You CAN’T find me in da club

I do not fully enjoy clubbing.

Oh I drink alright. Give me anything, I’ll drink it. Rum, Whiskey, Vodka, Tequila, Gin, Beer (well not so much anymore), even alcomixes straight from a bottle! But I just don’t get clubs.

I ordered one bottle of beer, a San Miguel Light (popular here sunny Philippines), and had to pay 152 pesos for the one damn bottle. This only sells at about 30 pesos a bottle in regular stores or in a grocery! For those that cannot fully appreciate it, let me convert to dollars. 30 pesos, is not even a dollar yet. 152 pesos is more-or-less $3.5. See the difference? We also bought a bottle of Jim Beam White for about 3,000 pesos ($65 dollars or more), a pitcher of Coke for about 200 pesos ($4). Jim Beam is only about 1,500 pesos, maybe less and a friggin’¬†bottle of coke is only 40 pesos.

I like to listen to music, dance, but club music. Blaring, mixed to the core. Okay, I don’t care about the music in clubs. It’s one of the things I actually do like about them.

I’m sure the interior of the bar was very beautiful, well designed. But I couldn’t really see it. It was so dark. Why do these places charge so much, when they cannot even turn half of their lights on?

And I get why people prefer to stand around, and get next to each other super close. Because aside from the booze and the music, most people go to bars to get laid. Well, to meet someone. I guess I don’t enjoy clubs much because I don’t need to find anyone anymore. I’m already happy and content.

So, what’s a guy to do when his office mates carry him to the club? Drink the booze, sit down, and watch people at play. Two girls dancing in the bar then all of a sudden this dude grinds behind one of them and they end up dancing together (reminds me of an episode of How I Met Your Mother actually, yeah remember that time Barney was grinding with this girl in a club and it turned out to be his cousin? Yeah, that was Legen… Wait for it… Dary!), a guy and girl bump into each other and they spend the whole time dancing within each other’s arms as if they were childhood sweethearts. Yeah, I was just content drinking my whiskey with soda and ice.

I enjoy drinking, but in a bar or a “watering hole” where you just drink, eat bar food, listen to music, and you virtually stay seated. That’s perfect for me.

But you know what, seeing the money that people just let fly inside them clubs, I’m actually thinking that is a lucrative business venture. Maybe I’ll own one someday. Who knows?

Again, I do not own the picture.

Peace ūüėČ

I hear you

I’m taking up graduate school, pursuing a Master’s degree in Business Administration and classes are during Saturdays.

It is a fairly large class, an average headcount of about 30 for the 3 classes. 5 of my colleagues are also (or were) my co-workers in the bank. We all compared our results in the qualifying exam (hey, they started it), wherein I got the highest mark and this irked one of them (hey, they started it, why the hate?) and she then arrogantly declared¬†“Tignan na lang natin sa school mismo”¬†(let’s just see when the actual classes begin). The malice in those words was screaming, she downplayed my (almost perfect) exam score suggesting that when classes start I shall surely fizzle.

Her words have some basis. I am not really the most productive in my former work. Another colleague actually told me “Pumapasok ka ba talaga dito, minsan kasi parang naglalaro ka lang eh” (Do you actually work here? Sometimes it seems to me you’re just playing.) I can understand where their coming from, compared to them I’ve had a fairly comfortable life. The fact is this, I was not motivated in that work (even though¬†I lasted there for four years). I guess the privilege of being a financial analyst specializing in credit risk (credit analyst) was what kept me there. The work is supposed to be stunning, you get to know information about the many blue-chip companies in the country that other people salivate to know but cannot. But the way they ask us to handle it, really got me frustrated.

Think of a factory. According to dictionary.com, a factory is “any¬†place¬†producing¬†a¬†uniform¬†product,¬†without¬†concern¬†for individuality”.¬†As the years have gone by, the concern to produce more reports to cover the increasing bank’s loan portfolio have led to the department revamping the way we made our reports. I cannot really discuss procedure here, but let’s say the changes have sacrificed quality for speed.

What do I mean by that? I asked one of the newer members of the group (she’s been there for more than a year already and can easily make reports quickly) about what she does as her job¬†to which I expected her to answer something in the range of “We interpret data necessary for us to come up with the credit risk rating which quantifies the degree of risk the bank will assume when it releases the commercial loan to the client”. She answered¬†“Gumawa ng report”¬†(To make reports). I followed by asking her for what will her report be used to which she deftly replies “Para sa office”¬†(For the office). To make reports for the office, she’s still correct really but it just shows how little of the actual importance of the job she understands. This can be traced to our lack of proper training, but still. The one that told me that I was just playing? Our boss commented on one her reports, on the part of the industry analysis about why she used some figures in US Dollars to which she spent a huge chunk of the afternoon poring over the problem when she could have simply omitted it (I read her report, it wasn’t really relevant to it) and¬†submitted¬†the final draft.

Back to graduate school. During the first day of every course, the professors explain that participation in the discussion among the class was an integral part of the learning process in MBA. It readies us not only for the eventual case analysis which is the final requirement to get the degree but also for the world after MBA where you expect a revamp of your professional life. Hearing this, I get encouraged about sharing some of my views about the presentations and discussions in the class. I am an opinionated guy (I have a blog) and I believe that my ideas may only be validated or¬†disproved if I let other people, especially professionals who understand my views, know about them. The same girl who said I shall fizzle in class chose to just discuss her ideas to her seat mate. After the professor sided with one of my ideas, saying it was the proper way to construct a statement, she then blurts out “Yun yung sinasabi ko kay Jen kanina”¬†(That was what I was telling Jen, her seat mate, earlier). Whatever woman, your seat mate won’t be the one noting your participation in class. It’s almost the same as when she lifted (read, copied) technical terms in her report once because I was known to use outlandish (well for them) terms in my reports.

Maybe, in retrospect, part of my decision to leave my former work was because of people like these. Insecure. The fact that a guy from a well to-do middle class family who had more talent and potential than them which makes the holes in their “armors” stand out rubs them the wrong way thus they need to make themselves feel that they are better than me to validate their own ego. I don’t care. I’m content to know about what I can do and what I can learn still. I am irritated or intimidated by them, I pity them. If they can make better of their lives so far then good for them, but I surely hope they can outgrow their insecurities. I have left them already, they can continue to live in their own bubble of mediocrity for as long as they like.

Peace ūüėČ

The most egostistical, arrogant, and idiotic thing to say ever! (in the Philippines, in my opinion)

Here in the Philippines, we have this age-old idiom about experience.

in our native language, it sounds like so: “Papunta ka pa lang, pabalik na ako” (You have only begun your journey, I am on my way back already). To me this is one of the most egotistical, arrogant, and idiotic things to say¬†ever!

This short statement implies to the person you are telling it to that they are nothing compared to you, that all he knows adds up to nothing compared to you, that he should bow to you because you are his senior, egotistical.

It’s very arrogant since the statement has an air of arrogance. It’s supposed to convey “you still have a long way to go” but “I am better than you, rookie. If you ever want to be anything, be like me” or something like that also tags along.

It’s idiotic because if you are still alive and still talking to me about being “on your way back”, then that only means you have stopped the pursuit of knowledge. If anything globalization and the advancement of technology has taught us, information about a lot of things in this world and beyond it come at a neck-breaking speed. What you have learned today, can be obsolete in a week or even days. If you give that crap statement then I shall laugh at your face. You’re still alive and have already given up on the pursuit of knowledge and experience. I pity you, you started your journey long ago and only coming back now learning a few snippets. What you have learnt in your lifetime, I can have in months.

I acknowledge that the combination of fervor for knowledge and experience are essential for all people, but please. Don’t brandish your experience to anyone, especially those younger than you. I’ve seen it countless of times, the junior outshines the senior in no time and the senior gets kicked to the curb. That statement also connotes insecurity, the main fact that you used that on anyone was because you already felt threatened by that persons potential, and used it to diffuse his confidence and boost your own.

To be fair, that¬†“Papunta ka pa lang, pabalik na ako”¬†thing I have not heard in a long time. I guess it was more for the generation of our parents who absolutely were forbidden to go against their elders.

In any case, peace ūüėČ

We are not poor!

Who says Filipinos don’t have money?

I am writing this post while in the middle of a very busy mall. It is father’s day. And I am telling you this place is packed! Everybody’s eating, and everyone’s taking advantage of the free wi-fi service with whatever device they have (that includes me right now).

And this isn’t one of those upscale malls like Glorietta, Greenbelt and whatnot. No. I am here a mall located in the province of Rizal.

Who says we Filipinos don’t have money? We can afford wi-fi capable stuff. We can afford to celebrate father’s day. The parking lot is also packed full, so we can also afford to buy automobiles.

Were not poor. We just love to spend our money first and then think of necessary expenses and (if any) savings. We’re not poor, we just spend too much that when it comes to important stuff (like school, everyday food) we don’t have enough.

Yes the foodcourt is packed with people, but not everyone is eating, and some are eating just snacks. Everyone’s taking advantage of the free wi-fi service simply because not everyone can afford data charges on their handheld devices or to have internet access put-up in their homes. The parking lots are full simply because it’s a small parking lot, and that a significant portion of this has been dedicated for motorcycles (the cheaper alternative to four wheels that we Filipinos prefer nowadays.

In reality, we’re just kidding ourselves.

Peace ūüėČ