Sunday, December 28, 2008

Forecasts and Predictions for 2009

There will be a slowdown for the Philippines in 2009, economists tell us. Forecasts and predictions for 2009 are not really that bright. The US is on a recession. Europe is in danger too. Giants businesses are crumbling. A lot of people are scrambling for their lifelong earnings which could vanish with this economic turmoil. There are rumors and threats of terroristic attacks. Where do we go in 2009?

2009 is the year of the Ox in the Chinese calendar but I don't know what that means. I am not a follower of any psychic nor do I read horoscopes. Predictions are just hunches. You and I can make one. Forecasts are based on historical facts and figures, which could not be correct at all times.

But whatever the signs of the times says, I wish you all a happy and prosperous New Year! May the Lord gives us all the wisdom and the strength to overcome whatever trials and challenges 2009 may bring!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Discounts for Christmas Shopping Rush

I was at SM Mega Mall and St. Francis Square last Saturday hoping to catch up with the Christmas shopping rush and discounts from some stores . Both malls were not that crowded as I initially expected. I was able to buy a new Yonex double compartment badminton bag with 10% off and Umbro shoes at buy-one-take-one for only P1,500. I was glad to know that there are still discounts available despite the Christmas shopping rush.

At the other mall, I was able to negotiate a fair price for ladies shoes. If these shoes won't fit, then we're gonna sell them. It would be business this Christmas. I am still not finished with my shopping. I hope there would still be discounts tonight. Some bonuses just came in. I wish my wife is with me right now. But she's in Cebu and I am here alone to push carts.

I have to fly back to Cebu first flight tomorrow, and I will bring with me presents for people close to me. Merry Christmas, everyone!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Monetization of Everything

Monetize here, monetize there. When did we first learn to make money? As children we ask them from our parents. Then some monetize household activities, like asking for money in exchange for washing of the dishes, or a mere shining of dad’s shoes. No, I didn’t do that. My monetization was based on the 100% grade I received at school -- P1 for every paper that has 100%.

In our teens, we get our allowance from our parents. Some gets P50 per day, others get more. Mine was a mere P20 then in the ‘90s. I have to sell used newspaper and bottles to get some extra money during summer.

At that time we got our first job, our glee reached high heavens when we received our first ever salary, even if it’s only a minimum wage. Then our needs grew, and so are our expenses. As we earned benefits, we want some to be monetized. Like our leaves credits. We want money more than a day of relaxation with family. Some benefits or even awards, trophies and recognitions, we want converted into cash. Can we cash-in the ‘most punctual’ award? At times, we might also prefer money for gifts this Christmas. You don’t have to think high and low of kris kringle gift ideas if your kris kringle wants cash.

And as to blogging, we too joined in the monetization bandwagon. We monetized our first personal blog. We added 10 more for the same purpose of making more money. Some sacrificed quality, content and even readership because of the lure of the green bucks. (Of course there are money bloggers of the rare kind)

At the high level of politics, we suspect some moves as an attempt to make more money. The longer they stay in power, the more they get from the people. Political relationships are also monetized, like what the Illinois Governor is charged of. (So it does not only happen in the Philippines).

After everything is said and done, we are now moving towards 2009. There will be even harder times in the future. What would be your New Year’s resolution? MONETIZE even more?

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Ideas for Christmas Kris Kringle

Our office Christmas kris kringle started last week but I haven't given a gift yet. I have not received one either so it was just fair. What is that something soft and hairy? Or that something naughty?

Any ideas for Christmas kris kringle please? I have made a list for the best gifts and toys for kids this Christmas. But I could not think of what to give to my secret manita.

Sometimes I think it's better to give in cash, but it's totally tasteless to give the exact amount on exchange gift day. I remembered one Christmas when a boss of mine picked my name in the exchange gifts. The minimum was P100. Since he forgot to buy a gift, he just gave me P100 instead.

I would like to complain really. Had he tripled the amount, that would have been acceptable.

Update: I already bought something for my kris kringle. I remembered that we signed a wish list, and my staff emailed me the summary. Posting an entry about kris kringle gift ideas purges my brain to think of something.

Monday, December 08, 2008

Dream Match: Mismatch

It was a mismatch before it began, even without the stats and the belts attached to their names. Experts predicted a De La Hoya win. Hopefuls and determined fans cheered for their People Champ Manny. Some had already changed heart because the stats and the experts said that De La Hoya will teach Manny what boxing is really all about.

We watched the fight live at the Hyatt Manila. We were comfortably seated at the front row of the big screen. We watched some of the undercard fights and I got to know who Juan Manuel Lopez is and why he is a feared fighter in his weight category. His opponent, Sergio Medina, is a champ from Argentina. But he looked like a fool in the ring. Our Gerry Penalosa could do better than that. Sergio was just a scared boy.

Then we listened to Karylle as she sang the Lupang Hinirang. I know a lot were scared of an embarrassing mistake. Did she sing it correctly? Well, by now, youtube will have lots of video replays of her rendition.

Then the fight. The mismatch was very obvious: David vs Goliath. But when Manny began connecting, and Oscar missing, the crowds' cheers were getting louder. Round by round, we saw De La Hoya punished. I even thought he'd be knocked down. But he stood his ground, only to suffer more. At the end of the eighth round, Oscar learned what boxing is. The mismatch was not actually in the size, the stats or even the number of titles held. It was a mismatch in terms of real skills and of heart. Manny deserves the win!

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Pacquiao VS De La Hoya Fight Results This Weekend

The Pacquiao VS De La Hoya fight results will be known this weekend - Saturday night in the US, Sunday morning for us here in the Pacific. I know I'll be cheering for Manny then. I'll be watching live at some large screen at a location I still do not know of. But I'll post the location of where I'll watch live Pacquiao - De La Hoya dream match, once I get the details from my friend.

We all know that this is a very crucial fight for Manny. Boxing experts (except Roach and his allies) are predicting a De La Hoya win. Miracle believers, hoped for a lucky punch that could send the Golden Boy crawling on the canvass. Bettors think that, against de la Hoya, Pacquiao is a plus 155 underdog, a wager of $100 wins $155. Dela Hoya is at minus 185, which means you need to shell out $185 to win a hundred bucks.

The boys at our operations office are probably busy with their betting by now. Just some little fun, they say. I think even those who put their money on Pacquiao are also trembling. Can he win against Oscar de la Hoya? The results will be known this weekend.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Watch De La Hoya vs Pacquiao Live

Watch De La Hoya vs Pacquiao Live! I think I saw this announcement many a times in the internet. Some offered live online video streaming, and some just mentioned something like it.

For now, it is nearly impossible to watch this dream match of Pacquiao vs De La Hoya live at the MGM Grand on December 6, 2008 because all tickets were sold out two hours after they were available. Ok, perhaps there are big-time scalpers around Las Vegas. Or you may have inside pass in both camps. But for us in the Philippines, we can watch Pacquiao vs De La Hoya live on payperview, in selected movie houses and in some bars and restaurants. That is if we have P600-P1,500 to spare.

I guess a large network will air a slightly delayed coverage of the fight. I am still comfortable of knowing the results an hour or two late. But a friend inquired if I am available on this date because he will watch the fight live. Since I will be in Manila at that time and nothing to do on weekends, I said yes.

So for P900 we’re gonna watch the fight live. I’m not sure where it is gonna be as he has not sent me any details yet. I just hope that Oscar will not put Manny on a stretcher at the end of the fight. I’d like to see it the other way around, live on the large screen.

Friday, November 21, 2008

E=MC2 And Einstein's Hairstyle

Even without posting a picture, I'm sure you know who Albert Einstein is. But I think that ordinary people can better identify him by his hairstyle as compared to his theory of relativity.

Here's an excerpt from Yahoo:

e=mc2: 103 years later, Einstein's proven right

PARIS (AFP) – It's taken more than a century, but Einstein's celebrated formula e=mc2 has finally been corroborated, thanks to a heroic computational effort by French, German and Hungarian physicists.

read the full entry here>>>>

I don't know if it is good news or bad news, or anything that will benefit mankind. But I know that science still has a lot of exploring to do.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Gahapon Kami Nagasaulog

Gahapon kami nagasaulog
Sa duha ka mga panghitabo
Nga angayan ikalipay nining
Ubos ug uyamot ninyong igsoon.

Tukma sa adlawng natawhan,
Duna’y maayong balita
Nga kuno nakab-ot na
Ang gisaad nga promosyon.

Gahapon kami nagsaulog,
Apan uban na usab ang panamilit
Kay ang Sugbo ako ng biyaan
Ug ugma lupad na ako padulong sa Maynila.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Plenty of Fish

No, this is not about the dating website that earned record-breaking adsense earnings. This post is about fishing, our new-found hobby. I think me and my wife are already addicted to fishing.

Here are some pics of our catch the other Sunday and yesterday (2.75 kgs).

Plenty of fish, Fishing in Cebu Our catch last weekend

Plenty of Fish, BangusOur catch yesterday

Everytime we go fishing we aim at catching the biggest haul of our lives. We usually start at around 230pm and end at 600pm. Our gears are a couple of fishing rods with reel, line, floater, swivel, hooks and bait made of dough. The others who join us would settle for the rented bamboo rod. But having a special rod is not a guarantee of a catch. My latest fiberglass rod still has zero catch in 5 outings.

Don’t ask me how to catch fish. Even though my dad’s family lived near the sea, and survived with the produce of the sea, I am a product of the city. So fishing is just a hobby for us. Even the others, with the crudest of instrument, are better than me in catching fish.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Come, Join Us In Our Feast

Feeding, Leftover Thoughts

Some people are so kind-hearted to share a portion of their wealth to those who are needy. May they grow in number and may they influence more people to share and bring these kids out from poverty.

(photo was taken during another feeding program organized by my wife last August)

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

CPA Board Exam Results, Again

The latest CPA board exam results can be found here: October 2008 CPA Board Exam Results.

My congratulations to the new Certified Public Accountants!

Friday, October 17, 2008

Smile, Kiddo

I'm just gonna share to you this pic at one of our feeding activities at a dumpsite in the city where I live.

This child, despite the mucus falling from his nose, managed to let out a smile while enjoying his meal.

Monday, October 13, 2008

I Got A New Pair Of Badminton Shoes

I don't keep plenty pairs of shoes. I usually only have one good pair for work, and another pair for recreation. I don't usually buy a replacement unless the other is totally worn-out.

My SOTX badminton shoes which I bought sometime in early 2006 is in such a bad shape since late last year. I talked of buying a new pair but I kept on procrastinating. My playing days have reduced from twice a week to once every two weeks this year, so I thought putting off the purchase for a while is justifiable.

SOTX Badminton Shoes
But my shoes had it's way of telling me of letting it retire. The leather and the rubber opened up making it difficult for me to move. So, I finally decided to buy a new pair. But what brand, what type?

For those of you who knows nothing about badminton shoes, these type of shoes are common these days. They are basically gum-soled (yellowish color), non-marking, and great for indoor sports. Most badminton courts require that you wear badminton shoes when you play on their courts. This is to protect the specialized mats and of course, to protect the players. You can easily slip in the taraflex mats if you don't use gum-soled shoes. These soles are great for those quick steps, stops and turns while playing.

But it took me probably a hundred visits to the various shoe stores in Cebu before I actually bought one: A Mizuno. I hope this pair of new shoes help me get back to playing badminton again. I miss playing in the tournaments.

Mizuno Badminton Shoes

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Blog Visits and Other Stats

Even I myself failed to regularly visit this blog. Looking at my Feedjit (at the bottom of my right sidebar), the visitors are mostly from Google, searchers who could not be bloggers. I did not enter this site in entrecard, so I miss 20-30 possible blog visitors daily from that community. I checked my Sitemeter. The number of visits had indeed halved. From a high of 1k visits in January to an average of 400 visits these last four months. My other site is receiving more than 3k visitors a month, these last 6 months.

My posts had become rare too. For the month of September, I only had two short posts. In July and August, I had four for each month. It seemed that my focus had been in my other sites; the updates, the commenting strategies, the SEO, the promotions, etc… Too many blogs to maintain, too short a time to blog.

There are no most paid posts here unlike before. Blog income had significantly reduced and or nil. Now that my PR is back, it doesn’t mean that I’ll fill this blog with paid posts again. I think am already done with that. On the other hand, my Alexa rank is somewhere at 3.9M. That is a very low rank! By gaining more visitors, Alexa rank will also improve. It is only I who is to be blamed for the decrease of my blog visits and other stats.

I also logged out from MyBlogLog, hence, if you have the widget installed, you will not find me when I visit your site. Also, you will rarely find me commenting more often in your blogs these days. Perhaps I did so using another name and with a link to another site. Or if you had that entrecard widget, I must have dropped a card. But I did visit a few blogs in my blogroll and read entries covering for months. I really missed a lot.

For this month of October, expect that I’d visit all the blogs in my blogroll at least once. Some had already de-linked me but that is fine. We often forget past friendships. I’m gonna cleanse my blogroll too, along with the annoying widgets that slows down loading time. But, hey, I’m still around blogging. If you’d like to follow my other blog as well, visit this link. I announced this in the past, but perhaps you just missed it.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

A Belated Congratulations

Upon learning of the results of the 2008 Philippine Blog Awards a couple of weeks ago, I was just too happy to see very familiar blogs. These blogs are in my blogroll for many many months now.

Friends, bloghoppers, or whoever you are reading this post, let me introduce to you 3 award winning bloggers:

Best Blog – Family and Living
The D Spot – by Dine Racoma

Dine Racoma is Sexy Mom, a Filipina doing what she likes best—writing, her passion. She writes freelance, does research, advises on new media, and manages a virtual assistance office for home-based jobs. A mother of 7 (what joy!) foremost, a wife, MIL, grandma to 2 pretty girls and an angel in heaven, sister, daughter, friend. Was in the corporate world for 27 years, the first 5 as Executive Secretary to an affiliate of the country’s biggest drug chain, and the last 22 as an international civil servant in an international development bank with HQ in Manila. Traveled extensively to many countries bringing about rich experiences and lessons learned to share with dear Readers. All these—in The D Spot. (from the About page) Her blog was also one of the top 10 emerging influential bloggers in 2007.

Best Blog - Travel
Ironwulf.Net: En Route – by Ferdz Deceña

Ferdinand Deceña is a travel photographer and award-winning blogger. A graduate of Fine Arts, Major in Advertising at the Far Eastern University, he got started on film photography during his college years. He worked as a graphic artist and web designer for three years, pursuing photography as a hobby. (from the About page)

He was also a finalist of the same category and in the Best Blog Design in last year’s Philippine Blog Awards.

Best Blog – Arts and Culture
Gibbs Cadiz – by Gibbs Cadiz

Gibbs Cadiz is a prolific writer and currently a Desk Editor for the Lifestyle section of the Philippine Daily Inquirer. In 2007, along with the D Spot, his blog was awarded as one of the top 10 influential bloggers. He writes mostly about theater shows and productions but he also posts some personal entries. He was also a finalist in the Fashion and Lifestyle category of 2007 edition.

Go check out these bloggers. I’m sure you’ll truly agree that they deserve the awards. My congratulations to you Sexy Mom, Ferdz and Gibbs!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

How Can I Leave Cebu?

How can I leave Cebu? As I've said before, I'm not good at moving, and specially if I leave behind people close to my heart.

The first day of September would have been the appointed day. But I had some doubts as to the intent of this move. I too doubted my own intent, having formed so many alternative plans in my mind. This is a challenge ahead of me, I kept repeating that to myself. And I really wanted to believe that.

So I had my annual medical checkup middle of August There was a not so good news from the doctor, and I was given some prescription medicines. At 32, I should not have these cholesterol and uric acid levels. I emailed my bosses citing medical problems and buying some more time to delay my transfer. There were also other matters, both work and personal, to attend to.

They said it's fine, and were not in a hurry too. Ok, I felt relieved, but as the day nears, I really don't feel comfortable anymore.

The first time I left Cebu for a period longer than 6 months was when I was 5. I spent my first grade in a remote baranggay in Mindanao. I remembered how I missed my parents and my sisters. I cried almost every night on the first few weeks. I really wanted to quit school and return to Cebu. My wish was not granted. I stayed on and finished the first grade before moving back to Cebu.

At this time, I know that I should be ready and that Cebu is just a temporary dwelling. If I want to become a global citizen I should look beyond my hometown, and consider relocation as a normal event of existence. When asked by my friends and colleagues about my impeding transfer, I just smiled and said, "I'll be there in due time.".

A long time friend and mentor of mine said these words that pierced deep into me. "Whereever you will be, just continue to let your light shine and be a blessing to others."

Monday, September 01, 2008

September Once More

I would have been in a new office today. But thank God it didn't happen too soon. I am still here in Cebu and would probably be here till I don't know when. Or when some hand would lead me overseas.

Two years ago, I wrote something about September. This month of the year is really something for me.

Ok, so it's September once more. Probably it's time to reflect on 2008 and plan for 2009 at this early. Nah, I'll just greet you all in advance, "Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!"

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Skipping Tomorrow

Sometimes I'd like to skip some portions of tomorrow, like in a time travel, or into a time warp. I just want to close my eyes and sleep, then wake up a year from now.

I don't know if I am alone with this feeling. But it's simply what I feel like now as the days are approaching. Part of me wants to stay, part of me wants the challenge, and another part of me wants to go somewhere else.

Wisdom and courage, I seek from Thee Oh, LORD!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

US vs China in the 2008 Beijing Olympics

The others should give up dreaming of landing at the top two in this 2008 Beijing Olympics. It's now US vs China. Currently, China is on the lead with 43-14-19, Gold-silver-bronze medals. US is in far second at 26-26-27, but still leads in medal total. In determining the winner, we all know that it's the number of gold that counts.

But there are so many who complained about the judging and all sorts of accusations. Here are some of them:

1. Obscure tie-break system in judging (particularly in the gymnastics)
2. Titanium robots as divers (i read this in a comment in another blog featured at yahoo)
3. Underage gymnasts (looks like the chinese are really underaged. Or they are just cute.)

There was even one medal count table which displays the rankings based on the number of medals won. Of course, it's the US on top. But it won't be for long. And when you browse on some sites and blogs that features the Olympics, it's mostly the US athletes on the front page. Michael Phelps won 8 golds alright. And it can't be disputed. But there are really sour-graping posts.

As to the judging, it is a fact that judges are prone to errors. But they are the best people for the job. In boxing, the best way to avoid biased judging is to knock out the opponent. But I don't know how they do it in gymnastics, diving, and other sports which are won by judges scores.

And where is the Philippines in the 2008 Beijing Olympics medal standings? As of today, we are nowhere in the table. Let's better be spectators to the two world superpower in sports. Their rivalry is fun to follow. I hope the politicians will not involve theirselves here.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Leftover Thoughts on Google Search

Leftover Thoughts in blogspot had been in the top of SERP since a long time, even topping the one with the dotcom. There was no SEO involved. Just plain and natural link-building and blog content.

Today, in my curiosity, I peeped at Google search to find my site at no.3. There are 2.6M results in Google for that particular keyword, but since it's not something that is marketable, no one probably optimized it, because the one with the dotcom is now on top.

The wikipedia entry on SEO says
“Search engine optimization (SEO) is the process of improving the volume and quality of traffic to a web site from search engines via "natural" ("organic" or "algorithmic") search results for targeted keywords. Usually, the earlier a site is presented in the search results or the higher it "ranks", the more searchers will visit that site. SEO can also target different kinds of search, including image search, local search, and industry-specific vertical search engines.”

One way of going high in the search engines is to include your keyword of choice in your URL, i.e. your domain name. So, if you want your name to be easily searched, buy a domain name with your name in it. There's some bragging rights to be on top. For marketable keywords, there's plenty of money for it.

But it does not really end with the domain name. There are other techniques required to further bolster one's position. To bring this site back on top, I have to apply some techniques for leftover thoughts. I hope this works, because no one really knows the mind (algorithm) of Google.

For those who would like to experiment on SEO, there's a local contest going on around: Cebu SEO Contest. The web is rich with resources on SEO and all you have to do is research.

Thursday, August 07, 2008

It's Bowling Season Again

It's bowling season once again and our company team will compete against other teams starting tonight. The last tournament, we were the fourth worst team. I even feared disbandment after that losing season. But we were given another lease of life as the budget was approved. And we have five new faces on our team.

We had our practice last Monday and my 1st and 3rd game were pretty bad. I couldn't hit those spares. The new players were doing great. A colleague of mine who is new to bowling and to the team, asked why we have special balls when there are plenty of house balls. I told him that players have special needs and these special balls are designed for it. For example, the reactive balls are good for players who threw curve balls, from the side then to the center. In my experience, my highest score of 228 (one time tsamba) was made possible by those reactive balls.

It's already a long time since I breached 200. My average even dropped to 140 the last tournament. How I wish I can play more often but rentals is getting very expensive. Though I now have my own bowling balls, I still lacked practice and consistency.

Wish us all the best for tonight. This is my last season for our Cebu team as my transfer will effect next month. The tournament will run till November so I won't be playing in most games.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Another Page Rank Update in 2008

The following is a short post of Matt Cutts, the famous Google guy, in his blog dated July 24, 2008:

Hey folks, I wanted to let you know that new toolbar PageRank values should become visible over the next few days. I’m expecting that also in the next few days that we’ll be expiring some older penalties on websites.

Really? I am anxiously waiting for this. I am not sure if I can regain my PR4, but I would gladly welcome anything green in my pagerank toolbar. The last update was a disappointment for this blog. I got a PR2 after penaltization. But everything was taken away in the last update. So, despite all the backlinks I got, my PR is nil.

You see, I haven't been posting money-making reviews here for quite a long time. I've not been logging in at the paid post sites, even almost forgetting my passwords. My paypal account is almost zero, as I used my earnings to buy domains and webhosting.

But if Google would not restore my PR, so be it. I'll blog on anyway.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Relocation Woes

I surveyed the map of Metro Manila. I checked the places I've been to. Monumento, SM North, Navotas, Sucat, Mall of Asia, SM Megamall, GreenHills, Makati, Tutuban and Luneta. I let my fingers run the streets and highways. From this point to that took me 40 minutes in a taxi. Here to there, took an hour.

Some things I'm considering when I'll look for a place to live in that big city. I know I should start looking by now. In a few weeks, I have to relocate. The house/apartment doesn't have to be big. Just enough for me and my wife. A garage is a must, or just any available parking space. Since I don't wake up early, I should find a place that can be traveled within 30 minutes from my workplace. It will probably be within the Parañaque and Las Piñas areas.

As to the budget, we don't really have a large budget for relocation. I rechecked our policies and it's really a small amount compared to what was mentioned by a friend who works for another company and is also going to be reassigned in Manila. Of course, we are in different industries.

I am not really good at moving. Perhaps this one is a good experience for us. I'm just thinking positively here.

Friday, July 11, 2008

A Bigger Challenge Ahead

There is a bigger challenge ahead of me. Careerwise, this is good. And my knees were not shaken, nor my heart beating fast when I first heard of the news, though informally. So many things/ideas/plans are swirling in my head right now. Plans here, plans there. These could not be another crossroad. I see myself as a catalyst for change, someone who comes from the outside, though basically from the inside. This could be a 'make or break' for me. I know it won't be easy.

I also have to relocate to a place I've been to many times but have not learned to fall in love with. My wife will join me a month after. That what she said but reluctant to actually transfer. "If it's a transfer then we'd better go abroad" she once said. She's a nurse, and I am a CPA. Plenty of foreign countries need us and are willing to pay more.

It's not that I don't want to go abroad. I want to. But we just have to wait for a little time. And there is a bigger challenge ahead of me now. May God give me the strength and wisdom!

Monday, July 07, 2008

Rafael Nadal Wins Wimbledon 2008

Rafael Nadal, the 22 year-old world no. 2 wins over the 5-time and current world no.1 Roger Federer in the finals of the 2008 Wimbledon Tennis. Rafa pushed Federer to the extremes from the start and lead 2-0. He broke the champion’s winning streak record and attempt to make it six in a row at the prestigious grass venue.

The game was suspended at 5-5 in the third set. I was glued in my set at aunt’s house at almost midnight. My wife was all smiles as she was cheering for Rafa. Oh, not that she’s a fan. She just wanted to take side on every opponent of my bet. Last night, I believed she got converted.

I was kind of frustrated at the many mistakes of Roger. I can also see frustration in his reactions. So many easy net shots went awry. He failed to convert many of the break points. Though it was obvious that Rafa always appeared stunned when Roger serves, the later was not able to break his opponent’s serves.

We went home at around midnight but I was not yet finished. I opened my laptop and immediately visited Wimbledon’s website. The game resumed many minutes after. I was also browsing other sites while waiting for scores updates. It was tied 6-all at the fourth set when I closed my laptop. I was too sleepy then and it seems that the game was halted for the second time. I slept hoping that Roger will survive another set.

As I was about to dress up for work this morning, my wife asked me about the results of the Wimbledon Finals. I forced myself to open my laptop. I was excited too expecting Roger to win. But I was disappointed to know that Wimbledon has a new champion.

The game was the longest in Wimbledon's history at 4 hours and 48 minutes. It also kind of repeat Bjorn Borg's stop of his 5-year winning streak. Final results: Nadal wins 6-4; 6-4; 6-7; 6-7; 9-7.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Sunday Lethal Combination

It's another war of the fists! I'm sure all of us Filipinos are waiting for the Pacquiao vs Diaz fight results come Sunday. This is just a temporary break to the problems this country is facing right now. Think about the victims of the typhoon Frank, the lost lives of the Princess of the Stars and 8 other vessels, those who died of the flood in the Iloilo area, the rising prices of rice and fuel, and the various unsolved murders.

I don't know. It seems like we are all seeking for a hero somewhere. He couldn't stop typhoons and rising inflation rates, but at least he gives us something to be proud of - even just in the world of boxing. If Pacquiao wins, let's not get lost in the euphoria. We still have suffering brothers and sisters.

If you are in Cebu, you can watch live feed at SM Cinema. Reserved seats are sold at P500 and P400 pesos. One can also go to Club Ultima, that high-rise structure near Fuente Osmeña. Or the cheapest that I gathered is the eat-all-you-can offer of Royal Concourse in Gorordo Cebu. Only for P298. Or if you have a large TV and cable subscription, you can buy pay-per-view from your cable operator. Gather all your friends, and prepare a feast.

Oh well, these are just suggestions! But don't forget that Sunday is church day!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Make Money With Bloggerwave

It has been a while since I made a post of something like this. Perhaps these last few months, after the Google penalization, my interest probably dwindled. But I'm not quitting. As you know, there are plenty of money-making opportunities a blogger can take part in the blogosphere.

One of which is by joining Bloggerwave, an advertising company that aims to be Europe's biggest advertising media on blogs. Blog and make money. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Frank's Fury Sank 9 Vessels

....left hundreds dead, 700 more missing and flooded many areas nationwide.

I received an email from a yahoo group the passengers' manifest and the crew list of the ill-fated Sulpicio Lines Vessel, Princess of the Stars. I told an officemate if he wants that list and post it his blog. It sent shiver to his spines. "No, no" he said.

Our office also received memos that some of our branches will have no operation for at least three days because of flooding. Affected were offices in Zamboanga, Kalibo and Cotabato.

An officemate got stranded in Tacloban over the weekend. Here in Cebu, we also experienced strong winds. A wedding, which my wife coordinated last Saturday, pushed through despite the bad weather. The garden wedding set-up at Busay Hills was aborted. Good thing the venue has a covered area, and everything went smoothly, well except, of course the winds outside the venue.

Oh yeah, another typhoon! Another of nature's wrath that claimed many lives. But why did the responsible government agencies allow vessels to sail despite the turmoil? We'll be expecting another senate investigation on this.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Fathers' Day Post

This is supposed to be posted yesterday, Fathers’ Day. I think I have written enough pieces here in my blog about my father. I’ll just dig my archives and give you the links if you like to read them. These are his tales and stories, unbelievable sometimes. But I’ll let you be the judge. He insists that these are true.

1. Introduction to my Fathers’ Tales - My father even has a story about his birth.
2. The Magical Stone - This is a story about his precious find but an aunt took it and kept the thing for herself.
3. My Stubbornness Saved My Mother – This is an incident his mother will never forget.
4. Adventures in Kiamba – He spent some time with his uncle’s family in Kiamba, Saranggani. There his adventures continued.
5. A Goodbye from A Departed – When he was young, he and his grandfather swore among themselves that whoever leaves his earthly body first, shall have to say goodbye to the remaining one.
6. The Library: A Love Story – How he met my mom.

I still have plenty of his stories that remain unwritten. The following are the possible titles:

1. The Black Prayer Booklet – His grandma left a black prayer booklet containing Latin chants, just before she died. A cousin confessed that he kept it.
2. Chased by a Tikbalang – He and his cousins were chased by a Tikbalang.
3. A Ride With a Magical Horse – This is a story of a city boy who was invited to a town fiesta.
4. On the Brink of Assassination – He almost died at the hands of the NPA while visiting a brother-in-law in Davao.
5. The Underground Route from Cebu to Negros – An old man emerged from a cave and asked around for people who died decades earlier.
6. The Bullet-Proof soldier – This is a tale of his aunt’s bro-in-law who is said to have powers. His death was blamed on his aunt.
7. The Headless Horseman - A headless horseman roams the road near the cemetery.

Maybe one of these days I’d publish a volume of his stories. I already wrote a short story version of the Magical Stone and My Stubbornness Saved My Mother. I'll make it a goal to complete it by 2010, including a Cebuano version of these tales.

Monday, June 09, 2008

Today I Played Pingpong

There are so many sports I played since I was kid. One of these is pingpong. I was in elementary when I first got hold of a pingpong racket. I can still picture the place where we played and how I returned the ball to my opponent, which was similar to my badminton lob. Of course I lost that game.

But I improved my game three years later when a neighbor bought a pingpong table and some kids from the neighborhood were lining up to play. My neighbors just designed and made their own rackets. I bought the cheapest one. There was a time when an adult ruled the table. But after a few months, another kid ruled. Then I had my time too of being the best in the neighborhod.

But in school, there were other better players. So I was not able to make the cut for the intrams. Besides, I was already a badminton player.

Last month, my wife's uncle bought a pingpong table hoping to encourage his son to play the game. He used to be a mainstay of the pingpong team when he was in the Philippine airforce. His father and brothers also played pingpong when they were young. But his son prefers the computer. Uncle asked my wife if I play pinpong. When my wife told me about it, I immediately bought a new racket.

Then the rivalry began. In our previous encounters, I usually win by large margins, 10-2, 11-3 but today, he was even ahead 8-6. Good thing I made some adjustments and took the next five games. So today, the score is 11-8. At 57, uncle is still a very good player, and I cannot keep up with his stamina. I have to call a time out a couple of times to rest and drink water.

After the game, he told me to return next Sunday. It would be another hell of a pingpong battle next time.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

From Cebu To Manila

I was here in Manila three days last week. And now, I'm here again. I was here since Monday. Tomorrow I'll fly back to Cebu, but I'll be back here again on Tuesday next week for another meeting. You know, Manila is only an hour plane ride away from Cebu.

I usually take the 6AM Cebu Pacific flight. It means that I have to be at the Cebu airport before 5:15AM. But last week, I had my flight scheduled at 445am. My boss was even kidding me, "Are you sure you'd wake up in time so that will not miss your flight?" I nodded and confidently replied, "I had never missed a flight."

So the night before, I had everything readied. I set my cellphone to alarm at 3AM. I also did the same to my wife's phone. Two loud ringing phones just to be sure. It was almost 1AM when we dozed off.

I had a very good sleep, until I remembered my flight. The first thing that I did was to grab my cellphone. Wow! The clock says it's already 4AM. The cut-off is 45 minutes prior to departure. I rushed to the shower. But when the flowing water hit my face, I was like being hit in the head by a baseball bat. I complained to my wife and she just told me to relax. Relax? I'd miss my flight.

In 10 minutes, I was already waiting for a taxi. "Your fastest run to the airport" I told the taxi driver. It was more of a demand. He obliged and in ten minutes, we arrived at the domestic airport. I checked the airport clock. It's 420AM. I ran to the check-in counter and handed in my ticket. I was silently praying. I didn't bring enough cash in case I had to pay for a rebooking. I heard from the loud speakers that our flight is now boarding. "Did I miss my flight?"

I checked the boarding pass. I'm in the 445am flight! I called up my wife to report the good news. She said she was praying for me. I slightly massaged my forehead and took a deep breath. I didn't miss my flight alright, but I suffered from a severe headache and some body cramps that whole day.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Still Nothing For Chelsea

Forgive me if you don’t know what my title is all about. The Chelsea I am referring to is not a name of a girl or that of Miss Clinton. If you have read my sports archives, you will know what I mean.

11 pm last night I browsed the sports channel in my hotel room here in Taft, (Yep, I’m in Manila since yesterday), looking for the schedule of the Finals game between Manchester United and Chelsea FC, two leading football clubs in England. It’s an all-English finals for Europe’s elite club tournament, the Champions’ League. It’s really very ironic. Two English clubs, one is majority owned by an American, the other by a Russian. They battled in Moscow. Despite their clubs’ strength, England will not be seen in Euro 2008 next month. Their national team failed the cut. So sad!

I woke up 2am and turned on the TV. I was just in time to watch my Chelsea team tormented by Ronaldo’s header that found its way to the goal. Just before half time, Lampard found the net to level the score at 1-1. I turned the TV off at half-time and slept. But my mind wandered into a deep sleep that I missed the whole second half and the extensions after that. By the time I pushed the button, it was already towards the end of the 30-minute final extension, and the score still tied at 1-1. It went into a more exciting finale, a kick-out.

I thought it was the end of Man U when their superstar, Cristiano Ronaldo, failed to convert. At four all, everyone’s eyes were on John Terry, the Chelsea and England Captain. If his shot will go in, Chelsea will be a first time Champ. I was so confident that he’d deliver, but his ball missed the entire goal. Abramovich, the team’s Russian owner, could have had a heart attack at the owners’ box. He couldn’t believe what he just saw. Two more United players found the net, but Chelsea’s rarely used Anelka, had his ball blocked by Man U’s supergoalie.

It’s the end of Chelsea. Four times of reaching the semis in the past, and now the finals, this one should have been tailored fit for them. Yet they failed. They have not won any trophy this season, they failed to defend their titles, they lost their fiery coach earlier in the season, and they could lose more fans.

I am just happy for Manchester United. They deserve to win both the English Premier League and the Champions’ League this season. Cristiano Ronaldo is awesome too. The young Portuguese is truly deserving of all the awards he won. Had they lost, his miss on the box would have been remembered forever. I can also cheer for the team, since they are one of my top 5 faves. Cheers to Manchester United! Still nothing for Chelsea!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

From The Archives

In the past, when I hop into a blogsite (a personal one) for the first time, I usually read the latest 2 or 3 posts and then crawl to the first post. I’d like to read how the blogger started out. I also like to dig into the archives if a title interests me. I don't hop and leave. I read and comment too. I don’t comment on long past post because the author might not be able to notice it. Comments are only reserved to the latest 5 posts. But it’s just me. My commenting practice may not be the same as yours.

And if you visit here, maybe you’d only read the latest post or whatever is shown on the first page. But if you’d like to read some of my past posts, I’d refer you to 15 out of my 280 posts. These are not really my best posts, but these got the most interactions from my readers.

1. Hit List – This is about an experience me and my wife encountered while getting our NBI clearance.
2. Oh When I Was In love With You – Young love that changed the behavior of a young man.
3. The Way We Blog – This is my second year anniversary post. It kind of reflects my own blogging experiences for the past two years
4. I am A Cebuano Blogger - The post declaring myself a cebuano blogger.
5. The Problogging Experience - 25 things I learned in blog monetization.
6. Nothing – Writers' block? I just wrote about nothing, when I had nothing to write
7. Where’s The Eject Button? - Sometimes, we want to get rid of people out from our lives. But later on, we realize that they play a very important role in shaping us.
8. Old friends – I was just reminiscing my childhood friends.
9. A year Ago - My first anniversary post, and the reasons why I blog.
10. Prom Night – My first time experience of JS Prom. I escaped from my partner. Crazy me!
11. Lovers And Friends – This is just some love stories.
12. Stained Gift - I sincerely thanked the friend who gave me a gift not knowing that it has stains on it.
13. Termites and Troubles - Termites ate away 6 steps of our stairs.
14. The Library: A Love Story – It's my own dad's love story and how he met my mom.
15. Bold As A Bear - It’s about my classmate who was kicked out in high school, but fared excellently after that experience.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

A Surprise For Mama On Mothers’ Day

As of today, I still don’t know what to give to my mom and to my mother-in-law this Mothers’ Day. I am thinking (even blogging) of a surprise for her. What should I give her? came up with a list of 9 Worthwhile Mothers’ Day Surprises. Here they are:

1. Create a photo album of old memories
2. Make a tribute video
3. Offer her some spa treatment
4. Plan a weekend getaway for her
5. Take her out for a private, formal dinner
6. Make her dinner
7. Enroll her in an interesting class
8. Help around the house
9. Buy her a gift

We don’t have that much pictures and we don’t have videos either so items 1 and 2 are out. Though it’s a very creative idea, I just lack the resources right now. Mom is not into some beauty treatment and she will not go to a weekend getaway without dad. Taking her out to a formal dinner would not work as she might complain of the exorbitant food prices. To make her dinner may work. I’ll do that for mom-in-law, as she lives very near to us. No. 7 will not work because there is no interesting class that I know of. Helping around the house, is good only at that time when we were teens. And mom won’t appreciate it since she expects us to help all year round.

So, I’m left with number 9. I’ll buy her a gift, probably a bouquet of flowers arranged by my wife. But throughout these years, my mom would always prefer time spent with her than any other gifts we can afford.

Yeah, that precious time, is better than diamonds for Mama. Happy Mothers' Day to my mom and to all the mothers in this world. May 11 is Mothers' Day.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Of Kids' Summer Camps

Not so long ago, I looked up to summer with much anticipation. You know the feeling when school’s out, and you don’t have to wake up early everyday. But there is a particular week that I really looked forward to: It is the Kids’ Summer Camps.

It is the time of the year for kids to troop to our campsite in the hills. I grew up with these kinds of camps organized by our church denomination. During schooldays, I make it a point to drop a peso a day at my piggybank just to save for this event. The savings may not be enough, but add to the points I earned at Sunday School, my camp fee is secure.

I was eight years old when I first joined a kids’ camp. I was quite a shy kid. But since my dad is quite popular among the camp counselors and organizers, I always get their attention, despite my efforts of ducking low. In groupings, I don’t volunteer to lead because there are other older kids around. But I always got picked whenever there were Bible quizzes and Bible Drills around. It’s almost automatic that I got to be the group’s representative. In my 3 years of attending kids’ camps, I got so many awards to boast of. And I can always narrate to kids at church nowadays about the excitement and the fun of these summer camps.

I really miss those summer camps. It’s the time of the year when I get to learn many things and meet new friends. I can just recall those lovely days, and how behave we were in the few months that follow.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Kalami Sa Inun-unan (Ang Sarap Ng Paksiw)

(This Post Can Only Be Understood By Cebuanos and most Visayans)

Daghan kaayong mga panahon nga magsige na lang mi kaon ug karneng baboy, mao nga mailhan kaayo sa among lawas nga tambok. Niwang ra man unta mi sa una apan karon pwerte na mang dagkoa. Makapaminghoy usahay kay bisan ug pagsaka sa hagdan, maghangos na intawon.

Ingon akong amigo nga maayo sad nga mokaon na lang ta ug isda para dili manambok. Ug tinoud gyud, nagsige na lang pud mi ug palit ug isda. Barongoy lang nga gagmay kay barato ra. Tag singkwenta ra ang kilo didto sa may eskina.

Apan usahay maglalis mi sa akong asawa unsaon pagluto sa isda. Usahay pinirito, inun-unan, eskabetse, steamed ug uban pa. Pero ang amo gyung kalalisan kay unsaon pag un-on sa isda. Simple lang gyud ang akong istilo. Suka, tubig, asin ug ahos. Binisaya lagi kaayo unya parat sad ug gamay. Pero ang akong asawa kay duganga pa gyud niya ug asukar. Naa ba go’y inun-unan nga inasukaran? Matod niya, mao sad na iya style. Busa para wala’y gubot, si nanay na lang amo paluto-on. Nagkahiusa mi pag-uyon nga lami mo un-on si nanay.

Inun-unan ko kagabii, inun-unan sad ako pamahaw. Ug basin unya, inun-unan na pud. Tungod sa kalami, di gihapon mi ani mangniwang kay hurot man gyud kanunay ang bahaw.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Photographing Summer

Two of my friends recently bought DSLR cameras. One locally procured a Nikon D40 and he is currently enjoying his newfound hobby by going out with other enthusiasts. Summer is currently his photography subject.

Another friend bought from ebay a Sigma DSLR camera. It cost him a little under P40k and last night he showed me his week-old toy. "Wow!" was all I said to him abiut his gadget. We discussed of plans to go out and photograph summer.

The truth is, I really envy them. I want to have a DSLR camera too, but I have other priorities as of this moment. Had Google not slashed my PR, I could have earned enough by this time to buy entry-level DSLR cam plus a nifty lens. Oh yeah, some wistful thinking. I just had to be contented right now with my camera phone.

Photo above is taken by a friend who bought his Canon DSLR cam last summer. Yeah, seems like everyone else has a DSLR.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Play For Fun And Play To Win

The beach volleyball game had always been the highlight in our company beach outing, regardless of the weather. This time around was no different. But unlike in the previous years, the current edition requires at least two female players in the court.

