Sunday, April 22, 2007

Friends in Word, Indeed! (My Scrabble Buddies)

Long before I stumbled into blogging, I had run into online scrabble. Or more precisely it crashed into me -- splitting me in two. One online (the virtual me), the other off (the real me).

For a while, I was in quarantine from my real life -- unable to give anything to it, wanting nothing from it. (I have since, auspiciously, regained my sense of balance.)

The Internet scrabble club gave me what I then called the "undiluted pleasure" of playing my favorite game with people of all colors, ages, nationalities, and other demographics.

As in the real world, I've met all kinds: the nice and not so.

Unlike in the real world, where you have to grin and bear with all types, you can shut off the absolutely un-nice in the scrabble club. By simply being put in your "no play" list, they can't play nor chat you even if they itched trying. They might as well be in limbo, as far as you know.

You of course "buddy" the very nice. "Buddying" means you'd know when they're online or off. You'd be alerted to their comings and goings. You make scrabble dates with them, play a dozen games with them until your back breaks and your eyes drop out of their sockets, observe them while they play another, kibitz them if neither of you mind.

Making scrabble friends online is as easy as boiling eggs in a pan. Many are drawn to my profile which I wrote so ingeniously it made me sound better than Pollyanna. So, players chat and buddy me. And I return the compliment.

Online friendships can be so fleeting, though.

For various reasons, you lose touch or lose interest. One may decide the other's not "that nice," or "that hot," or "that cool," after all or anymore. Or you playing style may not match -- you like playing an open board and she prefers it tight. Or he may like to tease and you don't. Or vice- versa.

The problem might lie with the time zone. He lives on the sunrise side of the mountain and you on its sunset slope, and you couldn't get synced for a game. Or she finds out how old you are and may get bored or intimidated playing a goldie, no matter how goodie.

Possibly, you outgrow him or he outgrows you -- in ratings. Or your games get skewed. And hey, I don't mind losing. But if someone beats me in all of five successive games -- that's no longer so sporting of anybuddy!!

Yup, most online friendships seem to have a shelf life. I've had as many as 40 on my budlist, and most have drifted away.

But there are exceptions.

In my buddy list, there are (at least) two that have come to stay ... and stay ... and stay ....

Let me tell you about them.

Marthalee Pietri aka Marthalee aka Pennielane aka Lucyndskys

A trueblue Beatle fan, as her aliases imply (all of them alluding to songs by the mopheads). An American from New York who married a Frenchman and has since settled in Britanny, a seaside haven northwest of France. Teaches English to French children and twice a year makes me hmmpphh and harumfff when she disappears from online to accompany a group of them to a study tour of England.

We call each other, in Marthalee's own words, our "first real scrabble friend and kindred spirit." Our friendship hits the three-year mark this August. It is one unblemished by kink nor snag. The only time I got upset with her was when she beat me four times in four games and seemed so unstricken by remorse. I don't know that I have ever upset her .. nor that I have won over her more than twice in a row.

She plays an open game and doesn't mind (very much) when I (more than) occasionally jam the board. She doesn't have qualms opening triples which puzzles this "kindred spirit" who'd sooner part with a limb than open a red spot. Notwithstanding our differences in playing style, we're so evenly matched we always play a very close game -- one where you have to do a little math towards the end to figure out how you'd win by one or two points. She never minds losing to me she says: "Better to lose points to a buddy than to any tomdickharrry."

How can anyone find fault with Marthalee! She never misses saying "nice one" when I bingo and "bravo" when I win. Always willing to adjourn when what she thinks is a preferred friend logs in. Generously passes every time I form a phony word when we play a challenge game.

She loves handmade paper products from Cagayan de Oro and freshwater pearls from Greenhills and doesn't complain if one or the other is all I send her for Christmas or her birthday. They are a limp return for all the chocolate truffles, pate, and rilettes and French cosmetics I have received from Britanny And yes -- eat your heart out, my fashionista friends -- I get to dangle a shoulder bag from Paris when I want to go tres chic.

