Category Archives: Politics and Current Events

Duterte Is the Most Competent Presidential Candidate!

Eight Days to go before Election.

Black Propaganda and Duterte Haters

Duterte’s enemies are expected to do everything they can to prevent him from winning.  They have agendas and interests to protect.  A Duterte presidency is a very threaten

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ing prospect.  This is the reason why they are very desperate in throwing accusations againsts him now that the election is just a week away.

But, I actually don’t expect that many of their supporters are too rabid in criticizing us (Duterte supporters) to the point that all they can post on their walls are mostly about Dutertards instead of highlighting the good qualities of their choosen candidates. I can’t help but feel very disappointed.

We don’t need to resort to name calling just to prove who is right or wrong. We should be optimistic because most people here in social media are very passionate in wanting to elect the right leader. We argue and debate because we wanted a better future for our children, the next generation.

Electing the right leader doesn’t mean everything will automatically change. Nothing will change if we, ourselves, are still stuck with the old ways. No matter how good the leader we will put in there, nothing will happen if we, the citizens, are not doing our fair share of responsibilities.

Duterte is the most competent candidate. Deal with it!

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To further clarify the common misconception, as part of Duterte’s millions of supporters, I don’t see him as a hero, a savior, or a messiah. Only delusional people would think that way.

I am supporting him because he is the most QUALIFIED. His portfolio says so. We are hiring a leader, not a pastor. Of course, he needs to wear different hats if he’ll become a president.  His machismo and gutter talking persona would be a downside.  But, let’s take a look at the bigger picture.

Who among the presidentiables can inspire people to act? Who among them has demonstrated effective and result-oriented leadership? Who among these president-wannabes have no agendas and have showed genuine intention to serve the people? Who among them have enough courage to face bullies such as China? Who among them have demonstated tangible results of an effective leadership?

We are in the process of hiring a competent leader with a backbone and a solid track record. Express your support to the candidates you like through your votes. There’s no point in insulting each other. We all want a better country that we can be proud of.

I am voting for him because I’m so feed up with these TRAPOS who always side with the elite. I’m so feed up with an incompetent government that really doesn’t care for its people. I’m angry with the current president who has no accountability and no friggin’ backbone. I’m so tired of this system that only serves the rich and oppresses the poor.

Duterte, despite all the black propaganda thrown at him, has one thing all the other candidates don’t have. He has Davao city. A tangible and glaring proof that he has the capability to lead this country.

If I am the CEO of a company, I would surely hire him because he has the best portfolio. Why would I choose the incompetent ones? All I need are results.  And, Rodrigo can surely deliver. This is definitely not an irrational choice. In fact, this is the most logical because despite his crassness, I choose to focus on what really matters – his capability, his ability.

Thus, those who keep on ranting that his supporters are irrational and dim-witted, I urge you to take a second look.

This election means a lot to us. This country doesn’t deserve another lousy leader who is just good at promises but can’t deliver actual results.  We need a system overhaul and I believe Federalism is the answer.  And, Duterte is the most competent candidate who can implement this.

Now, look at the other candidates and scrutinize their leadership portfolios. Does any one of them better than Duterte’s? If you still don’t know the answer, then I guess you should research more about his track record in Davao. Good luck to all of us!

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Who is the Better Cebu City Mayor – Tomas Osmeña or Mike Rama?

Photo Credit: www.everythingcebu.com, www.123people.com

I’ve heard lots of feedback from each of their loyal followers, yet who can really say which one performs better?  These two well-known political figures who used to be “buddies” constantly bicker and throw all sorts of accusations at each other, which result to massive negative public impression towards them.  But, which of the two performs better as a Cebu City Mayor – Tomas, who served us for 9 years or Rama, who has already served us for 2 years and is still the current Mayor of the city?

Participate now in our poll and make your choice.  Our poll area is located at the left sidebar.  Once you’re done voting, try to comment on this blog-post and share the reason/s why you chose Osmeña or Rama.

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DOT Announces Tambuli Beach Resort’s Closure

The Department of Tourism (DOT)  Central Visayas recently announced the closure of one of Cebu’s famous beach resorts, the Tambuli West Hotel and Restaurant.  The beach resort will officially stop their business operation on April 16, 2012.

According to Tambuli’s management, their main reason of shutting down the business is due to the increase of competing beach resorts surrounding Lapu-lapu and Mactan area.  The establishment can’t cope up anymore with the high operational costs due to the inconsistency of the number of their guests.

Below is a screenshot displaying the full details of DOT’s announcement.

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With the surge of e-books, are physical books dying?

This is a guest post by Nancy Cudis, an award-winning Cebuano journalist.

Photo Source

IN LATE December 2011, The Christian Science Monitor reported of e-book readers complaining of higher prices of e-books as prices of reading devices plunged, saying that it is difficult to justify the purchase of e-books worth $10-$12 when one can buy a used physical book over at Amazon for $2.

However, in January this year, the USA Today reported a post-holiday e-book “surge” with 32 of the top 50 book titles on its list at that time selling more copies in digital format than in print, including all top 10 titles such as The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins; Private: #1 Suspect by James Patterson; The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson; and The Help by Kathryn Stockett.

I’m not going to jump into conclusions, but I can tell that there is a trend of readers across the globe reading e-books. Does this affect physical books? Will this trend lead to the death of print books?

There are different ways of looking into this. One is, I know of many book bloggers who read both e-books and physical books and still express their love for the latter, saying that the scent and feel of paper can never replace the convenience that e-books give. Hence, if these book bloggers represent a sample in the whole reading population, then we can surmise that more individuals will embrace e-books without giving up print books. This will then lead us to surmise that authors and publishers will have to learn to embrace the two reading formats.

Two, not all can afford a reading device, especially here in the Philippines. Many poor and even middle-income families are more concerned with putting food on the table than buying their eldest with a tablet for his/her birthday. But that does not stop companies and organizations, such as Vibal Foundation, from digitizing book titles.

There is a question by pinoytechblog on whether or not the Philippines is ready for e-book readers. Judging from the way the young generation in the country is embracing technology, particularly gadgets, I think the Philippines is ready for e-book devices; we already have tablets and smartphones dominating the malls’ cyber zones. Still, with this case, how do we explain the numerous young people flocking to the local bookstores when I visit these shops almost every other day?

But for the younger generation, or the children, you might want to reconsider reading to them over an e-reader after studies show that doing so makes the children slower to read and understand the story. According to the researchers at Temple University, parents reading aloud and asking questions at certain intervals allows the children to think and focus on the story rather than having a device read to them wherein children are more focused on how to use the device properly.

To conclude, these scenarios tell us that it’s really the consumers who decide whether or not they let physical books die. So, if this question is thrown to you, would you let physical or print books die?

For me, I know I wouldn’t.

Nancy Cudis writes at her blog, www.nancycudis.com. She hosts Short Stories on Wednesdays and monthly Readings in Philippine Literature. Apart from short stories, she enjoys classics, children’s and middle-grade books, Christian and historical fiction, and (clean) romance. If she is not blogging, writing, or reading, she is driving and enjoying the fresh air on a road trip. While she owns a Kindle, she prefers bringing a physical book anywhere. Bump her at enarse@gmail.com.

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World markets fell over US debt deadlock fears – Predicting the future in 2012

It was during summer 2011, nearly 4 years since the economic downturn began that the US economies and the countries of Europe continued to struggle as the markets were roiled by the fears of new setbacks, defaults and other possibilities of yet another double-dip recession. Behind this turmoil in the US and the other economic powers like Europe lay many economic factors among which the most important is the stubbornly high unemployment rate in the US, the partisan fight in Washington over the raising of the federal debt ceiling and the sovereign debt crisis in Europe. The harsh decision of chopping off a notch from the pristine credit rating (AAA) and its aftermath was also an influencing factor behind this gross financial crisis. The US government is not only drowning in a sea of debt but the consumers are also rushing to the professional debt settlement firms in order to lower their personal debt ceiling and stay on the right financial track.

Apart from all the aforementioned signs, the clearest trigger was when the Commerce Department released the report that said that the gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of 1.5% in the second quarter of 2011 and this was way below the prediction of the analysts. The Commerce Department also revised the annual rate of the 1st Quarter to 0.5% from the earlier estimates of 1.8%. While the debt debacle paralyzed the entire America, this entire phenomenon even caused jitters in all the power corridors from Brussels to Beijing and the stewards of the world’s largest economies are very much anxious for a compromise to keep the finances from collateral damage.

China was probably the hardest hit when the US was going through this tough economic phase as it held the largest amount of Treasuries of at least $1.17 trillion and they even called a blistering attack on Washington as this showed height of irresponsibility. While this donkey and elephant fight between the Americans continued, the worst part of this saga was that this affected the well-being of many other countries. The officials in Europe were very diplomatic as they archly called the American leaders who admonished them about the messy politics of the continent’s debt crisis.

If the American leaders want to see a better future in 2012, they have to leave behind the threats of credit downgrades and the implosion of the Euro zone. The markets are gradually showing marked signs of improvement with the expected jobless figures and the Labor Department said that the weekly unemployment benefit applications have dropped for the 4th time in the last few weeks. Therefore, with such improvements within the US economy, we can certainly forget the fears of the economy backsliding into yet another recession.

Apart from the economies, the business organizations are also bracing a tough ride as the economy is going through the unexpected turmoil through the last few months. However, though the US government is taking all the steps in order to get back on the right financial track, the world economies are still skeptical about the future of the economy but still have not lost their hope on the actual economic superpower.

This article is a guest post by Rick Murphy, a contributory writer associated with debtconsolidationcare.com. He holds his expertise in the Debt industry and has made significant contributions through his various articles.

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Mandaue Chamber of Commerce Reveals Top 23 W.I.N.N.E.R.S

The Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry reveals the top 23 micro-entrepreneurs for the search of Women In Need, Now Entrepreneurs and Role models (W.I.N.N.E.R.S) last July 23, 2011 at St. Theresa’s College Campus.  These 23 micro-entrepreneurs were selected from 72 candidates, each representing a barangay in the City of Mandaue.  Below is the list of extraordinary women who have risen from poverty and became role models in our society.

Click Image to enlarge

The search for W.I.N.N.E.Rs (Women In Need, Now Entrepreneurs and Role models) aims to recognize women micro-entrepreneurs from Mandaue City who are supporting their families and are struggling to rise from poverty through their small business ventures.

The Mandaue Chamber of Commerce and Industry in partnership with the local government of Mandaue City opens this search for the model women entrepreneurs whose stories of courage perseverance and creativity will inspire other women to be empowered.  Read here for more details about WINNERs.

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Scarcity of Cebuano Political Bloggers

Though blogging has already made a significant mark here in Cebu, there are still some niches that Cebuano bloggers haven’t explored yet.  One of this niches is political blogging.

In my estimate, there are already hundreds of bloggers all over Cebu but the ones who focus on political writing can only be counted by my fingers.  Most Cebuano bloggers are focused on writing about events, businesses, foods, travels, lifestyle & leisures and the likes.  It seems like Cebuanos are not that interested in blogging about local politics.  Is it because of our laid back lifestyle or it’s just that most of us are not inclined to politics?

The Filipino Blogosphere: Political Expression, Communication, and Participation after the forum photo

Last 5th of March, Miss Mary Grace P. Mirandilla-Santos, a researcher from SIRCA (Strengthening ICTD Research Capacity in Asia) shared the result of her research and study about the A-List Filipino Political Bloggers and their Readers in a 3-hour forum attended by local media and members of Cebu Bloggers’ Society, Inc..  Her study reveals that Filipino Political bloggers are mostly males with ages ranging from 25 to 34 y/o, based in Metro Manila, college educated, employed with high income, veteran internet users, and have broadband internet connection both at home and at work.  These findings show that political blogging is not rampant here in Cebu or in any other parts of the Philippines.

