Monday, March 22, 2010

"A mindset that leads to action"

I hear rebels with a cause Alex and Brett Harris may be including Manila in their Do Hard Things Tour this year :-)

"Scout's honor"... sounds silly now

Excerpt from Feminine Genius:

Sit-upons and camp fire songs are so last century:

(NEW YORK – C-FAM) The World Association of Girl Scouts and Girl Guides hosted a no-adults-welcome panel at the United Nations this week where Planned Parenthood was allowed to distribute a brochure entitled “Healthy, Happy and Hot.” The event was part of the annual United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) which concludes this week.

The brochure, aimed at young people living with HIV, contains explicit and graphic details on sex, as well as the promotion of casual sex in many forms. The brochure claims, “Many people think sex is just about vaginal or anal intercourse… But, there are lots of different ways to have sex and lots of different types of sex. There is no right or wrong way to have sex. Just have fun, explore and be yourself!”

Really can't add anything to this as I am still speechless regarding the whole matter. Read the rest at Feminine Genius (yes, there's more)

Children's cenaculo in puppetry!

There's something about the movie Jesus of Nazareth starring Robert Powell that fascinated me as a child. Every year, during Holy Week, the film would be shown on TV -- on channel 9 if I remember correctly. It is such a long movie that it would be shown in several parts. And every year, I would watch it, not missing any part.

I still remember the actors (Olivia Hussey as Mary, Michael York as John the Baptist...), Jesus' piercing blue eyes (which to me gave the character even more mystery) as a child who conversed with elders in the temple and as the man followed by his disciples, the way Joseph taught the child Jesus the use of a ruler in carpentry in one scene, the way Jesus' death drove his mother to hysterics at the foot of the cross (now I really doubt that a perfect creature such as Jesus' mother would have reacted so emotionally, but that's a different story altogether). I had my "fill" of the story of salvation through this movie, which I was engrossed in each year for a time.

Two years ago, I experienced a different and striking depiction of this story. Saying I had "fun" doesn't sound right (since it was on the Passion and Death of Christ); I guess you could say it was a novelty. My friend Petrufied is part of the children's puppet group Teatrong Mulat ng Pilipinas and among the group's regular shows is "Papet Pasyon," its yearly Palm Sunday offering. I'm watching it again in less than a week!

There's not enough of puppetry going on in our local art scene, and whatever puppet shows most of us are exposed to probably resemble the Sesame Street or local Sesame kind. Or the ones that are part of McDonald's kiddie party packages. The puppets used by Mulat look really interesting (they're made of wood), being manipulated with the use of sticks or rods. That the puppeteers are garbed in "Viet cong-esque" all black -- against a black backdrop -- makes for a fascinating element as well.

The audience is composed mostly of kids, which adds to the enjoyment of watching a puppet show. Once in a while you'll hear funny comments from the little ones or questions about what's going on onstage. And when Amelia Lapena-Bonifacio (fondly called Lola Amel), the venerable lady who founded Teatrong Mulat ng Pilipinas in 1977, starts each show with a short casual introduction, the kids respond to her questions in unison -- and with gusto!

Okay, here are the details of this year's "Papet Pasyon":

(the Philippines' 1st and only children's senakulo in puppetry)

March 28, 2010/Palm Sunday
3:00 & 5:30 pm
Amelia LapeƱa-Bonifacio Teatro Papet Museo
64 Mapagkawanggawa St., Teachers' Village, Quezon City
(it's the block between Maginhawa and Matimtiman streets)
for details call 921.9773, 929.0895, 0918.903.2040

* You are welcome to bring your palaspas!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Imperialism isn't always in the form...

...of military bases.

"The existing programs of family planning are imposing Western views on people who have a different view of life and very different desires for family size," [Steven Mosher] said. The approach taken by such groups as UNFPA and Planned Parenthood is "contraceptive imperialism," according to Mosher, "exporting the mentality of Manhattan ... or Hollywood to relatively innocent, untouched corners of the world."

If even the Walt Disney empire can be an imperialist tool, what about other things that reach into the deeper levels of a people's culture with a foreign concept?

[The Population Research Institute] has conducted surveys in such countries as Kenya, Ghana, Sierra Leone, and Mexico and found in every case that "reproductive health" was lowest on women's list of health care priorities. "It's not what they want," said Mosher. "We're not responding to their pleas for help. ... They ask for clean drinking water, and we give them contraceptives."

He explained that women in the developing world are deemed "ipso facto [to] have a so-called unmet need for contraception" based on the simple fact that they had a baby in the last two years and are not currently sterilized or on contraception.

"In other words, they're not asking these women if they want contraceptives," he said. "They're assuming."

Read the full story here

Sunday, March 14, 2010

When you've got 5 minutes left...

... for online time, you do as I do. Put a "refer post."

Here's Baby magazine's latest issue, and it's all about getting ready to welcome your first baby! But as always, there are other topics somewhere on its pages that have nothing to do with the issue's theme. Really informative read here. Go to Petrufied for some interesting tidbits about it!

Monday, March 08, 2010

The end of the world through a fruit shake

Here's something that happened to me three days ago:

After doing some work on campus, Nicole and I drove over to a little place on another part of the campus for a taste of fruit shakes. They were the perfect thirst quencher on that hot summer day. It was yummy, it was cheap. I chose mango; she chose avocado. We stayed a few minutes to enjoy the cold treats, then went our separate ways afterwards.

I went back home to pass by for some things before proceeding to the office. As I entered the living room, I felt a slight headache, so I popped a paracetamol then went up to my room to rest a bit. I'm really getting old, I said to myself, noting, too, a little ache on my side. Kaunting pagbuhat buhat lang ng baby, laspag ka na?!

Okay, lie down for 15 minutes, then drive to work, I made up my mind. In a few minutes, I noticed a tummyache and a generally strange feeling. "U feeling ok? I have a tummyache and
feel a bit nauseous. It must be d mango shake. Parang puno pa din tummy ko," I texted Nicole. She was fine, she replied.

In less than an hour, slight tummyache turned major, nausea was "consummated" and "electrolyte imbalance" flashed in my mind as I wobbled out of the bathroom, straight to my bed. How can that much fluid come out of a thin body like mine and I can still walk (sans elegance, though)? Is Gatorade my only lifeline? Must I holler for someone to buy me a case?

I was relieved, for nothing can make me whimper and feel like it's the end of the world than an impending episode of insides going outside when they are meant to stay inside and go through the normal process from the digestive system to the excretory system, as we learned in health class years ago. Needless to say, few other things can drive me to pray with as much intensity as when something like this happens, while it is happening.

Our ever reliable helper was my angel, bringing in a glass of water after my feeble call at the top of the stairs outside my door. What relief. But then, my stomach decided to launch a second revolution after a couple of hours, and by this time, I was too exhausted that I turned to technology for assistance. The bedroom door seemed like a kilometric walk from my side of the bed, and no way was I negotiating a 10-step staircase to ask for another glass of water. So, praying that my perfectly-content-even-when-her-cellphone-is-out-of-sight-for-hours sister would happen to have her phone in her hand at that moment, I sent her a text message, asking her to call up the house (where I was), tell our helper downstairs that I needed water again and to please bring the whole bottle this time.

When three minutes passed and nothing happened, I began to wonder if this was my end. Then the knock on the door came and in walked my angel once again! Ah, cold water! A glass and a whole bottle! My mother walked in, too, to my chagrin, for now she was worried as well. After I assured her that my body had expelled whatever needed to be expelled and that all I had to do was replenish the lost fluids, she seemed to calm down.

That evening (or the next morning? It's hard to keep a time element during traumatic episodes such as this), when I had updated Nicole and another friend about my experience, I figured Nicole was completely fine despite buying from the same vendor since (if I remember correctly) her avocado was sliced open only after she placed her order. My mango slices, on the other hand, were ready for the dumping into my glass even before I made the selection. Who knows how long they had been exposed to the sweltering heat and the wicked bacteria? Yuck. It couldn't have been the milk as the same batch was used on both our shakes.


Thank God it was nothing more serious than that. I mean, that night, as I noticed the dull pain leave my tummy (the nausea returned intermittently, though), I remembered cases I had read about wherein food poisoning resulted in death! Didn't the young daughter of someone famous or some government official die after eating contaminated food? I am truly fortunate.

** For information on food safety during hot months, here are 10 tips for summer food safety 

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