Friday, September 28, 2007

Reward or Ransom?

There’s an interesting situation playing itself out in the “Letters to the Editor” sections of the islands dueling newspapers and I wanna know what you think about it. It centers around a certain canine by the name of “Jake”. It seems that this poor pooch was “lost” some weeks ago and the owner, who happens to be working as a public defender, offered a reward of some $200 for his safe return. It’s important to note that PAWS, which is also a fellow blogspotter, was the organization which was used to promote this incentive.

Well after a few days the dog was apparently returned unharmed to his rightful owner and love filled the air and all was right with the world. That is until a couple of days ago when a local high school teacher announced through a letter to the editor that his niece was the one who had “found” the dog and that she had yet to receive her promised reward. He says “The Good Samaritan lady who found and provided shelter and care for Jake for at least four days is my niece. I was appalled to find out from her yesterday that the promised reward has not been given, and her repeated calls to PAWS and the Public Defender’s Office has gone unanswered.”

Then today the story got even juicier when the owner wrote his own letter to the editor claiming that the pup was not in fact lost but had been stolen. He claims “Your niece is not entitled to the reward because she “took” Jake, she didn't “save” Jake.” The owner goes on to say “PAWS had nothing to do with my decision not to pay the reward and therefore should not have been implicated by your letter to the editor.”

So the question I pose to you oh great all knowing and highly opinionated public is this, is the owner justified in not paying the reward or should he fork over the cash?

Now before you offer your scholarly insights I would suggest reading both of the letters to the editor yourself. They can be found on the Saipan Tribune website under the title “A failed promise” and “What would a Good Samaritan really do?” Now…may the banter begin.

Quote of the Day:

“Don't worry so much about your self-esteem. Worry more about your character. Integrity is its own reward.”

-Unknown

***************UPDATE*******************

Monday, October 1, 2007

In today's Marianas Variety the uncle of the girl who found "Jake" wrote a rebuttal to the lawyers letter, it definitely offers a different take on things and is worth checking out if you're still following this little piece of island drama.

Monday, September 24, 2007

MP's and Blogger Play from the "potential cool kid"

What does the MP stand for anyway?

I know I need to update this thing more often but I must admit that I haven't been online much in the past few days. I realize that this is truly hard to believe but hear me out because it gets worse...you see I must also come clean and with great trepidation admit that I actually picked up a hard copy of a publication and read it...(gasp)

I know I can't believe that I did that either I mean what was I thinking? I never read anything that I ever have to hold in my hand, what with all that pesky page turning and the ever present peril of a paper cut, go ahead and scoff if you will but those things hurt.

So what could have caused me to lay aside my high technology and actually reach down and pick up such a relic of communication? Well I'll tell you...it was the surprisingly clever MP magazine. Yes I must say that while I initially approached it with some disdain I was soon enraptured by the quality of the content held within its bindings.

The articles were interesting and well written (something I had come to accept as nonexistent here) and of course the photographs were virtually stunning. I especially like the article by William "Bill" Stewart about Saipan in the 1970's, as well as Ed Propst's candid piece on his journey to his maternal homeland of the Philippines.

I even found myself briefly filled with some hope for the upcoming election as I read the interviews of five non-incumbent congressional contenders. (What you mean we may actually have a choice besides the same old status quo politicians??)

The underwater photographs of the barracuda and eagle rays were splendid. And the "Are you a Local?" quiz was laugh out loud funny. And I'm proud to say that I scored an 8 out of 10 so I barely squeezed in as a bonified local...though I missed the question about "chenculi" so I suppose I still have retained some of my haoleness.


But seriously, all in all I found it to be a great publication and well worth the $3.50 at the newsstand (or at the local Joeten since we don't really have any newsstands) and this coming from someone who thought for sure he'd be laughing it off as another Saipan misadventure. You can also find them on the web at www.marianaspride.com.

Which brings me to my next burning question...What exactly does the MP in our address stand for? I mean I know the magazine is going for the whole MP equals Marianas Pride thing, which is cool, but what really does it mean? I've heard such postulations as Marianas Pacific or even Mid Pacific, but does anyone really know for sure? If you know or even if you just have a good guess leave a comment and enlighten us.

Who knew randomass photos could be so compelling?

Have you Blogger Played today? If you haven't, be forewarned it's addicting and it can be shockingly time consuming. What I'm euphemistically referring to is a new feature on blogspot called, surprisingly enough, Blogger Play. As they explain on their website:

Blogger Play will show you a never-ending stream of images that were just uploaded to public Blogger blogs. You can click the image to be taken directly to the blog post it was uploaded to, or click “show info” to see an overlay with the post title, a snippet of the body, and some profile information about the blogger who uploaded it. We also wrote a Blogger Play FAQ with more information.

I must've spent an hour looking at all those arbitrary photos. And you can't help but click on the occasional one because you just have got to see what kind of a blog that whatever it is goes with…take this one for example:


Now if your curiosity gets the best of you and you just have to see who would post a picture of what could conceivably be a bunch of birth control pills (you gotta love the pun in that)…well then click here…but be warned you’ll probably not be able to figure out what they are, unless you speak like Swedish or something…though whatever her nationality she is pretty hot.

Milestones

And yes I have passed yet another blog milestone as I have now officially been linked to the prestigious "Saipan and other random hypercritical thoughts" blogsite. The Great Bald One referred to me as having "potential" and though I know I do not post near often enough to match His Highness I appreciate the link indubitably.

"M.P." Quote of the Day:

Amanda to Sam (after she finds out about Billy's "pass" at Connie): "Get used to the fact that even the most perfect, sensitive guy is bottom line: a dog. I mean, he might be a well-behaved dog but he still howls at the moon and grabs the first leg he can get a hold of."

...can anyone guess what "M.P." that quote comes from?

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Saipan Light Show and The Bell

Last night we had a splendid lightning show here on Saipan. It's actually a rather rare occurrence for the island. I mean we get plenty of rain showers and the occasional flash of lightning but this was the kind of light show I remember seeing down south after a particularly steamy summer afternoon.

So, after sitting for awhile watching the sky dance overhead I decided to try and capture some of the show. I grabbed my video camera and rolled tape for about 15 minutes and here's what I came up with. Don't worry...it's been edited for time I've slowed the speed down and put in a couple freeze frames for effect, but aside from that it's all mother nature, no special effects required.

Saipan Light Show



Oh and if you recognized the song and can tell me it's relationship to Lightning then you'll win the Grand Prize. If you wanna take a stab at the trivia leave a guess in the comments section and I'll tell you if you're wrong or right.

The Bell

There's also a rumor swirling around out there that one of my favorite fast food joints and pretty much my only reason for going to Guam was in fact going to be making an appearance on Saipan. That's right folks, there's yet another rumor that Taco Bell will be opening its doors on our lovely little slice of paradise.

Now, I wish I had a nickle for every time I've heard this rumor in the past 8 years (then I could actually afford something there) but this time it genuinely seems possible. The reason for my increased hope this time is that there's been some unexplained construction at the local KFC and the story goes that our beloved Taco Bell will be housed in the same storefront as the Colonel. So, keep your fingers crossed and if it turns out to be true then I'll see you at the Grand Opening with my chihuahua "Here lizard, lizard, lizard" t-shirt on.

Taco Bell Sauce Packet Quote of the Day:

"At night the sporks pick on me."

...can you believe there's actually a website dedicated to Taco Bell Sauce packet quotes....

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

We Took Time to Remember...Did You?

The students and faculty of Kagman Elementary School took time from their regular classes this morning to remember the tragic events which transpired on this day, September 11th back in 2001. It seems like only yesterday to many of us but to the children, some of whom weren't even born yet, it feels like ancient history. It's important that we remind them of this cataclysmic day because after all, the world which they will inherit was drastically altered in a matter of hours that clear September morning just six short years ago.

video

Quote of the Day:

"No matter how hard we try words simply cannot express the horror, the shock, and the revulsion we all feel over what took place in this nation on Tuesday morning. September 11 will go down in our history as a day to remember."

-Billy Graham

Friday, September 7, 2007

From The Desk Of...

I looked down at my desk this morning and saw this, thought it was humorous and decided to share it with the world. My students were all like, "Mr. Redd, why are you laughing at the office supplies?" Ai adai, I love it when the Chinese decide to write things in English on their products.

NOTE: No paper was harmed in the making of this blog!

You may need to click on the image to make it big enough to read.

In all fairness though, my wife and I pulled up behind a pickup truck with a couple of local boys in it, one of whom was wearing a baseball cap with a Chinese character on it and I heard my wife snicker. So I asked what was so funny and she goes, "well that boy's hat says 'arm' in Chinese."

Whoa...on a totally unrelated note, some little kid just puked in front of my classroom...don't worry I'm not going to post a picture of it, nor am I going to have the steamed fish with lemon butter sauce now either. (cringe)

Speaking of school...I had what could possibly be called a uniquely Saipan conversation with a couple of students this afternoon. I had two 5th grade girls in my class sitting next to each other with the same last name and I asked them "Ok which one of you is Sally and which one is Sandy" to which one of them replied "I'm Sandy, she's Sally...she's my auntie" Of course I (ala Steele on Saipan) said "No you must mean cousins" but the girl was like "no she's really my auntie" and slowly Mr. Redd caught on. But seriously can you imagine being in the 5th grade with your aunt? That would be so trippy...but that's why I love Saipan.


