Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Airlines of the Philippines Banned to Fly in EU?

I feel sad when I learned in the news that airlines in the Philippines are not allowed to fly in the European Union.

The European Commission spokeswoman for transport affairs Helen Kearns announced that it has banned all airlines in the Philippines and Sudan from flying into the EU for "serious and persistent non-compliance" with the bloc's air safety rules.

The news further adds that "neither of the two countries has planes flying directly into the EU, but the blacklisting increases pressure on them to improve safety as European citizens could be discouraged from taking their flights."

Meanwhile, the head of the Civil Aviation Authority, Alfonso Cusi insists that, "our aircraft meet the international standards in safety. I have invited the EU safety aviation commission to come to the Philippines for re-inspection this May to show that we have corrected the problem they have raised."

The flag carrier of the country, Philippine Airlines is registered to fly to the EU but PAL's last commercial flight was in 1999.

Photo above is a stamp issued on March 15, 1991 celebrating the 50th anniversary of Philippine Airlines.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Gibraltar's latest King George V stamp

Gibraltar issues it's latest stamp featuring King George V, who was king of the United Kingdom and the British Dominions and Emperor of India from 1910 until his death in 1936.

The stamp set was released on March 26, 2010.

Cebu Stamp Club's March 2010 CSCI Newsleter

This is the CSCI Newsletter March 2010 issue recently released by Cebu Stamp Club, Incorporated (CSCI). The newsletter is in pdf format and given for free to Cebu Stamp Club members and friends.

Email for a copy of this latest publication

Monday, March 29, 2010

Two Star Wars Darth Vader Additions

The fearsome Darth Vader is among my favorite Star Wars figures. My collection of this Sith Lord includes stickers, figures, bobble heads, books, mugs, etc.

Just last week, I was excited to see two Darth Vader toys up for auction in Ebay so I wasted no time in bidding. Lucky me, there were no other bidders so I won the items.

The toys were delivered to my house last Saturday to my heart's delight.

What struck me with the new additions to my Star Wars collection is the Darth Vader figure from POTF2. Anakin Skywalker's face is shown once the helmet is removed. The other figure from the Bespin Duel comes with a cape made of cloth.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

It's Palm Sunday!

It's a beautiful and significant Sunday today. Me, my wife Julie and youngest son Jerald Kervin found ourselves rushing to St. Joseph Parish in Mabolo, Cebu City to attend the morning Mass and join in the Catholic celebration of Palm Sunday.

There were multitudes of people bringing with them palm leaves with crosses tied on them to be blessed by the officiating priest. We wasted no time in buying some palm leaves from peddlers nearby.

I was happy to see an old family friend, Fr. Alcazaren blessing the palms and officiating the Mass. Glad too that I brought along a camera and took pictures of the ceremony inside the church.

Palm Sunday is the final Sunday before Easter and signals the beginning of the Holy Week. Today commemorates the triumphant entry of Christ to Jerusalem with people laying palm branches on his path.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Cebu Joins Earth Hour

"The world will be brighter if people just turn off the lights."

This is what organizers of Earth Hour believe in. I admire their zeal in enjoining people to turn off their lights for just an hour to help decrease harmful carbon emissions that threaten the Earth's climate.

Although this is only the second year the Philippines joined this worldwide campaign, I believe a lot of good will come out from this worthy endeavor.

Here in Cebu, local organizers claimed that their campaign was a success. The city's demand for power dropped to 249 megawatts when Earth Hour started at 8:30 p.m.

Organized by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), Earth Hour started in Sydney, Australia on March 31, 2007 with millions of houses and establishments turning off their lights to show their concern on climate change.

Australia Post issued stamps last year to highlight Earth Hour.

Friday, March 26, 2010

My New Star Wars Collection Cabinet

These past two months, I got occupied supervising the people involved in renovating my house. This is one reason that I was out of touch with everyone except of course in attending Cebu Stamp Club meetups.

One of the things I requested my carpenters is to make me a cabinet that would be bigger than the usual cabinets sold in furniture stores and malls.

Of course I got what I wanted! I have a new cabinet for my Star Wars items. Although the paint job will have to wait for another month right after they finish work on the second floor, I can't wait to display some my collections at once.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Ellen DeGeneres Promotes Stamps on Pets

I love dogs and cats! This is the reason why I have a pet dog and a cat while at the same time collect stamps featuring these animals.

It is interesting to note that the United States Postal Service is coming out with a new issue on pets to further the cause on animal adoption.

The USPS and famous tv comedian and talk show host Ellen DeGeneres have joined forces to promote the "Animal Rescue: Adopt A Shelter Pet" stamps.

Ellen is an outspoken advocate concerning pet adoption and a co-owner of Halo, Purely For Pets, a company that sells pet food. Halo is set to donate 1 million meals to animal shelters in the United States.

