and with the last penalty kick...

...in extension, vietnam finally succeeded to score a goal against thailand in the final game of the 2008 aff suzuki cup, ending the final game with thailand to a 1- to 1 draw, but securing its championship win by aggregate points of 3 to 2. it was an impressive and determined play by the vietnamese players, although losing a goal to thailand in the initial half of the games, vietnam managed to keep its defense against the almost calculated passes and penetration of thailand's stronger and more experienced players, but also kept thailand more busy with its defenses against vietnam's persistent attempts to penetrate and strike a goal.

and with an inopportune penalty by thailand (in comparison to vietnam's more numerous fouls committed) in extension time, around a couple of minutes before end time, vietnam obtained that last opportunity to score and win the cup.

(photo courtesy of affsuzukicup.com)


vietnam to push for the crown

passing the semi--finals elimination a few days back are thailand and vietnam, both from block b, against the qualifiers from block a, indonesia and singapore. presently, after the first knockout game between thailand and vietnam for the crown of the aff suzuki cup 2008, vietnam stole the first with a two to one win against thailand, vietnam fielding two goals in the first half with thailand managing to steal a goal in the second half. unexpectedly, thailand, the promising team to win the 2008 cup with its experience and field strength, lost in this first game which should have been a critical game for thailand being played in their home ground. vietnam, with its impressive surprises throughout the tournament, and to play the second knock-out game in its home ground, may be sound to win the 2008 cup, if it still manages to stay strong with its defense (to protect its one goal advantage against thailand), and its effective counter-attacking strategy effected in its game against thailand.

will vietnam win its first football trophy this time? the second leg of the championship for the 2008 aff suzuki cup will be on sunday, december 28, 2008.


wishful greetings

the common and usual thing in life is to expect that cruel and mean people will come your way, which does not necessarily mean you have to make life difficult for everyone else, by being cruel and mean as usual and as common it may be. perceiving life as a pitstop for suffering and negativities does not, in all circumstances, equate to negative acts towards others, although it does have, to an influential extent, bearing on your actions.

it may not be a hard- fast rule but it is a reality that often times we try hard enough to be polite and nice. however, there are also times that call for feelings of rawness. to see the world as it truly is, minus the biased perceptions triggered by strong and rigid social norms.

the point is nothing more than being human with the negative baggage that comes with being one... be it the frustrations and disappointments that come, the meanness and cruelty that are still apparent, albeit, disfigured in a lot of sparkling colored lights, or the insecurities that still flail the human spirit, even in a supposedly wonderful day... to be human still in christmas day. happy holidays.


lost... contact if found

if anyone has seen vienna, a female mini- daschund, the one in the photo, please don't hesitate to contact me. she has been gone for almost two days since she disappeared early morning yesterday in ortigas avenue extension in cainta rizal. bystanders who claimed to have last seen her account that it was a male with curly hair and wearing shoes who took her while she was prancing about along the street. they can't describe the person more clearly than that, although they said that they would recognize the person if he should pass by the vicinity again.

vienna has been with the family for around seven years, i'm sure anyone can understand how important she has become a part of the family already. so if found or seen somewhere, leave a message.


an almost affair

it was almost like too good to be true, as there he was, arriving with enough time to pray and move about, waiting for her arrival.

at five in the afternoon, the sun was beginning to falter at the far west, sending orange light to skirmish above the sky, and fade into deep blue to the far east. it was almost too good a moment... to capture... with the fading light... two souls drawn together... gazing towards a yonder east, almost under the umbrage of fast- appearing moonlight, for perhaps a blessed future together.

and fifteen minutes past the meeting time, she never came, and he went home, feeling that the moment indeed was too good to be true, and the stars could not be glistened amidst an almost perfect clear darkening sky, and the moon seemed to wane in the far distant abyss, and the sun already fading out of the overpowering night...


kicking the cup

it must be only when i find myself here in the indochina countries where i can really get to watch and be absorbed watching football games live in television. as it is in the philippines, football has never regained its popularity (believing that it did become the country game before basketball came to dominate sports programs in schools and in television, being the more popular sport during the spanish occupation), which also shows why the philippines could never seem to find its way back to performing well in football.

i remember having seen much of the games for the 2008 eurocup here. now i've been caught again following the games under the 2008 aff suzuki cup, witnessing how malaysia won over the lao team (despite the really good efforts of the lao team at offense and defens
e during the first half) last saturday, seeing the slim win of vietnam over malaysia at 3 to 2 just this afternoon, and presently watching how thailand is killing lao with a 6- to 0. and where does the philippine team fit here? philippines never made it past the round- robin tournament against brunei, cambodia and lao to qualify for the two remaining spots in the tournament proper (although the philippine team did perform well in the qualifying... ranking 3rd below laos and cambodia, and tying with cambodia in terms of points) . the filipino in me apparently still believes that the philippines can still prove its football foothold, even within the asean region, and that part in me would still long to be able to watch and cheer for the philippine football team go for a world cup (or even just for a regional cup).

under the fifa/coca cola world ranking (updated in november 2008), the philippines ranks 157th overall (out of 201). in the asean region, this fares well against timor-~leste in 198th, brunei in 182nd, cambodia in 174th, laos in 162nd, vietnam in 159th, and myanmar in 158th. malaysia falls ahead as 151st, singapore in 136th, indonesia in 132nd, and thailand in 116th. the present philippine rank apparently is a big improvement from being 165th the previous month. he fifa/coca cola world ranking makes use of a simplified procedure to compute the overall position of a national team based on the matches, the results (W-~D~L), importance of match, strength of opponent, regional strength, last four years games, etc. (which i still find complicated).

