Who am I?

S vintage star
S filipina now living in california
S obsessive-compulsive... make that compulsive-obsessive... no, obsessive-compulsive
S cold all the time (literally)

current terror alert level
Terror Alert Level

Why is Life Cold?

i actually have a very happy life. i just saw this graphic one day and got an inspiration for another blog. why not write about the stuff that makes life cold? from the huge, catastrophic, life-altering events to the seemingly trivial, little incidents that rub you the wrong way. it doesn't have to be a personal experience, it can be something observed.

on writing these down, my intent is to learn to appreciate life more and have a better handle on things when life throws you a curve ball. i want whoever will read this to contemplate, not get depressed. hopefully, you'll share with me your experiences as well so we can learn from each other.

p.s. it doesn't always have to be cold

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Where I Go When I Feel Life Getting Cold

S Memento
S Jo's Forum
S Shai Coggins
S pinayexpat
S joyceline
S piehole (a very funny girl)
S Din's World
S pinayhekmi chronicles
S Linnor
S Tin
S kwentong tambay
S deja brew
S denden
S mushings
S Junkville (never fails)


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How Do You Do It?

This past weekend, I did something something I haven't done in a long while... not read a single blog. Of course this means I have a lot of catching up to do. Which has also prompted this post.

How do you guys do it?

How do you manage to be on top of everyone's blogs, comment faithfully and still have time left over to update your own? I'm defeating the purpose of my blog when I started it - to document my day, preserve the events, capture the moments. What I end up doing is visiting a site, finding an interesting link, hopping on to another interesting link, liking it so much I visit the archives, and so on and so forth. It's a vicious cycle!

I consider myself a beginner and try to pace myself by slowly building my favorites (I started with just Memento). I really only want to add as links those I enjoy reading, and so far I've done just that. But now I find myself discovering more and more blogs to my liking, and less and less time to devote to blogging. I marvel at those (you know who you are) who update theirs daily (complete with fresh pictures!), visit their hundred links, comment on every post and have time to update their music lists. Whew! I know someone who even uses a different alias everytime he comments! Superhero indeed!

Any tip will be appreciated. I do love this blog world and I don't want to get burnt out and leave it.

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.31.2005 5:27 PM. |

Who Are You?

Yesterday, [or technically, 2 days ago since it's already 12:28 am] I got upset with hubby for being late picking me up for our daily lunch date. With eyes wide with excitement, my stepson [who joins us for lunch every Wednesdays because he gets off school early] exclaims, "There was a commotion at San Tomas! It was like a CSI scene! There were cops and firetrucks and CSI guys!" This makes me smile. To him, everything is like CSI.

Later on in the evening, we find out in the news that the commotion was due to the discovery of a dead baby in a hollowed-out hole of a rotting tree, a mile away from our house. This made my insides churn. We were watching this with a neighbor, who's a nurse, who then informed us that a California law has just been passed that anyone can leave a baby to a hospital, police station, or other government agencies with no questions asked. She said too bad the mother of this baby didn't know about this law. My husband then opines that the baby probably was stillborn and the mother got scared of the liabilities. Our neighbor added that it probably was one of those hidden pregnancies too where the family had no clue. As they continue to discuss, all I can think of was why didn't they just leave the baby at our doorstep? I would've taken care of it and raise him/her as my own. As if reading my thoughts, my husband says "no, it's against the law to keep the baby if you found it."

On a not so lighter news, a suicidal man left his SUV on the train tracks, changed his mind, and caused a massive train wreck that left 12 people dead and 200 injured. I know this is tragic, but I couldn't help but find the following ironic - almost laughable. The suicidal man, seeing the havoc he wreaked, tries to slit his wrist and stabs himself in the chest. The prosecuting lawyer is now making sure that he is under close suicide watch, so he could be tried for 11 counts of murder with "special circumstances" of committing murder through a train derailment. Under state law, special circumstances allegations could make a defendant eligible for the death penalty.

