Almost Eaten by a Tiktik

Do you know of the monster called as “tiktik?” Well, I encountered one such monster in the past.

Twenty-four years ago, when I am still inside my mother’s womb, my father heard a noise coming from the roof of our house in Quezon City. It is already past midnight and it is few more hours before dawn. My father wonders what is that noise coming the rooftop. It sounds like something or someone is scratching the roof.

My dad is wondering if an “akyat-bahay” (thief) is on the top and is prying the roof open. Then, he suddenly remembered the rumors about a tiktik that roams the neighborhood. Tiktik is known to eat babies from their mother’s womb by using its very long tongue. It is also known that Tiktiks are fond of firstborns because they say that firstborns taste the best.
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He took his bolo and rushed outside and climbed up to the rooftop. Alas, there is nothing at the rooftop. He ran to the street outside of the outside only to see an old woman sweeping the streets at 3 in the morning.

My mother, on the other hand, never ceased praying and clutched the Holy Rosary.

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That’s my Halloween story. My parents said that I was almost snatched and eaten by the “tiktik.” I am not sure if it’s the truth but I am sure that there is a grain of truth in it.

There are such monsters, evil spirits, and demons around us that lurk in the dark to prey on human beings and to trap their souls in darkness. My country and the people is suffering from such horrific deception, in many forms, being laid by the Devil.
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Archangel Michael vanquishing the Devil.

This Halloween Season let us not focus on the devil and the monsters of this world. Let us focus more to our God whom the Devil fear the most.

Why fear the Devil and his monsters if there is a more powerful being that these agents of evil are afraid of?

Happy Halloween! Don’t forget to pray for all our relatives, friends, family members, and all the people who already fell asleep.

Visit Me in Digital Think Tank

I have been blogging for more than three years now. I had experienced and learned many things through my blogs and interacting with many people in the blogosphere, the social media websites, and meeting other bloggers through a blog forum. This experiences and learning drove me to create another blog, which I called as Digital Think Tank.

The goal of my Digital Think Tank blog is to serve as a venue where I could share to the readers, especially to you my blogger friends, the things that I learned for the three years or so of being a blogger and Internet addict.
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Digital Think Tank focuses on giving tips on blogging that includes some ideas that I learned about Search Engine Optimization (SEO), Sociak Media Optimization (SMO), blog monetizing, and many more. I also talk about social networking websites like Facebook and Twitter. My Digital Think Tank blog will also talk about general topics about the Internet.

At the moment, I already have the blog posts about Facebook (Protect Your Facebook Account), internal linking (The Importance of Internal Linking), and outside links to your blog (How to Get Inbound Links to Your Blog).

There are more topics that I already tackled in Digital Think Tank and I have more things that I will tackle in the future. For the coming weeks, my posts will focus about Facebook.

Please feel free to visit Digital Think Tank and I do hope that you will get something from what I posted.

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Worse than a Can of Sardines

“Mas maswerte pa ang mga sardinas…” (Sardines had it better). This is what my mind exclaims every time I had to ride the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) train to go to the main office. When you ride the MRT, especially if you decide to stand near the doors (to make it easy for me to go out when I reach my destination), you will be crushed and you will feel uneasy throughout the whole trip.

In the past four work days, my boss sent me to a training in the main office in Taguig. To reach the main office from my home, I had to ride the MRT from the North EDSA station then go down the Guadalupe Station.

Riding on North EDSA is just fine. You only need to wait for 15 minutes lining up and edging other commuters up to the platform entrance.

The problem comes when you reach Kamuning, Cubao, and Santolan Stations where the agitated and now impatient commuters will push those already are inside the train so that they too could ride and reach their office on time.
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Inside the MRT (Recycled photo).

That experience made me think that I will never ever want to be assigned in the main office. I would rather outwit and outrun other commuters to the buses going to Quiapo.

It is Nice to Have Visitors

In my previous post, I said that my sister had her 18th birthday. Well, it was just a simple birthday celebration and not the traditional birthday debut that have 18 candles, 18 candles, etc. We opted for a simple celebration since my little sister insisted that her birthday party be a simple gathering for the family.

