October 22, 2006

I’m forming an e-group. It’s called T-bloc Creative Writing Group. Membership is by invitation only, but if you are interested, you are more likely going to be invited. The group is for serious writers–high brow or low brow. Just write and send me sample of works and a bio-sketch.

Meanwhile, as literary editor of OragonRepublic.Com, I’m happy to announce that we are accepting contributions again. Just send poems, essays and stories written in any of the Bikol languages to We intend to launch the folio on December and hey, we are looking for sponsors too. If you have some cash to spare, you can help us out. In return we will also print your name or establishment in the folio. This will help you a great deal also because our folio is read by the right people. Now I’m learning marketing.


At last SOS has replaced my 128MB RAM. Now I’m back working.

To seal this fortunate event is an LBC package from my Esmi mailed from Davao (She’s back in Makati now). By the looks of it, I have a month-long supply of GenSan Tuna, siram! I also have a new shirt to wear tomorrow and it will sure make me look like a hip Mt Apo climber. Also, when she was there in Mindanao doing field work, I often lost track of her whereabouts, so she sent me keychains and magnetized keepsakes from Cagayan de Oro, General Santos, Butuan and Camiguin. Mabalus, Bibi, you brought me Mindanao in a package.

Now we got some info on the Mundag Literary Awards, a contest sponsored by The Pillars of Ateneo de Naga University. Entries in the Essay, Fiction, Poetry and Drama written in English, Filipino but preferably in Bikol are welcome. There is also a category for the visual arts. The contest is open to all Ateneans (alumni and current students) only. Deadline is on November 5, 2006. For more information write or visit

The Friedrich Naumann Foundation is once again offering a free Liberal Leadership Training/Seminar on  “Market Economy and Poverty Alleviation: Making the Market Work for the Poor”. It will be held Nov 13-15 at the Asian Institute for Management Conference Center.

Workshop objectives are as follows:

1. Participants understand the fundamentals of liberalism and the place of the market economy in it.

2. Participants understand basic economic principles.

3. Participants understand how the market economy benefits the poor.

4. Participants know how to create pro-poor market structures.

5. Participants identify how government can institute policy reforms
that benefit the poor.

Prospective participants must fill out the application form and  send it via e-mail or fax to and (02)8103189 along with a résumé no later than 23 October 2006, 5pm.


October 11, 2006

I think it all started when my PC refused to boot. I brought my CPU to where I bought its parts, right there in Save on Surplus-Naga because I wanted to avail of the warranty. The technicians figured that the cause of the malfunction was the Memory so I had it replaced. Since they could not provide the item at that time and I use my PC everyday, I had to buy a new 128MB DDR 333 Memory and spend P850 for it. I was thinking that when the replacement arrives I would have my CPU upgraded.

After three months SOS called me up, saying that the item was ready for pick-up. It was great news for me. At last, an upgrade.

They installed the thing and right there it seemed to be working just fine. I even noticed that my PC began to boot and execute applications faster. But when I got home and was working on something, I experienced a reboot. I did not make a big deal of it at first although my gut instinct was sounding an alarm.

That weekend I went to Manila, did some Bar-Ops, attended the Ani 32 launch and met some friends. When I came back, my housemate borrowed my PC for her power point presentation in her Master’s class. It was then when the restarts began to be annoyingly frequent. She could not finish anything.

And so I brought back the unit to SOS. One of their technicians examined my CPU and offered a myriad of diagnoses: software problem–unapdated XP version, virus, electrical instability (it was just a day after Milenyo). Nothing about hardware. He did not even take a look at the CPU’s innards. He told me if it’s memory problem I would experience blue screen. He said they could reinstall the software for a fee. I was left thinking.

Instead of paying for it, I could do it myself, I thought. But I asked for some assistance from Fer Basbas, but we were not able to finish installation due to CD-ROM problems. The device, as I mentioned in a previous entry, was screeching like a girl being gang-raped. And so I had to buy a new one, an LG brand, for P700.

It was difficult to reinstall my softwares even with a new CD-ROM. I could not perfectly copy the XP files from the disk and so I had to repeat the process so many times. And when I was finally able to complete the reinstallation, there would still be the same reboot problems.

I was advised by Computer Engineering students to reformat my system drive using File Allocation Table 32 (FAT32), and so I did. But I lost some of my files since the reboot problem kept on bugging me while I was trying to transfer my files.

After many attempts at perfecting the reinstallation (copying of XP files is quite tedious, if you skip a file, your XP won’t work properly), I was finally able to set up a new system. I reworked my file system and started doing my thing in there but heck, the reboots kept on coming.

I disabled the automatic restart so that I could read the stop error screen. The reports mentioned computer Geek language that I had never read before. But something hit a chord: If I did introduce changes in my system like add or remove software or hardware, or change configurations, it could be the culprit.

What was annoying was that, my PC would work for some time and would suddenly shutdown. You can try to recover your work in progress though, but you will have to cross your fingers.

When I was resting yesterday afternoon, something occured to me. These problems actually happened only after guys at SOS installed the ‘new’ memory stick. And so I got up, packed my CPU and went back to SOS.

It’s true when they say that most PC’s crash at times like these, when the semester is about to end. One teacher opined that maybe it’s caused by all those negative energies coming from encoders. The computer is an energy base and much more, an artificial intelligence. Maybe it can absorb negative energy after-all.

I say this because there were dozens or more of CPUs waiting to be serviced in SOS when I got there. I argued that I ought to be given preference because I was merely coming back. They misdiagnosed the problem of my PC that is why I came back. I asked the technician to remove the memory they installed earlier and retest it.

I was right after-all. The memory they installed was defective and was causing the breakdown of my machine.

Now they gave me another replacement slip and I am expecting another three months before they can provide another memory stick.

For my trouble? Nothing in return except the little knowledge I acquired in programming.

Now my PC is as good as before. But wait until you check my CPU’s transide–it turned out the technician forgot to screw it back. Damn.

Recently, Bill Gates and Company (Microsoft) came up with a new OS software called Vista. I learned about it through my Muslim friend right there in Bichara Mall. It’s cheap, only PhP180.

I think of this because my PC got busted. Worm Virus, the experts say. It kept on restarting, to my annoyance. And it was hard not to consider my frequently updated cheap operating system (Microsoft XP Package 1) as part of the problem.

Now, I gathered my courage to open up my CPU and look at my CD-ROM attachments. You see, when I was trying to reinstall my cheap but frequently updated Bill Gates software, it kept on screeching, sounding like a girl being gang-raped. As a result, the OS would not install properly.

Sometimes I dislike IT people who don’t tell you what your machine’s problem really is. They just give you hints and you are expected to spend for it. That is why, as I said, I gathered up my courage and began doing the fixing myself. I thought, if computers are to be the writer’s best friend, I better try my luck in mastering it.

My motivation is my backlog. I have manuscripts to work on and some on-line poetry sections to edit. Not to mention my thesis.

Think of it, my IT for Idiot’s worth of pananoia: Bill Gates and Company finally got to hack their way through my frequently updated cheap OS and marked my computer as number one target for shutdown, sending Trojan horses, donkeys, cats and dogs just to shut me down so that I cannot blog anymore. You know why? It’s because my entries are actually codes, yes, codes. I am actually communicating with some IT terrorists. And Microsoft wise guys singled me out among the enumerable friends of Mindanaoans right there at Bichara Mall.

Now, it has been more than an hour and no shutdown. Even after reformating my hard disk, somehow, I am still expecting some sofware issues.

But for now, before I visit my Muslim friend. I meet with Mr. Grisoft online.  Ta ta.


October 1, 2006

Went to Manila last Saturday and did some Bar-Ops last Sunday. We observed how people make a big deal of the law profession. After-all, it is still a favored career. Most of our leaders are lawyers and it would not be a surprise if their sons and daughters were among the barristers this year.

We planned to drop by CCP last Monday to get our copy of Ani 32 where our 3-page poem, ‘Hagbayon’ is printed. However, we learned that CCP is closed during Mondays and so we opted to attend the launch in Conspiracy Bar come Tuesday. We rode with the literary division staff aboard the CCP bus and arrived at the venue early enough to witness Nyoy Volante shooting a music video.

Gary Granada and Noel Cabangon performed prior to the readings. The event was hosted by Manolito Sulit and Dr. Luis Gatmaitan. The readers were Jose Jason Chancoco, Rogelio Braga, Dexter Cayanes, John Torralba, Jun Balde, Genaro Gojo Cruz, Nestor Lucena and Nonon Carandang. Reader-contributors were each given copies of Ani 32.

For his part, editor Herminio Beltran thanked all those who made the project possible including UP-ICW for arranging with Conspiracy as venue for the launch. He also invited prospective contributors for next year’s issue.