baratillo @ cubao :

A map that helps the victims of Ondoy/Ketsana

Posted in Politics and Culture by juned on the September 28th, 2009

A map page where you can report where help is needed. This is what it is. But it is more than that it also contains and and a list of relief organizations accepting donations.

But its more than that by recording and pointing out flood problem spots on can actually be used in the near future to plot out critical and sensitive areas durign a storm.

Here is the actual map:

View Ondoy situation map for Metro Manila in a larger map
Disclaimer: This map was initiated by a group of volunteers not directly connected with Google. We cannot guarantee 100% accuracy of all placemarks. If you are familiar with Google Maps and would like to help the group’s volunteer efforts, please email

And here is the link to the map.

Baha: Flood: September 26, 2009

Posted in Politics and Culture by juned on the September 27th, 2009

To help the flood victims. Please read this post.

The rain never did stop. Water is said to be universal solvent. It dissolve everything … everything. And its patient very patient as patient as Father Time. Unlike its more stronger sibling the typhoon that leaves a big mark. Mister Rain is patient and can do more … give it time. And time is what it had this week. Yesterday, It began and it is still raining.

Good Morning! Harvard Street is flooded.

Harvard Street, Cubao, Quezon City.

Considering we live on a hill. This forebodes ill for the rest of Metro Manila. From twitter and plurk you could read messages like:

Fairview Dahlia bridge near Brgy. Hall impassable; tricycle drivers and crowd say water is chest-deep. GoodShepherd church area, knee-deep.

High School in Sta. Lucia Dist. in Northern QC accg to ppl crowded in convenience store where I was 15mins ago is being evacuated of evacuees

QTV11 Raffy Tima reports collapsed perimeter concrete fence in Corinthian Gardens; flood is 6 feet high[!]

Latest satellite image:

- Kaffee on Plurk


This post was interrupted when we lost power. In the absence of the Net and even AM radio a number of people relied on mobile internet to get a semblance of what was happening - twit and plurk. The cellphone was the lifeline for most of us -whether accessing the net or just calling friends or family.

Amidst all that we learned of calamities upon calamities. People were stranded in their own houses. People who fled from their house taking shelter in the neighbors who had two or three storey houses. Friends walking, walking and walking to their home.

Our house itself got flooded. Water rushed in filling the floor with water. It turned out the drainage was clogged almost a sackful of debris was found. A friend’s house suffered the same fate this time it was the neighbor’s house that caused the damaged - It, the neighbor’s house, had no drainage and it just went to the other house.

We were safe.

However, It was a mix and guilty feeling. One felt relieved that the worst did not happen to you but what about to those who did? One cannot help the creeping sorrow that one felt. A few weeeks ago we were in a friend’s house - now it was submerged in water.

The rainfall brought typhoon Ondoy/Ketsana in Metro Manila surpassed the largest amount recorded, 334 millimeters - which was recorded 42 years ago.

It was a day of rain and a day of tears.

But it was also a day of hope for people began to chip and help.

To help the flood victims. Please read this post.

Musicals and Politics: Evita & Che

Posted in Opinion by juned on the September 25th, 2009

It is amazing how art can be a chronicler and commentator of life and history. Take for example the musical - Evita by Andrew Lloyd Webber and Time Rice ( who also created Jesus Christ Superstar). It is entertainment, culture and arts … but it is also a commentary on life, politics and history.

It does it with words, song and dance.

And it so reminds one of what has happened, what is happening and possibly what is happening. Evita is set in Argentina and it tells the tale of Evita Duarte who will rise to power and fame as the political partner and wife of General Juan Peron - the President of Argentina. It is also includes the character of Che Guevara icon of the Cuban Marxist Revolution and an Argentinian. He probably never met the Perons - but his persona was used to act as narrator and counter foil to the Perons.

A New Argentina - This is the final scene in the first part of the Musical. Che is plated by Many Patinkin and Evita is played by Patti Lupone.

In the musical Che eventually leaves Argentina out. And in true musical fashion: Che’s momentary exeunt or exit is done with panache. The breaking of with Evita is done during a waltz - a dance. If you think of it - a dance is a perfect symbol between two opposing forces - in this instance Che the idealist and Evita the Pragmatist.

Waltz scene - depicted in the film adaptation of the musical: Antonio Banderas plays Che and Madonna is Evita.

This so reminds one of the struggle between the idealists/romantics and the pragmatists/Realpolitik. And it exist everywhere. The eternal struggle between the romantics and practitioners of realpolitik.

Waltz for Eva and Che: Patti Lupone and Mandy Patinkin.

It exists everywhere and even on-line: in blogs, micro blogs and even exchanges using instant messaging.

A debate: A waltz between two opposing views.

Just look at the exchanges of Marocharim, Arpee, Arbet and Sparks in the Web. It is interesting to watch. And like any good debate there is something of value that can be gotten whether it is a fresh insight or a realization.

In the case of Evita and Che. One of the forms of realization it comes to is the refrain:

There is evil, ever around
Fundamental system of government
Quite incidental - Waltz for Eva and Che, Evita - Andrew Lloyd Webber and Time Rice

As both continue their Waltz …