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Lambot sa imo?

Acknowledged grandmaster of qigong (literally, ‘working with life energy’) Li Ching-yuen at 71 joined the Chinese army and taught troops the finer points of unarmed combat. Records have it he lived to 256 years, married 23 times, and fathered over 200 children. One of Li’s disciples reported of having met a much older man, about 500 years old who taught the disciple qigong exercises and gave out dietary recommendations purportedly to extend the lifespan to superhuman proportions.

For Li, “inward calm and peace of mind combined with breathing techniques were the secrets to incredible longevity.”

One of the quaint herbs that the grandmaster subsisted on is Centella asiatica, gotu kola or what we know hereabouts as takip-kuhol—two leaves a day keeps old age at bay, so insists an adage—which, when taken with a spoonful of honey can keep the blaze in gray and groin matters roaring. However, Li is no longer around to endorse the virtues of the herbs he fed on to keep in shape despite old age. Too, pharmaceutical firms won’t take kindly an old man’s say-so about the wonders of an unsightly weed that teems near ditches and waterlogged cesspools.

Advertising hotshots would rather bank— that word alone conjures having an unconfirmed P2.4 billion cash in stash and 41 real estate properties unsold and likely gaining unearned increments—on the latest 71-year-old darling of the crowd, the current idol enjoying unadulterated adulation bordering on reverence of a 54-million strong electorate that represents a huge market to dump to whatever sells, including blatant lies, pyramiding scams, and pick-up lines.

As form is all it takes, never mind perform or platform, this macho embodiment of the zeitgeist and he-manity even admitted candidly that he takes the ‘little blue pill’—suggested retail price at P3,500 for a box of 4 tablets, so we checked—to, uh, how do we say this without getting bleeped or edited, allow his flagpole to plug hole. (Now that’s so properly evocative of patriotism, eh?)

The adoring hordes of the faithful would likely writhe in the ecstasy of the promised exertions he would do upon mounting the highest position of responsibility in all the land, ay, would they scream their lungs out in religious fervor, “Praise the lewd!”

Welcome a new poster boy against erectile dysfunction. And all he needs to do as he flashes a box of the “little blue pill” before his fans’ worshipful homage is ply out a few words with a leer inciting to seduction and a get down to the naughty-gritty wink, and they’d be buying the pitch and the product—without as much a second thought.

Lambot sa imo?”

Sure, pure manure

Dumping excess nitrogen into croplands does not increase the capacity of any plant or weed for higher uptake of fertilizer— a plant can only use a mere 20% of the fertilizers in the soil. The better option is to use fungi and soil-borne bacterial colonies to render growth enhancers more soluble for better plant uptake. As is, fertilizer broadcast onto farmers’ fields have been found to be polluting rivers and lakes, even leaching into drinking water wells for more than 80 years. Findings affirm that “fertilizer applied today will continue to pollute water for decades because it’s building up in the soil.”

Unused nitrogen stays in the soil and turns into harmful inorganic nitrates—not the organic kind from plants that signals increased blood blow to the nether parts of the male anatomy to trigger tumescence, yes, gorging on salads and greens is a sexy habit. High nitrate levels in the soil pollute drinking water.

Nitrogen in the form of crystalline urea—which has up to 46% nitrogen content-- is a nutrient for plants; applied as fertilizer, the nutrient helps increase crop yields. And in a bid to bolster crop yields, most farmers apply an excess of fertilizer that, in turn, leave large amounts of unused nitrogen in the soil. It’s the soil that gets sick, and water run-off drips down into the water table that can, in the long run, turn the water to taste salty and harmful to human health.

An alternative method of earth-friendly farming has turned to using organic wastes as source of plant nutrients. The higher the organic content of the soil, the healthier— and of better eating quality, with higher food nutrient and phytochemical content—are the crops grown on such healthy soil.

Among the current crop of aspirants to the highest elective post in the land, there is only one who can provide help to the growing numbers of the nation’s agro-entrepreneurs who have turned to organic farming. His pronouncements, well-received without as much a whit of thinking by his adoring fans, ought to be broadcast in the nation’s 12 million hectares of cultivated croplands for higher yields and lesser harm from inorganic nitrates.

This candidate, whose minions have rendered to compost over a thousand human victims, spouts through blood-and-thunder speeches top-grade compost. Sure, pure manure for farmlands and farmers who should be thankful.

It’s the level of toxicity that we ought to be wary of, though.

Zero love life

The endless whining and unabashed insertion in policy pronouncements about the outgoing numero uno’s having a zero love life must have stoked fires of resentment in the millennial generation that comprise the greater bulk of the nation’s voters. Here is a nation hobbled with the highest teenage pregnancy rates among the six Asean economies, with 24 babies seeing the light of day every hour and nearly 15 percent of girls in the 15-19 age group are either pregnant for the first time or are already full-fledged moms. Here is a young population that statistics somehow validate, of unbridled fecundity.

And the head of state has made it a habit of plying complaints about his lack of a love life? What gives?

In glaring contrast, the current darling of presidential poll surveys must have endeared himself to all and sundry by his admission that he has two wives, two mistresses, and most likely, countless flings. That’s probably a lot of loving. How could not a self-confessed roué earn the admiration of a populace that must have been fed up with a Malacañang top resident’s constant reminding to people of what he sorely lacks?

As common sense would have us believe, “Bored people are boring people; unloved people are unloving people.”


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