what do you do? 

I’m in a crowded bus on the way to the great North, north of the city that is, to meet up with my partner who’s off to Hongkong tomorrow over the weekend. I wish I could surprise him with tickets to join him myself but a guy can dream. 

I have been spending too much brain power at work over the recent few weeks as am currently trying to get a grip on a new process that was given to me. So far the results have not been stellar, and I am beginning to think that they are starting to have regrets on why they hired me in the first place. So much for not meeting service levels over the past few weeks, right after I was awarded with a commendation after an efficiency project for my former process. 

And that brings me down to work. What do you do? When you get asked the question, what do you say? How do you begin to explain your job to someone who doesn’t know anything about it? In the same way, say it’s career day at your kid’s school and you were invited to speak to junior high school students on your career, howwoudl you begin your talk? How would you describe your job/career in such a way that the students would find it interesting? Well, is it interesting in the first place? 

I bet you would never have had an idea that people were actually hired for the things you currently do before you got hired. Apart from the standard careers like doctors, firemen, etc., at least those people you would have a pretty good idea of what they would do at work, you have seen what firemen do and you would have gone to the doctor once or twice as a kid.

But I work in a bank. Does that make me a banker? What does a banker do? I would never have imagined as a kid that I would work in a bank one day, much less have any sort of idea what working in a bank meant. I would imagine them holding money, lots of it, and keeping money. Money goes into a bank so people wouldn’t spend it. And then when they are ready to do so, they take it out of the bank. Hmmmm. That doesn’t exactly would like what I do right now. I have been working in several financial institutions for the past 13 (?) years and I have yet to see actual money in the office. One office I worked for was even paperless in a sense.

So again, how would I describe my work/job concisely and accurately to someone who doesn’t have a clue about trade financing and markets?

I’ve thought about it over dinner and realized something. The job title. When you’re young choosing what you want to be when you grow up, you’d always come up with the same worn-out answers for the generic careers, and I don’t mean generic in a bad way, generic because it’s widely aspirational (?), commonly looked up to, or known. I have yet to meet a kid who wants to become an FX trader or compliance officer.

So what’s the point of this again? I’ve completely lost it, I’m sorry. Oh, yes: what do you do? One could start to answer the question more sensibly by making comparisons with other types of careers jobs which are more relatable than the title risk and product controller. Security guard. I’ve heard that on one training session before. I am like a security guard for trades. Hmmm. Close enough.

So what do you do?


icebreaker 017

Have you ever been rejected by a crush?

Yes, though I don’t think it was just a crush, it was more of a severe or deep (very) deep infatuation. I was already thinking waay too far ahead into things that I was not able to see that I was just not who he was looking for. Whatever kind of person that was, I’d never know now.

When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper?

I don’t really remember, maybe it was way back in college. Or maybe after that. I have a slight memory of writing to my ex-girlfriend back then. But we also had phones and I was working in a paperless office then too, so I guess those must have been emails or something, or text messages.

I used to keep a pen pal in college, some guy I met online, a Filipino based in the US. We had a good run I suppose, a couple of years. He was fond of writing me letters and poems and essays and stories in Filipino, and I could say I was fond of him enough not to criticize his Amboy accent on paper. I remember he’s a nurse now, but I am not sure if he still remembers me though. I think I can still dig up a few of his letters to me, if I try hard.

Wear a bath robe?

Yes, if I had my way, I’d wear one everyday when at home. Comfy and always ready for fun. Haha.

Who was your high school crush?

These questions never fail to surprise me. Sheila Marie Juan. Now Juan-Catillo. Almost everybody I know knows that.

Do you like the type of music your parents listen to?

I remember a few Sunday mornings waking up to the radio on, with my mom doing the laundry across the hall. I think I must have heard her sing a few times. Old songs maybe 50’s or 60’s I’m not really sure. Good days.

Do your parents like the type of music you listen to?

I don’t know if they know what kind of music I listen to. They haven’t even heard me sing, as far as I can remember.

What’s the best route to your heart?

Food. Cake. Sweet things. Sex. ALL of the above.

Make a 5 song playlist that sums you up as a person.

This is hard. Maybe currently, as of course, the music I listen to does change depending on my mood.

  1. All My Friends by Snakehips
  2. Wait for It by Lin-Manuel Miranda, from the musical Hamilton
  3. One Dance by Drake
  4. Standing in the Way of Control by The Gossip
  5. Habits (Stay High) by Tove Lo

What was your first job?

Would an internship count? I did an internship with a very small port-side publication, where I did a few marketing materials and branding and identity. After that, I worked as an intern at a PR firm, and helped create the campaign for the first Filipino team to climb Mount Everest, apart form local election campaign for a provincial governor. Those were my first twp paying jobs. I eventually worked for customer service for a dog food company before moving into the BPO industry.

Have you kissed someone whose name starts with a ‘J’?

Yes. My current partner, Jerome.

the following

Three most painful words that a millennial can say to another millennial: “You bore me.”

After that, an unlike, or unfriend, seen-zone, unfollow, all of which are pretty much the same thing, must feel like knives stabbing you slowly, right in the chest, with a crooked smiley face. In the same way that real-life relationships spark and eventually crumble, in cyberspace, these things happen in the same speed as uploads and downloads, dictated only by your internet provider’s bandwidth.

In the mature age of social media, it’s not the clicks that count anymore. We have to be more demanding of our audiences, the more demanding of us in terms of things we share and put out online. Likes are the new commodity, follows are just the same.

To be unfollowed by that special restaurant whose food you loved and whose business you supported, to lose the attention of the buff barman who filled your summer holiday with delicious innocent eroticism, to discover a friend would prefer to cleanse his account of your presence rather than share your work and photographs as you did his, well, it is personal.

via A Proustian View on Being Unfollowed — Andrew Reid Wildman, artist, photographer, writer, teacher

Narrowing Down the List, Sort Of…

I went though a couple more options earlier tonight for a prospective laptop purchase and I ended up slightly more confused than before. At one point in the evening I was already ready to bite the bullet and just get it over with and buy a goddamn something, but then a lady and her son walked into the store and checked out the same unit I was buying. They asked exactly two questions and just bought the thing. I was confused even more. Was it supposed to be that easy?
I can’t even imaging producing a shortlist of the laptops I’m thinking of getting but I think I do have to, in no particular order I think.
MacBook Pro with Retina Display 13-inch
MacBook Air 11-inch
ASUS Zenbook UX303LN
ASUS Zenbook UX32LN
HP Envy Touchsmart 15 Q006TX
Dell XPS 11
Dell Inspiron 5547
Dell Inspiron 14 7437
Acer Aspire E1 472G
Lenovo Z5070
Lenovo Z510
Samsung Series 7 NP740U3E