So... we're going to spend thousands of taxpayer dollars and waste hundreds of hours to make sure this nut dies, something he's all too willing to do himself right now? Is this why people make fun of California? Or lawyers?

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.28.2005 1:00 AM. |

Stepmoms are People 2

I have a very unique relationship with my stepson. I would say we are more friends than mother-son. I'm his favorite wrestling partner, maybe because I let him do anything and everything to me [and he, me]. I'm also his favorite TV buddy. He's got me hooked on SpikeTV and Nick@Nite while I've got him hooked on CSI and The Amazing Race. He'll even watch Dr. Phil as long as it's with me! We love to play, I mean really play, with each other. He laughs at me whenever he kills me at Halo 2, while I laugh at him when he gets a word in Scrabble wrong. We gang up against hubby/daddy, like when I'll let him go out and play when his dad won't, or when he takes my side when choosing which restaurant to eat at. We also have spats like friends do, like when he made fun of my favorite 80's music or when I teased him about the girl he liked at school.

Lately though, he's become more son-like towards me. He makes me sign his homework packet all the time, while I used to leave this to his dad or mom. He wants me to tuck him in after his dad has already done so, whereas he used to just kiss and hug me goodnight before going to bed. He asks for my help more and more on his homework, especially in Math. Last week, when he got sick, he told his dad that he'd rather stay with me than his mom.

He's also been slipping a lot too and mistakenly calls me "Mom." Although I'll never take the place of his mom, I like the sound of that.

my drama queen stepson after trying some vietnamese fish sauce

still reeling from the fish sauce, and gunning for an oscar at the same time

once in a while, i let him sit in the front seat of the car, and whenever he does, he always wants to hold my hand

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.24.2005 5:55 PM. |

iPodify Me!

Wow. I haven't realized the magnitude of iPod's popularity until a friend forwarded me this website. This site charges $19.95 to convert your photo into an iPod ad. What you will use it for, I have no idea, but apparently, a ton of people are flooding the site such that their backlog has grown from 2 days to a week!

Whew. Pretty soon, the iPod is going to be incorporated into our daily jargon, maybe as a verb like 'tivo' ("Did you tivo Desperate Housewives?") or a common noun like 'palm' ("I forgot my palm at home!"). Wouldn't it be nuts if it became an adjective? "Oooh, I like your skirt, it's so ipod!"

Nevertheless, the site inspired me...

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.20.2005 7:06 PM. |

To All You Phlegmatic Ducks

I got this via email from a friend in Atlanta. Found it funny and interesting, so I'd like to share with you.

English of English
By Carla Montemayor

The King's English and I

Sheffield-- I have always had a love affair with English, and for that reason I write in this language. I've encountered Singlish (the okay lahs of Singapore), Deep South English (brung and y'all), Japanese English (no R's), Ilocano English (all R's), and I have never had major surprises until now with English English, the way they speak it here in the UK.

It's not that I was ignorant of its peculiarities. I had read British authors, watched British films, and spoken with British people long before I got here. All that, however, still did not prepare me for the shock of the colloquial.

For starters, there's the verbose politesse. The British will not just say "thanks," they will invariably say, "Thank you very much indeed," or "Thank you ever so much." Ever so much na, indeed pa. How does one reply adequately to that? "You are profoundly welcome from the deepest recesses of my heart"? Sometimes I feel like bowing.

Then there are the dramatic exclamations. Things are never just "okay" or "nice" or even "great"; they are "splendid," "fantastic," and "brilliant." It's overwhelming and somewhat suspicious for someone whose own language is restrained in the deployment of superlatives. Maganda (beautiful), magaling (good), and ang galing-galing (really good) are about all we can bring ourselves to describe anything we're impressed with, although we do make up for it with emphatic gestures and lively vocal tones.

The British, when pronouncing something as being "superb," will make the most frugal of lip movements and the slightest of eyebrow lifts. Requests are bound to be long-winded. "You don't suppose you could turn the light on, do you, that is if you don't mind and if it's not too much trouble, of course?" I'm tempted to reply with a similar treatise, but I just say, yes, I suppose the Filipino CAN!

