Wednesday, September 17, 2014

The "C"s Just Got Kawaii.

Not too long ago I posted on this ye olde book of faces:
Thankfully, I was talked down and able go back to my usual state of childishness. The news of the house shouldn't come as a surprise since I posted about that not too long ago. By the way, we went & did the walkthrough of the soon-to-be new House of C. Here's how it looks on the outside:
Our house... In the middle of abunchofhousesthatlookjustlikeit! Sing it with me!
Moving right along.

As for the car thing, I also mentioned how bad Mrs C wants one of those. Let's just say she isn't too disappointed by the fact that this may speed-up our plans to get one.

As such, I'm not talking about either of those today. Those are still a ways off. See that third thing? The one about the dog. Yeah, that happened. Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the newest member of the C family:

Kawaii!
She refused to let me type this post unless I let her sit next to me. Needy much?
Kawaii is a two-month-old Lhasa Apso. For those who aren't aware, "kawaii" is Japanese for "cute", "adorable", etc and as you can tell by looking at her, it fits. And, yes, I did pick the name. Considering my fascination with Japan that should come as a surprise to no one.

The short-short version of the story is that one of Mrs C's regular customers at the bank owns a pet store and one of the things she always wanted to get was a dog. Preferably a small and cute one. Recently, he offered to sell Kawaii to us at a huge discount. We had dogs before, when we first got married and always said we'd get another when we had a suitable place to take care of it so she jumped at the offer.

Then, last Friday, I went and picked her up. When I got her home, I emailed a photo and a quick update to Mrs C.

Me: So you know, she likes to bite me & is a little clumsy (as evident by her running into a wall & my foot). You two are perfect for each other!
Mrs C: kk. She's photogenic.
Me: Maybe, but she has a bad habit of looking away at the exact moment the picture is taken.

I wasn't kidding there. It took me, on average, about eight tries just to get one good picture where some part of her body, mostly her head, wasn't a blur.

Kawaii's already fitting in. She keeps to herself until she's bored or hungry and, with the exception of trying to chew off our fingers and toes, she's pretty well behaved.
This, I can do without.
She does have a bad habit of following you too close, though (as in, just-under-your-next-step too close) but I think she's smart enough to figure out how this could work to her disadvantage.

Time will tell.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Subtle Differences.

Me + nighttime cold medication:
 
However, Mrs C + nighttime cold medication...

Thursday, August 14, 2014

And That's What I Did During My One-Month Vacation.

Yes, it has been a month since I last posted. No, I'm not going to explain myself. Actually, my plan was to just keep posting like nothing happened but, since I'm not a total douche I've decided to just give you guys some updates of what's been going on in my life in the past month.

See? So not a total douche.

First off, remember the special assignment I told you I was put on at work? And then I said that due to circumstances mentioned here they moved us back to the main office and the project was taking a while to get going again? Well... almost four months later... nothing has changed.

Not. a. damn. thing.

Actually, that's not totally true. What little work I had to finish up on the section of the paper I was working on when we moved was done and submitted back in May. Since then, nothing. I mean, literally no more work has been done on the white paper by any of the other team members. One of them even quit before even submitting anything.

That's not the best part, though. As I mentioned, I was loaned out to another division for the assignment. That means that everyone else on the team was free to go back to their original duties from before the project. I, on the other hand, have been basically abandoned in a new division with almost nothing to do for the last three months. For a lazy slacker this would be paradise. Unfortunately, I'm not a lazy slacker. This is almost like my old job at TinyCo. The only difference is, here, I'm surrounded by people who all have stuff to do and I can't just say, "screw it all!" and take a nap at my desk.

That's s all the sucky news I'm going to share today. On to happier things.

Second on the list: I go on vacation in less than two weeks. It'll be a month long and my first paid vacation in four years. My previous vacations during those years were without pay as they weren't so much "vacations" and were more "unemployment". So, yeah, I've actually been continuously employed long enough to qualify for vacation. I've already got my entire vacation itinerary planned too.
Of course, this also means my one year contract with the government is up but that brings me to update number three:

They gave me two more years! Remember all that stuff I wrote about them saying I was efficient? Well, it turns out they weren't just blowing smoke up my ass. They're so impressed with my performance they decided to approve a new two-year contract for me without me having to go through the usual process of reapplying for the position.

I'm not sure where exactly they plan to put me when I get back but this could be my chance to get out of this stalled project for good. Win-win, I say.

