Saturday, February 27, 2010

Trip to PVD

Originally uploaded by norwinespiritu
my fam flew over from bay for the weekend. mom really wanted to go to providence, so off we went in a zipcar.

providence is much much smaller than boston. it's pretty much known for brown university and a big italian population possibly harboring mafia (thanks chiara for that info). the above pic is of brown's mascot.....a bear. (brown bears < golden bears) brown also has thayer st which is equivalent to berkeley's telegraph minus blondie's, bums, and diversity. it's worth visiting since it's an old historic ivy league university with a nice looking campus.

not much else going on in PVD. has a big mall with a D&Bs and Tiffany's. didn't get a chance to go to federal hill which is where you'll find the italian restaurants and such. PVD is also known for it's annual waterfire festival where they light bonfires in the river. nice place to go, but i don't see myself going there too often.

got a few other pics here.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Snow Surfing

I've been fortunate enough to have the chance to snowboard on two coasts this past Winter season. Twice in Vermont, three times in Tahoe. I've been to two Vermont resorts--Killington and Sugar Bush. They're great resorts, but they simply don't beat Tahoe. They're just as far from Boston as they the Tahoe resorts are from the Bay. But here in the East, it sucks that I don't have a car nor do I have the same group of friends that I would normally go boarding with.

Every time you board, I recommend climbing to the very top of the summit. At Sugar Bush, I went atop Mt. Ellen, the highest peak at the resort. Really amazing views. I felt like I was away from all of the craziness in the world. Peace and tranquility settle in when you begin to look at the world below. Then all of that shatters when the excitement and adrenaline kick in when you realize that you have to cruise down the mountain to the bottom, back to reality. I love how no matter how early you wake up or how little sleep you get, the adrenaline you get while boarding keeps you going.

I'm really hoping to snowboard at least one more time before the snow melts. 2nd week of March in Tahoe anyone??

Check out my other Sugar Bush pics

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

security breach

anyone else a victim of credit card fraud??

recently i found out that someone has my credit card info and has been using it attempt to make some expensive and inexpensive purchases. good thing i caught it when i did...

my dad has a card for my account and his purchases kept declining. then i saw that there was this strange transaction on my online statement titled "" found out it was linked to a porn/live cam/adult dating website! Chase told me that there were other attempts to for purchases in addition to those my dad tried to make. what triggered their suspicions and their action to freeze my account was a purchase of $150 through Zynga, the facebook/iphone game company. then this criminal tried to purchase membership through that same porn website for $9 and $35, with the latter being successful. and also an attempt to charge $253 through Comcast was also made. So basically the only charge came through was the $35 porn website charge.

my sense of security has suddenly become shattered. i use this credit card for the majority of my transactions. i use it almost carelessly. there are so many ways my credit card info could have fell into the wrong hands:
-while making a purchase online some one could have been recording my info
-someone could have hacked into a website where my card info was being stored
-at a restaurant someone could have wrote down or took a pic of my card after the waiter/tress took my card
-there were a couple of times i gave my credit card info over the phone
-anybody at any company where i used my credit card or even someone at my credit card company could have used my info illegally

it's creepy to think that this bastard has my name, credit card number, and possibly my address. you need all of that, in addition to the security code on the back of your card and the expiration date, to make a successful transaction online.

so be cautious and be vigilant people. pay attention to your credit card statements. watch where your credit card goes in a restaurant or store (even fancy ones). pay cash if u can. i'd seriously consider canceling all my credit cards but it's sorta hard not to have one when u can get rewards and helps you pay for stuff temporarily. i think i'll be using my card less. be careful people!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

latest thoughts

my goodness, it's been that long since i blog on here? well, time to blog some thoughts and updates...

since starting part-time schooling on top of working full-time, i've developed the tendency to put things off til later. basically procrastinating. but not just procrastinating school work and hobbies and such, but also feelings, thoughts, opinions, etc. when i was working in CA and even when i was still at berkeley, i had more time to think about the finer things in life. and now because i'm busy doing work, studying, traveling, i feel like i don't have the time to sit down and reflect on my life and the things i believe in. anybody else feel the same way? do i even make sense? i just feel that i am starting to lose myself.

i'm about halfway done (time-wise) with my master's program. yay! but i still have a lot to do: 5-6 classes, a practicum, a final project and presentation. and this is all on top of working full-time.

it was my second year in a row celebrating thanksgiving in the east coast. this year i traveled to NYC. good food. good times. ribs and choco-pecan pie will be my traditional holiday offerings. Props to Mark C. for hosting the dinner and giving me a place to stay in the borough where RunDMC, Nas, and LL Cool J call home.

i hate how all of these sales are making me want to buy stuff for myself instead of buying stuff for others this holiday season. but snowboarding and coldweather stuff is essential now that it's cold and snowing...right?

speaking of snowboarding. this sat will be my first time snowboarding in the east coast in the state where snowboarding was born...vermont! there any filipinos out there?

two weeks until i get to go back home!

Saturday, July 25, 2009


Damn it's been a while since i wrote in this. And when i created this blog, i thought i'd be writing in it everyday haha. well better late than never...

boston (and maybe the east coast in general) makes u a more angry person. why?

-cars honk way more than they need to.
-some people don't acknowledge u in stores and such or don't say thank you or hi.
-boston sports fanatics (which is basically everyone who is from the area) are really aggressive and prideful and give u shit if u talk about any other sports team.
-there's been quite a few news articles about white boys committing acts of racism and racial slurs against asian americans in boston colleges.
-u get pissed off when people ask you if i speak english just cuz you look 'asian' and assume u don't speak english.
-because of the sterotype that bostonians are racist and ignorant, in your mind u assume than any white person is racist and ignorant and you're just waiting for them to say something about you so that you can talk back and raise hell and throw a fist or two.

aside from these lovely characteristics, boston is a pretty cool place to live in. i've grown fond of public transportation because it's so good out here. definitely puts BART to shame, but you have to cut BART some slack cuz of the geographical obstacles. not much seperates the different areas of boston, so places are pretty accessible by public transportation. and it's so hard to be a $59/month unlimited bus and subway pass! the only downside is that the subway shuts down before 1am and most buses stop running around 1am. this makes things difficult when u want to stay out late at a bar or lounge til 2am.

you'll actually come across really nice people here. some of the bus drivers are pretty friendly as are some store clerks. some people in my department are cool folk. and occasionally you'll see drivers stop for u if you're trying to cross the street.

the weather has been pretty weird in boston. i was expecting a humid, unbearable summer. it's been humid, but the temp has only reached the 70s and 80s. we've had maybe only one or two days 90 degree weather. what makes it weird is that one day it will be nice and sunny and then next day will be all cloudy or raining pretty hard.

things have been pretty busy for me. since my last blog entry, i've been working full-time (never gonna change til i get outta here), taking classes, and going on plenty of weekend trips. i passed my spring semester of classes with satisfactory grades. i've been taking summer classes and now taking my second summer school class and i just took a midterm for it (we are now entering week 4 of 6).

i took the opportunity to go home to the bay for memorial day weekend. the following weekend i went with chiara to see blackstar in concert in of the dopest shows ever. she came back with me to boston til i saw her off to go back to the bay and then to the PI for the summer =/. then rick and kay ann came into town and definitely had a good time showing them around boston and NYC. the following weekend my sister and cousin came into town and showed them around boston and NYC also. i was pretty exhausted by the time they left.

i finally had a break for a weekend until the next weekend where i went off and met my family for a trip to toronto and niagara falls--they're really dope places to visit. toronto is very international (yes, has many filipinos!) and has SF-ish and NYC-ish neighborhoods, many ethnic neighborhoods, and european architecture scattered throughout the city. niagara falls is pretty amazing too, but the area around it is pretty touristy.

last weekend mark, kat, kyle (from chiara's med school), van (from berkeley), and i checked out a casino in CT called Foxwoods--its supposedly the third largest casino in the world. it's no lie, it's pretty huge (twss) with like 5 or 6 casinos all connected together. has a bunch of restaurants and bars. the night we arrived mark, kyle, and i played at a really hot craps table. i ended up winning $300 that night but only to lose $200 of it the next day. oh well. better to come out on top than bottom (twss)

and just yesterday i checked out a pretty cool venue that someone i met through miguel (mark's friend from HS and currently NYC roommate) has been wanting me to check out for the longest time. man, what have i been missing?? this venue is actually an asian bookstore which is actually a front for an asian american community space where they host open mics, open music jam session, art showings, and straight up parties. a lot of underground poets, spoken word artists and MCs come through here whenever they're in town like giles li, bambu (yes, bambu of native guns) and magnetic north (yes, UCBs beloved magnetic north). the people who are a part of this community are students, activists, teachers, DJs, dancers, and musicians and all-around down to earth people. i met three filipinos that night, which is a record for me in boston haha. I met a couple of DJs who are really cool and looks like i might be working with them in the near future. i was also invited to the next jam session and scratch alongside the musicians as they jam away. pretty cool. this reminds me a lot of the community groups and spaces in berkeley and the bay. i felt immediately connected when i stepped inside this space and people there were really welcoming and friendly. hopefully i can use this to get back in the DJ game and step up to the next level.

i'm so glad to have found this asian-american space cuz i feel like i haven't found my niche yet here in boston. so far i havent felt really connected to many of the people i met. is it cuz i'm filipino and i am only used to hanging out with filipinos, asian americans, and other people of color and people at school and work aren't the typical people i'd hang out with? prolly. everyone else i've met are nice and all, but i just don't connect with them on many levels. the people who i feel are the ones i sorta connect with are those from california who have also been transplanted to boston. but with them it hasn't gotten to the point where we're close buddies and hang out all the time. i really miss having friends that i can hit up (or hit me up for that matter) and are more than down to hang out and chill or do something. hopefully i can find something like that here in the near future.

so that's just a summary of what i've been doing. long summary, but at least it's an update for those that care. the next update will prolly involve my first red sox game, trip to philly to be reunited with chiara, and my trip to japan!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Do you speak English part 2

yup. second time this year and during my time in boston that someone asks me this question. this time it was a young woman asking for help. i should have said 'fuck you' to answer her question. but i didn't. i just said 'i do' and walked away.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


...An old old wooden warship use during the civil war era? There's more truth to that here in Boston than the idea that there is a large variety and large numbers of ethnic groups all around. But don't get me wrong though, you'll find a good number of african-americans, latinos, chinese, african-carribeans. but they're pretty much segregated into their own neighbhorhoods (usually poor) and usually don't mix in with the white folk. this is probably true for cities in general. it's true that in the bay you'll have ethnic neighborhoods, but you'll come a cross a lot of areas, including the richer ones, where you'll find people mixed in together.

in boston you aren't going to find much filipinos. in public health there's me, kat, another in kat's class, and a half-indian/half-filipino. So at least 3.5 of us in the school of public health. a couple times i've seen and heard a couple talking in tagalog on campus. they could be nurses, who knows. but that's pretty much it for boston. i've heard there's a community of filipinos in one suburb outside of boston.

in my department, i am the only asian/pacific islander-american and one of three non-whites. there was four of us, but one of em (who i really liked and talked to the most here) left and was replaced by a white person. in my classes, it's mostly white females and i'm the only api male. it it depressing? sorta cuz i've never experience somethign this extreme before. but it doesn't bother me too much that i can't stand it. it's something that i got used to right away.