Category Archives: Current Events

Commuting to Manila

UBER no longer available

Since Uber is suspended and when I checked Grab, the fee was über high I decided to take the shuttle, those UV Express Service.

I had to go to my son’s dorm in UST area. So, I was told to take the shuttle from Bicutan to Lawton and get off at Park n Ride in Lawton. From there, I would take the jeep to UST-Dapitan. Alright.

My husband took me to the shuttle terminal in Egypt, Doña Soledad but there was a long line, so he took me to the terminal at the back of SM Bicutan. There was no line there! Yey!

We took off right away and OMG! My driver was the king of the road! We took the Skyway and even if it was packed our driver managed to snake his way through by changing lanes and honking his horn. He was driving this way until we reached Buendia turned to Dian-Durango-Bautista-P.Ocampo-Taft until we reached Lawton.

Since, I would be stopping off at his last stop, I seated myself at the back of the van. It was cramped but that is commuting for you. I didn’t mind. Besides the AC of the van was working well. What I didn’t like was the way the driver went about his business. I felt I had to also stretch my foot as if putting on the breaks and would close my eyes several times waiting for the crash to happen. I couldn’t remember the many times we almost crash into a vehicle ahead of us or beside us. He wanted to be ahead of every vehicle! I looked around my co-passengers and they seemed to didn’t mind. Some were staring into space, some were napping. But all of them were hooked on their smartphones listening to music or watching a video.

Would you believe? I was praying that a traffic enforcer would flag us down and arrest the driver. I didn’t care if I would be late for my appointment or something. I just wanted the driver to be apprehended.

I was the last one to get off at Lawton, and I said, “Grabe ka Kuya magdrive parang ambulansya.” (trans: you’re driving was crazy man!) And he just responded with a naughty smile. Grrrr!

I felt really unsafe!

Was it because I was no longer used to taking public transport or was that driver an exception and was really reckless?

So, here’s an appeal to LTFRB or whichever agency is it that handles erring drivers–may it be vans or cabs–to passionately pursue disciplining them like LTFRB is doing with Uber and other ride-sharing services.

Safe transport does not only involve having all the documents, complying with all the licenses or what-have-you. It also involves having conditioned public utility vehicles and responsible drivers.

Derek Ramsay, My Candidate

My Candidate

My Candidate, the Movie

My Candidate, the Movie

Derek, Iza & Shaina give the election season a romantic twist in “My Candidate”

Now, that the election fever has died down. The Filipinos have voted, and lucky candidates have emerged the winners. I think it’s time to get that much needed break and watch a movie. If you have unfriended your favorite movie buddy during the campaign period, well, pick from your loyal friends. *wink*

Showbiz hunk Derek Ramsay, Iza Calzado and Shaina Magdayao give us a different tale of love and romance this election season via “My Candidate” from Quantum Films, MJM Productions, Tuko Film Productions at Butchi Boy Films, producers of the award-winning and critically-acclaimed romantic-comedy films, “English Only, Please” and “#Walang Forever.”

The film is set against a political background and so, it is timely as today’s headlines.

Derek plays Congressman Sonny Suarez, now seeking a Senate seat. He may be a perfect candidate but is painfully shy and a bit withdrawn.

Iza, meanwhile, is Vera Sanchez, Sonny’s erstwhile girlfriend and archrival in his senatorial bid.

She possesses strengths lacking in Sonny.  She's charming as well as engaging but is not able to relate to people from the grassroots.

Shaina is Billie Pono, a life coach and communications trainer.  Sonny’s campaign team hires her services to help polish their candidate’s public speaking skill and innate charisma.

Billie succeeds at turning Sonny into the dream candidate and the two become close while at work.

In turn, Sonny is able to unleash some unresolved issues  in Billie’s life, including her insecurities thereby making her a better version of herself.

The movie’s teaser immediately earned almost a million views, shares and likes the minute it was posted on the “MC” Facebook page.

