Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Strategy to Win in Pinoy Henyo!

Filipinos love games - specially those games that involve some kind of creativity. That is why many Filipino viewers are glued to their TV screens when it's time for the PINOY HENYO portion in Eat Bulaga - a popular and longest running TV variety show in GMA 7. 

My mother-in-law and I love watching Pinoy Henyo. This is up to a point where we get angry on the contestant who can't answer a very easy word. Sometimes, my kids keep reminding my mother-in-law to calm down and stop screaming because she might suffer from heart attack. In my case I get frustrated when the contestant are not ready to take the challenge or maybe they don't know how to strategize to come up with the right answer. This is why I wanted to write this article: To come up with a strategy or plan for the contestants to use in playing Pinoy Henyo games.

Pinoy Henyo is a game of deductive reasoning and creativity. It requires understanding of objective facts, logic, geography and language.

The mechanics of the game.  Teams must have 2 players. Player One will do the questioning while Player Two should answer only YES, NO or Can Be. The secret word will be posted at the top of the head of Player One. The team will be given 2 minutes to get the correct word. No body language is allowed. The team can be disqualified for this. If Player Two answers with another word other than Yes, No or Can Be, a 3-seconds penalty shall be given to the team. The clock stops when Player One answers correctly the secret word.

The Strategy. Often times, only 5 categories are being considered to guess the secret word. These are:
  • Person
  • Animal
  • Place
  • Food
  • Thing. 
The team should use logical questioning to get the secret word. Questions should start from the first level and then to the second level until they have all the clues to guess the secret word.

Tip for questioner - be attentive to the answer of your partner. 
Tip for answerer - modulate your voice if the word guessed by the questioner is already near the secret word.

Below are the level of questions for each category:

  1. Name of the person
    1. Celebrities
      1. Actor - drama, comedy, action, has a new movie or tv show
      2. Singer -R&B, Pop, Rock, Ballad, Jazz
      3. Host - Evening show, Afternoon show, Morning show
      4. Dancer -TV show
    2. Politicians - President, Vice President, Senator, Congressman, Mayor, Governor, Cabinet Secretary
    3. Presidents - Still alive / already dead, Gender
    4. Heroes - Gender, Name in bills or coins
    5. Athletes - Basketball, Boxing, Swimmer, Runner, Billiards
    6. Newscasters- Network affiliate, Morning news, Evening news, Afternoon news
  2. Parts of the body
    1. Internal
      1. From shoulder to head - Inside the head, Inside the mouth
      2. From neck to waist
      3. All over the body
    2. External
      1. From shoulder to head
      2. From neck to waist
      3. From waist to feet
      4. From shoulder to hand
General questions: Age, gender

  1. Living in Land
    1. Number of feet - No feet,  Two feet, Four feet, More than 4 feet
    2. Mammals? Amphibian? Reptiles? Insects?
    3. Pet (can be found inside the house?)
    4. Living in the wild or forest or zoo or farm
    5. With horns, furs
  2. Living in water
    1. Fish - size, can be eaten
    2. With shell - crabs, clams
    3. Without shell - jelly fish, star fish
    4. With tentacles -octopus, squid
  3. Living in air
    1. Birds - size(small, large)
      1. as pets?
      2. living in the wild, forest or zoo?
    2. Insect
    1. Fruits
      1. Color, shape, size, taste (sour, sweet)
    2. Vegetables
      1. leafy, color, shape, size
      2. viand
    3. Meat
      1. Pork, chicken, beef, lamb, goat, fish, seafood
      2. Viand
        1. prepared in breakfast, lunch or dinner
        2. with sauce, soup or fried only or with dip sauce
    4. Appetizer
    5. Soup
    6. Dessert
    7. Drinks
    8. Condiments
    1. Inside the country
      1. Luzon
        1. North - central, south, metro manila
          1. province, city, landmark, tourist destination
      2. Visayas - province, city, landmark, tourist destination
      3. Mindanao - province, city, landmark, tourist destination
    2. Outside the country
      1. Asia, Australia, North America, South America, Africa, Middle east, Europe, 
        1. State, city, province, landmark, tourist destination
    1.  Inside the house
      1. Kitchen, bedroom, dining room, living room, toilet
        1. Made of plastic, metal, wood, paper
        2. Electrical appliances
        3. Electronics - gadgets,
      2. Part of the house
      3. Used as decoration
    2. Outside the house
      1. Made of plastic, metal, wood or paper
      2. Kind of transportation - land, water, air
      3. Trees, plants, land formation, water formation
      4. Buildings, monuments, offices, malls, 
      Both player should be attentive to the answer of each. And the best tip in this kind of game is --- PRACTICE.

