All it took was one second.
Monday, September 25, 2006
All it took was one second.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
A day after I had written about the destruction of trees in our subdivision to make way for sidewalks, a letter was stuffed into our mailbox.
It was the board’s response to the protesters, and, reading it, I realized that the issues ran deeper than the tree cutting, that there were factions in the subdivision, that the tree cutting was being used as a battleground.
During the motorcade, I remember one or two vehicles which carried signs other than protesting the tree-cutting. In effect, the signs insinuated that not everything was above board in the way the board ran the subdivision affairs. I remember thinking that it was uncalled for, that it muddled the primary issue.
The board members apparently thought so, because their letter responded to more than the tree-cutting.
There were two parts in the letter, one rather badly and hurriedly written in Filipino by the board president, and the other written in English by the board members in general. In the president’s letter, he stressed the need for the sidewalk project, saying that it would help make our subdivision one of the best in
A side story I learned from a friend of mine is that one family of homeowners objected to both the sidewalk project and the tree-cutting, and that their trees were cut down when they were conveniently out of the city. The trees that were cut down apparently included a fruit-bearing avocado tree; yep, that’s truly an obstacle to beautification.
In the board letter, it answered various complaints that the protesters apparently made. I won’t go into the other issues; they’re not my purview. They did focus on the sidewalk project. They said that it was “technically feasible, legal, and ‘affordable’” for the homeowners, and that majority of the homeowners voted for the project.
I wonder if those who voted for the sidewalk project knew that the trees that were in the way would be destroyed.
Sure, it’s legal, but is it moral? In other subdivisions, I’ve seen sidewalks wherein the trees are given some leeway, so why can’t that be done in our subdivision?
The letter ends with some nasty insinuations, casting doubt on the protesters’ integrity, accusing them of appropriating the sidewalk space, which is technically public property, for their own benefit, calling them selfish for favoring their personal interests against the “welfare of the community?” I wonder how destroying trees that give shade along the streets of the subdivision is for the “welfare of the community?”
Personally, I’m not concerned about the other issues against the board; I’m not that in the know about these things. But I am concerned about the trees in our subdivision, and hope that some middle ground or compromise can be reached.
The protesters called for concerned homeowners to tie red ribbons around their trees as a sign of protest. I won’t do that, because that would mean taking their side, and everything it entails. Instead, Hazel and I placed a sign on our tree, informing people about its significance to my family, and why it shouldn’t be cut down. This way, we’re just focusing on the issue at hand.
Monday, September 18, 2006
Yesterday's Final Four game between the Ateneo Blue Eagles and the Adamson Blue Falcons had all the makings of a classic match-up. Both teams were relatively evenly matched, as evidenced by the two one-point victories by Ateneo, both won in the closing minutes. In addition, Adamson had a golden opportunity to end nine years of frustrating losses to their fellow raptor team, an 18-game losing streak. Finally, both teams featured MVP candidates: the Eagles with streaky JC Intal, and the Falcons with burly Ken Bono.
The game started out with the Falcons coming out with guns blazing, erecting an early 11-4 lead, which the Eagles quickly erased. The game seesawed back and forth between the two rivals, neither side gaining any headway. For every Ateneo basket, Adamson matched each one.
Ateneo did have some problem with the officiating, with Ateneo's Rabeh Al-Hussaini drawing a technical foul for protesting a loose ball foul; this gave him a total of four fouls before the half, reducing his effectivity for the rest of the game. Ateneo mentor Norman Black was similarly livid, drawing a technical himself for his loud protests.
At the same time, Adamson made sure it was a physical game, elbowing and jostling for every rebound. It got to the point that both teams were given technicals at the start of the second half as a warning against too much physical play.
During the second half, it was more of the same. Each team drawing out the best from its members, each side never giving up. Both MVP candidates shone through in the second half, although I think Bono had a better game, displaying surprising outside shooting accuracy by making three straight three-point bombs; he ended up with 33 points.
In the end, it boiled down to the last minute. The crucial play was a miscue by Adamson guard Polayapoy with Ateneo leading 72-70 with less than a minute to go. Polayapoy held on to the ball way too long, and, when he passed it, it was intercepted by an Ateneo player (can't remember who), who brought it back to make the score 74-70.
But Adamson wasn't beaten yet. Bono completed a three-point play to close the gap to one point. But Ateneo was able to push the lead back up to three, with 1.9 seconds to go. That sealed the Falcons' fate.
It was a well-played game on both sides, but I'm happy that Ateneo didn't have to go to a second game. That way, the players get to rest while they await the results of Thursday's match between UST and UE, as third-seeded UST managed to force a rubber match by beating UE, 79-75. The finals begin on Sunday, and it's probably going to be a great one.
In the junior division, FEU beat Adamson, 76-66, for the right to face the Blue Eaglets in the finals, while in the women's division, FEU dethroned champion Ateneo, 46-44, and will face UST, which won against UP, 72-68.
Friday, September 15, 2006
What's been happening:
1. In my fantasy baseball leagues, the Blue Eagles look poised to wrap up this season on the top of the heap, with timely good hitting and pitching coming from my various players. The Dojoboys, however, mired in sixth place because of poor pitching, and lack of power hitting (I should've gotten Frank Thomas sooner, but who've thunk he'd revitalize himself in Oakland? Not many.), will be lucky to make it to fourth place; they're in fifth now, a half-point between them and sixth place.
2. We're preparing to file Gabby's application to a big, traditional school, so it's a bit of a flurry, gathering documents, and, at the same time, prepping her for the exam or interview. Here's hoping that she makes it in.
3. Fleur de Lys' chorizo hamonado is a wonderful breakfast/snack meal, whether with a savory waffle or with the traditional silog (garlic fried rice and egg). It's meaty and savory sweet. Yummy.
4. Monday next week is doomsday for some of my students, as their parents will be getting the report cards that day.
Maybe I'll find my second wind next week. Let's see.
Monday, September 11, 2006
Khas is open daily from 7am to 12 midnight.
Such was the case in my subdivision when the subdivision board decided to build sidewalks all over the subdivision early this year, as a beautification project. We were informed that we would have to pay for the installment of the sidewalk along the fronts of our houses.
What we weren’t informed about was that any tree in the way would be cut down. I saw evidence of this when I saw that some of the trees leading to the gate exiting to Commonwealth Avenue were cut down, one of them a relatively old tree. When I mentioned this to the board secretary, about whether it was right to cut down the trees, she blithely said that there weren’t that many trees to be cut down, and that the board apparently got permission from the barangay hall to do so (isn’t permission supposed to be obtained from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR)?).
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
Irwin, who was known for his exuberant style of speaking ("Crikey!") and his capturing and relocation of crocodiles and other potentially dangerous animals, did much to raise the public's consciousness about the reptiles, and helped make people more aware that these animals also need to be protected.
He leaves behind a wife and two children.
Monday, September 04, 2006
With the defeat of the impeachment against the President, the government is throwing all its weight and resources behind the move to change the Charter (Cha-Cha). Already, Sigaw ng Bayan, the group responsible for collecting the necessary signatures to push a people’s initiative has filed the petition at the Commission on Elections (Comelec) last week, and has had it rejected, moving the battleground to the Supreme Court.
It will be up to the Supreme Court to decide whether the Charter Change movement will flourish. From where I stand, the Court will have to decide the following issues (this is assuming such issues will be brought before the Court, which cannot initiate decisions on its own, but I’m pretty certain that opponents of Charter Change will bring it up before the Court at the right moment.):