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Who was Michael Jackson to you?

Advocacy, Arts, Blogging, Consumer, Controversial, Entertainment, Features, Headline, Internet, Media, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Personal, Personalities, Society
Please feel free to share your thoughts! I would love to hear from you...WHO WAS MICHAEL JACKSON TO YOU? Who was Michael Jackson, the renowned "Gloved One," the "King of Pop," to you? How did his life, talents, skills and accomplishments affect you? When he died, how did you feel? What were your thoughts? Today, June 26, 2009 (June 25, 2009 in the U.S.), the world awakens to the sad news of Michael Jackson's death. The Los Angeles coroner confirmed that at roughly 2:26 PM of June 25, 2009 (U.S. time), MJ passed away. Michael Jackson, despite all of the controversies hounding him, will undoubtedly remain as one of the greatest artists of all time. He was a part of our childhood. His music, talent, grooves, style, love and the capacity to draw people together at least in the spirit...

Michael Jackson dead at 50…is this for real?

Blogging, Commentary, Controversial, Media, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Opinion, Personal, Society, Technology
Like millions of fans around the world, I woke up today shocked and with tears in my eyes. I woke up to the sound of a CNN report saying that the King of Pop - THE Michael Jackson - has been hospitalized and then went into a deep coma. A few minutes later, L.A. Times, AP and Fox News confirmed that Michael Jackson has died at the age of 50. Interestingly, and even right at this moment as I am blogging this, CNN STILL has not yet confirmed the news that Michael Jackson has died. Which is a good thing because basic journalism ethics state that news should always be verified before you broadcast it, lest you want to create senseless or unreasonable commotion. Right now, at this very moment, tears are rolling down my eyes. In my heart, I am hoping that Michael Jackson is still alive....

OMG! Mindanaoan has been ratified! Weehee!

Announcements, Blogging, Features, Internet, Media, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Personal, Technology
HOLY SMOKES am I so happy today or what?! I was just mindlessly surfing a few minutes ago and I happened to stumble upon the Ratified website. God knows I've been trying to get Mindanaoan and a couple of my other websites Ratified but lo and behold, I finally spotted my humble blog in the Ratified directory TODAY --- just when it was so darn unexpected! Check out my Ratified button: I know a Ratified rank of 320 isn't so much to be proud of but hey, at least, right?! Right?! LOL Yes, I'm excited obviously! For the uninitiated, Ratified.org measures measures the top 100 blogs of the Philippine blogosphere. Ratified uses a site's Technorati rank, Feedburner rank, Google and Alexa stats to figure out your rank. Come on, people, congratulate me by SUBSCRIBING TO MINDANAOAN! Go, g...

Conquering the Xcelerator – the longest speed zip line in Asia

Commentary, Davao City, Entertainment, Features, Leisure, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Personal, Photos, Reviews, Society, Tourism, Travel
MINDANAO - A few weeks ago, my family and I celebrated our brother's birthday by trying the most talked about Xcelerator over at Outland Adventure, Davao City, Mindanao. The Outland Adventure Xcelerator is said to be the longest speed zip line in all of Asia! Cool, right? We arrived at Outland Adventure Davao City half an hour before noon. As it turned out, we missed the "cut-off" time so we had to wait until they re-opened at roughly 1:30 pm. The more than an hour wait was all right --- we just kept ourselves busy taking photos. By 1:30 pm, all of the "zip liners" for the afternoon were asked to sign waivers. Then we proceeded to the area where we put on the harnesses, helmets and other safety gear. My brothers and I were made to choose if we wanted the "Superman" option or the ordi...

Mindanaoan Manny “Pink Lips” Pacquiao for Nikon Coolpix

Business, Controversial, General Santos City, Humor, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Personal, Personalities, Photos, Sarangani, Society, SoSCksargen, Weird
Before anything else, let me make this clear. I love Manny Pacquiao. I have the utmost respect for the man. He has brought pride and glory to the Philippines and Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao really is one of the world's best athletes of all time. Plus he's a certified Mindanaoan! So of course I'm proud of him! However...I cannot help but be tickled pink with my fellow Mindanaoan's new ad for Nikon Coolpix: Is it just me or are Manny's lips PINK?! What the smokes was the stylist/make-up artist thinking?! EGAD! Now this is one "UN-COOLPIX" :(

Looking forward to trying the Xcelerator!

