Saturday, August 30, 2008

4F '98 10th Anniversary Reunion

Finally, the most controversial, notorious, multi-awarded section in the history of 4F came together to celebrate ten fruitful years after graduating from high school in 1998. Out of the 46 in the class list, plus a good number of former classmates and honoroaries attended, along with a few significant others and wives. Our Class Beadle recorded a total of 36 attendees (27 classmates and honoraries). It was indeed a gathering of the country's best and brightest.

The night was full of reminiscing, complete with props and sounds, thanks to the iPod of Carlo and Mikko. Because of Carlo's eagerness to play all songs in his repertoire, he needed to cut short every single song in his playlist...

There was even the awarding of Sun Chips to the accomplices of the infamous Sun Chips scandal, plus chanting the unforgettable "Weeeeeeehhhhhhhh" after uttering a corny joke.

Each group was well represented: the 4:30 boys, the Gobots, the Beatles, the Vatos Locos, etc. All of them with the aim of not only seeing their former groupmates, but to relive the fun and excitement of being a member of the most talked-about 4F in Ateneo. :)

Too bad we did not see a lot of memorabilias like Ron's Icarus shirt, Carlo's Atache Case, Jomax's bottle colletion, or classic class banners, but the stories and anecdotes sure were enough to complete the class' nostalgia. It felt like we just came back from a long vacation.

Some even took it like the traditional High School Class Night! The party officially ended at 8:00 am the next day! I wasn't there to until that time, though.
The group is now planning for a repeat reunion on December, to give chance to our classmates who will visit the Philippines for the yuletide season. I hope it will be equally, if not more successful than what transpired on August 29.

Reyes, JV
Reyes, JJ
Santos, J
Santos, M
Enriquez, J
Del Rosario
De Jesus
De Dios

Cheers! Fouuuuuuuuuuuur F (high pitch)!

Thanks to Mikko, Dingdong and JP for making this event possible. :)

Sa uulitin...

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

National Museum Renovated

It's good to see that the City Government of Manila is making efforts to revitalize our museums. I passed by Burgos St. recently and saw the newly-painted walls of the National Museum:

I'm also looking forward to see more people entering the premises to see the great discoveries of our national history. If you haven't seen the world-renowned Juan Luna Masterpiece, the Spoliarium, it's about time you visit the National Museum.

People say that in order to have a good view of the future, you should know much about your past. It's about time we appreciate bits and pieces of history. Visit our museums and art galleries now!

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Inuulit na letra...

Bakit ang mga pinoy hiraaaaap na hirap mag-ulit ng mga letra? madalas kulang ang nasasabi nilang letra kapag nagbabanggit ng lugar o pangalan? Eto ang tatlong sa pinakamadalas na magkamali ang mga kababayan natin sa pagbigkas:

1. SSS - It ang pinaikling Social Security System. Bakit ang madalas kong marinig sa barker ay SS? Minsan may nakasabay ako sa MRT na mga mag-aaply ng trabaho at papunta ng Makati, binanggit ng isa: "Di pa nga ako nakakapunta ng SS eh. Kelangan daw ng ID." Bakit kailangang kulang ng isang S? hmp.

2. BBB - it ay isang lugar na Valenzuela. Isang landmark. Babaan ng mga pasahero. Pero madalas ko rin marinig ang mga tao kapag nagbabayad ng papuntang BBB ay ganito:
konduktor: Saan kayo ma'am?
pasahero: sa BB.

Sa BB?!?! O sa BBB?!?! Isang pantig lang naman ang B bakit hindi masabi?!?!

3. WWW - ito ang pinaikling world wide web. Madalas itong pagkakamali ng mga announcer sa radyo o TV, pati ng mga advertiser at guest kung gusto nilang magpapunta ng mga panauhin sa website nila. Ganito ang kadalasang sambit nila: "Sa mga interesado po sa aming produkto maaari po ninyo kaming bisitahin online sa WW.-blah-blah-.COM" Minsan sinubukan ko kung meron talagang webpage na dalawang W lang ang kailangan e. Napunta lang ako sa "Cannot Find Server" page.

