Monday, August 31, 2009

Wide Tube 2.0: UP

As a young boy, Carl Fredricksen had a dream, to follow the foot steps of his idol Charles Muntz as a great explorer. He shared this dream with a girl named Ellie whom she met in a dilapitated house. It then started a friendship that blossomed into marriage. Even though they have found out having a child is not possible for them they live contentedly in their house where they first met.

They did not forget their dream to go to Paradise Falls in South America. Ellie become a zookeeper and Carl become a toy balloon vendor. They save every money they could so that they can fulfill of going to their dream place. But as time passes by, their savings had been used for other financial obligations that has to be taken care of.

As they grow older, the plan has not been executed but not forgotten. When the time Carl was able to buy the tickets, Ellie succumbs to an illness due to old age that resulted to her death. This event left him devastated causing him to be grouchy. This time his house is already surrounded by construction of tall buildings because the city is already expanding.

At one point, he had a confrontation with a worker who accidentally destroyed his mailbox. He then hit the worker causing a commotion taken by the developers as an opportunity to take him out of the way to expand their construction. Carl was then ordered by court to reside in a retirement home.

Then came the day he is supposed to be taken to the retirement facility. Carl made his own plan of lifting his house with 10,000 helium filled baloons. Unknowingly, he had taken with him Russel, a Wilderness Explorer, whom he sent to a snipe hunt day before. This is where their adventure starts when they encountered thunderstorms that took them off-course.

Russel, with the help of his GPS device, was able to to navigate the house to their destination. It was just at the opposite side of the plateau where they have been thrown of the house, and had to use their weight to keep them on the ground and walk the rest of the destination before the helium's effect on keep the house stay floating. During their journey, they encountered a colorful bird whom Russel named Kevin. They also met Dug, a talking dog because of a collar, who befriended Carl immediately.

During the course, they met Charles Muntz, who is willing to kill to capture Kevin. He even went far of burning Carl's house during their escape from him. Carl decided to proceed in his original plan of bringing the house making Russel angry about it.

Upon reaching their goal, Carl found out that Ellie wanted her to have his own adventure after her death. This made Carl decide to rescue Kevin from Charles but Russel already left earlier. Together with Dug, they chased Charles' airship "Spirit of Adventure".

They eventually rescued Kevin at the expense of the house floting down at the same time Charles plunging to his own death. They were able to take over the airship and go home for Russel's badge awarding ceremony.

The movie is not just about some grouchy old man who lost someone he love and decided to commit suicide after making his house float. It is about the journey, adventure, friendship, love and family. It shows how an old man like Carl Fredricksen, even grouchy, can be a friend to boy named Russel, who longs for a father figure. The movie is not just for children but also for adults. It is recommended to watch the movie with your grandparents.

What touched me most is when Russel asked something to Carl then asked again to "cross his heart". This struck Carl because it is a line usually used by Ellie to him. Sometimes we usually find interesting traits of a friend or a love one with another person.

It also shows that your life does not end when somebody close leaves you. Not just death but if someone close decides to leave for better opportunity or a best friend who decided to face a new stage in life. It is really hard to face some reality. You just have to face it like what Carl did, since Russel misses a father figure, he became like that and made Russel a son he never had. Together with Dug they have more stories amd adventures to tell

I wish I find my own Dug but house space forbids. For now I will settle with 2 future garfields. Feel free to download the wallpaper from the movie, click to enlarge and right click and select "Set as Background" from the options.

Monday, August 24, 2009

The Saturday that was wet but not wild

It was the last shift for the week and I was looking forward to go home and have a nice weekend. Need plenty of rest since I catch a cold last Thursday due to heavy rains when I was going to the office.

I can hear the rain splashing in the windows of the 23rd floor where our department is located. It will be a nice sleep I said to myself, this rain will keep my room at a cold nice place to sleep. An hour before my shift ends, I received a YM message from my brother not to go home early after my shift because floodwater already entered our garage and the lower part of the apartment. He already informed me that the main road (R. Magsaysay) is unpassable to vehicles.

It was around 9am (4 hours after my shift) that I decided to go home. I am a little bit tired, some of my team mates are already gone home. Since I see the sun beautifully shining, I thought the flood would have receded by now since the rain already stopped almost 6 hours ago.

Inside the LRT, I was stilll thinking if it was a good decision to go home. Upon leaving at V. Mapa station, I can see a traffic build up from Santol. That's when I realized I made a wrong move. The heavy traffic of vehicles not moving is up to Magsaysay bridge and afterwards I see what made the traffic stop. Ramon Magsaysay Blvd. was covered with leg high flood water. Only the brave vehicles dare to continue their quest to cross the road now also known as Magsaysay River.

I was thinking that the side streets will be spared from the flood but I was wrong. No one was spared from the heavy downpour of rain earlier that dawn. Here are some pictures taken from my phone.

With this situation I have seen, I will not be able to get home dry. I am not sure if the way home is dry, so I decided to head back 1 station and decided to stay at the red building famous for couples who want to spend time alone. I am not really used to go inside these places... ALONE. Bwahahaha! I wish! Maybe next time when I get stuck in a traffic or heavy rains I will make sure I have someone to accompany me there when the need to stay there arises.

I will leave you with this video I have taken from Pureza LRT station.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Scams 101: New SMS scam uncovered

Recently, my mom received a text message from a certain person who identified herself as Emma. She's telling my mother that they have met the night before in the province. She added that she was the one selling beauty products together with another person whom she named. My mother knows the other person by acquaintance. My mom got a little worried because she was already in Manila the night the person claimed they met.

Since the person whom identified herself as Emma told that she was currently at our place in the province, my mother called my father and asked if there are any guest in the house as of the moment. He said there's no one looking for her during that time. Relieved, she replied to her mysterious textmate and told her that she might have sent the message to a wrong number given by a common acquaintance. Emma never texted back again. Turns out it might be a wrong message sent.

What happened to my mom reminds me of a similar incident last Saturday, August 15. We were on our way out of the office with my team mates when I received a text message. Here's the exact message I got and I will include the number so that you can identify this scammer:

"Muzta n kau dyan sa pinas, miz n miz ko n kyo, e2 nga pla bgo k roaming, nga pla my pa2dla me dyan package mga gmit e2, ingat nlng kau palagi, miz u ol, god bles, nga pala paload muna ng 300 pnta2wg lang aq ng agency q ngkaproblma daw un pastfort q.importnti lng, d2 s # n2. 300 tnx,"


At first I thought it was a relative that is currently residing abroad just saying hi and giving her new roaming number. And it was really nice of them to send a package (I hope it's a gaming console they haven't used). The most touching part is they miss all the relatives in the Philippines. But wait, here's the catchy part, they need a prepaid card worth 300 PHP so that they can call the agency because they have some issues with their passport.

Well what do you know? If my common (spider) sense did not trigger immediately, I would have already sent this number a 300 peso electronic load. I will be able to do so with my own load wallet.

But as you can see, not all people can make sense after receiving a text message like this. One of the reaction they will make is since their "relative" will be sending some package to them, 300 pesos is just a small price compared to the appliances and imported goods that they will "receive" later.

Some of you would not believe that some people fall for this lame act. But some people fall for this because this kind of text messages will not propagate if they understand what it really meant.

So here are some tips I can share to avoid losing 300 bucks to this losers:

  1. Do not reply to messages from unregistered number. If they really need to talk to you, they will send another message.
  2. If you cannot avoid yourself from replying, ask the sender to identify themselves. The following replies can be used:
  3. If they identify themselves with a name you do not know or heard of, ask more information about them. If they identify themselves as a common friend of the classmate, relative of the colleague from a previous work place, with description which is higher than the third degree of your connection in your Friendster or Facebook profile, this is either a stalker or a scammer.
  4. If you are not satisfied with the information they are giving and instead luring you to give details about you, this is the time you should stop communicating with them.
  5. As a follow-up to tip number 4, never identify yourself to them. This will give them an opportunity to lure you into giving up more information that they might be able to use to extort from you.
  6. Kindly inform other people you know who is gullible withis type of messages. This way they will identify this "modus operandi" and will be aware of it. This lessens the chance of the culprit to fool other people.
  7. You can also check other people if they know the number being used. There's a possibility that someone you know or somebody might know who is doing this act to you.

If you have other tips you can share you can add it on the comments section. These small things will be able to thwart the evil deeds of small time thief.

By the way I did reply to that text message I received last Saturday. I thanked for the package they will send and gave her the load:

"Salamat sa ipapadala mong package! Okay naman kami dito sa Pilipinas! Nakakaraos kahit papaano. Eto na nga pala yung PIN ng load na hinihingi mo - ##############. Pakiscratch na lang ng coin para magamit mo. LOL!


Sunday, August 16, 2009

And it all begins now

Finally, after a long time, I have decided to start my own blog.

So what made me decided to start this thing in my life? Well, recently, my brother got a notebook computer for posting something good about a famous bakeshop (they also got a cake and we have not yet eaten it till today). I have also heard my officemate that you can earn extra cash from the ads and other things like product reviews (not yet planning on monetizing this blog at this early stage). Lastly, I like to practice my writing skills just like the old college days when I used to be a staff writer, later features editor, in our school publication.

Hopefully, I will be able to sustain this blog since I also have a weakness for enjoying a hobby for a short period of time and leaving it afterwards.

All I can only say right now is good luck to me and welcome to my world!