Saturday, February 28, 2009


Here I am, dear Lord,
before you at the end of this
long day.

I want to devote to you
these moments because only
though being with you now will I be
able to sleep in your peace and love.
I thank you for all the good and
bad events of this day.

I hope you will continue
to understand my failures and
shortcomings, may unkind thoughts,
my inconsiderate words, my unbecoming
actions, and all that I may have done
today that could have caused harm
to others. Perhaps I was half-
hearted and lazy in doing
my work, too.

For all these, Lord,
I beg your mercy. Please heal
the wounds of sin and selfishness in
my and blot out whatever hinders
me from following you closely.

With the help of your
grace, I pray for the day
when I shall no longer
wound your loving


Friday, February 27, 2009


A person is worth what he chooses to live and die for. Heroes and saints, as well as villains and criminals, are a proof of this statement. If heroes and saints are great, it is because they have chosen to live and die for causes and meanings greater than themselves or things lower than themselves to live and die, like money or power.

Thursday, February 26, 2009



Queen Latifah is one hell of a driver, if she was really driving the motorcycle and cab in the movie, Taxi. She's so fun to watch. She has her ways of making people laugh. She's original. This movie reminds of the so many taxi drivers here in the Eastern Province of Saudi Arabia.

Unlike in the early 80s, taxicabs now in cities like Dammam, Al-Khobar, Jeddah, and Riyadh are plenty. There's no problem flagging down cabs anywhere even during rush hours. There are more taxis than there are passengers to rent them.

The long hours taxi drivers have to put in to eke out a living add to their cup of sorrow. It is invariably 14 to 16 hours daily, with the work day beginning for most drivers at 4:30 a.m. In spite of the tedious work, most of them have more days than riyals to count by the middle of the month.

Gone are the good old days when they used to make up to SR3,000 a month after expenses. Most taxi companies charge the drivers who work for them a flat daily rate of SR120 to SR130, and anything they earn up and above they keep for themselves. Considering the fact that they have to pay for petrol, repairs to the car, their own medical costs and their exit/re-entry visas, there is nothing much left over.

Another problem faced by taxi drivers is the constant abuse they face from passengers. More and more are falling victims of harrasment, which generates an air of mistrust between the driver and the passenger.

Their hardships are many. But they are used to them. What amazes a casual rider is the guys' ability to take hardships in their stride and put on a disarming smile.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


Fraudsters stealing identity are on the rise.

I got an email from PayPal informing me that there were three attempts to access my account, but failed because they were using different passwords.

Internet fraudsters known as "phishers", pose as banks, credit card, phone companies, consulting firms, executors, heirs to huge amount of money, advertisers, etc., to extract personal information of unsuspecting users.

Don't be fooled. There are ways to avoid becoming a victim of phishing. If you receive an email claiming to be from your bank, phone company, or from any company asking for personal information, take the following precautions:
  • Check the email address it comes from. Phishers trying to pose as a company are unlikely to send email from the company's official email address.
  • Check for external links. Phishing emails often require you to click a link to make payment or enter personal details. Check where these links take you. They are likely to be pages on third party websites (not the company's domain) that are made to look like the company's website.
  • Check phone numbers provided. Phishers will include customer support phone numbers to appear legitimate. Check these numbers. If they are in countries the company's not known to have operations, it could be a case of phishing.
Don't fall victim for email phishing scams!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009


When it's all added up, for many of us, our work is our life--at least in the time and attention we devote to it. Is that bad? The answer to that depends on our needs and our attitude. Even though the amount of time we work can reflect a good or bad attitude toward work, the real issue is not the hours we put in but the reasons for our actions and the kind of people we are on the job.

A catch phrase from the movie, The Final Season:

"Work to live and not live to work!"

Monday, February 23, 2009


Strange News From Abroad

A 107-year old Chinese woman who was afraid to marry when she was young has decided to look for her first husband and hopes to find a fellow centenarian so they will have something to talk about. She is worried she is becoming a burden to her aging nieces and nephews since breaking her leg when she was 102 and had to stop doing chores like washing her clothes. "I'm already 107 and I still haven't got married," she said. "What will happen if I don't hurry up and find a husband?"

he was born in Guizhou province, the child of a salt merchant. She grew up watching her uncles and other men scold and beat their wives and often found her aunt crying in the woodshed after an attack. "All the married people around there lived like that. Geting married was too frightening," she said of an era when Chinese women had few rights and low social standing.

Sunday, February 22, 2009


This is a true story of a young man, who was an ex-convict for less than an hour before finding himself back into trouble with the law. The man in his late 20s who was just released from the prison hailed a taxi and asked to be taken back to his family's house in a remote village in the south.