Marthalee always threatens to come to the Philippines "next year" which never fails to give me the jitters for my topsyturvy, hot'n'dusty home is not (yet) ready to entertain a French-American lady who swims 24 laps each morning and jogs by the sea each afternoon. Once, I told her (joking, half-joking) I preferred I went to France instead. And she replied (serious): "Hmm, let me look at airline rates." Then I backtracked. Haha.

Manuel G. Reyes aka Peanoie aka Beatlefan
(shown here with his wife and daughters)

I found serendipity on a Saturday in June at a mall near my home. I had finished shopping; my kids were late picking me up -- so I went to a Net cafe to kill time.

I had just finished a scrabble game as "Pipinay" when who would click me for the next but someone named "Peanoie." As we began, one of us remarked our names were like-sounding. One question led to another and it turned out I was pi-PINAY to his PINOY-eh. I didn't get it at first: I was "duh (that was exactly his word)!

You know when you meet a fellow Pinoy in that international scrabble club of about 20,000 members and he/she turns out to be nice, funny, witty, belongs more or less (more of less, and less of more) to your fading generation, and shares many of your interests -- it's almost like winning the lotto.

Well, that was almost two years ago and the friendship has grown, stabilized.

As a migrant in Hawaii, he was hungry for news and stuff about his home country. Philipppine politics, the dwindling economy, the poor governance, the natural and man-made calamities, the desperation of the people.

He waxed romantic over Filipino music, literature, art -- even the Pinoy every-man. I could almost feel him flinch when I ranted we were a quarrelsome people who couldn't pull our act together. Told him it was easy for him to idealize the people, with his farsightedness and glasses soft-misted with nostalgia and homesickness.

But he kept posting me on proud Pinoy moments I took for granted -- the Pinoy beach boys in Hawaii clinching the junior baseball world championship, Manny Pacquiao winning his umpteenth fight, a team of pinay volleybelles making a good showing. He reminisced stories redolent of the Filipino's good humor, endurance, hospitality, and grace under pressure and poverty. He reminded me of the boundlessness of hope, the pride in great Filpinos like Ninoy, Ricarte, Sionil-Jose.

I was abashed for giving up on my own people.

So, it must be true, I told myself -- that when you go away from someone or someplace, you get to know it better.

Because of him, I read or reread Bienvenido Santos, F. Sionil Jose, N.V.M. Gonzalez and Nick Joaquin. I began to listen with TLC to Constancio de Guzman, Nick Abelardo, Levi Celerio.

He avidly chewed old fat with me -- Tia Dely, Student Canteen, Ang Panday and his Susana, Elvis and the Beatles, Nardong Putik . He has his roots in Cavite but he was familiar with some of mine -- Gagalangin, Torres High, UST.

He self-deprecates and I wonder why. He is as witty as I can never be. I claim to write but his English is more impeccable than mine. And yes, he beats me more than I do him.

(And ... he sends me macadamias and I send him Philippine music and literature.)

Last November, we had an offline scrabble party with Peanoie and other Pinoy scrabble players. Marthalee sent pate -- which unfortunately came late for the event.)

Topmost photo: courtesy of Stockxpert.

Want to play scrabble online? Log on to: But just a word of warning: it IS addictive.


noemi said...

Can we play one of these days? I got addicted to scrabble when I worked there at the office. All throughout my pregnancy with Lauren, I begged my husband, siblings to play with me. I am rusty now with scrabble.

ladycess said...

wow! cool! ang galing. i mean, your online friends have become your real friends - for years. :)

auee said...

Your online life is really blooming/booming ha. It's difficult not to like you.

To me you project a very positive personality which influences people, myself included. For example it weren't for your changes in your layout I'd never upgraded my Blogger account to that of google's. Na-negate mo yung laziness ko hehe

annamanila said...

Sige, Noems. Sign up ka na sa scrable club: Then you tell me your user name and i will watch out for you. It might take some getting used to, but geeks like you and me (LOL) should be able to get the hang of it in no time. See you soon on the board.

annamanila said...

