On the Billboard charts for July 6

I’ve been a chart geek since 1990 when I started making my own Personal Top 20 (the very first #1 single on my personal charts? Release Me by Wilson Phillips). Thanks to the Internet, I can browse Billboard’s charts without having to buy the superexpensive magazine flown here each week.

This week sees a lot of things on the charts that are interesting only to chart geeks like me:

– Nellie Furtado’s #1 in the US with Promiscuous (featuring Timbaland) and #1 in the UK with Maneater. One artist at #1 in the UK and the US with different singles? That hasn’t happened since Usher’s Confessions Part Iand Burn, respectively.

– Nellie/Nelly is the second name to have topped the charts with a male and female artist (Nellie Furtado and rapper Nelly). The first name? Taylor (Dayne and Hicks).

– Look! Bananarama’s #2 on the Dance charts with Look on the Floor (Hypnotic Tango). I’m thrilled for them; I’ve been a fan since the mid-80s and supported them even with their brief 90s flirtation into Japanese pop territory (Avex Trax).

– Timbaland is HOT. Aside from Promiscuous, he’s produced SexyBack, the new single of Justin Timberlake (Timbalake? LOL). Glad he’s back; Timbaland’s in my Top 4 of favorite Afro-American producers (the other four being Darkchild, Jermaine Dupri, and Babyface).

Ruminations caused by a sore throat

I’m battling a sore throat right now. I know it’s probably punishment for talking too much, but it’s really uncomfortable, and, combined with a mild headache, giving me reason to regret coming in to work. Ugh. Even more upsetting, this sore throat will inevitably cause me to miss choir practice, for a second week in a row, over at Victory – Fort. This upsets me because two weeks ago, I was asked to help take care of the tenors, and, well, it looks bad that I miss two weeks in a row after being given that important position. Late last week, Cathy and I were talking about Nathan and how he always waits for us to come home before he falls asleep (nine out of ten times). With Mondays coming home late because the car’s coded until 7PM, Tuesdays coming home late because of Cathy’s class, Wednesdays coming home late because of choir practice, and Thursdays coming home late because it’s professionals’ support group discussion night, I’ve pretty much missed four days out of seven with my son. It’s not easy, and if I look at those days, I think the only thing I can really give up are my Wednesdays (because Monday, I’m stuck in Makati until 7, Tuesdays I can’t let Cathy go home at 9PM!, and Thursdays are essential for Cathy’s and my spiritual growth). Cathy, meanwhile, thinks that isn’t a good idea that I give up being with the choir, given that it’s my chosen ministry and I’m kinda good at it. So I’m praying for guidance from God and asking Him what to do. The truth is my throat has always been fragile (or maybe it’s actually quite resilient, but the rate that I talk is too much even for the most resilient vocal chords) and the kind of singing required of us – especially for me, because I am not a natural tenor – can really strain it. I don’t want to give up the choir ministry, but I also don’t want be resposible for Nathan’s awful sleeping habits when I come home late four days a week! Compromises are possible. I suppose I could commute Mondays, so I don’t have to wait until 7 to go home. Then Fridays, I can leave at 5PM and be home by 630PM. Or we could attend a small group closer to home, but that wouldn’t make any sense because leaving at 5PM would just mean arrival at the small group at a late time anyway. Anyway, I’m optimistic that I will be well by tonight (because I don’t want to miss tomorrow’s discussion group – I’m bringing two friends along!). I hold on to God’s promises, that He knows I trust Him, and Nahum 1:7 tells me that He cares for those who trust in Him, as He is good, my refuge and strength. Be blessed!

Wilson Phillips Greatest Hits – get your copies now!

If you’re looking for value for money, get this spectacular “Best of” album, now available at all Tower Records and MusicOne outlets throughout the nation! If you recall, Wilson Phillips is that girl group that burst onto the 90s music scene with three #1 hits from their self-titled debut album, setting a record that has not been beaten to date. With Hold On (the Billboard Hot 100 Single of the Year), Release Me, and You’re in Love, Wilson Phillips – Chynna Phillips and sisters Carnie and Wendy Wilson – dominated the early 90s music scene with their trademark harmonies, pleasant looks, and quality topnotchers, courtesy of master tunesmith and producer Glen Ballard (who would later go on to Grammy success with Alanis Morissette). Aside from the three aforementioned topnotchers, Wilson Phillips also had Impulsive, a #4 hit, #12 hit The Dream is Still Alive, Top 40 hits You Won’t See Me Cry and Give It Up. Greatest Hits also features Daniel, another hit on the Adult Contemporary Charts; live versions of Hold On and Hotel California; bonus tracks from Phillips’ solo album and the Wilsons’ debut opus. All these great tracks for only P299! That’s incredible value, so get your copies of Wilson Phillips’ Greatest Hits today! And in case you’re curious as regards why I’m so crazy about Wilson Phillips, check in tomorrow, when I post a picture that could lose me all credibility with my online friends. Ah well, anything to promote Carnie, Wendy, and Chynna.  If any of them would write or call me, I would DIE.

What’s going on in sports?!

I very rarely make sports-related posts, but today, I just had to, in light of the strange goings-on! Wimbledon. Hingis is out?! Safina and Venus Williams are out? Gonzales, Grosjean, Agassi, Ljubicic, Roddick?! What in heaven’s name is in the water over at the All-England? Boxing. Pacquiao beats Larios, sure, but that game looked soooo fixed. Why back off in the third when you’ve obviously got your man seeing yellow canaries? FIXED. World Cup. France beats BRAZIL?! What the heck?! Man, it’s cuh-razy out there. Go Henin-Hardenne! Go Roger!

Tune in to The Edge 91.5FM!

On July 1st, 2006, The Edge Radio, Metro Manila’s first all-Contemporary Christian Music (CCM) radio station, goes live from 6PM to 6AM. With music coming in from many of the world’s foremost Christian artists, including American CCM artists Switchfoot, MercyMe, and Casting Crowns, and local CCM artists Kitchie Nadal and Barbie Almalbis, The Edge Radio will broadcast 12 glorious hours of CCM daily.

LIVEtheLIFE Magazine salutes The Edge Radio and its vision of broadcasting CCM in all its formats – Christian rap, R&B, hip hop and gospel, among them.

Please help spread the word about The Edge Radio by posting similar announcements on your blog, Friendster, MySpace, or Multiply pages. Tell your friends in your small groups, discipleship groups, and churches. Be part of Filipino-Christian history in the making, with God-glorifying music on local airwaves.

Visit The Edge Radio‘s official website at http://www.theedgeradio.net.

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Iron Chef on Wifely Steps: Ganns’ Eat-Some Sweet Hum

Toni of Wifely Steps challenges her readers, in an Iron Chef -type manner, to come up with recipes for fruit cocktail. Most of the folks who’ve posted thus far have suggested dessert recipes, so I decided to submit a recipe that picks up on an original recipe from my mother. By the way, did you notice, in my trying to be classy and picture-perfect, one of Nathan’s toy blocks in the flower vase?! LOL I only saw that now! fruityham.jpg


Ingredients: 5 slices of CDO Cooked Ham 2 small cans of Del Monte Fruit Cocktail (Lychee Flavor, mmm) 1 teaspoon of sugar Salt and pepper to taste Directions: 1. Bring the syrup of the two cans of Del Monte to a boil in a medium saucepan. 2. Put the ham in, and cook until almost all syrup is gone. 3. Empty the fruits into the saucepan. Place one teaspoon of sugar in one of the empty cans of fruit cocktail and half-fill it with water. 4. Empty the can into the saucepan and cook for five minutes or until syrup thickens slightly. 5. Plate the ham. Spoon the fruits onto the ham or on the side. 6. Drizzle the syrup onto the ham and fruits and serve immediately.

Just plain cheeky

We celebrated my mother’s 60th birthday last Saturday (photos due for uploading within the next few days). Cathy, Nathan and I were joined by her mother and three brothers for this celebration at my mother’s home in South Green Park. During the celebration, an old family friend of my mother’s showed up with his wife. He apparently hadn’t seen me since I was just a lad – I couldn’t place him for the life of me – and was tickled pink by the sight of me “all grown up.” “What smooth skin!” he crowed before he reached up and pinched my cheeks. Now I praise God for my “smooth skin,” and I praise God that I’ve managed to somehow avoid looking my age, but how many 30-year-old’s out there are still cheek-pinched by well-meaning family friends?

I’m really not that smart

Yesterday morning, I decided to clean out Nathan's toy chest, getting rid of the old and busted toys (yes, it's very Toy Story). My son has quite a variety, from toy cars to squeeze toys, from alphabet boxes to bubble blowers. In the course of the cleaning, I found a tool kit that Nate received as a gift, with hammer, ruler, plane, you get the idea. That tool kit came with a plastic cutter that I found at the bottom of that chest. Looking at the cutter, I marveled at how legit it looked. Wow, I thought to myself, that plastic looks real. At this point, all neurons to my brain may have shut down, because I ran the cutter along the tip of my finger. To my surprise, blood began to spurt out. It was a real cutter, and I had just cut myself! In between the self-berating and Cathy's why did you DO that tirade that immediately followed, all I could think of what how I was so glad that I didn't feel like humoring myself and running that blade across my wrist. Lessons learned: 1) No matter how well you think you can hide your dangerous materials, there's no real way to hide them unless you do it lock-and-key. That cutter is now safely out of Nathan's reach. 2) Fake cutters have no place in a toy tool kit. A 30-year-old kid like me can't tell the difference, what makes me think a 3-year-old can? 3) I want the Fairly Oddparents band-aids. My boo-boo's covered with a band-aid that matches my skin tone, and I don't feel cool at all. Dude, none of this is cool.