Gymnastics: My Dream Olympic Event

alexei nemov

Now that the London Olympics is on, have you ever wondered what your Olympic event be if you were an athlete?

Only now that it dawned in me that the Olympic event I would be in if I were an athlete is men’s gymnastics.  At a very limited chance that I got to catch a men’s gymnastics game on TV, I am always at awe with the combined strength, form and acrobatics of these athletes.

I guess for me this is one complete sport and besides no one in my country has been sent to compete in gymnastics event in the Olympics (my country with a population’s average height of 5 feet 5 inches is so obsessed with basketball).  Also no male gymnast has been chosen as the Athlete of the Year by ESPY.

Yeah, I have always been a fan of tennis but I will leave that sport to my idol Federer besides everybody can whack a ball with a tennis racket. For me it is easier to swim, dribble a ball, punch an opponent, throw a discus, shoot a target or dash to a 100 meter distance.  But not everybody can twirl with flair on a pommel horse, hang like a monkey on a high bar, fly and twist from a vault, do intricate tumbling passes on the floor, swing and spin on still rings and defy gravity on the parallel bars.

Gymnastics is not considered an extreme sport but through the years of its evolution through discoveries and inventions of various intricate moves I do consider it as one.  Modern acrobatic styles are very risky it can actually result to broken bones or torn muscles.  It takes a lifetime to achieve the form, strength, agility and discipline to perfect this sport.

So to those male gymnasts competing may it be in your local school event or in the high and mighty Olympics I have nothing but high regard for the sport you have chosen.  In case the sport become famous or remains mediocre in popularity I will always be at awe every time I will get the chance to watch a game.

Perpek ten ang skor ko sa sport na ‘to!

Now Federer Needs a Bigger Plane

Now that cart is 3 grand slam trophies heavier…

Many said that Roger Federer is no longer in his prime and is on his downhill path concerning his tennis career. Many doubted whether he would gloriously win another major, let alone return to the top of the rankings.

But last night Roger casted all doubts.  Federer won his 7th Wimbledon men’s singles title. It is his 17th grand slam championship and with this victory The Fed returned to the World Number One.

The Fed’s exciting tennis last night further proved that he remains to be the most daring player of his generation.  His strategic aiming for the lines in powerful yet elegant strokes remains.  He continues to push the boundaries between watchful assault and recklessness.

Now I won’t be surprised if Federer will reach his 20th grand slam championship and will need to get a much bigger plane!

The Fed
my long time sports idol

Kongrachulayshons Rudyer Peyderer!

Late for Australian Open 2011

Two months!  That is how late I was to witness one of the most prestigious tennis tournaments in the planet.

While in Sydney, planning our trip to Melbourne, I specifically requested my Pinoy-Aussie friends that I wish to see and visit the arena where the Australian Open is annually being held.  True enough on our second day in Melbourne, my dear friends granted my wish by catching a train and made a short walk along Melbourne Park.  We specifically went to the Rod Laver Arena, the center court of the recently held Australian Open.

a wide walkway bridge within Melbourne Park leading to Rod Laver arena

obyus ba na atat ako? iniwan ko mga kasama ko ng milya milya

thanks to jerico for these superb photos...

We had the opportunity to enter and feel where the superstar players traverse leading to the court in which the walls are lined with pictures of past winners. I was ecstatic trying to control my happy feelings.  The excitement and thrill was more than the festive Jollibee kiddie party.

While inside the lustrous hallway, I severely focused my senses to verify the wall vibrations if there still subsists the reverberating sound of audience cheer from this year’s men’s finals between Murray and Djokovic.

i've written a lot about this legend in this blog. i'm a fan!

thanks guys... for allowing me to have this wish fulfilled...

Of course, me and my friends did not miss the chance to take souvenir photo shoots of this once in a lifetime experience.  A gazillion thanks to my Pinoy-Aussie friend Jerico for the great photos…  This is one breathtaking realization on my bucket list.

 

me with this year's winners

the message wall from the players... encircled are the autographs of the two greatest tennis players of the present generation (Rafael Nadal and Roger Federer)

Huli man daw at magaling, huli pa din… Oberwelming ang piling!

Pekyaw

So the Gods, the odds and karma are again in favor of Manny Paquiao.  His win today against the bigger Antonio Margarito only confirms that Paquiao is the greatest boxer in modern history.  Every time Pacquiao wins a boxing fight, I am always so impressed by how the heavens answer the intense prayers of Nanay Dionisia (his mother).  Also, every time Pacquiao wins a fight, I always remember my first ever encounter with this boxing hero.

It was more than a decade ago when I was still working as the Head of HR in 3-star Royal Palm Hotel (now Lotus Garden Hotel) located in Ermita, Manila.   Pacquiao then was a budding boxing athlete who could hardly speak the English language and was worth less than a million pesos.  He was not yet popular then.  Even the boxing ring announcers during that time could hardly pronounce his name.  He is either introduced as “Pakyeyiyow” or “Pekyaw”

Pacquiao during that year was due to have a boxing fight in Manila with Mexican Gabriel Mira and no five-star hotel (I suppose) agreed to sponsor both fighters’ hotel room so the organizers settled with ours.  Both Pacquiao’s and Mira’s team were billeted in our hotel.

I remember the owner of the hotel instructed me, Mr. Sal Magugat the Resident Manager and Mr. Oca Bangayan the Head of the Security to ensure that Pacquiao be given the most comfortable room.  On the other hand, she further ordered that Mira be assigned in a crib where the noisiest air conditioning unit is situated or in a chamber located on the street-side of the hotel where the earsplitting engines and honking of public utility vehicles (like jeepneys and taxi cabs) can be heard inside the room.  That’s just precisely what we did.

The following day, it was in all broadcast media that Manny Pacquiao retained his WBC Flyweight World Title and was tagged as boxer with the greatest potential to be the next boxing hero of the Philippines.  Let me clarify that Pacquiao did not cheat it’s just that his opponent was puyat (without sleep).

Isang sikretong pati si Pekyaw di alam…

World Cup for Pinas is Bland

In the midst of all the brouhaha about the NBA Finals Game 7, the citizens of the Philippines do not care and do not know that there is an estimated 380,000 foreign fans who travelled and will travel to South Africa to watch the World Cup; there are already 2.9 million tickets sold for its various matches this year; an estimated 3.2 billion US dollars earned by FIFA in media and marketing revenues; and, 60 million estimated number of viewers who will watch the World Cup finals on television.

However, in the Philippines we seem to not belong in the above stated statistics.  It is because majority of us find soccer as a boring low scoring game.  It is because we do not know the names of the players (David Beckham is more of a husband of Posh Spice and more of an underwear model than a soccer player to us).  It is because we do not know its history or the game’s tactics.  We just essentially see 22 men running up and down a huge field chasing and kicking a ball. 

But it is a totally different scenario in Bangkok, Thailand.  I was almost bitten by the World Cup bug during my short stay in Bangkok last weekend.  The international sports all I was exposed to was nothing but World Cup.  It’s everywhere in Bangkok!  You can really feel the South African World Cup fever. 

My first night, I was amazed by the young Caucasian-race foreigners crowding at almost all bars along Khaosan Road watching and cheering on the games flashed on TV screens and digital projectors.  The stores in Siam Square are decorated by massive billboards promoting the games.  The streets are full of promotional materials bearing the various superstar players of the game.  Magazines, newspapers and even restaurant bar’s bulletin boards are headlining the highlights and schedules of the games.  Even at the airport, the travelers waiting for their boarding time are all stuck on the TV screen watching the games. 

I do not understand the underlying excitement that has the world captivated about this sport.  Some even believe that fans riot out of boredom but I totally disagree because if boring sports like soccer lead to aggressive spectators, we must surely witness a lot of blood during a chess match.  I believe that in soccer, it’s just so hard to score that is why tension and excitement builds up which leads to full blast celebration when one player makes a goal.

Filipinos have yet to be mystified by the sport maybe it’s also because it’s like some food from other countries which we think is gross and some things we eat is gross to them.  It’s the way we are raised and what we have grown accustomed to.  We love NBA because we are so American!  I still find soccer to be absolutely boring yet I am mystified as to why it’s so damned intense in other parts of the world like Thailand.

Kung boring sa atin, eh bakit “sipa” ang pambansang laro?

Warning: NBA Finals Game 7 may lead to a Job Disciplinary Action

Even if the economy is bad, a lot of people borrowed large sums of money just to place their bets.  We Pinoys are so immersed on the performance of a bunch of basketball prima donnas chasing, bouncing, passing and shooting a ball on the final game.  Each Pinoy is either a Team Lakers or a Team Celtics.

The upcoming Friday morning is not going to be a walk in the park.  Every working Pinoy citizen (who has work on Friday) has been clogged with a lot of things to update and finish this 4-day work week especially after just having an extended weekend.  But NBA finals game 7 (only the 17th time in the history of NBA) will happen this busy Friday so work on Friday morning will have to wait.  For sure, a lot will not be able to concentrate in their job and would try to peek in their handheld China-made mobile phone with TV they brought along in their place of work while being on duty trying to get a glimpse of the much anticipated final game.

Due to this, I’m sure a lot of employs may be given a disciplinary action because of the following possible office violations: 

  • malingering (for those who called-in-sick and opted to go on half-day to watch the game);
  • negligence (for those who fail to concentrate on their job because of no means to see the game);
  • deliberate slowing down of work (for those who peek into their mobile TV they brought in their place of work);
  • gambling (for those who can’t resist on placing their money bets to their preferred team);
  • deliberate destruction of office tools, materials and/or equipment (for those who can’t resist destroying an office equipment because of emotional outbursts during and/or after the game)

Here is a tip to prevent this.  Office politics will be very important on Friday morning.  For sure your boss is either on your team or comes from the opposing side.  Therefore, be creative!  If you and your boss is a fan of the same team then watching the game with him during office hours won’t be a problem.  However, if you favor the opposing team then sincerely talk him over, bring a hot breakfast or snack for him and remind him that NBA finals game is on and would love to see who would be a better cheerer between you and him during the game.  Furthermore, tell him that you would be willing to finish the pending job on extended working hours before calling it a day.

Gudlak sa maka-Seltiks at maka-Leykers…

The Fashion Evolution of Roger Federer

2003

2003

2004

2004

2005

2005

2006

2006

2007

2007

 

2008

2008

2009

2009

2009 (in vest without the coat)

2009 (in vest without the coat)

 

From a Boy Wonder to a Gold Emperor of Wimbledon!  A lot has raised their eyebrows about the fashion sense of Roger Federer.  For me, his sense of style ads more perspective to his tame personality.  Apart from winning the most number of tennis Grand Slams and being one of the athletes with the most gracious manners, Mr. Federer has made a unique mark for being the best-dressed athlete in modern history.

As long as Roger Federer plays tennis like Roger Federer, no one should question his audacious taste in fashion.  May he wear an armor suit or astronaut spacesuit in his future games of tennis, Mr. Federer will remain as the greatest tennis player ever.  I actually admire his being adventurous in style and fashion.  He is one class act!

Kahit naka tsinelas at sandong butas-butas ang lolo mo, paborito ko pa rin sya.

Phils vs. Phelps

General Info:

  • Phils – a democratic country
  • Phelps – a swimmer

Population:

  • Phils – 94,000,000+
  • Phelps – 1

No. of times participated in the Olympics:

  • Phils – 19 Olympics (since 1924)
  • Phelps – 3 Olympics (since 2000)

No. of athletes sent to Olympics since first participated:

  • Phils – 465 athletes in various sports discipline
  • Phelps – 1 (swimming)

No. of Olympics gold medals:

  • Phils – zero (bokya, itlog, butata)
  • Phelps – 14 (tumataginting)

One elusive gold medal will make our country with 94 million mortals to feel very proud and happy yet Michael Phelps a solo human being actually earned 14 outstanding gold medals.  Ewww! What an irony!

Michael_phelps2

That’s nasty! Tinalo tayo ni Phelps ng bonggang-bongga!

Pasay Tennis Open

For the past years, there has been an upsurge in the number of tennis tournaments being held in key cities and countries around the globe.  Of course there’s the 4 major grandslams: US Open, Australian Open, French Open and Wimbeldon.  Some of the less popular tennis tournaments are:

  • Monte Carlo Open (in Monaco); Generali Open (in Austria);
  • Dubai Duty Free Open; Heineken Open (in New Zealand);
  • Brasil Open; Chennai Open (in India);
  • Estoril Open (in Portugal); Qatar Total Open;
  • Gerry Weber Open and BMW Open (in Germany);
  • Ordina Open and Dutch Open (in the Netherlands);
  • Thailand Open; China Open; Romania Open;
  • Croatia Open; Prague Open (in Czech Republic);
  • Korea Open; and, Tashkent Open (in Uzbekistan)

Tennis All these competitions and others that I failed to mention makes all tennis players – top seeds and "seedless" alike – to be very busy all year round.  Martina Navratilova in her recent Wimbeldon interview was even bothered by the increase of tennis competitions around the globe.  Navratilova expressed that she wanted fewer yet grander games in each event.

Considering that there are a lot of tennis competitions going on, never in the history of world tennis that a Pinoy made his or her mark.  That is why I am suggesting that our country should join the bandwagon of setting up our own tennis open – Pinoy style.  Let’s call it Pasay Open.  To establish prestige, invited players must only be from the top 30 seeds of the year plus the chosen Pinoy players.  To make it more different from the usual tennis open held around the world, there will be no singles or doubles event.  Instead, Pasay Open will only hold triples event.

Our Pinay contenders for the female triple event will be:

  1. Maricel Soriano, the actress with the hardest hitting hands when it comes to "sampalan" (face slapping) scenes in Philippine cinema.  For sure her whipping forehand would equal the forehand strokes of Maria Sharapova and Jelena Jankovic.
  2. Annabelle Rama, the monster mom of celebrity actress Ruffa Gutierrez.  With her mere stare, sisters Serena and Venus Williams will surely get inimidated resulting for them to shut up and stop their annoying grunts every time they hit the ball.
  3. Bea Alonzo, one of the local "pa-cute" actresses with the most beautiful face for aesthetic purposes.  This is to match the beauty, elegance and charm of Elena Dementieva and the world’s number 1 seed Ana Ivanovic.

While the male triple event Pinoy players are composed of:

  1. Manny ‘Pacman’ Pacquiao, the present king of the boxing ring to counterpart the present king of the tennis court, world’s number 1 Roger Federrer.
  2. Brandon ‘The Truth’ Vera, the Pinoy mixed martial arts athlete of UFC or ‘The Animal’ Batista of WWF.  Their body slams on the canvass can equal the racket slams of Marat Safin.  Also, their big bulging muscles and their large butts are bigger than those of Rafael ‘Vamos’ Nadal.
  3. Neil ‘Delicious’ Langit, a true-blue Pasay citizen to match the pretty face and young agility of Novak Djokovic and Andy Murray.

Sige sali na nga ako para merong "home court advantage".

French Week…

Samedi, 07 Juillet 2007

No I have not been to France (how I wish I was), but this week I have been bombarded with a lot of French connections…

1.  I have been following this year’s Wimbeldon tournament and surprisingly Richard Gasquet entered the semi-finals.  As expected, this young Frenchman lost the game to my favorite tennis player and world’s number one, Roger Federrer.

2.  Also, an unlikely finalist of women’s Wimbeldon is a young, chubby yet powerful French lady, Marion Bartoli.  She is this year’s runner-up in Wimbeldon after she had a beating by the American, Venus Williams.

3.  This week’s number one movie is entitled "Ratatouille".  Before it became a movie title, ratatouille is actually a French vegetable soup.  Ratatouille now is a new Disney animated movie set in France being starred by the newest Disney mouse (not Mickey this time).

4.  I was asked by our Executive Sous Chef on how to properly pronounce the French word of fresh vegetables appetizer that will be served in one of the parties of the restautants that we operate.  The French word was "crudites" which Pinoys would expectedly read as "kru-dits" but the right pronunciation is "kru-di-tey".

5.  I have read in the news that the Eiffel Tower of France is a nominee in an internet poll for the New Seven Wonders of the World.

6.  Last night, while watching a French film "Le Fabuleux Dentin D’ Amelie Poulain" my dinner is a big burger with lots and lots of French fries…

Au revoir… A la prochaine…