The stamps unveiled on March 17 will go on sale to the public on April 30, 2010.

Check out to know more about the campaign.

Monday, March 22, 2010

Snoopy is on Japanese Stamps

America's famous dog Snoopy is so popular in Japan that Japanese Post decided to honor him with a set of stamps. The stamps intended to celebrate the spring season in Japan came out on March 3, 2010.

The ten stamps feature Snoopy, Peppermint Patty, Woodstock, Snoopy and Woodstock, Sally, Charlie Brown and Snoopy, Woodstock, Snoopy and friends, Snoopy and Woodstock Kennel.

The stamps are valued at 80 yen each.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Pink Floyd Rocks on a Souvenir Stamp Sheet

England's Royal Mail and famous rock band Pink Floyd came out with a unique collaboration featuring a souvenir stamp of the band's last studio album, The Division Bell.

Fans worldwide will surely love the souvenir stamp sheet that was released on March 6, 2010 which coincides with the birthday of the band's guitarist and vocalist David Gilmour.

The lyrics of "High Hopes", the final song of the band's final studio album is also featured.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The Season of Graduates

This time of year, Filipinos are mostly preoccupied with the preparation for the graduation ceremony of a son or daughter who has completed an educational level either in kindergarten, elementary, high school, vocational, college, or graduate school.

For the Filipinos, a person has truly graduated only if they have "marched" and received their diploma onstage during the graduation ceremonies.

To honor all the graduates, the Philippine Postal Corporation (Philpost) issued stamps on April 15, 1994.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Australia's Come to the Show Stamps

On March 23, 2010, Australia Post will release five stamps that highlights the agriculture and royal shows that comprise the Australian calendar every year.

The stamps create an awareness to millions of Australians who are known to attend shows to enjoy both the activities and exhibits of agricultural societies all over the country. This variety of activities are being presented in the shows that play an important role in educating Australia's increasingly urbanised population.

These beautiful stamps are designed by John White.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Hongkong's Mainland Scenery Series No. 9: Fujian Tulou

Hongkong Post issues the Mainland Scenery Series No. 9 featuring the Fujian Tulou on March 18, 2010.

Cylindrical in shape, the Fujian tulou were built in old method construction forming a very unique large housing district in the mountains.

In 2008, they were included in UNESCO's World Heritage List for their long-standing cultural tradition as well as their exceptional size and distinct design.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Manny Pacquiao Wins Anew!

Filipino boxing superstar Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao is again victorious against Ghana's Joshua Clottey in a match held at the Cowboy Stadium in Arlington, Texas, USA on March 13, 2010.

Although the match was not that exciting as most fans expected it to be, with Clottey's refusal to engage Pacman in a slugfest, nonetheless, it's another job well done for the Pound for Pound King.

We are proud of you and Mabuhay ka Manny!

Jerald Kervin Uy's 6th Birthday

Jerald Kervin Enriquez Uy, Cebu Stamp Club's youngest member turns 6 years old today.

Family members, friends, and Cebu Stamp Club executives Ricky Teves, Edwin Al Cuizon, and Bob Uy came to the house for his birthday party.

Bob made some vegetable salad and seafood delicacies. Charles Mark Uybengkee, my brother-in-law also brought some grilled fishes. William, a family friend cooked pansit for the celebrant.

Of course, lechon, humba, chicken and a lot more were served to the guests. We never expected that more than 50 people came.

"It's my best birthday!" Kervin whispered to my ear as I carried him to bed.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Abstract Expressionists

In celebration of the abstract expressionist artists of the 20th century, the United States Postal Service (USPS) issued on March 11, 2010 a 44–cent, Abstract Expressionists commemorative stamp in ten designs, designed by Ethel Kessler of Bethesda, Maryland.

Art Director Ethel Kessler and noted Art Historian Jonathan Fineberg (Gutgsell Professor Art History, University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign) selected ten paintings to be included on this pane of self–adhesive stamps. Kessler used elements from Barnett Newman’s Achilles (1952) to frame the stamps.

The stamps were arranged in a manner to suggest paintings hanging on a gallery wall. For design purposes, the sizes of the stamp are not in relative proportion to the paintings. The pane also features selvage text and a quotation by Robert Motherwell. Each of the stamps include the name of the artist and verso text that identifies the painting and briefly tells something about the artist.