Lady Cess!

These are two of (perhaps 3 to 4) scrabble friendships that have endured. Friends forever sana!

I hope that will happen as well with some of my new blog friendships. Sana kasama ka na din dun. :)

annamanila said...


Talaga?! My physical renovations onsite inspired you. Who would have imagined ha. Talaga namang we inspire and learn from each other in this kewl blogging community we move in.

Yup, I am so lucky to have a fulfilling double life. Hindi ba ikaw din?

Gina said...

AHA! So you're not above forming a phoney word once in a while ,huh?!!! I should have watched out for that LOL! No wonder you kicked me in the b_ _ t so hard. It's a wonderful friendship story Anna. Just goes to show that these days, geography doesn't matter anymore when it comes to friendships.
Happy Scrabbling & hope to meet you again online for a game or two sometime soon.

annamanila said...

LOL Gina! Of course I am not above forming a phoney word or two. Pero believe it or else (hehe), hindi sadya. Alam mo na naman, there are "words" that sound like a word but hindi pala and conversely ... Nowadays all I play are games in the void mode where the system itself validates all words played before it gets to the board. We played void Gina. But I really had an advantage over you ... I am .... you know -- in 'shape' ... practisado and very familiar with the isc board. Unlike you. So keep practising. hehe. Sige, laro ulit tayo ha?

jerry said...

Hello. No wonder you got hooked to internet scrabble with friends like that. Marthalee seems to be a nice and unselfish player ... very sporting. And sending you all those french delicacies ... wow! On the other hand, Pinoy-eh must have woke up your nationalistic fervor. Being abroad makes one more conscious of national identity I suppose.

Sidney said...

I don't play scrabble (off or online) but it seems it is a rewarding game!

vernaloo said...

oh cool! I play scrabble too but sa ako naglalaro. But unlike you Anna I just do it when I'm super bored na talaga. Maybe its because I'm not really good. I never won hahahaha shame shame shame lol

niceheart said...

You have made such wonderful friendships online. And I bet it's because you're such a wonderful person. :)

I would love to join that scrabble club. But maybe sa summer na kapag hindi na ako gaanong busy. :)

Abaniko said...

Hi Annamanila. I love playing Scrabble but haven't tried it online. Can someone cheat online like look at a Scrabble dictionary or have a Word Scrambler software. I'm interested to play with you but I guess I have to rehearse first with novices before I have a game with you. Haha.

ladycess said...

^ wow naman! of course i would love/be honored to be a good friend of AM.

wow! may brand new acu ka na! ang sarap ng unang buga ng hangin nyan! amoy plastik, parang sopa na naka-plastik pa :D uwi ka agad!

bout the cashier. i agree, usually there is a long, long story behind these things.. hay...

annamanila said...


You can say that again! Ty for reading about my scrabfriends.

annamanila said...


You can say that again! Ty for reading about my scrabfriends.

annamanila said...


It is very rewarding. I guess bloggers usually but not always love scrabble too as words are their tools.

annamanila said...


I also play infrequently at scrabulous; I think Toe plays there too, di ba? I haven't been there for months. I won't insist to play you because it is easy to see you're cool or cold on scrabble. Well, I guess I should congratulate you for having one addiction less. :)

annamanila said...

Nice heart!

When's summer where you are? Hope to catch you then.

Thanks, it is nice to be nice .. and I am not trying to make a pun of your very nice blog name. :) All best.

annamanila said...


It is "legal" to look up words when you play online scrabble. What isn't is to use an anagramming tool or what you call a scrambler. I think the system detects when you one uses it. You don't have to practice to play at isc. You begin as a provisional player with provisional rating (while you're trying to get the hang of it). It is only on your tenth game, that you get a regular rating. Go and register and tell me the name you signed up under. :)

annamanila said...

Lady Cess!

Pleasure/honor mine (how formal can we get ha?! -- haahhaa). Sana nga maamoy ko yung sinasabi mo mamyang gabi. :)

sheilamarie said...

hi anna =) i had a great time reading about your scrabble buddies. what is distance to good friends?

tita, pwede pa share ng mga chocolates? LOL! just kidding...

i'm glad to have met you and a couple of the other bloggers. it makes life more colorful and interesting. both mentally and emotionally =)

p.s. it's true that you appreciate some things more when u are far from it. i never gave a thought to our country before, but now i devour the news daily and have come to love it more,and to be proud of my roots =)

rhodora said...

We siblings played scrabble on school breaks. But my brother who was still then an engineering student, would try to outsmart us by forming words alien to us. He would say: "Eh, technical word yan, engineering term!" At di namin mahanap sa dictionary, kasi nga, engineering term daw! :)

Really, Anna, Marthalee sends you choco truffles! And she sent you a bag from Paris! Ay... mag online scrabble na rin ako! hehehe.

annamanila said...


Yes, the internet crunches distance. See you in Africa and I in Manila are only a click away. Awesome ha. And we know so much of each other na in (I think) a few weeks of blog friendship. May our friendship flourish!

Hmmm ... I can send you Chocnuts from here and ... come to think of it ... I haven't tasted African chocolates or (any) delicacy. Hint .. hint ...

Yes, it is sometimes good to look at people and places from a distance. Myopia sometimes distorts viewpoints.

annamanila said...


I will take your situation seriously and suggest that you play with a dictionary or word list that will arbit challenges. This can be any dictionary all players agree on, but better if you use an official scrabble players dictionary or OSPD(used in tournaments). The latest they have is the 4th edition.

Inggitin kita lalo ha? Last Christmas, I was able to make banana split with, siempre, lakatan saging, vanilla icecream, truffle shavings (alam mo kasi dahil sa init at tagal ng delivery by post, yung trufffles na pinadala nya sa akin melted into one giant piece .. haha ... which I had to shave or icepick), and crushed macadamia nuts, plus Nestle all purpose cream of course. Sinful!!

Sige play ka na. I guarantee you a good time once you get the hang of it. Go and sign up and tell me your scrabble name.

kathy said...

Wow, scrabbles - it's like a ghost from the past. You see, we used to play scrabbles at home. We get to learn new words, our brains get some mental exercise, and best of all, it doesn't cost a thing to enjoy. I have yet to try "scrabbling" online. It sure sounds like fun. Pero addicting? Naku delikado...hehe. Addict na nga sa blog eh. :)

Heart of Rachel said...

I love scrabble and I remember how fun it was playing with my dad, mom and brother. They live far from me now but I will always treasure those simple yet memorable moments.

Thanks for sharing about the friendships you've formed through online scrabble. I hope that your friendship with them will continue to flourish.

houseband00 said...

Scrabble reminds me of Sundays at my Lolo and Lola. After a hearty lunch, my cousins and I would sit across each other at the long black table in the terrace and play Scrabble the whole afternoon - boys vs girls.

Of course, being the gentlemen we believe we are, we let the girls win.

Who am I kidding? =)

annamanila said...


We both have a youth full of scrabble memories. I first saw scrabble being played as a highschool student while we were proofreading our HS newsletter. AT the the lounge I heard a commotion. Two adults were fighting over a board ... more precisely fighting over a word --REMELTS. Di ba bingo yun? One was insisting it was a word and the other yelled that something that has melted could no longer be remelted. I was fascinated and vowed to play the game soon. My first scrabble board was made of cardboard and tiles small pieces f the board. Ah, those were the do-it-yourself days.

Yes, it is very addicting. But if you dont have an OC personality, I guess it should be safe to try online scrabble some time under "supervised" conditions. hahaha

annamanila said...

H of Rachel!

Another blogger with a scrabble childhood. I guess, since bloggers write and words are their tools as well as materials, we're really disposed to scrabble games di ba.

Yes, these friendships (blog and scrabble) should be cherished!

annamanila said...


In my experience, it is the "gentlemen" who play as though winning were a matter of life and limb. Hindi naman lahat ah ...

Delightful memories with your lolo at lola. I can imagine the long tables and the boards and the tiles and good humored jostling and fights over a word.

pining said...

amazing how we meet friends nowadays; you speak so highly of them so I assume that they are loyal ones too. I wouldn't be surprised because you're one blogger I'd love to meet, too ( well, as soon as we sort our finances out, I hope soon though)

mitsuru said...

hmmmm, maybe i'll try to play those online scrabble games for a change.

i'm hook on jeopardy though and sudoku. lol

faith said...

Ms Anna,

May these friendships be of the lifelong kind.

This brings to mind memories of Sundays at our lola's home, where our aunts would shout their lungs out over a supposed "phoney word". My dad invents phoney words too.

Btw, I share peanoie's love for sionil-jose and bienvenido santos. They are one of the reasons that I can never lose hope about this country that produces such geniuses.

myepinoy said...

It seems that it is not only scrabble that binds you and your friends but also Beatles' music.

annamanila said...


I am so lucky to have met Marthalee and Peanoie and kept their friendships. There are a few others (there is a third, a young Pinay in Oregon but she failed to give me some more info about her). Maybe I write about them in later blog pieces.

Ay, Pining, when you said you and your family might settle here in the Philippines in a few, I felt happy. But maybe even before then, you could come for a holiday.

annamanila said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
diogenes said...

Ok, do I have to learn scramble;-)

faith said...

Ms Anna,

I couldn't pass up the chance to say--

Sa truffles pa lang, nainggit na ko, why, oh why did you have to mention those bags from Paris? Now I'm positively green.haha

sasha said...

Hahahah, naadik din ako sa online scrabble before. I play mostly with my college friend who's in the US and her flatmates.

True, you get to appreciate and learn more about a place once you're away from it already. Ganon naman yata, tita.

Hindi kaya kamag-anak ko si Mr. Manuel Reyes? Heheheh

Beautiful family. When will you post yours, tita? Meron ka ba sa archives mo? :)

Happy Wednesday!

sexy mom said...

whoa! Annamanila--when i read that you would even go to an internet cafe just to play scrabble--i knew that indeed you were addicted!

Marthalee seems to be a very nice person--so do not worry when she comes to manila, it's the friendship that she is after, and not whatever comforts manila nor your home could offer.

i would not even dare challenge you with scrabble, but it will be good practice for a change (from my daily crosswords and sudoku)

annamanila said...


I'd say play scrabble or at least try it. I don't expect everyone -- including writer-bloggers though words are the tools of their trade -- to take to it.

Sudoku -- i tried it too but didn't last a few minutes. Hindi kaya ng IQ ko eh. Pero jeopardy -- type ko din yan -- pwera lang yung masyadong cultural ang orientation the questions. Is there a new version na downloadable?

annamanila said...


May you speak with the tongue of an angel when you wished long live my online friendships. I hope that includes ours too.

There you go ... your family is a scrabble-playing family ... tracing 3 generations ha. But do you know none of my children play it, including the bonch who loves to write? Frustrated nga ako eh, haha.

Oh, yes, we have Filipino writers to be proud of ... in Pilipino and in English. The contemporary batch is very promising too. Charlson Ong has this joy-luck-club sounding new novel.

Oo nga, sarap ng truffles at macads. The bag is very tasteful, i should say. Inggitini pa kita, pwede? -- she asked me if i wanted clothes from Paris. Pero hirap for someone else to shop for clothes for you di ba. Baka sayang lang.

annamanila said...


Why not .. try to learn scrabble, as you have a way with words. Then see how it goes. :)

annamanila said...

Baka nga ah. He's from Cavite City. Ikaw, tagasaan? Pero daming Reyeses sa kapuluan eh.

See, I know. Bloggers of course know how to write, love to read, and in love with words. So disposed din sa scrabble. Siempre hindi naman lahat.

Omg ... you will really find me a new template? based on my personality/temperament? You have more or less deduced it from what I blog about di ba? Oooh what can I say!! My cup runneth.

All best, God bless.

annamanila said...

Sexy Mom!

Shhhhhh. Don't rub it in. Aminado na ngang addicted eh. Nowadays though, between scrabble and blogging -- hindi ko na alam. Blogging wins out a bit I think -- but perhaps because its more of the novelty. I dunno. What do your sons and daughters say? Does the novelty of blogging ever wear off.

Thanks for bringing your comments (on the art of blogging) from diogenes' to my site. Gusto ko ngang ilagay dito yung iba din... ang sarap basahin ... parang they are talking of a different person. hehehe Thanks Dine, I think the other commentators took the cue from you. Sobra kasi buildup mo sa akin.

annamanila said...


Nagbasa talaga si Myepiny. You noticed that Peanoie's other alias is beatlefan and that Marthalee was very explicitly a fanatic given her "alsoknownas's. Eh teka, hindi ko naman sinabing Beatle fan din ako, ah. But I am .. a late blooming one ... only when my sons began to be devoted to those singer-poets. They sing poetry, don't they?

annamanila said...


Yes, ang gaganda nila Peanoie and family.

Belle TH said...

anna, has Marthalee read your blog, too? it would be interesting to know her reaction to this post. better brush up on your french speaking skills in preparation for her visit.

too bad my mother-in-law passed away already, she was very frustrating to play against. nasty one!

i played scrabble with some friends of mine while vacationing in the Phil, and surprisingly enough, with my very limited vocabulary, i won! my husband was impressed! hehehe.

annamanila said...


I doubt that Marthalee has read this piece; she is in England right now chaperoning French students on a field trip. Nevertheless, she knows I was going to write about her. What you say is true .. it would be interesting to find out how she reacts esp. to my reluctance to entertain her at home.

Why am I not surprised that you beat 'em in scrabble?! :)

SASSY MOM said...

Hi, anna!

I love playing scrabble but I haven't done it online... Maybe we can play one of these days?

It's great that you have made more friends thru the net.

Take care!

sexy mom said...

i posed your questions to my kids:
(1) JAngelo-it's his work now, so, blogging is here to stay, I guess he will be Blog Lord someday (or is he now?)
(2) BA, together with Noemi's daughter Marielle, are now spearheading the UP Blogger's Circle
(3) Vince says he is trying to improve now, that he is read by mom's readers
(4) Alan, Jr is now inspired to write again
(5) the girls continue enjoying their friendster and multiply

i guess blogging is here to stay, though it may mutate to something much better to catch up with the times.

no naman, you don't really need to be built up! galing mo e!

tutubi said...

i miss the game when my whole family
nothing beats in-the-flesh games of scrabble :)

annamanila said...


I doubt Marthalee has read this piece as she is away chaperoning French kids on a study visit to England. But maybe she has an idea about my reservations. But I guess she can be booked in a hotel/hostel maybe near my place of work.

Why am I not the least surprised that you won your scrabble games when you played here?! :)

She scrabbles in both English and French. When we play i sometimes aurevoir merci beaucoup bon apetit her. But thats the sum total of my French vocabulary.

annamanila said...

Sassy mom!

Like when? Make it soon. But have you registered? Sign up first at then let me know the handle u register. Then i look out for you and we have a blast!

annamanila said...

Sexy mom!

Thanks for baderging your children to answer my questions on blogging. Lakas ko talaga sa 'yo. I believe them when they say blogging is here to stay unless it mutates into something better. I also wonder whether the "enthusiasm" or OC-ness I have for blogging would settle down into something resembling cool or balance. hahaha

annamanila said...


I meant thanks for badgering them.

annamanila said...


Personally, I enjoy both equally. The personal dynamics, the jostling, the teasing, the kwentuan that makes a face to face game fun can also be done in online scrable especially among "buddies." Basta may ibang mystique pag online. If I say everything here ... ay ... baka mas mahaba pa sa blog piece ko. LOL

See you at your site soon.

gibbs cadiz said...

anna! we have to meet and renew old ties. starbucks or chocolate kiss? hehe. 0927-2402358. yan ha? :)

chateau said...

i love the online scrabble game, but i've never had online scrabble buddies. i played against the robot. How do i join your online games, if i may? :)

chateau said...

Oh my! I've just registered at ISC.. and been playing all afternoon! It is very addicting, hehe. hope to see you there soon :D

Gypsy said...

This is the first time I've heard of online scrabble pals! How interesting! I wish I could join you but am not a very competitive person when it comes to scrabble so I would be too boring to play with!! :)

eRLyN aka aMgiNe said...

hey nice meeting you last friday ms annamanila. hope to read more of your well written posts. kept me reading down to the end of the entry. i highly agree that online friendships could be really fleeting. lucky for you to keep marthalee and peanoie.

btw, i linked u up already. have a blessed sunday and a great week ahead.

Heart of Rachel said...

Hi Anna,

I was reading Dine's recent post and it's so nice to read about the friendship you have with her.

I also want to wish you an advance Happy Birthday! May you have the best of health and more promising years ahead.

I enjoy reading your posts and hope to get to know you more. Take care!


annamanila said...


Why do I find that hard to resist?! heha Yup, sometimes i get nostalgic about the eyp days ... what happened to gibbs' angels ha? Is anyone of them still around. Will get in touch sooner than soon.

annamanila said...


I'd be more than happy to play with you .. once i get my dsl fixed (am now in my sis's place).

Go to, register a name and password. Let me know the scrabble alias u chose (user name) and I will watch out for you. Meantime, you can try playing (even if I am not yet around) ... navigate the site, play a provisional game or two (no-bearing games yet as far as your rating is concerned.) It might take a few games for you to get the hang of it ... after maybe game No. 3, it will be a breeze. Promise.

annamanila said...


Delighted to have met you too and the other young bloggers friends of Nao. You had fun at board walk? Hope you enjoyed your evening at issi.

Salamat ... ang sarap naman basahin your comments. Will see you at your site too and link you once i get my dsl fixed.

annamanila said...

H of Rachel!

Thank you. LOL I was getting these happy birthday texts from a few blogger friends and i wondered how they knew. I must have told Dine ha ... when she asked me what my birthday month was (as she dabbles in astrology). Ay naku, getting on in years na talaga.

I want to know more about you too, Rach (can i call you Rach)? Would like to reach your archives one of these days. How wonderful these oneline friendships are hindi ba? I got much more than I bargained for when i began blogging. And i mean that in a most positive way.

Gina said...

Hi Anna!
Just hopped from Sexymom! Birthday mo raw =) So here's sending you some birthday wishes thru cyberspace ! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! May all your fondest wishes come true...

(p.s. nawala yata ang link mo na 'about the author' at 'contact me'?So dito ko nalang sa comment section ipinadala)

Belle TH said...

Happy Birthday Anna! Hope you have/had a wonderful time with your loved ones.

annamanila said...


Thank you, Gina. Hmmm I didn't mean to celebrate a birthday online ... but thanks to Dine ... masarap din pala. hahaha.

I think i still have my profile intact sa bottom ng page ko. I don't have a contact page but i know some buddies are able to get my email address somehow.

annamanila said...


This is one of the most memorable I have celebrated. My extended family came almost full force and took me by surprise last Saturday. Sunday naman my medical student daughter came home for first time in almost 5 weeks ... but had to leave the next day (my birthday) so we had to celebrate early din for this daughter. Tapos, Dine is also hosting an online celebration of sorts. With greetings from all over, including Arizona, how can I ask for more?!

ladycess said...

hi AM! happy birthday! everybody shout: birthday post! birthday post! birthday post!

Heart of Rachel said...