The highest ranked officer in our team emphasized that our first objective is to have fun. And the second objective is to win. I am one of those who at any game want the best players on the court. But we cannot just turn away those players who want to play despite their lack of skills. Not in a company sportsfest.

The first set was close. The weaker players were obviously our team’s weakness. So the boss declared that for the second set, winning shall be our first objective. I assisted him in choosing the better players. But the other team was just so fortunate in their plays. We lost in two sets.

In the afternoon, we played against the loser in the other bracket. We were fighting for third place. The rules changed allowing us to bring in our best players with or without females. I thought that had it been the rule in the elimination round, we would have had a bigger chance of winning. It was also the same with our current opponent. The result: we won in two sets after exhausting ourselves under an early afternoon sun. Then after that, we watched our tormentor win the championship.

A teammate and I just shook our heads. Sometimes, the desire to win takes away the fun. And sometimes, there is no fun at all when you lose.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

After The Tax Season

My whole professional life revolves around accounting; 6 years in an auditing firm and another 6 and a half years in corporate finance. And many times I wonder what if I pursued my high school dream of taking up Agriculture (my first choice) for College. There will be no tax season, only harvest season.

Yeah, some wistful thinking now that the tax season is over. I actually want a vacation, somewhere outside the city, preferably the beaches in some islands north of Cebu; Bantayan, Malapascua and Camotes. Or even Boracay. My first time there was during a firm outing after my first ever tax season. Boracay has been my standard for beaches ever since that day. So far, none can compare.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Outsourcing: As Applied At Home

Outsourcing, in its simplicity, is letting a third party do some of the work you usually do but is not your main job, or your core business.

Outsourcing is practiced at home. And here are some of them:

1. We hire a neighbor to wash our clothes on weekends.
2. We hire father in law’s carpenters to fix our stairs
3. We hire a teenage neighbor to clean some floor and bathroom tiles in our house.
4. I pay my nephews to wash my car

This is better than keeping a housemaid. But it does not mean that we are too lazy to do the household chores. We know how to do these things (except for the carpentry job). But the laundry girl needs money for her tuition fees, the teenage boy has to earn for his poor family, and my nephews want money for extra allowance. We don’t want them begging for money so it’s a win-win situation for all of us.

My wife and I knows that when the time comes for us to migrate to the US, we can no longer avail of these outsourcing services at home. The outsourced workers are in Asia so we have to do the chores ourselves. Or else it would be very expensive.

Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Termites And Troubles

Daily I walk up and down the stairs at our rented apartment. But last night I refused to go up to our room. Why would I do that? You might be thinking that my wife and I had some sort of a lovers’ quarrel but it is not.

Blame it on the termites that destroyed about three steps of our stairs. If I step on it, there’s a big possibility that it would collapse. I can’t just tiptoe or jump coz I’m 40lbs heavier than I was a decade ago. Good for my honey and the other occupants of our house. They’re all paperweights. But my wife prodded me to make another attempt.

Ok, I was adamant. So I slept in the sala, particularly on the bamboo bench. I know I can sleep anywhere and I immediately dozed off within five minutes. But it’s so awkward, sleeping separately inside the same house. And the thought crawled in my sleep.

3am I rose up and made one last attempt at climbing up the stairs. I felt light but surely I did not float over the weak structure. When my wife noticed my presence, she asked “How did you manage to climb the stairs?” “I sleptwalk” was my reply.

This morning, my problem was how to get down. Oh, those termites!

Thursday, April 03, 2008

Technorati and Tags

Panaderos tagged me. It’s been a while since I posted a tag. I might even have some pending assignments, which I’ll try to dig one of these days. The best tool to use in finding these tags is Technorati. Why? Because it lists down all the blogs that linked to your site: whether it’s a tag, a link mention, or even a critique.

You know, every tag that posts a link to your site is good for the technorati ranking. But if you ask me about the importance of the technorati ranking, I consider it as one of those rankings that make you feel good. Tags can also be good for the blog’s backlink count and may even affect page rank. For those doing paid posts, this one is also a sort of a posting break.

Ok, let’s go back to the tag. This one requires that you tag 5 other bloggers. Here’s my five: Josh, Scotty's Princess, Ethyl, Wil and Gladita.

After tagging, keep adding to the list below. This one takes time if you don’t know the shortcut. Just keep adding to the list. No replacements or deletion, just additions. And these are the people who already took part on this tag:

*Blognation, Pinoytek, Reyna, Bluep, Kotsengkuba, Buraot, Iris, KCee, Banco De Reyna, Mitch, Melai, Malen, Beng, Sasha, Divaness, Jojitah, Joanjoyce, Gzel, Panaderos, Lazarus, (you!)

By the way, if you have joined Techorati and already claimed a blog, I wouldn’t mind if we exchange favorites. Fave me and I’ll fave you. Add to Technorati Favorites

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Do You Want To Change Your Blogger Template But Don’t Know How?

I have ditched my green blog clothes in favors of a blue one. My long search for a new template has finally ended. This used to be a dilemma for blogspot users. While those using wordpress have nice-looking templates, we, blogspot users, have to be contented of the few available. Sometimes, we just experiment tweaking the colors and the sizes just to make it appear different.

But it is now possible to have those templates previously available to wordpress users. At Eblogtemplates, they have quite an impressive display of free new blogger templates. If you are not yet satisfied, you can search for more using the google search engine. Type “free blogger templates” and search away. And when you have chosen a template, the next thing you might ask is how to install it to your blog.

Here’s a list of what to do:

  1. Download a zipped file of your chosen template.
  2. Extract it on your hard disk making sure that you have the XML file.
  3. Go to your blogger dashboard and click page layout, then click “edit html”.
  4. Download a copy of your previous template. It is for contingency purposes.
  5. Go back to your page layout. Copy the html codes of all your widgets and paste them in word, wordpad or notepad. Label them properly as you may have difficulty in finding them. When you change template, plenty of the widgets will be deleted.
  6. If you have installed meta tags and scripts in your html, like those of PPP, google analytics, webmasters tools, etc…, copy these codes and remember where you placed them.
  7. Then go back to “edit html” and upload the xml file you extracted and downloaded earlier. It will prompt you and display the widgets that will be deleted.
  8. Proceed with the deletion.
  9. Save the template and then view your blog. You can also add those scripts and meta tags before saving the template. What usually remain are the blog posts, links, categories, headers, about me, and the archives.
  10. Then go back to the page layout and re-add those deleted page elements/widgets. Don’t forget to click on “save”.

So, there! I hope you will learn from this post. If you also know any short cut, please feel free to comment here. If you are not confident enough, try creating a dummy blog and follow the steps above. But if you are happy with your current template, keep it as it is. Happy blogging!

Trade Show Exhibits

An ex-colleague of mine back in the accountancy firm is now into organizing trade shows, fairs and exhibits. She had plenty of exposures in such kind of business when she was still a kid since her parents’ business always had a booth in almost every fair or mini-market in the city.

I wonder how she does the organizing. I know that to organize such is not an easy task. Large trade show exhibits needs many booths, tables, tablescloths, curtains, counters and table covers. It is much more difficult if the organizer handles successive trade show exhibits with different design requirements in different locations.

But there is a company that offers affordable trade show exhibits requirements and accessories. Camelback Displays, Inc. is a one-stop shop for factory priced trade show displays, booths, exhibits and accessories. Theirs are portable and comes in plenty of sizes, colors and designs that would easily meet exhibitors’ specification requirements. This can really help anyone into trade show organizing.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Floyd Mayweather Jr. KOs 7-footer Paul‘Big Show’ Wight at WrestleMania XXIV

This is one big show indeed! Floyd Mayweather Jr., the current WBC Welterweight Champion, is undefeated even in professional wrestling. He knocked out his opponent in his debut fight. So how did Floyd win it against a giant in front of the 74,635 fans at the Citrus Bowl? I really couldn’t imagine. First, it was the help from the corner. They gave the boxer a metal folding chair and brass knuckles. But it was a brass-knuckled right hook to Big Show’s jaw that brought the big man down.

What will Hatton, de la Hoya or even Manny Pacquiao say about it? Obviously, they’d chorus, “It’s plain entertainment and not a true fight.” Oh well, let them fight in WWE themselves and face giants. Fighting a 7-footer giant in 400-pounder Paul “Big Show” Wight is not a small joke. A choke from his bare hands or a bump from his body can make anyone spit blood.

