One nice thing about having a blog is that you can do favors for friends who’ve been nice to you, who’ve shared their hopes, joys, and success with you, and who regularly and tirelessly keep on writing, editing, anthologizing.  In the miasma of economic despair that is currently California, such friends should be cherished, coddled, supported, applauded, and embraced, at every opportunity.

So, here are a couple of supporters who self would like to acknowledge today:

  • To the Editors of Used Furniture Review:  You made self’s day!  Thank you for taking “Jesters” (and for waiting patiently while self cleans up her interview with Karen Llagas)
  • To Randi Shapiro of The White Whale Review (published “Dumaguete”)
  • To Isagani Cruz, editor of Best Philippine Short Stories in English (included “Lizard,” self’s altogether strange story about a “shadow” attached to the narrator’s beautiful mother) —  Isagani, where can self acquire additional copies of this book, preferably in paperback?  Many’s the time when she’s wanted to haul a copy with her on a trip but —  egad, the hardcover weighs three pounds, if not more — !!!
  • Trevor Carolan, editor of Another Kind of Paradise (Boston:  Cheng & Tsui)

Here’s information about Trevor’s new anthology, The Lotus Singers:

The Lotus Singers is an anthology of contemporary stories from India and the South Asian region.  It’s the companion volume to Another Kind of Paradise, the collection of stories from East and Southeast Asia that was published last year.  Here’s a link to the publisher’s website.

The stories come from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, the Maldives, Nepal, and Pakistan, and explore the themes of social upheaval, gender inequality, economic and spiritual struggle, and challenges to cultural orthodoxy.

And, dear blog readers, self has just decided that she’s going to head back to the lovely lovely island of Negros, soon.  Because that place is just magic for self.  And once you’ve found magic, you know, like in Woody’s new movie, you’ve just got to hang on to it.  Because life is not a dress rehearsal.

Stay tuned.

This Is Terrible

OMG, this is terrible:  self’s jeans are tight.

If she doesn’t stop hitting the Rick’s Ice Cream —  oops!  Self means the Hoover Archives, she’ll need to pay for a double seat next time she embarks on a trip.

Help!  Help!  Help!

Normally self doesn’t pay attention to Buzzsugar articles (She only logs on to look at the pictures —  As if!), but today there was one that she thought she would share with dear blog readers, those who stopped wearing bikinis years ago . . .


  1. You overeat healthy foods.  It figures:  You limit your daytime consumption to avocados and nuts, only you buy 10 avocados instead of two, and buy five pounds of nuts instead of half a pound.  Ergo:  fatness
  2. You drink your calories.  Peanut butter milkshakes from The Counter, hello!
  3. Your partner isn’t on the same healthy road as you.  Self’s partner (aka Hubby) buys self scads and scads of chicharon, because he knows she simply can’t resist them:  One look, and it’s like magic:  Disappeared!
  4. You’re addicted to condiments and toppings.  Yes indeed, self’s salads are always loaded up with bacon bits, garlic croutons, shaves of Parmesan cheese, and not only that, she loves Blue Cheese Dressing.
  5. You never measure your food or keep a food journal.  Who has the time —  ???
  6. You think walking your pooch around the block is enough exercise.  Self knows that walking the pooch isn’t enough exercise.  But the real danger is:  self never getting around to walking the pooch at all.  For days on end.  (In this heat?  Are you kidding?)
  7. You’re over-indulging in low-fat or light foods.  Oh, Yumi Yogurt fro-yo, when self starts seeing long lines on the sidewalk, or Oh Pinkberry, same thing —  self immediately thinks:  What am I missing?  And rushes over and tries the new flavors.
  8. You’re on a diet, sort of.  Face it:  being on a diet means never eating.  Never.  It means having a fridge that contains only one carton of milk and a couple of leafy vegetables and tomatoes.  Not ever buying ice cream or popsicles.  Going vegetarian.  Who cares what people think when they drop by for the weekend.  You want food, you go out and buy it, is that clear?  And don’t be bringing home any left-overs, either!
  9. You go out to eat a lot.  Oh yes, huge meals (The Counter:  guilty as charged), the fried foods (Lobster Shack?), and the dessert (Tribu bibingka?  Tribu frozen brazo de mercedes?)

If only self were still in L’Fisher Chalet!  Those people were so nice:  When self asked them to remove all the snacks and drinks from the fridge, they did so, immediately.  And believe it or not, in spite of self having 24-hour access to Room Service, she actually lost weight in Bacolod.  That’s a first!

And because self thinks it will be completely lame to have a post just about dieting, here’s some book news:

25-year-old Tea Obreht has become the youngest woman ever to be awarded Britain’s Orange Prize.  Even though self has only read the excerpt that appeared in The New Yorker,  she still feels entitled to an opinion:  Thank you, Orange Prize judges, for displaying such astute literary discernment!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.  Stay tuned.

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