Friday, February 26, 2016

Math teacher makes addition mistake. Hilarity ensues

Here is a funny (?) story my Grade-5 son related to me the other day.

So they had this live math contest in their classroom presided over by the math teacher. The teacher was adding up the points on the board and was adding 10 and 4, and inadvertently (or so) she wrote 17 as the result. Huh?

10+4 = 17 ?!?

As the pupils were glued to the results being written on the board - by their math teacher no less - they were instantly astounded although their astonishment was quickly transformed into hilarity as many of them laughed out loud in reaction (LoL!). My son glanced at his classmates and saw that some of them were even rolling on the floor laughing (RoFL!)

The math teacher, a trifle embarrassed, quickly erased her booboo, stomped her foot on the floor and threw her chalk backwards. The red-faced teacher then faced the class, grabbed her desk, lifted it a few inches and slammed it hard on the floor.

Silence follows and then the booming voice of the teacher:


The teacher then commanded everyone to take out one full sheet of paper and fill it up writing something over and over again, back to back. I suppose what they were required to write repeatedly was: "I will always behave in class.". I think they call this a "JUG"  - a typical punishment for misbehavior.

Perhaps the teacher paused and reflected a bit, and then asked some pupils to stop writing. These few students are normally the composed ones and were behaved throughout the incident. My son was among these boys, and it is with a lot of pride (and some amusement) that he was relating this story to me. "You did right son!" I proudly exclaimed, even as I was unable to control a few laughs myself.

Ahh, grade 5 boys. Strange though that I myself at this age couldn't help laughing at the incident. Could have rolled on the floor too, hahaha.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

A question for which there is no answer

In the Old Testament we find Job asking the same quintessential question: "Why do His faithful never see His justice?"
(Jb 24:1). The Psalmist likewise finds himself in a dejected state as he pleads: "Why do You hide Your face and forget our affliction and our oppression?" (Ps 44:24).  In both cases there are no answers, and neither does Pope Francis have one when a 12-year old ex-street kid asked him essentially the same question:

"There are many children neglected by their own parents," Glyzelle said Sunday at a ceremony at a 400-year-old Catholic  university in Manila. "There are also many who became victims and many terrible things happened to them like drugs or  prostitution. "Why is God allowing such things to happen, even if it is not the fault of the children?" she asked the Pope, breaking down into tears as she spoke.

Rather than expounding on a theological treatise, the Pope did right: he simply embraced the crying child.

"She is the only one who has put a question for which there is no answer and she wasn't even able to express it in words but in tears", the Pope later said.

For me it was one of the most moving event in the recent papal visit. All we need is Christ's embrace, for we are sure His justice prevails in the end.

Saturday, August 31, 2013

To space and beyond!

OMGosh! Have you heard of this?

Mankind must abandon earth or face extinction!

LONDON—Mankind's only chance of long-term survival lies in colonizing space, as humans drain Earth of resources and face a terrifying array of new threats, warned British scientist Stephen Hawking on Monday…

"Our population and our use of the finite resources of planet Earth are growing exponentially, along with our technical ability to change the environment for good or ill."…

If we want to survive beyond the next century, "our future is in space," added the scientist.

"That is why I'm in favor of manned, or should I say 'personed', space flight."…
Shiver me timbers! The stuff of Michael Crichton sci-fi novels now approaches reality. Only this time, the doomsday scenario is predicted by a real McCoy – renowned British scientist Stephen Hawking who predicts the dire future even while not forgetting to be politically correct: "personed" space flight?. At least we’re sure it won’t be a monkey piloting the spacecraft of the future, but who knows? At the rate the secular world has been redefining the biological and fundamental norms of society, we really can’t be sure what a "person" would mean in the future, can we.

At any rate, we are given one century to conquer space because we are steadily burning out ourselves and the earth! The "terrifying array of threats" will slowly but surely snuff life as we know it on earth. In the next few decades, the population will continue to grow but will peak out by the year 2100. This development will finally make the doomsday Malthusians happy (yes, they’re still around) , but not for long. Many big companies like Toys-R-Us would be wiped out of the economy. So will an entire gamut of industries catering to kids like infant formula, disposable diapers, MacDonalds Kiddie meals, and the like. No wonder because at this time, there are almost no kids around, and the average worldwide age would be at about 55 years of age. Meanwhile, the worldwide shortage of goods makes its dire presence felt, starting with the scarcity of commodities like adult diapers, rheumatism medication, hearing aids, and false teeth adhesives. From its peak in 2100, the world population now goes on a rapid plunge, owing further to science’s utter failure to discover how to make same-sex unions (hugely popular at this time) produce natural offspring. Like Hawkins predicted, mankind (or is it personkind?) will at this time find the frustrating limits of its technical ability to change the environment (along with its failure to change the nature of humans, of course). Meanwhile, Singapore is still at it. The country is now offering 10 billion dollars to each couple for every child they bring into the world. It is probably a tad late anyway, because Singapore at this time will have a country population of exactly 1,003 people – 90% of whom are senior citizens.

But wait! At this time, a heretofore small and insignificant country in the Far East, the Philippines, has emerged as the new world superpower! While the rest of the world has been grappling with its myriad problems, the Philippines has quickly made giant strides in super-technology, while maintaining its population at a healthy, replacement rate. Its emergence as a world power can be traced to its bucking the trend of an ultra-liberal, disastrous "postmodernism" with the heroic efforts of an innovative, value-oriented, and incorruptible populace starting in the year 2016. Unlike the rest of the world, this country has shunned contraceptive mentality and concentrated in tapping the productivity of its best resource – its people. Also in large part due to the migration of Filipinos around the world, key leadership positions were cornered by the best and brightest Filipinos in their various countries of residencies. The best scientists of the world, now young Filipinos, were able to solve the fuel and food problems of the whole world! Thanks to the ingenuity of these scientists, one grain of palay can now grow into 100 sacks of rice. A single super-solar cell can now light the whole of Metro Manila. Global warming has finally been conquered. It is now the year 2110, and there is no more need to conquer outer space!!! Stephen Hawking was right about the problems of the world, but he grossly underestimated the resilience and ingenuity of these hardy people from a small country in the Far East.

Meanwhile in local politics, Congressman Edcel Lagman XXVI, Jr., has refiled the controversial RH-bill on the very first day of the opening of the 214th session of Congress, in the year 2110. Reminded that this is the RH bill's 204th try for approval, Lagman XXVI, Jr, replied: "We'll have it passed into law this time around. We have the numbers. If not, we will have it passed on the moon".

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Dante's inferno in the year 2102

As Dante arrived home he felt very tired, and hungry as his dog Scruffy welcomes him home with playful yelps.  He had been toiling fourteen hours on two jobs day after day and it was as exhausting as it can get, as far as he can remember.  It was already way past 11pm and he decides to reheat a quick dinner from the fridge. As he opened the fridge he found out that there was only one frozen dinner left.  He sighed and took only half of it, knowing that his beloved partner would arrive a bit later and would be hungry for food too.  He strokes his dog Scruffy and throws him a morsel from his dinner.

Things are getting tighter and tighter for Dante,  as it has always been as far as he can remember. Taxes are getting higher each time, even as wages are going down assuming one gets lucky enough to find a job. He and his partner did not have children, yet they had to support  four elderly people in the house: his own parents and that of his partner.  He resents the fact they had no choice but to support their elderly parents but he knew there was no other way. He, like his partner was sole offspring, and besides the state required them to support their parents under the force of the law. The state had long ago given up on public institutions for the elderly, doling out only paltry monthly pensions for them that was hardly enough even for their food alone. Anyway, he knew that their household arrangement was typical. It is after all in the year 2102, just into the twenty-secondth century and indeed much has changed over the past hundred years.

Over the last half-century, major companies and even cities have declared bankruptcy. He remembered his grandfather say they used to live prosperously in Detroit many years ago, and they left due to the city declaring bankruptcy after a long hemorrhage. Then one city came after another, and after another. The government had no more resources to bail them all out, being in dire financial straits itself. Many businesses have shrunk along with the population, and recent reports declared that the median age for his aging country was 46 yearsof age, a stark reality that was the result of  disastrous population policy along with government's heavy push for contraceptives and abortion over the last hundred years or so. He suddenly remembered it was so long since he had seen couples pushing baby carriages  around the malls. Nowadays his typical sight was of elderly people moving around in canes or motorized wheelchairs, and it was the younger breed who were assisting them around.