The fourth and final update it's the big one. Mrs C and I will soon become homeowners.

Yes, you read right. We're getting our own house. To properly tell the story, I'll take you back a bit...

About six years ago we applied to the government for a flat in one of their housing schemes. They build low-to-medium income homes all over the country and the terms are much easier to manage than going through real estate agencies and the bank. We went through the entire application process and were sure we qualified. Then I lost my job at the bank and we basically put the whole thing on the back burner. After that, an election came, the government changed and our application was apparently lost in the void.

I can't lie, Mrs C deserves a lot of credit for this. While I was trying to get back on my feet, my wife never gave up and she would check up on it every so often. Her last resort was to get our representative for the area to write them and that was when our old application finally turned up. Of course, we head to reapply after so much time had passed. Then, last week, I got the call that we were allocated a unit in a new development in the east.

SWEET!!!

We'll have to  leave the town we've called home for most of our married lives (which was conveniently close to the capital too), and move all the way to practically the other side of the island where we'll have to battle insane rush hour traffic to-and-from work. But we won't be renters anymore so it'll be worth it.

Right?

So that is basically what I've been up to in the past month. See? Nothing special really.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Also In The News... The Case Of The Twice-Sold Baby.

It’s been a while since I posted something from the headlines. However, I recently came across a story that filled me with an overwhelming feeling of “WTF?” and I thought I’d share it with you all. If you had any faith left in humanity be prepared to lose it.

Our tale - which I read here - comes from China, where a couple in the Guangdong Province has been arrested for selling their young son... TWICE!

In jail are 20-year-old sperm donor, A-hui and his girlfriend the 19-year-old “mother”, A-mei.
After these parents-of-the-year contenders got off the hook in January for selling their 4-day-old son, they turned right around and did it again last month.

Their excuse the first time was that they were neither married nor ready for the responsibilities of parenthood. They decided to sell the child to a trafficker for 20,000 Chinese Yuan (about US$3,225). This would have been the end of the matter, as far as they were concerned, were it not for the child’s grandfather, on the father’s side. When he found out what they had done, he found the trafficker and bought the child back, having to pay the marked-up price of 30,000 Yuan (US$4,836).

Unfortunately, grandpa made the questionable decision of returning the boy to the custody of his parents and they all kept the incident between themselves.

Still, it seemed like things were going okay for a while after that incident. In May, A-hui and A-mei moved to another city, A-hui got a job in a restaurant while A-mei stayed home and took care of baby. A-hui’s income was modest, to say the least (he only brought in 3,000 Yuan (US$484) a month from his job) but they appeared to be managing.

Until daddy’s little obsession reared its ugly head.

Before I go any further let me confess, I play video games. I LOVE video games. I’d dedicate at least one-third of my waking hours playing video games if I could (the other two-thirds would be evenly distributed between watching Japanese anime and blogging, FYI). That being said, I've also spent money on, as well as, in video games. Still, I know where to draw the line. There are some, however, who do not. Once upon a time when I wrote on Sprocket, I shared a story about a promising young Japanese police officer who tried (and failed) to blackmail a woman to fund his gaming addiction. A-hui takes things a step further, though.

Instead of feeding his new family, A-hui spent his modest paycheck in internet cafes where he played online games well into the night, as he used up the family’s only source of income to level up his in-game weapons and armor. Then, in June, when it became clear his salary alone wasn't going to cut it, the couple made the decision to get in touch with the traffickers they sold the child to before so they could put him up for sale the second time.

Yeah...

This time around they only got 16,000 Yuan (US$2,580) for their son. Whether this was because the traffickers knew they were desperate or because they factored in the diminishing value on return babies is unknown.

Sorry.

Again, grandpa found out. This time, however, he was fed up and decided to put the matter into the hands of the police. Both “parents” were arrested and now police are trying to track the baby down.

During her incarceration, A-mei said her baby daddy blatantly declared to her that he did not care what happened to the child. Even when she went so far as to threaten to beat the child up, he remained totally unconcerned and said she could do whatever she wanted.

Yeah, isn't he a piece of... work!

My only hope is that the police are able to find the child and, at the end of all this, he ends up in a good home with parents who place much value on him that the cost of virtual gaming gear. Well... that and for someone to sell A-hui on the black market.

They probably won't get much, though.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Oh! So *You're* Vinny C!

