22 November, 2010

posting drought is that you?

Lately, i don't know if it's a combination of being busy with sudden bouts of procrastination that has been hindering me from posting anything new or maybe i have nothing with any sense to go on about; But trust me, my readership rates at google analytics have been dipping -not that it's much but i do enjoy the clicks... come on, we're not out here blogging just for our personal pleasure to read -that would be too absurd even to the vainest of all of us.

So I leave you with something to think about today, because I have been stuck with certain pages of my book and it's taking a while to write/move on:

"Like are we writing for Art?
And is Art a springboard for fame?
And will fame give us a paycheck?
And will a paycheck mean that we're sellouts?
And if we sellout, will they yell out me and you?"

-Title of Show

thus spake the Barefoot Baklesa

08 November, 2010

I must be making sense to someone out there...

Remember how I often refer to my postings as "the swirling mist in my head"? Well, i often wonder if what i'm going on about here makes sense to some, or if I seem to be blabbering on about random things that catch my fancy, or getting emotional and passionate about -well, just about anything...

Just now, I found a curious message in my inbox... it was a long read, and a juicy one at that. Before I actually make a response to his dilemma, I'm going to ask him if I can feature it in The Barefoot Baklesa blog. I think what he went through and what I have to say about it I reckon is something we can all learn from.

Until then, i leave you with Bernadette Peters singing "Not A Day Goes By" from Sondheim's Merrily We Roll Along

thus spake the Barefoot Baklesa

06 November, 2010

Happiness, the Shallow Side of Me, and Super Junior

I will have to admit, there are days when I can be undeniably shallow... Next to great food, eye candy and the continuous sight thereof keeps a smile on my face longer than the balance of my bank account. Maybe that's why I enjoy 'people watching' from the odd corners of cafes and lounges which i frequent.

Back when we were in training to be writers, we taught the skill of observation: to see what stories people's actions tell. But I'm getting way off topic here, I need to be shallow.

I woke up today, considering the obvious lack of sleep, with what one calls "a spring in my step"... There was something in the air, I sensed.

As i was checking stuff online, I was reminded that five years ago today, a Korean boyband of 13 members strong was launched: SUPER JUNIOR.

[oh yeah, this was from years ago... look at the hair on these boys!]

I have to admit, I became a fan very late in Super Junior's existence. How late? Well, only early this year... That gives me four years I need to catch up on. Trust me, the pretty boy overload wasn't something I came to regret.

So, even with the racist slurs actress Lee Da Hae has thrown my people's way by poking fun at how Filipino teachers speak/teach the Koreans the English language, the very fact that Super Junior still keeps a smile on my face when I watch them trumps the latest uncouth comment from a second rate actress. Thank you, Super Junior [*sigh*]

You see, there's something about SUJU that appeals to me [Siwon and Donghae perhaps? Hehehehe] which I can't really find with the guys from U-kiss, Beast, or 2PM. Although 2PM's Nichkun would make for the cutest cuddle-mate, and I could stare at Eli of U-Kiss for hours on end, they don't have that "lift my spirits" kind of vibe that SUJU has on me.

These guys [SUJU] look like they're having fun all the time. Which is evident when I look at their performance concepts that they have a sense of humor about themselves with the cross dressing and the antics.

The Barefoot Baklesa wishes SUPER JUNIOR a happy five years in the biz; and here's wishing they keep making me -I meant- more people happy.

I leave you with the very first SUPER JUNIOR song I ever saw, "Haengbok" or "Happiness"

Have a great weekend, everyone!

thus spake the Barefoot Baklesa

05 November, 2010

Don't Bother, He's Here

Quoting someone very dear to me just now, "Ngayon older but much much stupider things we do for love."

Sooo True... and nothing defines this midnight's epiphany better than this Sondheim song.

"Don't you love farce?
My fault I fear
I thought that you'd want what I want
Sorry, my dear...
But where are the clowns?
Quick, send in the clowns!
Don't bother, they're here"

Thank you, Glenn... I needed that; feeling a bit more recharged.

thus spake the Barefoot Baklesa

04 November, 2010

Just In Case You Get It: Taking Chances

[again, the photo is just for emphasis]

"Too many people are thinking of security instead of opportunity. They seem more afraid of life than death." ~James F. Byrne

I often wonder how I survive ~for the most part... You see, the life of a full time theater artist is not really the most lucrative and most secure of all job options out there. You go by project, by paycheck, and by sheer gumption in getting hired.

The rate of how busy I seem to some does not always equate to peso signs flashing on my way to the bank. Sometimes it takes 90 days -a bit of an inside joke there for those of you who get my drift. When it comes to my career as a Production Designer, I earn and I get by... And it doesn't hurt that I know of many other ways to earn from my myriad of skills; which more often that not, still surprise me. And now that the holiday season hath begun, I reckon the Barefoot Baklesa shall be wreaking havoc on them Christmasy things that would do Martha Stewart proud.

