Saturday, November 28, 2009

Bob Dylan's Christmas in the Heart

Bob Dylan recently released an album of Christmas songs. How does it sound? It sounds like somebody is making fun of the songs. It sounds like only hardcore Bob Dylan fans will like it.

But the man is far from being irreverent. He is being himself. That's the way he does songs. The album has to be treated as a novelty despite the traditional songs. Imagine the ear-grating gravelly drunk-like voice singing a Christmas song then blend (?) in Ray Coniff type back up singers and you've got this album.

Hey they say this is for charity. Proceeds will go to some charitable cause. My advice for non-Dylan fans is to give your money straight to that charity and spare your ears. No need to pop up this album for your holiday mood.

The front and back covers (the sleigh ride and the three kings scene) evoke traditional Christmas spirit. But with the inside cover he can once again be accused of irreverence. Reminds you of his Victoria's Secret MTV with Adriana Lima.

But I'm A Bob Dylan fan. To me he gets away with this.

Friday, November 27, 2009

PacMan joke

In the recent Pacman fight they chanted:

Crowd: PacMan! PacMan!
Krista: Pac Me! Pac Me!
Jinkee: Pac You! Pac You!

Manny's conquests

Here are Manny Pacquiao's conquests on and off the ring. Manny definitely knows where to put his hands in every opportunity.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Women's tennis album 15 - Maria Kirilenko and Anna Chakvetadze

Maria Kirilenko and Anna Chakvetadze are the lesser lights of Russian tennis, behind former world no. 1 Maria Sharapova. Like Ms. Sharapova, the two are now slipping down the ranks, Before they totally fade away from the tennis scene, let us enjoy some of their photos in action.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

White hair chronicles XVIII - Longevity calculators

Kids ask darn questions. My son Popoy asked me last night who will cut his hair when our barber dies. Our barber is a gray haired guy and to my son, he looks to be a rather old man. It seems he still cannot get over the thought that people die. When I told him that our barber is not that old and is not about to die soon, Popoy's next question was "at what age do people die?"

Monday, November 23, 2009

Pinoy online power produces CNN hero of the year

A week after Manny Pacquiao's heroic feat, another Filipino is heralded a hero in the world stage. Efren Peñaflorida, who started a "pushcart classroom" in the Philippines to bring education to poor children as an alternative to gang membership, has been named the 2009 CNN Hero of the Year. He fully deserves the award but he definitely cinched it with a lot of help from his fellow Filipinos' online power.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

White hair chronicles XVII - A Grandfather?

I heard the news yesterday, oh boy! The youngest daughter of my younger brother gave birth earlier this week. That officially makes him a grandfather at 46 and my mother a lola sa tuhod at 68. That is not so shocking at all as other people became great/grandparents at an even younger age. The mild shock is that my niece is very young. She has older sisters, but the apo that would give my mother her first apo sa tuhod turned out to be her.

Still it shocks me that I am now also, technically, a grandfather. I hope the young mother and her baby are doing well. In a few years time, some tot will call me Lolo Perry. Some people have jokingly called me that before because of my white hairs. Now there will be some ring of truth in that. Wow!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Manny, Please stay good 3

Manny Pacquiao arrived to a hero's welcome in Manila. He was given yet another award by the GMA. This time he was conferred the rank of Datu, a fine addition to his plenty of datungs.

Manny and wife Jinkee kissed in front of the media after their arrival. They evaded the Krista affair issue. Jinkee said she cried during the homily because she missed their children. Anyway - Jinkee 1, Krista 0.

Friday, November 20, 2009

White hair chronicles XVI - Lose weight with emails?

The holidays always tend to add more pounds to everyone. Then by the start of the new year, among the resolutions always made is to lose weight. Early this year, I did the GM seven-day diet. I lost close to three kilos. I regained some of it but I am still lighter than last year.

Now in anticipation of holiday binges, I am trying to keep my intake down. There's a wellness website that claims people might drop more preholiday diet pounds if they tap into this simple technology: e-mail.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Manny Pacquiao - profile signatures in sig bets

In an online boxing forum that I frequently visit because of the spirited and intelligent discussion, forum members often place sig bets with one another. The agreement is that the losers must use for a month or two the profile signature provided by the winning team.

The past Pacquiao victories produced a lot of amazing photoshop works from Pac fans. Here are some that were considered or used. The latest sig bet profile from the Cotto fight is yet to be released. I'm sure it will also be very creative.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Manny, please stay good 2

Manny Pacquiao misses the point over the issue of his alleged affair with a starlet. Instead of a flat denial, he  counters with an accusation of crab mentality. He also pleads for unity in savoring his latest triumph as he makes a coy 'no comment'. That stance bolsters belief that the rumor is true.

He needs to be reminded that his success does not exempt him from moral laws. His association with bad influences lead him to believe that he can get away with anything. Some people might find cute his vain attempts to sing and act. People find novelty in that. But there is a limit. He better not venture in testing that.

Manny, use your power and influence to banish evil. Just do it.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Congrats Manny! Please stay good.

Congratulations Manny!

I watched the fight at a theater and unlike the previous PacMan fights I watched, the crowd was more relaxed all throughout. Perhaps it was because of the boring undercard. Or maybe it was because you were the 3-1 favorite. In the dela Hoya fight where you were the underdog, there was a nervous air. And unlike the Marquez fight, the audience was not taunting the opponent. It's as if we (and it seemed you yourself too) didn't want you to finish Cotto off brutally.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Women's tennis album 14 - Yanina Wickermayer

The women's tennis world no. 16 Yanina Wickmayer was suspended for a year by a Belgian anti-doping tribunal last week for failing three times to report her whereabouts for drug testing. Wickmayer said anti-doping officials sent her registered mail to her home in Belgium. Being on tour several months of the year, her registered mail remains unopened. Under the rules elite athletes must make themselves available for out-of-competition testing for one hour a day, 365 days a year. If they miss three out-of-competition tests or fail three times to register where they will be for anti-doping tests, they risk sanctions. The tearful 20-year-old U.S. Open semifinalist accused the sports authorities of treating her unfairly and ruining her career.

Seel also Album 13.

Monday, November 9, 2009

White hair chronicles XV - The Berlin Wall

Photo from Time
November 9, 2009 is the day the world celebrates the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall (photo from Time).

The construction of the wall started on the year of my birth. It stayed on for nearly three decades before it was torn down in 1989. My generation has seen the rise and fall of a historical icon, events that will be taken up in history lessons by future generations.

My generation has seen history made, but we're not history yet.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Most bang for the buck - SUN cellular and China wifi phone

Sun Cellular offers a low cost unlimited call and text service. The service works great for family members that need to get in touch with one another constantly. My sisters, my wife and son are on the Sun cellular network. I want a Sun cellular SIM too. Since I don't want to let go of my Smart mobile number, as this has been my number for the past 7 years, I need another pone as well.

I scouted for dual SIM phones. China made phones are invariably dual SIM. They allow you get two calls simultaneously, they give you analog TV reception, has a touch screen, and now some newer models are WiFi capable. All these at up to an eighth of the cost of an original Nokia (which is not dual SIM and has no TV). I got one for myself last Halloween.

The TV reception is passable. The audio player is ok too. The shake to shuffle feature works. The dual SIM works. The best feature I think is its WiFi capability. It has Google Maps, an chat client, and Opera browser. The package includes two batteries apparently because two SIMs use up power faster. The cheapest Wifi phone sells for around Php13,000 (a Samsung). But it is just single SIM, without TV. So I think the China dual SIM phone with TV and WiFi gives the most bang for the buck, most especially if the second SIM is from SUN cellular. That is, if you can live with its obviously clone look.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Women's tennis album 13 - Daniela Hantuchova

Daniela Hantuchova appeared in the 2009 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition together with Maria Kirilenko and Tatiana Golovin. She is the oldest and most successful among the three (so far), reaching the top 5 in 2003. Maria and Tatiana have overtaken Daniela in the rankings by now. Before she slips further down the rankings, let us enjoy her on-court beauty.

See also Album 12.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

White Hair Chronicles XIV - Itay, matanda ka na ba?

Itay, matanda ka na ba?

My son Popoy, 6,  asked me this last night (are you old already?) Of course, I'm not yet old, I told him. Why are you suddenly asking that, I asked him back. Wala lang, po - it's nothing, he said.

Something must be troubling him after we visited the cemetery where his Lolo Vic (my father) and his grandparents (my in-laws) were buried. We usually go visit them ahead of the throng, but typhoon Santi made us go along with the multitude that were there November 1.

When my father died two years ago, Popoy asked "why did Lolo Vic die?". The quick answer we gave him was "because he was old". Actually my father was only 68 when he suddenly died from heart attack. He was ok despite the operation that drained cerebrospinal fluid from his skull six months before and despite the difficulty in walking due to arthritis. Popoy and his lolo bonded well during the short time they knew each other. Popoy did not meet my wife's parents ever. But he knows from the pictures shown him that they got to be very old. My father was on the fat side and had his hair dyed black regularly. To Popoy, he must not have looked old at all.

So when my wife teases me about looking like a grandfather, and me being so old that cataracts affect my eyesight, plus the visit to the cemetery 'where old dead people' are buried, Popoy must have worried that his father is going to die soon.

It is kind of sweet to think that my young son is worried sick about me.