Saturday, 29 April 2006

Kids, Don't buy drugs. Become a pop star, and they give you them for free - Uncle Billy Mack

With my tweeds.

The worst haircut I ever got was from a trannie named 'Elvira'. I blame it all on my bestpren Josh. We were roomies in Manila revising for the ECE board exams and we were away from our usual hairstylists in Baguio (also trannies. But good trannies) and we randomly chose a salon somewhere in the Sampaloc area. Well, it wasn't quite random, Josh suggested we toss a coin. It took 'Elvira' two agonising hours to do our hair. While 'Elvira' was at it, a small town pickpocket came in the salon to sell a necklace, with its lock broken of course, which 'Elvira' carefully examined. Surreal is not an adequate word for it. Eventually, Josh and I came out of the salon looking "Dumb and Dumber".

Fast forward to the present. All my gal friends seemed to love me more as my hair grew longer. It gave them something to grab to get my attention. But, I'm human, I want people to love me for who I am and what's inside instead of what's outside. (Emo-crap Did I just say that?). Of course I'm a shallow bastard, I need all those silly affirmations to keep me out of depression. I looked at my monthly expenses for shampoo, conditioner, and hot oil treatments and realised that my hair care cost as much as the budget of a small barangay. The worst part of it all was that I saw a couple of split ends. That's so not cool. Hence, time for a haircut.

It's been a long road from 'Elvira' the hairdresser from hell. My current salon is owned by a former Black Sabbath hairstylist. If anyone knows anything about long hair, it's gotta be someone who once cut Ozzy and Tommy Iommi's frocks. Pucha pare, ka-level ko na si Ozzy Osbourne!

"Holy Toledo! Are those original?" I screamed as I was reclined, my hair being washed and massaged and the stylist's soft breasts resting on one of my cheeks. On the wall was a picture of Sir Mick Jagger, circa 1970s, smiling. My pretty stylist stops and stands under the picture "Yes, they're original." Peter, the Black Sabbath stylist and owner, decorated the salon with rock and roll memorabilia and I was told that a newspaper reporter came last week to take a picture of the Mick Jagger picture because apparently, no one has seen it before. "I want the same hairstyle" I said. (There were also some Hendrix photos. Also original. But I don't think I look good in an Afro even if its back in vogue.)

I came out looking like a Koreanovela actor. But it was still rock and roll. My original intention of "being accepted for who I am inside" backfired as my gal friends said they liked my new 'do. I just can't get no satisfaction...

Without my tweeds.

The New 'Do. A cross between a Korean telenovela actor and Marcia Brady in the Brady Brunch.

Now that I'm a rock star............

How is it that Kate Moss gets busted for snorting cocaine, goes for "vacation" to the USA, and then comes back to sign new endorsment contracts worth at least £5M. I figured that if she can do it. So can I. I need the money badly to support my extravagant rock and roll lifestyle and to keep my model trophy girlfriends happy. So here are a few pictures of me snorting "white stuff". Please, dear blog reader (whoever you are, and no matter how you entered a sick and perverted search query on google to get to this blog) spread this to as many newspapers and tabloids as you can. I shall be waiting for companies begging me to become their image model. I even bought a new Montblanc pen encrusted with bling-bling diamonds so I can sign my name with flair on those lucrative contracts.

(PS. Please disregard the fact that the "white stuff' looks oddly like sugar. I couldn't afford the real thing but I hope it convinces you anyway that I need those multimillion pound contracts...)

Tuesday, 25 April 2006

Time for a Full Cavity Body Search with Designer Latex

Apparently, all my CSI analysis is inadmissible as evidence because I refuse to put a lab coat unless it was designed by Ermenegildo Zegna.

Who says geeks can't be fashionable? It pays look good on your way to Stockholm. Brown latex is so last year so I commissioned my friends from Milan to ship me some gloves in different colours.

Time for another Reality-TV text contest. Would you like me to feel you up in green or violet rubber? The choice is yours, or would you rather get love without a glove?

Do you like The Nashman in green? Text GREEN to +447789845292.

Do you like The Nashman in violet? Text VIOLET to +447789845292.

Sunday, 23 April 2006

Haz means 'Pleasure' in Turkish. The Nashman is a Haz-ard.

Everything in this hall is a work of art - coffee, the scaffolding, the VW in the middle, and the female form.

Today is Orthodox Easter. So Jesus has to come back down to his little cave for the centurions to roll the stone door back in place for God to open it again and Jesus to come back out. He's like a rock star on tour, but he ain't complaining.

I went to the Tate Britain in the morning to see the temporary exhibit on New British Art. There's a light installation by Angela Bulloch and the memoirs of the adult model Cosi Fanni Tutti (if that name ain't porno enough, I don't know what is). The notice on the front warns of the sexually explicit nature of the exhibit and if anyone 'needs special assistance' to please ask a member of staff. I must admit I got a boner looking at the first few erotic pictures and escapist articles but as I read Cosi Fanni Tutti's account of real life in the adult industry, I began to realize how exploitative and hard it is for the models. It's one of those art works that first grabs your basic instincts and then makes you think hard. Cool.

On another wall hangs Lucy Mackenzie's untitled painting of a woman eating in a restaurant "incongruously seated beneath a framed scene of a woman masturbating taken from the erotic comic book Click". The only thing that startled me was the uncomfortable position the woman took while masturbating. Other than that, there must have been a deeper meaning to the painting but it escaped me.

I caught a glimpse of the London Marathon on my way to meet my Serbian comrade for Orthodox Easter Lunch. There were runners twice as old as me. I felt so ashamed and inadequate. Despite the gloomy weather, the streets were lined with vocal spectators egging the modern gladiators. Some runners were in costume, ranging from the furry animal (bear, squirrel, dog) to the superhero (Batman, Superman, Spiderman) to the "I don't know what the fuck that's supposed to be".

On the underground, people clapped as one runner who finished early got on the train. He finished the marathon in 4 hours. Not bad considering the elite runners finished in 2.5 hours and that hundreds were still in the halfway mark. In the same carriage, an obese man was oblivious to all the kudos to keeping fit and healthy living and noisily ate a large burrito as quickly as Michael Johnson takes to run 400m. The contrast between marathon runner and burrito man was so bone jarring I promised myself to get back in shape soon.

Nemanja, Jelena, their wonderful Mom, and I headed to a Turkish restaurant called Haz located in the financial district of London to celebrate Orthodox Easter. We sat down for three hours to enjoy the Ottoman Delights (Imam Bayildi, tabule, ezme, bakla, kisir, felafel, kalamar, hellim, iskender kebab) washed down with cold Efes lager, and capped with strong Turkish Coffee and Vintage port (compliments of the house). In the middle of lunch, Svetlana called from New York to greet us all "Hristos Vaskrse", which is Serbian for "Christ is Alive". The Catholic reply to this is "Again?" Maybe next year, Easter will fall on the same sunday. (I would have taken pictures of the food but my camera ran out of battery.)

Nemanja's mom lamented that we were celebrating Orthodox Easter in a Turkish restuarant. She hoped that no one in Serbia will know, the Ottomans having occupied Serbia for 500 years. I reassured her that it's all in the past. I normally 'celebrate' Philippine Independence day in Spain I told her. (Okey, I don't really fully celebrate Philippine Independence day because I'm an Igorot, hence, NOT a colonial but any excuse to party is a good excuse. This year on Hunyo 12, I hope to be somewhere in Andalucia drinking San Miguel beer shouting "Mabuhay ang Pilipinas")

That's no way to treat a beautiful lady.

The London Marathon raised £35M for charity. The runners were able to solicit from £200 to £5000 each for their chosen charity. I should run next year.

Even the Caped Crusader took time off to run the marathon.

Modern heroes near the finish line. As expected Kenyans took the top two places.

Saturday, 22 April 2006

Rowing, Cakes, Marriage.

The calm waters of the river won't be long before it will be full of drunk, naked, stoned, and stressed students for the annual spring mating and final exams de-stressing rituals.

I just had to stop to bitch-slap my two backseat rowers, the Akbayan sister Lourdes and her geeky guest from Accenture as they, of all people, instructed me on 'how to row'. Hellllooooooo! Telling the Nashman how to paddle a boat is like telling God how to change a lightbulb. Moi, veteran of many a Burnham park boat race in the middle of typhoons. Moi, whose record of 2 minutes rowing end to end the treacherous waters of Burnham lake remains unbeaten? In all humility, my rowing stroke is powerful yet so smooth and my follow through is best described as so graceful it reduces Mikhail Baryshnikov to tears.

