Sunday, June 24, 2007

X Sports: Downhill Challenge Adobo Style

No Head Gears. No Brakes. No Fear!

Extreme sport (also called action sport, adventure sport and adventurous sport) is a media term for certain activities perceived as having a high level of inherent danger or difficult and often involving speed, height, a high level of physical exertion, and highly specialized gear or spectacular stunts.

Pimp My Ride: Adobo Style

Two weeks ago me and my friends went uphill in a place called Bongbong in Valencia, Negros Oriental to witness a different kind of extreme sport children ages 6 to 8 years old play. In most downhill challenges they use BMX Bikes, Snow Boards, Moto X Bikes, Skis and Bob Carts, but in this part of the world they have their own version of a bob cart called "Ligiron". Ligiron comes from the visayan dialect word "ligid" which means wheel. When we arrived there, some of their parents where still making them.

Proudly Philippine Made

Environment friendly, all made out of indigenous materials. The main chassis, steering rod and wheels are all made of santol wood. The seats are made out of bamboo strips that also serves a good shock absorber and give superb suspension. The wheels are then wrapped with old tire strips lubricated with grated cocoa pods. No engines and no brakes.

Downhill Challenge

The Need for Speed

The sport is participated in by mostly kids and sometimes with adults too, no protective head gears, no breaks and with no fear at all making this totally extreme! I am not aware of any child's sport this fun and reckless anywhere here in the Philippines or abroad.

The Race Tracks

In order to get the fastest speed, the kids carry their ligiron to the starting point, at the peak of the hill and gets set for the adrenaline rush. After all extreme sport is about height, speed and having a high level of inherent danger with spectacular stunts otherwise it won't be X Sports!

Extreme Driver

According to the town folks, the ligiron goes a few years back in the 1980's. Ligirons at that time had bigger wheels about 6 feet in diameter and was used by farmers to transport copra from harvest to the market place.

The Rush Hour

The kids really have fun and enjoy this sport. They do this almost every weekend. They even hold race competitions and invite some other kids from the nearby village.

X Sport Model: Hersley Ven

The sport is not yet popular. It was even my first time to see such totally extreme child sport. Some passers by gets amazed when they see the kids rushing down the hill. Some of them offer to buy their ligiron and pays them P100.00(about USD 2.00) for one.

After seeing how the kids enjoyed, Hersley and the rest of the gang couldn't help but try the thing. I didn't want to miss the feeling of adrenaline flowing through my body so I tried it too. We all had a blast.

The X Monkeys heheheh!
(From your left: Nicky Dumapit, Hersley Ven, Bruce not the Lee, Victor, Carmel)

The best part of the trip was the warm welcome and the hospitality of the villagers. They showed us around and offered us lots of food. We wrapped upped the trip with a thirst quenching fresh buko juice (coconut juice). It really energized us after the tiresome mountain treck to capture these rare moments.

We plan to go back sometime to capture the thrills in video.

Very Special thanks to Nicky Dumapit for touring us in the village.

Special Thanks to Hersley Ven Casero for his "Pimp my ride" photo. Check out more of his photos here...

And thank you to the Bongbong villagers for the warm welcome, fresh bananas, buko juice and the "water and salt".

Sunday, June 03, 2007

The Patriot

The Patriot Some call him the revolutionary "Che Guevarra" of Dumaguete, some call him "Bob Marley" because of his dreadlocks, and some call him "The Lost Commando" because of his full battle gear outfit. If you want to catch him and get his autograph, you can see him at the boulevard at 6am, then he moves on towards the gates near the flag pole of Silliman Hall then on to the flag pole at the Freedom Park by 7am.

I came across him this morning while I was driving my bike and decided to stop by and have a little chat with him. Here goes the chat transcript:

Me: Hello Manong. Pwede ko mangutana? (Hello Mr. Can I ask you a few questions?)

Gentleman: Maayong Buntag! (Good Morning!)

Me: Aw! Maayong buntag pod Manong. (Oh! Good mornin
g to you too Mr.)

Me: Nagunsa man ka dire? (What are you doing here?)
Gentleman: Nag poste ko dire. (I am on my post.)
The Lost Commando

Me: Nagposte? Unsa pasabot nimo? (On your post? What do you mean?)
Gentleman: Mao na ang tulumanon sa usa ka Armed Forces of the Philippines na magposte (It is a duty of every Armed Forces of the Philippines to be in his post)

Me: Ah mao ba? So naa diay ka sa army? (Oh I see. So you are in the army?)

Gentleman: Oo, Brigadier General ko. 24 na ko ka tuig nag serbisyo sa Philippine army. Na assistant ko ni Gen. Fidel Ramos sauna, na under pod ko ni Espina pero karon ako maoy kinatas-an og rangko sa tibuok Pilipinas. (Yes, I am a Brigadier General. 24 years of service in the Philippine Army.
I was the Assistant of Gen. Fidel Ramos, I was also under Espina but now I am the highest ranking officer in the Philippines.)

Me: Unsa imo ngalan? (What is your name?)
Gentleman: Ako si Brigadier General Juanito Riseñas Cuyad ... c u y a d. (I am Brigadier General Juanito Riseñas Cuyad...that is spelled out as C - u - y - a - d.
amazingly, he was really able to spell out his name!)

Me: So asa man ang imong mga kauban? (So where is the rest of your brigade?)
Gentleman: Tua sila nagkatag-katag, ang uban tua sa Camp Crame. (They are all spread out, others are in Camp Crame.)

Me: Paghuman ani sa imo duty asa man ka pagkahuman? (After your duty, where do you go?)
Gentleman: Naa pa ko lain duty. Ang army tulo kabuok ang tulumanon nga departamento - and munisipyo or capitolyo, ang unibersidad og ang boulevard. (I still have other duties. The army serves 3 departments, the municipality or capitol, the university and the boulevard.)
El General

Me: Taga asa man ka? (Where are you from?)
Gentleman: Taga Bohol ko, Sierabollones pero ang mga Cuyad sa Jagna ang among kagikan. (I am from Bohol, from the town of Sierabollones but the Cuyads roots from the town of Jagna.)

Me: Oi mao ba?! Taga Bohol man sad ko. Kaliwat diay ka ni Dagohoy, kaila ka ni Francisco Dagohoy? (Oh really? I am from Bohol too. So you run the blood lines of Dagohoy, do you know Francisco Dagahoy? - holds the distinction of having led the longest revolt in Philippine history against the Spaniards, the famous Dagohoy Rebellion from 1744 - 1829. )

Gentleman: Hahahaha! Boang man tingali ka. Dili mi amigo niya. Nagskwela pa tingali ko anang panahona og ikaw wala pa ka matawo. (Hahahaha! You must be crazy!, We are not friends of course, I was probably still in school and you were not yet born during his time) - He was almost close but not close enough :)

Me: Ok Manong, salamat sa pag gayon sa imong oras. (Ok Mr., thank you for your time.)
Gentleman: Tig byahe man ko sa dagat ug ting pyesta sa atoa sa Tagbilaran. kita unya ta didto, mamiesta ta ha. Cge salamat pod. Ayo ayo. (I also travel the sea during fiesta season in Tagbilaran. Lets meet up one day. Thank you. Take care.)

El General
(Click to Enlarge Photo)

Well, although he sounded like a few screws where a little loose, I still think he is a fine gentleman and a true patriot.


Special Thanks to Hersley Ven for sharing his Flickr photo of "The Lost Commando".

Sunday, May 20, 2007

Café Antonio: best coffee shop in town.

Last Thursday night, Joel treated out the team for dinner(thanks Joel!). With us were Victor, Jan Mark and Jerol(a new member of the team). It wasn't really planned, it was just a spontaneous thing which happens frequently. We went to our favorite 24 hour food house, "Qyosko", which means kiosk. The guys ordered the all-time favorite "pork belly sizzler", Jan Mark ordered chicken and Jerol chosilog! I ate a late snack and was still full so I ordered an ice-cold san miguel beer light instead. We had a little chit chat for an hour, talking about non-sense actually and all those weird-geeky tech jokes. We really had fun. Vic has this habit of moving from one place to another, so he said that we go out and drink coffee some place else.

We went to Café Antonio, the best coffee shop in town, they serve a whole lot of varieties and has a very nice setting which places Starbucks into shame, as our kahuna friends Chris and DJ puts it. Well it has indeed a very nice Spanish style interior design and furniture equipped with Wireless Internet access. You have to buy a prepaid card to gain Internet access but all yahoo and google site access are free. Vic couldn't resist so he stuck out his Mac Book and logged on the net.

Me, Joel, Victor and Jan Mark. Too bad Jerol had to leave early.

Vic and Jan Mark ordered Raspberry Mocha, Joel and I got Coffee Latté.
So we stayed there for an hour and continued the senseless talks and jokes then headed back home.

heading back home

Friday, May 18, 2007

Kudos Dumaguete!

taken on Election day May 14, 2007

3 days after election day

Kudos Dumaguete! One of them must have read my blog. The 2007 Philippine election did not turn out that bad at all, well at least for Dumaguete City. Just a few days back I was blogging about how the election campaign posters became an eyesore along the national highway and hoped that these politicians would do clean ups, and here we go folks they actually did it!

I am seeing a little light at the end of the tunnel and I hope that this light gets brighter as we go along the way. Congratulations to all the politicians of Dumaguete City, even if some of you didn't make it to the post, you still showed the people that you are responsible enough.

More power Dumaguete!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Badjao in the City

Knowing their history, learning their culture and respecting them as a human being.

Badjao in the City
Against all the odds, this Badjao or "Sea Gypsy" child still affords to give a smile after having eaten her breakfast along the sidewalk. (Click Photo for a larger view)

The Badjao or "Sea Gypsies" inhabit the shores and waters of Sulu archipelago. They can be found today in many coastal settlements dotting the archipelago, particularly in Jolo, Tawi-Tawi and Sitangkai. Others are scattered in Davao, Surigao, Zamboanga, Basilan, Bohol, Cebu, Manila and now in Dumaguete in search of livelihood. Their livelihood is totally dependent o­n the resources of the sea - fishes, seaweeds, shells and so forth, either for food or to sell/barter for other necessities such as clothing, materials for boat construction, and fishing equipment.

Badjao mother preparing breakfast along the side walk.

Their physical features are distinctively attributable to their environment and their mode of life. They have sturdy built dark brown skin and bronze hair. Their manner of walking is affected to a large extent by their crouching on boat stern while sailing or fishing.
A Smile
A sea ritual makes the Badjaos childbirth practice somewhat peculiar. The newly born infant is thrown into the sea. Other people dive after it to rescue it. This ritual is simply an initiation into the reality of the Badjao life which is based on kinship with the sea.

The Badjaos are oppressed tribe. They are referred to as palao or lumaan (God forsaken) by the Tausugs. Badjaos developed an inferiority attitude towards the Tausugs and the Samals who always look down on them. Originally, they used to live on the land but the constant pressure on their safety by the other Muslim tribes forced them to seek the sea. They eventually found that the sea afforded them greater avenues of escape in the event of attack.

Today, they roam the city of Dumaguete as beggars, still oppressed and ignored, a very sad reality. At times they become annoying to the public being shouted at and driven away as they desperately ask for your mercy hoping that you give them a small amount from your pocket.

Our local city officials has been making extra efforts to promote Dumaguete as a tourist destination for both domestic and foreign tourists but has overlooked this problem. How are we going to impress our tourists if what they encounter in every major street or corner they walk by are Badjaos begging for alms.

Whoever wins in this election, you should give attention to this emerging problem and come up with socio-economic development programs to help these people. And as good citizens, let us know their history, learn their culture and respect them as a human beings.

"Great things are done by a series of small things brought together."
-- Vincent Van Gogh

Monday, May 14, 2007

How Clean is the 2007 Philippine Elections?

How Clean is the Philippine Election?

After the "Hello Garci" controversy during the last presidential election, I think many of the Filipinos has lost their trust in the Philippine political system. Everyone involved got away, some even ran for public office. More actors and famous sports icons are running for top seats in government and they way it looks to me they have high chances of winning. What are their true intentions? Is it really for public service?

Politicians running for top positions are spending millions for campaign materials. Some even go to the extent of cheating or killing their political rivals. And how much salary are they getting? Between 35 - 50 thousand pesos? Aren't these actors and sports icons earning more than this? I'm no mathematician, but I think nothing really makes sense.

Well in spite of all my murmurings, I still went to my voting precinct to cast my vote. All I can hope for at this point is for all the politicians and their supporters is for a "clean" election. When I say clean, it means literally clean up their mess - posters and other election materials! :)

Vote Wisely!

Click here to see what happened after 3 days!

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Your Love

For some reason I woke up very early today, went straight to my computer and logged on the net. Since it is Sunday today, I thought I'd listen to Christian music so I downloaded some songs and played them. While listening, I visited YouTube and checked my subscriptions. I came across one of Happy Slip's video blog and I thought I'd share this beautiful song composed by Christine herself:

Title: Your Love

Composed by: Christine

When I try to look elsewhere or in others
I lose myself
For my life is nothing without you
My Creator

You give me meaning
You give me purpose
I find my destiny in you oh God

How wide
How long
How high and how deep
Is your love oh Lord

Unless the Lord builds this house
I will build in vain
I will sink in the sand
But I choose to stand on you
The Rock of my Salvation

You give me meaning
You give me purpose
I find my destiny in you oh God

How wide
How long
How high and how deep
Is your love oh Lord
For when I fall
When I fail
You pick me up
And hold me in your arms

Oh Lord my God
Redeemer and my Friend
You’re the Alpha, Omega
The Great I am
And I give my all to you

How wide
How long
How high and how deep
Is your love oh Lord

I die to myself
So that you might live in me oh Lord
All the days of my life
Shine through me
Oh God of who I am
Oh God of who I am

Friday, May 11, 2007


"It is not currently considered a psychological condition or a disorder..."

This is my first attempt to create a blog. I have never written a blog ever before but I think the idea of writing the things that are happening in my life is just cool, may it be in my workplace, in my home or in any of my experiences in everyday life in society or in the ever changing cyber world! I am not really sure if there will be anyone who will read my blog or if there is anyone who will be interested at all in what i think or say. But what the heck...I will do this anyway. :)

As a start, I think it just makes sense to tell you a little about myself. I am a technophile.
For those of you who doesn't know what "technophilia" is, here is its simplest definition, a strong enthusiasm for technology, especially newer technologies such as computers, the Internet, cell phones and home theater. It is not currently considered a psychological condition or a disorder, but is used in sociology when examining the interaction of individuals with their society, especially contrasted with technophobia. In short, I am a guy who loves computers and the Internet. So basically, my world evolves around these two things which makes it challenging for me to interact with people in the real world and to live up with the norms of society.

I am not a "geek" or "nerd". I try to mingle with people as much as I can to prevent myself from being imprisoned in the virtual reality. But the impact of the Internet revolution has changed the way I live my life, I depend so much on the Internet, I go crazy sometimes if I get disconnected.

Like many of you, I also dream and seek for happiness, but it will not stop right there. I shall dream, explore and discover.