Isyung Pandemya 2020

NAGDULOT ang COVID-19 pandemic ng maraming problema sa ating bansa, na nakaaapekto hindi lamang sa sektor ng kalusugan ngunit sa lahat ng aspekto ng pamumuhay ng bansa. Apektado nito ang pagpapatakbo ng pamahalaan, ang operasyon ng mga negosyo at industriya, at ang buhay ng ordinaryong mga tao sa bansa.

Nagkaroon ng problema sa bayarin sa kuryente sa unang mga buwan ng Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ) nang kuwestiyunin ng mga konsumer ang kanilang electric power bills, na tinatanong kung paano natukoy ang halagang dapat bayaran gayong hindi naman nagkaroon ng aktuwal na reading sa mga electric meter sa mga bahay dahil sa lockdown. Isang pro-consumer group ang nagsulong ng FiT-All rates – isang uniform charge sa lahat ng gumagamit ng kuryente upang mapababa ang produksyon ng malinis ngunit mahal na renewable energy. Ngunit lumabas na ang FiT-All ay malaking halaga na matagal nang bahagi ng Meralco bills –na nagkakahalaga sa isang tahanan ng R50 ng R10,000 bill para sa 937 kilowatt-hours noong Hulyo. Gayunman, ipinag-utos ng Energy Regulatory Board ordered ang refund sa anumang FIT-All amounts, gayundin ang Universal Charge-Environment Charge (UC-EC) sa panahon ng lockdown.

Kalaunan, inanunsiyo ni Meralco Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan na nakaisip na ito ng paraan upang mapababa ang mga bill, kabilang ang reduction of systems loss, ng transmission charges, at ng Wholesale Electricity Spot Market prices. Nangako naman itong patuloy na hahanap ng paraan upang higit pang mapababa ang systems loss habang pinagbubuti ang kanilang serbisyo.

Sa pag-usbong ng usaping ito mula sa nagpapatuloy na pandemya at ang kasamang resulta ng restriksyon ng pamahalaan, maaaring panahon na upang suriin ng pamahalaan ang pangunahing isyu kung ano ang pinagmulan ng pandemya. Sinasabing konektado ito sa climate crisis—ang pagtaas ng global na temperatura, pagbagsak ng ecosystem, na dahilan upang mapilitan ang mga hayop na lumayo sa kanilang natural na tirahan, pagtaas ng interaksyon sa iba pang hayop gayundin sa mga tao sa nakalipas na mga taon.

Sa proseso, maraming virus ang nag-evolve, tulad ng EBOLA, H1N1, at HIV-AIDS. Ilang pag-aaral ng mga siyentista ang nagsasabing may koneksyon sa mga paniki ang nangyayaring COVID-19, na humawa sa mga pusa at ferret.

Kasama ng ating pagsisikap na maunawaan ang COVID-19 at mahinto ang pagkalat nito, kailangan nating maglaan ng atensyon at panahon sa pag-aaral at aksyon upang malabanan ang climate change. Kailangan natin ang mas malaking pamumuhunan sa renewable energy at sa iba pang mga programa na may layong sugpuin ang mapaminsalang gawi na nakasisira sa balanse ng kalikasan at nagdudulot ng matinding pagbabago sa natural na mundo— mga pagbabagong nagpasimula sa pag-usbong ng mga virus tulad ng COVID-19 na patuloy na lumalaganap sa mundo.


2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup: The height of the players (tallest & shortest: player, team, position) infographic

A very interesting infographic of the 2014 FIBA Basketball World Cup, and the bottom line why the Philippines is lagging behind

The Missing Graph

Infographic with facts and figures about the heights of the players of the 2014 FIBA World Cup Click on the image to enlarge it

Today’s infographic examines the height of the basketball players who participate in the 2014 FIBA Basketball Word Cup held in Spain (30 August – 14 September).

The shortest basketball player of the tournament is Philippine point guard Lewis Alfred ‘LA’ Tenorio standing at 1.70m (5’6”). There are 3 more participants below 1.80m (5’9”): one of them is Iranian point guard Sajjad Mashayekhi (1.78 m – 5’8”) and the other two play in the Philippines team. In fact the Philippines team has the lowest height average, 1.91m (6’3”) and point guards are the shortest in the tournament – average at 1.88m (6’2”) and usually is the position where shorter players thrive.

On the other end of the spectrum tallest team is Greece – average 2.04m (6’7”), followed close by Serbia. Centers are the tallest players – average at 2.10m (6’9”). The tallest participant of…

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Mother’s Day Dinner Date at Fisher Mall


Sometimes, unplanned dates turn out unexpectedly successful. This was what happened to my dinner date with my wife, Tina. I initially thought of bringing her to a resto in Banawe Street recommended by my office colleague. She suggested Fisher Mall instead. I didn’t want to prolong the discussion so I agreed. Once there, she asked that we go to the second floor. I saw King Bee and it seemed okay, though the place was already crowded.ImageImage

I didn’t know that Tina also wanted to try King Bee. She said another branch at Commonwealth Avenue had a similar crowd of customers. As we waited for a vacant table in front of the reception desk, I noticed that several waiters just ignored us. Hmmm. First impressions? Perhaps the sheer number of customers kept them from welcoming incoming guests. Still, it’s basic courtesy to acknowledge, or greet potential customers. So I signalled for a table for two. That was the only time I got their attention. We were led to a table overlooking the corridor outside the mall. I asked the waiter about their bestseller. “Lechon Macau,” was his reply, and another dish I didn’t remember. My wife asked for a menu with shrimps. After several suggestions, she settled for “shrimps with asparagus.” “Drinks, Sir?” Tina ordered watermelon shake, while I asked for buko shake.ImageImageImage

As we waited for our orders, another waiter offered some dimsum for appetizers. Tina chose the siomai. Wise choice! It was simply the best-tasting, mouth-watering siomai, with no wasted space inside out. It was pure pork siomai alright. Now, going back to our main course, when we asked how long will it take for our dinner to be served, we were told to wait from 15 to 20 minutes. I don’t know if they were being too thoroughly secure or downright naive, dinner was served in less than 15 minutes! Mind you, both Tina and I were starving after a long day’s work, so we immediately got into action (as I began snapping photos). Once I took my first bite of the Lechon Macau, I could feel the lechon “melting” in my mouth. It was amazingly very tender yet perfectly cooked. I can hear the crunch while I chewed. The shrimps with asparagus didn’t get relegated on the sidelines either. The chef didn’t save on ginger – there was plenty to spare, which more than made for a delightful course, with mushrooms going with the asparagus and onion sprouts. It was magic in your mouth! I couldn’t help getting one more serving of rice (there goes my diet) with such gastronomic delights. After a hearty meal, we made our way to the door. Being used to Jollibee’s service crew bidding a goodbye, Tina and I looked at each other once we were outside. Not a single waiter even managed a smile or a greeting. So much for first impressions! Still, I’m giving King Bee a passing grade because of the main course (and the siomai). For those of you who wish to visit Fisher Mall, why not try out King Bee, unless there’s so many customers you might want to check out other restos instead.Image

As we bided our time window-shopping, I noticed Pepper Lunch just across King Bee.Image


I can’t easily forget good food when I get one. A week ago, I was treated for lunch at “Pepper Lunch,” somewhere in Greenbelt Makati. We ordered Double Hamburg Steak with Egg. Eating it reminded me of an unforgettable meal at Korean Air, 35000 feet flying to Incheon International Airport, Korea: bibimbap. If you’re on a gastronomic adventure, I’d recommend Double Hamburg Steak with Egg at Pepper Lunch. It would blow you away, really. Image

Up at the next floor, Tina and I saw Cold Layers. I thought of ice cream, same as Tina. We went in and asked for their bestseller: Deep Temptation. Cold Layers makes use of ingeniously shaved ice mixed with chocolate, syrup, bananas in the case of our order.Image


Once you taste Cold Layers, you get to feel the smoothness and the rich flavor of their concoction. Simply amazing!ImageImageImage

Fisher Mall has many more stores waiting to open very soon. For mall rats or window shoppers who’ve since been used to visiting SM Supermalls, Robinsons, or Ayala, Fisher Mall will surely be a welcome addition to your list of malls that surely captures the tastes and sights and sounds of every Pinoy. Here’s wishing you all mothers a very warm Happy Mothers’ Day! Nanay, may you rest in peace. We miss you, but we believe you are now in a much happier place.