My life in books

Ancillary Justice - Ann LeckieReading has been my past time in a long time. Growing up in the province my access to reading materials when I was a kid is very limited but I was contented with reading the short stories in my English and Filipino textbooks. In high school, I now have access to fiction books from the school library. Most of the books in the library are the classics and literary novels. These were required reading and we have to make book reports so reading them became a chore and not enjoyable. Until I found out about the Choose Your Own Adventure Books. I pretty much enjoyed those books. In college I may have forgotten reading for pleasure. Even if I had time to read, the college library does not carry fiction novels. The only time I enjoyed reading is from reading the comics collection of a friend. I remember reading issues of X-Men, X-Factor, Superman, and D.P. 7.

Superman Unchained - Scott SnyderMy interest in reading returned when I chanced upon a battered book when I already started working. It does not have a cover and the story is set on a world where technology is based on organic materials and not on metals. The story intrigued me and I kept on reading the book during my down time. Too bad I can’t remember the title of the story or who wrote it. This book showed me that my genre of choice is science fiction (or speculative fiction in general).

Headlong Flight - Dayton WardSince I am already working (meaning I have the means) and staying in the city (meaning I have the access), I can now buy my own reading materials. The bookstore is like a candy store! Too many books to choose from. The bookstore also introduced me to Star Trek original novels and media tie-in books in general. This is also the time that I started buying comic books, mostly from the X-Men line. And then I discovered used books stores. The books are dirt cheap. Then I started hording. I also branched to magazines by this point.

Night Comes Early - Burt GabotIt came to a point that I acquire 5 but only finishing 2 then acquiring a new batch again. I realized that this a problem when I moved apartments more than 3 times now. I now have a book buying ban: buy one paperback book at most in a month. I am now shifting to electronic books and digital comics. Also a recent development, listening to audio books. I am pretty much becoming format agnostic as long as I like the story. In the next few months, I will try to unload my paperback books. (Cue Elsa, “let it go, let it go…”)

Rewinder - Brett BattlesI have a bad habit of starting a book but not finishing it or reading multiple books at a time. Also when I read a book, I pretty much jump to another book immediately. I do not give myself enough time to reflect on the book I read. When someone asks me how I see the book, all I can say is “I liked it” or “not liked it” with no further elaboration. I would like to change that. Well, I tried it before but the only word that can describes my attempt to write reviews is “terse”. Most actually fits as a tweet.

How should I do it? I asked myself. I need a structure. So I made one that I hope I can follow (I might also use these guide questions as section headings).

1. Why did you pick this up?
2. What is it?
3. What is it all about? (for non-fiction)/What happened? (for fiction)
4. Did you liked it?
5. Would you recommend it?

There you go, a book review for at least 5 sentences!

I will also do a status update on the first 10% placing my initial impression of the book. And on the 20% mark or after 50 pages (whichever comes first), I will evaluate if I need to proceed reading. If I will DNF the book (short for did-not-finish), I will post a status update as to why and if I there is chance that I might revisit the book in the near future.

I now have a plan for this book blog. I hope I can stick with it. Crossing fingers.

Original post:

Time travel fascination

I was and always have been always fascinated with the possibility of time travel. The ability to revisit past events, the thrill of sneaking a peek to a possible future, that always make my imagination going. It is the reason why I always find myself attracted to fictional characters who have this ability or access to machines or artifacts that allows them to travel.

But, is it possible?

If it is possible in my lifetime, would I travel? When? Upstream or downstream? Would I just visit and view passively or interact with my timeline? And what about the possibilities of paradoxes? Exciting isn’t it.

There is a possibility that I had done it, will do it, what the hell I hate tenses when time travel is involved. People claimed (not definite, though) that I was spotted in some place but I am very sure that I was not there. Or I may be there but doing something else entirely. A doppelgänger, maybe. A time travelling self, I like to be.

Fine, fine. I think I am just missing this fictional character that travels in a blue box across time and space. Fantastic!

Featured image: “Kanazawa Station Clock” by Rei, used under the CC-BY-SA-3.0 license, from Wikimedia Commons


The day is ending. Haven’t got an idea on what to blog about. Didn’t do anything interesting the whole day. Not inspired the whole night. I am waiting for a spark to start something worthwhile but… nah… I’ll just do it tomorrow. As usual. That is why I am referred to as “Procrastination” in the first place.

