Influences (or Why I Write the Way I Do)

Natalie Goldberg (free-flowing writing)
Clarissa Pinkola Estes (wild woman writing)
Jane Hutchison (direct-to-the-point writing)
Ernest Hemingway (simple words writing)

Monday, January 31, 2011

The Abyss of Fear

it's always like this at the tail end of fieldwork.  this feeling of running out of time. this feeling of the body not keeping pace with the will.  this feeling of frustration overcoming determination. these feelings make me shudder but like ghosts, we have to shun these away vocally, articulate the fear, even if with empty words to start.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Last 10 minutes

it was a necessity to beg for the last 10 or so minutes
before the day ends for lightworker.
ShadowMan would insist that among the many things he must do,
the remaining moments before 9pm must be devoted solely for the wifey.
he is all-out in everything lightworker has committed to do,
even if it means a huge difference in time to be together on skype,
the last 10 minutes is enough...happy na si hubby!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Beauty Matters

little does the hubby know that sometimes before i go online, i put on pressed powder. too icky looking at my oily haggard face. and quite shameful for the one on the other end who expects to see a refreshing face on screen.  there are no excuses for ugliness, especially one resulting from carelessness. i forget sometimes. i forget i should be beautiful even if only for one person.  if only for me, i would not care. there was even a time in guijo (proj 3, quezon city), there was not a single mirror in the house, but only the one found in my compact. beauty matters, effortless or not.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Fieldwork Test

when on fieldwork, one should have ready options if the person you're supposed to see or document supposed to have, runs kaput.  perhaps this is why i carry a bulky bag. in it is a folio filled with questionnaires, journal articles and a letter for the Holy Rosary Minor Seminary library in case i need to visit as a last resort. i can only wave my hands in despair after heading for the nth time to del rosario and upao only to eat disappointment. this is as it should be i think. fieldwork is testing too.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


today, the unexpected and impossible
in 15 years is unfolding

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


how i wish i'm there with you.
my beginning, my end,
my moonlight, my sunshine.
let me take out the fever in you,
and consume us both

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


because in hcg cooking, it is not possible to use flavoring cubes, MSG, sugar, honey, and veggie oil among others, it could be very hard for a neophyte cook to command flavor in dishes normally cooked with these seasonings.  so i turned to the internet and the sister's advice on what to do with the herbs and spices lying around the kitchen (in dried form that is). thus, i found out that marjoram, the dried common one, is just oregano and together with thyme, is good for beef. tarragon (a french herb) is great for fish, and rosemary goes about with almost everything. because my appetite is the lowest during breakfast, i took to eating salads instead. one i force to eat for its idealness for hcg - raw, fresh and bursting with color.  while before, i used to have a thousand island dressing or caesar's for salads (anything rich in flavor and gooey), i have none to make given the limited choices. faced with these, i made my own dressing: olive oil, salt, powdered garlic and rosemary.  great! i've been having my salads ever since with these (a day after the hubby frowned on the balsamic vinaigrette). so yeah. when faced with the wall, the ever-hungry looks down and finds answers on the ground.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Plateau and a Dream of 139

in hcg therapy, it is a MUST that one loses a half to a pound a day.  since starting last january 13, with a weight of 151lbs, now i'm 140lbs. this is about 12 days away already. but twice, i've plateaud. last january 20, after an overnight bus ride, my weight flattened at 143 (since jan 19) and today, at 140 (since yesterday, jan 23). the regimen is to 'break' the plateau by taking on at least 10 'to-do's'. of these, i chose two. eating 6 apples a day and fish by dinner; and, drinking apple cider vinegar-water.  today, i was supposed to resume fieldwork.  around noon, after downing 3 apples, got a bit agitated and dizzy again so had to put off supposed rounds around 3 city hall offices.  every morning takes a toll on the spirit. because i have to check my temp, do morning rituals, then weigh.  only after i weigh would i know whether i'll have a 'normal' or 'plateau-breaking' day; both highlighted because relatively, i have not been eating 'normal' for the past 9 days --- no rice, no fatty food, no bread, no juices etc. the weighing scale now half determines what i could do for a day.  the other half would be will power i think. in case i really need to go on the field, plateau day or not, i have to go with apples and water handy. need to pray hard for breakthrough weight tomorrow. if the scales tip 139 or even 139.5, it would be the first time; in say, 15 years, that vitti has weighed less than 140.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Going It Alone

when the going is rough, sometimes the best recourse is to not think about it. it's the time to use instinct. move by gut feel. decide where one's feet leads on a day seemingly without direction. i do not care to be understood.  i'd rather be comfortable with my own understanding.

