Saturday, January 28, 2017

Driving in the Philippines

Vehicles in the Philippines are often overloaded to the point of being dangerous.  Jeeepny's stacked with large loads of wood or metal hanging out the back.  Tricycles overloaded with bags of recyclable glass and plastic, or with bags of vegetables, or with long stalks of bamboo. Trucks packed to overflowing with sugarcane which inevitably spills out into the streets increasing the hazardous driving conditions. 

Especially with the tricycles one wonders how they mange to move with so much weight.  But they do move.  Things get done.  Just not orderly and safely.  Who cares though, right?  As long as the job gets done that's all that matters. Safety first?  Maybe third.




No seat belts. No turn signals. No headlights at night.  No waiting for the light to change. No waiting your turn in line. No safety guaranteed.   

Monday, January 23, 2017

Overseas Filipino Workers aka OFWs

Working conditions in the Philippines are horrid.  The hours are long, the pay is niggardly, and on some occasions one must actually live at their job usually sleeping upstairs or in the back in the living area. Requirements for even the most menial jobs require a college degree and no one wants to higher an ugly person or anyone over 25. The worker must pay for countless background checks and proofs of identity and if he is lucky enough to land a job he must pay even more for uniforms and training. And after paying thousands of pesos just to earn a few hundred a day he is at the whim of the employee who is under no obligation to keep him on.  He could be let go anytime for any reason.

One of the more popular professions in the Philippines is nursing.  There are many nursing students and many unemployed nurses in this country.  It seems like there is a real surplus of nurses.  Nurses are treated no better than slaves.  When they start working at a hospital they must work an entire year for free.  There are no paid internships here.  There is simply slave labor.

So many problems working here and trying to live on stingy pay.  That is why the biggest goal of many Filipinos is to leave the country for a job with better pay.



It's not always roses out there though.  Many Filipinas are sent out to Hong Kong or Dubai as maids.  Many of them are treated well but plenty more are abused by their employers. 

There is not a house in the Philippines that does not have a family member wether distant to near who is an OFW.  These workers dutifully send their pay back home while their family sits on their lees reaping the fruit of another's labor.  

OFW's account for 13.5% of the GDP with $20 billion coming in to the country each year.  The Philippines is not a self-sustaining country.  Without these remittances the Philippines would be in worse trouble than they are now.  

This is a situation that should not be.  A strong nation is one that is self-sustaining with a strong industrial base. The Philippines weakens itself by giving every incentive for its citizens to leave the country.  

Just more fail from the land of the Failipino.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Toilet paper? We don't need no stinking toilet paper!

Imagine being in the mall having lunch with your friends.  All of a sudden your tummy starts rumbling and you feel the urge to go.  You race to the bathroom ready to relive yourself.  When you open the stall you see this:



There's no toilet paper! WHERE'S THE TOILET PAPER??? 

Don't be silly.  Its right here:


Why would toilet paper go inside the stall?  Surely its better placed outside to monitor it for theft. They can't risk anyone stealing toilet paper.  Never mind the fact that Filipinos use their hands and a bucket of water to wipe themselves. This totally makes sense. 

So always remember that in the Philippines there is no toilet paper in the public toilets. If there is it will be either outside the stall or hidden away someplace and you might have to pay for it! 

What does it matter anyway? Why all the fuss about hiding the toilet paper when Filipinos do not use it?  They literally use a bucket and water to wipe themselves.  Even though they sell toilet paper at the stores you will not find it in a typical Filipno house but you will find a large slimy bucket full of nasty water and a ladle.  Even a toilet in a government office might not have any paper.

The lesson is always bring your own toilet paper and never shake hands with a Filipino.

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Who let the dogs out?

It is necessary to have a dog when living in the Philippines because of all the breaking and entering that occurs.  They are not a sure-fire theft deterrent but nothing ever is a sure thing.  And when the dogs you have to protect you property are out and about they sure aren't going to be protecting your property.




So who let the dogs out?  The Filipino who owns them!  

None of these dogs are strays.  They are all out on the prowl because either the owner did not secure the fence or opened the gate to let them run about.  Why would a loving dog owner not secure their fence or purposely let their dogs out to run about in the street all day? They wouldn't. That's just one way Filipinos let the rest of the world know they are not kind and loving towards animals.

Loose dogs are a menace. They dig through the trash and spread it all over the neighbourhood. They get in the way of cars. They poop everywhere. They growl and bark at passersby. They breed uncontrollably. Their bodies become mangy and disease infested. They bark all day and as they stroll about they set off all the other dogs who are secured behind fences. 

But who cares right?  If you don't like it leave! Certainly Filipinos must like having a country full of loose dogs on the prowl. Otherwise they would secure their dogs and their fences.

Monday, January 16, 2017

Burning Trash

Filipinos love to burn leaves and trash. They just cannot wait for the garbage man (who comes twice a week!) to arrive so they pile it up big and small just to watch it burn.  Actually its mostly small.  And there's hardly any fire to speak of.  And no is watching.




Burn pile?  More like smoke pile. 



There's hardly anything there worth burning. Burn piles are usually huge and composed of leaves. Not in the Philippines. In the Philippines they will burn the tiny little pile they sweep from their doorstep just because they see no other way to get rid of it.

These burn piles, and some do start rather large but always die down into a smoke pile that will pollute the air for hours on end, are a nasty inevitability of living in the Philippines.  Sometimes mornings here are nice and lovely.  So peaceful and still. Especially after days of rain.  The day is beginning and you got a large cup of coffee and the windows and doors are open to let the fresh air clear out your house and then...out of nowhere...the acrid stench of smoke fills the air and the morning is ruined because someone decided to burn their little sweep pile. 

Open burning is just another area where Filipinos have no idea how to be good stewards of the environment or good neighbours. Good neighbours do not force others to breathe in the poisonous smoke generated by burning leaves and garbage.

They don't think to make a compost pile. They don't think to put it in a bag and let the garbage man take it. They don't think to collect all the leaves and toss them into a wooden area. They don't think at all. They only have one thing on their mind:



And they can't even do the burning right.  The goal is to incinerate the pile.  At some point it should become a mini-conflagration. When it dies down into a smoke pile it should be rekindled or put out. At the end there should be a pile of ashes.  What's left is usually a pile of leaves that is still relatively intact because nothing was ever burning. The smoke only gave the illusion of burning. 

Illusory and ineffective. How fitting a description for just about everything in this country.

And notice in the pics of the smoke pile how there is no one in attendance.  Not only do they start burning leaves right on the wall surrounding their house, which is about as foolish a thing as one can do, but they just walk away and que sera, sera. I have never once seen a burn pile being attended to. 

Notice also the contents of the burn pile. Not only are there leaves but there is also plastic! Filipinos won't think twice about burning plastic. Never mind all the toxins floating through the air and into your lungs. The air is already polluted enough from the unregulated motorcycles, cars, jeepneys, and trucks which regularly spew out thick black exhaust. What is needed is more airborne toxins and pollutants from burning plastic garbage.

They even burn plastic when they barbecue. The coals come in a plastic bag and they just light the whole thing on fire, bag and coals.  So when they go to barbecue their pork sticks and chicken intestines they now have toxic smoke infecting the meat. They aren't only breathing in the toxins but they are eating them as well.

Filipinos are literally poisoning themselves and their neighbours and they don't care.


Saturday, January 14, 2017

Sinulog

This weekend is the Sinulog festival in Cebu.  What is Sinulog?  Basically its a large dance party and contest with thousands of participants. The festival has its roots in the worship of a wooden statue of the Child Jesus.

Sinulog is the ritual prayer-dance honoring Señor Santo Niño or the Child Jesus.  

They sure do love dancing in this country.  Truly Filipino culture is a song and dance culture. They will even do a little dance for a 500 year old wooden idol of the Child Jesus.

It is an undeniable fact that the Filipinos are a very superstitious people and the Santo Niño figurine is embedded in the popular piety of this country.  You can see this statue everywhere you go.  In shops, in taxis, in jeepnys. 



In 1521 Ferdinand Magellan landed on the shores of Cebu and presented this abomination to the local chief. The rest, as the say, is history.  The Filipinos worship this idol thinking it is actually the Eternal God and Saviour the Lord Jesus Christ.  It's not.  It's a tricked out piece of wood. And there is no Santo Niño.  Not now.  Not ever.  Jesus was never a saint.  He is God. And not only is he God but he is now a man.  The child Jesus is all grown up. He will never be a child again. Do Filipinos even read their Bibles?  As good Roman Catholics I'm sure they don't.

Along with the usual idolatrous worship and dancing and festivities local law enforcement have decided to add a disturbing and potentially deadly and dangerous twist to this year's festival: jamming all cellphone signals!

Why would they do this?  

To prevent a terrorist attack. 

Do they really think jamming all cellphone signals is going to prevent an attack that, if it were to occur, must have been planned out in advance and who's perpetrators have no need of using cellphones? You don't need a cellphone to toss a grenade, fire a machine gun, or set off an IED. If they do actually jam all cell signals no one will be able to contact anyone.  Having a medical emergency?  Need a taxi?  Need to send a message to your wayward errand boy? Trying to meet up with friends? Too bad. 

This communication cut-off puts the entire city at risk and in danger especially if there is an attack because then everyone will be in the dark about what is happening and will have no idea what precautions to take. Facebook is the national grapevine and if wi-fi is disabled and no one can access Facebook then the whole country will be in the dark about whats happening in Cebu if indeed an attack happens. A total communications blackout would be disastrous. 

"Aside from internet and cellphones, the planned network shutdown will also affect banks. Some ATMs have wireless connections."  

Isn't that just great?  You won't be able to contact anyone and you won't be able to withdraw money you might need.

And who would even think to bomb a "Christian" festival? 


Islamic terrorists.  

Allegedly the Maute group carried out a bombing at a festival last December but no group has taken responsibility.  The Philippines has much larger issues to deal with than shabu. They need to exterminate all the insurgent Muslim groups in the country: BIFF, MILF, MNLF, the Maute Group.  But this has been an ongoing problem for decades and, like any problem in the Philippines, especially one that involves the government, there is no solution in sight.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Fighting Cocks

Fighting cocks are everywhere in this country.  After all, cockfighting is the national sport of the Philippines. In order to fight cocks you have to breed and raise them so what better place to set up huge fighting cock breeding grounds but in a gated residential community.






It's cock-a-doodle-do all day long.  They don't just crow at sunrise.  They crow whenever they feel like it. Even at 2am!  Such a cacophony of noise along with the motorcycles, tricycles, fish vendors, barking dogs, and loud music and televisions coming from each house.

In the second picture you can see they didn't even bother to put up a fence around the area.  Instead they sit out in a chair all day and watch their cocks.  They also have two dogs tied up to trees.  How is that supposed to stop any of the stray dogs from stealing a chicken at night?  

Its really a waste of space.  The land could be used more productively by growing crops or building a house.  Build a house?  In a gated residential community?  No let's just raise fighting cocks.  

The are in the fourth picture doesn't just have fighting cocks.  There's also a goat and a few turkeys.  Of course the only real turkeys are the men who fight cocks and decide to raise them in residential areas.  

But it's not just residential areas.  It's everywhere! Hens and cocks are literally all over the place in this country.  Everywhere there is a spare area they will tie one up and build him a little hut. Makes no sense.  

But that's the Philippines.  Nothing here makes sense.

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Typical Filipino Linemen

In the Philippines the power often goes out. In my city the power company regularly schedules brown outs that last from 8-12 hours. The alleged reason is the need to work on the lines. They don't advertise this on their webpage.  They advertise it in the notes section of their Facebook page.  Why does the local power company have a Facebook account? Because everyone has their nose buried in their phone  browsing Facebook.  It's as if that's the only website they know here. But that's material for another post. Suffice it to say if you want to get information to Filipinos you have to do it through Facebook. But even so who thinks to look on Facebook for information that should be on the electric company's main site?  And they don't even publish it there.  It's Facebook only.

But back to the electrical situation here. Power lines are strung all across the city in a horrid mishmash and tangle of black lines.  Some lines even dangle precariously into the street.  Are they live?  Dead?  Who knows!  It's certainly dangerous to have power lines dangling in the street. Many of the wooden poles  hoisting these lines are rotted and toppling over which further heightens the danger of electrical fire or brownouts as well as death to passersby.  It's simply not a good situation in any way.

Here's a picture of a typical Filipino lineman.  No bucket truck.  No safety harness.  Just a ladder resting against a thick nest of power lines. Workers standing idly by not even attempting to secure the ladder. Working in the middle of the street on a busy day.  I have seen this exact type of hazardous work situation many times in the city. This is not atypical. In fact it's a very typical carryover of the DIY fix-it attitude that is prevalent here.  That's great if you are repairing your own electronic devices but not when you are repairing the power lines which give life to an entire city.



With such unsafe, unprofessional, hazardous, and potentially deadly workmanship is it any wonder the electricity fails so often here? 

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Introduction

The original website Philippinefailblog is no more.  The owner decided to shut it down and focus his attention on a new anti-Trump blog.  Therefore I have decided to pick up his mantle and continue this site on my own.  I have also decided to use the banner from the original site to let others know what this site is about.  Living in the Philippines can be crazy at times.  Writing about those crazy times can be cathartic.  I cannot do this alone and I hope to hear from you.  Please submit stories, preferably with a picture, to: philippinesfailblog@gmail.com.

UPDATE: Philippinefailblog.com is back up but it is a wholly different site and nothing from the old site was saved.  I will still keep updating this blog as well as posting entries from the old PFB as found on archive.org.

UPDATE: I have changed the logo since the old site is back online and the owner asked. It was something that had been bothering me a bit since his return. No theft or misrepresentation was intended. This website is NOT Philippinefailblog.com nor is the owner of that site affiliated with this one.

UPDATE: This blog was formerly Philippinefailblog.blogspot.com but is now Philippinesfail.blogspot.com

UPDATE:     This introduction has outlived its usefulness and will now be pulled from the top of the blog and put back chronologically.