Rafflesia - The Largest Philippine Flower

    The Rafflesia comes from the major family of flowering plants which are parasitic. It has an estimate of 28 main species which could be found in Southeast Asian countries one of which is the Philippines. Rafflesia was first discovered in an Indonesian rain forest. It was found by Dr. Joseph Arnold’s guide in 1818. The plant though got its name from the leader of that expedition. His name was Sir Thomas Stamford Raffles. The Rafflesia was originally found in between years 1791-94 by Louis Deschamps but according to history his notes bout it were captured by the British.
    The plant has a unique body which is void of stems, leaves nor does it have roots. Instead it only consists of an absorptive organ which is located inside the vine. It belongs to the holoparasite vines of the Vitaceae. On the outside the plant looks like a flower with five large petals around its body. The size of the Rafflesia in diameter is 100cm with a weight of 22pounds. Aside from looking rotten there emanates from it a rotten smell which is why it has many local names. Some call it the “rotten flower” and others would name it the “meat flower” because it looks like meat. Remarkably, the rotten smell of the flower draws insects to it. 
    There are two general species of the Rafflesia. The first one is the Malaysian and the other is the Philippine species. In 2002, Filipino scientists set out for myriads of research activities where they discovered various species of the Giant Flower. The first Rafflesia was discovered in Antique Province on the mountains. Its features were unique compared to all other species that were found. By 2005, the next rafflesia was found in Compostela Valley of Mindanao. It had an equal size with that of the first rafflesia having a size of 50-65 centimeters in diameter.
    In 1991 a collection of Rafflesia species were found but were not given names. In 2006 Danny Balete collected them all and studied them to find out that they were different from the R.manillana found in Luzon. Thus it was given the name R. baletei. In the following year another group of species was found by Dr. Julie Barcelona in Bukidnon. Another was found on the same year in Mount Banahaw of Luzon. Every year since 2002 scientists would find new species of this giant flower from different cities and provinces of the country. Until in 2010 the tenth Rafflesia was discovered.
    The most famous Rafflesia discovered in the Philippines is called the Rafflesia philippensis. It was given its name by Blanco. It has a diameter of twenty nine up to thirty two centimeters when it has fully opened. Its species were found to be scattered around the vicinities of the Mount Banahaw National Park. In 2003 the park was closed for the Rafflesia researchers to make more studies on the population of the plant.
    Among other names the plant is known also as the “corpse flower” because of its odor and meat-like structure. It has 20 general species known to exist. Despite its gigantic size, the flower is said to be safe to touch.

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Sunday, September 11, 2016 - 12:16:10 AM
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Trivia & Discovery

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    Marriage is something that requires a good amount of preparation. It is actually one of the biggest events or occasions in any family. It is also a special family gathering that often illuminates joy, prosperity and the union of two families. For women it is one of the most awaited part of being a woman next to becoming a mother. Since it is important to plan everything to make it really special and memorable, setting a date is such a wonderful task. In weddings, the month of June appears to be the favorite, but why?     When someone is getting married during the month of June, it is as if that wedding is sure to be extra special. Being a June bride is quite in demand for so many people that it already became a norm. But what’s really special about having your wedding on this particular month? In early years people are driven by their beliefs in gods and goddesses. According to Roman Mythology, the word or the month June is actually derived from Roman goddess of Marriage, Juno. It is as if the marriage will become really fruitful and strong because it has the blessings of that particular God who keeps or guards on marriages.      Another thing is that during the medieval period, people will only take a bath once a year. They call it the annual bath. Although it may sound gross but it’s actually true. The annual bath usually falls between the month of May and June. Most women then decided to be wed on June so that they still look fresh and they don’t have to worry about body odor. The use of bouquets were actually designed to hide that unpleasant smell they got because they only bathe once a year.     In a more practical view, other couples would prefer to be wed on the month of June thinking that they could conceive right after the wedding. The child will then be born on the month of March which is very much ideal for a child when he or she starts to go to school. Since the start of classes is on June, the child will then be fit for his or her age to enroll. The child will not be too young or too old for his or her level then.  
    Controversial photos of a huge fish with alleged tattoos on its body circulated over social media. It was first reported by GMA News. According to the report the fisherman caught the fish and he was stunned after seeing it with unusual markings. It is as if the fish has tattoos on its body. The designs were uniquely done and it was hard for the people in the village to explain how it happened when the other fish of the same type doesn’t have any of those markings at all.     Since it was posted in the social media, people swarmed the comment section and gave their unsolicited explanation as to where did the fish got its markings. Some were pretty hilarious that are worth sharing. There are also some that could be quite convincing and could actually answer how, but the reason behind why the fish has tattoos on its body is still unknown at this point.     To note, there were no other cases yet of the same incident at all. It is the first time that a fish was caught with complex designs painted on its body.   1.    The fish could be Maui from the movie Moana. He wasn’t able to fully transform and end up dead with the fisherman’s fishing net. 2.    The fish was a drug addict and was part of the operation TOKHANG led by the government enforces as a way of eliminating the use of illegal drugs in the country. 3.    The fish stumbled on plastics or papers with prints and it transferred to its body.  4.    The fish accidentally got its tattoos from a materials used in hydrographic paint.      However to put an end to all the hilarious speculations made Filipinos over the internet, it has been validated that the fish actually got its markings from a t-shirt. It could be that the print transferred on the fish’s skin since the image appears to be inverted.   
    If there are things that remained pleasing to the eyes of the people particularly the women, one of these is make-up or cosmetics. Men could even question a lot or almost all of women why they would really want to have a set of make up at home or why do they keep a make-up kit inside their bags at all times? Men often wondered why it appears like women are so delighted with cosmetic and are even confused why they men on the other hand have little or no interest at all when it comes to make up.     If there is someone or something to blame about the differences of perception of men and women towards make-up it is none other than the society’s standards. Women were raised to become attractive. They were conditioned that in order for other people to like them they must always be beautiful, attractive and appealing. They need to observe proper grooming at all times, smell good and do what is likable to others. Meanwhile men were simply raised not to bother about their physical attributes. They were conditioned to become more concern on their skills, their strength and other things that could contribute to them becoming manly enough.     With this regard, and the changing demands and standards of the society when it comes to beauty, women are trying their very best to look appealing and lovable like what they were taught about. With women’s quest to acquire an irresistible kind of beauty, they discovered make-up. Not all women were born with to have the qualities that the society declares to be ideal and beautiful. There are also some women who are exposed to certain things which made a huge effect on their physical traits.      The thing about make-up and beauty is that when it seems appealing to the eyes of most of the people or to the society then it is good and acceptable. There is nothing wrong about choosing cosmetics and enhancing one’s beauty, however the question on how it started and why most women are into it is all because of the society. Almost all people want to look good. Nobody wants to look like a joker or something inappropriate. Looking good is already embedded inside the heads of the people. It is something you cannot just ignore. But it should not also keep you from loving yourself more of who you are and what you are.  
    Dysmenorrhea, irregular menstruation cycle, acne breakouts, and muscle cramps during menstruation, are just few of the common problems that women experience all due to hormonal imbalance. Once hormones act in, every single thing is affected. A woman’s mood is even affected by hormones as well. It is the reason why when women are on their period or about to have their period, they are quite irritable and are usually in bad mood. It is too much to handle especially that it happens every single month. Good thing there are now ways to correct this problem.     Basically contraceptive pills were designed as a type of birth control method. It comes in a 28day series where in you need to take one pill a day for 21 days only and no pill shall be taken on the next seven days. During the seven days of not taking a pill, this is when you will have your period. You can actually be in control of your period once you know how to use it properly. The bleeding that you will have within that seven days allowance is actually the withdrawal result of not taking the pill. After the seven days you will then have to start on another pack and so on and so forth. One must also keep in mind that you have to take it on the same time of the day to preserve its efficacy.     Aside from being an effective birth control method, contraceptive pills can also help to eliminate or lessen your problems during menstruation. By taking pills, irregular periods can become regular because your body will receive the right amount of hormones that it needs. It can also be a cure for dysmenorrhea because less blood will come out during menstruation. You will no longer experience heavy periods and the possible threat of anemia.      Acne breakouts have been proven to be connected with hormonal imbalance. There are specific type of contraceptive pills that contain a certain amount of hormone that can actually get rid of such skin problem.      Although the effects are really promising and buying contraceptive pills can be done without prescription, it is best to consult your doctor first before deciding on what type of pill will you use. It is not advisable to self-diagnose and just choose something which is often bought by majority of people. Health wise, every patient has a different medical history, thus it requires a case to case basis approach in order to find the best suited type of medicine.     Also, be sure not to be fooled by contraceptive pills sold online. Some online sellers sell it way lower compared to the pharmacies. Others would even say that these pills came all the way from Thailand and they are selling it direct from their supplier, a reason for its low price. Better buy medicines from authorized pharmacies rather than take chances and risk your health to the illegitimate ones.   
