in limbo


It’s is becoming oh-so-true that death and taxes are the only things certain in this world, even insurance is now a misnomer.

I am one of the many CAP planholders, the beleaguered pre-need company, whose heart is very much perturbed nowadays because of the company’s seemingly imminent insolvency. I am pissed off not just for myself, who at least used disposable income to pay for the premiums, but more for those less well off who scrimped on their very basic needs just to make sure of a brighter future for their children and eventually alleviate their poverty.

It is also frustrating how the state is handling the issue. Putang inang yan! It’s the usual circus and grandstanding. Although there is a reason to believe that First American Investment, lending few hundred million dollars, is a sham, nobody is lifting their big fat ass to verify it! It makes me also wail that although SEC is “forcing” CAP to comply, no timeline is given! Corrective action without timeline is pure hogwash!

Hindi mo tuloy maintindihan kung mga talagang tanga o nagtatanga-tangahan lang!

I completely paid my dues few years back but the most that I can get back is 65% of it. I also need to fly back home and be there for eternity! And knowing how rotten beareaucracy in Pinas, I might as well cross my fingers and just hope CAP to bounce back. It’s practically not worth it!

It won’t be surprising that people to lose faith in insurance and pre-needs. CAP is biggest and yet this happened!

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I was watching Dong Puno Live and can’t help but feel sorry how democracy is steering our country into the snake pit. Their topic was about the unfelt effect on the masa of the increase in GDP.

GDP is an accepted barometer of a country’s economic health. And though in reality it is not expected that the miniscule improvement to trickle down on everyone’s purse and dining table immediately, it’s a collective improvement and should be a sign of jubilation nonetheless.

It’s unequivocal that the masa is furious and cursing, you really have to respect that. Our media apparently, and most of the time, add up to the chaos and confusion by giving forum to militant or paramilitant group speaking their guts out and yet failing to provide realistic alternative solution. The last thing you need during a crisis is everyone’s personal opinion blaring out in national television inflaming distorted views and sentiments.

Populist policies is one of evils that brought our country to it knees and democracy is its benefactor. Democracy, bordering into anarchism, is not a tool to economic prosperity. It’s something good when the house is in order. But with a country like ours, what you need is control.

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Here is an email thread I received about a missing girl. A caveat though, I have yet to check on its veracity. I received this mail from someone active in the catholic church here in Singpore that’s why I’m taking the plunge anyway and blog about it. Dissemenation of info is the best tool for missing person and in good faith, I hope something good comes out of this.

Here it is:


Pax Christi!

I am Willen Cabanes-Almedilla Sale of Cagayan de Oro City, Philippines. Am initiating a cause to find An-An, my dearly missed cousin.

Joan “An-An” Cerona Almedille, a smart young lady, a loving daughter, a good friend and a wonderful cousin, has been missing for three years already. We, her family, are so worried and full of anxiety. But we are not at all hopeless in finding her back? We are not at all hopeless in giving back the long lost happiness of her grieving mother? AND IT’S BECAUSE OF YOU. It’s because we know you’re willing to be an instrument in the fulfillment of this mission. Please don’t fail us. Please don’t hesitate to somehow ease the wound in her mother’s heart? PLEASE PASS THIS MESSAGE TO EVERYONE YOU KNOW AFTER READING THIS?

An-An departed for Brunei in December 2000, aiming to help in financing her family’s needs, especially the medicines of her father who was then bedridden due to cardiovascular accident, hemiplegia. All she told us was that she was going to be a Cashier in a certain company, the name of which she didn’t mention to us. We were somehow able to secure its alleged address:


Miles 2 Jalan Tutong

Badiah Complex

Bandar Seri Begawan

Negara, Brunei Darussalam

2604


Months after she had left, she called up her mother, assuring the latter that she was doing fine in Brunei and telling her to always take good care of her ill father who was then the main reason of her having to work miles away from home. She regularly kept in touch since then. But after some time, her calls became less frequent. And a bit alarming. Her mother got confused and worried because in most instances, An-An always seemed to be in a hurry. Sometimes the line would even be suddenly cut without the two of them having said goodbye. When asked how her life was going on there, she would only tell her mother not to worry as she could handle things well. She never told anything about her work and the actual place she was staying.


Her last call was made in Sabah, Malaysia in March 2001, wherein she told her mother that she was sent for some task by her employer. Since then, she didn’t make any communication. She merely vanished. And we could do nothing to stop the stream of tears from her mother’s eyes. For how could we comfort our dear Tya Naning when even we are entertaining bad thoughts like An-An might have been maltreated by her employer or a victim of illegal recruitment? That she might now be imprisoned and full of bruises? These things have now become rampant anywhere in the world as often seen on TV and read from the newspapers. If ever this has indeed happened to her, we want her agony to be ended right away.


What made things worse was that An-An’s father died on December 31, 2004. How could we greet Tya Naning a Happy New Year then? Burial was on January 6, 2005. And An-An did not even know of her dear father’s death. My heart broke when as the coffin was laid down the grave, Tya Naning tightly embraced me with tears welling up her eyes and said, “How do you think is An-An feeling right now?”


The agony of Tya Naning as a searching mother and a lonely widow has now become so intense? Let us help her out please.


Please pass this message to everyone you know. For deep in our hearts we know that somehow this will eventually reach to someone who knows what’s happening to An-An, wherever she may be. Thank you for doing your part. Thank you so much for your help.


Sincerely,

Willen

(0918) 530-7225/ (088) 857-2715

The catholic church here in Singapore decided to celebrate Ash Wednesday on a Friday of that same week. I find it quite amusing, no offence by the way. We might as well catholics, at least here in Singapore, call it Ash Friday. The reason is that this will fall on the first day of Chinese New Year on Feb 9. Majorities here are Chinese, so Chinese New Year is really a grandiose, comparable to Christmas season in Pinas.

I was tempted and itching to approach our parish priest and ask for lucidity. Why does culture and tradition takes precedence over a very important religious event? But then again, I decided not to, prudence got the better of me. Anyway, it’s a fat chance that they will reconsider with my inquisitions. The best that I can probably get is euphemistic explanation and a smile. It’s no big deal by the way, at least for me. No beef as long as is it not contradictory to, or skewed from the core fundamentals of my faith, which I tend to believe are common denominator for all monotheistic faith: one true God, social justice and practical compassion.

For me, anything inconsistent with these fundamentals is detestable to our Creator and destructive to humanity as a whole. That’s why it think it makes sense that Jerusalem, since time immemorial, is in chaos. God is showing us HOW NOT LIVE OUR LIVES: intolerance to people of different faith, insisting one’s faith is better, and using force to advance this fallacy and ludicrousness.



Just for your info, R&R–race and religion–are topics of discussions which are taboo here. Openly discussing the “infirmities” of other faiths or skin colors is practically outlawed.

I am very much disturbed and astounded that the driver of the bus that rummage through a row of houses in a creek in Quezon city, killing two kids in the process, walk away with merely a slap in the hand. Apparently, practicallity got the better of the kids’ parents that instead of filing a formal complaint, settled amicably for 250k pesos. Of course I’m not in the position to judge the parents’ decision. Anyway, given their circumstances in life, most of us may probably agree with them.

I’m not well-versed in our laws but common sense tells me that something is not right. I opine, although I maybe wrong, that this is a criminal case and not civil. It should have been “people of the Philippines versus that fucking negligent driver or bus company”. Our imbecile state should pursue the case. The bus company or driver can compensate the victims which is actually an admission of liability and can be seen as a mitigating factor, but not to absolve anyone’s screw up. The least that the state can do is investigate what went wrong. Doing so would prevent, or at least minimize, recurrence. If it’s the driver’s fault, let him pay dearly by sending him to jail and barring him from driving. If it’s the bus company’s fault, be it poor maintenance or any of that stuff, slap them with crippling fine to set a precedent.

For all we know, that same bus driver will be back behind the steering wheel of the same bus company, or another, in no time at all!

This kind of accident is relatively a daily dose in our newspapers, something trivial specially if you are not related to anyone involved. I just refuse to treat it as another entry in the statistics. Shiver went down my spine when I saw the footage in TFC (The Filipino Channel). Hitherto, gory images of those kids pinned under the bus make me queasy. And being a parent myself, I can’t help but grieve for those kids.

Hail to the king!

Monday was my eldest son’s 10th birthday. I took a half day off to prepare a little something for the family to share and (hopefully) made him feel pretty special. Arthur somehow outgrown certain type of toys so I just got him the “Counter Strike: Condition Zero” computer game (not the pirated one, btw) that he drooled for and keeps him occupied this past few days.

I took every opportunity on that day to tell him how much we really love him, hugs and kisses were aplenty. For the upteenth time, I explained to him the burden of being the eldest and hopefully, he takes it more of a blessing rather than a curse. He is well aware that the cudgel is his.

Working girls ulit…



Monday was also my wife’s first day on her new found job after a hiatus of about two months. If you frequent my blog, you should have known that she was retrenched ‘coz of petty office politics last year. Indeed, windows are opened once a door closes. It was the catalyst to this blessing. She was able to get the same salary package, a 5 day week in a family run accounting firm relatively devoid of corporate politics and assholes. She also considers it a “fringe benefit” that her office is just a 10 minute walk from mine which allow us to have lunch together. On our “first lunch”, we pigged out on my favorite fish head curry that is really to die for. She’s hooked.

We had some misunderstandings mid of the week but since there’s no condition, circumstance or problem that love cannot solve, ruffled feathers were stroked and soothed easily. Actually, it was more than ruffled feathers that were stroked and soothed..;)

Our hearts and prayers are with you…



On a poignant note, the father of my kumpareng Jong left us to be with our creator. I hope you find solace and peace on this very difficult time. I’m not sure if it fits, but since it was your birthday yesterday, happy birthday na rin parekoy.

Lazy sunday, my usual sunday…

Instant noodles na galing pang Pinas ang inalmusal ko, Lucky Me La Paz Batchoy to be precise. Although nag-improve na ng konti ang buhay namin, hindi pa rin namin inabandona ang pagkain ng instant noodles paminsan-minsan. As a matter of fact, parati kami may imbak at sa tuwing uuwi kami ng Pinas, siguradong may bitbit kami nito pabalik sa Singapore.

Instant noodle ang sinasabing de facto national food ng Pinas. Medyo nakakainsulto lang kapag sa bibig ng banyaga nanggagaling, pero ito talaga ang realidad. Mataas na kasi ang poverty rate sa atin kaya naging patok ang instant noodles, na bukod sa mura at malinamnam ay puwede pang pang-ulam. Dehins na mahalaga kung nutritional ba o hindi, sapat ng malamanan ang mga kumakalam na sikmura.

Target daw ni GMA na kalahatiin ang poverty rate ng Pinas before the end of her term. Pero sa going rate ng fertility ng Pinas, in absolute value, mas marami ang tirik ang mata by that time.

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