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Featured posts by JayDJ and other guest bloggers.

JayDJ is ME

Discover more about JayDJ by browsing the archive which goes way back to 2006.

28 August 2008

Renewed Interest In Chess

When I was a kid, I didn't have any regular sport. I took Tae-Kwon-Do lessons for 2 years, but I don't consider it something I did regularly even after. I took swimming lessons but that was more to learn how to swim and not to undergo rigorous training. Contrary to the popular belief that every boy loves and plays basketball, I never did enjoy it. The few times I played with my high school friends was because I enjoyed their company more than the game.

So, it may be safe to assume that I didn't have any regular sport then.

I can't remember when I learned chess and who taught me but I do know that it wasn't my parents who taught me because none of them know how to play chess. And since I was an only child then, I had no one to play chess with. There weren't any computer-based chess games back then. It was kinda boring to play by myself too. So I guess my interest in the game just died a natural death.

Lately though, with the help of Miguel, I've renewed my interest though in chess. Miguel is part of their school's chess club. The enthusiasm he has for chess is outstanding and enough for me to regain interest in the game, not to mention having a permanent chess opponent.

It also made me realize that I have yet much to learn in terms of moves, techniques and foresight in the game. That's why whenever I get the chance, I play now for experience. It also helps that I installed a java-based chess game on my mobile phone and the PDA that Aileen lent me also has one. I make it a point to play at least 2 games in a day to enhance my skills and learn more.

And I just found out that Chess today is a recognized sport of the International Olympic Committee. So I guess I have a new sport, Chess !

Thanks Miguel !

27 August 2008

UP Centennial on Bill

I only noticed this yesterday. I had a 100 peso bill with me and it looked kinda different.
It had an extra seal. Upon closer inspection, I found out that it was the UP Oblation statue with the text "University of the Philippines Centennial" in commemoration of UP founded in 1908.

26 August 2008

Album Review: William Hung "Inspiration"

You must be wondering why
1. I'm reviewing this 2004 album
2. Why I even have a copy

Well I saw it on sale for P25. (50 cents in USD) which is a 2-disc set including a 40 minute video with interviews, studio footage and surprises (as the label says). If you split the price into the 2 CDs, it's like 25 cents per CD. That's cheap ! So I figured what the hell. I'll take it.

Ok... from hereon then, I may be harsh, but that's how I see it.

I remember watching William Hung audition on Season 3 of American Idol and the judges' laughter which later transformed into respect for his positive outlook was a unique spectacle in American Idol history then.

Track 1, entitled "Words of Gratitude" is immediately a preface of William thanking the people for buying his CD. I took it more of a "no return, no refund" disclaimer and visualizing an evil image of William saying "I got your money sucker."

Track 2 moves to the Ricky Martin song, "She Bangs" as it was his signature song in the auditions.

Being a musical arranger, I cringe at the several instances of lack of timing. The off-key notes make my eyes squint in disbelief. I could imagine the studio engineer dropping all his mastery skills and just humbly accept that the songs were meant to be recorded this way. No attempt was made to digitally alter William's voice. It was recorded like that on purpose. I guess they want to capture William as he is and not as some celebrity-created persona which would be a twisted reality of William's actual talent.

I can't help but be disturbed by the mispronounciations of certain words (like pronouncing "singer" as "sing ger") but that's just me.

I Believe I Can Fly - William Hung

William chose some pretty difficult high-pitched songs. I was just looking at the song list and after seeing songs like "I Believe I Can Fly" and "Hotel California", I just had to exclaim to myself "Goodluck man". And I was right. A pitchy rendition of "I Believe I Can Fly" is an understatement. His pitch was all over the place. The last part had me hysterical as William tried to sustain some long notes without breathing and in the end obviously lost breath.

You know those times when you know you can't sing a high pitch yet attempt to do so in hopes of reaching it ? Well, William does that several times... and fails.

William kinda redeems himself in the upbeat tracks "YMCA" and "Shake Your Bon-bon". The backup singers render pretty decent vocals. As for William, well, the upbeat tempo and popularity of the 2 songs overshadows the remaining vocals owned by Hung.

Okey so right about now, you think I'm a bad guy for thrashing William Hung's album.
William's album did contain some redeeming factor and in fact much respect for the guy.

When you watch the 40 minute documentary, you'll find out the goodness in William, spreading a positive outlook no matter how many may laugh or ridicule him. For him, he enjoys singing and performing. So why would someone tell him otherwise ? A lot of interviews from his schoolmates at Berkley paint a better picture of William giving nothing but praises to the Chinese-American student.

In the end, you'll gain respect for this happy singer.