Saturday, January 22, 2011


she's my friend since highschool. noticeable for her curly hair, her giggles, and practical approach to almost anything.  if twilight zone amazed me, for her it was crap. no such thing as multi-dimensionalities for a math major in UP. but we did like the same things --- among which was table tennis. we were like table-mates. we enjoy each other while playing tennis.  what was once just a shared dorm in uplb turned two years later to a shared house. we became sharemates for about a semester until she left to live with her aunt in forestry. when she had her first and only serious relationship with terence, we talked about it. even their first dinner date in uplb, she invited me to join in. then her 'first paycheck dinner', the wedding with terence...even after the operation in 1999 when she lost her full memory, until now, nothing has changed with mabel. even if she can only remember bits and pieces of the past. even if she can't find the right words for what she means to say. what hubby said is true with her. it's in her eyes. the sincerity, the mirth, and yes, the humble acceptance of what life at present, is. i'm happy to know our friendship goes well beyond memory.

Friday, January 21, 2011


i've written off writing for the last 10 weeks here in the philippines. by resuming fieldwork next week, more concerned now with new rounds of data and ensuring the quality of it, as writing fodder in perth by april. will also resume data processing - transcribing, finishing the matrix - and threshing within what jane and carol meant by writing the chapter using my arguments and the key points serving as their foundation. i would have to rewrite the chapter on Kaantabay with courage and faith that have yet to build.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Limits and Losing

yesterday when i read the email around noon, i suddenly lost the drive to write. in murdoch, a word limit on a phd thesis is imposed at 100,000 words. this is about 10,000 words per chapter or about 20 pages per chapter.  in the recent part 1 of chapter 1 submitted to jane and carol, i've used up about 5000 words already, not considering 2 more parts of the chapter still to be written. to be told to write briefly is a discipline in itself. it takes concentration and a masterful combination of words to be precise. but now, i believe that it can also stunt self-expression, especially when the verve to write comes from hearing the voice within and letting that voice out, without concern for limits. to trim down what one wants to say is frustrating and goes against what is taught in free writing as silencing the editor. because to write under the limit means turning on that editor. to be conscious rather than instinctive. to be cautious rather than believing. i just lost the inspiration to write. 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


a piece of me stays with every sigh.
as i leave the home of real dreams.
may my sighs penetrate the walls, blanket each speck aground.
in sighs i linger

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

365 days and Love

365 days ago, this blog was missing an inspiration. in this white space, my longing hang over like a cloud, sometimes seeding, pregnant with tears. sometimes gay with the sun on the background, the signs of occasional bliss. one can never feign loneliness, or treat it just like alone-ness.  365 days ago from today, this inspiration came via facebook. an invitation to friendship leading to so much more. and now life is complete, alive, never running out of meaning.  happy anniversary my love. there is no end to our forever...

Monday, January 17, 2011

Finding Forward

in this second part of chapter 3, i'm having trouble moving forward. my logic and structure may not be ok. that's a sign. whenever i feel this 'block' towards proceeding, there must be something wrong with either of the two. from 2pm today, i was only to produce three sentences amid the sounds of bach.  i would have to start by discussing Kaantabay as an LGU-administered program, and from there discuss the concept of self-help. or should it be the other way around? i'll think this over in bed later. then i'll know tomorrow. which way would lead the way forward.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Starting with the Salad

today's my first on hcg protocol. the protocol is meant to guide you eat protein and veggies (builders), fruits (cleansers), selected nuts and seeds, and seasonings for 45 days. each day consists of six meals: 3 full and in-betweens totaling 1500 calories. the diet goes with once-daily before-breakfast hcg injections which would make up for the difference in the required calorie intake of 2500 by triggering the burning of unused fats (1000 calories).  it depends upon you to mix up whatever is in the list.

