Showing posts from 2009

Creative Xmas. Remembering love, recalling hate

MANILA - White Christmas is what they're dreaming of, and they're Filipinos. But aren't millions of other Filipinos dreaming the same? Yes. They've been like that at least since Bing Crosby became the Crooner, and they can sing like him too. They are creative, silly!

Still, the Yankees are sillier, if you ask me, or more ridiculous. That's the insight I get listening to Deirdre Reilly of Boston who says American "Christmas is under attack" (16 December 2009, Taunton Gazette):

Christmas in 2009 is under attack, and Christians are feeling the heat. Many towns across the country are considering removing their crèches or have already removed them, and employees are fined if they express their faith at work by saying "Merry Christmas."

Crèches, Nativity scenes have been transformed by American legal luminaries and media masters from being devices for free worship to being devices for liberal horsewhips. The law of God is a respecter of persons, but…

Neneng’s Idea. Louie Tabing & science in Asingan

MANILA – Sunday, 06 December 2009, we are in our hometown of Asingan in Pangasinan in Central Luzon in the Philippines; my old/new girl friends Neneng Manuel, Neri Tepace, and Lady Councilor Julita Orpiano and I am in a seminar in, shall I say, the sciences of restoring the health of the soil (using organic fertilizer), and of growing healthy foods for the people (locally produced milk from local and imported cattle, eggs & meat with poultry & livestock grown with natural feeds, and virgin coconut oil from local nuts). You're nuts if you don't think health is wealth as it comes naturally.

In this seminar, 67 farmers are in attendance, 21 from Asingan, and 46 from other towns in Pangasinan: Alcala 2, Bayambang 2, Binalonan 2, Laoac 1, Manaoag 2, Pozorrubio 4, Rosales 4, San Manuel 1, San Nicolas 6, Santa Maria 5, Sison 1, Tayug 4, and Villasis 2. They came from other places. From Nueva Ecija Province: Cuyapo 1. From Tarlac Province: Gerona 1, Moncada 2, and Ramos 4. From…

My Hero? I did not vote for Efren Peñaflorida!

LOS ANGELES - Saturday, 21 November, towards the end of a gala event, “CNN Heroes: An All-Star Tribute,” Cable News Network's anchor Anderson Cooper announces that Filipino Efren Peñaflorida is the 2009 CNN Hero of the Year. Their hero! It's a Filipino who has won over many other deserving CNN heroes in their own countries. No thanks to me.

Efren is the founder of the Dynamic Teen Company (DTC) based in Cavite City near Manila; DTC is a 12-year old doing-the-best-we-can-where-we-are project of a street-children classroom manned by volunteer teenagers pushing carts loaded with books, blackboards, school supplies (Edson C Tandoc Jr, 23 November 2009,, and chairs ( - and hearts loaded with faith, hope and love. The greatest of these is love.

Efren won over 9 other 2009 CNN Heroes because he had the highest CNN online votes, that is to say, he was the CNN Hero whose heroism people around the globe were impressed the most. Having read much o…

Farmer Green Bill Gates. Listen, you capitalist laggards!

DES MOINES, IOWA - Nouveau Riche Farmer Green Bill Gates on Thursday, 15 October, called on the wealthy people and the rich countries of the world to invest more millions on the millions of poor farmers of Africa, Asia and America.

He isn't talking, but I'm sure it's his latest application of his own innovative idea he calls Creative Capitalism. (I've written about it earlier; see my 'Bill Gates, Nobel Prize for Economics 2008!',' October 2008, I've been using Microsoft applications since I can remember 'Alpha' (Word 1); I've been following up his career and software for better or for worse. If I know Bill Gates from his Microsoft days, he's trying to program it as the industry standard.

Putting his money where his mouth is, Bill Gates gets 5 stars from me, a critic of capitalism - and Microsoft. He announced that the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation was granting a total of $120 million to 9 pro-poor farmer green…

ShelterBox. Australia, You Light Up My Life!

LOS BAÑOS, LAGUNA – After a disaster, ShelterBox gathers people, shelters, warms, comforts and lends them dignity and, surprise: It glows? From out of that green box has come this gray domed tent, and here it glows in this beautiful, cloudy afternoon at 1628 hours of Tuesday, 06 October above Tadlac Lake, near the University of the Philippines Los Baños, below legendary Mount Makiling and above historic Laguna Bay some 50 km south of humbled Manila in the Philippines. They have been distressed by the fury of Ketsana. Yellow for hope. Thank God for the green ShelterBox!

Inside the domed tent, wrapped around that glow, you can also see the soft glow in the faces of the women, the glow of hope, the glow of renewed enthusiasm for life. The light. Isn’t it enough to fill everyone’s heart? I'm a stranger here, and it certainly fills mine.

Now then, further thinking out of the box, I would like international star Charice of the Philippines with her gift of song to sing for the refugees of…

Who, me? 17 September birthdays & celebrations

LOS BAÑOS, LAGUNA – When I celebrate, it's a big one, as big as a whole town. Let's board the boat and let's party! With love, let me celebrate with those who were born 17 September, and they are legion. At 69, I am of course an old UP Los Baños sentimental fool, so I'll start right there.
17 September 2009, today is the 8th in the series of what is called the Bañamos Festival, which started 2002, packaged as the 'Hot Spring Baths Festival of Los Baños' ( Today, the town celebrates its 395th Foundation Day. Yesterday, the town was called 'Mainit' because of the hot springs emanating from Mt Makiling, a dormant volcano the foot of which was a few meters away. The place was part of Bay, Laguna. Francis was here; the Franciscan friars were fascinated with the hot baths and in 1589, Fr Pedro Bautista set up public baths and renamed the place 'Los Baños' (The Baths). But it wasn't until 17 September 1615 when the overseer Luis Vil…