Business, Consumer, Davao City, Entertainment, Features, Leisure, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Personal, Society, Tourism, Travel
Experience some atmosFEAR! Now who wouldn't be curious with that? I am really, really looking forward to trying the Xcelerator zip line over at Davao City's Outland Adventure this weekend! The Outland Adventure Xcelerator is supposedly the longest speed zipline in all of Asia! Cool, eh? The Xcelerator is open everyday from 8am to 5 pm. Groups reservations available for weekdays. Fee is P300.00 per adult. They grant a 50 percent discount for small children if they're riding in tandem with an adult. Outland Adventure is right across the GAP Farm along the Diversion Road in Ma-a, Davao City, Mindanao. Check out this video:

The power of luya, salabat and Pei Pa Koa

Advocacy, Commentary, Consumer, Features, Food, Humor, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Opinion, Personal, Recipes, Reviews, Weird
So I'm up at 3 o'clock in the morning. I'm set to travel to Koronadal City, Mindanao in a few hours. Terribly excited to see another part of my beloved Island of Mindanao but a bit worried, too. Not about traveling to the place formerly called Marbel but because I lost my voice...literally! I caught nasty cough and colds a few days ago and now I'm paying for the consequence --- I currently have terribly hoarse voice. Two days ago was the worst. I could barely hear myself. I couldn't hear anything when I tried to utter a word! Enter my immediate remedies for this type of emergency --- luya (ginger), salabat (ginger ale) and the ever trusty Pei Pa Koa. Ever since I was a child, my mother always reminded us of the wonders of luya and salabat. And of course, mothers know best. Ginger ...

The presidentiables, senatoriables are now reaching out to Mindanao

Bukidnon, Cagayan de Oro City, Commentary, Controversial, Government, Headline, Journalism, Media, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, News, Opinion, Personal, Personalities, Society
The next Philippine national elections may still be a little over a year away from today but the various personalities believed to be among the "2010 senatoriables" and "2010 presidentiables" have started to make their presence felt here in Mindanao. Just a few days ago, Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay paid Cagayan de Oro City, Mindanao a visit. He was the guest of honor in an SK-related event, I think. However, sources told me that he also proceeded to the Province of Bukidnon to meet some political allies. Care to guess what they discussed? Senator Mar Roxas, on the other hand, has also been visible around Mindanao as of late. Touted as the Liberal Party's presidential bet, Senator Mar has been doing the rounds here as commencement exercises speaker. Same thing with the solon fro...

Attending my brother’s Xavier University – Ateneo de Cagayan graduation rites

Cagayan de Oro City, Campus, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Personal, Society
I attended a very special ceremony at the Xavier University (Ateneo de Cagayan) last weekend. My youngest brother graduated from college last Saturday, March 21, 2009. Yay! I'm really very proud of him. He was one of the graduates who marched and received their diplomas in the afternoon (2nd batch). The afternoon batch was composed of graduates from the colleges of Agriculture, Law, Engineering, Graduate School etc. I haven't attended a graduation ceremony in years so I was a bit worried that it might take a lot of time (I remember my college graduation took about 4 hours!). Thankfully, the Ateneo de Cagayan graduation ceremonies that day started on time (3:30 pm) and ended roughly 2 hours and a half later. The graduation rites were orderly although I was a bit baffled as to...

After Villar and Teodoro, Bukidnon’s Zubiri is now endorsing Loren Legarda

Bukidnon, Controversial, Government, Headline, Kaamulan Festival, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, News, Opinion, Personalities
I cannot help but wonder what's going on Bukidnon Governor Jose Zubiri, Jr.'s mind right now. Isn't he supposed to be a LAKAS-CMD member? What's he doing endorsing NPC member Senator Loren Legarda as "the next President" of the country? Zubiri publicly called Legarda "the next Philippine President" and "President Legarda" during the female senator's recent visit to the Province of Bukidnon, Mindanao. Legarda served as the guest of honor during the 92nd Foundation Day (Aldaw Ta Bukidnon) of the Province of Bukidnon last March 10, 2009. Before thousands of people, the Bukidnon governor and father of current Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri called on his constituents to support Legarda. Zubiri's statement has raised a lot of questions. WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS? Photo courtesy of ...

How long before you get your SSS ID – three months!

Business, Commentary, Consumer, Government, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Opinion, Personal, Society, Technology
Well, in my case, at least. After a little over three months, I finally received it. I received my Social Security System (SSS) ID in the mail today. My SS card was sent via registered mail and interestingly, the "generic" letter that came with it (which was signed by current SSS Chairman Romulo Neri) was dated February 3, 2009 but the envelope was postmarked February 19, 2009. So I'm thinking the SSS has one really very slow mailing process. Anyways, this post on how long before you get your SSS ID comes three months after my entry on how to get your SSS ID card. In that post, I mentioned that the data capture operator told me that it might take more than two months before my SSS digital ID is sent via registered mail. Well, what do you know? She was right! Not only did it take more th...

Bukidnon Kaamulan Festival 2009 Ethnic Street Dancing competition to have 7 contingents

Announcements, Bukidnon, Culture, Entertainment, Events, Festivals, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, News, Opinion, Personal, Society, Tourism, Travel
I learned from the Kaamulan Festival 2009 Chief Coordinator today that a total of seven (7) contingents will compete during the Kaamulan Ethnic Street Dancing competition this Saturday, March 7, 2009. The contingents will represent the cities of Malaybalay and Valencia and the municipalities of Cabanglasan, Kalilangan, San Fernando, Malitbog and Quezon. I must admit, I was a little bit disappointed with the news. Out of 20 municipalities in Bukidnon and 2 full pledged cities and only 7 will vie for this year's much-awaited event! However, the Kaamulan overall coordinator said that in recent years, the provincial government of Bukidnon has imposed a couple of changes in the way they handle the yearly festival --- and the cutting down of budgets for official streetdancing competitors is o...

Angela Batumbakal finally sends a reply and yes, she needs money

Controversial, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Opinion, Personal
This post is related to an earlier entry about this girl who sent me an email and claimed that she has photos of award-winning Filipino actor Baron Geisler and a girl smoking marijuana. The email sender calls herself "Angela Batumbakal." And since I was intrigued by her email, I sent her a brief reply asking, "and I suppose you're asking for money?" (Well, truth be told, I knew from the get-go that she needed money in exchange for these photos of former Pinoy Big Brother Celebrity contestant Baron Geisler and a girl smoking marijuana but admittedly, I was curious and a bit baffled as to how people can go through such lengths just to earn that quick buck) Today, I checked my email and I finally received a short confirmation from "Angela Batumbakal": "ofcourse in exchange for d pictur...

Baron Geisler and a girl smoking marijuana – caught on camera?

Controversial, Entertainment, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Opinion, Personal
I received a rather weird (yet interesting, I must admit) offer via email yesterday. A girl who introduced herself as a certain "Angela Batumbakal" claimed that she has photos of "Jay" indie film lead actor Baron Geisler and another woman (unnamed) smoking marijuana. I found her email "interesting" only because I realize the lengths people go through just so they can either destroy a person or earn that quick buck. This "Angela Batumbakal" wrote: i have 5 clear pictures of baron geisler and a woman smoking marijuana.i found a memory card at an internet cafe and then i opened it and saw baron's pictures on it.if u are interested to have these pictures,u can send me an email.09099758776 [[email protected]] I'm pretty sure I'm not the only one who received her so-called "offer," wh...

Quick updates: Kaamulan Festival 2009 in Bukidnon

Bukidnon, Commentary, Culture, Entertainment, Events, Festivals, Fiesta, Kaamulan Festival, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Opinion, Personal
So today, Sunday, February 22, 2009, is the fifth day since the "soft opening" of the Kaamulan Festival 2009 celebration here in the Province of Bukidnon, Mindanao. I'm here because my team and I (meaning my very helpful brothers and I) are in-charge of some Kaamulan 2009 events. We regularly have a lot of responsibilities every Kaamulan time and it's something that we just love to do. There's a different kind of rush whenever you're part of something grand and looked forward to by many. Plus of course it's an honor to be a part of such a huge festival (not to mention the widely recognized only remaining authentic ethnic festival in the Philippines!) There are now hundreds of booths at the Capitol Grounds here in Malaybalay City, Bukidnon. All of these booths, by the way, are only made ...

I’m now a wedding photographer here in Mindanao!

Arts, Beauty, Business, Cagayan de Oro City, Camiguin, Davao City, Fashion, General Santos City, Mindanao, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Personal, Photos, Sarangani, Society, Weddings
So I just produced the photos I took during my very first wedding photography coverage gig. I was one of the photographers (and the only female photographer, I should say) during the Prestenbach Wedding in Cagayan de Oro City, Mindanao last December 28, 2008. (Yep, I guess I'm now a wedding photographer here in Mindanao! :) ) It was truly a great day - to be able to capture people and moments and to be a part of a nice couple's memorable day. The Prestenbachs, a Germany-based couple, have been together for 15 great years and they're thinking of moving here in the Philippines for good. The Prestenbachs have two lovely children. They also have this magnificent beachfront property in Baloy, Cagayan de Oro. Here are some of my wedding photography photos: * All photos are of low ...

The one question I want to ask General Santos City Mayor Pedro “Jun” Acharon

General Santos City, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Opinion, Personal, Travel
A few months ago, my brother and I went to General Santos City, Mindanao. AFTER 14 LONG YEARS. It was a trip planned within a few days - I wanted to take pictures during the Tuna Festival and at the same time, perhaps see some of our relatives (father's side) whom we haven't seen in that long a time. What supposedly was a "reunion" turned out to be a depressing visit. My brother and I learned that some of our relatives are now homeless. Yes, HOMELESS. Their homes in Lot 2, Barangay Apopong, General Santos City have been demolished and they have been living in makeshift shanties for more than a year now. By makeshift I REALLY mean makeshift - they merely took whatever they could retrieve in the heat of the demolitions (there were two in a span of a few months) and they literally just pie...

My first Sony experience is with my Sony Ericsson K500i

Consumer, Contests, Controversial, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Opinion, Personal, Reviews, Style, Technology, Tourism, Travel
While I consider my father's Sony all-transistor radio my first Sony "encounter," (it was one of his most treasured possessions and when he installed pipe-in sound systems in Jesuit-owned buildings, he'd bring me and his precious all transistor radio along - my role was to belt out songs and he'd test the wirings and quality of sound) I consider my Sony Ericsson k500i mobile phone as my very first Sony experience. In fact, truth be told, my Sony Ericsson k500i cellular phone has been with me through so many "firsts" in my life that it has just been (and still is!) one crazy, amazing, memorable ride. This phone has also played a great part in my quest to find my niche - my very own place under the sun. I bought this Sony product at a time when I felt I badly wanted - nay, needed - a chan...

Top 5 tips on Christmas gift shopping

Advocacy, Consumer, Mindanaoan Update, Musings
A U.S. survey recently revealed that the consumers are setting aside an average of $832 just for Christmas shopping this year. However, due to the global financial crisis, the said amount may seem too expensive or steep. Financial experts say that one doesn’t have to overspend this holiday season. Seriously, there's no need to overspend on perfect presents! Here are the top 5 tips I can share on Christmas gift shopping: 1. Make a written plan: Be realistic when it comes to how much you can spend for the holiday gifts. As much as possible, don't allot more than you can afford! 2. Spend on sentimental gifts: Gifts such as picture frames with memorable photos will be for sure more valuable for the recipient. A personalized scrapbook highlighting your travel photos for this year will ...

Pictures taken during the Senate Nov. 17, 2008 revamp

Broadcasting, Controversial, Government, Headline, Media, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, News, Opinion, Personal, Personalities, Photos
What supposed to be was a simple, routinary visit to the Senate of the Philippines last November 17, 2008 turned out to be one very controversial occasion. It was the day when the Senate coup happened. It was the day when the Senate revamp occured. It was the day when Senate President Manny Villar got ousted by his fellow senators and was replaced by Senator Juan Ponce Enrile. And yes, it was also the day when Mindanaoan Senator Juan Miguel "Migs" Zubiri got appointed as Acting Majority Floor Leader. Although I've been receiving some tips via text messages that something "big" and "major" would occur in the next few days, I never thought that IT would happen that day, a seemingly innocent Monday. Anyways, here are the photos I took that day: (CLICK ON THE THUMBNAILS) ...

Pacman vs. Golden Boy: Pay Per View Or Not?

Events, Mindanaoan Update, Musings, Personal, Sports
Who's looking forward to the upcoming Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao - Oscar "The Golden Boy" De La Hoya bout as much as my family and I am? Can't wait to watch the exchange of jabs, hooks and upper cuts on December 6, 2008. The event, which will be held at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, is dubbed the boxing match of the year! Do you think Oscar will win or will the Kibawe, Bukidnon-born Pacman deliver a knockout? Anyways, as we all know, HBO Pay Per View (PPV) will carry the bout on December 6, 2008. So now I'm a bit confused as to whether or not I should avail of the PPV. The local cable company here in my area is offering its subscribers the PPV service for P700.00 (roughly US$15.50) If I pay on or before November 30, 2008, I only need to shell out P600.00 (roughly US$13.33) Now the big que...

Review: Aljem’s Inn Davao budget hotel

Davao City, Hotels, Musings, Reviews, Tourism, Travel
Whenever someone asks me to recommend a good, cheap yet clean and affordable inn within downtown Davao City, I often recommend Aljem's Inn along Rizal Street. Single occupancy is only P750.00 while double occupancy is only P875.00. If you prefer the deluxe accommodation, it's just P975.00 and an extra mattress will only cost P300.00. Those are affordable rates, in my opinion. You have hot and cold shower in your room, cable TV, soaps, soft towels and telephone. Local calls are free of charge. Staying at Aljem's Inn Davao City has a couple of advantages. Guests are offered free breakfast (plated - they usually prepare Filipino almusal/breakfast like tapsilog, tosilog, cornsilog and bangsilog). Now if you're not in the mood for Filipino fare in the morning, note that the inn is right smac...