Philippines Travel Stories, Page 19

Saving Face

Saving Face
One of the greatest aspect of Asia is the concept of saving face, and at the same time one of the worst social behaviors of Asia.

I consider the majority use of “Saving Face,” as being the epitome of mass dysfunctional social behavior, while a small portion is glorius appreciation of peaceful relationships.

I wonder if it was always this way… I mean what I feel is the majority...

Manila, Ermita Philippines
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey

Saving Face in male - female relationships is great, there is no pushing and shoving, no picking arguments, there is always an attempt to agree, even when they totally disagree. It is incredibly hard to escalate an argument to a level of violence between two acquaintances.

On the other hand, saving face is absurdly used for dysfunctional reasons. To understand, think about the word function, a relationship that works functions, it works.

I have changed this quote from the to focus on Saving Face.

“the confidence of society in a person's moral character, while (saving face) represents social perceptions of a person's prestige. For a person to maintain face is important with (Asians) social relations because face translates into power and influence and affects goodwill.”

What is the problem, this all sounds great, in a society that does not insult, any and all people in the society can lie, or create situations that are dead-ends, there will be no telling them they are lying, everyone overlooks all lies, by default making lies easy to tell.

On the simple level, an Asian can tell you they will come over for a meeting and never show, a simple problem, yet annoying.

On the worst and horrible side of this saving face problem, they feel nobody has the right to say,
“You are a liar.”

This allows lies to flow like water, there is no need to in the least be honest or forthright, there are no repercussions. Separating the truth from the lies becomes and perpetual problem.

I am often sad, I know I am jaded, I like Asians, they are not going to make wave, and life is easy, like a well-behaved servant. On the other hand, I never trust Asian, never turn my back, and continuously double check, and never allow them to catch me checking.

If they realize I am checking, testing, they feel as if I do not trust them, and that I must… trust them, I am not suppose to check them.

Trust is never earned, while with the concept of saving face, trust is assumed even though everyone knows they cannot trust the other person.

I have experience the concept of Saving Face, it becomes bewildering difficult to work with Asians, because how do you say,
“You did this wrong, you need to fix it.”

Extreme roundabout diplomacy is needed to not offend, and to allow the irresponsible person to save face, or end the relationships, or give up, which is the easier route.

This quote indicated, to never be confrontational, and I enjoy the number of lies I get to listen too, or ignoring of real problems, the opposite of functional behavior.
“Filipino humor is rarely mean. Because of their strong sense of hiya (shame), Filipinos go to great lengths to be polite. Just as a problem should never be discussed directly, humor, likewise, should never be confrontational.”

I suppose, you want a good argument find a German, if you want a nice easy going, never be serious situation, find an Asian.

I have no idea how to be perfect without a few arguments, however passive agressive behavior has a hay day.

Saving Face

PHP Coders Wanted

PHP Coders Wanted
If you are from India, Eastern Europe, are energetic, and you brain seems to work too fast to talk, then or need PHP Coders.
Internet Jobs Online, Work at Home

Manila, Ermita Philippines
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey

We are searching for PHP Coders, maybe Boy Genius from India is calling them PHP Developers, whatever we call them, they cannot be scared when they hear the about databases online and PHP coding.

Yesterday, Boy Genius, now back in India was to put an advertisement in what a newspaper I think called the Times of India for a month. I expect to run the advertisement for about three months to one year as we need about 5-10 PHP coders.

This is fun, the way outsourcing is meant to work, not the way it does work, but the way it is supposed to work. If you talk with companies that have outsourced work to India or other countries, you will hear some nightmare stories. Moreover, for sure, this is an extremely complicated and confusing thing to do; outsourcing is is only for a person that has personally traveled in India for about six months and understand just how different the culture really is from say the USA culture.

We developed a sloppy looking job application form on the internet that works; it is full of back end control panel information. Sorts by job, by country, by date of application and automatically sends out test. We have used it to hire a couple of data entry people, however PHP workers are actually a lot harder to hire.

We need to test them, so we have a way to set up test databases; we give an easy PHP assignment, then see if they can do it in two days. It is an evaluation of speed and process, to see if they can spin the wheels of technology fast as needed to become a player.

All this is cool, too much fun, and what is great, we can hire some PHP Coders to clean up all the half-done, need to finish project to make the transition from a good site, to a great site.

I tend to laugh at other websites, they always want to brag about how nice their sites are, and I keep trying to say, make sure you know how to make money before you spend it.

This is what the whole failure was all about, thousands of companies trying to ramp up non-profitable companies, that had no clue how to make money. I do not need a clue; we are making money, so life is good.