However, I did let Lourdes take hold of the paddles and tried to teach her the finer points of rowing. To keep a sad story short, the ride was no QE2. Like her sisters at Akbayan and Gabriela, she did not know left from right.

Illegals Immigrants Arriving. The Coast Guard watches bemused at the poor rowing skills of Akbayan founding sister Lourdes. Her navigator was multiple Palanca award winner Clinton who looked as if a split infinitive just fell into the river. Or maybe he was indulging in a bit of Narcissistic folly. Their passenger, a guest from the Ateneo was excitedly looking for Harry Potter. I had to tell him to calm down. It's just a figment of his imagination like the AMA robot or Atenean superiority over San Beda.

Magdalen Bridge. At this point, I took command of the ship.

"Where are my grandchildren gadammit!" my father screamed in the background as I talked to my mom on the phone. True, most of my friends and contemporaries are getting hitched and making babies left and right whereas I am still enjoying my freedom. Maybe when I finally pay my student loans and my Mastercard is no longer in the red, I'll finally sort this 'line of succession' thing out.

My good friend Cat is getting married soon and so the mandatory engagement party at her college....

"Do you want sex on the beach?" Cat asked as I entered the Long Room. I opted for a straight vodka.
Cat delivers the 'the best thing that has ever happened to me' speech before cutting the cake.

I wish Cat and Matt an eternity of sweetness.

I'm sure I wasn't drunk but when Cat asked Grace how we knew each other, Grace said "We live together, sort of..." I'm so in trouble. Cue the gossip columns.

How Sweet and Romantic. Proposing on top of Snowdonia. This is one of the best pictures of the year. (Photo courtesy of Cat. Taken by Matt on time delay). I'm running out of creative ways to propose. All the good ones have been done already.

Monday, 17 April 2006

Nature Programs: What They Don't Show You on Reality Television.

His Royal Orangeness Karl Willem takes a rest on a bench deep in the woods.

On Easter Monday before heading back to Middle Earth, we took the Western Yar Estuary Circular walk. It's a 6km circuit that allows one to appreciate up close the local biome and the unique wildlife.

Yet, despite my superior tracking skills, the red squirrel evaded me.

I just hate it when they put celebrities/amateurs on the nature programs such as "Hunt for the Hairless Yeti" or "Riding the Unstriped Zebra" etc. and on their very first step outside their luxury camper, there it is, the extremely rare blue chested Dodo ready to take the morsel of food from the open palm of the celebrity host with the camera rolling and telling us "Look how easy it is to track cute and rare animals". And all it took was 60 minutes (45, if you discount the commercial breaks).

Well, real life ain't so simple. So while you sit on your couches impressed at how a C-list celebrity, with nary a trace of mud or sweat on her designer camouflage, easily gets to catch an alligator with her bare hands while narrating casually how it was such a life changing experience for her, spare a thought for real people like the Nashman who spend 6 gruelling hours trekking in inclement weather and painful conditions just to see a glimpse of a small, elusive, furry but cute rodent.

HRO Karl Willem showing his balancing skills.

HRO Karl Willem watches the wildlife inside a purpose-built hide.

The salt marshes of the Western Yar estuary.

Back at Lyminton Pier on Easter Monday.

Sunday, 16 April 2006

His Royal Orangeness Karl Willem and The Nashman Reflect in the Isle of Wight for Catholic Easter

Leaving Lymington on a ferry.

For Catholic Easter break, His Royal Orangeness Karl Willem and The Nashman retreated to the Isle of Wight for some peace and to chill out. The Orchard Lee cottage is situated on a working farm a short drive from the port town of Yarmouth. The island is very small, around 20ish by 40ish kilometres in size, but the cottage location gave that 'middle of nowhere' feeling. It's a cute cottage, 4 bedrooms, massive showers, and a fully equipped kitchen. The house is geothermally heated, there is a biomass reactor, and fruit trees. Plus two very friendly dogs. The owner's goal is to make the farm 'carbon-neutral' by next year.