Here’s something from AVByte.

Now off to sleep. Or maybe check some tweets first.

Board game mash-up

How to make two board games more awesome? Mash them up!

A while ago while hanging out on cafe that offers board games, we pulled out two games: Scrabble (albeit a knock-off) and Snakes and Ladders. We intent to play board games simultaneously and then an idea came to me, why not mash them up. The mashed-up game removed the unpreditability of Snakes and Ladders and added an additional strategic level for Scrabble.

The rules for both games are kept except: make the scores earned in Scrabble as the dice-roll in Snakes and Ladders. The game ends when the Snakes and Ladders board is completed. Need to move 8 spaces in Snakes and Ladders to climb a ladder? Score an 8 in Scrabble. Need to pass the head of a snake by not moving 10 spaces? Don’t score a 10 in Scrabble!

Now, what classic board games that can be mashed-up?

Late night at the videoke

The time is 2:30 am. Time flies when you’re having fun… especially on videoke. I am not a good singer but it is fun. Do I have a go-to song? Previously, yes. Now, maybe. Here’s the run down of my playlist a while ago.

“The Actor” by Michael Learns to Rock

MLTR was my go-to artist when I was still in college. We had a videoke compilation on VHS.

“After All” by Al Jarreau

First time to sing it on videoke. I found out that this song is on my (very limited) vocal range.

“All Behind Us Now” by Patti Austin

Also first time on videoke.

“Gaya ng Dati” by Gary Valenciano

As always, I need to have a Gary V song in every session.

“I’ll Never Go” by Nexxus

Until now, I can’t get the correct pitch.

“Last Flight Out” by Plus One

It is obligatory to have at least one boy band song.

“Truly Madly Deeply” by Savage Garden

I always get out of breath with this one.

“True Colors” by Phil Collins

This song is fun to sing.

I’ll Be Over You” by Toto

The closing song for the night. This was my go-to song years ago. Now, I feel hollow singing it.

Looking forward on the next videoke session. 🙂

Featured image: “SennMicrophone” by ChrisEngelsma, licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Four-legged companion in my mind

For days now, I am thinking of having a pet. But before getting one, I have questions. Big questions.

English: A pet dog that I found
English: A pet dog that I found (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Am I in the right state of mind and emotion to have a pet. It is a big commitment. Am I willing to have this pet in my life for the next 15 or so years (assuming it is a dog or cat). Can I take care of this “baby”… give it food, shelter, affection, protection that it needs from me.

Is my apartment the right fit for a pet? What would my roommates react to a pet around the apartment? How about the neighbors? How about if I go to work, would the animal stay in the apartment alone until I return? What if I will be assigned on the field, who will take care of the pet?

Pet cat Matahari in gestation(52 days)
Pet cat Matahari in gestation(52 days) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Should I get a dog or a cat? A big one or a small one? Can it live in a small space? How much exercise does it need? Pet food, how much? Vet bills, definitely.

If I can’t have a dog or cat, how about fish? Can I have an aquarium in the apartment? How much would it cost installing and maintaining it? Which aquatic creatures should I get?

Too many questions! This will occupy my mind for many days to come.

Featured image: “HAZE & CHARA 2013-10-01 22-00” by Lori724, licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Year 37

So my new year started uneventful. Probably because it falls on Maundy Thursday where it is almost somber everywhere. But I do hope the rest of the my new year would be different.

So what would my new year entails? I don’t dare to speculate because I don’t want to jinx any good things that may come before me. But there are things that I should do (or start) this year.

Credit cards Français : Cartes de crédit Itali...
Credit cards Français : Cartes de crédit Italiano: Carte di credito Русский: Банковские карты Tiếng Việt: Thẻ tín dụng 中文: 信用卡 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For finances, I am already training myself on managing it. Paid my one of my credit cards already. The other one, I set a plan of paying it down without incurring too much interest. I am disciplining myself of treating my credit cards like a debit card so that I will fall to the debt trap again. I may have to increase my income, either my taking a side job or switching full-time job.

I may not get fit this year but I really need to get started. So I do hope to get my a** off and start moving. I also need to get a physical check-up just in case. Diabetes runs in the family.

I also want to go on a vacation this year. A full one-week break would be nice.

I can’t think more things to do at this time. Will post some soon.

PS: Yes, I am that old but for me it is just a number.

Featured image by Joey Gannon, licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons.