The pathetic state of our political party system

The Philippines’ political party system has gone haywire that it has become a norm for presidentiables to share some senatoriables in each of their senatorial line-ups.

At least 5 of the tandem’s [Grace Poe and Chiz Escudero] bets are shared candidates with the slates of administration and the opposition United Nationalist Alliance (UNA).

— Rappler, Who are on the Poe-Escudero senatorial slate?

Imagine this: a presidential candidate endorsing and campaigning for a senatorial candidate, yet the latter does not return the favor but campaigns and votes for another presidentiable instead.

Consider that irony and tell me how pathetic we are to have such a political party system?

Taking delight in my all-wheel drive

Top Gear Philippines (TGP), in its article ‘This is the reason you buy a go-anywhere AWD vehicle‘, writes:

Yes, crossovers are mostly used in and around the city. But in those rare moments when you just want to live life to the fullest and take the road less traveled, you’ll thank yourself you purchased a ride blessed with all-wheel drive.

Personally, I don’t go that much to such adventures. I may sound just trying to take delight in my decision that I got a Subaru XV, but the fact that my Liana (my Subaru XV) is proudly equipped with symmetrical all-wheel drive actually brings me peace of mind when my travels take me along some muddy roads and the like. Continue reading

Nickel Asia $NIKL reports higher volume but lower Peso revenue in 3Q-2015

Nickel Asia Corporation (PSE: NIKL, RIC: NIKL.PS, BBG: NIKL.PM) reports 12% increase in sales volume for the nine-month period ended September 30, 2015 on a year-on-year basis, but that peso revenue slumped by as much as 40% for that same period YOY. We’ve seen soft metal prices, particularly LME Nickel price and nickel ore prices, in the last year or so, thus a huge drop in NIKL’s and similar mining companies’ revenue.

I’m attaching the press release in full below, but the main points can be summarized in the graphs that follow:

NIKL-Total Volume September YOY 2015 vs. 2014

NIKL-Total Volume September YOY 2015 vs. 2014

Check out more graphs and read the full press release »

A clear testament that Smart Bro Flexitime is a rip off

So I’ve been blogging about this and calling @SMARTCares‘ attention for the last two weeks or so:

Perhaps, to make up for their flawed service or a futile attempt to buy me and this blog off, they reversed P100 to my Smart Bro account;

10-12-2015 8-11-09 PM

Indeed, I received that P100. But wait, there’s more »

A church visit to Parish of St. Therese of the Child Jesus in Lipa City, Batangas

The Facade of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Lipa, Batangas

The Facade of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Lipa, Batangas

The Parish of St. Therese of the Child Jesus is located in Brgy. Talisay, Lipa City, Batangas. It is adjacent to the property of Mount Malarayat Golf & Country Club. Out the open windows (and/or doors) of the church you can see the beautiful golf course.

The Alter of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Lipa, Batangas

The Alter of St. Therese of the Child Jesus, Lipa, Batangas

Read the Historical Marker 2009 and check out the mass schedules »

Smart Communications, Inc. under-delivers on its Flexitime promise

I can’t seem to get over this issue. How can I? Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart) was a disappointment, especially when it came to its Smart Bro Flexitime offering.

Just a recap on what my gripe was all about, I subscribed (and resubscribed) to Flexitime 100, a surf package that promises 15 hours internet browsing valid for 7 days at a cost of P100, but noted that my data minutes deplete faster than my actual use. On top of that, I observed that my data minutes are depleting further even if I no longer use that particular data connection.

After exchanging DM’s and replies with @SMARTCares on Twitter, they just can’t seem to help me at all. I’ve laid down my issues, complete with screenshots and everything, and they still can’t seem to get to the bottom of this mess. They said they’re investigating, but all my data minutes have already been fully wiped out (that’s according to their monitoring system, not based on my actual usage), and they still have to come up with a solution. Or, better yet, just admit that their system and this offer in particular is flawed. Read further and find out what happened next »

The battle for subcompact SUV supremacy

When I bought my Subaru XV last year (July 2014), there was really only one challenger in its segment: the Mitsubishi ASX. (I will put the Ford Ecosport in the same category as the Kia Soul and the new Hyundai i20 Cross, while the Kia Sportage with Hyundai Tucson and the old Ford Escape.)

Liana is my Subaru XV

Liana is my Subaru XV

But then, Honda introduced the HR-V early this year; and more recently, Nissan with the Juke and Cheverolet with the Trax. The Mazda CX-3 is yet unsure whether to enter the Philippine market or not. Continue reading

The curious case of disappearing data minutes in Smart #Flexitime

I was resubscribed to Smart Flexitime 100 this week. Yes, silly me — I didn’t learn from my experience about the depleting data minutes faster than real time use. But more than the hurried diminution of data minutes during use of Smart’s (Smart Communications Inc.) internet, what irks me the most is the continued depletion of data minutes even when their internet is not in use — at all!

I was using my Smart Bro sim for the last two days while subscribed to Flexitime 100 and plugged to my 3G Wifi modem router, the Huawei E355 — a batteryless pocket wifi that can only be powered when plugged in a running USB slot: Continue reading

The reasons you should buy a Subaru XV (Crosstrek)

Just a disclaimer, I own a Subaru XV. Even though I bought one last year, I still scrounge the internet, particularly Youtube, for the latest about the Subaru XV. Perhaps I’m just trying to reaffirm to myself that I made the right choice.

Yet, if you’re in the market for a new car, you should give the Subaru XV (or Subaru XV Crosstrek in the US) a serious consideration. Autotrader listed down the reasons you should buy one. They have separate videos for the 2014 and 2015 versions, which you may watch below:

Watch the 5 reasons to buy the 2015 Subaru XV Crosstrek »