      Cogito ergo sum (I think, therefore I am)

      Thursday, September 22, 2011

      National Famealy Day! September 26, 2011

      Through Presidential Proclamation 1895, every 4th Monday of September has been officially declared as National Famealy Day - the day recognizing the importance of family meals.

                                                  Video courtesy of Lucky Me

      On this day, family members are encouraged to go home early and have dinner with their family. Parents are reminded to have mealtimes with their children. Family meal is the perfect time to talk about topics directly affecting our children.

      Courtesy of

      Parents should strive to sit down with their children 5 or more times a week be it in breakfast, lunch or dinner because of the following reasons:
      1. Mealtime with the family is where real conversations happen and it provides a sense of security for the children to tell their stories
      2. Teens with frequent dinners with their parents are unlikely to engaged in destructive behavior such as smoking, alcohol drinking, drug addiction and pre-marital sex.
      3. More frequent dinner results in a better academic performance for the children.
      4. Children with strong parental bond results into a less destructive behavior.
      5. Children learn table manners and proper social skills as they see from their parents.
      6. Involving them in the kitchen benefits the children to be more responsible and self-sufficient.
      7. Parents are able to ensure the nutrition of their children because they can see what their children eats and what food their children are fond of eating.
      8. Family meals will bring extra savings. Eating outside cost about 4 times compared to preparing meals at home.
      These reasons are supported by studies and findings from different respectable groups such as:
      • 3 out of 4 teens talk to their parents about their lives during dinner - Center for Addiction and Substance abuse VI, Sept. 2010
      • 84% of teens prefer to have dinner with their parents and teens who have 5 to 7 dinners per week with their family are more open ti talk what going on with their lives  with their parents than those who have less meals with them per week (based on a 2009 study on "The importance of frequent family meals IV" conducted by Columbia University's Center for Addiction and Substance abuse.)

      Positive influence of parents on their children's lives is vital specially now a days when 1 in every 4 Filipino teens have engaged in pre-marital sex based on the study entitled "Youth's Views on Pre-Marital Sex and Unmarried Parenthood" conducted by Zelda C. Zablan, UP Population Institute 1995.

      Video Courtesy fo Lucky Me

      How to make family meals a habit? Some tips you may want to consider:
      1. Make a commitment and stick to it.
      2. Be flexible in selecting meal time. The time must be where most of the family members are available.
      3. See to it that at least 1 parent is available. One is better than none.
      4. Start with 2 meals a week then increase the frequency as you move along.
      5. KIS- Keep it simple.
      6. Make it relaxing and pleasurable occasion. No scolding in front of the table. Don't nag, give a lecture or interrupt. It can leads to children clamming up.
      7. Be a good listener. Make an eye-to-eye contact when one member is talking. It shows your seriousness to listen.
      8. When you need to give an opinion, be as objective as possible. You can share your personal experience on the subject and tell them what you have learned from the experience.
      9. Avoid distractions such as cellphone, TV, newspaper.
      10. When someone is talking, focus on what is being said and not on what your reply will be.
      11. Ask questions to clarify and to make him/her feel he/she is listened to.
      12. Do not take side or be compelled to agree on everything  he/she says.    
      Video courtesy of Lucky Me

      What do you do to make family meals a regular occasion?