Have you ever felt like you were being watched? Like there are people... talking about you? I think we all feel that way. We wonder if people acknowledge our existence outside of direct interaction or having some specific need of us. In the workplace, I’m always wondering if my name comes up when my office superiors sit in their dimly-lit boardrooms, discussing top-level executive-type things (while someone is stroking a white cat). They probably mention me somewhere between discussing their plans for world domination and divisional budget strategies.

I guess it’s not uncommon for people to think their bosses talk about them. Of course, common sense will dictate that management has more important things to worry about (world domination can be a logistical nightmare after all) than one lowly office drone. It’s just as easy to convince oneself that those in the upper echelons don’t even know your name, much less set aside the time to actually talk about you. Just who do you think you are, anyway?!

Either way, unless you did something – good or bad – to get on their radar, odds are you probably won’t know whether they talk about you or not.

Until you know...

The other day, I was passing a coworker on the stairs. I’ve seen her around but she works in a different division and we’ve almost never spoken to each other before then. As we neared each other, she did the whole “glance at me casually, smile, nod and look away” routine, as is standard office etiquette when encountering a coworker with whom you didn’t have any particular dealings. I greeted her in kind and was prepared to continue on my way when she suddenly stopped.

Coworker: You’re Vinny, right?
Me: Uh... Yeah. Why?
Coworker: Oh, nothing. I just remember hearing some of the managers mentioning you.
Me: Huh?

If you’re anything like me, I'm sorry you probably would have thought the same thing I thought at that moment: “Oh crap! This is bad. Attention from the people on the top floor is never good. They’re on to me. They've figured out I have no idea what I’m doing and they’re discussing what should be done about me.”

It’s at this point I casually try to get some more info out of her...

Me: Not all bad, I hope? *nervous chuckle*

I know! Smooth, right?

Coworker: No-no. Nothing bad at all. (She pauses) I hear you’re very efficient.
Me: Oh... Thanks.

She nodded and the conversation basically tapered off there and we continued about our respective businesses.

You’d think hearing that I found favor with the people in charge would make me comfortable but, oddly enough, I wasn't. Not completely, anyway. I mean, it’s good in that I have a good chance of getting my contract renewed lat the end of the year. So there’s that...

Maybe for those types who have ambition and want to climb the corporate ladder, getting positive attention from your employers is a good thing. But I’m not so much the ambitious type. Not any more, that is. I know what climbing the ladder is like back when I was in banking. It’s work! A lot of work. And what you are you working for? More work! Higher paid positions come with a lot of responsibility... and pressure. Let’s not forget the pressure. It’s not like I don’t want to climb a step or two. But when words like “efficient” start getting thrown around people start getting high expectations and start thinking up other dangerous words like “potential” and “capable” Next thing  you know they’re “expanding your portfolio”.

I don’t know if I can handle that.

It’s okay to suspect you’re on the higher-ups’ radar. At least, then, you can dispel the thought and tell yourself you are being full of yourself. When you know they’re watching you, that’s something else. I did say this was one of my paranoid suspicions. Didn't I? What if they’re watching me? What if they really do have my phone bugged? At any point I could have left my cell unguarded and they could have gotten into it. I've seen Person of Interest! I know how easy it is to clone someone’s phone! Every text, tweet, status update and call I've ever made since I got here could be stored on one of the office servers (right next to the plans for the weather manipulation device). Hell! My last boss, the Big Man, had spyware on my office computer. And he’s a cheapskate! I work for the government now!!!

Aside from that, what if this is all a trick? What if they don’t actually think I’m efficient after all?

- Secret Paranoid Suspicion # 8: People don’t actually approve of me, they just pretend to and say nice things to make me believe there’s something about they like.

I’m not quite sure what the reason behind this is yet but whatever it is, it can’t be good.

I need to find a way to become anonymous. I have to blend in! I’m normally pretty good at that. What am I doing wrong? Maybe I should start sleeping at my desk like so many of my coworkers. I bet I could blend in if I did like the group in the cube right next to mine and spent more than half the day carrying on loud conversations about every TV show/movie I watched (or book I read... or what I had for dinner... or where I went clubbing) the night before. Did I mention they were loud?


I need to nip this “efficiency” talk in the bud before something bad happens.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Her Special Day.

Today’s a very special day. Not for me - well, not directly anyway – but for someone very special to me. Join me in wishing her a great big “Happy birthday” to my lovely wife and muse, Mrs C!
She wears glasses now. She totally rocks them too.
I know. I know. You love her too. What, with her cute antics and witty retorts, what’s not to love?

