Monday, August 31, 2009


Why have sports become so violent?

Some writers maintain that organized athletics, especially body contact sports, ritualize violent behavior in both players and spectators. According to this notion, people work off their impulses by taking part in or watching violence.

Nowadays, not only basketball, hockey, soccer, and football players play rougher than ever, but that the fans who watch them are often excited into a frenzy of violence themselves. Psychologists think that the competition to win at any price in a business that has grown to enormous proportions has lessened the ideal of sportsmanship.

An author relates spectator violence to a breakdown of community ties. The fan thinks of himself as part of the team. This intensifies his emotional reaction to what goes on in the game. At the same time, this feeling is not reciprocated by the players, who look upon their fans as an anonymous crowd.
The fans' love for their heroes is denied, their desire to identify is frustrated. All that is left to cling to is victory--if not victory for the home team, then some small personal victory over the faceless tormentor masquerading as the fellow in the next row.

Sunday, August 30, 2009


He is back!

Rafael Nadal

A true champion and a gentleman!

Djokovic, Federer, Murray, Roddick, Serena, Venus, and Kim are making headlines in and out of the US Open tennis courts, but it's kind of quiet in Rafa Nadal's camp!

Whoever wins this year's Men's US Open doesn't make any difference. Rafa will be Rafa, an athlete with a big heart, a fighter, humble, calm, always reserves a clear understanding of the word sport, and he always looks at things more positively.

Saturday, August 29, 2009


"Bach gave us God's word,
Mozart gave us God's laughter,
Beethoven gave us God's fire.
God gave us music that we
might pray without words."

Friday, August 28, 2009


German Boy Soprano

(Click to watch on Youtube)

I had to sleep very late last night because I just couldn't stop replaying the youtube of a young German boy soprano singing the Queen of the Night's aria from the grand opera, "The Magic Flute." His voice is awesome!

He is an exceptionally gifted boy, who has a well rounded three, or maybe, four-octave voice range. Every opera enthusiast will agree that the particular aria is a highly-rated piece that only highly-trained coloratura sopranos with fine thrills and roulades can do justice to it. However, no matter how difficult the song, the boy made an extraordinary rendition with ease, as if just fine-tuning his vocal cord.

While listening to the magic voice, I was reminded of one long-ago artist, Madam Florence Foster Jenkins, who did a disastrous recording of the same song howling along each note with great pleasure.

Madam Florence Foster Jenkins

Thursday, August 27, 2009


There is only one way in which a person's sincerity can be proved, and that is by one's practice. Fine words can never replace good deeds. Our character is revealed in the choices we make, especially when we must choose between what is true or false, and good or evil. Do you cheat on an exam or on your income taxes, especially when it will cost you? Do you lie, or cover-up, when disclosing the truth will cause you pain or embarrassment? A true person is honest and reliable before God, neighbor, and oneself. Such a person's word can be taken as trustworthy.

What can keep us from falsehood and disaster?

Wednesday, August 26, 2009


Curare plant

urare, the arrow poison of South American Indians, was once essential to surgeons performing abdominal operations because it was the only drug that could be used as a muscle relaxant. The patient's muscles became much too stiff for s
afety during the operation, and curare was used to relax them.

Curare is an Indian word, meaning "poison."

South American Indian

Tuesday, August 25, 2009


o you enjoy crossword puzzles?

crossword puzzle

Everytime I make a trip, especially those requiring longer travel time, working on my crossword puzzles and Sudoku alternately relaxes me. Break time, free time, waiting time, bathroom time, I enjoy them very much and they truly fill the void.


But did you know that doing crossword puzzles, number games, reading, writing, playing board or card games, and listening to music help delay the rapid memory decline that occurs if people develo
p dementia?

card game

Researchers spent five years following 488 people aged 75 to 85 who did not have dementia at the start of study. During the study period, 101 of these people developed dementia. At the start of the study, the participants reported how often they participated in six leisure mind activities - reading, writing, doing crossword puzzles, playing board or card games, having group discussions, and playing music.

board game

For each activity, daily participation was rated at seven points, several days a week was rated at four points, and weekly participation was rated at one point. The average score for those who later developed dementia was seven points, meaning they took part in one of the six activities, and 11 reported only one activity per week. The researchers then looked at the point when memory loss started accelerating rapidly and found that for every additional activity a person participated in, the onset of rapid memory loss was delayed by 0.18 years. The point of accelerated decline was delayed by 1.29 years for the person who participated in 11 activities per week compared to the person who participated in only four activities per week.

