Thursday, September 29, 2016

Happy Birthday, Killer.

Sept. 29, 2016 is the 81st birthday of the Killer, Jerry Lee Lewis.

Two of Jerry Lee's hits from 1957 - Whole Lotta Shakin' Going On and Great Balls of Fire - propelled Lewis to world wide fame. Sadly, it was his marriage to his 13 year old cousin at age 22 that nearly put an end to his musical career. In comparison, today a 22 year old male singer could marry his 13 year old male cousin (or brother) and it would be seen as a career enhancement......yes, times have changed that much.

Not only have the times changed, but Jerry Lee Lewis has changed a bit, as well. Once seen as rock n' roll's first "wild man", years later, when he recorded the Rolling Stones' song,  Sweet Virginia, with Keith Richards, Lewis self-censored himself by changing the line "gotta scrape the shit right off you shoes" to "gotta scrape that shine right off your shoes".

To celebrate the Killer's 81st birthday today, I'm posting 2 videos from 1957 when Lewis appeared on the Steve Allen Show.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016


I'm a bit late with this, but after slogging through Lew Wallace's Ben Hur, I finally gave up on my attempt to finish reading the novel. I switched to The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes, finished that and began reading Twain's A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court.

I vaguely remember reading the Twain novel fifty years ago, but I can now remember very little of what I read.

I picked Twain because of a blog post by my friend Dom, who mentioned the novel in his critique of The Man Who Came Early which is considered the antithesis of Twain's book. I'll move on to that work when I'm finished with Twain.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Man Impregnates Woman and World Goes Insane.

My vote for the most insanely stupid headline of the century goes to with their lede, "Transgender man gives birth to his OWN BABY in world first".

The article gets difficult to follow, so I'll try and unravel it.

It begins, "A TRANSGENDER couple has become the first to have their own child after a man gave birth to his own baby."

Absolutely wrong. The article states, "Fernando Machado, who used to be a woman, met Diane Rodriguez, who used to be a man, on social media two years ago and started a relationship."
Fernando was born a woman and remains so. She has had no "corrective surgery" and remains biologically a woman even though she believes herself to be a man. Her spouse, Diane was born a man and remains so. Fernanado still has a functioning vagina and uterus while Diane still has a working penis.

Dressing up in the other gender's clothes and changing your name does not make a man a woman or make a woman a man.

This is simply a case of a woman, who thinks she's a man, getting pregnant by a man who imagines himself to be a woman.

Sorry, but a man did not give birth to a baby.

First Debate Did Nothing to Change My Mind.

Like 100 million other folks, I suffered through the first debate in the Clinton/Trump Slugfest, and as I expected, both sides are claiming its candidate the winner. The Clinton News Network (aka CNN) has "fact checked" many of Trump's statements during the debate and , naturally found those particular statements untrue. Of course, that is CNN after all, and you wouldn't expect otherwise.

I also expected, before the debate, that my dislike for both these douchebags would remain the same no matter what happened. That expectation was realized. All through out this election, I've maintained that choosing between Trump and Clinton is like choosing between mustard or mayo on your shit sandwich. I have not wavered in this assessment.

One expectation not met was my believe that Clinton might very well have a medical episode during the 90 minute debate. That medical episode didn't happen, of course, but we still have two more to go.

What we saw in Trump was a true non-politician - an unpolished, off the cuff speaker. In Clinton we saw a politician who came with her list of practiced talking points who, for the most part, followed the script written for her. With Trump, we saw the real Donald Trump. We saw the real Hillary as well - a programed robot who doesn't understand spontaneity, except for perhaps programed spontaneity.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Tomorrow's Debate.

As I write this post, it is just after 7:00 PM - Monday the 26th - here in Philippines. In 14 hours I'll watch the Clinton/ Trump debate live on television. It'll be 9:00 AM Tuesday here; I'll pour a cup of coffee and enjoy the circus.