As he took the last  bite of his dinner, Dante wondered what the world looked like a hundred years ago. Were there many happy families strolling around in the parks and malls with their children? Did people manage on single jobs alone? Was it easier to find a decent job for a double-Masters degree holder like him? As he pondered these thoughts his domestic partner, Marko arrives. He had a dejected look on his face. What happened? asks Dante as he plants a kiss on Marko's lips.  Got laid off again, replies Marko curtly, and goes straight to rest in the bedroom which he shares with everyone. Marko looks even more tired than he was, he did not even eat the half-dinner I left over for him, rues Dante.

This situation is getting unbearable, Dante decides. Now I have to support five people. Marko is certainly getting to be a tough burden around, and he decides it was time to divorce him. That would rid him of three people off his back. It would be his sixth divorce in as many years, but he would take a half-day off tomorrow to get the paperwork done over with.  As he pats his playful dog Scruffy, it dawns on him that it might be a better arrangement for him to marry his dog, and a lot less expensive too. It would even be more practical and makes a lot more sense than marrying a bridge, for example. After all, he loves the dog - that is all that matters for the government to legally recognize the marriage - while the paperwork it will require will not be much of a problem. Sigh, too many problems he concludes…and then falls asleep on the couch beside his dog, away from the heavy snores of the five people in the shared bedroom.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Bullying the bearer

"gracious madam, I that do bring the news made not the match"
- messenger to Cleopatra in Henry IV, part 2 by William Shakespeare
Sotto: Online critics can’t answer issues vs RH bill 

MANILA, August 29, 2012–Senate Majority Leader Vicente Sotto III on Wednesday hit back at his rabid online critics, saying they would rather do a demolition job on him than answer questions raised on the “reproductive health” (RH) bill. 

Indeed. It appears that Sotto's critics who do not want the message, would rather shoot the messenger.  Earlier on, Senator Sotto delivered part 2 of his 'turno en contra' wherein he stated:

"And so, I will prove that this bill has been significantly influenced by various organizations, both local and international, which are of doubtful character. They have been pushing for the passage of this bill to serve their ulterior motives far-off from the aims of the proponents of the bill.". 

What was he referring to? Let us track back a bit to parts of Sotto's speech against the bill back in December 2011.  Among other things, Senator Sotto bared here that:

"... one particular lobby group – the Reproductive Health Advocacy Network (RHAN) – has a budget for “nurturing legislators” from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), which has been criticized for its coercive abortion policies. The Family Planning Organization of the Philippines (FPOP) has also been getting millions of dollars in subsidies from UNFPA and the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF), the largest abortion provider in the world founded by the eugenicist Margaret Sanger..."

Sotto further cites the list of resource organizations who helped craft the bill, and said the database of the Securities and Exchange Commission yielded the following results:

• Pinasamang Lakas ng Kababaihan at Kabataan – “Not Found”
• Program for Adolescent Reproductive Health – “Not Found”
• Democratic Socialist Women of the Philippines – “Does Not Exist”
• Philippine Legislators’ Committee on Population and Development – “Revoked”
• HIV-AIDS Network – “Revoked”
• Likhaan – “Revoked”
• RHAN – “No Records”
• Institute of Maternal and Child Health – “Does Not Exist”

Hmm, this is part of the message that they do not want, for they have avoided challenging it altogether just like the rest of the issues that Sotto raised. They would rather hit the person of Sotto to divert the flak. In other words, it is called Ad hominem. I have a few directly-related questions though.

 * If these organizations are receiving foreign funding for their advocacy, then are they not required to report all donations to the BIR?
* If they are really legit NGOs then they are supposed to file audited financial statements to the SEC. Have they done so?
* How are they supposed to report if they are not registered with the SEC anyway?
* Did these organizations tell their donors that they are not duly registered? Have they given receipts or certificates of donations to the donors?
* Why would a foreign donor donate to a non-registered entity? It would mean that the donations are not non-taxable.
* If an organization such as RHAN is not duly registered, why does it allocate a budget for "nurturing legislators".
* Sotto reveals that FPOP received $625,095 or almost P27.5 million from UNFPA in 2011. Have they denied it?
* Who are these donors? And what do they want?
* Why do Sotto's critics not face these questions and instead attack Sotto on the (non)charge of plagiarism?
* Why did Cleopatra get mad?