👋 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. 🥰
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:
It’s my mom’s 57th birthday, so Jayc and I cooked for her–a very simple tomato and chili pasta with pan-seared chicken.
Happy birthday, ma! We love you.
As the car in front of mine overtook onwards, a weird-looking pedicab emerged in view–a block of text on bright red paint caught my eye enough for me to tailgate this cruising balut vendor.
A balut or balot is a fertilized duck embryo that is boiled and eaten in the shell. It is commonly sold as streetfood in the Philippines.
Source: Balut (egg) on Wikipedia
We see how funny and ingenious our fellow vendors could be (also seen ubiquitously on jeepney decorations).
Loaded with balut eggs
Sorry po sa kaunting delay!
The English transcription:
Distance, my friend
Loaded with balut eggs
Sorry for the slight delay!