Not Until You’re Older

“You’re too young”.

If you, were like me, then you heard this a lot from your parents.

All throughout my childhood, I always wanted to do things I saw adults doing.

I grew up with such eagerness to be an adult, rushing through so many things I didn’t know were so precious. Especially when the thing you wanted to do,  required a certain age to be allowed to do so.

When I’m older, I can stay out as late as I want.
When I’m older, I can drink or smoke.
When I’m older, I won’t have to wake up early.
When I’m older, I can have a girlfriend.

There was always something to aspire to when you’re a kid, but it was only attainable, when you were older. This is where it all begins. When you want to do something you’re too young to do. This is when you start to let go of your childhood innocence for the desire for real life. And so begins your journey through fantasy into reality. It’s as if you lived in a myriad of protective bubbles, and you began popping them one by one, each one revealing more about real life, and shattering any illusions of perfection or utopia you may have had.

Sometimes this choice is taken away from children. Sometimes life deals you a card, where it cuts your childhood prematurely and without your permission, either through natural means, or unnatural means, leaving you with two choices, grow up, or be a child forever.

We each have a child in us. Some of us listen to it. Some of us ignore it. Some of us try to forget it. And some of us listen to it too much.

If children are a ship, then parents are the lighthouse. When the children are lost at sea, the teachings of the parents will be the light that guides them home.

I pray that if or when I become a parent, my light will shine for my children as bright as the sun in the peak of summer, far long after I have left them.

Seasoned Pork Chops with Gravy

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This is a really simple recipe you can make in 30 minutes, you can make this for yourself, for friends, or for a date with a special someone. 🙂

So let’s get down to it!

You’ll need the following:

Salt
Pepper
Paprika
Garlic Powder
Ground Mustard
Rosemary
Dill Weed
Onion Powder
Milk
Basil
Pork Chops
1 stick of Butter cut into two

If you’re missing a few spices, that’s okay, this recipe will work even with the absence of a few spices.

First off, make sure your pork chops are defrosted,   you want your chops to be at or near room temperature before you cook it. Also put paper towels on top and below the chops so it absorbs the moisture which will allow your spice rub to stick to your chops.

While your chops are releasing their excess moisture, now it’s time to prepare the spice rub!  Combine 1 tbsp Salt, 1 tbsp Pepper, 2 tbsp Paprika, 2 tsp Garlic Powder, 1 tsp Ground Mustard, 1 tsp Rosemary, 1 tsp Dill Weed, and 1 tsp Onion Powder in a small bowl.

Mix well and pat dry the chops then rub 2-3 pinches of the spice rub on each side of the pork chops. Use one hand to sprinkle the spice rub, and the other to rub the chops. Then once all chops are seasoned and rubbed, set aside remaining spice rub for future use.

In a heavy skillet over medium heat toss the butter in, once it’s all melted, start cooking the chops, about 5-8 minutes each side.

When the chops are done, remove them from the pan then set aside. Put the pan back on the fire and set it to low, add the remaining butter and a cup of milk, add freshly ground pepper and constantly stir until it’s all combined. If it’s too thick, add water little by little until it reaches your desired consistency. Then taste it to see if it needs seasoning. This is done in about 2-5 minutes.

Once the gravy is done, pour some on the chops and serve along with rice or mashed potatoes.

Enjoy!!

My Top 5 Chicken Delivery Restaurants

Sometimes I get really lazy to cook and so Arianna and I opt for delivery instead, and given all the news articles about how fast food beef isn’t really beef, and instead is full of extenders and whatnot, my go to choice is always chicken, because in my mind, it’s the healthier choice. One could argue that the chicken is also engineered or genetically modified, but this is me so bleh.

Here are my top 5 fast food chicken choices, in no particular order.

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For a pizza place, Shakey’s has some pretty awesome chicken. And it comes with Mojo’s! And they recently released a spicy version, although in my opinion, it could use a bit more kick to it. My usual order, 3 piece with 2-3 orders of rice.

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I don’t know if this actually counts as fast food, but hey they deliver so I’m adding it to my list. If you’re pinoy, you’re bound to have eaten at Max’s. Coupled with garlic rice and banana ketchup and I add Worcestershire sauce and hot sauce. My usual order, 1 whole spring or regular chicken (not chopped and well done), and 2 orders of garlic rice. And it lives up to its slogan, sarap to the bones! (because that’s all I leave)

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I was only recently introduced to their chicken fairly recently, hot darn it’s pretty good, their gravy is delicious too! It’s a bit on the pricey side, and you don’t get to choose what part of the chicken you get.

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Of course KFC is on here. While some like the original recipe, I prefer the Hot and Crispy chicken. No minimum amount for delivery is win! My usual order, 2 piece hot and crispy, extra gravy and extra rice.

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And last but definitely not least, Jollibee. 24 hour delivery and affordable. 200 peso minimum for delivery. My usual order, 2 piece with extra rice and gravy.

Yes. I love rice. And chicken. If Andok’s delivered, this would be a single choice blog post. Because Andok’s is the freaking best.

Man. Now I’m hungry. I don’t know how those food bloggers do these kinds of things without getting major food cravings afterward.

Khalil and Arianna Wedding SDE by Bob Nicolas

When Arianna and I started the wedding planning, she had two things that were absolutely non-negotiable.

The photographer, and the videographer.

And now that the wedding is over, I understand why you really should go with the best photographer and videographer. First off, it is one of the most important days of your life. And you probably will or have already heard this from your friends who have gone through the whole wedding process, but the months/years you spend planning will speed by so fast. And the wedding day, well that goes by even faster. So you will really want good photos and videos to help remember your incredible day, especially in the latter part once the drinking hits full swing.

So I’d like to thank Arianna for being adamant about these two things.

I would also like to thank Bob Nicolas and his awesome team for documenting our wedding with such skill and brilliance. (FYI, he’s booked a year in advance so plan ahead and contact him asap to work out a schedule)

Here is the same day edit by Bob Nicolas.

And We Are Still Beginning

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We are down to our last two shows, which are completely sold out! Thank you to everyone who has and are still going to watch!

It has truly been an honor to work with everyone in this production, and I’m so glad that I was able to be a part of this show. And I’m also thankful that my beautiful wife has been so supportive (even though she was afraid that I was going to suck since it’s been eight years since I last stepped on stage to perform, thankfully I didn’t suck).

It was difficult for me to adjust at times due to the swearing and some of the content in the show, as almost all the shows I’ve ever done in my life have all been Christian shows, and since I rarely swear in real life, swearing on stage was a very big hurdle for me. It even reached a point where I had to speak to my pastor about my misgivings, and find a way to work through it.

I’m so glad that I did this show. I have learned so much about this millennial subset and myself. I feel like I’ve grown so much as an actor and as a person.  And also, I’ve gained so many new friends who I hope I still see once this is done.  The time we have all spent together at rehearsals and just hanging out have brought us together,  and I didn’t expect to form such a bond with everyone, where we all are stuck to our phones checking our whatsapp group when we have no rehearsals because we have a severe case of sepanx.

Usually when TV personalities join a theater show, I’m quite skeptical because sometimes it’s hard for them to make the transition from TV to theater, but in this instance I was pleasantly surprised at how much time, effort and work that Jasmine, Saab and Lauren have put into their performances. And gosh how they have blossomed! Churning out heart wrenching monologues with such ease, emotion and truth.

And Cai, Micah, and Sarah, who I’m also working with for the first time, who have taken their monologues and driven them home with all the years of acting experience they have, it’s an honor to share the stage with such amazingly talented people.

I’m so proud of everyone in this production, and I’m amazed that such a small prod team has been able to do such a great job, they’re a group of 8 doing the jobs of at least 15 people. The actors may be the ones on stage, but the prod team is really the star that no one sees.

And the writers! Toff, Wanggo, and Jam and everyone else who worked on the script and the plethora of edits that they made to make this show the honest and unapologetic work that tugs at your very core, raising questions about yourself that you never knew you had, and realizing things you never knew you had to realize.

Toff, Wanggo, Jam, Anissa, Sarte, Maine, tita Pauline, Sofa, Child, Jace, Micah, Lauren, Jos, Cai, Sarah, Martin, Saab, Sab, James, Jim, Robbie, Maronne, Kayla, Miggy, Maryss, Mik, Santi and Anna, (I hope I didn’t forget anyone), I love you all, I am so happy to be able to call you guys my friends.

This run may be coming to a close, but we are always just beginning.

🙂

#SandboxNoFilter

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So I’m in a play again.

It’s been 7-8 years since I was last on stage, thanks to Toff de Venecia and The Sandbox Collective, I return to my favorite playground once again.

No Filter is all about Millennials. If you don’t know what a millennial is (I didn’t know either), it’s someone who is born in the 1980s to 2000s. Basically, we’re the ones who are stuck to our phones for 80% of our waking moments, sharing our lives through Facebook, Twitter, instagram and whatever other social networking app there is.

The play is a monologue series written by some of the best writers of our generation. Where we talk about social media activism, dating in this era, having to get a job that didn’t match your childhood dream, being more connected to people yet also being disconnected from people, coming of age and all the other troubles that come with being alive.

And if there’s one thing that’s stood out for me is that although we have different views, the deeper cry is the same. We long to be understood. We long to be accepted. We long to be loved. And our parents, being Gen X where they had to do things a certain way or they had to live a certain way, those rules no longer apply to us. We live in a world where almost any moment of our lives can be captured on video or photo and be forever included in the annals of the Internet. Our greatest triumphs and our lowest failings can be captured not only by us but also by other people. And that’s scary. One mistake thought private, can suddenly explode and go viral. See Cecil the Lion, all those top gear posts or those celebrities caught on video during embarrassing moments.

Our parents messed up too. But they didn’t have to deal with their mistake being common knowledge the next day. So while we may have the maximum amount of friends possible on Facebook, there’s also the fact that there are times we can feel more alone than we ever have before.

I thought that we were just telling stories of what it’s like to be a millennial. After reading a few reviews I now know that not only are we telling stories, we’re telling fellow millennials, “hey, you aren’t alone, we’re just like you”. Some of generation X who watch this show don’t understand anything at all. While there are other Gen X who have said that they understand their kids more now and that knowledge will help them be better parents.

We have much to learn from Gen X. They have decades of wisdom and experience that they can impart on us. The problem is that Gen X and Gen Y is that we have trouble communicating. Hopefully this play can bridge the gap between us and finally fill the empty spaces we try to fill with likes and retweets.

And for those Gen Y who feel like they’re more alone than they’ve ever been in their lives: keep your chins up. Things get better. They always will. It won’t always be dark. You won’t always be alone. Life sucks. But it will always get better.

We have some beautifully written and honest monologues that will make you laugh, make you cry and make you see that you are not alone. I have learned so much about myself and my generation because of this show.

No Filter: Let’s Talk About Me is on its last weekend at RCBC. Starring Jasmine Curtis-Smith, Saab Magalona, Cai Cortez, Sarah Facuri, Lauren Young, Micah Muñoz, Mikael Daez, and myself.

I am very happy to say once again, see you all at the theater!