Enough.

I don’t dream enough.
I don’t do enough.
I don’t write enough.
I don’t smile enough.
I don’t care enough.
I don’t love enough.

Statements. Accusations or admittance? I try not to get myself down but I’m a big believer of self-evaluation. Reflection is useful to solve problems, to be better but are these problems? Am I thinking too much, too hard on myself?

In summary, I think the outstanding question is, Am I enough?

Gears.

The gears are stripped,
raw and overworked.
Yet still they turn,
never straying from their purpose.

The tenacity, I can’t help but admire,
But I need to know,
When the gear becomes obsolete,
if the purpose was ever completed,
for if not,
Then had it been redeemed?
Was it too much to bear?

The collapse of the gear is uncertain,
But the purpose is set.
And all I want to do is strive forward,
But the hands don’t align
And now I don’t know the time,
So I am still.

My picks for Best Dressed at the Golden Globes:

• Cate Blanchett in Armani Prive

• Lupita Nyong’o in Ralph Lauren

• Kate Beckinsale in Zuhair Murad

• Elisabeth Moss in J. Mendel

• Lily Rabe in Georges Hobeika

• Amy Poehler in Stella McCartney

• Kate Mara in J. Mendel

• Kaley Cuoco in Rani Zakhem

2013 in gratitude

In a year, gratitude remains.

strangers introduced,
surprising traits, especially kindness,
memories I’ll never forget.

new places devoured,
exploration in excess is a known desire,
and I am insatiable for more.

excess shedded,
materials, negativity, and weight
happily I say farewell.

dreams were sown,
bolder seeds breaking through ground,
impatiently waiting for me.

serenity was fought for,
battles won and lost,
but a new power was gained.

Myself, I believe to be better,
And I am hopeful and hungrier for the next.

While I’m really into the message behind this Pantene commercial, I find it part ironic and part genius advertising that beauty / fashion companies are now encouraging women to embrace themselves, especially since many of these companies were so instrumental in projecting a specific beauty standard that we now have to battle against. 

Also, why is this commercial only airing in the Philippines? America’s not ready, yet? 

FIERCE

Today, I was on the bus and I saw this old couple crossing the street. They were probably in their late 60s or early 70s. The man carried a cane and the woman had tucked her arm into the crook of his, helping her partner on the crosswalk. The woman was wearing high heels and a black jumpsuit. It had a slight sheen to it and strong pointy shoulders, flared hips, and tapered legs. She also had a white pixie cut and all I can think was:

"I can’t wait until I can be that fierce." 

Trayvon.

We called justice from a broken phone. 

But the message is being written, 

The voicemail recording, 

We’ll wait for justice to respond,

Brace for its impact, 

Deafening, demanding

The attention it should,

Like the sun,

Bright and bold,

It’ll shine through the clouds,

Message never deleted. 

 

I don’t stand behind this decision;

I stand behind Trayvon. 

Hov, for the win. Sorta.

Everyone who knows me knows that I’m a pretty big Hov fan. Like major. Basically, I think he’s a genius. 

But if I was to write this review with the most honest of opinions, I’d say Magna Carta Holy Grail is not his best work. Actually, I’d consider it a mix bag. 

It starts off intriguing but I’m left waiting and unimpressed. Yes, the first track is “Holy Grail”, with Justin Timberlake, who’s great and all but for a second, I thought this was his song and not Jay’s because he literally sings for the first 3-quarters of the song. Then Jay goes off talking about art and fashion on “Picasso Baby” and “Tom Ford” and whatever the fuck with Rick Ross on “Fuckwithmeyouknowigotit.” Seriously? This is not good. 

The turning point comes at “Oceans” with Frank Ocean. Finally, I’m hearing some real shit, reflective and broodingly beautiful, and Frank is as usual amazing on vocals. There’s provocative thoughts on “Heaven” and “Jay-Z Blue.” The rest of the album is alright with the exception of some less-than-a-minute throwaways like “Versus” and “Beach is Better.” I’m not sure what the point of these were. 

Truthfully, the whole album feels like a first effort piece. No edits. No second thoughts. As if he just spewed his thoughts with no filter. Proven even more likely so when The Dream recently admitted that the album was done in about two weeks. With Timbaland producing most of the album, there are moments of breakthrough genius but also awkward points where Jay-Z’s buried under a monotonous chord or conflicting rhythm. Pure and true but not necessarily a showstopper like I know Jay could do. ”Oceans” is a stunner and I could see “Holy Grail” being a top summer single, although I think Jay raps too sparingly and haphazardly on that track. 

With that said, I’m not sure why Jay created this album; it was sort of unexpected. Some scenarios come to mind. Indulge me: 

Scenario 1: Jay-Z was at home chilling with Blue Ivy and was bored of watching too many cartoons so he decided to go make an album. 

Scenario 2: Jay-Z was just chilling at his mansion with Rick Rubin, Swizz, Timbaland, Nas, etc and decided to make an album as a summer project. 

Scenario 3: Samsung paid him to make an album. 

Point is, I’m not sure Jay made this with the most inspired of intentions and thus, it showed. 

A lot of people argued that Watch The Throne was all egomaniacal nonsense but I would like to dispute that and say the excess showed more in Jay’s latest effort. On Watch The Throne, there was a point in being over the top and egomaniacal because it was balanced with the consequences of success. It also was brilliantly produced and finished. MCHG doesn’t have that type of balance and finesse. Jay raps again and again about high art and high fashion, luxury brands, and basically, his fantasical life. We also hear a lot about Blue. Like a lot. And one could argue that he’s rapping about those things because they’re of the moment, this is his life now. You rap what you know but I know Jay could rap about a lot more. 

Still, no matter what the critics and fans think about the new album, Hov wins solely because he’s Hov and the campaign surrounding the album is phenomenal:

He broke the Internet and delighted hip hop nerds with this behind-the-scenes video

He signed a deal with Samsung to pre-release his album to the first million Galaxy users via a mobile app. Oh, it went platinum before it hit the stores. New rules, indeed.

On Monday, he did a Twitter Q&A. YOU HEAR THAT? JAY-Z ACTUALLY SPOKE TO FANS VIA TWITTER.

Yesterday, he rapped “Picasso Baby” for 6 hours straight at the Pace Gallery with fashion and art luminaries. Worlds collide and are indeed buzzing. 

There’s no telling what he can or will do next. Even if this album is not his best, dude puts in WORK and you just can’t help but admire that.