I am not beneath common labor; work is work. My upbringing has taught me the value of a hard day's work, and at the crunch, I wouldn't put it past me that I can be found at the battens of a theater if something needs to get done -I like working with my hands. Trust me, sleeping on plywood in an unoccupied tenant space at one of the biggest malls in the country just to catch some sleep during a bloody three-day set-up is already crossed out on my "things to experience" list.

Maybe what I'm getting at here is, everyday we all must take chances and that we must risk it to get to where we want to be.

I take a chance with what I know, with what i can do, with what I feel I must accomplish... And with every little victory, I am better for it.

I could have easily taken a creative job that requires me to be in an office environment, but I have been there and I was never happy. Then there was the job that paid like the money would never run out, but the hours it took meant my life expectancy would be down a decade.

It takes very little for me to say "I'm quite happy where I am" and even less to say "I'm happy I did" -and that's because I took a stab at it, sometimes blindly...

Add to that, "the book" -Oh yes, the book that is taking an eternity to get from chapter three to four in a collective twelve- plus more than nine excursus still waiting to be written. Manuscript due date: December 2010; Major Photography due date: February 2010 -no publisher yet...who knows?

thus spake The Barefoot Baklesa

03 November, 2010

The Barefoot Baklesa Cooks: 001 Three Mushroom and Grilled Eggplant Pasta

I decided to start a recipe series since The Barefoot Baklesa was actually cooking lasagna barefoot when his dear friend, Sandro Lopa, called him The Barefoot Baklesa for the very first time. It was a few days to Halloween back in 2006 when that came to be... And just this evening, I experimented on something that deserves to be the first recipe to post.

The Barefoot Baklesa's Three Mushroom and Grilled Eggplant Pasta
[serves 3 to 4 very hungry people]
You will need:

250 grams button mushrooms, sliced
250 grams straw mushrooms, quartered
200 grams dried shitake mushrooms, rinsed twice and soaked in distilled water for at least one hour, rinsed a third time and soaked again in distilled water
two medium sized garlic bulbs, crushed and minced
4 large eggplants, whole
1 heaping teaspoon dried basil leaves, if fresh ones are available, then substitute 1/4 cup minced
1 and 1/2 cups of either vegetable, chicken, or beef broth -fairly concentrated. if not available, dissolve one instant broth cube in a cup and a half of hot water
4-5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons tomato paste [optional]
2 tablespoons Balsamic Vinegar
Worcestershire Sauce
crushed red pepper flakes
500 grams cooked pasta in flavored pasta brodo, Barefoot Baklesa Style
salt, sugar, and pepper to taste
Grated Parmesan Cheese

1. Preparing the Eggplants
With a steel tong, take the eggplants and grill them directly above an open flame -the stove is best if you're in a rush, keep a good watch and turn them constantly. once most of the skin is singed to black and the eggplants are soft, take them off the flame and place them in a large container and cover with plastic cling wrap and let them steam for a few minutes. after they have steamed, take a clean damp kitchen towel or paper towel and run the eggplants against it -this will peel of the singed skin cleanly, if not automatically. chop the eggplants into half inch cubes then set aside.

Pasta Brodo, Barefoot Baklesa Style
in a pasta cooking pot, add the proper measure of water to cook your pasta, 1 laurel leaf, a pinch of dried basil leaves, 1 whole broth cube, a few teaspoons of salt -or subsitute liquid amino salts if you're watching your salt intake, a few drops of Worcestershire sauce, and a few teaspoons vegetable oil to prevent the pasta from sticking. allow to boil and cook pasta the usual way.

TIMING IS VERY IMPORTANT FOR THIS RECIPE, sautee only when the water is boiling and you have just put the pasta in to cook.

2. In a deep non-stick pan or skillet heat 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, flavor the heated oil by sprinkling a dash of crushed red pepper flakes and allow to fry for a while; add garlic and sautee in medium heat until golden -take great care not to burn the garlic.

add in the basil leaves and allow to cook a little before adding the shitake mushrooms, the straw mushrooms, and the button mushrooms, allowing some time for each type of mushroom to cook. sautee for another minute or so after all the mushrooms are in the pan. shake in some Worchestershire sauce, salt, and pepper to taste.

Remember, other than the varieties of mushrooms with a woodsy flavor like the shitake or porccino, most farm cultivated mushrooms are bland and in some cases lightly sweet. thus they require some flavoring from the garlic and spices.

3. After that, add in the chopped grilled eggplants and your choice of broth and the 3 tablespoons tomato paste, bring to a boil and allow to simmer in medium heat for about 3-5 minutes. you will notice the sauce thicken due to the grilled eggplant breaking down during the cooking period. add the balsamic vinegar and allow to boil and simmer once again before stirring.