Political blogging may not be rampant here in Cebu but we do have significant and extremely influential political bloggers here.  They are Mr. Jerry Gervacio of Ambot Lang and Kevin Ray Chua of Mar Roxas for 2010.  I know them personally because they are my colleagues in CBSi, an organization of premier bloggers all over Cebu.  Sir Jerry’s and Kevin’s blogs can become a blueprint or inspiration for all Cebuanos who are planning to start a political blog.

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CBSi holds series of Group Development Sessions for Members

Cebu Bloggers Society, Inc., in partnership of Be! Experiential Trainings & Exist Global, will hold a series of group development sessions and trainings for CBSi members scheduled on March 19 & 26 and April 16 & 23, 6:30PM to 9:30PM.  This series of group sessions will be held in TechBar, G/F i1 Building Asiatown IT Park, Lahug, Cebu City.

Mr. Thaddeau Y. Engaling II, Cebu’s group development & training expert and the head of Be! Experiential Trainings, is the main facilitator during all the group sessions.  Be! Experiential Trainings is composed of training and development facilitators bonded by a shared passion for facilitating corporate team building services utilizing fun-filled, adventure-based experiential learning activities as a medium.

TechBar, Cebu’s newest gathering venue for IT and business related activities and discussions, is the main venue for all scheduled sessions.  TechBar is owned by Exist Globalan international software development company.

These group sessions is part of CBSi’s team development strategy for the year 2011.  CBSi is not only focused in promoting Cebu through blogs but is also dedicated in enhancing its members skills and capacities.

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The First Cebu Chinese New Year Festival

Have you noticed that of all foreign people who live, conquer, and settle down here in the Philippines only the Chinese has remained, has kept their roots, and has truly “conquered” the country?

The Chinese people have traded with and settled in the Philippines thousands of years before the Westerners discovered the archipelago.  They considered the Philippines one of the golden lands far to the south.  In Cebu, most of the Chinese settlers are traders.  It is noted that they made a big community located north of Fort San Pedro (within the district of Parian) in the early 16th century.  They lived primarily through the trade they conducted while traversing the length of the Parian estero.

Today, the country’s richest and most established business man is a Chinese – Mr. Henry Sy, one of the world’s multi-billionaires, owner of SM Malls.

The Very First Cebu Chinese New Year Festival

Xin Nian, the first Annual Cebu Chinese New Year Festival was held last February 5, 2011 at the Ayala Center Terraces.  It was a festive celebration of Chinese food and culture highlighted by colorful presentations featuring authentic Chinese dynasty era costumes and fashion show.

All Cebuanos and people who watched and participated in the celebration were greeted by the mesmerizing live performances of the auspicious lion dance and ribbon dancing.   Authentic and exotic Chinese delicacies and street foods were scattered everywhere prepared by the finest chef and cooks from various participating hotels and restaurants all over Cebu.

Xin Nian is set to be a yearly event to highlight the Chinese New Year. It is the first project under CCTC’s (Cebu City Tourism Commission) “What’s New in Old Cebu” campaign, a drive to introduce new events to the city to further encourage and attract local and foreign tourists to visit Cebu. (Event Photos to follow.)

References:
ceburocks.com
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/History_of_the_Philippines
philippinehistory.ph
Photo Source
blackandwhite999.blogspot.com

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CBSi Brings Christmas Joys to Fire Victims

Cebu Bloggers Society Inc., in partnership with TechJobs.ph and SM City Cebu, and in participation of the Bethany band, had successfully held their very first Christmas Gift Giving & Caroling Outreach last 19th of December 2010 at Duljo Fatima, Cebu City.  Forty-seven homeless families received gift bags and were serenade with beautiful Christmas carols.

Forty-seven families enjoyed the short Christmas activity initiated by the Corporate Affairs Committee of CBSi.  These families were carefully selected by the local DSWD according to their economic status (poorest of the poor). And although there were only a few members who extended their help during the actual event, a lot of volunteers came from TechJobs.ph, the newest job portal in the Philippines.

The Bethany, a fast-rising band in Cebu, made the Christmas outreach livelier by serenading the families with heart-warming and jolly Christmas songs.  Some of the attendees even danced and sang while Luis, the band’s vox, effortlessly entertained the whole crowd.

The CBSi’s Corporate Affairs Committee would like to thank the following for the very successful Christmas Outreach.

Major Sponsors are TechJobs, SM City Cebu, and in partnership with the Bethany band.

Blog Sponsors: Janmck HiladoBert PadillaRodel LagahitOrville TadleAika BaylonMilafel HopeMark AbitonaRuben Licera, & McBilly Sy.

Photo Credit: Coolots. (:

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More than 1,500 join in walk for breast cancer awareness

More than 1,500 Cebuanos joined in the 7th annual Moonwalk: A Walk for Breast Cancer Awareness organized by the Ramon Aboitiz Foundation Inc. (RAFI) last Oct. 23.

Under a full moon, the participants walked from Cebu Business Park to Asiatown I.T. Park (AITP) where a short program was held.

Moonwalk was organized in celebration of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October.

The event registered 1,354 participants. RAFI estimated at least 300 more participants who came in late during the assembly time and who were already waiting at the venue for the program but failed to properly register.

Participants of Moonwalk came from different walks of life. They include cancer patients, cancer survivors, students, members of cancer support groups, representatives of private companies, representatives of local government units and government agencies, and members of gay rights groups.

“In this Moonwalk, we are not just walking. We are walking our way to wellness,” Ronald delos Reyes, program coordinator of the Eduardo J. Aboitiz Cancer Center (EJACC) of RAFI, said.

Breast cancer, which is characterized by an abnormal growth of breast cells, is most common in women ages 30 to 59. It is the leading cause of cancer-related deaths among Cebuano women, based on the Cebu population-based Cancer Registry of RAFI.

From 1993 to 2007, EJACC recorded a total of 3,005 reported breast cancer cases in Metro Cebu. EJACC found a continuous increase of breast cancer incidence in Metro Cebu over the past 10 years, caused by lifestyle and health-related factors.

Delos Reyes urged women aged 20 and above to conduct monthly self-breast examination, preferably five to 10 days after their menstrual period. He also advised yearly clinical breast examination for women aged 40 and above and annual mammogram for women aged 50 or earlier for women who have family history of breast cancer.