But CANS are not in vogue here. My housemate asked me for a TIN opener, not a CAN opener. And we're all supposed to throw our trash in the trash BIN, not the trash CAN. This must have confused the English when Bin Laden burst into the political scene because, well, the bin is always laden and that is why one must empty it regularly.

One evening, I decided I could speak fancy English as well as everyone, and so I announced to my housemates that I would be buying a small SKILLET. That was met with blank expressions. I am buying a small skillet so that we won't have to fry eggs in that big pan, I announced again. Oh, a FRYING PAN, they chorused. (Celtic barbarians,
I muttered under my breath.) But when they did fry poTAHtoes in that pan, they weren't FRIES at all but had somehow been transformed into CHIPS.

Don't get me started with those poTAHtoes and toMAHtoes. I scoured the grocery shelves and there wasn't any toMAHto SAUCE, just diced toMAHtoes in toMAHto JUICE. But I don't want to drink it! I want to cook with it!

I went on to the vegetable section already stressed out. No one knows of EGGPLANTS around here, just AUBERGINES. I could not positively identify the ZUCCHINIS because they were hiding under the alias COURGETTES. I've lost all hope of finding mustasa because I'm sure they're not called "moustache."

I've seen menus featuring "spotted dick," but I'm too embarrassed to order it. I searched for BISCUITS, ignoring large packages of DIGESTIVES, which I thought were for septuagenarians who had to put all solid food through a blender.

And because this is the north of England, I've been invited to TEA in the evening in which no tea was served it was actually DINNER. Then I was asked to DINNER, which turned out to be LUNCH. So now when they ask what I'm having for "tea," I say "rice." And when someone invites me to "dinner," I no longer plan to wear a shiny dress.

I have also ceased to recoil upon hearing the various endearments with which total strangers address me: "luv" (fairly common), "flower," "angel," and get this "duck." Why the name of a domestic fowl is considered a fond nickname, I have no idea. If someone called me "bibe" (duck) back home, I would surely be livid and yell back, "Itik" (skinny Philippine fowl)!

I have had to LOAD credits onto a local SIM card given to me by a friend, but I found out right away that there is no pre-paid "loading" here, only TOP-UP service. You top-up your mobile phone, tuition, bank balance.

All that topping up requires money, of course, and I cannot help making mental computations to convert pounds into pesos. (One pound is now about a hundred pesos.) So when I get a "concession" ticket (a discounted ticket for students) to watch a movie for "just" five pounds, I have actually spent P500 to see a film. Oh, bollocks! as the Brits would exclaim, and to that I can certainly relate because it sounds like bulok (rotten) and in the plural, too. In other words, bulok na bulok (very rotten).

Due to all the budgeting I have had to do, I have become better at MATHS yes, in the plural, as well. But for the first time in my life, my spelling skills have to be, er, topped up. It's labour, with a U. It's analyse and offence. All my written academic work is riddled with words underlined in red. I am completely DISORIENTED, but since this is England, I must be DISORIENTATED. Bloody strange, if you will excuse my English.

Anyway, I don't understand why "bloody" or "bleeding" is considered a swear word in this country. In Tagalog, if a meeting or a confrontation is particularly tense, it will be described as madugo (bloody). How is that filthy? Probably for the same reason that here, "phlegmatic" is something of a flattering adjective. To be full of phlegm is to be quintessentially British: calm and unflappable.

Me, I'm from a population of weak lungs where the horror of tuberculosis is still euphemized by the term "primary complex." I neither possess nor desire any phlegm whatsoever. To each language its own bodily fluid. lovely, isn't it? =) c u later, my ducks! =)

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.18.2005 4:06 PM. |

101 Things About Me

since i haven't figured out how to reference a non-archived page, i am presenting this as a post.