Yun kaya ay madalas lang talagang pagkakamali o isang repleksyon ng katamaran ng mga kababayan natin, na pati pagbigkas ng tama ay hindi pa magawa dahil tinatamad magbanggit ng isa pang letra?!?! Nagtatanong lang.

Friday, August 22, 2008

Better luck 2012

It seems like our 15-man Philippine Team has already been depleted. In diving, we still have our last man standing, Ryan Rexel Fabriga, who will compete in the 10-meter diving event tonight, at 7 pm. But judging from the tough copetition, he would be very lucky if he exceeds the qualifying round.

Contrary to general belief, Filipinos are not atheltically challenged. In fact, we have the best athletes in the world. However, most of the sports we are good at are not included in our Olympics, like:

1. Boxing - Even if there is an olympic event in boxing, our amateur boxers train to become not as Olympic gold medalists, but to be WBA, WBC, WBF, WBO, IBA, IBO, or IBF champions. This means that we can not rely on them to bring us medals because they are professional boxers and unlike basketball, olympic boxing cannot be fielded by pros like Manny Pacquiao.

2. Bowling - it would be nice to see CJ Suarez at the olympics, but sad to say, bowling is not yet a considered sport in the olympics.

3. Chess - It would be a site to see our very own Mark Paragua compete against Kasparov in the Olympics, but unfortunately, Chess is not an olympic sport.

4. Billiards - If only Bata Reyes, Django Bustamante, Dennis Orcollo, Ronnnie Alcano or Alex Pagulayan could don the Philippine jersey at the olympics for the billiards event, we could have gotten our first golds. Unfortunately also, there is no billiards in the Olympics.

5. Wushu - Unfortunately, unlike Taekwondo, Judo, and Greco Roman Wrestling, Wushu is not yet a widely-played martial art, thus our Asian games gold medalists cannot maximize their talents in the olympics.

6. Golf - Jennifer Rosales could have a good chance in the gold medal if only this sport is an olympic event.

7. Sepak Takraw - We have the best kickers in sepak takraw, parly because we are one of the originators of the sport. But sadly, there is no such sport in the olympics.

I agree with PSC officials that if we want to get a medal in the next few olympics, there should be drastic measures to be implemented. One of the most drastic measure is the sport that we choose to play and fund. We should encourage major sports that suit the Filipino physique and talent. We have to first admit that we cannot stand a chance in one of our most favorite sports, Basketball. This is unless we find at least 4 players as tall as Yao Ming and as agile as LeBron James. But until we do, we should stop dreaming the American dream and focus on the sports that will bring more medal hopes. After all, Basketball churns out only one medal. We should start focusing on sports that do not require much height, nor physique, like:

1. Badminton - Since it is a hip sport in the Philippines lately, we could start looking for potential olympic medalists and start training them NOW.

2. Diving - Sheila Mae Perez and Ryan Rexel Fabriga should not stop training. It is a good start for the program. We have the Trace Aquatics Center in Laguna as a venue for young divers to train and practice. This does not require much height. It just requires focus, determination and grace. We are a fortunate country to be bound by water, and so there is a much greater chance that there are kids out there already trying their somersaults in one of the rocks or cliffs in beaches.

3. Shooting - Eric Ang could be just one of the many potential shooters in the Philippines. We have a lot of gun clubs in the country and they themselves can promote trap shooting as a viable sport. Again, this does not require much height, only focus and concentration, not to mention speed to pull the trigger. Also, with a high rate of hypertension in the country, pulling the trigger will not be much of an issue. :)

4. Archery - Fans of Legolas, unite! Archery, just like shooting, does not require much height or might. Our beloved aborigines are expert hunters so we should relive these moments and start training on hitting those targets.

5. Football - Unlike basketball, football does not require much strength, nor height. This is more of a competition for speed, agility, stamina, and heart. That is the main reaosn why this is more famous than Basketball. With the proven stamina and determination of Filipinos, if coupled with enough funding and hype, we shall accomplish to have our first football team in the Olympics. I think the olympics prohibits professional football players so we could have a fighting chance with the amateurs.

6. Taekwondo, Boxing, Judo - Since these sports are classified by weight, we could develop players within our desired weight class and excel. There are a lot of boxing hopefuls out there. It is just a matter of training them to become olympians first before going for the big league of pros.

7. Weightlifting - It is about time that we show that Filipinos are not just metrosexuals who simply love to trim their abs in the gym, but we are also serious lifters. If we could already match Arnold Schwarzeneger's biceps, maybe we could also train to match world standards in lifting.

8. BMX Cycling - Calling all BMX bikers out there! It's about time we take this "hobby" more seriously than just hanging out in mall parking lots. It's your chance to be an olympiad, now that BMX is already part of the olympic roster of events.

9. Rowing - As I mentioned earlier, we a fortunate enough to be bound by water. There will be no excuse for rowers not to train because they have all the venues they need. And like the other sports above, rowing does not require much height.

10. Equestrian - I think we should continue the legacy left by Mikee Cojuangco and Toni Leviste in the Asian games. If our athletes start young in equestrian, they could be good olympic standouts. We have the best horses in the world, owned by the richest people of the country. I'm sure they would lend their steeds for the sake of olympic glory.

Drastic, indeed. But if you take a closer look, a lot has already been started in these sports. All it takes is a little persuasion from the people that matter so that they could grasp the idea, and later on help in the funding of these sports towards a bigger and brighter olympics in the future. I await the day that I will get to cheer my countrymen for a gold medal event, be it on TV or live in the venue. But until then, our first olympic gold medal will continue to be an elusive dream.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Remembering Ninoy

Today marks the day that spurred a peaceful revolution that was heard around the world. It was on that fateful afternoon of August 21, 1983 when one man fell down, which led millions to stand up to fight an abusive dictatorship.

It is sad to hear that 25 years hence, fewer Filipino children know the personality and achievements of Benigno Aquino, Jr. If I were to be asked who is Ninoy, I would say that he is the very reason we are in our absolute freedom. This is to put it in the context of the younger generation, I wouldn't be able to write anything in this blog if it weren't for him. People will not be allowed to take their protests to the streets if not for him. Without him, we will not be able to enjoy the sights and sounds of The Fort, Eastwood, Metrowalk, Greenbelt, or Rockwell.

Let his memory remain in every Fillipino homes because he is the only one who had faith in saying that "The Filipino is worth dying for."

PGMA's Anger Strikes Again

I think at a time like this, PGMA's fury is acceptable. I just wished the anger had not collateral damage. Poor Malacañang workers took the brunt of PGMA's hormonal imbalance. What's worse is that this happened on a holiday! As a Malacañang close-in, it's so difficult to think that you would work on a holiday just to get scolded by no other than the President of the Republic. :)

Despite this rather usual phenomenon in Malacañang, we should never take away the main reason why all these happened. We are now in the middle of a situation where we need to defend our people against renegade groups who obviously want to sow fear in order for their demands to be met. Government should be relentless in their efforts to protect the major tenets of our state: our brothers and sisters in Mindanao caught in the crossfire, and our sovereignty being ridiculed and questioned.

We pray that the atrocities will end with a peaceful resolution.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

MILF strikes again

Let it be known by every Filipino that there is a war going on in the South. The escalation of violence followed after a series of failed peace deals between government and the MILF. Issues in Mindanao are often forgotten easily, if not taken for granted, especially for people in the Metropolis.
Let it be known that our brothers and sisters are dying in Mindanao, in this case, 41 civilians and 24 soldiers; while we are here in Manila (or other parts of the country) complaining about poor salary, stress over work, or even failed relationships and the rainy season.

Let us pray for our brethren in Mindanao, that the fighting will end and peace will prevail.
MILF attacks leave bloody trail
By Nikko Dizon, Inquirer Mindanao
Philippine Daily Inquirer

MANILA, Philippines—In a major escalation of the fighting, Moro guerrillas Monday raided five towns, spraying gunfire, hacking civilians with machetes and torching houses before withdrawing using residents as human shields in the face of a government counteroffensive.
At least 41 people, including Army Lt. Col. Angel Benitez, two soldiers and a policeman, were killed in the worst flare-up of violence since a peace deal with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) was aborted two weeks ago, military and police officials said.
Sen. Richard Gordon, chair of the Philippine National Red Cross, said 24 soldiers were killed in Monday’s battles. He did not give details and his figure was not included in the reported death toll of 41.
There were no rebel casualties reported.
The MILF fighters slipped before dawn into Kauswagan, Kolambugan, Maigo and Bacolod in Lanao del Norte and Maasim in Sarangani unleashing brazen attacks on police stations and town centers that sent thousands of residents fleeing.
enitez, a member of Philippine Military Academy Class of 1990 and incoming executive officer of the 104th Army Brigade, was ambushed along with two of his men at 5 a.m. in Kolambugan.
He was the highest ranking officer killed in the current upsurge in violence that on Sunday claimed seven lives when an Army convoy was waylaid in Lanao del Sur.
‘Killed like chickens’
At least 30 civilians were reported killed in Kolambugan.
Brig. Gen. Hilario Atendido, chief of the 102nd Army Brigade in Iligan, said 23 of the civilians were used by retreating MILF fighters as human shields before they were later slaughtered in the outskirts of Kolambugan. “They were killed like chicken,” said Atendido.
The military also reported that 50 other hostages were freed, but that about 10 remained in rebel custody.
Matilde Eballe, who was among those taken hostage but was lucky enough to escape, said four of her companions were slain while attempting to escape. Eballe suffered gunshot wounds in her right leg. Eballe, four other civilians and two soldiers were brought to a hospital in Ozamiz City.
In another part of Kolambugan, in Barangay Kulasihan, the rebels shot at houses at around 4:30 a.m. PO1 Dexter Salvacion and a companion, Ricky Sulicar, were gunned down while riding a motorcycle. Also killed in Kulasihan were a cab passenger, Ricardo Gil, and an unidentified woman.
In Kauswagan, two passengers of buses that were either torched or fired at were killed. Seven farmers also were slaughtered apparently while attempting to flee. Some of the dead were left lying on the streets for hours.
Television footage Monday showed mayhem in one smoldering village as residents ran for their lives, jumping over the fence of their houses. Burned-out vehicles littered the streets.
The rebels fired shots in the towns of Maigo and Bacolod, but there were no reports of casualties.
A force of around 80 heavily armed MILF men slipped at 2 a.m. into Maasim, a coastal town of around 50,000 people in Sarangani in another part of Mindanao. They ransacked a pharmacy and a pawnshop, set several shops ablaze and strafed buildings, said Chief Supt. Felizardo Serapio. Two civilians were killed—pedicab driver Joelito Omas and James Varon.
Declaration of war
The attacks are a “virtual declaration of war” by the MILF, Gen. Alexander Yano, chief of staff of the Armed Forces of the Philippines, told a news conference in Manila.
“It appears that several MILF sub-commanders are not controlled by the MILF leadership and just using the peace process as a blanket to launch violent attacks against the people of Mindanao,” he said.
“The AFP shall not allow this to go on,” Yano said. “We are taking military action to stop these atrocities perpetrated by the MILF.”
He said the developments were a “clear manifestation of the insincerity to the peace process of a significant portion of the MILF,” and vowed to restore law and order as quickly as possible.
Attacks not sanctioned
The MILF distanced itself from the latest attacks in Mindanao.
“Our leadership has not sanctioned these attacks. This has to stop if we can confirm the involvement of our forces,” MILF spokesperson Eid Kabalu said.
The latest attacks came a day after MILF rebels armed with 60-cal. machine guns, rocket-propelled grenades and other high-powered weapons ambushed a military convoy in Malundo, Lanao del Sur, killing four soldiers and three militiamen.
Eight other soldiers and three other militiamen were wounded in the attack.
Mayor Beltran Lumaque said in a radio interview that around 200 guerrillas swept through Kolambogan, a coastal town with a population of around 25,300, under cover of darkness Monday.
“They have taken over the business center, the rural banks, pawnshops,” Lumaque told a Manila radio station at midmorning, saying houses were on fire and many residents had fled heavy fighting in the town center. “We need reinforcements,” he said, as the shooting continued.
Priest trapped in convent
Provincial spokesperson Lyndon Calica said MILF rebels torched a police outpost and vehicles. Calica said the rebels started pulling out at noon, about nine hours after the attack, taking with them scores of hostages.
Father Regino Quijano, a cousin and her year-old baby and three students were trapped inside the Holy Cross Convent in Kolambugan for eight hours. Quijano said they heard gunfire and people shouting outside the convent and decided to stay.
“All of us are praying here in the room. We are all scared,” he said. “I hope something should be done to end this crisis, a lot of innocent people are becoming victims of this situation.”
It was only after the rebels left at around noon that Quijano and his companions went out of the convent.
Quijano said he later saw the bodies of three soldiers in the village of Pantar. Quijano also said there were six dead civilians. He identified them as Rolando Porcare, Rey Patalas, Nading Sosima, Florante Petsico, Jaime Daguan and Pedring Kabingwit.
“Everything is devastated here,” Quijano told the Philippine Daily Inquirer by phone.
Volatile situation
Brig. Gen. Jorge Segovia, acting chief of the AFP command center, said that while the military and police had taken over the areas that the MILF had occupied earlier in the day, “things are still volatile.”
“Pursuit operations are ongoing ... they still have hostages with them,” Segovia said.
The MILF signed a ceasefire agreement with Manila in 2003 which opened the way for peace talks.
However, the Supreme Court on Aug. 4 halted a deal that would have given Muslims virtual statehood in Mindanao, sparking a backlash by rebel MILF units who earlier attacked government positions and took over several dozen villages in North Cotabato. They were eventually repelled by the military with artillery and helicopter gunships.
Lt. Gen. Pedrito Cadungog, chief of the Philippine Air Force, said additional air power had been deployed in the conflict zone and that air strikes would be launched against known MILF positions.
“The strikes will be on confirmed areas where MILF members are concentrated. The areas are determined by troops on the ground. It’s [going to be] a well-coordinated air strike operation to minimize collateral damage,” Cadungog said.
With reports from Tarra Quismundo and Gil C. Cabacungan Jr., in Manila; and Aquiles Z. Zonio, Richel V. Umel, Julie S. Alipala, Ryan D. Rosauro, Grace C. Albasin and Jeoffrey Maitem, Inquirer Mindanao

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Los Baños Tornado

Video was taken by UP Los Baños student Pamela Bianca Lomaad using her camera phone, at the time when Los Baños, Laguna was struck by a tornado, which causd roofs to rip off and trees to uproot.

Capital Punishment

Just when I thought capital punishment is prohibited in the Philippines...

*Photo taken near E.Rodriguez Ave. cor. Cordillera St.

I don't know how they implement this but... Kudos to Street Justice!

(Note: Pictures were taken in an angle with partiall hidden letters for censorship purposes.)

Monday, August 11, 2008

Love Dogs?

Looking for an ideal dog? Why not consider a Dachshund?

Let me tell you the benefits of having a Dachshund as a pet:
  • They are very adaptable.

  • They are excellent pets for children.

  • They have an affectionate, delightful, playful, clownish type temperament, alert, and easy to please.
So why not own one now? I am selling my two Dachshund puppies. One is black and tan, the other is brown and tan. See the picture below.

You can get these lovable pets from me for only P6,000 each, complete with papers and a 5+1 vaccination. :)

Interested? Call or text me at 0917-6407312.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

AIG Winning Edge: Out Now!

People say that August 8, 2008 will be a lucky day for investors. Why not invest your money now?!


I am proud to announce the launch of the Third Offering of AIG Winning Edge, the country's first principal-protected variable life insurance!

Major Benefits of this product include:

Principal Protection
Protects your principal by giving you at least 100% of your initial investment at maturity

Life, Accident, & Health Insurance
Provides guaranteed life insurance protection and additional benefits in case of accidental death, disablement and/or dismemberment

International Market Participation
Provides access to worldwide markets as it allows you to participate in the potential upswing of emerging markets securities from more than 20 countries!

Fixed Term of 5 years!

Selling period is from August 8, 2008 (08/08/08) to September 9, 2008 (9/9/8).

Contact your trusted Philamlife Agent today!

PhilamlifeTel. (02) 528-5028


August 8, 2008 (08/08/08) is considered a lucky date for most Chinese bescause of the number 8's symbolic representation of growth and wealth. As the calendar strikes 8-8-8, it also marks the start of the much-awaited, highly controversial 2008 Beijing Olympic Games!

Here's a brief background on the 2008 Olympic Emblem(taken from the official website of the 2008 Beijing Olympics,

Every emblem of the Olympics tells a story. The Beijing 2008 Olympic Games emblem "Chinese Seal, Dancing Beijing" is filled with Beijing's hospitality and hopes, and carries the city's commitment to the world.

"Dancing Beijing" is a milestone of the Olympics. It serves as a classic chapter of the Olympic epic inscribed by the spirit of the Chinese nation, calligraphed by the deeper import of the ancient civilization, and molded by the character of Cathay's descendents. It is concise yet deep inside, bringing forth the city's gradual changes and development. It appears dignified yet bears a tune of romance, reflecting the nation's thoughts and emotions.

In the lead up to the Beijing 2008 Olympics, the emblem will attract more and more people from around the world to Beijing and China to join the great celebration with the Chinese people.

"Dancing Beijing" is a Chinese Seal. It is engraved with commitment made to the Olympic Movement by a country that has 56 ethnic groups and a population of 1.3 billion. While witnessing the advocacy of the Olympic Spirit by a nation with both ancient civilization and modern culture, it also unfolds a future-oriented city's pursuit of the Olympic Ideal.

It is a symbol of trust and an expression of self confidence, standing for the solemn yet sacred promise that Beijing - the host city of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games - has made to the world and to all mankind.

"Complete sincerity can affect even metal and stone (literally meaning sincerity smoothes the way to success)." The inception of our ancestors' wisdom and the image of a seal made of metal and stone allow the emblem to present

Chinese people's respect and honesty for the Olympics.
The moment we earnestly imprint the emblem with the "Chinese seal", Beijing is about to show the world a grand picture of "peace, friendship, and progress of mankind" and to strike up the passionate movement of "faster, higher, and stronger" for mankind.

"Dancing Beijing" serves as the city's foremost appearance. It is an image that shows the eastern ways of thinking and the nation's lasting appeal embodied in the Chinese characters. It is an expression that conveys the unique cultural quality and elegance of Chinese civilization.

With inspiration from the traditional Chinese art form - calligraphic art, the character "Jing" (the latter of the city's name) is developed into the form of a dancing human being, reflecting the ideal of a "New Olympics". The words

"Beijing 2008" also resembles the vivid shapes of Chinese characters in handwriting, voicing in concise strokes of the countless feelings Chinese people possess towards the Olympics.

As people ponder on the rich connotations and charms of these Chinese characters, a "New Beijing" has thus been brought forward.

"Dancing Beijing" is a favorite color of the Chinese people. The color "red" is intensively used in the emblem, pushing the passion up to a new level. It carries Chinese people's longing for luck and happiness and their explanation of life.

Red is the color of the Sun and the Holy Fire, representing life and a new beginning. Red is mind at ease, symbol of vitality, and China's blessing and invitation to the world.

"Dancing Beijing" calls upon heroes. Olympic Games functions as the stage where heroes are made known, miracles created and glories earned, and where every participant constitutes an indispensable part of the occasion.

The powerful and dynamic design of the emblem is a life poem written by all participants with their passion, affections, and enthusiasm. It is an oath every participant takes to contribute power and wisdom to the Olympics.

The emblem cheers for arts and for the Olympic heroes, who pass down the essence of the Olympic Spirit, which well connects sports and cultures.

"Dancing Beijing" extends the totem of the Chinese nation. The form of a running human being stands for the beauty and magnificence of life. Its graceful curves are like the body of a wriggling dragon, relating the past and future of one same civilization; they are like rivers, carrying the century-old history and the nation's pride; they are like veins, pulsing with vitality of life.

The intrinsic values of sports -- athlete-centered and people-oriented - are well defined and upgraded in an artistic way in "the dance of Beijing." We sing if words fail to explain it all, and we dance if the singing does not explicitly tell the meaning.

Vigorous Beijing is looking forward to the celebration in 2008 and the Olympics wait all mankind to dance together.

"Dancing Beijing" is a kind invitation. The open arms in the emblem say that China is opening its arms to welcome the rest of the world to join the Olympics, a celebration of "peace, friendship and progress of mankind."

