Saturday, May 26, 2012

A beach trip off the beaten track - Matnog, Sorsogon

Sorry for the overprocessing, I overexposed the shot.

There are some islands in Brgy. Calintaan, Matnog, Sorsogon Philippines that have always cropped up in conversations between my cousins and I about the best spots to go to that’s near my hometown. I have, with a flurry, explored the many great spots that litter the area around my beloved Gubat, Sorsogon. In a much, much longer post, I will tell you the tale of how, in about two years, I’ve gone to so many amazing places that, at most, are two hours removed from my ancestral home.

But for now let’s stick to what locals call, Subic Saday or Small Subic, which is in my opinion erroneously named because I think people in Matnog don’t know HOW MUCH better their beaches are than those in Subic, Pampanga.

To get there, you have to first travel to Matnog port, which is easily found by riding a Sorsogon-bound bus in Manila or taking a plane to Legazpi City and traveling by bus or public transportation (read: jeepney) first to Sorsogon then another jeepney ride to Matnog.

When you get to the port central, you’d imagine that you’d have to work through the hagglers usually seen in more well-known spots as Puerto Galera (Sir, pa-White Beach po? Sir may bangka na po kayo? Sir, dito po, paalis na, Tawaraw beach) or Cebu. Well, to some extent you get that, with people buzzing around obvious tourist jeeps and cars asking those same questions, but without the aggressive beat-you-to-submission sales shove. More like a gentle inquiry that stops once word gets out that you have arranged for boat services. People are so helpful here, with the boatmen we hired going the extra mile and accompanying us at the beach, even cooking the fresh fish we bought at the port for us!  To help you out, here’s a useful website full of tips and travel info on Matnog.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

A few things I'd like to say to Facebook users

Facebook lets us do a lot of things. A ton, really. But here are a few things I think everyone with a modicum of self-respect should bear in mind.

1. DO NOT like AND THEN and comment on your own post.
Please. Seriously. Really. Come on, it's pathetic. Let your friends react to what you post first so you don't come off as a friendless loser who just wants attention, liking and commenting to get your post noticed on the notification board. (And really, it doesn't even work. D'oh!)

2. DO put your own picture up on your page.
Your friends know just how f*cked up you look. They don't care. An anime character may be cute for someone in their teens, but at 26, man, get your mug up there. And please, don't even think of putting up a celeb picture up there, it's just...funny. No. Depressing. No. funny. Nah, really, depressing. Especially if you look nothing like him or her, even after a rake plows through your face.

3. DO NOT start or share your fights on your wall.
So you love her or hate her with a fervor that brings the Crusaders to shame. But don't you think lovers quarrels and petty catfights are too personal to share to the world? I mean, a lot of times, your grammar's wrong, your insults are weak and you whine like a wounded mofo. Would you like people to see that?

4. DO add friends that are, well, really friends.
Seriously. Add people who really know you and you would like to be in contact with. Don't fall into the fame-by-association trap. If you don't know a person, then the whole gamut of services Facebook offers is rendered senseless.

5. DO NOT tag people in your selling posts who have previously untagged themselves.
Sure, electronic commerce is cool. You can make a lot of money without even leaving your house. But if someone already untagged him or herself from a post you put up before, don't tag them in the next one just like it anymore. It. Is. Annoying.

6. DO choose your goddamn pictures.
You have a digital camera or a camera phone. Good. For heaven's sake, don't upload all the shots you take, weed out the out-of-focus ones. Or the ones with half a face or are incorrectly lighted. Or the pictures of your back pocket or the inside of your purse you accidentally took. The user content driven age we live in should seriously have some guidelines. Like a manual or something.

7. DO NOT stalk people.
If you have a crush on someone, man up and talk to her man. It's just pitiful to see all of the posts on someone's wall with one person trying to be cute and liking and commenting on every little thing there. Message her. Don't stalk her. You have a better chance just talking to her, than frightening her with all your (what you think are) cutesy little comments. Fudge.

8. DO friggin' spell and grammar check.
See those red squiggly lines below what you're typing? THEY'RE THERE TO TELL YOU THAT THERE'S AN ERROR IN YOUR SPELLING. Man. What? Avoid shaming yourself please. Worst case scenario: a pretend Grammar Nazi who should swallow his or her own pill.

9. DO NOT update us with everything you're doing.
So you're eating. Sleeping. Defecating. Watching. Picking your nose. Breathing. Existing. So effing what.  

10. DO log off.
Try talking to your friends or making new ones in real life. It's sooooo much more fun.

Got anymore ideas? Feel free to add your own.