the babel machine


Friday, October 29, 2004

nanowrimo and you

While reading a novel, have you ever found yourself thinking, "Hey, I could do this. I can write better than this -- if only I had the time."

Maybe you're dreaming of being the next J.K. Rowling, or writing a bestseller that will put "The Da Vinci Code" to shame. Maybe you want to be the next Gabriel Garcia Marquez or Isabel Allende and have other novelists worship at your feet, saying "We're not worthy" over and over again.

Read "NaNoWriMo, NaNoBlogMo" in YOU Technogear and then get off your butt and... well, actually, you'll still be sitting down but you'd better be writing when you do, hehe.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 6:08 PM :: 0 Comments:

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cat without a hat

Meet our Friday YOU Blog Addict, banzai cat.

Check out the pic of the mouse banzai cat caught, hehe.

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magnetic charm

Ninang Kay watching Sam play with the magnetic letters she gave her inaanak today. Sam can already recognize almost every letter of the alphabet -- she gets confused with d and p, though. Posted by Hello

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write your novel, blog your novel

Wrote a feature on NaNoWriMo and NaNoBlogMo for INQ7 Infotech, which also talks about my friend Dean Alfar and how he inspired me to kill myself, er, I mean have fun trying to write a novel in 30 days.

In the meantime, check out "Write your novel, blog your novel." And do consider taking the plunge yourself.

You can also check out the Blogging Your Novel series of tips from Blogger: read Part 1 and Part 2. Haven't read Part 2 yet, so let me know if they're making sense, hehe.

And check out The Maharlika Legacy on Nov. 1, when those of us who have made our NaNoWriMo pledge start writing our 50, 000-word novels. Sigh, what am I getting myself into -- it's crazy but I'm going to do my best to have fun, hehe.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 9:58 AM :: 2 Comments:

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Thursday, October 28, 2004

five poems and a short story

This week's poems in YOU Expressions are "Inspiration from a Flower" by shireyu-chan, "Autumn in Japan" by Emmanuel P. Villaceran, "Such Sweet Sorrow (One For The Road)" by Migs Marfori, "First Flight" by Alexis Adrias and "Sex and Death" by Liza Nobleza.

We also published Dianne Capulan's short story, "Cafe Blues."

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 1:30 PM :: 0 Comments:

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the curse is over

Yup, Banzai Cat! The Boston Red Sox have finally won the World Series after 86 years!

With a sweep, at that. So congratulations to the Bosox and their fans, particularly Boston Rob.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 1:21 PM :: 1 Comments:

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Wednesday, October 27, 2004

boston 3, bambino 0

Well, Boston is now just a win away from winning their first World Series since 1918, after beating the St. Louis Cardinals, 4-1, in Game 3.

Of course, it's still possible for a 3-0 lead to be overcome -- right, New York? And I'm sure with all their meltdowns in the past, even the most ardent Boston Red Sox fans might be wondering at the back of their minds if somehow, yet again, by some miracle or curse, they will again be left heartbroken.

Which is why the Bosox had better sweep and get it over with, 'coz you know that if they let the Cardinals win in Game 4, the ghosts of the past will be there to haunt them and put additional pressure on the players.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 3:30 PM :: 0 Comments:

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nanowrimo = nanoblogmo

Well, I've decided to join NaNoWriMo and NaNoBlogMo, to see if I can produce a novel in 30 days this November.

I stumbled upon National Novel Writing Month a week or so ago, and then Blogger decided to complement it with NaNoBlogMo, if you want to harness blogging as a tool for writing your novel and sharing comments with other authors who'll be blogging their novels.

So, like Hamlet, I was postponing my decision (To write or not to write? To blog or not to blog?), but then my friend Dean Alfar, one of the writers I respect most, decided what the heck, he'll go for it.

At the very least, this is going to be a very interesting experience and writing challenge. I'm not really sure yet how I'll go about it, but I know I'm going to have a lot of fun (and lots of angst-ridden moments, I'm sure) trying to write a 50, 000-word novel in 30 days from Nov. 1-30.

