👋 Oi, mga repapips, Brian Dys here! I love music, photography, and creative stuff like UX design and art. This is a place where I collect my thoughts and works. Apart all these, I’m Jaycelle’s better half and Bryce’s dad. 🥰
It’s been a long way since Photoshop 4 – eighteen (18) years and we’re now in the Cloud. Could it be any punnier that it was built from the ground “up”?
This Internet Thing
’96 – I was in high school – clueless as to what the coolest nickname was for an e-mail address because what’s e-mail? We were only using the PeeCee to research on the Encarta CD. It was the same year I left alone the 20-volume encyclopedia and 17-volume macropedia to rot in the shelf.
One very late night, I was asleep in the living room, I awoke to this weird sound – it was a robotic android-y sound coming from the computer area. Brushing my eyes from the slumber, I saw my brother in the dark with his face lit by the 15-inch monitor. I asked him what’s that I heard.
“I’m surfing the internet,” he said it like he couldn’t be bothered.
“Surfing? Internet? Can I watch?” Thought it was a new game he’s got there. Then maybe, just maybe he switched windows to Yahoo! Directories from whatever he’s doing.
And that was the end of the Encarta CD.
Surfing Sounds So Cool
You see, surfing the ‘net is quite easy to learn – with all those underlined links and animated GIFs – pure fun in digital form. I waited for my turn every after midnight to connect to the internet with anticipation – that distinct sound of the 56k modem (which is now my ring tone) successfully taking you into another dimension – it’s my Pavlov’s bell.
And so I found another reason to use the computer – to collect pictures of my favorite band of all time, Oasis.
And Graphic Design!
I’ve exhausted my “research” and “data-gathering” on Oasis and it left me with buttloads of band pictures. Then, just like how curiosity killed the cat, I wondered if I could “extend” a cut picture of Liam Gallagher’s shirt.
Going past through Notepad, FreeCell, Solitaire, and Minesweeper, I found my way to this piece of software which I tried to tame at least once in my life. It’s called MS Paint. It was a pain to manually copy-and-paste similarly-looking pixels to form an extension of the shirt. But hey, this was no the Photoshop before I knew it existed but it did what I wanted – a pop-out Liam Gallagher.
“Enter” Adobe Photoshop 4
Adobe Photoshop, you were a mere proper noun and a software with the coolest splash image – congratulations you’ve already been verbalized. I’ve seen you in your Undo/Redo ability until your History capability.
It sounded funny – the word “Adobe” – while I pictured an orange-y block of stone. And that nearly hindered me from getting interested in launching the program. “Photoshop” – it was just a place where you go to develop and print photos. No big deal.
I wondered if it could take the pain MS Paint gave me. I launched the program and thought to replicate what I did in MS Paint – just click “File > Open…” and find whatever picture was lying on the Desktop. Or in the bowels of a 100-folder directory.
Long story short, I found my brother’s pr0n stash.
And that’s the beginning of the tale of a wide-eyed pimply teenager in front of a computer about to uncover life’s biggest secrets.
Photoshop and Boobies
I opened one file from the stash.
Why not the same picture of Oasis? You might ask. My reasons, my disposition at that time – I could not recall. But I remember I was happy, a determined person.
The picture made me forget about my original plan – to extend Liam’s clothes, remember? Ironically, there it was – a picture of a flawlessly naked woman in front of me. I was being challenged to erase some itsy-bitsy body parts.
And so I clone stamped it out.
Alt+click-release + click, alt+click-release + click, alt+click-release + click. And more alt+click-release + click.
Done. It’s not a work of art – but this accomplishment, like how the internet dawned on me, opened a new dimension – a world of possibilities what could be done to, say, a landscape picture or even a blank canvas!
And so they say, “curiosity killed the cat but satisfaction brought it back.” Only to get curious again.
Our father arrives home once again–we picked him up at the airport one Monday morning.
Today is the 2013 Philippine general election, a midterm-kind of election since elected officials will be sworn in to office midway from the president’s term.
Last night, my brother, Jaycelle and I came home all the way from Quezon City to exercise our right to vote and the right to not vote epal candidates. From the news, we could hear all sorts of violence springing from this event–who should win and gain back their investments and more. And that’s what we saw–clumps of people on every corner as we drove by nearer our house in Cavite City.
We arrived in front of our house by 11 PM. From afar, I saw a dark spot on the street. It was a pool of blood as I inferred from the commotion of people nearby. I honked the car to tell my brother to quit probing and start opening the gate. Thanks to the goto late-night meal we had we didn’t reach home early enough to be part of this news.
At Ladislao Diwa Elementary School
We planned to wake up early to vote by 7 AM to avoid a long queue of voters. I readied my camera and stepped out to walk up to the school.
