Showing posts with label Valentine's. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Valentine's. Show all posts

Friday, May 10, 2013

Parks, open spaces and dating options

It was Valentine's Day again and rather than write about why the Clairvoyant and I didn't necessarily celebrate this cheesy day I am writing about ideas on dating. Call it unsolicited advice but it seems that in this age of materialism and malling, of social networks and android phones, old fashioned activities like taking a stroll along the park or going somewhere except the mall is lost to many of the current generation.

We are quite fortunate that we have advanced means of communication. Couples who are geographically apart such as those with loved ones abroad no longer have to sulk as they wait (eagerly) for a letter, a greeting card or an expensive long distance call. With the internet and advanced telecommunications, there are so many options now for long distance relationships (LDR) to be established and nurtured. Among the more popular options now include Facebook, Skype, BBM, and the various promos (e.g., Unlitext, Unlicalls, etc.) now available for texting and calling offered by the competing telecom companies. Yet there is still a need to have actual contact (face to face? EB or eyeball?) rather than the relatively impersonal chat online.

It's sad that Metro Manila and many other cities in the country have few parks where people can enjoy the outdoors. Most people now go to the malls. Likely, this might be to window shop and during summers, perhaps to enjoy the airconditioning of the mall. In the smaller towns in the provinces, the town plazas are still the places for a stroll. And there are some cities that have taken steps toward walkability including Marikina (Riverbanks area) and Iloilo (river front). Quezon City prides itself with the Quezon Memorial Circle, Parks and Wildlife and the La Mesa Eco Park. Manila still has Rizal Park, the promenade stretching along Roxas Boulevard and parts of Intramuros (Fort Santiago). But these examples are more the exceptions than part of the norm. We need more parks and other open spaces where people could take a walk or just find a place where they could sit and perhaps spend some time reading a book or simply doing nothing. I read somewhere that parks and open spaces serve as lungs for a city.

The University of the Philippines campus in Diliman, Quezon City is one of few places in Metro Manila where the public can enjoy open spaces. UP's Sunken Garden and Lagoon are havens for faculty, staff, students and other people coming to UP to enjoy these public spaces. On Sundays, the Academic Oval is closed to motorized traffic and more people flock to the campus to walk/stroll, cycle, play games/sports, or picnic.

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Thursday, February 14, 2013

Formula for love

A friend posted a formula on Facebook together with a simple instruction to copy and paste it on Google. Hitting the enter button will instantly give the result shown in the screencap below.

(sqrt(cos(x))*cos(300x)+sqrt(abs(x))-0.7)*(4-x*x)^0.01, sqrt(6-x^2), -sqrt(6-x^2) from -4.5 to 4.5

You can actually change part of the formula to re-size the heart.
This probably proves that math can be fun and definitely can be used to express feelings or emotions. Happy Valentine's Day!
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Monday, February 15, 2010

Valentine's Day memories

The day of hearts has always been a curious one for me. Falling on my birth month, it is supposedly part of what I consider my luckiest days and I have my share of stories for this day. I still remember that during grade school (and I attended an exclusive school) we had an activity in arts class where we each made a Valentine's card for our mothers. Our teachers from different grades had us bring a variety of materials including art and oslo papers, crayons, cray-pas, water color, paste/glue or whatever was available back then that allowed us to create cards by which we were to express our love to our mothers. A standard exercise in early grade school was to cut paper in the shape of hearts and to write a short message inside stating why we loved our mothers. It's not difficult to believe that many of us took these exercises quite seriously. After all, it was graded before we even got to take our projects home to give to our mothers.

High school was quite different considering our transition to puberty and adolescence had significantly affected the way we behaved, the way we thought. Valentine's Day would never be the same as those during grade school when the innocence of youth and the concept of puppy love seemed to blend in quite nicely. Crushes during grade school were quite "harmless" in that they were partly dismissed as a feeling associated with our limited exposure to the opposite sex. After all, it was still a time when 5th and 6th graders did not have girlfriends, in a manner of speaking. In high school there were so many changes including our better appreciation of girls and the female form. (Of course, there were some in our batch who adapted the female form but that's another story.)

I have fond memories of Valentine's Day parties (not the underground soirees that I have yet to write about - as soon as I could put my mind into it) in our village. Our first crushes after all were neighborhood girls, many of whom were childhood friends and were even school bus mates. I must admit that I had my share of crushes back then and have the same people as friends to this day though I have lost contact with many of them (thank you Facebook for renewing some contacts). I don't remember though that I composed Valentine's greetings or wrote to these neighborhood crushes. For me, back then it was so awkward to express something in an environment where everybody seemed to know everybody else. It was a small subdivision where we lived in Cainta and my crushes' mothers were probably my mother's friends. More "terrifying" for a young man in those days were the thought of facing a crush's father (who probably played tennis or served at the chapel with my father).

These days when I read about people as young as I were back in the day getting into tough situations (e.g., getting pregnant, eloping, etc.) I have difficulty understanding what big changes have been effected in our lives. Has our values system really changed? Is the innocence we knew back then already gone today?