Netizens swore by Derek, Iza and Shaina’s outstanding performances.

Shaina held her own against Iza in the film, and this may be considered as her biggest break as a lead actress.

Shaina definitely gave the role her all, especially in scenes where her character finds herself slowly falling in love with Sonny.

Take note, Derek and Shaina also register very strong positive vibes on screen. Their romantic scenes together are neither hard sell nor put on, so, their pairing is indeed one of today’s freshest, newest romantic-comedy tandem.

No wonder, Direk Quark Henares is satisfied with his three main stars plus the support cast composed of Al Tantay, Nico Antonio, Ketchup Eusebio, Ricci Chan, Jun Sabayton and Tirso Cruz III in a special role.

The movie imparts all these funny situations during election time coupled with the resounding message that it must indeed be: “Bayan Muna Bago Puso.”

Also part of the movie is box-office director Dan Villegas, who serves as Creative Producer.

Direk Dan is the genius behind such award-winning and blockbuster films as “English Only, Please” and “#Walang Forever.”

His latest hit project is “Always Be My ‘Maybe.'”

Fresh concept. Hilarious story telling. New screen combination.

“My Candidate” gives the election season a romantic twist starting May 11 in theaters nationwide.

FILM              :           “MY CANDIDATE”
PLAYDATE   :            MAY 11, 2016

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Metro Manila Standstill

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NCR road advisory for APEC leaders’ meet. More road advisories here

Metro Manila, or even NCR, is now preparing for a one-week standstill. No, it’s not because of a Manny Pacquaio boxing match. It’s not even because of an AlDub Nation activity.

The country will host the most high-profile event, the APEC Leaders’ Meeting. Here’s the Primer. The Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation 21-member economies will gather here in the Philippines. Top leaders, senior officials, top businessmen and industry experts will meet and discuss about three main items namely trade and investment liberalization, business facilitation, economic and technical cooperation (Ecotech).

It is an important event for the member economies, as it is for the country.

But why the standstill?

Classes in all levels in the National Capital Region (NCR) are called off, government offices and public services, airline flights flying out and flying in to Manila are cancelled for one week from November 16 to November 20. Private offices, including banks, will be closed for business for two days, November 18-19. Road closures/reroutes have been set up.

The city does not only go on a standstill, business is also shut down.

In my sons’ school, they did away with their original schedule of semestral break and would just take the break during the APEC week. But because of the disruption of flight and business skeds, we cannot do anything much.

I wonder how the airlines would fare with all the flights cancelled; how the banks will do it without any transaction for two days; how we will cope with further delays in our public services.

If we are to be concerned of appearances, I wonder how it would look to the world that our country cannot host an important meeting without sending its people and businesses to sleep BECAUSE of lack of foresight and planning.

Articles about the APEC Meeting

APEC 2015: Where delegates met in PH
Not ready to host APEC
LIST: Schedule of bank operations during APEC PH 2015
Manila goes into lockdown mode for Apec summit

Flight Cancellations

Philippine Airlines – PAL cancels over 200 flights in relation to APEC Meet in Manila; offers free flight rebooking

Cebu Pacific Air – CEB Advisory – 2015 APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting

Air Asia – Flight cancellations for the APEC Economic Leaders’ Meeting 2015

1,364 domestic, int’l flights cancelled, more roads closed due to APEC meet

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AlDub and Laglag Bala

Photo grabbed from

I hope I won’t get flagged for the title of this post.

But there’s a reason why I’m writing about these two topics now. As you all know, these are the hottest news about our country lately that has attracted the attention of people worldwide.

Let me start with the positive news first, the AlDub Nation. I don’t need to expound further as much have already been written about Alden (aka Alden Richards) and Yaya Dub (aka Maine Mendoza of the Dubsmash fame).

Breaking all Twitter records and being picked up by CNN Philippines and BBC News Asia, and even Bloomberg, the tandem is phenomenal. CNN PH talks about how AlDub has the stirred anew the old-fashioned values of family and community. BBC NA tagged AlDub as a social media phenomenon about love and lip-synching.  And Bloomberg, being a business channel, hits on AlDub as a new disrupter in the practice of marketing. The local newspapers and online portals also have their take on the AlDub’s influence on TV viewing, TV ratings, and social media explosion.

I do watch the segment every chance I get, and although I cannot call myself a fan or a fanatic, I am as amazed as everyone else by how much it has broken into the consciousness of every Filipino here and abroad. Truly, it is a phenomenon.

I talked to a friend and an avid follower of AlDub and she said something that really struck me. AlDub has no fans club. It has created fan communities (because yes in social media, you have communities). That is how the new media operates. You create communities and you organize these communities. Now, according to my friend, these communities joined by Facebook or Twitter or SMS or all three, discuss and decide what is the official hashtag of a particular episode. Once an hashtag (example: #ALDUBEBTamangPanahon) is decided, these communities start tweeting using the hashtag. The tweeting and sharing on Facebook has no time and boundary. She mentions that many of them stay until the wee hours of the morning (and I’m guessing, some don’t sleep at all) tweeting to their hearts’ content. So that even before Eat Bulaga airs and even after the show has stopped airing for the day, the tweets keep coming.

Very clever for the group behind AlDub! Take note for these are valuable lessons for those working with brands on social media engagement.

Photo grabbed from

Just when we have put out there positive news, scalawags in uniforms are out to spoil our fun. The Laglag Bala modus operandi, aka Tanim Bala, in NAIA airports is shameful, frustrating, and stupid!

The first time it happened, Malacañang dismissed it as an isolated case. Further investigation proved, though, that the incident was a modus operandi. And just recently, the modus has exploded. Suddenly, one OFW after another returning to the country has been nabbed as bringing home bullets. These bullets are found lodged in the traveler’s luggage, and often in the carry-on baggage. Who in his right mind would hand-carry and just put the bullet, an illegal item, randomly in pockets that can easily be scanned and inspected? And after one person has been caught, another person would come home bearing the same illegal item. Have these returning OFWs gone mad?

What is more frustrating is that the authorities don’t seem to find an urgency to get to the bottom of this… and that is after several incidents already. Unbelievable! This incident, on the other hand, teaches us a valuable lesson on how to be stupid and play dumb!

PAO opens hotline for bullet-planting victims

Two stories, although disparate, that arouse the emotions of us, Filipinos.


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Plus, Minus of SONA 2015

Yes, it’s the 6th State of the Nation Address (SONA 2015) of President Noynoy Aquino, and his last. As expected, the reception of the SONA depends on whose side you are.  But here is a good account of important issues that are  not being addressed yet.

As for me, here are my pluses and minuses of the SONA as a cursory bystander member of the citizenry.


  • His loud and active program of “matuwid na daan,” eliminating corruption has made people wary of committing graft and corruption. It has set the atmosphere of transparency.
  • His litany of programs/projects he has done with his cabinet members shows that he was doing something to improve the plight of Filipinos and the economy of the country. I know for a fact, that he and the relevant agency is supportive of some programs of the private sectors.
  • He actually has good and and qualified people in his ranks, who I know are working toward the “matuwid na daan.” And from a management standpoint, recognizing these people and their work is a good and inspiring thing.


  • His loud and active program of “matuwid na daan,” however, is partial to scalawags close to him.
  • He is not telling the real status of the programs that he has embarked on. Let us take Department of Education as  an example. Despite DEPED’s claims as being ready for K+12 program, the teachers claim otherwise. Despite DEPED’s claims to have addressed the shortage of classrooms, school officials say otherwise. Despite DEPED’s claim that the teachers are ready for the K+12 programs in terms of skills, the teachers say otherwise.
  • He claims of foreign investments but still there is no proof of foreign direct investments.
  • As expected,  he cannot acknowledgment that the previous administration despite its faults, has paved the way for some, if not most, of his successful projects to date.
  • Simply put, his administration has failed to address the basic services of the country, and he did not make heads roll for that.

And for the militant groups out there, I think you are overdoing it. In this day and age of high technology, you do not need to be in the middle of the action to prove your point. Why can’t you obey the rules and launch your rally on your designated areas??? In the process, you only earn the ire of the people.

Read the full transcript of SONA 2015 here.

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Typhoon Glenda Hits the Philippines

The path of Typhoon Glenda (Rammasun)

The path of Typhoon Glenda (Rammasun)

Classes from pre-school to high school are suspended today, July 15, and tomorrow, July 16 as heavy rains, strong wind, and storm surges are to be expected when Typhoon Glenda (Rammasun) makes a landfall.


As of 4:00 p.m., July 15, 2014, typhoon Glenda was located 60 km east southeast of Legazpi City, and moving west northwest at 19 kph. Glenda has maximum sustained winds of 130 kph near the center and gustiness up to 160 kph. Typhoon Glenda is expected to make landfall over Albay-Sorsogon area this evening, then cross Albay towards Southern Luzon.

It is expected to pass Metro Manila before noon tomorrow and will be in the vicinity of Bataan in the afternoon and will then move towards the West Philippine Sea. By Thursday afternoon, it will be at 370 km West of Sinait, Ilocos Sur outside the Philippine Area of Responsibility.

Signal#3 (101 -185 kph) Catanduanes, Albay, Sorsogon, Camarines Sur, Camarines Norte, Masbate, Quezon including Polilio Islands, Marinduque, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Northern Samar, northern part of Eastern Samar

Signal#2 (61-100 kph) Southern Aurora, Cavite, Bulacan, Pampanga, Bataan, Nueva Ecija, Pangasinan, Tarlac, Zambales, Lubang Island, Oriental Mindoro, Romblon, Biliran, rest of Samar, Eastern Samar, northern part of Leyte Province, and Metro Manila

Signal#1 (30-60 kph) Northern Aurora, Quirino, Nueva Vizcaya, Benguet, La Union, Occidental Mindoro, rest of Leyte, Southern Leyte, Northern Cebu, including Cebu City and Camotes Islands.

Residents in low lying and mountainous areas under signal 3, 2 and 1 are alerted against possible flash floods and landslides. Likewise, those living in coastal areas under signal 3 and 2 are alerted against storm surges of up to 3 meters. Estimated rainfall amount is from 7.5-20 mm/hr (moderate-intense) within the 500 km diameter of the Typhoon.

Read the PAGASA Weather Bulletin for updates.

Meanwhile, keep safe everyone! Save these emergency numbers just in case:

National Disaster and Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) hotlines
Trunklines- 911-5061 to 65
Operations Center- 911-1406, 912-2665, 912-5668

Philippine National Police (PNP) Hotline Patrol
Hotline: 117
Text hotline: 0917-847-5757

Red Cross hotline
Trunkline: (02) 527-0000

Click HERE for more!

The State of our Streets

 Image grabbed from Philstar

Here in Metro Manila, there is not a day that a motorist does not complain of being stuck in a traffic jam. To travel on the metro streets in a breeze is considered an exception and not the norm.

I for one got a bit scared one time when I was walking along Ayala Avenue and didn’t see any vehicles on the street. As in the street was empty. I had to look around and walk fast for fear that something was amiss.

Such is the state of our streets here.

This morning was no exception. A friend who was taking the Skyway, shared on social network that she got stuck in bad traffic. Everyone thought that it was because of the start of work for the Skyway Stage 3 project, which will connect SLEX to the NLEX through Buendia to Balintawak. This project aims to decongest EDSA, C-5 and other major thoroughfares in Metro Manila. The traffic jam this morning though was caused by a vehicular accident, according to the news.

Still, accident or no accident, metro streets are always jammed every day. Now with the Skyway Stage 3 project, the goal is noble actually. It has to be done.

What gets my beef is the seemingly lack of preparations (again!). Alternate routes, and working ones at that, should have been prepared and established years or months before this project starts. What’s happening, I heard, is that it was only at the start of the project (which is today) when the alternate routes are also identified. Take note, identified. Not prepped and tested.

Such is the state of our streets!


Here are the alternate routes as Skyway Stage 3 construction starts!

Reflections of Moscow and the Metro Bombing

by Nono Delid

The recent deadly bombing in two Metro stations in Moscow left the Russian nation in mourning and resolve to search and punish the perpetrators. Fear of the same calamity likewise gripped the Russian capital. I join the world in condemning the incident as I sympathize with its people on this tragedy.

Seeing those pictures in international media and reading them from papers left me reflect those times many years ago when I was in Moscow, circa 1984 when “glasnost and perestroika” were not yet around. For those who are fond of real spy stories, from Mossad, CIA, Scotland Yard to KGB, the place Lubyanka maybe too familiar; specifically Lubyanka prison which was then, to Western observers, almost synonymous to Gulag. Because this is where the main headquarters of the famous KGB was located. Today, it is also the headquarters of the Federal security Service, the agency tasked to protect its citizens. The first bombing took place in nearby Lubyanka Metro station.

I remember this place quite well. Daily, on our last week in Moscow back then, we would pass by it, or ride the Metro through this station. Because this station was very close to our hotel, the Rossia Hotel, which was just a stone’s throw away from the Kremlin and Red Square.

We have been amazed by the magnificence of Russia’s Metro Subway stations that we would just then joyride from station to station. In many instances, we got lost, because many stations were actually several levels below ground levels. Everyday, millions of Russian people use the Metro. One time coming in from the central city of Liepetz, we disembarked from a Moscow central station and that was when we realized that at least 5 million people use that line daily.

How Typhoon Pepeng (Parma) Looks Like

Metro Manila and neighboring towns Bulacan, Rizal, Laguna, and Cavite are still recovering from Typhoon Ondoy (Ketsana), and another typhoon is heading its way here.

This early, Typhoon Pepeng (Parma) is described as a super typhoon, packing winds of 150mph and it’s heading toward northern Luzon.

Help us pray that Pepeng (Parma) weakens as it nears land!

As I write now, rains are starting to pour in Makati. Plurkers also share that it’s beginning to rain in their areas (Quezon City and Pasig). Yet, more help is needed in the calamity areas. If you have more to give, visit these drop-off points:

  • Team Manila stores in Trinoma, Mall of Asia, Jupiter Bel-Air and Rockwell shall be accepting relief goods (Canned Goods, Ready-to-drink Milk, Bottled Water and Clothes) for distribution by Veritas.
  • Aranaz Stores in Rockwell & Greenbelt is accepting donations of any kind for Payatas communities affected by Ondoy.
  • Papemelroti stores in 91 Roces Ave. / Ali Mall Cubao / SM City North EDSA / SM Fairview / SM Megamall / Glorietta 3 in Makati / SM Centerpoint / SM Southmall are accepting relief goods (canned goods / milk / bottled water / clothes – NO CASH pls.)
  • Petron: You may bring your relief goods to all Petron branches.
  • LUCA stores (Rockwell, Shang-rila, Eastwood, or GA towers): Send your old clothes & donations (no cash pls).
  • MOONSHINE boutique in Rockwell also accepting relief good to help Ondoy victims in Marikina and Cainta.
  • MINISTOP IBARRA (Espana cor. Blumentritt, Sampaloc Manila) is also accepting relief goods, Food (non-perishable goods only) Clothing, Medicines, Beds, Pillows, Blankets, Emergency Supplies to help Typhoon Ondoy victims.

Read more list…

[Source of Images]