Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Lunar Eclipse August 28th.

The kids are counting the days.

"This eclipse will be visible in the Philippines as well as in the United States, the Pacific, eastern Asia and Australia, PAGASA said.

The eclipse will begin as the moon enters the penumbral stage at 3:52 p.m. and the umbral stage will begin at 4:50 p.m. It will end at 9:22 p.m. The moon will rise at 6:08 p.m. and set at 5:16 a.m. the following day." More . . .

Monday, July 30, 2007

Baby Hamster Update

Day 10. These puppies are growing like anything. A sheen of fur covers their bodies. Their eyes are pronounced but still unopen, which doesn't stop them from moving about. Roborovskis are a small breed; adults are a mere three inches long so these pups may well be the tiniest baby mammals we'll ever see first hand. They yellow object near one of the pups' rump is a corn kernel.

Closer look at the pups with mom. Dad still in exile keeping to himself in the tubes and rarely venturing on the factory floor. Pups still suckle every chance they get.

~ o 0 o ~

Day 15. Five days later and the pups own the place. Their slit-for-eyes are a bit open, their ears very defined. They're nibbling seeds and pellets, or trying to. One of them is even climbing up the tubes (see his shadow faintly inside the tube on top right as the clip ends). Time to buy some hamster real estate and some kind of water dispensing device for the pups. Can't have them swimming in a dish and catching pneumonia or drowning. Hamster CPR is tricky I hear.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

It's not brilliant but it's big.

The Simpsons Movie suffers from the weight of its own legacy, an unwieldy plot, and a killer sight gag that was too big too soon.

A few minutes into the movie, you realize that for this thing to work it's got to be better than or at least in some way different from a TV episode. But after 400 installments of some of the best comedy TV has ever seen, it's instantly clear that the bar has been set too high. There's also the problem of the unfolding plot. It's about the environment? Really? Good luck going to town with that one. Then the much much-buzzed Bart full frontal turns up in the first fifteen minutes. I must admit I've never laughed in a moviehouse harder this year. It's truly one for the ages. But it dooms the next 75 minutes of the film -- the momentum isn't sustained (see plot, above), none of the next gags comes close and it ends up as the film's defining moment.

So, besides a big, fat, juicy "D'oh!", what else is there to say of a film whose saving grace is a wiener shot? That even if you turned your expectations down a few notches, you'd still be disappointed ("I hope there's cameos!"). That it's a movie that didn't have to be made and that movies of TV shows rarely turn out great anyway. That maybe the filmmakers knew all this going in so they didn't strain themselves. That since Homer (speaking to the audience) laid it all down nicely for everyone at the opening scene, no one has the right to bitch about anything.

Friday, July 27, 2007

You can buy her Umbrella ella ella e . . . eh?


Totes Website
This actually sounded like a cool idea for about two minutes. In fact I already had 3 (to qualify for free shipping) in my shopping cart when I came to my senses.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Advances in public peeing

Four years ago, people in these parts who peed standing up and had poor bladder control were introduced to pink urinals -- doorless, roofless steel cubicles that made street pissing in Metro Manila a more private, colorful and splatter-free experience.

Sometime last year, it was the waterless urinal that made its debut in mall restrooms. By eliminating the flushing system, it promised to save 150,000 liters of clean water a year per urinal. Wow!

One would think that an achievement of such proportions would come at great olfactory cost. Wonder of wonders, it didn't stink with any particular severity. Actually, it didn't stink at all. In fact, its water-guzzling counterparts stank way more.

How was this possible? Hi-tech plumbing? Super-strength deodorizers? Alien technology? The answer is right there for those who seek the truth. Behind the janitor's locker door in an SM Megamall men's room to be exact.


Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Thriller in the Slammer

John Landis would be so proud: Inmates of the Cebu Provincial Detention and Rehabilitation Center doing some rehabilitation.

Anderson Cooper featured this clip on AC360 last weekend, so it's only a matter of time before ABS-CBN or GMA 7 does a story on this as well. First, a spin (we're world-famous again!) and later, a full investigative piece asking (1) why were these inmates doing non-official business on company time? (2) what in God's name were they practicing for? and (3) who smuggled the make-up?

Best watched alongside another spawn of the 80s.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows in the hzouse.


I hope this lives up to the hype. Even if it doesn't, I just hope it manages to keep itself together, you know, not unravel or fall to pieces or make a mess. All I ask of books or movies, really. I'm that easy.

I took a playful peek at the very last sentence and was instantly sorry I did. I might have just ruined it for myself, dogmaddit.

If you want your reading to stay fresh and unspoiled DO NOT EVEN THINK ABOUT TAKING A LOOK at the last couple of sentences.
They're very short and easy to read, but they may well summarize the entire book and give away the answer to the most important question of all, taken at face value. Word to the wise.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Alaska wins Fiesta Conference 99-96

Talk n Text's Macmac Cardona was fired up all night and for a while looked quite capable of taking his team all the way. He was everywhere with his signature hook and nobody could stop him, not even his former teammate and mentor Willie Miller. And he knew it too, at one point cocky enough to trash-talk the import Ellis in whose face he sank another hook just seconds before. Ellis took the bait and got slapped with a technical.

But Fate (or Justice the Poetess?) had other plans: down the last minute and a half with the score inextricably tied for the longest time, Miller would convert from a steal off Cardona, and a few seconds later, it would be Ellis' turn to score -- with a hook no less.

Alaska never looked back from that 4 point lead, surviving seven missed free throws of their own and Talk n Texts' near-perfect execution its last 2 plays including (Best Import) Sullinger's final-second 3point shot that had a heck of a good line to the basket but bounced out at the buzzer.

This one played out good, like a Game 7 should. (Made me want to reach out for my Winstons. Too bad I quit six years ago.)

Thursday, July 19, 2007

The Simpsons Soon


"The Simpsons Movie" billboard lording it over the Pasig River and the C5 bridge since last week. Must admit it's quite a sight. Would have loved to photograph an actual, live Kwik-E-Mart but since we live in a place where billboards rule the landscape they actually kill people, what we got is a movie poster of IMAX proportions.

Heard Late at Night

On Letterman, Monday July 16:
Top Ten Things I'd Rather Be Doing Right Now:
2. Enjoying a chuckle over Jay's "Headlines"

Dave zipped through that one, not even waiting for the audience to react.

On Leno, same night.
Bill Maher: "Whoever is gonna win [the Democratic nomination] has to come from the South. You have to be able to pronounce all the e's in 'shit'."
[Audience laugh, some grumble]
Maher: "Sorry, I had to say that."
Leno: "No,i t's ok. They like edgy."
Maher: "That's edgy?"

Yessir. For Leno and his minions, it's the Hattori Hanzo in the arsenal of wit.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Harry Potter and the what else is there to talk about.

Saw the Harry Potter flick which has been getting raves especially from fans of the book. It stayed faithful and true, covered everything important, and took the franchise to "another level," they all gush. For me though, one of twelve people in the world who haven't read the book, it was a far, far less magical experience.

For a movie, it had absolutely zero high point. Nothing to make you sit up or jolt you out of stupor. No quidditch, no money shots, no spectacle of evil-thwarting wizardry in the end. In short, nothing to grab me and my attention with.

It also had zero tolerance for people who didn't do the assigned reading. Characters like Dumbledore and Sirius were popping in and out of nowhere. Some like the House Elf would say things with no later consequence. People and creatures did stuff, behaved, reacted a certain way and damned if the movie would give so much as a hint why. You were supposed to know.

But, it also had Imelda Staunton whose performance was worth the price of admission in my book. One of the best performances -- in any movie -- this year. Those who read the book weren't so keen on her though. She wasn't "froggy"-looking enough. Wha? I really ought to read more.

On that note, I reserved my copy of the final book at National Bookstore today. I was a very early adapter with the first book. In fact, got my copy even before National started selling them. But I stopped reading midway through the third book and never bought the later ones since. About the same time the movies started coming out. I figured I'd let the cinematic versions surprise me. But I'll be buying and reading the last one -- for the social and historical significance of the thing, if nothing else. Heck I'm even thinking of crashing the 7am store opening on Saturday. Stay tuned for pictures.

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Hamster Update


The Roborovskis surprised us today with three pink, squirmy, throbbing little ones. They were so tiny and fleshy looking, they looked like a perfect feast for any predator -- or even mom and dad themselves. In fact I thought I saw the dad having a go at one of them. He just picked a pup up and ran off to a corner while the mom was elsewhere doing godknowswhat. When she came back and found she had less of a litter than before, she ran to where dad was, jumped on him and snatched the little one. An animated struggle ensued. For a while I thought they were trying to rip the baby apart. The mom won out and took the baby back to the nest without a scratch.

We were thinking these pups would eventually end up either abandoned or eaten for dinner. But a few hours later, mom's instincts kicked in and she started nursing.

I think dad on the other hand has been banished and is keeping to himself in the upstairs level -- with a beer in one paw and the tv remote in the other I imagine.

So far so good. Time to Google "Roborovski Hamster Babies" to get some idea what's in store for us the next few weeks. And then eBay, see what these babies are going for ha ha ha.

Friday, July 13, 2007

The Fingers of God

Stumbled on this while searching for a "Fix You" video on YouTube. Might as well have been searching for "sold soul to the devil" and this guy would have been on top.

He's got a decent "Fix You" but this one's the killer. ("Dead!" also by My Chemical Romance is a tight second.)

Easy to find yourself staring at the right hand since it's doing the vocals and melody, but it's the left you should be watching -- especially down the stretch.

Might be of interest: