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Monthly Archives: May 2015

Superstition or coincidence?

“The first rule of any technology used in a business is that automation applied to an efficient operation will magnify the efficiency. The second is that automation applied to an inefficient operation will magnify the inefficiency.” Bill Gates

By Alex P. Vidal

LOS ANGELES, California — I talked to businessman Adriano “Rey” Golingan, Manny Pacquiao’s spiritual adviser two nights before the Fight of the Century on May 2 at the MGM Grand, while we were at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas.
Gen. Santos City-based Golingan, a friend of former San Joaquin Iloilo mayor Daisy Sibya, said he asked the 36-year-old eight-time world titlist if there was still a chance for them to pray the rosary a night before the bout against Mayweather Jr. like what they have been doing in the past.
“Pacquiao answered me that when he prays he goes directly to the Lord now,” Golingan narrated.
“So there’s no chance anymore for us to be praying again for the intercession of Mama Mary?” he allegedly told the people’s champion.
Pacquiao did not answer him, he said.
On several occasions in the past, I saw Golingan lead the praying of the rosary at least two nights before Pacquiao’s battles against Juan Manuel Marquez (second and third matches), Oscar De La Hoya, David Diaz, Joshua Clottey and Shane Mosley, which he had all won.
In 2010 when Pacquiao incurred back-to-back losses to Timothy Bradley and Marquez (in their fourth meeting), Golingan said Pacquiao did not anymore pray the rosary.
They did not pray the rosary before the Mayweather Jr. fight, but Pacquiao read the Bible several times together with his pastor friends.
I’m not insinuating something.
The story was narrated to me personally by Golingan himself two nights before Mayweather Jr. scored a lackluster 12-round unanimous decision against Pacquiao.
Was it a superstition or a mere coincidence?

****

IF the system can be adopted in the Philippines, we can save a lot of taxpayers’ money and finance social and health programs and activities for the poor.
Automation and paperless transactions.
The United States government has eliminated paperworks in most of their agencies, a move that enabled them to save money and reduce their expenses.
We learned this when we arrived on April 27 and when we recently went to the Department of Motor Vehicles to renew our driver’s license.
Like other foreign visitors who arrive via air or sea, there was no longer need for us to complete paper Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Form I-94 Arrival/Departure Record or Form I-94W Nonimmigrant Visa Waiver Arrival/Departure Record.
Our application or renewal of driver’s license will not be accommodated if we don’t bring the downloaded and printed copy of our I-94 Admission Number along with all of our birth date and legal presence documents.

PASSPORT

Several years ago, we only presented our passport and the forms we filled up in the DMW.
Not anymore today. No copy of I-94 Admission Number, no identification card or driver’s license.
If we need to prove ourr legal-visitor status—to employers, schools/universities or government agencies—we can access our CBP arrival/departure record information online.
CBP now gathers travelers’ arrival/departure information automatically from their electronic travel records.
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection explains that because advance information is only transmitted for air and sea travelers, CBP will still issue a paper form I-94 at land border ports of entry.
Meaning that if travelers need the information from their Form I-94 admission record to verify immigration status or employment authorization, the record number and other admission information they are encouraged to get their I-94 Number.

STAMPS

Upon arrival, a CBP officer stamps the travel document of each arriving non-immigrant traveler with the admission date, the class of admission, and the date that the traveler is admitted until.
If a traveler would like a paper Form I-94, one can be requested during the inspection process.
All requests will be accommodated in a secondary setting.
Upon exiting the U.S., travelers previously issued a paper Form I-94 should surrender it to the commercial carrier or to CBP upon departure.
Otherwise, CBP will record the departure electronically via manifest information provided by the carrier or by CBP.
The automation has streamlined the entry process for travelers, facilitated security and reduced federal costs. CBP estimates that the automated process will save the agency $15.5 million a year.

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Posted by on May 7, 2015 in BOXING

 

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Iloilo to California: water crisis

By Alex P. Vidal

LOS ANGELES, California — HAS the water crisis become a global phenomenon?
Barely two weeks since the Iloilo City Council in the Philippines declared the city under a “state of imminent water crisis” due to projected prolonged drought, the State Water Resources Control Board (SWCB) has approved an emergency 25 percent cut in the cities’ water use.
The Council declaration in Iloilo City came as a response to the Iloilo City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (ICDRRMC), chaired by Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog, which made a resolution to allocate P3 million for possible water rationing.
It emphasized the need for funds “in preparation for long drought as brought by the prolonged dry spell has identified possible alternative water distribution mechanisms and alternative water sources.”
This will enable metro villages to prepare their calamity funds now that many villages have reported that their wells have dried up, according to Mabilog.

PORTRAIT

California data released May 5 painted a stark portrait of the uphill struggle Californians face in achieving a mandated 25 percent reduction in urban water use, with one official joking grimly that dealing with severe drought was similar to grappling with the five stages of grief.
Reports said cumulative water savings since last summer totaled only 8.6%, according to the State Water Resources Control Board, far short of the historic reduction outlined in an April 1 executive order by Gov. Jerry Brown.
ICDRRMC said at the same time, most of the state’s water suppliers issued 20 or fewer notices of water waste in March even though they have received thousands of complaints.
“It’s a collective issue we all need to rise to. I keep thinking that we are in some stages of Elisabeth Kubler-Ross,”Felicia Marcus, the water board chairwoman, told the Los Angeles Times, referring to the psychiatrist who wrote “On Death and Dying.”
“It’s a collective issue we all need to rise to. I keep thinking that we are in some stages of Elisabeth Kubler-Ross,” said Felicia Marcus, the water board chairwoman, referring to the psychiatrist who wrote “On Death and Dying.”

DISCLOSURES

The paper reported that the disclosures came as board members May 5 night unanimously approved new conservation regulations set to take effect in time for summer, when outdoor water use traditionally accounts for 50 percent to 80 percent of residential consumption.
It quoted water board staff scientist Max Gomberg as saying that California residents and businesses used only 3.6% less water in March than they did during the same month in 2013, the baseline year for savings calculations.“We need to do more,” Gomberg told the LA Times. “Conserving now and over the summer is imperative.”
Despite the meager savings, some outside experts said it was still possible for the state to achieve the governor’s goal in the coming months.
Brown is seeking hefty fines for water wasters, and some local water agencies have been crafting tougher conservation plans in recent weeks.
In the Philippines, the P3 million fund can be mobilized once Iloilo City is declared under crisis, said Councilor Joshua Alim who blamed the Metro Iloilo Water Districs (MIWD)’s inability to supply sufficient water because of narrow pipes.
The fund can be used to buy water containers for water distribution in affected barangays and for fuel expenses in transporting the water.

***
EVEN in California, bettors who lost in the Fight of the Century continued to bemoan the lackluster performances of both Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr on May 2 in Las Vegas.
Many Hispanics claimed they were shocked when Pacquiao, who is now facing sanctions from the Nevada State Athletic Commission for his failure to disclose a shoulder injury before the bout at the MGM Grand Arena, peformed below expectations.
“What happened?” Mario Sosa, a customer in a T-Mobile store in the City of Lake Forrest, asked this writer. “I haven’t tasted a free dinner from my wife, who offered to give me one if Pacquiao would win.”
“I expected too much from Pacquiao because videos released on TV before the fight showed he was prepared and very strong. But during the fight, he hardly threw punches and it was the defensive fighter (Mayweather Jr.) who was the one initiating the fight.”
Former San Miguel, Iloilo councilor Reynaldo “King” Uy said he and his fellow bettors in the Filipino community lost heavily believing that Pacquiao would beat Mayweather Jr. “even only on points.”
“Some of our kababayans lost their salary equivalent to one month,” he revealed. “Others lost $5,000. Many of them are still shocked.”
Las Vegas Filipino community leader Raul Sabido, who collected all the bets from his California friends for Pacquiao, said he is now convinced that Mayweather is the better boxer pound-for-pound.
“Pacquiao should stop giving excuses. Let’s move forward,” said Sabido, president of the Central Philippine University Alumni Association Las Vegas Chapter.

 
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Posted by on May 7, 2015 in BOXING

 

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Rosauro and Dionisia

By Alex P. Vidal

LOS ANGELES, California — At the Delano (formerly The Hotel, adjacent to the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas) they met accidentally before May 2.
Rosauro was on his way down from the 67th floor with a lone male companion, while Dionisia was in the company of four boisterous females and a young-looking effeminate male holding plastic bags full of what looked like shopping and souvenir items.
They pretended they didn’t notice each other while their respective companions waved “hi” and “hello” using their heads and hands.
Rosauro was lame, inhibited and repressed while Dionisia appeared flashy, rambunctious and always conscious that people were watching as she waddled on the floor of the glitzy hotel.
Fans bowled over the high-strung matriarch of the most famous fisttoser in the universe for photo-ops and signature, while the bedraggled patriarch disappeared in the sea of humanity unmindful of the celebrity status achieved by the woman he jettisoned some 30 years ago when poverty couldn’t bring together a large family to live in one roof.
There’s no more love lost between Rosauro and Dionisia.
They may be “friends” in the eyes of their children, but the spark and glitter of the love they both once shared together were no longer visible.
“Kanya kanya na sila ngayon. They have decided to move on with their respective lives. They are now happy, secured and satisfied materially,” quipped a female relative, who refused to be identified because she was not authorized to say something about the estranged couple while emerging from a noodles restaurant inside the Mandalay Bay.
Rosauro was sometimes accompanied by his two sons in the casino area, while Dionisia had to evade a horde of shrieking fans waiting for a photo-op and a selfie ambush.
They both shed tears when their superstar son was subdued in a titanic duel in a square jungle witnessed by millions of people on a pay-per-view worldwide.

-o0o-

FANS all over the United States continued to criticize the “lousy” welterweight unification fight on May 2 hyped as “Fight of the Century.”
Our colleague from Recorder, Jayson Butynski, lamented: “It’s Monday morning and I’m still being reminded of just how hyped up Saturday night’s welterweight title fight between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao was.
“I walked into the office just before noon and sitting on my desk was Sports Illustrated, complete with its special double cover, one side featuring Mayweather, the other Pacquiao. One final bit of hype for a fight that had taken place about 36 hours earlier.
“Problem was that the most hyped boxing match in recent memory wound up being a dud. The fight went exactly how Floyd Mayweather drew it up and ultimately only cemented his status as the greatest pound-for-pound boxer of this generation.
“That didn’t do much to appease the casual fans, many of whom felt like they wasted money and time watching the fight.”
Chances are that over the past two days we have fallen into one of three camps:
1) We don’t usually watch boxing but ponied up the $100 and came away disappointed by the lack of action.
2) We are boxing fans and ordered the fight hoping for more action than the defensive-fighting Mayweather generally produces but appreciated just how great a boxer Mayweather is.
3) We didn’t order the fight, have heard how lackluster it was and are now calling everyone who did buy the fight a chump.

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

Mayweather shows why boxing is called ‘sweet science’

By Alex P. Vidal

LAS VEGAS, Nevada — Instead of ribbing Floyd Myweather Jr. for “running away like a scared rabbit”, we must, in fact, credit him for giving justice to boxing’s billing as the “Sweet Science.”
Daniel Petrov Bojilov exposed our ignorance when we lambasted the five-man jury for awarding the lightflyweight (48-kg) gold to the tall Bulgarian who reduced Mansueto “Onyok” Velasco Jr. into a homunculi during the 1992 Barcelona Summer Olympics.
Like Mayweather Jr., who jabbed and bicycled his way to a 12-round unanimous decision victory against Manny Pacquiao on May 2 at the MGM Grand Arena, Bojilov used science to the fullest to bamboozle the smaller Velasco.
Some of us are again displaying utter ignorance if not lack of understanding why scientific boxers like Bojilov and Mayweather can be dominant when matched against sluggers or brawlers like Velasco and Pacquiao.
Mayweather Jr.’s mastery of the ring was a mixture of science, skills, intelligence, size and reach.
Scientific fighters usually have long legs and a thin frame like Salvador Sanchez, alexis Arguello, Aaron Pryor, Sugar Ray Leonard, Thomas Hearns, Hector Camacho in the lighter division; and Muhammad Ali, Lennox Lewis, Evander Holyfield in the heavy category.
They throw punches like windmills and their movements synchronize with how their brains work while weaving and boobing.
Sicentific fighters maintain springy legs which they use in order to stay away from danger zones.
Mayweather effectively utilized his footwork and crisp jabs to hold Pacquiao at bay and made the Filipino lefty eat the dust.
Scientific fighters look awkward when they avoid head-on collisions but that’s how they are made of; they just can’t dance in the tune of a brawler who demands a slugfest by enforcing their own program of works in the ring.
Scientific fighters flick a jab, display cunningness and a virtuoso of ability meant to confuse and befuddle a brawler.
Brawler Pacquiao wanted to come in on various occasions but hesitated for fear of being zapped by Mayweather’s laser-laced left hook.
Pacquiao lacked activity. His work rate was dismal and timid.
There was no more fire in his belly and Pacquiao’s eyes were no longer emitting volcanic fireballs.
Pacquiao was simply outshuttled, outgunned and outjabbed by a superior fighter who confirmed the dominance and mastery of scientific boxers with amazing amateur background.
Mayweather was a bronze medalist in the 1996 Atlanta Olympics. He fought and swapped tongs and hammer vis-a-vis the best amateur simonpures in Europe, Asia, Africa before he became a prizefighter.
Pacquiao, “Kid Kulafu” in a brief amateur life that was never tested in the national amateur boxing championships or any AIBA-sanctioned tournament, never fought the best Cuban and Bulgarian amateur World Cup champions en route to turning professional in 1995 via a four-round scrapper.
In a nutshell, there’s a whale of difference between a street-fighting slugger and brawler with no fundamentals like Pacquiao, who topples opponents on sheer guts and power, and a smart aleck, Olympic Games-cultivated, tall and fast titan like Mayweather Jr.
In a truest sense of the word, running or showboating is not an act of cowardice. It’s science. It’s brilliancy personified.

 
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Posted by on May 5, 2015 in BOXING, SPORTS

 

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