Tag Archives: claret

Back when I was (near) bald.

Me (center) with some of my high school PEEPS at Eastwood City (c. 2009)
Photo ©Karl Carandang

It was the day before my birthday last April 30, I came by and stumble some photos on my Facebook wall featuring some of my classmates in college back in their high school days. Where they like the photos and make jokes out of it. I joined the party by leaving comments on the photos, but later, they stumbled on my photos from back then, and found a picture of me when I was in high school sporting a “near” bald haircut which brought back memories of my fourth year high school which was one of the best years in my high school life.

It was more than 2 years ago when I sported the look, in fact this was the first and only time in my life so far I sported this haircut. Well, there were haircut inspections back in high school and they were very strict on imposing it among the students (even in college there are haircut inspections but these are a little lighter than in high school). For me, I sported the haircut more on my personal choice, rather than complying with the haircut rule. I don’t like to sport longer hair for the fact that I don’t like bangs falling down from my hair (I know most would say What? You can brush that and raise it, and add some gel or wax on.), but that’s my touch on hair, besides.

I had some great memories with that hair starting from a birthday trip of my PEEP I attended together with my high school PEEPS, down at Eastwood City where we dined out at Yellow Cab, watched The Final Destination, went bowling, and chilled out the entire day. As well as the usual happenings down at school. It took about a couple of months for my hair to grow back from the time I sported the “near” bald look.

The fact it was the only time I sported this haircut, I wanted to sport that “near” bald cut again. However, they don’t want me to sport the cut anymore for the reason that it doesn’t fit in with my course in college and the fact I’m a slim man, and every time I talk about having that look, they will say “Wag! Hindi bagay sa ‘yo.” “No! It doesn’t suit you.”

Despite these facts that I can’t sport my cut, I can’t blame them for that. So from then on, I make sure I get the right haircut that I can be contented with. Besides, I have a good barber since the time they first brought me to a barber shop for haircuts and it costs me only P50 per cut (P20 for tips). Yes, he is a very good barber.

Well, it may be odd to say this but sporting a “near” bald look was one of the best moments of my life. It was a time when I freely chose what haircut I will sport. Though it was for only a short time and it made me look like a odd person. It was all worth it.

Photo ©Karl Carandang

“Don’t judge a man by his hair, judge him by his heart.”

The brotherhood remains. MERALCO is a brotherhood.

Photo ©John Daniel Item

Last night, I went to my friend Gelo’s house (PEEP at the center wearing blue) together with my PEEPS from high school to celebrate his birthday. His birthday has been known somewhat as a annual reunion of the troupe since we graduated 2 years ago since his birthday falls on a time where all of us are on summer break and the fact we have varying school calendars. Some who came I have seen not too long ago like the birthday boy who studies in the same university as I am, while some I hadn’t seen for a long time.

I was very happy to see these guys again. This brotherhood has been around for four years beginning at our 3rd year in Claret until today, though I admit I wasn’t present at all times then, it’s good that we still keep in touch even if we are on different paths right now in our lives.

Well, this was also a time to catch up with what has happened to us since we last met from our college lives to current issues, and reminisce good/funny memories (some of which dark memories) when we were at high school from the PE experiences to the funny jokes/pranks back then. I remember that we have unique laughs. One laugh would trigger laughs from the other. One good joke will trigger the whole troupe laughing. One poor joke would trigger the jeers “Weh!”. I remember when my friend Nur said I was handsome yet it triggered the “Weh!” jeer (Even I myself said it.) But hey, I believe that everyone is handsome no matter what the state a person has in his life. Well on my part I also did a flashback move from back in my 2nd year high school which I call the “You!-Boomshakalaka!-Hamboogle” move. Where I start with a Soulja Boy You!, then I shout Boomshakalaka! up in the sky, and end saying Hamboogle! with my head shaking, and of course I cap with a little dance. It was somehow my birthday gift to Gelo as he and the rest of the troupe had not seen it in a while. It was also a chance to plan our future outings. Yes, we are a happy troupe to say the least.

So once again we thank Gelo for the great party last night
. My PEEP Jadri who lives near my home for the ride back home. To my other MERALCO PEEPS Airam, Francis, JL, Centi, Aldrin, Philip, Nur, JD, Baña, Josh, Edison, Junji, and Agi. Thanks for the great time guys! Until then, enjoy the ride.

“The opportunity for brotherhood presents itself every time you meet a human being.” – Jane Wyman

“Above all things let us never forget that mankind constitutes one great brotherhood; all born to encounter suffering and sorrow, and therefore bound to sympathize with each other.” – Albert Pike


Me and my basketball. We take it all the way.