Student Quote of the Day:

"Mr. Redd, why are you taking pictures of your desk?"

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Humpday Mania in the year 1701

What’s up with Wednesdays? It’s driving me nuts, my knees are weak, palms are sweaty, (this is starting to sound like an Eminem song) I’m wracking my brain trying to think of something to write about but it’s gotta be quick, I’ve got to post something before…The Surge.

Now you’re probably thinking, “this guy must have had a little crack with his microwaved Jimmy Dean Sausage Egg and Cheese Breakfast Croissant this morning, What is he talking about?” Well I’ll tell you…The Surge is a disturbing trend I’ve noticed in the blogosphere which occurs every Wednesday. Like a tsunami wave nearing the shore, the number of visitors traversing blogland starts as a slow trickle on Saturday but quickly builds as the week progresses only to come surging in mid-week before receding for the weekend. Apparently, for all you bloggers out there, every Wednesday you’d better have some new material because that’s when everyone decides to get online and check blogs. And no, I’m not just out there making wild accusations, I’ve got cold hard data to back me up on this.

It first came to my attention whilst I was perusing my Extreme Tracker account, which keeps track of my site traffic. The data showed that many more people visited my site on Wednesdays, when I’d get my highest numbers, as opposed to Saturdays, when I’d get my lowest numbers. But then I noted that the numbers proceeding Wednesday gradually increased while the numbers for the days after mid-week incrementally decreased. So that in graph form these numbers create a perfect wave pattern, and not just once in awhile but consistently week after week.

"Putting the Hump in Humpday"

Over the last three weeks 68 people have visited

my blog on a Wednesday.

Thinking that maybe my site was just an anomaly I quickly surfed to a few other blogs which include the Extreme Tracker only to find the exact same trend, though granted with much larger numbers than my measly crumbs. Therefore, one could truly call Wednesday “hump day” and have some concrete data to back them up.

When I queried a friend as to why they thought this should be so, they said that of course most people are out and about on the weekends. To which I replied “oh, um, yes of course, I’d heard a rumor about people with lives who actually do leave the house on Saturdays”…of course I’d assumed that this was just an old wives tale…I mean who’d want to leave the house when you could sit all day at a computer with the world at your fingertips.

Anno 1701

And when I say that I have the world at my fingertips I mean that quite literally. You see to escape the realities of rolling blackouts, invading feds and possible payless paydays I dive back into a time when the world was a simpler place, namely the year 1701.

Through the wonders of modern technology, and a PC game called Anno 1701, I’m able to be named governor of my own island, given 50,000 gold pieces and a charter from the queen admonishing me to go forth in her name and conquer. You’d be surprised at how addicting this can become not to mention how many hours of your life you can fritter away in the pursuit of glory for queen and country.

In a desperate attempt to rationalize the acres of time I’ve spent on this I will say that not only is this game just downright fun but it’s also quite educational. Through struggling to keep your population happy you learn quite a bit about important concepts like economics and politics. Things like building efficient trade routes, the right amount of supply to meet demand, the basic human needs of faith, education and power all must be considered in order for your civilization to be successful.

And while I’m becoming pasty white from lack of sun, I am apparently quite an auspicious ruler, having taken my people from mere peasants and pioneers to a conglomerate of wealthy merchants and aristocrats. And with a few more deft political maneuvers I hope to succeed in achieving independence from the crown without so much as a shot being fired…now if I could just figure out how to impress the wife with that…

She seems to think there's no validity to this type of experience but I assured her that indeed there was. What if, for example, I found myself on an island, thousands of miles from a mainland, which had been colonized and over time had decided that they too wanted to become independent of the meddling federal gov...er I mean...monarcy, and they needed somone to guide them to a bloodless revolution...well then I'd be their man...in theory, of course.

Geez, I just realized my past two posts have been about video games…I’m such a dork. But be sure and tune in next hump day, since we know that’s when you all do your blog checking, when I’ll compare and contrast the intriguing elements of Dungeons and Dragons versus those of Magic: The Gathering.

Definition of the Week:

hump day (huhmp daye)

n.

1. An English language idiom for Wednesday, a reference to making it through half of the week as getting "over the hump".

2. The middle of the work week, Wednesday, or the beginning of the weekend, depending on your level of addiction to alcohol.