Ref: Tech/Science Update

Monday, August 24, 2009


Life is indeed full of struggles

Struggle is the very condition of life, and work is but one of its basic expressions. The world is made possible by work, but there are some societies in which not everyone is made to undergo the same degree of struggle. Some struggle to fulfill an obsession or reach a lofty dream. Others have to struggle just to meet the most basic of necessities be
fore indulging in their dreams. Still there are those who make others do the struggling for them. In developing countries, majority of the people work so hard for so little. But it is their hard work that sustains the nation and makes life easier for the wealthy few.

Sunday, August 23, 2009


ride prevents many from seeking needed advice. As a result they are hurting more seriously as they go along in life. It takes humility to admit faults and limitations. It takes courage to do something about them. Will you be a fool and avoid the aid of those who can help you?

Pride is synonymous with vanity, which is empty pride. It supports a whole array of sins, such as jealousy, bitterness, vindictiveness, self-pity, conceit, inordinate ambition, slander, gossip, maligning, implacability, and revenge motivation.

May we never refuse to others the sympathetic understanding and assistance, which we would want if we were in their troubles.

Saturday, August 22, 2009


re there really proven ways to improve relationship with toxic supervisors? There are many kinds of bosses in the workplace, but the toxic bosses are the ones causing more harm than good to the organization. They can reduce valuable production time and increase cost. They need to be lectured about professionalism. They need to understand the true meaning of teamwork, positive organization, trust building, values, professional ethics, and involvement. Most of the time rank and file employees do not get the chance to get back to them because of their positions and for fear of reprisals.

anagement needs to identify these toxic bosses and decide on the best way to deal with them. But how are you going to deal with toxic bosses whose understanding of human relations is almost "nil!"

Friday, August 21, 2009


"The gratification of wealth
is not found in mere possession
or in lavish expenditure, but
its wise a


Thursday, August 20, 2009



the symbol of
unconscious beauty
vigor, vim, vitality
richness, wealth

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


o you ever eat when you're not hungry? Would you rather eat your least favorite meal with a favorite person than eat your favorite meal alone
? Does the environment in which you eat affect how much you eat? If you answer any of these affirmatively, then your biological drives are being modified by other needs.

The body should regulate its own weight, yet many people eat when they are not hungry. To begin with, many people respond to
external cues--the attractive restaurant, good company. They are responding to eating as a social event. Perhaps they are being driven by their need for social companionship.

What motivates people to eat too much or to snack monotonously between meals when they are alone? We cannot be so sure, But some believe that these people overeat because food is a substitute for what they lack emotionally. a response to emotional deprivation. In cases like these, emotions
may be the motives that actually channel behavior.

Then there are people who clean up their plates whether they are hungry or not. Perhaps these are the people who were told as children, "clean up your plate!" Perhaps a leftover drive to please a parent in response to the need to feel loved and accepted.

All these behavioral patterns represent the way a biological drive is modified by other needs-social and psychological. Drinking and sleeping, the other biological needs, are affected in similar ways.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


have had a very stressful three weeks, which really shook me up and brought me almost to the brink of despair.
I'm glad it's over.

Many things we do every day are stressful to some degree; most of them are not serious, and we can readily adjust to them. But sometimes they still get the best of us. It is a fact of life, particularly adult life. It makes us wonder how we can cope with too many changes at one time, or adapt to radical changes we are not ready for. Anything that requires a major adjustment in our way of life can turn stress into distress.

As we cannot avoid some degree of stress, it pays to know how to cope with it effectively. We can seldom deal with stress successfully if we don't recognize its source. Once we identify the stressor accurately, whether it is physical or emotional, we have the chance of bringing our response under control. Finding the level of stress at which we are most comfortable helps us discover the positive values that some kinds of stress may give us.

Monday, August 17, 2009


eath from illness or accident occur to people of every age and stage of life, even the prenatal. A colleague is going through a very rough time of accepting the sudden demise of his elder brother.

When someone is dying, members of the family often experience guilt feelings or anger at being left alone in the world. These feelings may come from conflicts with the dying person that have not been settled. Often, family members feel it is wrong for the dying person to die while they survive. This attitude can lead to guilt feelings, which may need to be resolved in therapy.

If you have ever had a death in your own family, you know how upsetting it is to everyone. This is not only because you have lost someone dear to you, but also because the survivors are frequently confused about the role they should play in the dying process. If we share the concerns of the dying, as well as tend to their physical needs, death is easier for all.

Sunday, August 16, 2009


"Call on the Lord while He may be found,
Call on Him while He's near.
Call on the Lord while He may found,
He will wash away your fears."

ave you ever tried to stop and ponder for a while to ask yourself how you have been living your life? Are you living your life according to how God wants you to spend it, that is, to do the best for yourself so you can effectively become a person for others?

here is something deep inside that make us want to be the best we can be. This comes from a call that lies deep within ourselves. This call is actually from God. The call is for us to live, to grow, to become dedicated and committed Christians.

od has given us the freedom to live life, but with it goes the responsibilities to see that we do not abuse such privileges by destroying life or, if not, use others for our own glory and forsake God who created us.

his call to live the life as inspired by Christ is only possible if we think, plan, and reflect on His teachings before making a choice. He promised us, "I came to help you live and live fully. Follow me. I am the way that leads to life" (John 10:10; 14:6).

The choice is ours, but be sure to make the right choice. Let us review life and do something to improve it, if necessary. After all it is not somebody's life!

Saturday, August 15, 2009


"Man is, at one and the same time, a solitar
y being and a social being. As a solitary being, he attempts to protect his own existence and that of those who are closest to him, to satisfy his personal desires, and to develop his innate abilities. As a social being, he seeks to gain the recognition and affection of his fellow human beings, to share in their pleasures, to comfort them in their sorrows, and to improve their conditions of life."

Albert Einstein

Friday, August 14, 2009


ven though we may enjoy and need to be alone now and then, human beings are basically social animals who need the company and cooperation of other human beings. We need to make friends, to like and be liked, and to form loving relationships with at least a few people who are in some way special to us.

o like to love someone means that you enjoy that particular individual for certain unique qualities that fit with your own interests and needs. It means, too, that you have, not just an opinion, but a feeling about that person. Physical attractiveness is a factor in the initial decision to like another person.

Thursday, August 13, 2009



Alcohol has no calories.


A bottle of beer has approximately 150 calories,
which are without any nutritional value.

"drink to me only with thine eyes!"

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


id you know that migratory locust is kept flying by a bundle of hairs on its head. When these hairs are stimulated by an air
current coming from the front, they create a nerve stimulus that keeps the locust's wings beating. The beating, in turn, accelerates the air current; once the locust takes off, it continues to fly for extremely long distances.

Migratory locust

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


little boy, at a wedding looks at his mom and says,
"Mommy, why does the girl wear white?"

His mom replies, "The bride is in white because she's
happy and this is the happiest day of her life."

The boy thinks about this, and then says,
"Well then, why is the boy wearing black?"

Monday, August 10, 2009


exuality has been the subject of much c
ontroversy over the years. It was not too long ago that marriage manuals described sexual behavior as "a dangerous evil which, unfortunately, is necessary for the perpetuation of the species." It is not difficult to imagine the psychological impact--the guilt, shame, and fear--of such repression.

"I love you, you love me,
we vowed our love eternally,
don't you know love, that
true love comes from

owever, things have changed somewhat since then. In marriage today, sex is seen as a vital, fulfilling part of the loving bond formed by two people. There is less emphasis now on defining what is normal, socially acceptable, sexual behavior than on focusing on the positive aspects of a mutually satisfying sexual relationship between consenting, caring adults.

o promote a positive outlook on our own sexuality, we need to remember than sex is more than just a set of learned techniques, of pleasurable sensations. We need to accept our own body and the responsibility for someone else's. We must be willing to give and receive. But it is not enough to know what to do physically. For many, the most satisfactory sexual relationship takes place within a loving, caring relationship.

Sunday, August 9, 2009


he young man needs to be lect
ured on how to bargain sensibly.

Police are searching for a motorist who beat a 24-year old woman selling white asparagus because he was upset about her asking price for the coveted springtime vegetable. The prices for white asparagus, sometimes called "edible ivory", fluctuate wildly during the short springtime season. The man screamed at the woman that her asparagus was overpriced. He then punched her in the face and threatened to unleash his attack dog at her. She fled and called police. The motorist said her prices were totally over the top.

He didn't need to beat the woman. If he didn't like the price, he could always walk away. It's as simple as that!

Saturday, August 8, 2009


"Sometimes on
e pays most
for the things on
e gets for nothing."

Albert Einstein

Friday, August 7, 2009


Do you haggle with price? My friends always invite me to join them everytime they shop around. They know well how I handle price haggling. I make interesting price bargaining with friendly shop owners especially with certain big ticket items. It comes naturally to me.

ellers will always try to get the most money possible for their goods, and customers who
are not used to the art of bargaining will immediately pay for the items they like. The kicker though is that you can have some fun doing it. The most important thing is staying polite and keeping sense of humor while bargaining. Remember, it is supposed to be fun.

lways halve the first asking price and start from there, of course, with a smile and keep it throughout. The seller is much more likely to continue bargaining with a happy smiling face. Getting angry or upset will take you nowhere and rarely gets you the price you want. Be mindful that the initial price offered by the seller is usually marked up by at least 40% over the general price acceptable, or it can be up to even more. Do not say how much you want to pay for an item unless it is near the end of the process. Always try and drop the seller's offering price as much as possible before finally naming your price. If you don't get the price you want, humm the song line, "...walk away please go before you throw your money away..." ha ha! If you get called back, you know you are close to winning the price haggling battle ugghhh!!!

repeat, bargaining is an art and if you are unfamiliar with it, start learning the process and have fun.

Thursday, August 6, 2009


My colleague has a story tell. He said, an expatriate employed as an Accountant in a big contracting company here in Al-Khobar, who just got back from a month vacation, has been arrested by the police authorities. He has been charged with stealing from the company safe.

He confessed to his crime, which went undetected for five years. He was able to build a two-storey house and a commercial building in his home country from the stolen money. "No wonder he was living lavishly and entertained extravagantly," blurted crisply by my friend.

ow! he is not a small time thief after all.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009


A homeless man died after being set on fire on a street where he had lived for many years. He was drenched with what may have been gasoline and set ablaze. Scorch marks stained a wall on where the man was burned. The victim remained unidentified. It was reported that a young man in his 20s was seen running from the scene.

Whatever drove this young man to commit a heinous crime against a helpless beggar is unthinkable. It is without doubt an evil impulse, which stirred up the evil elements in his mind resulting to wicked action. It is a matter of the degree of wickedness one is capable of doing.

What did the beggar do to deserve this fate?
How can life have meaning in the face of such torture and death?

If indeed the young man committed the crime, he deserves the harshest sentence available.

"... the beggar man and the mighty king
are only different in name, but they are
treated just the same by fate...!"

Tuesday, August 4, 2009


f a deaf person understands the physics of sound, he or she can tune a lute, a viol, a spinet, or any stringed instrument. The sound made by a vibrating strings depends on its length, its mass, and how much it is stretched.

A very good pointer from a professional piano tuner.

Monday, August 3, 2009


I am learning an exciting new trade; piano tuning.

My regular piano tuner, Mang Joe, started giving me pointers on how to quickly learn piano tuning. He said, it is a simple process, but requires a lot of patience and years of practice to achieve perfection. First things first, I have to get my own set of tools: tuning hammer or wrench, tuning fork, rubber tuning wedges or mutes, and electronic tuner. These tools will probably cost me a lot, but it is worth it, knowing that I'll be doing my own piano tuning and won't spend anymore for tuning fees after some time.

I am so excited to get it going! Meanwhile, I am doing research to learn the basic mechanics of tuning and memorizing by heart the many intricate parts of the piano.

Sunday, August 2, 2009


r. Sigmund Freud saw that a third dimension of consciousness was needed to hold the id and ego in check. He termed it "superego." Unlike the id and the ego, the superego is not present at birth. It develops as a child learns which actions are socially acceptable and which are not. The superego holds society's values and moral attitudes.

The superego includes what we mean by conscience. It tells us right from wrong. A growing child internalizes rules made by parents and other adults. Gradually, this right-wrong response enters a child's own system behavior, independent of its original source.

As Sigmund Freud saw it, the superego does more than distinguish right from wrong. It also compares the ego's view of itself with an ego ideal of perfection. This ego ideal is our view of the sort of person we feel we should strive to become. We base it on our own hopes and on the kind of person others think we should be. The superego combines conscience, that tells us right from wrong, with the ego ideal, that inspires us to make things better for all. Mr. Freud viewed that conflict between the id and the superego is inevitable. A person can deal with the conflict either by directly suppressing unacceptable urges, saying no to them or by hiding them deep inside. Hiding unacceptable urges means repressing full awareness of them by keeping them in the unconscious.

Well, I was just discussing the same ego ideal to a piano student last night, giving more emphasis on balancing factors in life.

Additional knowledge, Mr. Freud.
Wherever you are, many thanks!

Saturday, August 1, 2009


"The next time it begins to rain... lie down
on your belly, nestle your chin into the grass,
and get a frog's-eye view
of how raindrops fall... The
sight of hundreds of blades of grass bowing down
and popping back up like piano keys strikes me
as one of the merries
t sights in the world."