So feel free to check out The Maharlika Legacy from time to time. I haven't started writing yet, of course, because the journey begins on Nov. 1, which is just around the corner. And with all these deadlines and other projects... well, that's precisely why many of us haven't written a novel yet, right, because we keep postponing it, thinking we just can't find enough time to do it.

At the very least, this will jump-start the process, which is why I'm encouraging everyone to check out NaNoWriMo. If you've already registered with NaNoWriMo and created the blog for your novel at Blogger, don't forget to go to the official NaNoBlogMo site and have it listed.

Whatever happens, I'm here to enjoy the ride -- and I hope many of you will embark on this exciting journey too.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 11:29 AM :: 0 Comments:

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Tuesday, October 26, 2004

a blog affair to remember

Hey Nikki, welcome back!

Guess what? You're our Tuesday YOU Blog Addict!

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 7:15 PM :: 2 Comments:

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pinoypc community

Wondering why the PinoyPC site seems quiet lately? Read this story.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 7:08 PM :: 1 Comments:

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digital experience

Remember when PCs were just boring beige boxes? Now they're full-blown home entertainment systems -- and Hewlett-Packard Philippines has launched a whole army of gadgets that work together as part of our digital lifestyle.

Read the YOU Technogear article.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 7:00 PM :: 0 Comments:

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filipino for filipinos

Ederic Eder, founding editor of youth e-zine and a GMA Network researcher, brought up a very good point when he e-mailed me earlier today, asking if YOU accepts submissions written in Filipino, particularly for Youngblood Online.

Like I told him, it hasn't been done yet in the print edition of Youngblood, but I don't see why we shouldn't for the online edition. After all, I've been using Filipino poetry submitted to YOU Expressions, such as this one.

So why not encourage more young Filipinos to write well in Filipino and provide another online venue for these articles? I would also appreciate this as a writer hoping to hone my skills in Filipino -- I can write in Filipino, but I'm just not as confident in it and my efforts somehow turn out sounding melodramatic.

Nakakahiya nga, napakapurol na ng aking kakayahang magsulat sa Filipino, gayong tubong Bulacan ang aking mga ninuno. Kaya sinabi ko nga kay Ederic, pagpasensiyahan na rin niya ako dahil mangangapa muna ako sa simula sa pagbabasa ng mga sanaysay niya at ng mga iba pang magpapadala.

But, yeah, let's at least make the effort to be better writers in Filipino. And give more young writers the incentive to excel in the language we call our own.

So send those articles in Filipino (800 to 1, 200 words) as an RTF attachment or text incorporated in the e-mail to We're still not offering contributor's fees, but hey, it's your chance to share your message with a worldwide audience and see your byline on

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 1:26 PM :: 0 Comments:

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got game?

Hope you like the new look. And try out one of the games at the bottom of the page -- no looping background music this time, hehe.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 1:20 AM :: 0 Comments:

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Monday, October 25, 2004

blog, don't clog

Read our Infotech feature story on tech blogger Edwin Soriano.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 8:21 PM :: 0 Comments:

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boston vs. the bambino

How about dem Red Sox, huh? Now they're just two wins away from finally putting an end to the Curse of the Bambino.

And if you believe that most enduring sports myth, boy, that Babe Ruth sure could hold a grudge. Eight decades, man!

I'm not a Boston fan. I'm not even really a big fan of Major League Baseball, but for some reason I've always rooted for the New York Yankees. I've never been to New York, but I've always been fascinated with that larger-than-life city and have promised myself that I will visit it one day.

So I was as stunned as the most rabid New York fan when the Red Sox did the impossible. After just being three outs away from being swept in Game 4, by their most hated rivals at that, who had eliminated them the year before, the Red Sox somehow became the first MLB team to overcome a 0-3 postseason deficit.

Four straight wins against the greatest baseball franchise, their storied archrival which only became a great team after Boston sold Babe Ruth to them in 1920, starting the legend of the Baby's Curse.