Humble beginnings are worth it.
for this morning, i tried on chicken salad, with a vinaigrette dressing made from balsamic vinegar, olive oil and a little rosemary. after which i had a slice of papaya. for lunch, i cooked my first cocido - which according to hubby was not a disappointment.  right now, i'm having a slight headache brought on by menstruation (2nd day) and a caffeine addiction (waiting for the hubby and brewed coffee --- the only type of coffee drink allowed) but trying to wear it off by blogging, and later, washing some undies.

i'm sure why i'm undergoing this therapy. i'm already pre-diabetic (hbaic of 6.05% vs. the 7% limit), borderline obese, with underactive thyroids that are behind my hard-to-lose fat deposits. i envy women who do not need to go through this to lose weight. but i am proud of myself for finally making a big step towards real wellness and good health.  it also starts with a salad.

Saturday, January 15, 2011


today, this is what i ate: 1 sunny side up, 2 hotdogs and 1 pandesal. for lunch, japanese shabu-shabu, kakiage bento, mixed and tuna sashimi. then two slices of pizza (chorizo/ spinach) and 3 servings of (seafood and tomatoes). yesterday, i ate similarly.  gorging that is. on corned beed, 3 cups of rice, seafood noodles, cereals, skyflakes, salad and american baked spareribs (the last two at cravings --- it should now read, Craving No More). then cappuccino, san mig's 3-in-one coffee, del monte pineapple juice, black ice cream, and tiramisu. i try to savor every bite. remember the mesh of sour juicy tomatoes, the black and white frosting on the middle of black and white layers of cake, even the blandness of dry spareribs as if the cook didn't care who to serve it. like a cannibal concerned more with the flesh than the taste of it, this is what it feels like. to eat as if there's no tomorrow. the concern more on the tomorrow. 

starting tomorrow, i won't be eating any of these, for the next 45 days.  i'm not sure whether i won't be eating any of these ever.  i'm not sure how not eating of these would make me feel, whether i'll feed good enough to persist on the abstinence.  i'll know within 45 days

Friday, January 14, 2011

Little Miss Faith*

can't devote 100% to writing this morning. partly because of the frequent trips to the bathroom from drinking hot water and green tea alternately, and which, the other part, made me more aware that my period hasn't come. and i'm late for what? 5 days now.  good that the pregnancy test last wednesday yielded 'negative' but still, 5 days is already abnormal for a very regular menstruating middle-aged girlalu like me. so i couldn't stop worrying while writing, checking now and then, looking ahead to nothing.  the reason is that, i'm about to go on hcg protocol  in the next two days to cure my hypothyroidism, and i have began taking hcg injections since yesterday. what if i'm pregnant? would the protocol harm my baby now that i've started it? can i leave the program and return to it after? how am i going to write my chapters then? how about yaman? are we going to leave naga now?

until suddenly, i got this gmail chat message from steph --- she's pregnant! and for about 10 minutes, i forgot myself. found myself in facebook, writing to her, to not worry so much about the future. yes, there are still more chapters to write. but then, there's baby growing inside you and she needs your optimism now more than ever.  i'm not saying the other world has to stop just because of the baby.  neither worlds will, and somehow, in the mysterious but amazing weavings of the One Up There, these worlds will not collide, but rather meld, in time. told her to see a doctor she trusts, to take her vitamins regularly and just be happy. to pray more even.

and somehow in that simple fb message to steph, i felt relieved of my own cares. of my worries about this blood that just won't drip and drop now.  of course there are limitations but the possibilities are endless and the space i see myself in may not be as narrow or suffocating as i think it is.  and somehow, in the dark corners of my worries, a little light is showing. telling me, assuring me to believe, to trust, to hold the present more strongly than the future; in that way, the future will be shaped, amazingly, to our liking (on hindsight yes...). so here, with the earphones in but without the music of bach (because of forgetfulness and silliness), i listen to my fingers drumming on the keys and i laugh at myself. it would take a good friend to nudge the faith i have inside. now i'm ok. i'm moving forward.