This is another kicker; we are looking for India workers who do not live in Bangalore, Hyderbad, or Mumbai. We really want those geniuses sitting at their desk in some remote village to apply, we want them to really understand, we are not a brick and mortar company, and we are really on the internet.

If you look at this site, and look at the Job Application and wonder why we need more coders, then go figure, this is why we need them... hehehe

Internet Jobs Online, Work at Home

PHP Coders Wanted

Too Clever to Work

Too Clever to Work
I see a malady of the computer, mobile phone, blackberry, PDA, Ipod and all the other toys on the market world.

They make the normal Joe highly ineffective.

Manila, Ermita Philippines
Sunday, August 10, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey

I just spent the last hour trying to tweak the Firefox, Explorer Tab system and this new Bit Defender Virus program. The do not work in the background, these systems require I play with them, tweak, configure, and work to make them work together with the other programs on the computer. This would never work for my Mother, normal person, she would just never figure out how it worked, and never learn how to optimize it, she is just a normal person on computers.

I remember asking a secretary I had to give a warning to a tenant,
“Pay your rent, or we file for eviction in five days.”

An hour later, I came unglued, and typed it on a normal typewriter.

The girl was fixing, altering, changing, changing, moving around, it was nuts, I said,
“This tenant is becoming the enemy, I do not care if they like how I deliver the message, and I am just being nice sending it, it is not a need.”

She did not get it, she was clueless to understand, spending and hour writing a warning letter was silly, plus very expensive.

Every hour, of every day, of every week of the year, I see people playing with their Mobile Phone, their Blackberry, their Computers, their Cameras, their Blog formats, their page layout. If it is technical, I want to avoid these people, they want to sit around and configure things, play with the computers, and adjust indefinitely.

I just recommended to my friend to buy a Blackberry, I know he does not want one, and will not use it. However, the way the non-effective, get nothing done managers of the planet evaluate employees is by their toys they use or do not use, or play on and this is the sad part, 90 percent of the time is play.

I continuously have people ask me how I blog so much, I say,
“I do not play around, I just get on the computer, type the blog and post it, you are having trouble waking up in the morning.”

There is a personal satisfaction in being clever, the people of planet earth want to be thought of as clever, and in the end, I could care less, I want them to be effective.

I fear there is so much bureaucracy in most USA businesses; I am not sure how they can survive when competing again China.

The USA only saving grace is that people in China are now buying all the toys and becoming highly ineffective also.

Too Clever to Work

Sending an ATM Bank Card Overseas

Sending an ATM Bank Card Overseas
My parents recently sent me a debit card from the USA to Manila, Philippines. It cost about 75 US Dollars using Federal Express, and I was thinking,
“I am lucky I have parent to help me, what would I do if I did not have parents or a good friend to help me?”
“Would the Bank send me a bank card by Federal Express?”

(Do not use DHL, they add all sort of extra cost, and will hold packages, even though paid in advance. UPS will work most of the time.)

Manila, Ermita Philippines
Friday, August 8, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey

My Mother and Father put the Visa Debit Card ATM Bank Card inside a Tom Clancy book, taped it shut with Duct Tape, then sent to me with Federal Express.

I wanted to receive the card in the Philippines because the Philippines people understand English well enough and the Tagalog language uses the Roman Characters.

Strange as it sounds, if someone calls for me at a hotel in countries like Thailand, and ask,
“Is Andy there?”

They say, "no."

I called Singapore to ask if Boy Genius was in the Hotel, and they said,
“No, he is not in the Hotel.”

I was 100 percent positive he was in the Hotel, the bottom line, very few hotels will even recognize your name, know you, or even work a little to help the caller. The caller must know you room number, without a room number, there is no way to even start to find a person. Boy genious was in the Dorm, he did not have a room number.

Well, to send a package by Federal Express, 90 percent of the staff is afraid, what is Federal Express, they do not understand, and they also would be afraid to sign for it, they might do something wrong.

I can speak in English here in Manila, the owner of the Hotel is Australian, and this is a huge advantage over a Thailand Hotel.

I am lucky, 300 USA dollars can last me up to one month, if I was staying in a 100 dollar per night hotels, and I would have needed that card in two days.

I carry at all times, two cards, but it is possible to have all my possessions stolen. If a person robbed me in the taxi, say the taxi stopped in an alley and his friend jumped in the car and stole all my possessions, how would I get money?

Would the bank Federal Express me a new ATM Bank Card?

Complicated, but I have an account in my Fathers name with Western Union online. I cannot send money to myself. However, I can get on my fathers internet online account with Western Union and send to my name money, this is one solution.

I am not married, my parents are older, I need to find an alternate way to receive help. One of my best friends works in the Bank, I have sisters and brothers, they will help me, I hope.

However, the best situation would be for the bank to send me the card direct. I am not sure, they always want to send to my Homeless Address in the USA, I do not have a Home. I can have packages sent to my parents, but I am Homeless, I do not have a Home.

Do not shine light up you butt, you will lose your card, need a card, if you are a perpetual traveler, you need help from your home country.

Who is going to help you?

There are mail forwarders, I suppose in Florida, there are mail forwarder that can send overseas easy, they do this for Sailboat Owners, I need to figure this out and implement.

Sending an ATM Bank Card Overseas

Make Your Travel Backpack Lockable Tip

Make Your Travel Backpack Lockable Tip
I have used many methods of the years to lock my backpack; however, I stumbled upon a way make a backpack lockable anywhere on the planet. In my estimation, this tip is needed by 99 percent of the travel backpackers on the planet.

Manila, Ermita Philippines
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey

This is the zipper slider you should be buying, this is called an YKK Hasp Slider, there is also a more normal type called a Padlock Slider.

However, when it finally hits you that you purchased a bag that is impossible to lock up, here is a simple solution you can do anywhere on the planet, while on your trip, all the parts are easy to purchase.

What you need?
1. Wire Ties
2. Tape, best is Duct Tape, but about any type would work.
3. Fingernail Clippers, Knife, or something to cut the wire ties.

This is what it looks like after you are finished.

Ok, you cannot stop a true criminal from cutting open your bag, or just stealing the bag. What is the goal of a locking backpack, it to remove the temptation theft by people who are walking by it. Whether the housekeeper, the taxi driver, or on some train in India while you are sleeping. Whatever the case, you do not want people to just open the bag and steal valuable items.

A wire tie cannot be broken easy; you make a small loop that will allow you to use a normal padlock. Then you tape the wire tie to keep the loop from becoming smaller.

For an even better explanation, watch this video on making locking backpacks.


IF no video here, you need to read on the blog, and not by email or RSS feed, click here: Travel Journal


Note, Craig of made a similar setup in the USA, and would also work, however not so easy to do anywhere on the planet.

The real solution is to buy a backpack with either padlock or hasp zipper slider pull. Do not buy a hiking backpack, to go traveling the planet, you are buying the wrong bag.

Backpack Tip by Craig

Make Your Travel Backpack Lockable Tip

The Tedious Business Principle

The Tedious Business Principle
I proposed a marketing plan to a Filipino friend, a bulleted to do list of how to market backpacks on a global basis.

He said,
“This is a tedious list.”
Manila, Ermita Philippines
Thursday, August 7, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey

I started laughing; his use of words was perfect. Yes, the list was tedious, a long and tiresome list, guaranteed to cause anyone working on the listed to become weary and tired.


1. marked by tedium; long and tiresome: tedious tasks; a tedious journey.

2. wordy so as to cause weariness or boredom, as a speaker or writer; prolix.

–noun the quality or state of being wearisome; irksomeness; tediousness.

I never realized it until he said the word tedious; however, my mind has been working for years to find this word. I have been trying to understand what separates the developed countries from the underdeveloped countries.

It is the perspective on work…

I have to admit, the majority of the world does not do tedious work willingly. In the underdeveloped countries, they have the good fortune to avoid drudgery work, they may not earn much money, however their work lives is not tedious.

Sadly, as it can get, the developed world has channeled the work force effectively whereby they force workers to do tedious work.

Sadly, as it can get, the school systems of the developed nations force students to apply themselves to tedious studies.

The result is, the developed world earns more money, because they do the specifics, they do the details; they do the tedious work that gets the job done.

Workers in underdeveloped countries become very angry if you ask too many questions. The majority has never learned, and feels no need to apply themselves to tedious jobs; they just do not see any advantage, answering questions is tedious, the get angry.

When I looked at the list, I just looked at it as the long and weary list of what was needed to succeed, with no desire to avoid.

The secret to success is work; however, it also is the will to keep going when the work is tedious.

In a nutshell, the cultures of countries like Germany have learned to apply themselves and do the tedious work, they can make nuclear bombs, a very tedious amount of study.

Most countries in the tropical zones of the planet feel no need to do tedious study or tedious work.

I would hate to encourage the under-developed countries to choose to apply themselves and have a tedious work life. However, this sadly is he sacrifice the developed countries make to have money or consumer items.

Lawyers normally do not like their jobs, pure tedious work, not really a fun job.

The Tedious Business Principle

A Hobo Becomes a Professional Photographer

A Hobo Becomes a Professional Photographer
I sold 13 photos of West Africa to, what I believe to be one of the top five guidebooks companies on the planet.

I was paid a substantial sum of money, therefore I went Pro... hehehe

Roughguides West Africa

Manila, Ermita Philippines
Tuesday, August 5, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey

The photos are now in the Fifth Edition, published in June 2008 with the Author or Richard Trillo.

Selling the photos to was a great business experience. The insights were valuable for anyone who wishes to become a professional photographer.

- Take photos of something different, example, do not take pictures of Machu Picchu or the Eiffel Tower and try to make a living.

- You need an internet page to allow buyers to view your photos.

- You need to check you emails daily or twice per day, so you can very quickly respond to request.

- A person needs to understand how to make a zip file of up to 100 Megs of photos that can be downloaded by readers. This allows you to give large numbers of photos to a buyer to review quickly. A person needs to know how to FTP to a server, then allow another person to download.

I believe a person must,
“See pictures.”

I am not sure a person can learn this many people are forever trapped in a mental box, unable to see.

I wish to say a special Thanks to Richard Trillo of

This was a fun experience, an enjoyable experience; I have yet to see the new West Africa guidebook, and will be happy to review the book on my next stopover in the USA.

I have had numerous request to purchase photos, mostly by unscrupulous NGO's who want to buy advertising photos to raise money from naive peoples donations. I say no to most offers, I have had a few magazines want to purchase photos. I was not able to sell the photos because they were in an extreme rush, I need to be online with a 24/7 connection to deal with those companies. they more or less waited until the last moment and then needed photos.

A webpage that had small photos, with an option to purchase and immediately download the larger pixel photos would greatly help sales of photos.

A Hobo Becomes a Professional Photographer

Choosing a Travel Backpack

Choosing a Travel Backpack
I am in the final design phase of making a travel backpack. How to choose a travel backpack, it has become clear to me, it is simple to choose a backpack.

The real problem is,
“What to pack for travel?”

If you know what to pack, choosing a travel backpack becomes easier.

Manila, Ermita Philippines
Monday, August 4, 2008
Blog of Andy --- --- Backpack Design Survey

I left the majority of my gear in a Hotel Storage Room in Bangkok, Thailand; I found it interesting what I decided I needed for a two-week trip to Manila, Philippines.

I really despise and annoyed by this word, it is not the correct word. Maybe I should say, I left my personal possessions in a Bangkok.

“What did I buy in a travel gear shop?”

After reviewing my personal possessions, the only thing I purchased in a gear shop was the “Backpack.” I like to go into Gear shops, I almost never purchase anything. What I really want, the items I would really like to buy, and they do not sell.

Here are some personal possessions I packed to come to Manila, however I do not know many people who carry.

This is a large plastic vegetable oil jug; I cut off the top, used some duct tape to cover the edge so it does not cut the fabric of my backpack. I put inside the pack to protect valuable electronics, I use to wash clothes, and strangest, I use for a table for my computer. The number or uses for a bucket are never ending.

Cooking with alcohol, this is my system, I just put a tuna can in the bottom and fill up with rubbing alcohol purchased anywhere on the planet. It is not as simple as it seems, I purchased that rectangular cooker at a garage sale in Ghent, Belgium. If you want to eat and live healthy, you must cook in your room.

I also brought a small umbrella, I use this continuously here in Manila, and it has been raining buckets of water. I can never understand people, they will buy quick drying, extremely expensive clothing, yet will not buy an umbrella whereby they would not need the expensive clothing. They also buy this stuff, but refuse to carry nylon cord for a clothesline.

Ok, how to choose a backpack?

1. Buy all the junk you think you need, but really do not need.
2. Pack it all in a cardboard box, or maybe a plastic garbage bag.
3. Measure the volume or…
4. Take to the backpack shop.
5. Stuff all your unneeded junk into the bag.
6. Buy a bag 25 percent bigger, I do not buy souvenirs, however the other 99 percent of people do.

Now, grow up, read close, not that you are going to be able to find the bag easy, but you 100 percent NEED a bag that locks.

The bag should have only one opening, no exterior pockets for to carrying gear you do not need. If there is an exterior zipper, it should have a way to lock it, if it does not have a way to lock it, then you are buying a hiking bag and not a travel bag.

Simple, you want a bag that locks, and will hold all your personal possessions.

I suppose comfortable shoulder straps or harness is good, but really the least of your worries, if the salesperson is trying to push this as a high priority, again you are buying a hiking pack, and not a travel backpack.

My guess is 99 percent of people buy hiking backpacks, 1 person buys a travel backpack. Then 99 percent of people need a travel backpack, and 1 percent of people need a hiking backpack.

What to pack? Passport, Bank Card, the only two essentials to travel the world. Trust me; they sell what you need where you are going, if you forget, not a big problem.

Choosing a Travel Backpack

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