And then when you listen to the CD again, you'll laugh at it in a more positive note being less critical at the imperfections. You just have to accept the fact that this album doesn't intend to compete with any other great singers. It's just there to showcase William Hung and who he is. Have a sense of humor and you'll appreciate the album giving you a good laugh.

That's William Hung for you... an inspiration.

22 August 2008

Annabelle Rama Stole My Parking Slot

Well, it was actually her driver who beat me to a parking slot by seconds.

I had a hard time finding a parking slot along Tomas Morato and no matter how many valet parking services there are along that road, it's not an option for me (I simply can't take it upon myself to entrust my car with a valet).

And so I waited near the sidewalk with hazard flashing lights. A huge black van was also waiting about two cars away from my area.

Then, a car backed up from the parking area. Unfortunately, it backed up towards my side which caused the van to get in the parking slot before I could.

I waited 20 minutes before I could get a parking slot. When I finally parked, I saw Annabelle Rama coming out of the restaurant and walking towards my way. She took a second look at me with her usual "mataray" look and I didn't mind cause I was late. Before entering the restaurant, I looked back and saw her board the van.

Kontrabida talaga
yung driver.

14 August 2008

Check Your Tires Regularly

This is a tip from personal experience I'd like to share.

Aside from having your tires regularly checked, it's also a nice habit to personally inspect your tires for any irregularities.

A perfectly inflated tire (with your preferred psi) doesn't necessarily translate to a healthy and perfect tire. Two weeks ago, I was using the car for an entire week before I noticed a weird clicking noise which sped up when the car accelerates. When I checked it out, there was a nail which was bent perpendicularly in such a way that half of it was pierced in the tire and the other half was bent away from the car which caused the clicking.

The car's tire pressure didn't decrease despite the piercing. That's because the nail fit perfectly inside the tire that it also prevented any air from coming out. Good thing it caused noise which led me to closely inspect the tire.

When I had the tire vulcanized, the mechanic also told me he found some small sharp rocks and a couple of nails also pierced in the tire. Some didn't penetrate the tire and were just on the top rim. I had all tires checked since I was there. The other pebbles didn't pose any harm to the tire, but it's best to regularly check them and have a healthy tire than a tire carrying unwanted foreign objects.

Happy motoring !

No-Thrill Puzzles

I like puzzles, especially the find-a-word types. Being trained in college to think in an organized fashion (blame it on computer logic), I always search for words from left to right, then top to bottom. Then, I go back and find any missing words left.

Last week, Aileen and I had the opportunity to visit Kopiroti at Tomas Morato branch. Their branch was currently being renovated then so it was kinda cramped. However, the free postcards they offered near the door compensated for the slight inconvenience. Plus, I'd go through any inconvenience anytime for a Kopiroti Kopibun.

So after we ordered our food and found a table, we checked out the postcard stand which all Kopiroti branches have.

I was delighted to find a Kopiroti postcard which had a find-the-word puzzle at the back. I took three so I could bring home the other two and have my mom and dad try the puzzle. However, I was shocked when all three of them were already answered. They all had pen marks of crossed words and the actual words highlighted (or more of a strikethrough in computer terms). I was surprised that someone would have the audacity to put it back after answering it. It's not like a newspaper in a store that's for public use. Everybody who reads it can equally benefit from reading. A puzzle though, whether it be a crossword puzzle, a find-a-word, spot the difference or maze has zero value to others when answered (not to mention that all the answers are there and nothing else to do).

At least those paper placemats by some restaurants like Shakeys, McDonalds or Jollibee always serve a fresh, unanswered activity page in the form of your placemat.

11 August 2008

Computer Ethical Hacking Concepts Applied Into Song

I recently attended Hackacon 2008, a series of seminars about Certified Ethical Hacking and similar topics such as Computer Forensics, Data Security and Penetration Testing.

I have been fascinated with hacking since my 1st experience with it 10 years ago when I watched our systems administrator demonstrate how a server can be vulnerable by breaking in to a public server. I've also been fascinated with movies involving hacking or in-depth computer use such as Sneakers (Robert Redford), The Net (Sandra Bullock), Swordfish (John Travolta) and Pirates of Silicon Valley.

During the two day seminar, I've been taking down notes and reviewing some of them has made me realize that some computer concepts aren't really different from real life teachings.

Here are a couple of quotes mentioned by the guest speakers which I noted down. Some may be cheezy but you'll get the gist.

"Nothing is hack-proof. It's only easy or hard to hack."

- similar to simple words of encouragement. Nothing is impossible. It's just a matter of how easy or difficult it may be but your goal can be attained. As the song goes ...

"Ain't no mountain high enough
Ain't no valley low enough
Ain't no river wide enough
To keep me from getting to you"

"There is no impenetrable barrier."

- similar to the quote above. Also from the classic song "The Impossible Dream"...

"This is my quest
To follow that star
No matter how hopeless
No matter how far
To reach the unreachable star"

And lastly, our very knowledgable instructor on Computer Forensics, gave us this cheezy but important insight on crime investigation.

"Wag kang magassume. Di ka naman taga Assumption."

It was a funny remark but when you think about it, it is one important thing that also applies to life.
Don't be biased. Don't be prejudice. Don't judge a book by it's cover. Be open to reasoning. Listen and think before you speak.

As the anthemic song of FrancisM's "Mga Kababayan Ko" raps it out...

"Wag takasan ang pag kukulang
Kasalanan ay panagutan
Mag malinis ay iwasan
Nakakainis marumi naman
Ang magkaaway ipagbati
Gumitna ka ang wag kumampi"
Kung may itim or may puti
Mayron naman kayumangi
Isipin mo na kaya mong
Abutin ang yung minimithi"

So it seems I didn't only get insight on Computer Ethcial Hacking but also with words of wisdom.

06 August 2008

Barangays Advertising Websites

I was cruising along Kamias road earlier today when I saw this ad. At first, I thought it was an additional decorative structure to make the barangay welcome sign more colorful. The sign also read "Enter a Perfect World". So it made sense that it was a catch phrase of the barangay to let people visit their area.

Upon closer inspection, I found out that it was an ad for http://perfectworld.ph , an online game. Ads like these aren't uncommon nowadays. What surprised me was that it was situated exactly beneath the standard barangay welcome sign.

With that in mind, I guess the next step they could've done is have an internet cafe nearby.

Philippine All Stars Win the 2008 World Hiphop Championships

With more than 1,000 dancers from 33 countries, the Philippine All Stars won the 2008 World Hip-Hop Championship in Las Vegas, Nevada last August 3, 2008.

Their matrix theme is truly a work of art !

Full props to the Philippine All Stars! PINOY REPREZENT !

05 August 2008

Churck Norris the Invincible

I remember watching a couple of Chuck Norris movies when I was a kid... not by choice, but by majority rule, being my parents.

Several years forward and I've been a fan of Conan O' Brien for his show "Late Night with Conan O' Brien" which kept me awake during sleepless and busy nights. If you're familiar with the show, he always makes it a point to include a Chuck Norris joke somewhere in his show.

Then, he came up with showing Chuck Norris snippets from the defunct television series Walker Texas Ranger where Chuck Norris seems to have hilarious dialogues and scenes even if it was not intended.

Showing several clips of Chuck Norris made me a fan for his one-liners, dialogues, stunts and antics.

Last night, I just discovered this website:
http://www.chucknorrisfacts.com which has some out-of-this-world invented but hilarious facts made up for Chuck Norris' character. Some are cheezily corny, some are outrageously hilarious.... but it wouldn't fit Chuck Norris if it weren't presented in that manner.

Here are a few:
  1. If you have five dollars and Chuck Norris has five dollars, Chuck Norris has more money than you.There is no 'ctrl' button on Chuck Norris's computer. Chuck Norris is always in control.
  2. Apple pays Chuck Norris 99 cents every time he listens to a song.
  3. Chuck Norris can sneeze with his eyes open.
  4. Chuck Norris can eat just one Lay's potato chip.
  5. Chuck Norris is suing Myspace for taking the name of what he calls everything around you.
  6. Chuck Norris destroyed the periodic table, because he only recognizes the element of surprise.
  7. Chuck Norris can kill two stones with one bird.

I'm still navigating the site, but I'd like to share it with you Chuckaholics or Norrisians (whatever the term may be).

04 August 2008

Upcoming Concerts for August 2008

Here are some upcoming concerts for International Artists around Manila:

Toney Hadley (X Spandau Ballet) – August 9, 2008 @ Araneta Coliseum
The Earth Wind and Fire feat. The Al Mckay All Stars – August 22, 2008 @ Aliw Theatre
Avril Lavigne – The Best Damn Tour – September 3, 2008 @ Araneta Coliseum
Al Jarreau & George Benson – September 8, 2008 @ Araneta Coliseum
Petula Clark – You and I – September 13, 2008 @ Araneta Coliseum
Tony Orlando – Yellow Ribbon Tour – September 19, 2008 @ Araneta Coliseum

Public Service Announcement: Pagpag

I received this link in the e-mail and I find it very disturbing. It's a feature about "pagpag" which is more popularly known as left-over food combined, reprocessed and re-served for the public to consume.

This is a 100% sickness risk. No amount of reasoning, convincing or justification will change that. I'm posting this for public awareness. Be careful with food from unknown sources. No one can afford to get sick these days.
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