    Having only six years of life span, the organization of La Solidaridad has accomplished lots because of the contributions of its prominent members. These people with their trivial pen names are namely Dr. Jose Rizal, Marcelo H. del Pilar, Antonio Luna, Mariano Ponce and Jose Maria Panganiban. The Pen names they used were Laong Laan (after a railway station) by Rizal, Plaridel by del Pilar, Taga-llog by Luna, Tikbalang by Mariano Ponce and Jomapa by Panganiban.     All of the members had one thing in common and that is that they were all liberals who were exiled in the year 1872. The La Solidaridad were also composed of students who attended universities in Europe. Their aim was to increase the awareness of the Spanish on the necessities of its colony in the Philippines. They also aimed to propagate smoother relationships between the Philippines and the Spanish if not closer. The La Solidaridad is a Spanish word which meant in English as the Solidarity. It was created on the 13th of December 1888 in Spain.      The organization was led by Galicano Apacible who was Jose Rizal’s cousin. La Solidaridad once issued a paper which had the same name. It was published on the 15th of February in 1889 at Barcelona, Spain. Graciano Lopez Jaena was the first editor of that paper and was later replaced by Marcelo H. del Pilar. The paper of La Solidaridad focused on nationalistic topics such as the political, cultural, social and economic conditions of a country specifically the Philippines and Spain. It contains articles and essays written by each prominent writer. Aside from that the paper also published articles concerning news and current events which are local and also foreign. They also included speeches coming from prominent leaders of Spain and which talked about the condition of the Philippines.     Aside from the first five mentioned, the other known members of La Solidaridad were Robert Lacamra, Jumar lim, Jose Alejandrino, Eduardo de Lete, Isabelo delos Reyes, Antonio Maria Regidor and Pedro Paterno. They also consisted of members which were foreign. The international members are the Austrian ethnologist Professor Blumentritt and Spanish Historian Dr. Miguel Sagrario.     The history of La Solidaridad take its roots back from the initial goals and aspirations of the Propaganda Movement. The Propaganda Movement in the past were looking for ways and venues to express their desires of the Philippines and Spain attaining a successful assimilation. They all then agreed that by creating the La Solidaridad they would be more effective in their mission and so it was established. The organization published their issues every after a week. It started its first publish in February 15, 1889. The La Solidaridad stood as one of the systems that helped the movement propagate for six years.     The Comite de Propaganda was the core provider and funder of the La Solidaridad. The editorship position was first offered to Jose Rizal which he declined. His reason was that it was due to his being so busy in the annotation of Sucesos de las Islas Filipinas by Antonio de Morga on London. From 1889 up to 1895 the La Solidaridad kept publishing. But after six years they ran out of funds to support their activities and on November 15, 1895, it officially ceased its publication with a farewell note from Marcelo del Pilar.

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    Of all the popular places in the world, Japan seemed to hold the reputation of having bizarre things or practices that you could never imagine such as the proliferation of their porn industry. Unlike in the Philippines, pornography is actually punishable by law and has corresponding penalties. It has been strongly condemned not only by the government but as well as the society.     However, although Japan has been known for its strict adherence to its culture and tradition it seems ironic that they allow or they help in regulation of pornography within their people. Pornography is even considered as a legit and feasible business in Japan.      If you might be wondering how it became that way, it’s all because Japan is actually preserving its culture and they embraced the fact that pornography already existed together with their history. Just like ancient civilizations, pornography were already evident on their writings and drawings. By continuing the practice they were able to have in the form of comics or manga. Later on an anime or Hentai has been made to proliferate pornography and finally short video clips were created.     Although it seems legal in Japan, there are actually rules and provisions that the porn industries are currently following such as the censorship of the actor and actresses genitals. It is not limited to live action but as well as in anime and manga. 