among some feeds that seem to offer a sense of hope for the philippine football team, in august 2008, the president did promise support to the philippine football federation to promote the sport in the country. in order to boost strength of the national team, in october 2008, the philippines has been going around searching for eligible football players in europe with a filipino parent to be included in the philippine football roster, while the present local talents are still not up to the competition and while the national football program is still being further boosted and developed.

and despite the seeming non-performance or absence of the philippine football team in competitions (blame it on the lack of promotions for football in the philippines and the lack of awareness of the filipinos for the sport and the team), the philippines seems to be making good waves back to the football stream.

unfortunately, i never got to see pacquiao fight. i was hoping that one of the local channels or even the thai channels or other channels in cable would show even just a replay, but news about his victory at round 8 only came a day after. so a lunch time that was supposedly allotted to see the bout turned out to be an afternoon and evening of having JW swim in soda water.



i found myself having the terrible sniffles yesterday afternoon and with a temperature that was slightly above well. it could have been due to the long travel from chiang mai to vientiane with the abrupt and unexpected welcome by a rather cold morning. but i've been thinking this long that it must be because of a drastic change of my lifestyle here... that from a cheap guesthouse room in the local district i now stay in a more expensive room in a hotel in a tourist section of the town, from enjoying the local food near my former cheap guesthouse i now have to contemplate a lot of choices at what to eat and drink... i mean it's like sky is the limit compared to a really simple lifestyle i got accustomed to.

then again it could be something else that's rifting my empathy cells to agony... i must pounce again. the thick data seem nothing as it can be overcome by an immediate need to procrastinate. this, on the other hand, is dependent on chances, on time, and right opportunities... feeling that at that precise moment when and where all your vital stars connive for your auspicious high.

all said, here still is a snotty nose. more data to dissect for more rounds of discussions and meetings. and the difficult task of deciding when options and opportunities are spread in multitudes on your lap. sickle this rationale head and allow the basics, for once, to take hold at this pouncing and give me a good licking.


as he stirs still

the package was supposed to be for n, but it seemed too obvious... too obvious for everyone else that he had something particularly defined and allotted for her. apparently, he still wanted to be discrete as much as he can, despite the seeming reality that there must be something going on between them, albeit not face to face or personally direct, however, where something as pure as this knows no boundaries, there must still be something there. and everyone seemed to sense it.

and he heard in his mind play that something in the way she moves attracts him like no other lover. and somewhere in the way she moves, his glances caught every slight movement of her fingers as it clasped a glass of what he colloquially called "nam dii lai", her slight intonation as she utters the two short syllables that make up his name was to be forever recalled and replayed. and he, at the center of all happy pandemonium, couldn't even utter the mono-syllable that makes up her name.

and he recalled from toto, even recalling from his own belief, that he often had this strange and lingering dream of an unknown woman whom he loves and who loves him. but he quivered and his arrow was sent flying to a more confused abyss.

there were lots of complications, lots of hindrances, but if life were to be lived as pure as pure should be, he would have no boundaries to set his motives apart. but as life is, the package that was supposed to be for n had to be for all. despite the seeming obvious, he had to, they have to stay still in a lingering state of confused abyss and perhaps find their commons conjive to a big bang.

in toto

i often have that strange and lingering dream of an unknown woman whom i love and who loves me... and every time, she's neither quite the same nor completely different... and she loves me and understands me... is she a brunette, a blonde or a redhead? i don't know... her name i remember sounds soft and melodious like life's exiled lovers... her gaze is that of a statue... her voice is faraway, calm and low... it has the tone of cherished voices since silenced

(toto le heros)



it has been rough since yesterday until i finally reached my hotel room noon today... struggling to find an alternative route to vientiane from manila considering the meager status of bangkok airports until today (i believe, despite a ruling already by thailand's constitutional court on the dissolution of big parties in thailand which include the party of present thailand prime minister somchai wongsawat, whose ouster has been a primary goal of the ongoing siege by PAD of the bangkok airports and main government offices in bangkok).

a rough wait in the thai airways office in manila, fortunately being ironed as smooth as silk by thai air employees, gave way to an almost last minute confirmation to be transferred to terminal two of the international airport in manila for a flight to chiang mai by philippine airlines. i figured that getting to chiang mai will be better than struggling to fly to ho chi minh then to hanoi for a 24hour bus (according to search feeds) to vientiane, that travel time from chiang mai to vientiane may in fact be faster and better... and it was, allowing a rough 12 hour bus ride from chiang mai to udonthani (which i first thought to be a mere 4 to 5 hour bus ride; rough because of having bought one of the last three seats at the backrow of the bus), an almost 2 hour wait in udonthani, and a more or less 3 hour travel time by bus from udonthani to vientiane. the roughness, the rashness, and the bags accompanying me disallowed me to find particular moments to take photos, except for a couple while waiting in udonthani terminal.

good people don't ruin their country, and have manners not to litter thoughtlessly, i read while in a tuktuk to my hotel. made me think about the mess whether here, in thailand or the philippines, whether it be about trash on the streets or in politics, in work or in personal lives.

and "thoughtlessly".