Thursday, February 22, 2007 at Thursday, February 22, 2007 | 1 comments
The following text messages have been circulating in virtually every cellphones since last year. Some of these are old, but they really make my day. I had told everybody they were ironies in my initial post, which was obviously wrong:

"You are never too old to learn something stupid."
"Smile... tomorrow will be worse!"
"Never miss a good chance to shut up."
"Don't run, you'll just die tired."
"Don't steal, that's the government's job."
"The number of people watching you is directly proportional to the stupidity of your action."
"He who laughs last thinks slowest."
"Never take life seriously: nobody gets out alive anyway."
"Always remember, you are unique. Just like everyone else." :-))

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Friday, February 16, 2007 at Friday, February 16, 2007 | 1 comments
Hello Earth! I'm back.

Just to give you some updates, I have been pretty preoccupied with a lot of things these days, things to which I unexpectedly shifted my attention. Aside from work and love life, I just could not go back to blogging right away, even if my nutty brain was brimming with ideas. Anyhow, I don’t feel like writing another piece about Philippine politics and all the darn things surrounding it, since I know you're not eager to dwell on it anyway. So let us spare this blog of political mayhem for a day or two. With all these circus coming to town, people can crack a good joke out of them anytime just the same.

There was something about the word "beautiful' that caught my attention recently. It is given that we all agree about the unreliability of any method in measuring beauty — since it's floating over the term subjectivity. This reminds me of Cleopatra, the ancient queen of Egypt. Cleopatra who was an Hellenistic co-ruler of Egypt with her father Ptolemy XII Auletes...blah, blah, blah (click the link if you get the itch to recall major things about her). People always have this impression that Cleopatra was a beautiful, head-turner, royal lady who made some perverts out of Roman generals. At one point, I even imagined she had a ravishing Jennifer Lopez-butt, a rare Thalia’s waist, a fine 35B boobs and a barbie-like face. Those might be considered exaggerated description, but quoting Shakespeare who wrote about Cleopatra “beggar’d all description” and some historians who said the mighty Julius Caezar was possessed by her, who would have thought she’s not that beautiful? Or worse, ugly?

Recently, though, I chanced upon an article about Cleopatra’s controversial beauty. A coin dating back 32 BCE and put on display in Britain illustrated her with a pointed chin, thin lips and sharp nose. In short, she was no beauty queen. It looks like she’s just another overrated woman whose coquettishness was turned into a symbol of beauty. Apparently, she was not.

Shakespeare would have made wept had he found it out.

Or would have he? Perhaps his lines about Cleopatra had double-meaning? Come to think of it, Shakespeare never mentioned the word “beautiful” when he described her. He might have been sarcastic or something. Or maybe the lines are satiric, his style of making a spoof of Cleopatra? According to an archaeologist, Roman writers tell us that Cleopatra was intelligent and charismatic and that she had a seductive voice, but, tellingly, they do not mention her beauty. How's that?

But then again, perhaps our modern world has a warped definition of beauty. Maybe our definition of beauty was completely different from that of the past. Perhaps a bulging eyes, a sharp nose and a pointed chin are what it takes to be a beauty queen in Cleopatra’s time? Or maybe the definition of beauty at that time was not the about physical appearance, but about characters and personalities? I don't know.

But what I do know is that if those (characters and personalities) were the features that make one an apple of people’s eyes in our modern world, difference between love and lust, between obsession and fatal attraction, would be spelled correctly. And nobody would have dared describing Zoraida as ugly.
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