But, you know? We wish each other a happy birthday all the time. We say it to friends, family and coworkers whenever that special day rolls around but when it’s for the person who means more to you than anyone, how are the same words you use for everyone else good enough?

I've been told I’m good with words and there are probably a million things I could say if I stopped to think about it. Still, none of those words could come close to representing how grateful I am for you being put here on this Earth and while I could bore you and the rest of the internet with pages and pages of words to express how appreciative I am that I have you (and considering the financial constraints, frilly words are all I can afford right now anyway), I guess sometimes the simplest ways are best. So, to the second half of this comedy duo, my second half, I wish you the happiest of birthdays and I that you have many, many more to come...

...And that I’m right there beside you for all of them.

Happy birthday, babe.

Friday, June 13, 2014

So... It Turns Out I Might Be A Masochist.

I suppose, if you've been hanging around here long enough, eventually seeing a post with a title like the one above won't really come as a shock. In fact, a few of you may think my admission of something like this is long overdue. Unfortunately, you're going to have to wait a little longer for me to admit to my twisted sexual tastes. I guess you'll just have to use your imaginations. Actually, don't. Forget I said that. I've hung around some of your places a while too and I'd rather not be a part of some of your own twisted imaginations.

Well... maybe a few of you...

My confession is nowhere as interesting as the post would lead you believe (no shocker there). Truth is, I'm hoping by the time you got to this part and realized this post contains no stories of whips, ball-gags and leather unitards, you'll decide to continue reading just out of the sheer principle of finishing something you've already started.

Which would probably make some of you the real masochists here.

Anyway, I digress (no shocker there either). One of the updates I neglected to pass on is that I restarted the gym a few months back.

I know, right?! How could I leave something like that out?

But not just any gym, mind you. The gym. The place where I first started learning Thai boxing back in secondary school.
source
The place I've tried to make time to rejoin but made every excuse not to could never get the timing right to get back into it. This is the gym where I was so pushed to my limits, physically, I likened the instructor's training technique to sadomasochism.

And now the title makes sense.

Of course, there have been some changes to the old place, over the years. New students, new equipment, bigger training area and all that. But, at it's core, it's still the same old place where you train hard and develop an unnatural affection for pain... and the guy in charge likes to occasionally sneak up behind you, flip you and send you flying through the air, just for the heck of it. I'm already getting back to my old form and keeping up with guys more than half my age... realizing there are now students there more than half my age training there now... feeling a little bummed by this fact...

Still, I am keeping up with them so I guess that counts for something. Plus, one time, one of the guys saw me practicing my kicks on the bag and insisted he be allowed to wear extra padding when he was told to spar with me. I've always wondered what it's like to be feared.

I like it.
This bag is actually the oldest one there. He keeps it far in the back where I have plenty of "alone time" with it.
I swear it looked like that before I got there. Honest!
All that being said. I have been reintroduced to the pain I had long forgotten. The first few weeks especially were rough and I spent a lot of time trying not to move very much. But... I kept going back... I keep going back! It's almost as if I enjoy this violent abuse being inflicted upon my body. I-I'm allowing people to hit me and they let me hit them back.

And I like it...

Maybe the title of this post is more appropriate than I thought. Come to think of it, I do get this special feeling of power when I strap on my leather training gloves.

By the way, if you're worrying about me regaling you with constant gym pics and posts, don't expect much more than this post. I did wait five months to actually let you all know I was back there to begin with so I think you don't need to worry.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Social Interaction - Quiet Vinny.

I recently figured out one of my main problems. No, not that one! The other one of my main problems. Nooo... Not that either- Wait! I do that? Okay! Let's not get off track here. Just stop listing them for a sec and pay attention. I'm referring to the issue I have when it comes to talking to people.

Despite the amount of words I've put down here on the blog, I forever remain a crappy conversationalist. Fact is, if you met me and we had to have a face-to-face conversation it would probably be a painful experience for all involved. I like to think it's because I'm not a people person. I think I mentioned that a few times in the past. I'm awkward when it comes to communicating verbally. Not because I can't think of what to say but because, whenever someone talks to me, a million thoughts about possible responses swirl around in my head and I get confused. This leads to such gems as saying the wrong thing, not getting the words out properly and – my all-time specialty – talking too fast.

I've thought of ways to fix this but nothing has ever really worked. Friendly and polite have always been my “go-to” states. These, however, are not natural for me. Growing up, I had to work at it. I decided that the mannerisms of a friendly person were what people considered acceptable so I just went with it. (Because what else does an eight-year-old think about?)

After I left the bank, where being fake-friendly was an actual job requirement, I'd gotten my fill of it. I decided to let more of my cynical, dry wit out and it worked pretty well... That is, until the new super-religious supervisor at my next place of employment thought these traits were undesirable of someone working under her and set out to have me removed (I'll mention again that I was never cynical to her). I didn't want to be fake-nice but after that experience I was convinced my initial theory was correct. As a result of all this I'd resigned myself to my awkwardness.

Until recently, that is. See, recently it occurred to me that I was looking at the problem all wrong. I don't always have to have something friendly to say or even something witty. I don't need to improve my conversation skills. I need to do away with them altogether. Well, mostly.

Stay with me here.

You know those guys who keep to themselves, looking all serious and deep in thought and badass. They usually don't say much aside from the odd grunt or one-word response. That's me! I could totally do that! I mean, I already do it sometimes. What I need to do is step it up and be the quiet badass all the time. No one expects the quiet badass to say much. No one expects the quiet badass to smile and feign politeness. The badass does not need to try to be the life of the party.

Have you ever heard of Batman telling jokes during the Justice League weekend barbecues over at Superman's fortress? No! Batman is the one silently examining the pent-up alien beasts in Superman's zoo, figuring out at least eight different ways to subdue and recapture them should they ever escape. No one ever says, “Hey, Bats! Tell everyone about that time you...” No! They all take a vote as to who will approach him to ask if he wants a beer and pray he doesn't karate-chop the unlucky sap through a wall for sneaking up on him too quietly.

I could totally be Batman!

I wish I'd figured this out before! So many wasted years trying to be “social” and “friendly” and none of that was ever truly in my nature. Sure, I'm a nice guy and I'm not denying that, but that doesn't mean I want to talk to you. I honestly don't want to participate in a verbal discourse on how hot it is today. No, I do not care to elaborate on what I meant by “Meh,” when you asked me how my day was going.

Of course, it doesn't help that whenever I don't feel like communicating someone is always there to chime in with a, “Hey, Vinny. You okay? You seem quiet today.” I hate that! Thanks for the concern and all but I just don't feel like talking. That's all! That's it! I'm not upset, I don't need to open up and I don't have a problem I need to get off my chest. Yes, I am sure. I just want to be quiet. It's nice. I like it.

Jeez! It's like society is forcing me comply with their mass-produced standards of social interaction. But I ain't your robot, man! I'm totally not going to dance to your little tune while you pull the strings on my cheeks to make me smile so you can feel comfortable. And I sure as hell ain't going to conform to your fascist rules about mixing metaphors... Man!

Imagine the freedom. I'd never have to fumble for words again. Even better I won't have to pretend to be extra nice and smile just to make others more relaxed. I can finally be the badass I was meant to be!

Now all I need is to get people to stop bothering me. Karate-chopping someone through a wall might seem a bit extreme but I'm fairly certain it'll get the point across.

Friday, May 2, 2014

I Have No Idea What I'm Doing - The Return.

I’m afraid I'm going to gripe a little bit so bear with me. Remember a few months ago I told you all about my employers deciding to exploit make use of my past experience as a reporter and putting me on a special assignment to write a white paper? Sure you do! This, as I mentioned, resulted in my being unceremoniously pulled from my desk, my duties and even the building and being shipped off to the Central Office where I and the other three members of the team would spend our days toiling away on the deserted top floor.

Then, of course, the HR girls were taken away too. I never mentioned this but, at my old desk, I was surrounded by the pretty girls from HR (Seriously, it’s like baring a resemblance to a porcelain doll is one of the hiring criteria for that section). I wasn't in HR, mind you. That was just where they had room to seat me that was closest to my department.

I'll admit I didn't mind this too much.

Still, aside from all that and me having to spend four times as much in transportation costs (No, I wasn't being compensated for this), it actually wasn't so bad. The team got along and, while progress was slow, we were actually starting to get the thing going. The whole point of us being transferred was to prevent us from being distracted by anything else. We were supposed to focus on the white paper and the white paper alone and get it done as quickly as possible.

For two months we battled traffic, parking issues (the other three drove) and the lack of decent lunchtime dining options (there are places you can get food but they’re all very far away). The people on the ground floor didn't like us very much, even though we all worked for the same government ministry (related to aforementioned parking issues) and sometimes the air conditioning on that floor broke but we persevered.