The entrance were barricaded by candidate supporters handing out flyers to people going in. There were many people already–some were there to vote, some were only hanging around.
Right by the very first building in the school was a voters’ assistance desk with roaming volunteers for a CHAMP elections:
Clean would be difficult to achieve given those loads of campaign materials that outnumbered trash cans; accurate would be a black and white thing–if the PCOS (Precinct Count Optical Scan) machine isn’t accurate then there wouldn’t be any event today; meaningful–I don’t know–this isn’t Christmas to be meaningful enough.
All I want is an HP elections–honest and peaceful.
Months before the elections, we’ve been bombarded with teevee ads and jingling campaigns where some were a pain to the sight and hearing and a nuisance to that teleserye we were watching. Days before the event I still didn’t have any senatorial roster. All I had was a list of “senatoriables” (what a term) I would not vote. Aside from being unready to vote, I had no idea where my designated precinct was.
Internet Precinct Finder? Wow!
COMELEC has a website, they say. COMELEC has an app, they say. It’s downright unusable, I found out–it’s always down. Even those who tried to help the government like GMA News Online couldn’t deliver the hopes and dreams of people who wished to immediately know where to go to vote on this day.
And the best damn thing that greeted me today–the Barangay Map Locator. Located in front of the school, it will tell you where you’re supposed to go without any search box or FAQ. It doesn’t need any data plan or even a keypad. It simply worked.
Our precinct was located way beyond the school grounds. Past the field and into the classroom, there were a few people loitering around. The good thing was that there wasn’t any queue.
Some of my relatives weren’t able to vote–them, being trapped in another city or country, they couldn’t afford to teleport here and back. I wondered how easy would it be for someone to pretend to be one of those absentees.
I didn’t use the ballot secrecy folder because there are no secrets to keep (like in some love songs). But really, I didn’t want to look like I’ve studied for an exam and was being overzealous in not sharing the answers.
I went home right after feeding my ballot to the machine and getting the ink. All we’re left with is the chance to hope that some candidates don’t get into position. For a better tomorrow.
Thank you, Ma, for all your love. We love you.
Here we go again, adrift at Cubao Expo. We spotted Humidor but it didn’t look like that we could snag some dinner food there. The door was open and I could feel the coolness of air conditioner and whiff cigarette smoke. There was a lady girl standing by the door and I asked her if they’re serving dinner. She pointed us to Alan’s Grill.
We were hesitant to settle immediately since it looked like there were beer-drinkers aplenty inside Alan’s grill. I turned my head around the neighboring establishments and saw even more beer. Inside the restaurant we went.
It seemed as if the food were priced a bit too high–imagine the veggies at two-hundred and up. So, I told Jayce, “if all else fails, fried chicken.” Hers was pork chop. The servings weren’t a mouthful nor a handful. Each serving is for a pair so we stayed for a little more than we should chewing and chatting. In between, I was drinking my buddy beer and she her fave calamansi juice.
Our waiter was very helpful that I thought he was Alan himself. Feeling relaxed in front of the over-working electric fan, I just kept my beer coming–bottle after bottle after bottle (just three) while enjoying Jayce’s company.
And we couldn’t take our eyes off the collage painting of the Aquinos and the Marcoses. I told Jayce that Ninoy Aquino is the founder of the NPA (New People’s Army) according to my grandfather who really loved Marcos’s governance.
After my last bottle of beer, we walked to find a desserts place–Sweet Ecstasy. From the outside it looked like a milkshake shop which Jayce would love. At the counter, there’s a gym-kind of guy who exuded a celebrity-kind of aura (he’s plastering a smile on his face). As he went out, Jayce asked the servers at the counter who he was because he looked familiar. Al Galang, that’s who. I remembered him from a chismax teevee show. It was like Al versus Hayden kind of thing.
Jayce was curious about Cerveza Negra shake but just by reading the combination of those two words made me squiggle my mouth so she ordered some Nutella cookie instead and I, Red Horse beer (sixty-five peso expensive for a small bottle).
We hang by the art gallery and tried so hard to start a conversation when the two of us were staring at a piece. I thank the alcohol for kickstarting a topic like how artists never talk about their pieces and poets let the readers interpret their words and Inception lets you think that there’s part two. But she thinks everything that transcends the normal is epal. I guess we really are in a third world country.
Happy 55th birthday, tita Gie. Thank you for welcoming me into your family. We wish you more happiness and blessings. We love you!
After celebrating tita Gie’s birthday dinner, I asked her to “unearth” her oldest picture which is her youngest-self picture. All we could find was this picture taken when she was 23 years old in 1979:
And the birthday soon-to-be mom-in-law’s most recent picture: