Spurs in their 20th straight playoffs appearance

play offs 2017

NBA playoffs is here again, the best teams going through 3 rounds of best of seven games to make it to the finals.  My beloved San Antonio Spurs made it to the finals per usual.  I think they made it to the NBA playoffs for straight twenty seasons already.  Not a small feat to accomplish but people keep on dismissing them.  I always hear people say that Spurs is a boring team.  I don’t understand that, they entertain me just fine.  Yeah they don’t have those flamboyant players with their flashy moves but they have their own style.  They play beautiful basketball as far as I am concerned.   They don’t have those superstars almost everyone loves to root for.   They won 5 championships already, what’s not to love right?

 

spurs 5 trophies

 

My Spurs don’t buy superstars, they breed great players.  Superstars have no place in this team, what they want are players who will fit in the franchise’s culture and would be willing to be coached by the arguably the best head coach in the league, Greg Popovich.  If you are paying attention to them, you already know how the Spurs system works.  This team don’t care about individual awards, they only want the championship and so far they got 5.  To be in this team, you have to self-less, you have to care more about being in a great team more than being the best player.  Have you seen Spurs ball movement?  Did you noticed how smooth their transition is?  Did you try to pay attention to their defense?  Did you see how Manu passes a ball?  He turned it into an art form.   He passes without even looking.

 

coach Pop

Arguably the best coach in the league.  Showing tough love to their players all reason round

The great Tim Duncan is the embodiment of this system.  He is my most favorite Spur player.  He was very low key despite his status.  He just let his work speak for him.   He is a 5 time NBA champion, a two time MVP, three time finals MVP, 15 time NBA All Star and the list goes on.  He is a legend on his own but what he did for his team is equally commendable.  He was a leader by example.  He joined the team as first overall draft pick in 1997 and stayed with them for 19 seasons until his retirement in 2016. People always say that he is the most boring NBA superstar both on and off court.  I get the off court part, he doesn’t have the international sports brand, he don’t talk that much, he does not dress well and don’t really have a very colorful personality, all these things that attract more fans.  However, on the court, he is not boring as far as I am concerned.   Yes, he is not the most exciting player but the way he play the game is a thing of beauty.  You can chalk it up to being a part of well-oiled machinery that is the Spurs team but Duncan has been the solid rock that Popovich built his team around.  What Duncan shows in his every game is how to play basketball it its most efficient and coordinated way.

 

 

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The legendary Tim Duncan. Say all you want about him but it’s undeniable that he is one of the best in his era.  I miss him.

I became a fan of this team in 2003 when they were playing New Jersey Nets in the finals.  I didn’t even know these teams during that time but I was bored and I was looking for something to watch.  I think it was already game 5, I don’t remember some of the players and was so surprised to realize that Steve Kerr, Golden State Warriors head coach, used to be a Spur and helped them win their second championship in 2003.  I didn’t really watch most of their games during regular season after that.  I even forget about them for a while until they made a reappearance in the finals in 2005 against Detroit Pistons and won.  I watched every game of that series.  I am more invested in the team this time around.  This is when I started to fall in love with them.  I love their ball movement, their defense and their system.  The Big Three; Duncan, Ginobili and Parker; made me fall in love with basketball.   I am just so amazed with their chemistry.  The respect and care for each other is very apparent.  Duncan is like a big brother, he is always there to encourage his team mates.   I live for this moments when his team mates would make a really good shot and he would give that guy a hair ruffle, which I find really adorable, a pat in the back or a high five.  I can’t imagine Spurs without him but it was inevitable.    My Spurs made it to the finals again in 2007 against the Cleveland Cavaliers and LeBron James and it was a sweep.  Despite his talent, Lebron wasn’t able to carry his team against Spurs.  It was different back then, he didn’t have superstar team mates to help him.  I feel in love with this team more and more.  They would have some not so stellar seasons after 2007 but they never failed to make it to the playoffs.  In 2013, they made it to the finals against Lebron James and the reigning champion Miami Heat; this time LeBron had the help of Bosh and Wade.  Miami Heat won in game 7.  It was a very close match, with Spurs leading the series and almost ended it in game 6 but Heat pushed back and forced a seventh game.  I was devastated when they lost but I know they will bounce back from this failure.  The following season, my Spurs did redeem themselves, making it to the finals against Miami Heat again.  Heat is poised to win their third consecutive championship but the Spurs won’t let them.  Spurs won the championship in game 5.  It was one of the happiest days of my life.  Miami Heat is the favored team to win, their fans are loud and rowdy, trash talking in social media.  I can’t blame them, their team is so hot that time.   So just imagine my glee when my Spurs crushed them with a 4-1 finish.  It was a lovely day, I was basking in glory.  What a comeback!!

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That season neither Duncan nor Parker took home the Finals MVP award; it went to the rising star, Kawhi Leonard.  He was only 22 back then but he was able to guard Lebron really well.   Kawhi was drafted in 2011 by Indiana Pacers but traded to Spurs for George Hill on the same night.  It was probably one the best decisions the Spurs management ever did.  Look at Kahwi right now and the way he is carrying his team.

kawhi leonard

He’s not the future of Spurs, he is their “NOW”

The following years, they were eliminated in the playoffs but Kawhi was just getting better and better. They were several changes in the team as they are preparing for Duncan’s retirement.  They signed LaMarcus Aldridge, the highest paid Spurs player right now, to fill in Duncan’s shoes.  There were so much expectations from Aldridge but as of the moment he is letting his team down.  I have never been so disappointed with a Spurs player before.   Spurs got eliminated by Oklahoma Thunders in the 2nd round of playoffs in 2016 and it devastated me.  There’s a huge possibility that this could be Duncan’s last season and I wanted the Spurs to win the championship so much.  I wanted Duncan to have what David Robinson had when he retired, a championship.  That is the only proper send off for the man who contributed so much to the franchise.  But they didn’t and it was a hard pill to swallow.  Yeah it was the era of Stephen Curry and the Warriors too bad they bowed down to Cleveland Cavaliers and Lebron James (yup he came back to the Cavs).

 

In July 2016, Duncan announced his retirement in his usual style, no flash nor call for attention, a simple press release from Spurs’ management and that’s it.  It broke my heart, yes, I expected it but it still hurts.  I cried despite trying so hard to fight my tears (I was at work when I found out about it).   Spurs signed Pau Gasol and I was hoping that he would be a good addition to the team, he was not so young anymore but I think he can still contribute.  With Duncan gone, people expected Aldridge to take his place, be the franchise player and bring Spurs to the finals and that’s probably one of the reasons why he went to the Spurs.  He maybe thought that he will be the star in this team.  However, he was found lacking.  Nope, he was not playing badly but it was subpar considering the expectations of him and the amount of money the franchise shell out to get him.  It was said that Duncan cut down his salary so they can sign Aldridge.  Good thing Kawhi is just getting better and better and this season he showed everyone that he is the “rightful heir” of Duncan.  He is even one of the frontrunners for MVP this season, and finished second after Curry last season (though the gap is quite wide).

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Spurs vs Grizzlies (Round 1 2017 NBA playoffs)

In the first round of the playoffs this season, Spurs played Memphis Grizzlies and it wasn’t an easy one, they won in 6th game and Kawhi is the biggest reason why.  In round two, they are playing Houston Rockets and James Harden (one of the top contenders for MVP race).  Spurs lost in the first game and they were humiliated by Rockets at their home court.  It was painful to watch but I still finished the game and all I was thinking was please close the gap because at one point Rockets was up by 38 points.  The game ended with 27 points deficit.  Again I was so disappointed with Aldridge.  Kawhi was doing all he can but he simply cannot carry his team all the way to the finals all alone.   Spurs got their redemption in the second game, ending the game with 25 point lead.   This a huge relief for me.  They were able to limit Rockets three point shots, Aldridge did better but still not enough if you ask me, and Leonard was able to guard Harden effectively while also doing so well offensively.  Kawhi really works both ends of the court.  We got a glimpse of the vintage Tony Parker, who made 18 points, but got injured in the third quarter.  The bad news is his injury is serious and he can no longer play for the rest of the playoffs.   I worry about his health but I don’t worry much about the impact of his absence in the team in the next games.  Don’t get me wrong, I respect Parker and his skills but Spurs have other players who can take his place and as long as Aldridge doesn’t mess up again and Leonard and coach Pop is around they will be just fine.  Game 3 was in favour of Spurs again.  Aldridge finally showed up and scored big.  Kawhi did his usual best.  Game 4 was another bad game for my team.  They were down by 21 points by the end of the game.  Kawhi made a dismal 16 points.  I was so disappointed but hopeful that they will the next two games.  Game 5 was a very exciting game.  It was a very close game.  I was screaming the entire time.  I noticed that Kawhi was not his usual self early in the game though he was doing okay but he seemed slower and not as aggressive.  Then got injured his ankle in the fourth quarter and his moves got more limited and did not play anymore in the overtime.  Thankfully my Spurs win thanks to Ginobili’s well-timed but very risky block on Harden.  It’s now a 3-2 series.  I really hope that Spurs will end this series in game 6 two days from now.

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They have a bigger opponent to face in the conference finals when they make (when, not if) and another huge adversary in the NBA finals.  I know most people don’t think that Spurs can beat the Warrior should they reach the conference finals; heck some people don’t even believe that they can beat the Rockets but I have so much faith in this team and Popovich’s ingenuity.  They will make it to the finals.  Wouldn’t it be amazing if Leonard win the MVP and Spurs the championship?  That would be awesome albeit a tad ambitious I know I am singing Kawhi praises but have you seen him play recently?   I just love this team so much

 

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Surprised to see Leonard smiling lol

Go Spurs Go!!

Proud to be part of the Spurs Nation

 

spurs logo

The Land of No Men

Watching Broadly’s “The Land of No Men”, a documentary about Umoja village in Kenya, brought up so much emotions and thoughts and I had this strong urge to write about these community.   Umoja village was founded by Rebecca Lolosoli in 1990 and become a safe haven for the women in the region.  The matriarchal community is now home to Samburu women who suffered FGM, forced marriages, and sexual and physical abuse at the hands of men.   This is what ignorance, lack of access to education and inequality looks like.Umoja women

Female genital mutilation (FGM) is already banned and considered illegal in Kenya but there are still some tribes that follow said tradition.  In some villages, a woman can’t get married if  she is not circumcised aka have her genitals mutilated.   “Cut” girls have higher bride price and FGM apparently increases a family’s status within their tribes. Women in this part of the world are also treated as property and simply powerless.  They have no control over their lives.  Most of them were forced to marry men that are old enough  to be their grandfather.  A man can easily leave and replace his wife for just about any reason.  They can beat their wives and if the wife dare leave her husband, her parents would simply return her to the husband because where else can she go?  Rape is also very prevalent in this region be it in the hands of the locals or British soldiers. What’s worse is that women get the blame after being horribly abused, like it’s their fault for being raped in the first place.  They are considered “unclean” and if they got pregnant they would be forced to resort to abortion which was performed by other women in the village.  There are just so many atrocities against women that it made me cry.  How can people be so cruel?
FGM Kenya girls

A public ceremony celebrating the season of female genital cutting, where girls undergoing FGM are being paraded openly in the streets

 

Sick of these age old traditions,  a woman decided to create a women only village. The Umoja Village is the first of its kind in Kenya where women run things and provides a place of shelter from women who suffered abused from their husbands.  To make ends meet,  these women make bead necklaces and bracelets and sell it to the tourists.  Her village was such a success that it inspired other women to put up their own villages too.  Some villages are strictly for women only while some allowed men as long as they don’t interfere  with how the women run things.  A lot of men hated these villages especially the village leaders (who are men so it makes sense)  because they strongly believe that women just can’t be leaders and make decision for themselves.  They believe that these women only villages are in trouble because there would be no men to fight off attackers and women simply can’t fight.  Makes me wonder who are these attackers might,  probably the same men who resented these women run villages.
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One man was interviewed about how he feels about the Umoja tribe.  He hated the tribe because his wife left him and this time has somewhere to run to and a safe place to stay. He also said that he can easily replace his wife anyway.  Another man was interviewed and was asked about female genital mutilation as part of their culture.  He said that this tradition will continue mainly because their people are not educated.  He believes  that the tradition will eventually stop but in a very gradual manner.  He personally don’t like the mutilation but felt helpless against an old age tradition.  He has a daughter and he certainly don’t want her to go through such brutal practice.
Several women were interviewed and asked how they are faring since they started living in the women only village.  Everyone is very  happy with her decision.  They finally feel empowered.  One woman run away from her family because she was forced to marry an old man she doesn’t like.  When asked if she would consider marrying someone and she firmly said no.  Another woman, a chair lady of one of the women only villages was also asked if she could go back in time, would she marry and her answer is a very firm NO, like it is the last thing she’d ever do in her life.  There are other women who were asked with the same question and their answers are all the same, a big and loud NO.  It’s like the idea of marriage and a husband was completely ruined for them.  Not that I can blame them, these women have gone through so much abuse and violence at the hands of the men who were supposed to cherish and support them.
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These women are also determined to hold on to their new-found power and have no intention of giving men an ounce of control.  As one of the chief ladies said, they held the power for so long and they took advantage of it.  For her,  once you give men power, they will only abuse it.  She is adamant that women should lead and men should only follow.  While I applaud her strength and determination, it is apparent that what she wants is female domination, not equality but simply a reversal of roles.   This made me feel bad because as a feminist I believe in equality not superiority.  I believe that men and women can work together side by side and create the best version of this world.  This is an experimental community after all and they have so much learning to do.   I hope that as women are gaining more power and independence, men would open their minds to the fact the world is changing for the better and they can contribute to this change by doing their part.
It is also very apparent what ignorance and absolute obedience can do to us.  Blindly following an archaic tradition (something that shouldn’t even happen to begin with) without asking why will not help any society.   Education is extremely important and as long as people are uneducated those who want to cling on to power will stay where they want to be.
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Women are not things to be used and discarded and we should all know this.  How can someone be cruel is beyond my understanding.   Respecting people’s rights should come naturally to all us. These women survived the worst of and now fight abuse despite being in a society that barely recognize a woman’s right.  They finally got a taste of what freedom is like and have no intention of giving it up.  They realized how education and a source of living can do so much even for someone living in a place that seemed to be cut off from the rest of the world.  While this documentary did broke my heart, it also gave me hope and inspiration.  If these women who have almost no resources at all have fought against misogyny and patriarchy and contributed so much in this world then I have no excuse not be the best version of myself and fight for equality in any way I can.

Sherlock (The Six Thatchers) : Not a review more of a rant

***Spoilers ahead***

Image result for sherlock keep calm and wait for season 4

The fandom while we wait

After 3 years of waiting, the Sherlock fandom finally got their most ardent wish, another season.  I have been a fan of Sherlock for only two years but I am just as excited and terrified at the same time.  Season 3 ended on a cliffhanger, with Sherlock being sent off to a deadly mission in Eastern Europe only to be summoned back by the government because of Moriarty’s threat.  The Abominable Bride last year gave fans a glimpse of what happened after the almost exile ending with Sherlock being so confident on what Moriarty’s next move would be.   So fans expected an episode about Moriarty or at least his “Did you miss me” video but the episode left us clueless on how they will solve the whole Moriarty mystery.

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Did I miss Moriarty?  Yup! He’s probably the one super villain I can’t hate lol

Needless to say the entire episode was about something else, Mary’s past and how awesome she is. The episode started on a lighter note and treated the fans with fluff, in the person of baby Watson.  Rosamund Mary Watson or Rosie is John and Mary’s baby girl.  She is so cute!!!  We got a glimpse of domestic life of the Watson’s and how they are as parents.

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Isn’t she lovely?

And then there is Molly Hooper. The amazing, beautiful, awesome Molly Hooper.  My favorite scene was during Rosie’s baptism, when Molly was scolding Sherlock about using the phone during the christening.  Molly gave Sherlock a stern look and uttered “phone” and he obediently followed.  The Sherlolly shipper in me was ecstatic over the fact that Sherlock listens to Molly. I wish there was more scene with Molly though.  I would love to see Molly joining the boys on their case in her own way like working in the lab or deducing the heck out of a cadaver lol.  I would to see Molly and Mary’s friendship blossom.  I just want more of my dear Molly.

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My lovely Molly.  I just love her.

Look at my babies

aren’t they cute?

We were lulled into false sense of security then slowly the story went dark and it never stopped until we were left befuddled and grieving (or at least those who loved Mary Morstan Watson). I love watching the camaraderie among Sherlock, John and Mary.  They work well together, instead of ruining the chemistry between Sherlock and Sherlock (as most fans feared), Mary only made the duo better and helped Sherlock (more than John could ever do if I dare say it out loud) solve crimes.   Mary brought something new to the show, a new flavor, excitement and adventures.  She was able to mislead Sherlock, she has a mysterious past, and she is super smart and able to keep up with Sherlock.  Instead of being threatened when Sherlock returned from the dead, she actually liked him and never got in the way of the duo’s relationship and escapades.  She is even more attune to Sherlock’s temperament and knows when is lying.  She is perfection. How can I not love her? Yeah, she shot Sherlock but it was  Sherlock’s fault in the first place.  If Sherlock didn’t intervene with her plans and ended up in Magnussen’s office, Mary would have been able to neutralize the blackmailer and none would be the wiser.  They could go on their merry ways.  But no Sherlock has to be the dragon slayer, the hero that saves the world and ruin Mary’s plan.  I just hate the double standard in the show that appears from time to time.  John had no qualms killing the cabbie in the A Study of Pink but got mad at Mary for trying to do the same to Magnussen.  Sherlock goes around insulting people, thwarting plans of villains and shoot them if he can’t and still get to live a “normal life” while Mary left her dark past behind and lives her life always looking behind her back and living with the knowledge that her happiness will never last.

 

Mofftiss killed Mary off because they want to stay loyal to ACD canon, where Mary was barely mentioned, and because the show is and will always be about these two men gallivanting around solving crimes and Mary just can’t stay and remain a third wheel anymore.  They can do what they want, it’s their show after all but it doesn’t mean I have to like it.  They could have kept Mary and still let these two have their quests but then again it’s their show and they can do as they please.  So here I am still grieving over a death of a fictional character.  They let us see how bad ass Mary is, make us love her more than take her away from us right away.  I have to say that despite my disappointments, The Six Thatchers is all about Mary.

The many faces of Mary Morstan Watson

Mary is the first fully developed female character in the show.  Irene Adler was a awesome but in the end she lost to Sherlock because of sentiment aka falling for Sherlock.  I have to admit it kind of ruin the episode for me.  In the ACD canon, Adlersimply bested Holmes and got away with her plans, leaving Holmes with such strong impression that he called her “The Woman”.  In Sherlock, Adler was the villain that Holmes eventually vanquished.  Molly Hooper has been around since the first episode but she was first introduced as simply a person who is so into Holmes but was totally ignored, a plot device to show the audience that Sherlock is not normal like us and no time for sentiments.  Mofftiss kept Molly around but still relegated to limited scenes (that didn’t stop fans from loving her though and shipping her with Sherlock) and while they can argue that Molly has grown so much from being the lovesick puppy that Sherlock manipulates easily to a friend that has grown a backbone, sees through his facade and doesn’t hesitate to tell Sherlock off, all of those so called character development are in relation to her interaction with Sherlock.  We want to know more about the person that “mattered the most” to Sherlock Holmes.

It’s such a shame that one of my absolute favorite TV shows barely pass the Bechdel test or didn’t if you asked me.  It’s so disappointing that Mofftiss has to go and kill off Mary.  The only female character in the show that was able to keep with the Holmes brothers (even fool one of them) and has shown both her “normal” and bad ass side.  It’s as if Mofftiss are resolved to make the women in Sherlock meek or turn them into villains.  Mary’s video message to Sherlock after she died “explained” why she has to die, like an explanation from the creators as to why they have to kill Mary.  Mary’s dark past will never allow her to live a normal life permanently.  She enjoyed the danger but she can’t outrun it forever and she expect it to catch up with her soon.  It’s like telling us that Mary does not deserve to be happy.

I hate John Watson now.   I cannot believe he cheated on Mary.  How could he cheated on someone as awesome as Mary?  I bet Mary knew about the other woman, might be another reason why she felt it was okay to die for Sherlock.  John got the nerve to get mad at Sherlock when he should be mad at himself.  John’s infidelity is such a huge surprise, he seemed to be the good guy in the show, the normal one, Sherlock’s moral compass then he just went and had an affair with a random woman he met on the bus.  He’s got a wonderful wife and a beautiful daughter!  How could he?   I am sure the next episodes will shed more light to this boggling turn of events.

I really hate you right now.  Yes Sherlock made a vow and so did you.  You cheated on my dear Mary!!!

Like anyone who have lost a loved one, I need someone to blame and in this case it’s Sherlock Holmes.  I blame Sherlock for Mary’s death because if he never intervened with Mary’s plan she would have got away with it.  But no Sherlock the dragon slayer has to save the damsel in distress.  Not a good idea when the damsel in question is capable of taking care of herself.  If only Sherlock let Mary do her thing, she might have been able to talk to AJ and explain herself and clear things up between them.  If only Sherlock didn’t convinced Mary to return to London because he can protect her better in his “turf”.  If only he didn’t love the drama so much and capture Norbury right away instead of staging an elaborate arrest scene.  If only he didn’t provoked Norbury she might not shot him.  If only he move right away when she shot him, he has good reflexes right?  (As they say if a person has enough time to move in front of someone, then that someone has enough time to move as well).  Yes, in my book it was Sherlock’s fault but John doesn’t have the right to blame him.  John now has to live with his guilt his entire life. Serves him right.

Some fan theorizes that Mary’s death is just a ruse, to keep her family safe.  There’s a small chance that it might be true but I don’t want to get my hopes up.  My heart’s already broken, no need to turn it into tiny splinters.  Mary’s death really shook me.  While it was expected for Mary to die because Mary died in the original ACD story I was hoping that Mofftiss will keep her around longer since she made the story more interesting.  It just so disappointing to see a kick ass female character go in a show that is predominantly male.

I am still reeling from the all that happened in the show.  Can’t wait for the next one but also terrified.  I hope no one on the “good side” dies, to see more of Molly Hooper and Moriarty’s mystery solved.   I am also sad because it is possible that this season will be the last one or it could be years again before they produce another season.  I don’t know if I should be happy that I stumbled upon this show and got so into it, ship Sherlolly and read tons of fan fictions or hoped that I never bothered to watch the first episode and save myself the trouble and heartaches.  Oh wait, I know.  If I have to go back in time I would still watch the show because the awesome characters and brilliant story is worth all the heartaches.  It’s like falling in love lol.  You know you’ll get hurt at some point but you still want to give it a try.

Then next week, I would watch the next episode, get my heart broken, rant about it and then beg Mofftiss for more.

As I was about to post this, I came across an article about Martin Freeman and Amanda Abbington’s split in the later part of last year.  I was like, how come I didn’t know about this?  I am so devastated.  My poor heart got broken again.

So what’s the glory in livin’
Doesn’t anybody ever stay together anymore
And if love never lasts forever
Tell me, what’s forever for

Hustling until the last day

It’s the last day of the term and I should be celebrating but I am just trying to catch my breath.  I just went on a challenge akin to amazing race.  Today is the submission for both my Operations Management group project and Management Accounting final paper and I was scrambling up to the last minute.  I finished all my part in the group project last night and worked on my case study until 2 am this morning and it wasn’t complete yet.  I had to verify the costs and data and go through everything for final edit.  When I went to the classroom to submit my paper,surprise, my professor is no longer there.  He told us that he will be there from 9 am to 12 noon.  I got there at 11:45 but he left already.  So I started bugging my classmates in our viber group chat and asked where’s our professor.  One classmate said that she just left the classroom and he was still there.  So I called another classmate to ask for his mobile number. It turned out our professor is already at another building already so I ran as fast as I can to meet him there.  He told me to just wait in the entrance but there are two entrances.   When I got there, he’s not around.  So I checked the lobby and the other entrance and he’s still not there.  I called him again, his voice is so soft I can barely hear him or maybe it’s the signal.  After few seconds I finally saw him, he’s not in the good mood.   I was worried he might deduct points from my paper but then I decided to just not think about it at all.  I gave my best anyway.

writing-paper-overnight

 

So yeah I am still that girl who crams despite getting all stressed out every time the term is nearing its end but what can I do?  Life is just so crazy!  Work has always been so demanding of my time, then there’s a couple of business trips and tons of paper works after those trips (to be fair, I was able to sneak in a few hours to explore the place).

procrastination

 

This week has been a crazy one for me.   I got sick on Monday and had to miss the office Christmas party, that broke my heart but I had no choice.  Went back to office on Tuesday afternoon to a table littered with paper works and a couple of gifts 🙂 Then we had to practice for our dance routine for the college Christmas party on Thursday, so I had to juggle my usual work load, back logs, practice and school requirements.  I only completed my blogs on the day it was due, I didn’t attend a class that night ( I missed another Christmas party lol).  Then came Thursday when you can barely talk to me, the good thing is we won first place in the Santa’s Got Talent competition!!!!   So at least my few hours of practice didn’t go to waste.  Friday is another super crazy day.  Paper works during the day with another Christmas party with some scholars then 7 pm onward was it was heck of a night.  Finished my Operations Management project (at least my part) and  (almost) my final paper for Management Accounting.  The night turned into morning. I finally went to bed by 2:30 am and up by 7 am to go school to edit, polish and finally submit my paper.   What a week, what a life!   I am actually used to this lifestyle 🙂  I am tired but I happy.

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Today I will enjoy my lunch, buy a book, go home early and sleep to my heart’s content.  I deserve it.

I hope to get good grades but I don’t want to obsess over it.  I gave my best and survived the term with 9 units, that alone is an accomplishment.

I just realized when I was practicing for our dance that I should really try to balance my life no matter impossible it may seem.  Only a few people know that I love dancing and it’s my favorite form of exercise (but I am not really that good lol).  This week I decided to join some of my office mates in their dance performance despite me not knowing a single dance step.  I may be so mentally and physically exhausted but when I dance it releases my stress and forgot my concerns for a while because I have to focus on the choreography if I don’t want to make a mess in the actual presentation.  The party came and instead of getting all nervous for dancing in front of almost a hundred people I just decided to enjoy the experience.  I have this awesome strategy every time I present in front of people, I call it the audience cancelling ability, where I just go through my presentation and pretend that no one is around, like I forgot they are even there.  That’s what I did during the dance and it worked.  I enjoyed it and ignore the audience especially when I was making the wrong moves lol.

life is too short.jpg

The key take away from this crazy period of my life?

  •  Do as much as you can without killing yourself, you’ll be surprised at what you are capable of doing. Just don’t stretch yourself too thin.
  • Don’t ever forget to indulge in something you love every once in a while. It could be good book , a massage or a date with your special someone and don’t let all this stuff overwhelm you.  Take charge, be in control.  It’s alright to get lost in the moment for a while but not okay to lose sight of who you are while you are so busy going after your dreams and fulfilling your responsibilities.
  • Take care of your health.  When you are surviving on a 5 hours of sleep, all stressed out and tired all the time your immune system crashes down.  Be sure to eat healthy, sneak in power naps and be a good kid and take your vitamins.
  • Don’t ignore your loved ones.  It’s hard I know but check in with them once in a while. They will understand, they are also busy with their lives.  Just let them know you didn’t forget about them.  You don’t want them to forget  you, do you?
  • Meditation and prayer is so important. It kept me sane, grounded and reminded me what really matters in life.

busy-is-a-choice

 

And next term I bet I will do this all again.

Au revoir. A plus tard.

Can’t hold us down

If you look back in history it’s a common double standard of society
The guy gets all the glory the more he can score
While the girl can do the same yet you call her a whore
I don’t understand why it’s OK,
The guy can get away with it, the girl gets name

Can’t hold us down – Christina Aguillera

 

This song came into my mind right after read Persida Acosta this statement on the news:

“Yung sa issue ng adultery and concubinage ang aking patakaran pa rin ay dapat mas mahigpit sa babae kesa sa lalake dahil ang babae ang ilaw ng tahanan,” Acosta said when asked by JBC member Jose Mejia on which laws she believes are partial to either sex. 

“Kapag nawasak ang tahanan, nagloko ang babae, wala na.  Kapag ang lalake ang nagloko, ang babae ay matatag, siya ang ilaw, buhay pa ang tahanan. So para sa akin OK lang na iyan pa rin ang batas mas mahigpit sa kababaihan sa adultery at ‘di masyadong mahigpit sa concubinage,” she added. 

 

Acosta was undergoing a public interview as part of her application to the post of SC associate justice.

Under Article 333 of the Revised Penal Code, a wife can be convicted of the crime of adultery for a single act of sexual intercourse with a man who is not her husband and by the man who has carnal knowledge of her knowing her to be married, even if the marriage be subsequently declared void.  If found guilty, both the married woman and her lover will suffer a prison term for a maximum period of six years.

 

Under Article 334, the law punishes a married man for concubinage only if he is found guilty of any of the following:

  • keeping a mistress in the conjugal dwelling
  • having sexual intercourse under scandalous circumstances with a woman who is not his wife
  • cohabiting with her in any other place

The penalty for the guilty husband is lower by one degree which is imprisonment for a maximum period of 4 years and 1 day only. His concubine, meanwhile, is given a separate penalty of “destierro” or banishment and not imprisonment.

 

So what is wrong with these? Let me see:

  1. In adultery, proof of sexual intercourse is enough, but in concubinage, it is not enough that sexual intercourse occurred. It has to be proven first that said intercourse is under under scandalous circumstance or a husband kept a mistress in a conjugal dwelling or cohabited with her in any other place.  Yup, convicting a woman of adultery is simple and straight-forward while proving that a man is guilty of concubinage is a lot of work.  If a married man is simply screwing random women in different locations then our state is totally okay with that.   Seriously what under scandalous circumstances means really?
  1. Let’s talk about penalties.  For the wife, the medium period of penalty for the crime of adultery ranges from 2 years, 4 months and 1 day to 4 years and 2 months imprisonment. The maximum period ranges from 4 years, 2 months and 1 day to 6 years imprisonment. The maximum period of imprisonment for a woman who is proven guilty of adultery by the court is 6 years.  For the husband, the penalty of prison correctional in its minimum period is from six months and one day of imprisonment.  The medium period of penalty is from 2 years, 4 months and one day to 4 years and one day of imprisonment.  The maximum period of imprisonment for a man who is proven guilty of concubinage by the court is 4 years and one day.  Not only is it easier for a woman to get convicted, the punishment also heavier.

 

The feminist in me just roar in rage.  I expected better from someone who leads the Public Attorney’s Office and a female lawyer.  It’s bad enough the law itself is unfair, it’s not surprising actually.  I bet the people who wrote and passed the law are men (I could be totally wrong).

So basically it’s only the woman who holds the family together?  It’s like telling men to go on their merry ways and do whatever they want they have no responsibility whatsoever as a father and husband after all.  He can’t be held accountable for what he does; he’s a man after all, the society expects him to mess around anyway.   Since a woman is strong enough she is not is not supposed to go astray and if she did, she must face tougher penalties just because.  Fantastic!

This rant is not about encouraging married women to have an affair because men are doing it anyway and with lesser consequence.   This is not me wanting both husband and wife to be heavily penalized by the law for desecrating their supposed holy marriages.  This is about equality.  Husband and wife should be both held accountable in their respective duties to each other and to their family.  Both should be resilient when it comes to challenges and temptations that will jeopardize their union.

Both sexes should face equal penalty for equal crime committed and both transgression should be convicted on equal grounds.

It is such a shame to leave in a patriarchal society in this day and age. I am so sick of double standard and gender stereotypes.  It’s the freaking 21st century already!  We explored space, detected gravitational waves (something we only read about and some might think will remain a theory).  We have phones that seemed smarter than us.  We’ve come so far as to realize that we can make clothes without taking off animal’s skin.  We’ve done so much.  We seemed so progressive but at the deepest recesses of our minds, most of us still believe in that bullshit belief that women are second class citizens and are only created as an afterthought, a companion to the lonely men.  Therefore we always have to have to play second fiddle to just about everything.

Nothing hurts a feminist more than seeing another woman purposely refusing to make gender equality a possibility.   Gender equality has a long way to go. I am not losing hope, someday soon and I hope I am still alive to witness it, men and women will stand side by side and recognize each other’s strengths and weaknesses and work together for a better world that is free of

This is for my girls all around the world
Who have come across a man that don’t respect your worth
Thinkin’ all women should be seen and not heard
So what do we do girls, shout out loud
Lettin ’em know we’re gonna stand our ground
So lift your hands high and wave ’em proud
Take a deep breath and say it loud
Never can, never will
Can’t hold us down

 

Like a thief in the night

The Marcoses just proved how sneaky they could get.  In November 18, 2016, the Supreme Court  allowed the body of the late President and dictator Ferdinand Marcos to be buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani.   Earlier today, like a thief in a the night (or the thief that they are), they sneaked Marcos’ carcass and finally buried him to where his family and loyalists believed to be his rightful place, among the nation’s heroes.   Why I am not surprised at  this?  Maybe I am losing faith in this country or maybe I am simply used to seeing powerful people getting what they want. I should probably stop writing on topics such as this lest Martin Andanar (aka one of Duterte’s apologists) call me a temperamental brat and some people might accuse me of not knowing anything at all since I wasn’t even alive during Martial Law.  Turned out apathy when it comes  to our nation’s history.

Hero or not

Today the Supreme Court ruled on the burial of the former president and dictator Ferdinand Marcos.  For decades, the Marcos family has fought to have the former president be buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani (Heroes Cemetery), a national cemetery.  Amidst criticisms and protests, the Supreme Court voted and got a 9-5 (yes-no) result.  This is a very triumphant and happy day for the Marcos and their loyalists and a tragic one for the victims (and their families) of the martial law victims.   Hero or not, as far as the Supreme Court is concerned, Marcos deserved to be buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani.

Imee Marcos (the former President and dictator’s daughter) said after the ruling “Ang sa akin tumalima tayo sa Korte Suprema.  Kung ano man ang galit sa inyong puso, let it go na po, pagpapatawad nalang , let us move on”.  Well tell that to the people who died and got brutalized without getting justice.  It’s funny to hear her say let us move on when it was her family who refused to bury their “loved one” for almost 3 decades because they  want a “heroes burial” for him.   Why can’t they move on instead and bury him elsewhere?

This news really darken my day.  Some solons even called this day a national mourning day.