Saturday, May 29, 2010

The Davalos twins: Who could be hotter than these twins?

Meet Mariana and Camila Davalos. They are US-born Colombian models who host a show in Colombia.

I'm pretty sure they are the hottest twins on the planet. And if you google them, you'll get a ton of photos but in case you're lazy, here are some of them:

Camila's on the left. I think she's more popular between the two.

Since I like Camilla more, I'll post more of her pics: 

Thanks to, photobucket, and blogspot for these photos! 

Thursday, May 27, 2010 quoted my article! :)

Please take a look at this article.

They quoted a Multiply blog entry I wrote ~2 years ago on the Internet Tidal Wave, a famous 1995 memo that Bill Gates wrote. Well, to be completely transparent, they only quoted my transcription of Gates' memo.

That's all! :)

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The tragedy of the commons

thanks to cashewman

A few people have asked me why I don't have a car, although it's quite easy to obtain one given our company policies. I have a number of reasons for doing so, and most of them are pretty mundane. There is one reason though which I would like to share to you, and I hope that you'd also learn something from it.

The tragedy of the commons
The tragedy of the commons is an idea created by ecologist Garrett Hardin. It describes a situation in which "multiple individuals, acting independently, and solely and rationally consulting their own self-interest, will ultimately deplete a shared limited resource (the commons) even when it is clear that it is not in anyone's long-term interest for this to happen." In other words, this happens when what's best for a group of people conflicts with what's best for individuals. 

Cows in a piece of land
Let's try to understand what this means. (thanks Wikipedia!) Imagine a group of herders sharing a big common parcel of land, on which they are each entitled to let their cows graze. It is in each herder's interest to put the next (and succeeding) cows he acquires onto the land, even if the carrying capacity of the common is exceeded and it is temporarily or permanently damaged for all as a result. The rationale is: The herder receives all of the benefits from an additional cow, while the damage to the common is shared by the entire group. Additionally, the damage to the common is too small to be spotted at first. If all herders make this individually rational economic decision, the common will be depleted or even destroyed to the detriment of all.

Note that you don't even need to be greedy and put in many cows. Even just one cow will degrade the common, but at a slower rate. This is the real tragedy.

Translating to modern times
This translates very well in modern times because we still have commons, and many more people than in medieval times. Our capacity for raping the environment has also increased. 

So in the example above, if you would take air as your commons, and cars as the cows, the situation is the same. We know cars will degrade the air around us, but the damage is too small to be felt, and the damage is shared by everyone. The benefits to the individual would outweigh the damages, given the individual is comfortable financially. So it's in everyone's best interest to drive cars everyday and/or get more cars. But, there will come a time when this environment can no longer bear the damages and shut down. 

This is true not just for cars. Take littering for example. When you litter, each individual instance brings too little damage to the overall environment, so everyone does it. But at the end of the day, we see that the floods are caused in part by blocked drainage due to the combined effect of everyone littering. 

I just hope this concept was taught in university. I think one of the impacts if this was widely propagated is a decrease in consumerism, and our economy in its current framework would suffer.

What does it mean to me?
What this means to me is that I won't be having a car for quite some time. There will come a time though  when I can no longer make the sacrifices. And it's sad.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


I didn't know someone in Asia can potentially stand up to Chuck Norris.
I wanna watch this entire movie!

The entire movie is available on youtube. Part 1 is here, it's part of a playlist.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The secret of attracting women - by the Book of Secrets

I'm starting to read Thomas Eaton's Book of Secrets, a book compiling several unrelated secrets, trivia and how-to's. Articles inside include: How to survive a shark attack, the inspiration behind Harry Potter,
why a black box is called black although it's orange, the history of Kotex, and the molemen of New York.

One of its opening articles is "The secret of attracting beautiful women" where Eaton highlights 10 points:
1. Be appealing - After first impressions have faded, women are more attracted to a man's manner than his look. So a man should work on honing charm and being more appealing.
2. Lead an interesting life - A recent survey revealed that women look for men who have led interesting lives. So don't refer to your failed business venture, spin the truth to make the episode sound like an example of your brave, impetuous, go-getting nature.
3. Aim higher - Beautiful women frequently complain that men never approach them.
4. Dress well - Be well-groomed and tidy, but don't spend too much on appearance - a woman will rarely date a man who is prettier than she is.
5. Make her laugh - A woman will find humor entertaining, which subconsciously means she can relax.
6. Be sincere - Women are receptive to men who are kind, thoughtful, sincere and good listeners
7. But don't be too sincere - Another study revealed that women instinctively divide men into those who can be friends and those who can be lovers. If you play #6 too much, you're the friend.
8. Play cat and mouse - If she's playing hard to get, then do the same. But you must make the next move.
9. Make her feel special - Treat her as if she's unique, appreciate her and never take her for granted.
10. Do your homework - Find out what her father is like, for most women, the father is the most powerful image of manhood. Then determine what you want: women want a fling with a cad, but a relationship with a dad.

What do you think?

Overall, this book is really fascinating.

Friday, May 21, 2010

I hope I was at the receiving end of this CPR

Unfortunately, not all CPR is like this.

Super Sexy CPR from Super Sexy CPR on Vimeo.

There will be a new video coming Jun 1. They will be showing super sexy abdominal thrusts then.

The tale of the Painted Bird, and social norms

One book that I have been looking for recently is "The Painted Bird" by Jerzy Kosinski. It is set in WW2 times about a six year old boy who was sent by his parents to a distant village to avoid the horrors of war. Little did the parents know what would happen to their child...

I haven't gotten around reading the book, but an excerpt from it sparks my interest. Find it here:

Sometimes days passed and Stupid Ludmila did not appear in the forest. Lekh would become possessed by a silent rage. He would stare solemnly at the birds in the cages, mumbling something to himself. Finally, after prolonged scrutiny, he would choose the strongest bird, tie it to his wrist and prepare stinking paints of different colors which he mixed together from the most varied components. When the colors satisfied him, Lekh would turn the bird over and paint its wings, head, and breast in rainbow hues until it became more dappled and vivid than a bouquet of wildflowers.
     Then he would go into the thick of the forest. There Lekh took out the painted bird and ordered me to hold it in my hand and squeeze it lightly. The bird would begin to twitter and attract a flock of the same species which would fly nervously over our heads. Our prisoner, hearing them, strained toward them, warbling more loudly, its little heart, locked in its freshly painted breast, beating violently.

     When a sufficient number of birds gathered above our heads, Lekh would give me a sign to release the prisoner. It would soar, happy and free, a spot of rainbow against the backdrop of clouds, and then plunge into the waiting grown flock. For an instant the birds were confounded. The painted bird circled from one end of the flock to the other, vainly trying to convince its kin that it was one of them. But, dazzled by its brilliant colors, they flew around it unconvinced. The painted bird would be forced farther and farther away as it zealously tried to enter the ranks of the flock. We saw soon afterwards how one bird after another would peel off in a fierce attack. Shortly the many-hued shape lost its place in the sky and dropped to the ground. These incidents happened often. When we finally found the painted birds they were usually dead. Lekh keenly examined the number of blows which the birds had received. Blood seeped through their colored wings, diluting the paint and soiling Lekh's hands.

One day he trapped a large raven, whose wings he painted red, the breast green, and the tail blue. When a flock of ravens appeared over our hut, Lekh freed the painted bird. As soon as it joined the flock a desperate battle began. The changeling was attacked from all sides. Black, red, green, blue feathers began to drop at our feet. The ravens ran amuck in the skies, and suddenly the painted raven plummeted to the freshly-plowed soil. It was still alive, opening its beak and vainly trying to move its wings. Its eyes had been pecked out, and fresh blood streamed over its painted feathers. It made yet another attempt to flutter up from the sticky earth, but its strength was gone.

What this excerpt nicely illustrates is the concept of social norms and how it - in a way - forces people to act and behave in a certain way. If you do not conform, you are isolated and pressured and harassed. This is even more pronounced in the corporate setting, but we have the concept of diversity masking it.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Why chasing beautiful women isn't worth it

Because it can literally put your life in danger! Let me explain.

This happened 6 years ago, I was still a college sophomore. It was around 5pm, and I was on the way home, waiting for either a jeep or an FX on the northbound side of Taft right across DLSU. It took quite a while on that particular day for a suitable ride to come by, I remember getting agitated.

A jeepney finally passed by and stopped. I caught a glimpse of an FX right behind it. While normally, I would opt straight for the FX, I decided against doing so. It was because I noticed there was a beautiful girl (a Lasallian, probably Chinese judging by face) who also took the jeepney. Two thoughts entered my mind: maybe I can get to know the girl; a beautiful girl would take the jeep why shouldn't I.

So I entered the jeep. I sat in the middle of the jeepney, diagonally from the girl - yeah, not the best positioning.

Right as we entered, 3 men also entered the jeepney. I remember that it was exactly 3. Two men sat beside me - one to my left, one to my right. The other man sat further out, near the exit. I remember feeling that these two men couldn't settle in their seats well, they were always jittery and shifting their weight around. I thought they just felt uncomfortable.

Then somewhere near Malvar, as the jeep slowed to a stop as it approached the stoplight, the man near the exit suddenly got up and covered the exit with his body. Feeling some sort of panic, I glanced around to see the two men to my left and right suddenly announce a holdup. Throw in a bunch of expletives to heighten the suspense. I can't remember if it was the man to my left or right who lifted a gun from his bag - probably the left. I think the gun was a revolver, details are hazy.

The man pointed the gun straight to my belly and told everyone to give their stuff. The man seemed to know how to carry the gun, and I don't think he was shaking - it seems he has done this before. At that moment, my life flashed before my eyes for a split second, but amazingly I remained calm. It's good I carry around an old phone (even by the standards of 6 yrs ago!) and only little cash in my wallet. So I calmly gave my stuff to the men. I think a few of the passengers were shouting and cursing the thieves. It's good that didn't irritate the thieves or else they could've opened fire (at me!).

They took phones and wallets from the passengers, and quickly got off the jeepney. I didn't lose much that day, but I noticed one young girl crying hard. She said that the phone the thieves stole was only a few days old and was expensive. When I got down at Binondo, the girl was still crying.

Two things I learned from this experience:
1. Always be alert. Watch out for people who can't sit still, eyes are darting around, and won't pay the driver.
2. When riding the jeepney, it's better to sit near the exit so you can get off when you sense something bad. Or the front seat.

OK, maybe "chasing" isn't the right term :)

Oh yeah, the thieves also stole from the beautiful girl.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Ketchup gang - new modus operandi?

I was going home one evening and I was in the Buendia cor Taft-Divisoria jeep when I witnessed this crime a few seats away.

I got in the jeep around 8PM near the Buendia-Taft intersection, there were only roughly 4-5 people then. Everyone inside looked safe (I always take a look at the people inside and if I can get a good position before I get in - I've experienced bad stuff there more than 2 times already. This was still early so, although it's not the best setup, I figured it's ok) so I hopped in and stayed at the end near the exit. A minute or so after, a 40-ish guy got in and stayed in the middle on my side of the jeep, and shortly afterwards 3 or 4 more people. The jeep was still in Buendia at this point.

This 3-4 people consisted of a mother carrying a small child, and 2-3 decent looking men. They don't seem to know each other. All except one sat on one side of the jeepney. The mom and child sat on one side of the 40-ish guy, 1-2 men sat on the other side. The last of this group sat on the other side of the jeepney sat right in front of the guy.

A few minutes after the jeep turned to Taft, the child spilled what seemed to be some ketchup on the guy (Or it could be someone on the outside, I'm not really sure. My mind was a bit preoccupied at that point). Then this group sprung into action, helping the guy wipe the ketchup from his shirt. I'm not sure if other passengers offered to help - I guess not. They even had tissue paper ready. In all honesty, there was very little ketchup on the man. But their actions seemed like there was a lot.

At this point, we thought the man and the man in front of him knew each other. The man in front seemed to be the most enthusiastic in helping. They tried to wipe ketchup from him for a full minute or so, maybe a bit more.

The guy was finally "clean." A few seconds after, the people seated beside him all got off the jeep at the same time. A few minutes later, the man sitting on the other side got off as well.

When we got to the DLSU area, the man checked his pocket and realized that his mobile phone and wallet were gone.

A crime perfectly executed. This happened because of the distraction offered to the passengers, and no one knew of this beforehand.

On the other side, I'm happy this whole fiasco happened without guns.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

How great leaders inspire action

I love this short talk. In essence, tell people (in this order) why you're doing something, then tell how you're going to do it, then what needs to be done. That is how you inspire action.