The list of stamp artworks are:
  • The Golden Wall (1961) — Hans Hofmann (1880–1966)
  • Romanesque Façade (1949) — Adolph Gottlieb (1903–1974)
  • Orange and Yellow (1956) — Mark Rothko (1903–1970)
  • The Liver Is the Cock’s Comb (1944) — Arshile Gorky (1904–1948)
  • 1948–C (1948) — Clyfford Still (1904–1980)
  • Asheville (1948) — Willem de Kooning (1904–1997)
  • Achilles (1952) — Barnett Newman (1905–1970)
  • Convergence (1952) — Jackson Pollock (1912–1956)
  • Elegy to the Spanish Republic No. 34 (1953–1954) — Robert Motherwell (1915–1991)
  • La Grande Vallée 0 (1983) — Joan Mitchell (1925–1992)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Battersea Dogs and Cats Home

The Royal Mail issues today March 11, 2010, the Battersea Dogs and Cats Home stamps to commemorate the center's 150th year.

The United Kingdom's oldest and most famous rescue center for dogs and cats was established and founded in 1860 by Mrs. Mary Tealby and is situated in the Battersea area of London, England.

Her Majesty Queen Victoria became Patron of the Home in 1885 and has been under Royal Patronage since then. At present, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II is the Patron with Prince Micheal of Kent as President.

Ten animals of the Battersea Dogs and Cats Home were selected by the Royal Mail design team. Animal photographer Steve Hoskins came out with beatiful photos of the animals.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Australia Post Issues Stamps on Centenary of Powered Flight

Australia Post came out with three stamps on March 9, 2010 commemorating significant powered flights from it's early aviation history.

The first stamp feature Englishman Colin Defries with his modified Wright Model A powered aircraft named The Stella that took a sustained and controlled flight on December 9, 1909 at the Victoria Park race course in Sydney.

Another stamp shows famous American "escapologist" Harry Houdini and his imported Voisin aircraft. Houdini made the first of several well-publicised flights in Australia on March 18, 1910. Houdini's name is emblazoned on the plane's tail.

The last stamp to complete the set is of John Duigan who was the first Ausralian who flew an Australian-designed and constructed powered aircraft. Duigan's self-designed biplane flew 180 metres at 64kph at an altitude of 3.4 metres at his family property at Mia Mia, Victoria on October 7, 1910.

Monday, March 8, 2010

International Women's Day is Today

Every March 8, the world celebrates International Women's Day. It is a global celebration of women.

This is the time that women are recognized for their efforts in the field of economics, politics and social advancements.

The 2010 theme of the United Nations' is "Equal Rights, Equal Opportunities, Progress for All".

Britain issued two stamps in 2009 to highlight the achievements of two women who were equality campaigners. The stamps portray pioneering feminist Mary Wollstonecraft, author of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, and Judy Fryd, founder of Mencap and campaigner for mentally handicapped children.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Cebu Stamp Club's March 2010 Stamp Meetup

The March 07, 2010 stamp meetup of Cebu Stamp Club took on a new twist as everyone agreed to hold the meeting in Eyan Yu's house in Talamban, Cebu City.

The group composed of yours truly, Dinah Potolin, Richard Guimbarda, Janice Benolerao, Janus Bariñan and Sharee Ann Trapa who came with a friend decided to converge infront of National Bookstore at the Ayala Center Cebu Mall at 1:30 PM. Once everyone arrived we all proceeded to Eyan's residence.

Eyan warmly greeted us and wasted no time in taking us on a tour of his house. He proudly showed his prized collections of stamps, coins, toys, models and antiques which amazed everyone. Polky, Eyan's son became the official photographer of the day.

The meetup was a very productive one with lots of sharings and free stamps for everyone. It was also decided that next meetup will be at the club president's residence on the third Sunday of April.

After the meeting, the host treated us with a delicious serving of Bam-i, a local type of noodles which he cooked himself along with some pastries and Coca Cola. Of course, we took out the Dunkin' Donuts, sandwiches, and chicharon that we brought.

Cebu Stamp Club, Incorporated's regular stamp meetup has strengthened our friendship with each while increasing our passion for philately.

For details and info on how to join Cebu Stamp Club, feel free to send an email to

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Ancient Reptiles on New Zealand Stamps

New Zealand celebrates this year its extinct natural heritage with five stamps depicting species that disappeared 65 million years ago.

The Antient Reptiles of New Zealand stamps are available on March 3, 2010. The stamps feature the Allosaurus (50c), Anhanguera ($1.00), Titanosaurus ($1.80), Moanasaurus ($2.30) and Mauisaurus ($2.80).

Beautiful African Violets from Canada

Canada Post issues today two stamps featuring African Violet hybrids in full bloom, the Picasso and Decelles' Avalanche.

The plants incluced on the stamps were grown by the members of the Société des Saintpaulia de Montréal (SSM). The Picasso, hybridized by Michel Tremblay is a heavy bloomer that has double violet flowers above and white below while the Decelles' Avalanche, named after Yvon Decelles has semi-double red-fuchsia star blooms and medium green and cream variegated foliage.

African Violets are considered as the most popular houseplant in the world and very easy to care for.