Friday, February 4, 2011

Overjoyed, over loved, over me

When I was in the van on my way to work earlier the radio played Overjoyed by Stevie Wonder.  Hearing it made me smile and I immediately brought out my phone and sent Simon a text.  In the message I said:
"I'm listening to Overjoyed on the radio and I immediately thought of you.  It was the one of the best gifts you have ever given me.  Thank you."
At which his reply was to send me back a smile.

It was then that I realized that, trite as it may sound, we actually had a song.  Many, many years ago when we were still together I noticed Simon practicing a complicated piece on his 6-string bass and thought, it must be a new piece the band wanted to try out for a gig.  Since they did that occasionally I didn't think much of it.  Back then I used to go to his gigs all the time.  This particular gig, though, he insisted that I attend and asked me to bring my friends.  There was nothing unusual about that request so I said yes.

That gig was at 70s Bistro with Lampano Alley, and it was at around this time of the year (February), on our wedding anniversary.  There is one particular song (I think it was "Gloria") where all the members of the band get some spotlight time so when it was time for Simon's solo I was not surprised.  What did surprise me was when everyone left the stage and then Binky announced on the mic that Simon's solo was dedicated to me for our anniversary.

He then proceeded to play his rendition of Victor Wooten's version of Overjoyed on his 6-string bass.  I was transfixed ... entranced ... speechless ... awestruck.  It was as if the roomful of people disappeared and there was only him and me.  His performance was so good that there was no sound from the audience, not even clinking ice.  He was that good!

Our friend, Claire, was so amazed that she had grabbed my arm at the beginning of the song and watched Simon the entire time and when he finished (to a standing ovation) she turned to me with starry eyes and said, "Manang, gumwapo si Simon sa paningin ko." hahaha

I was so choked up and teary eyed with happiness I wanted to run onstage and give him a smooch but I didn't.  Instead I just mouthed him the words "I love you".  After all, they still had a gig to finish.  From that time on, though, my friends and family (who were with me at the gig) and I cannot hear Overjoyed without thinking of Simon.

Just to give you an idea, here is a clip of Victor Wooten (sorry, not Simon) playing Overjoyed.  This video does not actually have a video (just a picture) so you can just listen to it.  This was the only full acoustic version I could find.

And, here are the lyrics to the song.

Over time, I've been building my castle of love
Just for two, though you never knew you were my reason
I've gone much too far for you now to say
That I've got to throw my castle away

Over dreams, I have picked out a perfect come true
Though you never knew it was of you I've been dreaming
The sandman has come from too far away
For you to say come back some other day

And though you don't believe that they do
They do come true
For did my dreams
Come true when I looked at you
And maybe too, if you would believe
You too might be
Overjoyed, over loved, over me

Over hearts, I have painfully turned every stone
Just to find, I had found what I've searched to discover
I've come much too far for me now to find
The love that I've sought can never be mine

And though you don't believe that they do
They do come true
For did my dreams
Come true when I looked at you
And maybe too, if you would believe
You too might be
Overjoyed, over loved, over me

And though the odds say improbable
What do they know
For in romance
All true love needs is a chance
And maybe with a chance you will find
You too like I
Overjoyed, over loved, over you, over you

Thursday, February 3, 2011

How do I love tikoy, let me count the ways

 tikoy.  I could eat it all day ... which is why I am very happy when we receive a lot of Tikoy from our friends.  Good thing that tikoy is usually only given during Chinese New year or I'd be a blimp!

Before cooking the tikoy I like to put it in the chiller to make cutting it up easier.  Once firm enough I slice it by cutting down (not in a sawing motion) and I store the cut up pieces in plastic containers in the refrigerator.  That way I can just take out a container and cook it without the hassle of slicing ... plus it takes up less space in the ref that way. 

The usual way of preparing tikoy is by beating an egg and then dipping the tikoy in the beaten egg before frying it in hot oil.

Another way is to roll it in cornstarch after letting the sliced tikoy sit out for a while (so that it is sticky again) and then frying.  This method uses no egg.

Another way is to wrap it in a lumpia wrapper with a slice of fruit.  Fruit options I am sure work (because I've tried them, hehehe) are langka (jackfruit), ripe mango, and saba (banana).  I've tried cooking the lumpia two ways and both of them work.  

You could deep fry it (as usual) or you could baste it with oil and stick it in the oven toaster for 8 to 10 minutes.  The second option is healthier so, if you are "trying" to eat healthy, you may opt to do the latter.  I wish I had chocolate or strawberry syrup.  I bet this would taste and look great with a drizzle of syrup.   The fruit in the photo is mango.  I like using mango because the contrast of sweet and slightly sour is interesting.

I read somewhere that I could roll the tikoy in sesame seeds before deep frying it so I want to try that tomorrow.

A friend of mine said he ate some earlier with nuts, so I want to try that, too.

Can anyone else think of other ways to prepare tikoy?  I'd love to try them all so suggestions are more than welcome.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

School hell in a hand basket ... for me

I used to love going to school.  I would wake up and be excited 'cause I will be learning something new.  For the first time ever I am so dissatisfied that going to school feels like a chore.

When it comes to work I have this philosophy:  "when I wake up in the morning and all I can think of is I wish the work/school day would end, then it is time to move on".  In other words, when work is no longer fun, then it is time to look for something more challenging or stimulating.

This semester started off wrong for me.  From the time it started in November we either had so many school extra-curricular activities or our classes were in jeopardy because of the student quota required that we are unable to meet.  Consequently, we didn't really learn much ... of anything.

If there is one subject, though, where I feel I learned something it would have to be Statistics.  Luckily, I enjoy math so I am actually enjoying the challenges this subject throws at me.

IMC is a bust.  If not for the fact that the class decided to do a marketing plan as a class project, I don't think our class would have any direction at all.  Since I have the official syllabus from our program chair, Sir Dodi, I know what topics are supposed to be covered but are not.

In Seminar in Communication Management in the Philippines:  Issues and Trends we have had some lectures, but, unfortunately, they were on days when I was not around because of work and then when I DID appear for class, I discovered there was no class on that day.

And then there is the accreditation for MC.  I'm glad the brunt of the work has been moved from my shoulders to that of a full-time faculty member.  As a student (and not an alumna of the university) I found myself at a loss to work on most of the things needed for accreditation.  Thankfully, Sir Dodi assigned the curriculum reformatting and updating to me, which I knew I was capable of accomplishing.  This meant that so long as there was a previous version, I had something to work with.  There are still problems, though.  I still need 6 more syllabi which, I suppose were subjects that were not taught before.  Without assistance from faculty and students who have taken or are taking those subjects, how am I supposed to acquire those syllabi?  Hello, student here, not faculty!  I am hoping, really hoping that the faculty step up and do their parts, too.  Btw, I don't know all the faculty members, either.  Other MC students have also been assigned to different parts of the accreditation requirements.  Hopefully, they are being utilized well as I have opted not to get too involved with it outside of my assignment.  I already have more than enough on my plate!

Let's add to that the MC activities that, apparently, I am supposed to be spearheading.  Color me shocked!  One of the activities I anticipated I will be spearheading since this was something we were discussing as early as September, but other than that ... how did I get to be the person in charge?  Napag-utusan lang ako to relay instructions from Sir Dodi and all of a sudden I am in charge?  I was promised support but not really getting any ... yet.  It is as if everyone is waiting for someone to tell them what to do but besides a handful, no one else is asking what they CAN do or volunteering to do something specific.

Ok, fine.  Someone has to do it, right?  And if no one else will step up then I will do what I can but my abilities are limited, given my current work load/responsibilities.  I don't know if I have mentioned this before, but I have 3 jobs, so you can imagine just how buried I am in work.  As it is, when I enrolled for a full Saturday schedule, I had not anticipated that I would have work on a Saturday that would affect 2 of my 3 subjects.  Thankfully, I was able to speak with my professors and was able to arrange alternatives.  For my Statistics class I will be attending the Sunday classes.  For my Seminar class I will present my report as soon as possible.

In the election of officers for the MC Society last August I was very surprised that I was elected (in any position) given that I was not present.  The constitution specifically stated that a person cannot be nominated nor elected in absentia.  In any case, I got elected Secretary and I have been doing everything I could to fulfill my role as Secretary.  The tasks set for me are specific.  Documentation, announcements, minutes, writing letters.  Other than that, duties expand given our roles in the various committees.  I feel at times, though, that I am (by accident or by design) doing things above and beyond my responsibilities and I fear that I am usurping the roles of other officers.  I keep trying to avoid them but they keep coming back to me.  So maybe in a way it is a good thing I can't be in school all day anymore.  Maybe it is a good thing I am not so available because of work.

I will continue to do what I can virtually and be present at MC or required school events whenever possible but that's it for me.

I don't like feeling so negative and right now all the negatives are pointing to school.  Thankfully the semester is halfway through and in a little over a month new officers will be elected and I will be released from my feelings of obligation.

I need to get back into the positive frame of mind. I WILL get back to being positive.  It's the only way to get through life without having a nervous breakdown again.  At the moment, I feel really close to having another one. 

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Buried under a pile

Ok, ok.  I've been saying for some time to whoever asks me what I am up to that I am buried in work.  I feel the load but I haven't really listed down everything I need to do.  So, I figured listing them down might make it look more manageable.  Let me see ...
With TK I need to complete the following:
  1. 17 lab exercises
  2. 17 complete websites (with original content, design, and full functionality)  
  3. 5 text quizzes  
  4. 5 interactive quizzes  
  5. 45 concept papers
Then with CSB I need to prepare lectures for the following:
  1. information architecture  
  2. web typography  
  3. web page elements and layouts  
  4. working with dreamweaver  
  5. working with colors for the web  
  6. optimizing images for the web  
  7. preparing photographs for use on the web 
  8. slicing and rollovers  
  9. designing the site template  
  10. inserting media  
  11. wire-framing  
  12. using tables to layout a website  
  13. CSS  
  14. spry  
  15. working with forms and applying JS behaviors  
  16. web publishing  
  17. portfolio production and timeline  
  18. production timeline  
  19. online layout and production  
  20. asset assembly and selection  
  21. specialization stages  
  22. asset collection  
  23. integrating assets to mediums  
  24. asset selection  
  25. physical setups  
  26. layout for physical designs
For the MC accreditation I need to retype and update the course syllabi of the following:
  1. COM 631 Statistics in Communication  
  2. COM 632 Information and Communication Technology  
  3. COM 634 Integrated Marketing Communication Strategies  
  4. COM 635 Seminar in Communication Management in the Philippines: Issues and Problems  
  5. COM 636 Corporate Communication  
  6. COM 637 Managing Public Information Programs and Campaigns  
  7. COM 638 Organizational Culture and Communication Policy Planning  
  8. COM 639 Research and Theory Construction in Communication 
  9. COM 640 Communication Research Utilization, Planning, Policy and Management  
  10. COM 641 Qualitative Approaches in Communication Research  
  11. COM 642 Ethical and Philosophical Issues in Communication Research  
  12. COM 643 Cross-Cultural Research  
  13. COM 644 Emerging and Indigenous Communication Research Methods  
  14. COM 646 Advanced RTV Production and Direction  
  15. COM 647 Legal and Ethical Issues in Mass Media  
  16. COM 648 Investigative Journalism and Development Communication  
  17. COM 649 Seminar in Global Communication  
  18. COM 652 Advanced Multimedia/RTV Broadcast Journalism  
  19. COM 656 Electronic PR and Advertising Strategies and Communication Campaigns  
  20. COM 530 Introduction to Communication Theories and Models  
  21. COM 531 Introduction to Communication Research Methods  
  22. COM 532 Social Dynamics of Multi-Media Communication
I've already completed a few and partway through a couple but until I do, that's the pending list.
For my schoolwork I need to submit:
  1. goals and objectives of the MC marketing plan  
  2. analysis of an existing communication campaign of a local government agency  
Also working on my thesis.
And then, as icing on the cake everything (except schoolwork) are priority work! Ok ... so maybe I have a good reason to be anti-social and keep my nose to the grindstone. I just wish I don't get more work dumped on me in the meantime. It's not like I have the extra time.
I'm not even counting other MC tasks because I am able to do manage to insert most of my tasks as secretary somewhere between all the writing and typing and conceptualizing but that's it. I can't take the helm on anything anymore. If I do that then I will have to give up something, which I can't do. I already gave up my social life, decent sleep, regular meals, and family time. What else am I expected to give up?