1. my real, full name is evangeline.
2. friends call me vangie, which i've formally adopted since moving to the states.
3. some of my nicknames growing up were gigi, gie, vange and tingting (as in reed thin... ah, the good old days).
4. i'm thinking of going back to evangeline, mainly because of her.
5. i was born on august 14, 1969.
6. which makes me a leo.
7. and a cock (or rooster, if you will).
8. i grew up in santa mesa, but moved to paranaque during my teen years.
9. i attended de la salle zobel high school.
10. in high school, my posse consisted of 7 nerdy girls.
11. we were known as the seven dwarves, and i'm sneezy.
12. i would go through a box of kleenex every 3 days.
13. i played the banduria, laud, octavina and snare drum in band just to get out of p.e.
14. i finished at the top of my batch in junior year, but fell down to third in my graduating class.
15. that's okay, because i had the happiest time letting loose with my senior-e classmates.
16. my first love was a classmate since sixth grade, but we only hooked up during our third year in college.
17. my first relationship lasted eleven years!
18. but now we're just friends.
19. i wish him all the happiness in the world.
20. i'm good in math.
21. i was the trigonometry (my worst subject) representative of our school for the math olympiad, where our team placed third.
22. my biggest crush in high school was neither cute nor hot, he just kicked ass in algebra.
23. i took up computer science in college, where i maintained a 4.0 gpa until the second year.
24. i am an alumnus of de la salle university.
25. i had many chinese classmates and i enjoyed learning and writing chinese bad words from them.
26. my two best friends in college were a tall girl and a pretty girl.
27. i was known as the smart one.
28. i secretly wished i was the pretty one instead.
29. i am a late bloomer.
30. i'm still waiting to bloom.
31. early in my career, i became good friends with six georgeous girls who are oozing with confidence, among other things.
32. i'm now married to a wonderful, loving, sweet and beautiful man.
33. i have the cutest stepson, whom i adore.
34. i have a yellow lab named xerky (short for xerxes double-trouble zeus f).
35. my husband's family is the best, and they don't even read this!
36. i used to get so self-conscious about the age and race difference between me and my husband.
37. now i love to flaunt it.
38. i'm a lousy homemaker.
39. i love buying expensive gifts for others.
40. i can finish a pan of brownies.
41. i have an unnatural obsession over ray liotta.
42. i can touch my nose with my tongue.
43. i have an abnormally high number of lines on my palms.
44. i had bulimia the first time i lived in the states.
45. which lasted for years.
46. i had the best time planning my wedding with my husband.
47. we splurged on my album ($8000) and scrimped on my gown ($200).
48. when it comes to gifts, my husband and i don't like surprising each other.
49. because it usually backfires (ugg boots, anyone?).
50. we love going to vegas, almost always staying at the paris hotel.
51. i love billy joel, sting, prince and george michael.
52. i'm stuck in the '80s.
53. i used to run for 2 hours on a treadmill everyday.
54. now i don't even want to walk across the parking lot.
55. when climbing stairs, i always have to end on the left foot.
56. when descending, i always start with my right.
57. this inanity has caused some minor accidents (not on my part but to others who have been watching me).
58. i can go on all day without drinking water.
59. i have never smoked nor taken any drugs.
60. i'd like to like liquor but my whole being rejects it.
61. i have very poor memory due to massive doses of anaesthesia over the years.
62. i got an mba from santa clara university in 2000, and got married at mission santa clara.
63. i used to sleep 3 to 4 hours a night while i was taking my master's (partly due to the bulimia).
64. i've had long hair for about 90% of my life.
65. i don't like my thick legs.
66. i like my small waist.
67. i love to dance.
68. if i could change one thing in my life, i would do more sports.
69. i play classical piano, my favorite composer is claude debussy.
70. i love my mom with all my heart.
71. i'm not good at making friends.
72. i think i have more guy friends than girl friends.
73. i'm impatient, lazy, quiet, pensive and stubborn.
74. i'm good at jeopardy and crossword puzzles.
75. i love beating friends at them.
76. i'm so into hollywood and all its drama.
77. my guy friends are comfortable with sending me racy and crude jokes.
78. i prefer the city over nature.
79. i have just finished writing my first novel, thanks to nanowrimo.
80. i would love to chat with oprah and judge judy.
81. i am a slow-reader, making sure i read every word.
82. although i don't often do so, i feel sexy when i wear a skirt.
83. my favorite color has changed throughout the years, but they've all been in the blue family.
84. i have a brother whom i miss all the time.
85. my favorite chain stores are banana republic, express, barnes & noble, the container store, target and marshalls.
86. i have created full choreographies in my head to 'brick house' and 'black and white' of which i'm the star dancer.
87. i have spontaneously played bohemian rhapsody at the microsoft store in sf metreon and got applauded by the crowd for it.
88. i get cold easily, for which my husband and stepson tease me all the time.
89. unfortunately, i was not gifted with a nice singing voice.
90. but that hasn't stopped me from singing whenever i can (only in front of my husband and good friends).
91. one bad habit i would like to get rid of is getting envious of others' possessions.
92. i sometimes dabble in drawing.
93. if i could be part of a sitcom, it'll be will & grace (yeah, even as rosario's daughter).
94. i am an aggressive driver.
95. my favorite shoes are bruno magli's.
96. i have a subscription to more than five magazines but read only one faithfully - people.
97. the only thing lacking in my life is a baby.
98. i have over 100 pairs of shoes but use only about five regularly.
99. despite #88, i love cold weather coupled with hot espresso.
100. my dream is to own a tim horton's franchise.
101. if and when i get my franchise, all my friends will get free drinks.