      I grew up in a poor family. My parents are not that well educated. Every meal, we need to sit down and eat at the same time. This is to ensure that the food is enough for all of us and there's no left overs. Little they did not know that this set up bring us together. But we are not allowed to talk while eating. My grandparents influenced my parent in doing this. We talk after having dinner. This is our time to discuss, ask questions and clarify things that concern us. Thanks to my parents we, their children grew up without having destructive behaviors. We now have our own family. And I'm trying my best to instill values to my children that will help them be a good person and a good citizen.

      As a father of 3 lovely kids, I make it a point to have every dinner with them. Sunday meals- from breakfast to dinner, all members must sit down and eat meals together. I'm lucky because some relatives help us in listening and giving advice on my kids. Their titas, uncles and grandparents share their experiences and give options or advices on how to deal with their concerns.

      Having frequent family meals may be difficult but it's not impossible. Sadly, as life became more and more difficult and extra-curricular activities ate a big portion of our time, the once sacred meal has taken a backseat. Specially for those OFWs who are not with their family abroad. But there's always a way to do this. One way is to take advantage of the Internet. You can schedule a time for family meal. Pick a time where majority of the family members are free. Set up your web cam (or you can go to an Internet shop), and eat with your family while on cam. I'm sure there's some other ways to do this and you are smart enough to figure it out.

      What about you? What do you do to make family meals a regular occasion?

      This year's National Famealy Day is on Monday, September 26. Mark your calendar now and pledge to eat with your family!

      Bon Appetit! Enjoy your meal with your family!
      Cogito ergo sum (I think, therefore I am)

      Tuesday, September 20, 2011

      PhP 2-B OWWA Loan for Overseas Filipino Workers

      Do you want to be an Overseas Filipino Workers FOREVER?

      No. I don't.

      Don't you want to come "HOME" to the Philippines and spend the rest of your life with your families and loved ones?

      Yes I do. I definitely do.

      As an OFW, these questions always come into my mind specially when I feel homesick. Question like, why am I here? When will I go "home"? - are left unanswered in my mind. Yes, I have a plan on how long should I stay here but I don't have a plan on what to do in the Philippines after leaving my work overseas.

      That is why when I heard of the Php 2-B Reintegration Program of OWWA and I had my vacation last August, I scheduled to go to the nearest OWWA regional office and inquire about the program.

      I went to OWWA regional office here in Laguna, located in Halang, Calamba.

      I had an one-hour briefing in order to fully understand the program as well as the terms and conditions of the loan.

      Here are the questions that I asked and their answers to my questions:

      Q1. Who can avail of the OFW Reintegration Fund program?
      A1. All current and former OFWs (and their immediate family members) who are OWWA members either by compulsory or voluntary. Compulsory members are those OFW who processed their contract at POEA either individually or through their respective agencies Voluntary members are those OFWs who registered on job site overseas.

      Q2. How much can I borrow from OWWA?
      A2. A member can borrow from Php 300,000 to Php 2 million depending on the nature of the business and his/her capability to pay. The Land Bank of the Philippines or Development Bank of the Philippines will evaluate the applications and they will decide how much a member (or his/her dependent) can borrow. the basis of approving the loan can be fully explained by LBP or DBP which will happen in the business orientation seminar.

      Q3. How long can I pay my loan and how much is the interest rate?
      A3. The loan may be paid for 5 years with a grace period of 2 years. The interest rate is 7.5% per annum.

      Q4. Any other requirements to avail the loan program?
      A4. The OFW or his/her dependent must present a proof of previous or current OWWA membership. You can bring POEA-LAC stamp passport, information sheet from OWWA, POEA-attested Employment Certificate (OEC) or E-Card. Upon verification of your membership, OWWA will then issue a certification of membership. The borrower must attend a business orientation seminar from any regional offices. This will be scheduled based on the number of possible applicants. In this seminar, the borrower will learn to formulate a feasibility study - an important part in putting up a business. The seminar will also be attended by representative of LBP or DBP to answer any questions regarding the terms and conditions of the loan and the criteria on approving the loan amount.   

