The First Friday of 2012 is Awesome because I am Most Improved!

My first week of January is too awesome to be true. I can’t believe it’s the second Monday of the year already. I have got three reasons why I think the start of this year is an effective propeller for the next days to come but let me share the first one first.

Last Friday, our office held our 2nd Annual DAN-ny Awards. I’m not really sure what the addition of the -ny stuff means; so, let’s just leave it at that. However, this year the awarding was accompanied by a game of scavenger hunt and a boodle fight. Anyway, the night before was kind of a disaster for me — and for Lance, actually. The office was divided into five groups and each group were assigned two dishes to bring the next day for the anticipated boodle fight. Unfortunately, I was assigned to bring the food. And no matter how hard I fought with RJ, Cyan and Lee (my groupmates) telling them I don’t freakin’ know how to cook beef tapa, I had to resign to my fate and accept the fact that I would lose any argument I put up with them because I don’t have kids, I live alone, and I have a stove.

I don’t really hate cooking. I actually like cooking but the thing is I suck at it big time!

Man, he's actually smiling!
Please insert face --->

Okay, to cut the cooking story short, Lance and I started at 9:30 in the evening and ended up cooking the whole thing at 1 AM. Of course, as a regular Claude thing, this includes stupid moments like burning a number of beef strips, charring the two frying pans black, and almost setting the curtains on fire while trying to manually lit the defective second burner with a matchstick! How am I ever going to get married?!

Fast forward to Friday morning, I arrived at the office one and a half hour late. At 8 o’clock, the scavenger hunt began! Each group has a game master who would provide them with the first clue written on a deck of black card. The answer to the first clue leads to the place where the second deck of card is hidden and the answer to it leads to the third and so on and so forth until all 10 clues are completed. I have always loved scavenger hunts, although, I’ve never played one. I have lived vicariously on books and movies for quite a long time, I guess. Luckily, I have some really fast thinking and energetic groupmates; so, running/jumping staircases up and down the building wasn’t much of a problem.

Here’s one funny moment I can remember about the hunt:

While answering questions, filling in the boxes with them and singling out the letters inside the shaded boxes…

Groupmate whoever: F!
Groupmate whoever: R!
Groupmate whoever: I!
Groupmate whoever: Errrrmm….
Groupmate whoever: Iwan muna yan! Next!
Groupmate whoever: Ge! G-E!
Me: FRI… FRI… FRINGE! — (receives blank stares from groupmates) Anung FRINGE?
Groupmates: Fridge?! Saang fridge?!
RJ: Eh isa lang naman fridge natin eh!

This always cracks me up every time I remember it ’cause I keep seeing the look on my groupmates faces especially RJ and Joey when I shouted Fringe! Like they were confused whether to believe me or not. Hahahaha! And then there’s the overloaded elevator where our gamemaster as well as our manager, Ate Ems, was pushed out of the elevator as an unwilling sacrifice. Hahahaha! Surprisingly, we won! I relayed to my groupmates the last answer to our clue which is the English translation for the French word, gagnant; which I, of course, obtained by quick googling. As the winning team, we were awarded a REALLY BIG CHRISTMAS SOCK OF FOOD!

The Competitive Group 3! (Photo Courtesy of Marvin Cruz)

Now, here’s the story why the awesomeness of this Friday is due to the fact that I am most improved. Literally, I was voted DAN’s Most Improved Employee (or Specialist or whatever) by the people of Dial-A-Note. Hahaha! Alright, I’m not really the model employee. I’ve got issues with tardiness, browsing of non-work related websites, and the quality of my transcription. The first one is due to my inability to discipline myself entirely; the second simply to our team’s enormous amount of free time and my love for jumping from one wiki article to another; and the last one, to my always blamed unilateral deafness. I had always told my friends in the office before that I was contented on being on a low-profile position. I didn’t have plans on moving up in the company ladder because I loved the leniency I get whenever I needed to go on vacation. No big responsibilities. No great expectations. I get to climb any weekend, file for a vacation, leave work without having to spend extended hours for admin works, and simply just work with no added pressure. Besides, I wasn’t really planning on staying here this long. I didn’t really expect to love this place more than I would allow myself to. I was expecting I would have saved enough money in a year, continue my film studies and pursue my dreams of having some passionate stalker fan write my own Wikipedia entry! That WAS my life at work until all my friends in the office, with the exception of Ainna, started submitting their applications for team lead positions about three or four months ago. Suddenly, the dream bubble I lived in exploded right before my butt and sent it hitting reality rock bottom. I realize I was so busy daydreaming about reaching my big dreams that I failed to see the formula of needing to excel first in my present job in order to excel in the future I have always dreamt to have.

So, I made a move. It took a great deal of guts and pride to ask my team leader to help me out with my transcription and proofing skills having been considered a tenured employee for more than a year. I confessed to her that I wouldn’t want to have to blame my non-functioning right ear all the time for my “unintelligibles”. Oh, and she never hesitated. I had to re-learn many things fast about transcription having been on the CRM entry side of the work process for the majority of my stay in the company. This may not be a big deal for many but it is for me. My work seldom gets proofed now. Thanks to my awesome teammates who are always willing to provide me feedbacks whenever I ask for them.

