Oct 21 2015

What a difference a year makes

Adel Gabot


The New Frontier building in Cubao May 2014:


Same building Oct 2015:



Jan 13 2012

The Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 Debacle*

Adel Gabot

I bought a game from Data Blitz Trinoma yesterday for my new PlayStation Vita. There were only three available, and bought the most promising one: Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3. I don’t usually give truck to these FRANCHISE VS OTHER FRANCHISE fighting games, but in this case I thought I’d make an exception. The PS Vita is so new and so starved for games I thought I’d give this fighting game a whirl, just this once.

I asked the salesgirl, Anna Marie, if the game, while in Japanese, was in English as well, and she said yes. And so I bought. Later, when I get home I try it, and I’ll be damned. It was 98% in Japanese, save for the characters’ stilted banter as they fought, which was in American English. But I had to guess at my choices for the instructions and options and it was like the blind leading the blind. This wouldn’t do, so I decided to return it.

So I go there to Data Blitz Trinoma first thing this morning, and explained my situation. The salesgirl, the same one from yesterday, picked up the phone to make some calls. Many ‘passing the buck’ calls, to other stores, to technical guys, to their higher ups, and finally after so many minutes she finds the person who can make the decision to refund or not, but he’s in a meeting and can’t be disturbed. So can I go about my business for a bit and come back after a while until she gets to talk to him? Ok, I figured, it can’t hurt. I gave her 30 minutes, and went to a McDonald’s to cool my heels and get a snack.

I come back in a half an hour, and still no word from the Higher Up. In fact, there was no assurance whether or not she could talk to him that day, and rather than making me wait, could I leave my number so I can be called when the guy makes a decision whether or not I’d be given store credit? Store credit? Not a refund? The girl said it was store policy not to give refunds. most likely it would be store credit. But there was nothing else I wanted. (Well, maybe that Vita charging cradle, but that was only P795. The game cost me P2295!)

I protest. They shouldn’t have sold me the game in the first place, since it was in Japanese! And now they want to give store credit? I think not!

But it was fruitless in the end. The girl would give me the refund if it were only up to her. Why wasn’t it, anyway? Why don’t stores leave the decision for things like these up to the people in the store? Why pass the buck to higher ups who weren’t even there, who had no idea of the situation in the first place? I could argue until I was blue in the face but it would get me nowhere. The Higher Up had to make the decision whether or not to give me a refund, or, God forbid, store credit, if at all.

I had to leave the game with the salesgirl, who promised to call me as soon as she knew anything, and I had to leave Data Blitz with no game, no refund or store credit, just a signed receipt that didn’t really amount to much. If the salesgirl was transferred to a different branch or plain disappeared, I’d have jack shit. Meanwhile, I just had to go home and lick my wounds.

So much for customer service in this country.


*Reprinted in a slightly different form in Technoodling.net

Mar 15 2009

Let them eat cake

Adel Gabot

Our boys Bobby and Rico celebrated their 7th birthday yesterday! As always, they got a nice chiffon birthday cake of their own to eat (with our help). A few pics.

Bobby waits for the ceremonies to begin:


The brothers patiently wait side-by-side for more of their share of the loot from Obachama* Yoriko-san :


Can we have seconds? Please? Iye? Honto? But it’s our birthday!:


* ‘Grandma’ in Japanese.

Mar 3 2009

Funny and sexy sometimes mix…

Adel Gabot

…but not in this case.


Apatow’s Angels: Rudd, Rogen, Segel and Hill. Ugh.

From Vanity Fair, picture by Annie Leibovitz, spoofing her own original 2006 VF cover photo.