The tomato paste enhances the basil in the sauce while the balsamic vinegar balances the woodsy flavor of the mushrooms. you can add sugar upon what your taste requires.

4. By this time, the pasta will be cooked al dente. Drain the pasta using tongs or a kitchen spider, do not rinse, and mix them in with the sauce -don't worry about some of the pasta water going into your sauce -it's also flavored anyway.

5. Plate and top with grated Parmesan cheese and crushed red pepper flakes.

I also discovered cream cheese goes well with this when still warm... hehehehe!!!

I do hope you enjoyed my first in The Barefoot Baklesa Cooks Series

thus spake the Barefoot Baklesa

02 November, 2010

If Life Were Less Complicated, Then We Would Just be Happy All The Time

Hello, blogsphere!!! It's been a while... needless to say, The Barefoot Baklesa has been very, very, very, very, very busy. Some people say that coming up with something and posting it on one's blog is easy; but if i had a punch for every one of those m*th@rf*ck3r$ who come up with nonesense and pass it off as an intelligible blog, then i would beat Pacquiao's punches by a thousand units, at least.

I'd like to share something for now, it's nothing that life-altering but it should give some people something to think about. Here it goes:

"Behind all this, some great happiness is hiding" ~Yehuda Amichai

I remember sending this message to someone not so long ago, without any thought as to what it would really mean to the recipient, nor what it would mean to me, for the meanwhile. If you know me quite well, I often love digging for words that would stir peoples' bored countenances to illicit a change of reaction at least.

The thing with words is that they could go either way... they could have profound meaning to some -life altering even, and sometimes they are just another bunch of letters that are ultimately meaningless [if you don't get them, then the fault is not the author's nor mine to begin with]; to use someone's words: "talksh!t yan" -in their understanding at least.

Maybe what I'm getting at here should be best laid out as lessons hereunder:

"Never believe what you initially feel when people say things that would stir your heart even if you are at your most vulnerable. Especially if your gut tells you that they are doing so because they have a lot to gain from you -and that includes money."

~this is when they can take advantage of your vulnerability. when your walls are down, they will find other ways and words for you to believe that their intentions are true and will use revolting sentimentality [pinagsamahan, bonding, shared tears and laughter, moments of value, etcetera] to manipulate you into believing that they are genuine to begin with.

"People are most likely to fail in keeping their words or promises if they have nothing to gain from it."

~the most genuine of friends are those that even in their absence, and without any expectations, would know when to be one. they never have to try so hard, they never have to say too much, and you will know them by their acts through others that will find their way to you.

"Be careful of people who promise that they won't forget and are grateful for your presence in their lives. They are the first ones to walk out the door or the ones that forget."

~they only say those things because they see that they have much to gain if they are kept in your radar.


~Sounds a bit elitist but coming from experience, it's true... This applies to all of you who have certain expectations from a partner. I, for example won't date someone who can't get my intellect or my humor. I have had the unfortunate experience of dating someone who needs to be told what you mean rather than understand it immediately. I have no time to guide anyone back to kindergarten. NOR TEACH THEM COMMON SENSE.

Soap opera/movie romances don't apply in real life, the 'haciendero' will never choose the 'muchacha' over his family fortune 95% of the time. And you never hear of the 5% now, do you? But that's just me being literal...

Date within your 'gauged' circle, it doesn't necessarily mean within a specific social class, rather within what you have in common like a sense of humor, tastes, interests, friends, intellectual base, level of openness... I can go on forever, trust me.

"People who make a fuss about what you fail to deliver 'as a friend' are usually the ones who keep count of what they can gain from you. When you unintentionally fail, they are the ones who will make you remember what they have done for you or what they have sacrificed, etcetera."

~beware these users; that's what they are. they display signs of their 'user-friendly attitude' by making such a fuss/arguing with you should you not please their brand of friendship, they are not worth keeping. Mahilig silang magbilang at manumbat.


~stay away from people who have SECRETS - especially that which you know and have discovered some other way, they are still keeping from you. They are also hypocrites, they make a show of what they are not yet they can't be decent enough to be honest when you confront them about it. you need to steer clear of these people, they are not worth the stress. And people who are ashamed enough not to trust you with their secrets, never really trust you at all. Sincerity is key...


~don't wait for the right person to come and fix your life for you. why don't you fix your life first, and maybe the right person will come along. In Tagalog, "Huwag kang umasa na darating ang nararapat na taong aayos sa buhay mo. Ayusin mo muna ang buhay mo, at darating ang taong nararapat sayo."

I think I have said a mouthful -or more, knowing my mouth. Bwahaha!!! I opted not to edit this least it turns into one of them prim and proper posts. I am in a good place and wishing you guys will be too.

Thanks to my Migs for keeping me sane this rather busy period.

thus spake the Barefoot Baklesa