I won't bother to predict who'll win the debate on points; both sides will claim victory no matter what the results.

Mostly, I'll be watching in the event that Mrs.Clinton will have one of her coughing fits or perhaps a minor fainting spell. Should either of those happen during the debate, Mrs. Clinton can kiss the White House goodbye. I can't think of any one single thing that could happen concerning Trump which would have the same disastrous affect, and for better or worse, Clinton has to face the same challenge in all three of the POTUS debates.

I don't believe the odds are in Clinton's favor. It will be much easier for Trump to waltz through the debates without a major screw up; it's less likely that Clinton will escape unscathed.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Will the U.S. Expat Vote Go to Clinton?

According to, there will be a "Soros-Linked 'October Surprise That Will End Trump'". The article goes on to explain that a registered U.S. charity linked to George Soros - Avaaz -, is hoping the 8 million American expats living abroad will register to vote and vote overwhelmingly for Hillary Clinton.

If Avaaz manages to get its wish, it will indeed be an October surprise. The Breitbart article points out that 88% of Americans living abroad did not register to vote in the last U.S. Presidential election. Getting these disaffected Americans to buck the trend would be quite an achievement.

Avaaz believes that a majority of these expats are progressives and maintains that these overseas voters could decide the election for POTUS.

I believe Avaaz may not get the results they're looking for. Let's assume, for the sake of argument, that millions of Americans living abroad decide to register and vote in this election, and let's assume that the majority of these voters do vote for Clinton, there is no reason to believe that their votes will have any effect on the outcome. There is, after all, a little thing called the Electoral College and the overseas vote will be thrown into that mix.

If the election were decided by popular vote, 8 million voters (which Avaaz likens to the 13th largest State) would be a formidable number. But when these voters are shoved into the Electoral College mess, their vote won't be as awe inspiring as Avaaz imagines it will be. It all breaks down into which particular State the individual voter is registered in. Five million expat voters registered in a Blue State like California or Washington or Illinois will be wasting their time voting, if Clinton is their candidate. Hillary will most assuredly win those States, and adding an additional four, five, or six million Clinton voters won't mean diddly squat.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Photo Replay

I've posted this photo a number of times, the last time being March 17, 2011. This is one of my favorite photos of Barack Obama. It appeared on line in 2008. He really is eating an ice cream cone, but I added the crown myself. I look at it as my crowning achievement.

I like this photo so much, I felt it was due a republication.

A Few of My Recent Edits to Google Maps

I've been busy lately editing and adding locations onto Google Maps......some have been published, some are being "reviewed". Shown below are a few of my recent edits in Sibulan.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

New Digs for Two Pigs

When we built the piggery for our three little pigs - Olivia, Peppa and George - we divided the overall piggery into two sections. It wasn't necessary, at the time, to separate the pigs; they were less than two months old when they went into the piggery and one section was large enough for the three.

The three are about 16 weeks old now, and a separation was long over due. The largest female - Olivia - would fight the smaller two at feeding time. She was so much larger than the two, she could easily bully her way to the feed. That made her even bigger, and it was becoming easier still for her to push aside her smaller siblings.

So, this week, my wife's Papa finished the 2nd section of the piggery. The inside walls were smoothed with cement and a gate was added. When the time came to make the move, I suppose it was easier for him to relocate two smaller pigs than one jumbo size porker. As can be seen it these photos, Peppa and George are now in their new abode. When we arrived at the property this morning, the three had already been fed, but they couldn't resist a bit of madre de aqua as a snack. This time, however, there was no fighting or shoving among the swine. Olivia could have everything that's placed into her pen, with no one to share it with. Peppa and George seemed content to share. They did not fight for the food.

Now that the smaller pigs are separated from the larger sibling, they should start to put on a bit more weight. When George reaches the size that Olivia is now, he'll be ready for lechon. Olivia and Peppa are destined for breeding, not lechon. It'll be interesting to see how long it takes for Peppa to catch up with Olivia (in size) now that the competition for food is lessened.

Saturday, September 17, 2016

Double O Seven to the Rescue

Thursday afternoon, my wife and I left home on a trip to Cebu. We had an appointment with Philippine Immigration Friday morning and the only way we could make the appointment on time was to stay over night in Cebu city and take a taxi Friday morning to the Immigration office from the hotel.

It was just before 2:00 PM when we stepped out onto the road in front of our apartment in the hope of getting a pedicab to the Sibulan pier. It was hot. Very hot, and pedicabs weren't out and about in our area at that time of day. Afew would pass by going in the opposite direction.

Just when I thought that we'd never get a pedicab going our way, who should come to the rescue but double o seven.

I've seen this pedicab around Sibulan quite a lot. I don't know if I've actually seen this one more than any other, but the number sticks in my head - I pay more attention to it. I even made a wee little joke about it in a blog post from this past June ,when I took the photo below.

The odd thing I learned is that the driver knows my wife's Papa (and my wife as well).

Thanks to 007, we managed to get to the pier in time for the 2:00 o'clock fast craft to Santander. 007 may not have been driving his Aston Martin, but it was good enough for us.

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Latest Email Update on Uploaded Photos.

Two days ago, I received an email from Google Maps letting me know that my photos have been viewed more than 50,000 times. 58,524 at the time of the email. At the time of this writing, the total number of views has risen to 65,483.

For the first time, two of my more popular photos of San Antonio Parish Church in Sibulan have dropped to 2nd and 3rd place in number of views, pushed aside by my rather modest photo of Manhattan Suites Inn in Dumaguete. Two other recent photos, Ceres Liner Terminal and Check-in Pension Plaza have risen to 4th and 5th and will probably take over the 2nd and 3rd spots soon.

A Bit of Weirdness from Google Maps - What Else is New?

Google Maps approved four of my edits this morning, but not without a bit of weirdness.

The first two, Quench Buddy Water Refilling Station in Sibulan and Jetti gas station in Dumaguete, near St. Paul University, were approved, rather quickly, after a relatively short review.

The weirdness began with the publication of One DGT (Dumaguete) Travel Services on San Jose St in Dumaguete. The location is correct in that it is located on San Jose, but it was placed - not where I placed it - but on the wrong side of Rizal St., west of its actual location. I added a photo, and put in an edit which was, you guessed it, put into pending review status.

I added another sari-sari store this morning, Mayeng's Store, after taking my son to school. Google Maps published this edit immediately, but put the name as "San Antonio St". My attempt to correct this went unanswered by Google Maps.

After looking at the Google Maps placement for Quench Buddy, I noticed an error in the location. I corrected the error - GM published the correction, but I'm not sure its showing up on the map.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Deadly Air Conditioners?

Evidently, at some point in the past, I must have signed a petition at the website, I have a vague memory of having done so, although the subject matter of that particular petition is lost to me. I do, however recall that my signing the petition was done in jest.

I bring this up because, as a result of my having signed a petition in the past, I will, from time to time receive an email from letting me know of a trending petition which they feel I might wish to sign. They're usually wrong.

When I received the latest email from the website, I knew immediately that the petition must concern, in some way or other, global warming AKA Climate Change as there was the mandatory polar bear jpg which, by law, must accompany anything dealing with anthropogenic climate change.

This petition comes from Kay Tea of Seattle Washington and concerns air conditioning.

Kay Tea isn't against air conditioning, per se, but merely against air conditioning units. She admits that cooler room temperatures save the lives of "children, the elderly,[and] pets" and therefore, AC isn't completely evil, but the AC units currently in use world wide are inefficient, and "spew 100 million tons of carbon dioxide into the air each year". Some, she maintains, "contain (and leak) refrigerants called hydrofluorocarbons, a very potent and long-lasting greenhouse gas".

If the petition put forth nothing more radical than that, I might agree. But of course, Kay Tea couldn't leave it there. She had to put forward a GOVERNMENT SOLUTION. You know, cuz Big Government is the solution to every problem we face.

Kay Tea believes that the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on the Budget and the U.S. Senate Committee on the Budget must use the power of the purse to make air conditioning innovation a top priority. It never occurred to her that there is nothing less efficient than government. It doesn't appear to have crossed her mind that letting the free market take care of this would be the best way to approach this (or any) problem. She need look no further than the failure of federal subsidies for alternative energy sources, like wind and solar, to see examples as to why her idea isn't the best solution.

Living in Philippines, where the four seasons are Hot,Hot,Hot and Hot, I am of air conditioning. I am not a fan of increased global temperatures or higher electrical bills. If Kay Tea can find a way to change the laws of thermodynamics and make air conditioning cheap and environmentally friendly, I'd be behind her 100%. I don't think, however, that the answer lies with the United States Government.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Photography......a Dangerous Pass time?

Today seemed like a good day to go out and take additional photos for uploading onto Google Maps. I was only 100 "points" shy of reaching level five, which I believe is the highest level attainable for, so called, Local Guides.

That 100 points could be gained in one of three ways. One, I could gain points by adding "missing businesses". I've been successful adding a few locations, but this is a hit or miss approach. Not every edit gets added right away, and in some ways it's counter productive. Secondly, I could write more reviews. The problem was that there didn't seem to be too many places left where I could add a legitimate review. I wasn't going to do as I've seen others do, simply give a business 2, 4, or 5 stars without giving any comment.

The third way of obtaining points is to upload additional photos. If I were to get the 100 points via photographs, they couldn't be simply more photos, but photos of places that I hadn't photographed before. I'd have to get photos of 100 separate locations...... not 100 photos of the same spot.

Looking at the maps, it seemed to me that I could add quite a few by simply going to Robinson's Mall and taking photos of as many shops and eateries as I could. So, that would be my plan for the day.

Arriving at the Mall shortly after it opened at 10:00, I parked my car, walked inside and began photographing every business there. It only took a short time to photograph every business on the first floor. I made my way across the Mall and proceeded up the escalator to begin photographing the 2nd floor.

I had only managed to take photos of a few businesses on the upper floor when I was approached by a security guard. She wasn't the first security guard in the Mall to see me taking photos, but she was the first and only one to approach me. When she asked me what I was doing, I simply told her I was taking photos; I made no mention of Google Maps, or the Internet. She told me that taking photos wasn't permitted.

Rather than give her any argument, I said, "OK" and headed back down the escalator.

I walked backed to the entrance where I had entered on the opposite side of the Mall. I made my way up the escalator on that side and managed to take a few more photos on the upper level.

There was no way the guard who had confronted me earlier could have seen from where she was stationed. Feeling that discretion was in order, I only took a few more photos and left the Mall.

I wasn't able to take photos of every business in the Mall - I managed 51 photos. I estimate that to be about 65 to 70% of the shops in Robinson's. As I write this, I haven't yet gone to Google Maps, so I don't know how many of those photos I'll be able to upload, but all in all, I feel good about my accomplishment this morning.

Monday, September 12, 2016

Today's Edits for Google Maps

Before lunch today, I drove out to take a few photos to upload onto Google Maps and I attempted to add five locations to the website as well. Of those five, three were immediately published while two are pending a review.

As I've mentioned in more than one blog post, the process of having an edit published or set aside for review seems to be haphazard. There doesn't appear to be any logic as to why some edits are published and why some must undergo a review. Getting half of mine published appears to be the norm.

The three locations published today are as follows:

1) Pepita's Grocery & Hans Cafe
2) Blend Coffee Hotspot
3) Essential Waters

All three are located in Poblacion, Sibulan. The map locations can be found below.

AHL Richie & AHL Rose Bakeshop

In addition to the more than 700 photos I've uploaded, and the more than 100 reviews I've written, I've also attempted to add more than 40 locations to Google Maps. Of these edits, about half were approved and published immediately with the other half being set apart, pending review.

Today, for the first time, one of my edits that had been pending review has been approved for publication - AHL Richie & AHL Rose Bakeshop in Sibulan.

Coincidentally, I went to AHL Richie & AHL Rose Bakeshop yesterday morning for breakfast pastries. Those pastries are shown in the photo above.

The Holiday Meal

Today, September 12, 2016 - the day after the fifteenth anniversary of the terrorist attacks known as "9 -11" - is also the Muslim holiday, Eid al-Adha.

Partly out of deference to it's tiny Muslim population, and partly due to the fact that Filipinos cannot resist any holiday, today is a legal holiday in Philippines. This being Eid al-Adha, I thought I'd try a recipe for pork chops which I've been meaning to try for quite some time.

A little after 6:00 this morning, I drove to the public market in Sibulan to purchase a kilo of pork chops. That kilo is shown in the photo above. The pork chops cost 190 Ph pesos for the one kilo. Converting pesos to dollars and kilos to lbs, that makes the price $1.86 per lb. I've no idea what the current price of pork chops are in the U.S.; maybe one of my friends will let me know.

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Dumaguete's Best Pizza

I noted in a blog post from Saturday that the fee for my application for conversion from probationary resident to permanent resident at the Philippine Immigration office turned out to be 2000 pesos less that I had expected. I stashed away a portion of that windfall for a rainy day. That rainy day came today when I decided to spend the money on a nice Sunday lunch for my wife, my son and myself.

On of the good things about waking before 5:00 AM every day (even on Sunday) is that lunch can come relatively early, and pizza at 10:30 AM isn't out of the question. When I told the family about my money stash and my plan for lunch, we unanimously choose Yellow Cab Pizza.

Located on the boulevard in Dumaguete, Yellow Cab has the best pizza in the city. Shown in these photos is the large New York's Finest  that we ordered for lunch. While I wouldn't go so far as to say this pizza would actually be the finest you could find in New York, there's no question that it's the best you'll find in Dumaguete. It's the closest to American style pizza I've eaten in Philippines.

Of course, with it's American taste it comes with an American price. This pizza and three canned soft drinks cost me 785 pesos. At the current rate of exchange, that comes to about $17.00. Minus the $3 for the three drinks, that's $14.00 for a large pizza. Not outlandish for Rome, GA. but really pricey for Dumaguete.

We weren't disappointed, however. This really is the best pizza in town.

September 11

As I write this, it is already September 11 here in Philippines, but actually 12 hours away from the time of the coordinated terrorist attacks by the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda on the United States of America in 2001.

As this, the fifteenth anniversary of the attack approached, I considered writing about my memories of that horrific day, but as this day came closer, I arrived at the conclusion that nothing I could say, nothing I could put down in words, could do sufficient honor to those who died in that attack.

I can only say that my prayers still go out for the eternal rest of those souls that perished that day, as well as prayers for the family and loved ones of the victims of that tragedy.

I also hope that the American people never forget.

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Food For Thought

According scientific, astronomical calculations, a new moon appeared on Sept.1st of this year. The sighting of the new moon is important to Muslims in calculating their religious holidays. In spite of the fact that scientists tell us the date of this particular new moon was Sept.1st, in order to declare the beginning of any Islamic holy day, Saudi Arabia depends on the testimonies of people in the desert as to whether or not they have spotted the moon. This year, the moon was not visible on Sept 1st, and was not seen by the "official moon spotters" in Saudi Arabia until the next evening.

Why is this even worth mentioning?

The Eid al-Adha, Islam's holiest festival celebrated annually around the world and an official holiday in Muslim-majority countries, is determined by the sighting of this particular new moon. Because the new moon was spotted on Sept. 2nd, the Eid al-Adha will be on Sept 12 this year. Had the new moon been spotted in Saudi Arabia on the 1st - when astronomers say it actually occurred - this holy Islamic festival would have fallen on the fifteenth anniversary of the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

Muslims in the U.S. are reportedly relieved that the powers that be proclaimed Sept.12 and not Sept.11 as the start of Eid al-Adha.

Not being able to resist any holiday what-so-ever, the Philippine government has declared, Monday Sept.12 as a National Holiday.

Islamic tradition calls for the sacrifice on Eid al-Adha, of a cow, camel, goat, sheep, or ram (depending on the region) as a symbol of Abraham's willingness to sacrifice his only son.

Perhaps it might be fitting for us to commemorate Sept.11 and 12 with bacon.


In addition to the pigs, the malabar spinach, and the madre de agua, we also have bananas growing on property in Magatas.

As these two photos demonstrate, the proof is in the pudding.

Nancy Store

After my discovery that the sari-sari store, Marivic Store (and a number of other sari-sari stores) had been included on Google Maps, I decided that practically no location should be off limits when it comes to what can or cannot be added to the website.

I felt that the popular sari-sari store located across from our apartment building - Nancy Store - should be included as well. So, this morning, I attempted to put Nancy Store on the map. What did I have to lose? It would either be published, or set aside for review. After the editing, I immediately received an email letting me know that my addition of Nancy Store had been published. Unlike most of my immediate publications, Nancy Store could not be immediately edited to allow photos. I suspect that it will be like my addition of Alfred Electronic Shop, accepted, but would take a few hours before I could upload a photo or review.

Our Latest Trip to Cebu City

Our recent trip to Cebus had its own positive and negative aspects - its own ups and downs - its own Yin and Yang.

My original plan was to take the first fast craft leaving Sibulan for Liloan, Santander at 5:00 AM. With the time involved in traveling by water, then the bus ride from Santander to the South Bus Terminal, we should arrive in Cebu by 10:00 AM. With luck, we might be able to finish our business with Immigration in time for the last bus returning to Santander that afternoon.

Unfortunately, a defective alarm clock put the kibosh on that plan. We woke up too late for the 5:00 AM departure, taking the 7:00 AM trip instead.

The heavy traffic from the South Bus Terminal to the J Centre Mall, where the Immigration office is located, didn't help either.

On the positive side, everything went better than expected at Immigration. I was able to get my I-Card with only a five minute wait. Getting all the paper work, for my status conversion from probationary resident to permanent stamped, approved and paid for, also went surprisingly well. The fee turned out to be 2000 pesos less than I had expected, and on top of that, we were finished by 2:00 PM. We wouldn't be able to make the last bus to Santander, but it was theoretically possible to catch the last bus going via ferry to Dumaguete. We might not have to spend the night in Cebu after all.

The 10 kilometer taxi ride from the Mall back to the terminal took two hours. We had even bypassed stopping at Krispy Kreme in hopes of still making the bus.

We did make it in time for the last bus, but it was so crowded, and we were so far back in the pack, taking the bus would have involved standing for the five hour trip. We weren't up to that.

My wife and I decided, instead, to head the the hotel where we normally go when staying over night in Cebu. Fortunately for us, there's a suitable cafe adjacent to the hotel. We could get a decent meal and go to bed at a respectable 7:00 PM.

Up before four, we were out of the hotel by 5:00 AM, and in a taxi heading for the terminal. We managed to get a light, non-nutritious breakfast across the street from the terminal and were able to catch the first bus to Santander. It was so early when we left Cebu, the Krispy Kreme located not too far from the hotel was not yet open. We would be leaving the city sans glazed donuts.

We'll be returning to Cebu toward the end of next week for an interview with Immigration. The appointment time is 10:00 AM which means we'll have no other option than to travel to Cebu the day before the interview. We'll be able to be at the Immigration when it opens at 8:00 AM and with a bit of luck, we might even be able to bump up the interview time. Stranger things have happened.

Even with the scheduled 10:00 AM interview, we'll have no problem getting the afternoon Santander bus. We might even have time to go by Krispy Kreme.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Krispy Kreme in Cebu

Early tomorrow morning, my wife and I will be traveling to Cebu city on business. While we're there, we hope to have time to stop at a Krispy Kreme donut shop before heading back home. There is more than one Krispy Kreme location in Cebu, and one is about 10 minutes from the hotel where we normally stay while in that city.

We have two full scale Dunkin' Donuts in Dumaguete, but no Krispy Kreme. If we are able to buy some of their donuts tomorrow, it will be the first time we'll have eaten Krispy Kreme donuts since arrival in Philippines over two years ago. As much as I love Dunkin' Dunkins, I wish we could magically swap one Dumaguete Dunkin' Donuts for one of Cebu's Krispy Kreme.

I'll be sure to post an update on this extremely important topic when we return.

Alfred Electronic Shop

Pictured above is Alfred Electronic Shop in Sibulan. It is located near the market area in Barangay Poblacion, next to the DCCCO Multipurpose Cooperative. I've had minor repairs done there on three separate occasions.

The first time was to have an off/on switch on the 220 to 120 transformer repaired. The second time, wires on my son's earphones needed soldering due to his pulling on the wires when removing the earphones from the PC. The third visit was this afternoon when wires on my wife's lap top battery charger also needed to be soldered.

Obviously, I'm pleased with his work. That's why I keep coming back with repair work for him. The soldering of the wires cost me 50 pesos - plus a 20 peso tip (today's rate is 46.2 Philippine peso to 1 US Dollar). I don't recall the exact price on the other jobs, but I believe the cost was similar.

Out of appreciation, I went to Google Maps and suggested that Alfred Electronic Shop be placed on the map. I received an email verifying that it had been added, but it may take 24 hours or so before the change shows up and I can upload the photo I have here.

Update: The location of Alfred Electronic Shop can be found here.

Third Email Update

For the third week in a row, I've received an email update from Google Maps letting me know the number of views my uploaded photos have received. The first email told me that my photos had been viewed more tha 5,000 times. This number had been reached after my photos of the St Anthony of Padua parish church in Sibulan had been online for about a year and a half.

The third email was to inform me that my photos had been viewed more than 30,000 times. It had taken a year and a half to reach the 5,000 mark but less than 2 weeks to jump to 32,000 views.

Although the two leaders in number of views are two of my St Anthony photos, the third place photo,- one of my photos of Manhattan Suites Inn - is coming up fast. That photo has been online for less than two weeks, yet it has more than 1,100 views; about half the number has the highest viewed photo, but the time element is considerably shorter.

Still a runner-up, my modest photo of the Ceres liner bus terminal has been viewed almost 900 times. My photo of Check Inn Pension Plaza has gotten a respectable 782 views in the same time period. All this tells me that Dumaguete is a popular travel destination with lots of folks searching for information about the hotels in the city.

Monday, September 5, 2016

Tennessee Williams Would Be Proud

My son and I had just arrived home when he pointed out these cats across the road from our apartment building. Having my camera handy, I couldn't resist taking two quick photos. As I said, Tennessee Williams would be proud.

Friday, September 2, 2016

Marivic Store

My newest hobby is, by being a Local Guide with Google Maps I've been able to add photographs, write reviews and sometimes add locations which have gone unnoticed and unlisted on the Maps.

I've mentioned before that the editing process - that is, adding new locations - seems to be a bit hit or miss. As of this writing, I've been credited with adding 17 locations, although I've attempted to add more than forty to date. Three or four of these additional edits have been approved with my not having yet received "credit" for them. Slightly more than half of my edits are under review. I've yet to have one that has been put it review, approved. So far, the 17 approved were approved immediately.

I wanted to go out this afternoon on an unnamed road that follows the coast in Cangmating in order to add something to Google Maps. Rather than fool with the editing BS, I decided to open the map and make a list of locations already given on Google Maps and simply take photos of locations on the list. This particular road has several beach resorts, as well as very expensive private homes. I made a list of six locations and headed out with my camera.

Most of these resorts/private homes have no signage. I was unable, for example, to locate "Regalado Beach Lot" due to this absence of signs. Of those six locations, I was able to positively identify three. Again, I'm puzzled by the ends and outs of Google Maps approval system.

I found it surprising when quite a number of my edits went up for review. I cannot understand why my addition of the Hyundai dealership (to name one) hasn't been approved. The dealership is located on the National Highway - not far from the Mitsubishi dealership - yet my edit for Ralyn Wood Supply, located off in Bumfuzz, Eygpt was published instantly.

The reason I'm mentioning this now is my discovery of Marivic Store. It makes its way onto Google Maps, just above Baybayon Resort.

Take a look at the photograph of Marivic Store.

The place is simply an average, run of the mill sari-sari store. There are millions just like it all throughout Philippines. How in Heaven's name did Marivic Store make its way to Google Maps, when the Hyundai dealership has been in review for more than a week?

Can anyone explain this to me?

Pope Francis says Destroying the Planet is a Sin

Whenever we get reports on the things famous people said or did, we can always tell before reading the report if the story will have a positive or negative spin by the accompanying photo of the person in question. Each one of us has good and bad photographic moments.....some photos are unattractive, no matter how you may look in "real life", and it's easy enough to search the Internet and find a less than flattering photo of anyone we don't agree with.

Judging by the photo used by Breitbart for it's recent report on Pope Francis' message for the "World Day of Prayer for the Care of Creation" I knew immediately that the editors were none too pleased with the Pope's comments on climate change and global warming.

For the most part, the writer of the article, Thomas D Williams accurately reported Francis' comments, but it was the accompanying photo, and the dismissive lede - Pope Francis: Global Warming a ‘Sin,’ Man Can Atone by Recycling and ‘Car-Pooling’ - whereby Williams displayed his passive-aggressive attitude toward the Pope's comments.

Williams attempted to dismiss everything the Pope said with his final sentence in the article, "Apparently the Pontiff's words have already been heard, since scientists are now forecasting that 2017 will be a cooler year than 2016".

Apparently Williams failed to read the entire Business Insider article he linked to. Climate scientists are indeed forecasting that the heat may not be quite as bad in 2017 due to the cyclical fading of El Niño. Those scientists do not deny climate change and note that there was no sign of a strong La Niña, El Niño's opposite that can cool the planet.

On a positive note, William's article does link to Pope Francis' message as shared by Vatican website. It would behoove us all to read the Pope's message and give prayerful consideration to it.

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Weeds and Feeds

My wife's Papa has been growing a plant on the property in Magatas, which he calls spinach. As one can see from the accompanying photographs, this does not look like the spinach we grow in the U.S.. These particular plants have grown to height of 5 and 6 feet. I'm not 100% sure what he's growing. but it ain't spinach.

My American friend says the plant is called hog weed in South Carolina. I saw to reason to doubt him, until I did a Google search of the word "hogweed". Judging by the photos, this plant is most definitely not hog weed.

From what I've come across on the Internet, I believe the plant is the green stem variety of malabar spinach. I was told Papa was growing it to sell, but I haven't seen any evidence of any selling going on. As can be seen it the photos, insects have eaten holes into a few of the leaves.....those can't been sold to customers, I'm told. Maybe the leaves with holes aren't salable to humans, but I can't see any reason why the leaves can't be fed to the pigs. The pigs are starting to require more feed and anything I can get to supplement their diet is very much appreciated.

In addition to this "spinach", the pigs seem fond of the madre de aqua that grows wild on the property, as well as banana skins and a number of vegetable peels from our kitchen.

Come next pay day, we'll be finishing up the 2nd area of the piggery so that we can separate the larger pig from the smaller two. She doesn't like sharing the food and that's affecting the growth of the others. They're doing OK, but they'll put on more weight if she's set apart.