Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Virginia Is For Lovers

Another weekend has passed, so you already know what that means - another state has been Raft3rized!

Yes, Raft3rize is a new term I coined. Hopefully, it will catch on.

We went to visit Virginia and stayed at a friend's relative. They were the nicest folks ever. That's the thing about Filipinos. Even if they meet you for the first time, they will treat you like family.

This is my second time in Virginia. I always liked it. Nice and quiet.

There are a lot of romantic places here. Assateaque Island is one. Hence the state slogan: Virginia is for lovers.

Although in this trip, Raft3r didn't get to see much of its attractions. We just went to the mall and that was it. Still it was perfect. Raft3r's a huge mallrat.

The family I stayed with prepared home cooked meals for us. But they served us kare-kare, longganisa, and salted egg with tomatoes. Yummy! Raft3r ate a bowl full of rice.

It's crazy how much one craves for local food when overseas. I miss my sisig.

Anyone back home who sends me one will get an In-N-Out Burger in return.

Money Changes Everything

Raft3r often dreams of being a millionaire. Everybody does, right?
I mean who wouldn't want to have the luxury of buying everything. That would be so cool.

Granted I am a millionaire, I’m buying everything Virgin Megastore is selling. Man, I am even buying the entire store. How's that!

Oh, I also need my own private jet.

Will someone please wake me up?

In reality, Raft3r couldn't even afford to buy any regular priced DVD in that store. Their prices are way jacked up.

These days, I can hardly get by with my per diem. Damn those clearance sales!

Thank heavens for cash advance loan. Whoever invented this is a genius.

Someone from work gave me a number to call. Application is fast and easy.

Now, Raft3r can shop for his nieces anytime.

There is nothing like a good sale to brighten up an otherwise uneventful day.

Eat The Rich

Times are hard.

Raft3r is very much aware of this. Despite the President's positive spin on the Philippines' current economic situation, one can just look around and see the real condition.

No amount of press release can deny the fact that most of the population are barely surviving with what they earn for a living. With weekly price increases in gasoline and basic commodities, people are stressing.

There are also other important factors to key in like school expenses, date nights, vacation trips, and frequent mall visits.

What if there is an emergency and you are all maxed out? Don't fret. The ever reliable fast cash payday loans are always helpful.

Like a good friend, loans are dependable, responsible, and flexible.

Go ahead. Live a good life but still be responsible. Monetary constraints should not be a hindrance. You owe yourself a treat once in a while.

Work hard. Play harder.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Fantastic Four

Who says Monday has to be gloomy and such?

Raft3r is having the best Monday ever!

Here’s some good news. 

Google has just paged rank The Deadbeat Club as a 4! I couldn't believe it myself. Am I lucky or what?

Four, coincidentally, is my favorite number. Although in Chinese numerology, four is considered unlucky since it symbolizes death. That doesn’t bother me.

Of course, a page rank of 4 could not be possible with you - my awesome online readers.

Raft3r has the greatest buddies in the world!

Your continued interest in my mundane adventures remains a mystery to me. But I am truly appreciative. Thank you.

I have to go now and post this right away. Google might suddenly realize its error and take back our new page rank.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Name Game

Pennsylvania, otherwise called the Keystone State, is known for a lot of things.

Funny names of places are one of them.

Consider the following:

Blue Ball;
Big Beaver;
Long Branch;
Virgin Run;
Beaver Falls;

Sorry for the innuendos.

Raft3r hasn't had any in a while. It's not even funny.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Whenever You Feel Like It

Girls love to shop.

I guess they are born with the talent to spend loads of money in the shortest amount of time. Raft3r knows this for a fact. I was born and raised in a family full of shopaholic women.

An ex is also a certified spender. She kept tons of crdeit cards in her purse. She used them like there was no tomorrow. At least day in the mall with her is guaranteed a good workout. I had to carry a whole lot of shopping bags.

Raft3r may not be a shopping whore but I sure know the value of having the best crdeit cards at my disposal. Being away from home, I need to have available funds at all times.

I found a pretty good credit card company here and hurriedly applied for one. They got excellent service. Click on the link to find out more.

Having a credit card is a reasonable solution to any money emergency. A sudden DVD sale is a perfect example. Whenever you feel like shopping, swipe away with your crdeit cards.

So far, Raft3r has been very responsible in keeping tabs on all his bills. Being an obsessive compulsive does have its perks.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Crying Shame

After four long years, justice has been served. Yes, America can finally move on.

Give it a rest, people.

Janet Jackson has been exonerated and rightly so.

CBS, producer of the 2004 Super Bowl half time show, will not be fined for the Nipplegate Scandal.

US Court ruled that fleeting, isolated or unintended acts of nudity should not automatically be considered indecent.

This controversy has dragged on for so long that Janet's once stellar career is now on the brink of VH1's: Where Are They Now? status.

It's sad that an icon like Janet who has shattered numerous industry records and paved the way for artists like Beyonce, Rihanna, Aaliyah, and even Britney will forever be remembered for wardrobe malfunction.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Pass The Dutch

Over the weekend, Raft3r visited an Amish community in Pennsylvania.

I know very little about the Amish. I have seen For Richer or Poorer. Though that would be a very inept representation of what their culture is really like.

Kill me now but I love that movie. It's funny as hell.

The Amish have a simplistic view in life. They don’t believe in material possessions. They have no electricity which cuts them off from the modern world.

Raft3r would love to simplify his own life. But cutting off electricity is a whole new ball game.

Thursday, July 17, 2008

10 Things I Hate About You

1. You always make me wait.

2. You nag me all the time.

3. You make me tuck my shirt in.

4. You often ask, "Do you think I'm fat?"

5. Your idea of bonding is shopping.

6. You treat me as your personal chauffeur.

7. You make mountains out of molehills.

8. You expect too much.

9. You like to talk about your feelings a lot.

10. You always say, "I'm not in the mood."

Monday, July 14, 2008

Waking Up The Neighbours

Raft3r was watching the news this morning when a report came in about Baltimore being compared to a third world city.

I was instantly hooked. If they mention Manila, Raft3r would just flip. 

Fortunately, there wasn’t any. A sigh of relief was in order.

Baltimore is not a safe place. Even local police will tell you that. But to be compared to a third world city, Baltimore must really be in deep shit.

Every night at exactly past midnight, I am awakened by the sounds of police cars and/or ambulances with their alarms way up high. 

I pity hotel guests staying on lower floors. Raft3r is on the 26th and the sound is still way too loud.

On more than a few occasions, I also noticed police helicopters with their search lights on. That can’t be good, right?

So at night before I lay myself to sleep, I say a prayer to keep everyone safe.

After all to be given another day to live is the best gift one can receive.

An Inconvenient Truth

Raft3r is an obsessive compulsive.

That’s my confession for the day.

My things are well organized. All of them are arranged by color, by category, by collection, and by date. 

Hit me in the head. I’m insane. I know.

Raft3r’s DVD and CD collections used to be displayed in a mounted wall cabinet. Since I am a neat freak, I normally spend half of my weekend dusting off my collections. I lived a sad life back then.

That ended when I decided to just place all my DVDs in cardboard boxes. Properly labeled and categorized, but of course. 

But cardboard boxes rot and even their contents can get damaged. So Raft3r took to the mall and found a better alternative.

I replaced my cardboard boxes with plastic ones. I found these really cool recyclable containers. They are also great space savers since you can stack them up. Raft3r bought more than a dozen.

During my weekly grocery at Walmart, I saw my acid free storage boxes on sale! Raft3r wanted to buy more since they are sold much cheaper here.

The only thing that stopped me from purchasing these babies is the travel baggage limitation. Damn those 50 pound restriction on luggages.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Another Suitcase In Another Hall

In the past few months, Rafter has been in and out of hotel rooms.

I have always wanted to be a rock star. So this is probably closest I could get to being one. My job rocks!

Just like any famous rock star, I fly first class and stay in ultra fancy hotels. Everything is at my disposal. Raft3r can get use to this.

Sex, drugs, and rock & roll. What’s not to like about that kind of lifestyle, huh? I’m exaggerating, of course.

I haven’t been able to unpack most of my stuff from my previous travel, when I hopped on a plane to Maryland.

It’s not that I’m complaining. Raft3r loves to travel. But once in a while, it would be nice to just stay home and chill.

I miss my nieces. Terribly.

A Few Good Men

Raft3r enjoys plane rides.

If I can do it everyday, I would. Jetlag is a word that does not exist in my vocabulary.

It would have been a hard pill to swallow if it was the opposite. My work entails a lot of traveling.

On my flight to Baltimore, the woman seated next to me was a pretty interesting character. I love talking to strangers. You should know that by now.

As it turned out, she’s an Alameda County lawyer. The conversation quickly revolved around law school and how it made both our lives miserable.

My mother would have been proud. I exchanged legal goobledegook with a trained professional.

The lawyer expressed her dismay that I dropped out of law school. Raft3r retaliated by declaring it was the decision I have made since switching to low fat milk.

Apparently, she specializes in probate proceedings. It’s the same subject Raft3r flunked in law school.

How's that for irony?

Mr. Smith Goes To Washington

Raft3r was in the Nation’s Capital over the weekend.

I have been there before and D.C. never disappoints. There is always something new to discover.

One of my favorite places to visit is Union Station. It’s unlike any other train terminals I have been to.

For this road trip, a long lost friend from high school picked me up from the hotel with his spanking brand new car. 

I had four other training buddies tagging along, I suggested on taking the train instead.

But my friend insisted we drive there with his San Diego Dodge Charger. It’s a good thing Raft3r said yes. His car is off the hook.

Not only is the Dodge Charger a thing of beauty, it is also spacious. There were four people in the back and they were still seated comfortably. We were even throwing things at one another during the whole trip. It was fun.

The engine is fast and smooth. Raft3r thoroughly enjoyed the ride. It made our weekend getaway more exciting.

Washington D.C. was never the same again.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Eight Easy Steps

Lucio Tan’s 8 Secrets To A Happy Life

Philippine Daily Inquirer

First Posted 01:11:00 07/08/2008

1. Work hard to achieve your dreams.

2. Take every opportunity, masama o mabuti (good or bad), as an opportunity to learn and grow.

3. Lead a simple life. Do not live beyond your means.

4. Do away with the very bad Filipino attitude of living on credit, or spending today, earning money tomorrow.

5. Be matipid (frugal); teach the kids the value of saving money and using money wisely.

6. Make sure to pay your debts.

7. Don’t betray other people’s trust.

8. Take care of your parents, your other elders.

I have never been a big fan of Lucio Tan. But his Inquirer article was brilliant. The fact it was a quick read was an added bonus for Raft3r.

Guess I have a lot of things in common with the tax evader.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

52nd Street

Finally, New York!

For this US trip, going to the Big Apple was the major agenda. Yeah, that and my wife's concert.

New York is definitely one of Raft3r's favorite cities.

We left Baltimore Thursday evening and four hours later, my friend's cousin picked us up at the bus terminal. 

The foul smell of garbage indicated we have arrived.

For most tourists, NY is among the top destinations in the States. You can't blame them, really. New York rocks! 

There is so much to see and lots to do.

Raft3r went gaga upon sighting Virgin Megastore in Times Square. I was in cloud nine! That's three floors of movie and music goodies. Raft3r was drooling all over the place.

I wanted to stay there the entire time but my travel buddies kept nagging me to go Central Park. Sadly, Raft3r caved in. We channeled the Friends gang and strolled around.

How I wish taking a trip to Luneta Park can be just as cool.

Monday, July 7, 2008


My fascination with the world of tennis seized when Hingis bid adieu.

It didn’t help that Pat Rafter retired early from the sport and decided to be a surfer instead.

Most of my faves have either been in and out of injury (Haas) or have simply lost their mojo (A-Rod).

The Williams Sisters are still interesting to watch. Anna paved the way for slew of hot babes from Russia. They are pure eye candies.

Federer remains to be a tennis god. That was up until he lost to Nadal in the recent Wimbledon Finals.

Roger must be feeling like shit right now. Raft3r feels for the guy. The Federer Express was going for a record breaking six consecutive Wimbledon trophies and the spunky Spaniard snatched it away from him.

I know how it feels to lose something you badly want.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

School Ties

It’s back to school for Raft3r.

Every morning at exactly half past seven, a bus picks me up from the hotel and takes me to the training center.

For 11 weeks, I have to learn and master six thick as a tree trunk modules. That entails reading. All these are in preparation for my new job.

Getting back in the swing of things ain’t easy. After all, Raft3r has not been in school in eight long years.

I have long abandoned the love for reading. Blame it on law school. Pre-law Raft3r frequented bookstores and purchased tons of books.

With all the readings I had to do for school, I lost interest in books all together. Suddenly, I had no urge to even browse through my non-fiction novels. Law school can do that to you.

Now back to Raft3r’s current predicament. I just passed my first exam. There are more to follow. Just staring at my modules makes me puke. I dunno how I can surpass this.

Money is always a good motivator.

My boss sums it up best: “Now, you actually get paid to go to school.”

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

It's All About The Benjamins

Like most guys, I don’t care much for shopping.

Unlike girls, we don’t find it therapeutic but rather stressful.

How can an activity that involves a lot of spending be considered by women as a great stress reliever?

Raft3r just spent the whole day malling. I got nauseous.

In my book, anything that involves parting with money is always painstakingly hurtful.