      Q5. Is the loan applicable to new businesses only?
      A5. The loan can be given to new and existing business. If you already have a small business and wanted to expand it, you can still avail of the loan. As long as you meet the minimum requirement.

      I would like to thank our President Benigno Simeon Aquino III for launching this program last June 2011. This program can really help us OFWs. It opens up another window where we can see another opportunity to give a better future for our families. By running our own business, we can control our financial destinies. Not like today, we are dependent on our employers. Our families will also not depend much on our remittances as a source of income. As we develop our business, we can be dependent and will no longer be working abroad.

                                              Steps in acquiring loan from OWWA. Video is courtesy of philstarcom.

      When I have my next vacation, I will attend the seminar and will seriously consider putting up even a small business. As I understand going into business requires discipline, perseverance, diligence and the desire to learn the business.

                                An OFW who availed of the program sharing her experience. The video is courtesy of philstarcom. 
      How about you? Do you have the guts to take this challenge for the benefit of your families? Think seriously about it! Remember, YOU have the POWER to CHOOSE!

      If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to write in the comment box. For other details, click OWWA to go to their website.


      Cogito ergo sum (I think, therefore I am)

      Monday, September 19, 2011

      Online SSS Membership Enrollment

      Have you tried the SSS (Social Security System) Online Membership registration?

      SSS President and CEO Emilio de Quiros Jr. is encouraging every SSS members to register online so they could check their status in terms of contributions and loan payments. Click SSS to go to their website.

      Members enrolled online can regularly check and review their contributions especially those planning to retire so as to avoid delays in case they encounter related irregularities.

      To register without delay, be ready with the following:
      1. SSS ID no.
      2. Full name as reflected in your SSS ID
      3. Birth date
      4. Email address
      Upon submitting the above information, you will receive an email confirming your email address. After which, you will have to complete your profile details.

      If your currently employed or household help, please provide your 13-digit Employer's SSS ID No. If your not currently employed, also click Employed but you have to provide the 13-digit Employer's SSS ID No. of your latest employer in the Philippines.

      You will also be asked if you are a pensioner or not. If yes, you have to provide your savings Account Number (where pension is deposited) or any Check Number of pension received.

      If your self-employed, voluntary member, non-working spouse or overseas contract worker (current SSS contributor), please provide the RS5 Receipt No. of paid SSS contribution at least 6 months prior to the current date.

      Accept the terms and condition and click the Submit button. If successful, you will see the screen shot below.

      Wait for the confirmation of registration and your password in your email. That's it!!!

      If you have any queries, you can call SSS at +6329206401 or email them at

      Kindly post your questions and comments in the comment box.

      Cogito ergo sum (I think, therefore I am) - without wax

      US Embassy Launches Visa Blog

      Do you have a pending US Visa application? Do you want to know the status of your visa application? Do you have any inquiries regarding your visa application? Or are you seriously considering getting a visa from the US? Do you want to know the requirements in securing a US visa? If yes, you are in luck!
      The US embassy has announced the launching of its official visa blog – VISAtisfied Voyager (click the underlined to go to VISAtisfied Voyager).
      The blog aims to provide timely and relevant information to Filipinos interested in familiarizing themselves about non-immigrant and immigrant US visa processes.
      Every week, blog posts will examine topics that are relevant to visa applicants. Readers are welcome to post comments and questions about applying for a USA visa.

      The blog will also serves a venue for visa USA applicants in providing feedback and sharing experiences after they have successfully applied for a U.S. visa.
      Embassy Information Officer Yolly de Guzman said that the blog will be moderated by a team of visa experts from the U.S. Embassy’s Non immigrant and Immigrant Visa units and inquirers can expect a quick response to their questions pertinent to visas.

      With the launch of VISAtisfied Voyager, the U.S. Embassy hopes to start a dialogue with applicants, providing them with up-to-date news and information.
      A press release issued by the Embassy clarified that it will not be able to respond to queries about individual visa applications on the VISAtisfied Voyager blog. 

      Good luck to your application!!!