Tuesday, December 24, 2013

 It's Christmas already? The last post I did was in reference to the victims of super typhoon Yolanda. And now look, tomorrow is Christmas and I have not written anything in between my last post and this post.

I think it's just right  for me to say that I (and the rest of the family) went through some trying patches in our life in the past 5-6 months. It's an understatement to say that the trials were minimal. On the contrary. It was predicament after predicament and sometimes, situations overlap each other.

There is a reason for each trial that one goes through.  I know that these trials are not from God for "God is good" all the time. It's just that sometimes, God allows us to experience trials to "test" our faith on Him. People fail us. Money fails us. But God never fails. Jesus never fails. Prayers never fail.

This is one Christmas that I did not go gaga shopping for gifts to give. I think I have become stingy in a sense since,  really, making a living is hard. Of course I have gifts for my kids and grandkids but that's where I draw the line. I have become  a proponent of a non-commercial Christmas celebration.

What is Christmas? For Christians all over the world, it is the appointed day that we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. True, Jesus Christ was born sometime in April or May  but in this instance, is the date really that important?

Merry Christmas to all of you. Remember that:

Jesus is the Reason for the Season.

Posted by desperateblogger On 12/24/2013 12:51:00 PM No comments READ FULL POST

Monday, November 18, 2013

It has been day 10 since the tragic event brought about by the most forceful typhoon ever to make landfall this year in the Philippines (and the world for that matter), and still the Philippine government's rescue, recovery and relief operations in the affected areas in the Visayas are still in their infancy. If not for foreign aid and the private sector, the Yolanda victims would be akin to zombies now.

photo courtesy of www.china.org.cn
There are those who are offended by the seemingly endless gripes and negativity of netizens regarding the government’s response to “Yolanda”. I get the point. It’s not nice to “bash” even your worst enemy. However, when we are talking about the safety, relief and eventual rehabilitation of disrupted lives, I think I’ll take on Peque Gallaga’s side this time. Of course I stand united with the Filipino people regarding “Yolanda”.  I and the rest of my family are doing what we can to aid the victims of Yolanda, but that doesn’t mean that I’ll just close my eyes on the incompetence and inefficiency of the leaders of the community. My gripe is not (primarily) on the seemingly snail-pace deployment of relief but more on the apparently non-existent contingency plan of the government in dealing with the aftermath of a disastrous event.

What have these cabinet members been doing? Probably grand-staging behind their desks on a daily basis. Feeling important attending meetings and other behind-the-desk activities. Busy with their calculators in estimating their mid-year and year-end bonuses. Siphoning off money from the Filipino people to support their (and their family’s and cohort’s) grand lifestyle. Formulating the chain of commands in the event of an emergency situation but forgetting to create a plausible and practical system to deal with the problem. It’s like telling your child to cook a meal but failing to give him the proper training and instruction on cooking that meal.

The Filipinos have short-term memory. Look! Impeached  Ex-President Erap is mayor of Manila! The wife, son and daughter of Pres. Marcos are elected officials!

Filipinos are highly sentimental. Look! BS Aquino is president, thanks to his famous parents! Bong Revilla (and his wife, son, brother and sister), Tito Sotto are public officials just because they are famous actors.

We have spoiled our elected officials by us Filipinos rallying to compensate for their shortcomings. It has always been like that. We have been patient and tolerant of our elected officials for the longest time that we have helped mold them into what they are today - corrupt, incompetent, inefficient, indolent, dishonest and arrogant.

Does a “united” nation in times of plenty and distress equate to a nation where inapt public officials get away with almost everything? Just because you chose to elect an ineffectual fool (better yet, fools as the distinction is not exclusive to one person), you expect the rest of the Filipinos to just bear and grin, then compensate for the lack? Do we say thank you Korina for your donation of blue and yellow slippers with your name stamped on it?  Thank you Jejomar Binay for your packs of goodies with your face and name stamped on each bag.

I personally see no harm with the wave of criticism hitting the government. I think these clamors are like fuses propelling the government’s snail-paced operations into speed.  Hopefully, the din of criticism will also push the government into action in formulating an effective rescue, relief and rehabilitation system for our country.

What? We are just a poor country and have no means for such?  President BS Aquino’s PDAF alone is in the trillions! I don’t even know how many zeros there are in a trillion.

When the DILG top honcho announce to the world (via television) that it is not the Philippine government’s top priority to look for possible survivors of “Yolanda”… what do we do?

 Say “aaaahhh… okaaaayy... yordamhan!”


Posted by desperateblogger On 11/18/2013 09:32:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

I must exercise! It has been a year since I “ran” and at my age, I should be exercising not for “aesthetics” but more for health reasons. Back in the days, I used to hit the gym and run 5 days a week, and play tennis and hit the ballroom floor twice a week! Yup! I was so agile, buff and quite strong. Things change and in the course of 11 years, I now find myself exercise-less! 

When one hits the half-century mark, one feels the little aches and stiffness associated with aging. I know that I am way fitter than some of my contemporaries but I feel (and know) that I should really be doing some cardio activities to keep myself fit. Though I do try to eat “healthy” I know that I should be more conscious of what I eat and drink.  I am keen on clean living to avoid age-related ailments such as hypertension, high cholesterol and osteoporosis.
I was surprised to learn that one out of three Filipino women (1:5 in Filipino men) is likely to suffer from osteoporosis. A few years ago, my female friend slipped in her bathroom floor and fractured her hip. I took her to the ER and I was shocked when I saw her X-ray. Her bones were so porous that there was hardly any white component in the X-ray! Now she takes those expensive medicines to make her bones denser.
I am a fresh milk drinker but I found out that even if I down a litter of fresh milk daily, I still won’t be getting the right amount of calcium to strengthen my bones. So, I switched to ANLENE, which provides twice the amount of calcium than regular milk. ANLENE is the number one bone health milk brand in the Philippines and according to a 2009 study, it can decrease bone breakdown within four weeks. Yup! A glass or two of ANLENE a day keeps osteoporosis away!
Many Filipinos do not take the necessary steps to counter osteoporosis. Though this ailment is asymptomatic, the danger lies in osteoporosis-related fractures such as in the hips, spine and wrists. The NNHeS (National Nutrition and Health Survey, indicated that the incidence fracture on 50 years and above females is more than 11% and almost 9% in men. Our joints provide lubrication for two moving bones. When the joint cartilage wears out, then the risk of damaging the joints is higher. This predicament could very well hinder physical activities. A new product from the Fonterra is ANLENE Total. This high calcium formula contains Glucosamine which helps protects the joints

Anlene and Anlene Total are products of Fonterra. Since 2007, the company has been working with the International Osteoporosis Foundation to increase bone health education and awareness. One cannot deny the role of calcium in preventing the onset of osteoporosis. I used to take calcium tablets then either take vitamin D (or expose any part of my body to the sun) to “activate” the calcium. No more calcium tablet for me. I prefer to drink ice-cold Anlene!

A delicious way to take Anlene is to pour some on a bowl of corn, oatmeal with sliver of almond cereal. Delicious! 

Twitter: @AnleneTotalPH
FaceBook: https://www.facebook.com/AnlenePhilippines
Posted by desperateblogger On 9/10/2013 12:42:00 AM 1 comment READ FULL POST

Friday, August 16, 2013

An arrest warrant has been issued for Janet Lim Napoles. The arrest has nothing (yet) to do with her alleged role in the 10 billion pork barrel scam. The arrest warrant is about the illegal detention of Benhur Luy, the whistleblower of the pork barrel scam. Ms. Napoles expressed in an interview that Luy's "detention" (from December 19, 2012 to March 2013) was a personal choice of Luy - a sort of a 3-month long retreat (reflection?) (exile?)  to "find" himself. 

I'm a person who occasionally attend retreats but these retreats are led by qualified persons and usually last a week, at the most. If I were to believe Ms Napoles, Benhur Luy's 3-month long disappearance was his choice so he could reflect on his life. Yes, that's probable but how come Luy didnt' advice his family? 

Oh haha. 

So, where is Janet Lim Napoles now?
Posted by desperateblogger On 8/16/2013 11:19:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST
Commuters from Cavite are experiencing difficulty upon the implementation of provincial bus ban. No provincial buses are allowed to traverse the roads of Metro Manila except those that have terminals in Manila. This scheme was implemented to decongest the streets of Manila to prevent traffic and its related pollution. So, commuters coming from Cavite (and part of Batangas) are to get off at the newly constructed bus depot at Coastal Mall, which is located at the corner of Coastal Road and Airport Road. The thing is, the scheme was not well-thought off. Chaos ensued on the first week of implementation as commuters and even bus drivers have no idea where to go. There were a few MMDA people giving out print flyers and everyone scrambled to get a copy in the hopes of reading instructions and information on the new bus scheme/segregation Here's what's written on the piece of flyer: Please do not litter.
Posted by desperateblogger On 8/16/2013 11:01:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST
Remember D2's "encounter" with   a Dura-Dura Gang more than a month ago? Well, she finally received a subpoena for the arraignment and subsequent trial. I asked a lawyer friend of mine if we need to have a lawyer and he said that there's no need as the case is pretty straightforward. What more, another victim read my blog and he too trooped over to the city hall and filed a complaint against the person. He saw the picture of the guy  and he said the same guy victimized him. However, instead of the usual "dura" (salive), the MO used on him was "dugo" (blood). These people are really quite creative in their want to steal from unsuspecting commuters, akin to the creativity of pork barrel scammers who establish fake NGOs for siphoning-off the Filipino taxpayers' money.
Posted by desperateblogger On 8/16/2013 10:38:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST
Our church's 50th anniversary is on December of this year. Committees relating to the successful celebration of this momentous event have been formed and "up-and-running" since early this year. A lot of activities are in the offing: fun run; family sports day; boodle fight; evangelism and outreach; concert and so much more. We seriously need to advertise these events so we can enjoin others to participate. We need to put up signage at strategic locations. I wonder how much wholesale yard sings at zooprinting.com cost.
Posted by desperateblogger On 8/16/2013 10:24:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST
The 10 billion Php pork barrel scam does not only involve its alleged "mastermind" Janet Lim Napoles but a number of unscrupulous politicians whose mission in life is to steal from the Filipinos who they pledged to serve and help. Who is to blame? In my opinion - the Filipinos who voted for these "trapos" and the Philippine government and its agencies that continue to turn "blind"  to the atrocities these "trapos" continue to do. 

Corruption is everywhere. I have a friend who proudly told me that she was in the ghost payroll of our local government years ago. I guess the "salary" stopped coming due to change of administration. I know of contractors who "bid" on local projects just for the sake of bidding knowing full well that the project is theirs. It is a known fact among contractors that the SOP when winning a bid is to set aside 30% for the concerned official. What can I do? I can't very well approach another official and report what I know for I have no proof, only hearsay. And in the event that I do have proof, who do I approach? Almost every official is reeks with corruption.

It's so sad to think that there are millions of Filipinos who are living below poverty line and then there's this bunch of devious, deceitful, greedy people who  "rob" the Filipinos. I cannot imagine how one can stomach such corruption!
Posted by desperateblogger On 8/16/2013 08:47:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST
My dining chairs are in serious need for a repair. The material is local rattan on steel framing but the :twine that holds the rattan together are frayed. They no longer hold the rattan pieces together. The ones on the backrests are not so bad but the ones on the seats are almost completely useless. I had to use pads for chairs to cover the busted seats. The problem now is, where do I have the chairs repaired?
Posted by desperateblogger On 8/16/2013 08:06:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST

Friday, August 2, 2013

Tabby's first time to splash and dash in the rain! She was so excited and happy that she kept singing and humming while in the rain. The umbrella was pretty much a piece of decoration as she kept on throwing it away every now and then. In the end, I had to give her a bath as she was soaked anyway. The joys of childhood... priceless...
Posted by desperateblogger On 8/02/2013 09:46:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST
It is that time of the year again! The church Council has been having these series of meeting regarding the new administration year. Related church ministries have submitted their plans and budget for 2013-2014. I belong to the NOW (nurture, witness, outreach) ministry and under this is the PAW (Praise and Worship) ministry. Since the church's 50th anniversary is this coming December, everyone is busy putting their heads together for the celebration. The head of the PAW team has been scouring guitar stores in search nice and affordable electric guitars.

Posted by desperateblogger On 8/02/2013 09:26:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Alabang-Zapote Road is a long stretch of oftentimes congested roadway that links Zapote, Las Piñas to Alabang, Muntinglupa. One is inclined to think that traversing Zapote-Alabang Road is safe enough since it’s quite a busy road with policemen, traffic aids and barangay tanod peppering the route.  On the contrary.

I was busy preparing dinner when D2 called at around 4:33 P.M yesterday.  She said that she was victimized on the jeep en route to Zapote. She was fine et al  but lost her pouch of chargers, USBs and other laptop/iPhone paraphernalia. That she was currently on board a police mobile car with the suspect in tow. Huh? Rewind please.

D2 got off from work at 4:00 P.M. Wanting to beat the afternoon rush hour; she opted to ride an empty jeepney near West Gate, Alabang going to Zapote, Las Piñas.  Near Alabang Hills, a group of passengers flagged down the jeepney and boarded.

D2 was sitting by the jeepney’s rear entry point.  Seated directly in front of her was a fat guy and beside that fat guy was a man wearing black shirt. Let’s tag the black-shirted man as Guy 1. On D2’s right side was Guy 2 then Guy 3.  The moment Guy 3 seated himself, he started belching and heaving, ready to vomit. After a hundred meters or so, Guy 3 decided to alight since he was about to vomit (allegedly). He made a big show of gagging on his own vomit in front of D2 then got off at Toyota Alabang. The fat guy alighted too so Guy 1 was now sitting directly in front of D2. 

Guy 1 quipped: “Miss, may suka po kayo”. To which D2 replied “anong suka?” as she thought there was no way Guy 3 could have vomited on her. To D2’s horror, she realized that her shoulders, hair and bag had saliva (vomit?!) all over!  Guy 1 was very solicitous in trying to wipe off the “vomit” from D2’s bag. D2, on the other hand, kept on telling Guy 1 to stop helping her as she was starting to have this nagging feeling that something was amiss.  Guy 2, the one sitting beside D2, was seemingly fidgeting and fiddling as D2's bag was being purposely and forcefully pushed towards Guy 2.  Guy 1 was trying to flip over D2’s bag and kept on saying that there was still spit on the bag’s back. 

Guy 1 then got off near Pilar Village, less than 200 meters from Toyota Alabang where Guy 3 and fat guy got off.  Guy 2 got off right after SM Southmall. Little did D2 know that the whole scenario was being scrutinized by two high school students. At the Moonwalk Junction, D2 noticed that her bag suddenly became lighter. She took a look inside and exclaimed that she lost her pouch! The two high-schoolers exclaimed: “sabi na nga ba e! Dura-Dura gang ang mga yon!” (dura is spit)

The high school students pointed out to D2 a mobile car parked along the road. D2 got off near Lozada and ran to the mobile car to tell her story. The very efficient policemen quickly asked D2 to get on the police car hoping to spot any of the cohorts along the road. A few meters away, D2 spotted Guy 2 riding another jeepney. She quickly told one of the policemen and they raced to cut-off the jeepney. 