Nicely choreographed, huh? So what? It’s the $20M that matters for Floyd’s camp. And for WWE, it a new record for live gate proceeds of $5.85M. Maybe they should feature Manny Pacquiao next time.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

While Waiting for the 2007 Philippine Bar Exam Results...

UPDATE: 2007 Bar Exam Topnotchers and list of successful examinees here.

While waiting for the 2007 Philippine Bar Exam Results, I will give recognition to my online friends who successfully hurdled the bar exams in the past. These are the blogging lawyers:

The Bystander
Major Tom

My hats off to these great people. May you continue to shine in your profession!

Friday, March 28, 2008

2007 Philippine Bar Exams Results

The Supreme Court official website says that “The results of the 2007 Bar Examinations will be released tomorrow, March 29, 2008.”

(note: If you are looking for the 2008 Bar Examination results, click here: 2008 Philippine Bar Exam Results and List of Passers)

The exam was held at the De La Salle University on Taft Avenue in Manila in the four Sundays of September 2007. A total of 5,626 law graduates from 109 schools nationwide took the bar exams. The results of the last three years showed that of the 17,000 plus takers, only 29.8% passed. It is an average of 1,700 additional lawyers a year. It’s not really a scary figure.

The results will be posted at the Supreme Court’s official website. The list of the names will also be displayed in LCD projectors to be strategically placed at the Supreme Court front yard near its Padre Faura entrance. I also think that plenty of blogs will post the results to divert traffic to their sites. Search the keyword "2007 Philippine Bar Exams Results" on google and you'll see what I mean.

I can feel the excitement rising right now, as bar exam takers, their schools, friends and relatives are probably monitoring the radio, internet, TV and even SC insiders for the release of the results. It's an agony to some, but hope to the others. I would also understand if someone is hiding at this moment, detaching himself from any form of media and communication. He will most likely reappear 3 days after the bar exam results are released. It is actually a strategy to cushion the grief in case of failure.

One of those who took the exams is a work colleague of mine. When I asked him about his chances a couple of months ago, he just smiled and said, “Dios na bahala!” I just wish all the best to the bar exam takers!

UPDATE: List of new lawyers is not available at the SC website. You may click here.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

160-year Old Church Building Destroyed By Fire

I took a picture of its façade weeks ago when I visited the place. I had been inside the church just twice in my lifetime and could not remember the content of its dark halls. I know that the Oslob Church is one of the oldest church structures here in Cebu and is considered a heritage site. Oslob is a town 117 kilometers south of Cebu City and is my dad’s hometown.

But a fire that struck at early dawn yesterday destroyed the 160-year old building and the nearby convent. The cause is said to be a faulty wiring that first gutted the ceiling of one of the rooms. And the irony is that, the fire station is just 50 meters away. The town’s only two fire trucks were for repair, and the firemen and some residents really had to push the truck with a functioning hose. Superman and Batman were not there to help them, so they sought assistance from neighboring towns who were very quick to respond. The fire was under control by 430 am, as reported in the news.

Parishioners cried of course. In this town, the church is like a second home to them. The cost of the damage has not yet been reported and it seems that everything, including the precious archives, vanished with the fire. Surprisingly, the framed wooden image of the Immaculate Conception, secured by a glass case, was found intact in the ruble. “It’s a miracle!” they exclaimed.

Oh, yeah! This month is supposed to be a Fire Prevention Month. The defective trucks were previously reported to proper authorities and funds were already allocated. But someone is sleeping on his job.

Dotcom Site Still Down

It has been a week now and my dotcom site is still down. Prior to the re-setup, there was not a day that my site was up 100%. I envied my friend. His site is up most of the time, enjoying his targeted traffic. I did not really know the root cause of the problem so I sought help. I even installed a web host tracker on my site. But what can you do when the tech support is on a holiday or off duty?

“Patience is a virtue” I reminded my self many times now. But there are others who do not have the same kind of patience. They want the best web hosting company, and demand the best from it. 24/7 tech support, reliability, affordability and excellent service; these are very important for the website owners.

It’s really frustrating seeing your site appear now, then disappear later like bubbles. Part of effective blog planning is really choosing the best web hosting.

Monday, March 24, 2008

HTTP 404

That's what you will see if you'll visit my other blog. It didn't crash because of traffic or some bombings. I had it resetup but I messed it up. I accidentally deleted some important files and I am not sure if I backed it up enough.

I even had an entrecard contest running in there to celebrate its first month. Maybe I had to double the prize as consolation for the anticipating participants. I could have declared the winner last Wednesday evening but I was left without a choice.

I just hope the tech guy from my webhost can fix it by tomorrow. I have plenty of entries lined up for that thing.

And for leftover thoughts, I am desperate of a new blogger template. I already scouted some nifty templates but my next problem is how to upload it. I don't want another HTTP 404.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

The Way We Blog

It has been two good years of blogging. Ups and downs really.

You know the excitement when you first created your blog. You don’t even know what name to use: Real or an alias. Then you ponder deeply on the title, and think hard only to end up including “thoughts” in your blog name. Then you type your first ever post. Hello, world that is, or whatever your first post title is. Then you begin to explore the complexities of the blog design and settings. You smile when you get your first commenter. You reply with excitement and quickly follow your visitor’s link.

“You have a very nice blog. Thanks for visiting mine.” you say truthfully to your new friend. Then follows the exchanges of visits and comments. You do every effort to make a friendly comment, and at the same time put enough care in your every post.

Later on they ask for ex-links. “What is an ex-link? What is a blogroll?” you ask. Then your friends begin telling you what to do. You add a blogroll, a tagboard, and everything else your friends adorn in theirs.

It took you half a year before you realize that your blog design sucks. It is not actually, but you begin to envy others with beautiful blog templates. So you decide to change templates, and change templates again, till a smile returns to your face.

After a week or two of non-posting and non-hopping, you post an apology citing reasons here and there. Friends assure you that it’s fine. Then you realize that others don’t do an apology at all.

A year of happy blogging, you earn a page rank. But you don’t know what it is or how your friends know about it. Then someone mentions paids post and the PR. You check them out and even comment innocently on a sponsored entry.

A few months after your first paid post encounter from a friend’s site, they begin to flaunt their earnings. What dollars? Is it true that they earned a thousand bucks or more a month? Then you find out it’s pretty easy. So, you join the bandwagon and fill your blog with 30 to 40 posts a month, half of which earns at least $10 per post. Not bad, eh as you begin to see money flowing in your paypal account.

But at the downside, you begin to lose your usual commenters, and even readers. Deep down within you know you worked hard on every post, even incorporating your own experience that even without a sponsor you’d write them anyway sometime in the future. But there are times when you even loathe some of your own entries. So you can’t really blame them. Then now, Google takes away your prized PR, and along with it, the monetary opportunities.

I sit down and ponder. 2 years of ups and downs in blogging. The motivation is really not the money, the PR, or the approval of friends. I blog because I love to.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

The Business Is Finished: Pacquiao Won Over Marquez

National disaster averted. GMA took a breather of relief. Rebels and soldiers braced arms in arms. Churches in the Philippines sing hallelujahs! The Filipino nation can say that they have a hero in their fold. We can now unite and put aside ZTE for a while, at least for a week just for the victory celebration. Bloggers are racing to get on top of SERP. Manny Pacquiao won on a split decision over Marquez. Judges Dwayne Ford and Tom Miller scored it 115-112 and 114-113, respectively, in favor of the Filipino. Jerry Roth scored it 115-112 for the deposed champ.

It was not a knockdown as expected by the Filipinos, but it was very close. Manny floored Marquez on the third round but was able to get up quickly. Both suffered cuts in the middle rounds and exchanged strong and lethal blows till finish. It was a really good fight and a close one. All the other pretenders can just watch in awe.

So what is next for Manny? I hope he won’t reenter politics. It’s a dirtier place and a dive from his lofty hero status. Why doesn’t he consider a fight with de la Hoya instead? It is not impossible and would definitely draw more money.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Pleading For Your Votes

Here's one shameless plugging from me. Vote for BLOGCEBUWORLD as the Filipino Blog of the Week for week 100 there at Talksmart's site.

I copied the code here for your convenience. Vote once a day starting now till the morning of March 22.

Which Filipino blog would you like to be featured for week 100? [please read new rules]
Thanks Pollhost

Thank you very much my friends!

Friday, March 14, 2008

Pacquiao-Marquez Part 2: If Pacquiao Loses To Marquez

The whole of Mexico will definitely rejoice as if they conquered the whole of the Philippines. The streets will be filled with revelers, tables turned over at bars, stores looted and probably cars will be burned. I am imagining here a football world cup victory scenario which is unlikely to be matched by boxing, even if exaggerated.

De La Hoya would be smiling from ear to ear but it will be business as usual for Bob Arum. Those who wanted to beat Pacquiao like Valero, Diaz and Chris John will be filled with envy and would direct their ire at Marquez. Marquez will go to an undisclosed location to relax, still in awe of his controversial win despite his disfigured face. He will probably contemplate on retirement after having beaten the best fighter of his class.

What about the Philippines and the Filipinos? The streets will be empty and you will see people moving out from cinemas and bars with PPV airing the fight with heads bowed as if they lost half of their life and earnings along with loverboy Manny. They will go straight home, kick the dog on the door, sleep and avoid the sports news of the day.

After the brief undeclared ceasefire between the government and rebel forces, the sour losers will raise their arms and shoot like crazy. Those who win because they placed their bets on the Mexican will silently withdraw from the crowd and avoid any sign of ecstasy because a punch may fly anywhere. They too will wear a frown emphatizing with a mourning nation.

The day after, the protesters will be back on the streets demanding oil price rollback and for GMA to step down. Some sectors will even demand for Pacquiao’s retirement and a possibly, a senate inquiry of his winnings, and who gets kickbacks. It’s public knowledge that some high powers will be in Vegas on fight night.

To avert chaos, Manny should win this fight!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Car Insurance Is A Must

A decade ago, my dad’s vehicle was stolen. It was just parked in an unlighted street while they went to an uncle house to attend a party. They immediately reported it to the police who had not really acted on it. For months my dad and a neighbor tried to locate the vehicle even traveling to the neighboring islands. But their efforts were fruitless. The vehicle was not covered with a comprehensive insurance, and it was really a big loss for us.

They already lost hope when one of the children at church reported that he saw dad’s vehicle in their neighborhood. My dad and a few of his friends went there to find out. To his surprise, a policeman claimed ownership of the vehicle saying he bought it from someone. But a family friend who happened to be a close friend of a certain police general assisted my father. He contacted the general who immediately called up the policeman and commanded him to return the vehicle without question. There the lowly-ranked officer obliged. We got our vehicle back, almost a year after it was stolen.

In another story, a boss drove home sleepy from a meeting with a client. At 2am, he parked his Pajero in the sidestreet in front of his house. When he woke up, the car was already gone. Good thing his vehicle was covered with a comprehensive car insurance. He got paid.

Car insurance is a must these days. If you happen to be in a collision with another vehicle, imagine the cost to repair your car, his car, and the medical treatment of your injuries. Visit EZ Insurance Portal and make sure you are adequately insured.

GMA Koreanovela: The Legend

There is a new koreanovela in GMA7: The Legend. I saw the first episode the other night but I have not fully grasped the whole story. The youtube video of the Bb Pilipinas interview portion distracted my attention.

I just have to set aside some questions and turn to some blogs or websites, or wikis for backgrounders later. I love movies like this. I just hope there would be more martial arts action and magic.

Oh by the way, the more you are exposed to korean individuals, the more you appreciate that they actually are well behaved people. My sister brought a korean student of hers to our hometown for a weekend exposure. He has this likeable attitude. My hats off to Michael.

(photo from the internet)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

New Blog Look

It's been a while since I changed the look of this blog from a two column template to a 3-column one. It was just a little tweaking of the html codes learned from some informative site. I know that the columns didn't look good on outdated internet explorers, but I just assumed that all my readers and visitors were either using the latest IE's or Firefox browsers.

But now, the time for me has come to have a blog overhaul. It's my 2nd blog birthday next week so that would be a valid reason. And I have to find a template as cool-looking as this blog. It would still be colored green but maybe of lighter shade. Green is not really my favorite color.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Ramiele Malubay: In American Idol’s Top 12

The 20 yr-old Ramiele Malubay is now on American Idol’s top 12. Her YahooTV! Biography says that “she currently lives in Miramar, FL, but was born in Saudi Arabia and spent her early years in the Philippines”. Duh, everybody knows that.

I have not heard her sing, or watched you tube videos of her. I just read her name in many entertainment news and publication. But since she is a Filipina, I will root for her. One does not really have to mind the scandalous photos now in the internet. They aren’t really scandalous.

But what interest me more is her name. Ramiele is a very cute and unique name for a lady. I am sure that plenty of babies born in 2008 will surely be named after her. And some would even dare name their pets Ramiele.

Go, Ramiele and win this idol contest. I hope Mr. Cowell will be nice to you till the end.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

NBI Hit Part 3

The other day, my wife and I went to NBI region 7 to have our clearance for international travel. We were turned down coz they ran out of official receipts that day. Whatta! We were told to return Wednesday.

With the help of a close friend, we skipped the long queue this afternoon. My wife got her NBI clearance but mine was still pending. I'm hit again. They said that it will take three weeks to get my clearance. The last time, it was only one week. Does it mean that their efficiency has depreciated?

If you ask me why the "hit", it has nothing to do with my own record. I have a very unique first and last names but my middle name, FLORES, is very common. My uncle was once imprisoned because he has the same name as their town's most wanted person. He was released the next day because of the mistaken identity. Oh well, we didn't choose our names in the first place. I'm gonna return to their office in two weeks.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Finishing The Term Paper

One of the most difficult challenges a student will face is the term paper. It is often referred to as thesis or research papers. Many students dropped out from school, or shed many tears of frustrations because they just could not find a way to complete their projects.

I remembered my first encounter of the term paper when I was in high school. I worked alone on it. I chose a very uncommon topic which was appreciated by the teacher. But I did not know it was gargantuan task. I had few resource materials, even our own library lacked the necessary reference books. But I was able to find a way by interviewing experts on the subject.

A classmate was wily enough to invent his own materials, jumbling our names as book authors. It was a risky act that could merit school stiff disciplinary action. But he got away with it.

Today, one does not really have to fear doing term papers, or the intimidating essays that teachers throw at their students. By joining, one of the largest, most-trusted databases of essays, term papers, book reports and research paper, you will find the much needed information to complete your assignments. Over 100,000 A+ grade papers covering all topics are in their databases.

The little investment you will make in joining goes a longer way than having to repeat the course and miss graduation.

Some Good Moments

Oh, some good things! I won 500 entrecard credits from Kotsengkuba. Because I voted for him, I was eligible for the random selection. Thank you very much, sir! I guess it's time for me to enter this site into entrecard's fold to make use of those credits. I'm still thinking of an attractive logo.

Next, my newest site (a dotcom this time) is nominated in Talksmart's Filipino Blog of the Week. I would have wanted to delay my announcement till the 2nd year anniversary of this blog, but I guess I have to do this sooner.

The voting is done HERE. Or you can visit my newest baby HERE and vote at the sidebar. You can vote once everyday till Friday, or if I get nominated again, till next week. My blog site is just 13 days old today and I'm not even campaigning in the tagboards of my online friends or at the sites I hopped into. Just the normal read and comment thing, or else someone would be annoyed. I'm currently running fourth and the leaders just zoomed ahead. So I need more votes.

If you ask me what the prize is, it's a week of being featured in a Talksmart's website plus a little badge one can flaunt in the sidebar. AJ is a previous winner, and you can check out his site as well.

Sunday, March 02, 2008

Waffles, Anyone?

When I was a kid, everytime my mom would do groceries, she would also bring me to a store in the downtown selling waffles. She would always tell me to behave and be a good kid, and not demand for some toys to buy. I would silently obey because I would not want to miss out on the waffles. It’s one of my favorite snacks.

When I got married, my wife and I bought what we think is the best waffle maker. We had a heyday making waffles for both of us and our nieces and nephews. But the equipment got busted after a few months.

At, you can read reviews and ratings of the best waffle maker in the market. The reviews are made by real people and actual users. Your search for the best waffle maker should end here. It’s time to enjoy the waffles.

Oust GMA! GMA Resign!

The above are just some of the messages from the banners I saw at a rally in Fuente Osmeña, Cebu the other day. The local daily says that fewer than 1,000 participants attended the rally.

My friend, the Bystander, posted in his blog a very clear and concise distinction between Edsa1 and Edsa2, which I also think is connected with my title above.

Though I may not like GMA, I don’t want either option. Who is worthy to replace her at this moment? They could all be of the same feathers. Let her clean up her acts and let us wait for 2010. Time flies so fast. We all know how stubborn she and her cohorts are, and how indifferent most people are today. Let us just continue to pray for our nation. We can survive all of this.