HRO Karl Willem and the Nashman shared the cottage with good friends - a neuroscientist couple and lovely little daughter, an investment banking couple and lovely baby tyke, and a happy gay couple (one, a former child star and MIT mathematician who has beaten a mainframe computer in chess and now a fashion designer and my source of uber-pretty model girlfriends. If you want to meet sexy girls, it pays to have a friend in the fashion industry.) In between reading, cooking, eating, sleeping, and watching some tv, we took short drives and walks along the coast and in the forests. It was relaxing.

I wanted to look for the rare red squirrel but my two attempts were for nought. The agressive and greedy north american grey squirrels have driven the endemic red squirrels to extinction in the British mainland. Instead, I saw lots of rabbits. Literally hundreds of them cavorting, eating, and jumping around in the fields. They have no natural predators on the island hence they breed like Catholic Filipinos.

HRO Karl Willem and The Nashman's room at the Orchard Lee Farm cottage.

Double Decker Routemasters at the garage being restored. They sell for 10,000 quid each. Hmm, I'm thinking of getting one and retrofitting the top as a shagedelic living/bedroom area. Think of all the roadtrips! Sadly, each bus drinks a gallon for every 8km. But if someone can figure out a way to put a hybrid engine that's efficient and environmentally friendly, put my name on the waiting list.

Naalala mo ba ang ating lambingan sa.......

Frisians and Jerseys greet me in the morning. It's so nice being back in a farm. By the way, who did your hair? It's so cool.

His Royal Orangeness Karl Willem braves the weather, the wind, and the steep cliffs for a walkabout on the southwestern tip of the Isle of Wight

The very steep chalk cliffs of the Isle of Wight. Chalk is pure limestone.

Rocket testing bunkers. I have to ask who in its right frame of mind decided it was a good idea to put a military installation on a limestone cliff. On second thought, these bunkers face France. These were used to test the Black Knight and Black Arrow rocket engines.

HRO Karl Willem admires the Solent despite the windy conditions.

Isolation. Middle of Nowhere. Fantastic.

The car GPS (called 'Janet') insisted that this was the correct way. "Turn right, 200 yards" she said. Well, darling, the sea has taken the road but if you insist, be my guest.

My middle name is Danger. I fear not.

More cliffs. I was thinking of doing a Lovers' Leap but technically, it counts as suicide if you are single.

The seaside town of Ventnor on the southeastern side of the island. Roll the stone door Barrabas, Jesus walks again.

Aye, aye Captain. HRO Karl Willem at the seaside Victorian pub "Spyglass". We had king prawns and a pint of the house ale.

Easter barbeque. The simple life. Yum.

Saturday, 8 April 2006

Spring Has Sprung But Her Heart Is Still Cold Like Winter.

Julia cuddles His Royal Orangeness Karl Willem.

I love Middle Earth outside term time. At night it's virtually empty and quiet. I went to Freud and knocked down two bottles of Czech beer. The place was empty and there was a lone classical guitarist who played the standards.

As I tried on the new cobblestones (thank Sauron they finished resetting the square already! It's taken so long!) of Radcliffe square at midnight, I took a call from Julia who said she wanted to take a walk and that I should pick her up at the King's Arms.

The 'walk' involved a long talk on her plans to work for Bill Clinton's firm in New York, us waking up the porter at University College because she wanted to leave a cheque in someone's pigeon hole, convincing me that I should take Pilates sessions with her at lunch time, her bitching about how she's lost her abs. ("Touch it" she said as she inflated her belly. No way I said), her bitching about how I've lost my abs ("Hey it's my abs not yours!"). She's also been attending Feng Shui classes, this after calling me three weeks earlier complaining how her mom has scuttled her plans of getting an apartment because the feng shui was not right. I don't care I said, as long as I have a bed when I come over. She then applied her new found feng shui knowledge at my place and said I should get rid of the big glass art below my window, as well as a couple of other things that escape my memory as I was really sleepy, as most normal people are at 2am. I thank God I don't live with her now and that when we lived together she was not into Feng Shui. It would have been hell.

Think beautiful thoughts....

Saturday, 1 April 2006

It's Really Not Fun Making Out Alone in the City of Lights.

The Louis Vuitton Dog. Underpaid and needing a new agent to work out a better work contract. (Look at how small my hand is compared to this massive beauty.)

