Talk about bread, I found out just recently why I do not like Gardenia Bread. Sorry, but since it was launched way back when my children were in Grade School, and every mother I talked to recommended the Gardenia line as against the old time favorite Goldilocks, I tried to taste the tastiness of the loaves, and through the years, tasted every new product Gardenia offered the market. Yet, I did feel bad when our loaf lies on our counter table as it nears the expiration date, and I would salvage the precious bread from gathering “amag” by refrigerating, and yet it stays in the fridge for days still, only to be fed to the birds and the ants.

Anyway, with no malice to the company which, of course, aside from profit of such a big business, only wanted to offer clean and quality bread, I learned that everything in the production of the bread, up to the sealing of the packaging, everything was machine made.

Now I know, the bread lacked the “halo” and the “palo” of a “panadero” which, I believe, produce the tender taste. That is why, I think now, I stop at Bread Talk or Tous Le Jours  and such other bakeries where I can watch the dough tossed, because, I love the way the bakers bake the bread.

My taste, I suppose, will always be old-fashioned.

It’s barely a week on the new year and here I am ranting!

The commentaries on the news about totally banning the firecrackers on New Year’s Eve had been deafening. The discussions about this environment unfriendly and health hazard tradition had been exhausted, and yet, each end of the year, I find myself closing all jalousies and sealing all holes with wet cloths, so the fumes would not penetrate my home.I used to turn on the air condition, the only time of the year that I do so, but with the Meralco bill eating up most of our monthly budget, I opted not to, and hoped that we’d not suffocate with the carbon dioxide coming from three humans and two canines. We survived, am glad. Ha ha. No thanks to Meralco.

I am fine, actually. I was enjoying the cold mornings and taking care of my wards. January is a relatively quiet and serene month. The cold air must have something to do with it. Look, even the birds are chirping and swinging all day.

I would not have minded the commentaries and simply switch off the radio button, or totally unplug that low tech gadget, per advise by Meralco, who, the company makes it appear, is supposedly concerned about our humongous electric bill. Thanks for the TRO, however temporary, our suffering will be postponed for a later time.

But the news about SSS raising our premiums effective this month blasted my auditory nerves like a time bomb. How dare these SSS people play on our savings! How dare they have the audacity to play on our very lives.

I listened on…. SIGH. Somebody please administer garrote on these vultures. They mismanage our money and now they want us to contribute more. SHAME on de Quiros et al, not once had I been to an SSS office that I was not led to a labyrinthine processing.

Hope this news prospers for the better:–philhealth-contributions-043640295.html

Probe sought after hike in SSS, PhilHealth contributions
A resolution was filed at the House of Representatives which seeks to probe the increase in membership contributions sought by the Philippines’ pension fund for private employees and the country’s health

My Resolution 2014

What is your New Year’s Resolution? I have one.

Resolution, according to Google, means “a firm decision to do or not to do something.”

In school, every end of the year, or the beginning of a new year, the composition teachers would ask the students, as if there is no other interesting topic in the world, to write a formal theme about personal resolutions. Most often, the writing instructions are phrased in the negative, like, what, in your person, would you like to change. The students are given examples such as: I will study harder, I will not cheat anymore, I will obey my parents from now on, I will not drink colas or the strong stuff anymore, I will not smoke anymore, I will not party too much anymore.

It is as if the students are not studying enough, or are always cheating, disobedient to their parents, drink a lot of prohibited liquid, smoke cigarettes, and party more than school. In the minds of the students, they have to find their faults. In the minds of the students, they have to identify the bad in them, and thereby make resolutions.

I did despise those moments when I have to search the bad in me. I would have liked, instead, to find the good in me, and resolve to make better for another year. If I was a basketball player, I would practice more, so my team could become champs. If I was good in academics, I’d make an extra effort to help a classmate who is behind in Math. If I was a singer, I’d serenade someone who needs cheering up each day.

Resolutions are meant to enhance one’s person. Resolutions are meant to make yet a better person out of the old one.

I am not too old for resolutions. And this 2014, I’d like to look for a downtrodden each day and liven him or her up with a gracious compliment. A stranger to talk to each day, my way of loving my neighbor, my way of loving my self, too.

My 30th December food fiasco.

My vegetable viand burned and yet again. My daughters had long given up on the food I present them, not that I do not concoct foods well, it’s just that I have this bad habit of leaving my cooking when it is simmering. And when I get back, the pan is black as charcoal. Shucks. And my girls try to salvage whatever is edible. Talk about carcinogen. Sigh.

I am that, and I also don’t like it. I patiently prepared the papaya with shrimp, sauteed in garlic and onions, with a dash of pepper. Would have been a good meal with the marinated boneless bangus, or the danggit that Jean bought from the vendors of Talim Island.

But I turned to throw the peelings out there on my compost, under my now tall and leafy avocado tree. And my greens seemed beckoning, needing a little sprinkle, so I turned on the faucet and showered the droopy plants.

As usual, i got carried away, hopping from pots to flower box, enjoying the feel of the December air…., then I spotted the chopping board I used for the peelings, and remembered my cooking.

I did give it a dash, almost sliding, my flip flops are worn. I didn’t beat the nick of time. The shrimp is in a sorry state. So is the papaya. And the boneless bangus.

I will just wait for Jean to wake up and fry the danggit. That’s what we’re having for breakfast. It is good with vinegar with chili.

By the way, the real red labuyo is harvest from my garden. I still have plenty, if anyone needs some. It’s for free.

— feeling hungry.