Friday, November 23, 2007

Globe DSL Sux!

I'm trying to get this post in before the system bogs down again. Enough said!

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

On Winning The UK Lotto And Other Nonsense

I received and email today from informing me that I had just won 1 Million (89M in Philippine Pesos) in the UK Lotto. Here's the letter:

Dear Lucky Winner,

We are pleased to inform you of the result of the just concluded annual final draws of UNITED KINGDOM NATIONAL PROGRAM. After this automated computer ballot, your e-mail address emerged as one of five winners in the category \\"A\\" You are therefore been approve to claim the total sum of 1,000,000 (One Million Pounds Sterling) with the information below:

REF No: UK/9420X2/68/osy TICKET No: 56475600545188

Contact the processing Consultant:

Contact Person: Owen Brown







Yours Sincerely

Cindy Moore

After my laughter died down, I Google searched "UK Lottery Scam" and sure enough, there they were! You can read about it at the UK National Lottery site here. These scams are so rampant that even vendors in the fledgling eBay Philippines are warned. Discussion boards are filled with Nigerian or 419 scams. The BBC News wrote a feature about those who fight back and are scamming the scammers. Philippine forums like PinoyExchange have a lot to say about this topic.

What's with Gmail anyway? I never used to get scam mail before. They used to go straight into my Spam Box. Now they're coming one on top of the other into my Inbox. Here's another business proposal from

Dearest ,

Permit me to inform you of my desire of going into business relationship with you. I got your contact from the internet search where searching for a responsible and humble person who will assist me on this, prayed over it and selected your name among other names due I was dicrected by God to do so, I must not hesitate to confide in you for this simple and sincere business .

I am Rose Kone the only duaghter of late Mr. and Mrs. George Kone My father was a very wealthy cocoa merchant in Abidjan , the economic capital of Ivory coast, my father was poisoned to dearth by his business associates on one of their outings on a business trip . My mother died when I was a baby and since then my father took me so special. Before the death of my father on January 2004 in a private hospital here in Abidjan he secretly called me on his bed side and told me that he has the sum of of ten million,five hundred thousand United State Dollars. USD (US$10.5 million) left in fixed / suspense account in one of the prime bank here in Abidjan, that he used my name as his only duaghter for the next of Kin in depositing of the fund. He also explained to me that it was because of this wealth that he was poisoned by his business associates.

That I should seek for a foreign partner in a country of my choice where I will transfer this money and use it for investment purpose such as real estate management or hotel management . Sir, I am honourably seeking your assistance in the following ways:

(1) To provide a bank account into which this money would be transferred to .(2) To serve as a guardian of this fund since I am only 22years.

(3) To make arrangement for me to come over to your country to further my education and to secure a resident permit in your country.

Moreover, I am willing to offer you 15% of the total sum as compensation for your effort/ input after the successful transfer of this fund into your nominated account overseas. Furthermore, you indicate your options towards assisting me as I believe that this transaction would be concluded within fourteen (14) days you signify interest to assist me. Anticipating to hear from you soon.

Thanks and God bless.

Best regards,

Rose Kone.

If I used any other nick, I would probably reply just for kicks. But I don't want these scammers to think that Filipinos are gullible. So, there you are. Fair warning. Don't let me say, "I told you so!"

On Turning 43

"1992 is not a year on which I shall look back with undiluted pleasure. In the words of one of my more sympathetic correspondents, it has turned out to be an Annus Horribilis."

-Queen Elizabeth II, in a speech to the Guildhall on 24 November 1992, marking the 40th anniversary of her Accession.

Prominent social personality Mayenne Carmona wrote in her Savoir Faire column last weekend that this year was her own annus horribilis. From her account, it was a nightmare of epic proportion. I hate using cliches, but this really was something you wouldn't wish on your worst enemy. This past week for me ranked a mere 4 out of 10 but I won't judge the entire year from recent events. It's just one out of 52.

I knew it was going to be a tough year. With my youngest child entering college adding to the previous three, it was obvious that I needed something short of a miracle. But things always have a way of working out and they did. They're all still in their private schools, thank you:) With the two oldest graduating next year, I can actually contemplate life in my farm.

I did a lot of new things this past year. We finally got a live-in maid. After literally doing everything ourselves all these years, we happily handed over the reins to our very own professional Manang. God bless her! I started to blog, joined more forums and began writing comments and letters to mainstream journalists. This was something I always wanted to do and online comment forms plus email make it easy. As I have always proudly worn my heritage and my age, I used the nick "filipina42." Unwittingly, I have immortalized myself and will forever remain this age. Well, in the virtual world at least.

In line with my "frugality," I made only one major purchase this year. It was a MacBook that my daughter badly needed for her senior thesis. I held out as long as I could but there was no going around it. On the other hand, she told me it was a Christmas/birthday/graduation gift. I might have saved a few thousand on the long run.

The most shocking thing this year was on something I saw on TV a few weeks ago. I was watching "How Do I Look?" on the Lifestyle Network and saw a makeover on a woman whose wardrobe was EXACTLY LIKE MINE!! Arrrgh, I didn't know I was a fashion victim. It started a few years ago when my father suddenly passed on and I had nothing black (or white) to wear. As I usually do, I overcompensated and wore mostly black (or white) for a year. I just never got around to updating my wardrobe.

I do have the occasional brown or gray shirt. And I got a navy dress for my youngest daughter's high school graduation. It was a steal on eBay for less than 100 bucks. I was telling my Mom that it was probably time for me to get a bespoke silk suit. That would be a splurge! However, since I would wear it to four graduations in four years, it would pay for itself in two.

In all, my humor , health and wit are mostly intact. My finances are a little worse for the wear but it's going to turn around soon. Everyone's still a little kooky while Gabriel is turning into a brat. Everything is as it should be. We should all be so blessed!


Monday, November 5, 2007

On The Funniest Thing Ever At eBay!
(It's Not For Sale)

I was looking for a photo to accompany my previous article. First stop? eBay! My hunch paid off. There were quite a few. After selecting the clearest image, I decided to write to the seller and ask her permission to use it. (Yup, I do it). But first, I read the article description and payment/shipping details. I didn't need to but it was habit. What I read made my jaw drop! My giggles turned to guffaws in a few seconds. THIS is the reason you should read the fine print:

This is the Complete set of 25 hardcover books from "My First Steps to Reading" Series by Jane Belk Moncure. All books are illustrated by Linda Hohag. Grolier Press: The Child's World, 1991...

My First Steps to Reading titles:

1) My First Book

2) My "a" Book

3) My "b" Book

4) My "c" Book...

23) My "v" Book

24) My "w" Book

25) My "x,y,z" Book

I accept paypal and money orders ONLY.....NO CHECKS. Payment is Expected within 7 days.....Not when your uncle Joe's will is probated.....And please calculate that 7 days in human years...not dog years!

Due to the dishonesty and greed of phony ebay buyers, I can no longer ship to an unconfirmed address....this is for your protection as well as mine. Don't panic, but I ship UPS ground .... and USPS (More about USPS below). UPS includes Insurance and Tracking. My Daddy doesn't own UPS (Too Bad) so I have no control over the rates...However, I can give you a break since UPS charges LESS to ship to a BUSINESS or SCHOOL address. (Sorry, in U.S. only)

UPS does NOT CONSIDER IT A BUSINESS if it is CONDUCTED FROM YOUR HOME....What do they know? However, they will know if it is not a true business....and access an annoying $5.00 penalty which I would hate to pass on to you!

My psychic abilities don't work well out of state. I will get a massive brain implosion trying to connect with you to get your name and address, so if you want the business rate, please EMAIL ME with your zip and I will calculate shipping costs for you.

As previously mentioned I also ship USPS. (Nothing too heavy) However, I can only drag these weary old bones there once a week on a if you don't mind waiting a few days, I will be happy to accomodate you.

If you would like me to ship to you via USPS the first Friday after the auction ends, I MUST RECEIVE PAYMENT BY THURSDAY EVENING, Otherwise it will be the Friday of the following week.

I have tried running after the mail truck, following to it's destination to make sure that your package doesn't get lost or damaged. But quite frankly all that exercise is wearing me out. So, if you want protection please take insurance so I can stay home and get some rest.......

Please be aware that if you ship USPS without insurance I cannot be held responsible for loss or damage by the Post Office (No relatives there either).


You are being sent overseas on a top secret mission and won't be around to respond.....

The President called you to the White House for a consultation on the economy and foreign affairs......

Your computer is located just too far away to check emails more than once a month.

You just have fun pressing all those cute little buttons on your keyboard......

You love to window shop, but don't want to spend your money....

You just won the lottery, but you are only going to use the money to "Save the World"

I am sure there are other ways you can have your RIDING A CAMEL.... WRESTLING A GATOR..... or.... DODGING CARS ON THE INTERSTATE!

* *FINAL NOTE* * As hard as I try to achieve perfection, I have not reached that lofty state and occasionally do screw-up. If this happens please email me BEFORE leaving feedback so I can GROVEL, BEG YOUR FORGIVENESS, WHINE, CRY and offer to be your SLAVE FOR LIFE.....Possibly a refund as well, although shipping either way is not refundable.

Thanks for Looking. Good Luck, Laugh, it's good for you....and Remember "HE WHO LAUGHS LAST, THINKS SLOWEST"

Sunday, November 4, 2007

On Reading

My dentist once told me that I was his only patient who never had to read their magazines. I brought my own books. I was always a voracious reader. I even slip a small volume or a Reader's Digest into a purse. At the rare times that I forget, I will read anything: menus, condiment ingredients (read: catsup bottles), brochures or posted company memos.

I got a set of books from Grollier in the hope of teaching my little kids to read. I liked the illustrations and was encouraged by the Parent's Guide. We read night after night. Then once when my eldest child was three, she started reading along. I thought it was a fluke. I got another book and she did the same thing. She was reading on her own!

When Gabriel was born, I took it upon myself to teach him to read. Call it serendipity but I got a copy of the same set of books at a local ukay. He is now reading proficiently at age three! I wouldn't know at what level he's reading, I'm just happy to get him going.

I'm sure there's tons of literature out there extolling the virtue of reading. As far as I'm concerned, teaching kids to read is a step to giving them their independence. Next: fostering their passion for books. Unlike music, television and film, each book teaches us at least one thing. Alexander Pope writes, "A little learning is a dangerous thing; drink deep, or taste not the Pierian spring: there shallow draughts intoxicate the brain, and drinking largely sobers us again." This quote is mostly overused and misunderstood. Read an infamous example of this at Carlos Celdran's blog to understand this.

A few years ago when I turned 4-0, I started getting farsighted. It was disorienting. Only when everyone insisted I get my eyes checked did I find out what was wrong. It was called getting older. I started reading again until even glasses couldn't help. I started blogging. I could see only the letters and glare of the monitor. Turns out, I'm now twice as farsighted. I won't give up the reading habit but nowadays I do it mostly online.

This is one of the more touching articles from the Digest. It's on a father that had never learned to read. Strange that I never forgot the title of the article and easily found it online. Read "My Father's Hands."

Thursday, November 1, 2007

On The Sexy Filipina

My eldest daughter says that after you've read a year's worth of Cosmopolitan, it begins another cycle. Only this time it's a variation on the same themes. She knows these things, we get all the magazines, I trust her. But does it mean that everything we need to know about being fun, fearless and sexy can fit into a mere 12 issues!?

I beg to differ. There are sexy Filipinas everywhere, undefined by convention. Here are my Top Ten picks, none of the Cosmo mold:

  • The sexy Filipina is our previous "labandera" who survived three husbands and has no teeth, even false ones.

  • The sexy Filipina is our current "labandera" who moved to the next barangay and got herself a new husband(!), or was it the other way around? (I should do laundry).

  • The sexy Filipina is the ubiquitous "Lola" who dresses up like Madonna did in the 80's. Like a virgin!

  • The sexy Filipina is the overly made-up matron reeking of perfume, dancing the night away with a much younger man.

  • The sexy Filipina is my 40-year old sister, who insists on wearing micro-mini skirts but doesn't know how to sit.

  • The sexy Filipina is a young girl who wears her heart on her sleeve and absolutely kills me with her public displays of affection.

  • The sexy Filipina is the subservient Shoemart salesgirl with her ill-fitting mini-dress, yellow stockings and open-toed shoes. How sexy is the uniform!

  • The sexy Filipina is our "isaw suki", who weighs 300 lbs. and who makes her husband scream in ecstasy. (Their neighbors are gossips).

  • The sexy Filipina is my friend Grace, who told me to spit into a man's first drink in the morning, to bury his used underwear in the the foundations of our house, how to look at men and much, much more. Local voodoo to keep men from straying. I didn't listen!

  • The sexy Filipina is ME, who at age 40 dared to wear my first bikini;)

I dare my daughters to outdo this list and be creative. It will help them define the word "sexy." And maybe they won't need to read so much to find answers. As to the word "Filipina," it's best taught by example.

BLOGGER'S NOTE. I'm rising to the challenge: "Write at least one entry with the word “Filipina” somewhere in the title of your entry and discuss anything about the Filipina — whether it is about you or some outstanding Filipina Woman you know. Use words like “Filipina, sexy Filipina, Filipina woman, sexy Filipina woman, Filipina Mom or Smart and Sexy Filipina” in our blog entries." For more on the The Filipina Images, click on ANY of the words "FILIPINA" in this post.