On the way, the young man noticed somebody walking with a cell phone. He asked the cab driver to stop for a few moments, exited the cab, followed his victim for a few meters, snatched the phone, returned to the taxi, and asked the man to drive on. It would have been a clean break had it not been for an unmarked patrol car nearby that witnessed the phone snatching. Less than an hour from being discharged from the prison, the man was back in custody, being held for a trial he's very likely to lose, considering the witnesses to the crime.

Crime will ultimately not benefit a person.
No matter how tempting it may appear, crime doesn't pay

Saturday, February 21, 2009


"The greatest crimes do not arise
from a want of feeling for others but from
an over-sensibility for ourse
lves and an
over-indulgence to
our own desires."

Edmund Burke

Friday, February 20, 2009


Had the visit of a young engaged couple. Later I found myself engaging in a serious discussion about keys to successful married life and how we should value the institution of marriage. In fact, with more couples waiting longer to marry or living together first, many seem to be considering the decision more carefully.

t is sad that a good number of people end in marriage not really because they look at it as a real vocation wherein it is possible to live up to the measure of love Jesus proposed, but more out of desire to possess the person loved, or worse because of convenience or because they have no choice any longer.

es, marriage is genuine vocation to which young couples have to give considerable thought and period of preparation. It is ever easy to say, "I love you," and "I do," but it takes more than just human capacities to be able to translate these words into a lifetime commitment.

here are those who choose to forego marriage and commit themselves perhaps to the noble profession they exercise, or even just to the task of helping parents, brothers and sisters and trying to lift them up from a life of privation. At times they go though extreme sacrifices only to feel as if shackled by the seemingly unending and growing demands from them. At times they even feel they are doing a thankless job. These persons are the like the seeds in the Gospel, which have to die in order to give life to the plant.

nd there are those who, feeling they are called to the religious or priestly life, take seriously the thought that their vocation is to singularly live Jesus' ideal of love: to lay down their lives for their friends. When one tries to live such an ideal, he will find very real obstacles too; obstacles from outside, like times when he comes to discover how precious really are the things he has renounced. It takes some heroism to live such a life.

esus' measure of real greatness isn't that simple and easy. Strangely though, within the folds of a life of giving there is so much joy.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


A cop thought he could get away with a little badge flashing to get out of a traffic violation when he was pulled over for speeding. Instead, he found himself in the slammer just like the plebeians under orders of the chief of police. After hearing reports of the incident from the police chief, a higher authority ordered the officer's car impounded and the cop jailed for 24 hours, the typical punishment for speeding here.

Well, a very common sight in the busy area where I live. The men in uniform are traffic violators themselves. I see them!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


Snail sleeps a lot. In addition to several months of winter hibernation, they crawl into their shells to get out of the hot sun, which dries them, or heavy rain, which waterlogs them. Desert snails may even doze for three or four years.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


1 x 1 = 1
11 x 11 = 121
111 x 111 = 12321
1111 x 1111 = 1234321
11111 x 11111 = 123454321
111111 x 111111 = 12345654321
1111111 x 1111111 = 1234567654321
11111111 x 11111111 =
111111111 x 111111111 =

Sunday, February 15, 2009


Am I making the most of my talents, my education, and my opportunities?

Do I believe that everything I am and have comes from God? Or do I believe as if I made myself what I am and gave myself what I have? Do I have a sense of responsibility to my Creator?

What are my priorities in life? Do I measure success only in terms of economic gains? Do I place more importance on material possessions than on human values? Do I have spiritual values? Do I live a life of faith, or have I allowed myself to be influenced by materialism, especially in its modern form, consumerism? Are my attitudes and values, my lifestyle and spending habits in line with the life and teachings of Jesus Christ?

Do I have social conscience, or am I locked up in my own little world, concerned only with myself, my family, my relatives and close friends? Do I recognize my responsibility towards my house helpers, employees, subordinates, their families and their future? Am I honest enough to question my indifference towards social justice and humble enough to own my part in an unjust social structure?

Is my love for God real or only a notion? Am I a Christian by convenience or culture, and not by choice? Am I practicing the Christian virtues only when it suits me and my schedule? Do I prove my Christianity in works of love for those who need me? Do I seek out Christ's poor or do I avoid them? Do I try to see Him in the sick, the lonely, the destitute, the old, the unwanted, or am I blind to them?

Do I take care of my physical body, and make sure I get enough sleep and exercise? Do I sometimes eat and drink too much or misuse my body sexually?

Am I able to admit my own need for help and ask for it? Do I accept myself despite my limitations and weaknesses?

Do I? Do I?

What is the basic goal of my life?

Saturday, February 14, 2009


"I've learned that people
will forget what you said, people
will forget what you did, but people
will never forget how you made them feel."

Maya Angelou

Friday, February 13, 2009


Lately, one man's senses were so dulled that he failed to notice a knife stuck in his back by a colleague. This is the case of a factory electrician, who was stabbed by the building's security guard as they were having a drunken argument. Passing out at a the factory, the man awoke the next morning and attempted to resume his work duties, but was sent home by his superiors due to his inebriated state. No one noticed the 15-centimeter (six-inch) blade stuck between his shoulders. He was only alerted to the knife in his spine when he went home and his wife noticed it.

Very strange indeed, ha!

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Here's a very nice thought I read earlier today about music!

hough the world of words may inform your intellect, that which cannot be expressed by words will inform your spirit. Give every form of music a hearing, especially the worldless music that expresses what words cannot, whether in the form an inspired symphony or the sounds of the natural world. This kind of listening requires no intellectual understanding; it resonates within a part of us that is beyond intellect.

Listen to the worldless words.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


What makes intelligent people do irrational things? The reasons vary, of course, depending on the situation. Let me share specifically about why people neglect or refuse to fasten their seat belts. Here are three of the excuses they give--excuses that really aren't that reasonable when the truth is known:

Excuse 1

"I don't need a safety belt when I'm
traveling at low speeds or going on a short trip."

All driving whether at low speeds or short trips can be dangerous. More accidents occur at speeds less than 64 kph (40 mph). Unbelted occupants of cars have been killed in collisions at as low as 19 kph (12 mph) about as past as you might drive in a parking lot.

Excuse 2

"I am uncomfortable and too
confined when I wear a safety belt."

Think how much more confined you would feel in a wheelchair the rest of your life. Besides, modern seat belts are designed to allow greater freedom of movement while still protecting you during collisions. Wearing a seat belt is like anything else new you try to do: it may feel awkward at first, but eventually you will feel comfortable--and you will be a whole lot safer!

Excuse 3

"It takes too much time and
trouble to fasten my safety belt."

How much is too much when your life may be at stake? You don't need a Ph.D. to learn how to operate a safety belt, especially if you practice regularly. It actually takes less than three seconds to put on a safety belt.

Tips from our friendly Safety Engineer!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009


The other day, my nephew shared the news that the City Mayor has issued a cleanup order by demolishing squatters along the railroad tracks. For the squatters caught in the impending sweep, this is part of an endless cycle of being uprooted by the city only settle somewhere else, a hopefully less visible location.

Will the removal of squatters from along the railroad tracks offer better chances of survival for both? True enough, poverty has a way of distorting one's sense of priorities sometimes even eroding it. Living in subhuman conditions always boils down to simply a matter of survival. The immediacy of food and shelter first, before the comforts of cleanliness. Poverty is a serious problem. It needs to be recognized, addressed, and resolved. It is found everywhere. Every country has its percentage of low-income earners, but some countries have many more people living in unfortunate circumstances than others do. Poverty is an area of concern as it brings with it a host of problems within the country, as well as on a global scale.

The worst kind of poverty is when people cannot get food and therefore they are thin and weak and many starve to death. Unfortunately, this is still happening in many parts of the world. The gap between the world's rich and poor has never been wider. Malnutrition, conflict, disease, and illiteracy are a daily reality for millions.

But it isn't chance or bad luck that keeps people trapped in bitter, unrelenting poverty. It's man-made factors like a glaringly unjust global trade system, a debt burden so great that it suffocates any chance of recovery and insufficient and ineffective aid. It doesn't have to be this way though.

Monday, February 9, 2009


A stressful pregnancy
could cause problems for generations!

Women who became stressed in pregnancy risk passing on health problems to generations of children, research suggests. Unborn babies who are exposed to high levels of the stress hormone cortisol run a greater risk of developing heart disease and diabetes in later life. It is thought high cortisol production in pregnancy alters the way genes function in not only the mother-to-be's unborn child but her unborn grandchildren, too.

he study conducted is not the first to link stress in pregnancy to the health of the unborn child. Previous research has shown that the children of stressed mothers are more likely to be hyperactive and have emotional problems.

ome of the main sources of stress include work pressures, unhappy marriages, money worries, employment issues, and anxiety about pregnancy itself. Parent and family groups urged employers not to put pregnant women under undue strain.

any just don't know what they are going to be living on when the baby comes and worry about the cost of childcare.

Be a stress free mom!

Shared Health Article

Sunday, February 8, 2009

NOAH'S ARK - The Camel Lots

"... All things work together
for good to them that love God..."

Romans 8:28

Noah was checking off the animals coming by twos aboard the Ark. Three camels came along, but Noah stopped them. "I have room for pairs only," he told them. "One of you will have to stay behind."

"Not me," spoke up the first camel. "I'm the camel whose back is broken by the last straw."

"Not me," said the second. "I'm the one who shall pass through the eye of the needle sooner than a rich man shall enter Heaven."

"And not me," protested the third. "I'm the one that people swallow while straining at a gnat."

"Come along," Noah sighed. "the world will need all three of you."

Quoted in Capper's

Saturday, February 7, 2009


"Never be afraid to do something new.
Remember, amateurs build the ark; professionals
built the titanic."


Friday, February 6, 2009



Luigi Galvani (1737-1798), professor of physiology at Bologna, Italy, is called the father of animal electricity. His name has been perpetuated in many terms associated with electricity. In everyday speech the word galvanize means to electrify, to stir into action as if with an electric shock.

Luigi Galvani


Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527) was a Florentine who wrote a handbook of government for the rulers of his time. He set down the principles of taking and holding power. The word Machiavallian is now used to mean cunning, crafty, and deceitful, although originally the book did nothing more than set down as a science what is now called power politics.

Niccolo Machiavelli


The Count de Sade (1740-1814), who was infamous for his misdeeds and his writings, described a situation in which a person derived pleasure from tormenting someone he loved. Such person is called sadist. The word sadistic is often used more broadly today to mean abnormally cruel.

Marquis de Sade

Thursday, February 5, 2009


If I ever wrote down a list of God's gifts to me, I would have to compose a book. Everything and everybody, whatever I may mention, is a gift of God for a definite purpose. All things, not just some things, are in my life for God's good reasons. In one way or another, they are meant to help me earn the unending happiness and glory of Heaven. I must reject any person or thing that leads me away from this goal by sin. All things are to be used wisely; that is, to help me live a good and useful life. By an intelligent use and control of life's daily needs and activities. I prove my sincere desire for God's eternal love and friendship in Heaven.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Beauty and Beauty

When Beauty and Beauty meet
All naked, fair to fair,
The earth is crying sweet.
And scattering
-bright the air,
Eddying, dizzying, closing round,
With soft and drunken laughter;
Veiling all that may befall

Where Beauty and Beauty met.
Earth's still a-tremble there,
And winds are scented yet,
And memor
y-soft the air,
Bosoming, folding glints of light,
And shreds of shadowy laughter;
Not the tears that fill the years

Rupert Brooke

Tuesday, February 3, 2009


I have been clutter clearing my flat for about a week now, weeding and sorting stuff which are everywhere. Magazines, bills, family photos, accumulation of paper, empty boxes, ahhhh... everything is taking over. I need to declutter, I need to declutterrr... will somebody help me clean up my mess!

"Just continue clearing your stuff and don't just stare at them, shouted a friend! And next time, get yourself organized."

"I am organized!"

"Oh yeah!"

As Ms Stephanie Roberts, author of Clutter Free Forever, said, "if difficult feelings comes up as we work through our clutter, acknowledge them. We may discover that we are just aren't ready to confront some tasks or ready to part with some things yet. It is self-defeating to put ourselves all at once through changes that are too large for us today. We have to be gentle with ourselves, take baby steps, and work at our own pace. Letting go of excess makes room for blessings.

Monday, February 2, 2009


The first antibiotic was discovered in 1928 by accident. A shallow glass dish for bacteriological experiments was left uncovered unintentionally by Alexander Fleming in his laboratory in England. An experimenter upstairs was careless with the mold he was using and some drifted in through an open window and landed in Fleming's uncovered staphylococci culture. The following day, the Scottish bacteriologist found in the dish a clear area where the penicillin in mold had been killing the bacteria.

Alexander Fleming

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Beware the Greeks Bearing Gifts

The Greeks, unable to capture Troy by storm, resorted to trickery. They left a huge wooden horse filled with armed men outside the walls and pretended to sail away. The Trojans wanted to drag the horse into the town and celebrate but their priest Laocoon warned them that the horse was a ruse, with these famous words: "I fear the Greeks even when they bear gifts." The Trojans went right on with their plans, made an opening in the walls, and wheeled in the wooden horse, which though a Greek gift, has ever since been known as the Trojan Horse, a symbol of treacherous infiltration.

The Burden of Sisyphus

his phrase has been used to describe the poor wage-earners' efforts to keep up with the rising cost of living. It's a never-ending task. Sisyphus, mythological king of Corinth, was punished for his misdeeds on earth by being forced to roll a huge boulder uphill in Hades. He never finished his assignment for no sooner had he rolled the stone near his goal than it slipped downhill, and he had to start all over again.