So yeah, I can't believe the Yankees blew it. They've dominated baseball for the past few years, but they haven't won a World Series since 2000. Still, that can hardly compare to the frustration of the Red Sox and their fans year after year after year...

I'm not a dog-in-the-manger, SpongeBob crabby patty like some Yankee players and fans who are coping with the shock and bitterness by saying, well, the curse hasn't been lifted yet, 'coz Boston still won't win the World Series. For pulling off that incredible feat and making history, the Red Sox deserve to win, whether you like them or not. Hell, they haven't won the World Series since 1918. If they blow it, they really should get an exorcist.

Besides, somebody from Boston has to make up for a year when Boston Rob was robbed in "Survivor: All Stars" by a bunch of self-righteous crybabies in the jury, led by Lex "It's just a game when I'm stabbing my friend Ethan in the back and betraying Colby, but it's immoral if Boston Rob does it to me before I do it to him" van den Berghe. Lex was panned for his Reality TV Hall of Shame moment even before the season ended, but he made it even worse during the reunion.

So, go for it, Boston.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 5:22 PM :: 2 Comments:

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bath time battles

Kids these days.

If Sam's like this when she's still two months shy of turning three, I'm kind of scared of the battles that lie ahead when she becomes a teenager. No wonder our parents were so exasperated yet sheepish lecturing us when we were teen rebels. Now I find myself sounding like my dad -- my God, I'm a parent!

While I was bathing Sam this morning, she kept complaining while I was shampooing her hair, like she always does. To put this into context, remember my post about Sam being the Energizer Bunny? Well, she doesn't stop just because she's taking a bath.

"Ow, it's in my eyes. Ow, it's in my nose," she kept saying.

"Well," I said, "I told you not to keep moving. If you stand still, then it wouldn't get in your eyes and your nose."

"No! That's not true!"

Yup -- my kid all right.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 5:08 PM :: 0 Comments:

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Sunday, October 24, 2004

triathlon winner

And now the news: Mylene Rayala won the bronze medal in her category at the recently concluded National Age Group Triathlon leg held in Clark, Pampanga. And it's her first time to compete in a triathlon! Go, Mylene, we're so proud of you! Posted by Hello

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Sam sandwiched between her mom and Ninang Mylene. She had just woken up when this pic was taken, so that explains the spaced-out look, hehe. Posted by Hello

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look ma, no curls!

Sam's Ninang Mylene showing off her new 'do, courtesy of hair stylist Jojo of Emphasis salon at the Peninsula Manila. Posted by Hello

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sweet dreams

Hey, a feature story I wrote on Nana Meng's Original Tsokolate Filipino came out today in the Philippine Daily Inquirer's Sunday Biz section.

Thanks to Margie Espino, Inquirer's Business Features editor, for using my article.

So, make Margaux Salcedo happy -- grab a copy of the Inquirer and turn to page B3. Then make her even happier and buy some cocoa from her, hehe.

You can also check out the article online in INQ7money.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 7:13 AM :: 0 Comments:

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ellen and sam are back!

It's crazy how much I missed my wife Ellen and Sam -- they slept over at Tita Neng's house Friday night and only came back last night.

I couldn't go with them 'coz I'm working on a major project, which I hope to share with you in the next few weeks. Actually, two major projects, hehe.

Sam brought back a lot of loot again, including shoes from her Ninang Kay and this enormous toy barbecue grill from my mother-in-law, Sam's Lola Linda. Sam was like the Energizer Bunny all throughout her stay there -- well, she's always the Energizer Bunny.

Sleeping late, getting up really early in the morning, and then spending every waking moment running, jumping, singing, dancing, laughing, drawing and talking, talking, talking. The poor thing woke up in the wee hours of Saturday, though, crying and looking for me.

It sure didn't feel like just one day without them.

It really felt weird having the bed all to myself Friday night. Not that I got much sleep, 'coz I was working. In fact, I'm still working, hehe.

Posted by Joey Alarilla :: 6:58 AM :: 0 Comments:

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