I am glad that we just had a simple celebration for my little sisters 18th birthday. It is because it is the first time that my family had visitors for a family occasion. In the past, we only have me, my brothers, my sister, my father and my mother are only present for birthdays, Christmas celebrations, New Year celebrations and other important occasion.

Last Sunday, we entertained about eight guests and it was fun. We had my aunts and one of my "mother" during my college years. It was not easy to be a host of a "party" but we managed it and we enjoyed it. Maybe next time, I will be calling more than eight guests to join another celebration.

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Another Taste of Sapin Sapin

Last year, I talked about Dolor’s sapin sapin in Ahab Reviews and Tips. You know what? My mom requested that I buy another sapin sapin for my sister’s 18th birthday. I guess my mom actually liked Dolor’s sapin sapin that’s why she made a special request.

Sapin sapin is a Pinoy sweets delicacy that is composed of different kakanin (sweet desserts made of rice). In English, sapin sapin is called as “steamed layered sweet rice pie.” Once again, I visited Mommy’s Malabon Pride located along Congressional Avenue in Quezon City. Before going there, I called them thru telephone (927-4453) and asked them to reserve one of their 17-inch diameter sapin sapin. Reservation is necessary, especially during the holidays because Dolor’s sapin sapin get sold fast.

Reaching their store at around 7:30 PM, I finally got this:
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They opened the box to show me this:
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It is quite heavy and I got a hard time bringing the sapin sapin from Quezon City to my hometown (Montalban), not to mention the price of this kakanin. Last year, a 17-inch sapin sapin costs 370 pesos. Now, its price tag is 410 pesos. Bah! Even kakanins are affected by inflation.

Dolor’s sapin sapin is composed of six layers and looks like a big dart board. The purple colored layer is the ube halaya. The red layer is the kutsinta. And the center layer is the biko (kakanin made from malagkit na bigas). I don’t know about the white and yellow layers but they taste good though.
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Dolor’s sapin sapin is one of the foods on our table during my sister’s birthday and we have the most number of guests that ever visited our house in the history of our family. My efforts of bringing the sapin sapin paid off because our visitors liked it.

This is the second time that we ate Dolor’s sapin sapin and I could still say that my money is well worth it.

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Pictures used in this post are recycled photos.
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Kwek Kwek, Isaw and Other Pinoy Street Foods

It’s been ages ago when I ate any street food. I can’t recall when but I remember that I am usually a “suki” (patron) of street foods when I am in college. UP Diliman has many street vendors and many students buy from them because they are cheap and many students have no money. When I was in college, I usually buy monay with cheese for my lunch – fishballs and kikiam for afternoon merienda (snacks) – and I eat my favorite corn in a cup.

Now, I rarely eat those things, because I doubt the cleanliness of street foods in the city of Manila. Last week, after the usual “gala” with my beloved, she decided that we eat this:
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Taking a closer look:
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Fried isaw for sale.

That is a fried isaw and that costs about 5.00 pesos per stick. For the uninitiated, isaw is chicken’s intestines and it is usually cooked by roasting. However, the isaw that we ate is fried instead of barbecued. Just like ordinary isaw, it is also dipped into a vinegar dip. The lady that sells this fried isaw makes good vinegar dip and this is the reason why many people buy at her stall.

After eating fried isaw, she then dragged me to the nearby stall that sells these:
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 These are not balls. These are kwek kwek!

Kwek kwek (a.k.a. tokneneng) is a popular street food. It is just a boiled egg that is wrapped in a flour breading that was colored orange and then fried. You could choose either the chicken’s egg or the smaller itlog pugo (quail’s egg). Just like the fried isaw, the taste is enhanced by dipping it into a vinegar sauce. For 8.00 pesos, the lady will give you a bowl wherein you can put some cucumber and pour the vinegar. If you are such a vinegar addict, then you will drink the whole concoction after finishing the kwek kwek.
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 This is how you eat kwek kwek.

Other version of the kwek kwek is the balot kwek kwek. Instead of egg, what is wrapped by the orange flour is the balot (balut). Balot is a fertilized duck or chicken egg with a nearly formed embryo. My girlfriend is fond of balot and she also likes the balot kwek kwek. I tasted balot kwek kwek in Plaza Miranda, which is beside the Quiapo Church.

The next morning, I discovered that my breakfast is kikiam, which is another popular street food and is usually sold with fishballs.
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 Kikiam for breakfast.

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Morning Rush and Evening Madness

Going to workplace is a challenge for me every single day. First, I must make sure that I wake up at the right time so that I will not be late for work. Next is to pray that the jeepney (a.k.a Philippine bus) that I will be riding from my home to Quezon City will not malfunction or will not experience any delays. Lastly, I have to deal with this scenario:
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People rushing to their workplace and school.

There are so many people that I have to outwit and outrun in reaching the bus that still have seats available. If I am unlucky, then I have to settle in standing from Commonwealth Avenue in Quezon City to Lawton in Manila.
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The story is the same during the evening when people are rushing back to their homes after long day of work. People are outwitting and outrunning one another just to reach the bus that will take them home. Unfortunately, the Pinoy and Pinay workers have to endure the heavy traffic that is tens of kilometers long and usually takes more than an hour.
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Heavy traffic in Cubao area.

Of course, to avoid the heavy traffic, the people could choose to ride the trains. However, riding the train is also a sort of a hellish experience.
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Crowded MRT.

These are my daily challenge during the whole work week. These are one of the reasons why I am very tired whenever Friday comes.

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Ready, Set, Advance War!

Every weekend, I command a large army and I wage war with those who try to destroy the peace in our land.

Yep, you read it right, I wage war using soldiers, tanks, ships, and warplanes; and of course I am not mad. I am talking about my newest favorite game in Nintendo DS, which is Advance Wars: Days of Ruin.
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Advance Wars

Advance Wars is one of the best Nintendo games on Nintendo DS and Gameboy Advance. It is a turn-based strategy game that lets you use various kinds of weapons on different maps. It is like a modern version of chess, wherein strategy and technique will make you win the battle.
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Advance Wars commanders
Army commanders for the war.

Plot of the Game

A massive meteor shower caused much devastation on the whole Earth. Many cities where destroyed and many people were killed. Dust from the explosions kicked-up clouds into the sky, blocking the sun and destroying plant life. In the midst of ruins, Captain Brenner and what remains of the Rubinelle Army works together to rescue the survivotrs and return the semblance of order in their country. However, old hatred from the enemy nation (Lazuria) and the madness of the leaders of Rubinelle prevent the peace from gaining ground.
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Advance Wars screenshot
Game screenshots.

My Take on the Game

Advance Wars: Days of Ruins is an excellent game with well-balanced maps and characters. This is the best turn-based strategy game that I ever set my hands on. The challenge for each of the chapter in the story will surely make your mind work as you grope to defeat your opponents. So, if you have a Nintendo DS, I highly recommend Advance Wars: Days of Ruins.

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I’ve Got to Thank a Good Friend for This

Blogging is such a rewarding activity for me. Even though I don’t get much money from blogging, I am rich when it comes to the great people I met online. And one of them is Mariel who is one of my first blogger friends.

Thank you Mariel for this award:
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My Favorite Blog


I am glad that she likes what I write here. ^_^

So to keep the ball rolling, I would like to show to all of you some of my favorite blogs/bloggers:

Mariel – she may not update her blog most of the time but I always like reading her posts or just looking at the many pictures that she post. This girl likes to travel and her stories give some idea what place to visit next.

Suitapui – I make sure to drop by his blog regularly and drop some comments. I like to read the delectable foods that he posts. It is a kind of a cultural exposure for me. Also, he is one of the nicest fellow I met in the blogging world.

Tine – she is the most “makulit” friend that I have on Twitter. She is one busy student and only updates her blog when her free time permits. But still, I like to read her “makulit” posts.
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