    Nowadays people communicate more often with the use of apps such as skype, wechat, watsapp and the most popular one which is viber. However several cases were already reported wherein the privacy and security of the users were jeopardized. It won’t really happen actually if you personally know the person you ware chatting to, however taking chances to connect with strangers has taken its toll when using these apps.      However did you know that you can actually chat with a complete stranger without compromising your security and personal details? Most of the time the exchange of photos can be used to extort or even blackmail someone. It would be safer not to send or share your pictures but how would you know that you are indeed talking to the real person behind a profile you just saw in another app?      When people want to talk about private stuff but are actually hesitant to risk their security a few tips from Viber in sharing photos might just help. You can actually set a timer to your photos, once it has been seen it will automatically disappear. For that your chat mate could never say that he or she wasn’t able to view it.      The steps are so easy that you will be surprised. Step 1.Instead of attaching your photo using viber, open your gallery and select a picture that you would want to send. Step 2. Click on the share button and select Viber from the options. Step 3. You will be shown a preview of the photo that you would want to share, before hitting the “send” button, notice that there’s a clock icon below. Tap the icon and you will be given options as to how long would you want your image to be viewed. 10 seconds is the longest, pick your choice and hit send. If you notice the photo you shared became blurred then it’s a confirmation that you made the right steps. When the person tried to open or view it, it will disappear and it won’t even be saved on their devices.
    Nature is indeed full of wonders and humans have not really explored it totally. There are still things that are seemingly odd in nature and there are also some that are quite deceiving. Take for example this Emerald Green Cat that was discovered in a small town in Bulgaria.      The town people and even people from far cities are quite familiar with this seemingly odd creature because of its color. The cat has been spotted walking around the city, it gives the town people the impression that it is a stray and it only gets its food by roaming around the place.      Due to its distinct color and possible breakthrough in the feline world, people from far countries travelled to Bulgaria just to take a closer peek and even take some pictures of it. However, this cat’s stardom started to fade when rainstorms came. Its bright emerald green color slowly faded away when rain started to fall.      It has been found out that the cat got its color from a barrel of paint where it sleeps. Although paints contain toxins that are eventually not good for the health, the cat was actually in good shape all throughout its stardom. With its color fading away, its popularity indeed started to slow down, however its quite noticeable she enjoyed her moment and made the most of it by gaining extra pounds.     
    In the midst of a severe flood happening in Guangxi Zhuang an Autonomous Region in China, a seemingly smiling pig was rescued along with other animals. Netizens were quick to spot the candidness of the pig’s smile while being saved from the flood. The pig seemed calmed and happy that it was rescued and even smiled wonderfully despite being held on its forelegs and ears.      As a usual response by netizens, its picture have been shared a hundred times and made quick rounds in social media all over the world. People were cheering of how this creature just made their days and made them smile right after seeing its picture.     However this pig’s instant stardom was shown not only through likes and shares of her original photo but people did hilarious Photoshop skills to savor the moment. The following are just one of the few photos that instantly became people’s favorite.       
    With today’s trend where direct, private, and instant messages are of great help to people, consumers must be aware in choosing mobile apps especially if it has something to do with your personal info’s such as your contact list where clients, bank accounts and other important stuff are being saved.     Most of the time, mobile apps are being installed because of its popularity. When a wide audience seemed to use it even for just a short time, you should expect for others to try it too without really verifying its security measures.  SARAHAH Honesty App is supposedly an app that can be used in giving feedbacks anonymously. Seems like people nowadays are drawn into intriguing stuff more than ever. However accordingly the app works in such a way that the person who has been rated or given feedback has no way of tracing or replying to it. The creator of the app tend to give its users the chance to leave positive comments or feedbacks as an act of kindness while keeping their identity unknown.      However the entire community has been totally shocked (shookt) when it has been revealed that this app is actually unknowingly stealing your personal details such as your contact list. Aside from stealing, they make use of it by uploading it to their data base and who knows what they could do about it.      Once you installed this app, it will only take them a while to steal your info. Logging out from the app can't make any difference at all. The best thing to do is to never ever install it and be more cautious in choosing an app.