I SAW these photos in a forwarded email that landed on my bulk folder a couple of months ago. My first reaction was that of utter disbelief. â€œThis can’t be true!â€ â€œMaybe this is just a hoax.â€ â€œMaybe these are just manipulated images.â€
A closer scrutiny of the images, however, dashed all of my hopes that the scenes in the photos are unreal. They are real. There is no doubt about it. I can’t conjure the right words to describe how I feel about these photos so I’ll keep it at that. The photos speak for themselves.
Click on the “Continue Reading” link to view the entire gory gallery. Read more
“The things Filipinos endure for their politicians!”
Yes I know that is a very cynical way to look back at the just concluded elections. Â Let me take that back and replace with this…
“The things Filipinos endure for democracy!”
I am referring to my very own personal experience last May 10. Â I posted my 7-hour-30-minutes recordÂ challenge in my Twitter and FaceBook accounts but I am yet to hear from anybody who would say they’ve clocked in more.
I actually know several people who endured a lot more than my 7-hour-30-minutes but they are probably not in Twitter or FaceBook. Â They are the people who were in the same anaconda queue I was in on May 10. Â I joined the queue at around 7:30 that fateful morning. Â It was already approximately a quarter of a kilometer long! Â And only later on did I find out that there were actually 2 such queues, one on each side of the Belvedere Community Center in Merville, Paranaque, where I was fated to cast my vote.
I had the chance to chat with some of the hapless folks in our line. Â And why not? Â We had plenty of time to waste under the scorching heat of the sun! Â Everybody was eager to cast his/her vote. Â Some arrived at the polling center as early as 6 o’clock! Â Like me, many of those people did not eat breakfast assuming that it will be all over in an hour or so… 3 hours at the most. Â I just realized that there may be truth to the old Filipino adage, “Maraming namamatay sa maling akala.” (Many perish for assuming wrongly.) Â I could have died that day from starvation… or more likely from heat stroke. Â I have my sun-burnt arms, nape, and face to show for it. Â My “charbroiled,” dead skin are still cracking and peeling more than a week after.
Much has been since said about how successful the Philippines’ first ever automated election was. Â And I don’t disagree. Â It could have been a disaster but it wasn’t. Â The naysayers predicted the worst. Â And it turned out quite well. Â A lot of people would swear on their great grandparents’ graves that it took them longer to vote in this election compared to previous ones, but then the lightning speed in which the votes got counted and the winners got proclaimed are more than enough to negate that stigma.
My 7-hour-30-minutes experience is probably more of an exception than the rule. Â From the tweets I’ve got, I would put the average voting time to 2-4 hours, which is not exactly bad. Â The people responsible for the poll center in Merville just f*d up, that’s all.
What I believe should be of real concern are the people who were effectively disenfranchised because of the long waiting time to vote. Â Within 5 meters in both directions from where I was in my queue I could count at least 2 “fall outs.” Â I guess they’ve decided their politicians were not worth all that trouble. Â If only they’ve instead thought that they were doing it for the sake of their country and democracy.
SIXTY NINE: What a number!â€ But before imaginations get any dirtier, thatÃs the number of minutes it took me to complete the 10K Run in this yearÃs Adidas King of the Road (KOTR) held at Bonifacio Global City last Sunday, Oct. 24, 2009.
It was a measly 3-minute improvement from my previous SundayÃs 72 minutes during the Quezon City International Marathon (QCIM).â€ An improvement, nevertheless.â€ Two Sundays ago, during the Milo Marathon, I did 78 minutes.â€ So thatÃs nine minutes shaved in two weeks.â€ Not quite bad. Read more
“Trees removed from Metro Manila thoroughfares are properly ‘balled’ and replanted in parks.”
That’s the official statement often heard from both the MMDA and the DENR. â€ Just about two months ago I heard DENR Secretary Lito Atienza on radio claiming that none of the trees that are being removed from streets of Metro Manila as a result of road widening and other infrastructure projects are “cut to death.”
Crap. â€ All crap! â€ All of these are lip service by the MMDA and DENR. Read more
I was cruising northbound along Roxas Boulevard near Intramuros the other day when four motorcycles passed me by.
The first thing that caught my attention was the fact that the motorcycles were being driven by policemen. â€ The last of the four motorcycle even had a policewoman for a passenger. â€ The second thing I noticed is the fact that none of them were wearing safety helmets! â€ Isn’t that illegal? Read more
“MAKING PASAY CITY A HEALTHIER PLACE TO LIVE” (ANO DAW?)
IF YOU’VE been anywhere in Pasay City in the past six or so months chances are you have already seen this “slogan.” â€ It is usually accompanied by the name and/or photo of Pasay City Congressman Jose Antonio F. Roxas (one of the CONASS signatories, remember?)â€ and, if you are really unlucky, PGMA. â€ It is hard to miss because it is all over Pasay City — in pedestration overpasses, tarpaulin banners, welcome arches, etc.
I am not an English grammar expert but I think there is something really wrong with this slogan. â€ Whenever I see it I cringe involuntary. â€ Even though I am not reading it aloud it feels like it is screaming right on my ears. â€ And it hurts! Read more
I ATTENDED the multi-sectoral mass protest at Ayala Avenue in Makati City last Wednesday to add my voice in the growing indignation and outrage over this blatant assault to our intelligence and sensibilities.
LOVE ’em, or hate ’em. â€ Here they are. â€ The 172 CONGRESSMEN WHO APPROVED THE CON-ASS, in alphabetical order.
I am dismayed, although I can’t really say I am surprised, that two of our congressmen in my home province of Isabela — Rodolfo Albano III, 1st district and Edwin Uy, 2nd district — are on the list. â€ So is one of our congressmen in my MM residence in ParaÃ’aque — Ed Zialcita, 1st district. Read more