*Taking after Steph's business name in S'pore: Little Miss Write

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Chapter 1 and Structuring

i committed to be productive on the first morning of the first day working here at Raya.  so with my back on the TV and resisting temptations to sleep because the bed is just a few paces away (i'm not sleepy anyway), opened the laptop and logged on without connecting the internet (else i wander off to gmail, inquirer, facebook...)

i'm starting on the second of four parts of Chapter 1 (The Kaantabay Program) and like any exercise, it's hardest to start. specifically, how to start. that is, what is the overall argument and then from that argument, how will thought be structured to guide the writing process.  i've decided to discuss the program components of Kaantabay by relating it with the 'enabling strategy', a tenure policy advocated by the UN and WB characterized by: self-help solutions by the poor; administration and support services by the LGU; and marker-based cost recovery mechanisms.  thus, i went to developing a structure that goes like this: Kaantabay as self-help, Kaantabay as LGU-administered, Kaantabay as market-based.  on the second, i'm tweaking on discussing the policy environment (which should have been the third part of the chapter). if i'm successful at integrating it here, then, i need to write only one more part (progress and issues) to complete the entire Chapter 1!.....(haaaaayyyyyyy!)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

My Father's Things

i finished part 1 (history) of the Kaantabay chapter today at 430am. what i thought would take 5 days, actually took 15 days to finish. one thing that delayed the writing was the scouring for factual data on naga city's public finances and economy. this took about 5 days.  at one point, i got desperate because local government data is not only outdated but also not periodic.  you could get average family income for 1990 but that ends there. none for 1995, 2000 or for the last 10 years.  mahirap maging researcher sa naga talaga.

in my desperation, i took to rummaging over my dad's files just to chance upon any data --- any data --- that will tell something about naga's or the bicol region's situation in 1987 or earlier.  his files still occupy one 4-row filing cabinet and 2 rows of another.  i got to see my father's writing one more time. those neat compressed strokes that could not quite hide his controlling nature. his expertise in training, project proposal writing and project management. his experience in the academe, in government and about five years before he died in 1994, in NGO work. he formed his own NGO that was based in daet, camarines norte. sometime before i was about to graduate from college, my dad asked which company i want to work in.  to his surprise (and also mine), i blurted without reservation, 'kahit saan, wag lang sayo' (any where but yours).  i felt the need to explain immediately so i said, 'kasi ganito. kung umaangat ako, sasabihin nila, ah, kasi anak ng boss yan.  pag hindi naman, sasabihin nila, bakit ganyan? anak pa naman ng boss'. (it's like this. in case i get promoted, they will say, of course she's the boss' daughter. if not, they'll say, how come when she's the boss's daughter?')  either way i lose. i will not prosper professionally under his wing.  indeed, nothing grows under big trees.

but seeing his things, it's amazing how our work is very much alike. in reading his proposals, it's like reading my own writing given the precise yet authoritative tone of the sentences. i suddenly missed him, so much. in my hands, he is alive. i did find an unexpected population fact sheet of all things (he attended a family planning seminar once --- why o why?), the master plan for the bicol river basin (grrrrrrrr, this would have been rich material during my proposal writing days in schema and bceom!), and several econ, physical and social stats for naga from 1986-1992 (pwede na kahit 1986) when cory aquino was still making 'paganda' (versus papogi). but what i did find as a whole, about my father, about his legacy to the world in his writing, his patience, and his professionalism, i found much much more. i miss you so much Daddy...

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Facing the Wall

as of 830pm today, i have written 1478 words. today's not only a good's a great day! as if i've written for two days already. i'm not resting on my laurels. just happy i got one. perhaps i was able to write this productive because from where i'm sitting, i'm facing this white wall. this white wall with religious decorations and pictures i've seen so many times, it might as well be just one big white wall in front of me. no distractions like tv or passersby outside. with bach (brandenburg concentos) on the background, i felt my hands race but soft on the keyboard. relaxed. just happy, writing. 

Monday, January 10, 2011

I Hate You

it will come to a head. when you hate a person so much, even if rationalizing it from time and time, and finding cause not to, still it will come to a head. hatred will swell and like a volcano, erupt in a frenzy of shouting, slashing words, and tears.  the person i hate knows i hate her in the open and from where it came from. bruises hard to recover from as the secret is now open and i have to contend with hypocrisy, proven and very much alive.  with this hatred, it is possible to disown even one's self. 

Sunday, January 9, 2011


di man nasisinagan ng araw
umiinit pa rin
ang ulo
di man nagpapasan ng mabigat
pagod pa rin
dala ng puso
di man kalaban maso at semento
bugbog pa rin
ang tumatandang utak

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Slow Start

getting the details right is the onus to technical writing. to write 1,000 words a day means getting more than a thousand numbers actual and accurate. half of a day or more spent with cross and counter-checking data. who could blame me for writing late and into the morning? there's more to writing than moving your hands.

