Thursday, November 29, 2007

Tips for Your Next Makati Coup

Thank you Senator Trillanes for giving Mrs. President the chance to once again flex her flabby biceps and show everyone who's boss. A few things to consider for next time:

1. Check the weather report. Especially if you fancy a long walk down the aisle and want some audience participation along the way. We Pinoys hate walking as it is so it's silly to think we'd be more willing to do it in the rain.

2. If your cohorts are old enough to be your father and grandfather, expect little support from the 18-49 male demographic and none at all from females of all ages.

3. We like your choice of venue so keep it up. Consider calling yourselves "The Posh Putschists".

4. Get rid of this guy.

4. Show us you're game. If you start something, bring it to conclusion. If you make a demand, stand your ground until you get it. If you chew gum, blow a bubble or two. Or at least make like you're trying.

5. Give whatever it is you're doing a name. Right off the bat, say, "This is a coup / putsch / rebellion / mutiny / terrorist act / hunger strike / sit-in." You will save us the trouble of figuring out what the hell it is and more importantly you will have people referring to you as coup leader, rebel or mutineer instead of twat.

6. Make sure people get something out of it in the end. If not a new government, then maybe a couple of days off work. And in no case should it be a fucking curfew.

7. Lastly, don't forget yer balls.

Monday, November 05, 2007

The Last Supper in 16 Billion Pixels; Gloria di Sant'Ignazio in 9.8


This website by an imaging outfit called HAL9000 lets you get up close and personal with the most famous 13-person portrait of all. Zoom in and you can almost smell the must and feel the cold surface just inches away from your face.

Another masterpiece featured is Andrea Pozzo's Gloria di Sant'Ignazio, the fresco in St. Ignatius's Church in Rome. Zoom in and notice that the mouldings in the painting are painted with cracks -- details a viewer on the ground would never get to see (until now), but are nonetheless there.

This is my favorite of all the artworks we saw in Rome when we were there in 2000. We almost didn't see it; it wasn't in any of the five guidebooks we carried around. We were walking in one of those streets from the Vittoriano leading to the Spanish Steps. There was a sudden shower and we took shelter in the doorway of an indistinct church. I saw the brass sign on the door and said to the wife, "Hey, look, St. Ignatius. It's fate. We have to go in."

What we saw inside was nothing short of majestic. The church vault had opened out to heaven and God's people were being drawn up by the sheer glory of it all. The images were so life-like we didn't know if we were looking at paintings or sculptures. We stood there open-mouthed, unbelieving, awestruck.

When we gathered our wits, we proceeded towards the altar and noticed that the cupola was rather askew. We realized there was no cupola; it was a perspective painting. Much later wifey found a marker on the floor. We stood on it and looked up. The painting was gone and right there was a cupola above the heart of the church. Amazing stuff.

St. Ignatius's Church was the best serendipitous find of that trip (of our lives to date, actually). We discovered it on our second day and by the time we were through with our exhausting and exhaustive 10-day visit it would rank right up there with the Sistine Chapel and the Parthenon as the greatest masterpieces of Rome in our book. Quite a feat considering the competition.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Are they serious?

Saw a Philippine Daily Inquirer ad at the movies recently that went:

Fade-in: photo of Romeo Garduce. "How hard can it be?"
Fade-in: photo of Lea Salonga. "Why not the world?"
Fade-in: photo of Ninoy Aquino. "Why can't I come home?"
Philippine Daily Inquirer. Dare to Ask.

I don't know that these words were ever uttered verbatim, but they are attributed to these people using sound-alike voice-overs to boot.

But apart from this, the problematic thing about the whole bit is that while it gives examples of supposed inquiries and dares us "to ask", those questions up there, as any fourth grader would know, are freaking rhetorical questions.

Sure we should all be Inquirers. But by asking "questions" that are by definition "used only for rhetorical effect and to which the answer is obvious, immediately provided or simply not expected," how much inquiring does one do?

Ten Years Old and It Still Kills

Tony looks like a human being, Drea de Matteo is a restaurant hostess, Big Pussy's on dry land, Christopher is lean and hungry, Paulie Walnuts looks exactly the same and Livia Soprano is the most terrifying of the lot. The Sopranos Season 1 is midway through its first Philippine television broadcast on Crime/Suspense (Ch.50 on SkyCable) Fridays at 10:00 PM, encore at 3:00:AM. Reruns on Mondays at 1:00 PM and Sundays at 11:00 PM. The girls at the Bada Bing are pixelized, but more than a few choice colorful words escape bleeping.

Might be of interest: