Saturday, September 28, 2013

Megan Young Wins Miss World 2013; Philippines Sets Record Anew

Two out of two.

Among the five considered major beauty contests, Philippines won the most coveted crowns of the two big pageants that were so far held this time of the year - the Miss Supranational 2013 and the Miss World 2013.

After Mutya Datul bagged the top plum of Miss Supranational 2013 for the Philippines, it is Megan Young this time winning the crown of Miss World 2013 for the same country in a spectacular final ceremony held in Bali, Indonesia tonight.
Photo credit:

Megan Young, an impeccable 23 year old film student from Olongapo City, earned the nod of the judges among 127 other contestants from the prelim events until the final phase of the pageant. She is the first woman from Southeast Asia and from the Philippines to wear the blue crown.

Her win is a historic feat, as many pageant analysts have observed and predicted, because Philippines has just set an impressive record to fortify its pageant leadership more impressive than powerhouse countries like Venezuela, Brazil, and India.

Philippines is now the only country in the planet to have won all the major beauty pageants: 2 Miss Universe, 1 Miss World, 1 Miss Earth, 4 Miss International and 1 Miss Supranational.

Aside from the top spot, Megan Young is also the winner of Top Model event and declared as Continental Queen of Asia. Completing her entourage were: 1st Princess Marine Lorphelin of France and 2nd princess Carranza Shooter of Ghana.

As your compatriots, we are very proud of you, Megan Young! Mabuhay ang Pilipinas!

Friday, September 27, 2013

Happy World Teachers' Day 2013

According to UNESCO, the World Teachers' Day presents a significant token of the awareness, understanding and appreciation showed for the vital contribution that teachers make to education and development.

This year's theme revolves around the slogan: A Call for Teachers, which will center on the development of teachers for global citizenship and cultural diversity. It is on this focus that it is believed that teachers are the instrument in building a sustainable future with people who are able to take actions on pressing challenges of the international community.

If you are a teacher who at the same time is a blogger or just as active in your social networks, here are some ways you might just enjoy this very special day dedicated only for the one of the noblest people in this planet - the teachers.

One of the easiest thing to shout that pride out loud is to spread awareness. Scribble on your online walls some greetings, quotations and compliments about the teachers you know. And just a simple tip: Do not forget to use trending hashtags.

Mail cards? You don't have to shop far and wide because there are hundreds of awesome electronic compliments about teachers. In a few clicks and seconds, and presto, you would have already sent your reminder of inspiration to all the teachers you've met in your life wherever corner of the world they may be now.

Programs and activities in honor for these "unsung heroes" of the world will surely be in every nook and cranny. Why not register your event this year and share your plans with others who may wish to participate or promote your event with the rest of the world? Submit your celebration in this

Dedicate and share a blog or note about the the role of teachers in your personal and professional development as a teacher. It is about time to look back to those people who helped us build ourselves to become just great like them. After all, aren't you teacher a result of our teachers in the past?

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Happy World Teachers' Day!

Sunday, September 22, 2013

What Is Pork Barrel?

I know that this recent public washing of linen all boils down into a thing called PORK BARREL, but I really wonder about the literal reference of this phrase. I asked a few people around who might be able to suffice my nosiness before it all became a dirty slogan among the protesters and a sickening headline among the news. While I scratched my head hard, they neither really know the answer.

The recently scandalized term pork barrel is also known as Priority Development Assistance Fund or PDAF in our country. It is a monetary budget allocated for each congressman to spend on projects or any matter where it is due without going through budgetary process. If you are a teacher, you would surely relate it to Maintenance and Other Operating Expenses or MOOE of a school.

I browsed some articles and here are some highlights of the things that I learned with regard to the origin of the term. They are really eye opener.

The term originated from the time when refrigeration was not yet a household thing for keeping pork and it was preserved in big wooden barrel of brine. The political usage may have been taken from the distribution of ration of salt pork to slaves in the plantation.  

A journalist C. C. Maxey commented that oftentimes the eagerness of slaves would result to rush upon pork barrel in which every slave would strive to grab for himself. Our modern day politicians, in their eagerness to take their local appropriation items, behaved so much the same as the slaves would for pork in the barrel.

Moreover, a barrel of pork is also used in the olden times as a measure of social status of a family. An eighteen hundreds literary document, for example, J. S. Cooper once wrote "I hold a family to be in a desperate way, when the mother can see the bottom of the pork barrel."

As I write and read this post, the picture that came in my mind from the metaphor above is that of a bunch of greedy politicians wearing a decent barong but in the middle of a stampede in the court with the others who are equally hungry, although not every one, to take the money of the people into their own pockets and cases.

I wonder how these same money we pay as our taxes could have helped so many needy people in our country if our politicians were just honest at all times. It's really a dirty business in a race of dogs, and a really dirty picture I can visualize.

How about you?

Friday, September 20, 2013

Night Life

Get a life. 

I hear it being commented to those like yours truly, who I must admit, have been living a mundane life comparable to that of an innocent monk in the monastery. So, after the nth time of coaxing and persuading, I succumbed to the idea of going out for a bar hop with my three friends this Friday night. An INITIATION, they said.

We went to EMR along Alunan Avenue, City of Koronadal. I like the place mainly because it is clean and cozy. A band on stage was playing live with a trio of female singers who I got envy with their singing prowess. There were a handful of party animals that night. It was not solely a bar for moneyed people but I can sense an atmosphere of civility around that people get conditioned to a decent mode when going there.

After two rounds of disco, we felt it was getting more boring to stay, so we decided to go to a more "open" bar called Paparonis along the other side of Alunan Avenue. It is not as classy as the former but the bar was jampacked by many expectant looks of mainly male species. There were stand up comedians but I pity at how they tried to look funny and people weren't amused at all.

We wanted to hop to another place called Mougen but it was a little late, so we decided to stay there longer. We drank and chatted until the unholy dawn. My three friends did a "very good deal" of getting me out of my claustrophobic life for me to see a wider vista of a barer life. I know there are things that aren't learned in school but it only meant more true until this time. Now, isn't that just a great drama again?

I noticed that most people in the bar have turned themselves into non-verbal animals either because they are innately born as non-verbal creatures or because it is a customary act when in the bar. Goers stare with meanings bulging out of their eyeballs. Passers turn with intentions screaming louder than voice. But in a sea of strangers desiring to engage in a companionship, it is the language of initiating and the freedom of reply is yours.

Another thing I realized that you need to dispatch a few people who are out of your taste in order to entertain a set of people you want to be friends with. I know that sounds a little mean of my friends making me realize it and I had terminal attacks of personal guilt about it but that's it and life, on a larger scale, goes on.

I also learned that it is attracting people and knowing them all, and the way they treat you depends on you. I must be frank that while I've always thought it's all about the flesh, I learned that we are the ones who carry ourselves and we can go to the bar without shedding and eventually losing self respect.

Our entire journey wasn't the best but I really enjoyed.

Worth another? Definitely.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Origin of Filipino Lolo and Lola

A happy grandparents day to my grandparents and to all the grandparents around. I am not fond of celebrating this special day, but if my own grandparents are still alive today, I would have told them how well they brought me into this world, having lived a part of my childhood life with them. However, as what the title of this post intends to discuss, this is not a time to get sentimental.

LOLO and LOLA are Filipino kinship titles used before name of elderly persons to imply status of being grandfather and grandmother. The terms are also used to any male or female acquaintance generally over sixty years old regardless of affinity. In the Filipino culture, it is considered as a sign of respect to the old ones.

I believe that the Filipino kinship terms for grandfather and grandmother were derived from the final syllable of Spanish words abuelo and abuela.This is the same case for other Filipino kinship terms such as manong and manang which are obviously adapted from Spanish hermano and hermana, meaning uncle and aunt.

From the original Spanish abuelo and abuela, the words probably evolved when children cannot pronounce the entire words that are,  as a matter of fact, foreign to the local tongue. So, the parents of the olden times must have used a motherese language to simplify the terms for the struggling children, making it into lo and la.

So, how did they evolve into lolo and lola? Reduplication is a common feature of the Filipino language and other local languages in the country. Hence, over time, the Filipino speakers must have turned the shorter namesake into sweeter endearment called lolo and lola.

My Lolo Gunding and Lola Tina.

So, once again, a meaningful day to my grandparents and all the grandparents out there. Thank you for everything that you do to make the world a lovelier and happier place to live.

*Disclaimer: Not for scholarly purpose. 

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Philippines Wins Miss Supranational 2013

Not really the most towering, most fluent, most fierce, but definitely the most high, most expressive, most beautiful.

For some people having growing interest in the relatively young pageant, the world stopped a moment after the dust settled and the brunette Miss Philippines was announced as the ultimate winner of Miss Supranational 2013 title in a spectacular coronation gala held in Belarus.

The 5'8 tall barrio lass Mutya Johanna Datul from Isabela Province was destined for greater things besting eighty three other delegates from different countries around the world to become the fifth holder of the said title and the first Asian winner in the history of the said pageant.

Initially winning the coveted Miss Personality, the Philippine bet was among the early favorites for her noticeable "radiance" and "genuine" personality that she naturally exudes the way she bears herself on stage, as many analysts said.

Completing her entourage in the top five were delegates from Mexico, Turkey, Indonesia, and U.S. Virgin Islands in that order. Rounding up to the top twenty were ladies from Australia, India, Thailand, Myanmar, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, Brazil, Canada, Luxembourg, Russia, Latvia, Ukraine, Poland, Belarus, and Gabon.

For the meantime, enjoy the pictures showing winning moments of our new queen. Photo credit goes to the respective owners.

All hail to the new queen! Congratulations and we are very proud of you!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Drawing Inspirations

Last month, I did not really feel the holidays because of work commitments. I must say that, as a domino effect, I was stuck in a  sort of uninspired blogging. But slowly I am looking again at the brighter side of everything, which I think is more important than staying at the mundane. And I would just like to share some of my random inspirations for this.

A beam of inspiration she is. And candid at that take.

I have this growing likeness to this pretty lady who I can only describe as a fresh breath of air. Her name is Mutya Johanna Datul, a beauty queen wearing the Philippine sash at the Miss Supranational 2013 being held in Belarus. She simply has this genuine smile radiating through her whole personality that judges chose her in preliminary contest. The pageant is being shown at these hours but I don't have access, so the final result will be the first thing I am going to make inspiration tomorrow when I wake up.

After assuming that it will be the prelude of a season that ducks will hate, the rain poured tonight. It is from this that I get inspiration to definitely put my two bare hands in the garden tomorrow. I am going to transfer my hibiscus plants in the ground after they rarely bloomed in their pots and sometimes I noticed some "nipped in the bud" literally. I think they really need a favorable spot where their roots can spread wide and can thrive more healthy.

On the academic side, I am still thinking of what topic I am going to take with the action research I am planning to conduct, so tomorrow will be a welcome relief for this inkling in mind to come true. I have initially thought of something that would relate to the implementation of mother tongue as a curriculum subject in schools or to the reading difficulties that many early grade learners experience. You know, these stuffs that only weird people would throw much inspiration nowadays.

And lastly, I was notified days ago that that I have a letter at the community hall. I was back to the grinds for the whole week and I would only claim the letter not until Monday. Gone were the penpal days and a very few of my friends abroad would send letter these days, so I am understandably inspired at this point that I can only wildly guess. Could it be from someone I love or just from the bank? A letter from none of these two choices would really pull surprise but I am hoping to receive from the former.

So, this is how I am going to make some twists and turns this weekend from my rut.