Anulus Aurum

The ramparts of the small castle was lightly illuminated with the yellowish orange glow of the bulbs decorating the length of the stonework. Smooth jazz music played in the background just audible enough to provide a decent atmosphere to the night’s promenade. On the courtyard was a small stage and a multitude of tables arranged around a fountain situated in the center. Here, it was adequately illuminated and the sounds of jeer and cheer emanated the loudest. Young men and women, in their suits and prom dresses just having a good time in general. It was the cusp of youth, the scene bursting with energy. 

Away from this bustle, is a couple among a handful of others roaming the ramparts. He was in a snappy black suit with a red tie, and her, a stunning azure ball gown. They strode along the stonework walls, enjoying the fields beyond, the starry night sky above, and enjoying an idle chat between one another. Her arms crossed with his to make sure that they strode at the same pace, and simply because she wanted to be as close as she could to him. She was a shy girl and this intimacy was a first time for her but his earnestness made her feel comfortable with it.

As the idle chatter slowly devolved into silence, their walk was only accompanied by the blow of the wind and the chirp of the crickets. She desperately thought of something to talk about in order to avoid this awkwardness when he suddenly stopped walking. 

“Alice, I’ve got something to give you,” he says.

He separates from her and secretly takes something out from his blazer’s inner pocket and takes a deep breath. As he turns around, Alicia sees a small box covered in dark blue felt in his hand. Her eyes widen from the assumption of what was in the box. She covers her mouth with her hands and slowly shakes her head.

“Relax, this isn’t some engagement ring. I wish it was but I don’t think I’m ready for that.”

Alice is somewhat relieved but her heart won’t slow down.

“Sturm, I can’t-“

“I love you Alice.”

The words that came out of his mouth seemed to drown out all other sounds. It echoed in her mind and she felt a growing lightness deep inside her. Sturm took this chance to open up the box, revealing a plain gold ring embedded in the felt covered foam.

“I’ve known you for more than three years now and I am deeply in love with you. I don’t think I can find anyone else who can make me feel this lightness inside me. Only you can do that,” he starts. 

“But for you to go as far as to get me something so expensive. I’m not worth this much-“

“You are my world. You are worth everything to me. There is nothing I would not do to make you feel happy.”

He takes out the ring from the box and moves closer to Alice. He takes her hand, was met with no resistance, and slips the ring onto her right ring finger. She uses her free hand to cover her mouth, an attempt to hold back the flush of emotions she is feeling. She looked up at him with watery eyes and he gently smiles. She takes her own hand and gazes at the lustrous gold ring. It glowed softly under the faint light of the bulbs around them and the light feeling within her swelled a bit more. She lunges towards Sturm and gives him a hug, wrapping her arms around his neck.

“Thank you, Sturm. I love you too.”

Sturm returns the embrace, almost lifting Alice off her feet. He swings her to the side a bit, prompting a giggle from her. With a positive reaction, Sturm does it a few more times before letting her down again. She plops down on the stonework and loosens her grip of his neck, putting their faces really close to each other. Sturm tries to shy away from her, feeling a bit uneasy with the distance, but Alice pulls him back close. 

“Alice…” he whispers.

She says nothing and just looks deep into his eyes with a solemn look on her face. Though she does nothing, the way she looked into him seemingly prompts him to move ever so closer to her lush lips. The beating of their hearts speed up little by little as the distance between their lips got closer. As the warmth of their breaths ran along their skin, Alice suddenly smiles, moves to the side and gives Sturm a kiss on his cheek. Surprised by the sudden change of action, he chuckles and smiles.

“I-I don’t think I’ll be able to hold myself back if we start,” says Alice.

“Fair enough. I feel the same to be honest,” he replies.

Alice giggles at the remark, feeling a sliver of relief. Sturm does so too, taking another deep breath before taking Alice’s arm over his. 

“Shall we continue on our romantic walk on the castle walls?” Sturm asks.

Alice simply nods, this time, leaning her head on his shoulders as they continue on their leisurely walk. 

The cool night air blows ever so softly on the castle. It takes with it, the cusp of vibrant youth and a tinge of a couple’s budding romance. 



[I finally put something out after so long. Not having to write anything in a while just puts a huge gaping hole in my soul. I was just taking some time to try and achieve my focus so I have more motivation to do things. 

Also this story was inspired by a dream I had the other week that really struck me hard. It’s one of those dreams that I can still vividly remember, thanks in part to the fact that I wrote it down right after I woke up.]


Vagrant Class

I’ve passed by so many beggars on the street that it’s begun to get to my nerves. Rather, I’ve been thinking about this for quite some time now and I don’t mean what I said earlier in a negative way. It just bugs me in such a way that it makes me feel so powerless and apathetic.

It’s a horrible dilemma of sorts.

See, no matter how one is raised, the right thing to do is to help the said beggar. Give him some money to get by, buy him some food, or refer him to a place which offers respite.

Good job, you’re a good Samaritan. You just helped a beggar on the street.

Then looking up, you see a whole bunch of beggars lining up the street.

Well shit. Seeing as I helped this dood, it would only be expected of you to help the rest of the beggars you’re seeing yes?

This is what I’m talking about. The horrible dilemma.

It’s not enough that you’ve helped one beggar to get by. Society or at least your own sense of empathy expects you to help the others. It’s just fair right? I gave some money/food/respite to this beggar, it would be unfair to the others if you didn’t give them the same treatment.

At least that’s how the scenario should go. To avoid this dilemma, we choose to ignore the beggar, trying our best to avert our eyes and attention to this “blight” in society.

I’m not dismissing the option that we SHOULD help any beggar we come across, but one cannot reject the fact that there are so many of them. There won’t be a day where you won’t encounter at least one (unless you stay at home obviously). I can’t just wake up one morning, stand up, and just declare “I’m going to give five pesos to every beggar I see today.” Of course, it’s not as if I’ll meet a hundred beggars in a day (not intentionally anyway) but you’ll see quite a few of them in your every day dealings.

But here’s what really gets me regarding this whole helping beggars shenanigan.

Are we giving alms to these beggars for their sake, or is it for ours? Think about it.

“I gave twenty pesos to this one beggar today. I feel better about myself. I’m a good Samaritan.”

It’s like giving alms or coins to beggars entitles us to a one day pass on being a kind-hearted individual, no questions asked.

“Yo, you just punched this guy for no reason! The hell’s wrong with you?”
“But I gave five hundred pesos to this one beggar this morning. It doesn’t make me a bad person today!”
“Oh, well. I guess that checks out. You’re free to go kind-hearted person!”

I dislike the thought that I’m giving this beggar some coins just because I don’t want it to weigh down on my moral compass. Though its not as if not giving anything would make it any better anyway.

Regardless, even though I’m contemplating about this point, there have been more times when I didn’t give anything to beggars than when I did. I’m a horrible person maybe but at least I’m not doing it because I want to feel good about myself. If I really wanted to help, then I’d do something about it grand scale. Or at least join the Red Cross, or start a welfare drive, or maybe even do a mobile food cart project.

That sounds good. Sounds real nice.


I regret not having to return to attend to my blog in the past few months. Things have been… difficult.

I hate using Facebook now since it’s becoming a massive time well and it’s not like there is anything worthwhile seeing there. Thought of deleting it but I won’t since most of the online sellers I frequent are on Facebook. There’s no merit in it either since I still use Messenger to communicate with friends.

The thought of using Twitter and Instagram also came to mind but I’m not really the type to constantly update ‘happenings’ in my life. Not that anybody would be interested anyway. So in the end, this blog would be the very outlet for the mind’s ramblings.

Some things to note, things I have noticed during my period of remorse;

I cannot remember the last time I laughed in earnest. All I can muster are mere chuckles and scoffs. Strangely enough, the things that do manage to make me chuckle are depressing things. Makes me wonder if I have any trace of soul left.


So it’s been a while since I last posted. Like a long while. But funny I find myself here once again when I am in the pits of darkness or in the swells of sorrow. This time I am faced with a horizon that will change me. Turns out I didn’t need soul searching to know what I really need.

I’ve decided. I need to change myself so I’m severing all ties to videogames. This obsession isn’t healthy anymore. Heck, any of my hobbies aren’t healthy anymore. I’m cutting all ties to these. I may never return.

It also turns out that borderline depression keeps me motivated to do stuff so I guess that’s a leverage I can utilize to get stuff done. Work, writings, stories, I can probably get around to doing those when I’m half-thinking about killing myself. I dunno. Weird discovery. See, I’m writing this post because I’m borderline depressed right now.

So that’s that. Music will be probably the only thing accompanying me in this journey. I can never get rid of that.

Taking the plunge. Heading out. I’ll see you around.

Reality TV Now in Readable Form!

Alright, a little back story on why I’m doing this to myself. For those who haven’t read the first review/rant, I decided to take a look into the *world of Wattpad publications*. I’m not particularly fond of them nor will I ever be but generally speaking, these are perceived to be really really bad stories; writing-wise or plot-wise. This video will better explain to you why. I was, however, infinitely curious on whether ALL of them were bad so I decided to give one book a try. You can read the resulting insanity here. Being done with that, I decided not to delve into those publications ever again unless I have been proven that not all of them are horrible (still wouldn’t touch those though).

And here we are again.

This time though, someone thought it was a good idea if I did more reviews of the publications. Since my blog is starving from lack of content, I thought I might as well beef it up a little with my ramblings. So I bought a random book, braced myself for the shit I was about to read, and set out to write this review.

Again, before I go into what I think about the book, some things that I do appreciate about it that made reading it easier. She knows how to write, better even than the previous author I reviewed. I had absolutely no problem with her prose and I will even admit that she used some words I had to use the dictionary with. Also, thankfully the whole thing was in English. So there’s that. I give you +1.

And now, Reality TV in readable form!

The book I bought is called “The Bachelor” by greenwriter (Janelle Ruiz). First off, I don’t get the idea of putting the pen name of the writer AND her real name just below it. Kinda defeats the purpose of a pen name now does it? See, we’re off to a good start.

I appreciate the bookmarks included. I don't have to taint mine.

I appreciate the bookmarks included. I don’t have to taint mine. Kappa.

Synopsis! So the book is about this bachelor named Zach (late 20’s I didn’t really care how old the dood was, don’t even think the book ever mention how old he was) who makes a bet with his friend Liam. The bet is Zach rejects 25 women or he finds his ‘The One.’ Liam wins on the latter condition. What Liam wins from the bet is anyone’s guess. Enter Julianne (25 I think can’t remember), a big shot writer who wants a script writing position for a television network. Jack, big shot director (or was it producer I can’t remember), can give Julianne the position she wants under one condition. She fills in for one of the ladies participating in The Bachelor (yes, the TV show) since one of the contestants suddenly gets engaged to some dude (hooray for her). Julianne doesn’t need to win and she doesn’t intend to since she doesn’t like Zach anyway. Zach of course is confident he’ll be able to easily reject every single one of the twenty-five women in the show. Buuuuut we all know that’s not gonna happen.

Spoiler alert: It doesn’t happen.

Aight, first thing’s first. We don’t have cable installed at home. We have TV but it doesn’t have cable. And it’s great! I’m sure we’re missing out on some things like CNN or BBC news, ESPN (I now appreciate MotoGP), midnight karaoke channels, those indecipherable Mandarin channels, and of course those infomercial channels. But the one reason I discovered why we don’t have cable is because of them insufferable drama and dank reality shows.

What are those you say? Oh you know:


Yeah, so beautiful

Yeah, so beautiful


Here we see a rare sighting of a faithful husband caught on television

Here we have a rare sighting of a faithful husband caught on television


By the sanctity of marriage, you definitely are and should be

By the sanctity of marriage, you definitely are and should be

I’ve sometimes caught glimpses of these drama shows and honestly, they’re just crying, and shouting, and screaming “He’s mine!” “No, he’s mine!” type of dialogues. It’s tiring and plain stupid.

No, I won’t watch whole episodes just so you can prove a point. Shut up.

Of course, there are also reality TV shows which make no sense like these:

I can't even diss on this. I got nothing. It's that inane

I can’t even diss on this. I got nothing. It’s that inane

Or, the actual show this book is based on:

“I’m gonna dump all of you in the end and I’m gonna be a subtle asshole about it.”

See, the first problem I have with this book is the fact that I’m reading a book version of the very reality TV shows I’m trying to avoid. I mean, I would avoid reading this book but this review/rant would be non-existent if I did. Really, why would I want to read this when I can just watch hour long episodes of the damn show even if I won’t?

Anyway, getting to the gist of my review/rant. The details don’t really matter but basically, Julianne tries to be as detestable as possible to Zach so that she can get off the show and start working the job she wants; as a script writer of reality TV shows. Ironic. She does this by dressing as slovenly as possible, not putting on makeup, being a total bitch, and so on and so forth. Unfortunately for her, everything she does has the opposite effect and Zach takes a liking to her (surprise surprise). From there things go awry as Zach intends to keep Julianne till the end of the show with Julianne kicking and screaming for the majority of the trip.

Right, they all take a plane towards the Astor (that’s Zach’s family name btw) island in the middle of somewhere. Right from the get go, the producers wants to eliminate two of the girls, which kind of defeats the purpose of getting them on the island in the first place. Bye bye, sad face. Naturally, Julianne isn’t eliminated because Zach is a total dickbag and this just tilts the girl to the extreme.

What tilts Julianne even more is the fact that she won’t be able to attend a book-signing event for her best-selling novel since she wasn’t eliminated. Oh yeah, apparently Julianne is this the author of this in-world best-selling novel which doesn’t have a title and has this vague and unnecessary description. Nobody knows who she is since she’s using a pen name and the book-signing event will be the first time fans will be able to see her in the flesh. See, the thing is, a best-selling author like you shouldn’t even be looking for a job, even for experience (which she claims is why she’s gunning for the writer position in the first place and why she agreed to be a contestant in the show – for experience). Heck, her editor and friend Diane (the most sensible one-dimension character in the book) says this herself. Even the director/producer of the in-world ‘The Bachelor’ show, Jack (second most sensible character in the book) thinks so too. If you wanted experience, Julianne could have just toured the inner workings of the television network or asked for a behind-the-scenes pass to the show. Its basically the same thing without the hassle!

So one thing Zach does to appease Julianne is by taking her to New York where the book-signing would be held. Under the guise of getting to spend some time with her alone though. Sneaky weasel and his ulterior motives. To his merit Julianne appreciates the gesture and loosens up a micro bit towards him. Still hates his guts though.

Fast forward to a couple more grills being eliminated and Julianne takes a breather under a coconut tree by the shore because Zach’s been hounding her and shit for the past couple of days. Oh wait, lo and behold, Zach comes along. He then rants about his love for her and shit to which Julianne vehemently rejects. So how else can Zach prove it? How else but by giving a SURPRISE CORKSCREW KISSU!!!

It's a thing. Look it up pleb.

It’s a thing. Look it up pleb.

Yeah, that happens. And Julianne likes it! A tiny bit! Just a little. Because she pushes Zach away and whines like a bitch again. Something along the lines of ‘I hate you,’ ‘Why didn’t you eliminate me’ things like that. She leaves the beach and runs to her room where she lies down, her head a soggy mess. Because that’s what a corkscrew kiss does to you.

The events transpiring afterwards is just Zach persistently trying to prove to Julianne that he indeed loves her and is not some mere infatuation. It kind of boils down to an agreement that Zach would eliminate Julianne after top 4 and they would see how the relationship goes from there.

Seriously, it’s like reading a manga of a bad anime you’ve already watched before. There isn’t much of “seeing it on TV” but is more of a “behind-the-scenes” kind of thing. What the chicks are doing when not on camera, is there any internal strife happening between the contestants, is there any secret rendezvous happening between the bachelor and any of the contestants, that sort of thing.

Right, so slowly, Julianne starts to believe Zach’s feelings towards her through the course of the book. Of course it would happen. Reading the first ten pages and I can see it happening a mile away. With poor eyesight. On a foggy day. In the middle of a snowstorm. Except as with a whole lot of romance stories, there has to be conflict. Something to shake Julianne’s faith in Zach.

There is this scheduled trip to shoot content for the next week’s airing of the show and Zach decides to take the girls to Vegas. Well, three of them anyway. No idea why, don’t really care. The two other girls enjoy their stay being the dumb broads they are except for Julianne, who is drinking alone by the bar. At this point Liam makes a return and introduces himself to the girls. Again part of Zach’s plan to get himself alone with Julianne. It kinda works much to Liam’s suspicion. Liam gets to be the bait while Zach takes a drunken Julianne back to her hotel room. They take the elevator to Julianne’s floor and the hot steamy foreplay begins. I guess Julianne being this (I assume) 25-year old virgin can’t manage to resist Zach’s aggressions for long. They reach her room and there it gets really hot and heavy with Zach fondling her breasts, running his fingers up her nape and all that. Yeah, run it up her nape. I like that shit.

Then Liam be like COCKBLOCK and knocks on the door. Julianne was self-conscious about it but Zach didn’t care at first until Liam knocks again coupled with calling his name.
“Yo dude, you doing 3rd base in there? Well too bad I’m gonna say your name a couple of times to make it awkward.”
Pissed, he answers the door to Liam’s smug face telling him that the other girls were looking or him. Julianne gestures for him to go lest they get suspicious and Zach goes anyway. Again, Julianne’s head is all soggy from what had happened and seemingly can’t sleep without tasting some of that if you catch my drift. Unable to hold herself back, she rushes to Zach’s room and flicks on the light switch only to find a shirtless Zach sitting on the bed with a naked Chloe/Fatima/Pauline I can’t really remember. Cookie cutter blondes by the dime I swear.

Julianne be like

Julianne be like







Of course Zach claims he didn’t know Chloe had slipped under the sheets while the lights were out.

And Zach's mind be like

And Zach’s mind be like

Julianne would have none of it as she mutters something along the lines of ‘You don’t have to explain’ before running out of the room back to her own room. Naturally, Zach is mad with Chloe and asks her to GTFO of his room. That went really well.

Trust levels plummet.

Next, Zach feels he needs to get off the island and convinces Jack to take them to his ranch somewhere in Kansas maybe. Oh, the book takes place in the United States by the way and in no way did the writer mention where the island was situated at (it’s just in the middle of nowhere I reckon at least two hours away by plane from any coastal state). Neither was the ranch so I’ll just assume it’s in Kansas or maybe Texas because I’m that knowledgeable about the United States. By this time, the girls have been cut down to maybe five or six? I dunno, I stopped counting back in the island. Anyway, so Pauline (one of the contestants) gets to spend time with Zach via riding horses and tells off Julianne in an effort to split the two. Not gonna happen again because plot direction.

So fast forward a few days and Julianne manages to get lost in the woods when she decides to take a stroll to clear her mind. See, I think its Kansas because it’s a ranch and there are woods nearby. Maybe. Bite me. Unfortunately for her, a storm begins to brew and as quickly as she realizes this the rain starts to pour and she finds herself soaked from head to toe. Deus Ex Machina – she finds a cabin! A fully stocked cabin to boot! She goes inside and decides to spend the night there because storms really last for maybe around 12 hours or more statistically. At the same time, Zach discovers Julianne is missing and becomes extremely worried to which he organizes a rescue effort. Knowing the place though he deduces that maybe she stumbled her way towards one of the cabin houses situated strategically in the middle of the woods. Because who gets lost in the woods and magically stumbles upon a stocked log cabin with the door unlocked? Literally every time right? Of course, he gets caught in the rain before he could get to the cabin but it’s all worth it since he finds Julianne there, also soaked. Hot damn, talk about setting it up eh? Like, couldn’t have made it harder for both of them couldn’t you? So they both change into dry clothes and late into the night, they have hot steamy sex. Hot steamy unprotected sex I might add, and that’s important for later on. But at this point in the book, Julianne’s pretty convinced Zach really loves her. I mean, the two of you have had sex already so might as well right?

The next day they leave the cabin and go back to the ranch only to find out Zach’s parents have come to visit; to see how their little impulsive baby is doing. Liam is also there driving the car – to cockblock again I assume but it’s too late for that. The two already did the thing. Bow chika bow wow *wink wink*. Either way, the parent’s visit has been sort of planned but mainly for two things: Mr. Astor wants to make sure Zach doesn’t fuck anything up and ruin the company’s reputation (Yeah, I forgot to mention that the Astors are filthy rich since they own a business empire or something). Mrs. Astor wants to assess the ladies remaining in the competition, to ensure that none of them will make baby Zach cry.

Mr. Astor’s got his end covered, talking with his son about how he shouldn’t fuck up because their name is on the line. Kind of a dick move from Zach joining the show if you ask me. Then again it’s hard being a prince. Mrs. Astor on the other hand decides she wants to take the whole gang on a little side trip, just to take a glimpse on how they carry themselves in an unfamiliar situation. They go to this orphanage called the Angel’s Sanctuary or something that the Astors sponsor or take care of or something I dunno. Julianne starts getting uncomfortable going to the place and here we discover that she was an orphan once.

This little bit of backstory information seems a little out of place. If anything, I feel it was just put there to put some dimension into Julianne’s character. Like, there wasn’t even any suggestion that Julianne’s experience with the orphanage contributes to her hatred towards Zach. Sure she mentions that her father left her there and never came back. Probably she fears the same thing if she commits with Zach. But the whole orphanage shenanigan is filled with holes like Swiss cheese. The only person she’s actually close with and has any semblance of family is Diane. That begs the question of who adopted her. Did she file a discharge form to get out of the orphanage, struggle for a little less than a decade, write her best-selling book, and end up in this farce? It doesn’t really contribute anything to Julianne’s character. It just seems to me she has major daddy issues.

Jesus, there’s just so many boring things happening in the book that I’ll just skip ahead to Julianne being eliminated, which is basically what happens next anyway. Yes, she does get kicked out of the show as per her deal with Zach but at this point, she’s struggling to not breakdown at the thought that she’s going to be separated from Zach until he finishes the show. Hell, I’m pretty excited to end the book too so chop-chop dood, dump all of them and make the happy ever after so we can all move on.

No idea why these books have these 'Playlists' at the back

No idea why these books have these ‘Playlists’ at the back

Having been eliminated, Julianne returns to her normal life of living comfortably in the presumed fortune she had acquired from her best-seller all the while waiting for Zach to come busting through her door and sweeping her away into the distance. Not quite what happens but Zach basically dumps the remaining contestants Chloe and Pauline, ending the show (finally!).

Unfortunately for me, the book still isn’t done because Julianne and Zach still have to get together to make the happy ever after. As soon as Zach ends the show, Liam calls to tell him that Mr. Astor is in the hospital. Stroke I think, I don’t fucking know. I was skimming the book at this point. So Zach rushes to the hospital to see his ailing father. Father asks Zach to stop doing the show so he can pass on whatever he can to aid the young Astor into running an empire.
“But dad, I already did end the show.”
“Oh. Okay. So I forced a stroke for nothing. Thanks son.”

Now that Zach gets the whole family affair out of the way, he rushes out of the hospital to go see Julianne immediately. He does though before he can even leave the place. Julianne is there with her contestant friend Kim. Surprise surprise, Zach is surprised. Then and there though he finds out that Julianne is pregnant. That’s what kinda happens when you don’t use protection. So always use protection if you don’t want to knock anybody with your baby or contract sexually transmitted diseases. No, seriously. Stay safe, use protection. Back with the pregnancy issue, Zach is more than willing to father the baby and that takes care of any impending custody issues and whatnot.

The book technically ends there but I had to leaf through an epilogue, eliciting a painful groan in an effort to stave off the urge to knock myself out. I don’t really have anything to say about the epilogue because I didn’t want to know what happened to the two afterwards. Basically though, they have a family now and love each other very much. Yay.

Fuck, that took a while. I feel like this rant went on far longer than I wanted too. Unlike the previous book, I managed to read the whole thing but the downside was it was incredibly boring. At least for me. Look, I don’t watch reality TV shows. It’s sort of an ironic event in itself. Like damn, go out and live out your reality.

Did a little background check on the writer. Apparently, she’s already done 24 of these and is fairly popular on the site. Reviews in-site doesn’t give anything, so greenwriter, if you’re reading this take it with a pinch of salt. This is mostly a rant than a review. Also you’re a more prolific writer than I am so who am I to judge amirite? Ayy lmao.

Aight, I’ve already said what I thought about the book. It’s just the reality TV show condensed into probably two days of reading. Nothing special. I’d give it 5/10 for at least having correct grammar, construction, punctuation, etc. Easier to read too.

I’ve said enough. Should finish this now as I’m beginning to hate doing this review. Also, short story is begging to be finished. Peace out.





Running on Fumes

Live blog! Live!

Just a little announcement post, only so to indicate that the blog is alive and well. It’s just a little silent the past few months is’all.

I’m cooking up two things right now and am looking to finish it sometime before the end of this week or in the middle of next week. I’ll have to because school has already started and I can smell the scent of digital handouts on the horizon. Mmmm, can you smell that digital paper smell? I’m getting eyesores already.

First I’m writing up a short romance story. I’m saying it right now, it won’t have a stellar happy ending but it’s not totally tragic either. I’m maybe halfway done and I can binge write it over the weekend if I’m diligent and driven enough. Still deciding how to flow towards the ending.

Second, I’m cooking up a book review. But before the book review comes reading the book. Remember that one book “review” I did of that Wattpad book? Yeah, it’s another one on a not so popular demand. I wasn’t planning on doing another one but since she suggested I do another one, I thought ‘Why the hell not? What’s the worst that could happen?’ I picked one out that I thought was the easiest to read and fortunately, I’m nearly finished reading it and inevitably, write up a review. Well, hopefully its a review because the last time I did it, it was more of a rant than a review.

That’s it for now. I pity my blog space because I’ve not posted anything of note in the past three months? I even have this list of things I wanna write but I don’t have the drive to do so. Maybe Les Miserables review next.


Talk about starting the year right. What with all the shit happening everywhere.

And in a way, I am starting it right. I’ve turned a new leaf and rid myself of games – along with some other excesses – at least for the meantime.

In my ever long quest to better myself, I have gone to an old friend: Solitude. Or rather, he sought after me. He is a double-edged companion however; someone who I can turn for strength or someone who will force upon me weaknesses. He is cruel as he is wise.

I have been feeling incredibly sad and lonely the past few weeks. I’ve not felt like this in a long while, or at all if memory serves. Makes me think about all those emotions in the past; the joy, sadness, anger, guilt, shame, regret. Were all those emotions been superficial? I cannot recall the last time I was so happy that I jumped for joy, or the last time I felt so angry that I wanted to vent and break things. I’ve thought before that I could be empty inside and now, I could be. And who could forget love? Of course there’s love for family, love for friends. But pure love? Love for a significant other?

Sometimes I think that I might not be able to feel those butterflies anymore.

Nobody has contacted me through anywhere for the past month now. Not even a peep out of anyone. No ‘How are you’ or ‘What’s going on?’ or ‘Want to hang out and talk?’ Nothing. I have grown spiteful, mostly with myself, since then.

I’ve drowned myself in books and writing like a drunkard drowns his problems and sorrows in drink. I’ve had little desire for anything else besides food, exercise, and study.

Forget about finding solace from this, I’ll seek out my peace by myself.


Peach Mango Pie and Chocolate Sundae

This is something that I have not told many people about since I started doing it almost a year ago. It’s not exactly something to be proud of but I just felt like bringing up here on the blog.

I have sworn off Jollibee and Chowking.

I could have said Jollibee foods subsidiaries but I don’t know how deep that goes, so I’ll just say those two. I could include Mang Inasal but it’s okay to eat there sometimes. Emphasis on sometimes. I think Red Ribbon is also a Jollibee subsidiary but I don’t exactly have a profound liking to cakes so it’s an exception. That and I prefer Mer Nel’s over it.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not specifically saying Jollibee food is bad. Way back during the early 2000s, I didn’t have any qualms about eating there, especially since I only preferred to eat Burger Steak and Palabok there. Those were my absolute favorite selections at Jollibee, no question. Chowking was also pretty okay back then. For me, it was the Sweet and Sour Pork or pretty much any of the King Lauriat selections there.

But now? I have a couple of reasons. First with Jollibee.

Some people might say this is an isolated case but having experienced this from a myriad of Jollibee establishments, I doubt it could be. Jollibee service is slow beyond logic. Like seriously, I don’t have an explanation for it. I like to think myself as a person who tries to understand a situation, a person, a reason before dropping judgment. Multiple times I have done this for Jollibee’s service speed but time and time again they have failed to present a satisfactory and logical explanation. Heck, I have even run several “experiments” to see if they really are slow and/or inefficient. To make this easier to picture, I’ll just enumerate the times I have been disappointed or perplexed by the speed of Jollibee’s services. Some may not be as bad as the others but to give you an idea on how annoying it is for me, I’ll just give some sort of scale by means of “offense levels.”

Time 1. Offense level – Mild: I typically don’t like ice on my drinks when I’m eating out at fast food joints because 1) The drink is already cold and I don’t want it putting my lips on a frostbite trip and; 2) The ice usually comprises 10-20% of the drink itself, leaving you 80% of drink left. See, whenever I order and the cashier asks me what drink I want, I always make sure the servers don’t put ice on the glass because (see above reasons). McDonald’s does an impeccable job at this. Jollibee on the other hand seems to have a difficult time carrying out the request. 80% of the time, Jollibee servers always comes back with the drink with ice on it.

Okay, now hold on. You may be thinking this is a trivial matter in which I could simply overlook. I tried doing that for the first few half-dozen times this happened but after that threshold, I knew this could not continue.

See, during the rare time that McDonald’s forgets to not put ice on my drink, the servers always remember at the last moment before even putting the drink down at the tray. Heck, if they even totally forget, they put so little ice that it’s forgivable. Jollibee isn’t like that. They don’t remember the request and you would have to remind them again much to my disappointment (and much to their own self-inflicted annoyance). Even other fast food joints don’t commit that mistake all that much.

Time 2. Offense level – Seriously goddamn frustrating: Jollibee is seriously frickin’ slow (great, I’m starting to cuss now) in pretty much everything (this might just be an exaggeration but it probably isn’t). The absolute worst time you could have chosen to eat at Jollibee is during peak hours when the lines are unbearably long because that’s one of the times they will perform the slowest. It also probably doesn’t help that Jollibee is, as some would say, “pang-masa” (for the masses) so you can expect that 95% of their customer base are families with at least three children. So besides the long line, the one at the counter is ordering two number 9s, a number 9 large, a number 6 with extra dip, a number 42, and number 42 large with extra chips, and a large soda. Even so, the fault still lies with Jollibee’s order taking system because as far as I’m concerned, it goes like this:

[Cashier takes order – Cashier punches order at POS – Customer pays – Cashier gives change when appropriate – Cashier gets food – Customer waits – Cashier puts food items one by one by herself/himself – Cashier is finally fucking done and gets to the next one in line.]

Seeing the problem here? Sure there’s no problem if the customer just orders like a burger, fries, and drink but what if the order is larger? Harder to put up front? It takes longer for the cashier to put out the order. Doesn’t help that there’s this 1:1 ratio of food server to POS machine so we just have one guy putting out the orders while the rest of the crew do something else. It’s inefficient. And if you’ve noticed McDonald’s works differently and their system is more efficient:

[Cashier takes order – Cashier punches order at POS – Customer pays – Cashier gives change when appropriate – Cashier places the tray aside so another crew can handle putting out the food – Cashier takes order of next one in line.]

Now, there are a few problems with McDonald’s system but it’s situational. But it’s damn efficient. They have these monitors which shows what the customer has ordered and they are required to complete the orders in under a time limit (45 seconds if I’m not mistaken, go take a look at the monitors behind them the next time you order at McDonald’s, it should be there). Heck, the monitors even show specificities the customer might want like how I don’t like my drinks with ice. The bee could learn something from the clown.

And it’s not just the line. Suppose Jollibee can’t put out the order quickly because it’s three Champ burgers and a chicken bucket then they’ll say “Sir, willing to wait X minutes?” Don’t count on getting your food at whatever ‘X’ is. From my experience the larger the value of X, the longer you actually have to wait for your food.

“But Max, they’re serving a ton of customers. You can’t expect them to fulfill your order at the exact time they said.”

No, I don’t, which is exactly why I tried eating at the joint during off-peak hours when there are virtually almost no customers at all. Of course, it was a totally random occurrence on when I would be getting the “Sir, willing to wait X minutes” phrase but when I did, they did not make any of the time they put out. There were even times when I tried to put them on a test where I would see how long I had to wait before I got my order. During these times and whenever possible, I would sit down somewhere they could see the number of my order. And to make it a little more interesting, I wouldn’t follow-up on my order because they can see the number anyway (I’m in plain sight FFS). There was this one time I had to wait a whole 30 minutes for the burger in my value meal. I had finished my fries and my drink before they even noticed that this guy with a number was waiting for something. “Sorry for the wait” was all I got. One of the worst experiences I had recently with them was when I was eating with friends. With the order being naturally large, we were made to wait at our tables with the number. Some 15 minutes passed before any of us got our orders and even then, one of us still didn’t get his. So we waited with the number for our friend’s order where he even went to the counter to follow it up a couple of times. After waiting some 20 more minutes, he still didn’t get his order and naturally, he was infuriated. Even so, he went to the counter to cancel the order instead and calmly demanded a refund. The thing is, management still wanted to serve his order despite not having delivered for the better part of the hour. Outrageous.

Time 3. Offense level – Unsatisfactory: Their food is not as good as it was anymore. Naturally, a food service’s food would change or evolve over time. New additions to the selections, new varieties to already existing menus, and subtle flavor changes to recipes. Jollibee’s food isn’t the same as before. As I have mentioned, the only thing I ate at the joint was Burger Steak and Palabok. Now, I don’t even like those. I’m not entirely sure if I just outgrew the taste of the food there or something. Though they have changed their servings somewhat. Their Palabok is lackluster now, that I am sure of.

Sweet baby jesus

Sweet baby jesus

Time 4. Offense level – IDGAFA: Funny how Jollibee has like five or six POS machines at the counter but just use from one to three depending on how many people are lining up for food. Seriously, at any one time, they could just be using one or two even when the place is jam-packed with people. I seldom see three POS machines open.

Oh, I don’t eat at Chowking anymore because they’re not a Chinese restaurant anymore like before, because their food is definitely in poor taste (except Buchi balls. I fucking love those), and the establishments are fuckin’ dirty seriously. Chowking has got to be the fast food joint with the most controversies when it comes to cleanliness both with the food and the place.

And for the record, it’s been almost a year since I ate at Chowking. It’s also been some five months since I last ate at Jollibee, not counting the times I bought Peach Mango Pie and the Chocolate Sundae there because it’s the only thing I’ll willingly order and the times I had to eat any of their food because a friend or family bought some for whatever occasion.

Holy mother of fudge

Holy mother of fudge

So there’s that. I don’t eat at Jollibee anymore for these reasons except maybe when I don’t have any absolute choice. I think I also want a pie and a sundae now.