In shades

Maybe, if I didn't wear glasses, I wouldn't feel this way about people with shades.

I don't know. I think it's the fact that you can't really see their eyes. You can't get a read on them. Not that I'm watching strangers from afar and trying to figure out what they feel, but, well, you do need to have some idea of what they're thinking of to be able to make your way through interactions. Are they gleeful? Are they forlorn? Are they high? That sort of thing.

I can't wear shades. I have prescription glasses. I've had them since second grade. I've never had the privilege of wearing shades with the conviction of a man who just scored at... something. Life? Sex? Adrenaline? Never. I've been denied, from early in life, the privilege of adding a second zing to lifting my head high in cockiness.

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Under the shadow of Mr. Lee

Judging from the news coverage early on Monday morning, you would think that Lee Kuan Yew made quite an impact on the world. He has, to an extent. In reality, though, it's not that evident to anyone who lives outside of Singapore.

If you do go to Singapore, you wouldn't even notice much of it. Sure, on the surface, you'll see a city-state that works. You'll get your baggage quickly. You'll ride a cab passing smoothly through expressways and avenues. You'll take a comfortable train system. Sure, there'll be stories of how a lot of things are not allowed, how a lot of things are fined and how a lot of things have strict limits, but there'll also be stories of how great it is to live there, how easy it is to do things, how you have everything within reach.

The Singapore you see - progressive, efficient; it just works - is all attributed to Lee Kuan Yew, the country's first prime minister. He led the country from 1959, when the then British colony gained autonomy. He pushed for a merger with Malaysia, seeing it as a way to finally end British rule. He got what he wanted in 1963, but a tense relationship between his government and the central government in Kuala Lumpur - mostly revolving around the latter's worries of increasing political involvement from the Chinese in the former - culminated in Singapore being expelled from the union in 1965.

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Give me Benedict Cumberbatch, or give me bacon

"Ayoko na kay Ian Somerhalder," my girlfriend said.

"Bakit?" I asked.

Ian Somerhalder, with his piercing eyes - especially his piercing eyes, perhaps - has been a bit of a topic between us two. Rainy's been swooning over him since she began watching The Vampire Diaries, and I try my best to, half-jokingly, pull her away from any Penshoppe branch that has his face plastered in front.

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Hold the wheel and drive

I was actually in Cubao for a baptism. Rainy's troll of a nephew. While the priest was talking, he already had his mother's car keys in his hand, and he was attempting to - pretty much - burn it with the Paschal candle. Usual grown baby stuff, but between the godfather and the aunt, well, "troll of a nephew".

Apparently the baby's dad, Rainy's brother, asked her to invite me to their place for drinks. I didn't know about this until a couple of days later. Anyway, why don't I come around for drinks? By then I had already dropped her off at her place, and I was on my way home, and she was preparing to meet her friends, and in between she was rattling off a quietly pre-approved list of reasons why I can't stay long.

He wants to go home early.

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"Number 27 has stretch marks!"

This image is girlfriend-approved.

I pressed the wrong button, and we made the wrong turn. It's understandable on my end, because no matter how well my sense of direction works, if I don't know a place, I don't know a place, and Cubao is one of those places that I just don't know. Rainy, well, Cubao is a place she's pretty intimate with, so her going along with that wrong turn was something.

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