“Breast cancer affects anyone, but we can do something about it,” he said.

During the program, Mary Ann Alcordo-Solomon, a breast cancer survivor and Cebu Coordinator of cancer support network I CAN SERVE Foundation said that all cancer support groups are one in promoting awareness on breast cancer to Cebuano women.

The major partner for Moonwalk was The Walk in AITP. The event was also supported by other various groups and institutions, including Ayala Center Cebu, AITP, Cebu Business Park, Department of Health-Center for Health Development Regional Office 7, Destiny Medical Fund, Cebu City Government, Cancer Care Network of Cebu, Rotary Club of Fuente, Rotaract Club of Cebu Fuente-Comm. based, Philippine Society of Medical Oncologists, Kahayag Network of Cancer Support Group, Cebu Cancer Fight, Cebu Breast Association, CAN with God, I CAN SERVE Foundation, and KALIPI Federation.

The Moonwalk is one of the programs under RAFI’s Integrated Development focus area, one of the five key areas in RAFI’s comprehensive approach to elevating lives and communities. Its other focus areas are Leadership & Citizenship, Micro-finance & Entrepreneurship, Culture & Heritage, and Education.

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RAFI Partners With CEAP To Combat Global Warming

Who among us haven’t heard of Climate Change or Global Warming?  I think most of us are aware of this issue but, not surprisingly, a lot don’t really care that much.  This, is because most of us don’t see this problem as a direct threat that should be acted upon immediately.  And with this kind of thinking, we are slowly digging our own graves in the valley of death.

To spread awareness about this global dilemma, Ramon Aboitiz Foundation (RAFI) and Catholic Educational Association of the Philippines (CEAP), join hand in hand in restoring the Philippine’s biodiversity through the Generation, Redemption, and Expansion of the Natural Resources initiatives in the Philippines (GREENIN’ Philippines) Program of RAFI.

RAFI and CEAP signed their partnership agreement on September 24 at the Waterfront Cebu City Hotel and Casino.  This, ended the week-long 2010 CEAP National Convention.  Present during the the signing were CEAP President Fr. Gregorio L. Banaga Jr. and RAFI board of Trustees Treasurer Mikel A. Aboitiz.

With this partnership, CEAP hopes that it would bring influence not only to the children of their schools but also their families and communities.  On the other hand, RAFI is optimistic that the partnerhsip with CEAP will help GREEIN’ Philippines in spreading national awareness that would enable them to replicate best practices in environmental protection throughout the country.

What is GREENIN’ Philippines?

The GREENIN’ Philippines Program seeks to develop, protect, enhance, and co-manage denuded forestlands, including bushlands and degraded residual natural forests.  It was formed as RAFI’s  way of contributing to the country’s commitment of achieving the seventh goal of the Millennium Development Goals, which is to ensure environmental sustainability by reversing the loss of natural resources.

For more information about the GREENIN’ Philippines Program, please contact Neil Papas at 418-7234 loc. 515.

Photo Credit: Vernon Joseph Go

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400K Awaits Winners of the RAFI Triennial Awards

A whopping 400K in cold cash is the estimated prize for each category winner of the 5th RAFI Triennial Awards which will be announced on March 2012.

During the Press Briefing for the results of nominations last 20th of August, 2010, RAFI announced that they received 262 nominations from Visayas and Mindanao for the RAFI Triennial Awards.  They received 128 nominations for Eduardo Aboitiz Award for Outstanding Institution and 134 nominations for Ramon Aboitiz Award for Exemplary Individual.

The press briefing highligted the award committee’s major activities to raise nominations from Visayas and Mindanao.  Strategic partners like 2GO, Sunstar Network Exchange, and Kapisanan ng mga Brodkaster ng Pilipinas-Cebu Chapter were also present during the event to show their support.  The award’s team had traveled 15 major cities in Visayas and Mindanao to garner competent nominees.  They were also being helped by the previous winners.  And, it was noted that most nominees are males and the highest number of nominees are from Region 6 and Region 9.

Before the end of this year, 10 semifinalists (5 nominess from each category) will be selected and will undergo intensive validation process for each location until the awarding date on March 2012.  In the final process, the top 5 finalist will become part of the Triennial Circle of Lauriats.  The finalists who will not win would still receive 100K each.

RAFI Triennial Awards Facts Sheet

  • Launched on December 6, 1996 during the foundation’s 30th anniversary to commemorate Don Ramon Aboitiz and his son Don Eduardo Aboitiz whose efforts have expanded from that of traditional philantrophy into democracy-based and people-oriented endeavors.
  • The RAFI Triennial Awards is conferred every three years to give ample time for the extensive screening and validation process of nominees.
  • The RAFI Triennial Awards was established to recognize individuals and institutions who have committed themselves to building a more humane, equitable and caring society.
  • The RAFI Triennial Awards honors those men, women and organizations who, through their efforts to bring about change and better the lives of the less-privileged, reflect the philanthropic, humanitarian and holistic ideals and values of the RAFI founders, Don Ramon Aboitiz and Don Eduardo Aboitiz.

Photo Credit: RAFI

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Philippine Election 2010 Voter’s Feedback

This is my very first attempt in Video Blogging.  As part of Cebu Bloggers Society Inc.’s election coverage, I conducted a few interviews a while ago, asking feedback from voters about Election 2010.  This is the first video that I uploaded because the guy I interviewed has detailed answers.  I inserted a transcript in this video because there’s a feedback that the audio quality is not that good and also, the language is in Cebuano.

Aside from this video, you can still catch up the latest 2010 Election news by visiting our cebu bloggers homepage.  CBS members are also simulcasting from different social media networks like Facebook, Twitter, Plurk, and Yahoo to bring you the latest Election 2010 updates.  You can also follow me in Twitter to get the latest Election happenings from my point of view.

By the way, here’s the detailed transcript of the video above.

>>What can you say about Election 2010?
It’s not organized and it’s very crowded.
The past elections were more okay since you only have to go inside your precinct’s room and vote.
Now, you have to line up and get a priority number and wait.
>>Any feedback about the PCOS machine?
It’s okay.  Actually, this election is nice if each precinct has its own PCOS machine. 1 PCOS machine serves 5 precincts, the main reason of the delay in voting.
>>What is your overall rating for Election 2010?
Well, it’s okay but I cannot tell if all can cast their vote.  There are some people who plan not to vote anymore because of the slow process.
>>Can you now conclude that the election is cheat-free because it’s automated?
I think it’s difficult for someone to cheat because the ballots are inside the machine.
>>Okay.  Thanks.

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World Bloggers’ Day 2010

At first glance, the thought of initiating a worldwide event is like a vagary.  People are raising their eyebrows, some are pessimistic, and some don’t even give a deal.  The main point here is that, we successfully initiated something which would result to a global impact later on.  We don’t need to expect a lot because this is the first, and though we have some failures, we surely can learn from it.

I wanted to congratulate Cebu Bloggers Society Inc. for successfully launching the very first World Bloggers’ Day event at Parkmall Cebu just a while ago.  It’s actually the very first time that all blogging communities around the Philippines made representations for each group.

The event started with an Invocation led by Willand Cuna (CBS member), followed by a welcome address by Miss Ma. Carla Estella, PR Officer of Parkmall, Cebu.  This was followed by the presentation of the blogging communities from around the Phillippines by Mark Monta, founder of Cebu Bloggers Society Inc..  Three blogging communities sent in their presentations: Manila Bloggers’ Network (headed by Azrael Coladilla), SOCKSARGEN Bloggers (headed by Avel Mananzala), and Davao Bloggers (headed by Ria Jose).  And, of course, Cebu Bloggers Society Inc. had also presented a short AVP about their organization.

After the blogging community presentations, Mark Monta presented the newly elected CBSI officers to the public.  The following are Cebu Bloggers Society Inc.’s newly elected officers.

President - Vernon Joseph Go
VP for Content Management - Michelle Louise Maglasang
VP for Corporate Affairs - Agnes E. Jimenez
VP for Education - Jerry Gervacio
VP for Marketing - Michael Sinjin Pineda
VP Membership - Clarence Andrew Mongado
VP for Ways and Means - Mark Monta
Treasurer - Bryan Karl Yuson
Secretary - Wilhelmina Sarawi
Auditor - Jorich Ponio
BOTs for Special Projects
- Gerrymie Tampus
- Guada Conception Esmena
- Mark Alessandrew Abitona
- Prince Ryan Gilig
- Ruben Licera Jr.
Ombudsman/Legal Counsel - Atty. Ethelbert Ouano

The presentation of officers was then followed by the unveiling of Parkmall’s monthly blogging contest.  Agnes Jimenez, the Events Coordinator, presented the contest’s guideline and mechanics.  This blogging competition is open to all Cebu-based bloggers.

The bloggers then enjoyed a sumptuous dinner prepared by Parkmall’s best food tenants.  The event ended with the awarding of the blogger of the day, the one with the best cast-away outfit, and a closing remark by CBSI’s new president, Mr. Vernon Joseph Go.

A lot of raffle prizes were also given during the event.  By the way, Ricky dela Cruz of Rabsing.com, won the best cast-away outfit contest.  Atty. Ethelbert Ouano and Doyzkie Buenaviajie were the men of the event (emcees).  Thanks a lot to Parkmall’s Marketing Team, headed by Madam Judith Letty Sellner for the major support and sponsorship.

N.B.: Before ending this post, I would also want to give special thanks to the special team behind World Bloggers’ Day’s online launching.

Graphics and Design - Jim Villaflores
Press Release - Bert Padilla
Post & RSVP - Michelle Louise Maglasang
Article - Milafel Hope Dacanay
Wikipedia Release - Jerry Gervacio (to be published later)
Others - Mark Monta, Agnes Jimenez

Photos will follow later.

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Thakral Group Is Now in Cebu

March 23, 2010 – Thakral Group announced its plan to expand their presence here in Cebu in the press conference held a while ago at Coral Room, Waterfront Hotel, Lahug, Cebu City.  This Singapore-based multinational company intends to focus on the Southern market for its four IT subsidiaries, namely – Thakral Infotech, Technopaq, OrionElec and Raffles Solutions and Services.

During the press briefing,  Teddy Sumulong, Thakral’s General Manager, talks about the company’s high enthusiasm of the booming Cebu IT market.  He shares his vision and go-to-market strategy with the local IT media and industry bloggers.  He believes that the Philippine market, in general, have matured to a level of sophistication and understanding wherein the value and importance of information technology is no longer deemed as a peripheral but a critical component in order to operate and remain competitive.  Cebu and the other business districts within the region have similar level of maturity and goals to succeed within their respective markets.  Sumulong says the Thakral Group recognizes the tremendous opportunities of Cebu and its nearby cities can offer.

For a start, the Thakral Group will be hiring around 5 to 6 people as the pioneering staff in their distributing branch in the city.  They will also find strategic partner-resellers to distribute products from IT giants like EMC, IBM, Lenovo, and a lot more.

In Philippines alone, Thakral Group has already have 500 resellers.  The company has a 12-year experience as authorized distributor of IBM, Red Hat Linux, Oracle and Acer.

Corporate Profile

Founded in 1905, Thakral Group is one of Singapore’s largest homegrown conglomerates with operations spanning 35 countries and employing in excess of 10, 000 people worldwide.  While Thakral’s roots were in trading and textiles, the group has since forayed into electronics distribution, real estate, hotel establishments, manufacturing, IT and value-added consulting services.

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Globe WiMAX in Cebu’s Elementary Schools

Vice Mayor Rama assisting the handing ceremony

Globe WiMAX brought good news to 6 Cebu City Elementary Schools yesterday, during the handing ceremony held in Zapatera Elementary School.  Along with Vice Mayor Rama, Globe handed a year contract of free Wi-fi connection to Banilad Elementary School, Bario Luz Elementary School, Kamputhaw Elementary School, Lahug Elementary School and Zapatera Elementary School.

This event is carried out thru Globe’s ISP (Internet in Schools Program), which is a part of their vision to become a leader in ICT for education.  This program is the major education initiatives of Globe utilizing Globe Broadband to provide free internet for one year to applicable public schools all over the country.

Public schools which have wireless internet connection through WiMAX will have easy access to a wide range of information useful in enhancing the learning process.  However, Vice Mayor Rama warned that the students’ access must be limited to educational websites only.   Browsing adult and illegal websites are prohibited.

About WiMAX

WiMAX is the newest and cutting-edge wireless broadband technology offering by Globe.  WiMAX has improved reach versus other wireless technologies as WiMAX covers greater distances and is 33% faster and 25% more affordable than other broadband providers.

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Philippines’ First Automated Election

This coming May 2010, every Filipino will have their first time experience participating in an automated election here in the country.  This is a very significant milestone in the Philippines’ history given those long years of tedious manual election process that not only gives burden to our teachers and volunteers, but has also left doubtful and questionable election results.

Through the PCOS (Precinct Count Optical Scan System) machine, an automatic counting of votes will take place.  This won’t only make the task of our teachers lighter, but would also lessen massive cheating during election.  But, before anything else, we must know first how reliable this automated system is.  Below are important facts and details about Smartmatic’s PCOS machine.



Basic Functions

  • Takes a digital copy of the ballot and record it
  • Counts the number of votes automatically

Note: The number of voters per precinct is already known by the machine. (There are only 7 precincts (data) per machine.)

Advantages

  • Speeds up election process
  • Lessens the doubt of the authenticity of the election results

Photo by Michael Sinjin Pineda

Reliability

A lot of pessimists are raising their eyebrows and are asking questions on how reliable this automated system is.  Let’s check the following facts.

  • PCOS machine and ballots are precinct specific – For security purposes the machine unit won’t read ballots that are not listed for that specific precinct.
  • Ballots are equipped with security features – All ballots have unique bar codes and have ultraviolet ink (an invisible one) which will confirm its authenticity.
  • The Data inside the machine is secured – A PCOS is a stand-alone machine.  This means that it is not connected to a network.  A network connection only occurs for 5 minutes every time an important update is being sent to the main server.
  • 128 Bit Data Encryption – A 128 bit encryption means that there are 2 (raised to the power 128) – or 3.4 with 38 zeros after it – possible combinations that could access the data inside the machine.  In layman’s term, it will be almost to impossible for a hacker to penetrate the system since that number of combinations can’t be processed within 5 minutes (the length of time the machine is allowed to connect to a network).  This kind of data encryption is actually used by banks to maintain a 24/7 security to their automated teller machines.

Now that we already know how this automated system works, let’s proceed to the basic dos and don’ts in voting.

Rules in Voting

  • Do not overvote – The machine won’t count your votes if you select candidates greater than the expected number (i.e overvoting for President)
  • Undervoting is okay
  • Fully shade each oval – In shading the oval for the candidate of your choice, you must fill it at least 50% so that the system would recognize it.  If it’s less than 50%, then the machine will not recognize it and will consider the selection as nothing.
  • Don’t put unnecessary markings on the ballot

More

  • Precinct result is automatically transmitted to the Comelec website – This means that every time an update of votes will take place, the data will be automatically displayed to a web page that can be easily accessed by the public.  This way, everyone can tally votes simultaneously.
  • Initialization reports of votes are printed using a thermal paper – A thermal paper can last up to five years
  • The overall election process will only take place within 11 hours
  • PCOS Machine’s back-up battery will last from 14 to 16  hours –  This is an emergency procedure if in case a black out will occur.

After reading the above facts and guidelines, all we need to do now is to be more vigilant and let’s make sure that what the Comelec told us will come into realization.  Anyways, if you wanted to know more about the candidates who are running for the office this 2010 election, you might try to visit Political Arena.  Hope you learned something from this post.  Cheers!

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Senator Mar looks better in person

He has better skin complexion, and has this wholesome aura in person. (I think he has a facial routine in Belo.  Hahahahaha!)  I had the opportunity of meeting him along with my fellow blogging cyborgs when Kevin, CBS spokesperson, organized a one-hour interview that was held in Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf, IT Park about a month ago.

Honestly, I’m not campaigning for him, nor do I have any plans of giving my precious vote  to him on the upcoming 2010 presidential election.  It just happened that Kevin is his die-hard supporter here in Cebu.  The blogging cyborgs got no other choice, but to interview him. LOL!

Anyways, after listening to his very nice platform and observing how he carried himself during the course of the interview, I think that he’s not bad at all.  I don’t want to be so bias.  Let’s give our beloved senator a chance to prove his capability.  I mean let’s give all those people who are vying for the presidential seat a chance to prove themselves.  Just think of it.  What will happen if no one is interested to become a president?

N.B.: Senator Mar Roxas was 30 minutes late.  Hahahaha!

Photo Credits: Doyzkie

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Katrina Halili, Hayden Kho and Maricar Reyes Video Scandal

The Katrina Halili and Hayden Kho Video Scandal

Before anything else, I wanted to express that I really got nothing against these celebrities.  It’s their actions, not their individuality that I will be criticizing.    It just happened that they are caught up in a sex scandal that spreads like a wildfire.  And, for a Catholic country to have something as big as this, the righteous moralists are way too restless.

As a woman, I personally detest Dr. Hayden Kho’s fetish.  I mean voyeurism is creepy.  And doing it to someone you have an intimate relationship with is creepier.  Since it’s very obvious that in those two videos, Katrina and Maricar were absolutely unaware that their sexual encounters with him were being taped, this proves that he is indeed a voyeur.  And I may say, a pervert of his own kind.  It was reported that he has 40 sex videos all in all with different women.

A voyeur is someone who seeks sexual gratification through watching naked people and sexual acts.  In this case, Dr. Kho is somewhat a special voyeur because he loves seeing himself screwing someone in videos.  The worst thing is, those videos were being publicized.  The “perverts” are celebrating, while the moralists are fuming with disgust and fury.

Let’s start with the main root of the problem, that is, who spread those videos?  It was already reported that a friend of Hayden uploaded them (a certain Eric Chua), and tried to sell it to DVD distributors.  But the public are doubting.  Some are rooting for the “revenge theory”.  There’s a possibility that Hayden’s ex-girlfriend, Dr. Vicky Belo, is behind this incident.  For those who don’t know, those sex videos is one of the main reasons of their break up.  Dr. Belo discovered Hayden’s infidelity during their three-year relationship when she found those videos.  It would be a bitter-sweet revenge to expose your ex’s unfaithfulness along with his “mistresses”.

But, one is always innocent until proven guilty.  The revenge theory will remain a theory until further investigation will be done.  After all, with all these brouhaha, it’s Dr. Vicky Belo who is playing the protagonist card.  She has the moralists’ empathy, and in all angle, she’s also the lowly victim of her ex’s dirty doings.  The righteous public will pity her and will carelessly despise the women involved in those sex videos.

These women are no other than famous star Katrina Halili and 2nd runner up Bb. Pilipinas Maricar Reyes.  These two are both victims, the only difference is that the former is in double jeopardy.  Miss Halili is definitely a victim of Kho’s sexual perversion, but her being a victim is overshadowed by the fact that she’s his former mistress.  And from that, the public can conclude that she’s a disloyal friend of Vicky Belo.  This is because it is quite obvious that she was screwing her friend’s man behind her back.

Most people will discard Katrina’s victim card, and they will only focus on her being the mistress, the other party, the traitor comrade of Dr. Vicky Belo.  People will despise her and will only see her mistakes.  This is the biggest prize of her a year of “just having fun” with Dr. Kho.  She will suffer the humiliation and shame, and it’s not even sure if the court can give her justice.

On the other hand, Miss Maricar Reyes deserves all the pity in the world.  She was Hayden’s girlfriend for one year when they were still in med school.  This sex scandal definitely shocked her and worst, the reactions of her family is may be unimaginable.  Her upcoming soap opera in ABS-CBN was cancelled due to the scandal.  I guess she has all the rights in the world to jail Hayden and all those people who spread the video.  Despite this, some people may still carelessly label her as a promiscuous and dirty woman because she’s involved in a sex scandal.  Not most people love to research.  Hasty judgments are always the common scenario.

But, what irritated me the most, is Hayden’s somewhat calm and unaffected reaction.  He was even smiling while the press were asking him about the possibility of suspending his medical license.  I don’t know what’s going on in his mind.  I wish him to rot in jail along with his small phallus!

Photo Credit: KapamilyaPhotos.Blogspot.Com

Review empressofdrac.com on alexa.com

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That left hook on Hatton’s right jaw…

That quick and massive left hook that landed at the edge of Hatton’s right jaw, ended the rather short fight between him and Pacman.  The Battle of East and West’s main fight only lasted up to two rounds.  The British opponent has been beaten, and in double jeopardy, when, after receiving a hard blow from Manny, hit his head on the canvass of the boxing arena.  Pacman finished the fight, leaving him lying on the floor, shocked and in pain, semi paralyzed, and losing his IBO Light welterweight title.

Ricky “the Hitman” Hatton, from Greater Manchester, England, sorely lost to our very own Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao.  The former, with height, weight and experience advantage succumbed to the latter’s agility and reach advantage.  Hatton was brutally battered even in round one.  He lost his balance twice after receiving few lethal punches from his dear opponent.  Our Pambansang Kamao, once again, made us all proud.  Mabuhay ka Manny!  Jia You!  And good luck to your next opponent, Floyd Mayweather.

Photo Credits: Fanhouse.Com

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Obama’s Assassination

I’ve been hearing people talking about this for a long time.  I and my father even had a long debate about this because I’m always in the skeptical side when it comes to this prediction thingy.  Everyone knows how famous Nostradamus’ predictions are, and some people tend to take it seriously, which I find very idiotic.  Still, this topic arouses my curiosity because this involves a no nonsense subject, no other than the very first black US president, Mr. Barack Hussein Obama II, the mabus, the third antichrist, and etc., as what those bloody online articles accused him of.

Those articles I’m talking about actually based their interpretations from the quatrains of Nostradamus’ predictions.  The following quoted quatrains are their bases of Obama’s Assassination.

Century 2, Quatrain 62
Mabus then will soon die, there will come
Of people and beasts a horrible rout:
Then suddenly one will see vengeance,
Hundred, hand, thirst, hunger when the comet will run.

Another quatrain where they based the speculation that Obama is the antichrist.

Century 8, Quatrain 77
The antichrist very soon annihilates the three,
twenty-seven years his war will last.
The unbelievers are dead, captive, exiled;
with blood, human bodies, water and red hail covering the earth.

Holy cow!  These people who hastily spread craps like this should be reminded that Nostradamus is no God.  He doesn’t know anything about the future and he’s just merely guessing from his not so lucid structure of thinking, wherein some constructs are in extreme deviation when compared to those boring and average many.  What I really mean is, how could people believe this kind of crap when most of his written predictions aren’t validated nor supported yet?  On the other hand, do this people even think of what will really happen if Obama, by any chance, will actually be assassinated?

Obama, the very first black US president, a democrat, a socialist and everything anti republican.  What would happen if he’s assassinated?  Honestly, I really don’t know.  Chaos?  Worldwide crisis?  Well, the world is already in chaos and in crisis.  What difference would it make?  Annihilating someone who is standing in the very opposite spectrum against the elitist lair is very perilous.  It is perilous in a sense that it would trigger uprisings from both extreme sides of the idealist camps.  But, if you will look closely, the probability of an assassination is actually moving toward the positive quadrant.

The US president’s extreme idealist thinking will attract lots of enemies and haters.  Well, to start with, all those US citizens who didn’t vote for him are actually rooting  for his failures and imperfections.  And now that he’s in position, they are too proud and happy to spread the news that their current president is the third antichrist.  I’m actually wondering what would happen if by any chance, Obama is not a black.  Tsk…tsk…tsk…  The countless years of looking down on slaves and those people who used their bare hands and feet to earn a living has actually dominated the minds of the elitists all over the world.

And the bottom line is, I’m not talking anymore of Obama’s assassination, but how the world unfairly treated those people who are working their asses off to serve the high and mighty elitists ones.  I hope and will pray that Mr. Obama could make a difference, being the ultimate symbol of a slave who went beyond the norms to prove to the prideful ones that the discrimination between the masters and slaves is just a part of the world’s history, and only belongs to history books that should be put away in the library and be used as a future reference.

Photo Credit: Blip.TV

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Pacman, Oscar Dela Hoya’s New Idol

Hidden Soldiers!
Ang sagot ni Manny Pacquiao
nang tinanong siya kung ano
ang World’s Number 1 anti-dandruff
shampoo.

The text message above is definitely funny, but it is an ugly reflection of how most Pinoy discriminate someone who doesn’t speak fucking English fluently. This, also shows how narrow-minded most of us when it comes to how we measure intelligence and capability. No wonder we are still living in a developing country until now. Hypocrisy dominates most of our central traits which has blinded us to see genuine talent and ability. We always assume that when someone is good in speaking english, he or she is smart and intelligent and everything. How pathetically wrong!

Well, this post is definitely not intended to rant about how pathetic most Pinoy are. This post is intended to praise Manny Pacquiao, Oscar Dela Hoya’s new idol. The golden boy in the boxing arena who has been a reigning champion and living legend bowed down and surrendered to Pacman at the start of the ninth round in their recently concluded Dream Match at MGM Grand, Nevada, USA.

I never thought the game would end that way. Dela Hoya has more fighting advantages compared to Pacman. First, is the height advantage. Pacman is only 5′ 6″ tall compared to Dela Hoya’s 5′ 10″. Next, is the reach advantage. Dela Hoya has long arms compared to Manny which means a high hitting probability. The Golden Boy is also famous of his powerful left jab and has more fighting experiences compared to our pambansang kamao. But all of these expected advantages had been easily vanquished by Pacman’s agility, good footworks, lethal throws and punches, and a combination of consistent offensive and defensive moves.

Manny Pacquiao dominated the whole game from round one to round eight. He threw the first few punches in the first round and managed to avoid Dela Hoya’s. The Golden Boy was reduced to a mere punching bag in round four to eight. Pacman emerged victorious after Dela Hoya accepted defeat with an injured face and a black eye. Pacman, on the other hand, accepted the victory unscathed along with millions of victorious Filipino around the world. Our Pambansang Kamao has clearly obliterated USA’s Golden Boy after 8 rounds due to technical knock out. Yeeeyyyyyy!

N.B. Have you noticed that the background music played after each round was of Rammtein’s? I’m referring to GMA 7’s game coverage. Hehehe.

Photo Credits: BatchLinks

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FilipinoVoices.com met CebuBloggers.com

The Cebu Bloggers Society,  headed by Kevin Ray N. Chua,  met Nick of FilipinoVoices.com yesterday, November 22, 2008 at Bo’s Cafe, Ayala,  around four in the afternoon.  FilipinoVoices.com is a collaborative blog of Filipino bloggers which focuses on News, Politics, and Social Commentary.

The main agenda of the meet-up was to discuss the participation of Cebu bloggers in terms of citizen journalism which focuses on Political and Social blogging.  Through this, a movement can be formed where local based bloggers could become reliable sources when it comes to political and social awareness.

Here is an excerpt of the copy of  Overview and Responsibilities sheet handed by Nick to us during the meet up.

The bloggers will be our correspondents, playing an important role in providing key insight, information, and analysis where they will most likely be informed that other bloggers and writers from outside of the area.

Today is the beginning of The Cebu Bloggers’ participation in a grassroot movement that will take back our voice, and finally give back to the people, the power that is rightly theirs.

Thus The Cebu bloggers will be crucial so that our readers will have a more updated, more in depth look on the issues that are facing Cebu specifically.  Opinions, views, and analysis coming from not outside, but those who live and breathe Mindanao..

The CBS members who were present during the meeting were  Sinjin, X, Empress, Vanjahn, Rodel, Atenean, and Clarence joined us later on.  For those bloggers who are interested to become contributors to FilipinoVoices.com, you can email to Nick the following details:

1. Preferred Username and Password(for login purposes)
2. Avatar Photo(200×200)
3. Display Name(posted with your articles)
4. A blurb of yourself(a brief description that will be at th end of your every post)
5. An in depth description of yourself to be featured on the About page so that readers will know more about you.

Photo Credits: Vanjahn

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I voted for Obama!

Yes, I did cast my vote for him in a mock poll during the US Election Watch 2008 at SM Atrium this morning. The Cebu Bloggers Society was invited by the US ambassador to the Philippines to attend the event. The venue was full of television screens that monitor the 2008 US Presidential Election.

Barack Obama is definitely the leading presidential candidate in almost all states. And as of the writing of this post it seems that victory is on the democrats side. Mccain, the republican candidate must brace himself well to accept defeat.

The US Election Watch 2008 was headed by Paul Jones, the U.S. Deputy Chief of Mission. The event were attended by different private sector representatives, media, americans, and a few prominent local personalities. Among these prominent personalities are local politicians like Mayor Jonas Cortes of Mandaue City, Rep. Raul Del Mar, and Rep. Neressa Soon Ruiz(attired in a maong mini-skirt with a glamorous hairdo). There were also local media reporters who covered the event. They were Rico Lucena of ABS-CBN Cebu and Bobby Nalzaro of GMA 7.

Of course, the group didn’t let the event pass without taking the opportunity to have our pictures taken with the above mentioned people. The event also has overflowing supply of american foods from generous sponsors.

Anyways, it would only take you a few seconds to cast your vote in their automated voting system process. This, I discovered when I casted my vote in their mock poll area. It is a far cry from our current voting process here in PI that is done manually.

On the other hand, I’m a little disappointed that I have to leave the event by 12 noon because of work.

Click here for more photos . Photo Credits: Clarence,Obnoxious Queer, and Athan Obs.

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