This  is  Guy 2
Guy 2 is Arnold
 To cut  short Guy 2 was apprehended. He called his cohorts and told them to give back D2’s pouch. The accomplices left D2’s pouch in the restroom of Jollibee Casimiro so D2 was able to recover it.

By the time my son and I reached the sub-station, I was quite decided to tell D2 not file a formal complaint against the culprit. I even talked to the suspect and was quietly “sermonizing” him on the demerits of what he has done. The commanding officer of the sub-station encouraged us to lodge a complaint  against the suspect since the so called Dura-Dura gang has been terrorizing commuters in and around Las Piñas for some time now. 
After 5 hours, we were finally able to go home - tired but wiser about double-word-entry MOs: budol-budol; dugo-dugo and dura-dura.


Posted by desperateblogger On 7/02/2013 09:20:00 AM 2 comments READ FULL POST

Monday, July 1, 2013

Escape! Come on over to Royal Crown Cola… 
And so goes a TV commercial way back in the 70s. Now, for a very impressionable youth, who was a Coke devotee, taking a sip of this “new” cola drink was unthinkable. “What the heck is RC Cola?”, I asked my gang of cola drinkers. “Oh, it’s a poor man’s cola drink.” said my wise and venerable gang of cola drinkers.
At 15 centavos per an 8 oz. fix, RC Cola was 15 centavos cheaper than the two popular cola drinks in the Philippines back then! So, my gang of cola drinkers and I tried RC Cola. To my surprise, the cola drink was less sweet and did not cause "brain freeze"  when quickly chugging an ice cold RC Cola. Cheers to RC Cola then. With 30 centavos, I had 2 bottles of cola drink  instead of one. 

So whatever happened to RC Cola? The Martial law years and weak product marketing probably curtailed the growing popularity of the soda pop in the 70s and 80s. However, I think there were still pockets of establishments that were selling RC Cola back then.

RC Cola was invented by Claud A. Hatcher, a pharmacist in Columbus, Georgia, in 1905. Chero Cola was introduced to the U.S. cola-drinking public together with a handful of refreshing drinks such as Royal Crown Root beer, Royal Crown Ginger Ale and Royal Crown Strawberry. Sometime in 1934, Chero Cola was reformulated and changed name to just Royal Crown Cola, or RC Cola.

In the battle of cola drinks, RC Cola may be deemed “losing” in terms of popularity and marketing ploy. However, when it comes to the actual taste, many cola aficionados conclude RC Cola is more “memorable”. After decades of drinking the most favored cola brand, I was presented with a chance to taste RC Cola once again and here is my verdict.

The flavor of Royal Crown Cola is quite distinctive. In truth, it tends of leave you craving for more. The cola taste is more concentrated but not overpowering. The initial sip has a tang of bitterness but the aftertaste is sweet and pleasing to the palate. I expected a searing sensation down my esophagus on the swallow but experienced none. This could be attributed to the fact the RC Cola is frothier and therefore “lighter”. The thing is, the bubbly carbonation goes out flat quite quickly OR maybe that is just my opinion since I got use to the seemingly unending wave of “carbon” down my esophagus at each initial gulp of the more popular cola drink.  The original RC Cola formerly used cane sugar as sweetener but current formulation now uses high-fructose corn syrup. However, compared with other cola drinks, the fructose content is less which makes for a smoother ingestion of RC Cola drink.  Ok, fine… RC could have been more creative with their logo design but hey! We are not buying the drink for the packaging. 

RC Cola is now available in 330ml can and 240ml, 800ml and 1.5ml bottles. It is now heavily being marketed in the Philippines. As a matter of fact, you can now buy in supermarkets, groceries and even in your friendly neighborhood convenience store.

As Nancy Sinatra crooned in her TV Ad more than four decades ago:  

for it's a MAD, MAD taste of Cola...RC! the one with the BIG, BIG taste!

The taste is truly :liberating!
Posted by desperateblogger On 7/01/2013 11:02:00 AM No comments READ FULL POST
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