Saturday, November 30, 2013
Saturday, October 26, 2013
Z went ahead and I have to follow a day after his departure. I booked a flight via Philippine Airlines as they appeared to be cheaper than Cebu Pacific sans the occasional promos. I was looking for a cheap flight deals but unlucky. I should have known that Z would be travelling to Bangkok months ahead so that I could have saved money by looking for online promos, but I have moved on. The round-trip ticket to Bangkok on a regular economy flight via PAL costs USD211 or around Php 11,000.
Because of that I decided to look for a budget hotel courtesy of the ever-reliable Agoda Online Booking. Agoda, for the past two years, has helped me find the best and cheapest way to stay in my country of destination. I booked a USD25 / Night Stay in Justbeds hotel for 2 Nights located near the Silom Road in Bangkok. Yes, its near to Patpong, but please there is more to Bangkok than these infamous red district spots.
Now let's get started, let me say I was lucky to stay in Millennium Hilton Hotel for just one night.
Now moving on, our first itinerary is the Chinatown Market/Yaowarat Market. If you think Thailand is yet another country with a huge Chinese population, yes you are certainly right. Chinatown is home to hundreds of amazing cheap finds and numerous street foods.
|Hey, Tuk Tuk everywhere. In the Philippines, we call this tricycle. Why don't we call our own tuk-tuk with a name that sounds so Filipino, just like them?|
Vietnam style noodles with basil leaves and bean sprouts. Basil leaves were a surplus and Z stole lots of it. Hehehe.
Bangkok also at river transport system but the current of the river was so scary so I didn't bother trying their ferries. It looks convenient and picturesque though.
The next day was a Sunday and we endeavored to find a Catholic church in a Buddhist nation. The Assumption Cathedral is situated in the heart of Bangkok and very near the Silom road where we stayed. But unfortunately (and understandbly), the mass was in Thai and we have to leave after saying a minute of prayer to thank God for our safe and fun trip to Bangkok.
Never-ending street food finds. This time we saw a Thai-version of our very own 'Penoy'. The taste was entirely the same, the only difference is we put salt here in Philippines while Thai put vinegar loaded with chilis.
Saturday, September 21, 2013
I wonder how is this going to impact the nation's obsession towards the Reproductive Health Bill (RH Bill) with the Philippine Catholic church being in the forefront of the defense against the approval of the controversial bill. The CBCP is probably scratching their heads right now and thinking how they are going to attack the issue with their head going against the grain this time. But one thing is for sure, Pope Francis clearly made a decisive action of changing how non-Catholics view the once hegemonic and antiquated religious domination. For once, many are seeing a window for reforms for the ailing institution.
But personally, for me the greatest war the Catholic church should focus right now is the decreasing population of its flock, second would be the failure to address the negative criticism towards the clergy and the institution itself, and lastly, the failure to evolve vis-a-vis the ever-changing socio-political landscape.
The rise of disagreeing believers and their shift towards the more upbeat and contemporary denominations is probably not hurting the Catholic church that much, but if left unseen, would definitely hurt further the already bleeding core of its spiritual foundation. The rise of Christian Fellowships are more appealing to the young and the skeptics/liberals. Tired Catholics who are probably bummed by its antiquated dogmas and long sermons are easily swayed by the more modern VCF (Victory Christian Fellowship) and CCF (Christ Commission Fellowship) which harness the power of social media and youth as a community empowerment as their unique value proposition.
I have to admit these groups are winning this side of war and the Catholic church must turn their blind eye towards this minor burn. These fellowships have found the weaknesses of the church who has been for thousands of years became one of the most dominant forces in the world - spiritual evangelization, the rationale of sainthood, the idolism.
For the next succeeding engagement with the press, I am hoping that the Pope would devote his time to shift his gear towards retaining the remaining faithfuls. It is high time for the high priest to center the faith once again, ultimately to Jesus Christ. It must once again evangelize its flock and reignite the waning spirit, the true meaning of salvation and explain the role of saints in their faith. It's too early to tell whether Pope Francis is going to turn more tables in the upcoming months of his leadership, but one thing is for sure, the Catholic church is now engaging to to the world, in an effort to promote transparency in its governance and hierarchy, to address the heated debated of sexual abuse and corruption, and under the helm of Pope Francis, it has a lot of explaining to do.
And with the Pope being more open to the press and the public, it is yet another clear impression of a shifting mood that will definitely resonate around the corners of its cathedrals and around the world.
I wonder what's next with the CBCP. We have our own set of problems to deal with in the first place.
Sunday, September 15, 2013
Stunt to watch out for - Bow and Arrow (0:42) and Scorpion (0:51) Triple Jump Combination (1:04)
Beware: Quadruple Fulls Orgasm
3. All Out War by California All Stars
Watch out for: Everything: Arabesque, Cobra, Scorpion, Toe Touch Bask, Power Jump. The Extensions, Transitions and Precision - Oh lalala
Looking forward to see more of these stunts next year. As mentioned, only NU this year has achieved most of these stuff, UP came close and DLSU. Deserving top three I must say. Congrats NU! From a bleeding Thomasian.
Saturday, September 14, 2013
Twitter announces IPO plans, on Twitter (via AFP)
|Source: GMA News (http://www.gmanetwork.com/news/story/326487/opinion/a-visual-evolution-of-the-pork-barrel)|
I love Blackberry. Before turning my eye on iPhone I was a huge Blackberry fan, and remains so until now. It is true that an individual's preference of a smartphone is dependent on its inherent character and personality. My relationship with Blackberry is loyal and honest - the tic-tac sound of the keyboard, the speed to text, the easiness of navigation, the discreet notifications, the multi-colored blinking lights, all of these features made Blackberry my preferred smartphone over the year. That was the era when I preferred productivity over style. As a salesman and a heavy communicator, I have to rely on the speed of my phone. I can't afford to make a mistake on my typing, a single stroke of error is tantamount to a lost of sale. Therefore during the years that I was working so hard, I can't put my hands off my beloved BB.
And then the beauty of iPhone's display swept me off my feet. I have seen's Samsung Galaxy S2s AMOLED display and it was awesome. But I felt it was a little too saturated, a bit yellowish/greenish. As compared to iPhone's natural contrast and brightness, it was just pleasant to the eye. But even if I got an iPhone, I still use my beloved BB 9360 as my main workphone. iPhone cannot replace BB on this particular field.
Android is great in the area of customization. It understand the character of its target market. They are the rebel, the young and adventurous. Their operating system is tailor-fitted to people who loves to do more and expect more. Therefore they decided to push the envelope further.
Samsung and any other Android OS smartphones such as HTC, Sony, LG are winning more users as they know that Android is more open and adaptive. They know that consumers love to see more drama, they love to see things get bigger, faster, better. There is no room for less improvement. Consumers are becoming more demanding and the evolution of technology is fast-paced. On this particular area, Samsung is getting more raves and applause. They know that Samsung is harnessing Android's strength to its full potential.
It is evident in the recent market surveys that iOS is losing more of its base and their market share continues to goes down, while Windows and Android are both gaining strength. Critics are bashing Apple over its recent performance during the September 10 unveiling. It was lack-luster, many were saying it was disappointing and boring. They said they were missing Steve Jobs' magic. iPhone 5S and 5C were expected even before the opening of the event and many people were hoping they would see more or they were looking for more surprise. But Tim Cook quickly ushered them to the demo room to see the iPhone 5S and 5C in action.
But iPhone knows that their money is on iOS reliability. They know that critics would bash them because they expect iPhone to be more revolutionary than ever. I don't think Apple is turning a blind eye on this sentiment. I know that Apple is intelligent enough to keep some magic under their sleeves. They knew that making iPhone bigger in terms of size is not going to increase their market share. They know that the right thing to do now is change the the way their OS works. The unveiling of iOS 7 for me is more than enough. A lot of critics were probably bored to see the usual icons, the slide to unlock, and the notification bars. And the revamped interface of iOS 7 is aimed to addressed that. The renewed spirit of iPhone is incarnated through Jonthan Ive's vision. They knew that changing the look and feel of the operating system is what Apple badly need right now. They have to attract new customers and at the same time, retain their current base who are easily swayed by their competitors fast-changing environment.
Apple is not going to rest on its laurels. I know that the Cupertino company is anchored on the vision that to be successful in this market is to be sustainable and they should keep the strength of their ecosystem at place and continue to rely on its marketing and logistics expertise.
Saturday, July 20, 2013
Why Would Apple Produce a Cheap iPhone? (via slashdot)
Thursday, April 25, 2013
GADGET DESIGNER Apple posted its first fall in profits in a decade on Tuesday, despite record iPhone and iPad sales. Apple's second quarter earnings call was widely touted as the biggest call of Tim Cook's career, but things weren't quite as bad as analysts had expected. The firm posted record revenues…