Happy birthday, Sagewin!

3 11 2009

Found Nemo!... as a huge plush toy!

HE HAS always teased me about my penchant for hierarchy – among my friends.  While I have never worn any accusation of favoritism as a badge of honor, I have never revolted whenever he would level this charge against me.  Yes, he does it in jest.  But that is not the reason why I have never taken this assertion of unfairness seriously.  Through the years, I have come to realize that only my real friends can get away with teasing me about such a usually sensitive matter.

Sagewin is one of those.

He to me is all that Ateneo De Manila University is touted to be (with Friendship being all that rival De La Salle University is).  That is why the Ateneo t-shirt he gave me years ago still remains to be one of my most cherished possessions.  Nowadays, it claims its rightful place alongside a t-shirt from UC Davis – again from him – where he is currently taking a Ph.D. in some highly advanced branch of chemistry that my brain just can’t handle anymore.  (And I got 1.00s in three of four chemistry subjects I had in college, the fourth being a 1.25!)  I have a good feeling that he is a Dr. Sheldon Cooper in the making.  (Yes Batman I hear you!  Sagewin is not in CalTech!  Hahaha!)

Tale of Two Tees - UC Davis 00

UC Davis T-Shirt

He helped refine and broaden my appreciation of music by introducing me to the likes of Howie Day, Binocular, Joshua Payne, Damien Rice, Dave Matthews Band, and Jamie Cullum while not judging me for still putting on heavy rotation my beloved cheesy ballads.  After all, more than half of the “groundbreaking” music he burned on a CD he handed me at the Sacramento International Airport were – all together now – cheesy!  But seriously, because of his influence, I have never removed songs like “Collide,” “Deep,” “Brick,” and “Gray Sky Morning” in my playlist.  They’re always there.  Oh, there’s “Nanka Shiawase” too!


Damien Rice CD



All-American Rejects CD



Dave Matthews Band: The Central Park Concert DVD

He has a tremendous amount of patience for my awful lack of EQ.  There was a time when we went for a long drive to Old Faithful and Napa Valley.  I was throwing tantrums the whole day but he and James, Friendship and Rafela just let me be.  But this is not to say that he condones my occasional misbehavior.  Because after my craziness subsides, he talks to me like the adult that I should be.  He parcels out advice when he has to.

He brought me and Brother to some of my dream destinations – Old Sacramento (Hahaha!), Stanford University, UC Davis, Universal Studios, Disneyland, my favorite Star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame (Nicole Kidman’s!), the Golden Gate Bridge, Lombard, and even to my first ever MRT ride.

Hollywood Walk of Fame Favorite - Nicole Kidman

My favorite star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame – Nicole Kidman!

He is only one of a very few people who makes my generosity pale in comparison.  And he never misses out on greeting me on my birthday (and there have always been gifts!).

Happy Birthday 05

Birthday gift 2009

Most importantly, he always – ALWAYS – listens to me.  And that has remained constant regardless of the time zone he is in.

If only everybody else has a real friend like Sagewin.

Friday, November 6th, marks his birthday.  Happy birthday, Sagewin!


Baseball in Chicago!



Michael Jordan – the statue – at United Center in Chicago, Illinois!





Copyright © 2009 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MuchTime™©.  All rights reserved.

Now that’s inspiring!

3 11 2009
Noynoy Aquino - Hindi Ka Nag-Iisa Ad 00

Truly inspirational – Noynoy Aquino's political ad.

US PRESIDENT John F. Kennedy said it best when he enjoined his nation to “ask not what your country can do for you.  Ask what you can do for your country.”

Last Friday night, I saw its embodiment in Noynoy Aquino’s first political ad.  Now that’s a campaign.  Now that’s inspiring!

I’ve always been about the lyrics when it comes to songs, and for the first time since people vying for my country’s highest position have expressed their interest, it has only been with Noynoy Aquino’s ad that I truly feel proud to be Filipino.  That I can make the change I want to see in this world.

Yes, I may have been disenfranchised, but I shall do my best to speak my mind.  After all that we have gone through and after all that we have seen, we need someone to inspire us to be the very best that we can be, to help, to do our share.

The government is not about those in position.  It is about the power that rests in the consent of the governed.


Copyright © 2009 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MuchTime™©.  All rights reserved.


Julie & Julia and eNTeNG

3 11 2009

I KNEW I enjoyed “Julie & Julia” tremendously the very moment I started throwing out “bon appétit” before meals – even when I’m eating all by myself.  I’ve dispensed with my review of the movie.  But I realize that I’ve left out my personal notes about it.

So here’s a list of things that struck me about “Julie & Julia,” and how they relate to me.

  1.  Boeuf Bourguignon.  Apart from the ampersand in the title that seems to act as the tie that binds the two women together, this dish – bouef bourguignon – deserves supporting non-actor credits.  It’s the dish that Julie’s mom prepared when her dad’s boss dropped by for dinner when she was a kid.  Only thing is that it wasn’t exactly just boeuf bourguignon but “Julia Child’s boeuf bourguignon.”  When the Christian Science Monitor reporter asked for an interview, it was the same dish Julie whipped up – doing it twice over after the first batch burned.  But the most important role this dish played was that it was the one that the Knopf editor kitchen-tested – eliciting an improper, orgasmic “Yum!” (back then it was thought to be improper to utter “Yum” while eating) – making her decide on publishing Julia Child’s 700-page manuscript.

Bouef Bourguignon 00

A copy of a Boeuf Bourguignon recipe. But this one's Rachael Ray's, the one I've been using.

  2.  eNTeNG’s Boeuf Bourguignon.  In 2003, I first saw this dish demonstrated on national television by none other than 30-minute meal champion herself, Rachael Ray.  How she managed to cut down the hours needed to simmer what simply translates to “beef burgundy,” was beyond me.  The dish looked sumptuous on screen!  I printed out the recipe and tried it the first time right around my birth month.  When my eldest brother visited, I actually made it, but just like Julie’s first, it wasn’t up to par so I switched to the very Filipino beef mechado at the last minute.  Eventually, I saw another domestic goddess whip it up onscreen – Ina Garten.

      Bouef bourguignon is simply a stew of beef in a reduced red wine sauce with pearl onions, carrots, and mushrooms, with the hint of thyme and parsley.

Bouef Bourguignon 03

As you can see, the boeuf bourguignon recipe is one of many recipes I went crazy about for some time. Everything on this print-out pile, I have actually kitchen-tested!

Bouef Bourguignon 02

Notice the time stamp on my boeuf bourguignon recipe print-out – July 16, 2003!

 3.  Salt over the shoulder.  In one scene, Julia attends to several pans bubbling up on the stove and proceeds to season them with salt.  It was one understated scene that can pass anybody by.  But not me.  I totally noticed Julia doing the “salt over the shoulder” thing – for goodluck!  I do that too.  Before, they thought I was just creating a mess at home.  But now they know what it means to me.  It bears mentioning that to my generation, it was Rachael Ray who told me about this.  In her other show “$40 a day,” she even chided a down-home diner owner-chef for not throwing excess salt over his shoulder.  I found it to be cute.

  4.  The Joy of Cooking cookbook.  I bought my copy of this landmark cookbook in a community garage sale.  My friends and I did the rounds of the cul de sac twice over before I decided to pick up the book.  I had since given it away.

  5.  Mastering the Art of French Cooking cookbook.  I saw this book on a days-long book sale at a community library in Sacramento.  It was lying down on its right side – the side that opens – with the spine and its title catching my attention.  It was huge.  Took me a second visit to decide getting it.  I had since given it away – to the same person.

  7.  Best sound bite from the film – “I love you so much I will let you take the first bite!”

Epilogoue:  I got introduced to Julia Child through two things – the “From Martha’s Kitchen” episode where she (Julia) and Jacques Pépin prepared the Chateubriand, the best part of the beef tenderloin; and much earlier on through the free 1995 Microsoft CD Julia Child Home-Cooking with Master Chefs!  (Interactive Cooking Lessons from 16 All-Star Chefs).  On that CD, my favorite part has been her guided tour of her “kitchen,” where she offers advice on stocking the pantry with her essentials, choosing the right cookware, cooking with wine, and working with knives and utensils.

Julia Child Home Cooking with Master Chefs

The liner of my 1995 CD – Julia Child: Home Cooking with Master Chefs! (Interactive Cooking Lessons from 16 All-Star Chefs)

To have her pots and pans at the Smithsonian only means that she is that important a part of the American culture and heritage.  I’m so glad I got to know her through these.

Copyright © 2009 by eNTeNG  c”,)™©’s  MuchTime™©.  All rights reserved.