"Is it not a joy to have friends come from afar?" The idiom portrays the feelings of friendly and hospitable Chinese people and expresses the sincerity of the city.

Come to Beijing, take a good look at the historical heritages of China's Capital city, and feel the pulse of the country's modernization;

Come, share every piece of its joy, and experience the vigor of the country;

Come, and let us together weave a peaceful and wonderful dream.

Let us support and pray for our Filipino athletes, namely:
Miguel Molina - Swimming
James Walsh - Swimming
Christel Simms - Swimming
Daniel Coakley - Swimming
Ryan Arabejo - Swimming
Harry Tañamor - Boxing
Sheila Mae Perez - Diving
Ryan Rexel Fabriga - Diving
Hidilyn Diaz - Weightlifting
Tsomlee Go - Taekwondo
Toni Rivero - Taekwondo
Henry Dagmil - Athletics
Mrestella Torres - Athletics
Mark Javier - Archery
Eric Ang - Shooting
Hopefully, one of the 15 could end the Philippines' Gold Medal drought.
Let the games begin!

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Kaiser Beer

This was the imported beer available at Munchen when I gave our new MA's a short Manila Tour. :) Good substitute for the regularly served Oettinger. Equally cloudy, equally smooth.


"Being serious does not mean being stoic." -- PMS Summer Interns, '04

Monday, August 04, 2008

The Dark Knight

A lot has been written about The Dark Knight's sudden rise to success. After topping the all-time record for US opening weekend gross ticket sales and breaking the all-time record for 2nd weekend sales (Formerly held by Spider-Man 3 and Shrek 2, respectively), The Dark Knight is now on the brink of breaking the all-time box office sales (currently held by Titanic). With the combination of excellent script, exceptional direction by Chritopher Nolan, and a powerful roster of stars led by Christian Bale as the Batman, the late great Heath Ledger as the Joker, Maggie Gyllenhaal as Rachel Dawes, Aaron Eckhart as Harvey Dent, Morgan Freeman as Lucius Fox, and Michael Caine as Alfred. I have watched the movie two times and am still planning to watch it again if given a chance.

The story of the most recent Batman has been the most realistic one. Chris Nolan was generous enough to provide the background for all the three main characters, Bruce Wayne, the Joker, and Harvey Dent. Bruce Wayne, rich and arrogant, but kind-hearted and noble inside, trying to make Gotham City a better place by being the masked vigilante Batman at night. Batman takes care of the night crime-fighting, while his alter-ego, Harvey Dent, fights crime in the morning by being the City's District Attorney. Most often people branded him as Gotham's White knight. All was well until they finally face a new breed of criminals, headed by a ruthless, nameless, psychopathic by he name of Joker. And his task was not just to wreck havoc in Gotham, but also to prove to himself and to all the people that power and justice corrupts in the most dire circumstances.

Heath Ledger played the most memorable Joker ever, if not the most memorable super-hero villain on the big screen. He mixes humor with rage and fear, making his character stick to viewers. He will make you scared, angry and laugh at the same time. This guy really deserves the posthumous Oscar award.

Filipinos are fond of watching superhero flicks like Batman. And surely, we can very much relate to the story of The Dark Knight. Our country nowadays is ruled by anger and fear, and the only hope we have rests on the White Knight icons like The Dark Knight's Harvey Dent. However, there are some people who try to scheme on noble men like what Joker and his cohorts did. Unfortunately, power and wealth corrupts, and even people as noble as Harvey Dent, if given a circumstance, may be vulnerable to such attacks. Filipinos long for superheroes like Batman, brave, noble, incorruptible. Thus, our fascination for the movie. If only we could have a Dark Knight that could help us tame the corrupt, put criminals behind bars, restore peace and justice in the streets, this country could be a better place.

Then the Dark Knight would eventually run for President, win, and people will start asking for pro-poor reforms, jobs generation, decent housing, farm-to-market roads, etc. All will be expected of him, while the Filipino populace rests at their homes playing dama, drinking red horse, making babies, etc. Then, when the Dark Knight does not deliver enough reforms, the people will then rally against him. Effigies will be burned, Mendiola will again be flooded by protesters from all over... Ooops...