Friday, January 7, 2011

The Quality of Local Government Reporting

after reading Naga City's accomplishment/ annual/ state of the city reports from 1988 to 2005 (with 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, and 96 onwards absent), here's what i have to say:

1. Revenue is NOT income. so the 192M something reported city income in 1996, purportedly to be a nine-fold increase since 1988 is a sham! the real income (Total Revenue-Total Expenditures) is only 20M. that's a nine-fold over-the-top lie!

2. Don't trust statistical interpretation. go to the tables and actual figures. the manner of reporting rehashes old data from many years back (i.e., 2000 report citing 1993 stats) and without any mention of the reference year!

3. With so many employees doing nothing in their offices but sit all day, how come reporting still comes in templates? demographic and socioeconomic profiling uses the same paragraphs way back in 1993. example:  'such a young population means a productive generation to follow...' hay gasgas na gasgas na ito...

4.  the tone of reporting reflects the administration in place. the lackluster template style reporting showed during mayor del castillo's reign; upbeat and optimistic under robredo (to the point of OA --- see the 1996 accomplishment report) and the boring almost anemic reporting under the roco administration.

5. reports like these should be entrusted to technical writers who could do justice to the data and the current situation.  no to spin doctors and jazzy writers (e.g., the city government quarterbacked by upao) who gloss around the obvious and give off nothing new. 

Thursday, January 6, 2011

The Burden of 5

i have been warned before by my numerologist (now deceased) that with a 5 in my numerology chart, i am bounded to be backstabbed, in local lingo, ta-traidor-in, especially by people close to me; specifically, those that i've helped.  so he warned further, slow down on your generosity. give a little kung pwede.  it would turn out to be ironical because that same generosity would help Mr. Nora by way of the family he left behind in 2009. 

as of today, that prediction has rang true.  in my high school batch, i am the outsider, even if this turned out to be the work of an ex-housemate schoolmate who relied on me for financial help when she was finishing her then college studies when we were already 32.  in woodfields, the business development guy who i recruited to the firm, worked with me in the same unit for 4 years, was my daughter's godfather, would wrongfully turn the tables on me on a project bid to save his ass and until now refuse to even say the 'sorry' for what he's done.  the husband of an ex-college student, which i recruited for the same company, similarly turned Judas during this harrowing experience with woodfields last 2008.  debts to relatives are left unpaid after so long a time, without explanation or apology, i sometimes wonder if i need to show the beast in me to these people. 

it could be a damper to helping, these pains i go through. this way i know life could be tortuously unfair. perhaps it's just better to help unknowing people. just to go round the curse and be rid the burden of expectations. 

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Counting Calories

Below is my calorie count since Dec 31 2010:

                                               Calories      Fat      % over standards
                                                                             Cal          Fat

2010 Dec 31 F 2445.0 56.0   203.75%  186.67% Bad
2011 Jan 1 St 2945.0 147.5     245.42%  491.67% Bad

2 Su 3138.5 124.3     261.54%  414.33% Bad

3 M 2182.5 83.8     181.88%  279.17% Bad

4 T 1692.0 52.7     141.00%  175.67% Fair

5 W 2107.0 45.0   175.58%  150.00% Fair

This shows how I have been so unsuccessful in avoiding pre and post-New Year food binges.  Based on a 1500kcal/ day and 30g fat/day standard for weight loss, I've gone over the requirement from Dec 31 to Jan 2 by as much as 161% to as low as 104%.  More than double the requirement.  For the past 3 days, I've made making fair progress, the lowest at 41% more last Tuesday.  Today, I would have made it to less than that if not for eating a Japanese bento box equivalent to a whopping 650kcal!  Lest I appear obsessive by counting calories all the time, I'm just citing a point of 'killers' coming in little boxes. I should have opted for a Mcnuggets meal of only 150 cal per 300 pcs.  Now, that's caloric thinking for you. I'm not getting crazy, just mainly illustrating how good calorie counting is when deciding which food to eat, avoid *(Katsudon is 1000 calories!) or manage in terms of portions (1 tempura prawn = 60cal). 

Aunt Nina gave me this booklet way back in 2009 but ignored it.  It's Allan Borushek's Pocket Calorie, Fat and Carbohydrate Counter, which, being an Aussie publication lists a comprehensive list of food (milk, eggs, breads, rice, take-away, international foods, juices, fruit, veggies et al.) complete with brands (although only those found in Aus market shelves).  Doesn't take much of an effort to leaf through the pages and be informed of what we eat and drink. It's reader friendly with color coding for measurements like calories (blue) sodium (yellow), fat (red), carbohydrates (light brown) and protein (magenta); information not only about weight loss but also of diabetes, fat and blood cholesterol, sodium intake, and even osteoporosis.  funny cartoons and tips adorn the pages like one which reads, 2 exercise tips while eating: PUSHING THE TABLE AWAY and VIGOROUSLY SHAKING YOUR HEAD FROM SIDE TO SIDE when asked for a second helping. 

it doesn't hurt to try. and i don't want to try only when i'm already hurting.  so here i am. having black coffee after this.  it's only 5 kcal.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Something Wrong with Local Govt Accounting

worked with numbers all the day. naga city's income and expenditure statements, in actual figures, from 1990-1993, 1995-1997, and 2002-2003. the last two years i had difficulty because the reporting format changed.

i wonder why people tend to complicate things. revenue reporting was pretty straightforward and easy to follow from 1990 to 1997 --- until a 'new' but not improved system of hodge-podge reporting and wrong cross-referencing was adopted in 2002 to 2003, and with apprehension, onwards. for example, under the 2003 certified statement of income, an entry 'initial years' adjustment' amounting to P11M was a deductible to income. then in the accompanying, 2003 certified statement of income and expenditures, the same entry is a component of income! perhaps the inconsistency is deliberate given the corruption in our institutions.

likewise, the traditional method of lumping IRA to real estate tax was changed. the 2002-2003 system here categorizes the IRA under 'other income'.  appallingly, tax revenues are lumped in just one column, containing categories that used to be under 'operating and miscellaneous revenues' or 'income from economic enterprises'. 

for a researcher like me who has to make comparisons and distinguish trends by year, this is a nightmare. even without going on the field, research is made a burden by (deliberately) lopsided secondary data. 

Monday, January 3, 2011

No Maid in the Philippines

my instructions were clear: go back on january 3 because i'm writing.  writing as in reading in between, poring through the literature, sifting through cracks in the info, building momentum. one does not write in an instant. one has to have brain material to write.  but today, since the maid did not arrive as promised, by morning, i had to prepare breakfast for the daughter, have my own, fold up washed clothing, clean the bedroom and before i knew it, it's 10 to 11am! time to bathe daughter, bathe one's self, have lunch, prepare her clothes to school and off we go before 130pm. when i arrived home around 230pm (after buying an exercise mat), i only had 1 and 1/2 hours to read through pre-Robredo budget reports and his own until 1994 only.  after picking daughter from school around 430pm, my hands were again full with her (cleaning up, preparing her snacks, dinner), soaking clothes for tomorrow's washing, and dish-washing.  it's only now, 1007pm that i will get to read what i should be writing about --- when? tomorrow evening again?  it's hard looking at all this 'lost' time because there's no maid, no yaya around.  the formal economy indeed subsists on the informal.  and i should give her a raise?

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Bad Mothering

Yaman woke up with mosquito bites on her face. to add to a month-old kulatoy that won't heal because she refuses antibiotic drops during the day. then awhile ago before going to sleep, she fell to the floor, face down, and hit her head. insect bites, an eye infection, and a bump on the head. that's how she'll greet her classmates tomorrow. such a bad mother.

Saturday, January 1, 2011


he called me porkchop. or rather, pointed to my left arm and said, 'porkchop'. if it was unintended, it's still subliminal. no matter how much the love is, the reality is, the wifey is fat these days, so fat. as if a sign starting with yesterday's counting of calories with a new food diary, perhaps i need to be really really serious about losing weight. and that's not just through dieting (a word i thought i've weaned off from) and exercise but more with the capital D - discipline! before lunchtime, i knew i had to eat just one stick of barbecue, half a cup of rice. ended up having 7 and 1, respectively. not to mention the coke, 2 glasses. by lunch alone, i've consumed 1365 calm which is so over the daily ideal (given age and lifestyle) of 1200.  i'm not proud of myself.  i am obese with a BMI of 31.39 (height=1.55m, weight=70kgs), overweight by 31 lbs (14kgs). perhaps 'porkchop' is the wake-up call.  especially from someone who should have known better.