And yes, being awarded the Most Improved title encourages me to move forward, stop procrastinating, and waiting for “the dream” to happen. No matter how handmade my trophy is (which I actually find more meaningful than the usual ones made of fiber glass), its value is as priceless as the Heart of the Ocean for me. Alright, that may be a little exaggerated if I really do have the jewelry. Let’s just say one of the most wonderful experiences on earth is to be rewarded with recognition for your hard work.



Speaking of office rewards and to end this another lengthy blog entry, I always find MORE FOOD to be extremely rewarding! THE BOODLE FIGHTTT!!! We actually thought it was going to be part of the games; like the group who finishes their food set first wins and I was sooo ready to fight making sure I was extremely famished! But don’t confuse me for sounding more excited for the boodle fight rather than the awards ceremony. I mean, c’mon, me? Really?!


Starting 2012 with a BLOG!

Alright, the title says it. I’m starting this year with a BLOG! And yes, that’s supposed to be a pun for KABLAAHGG! or whatever interjection old comic books can offer with a B, L or G in it.

Many people look forward to the new year for a new start on old habits.  – Author Unknown

Pessimistic pets!

Please don’t hammer me with questions as to why I’m creating a new blog for the nth time. I know I’m a nutcase for doing so, okay? But every time I make a new one I always have this habit of promising there would be no more “too” personal stories or bitter articles or depressing poems. That’s what your journal’s for, idiot! Okay, maybe it was my way of reaching out or whatever and it’s neurotic, but I really don’t want to do that again. You see, I’ve created this URL about six months ago and I’ve been thinking about starting it by writing stories, reviews, opinions, mountain climbing or traveling. I wanted to focus on just one but as the queenbee of fickle-mindedness, I know that is never going to happen. So, thanks to my friends who are bloggers/photobloggers as well, I was encouraged to start a blog this year no matter how cliché that might sound. I’m the queen of clichés. See, I just claimed to be the queen of another thing! Talk about focus.

Going back to thanking my friends, they have either been tweeting or posting Facebook status regarding what new things they plan on starting this coming year. Well, I’m a little less prepared because the only New Year’s Resolution I have is for my attendance in the gym to be regular. My friends in the office have formed this sort of group exercise where we all train altogether. That way, we would all be motivated knowing we’ve got company. Okay, another pun. I’m getting good at this! Unless, you didn’t get it. We’ve got “company”? And I’m working with my officemates in a “compa…? Whatever. Anyway, most of my friends have plans for 2012. Lance plans on taking swimming lessons to slim down his ever bulging body; Gervic has a new blog/blog posts; Ara just recently updated hers; Mads is having this 365-day photo challenge due to the success of her October 30-day photo challenge (which included me twice. Haha cool!); Me-anne and Thina have been updating their blogs too talking about some spiritual stuff; Sab is, well, probably planning on trashing against corrupt officials or commenting on social issues much frequently this year; and Irene is out to get more physical and athletic. This leaves me with a barely furnitured house, two food-wasting mongrels, and piles of debts that forbid me to die for the next nine months. Not that I’m whining. Or maybe I’m whining a bit. But I do know how fortunate I am despite all these debts. I really just like to rant sometimes. It’s like my way of boasting what I have. Dammit, why did I just disclose that?

I don’t really have any big plans for the year. I was planning on slimming down, that’s all. That’s not really big because I’ve been having that resolution for years and everybody seems to have the same plan, anyway. I recall my last conversation with my friend, Irene, after our trip to Cartimar to find a bicycle for me and our Chuck-inspired and dream-come-true dinner at Subway. She encouraged me to run to be fit. I’m not really a fan of running especially on organized and commercial events. The only outdoor activity I am willing to pay for right now is mountain climbing. But we planned on targeting biking next as an outdoor alternative. This I can definitely do. I own a bike ever since I was five but my parents sold them when we relocated in Laguna. The roads here are just too steep for bicycle riding but every time we’re in Nayong Pilipino during trips to the airport, I would always rent one. Then I bought one again two years ago and sold it again this year to Lance’s dad because I desperately needed the money. I’ve gained most of my childhood bruises from biking. I remember how I once spent half a month partly blind on one eye because I fell off and hit my eye on the handlebar of my rented bike when I was 11. I also had bruises on my breast when I fell off again trying to avoid a coming truck. That actually hurts more than the eye injury because I was on puberty stage and my breasts were slowly growing — too slowly actually. I actually thought that accident was the reason my breasts weren’t equal in size.

Anyway, you guessed it right. I’m recalling my biking experience because today, I bought myself a bike.

Please don't sell it, idiot!

It’s an ordinary mountain bike with aluminum frame and rim and it is already mounted with disc brakes, so I’m good with this. The last one I bought has a metal body and despite its aluminum rim, it was still one heck of a heavy junk. I’ve ridden it earlier this afternoon already and damn, did my legs hurt! It was a 20-minute ride from my parents’ house to mine and tomorrow I’m planning on exhausting myself with it early in the morning with my always eager little sister.

Okay, I think I’m writing too much. Just shows how much I talk as well. As I end this entry, I realize I still don’t have a New Year’s Resolution. But I do want to thank my friends for having plans because it encourages me to start on something too. May not be something new at all but still I’m starting something. I guess I’ll just leave this blog with three blog-ending and year-starting bullets: (Did I just write a cool play of words there? :P)


    • starting this year with a BLOG! (Yes, still retaining that)
    • starting this year with a bike.


    • starting this year NOW.