16 days

random rumination number 11 - vanity
i was at robinson's pioneer yesterday to look at the sale at the olympic outlet. i was hoping to score another shirt from salomon but settled for a pair of dirt pants instead. while i was there, i received SMS from alexis, who said he was in the area, having a facial at let's face it. a facial, imagine that. it might be routine for some, but it is almost hilarious for me to hear, in the same way that it might be boggling for people to hear from me that i am not as vain as they might think. i have never had a facial in my life. i have never even had a pedicure or a manicure. the most expensive haircut that i've ever had was at a bench fix salon. which happened only once, and never again because i found the task of styling my hair too cumbersome, which prompted me to return to my barber of many years. my only weakness is that i try to get a massage at least once a month. and awhile back, i've tried out a few body scrubs at the gym's spa. but that's about it.

and this is pretty obvious, but i'll say it anyway: i am not fashionable at all. i don't spend a lot on wardrobe. my priciest pair of jeans isn't even more than P1,500, after the discount. i don't have a shirt that's more than P1,000. i still wear shirts that have been with me for years. i try to buy clothes when they're on sale. my shoes are either leather shoes or athletic shoes. i have no loafers or nice casual shoes or anything of the sort. but this isn't counting my really outrageously-priced outdoor gear. (so in that sense, i am selectively vain).

i don't wear jewelry. and i don't own any. the only accessory i own is a watch, and i only have 2. i have a silver necklace though, and its pendant: my dogtag. i used to have a few rings, which i've just forgotten about. a man named noel frequents the office selling all sorts of jewelry, and he's failed to convince me to get any.

until about a year ago, i didn't care much for my skin. i used to have lots of pimples when i was in high school, and i still have the scars to remember them by, but after that phase, it was back to basic soap for my face. i have very oily skin, and only recently did i discover using products to address the shine and the oil. i get embarrassed when girls buzz me or pinch my cheeks, that's why. i am very lazy to stick to my routine though, and forget (or intentionally skip) the ceremonies that have been taught to me. i have been told time and again to visit a dermatologist and get all sorts of treatments. i really should do something about my skin, but i can't find the motivation to invest on the way i look. i do have all sorts of products at home, but i think they're really negligible compared to most men these days. at the dressing room in the gym, i see guys, and by that i mean, really butch-looking guys, applying face powder and all sorts of lotions and creams to their faces and their legs and arms and bodies. the only powder i own is foot powder, which i've used seldom. my good friend janet game me a bottle of lacoste cologne, and i doubt whether i'll get to use it up in the next year or two. i've had my kenzo since before i was a lawyer! i am missing something here, i know. perhaps i should go grab a copy of manual or men's health. i have to learn a thing or two (or more) about fashion and skin care and all that.

random rumination number 12 - alcoholic
i first tasted beer at the house of a friend, when i was i think in 4th or 5th grade. i remember it to this day as being a rather unsavory experience: it was a vile, bitter liquid, and i stuck out my tongue in disgust. i remember not understanding why adults drank beer, and resolved never to develop a liking for it. it helped, of course, that alcohol wasn't -- and still isn't -- welcome in the house, so for the next few years, i had virtually no encounter with anything inebriating. until i came into the company of writers. my first few beers were courtesy of butch dalisay, a professor and mentor of mine. i don't remember if sanmig light had been introduced back then, but i did have a few. in law school, i drank a bit, particularly during acquaintance parties, and post-exam celebrations. but i hardly ever spent on beer. i never did deign to spend my money on something which i didn't quite like.

when i became a lawyer, i still drank, but never really got drunk. however, my life as an alcoholic changed when i threw myself into the world of mountaineering, having first tasted gin at gulugod baboy. now, my rules have relaxed: i spend on beer and even the most expensive of these vile liquids, but i have never spent on alcohol for my own consumption. i have stored bottles of vodka and gin and brandy and tequila and wine at home, but only because they were meant for others. i'm happy i haven't quite evolved into an alcoholic, in that i would never imagine getting drunk when i am alone. i only share beer and all these other poisons in the company of others. i can very well survive without beer for extended periods of time.

to this day, i still find it rather odd why some people would spend so much money on things as vile as brandy or rhum. i think beer is rather pointless, actually, but then again, so are a lot of things. so i'd drink it if it's offered, and buy it if it's asked. besides, it's fun to see people drunk.

random rumination number 13 - prohibited substances
i must confess that i am pretty normal in this regard: i have no addiction that's prohibited or regulated by law. substance abuse is not a problem, although i will also not hide the fact that i have tasted some plants. my first encounter with marijuana was when i was still with the collegian. i remember being aghast at the time. of course, i was still very old-fashioned then. there were nearly 10 people in the room, and we shared 2 rolls. i think either i was doing it incorrectly or the rest of the guys were just exaggerating, because i felt perfectly the same. nothing changed. i even puffed the last few dregs of the last roll, and it still had no effect on me. the second time was in sagada. i shared a stick with 3 complete strangers, one of them the daughter of a magazine editor who had an encounter with claudine barretto. they were all very stoned after that, but i wasn't. the only time i actually got high was when i had hashish in ifugao, courtesy of an englishman named james. and that high wasn't particularly special. my voice was just loud. the other time was in sembrano. i haven't had anything other than MJ, and i don't think i ever will. i'm glad i don't have to deal with an addiction that's destructive and illegal. sleep, after all, is still pretty much allowed.
honey use a nivea face cleanser for oily skin (P70). then apply a nivea moisturizer (P50, P122, P222 depending on size) on your face, arms,hands, body, legs and feet. when your my age, you'll still manage to look 15 years younger just like me. trust me on this. i am my own best evidence. do your massage once a month or make it twice a month. that is all you'll need. massage is good for the soul. facials are good at least 6 months out of the year. they clean your face.
i like my liquor. i like good wines (not those cheap plonk they serve at cocktails), good scotch, good brandy (and fundador is a cheap plonk), good vodka (stolichnaya, gey goose). and i like my marijuana too. but i'm not an alchoholic. i can go days without imbibing any alcohol or any marijuana. addiction is in the genes. i read it somewhere.
wow. thanks TB for sharing your "beauty" secrets. i see now why i can't tell you're 46. you absolutely look young! like 44 or 43! joke! i'll try that nivea routine, although right now, loreal seems to be working well. :D