where good deeds are rewarded with apples & the bad with lemons

Fork tongues & Parselmouths

Meet Nagini.

No, I am not a Snake but belong to the previous sign, the Dragon (I spit fire, not venom) which ended yesterday and won’t be back in another 11 years (but this 2013, the dragon would enjoy a year of joy and wealth). The serpent (not my twin but we get along well together because we lots of things in common) is Nagini, Voldemort’s pet, which I met in a recent trip to the Hogwart-ish town of Salem. There, I got the chance to use Parseltongue- Kemsei hotz hanihatsilvei yehs iholsiveyarks kozaich tsse. I must have said it right, Nagini agreed to have a photo with me.

These days, conversations with Snakes are easier for they have taken the human form born under the sixth sign of the Chinese Lunar Calendar. Disguised they may be, their scales and fork-tongues are recognizable thorugh their human characteristics— naturally intuitive, cunning and contemplative; private, men of few words and not outwardly emotional; mysterious, exciting and dark; thoughtful and wise; determined, ambitious and take their failures hard; sometimes egoistic and conceited; stylish, fashionable and have exceptional taste.

Famous people born in the year of the snake



 guddipoland

Imelda Marcos

people magazine

Oprah Winfrey

us magazine

Brad Pitt






The Snake’s inner and outer beauty makes it very attractive and this trait can be used to their advantage, most especially in plotting and scheming to assure things turn out exactly as they want them to.



In Tagalog, the term is “ahas”, a negative trait often personified in Pinoy drama flicks that involve a lot of crying, screaming and slapping.

This 2013, the year of the Black (financially lucky) Water Snake, I called out to the snake people via FB and they hissed back in response. I asked them these:

1.) Which of these Snake characteristics hold true to you- Acute, Aware, Cunning, Proud, Vain, Vicious.

2.) The Snake will plot and scheme to make things turn out exactly as they want them to. Who or what would this object of affection be and why?

Nikki Honasan. Traveler, Yoga instructor.


I think I’ve a little bit of everything in me, but most dominant of all these characteristics is being Aware. I observe a lot – people, my surroundings & situations. And I’m sensitive to how people are around me, which is a great advantage especially when I step into a yoga class with new students. 


We are schemers alright! But scheming has such a negative connotation when in fact it can equally be for something pleasant. I love plotting travel plans with my husband, travel buddies, family & my girlfriends, and making sure they happen. It’s fun!



Trece Villenas, wife to Josh.

I could say Proud and Vain. Proud because I find it difficult admitting I am wrong (a bad trait, I know) and saying “I am sorry”. I would rather show it thru my actions than actually uttering those three words. Vain, because how I look matters to me. I will not leave the house without make-up (lipstick, eyebrows and mascara, at least).

I have schemed and plotted to have my husband marry me. I am sure my husband did too but only in the opposite direction. Nevertheless I won. LOL.

Josh Villenas. Husband to Trece, Businessman.

Cunning, because up to now my wife does not know how many watches I really own.

I have plotted and schemed to get out of marriage but unfortunately my wife is a King Cobra and I am only a house snake…… Correction: a lowly house snake.

Riza Isaguirre. Physician.

Aware. There seems to be that innate ability to easily feel, detect and understand the emotions of people around me.

I would not say that I am scheming but more of wanting to really do everything within my ability to accomplish goals in general and at this time, to be able to work well with and help children with special needs in particular.

Enrique Romero-Salas. Instructor.

Vain because in front of a mirror I cant stop touching my face, and Aware because my job requires me to be aware of 40 kids.

I was hoping that the object would be myself, that way I would feel like I am controlling my own life the way I want things to turn out for myself.

Ivy Fernandez. Fitness Center Manager.

I am a TYPE A snake if there is such a thing – acute & aware. I am sensitive to what is going on around me, and I can somehow discern what the other person is going through.

Object of affection – of course my husband, Jay, but no matter how I scheme he just can’t be lured easily hahaha.

Quina Keel. Commander-in-Chief…at home.

Being ACUTE or intense is how I do things. I don’t do anything halfway. To be AWARE is to feel life. It’s the only way to live! To be CUNNING is always an asset. It’s a tough world out there. Being PROUD helps me be independent. To be VAIN allows me to forgive myself. And as far as being VICIOUS, well, only when absolutely necessary, and I’m sure they had it coming.

I know what I want and I just go get/do it myself. I visualize the end result and then I go for it. For example, the plan for today— cinnamon rolls. I’ve thoughtfully and lovingly made the dough with my daughter, Chessie, this morning and the rolls will be ready later today! Yummy!

Gigie Arcilla. Journalist.

Of the snake’s five characteristics, being aware is what I am — aware and cautious about threats, of other’s sensitivities. Maybe it’s a rare snake specie – one that was born in captivity. But like the snake, I get easily stressed, so calm is the order of my day.


My house is that object of affection. For years, I’ve been wanting to transform it into what I can call mine and me. I am what I live in. Yung tipong I’ll just crawl to get in and out.

Gina Quirino. Teacher.

All of the above to a certain degree, some more than others. Why? Laway (read: wala lang). That’s just the way it is.

Second question. Many objects of affection. Who? Secret.

Ronald de Castro. Administrative Officer.

Aware, Cunning and Vicious. I have a keen sense of intuition on situations and intentions of other people. With that, I can be cunning in my dealing, and if proven that they have hidden and black agenda, I am vicious.

To all my fellow serpents and brothers in the Chines zodiac cycle, Ayehass-t’ levas hos! (that’s Happy new year in Parseltongue).

For more lifestyle & travel stories, visit http://apples-and-lemons.blogspot.com/ and http://jeepneyjinggoy.blogspot.com/

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on February 10, 2013.



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