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Hire an expert, says Poirot

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I’m twisting my mind over a simple short story. Agatha Christie’s short story, The Missing Will , follows the deduction of fictional Belgian private detective Hercule Poirot after receiving a request to find a missing will.  The request came from a lady orphan with “book knowledge,” or someone who went through formal education. Her late uncle’s first will states that she uses her mind to find his final will that entrusts all his properties to her. Otherwise, what he has will be donated to various institutions. The lady uses her mind—she goes to M. Poirot for help! And M. Poirot kindly acknowledges this. What is funny, though, is that the conventional-minded and unschooled uncle mocked his niece’s education. She hires an expert when he, too, has hired experts—masons, builders—to form a puzzle for his will hunt. So what is education, then? I’m twisting my mind like that. * * *

My Life in Seven Days #7 - #10: Aftermath of Typhoon Odette, A Personal Experience

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Typhoon Odette hit Central Visayas in the Philippines on December 16. Before that, we celebrated my husband’s birthday on the 13th with a cake and a kilo of lechon. I asked Billy of 96.3 WRock to greet him, and he did. My husband woke up just in time to hear it. On another day, Jac escaped from his leash and made a good dash back and forth about four times before we successfully clasped the leash on him. My book mail also arrived on the 14th. I also made graphics for a pull-up banner for my sister who planned to sell K-pop-related merchandise at Parkmall for three days (later canceled and postponed upon news on Odette). Really, they were regular, sunny days. Then typhoon Odette hit us. Where we are in Cebu City, rain fell helter-skelter and the wind was savage. It was night. Electricity went off then. My husband and I worked hard for hours to keep the flood from entering our living space. Jac-Jac, who was sleeping, woke up wet and confused and scared. Odette has already plucked parts

“Birth of a flag”

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One of the substantial pieces in the 1943 souvenir edition of Free Philippines magazine was “Birth of a flag” (p. 95) written by Pura Villanueva Kalaw, which shared the experiences of Filipino women coming together to sew and make the Philippine flag that would be raised during the proclamation of the Philippine Republic.  Ms. Kalaw wrote that after learning from the Sunday Tribune that the PCPI (Preparatory Committee for Philippine Independence) had met to discuss the work of its different committees, women, including herself, approached PCPI President Jose P. Laurel to discuss the Filipino women’s involvement in the preparation, something that Mr. Laurel (who would eventually become the third president of the country) welcomed with graceful tact. “You are the first women to come to me in order to profess an interest for our constitution. You must never for a moment forget that we have the progress of the Filipino woman in mind and we shall not permit such progress to be retarded. R

My Life in Seven Days #6

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December 5, 2021, Saturday Just a haiku for today: the elysian fields glowed so brightly while pouring melancholic rain December 6, 2021, Monday Today was my mama-in-law’s birthday. Contrary to stories I heard from long-ago friends about mothers-in-law being frustrating, my story with my mama-in-law is one filled with blessing and gratitude. I’m happy that she is a fighter, fighting to overcome her physical limitations one day at a time. So her birthday today was special. And it was only right that we celebrate it however humbly. Big thanks to my sister-in-law for preparing a small but delicious salo-salo . I announced on my Facebook account that I would be giving away 10 books to clean my book space. My former colleague at SkyCable, Nova, asked for them. I will have them delivered via Maxim next week after some book cleaning.  December 7, 2021, Tuesday Every day is a demon-slaying battle. I strive to be loyal to my self-imposed therapy to get better: praying (I subscribe to YouVersion

“Women in Journalism”

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A 4-page chapter titled “Women in Journalism” (pp. 171-174) was included in the 1933 self-published book, History of Journalism in the Philippine Islands , by Jesus Z. Valenzuela, B.J., M.A. The author was an instructor in English and Journalism at the University of the Philippines (UP).  The early publications targeting women, with sections on morals, fashions, literature, and history, were founded by men. The author noted that the “first woman journal in the strict sense of the term” and the first paper that was “genuinely feminine” was El Hogar (The Home), a weekly published on January 11, 1893; founded by Da. Amparo Gomez de la Serna, a Spaniard; written by women for women; and contained scientific and literary articles. Despite its sincere public “bow” in its first publication, it only lasted a few months, which the author surmised as a result of the public not yet prepared for women at the helm of things.  La Moda Filipina (Philippine Fashion), which came out on March 15, 1893,