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.11.2005 7:16 PM. |

Branifer No More

Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston separate. Yoohoo, Brad! I'm heeeeere!

Seriously, I find it weird that I'm moved to blog about Brad and Jen, neither of whom I was a big fan of. Sure, I liked Rachel on friends and find Brad hot, but I was more disheartened (hopeful?) when Tom and Nicole split. I'm just affected by this, albeit mildly, because I really believed that these two were the real deal. They seemed to really be in love, the way we ordinary folks find our soulmates whom we end up living with forever. I was rooting for this Hollywood couple! Besides, I was looking forward to their depiction of The Time Traveler's Wife on the big screen. Now, they're just an addition to the legions of celebrities with short-lived marriages. If it turns out that Angelina Jolie really had a hand in this, I will hate her more.

Maybe I should place my bet on Demi and Ashton instead.

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.08.2005 10:05 PM. |

He Just Wasn't That Into Me!

I just finished the book He's Just Not That Into You, by Greg Behrendt and Liz Tuccillo.


No, it's not a long book. In fact, it's a breezy and highly-padded 176 pages. I'm just whewing because it's so overwhelmingly scratch-your-head simple that you wonder why you didn't write it first (and made it to Oprah as a bonus). It is very practical, sometimes too cookie-cutter, but the authors are careful to address that issue by a disclaimer that it is meant for the rule, not the exception. And we ladies shouldn't see ourselves as the exception.

I think that's where the problem lies with dealing with hard relationships. When we're in it, we cannot help but feel we are the exception.

Since I'm married and very happy, this was just light, entertaining reading for me, especially with Greg's mild humor injected here and there. But oh how I wish this book was written ten years ago - I would've saved myself a lot of time, trouble and tears.

I highly recommend it to single girls who are dating.

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.03.2005 6:44 PM. |

Googling Myself

Someone mentioned to me a while back that when they googled for my first name, they got my blog as the first result. Cool. Since I'm vain, to me this is even cooler than googlewhacking. Of course I had to try it myself. I got the same result and took a screenshot to preserve the day when I was no. 1 at Google! The novelty soon wore off when I realized I'm still number 1 after several weeks. Not a small feat, considering the commonality of my name (which has made me, on several occasions, consider going back to using my longer, but rarer, full name... but I digress). Look, there's even a site for an Ex Playboy Bunny Vangie, who I'm sure gets way more traffic than mine. Hey, at least I'm still first! Major props to blogspot!

I decided to post today's screenshot to also capture the cool Google logo with 2005 as backdrop shadow. Happy New Year everyone!

Vangie Fuhrman got cold on 1.01.2005 7:51 PM. |