Now, we’re back. As of two weeks ago our long trips to Central came to an end and we were called back to base. You’d think I’d be happy now. Right? Now that it’s all over I get to return to my desk, resume my work and patiently endure the HR girls’ cooing over how much they love each other’s hair/shoes/outfit/etc. I would have been happy, if that were the case. See, the project isn't finished... I think. In fact, things are getting more and more confusing.

Let me explain.

Recently there has been some reshuffling of senior positions at the Head Office which forced our team leader, a Divisional Director, to have to return to base to assume some new responsibilities. With him being called back it made no sense to leave the rest of us there so they brought us in as well. The project isn't over. We’re just continuing it at Head Office... in the middle of all the distractions they wanted us to stay away from...

This, in itself, is annoying but the real problem is that the entire project has become an afterthought to the great big heads upstairs and no one is really taking it seriously. The team leader is too busy with his new responsibilities and they've separated all the members of the team as far away from each other as they could. However, since it hasn't officially been declared dead, I’m stuck here, one floor below where my real desk is, plugging away at it, wondering if there’s even a point. Added to that, they’re slowly starting to squeeze other tasks that have nothing to do with the project into my portfolio.

Then I saw an email from someone in the division wondering when I was planning to meet with her and officially assume the duties of my desk...

I don’t mind being given something to do. Don’t get me wrong. What I do mind is being taken from a division where, at least, I had some experience (and something nice to look at when I got bored) and being put in one where I had almost zero usable skills. While it is true I felt a little overwhelmed from time to time, at least I knew enough to fake it when I had to.

Helping write the white paper was an exception. This division I've been dropped into now deals with things like creating policy and a whole host of things I have never dealt with or have never been trained for.

Still, everything’s up in the air at this point. Just as I have been receiving little-to-no information on what’s going on, I think it’s safe to assume I’m not the only one and a lot of them don't really knows I’m only here on loan. In the end, I may end up being left alone to finish what I was sent here to do and go back to my “home”, surrounded by the pretty HR girls just one floor above.

I hope...

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I Have No Idea What I'm Doing - The Movie.

I knew this post would have to written one day, if for no other reason than for the awsome title alone...

One of my classes this semester is an introductory course in video editing. As with almost every course, we have group assignments and this class was no exception. In fact, EVERY assignment for this class needs to be done in some sort of group. The project I recently finished involved those folks I wrote a letter to not too long ago when we were going through some... um... compatibility issues.

Anyway, we got through it and managed not to kill each other (even though some very angry words were said between one or two members of the group). The assignment was supposed to be a short film but since a local film company just happened to be holding a short film competition around the same time, the lecturer gave the class the option of making our movies for entry into that instead.

And they voted to go for it.

The rules were simple. The movie was supposed to be max five minutes long, be along the lines of one of the themes provided and, most importantly, shot with either a smartphone or tablet. No professional cameras - or any, for that matter - allowed.

As I said, our group had issues. A few slackers and one busybody who didn't really do much but provoke everyone else to argue left the bulk of the pre-production work to two of us. Eventually, when it was time shoot most people got their acts together. I co-produced and acted as cameraman, since it was my phone which served as the camera for the project. Busybody did some acting and one slacker helped carry stuff (I believe in making the best use out of my resources). In the end we managed to pull off something decent.

You'll forgive me for not sharing what we did since my real name's in the credits and I'd like to at least pretend my half-assed attempts to keep my real identity (mostly) a secret on the blogosphere have been working. Allow to maintain that delusion, will you?

We submitted out film on the deadline day but, to be honest, I wasn't very optimistic when we viewed the other groups' projects in the following class. We had choppy sound due to the high winds during the shoot, my phone's camera quality was okay-ish at best and the final editing was rushed. I didn't think we had a chance in hell of our movie getting selected over theirs. And that was just when I compared what we did with the other groups in our little class. This competition was open to the whole country.

Then, a week ago, we found out our movie was the only one from our class to make it into the competition, in the People's Choice category.

While the others were good, one of our in-class competitors was disqualified when that group went over the time limit, while the other had audio problems that couldn't be overlooked. Still, we were proud (and shocked) that we at least made it that far. During the last class, our lecturer casually mentioned that a newspaper also wanted to interview us. That's when the other producer/director of the group fainted (not really but she could have).

I checked our standing against the other movies in the People's Choice. With two days left before voting closes, we're nowhere close to having enough votes to win. Still, we never even expected to get this far.

You never know.