Yes, you may call me Rach. I hope you don't mind that I already started addressing you as Anna. :)

I agree, online friendships can be very promising.

Happy weekend!

Marty said...

Just got back from England. You make me sound much better than I am. I might blush if it didn't make me feel so good. lol Sorry I missed your birthday--it must be tomorrow in the Philippines already. I am working on making up for it with a belated present. Anyway my father always said that it isn't this birthday that is important, it is the next one. I am looking forward to our next game.
ps thanks for not mentionioning the chief. lol

Leah said...

Great playing with you Anna! till next time

snglguy said...

I'm not sure if I'm late ( I think I am) in posting this online greeting but here goes... HAPPY BIRTHDAY Anna. :-)

annamanila said...

Lady Cess!

Thank you thank you. What can I say .. saya!

annamanila said...

H of Rachel

Thanks Rachel. Yup,here's to friendships -- online and off. They make this life easier to live ha.

annamanila said...


Omg. You're back! I wasn't sure if you would have approved my mentioning all your scrabble handles. But I couldn't resist the Beatles angle. haha

Well, my piece about you is innocuous. LOL Could have made it spicier. Maybe next time. haha

About the present -- awww! Would have wanted to say ... you don't have to ... but that would be less than honest. haha

See you at isc tonight?!

annamanila said...


Wow, greet na ako ni Rudy (Nao tells me your name is Rudy ... aba .. hinintay ka nya). Ok na ok talaga itong bday ko ha.

Tenk you tenk you

Anonymous said...

could be late but better than never.
hope you had a wonderful day and more wonderful days to come.
labs ya of coz.
just me!

amgine said...

belated hapi bday po. it was only now that i got the chance to greet you bacause blogspot is bloced in the office. Goot thing we're already wired here at home. well, i hope you had a blast. God blees!

faith said...

Fashionably late, but nevertheless sincere birthday greetings to you, Ms. Anna.

Wow, you're really on a roll, bloggers just can't get enough of ya, ms. Anna.

annamanila said...


Prec! What happened to you? Juan tells me you have been sick. Pikon na ako sa mga sick-sick mo ha. Hope you have bounced back. Been leaving messages at the scrabble club and no reply. Was scared i offended you somehow. haha Friends forever!

annamanila said...


Salamat ... how nice to celebrate online.

Hope you enjoyed friday at issi. Will link you soon as i get my home dsl going again, or edgewise here in the office (ssshhhh). But I have bloghopped to you -- galing ng site!

annamanila said...


Thank you. Your greetings are still intact as far as i feel.

Am I on a roll? Well, I hope so. Am also surprised that the piece drew a lot of interest. (Dine's blog about me helped a lot too.)

But if you tried half as much as i do, you'd be on a roll too. You got lotsa interesting stuff to share, Kim. but i know you blog peripherally (like i did before). :) thanks again.

annamanila said...


You/we can play a relaxed unrated game. You can specify that in your preferences. There are many like you who just play coolly not competitively.

(sorry for late response -- my less than 20-20 vision ... i usually skip a post or two.)

Anonymous said...

This is Marthalee's sister. Thanks for writing about my sister--she's the best. Hope you have a wonderful birthday and a great year ahead. Take care, Nancy

annamanila said...

Nancy (anonymous)!

Thanks for the greetings and for reading the piece. I know what you're saying about your sis. Marthalee is the best I have met in the scrabbleclub. She's almost like a Pinay -- and i mean that in the most positive way -- :).

Peanoie said...

Happy Birthday, Maligayang Kaarawan, Feliz Cumpleano, atbp., albeit a lotta bit late. WOW! I feel like the bida of a hit movie, "Dupong and Family". Much obliged, Annrym. You da (wo)man! Just finished playing a couple games, lost both times, no big deal, but was really hoping to play with you. Wrong timing, tsk, tsk. Hope to play you soon.

annamanila said...


Thanks for the post, the greetings -- in various languages. Pero, you greeted me na in advance ah.

Sayang. Was on and off isc too. Will play you soon!

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