Non, monsieur the guard replied when I asked him if the dog's leash was made by Louis Vuitton. It's so not fair that the dog gets to work long hours and not be given at least a monogrammed leather leash from one of the most desirable, (at least to the nouveau riche, mistresses of corrupt third world politicians, and logo-crazy fashionistas) luxury brands in this material world. Actually, LV is the only luxury goods shop I know that has a guard dog in front. Moreover, it's kinda sad that normal people have to queue outside the store just to get in while the celebrities can just get in at will. Yet, it's quite interesting observing the people who have to queue. There's the Chinese who probably owns a factory making genuine fakes, the Filipina matrons who think that being fashionable means being covered in ostentatious luxury logos nevermind that their make-up makes them look like rigor mortis has set in, the Novi Ruski in stilettos with the boyfriend whose hair has a thick coating of toxic pomade, and the Americans who are wearing souvenir 'Paris' t-shirts eating a McDonald's burger. (Ok, shoot me if you think I am stereotyping people, but these are all observations taken that very day.)

Except for the car showrooms, I have no inclination in lingering long in the Champs Elysees. Pickpockets and shysters run riot in this area. And it's not really pretty when the trees have not yet blossomed.

I love April fools day except when the jokes are true. My flight was delayed because someone didn't show up at boarding in London and they had to take out their bags for safety reasons before flying to Paris. Now, why on earth would you check in for a flight and not show up at boarding? When the plane finally arrived and we boarded, the plane idled on the tarmac because it needed 3 tons more fuel otherwise everything would have gone eerily quite somewhere above Normandy. I did discover that the best seats with twice the legroom on a budget airline are next to the emergency exits. The stewardess had to give me a crash course on what to do and how to operate the latches in case of an emergency. Incidentally, if anything did go wrong that door would probably be the first to go with me following a millisecond later so I thought it was quite pointless to teach me all that safety stuff. But hey, at least I could stretch my legs.

Not really pretty with winter trees. My claim to fame is that years ago, my friend and I crossed the avenue to the Arc de Triomphe by jaywalking and lived to tell this tale.

What's the point of making a concept car that you have no intention of building in limited production even? Front air dams borrowed from F1 cars.

A cool two passenger scooter. Wait till a Filipino gets his hands on this - it becomes a 5 seater

The Peugeot Lion. I did not know that Peugeot also makes salt and pepper grinders.

Mercedes has cut down on making bicycles. They used to have a couple of models some years back. Yet, I think the Ferrari bicycles are way cooler. They both use Shimano gears.

That's the French word for trees.

Obelisks 'donated' by Egypt.

Menage a trois.

I wish I could just be this lazy everyday.

The mandatory pastime at the Jardin des Tuileries. I beat a couple of those kids with my superior sailing skills

Yummy. Waiting for someone with the key to unlocking her code.

The pink marble columns of the Arc du Triomphe du Carrousel.

If you want to know where the authentic Heiros Gaimos rituals are. Send me an email.

Another barricade. Artists occupy a building along Rue de Rivoli.

Ile St. Louis. Look at the number of couples making out and doing sweet things to each other. It's so sickening.

This is like a 'Friends' set in real life. Cafes just a staircase away. I'm convincing Angela to take a job in New York so I can take over her flat.

And so there I was on the make-out quai making out with myself. Alone, single, unloved, eating my croque monsieur with only the birds to keep me company. A couple drops a euro coin at my feet despite my sartorial elegance. "Pucha, hindi ako namamalimos no! Pero you're so kuripot." But I take the one euro anyway. I'm cheap after all.

Goodbye crepe dinner. The crepe mistresses were the prettiest I have seen in ages. It's a relief from those hairy (although nice) crepe masters.

Captain Kirk to Starship enterpise. CDG terminal 3. I got drunk because Angela forced me to drink three quarters of the bottle of cider. I hope they let me board the plane.

Delayed at the airport. Where is that mani vendor when you desperately need one?

Your humps, your humps. Not quite as lovely as the Nashman's humps. This pretty girl asked me to wake her up once the plane arrived. Oops. It's not like she can catch me, I was probably 20000m in the sky when she woke up (if she did.)

The emergency exit latch. I'm so tempted to open it.