Photo ©Karl Carandang
It is no secret that I love playing and watching basketball, as seen on my NBA Daily Blog where I blog about the NBA games that have happened since I “resurrected” my blog a few days, and the fact the Philippines is still a basketball nation even with the rise of other sports like football, rugby and tennis, as well as sports with a long presence in the Philippines like boxing, billiards, volleyball and taekwondo. Basketball has been a part of my life since 2002 when the NBA came upon our television sets. Even up to today, basketball is one of the most special things I cherish in my entire life.
My first favorite NBA team was the Utah Jazz where my first favorite NBA player Karl Malone was playing. At first, I was playing basketball on video games on the PlayStation and so on, but a few months later, I got my hands on a basketball for the first time and life has never been the same from there.
I grew in love more with basketball when the Houston Rockets drafted Yao Ming out of China to become the first Asian player to be drafted #1 overall in the NBA Draft and from there, I have become a proud fan of the Rockets with Yao as my new favorite player. I also liked other Rockets players that have played over the years like Steve Francis, Cuttino Mobley, Tracy McGrady, Bob Sura, Shane Battier, Chuck Hayes, Rafer Alston, Dikembe Mutombo, Aaron Brooks, Luis Scola, Carl Landry, Kyle Lowry, Ron Artest (now known as Metta World Peace), Von Wafer, Kevin Martin, Chase Budinger, Courtney Lee, Goran Dragic, and many other Rockets players since I’ve watched with the NBA on TV. Over the years when I grew up, that was then I found out about the history of the Rockets with the likes of Hakeem Olajuwon, Clyde Drexler, Robert Horry, Kenny Smith, Sam Cassell, Mario Elie, Vernon Maxwell, Otis Thorpe, Ralph Sampson, Rudy Tomjanovich, Calvin Murphy, Charles Barkley and many other Rockets greats. That was then when I found out they were the NBA Champions in 1994 and 1995, and right now I hope that the Rockets can win a NBA title in my lifetime, because the time they won NBA titles, I was still a baby.
Aside from the Rockets and all the great players, I came to like other players like Michael Jordan, Scottie Pippen, Magic Johnson, Larry Bird, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wilt Chamberlain, Isiah Thomas, Shaquille O’Neal, Reggie Miller, Allen Iverson, Kevin Garnett, Derrick Rose, Blake Griffin, Kevin Durant, Dirk Nowitzki, Andre Iguodala, Josh Smith, Joe Johnson, Jeremy Lin, Kevin Love, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Dwight Howard, Kevin Durant, Kobe Bryant and many other players from different eras and the present. I also like other teams like the Atlanta Hawks, Orlando Magic, Oklahoma City Thunder, Dallas Mavericks, Boston Celtics, and New York Knicks.
Aside from the NBA, I also keep track of basketball played here in the Philippines from the Philippine Basketball Association to the college game UAAP and NCAA (Philippines). Some PBA teams I like are the Petron Blaze Boosters, Rain or Shine Elasto Painters, B-Meg Llamados, Alaska Aces, and the Powerade Tigers. Also, I am a supporter of the Philippine national team in basketball and the AirAsia Philippine Patriots of the ASEAN Basketball League.
I admit that before I came to study at the University of Santo Tomas, my favorite college team were the Ateneo Blue Eagles, but now that I am a full-pledged Thomasian, I wholeheartedly support the UST Growling Tigers, and I hope in my time as a student, they win the UAAP basketball tournament. I also like the Letran Knights and the San Sebastian Golden Stags of the NCAA (Philippines).
I also take a look at in international basketball contests like the FIBA tournaments in each region and the Euroleague.
I also come in to play video games, The first basketball video game I played was NBA Shootout 2000. Then it was followed the NBA Live series from 2003 to 2007, and now I’m a huge fan of the NBA 2K series since 2008, especially after the improvements and innovations they put up in every issue of the game that had been launched since then.
Whenever I play basketball myself, I’m a left-handed shooter, as I write with my left hand and favor more of my left hand than my right. I like to take three-pointers and mid-range shots, but sometimes I go for a lay-up or close-range shot. I’m trying my best to improve my passing, dribbling, and ball-handling game which is a constant improvement year after year. I can be a underrated on-ball defender. I enjoy playing basketball for the fun of it all, together with my friends at the basketball court. Whether it is free time during my PE class in high school and in games for one semester at the university, to playing at the Intramurals in high school or the CTHM Sportsfest, or to playing in the subdivision with my friends.

Basketball has been a part of my life for already a decade, basketball has shaped my life to the person I have become today. With basketball, I made great time with my friends and gained new ones along the way, I had a lot of moments of victory with jubilation, and also moments of defeat where I got to learn from my mistakes when playing. Basketball will continue to be a part of my life even after I’m done playing on the court and continue the rest of the day. Just like the Nike campaign “Basketball never stops.”
“Basketball is in my blood. It is my obligation to try.” – Hakeem Olajuwon
“I have one thing to say to those non-believers, don’t ever underestimate the heart of a champion!” – Rudy Tomjanovich
“Talent wins games, but teamwork and intelligence wins championships.” – Michael Jordan
A basketball team is like the five fingers on your hand. If you can get them all together, you have a fist. That’s how I want you to play. – Mike Kryzewski