When you get stuck along Beach Road, better take the Middle Road. This is a website for those who choose to tread Saipan's off the beaten path. * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * + * +

Oct 31, 2007

Where Were You During the Jolt?

Halloween did really scare the Saipan community.

We were at home for lunch and I thought someone was knocking on the door. I ignored it. 'Was washing the dishes when we felt the building was shaking for about 10 seconds. We immediately ran to the door and then it stopped. Online reports said that it was 7.2 magnitude on RS. The earthquake also occurred in California at the same time. Now that's a first.

USGS Report-An earthquake occurred about 40 km (25 miles) WNW of Agrihan or 405 km (250 miles) N of SAIPAN at 9:30 PM MDT, Oct 30, 2007 (Oct 31 at 1:30 PM local time in Mariana Islands). The magnitude and location may be revised when additional data and further analysis results are available. There have been no reports of damage.
'What you get for living three floors above the ground.

Where were you?

Oct 30, 2007

MVA and Tourism and the Eagle Rays

Two months left and it's 2008. What has the local tourism agency done so far to further promote the island as one of the Pacific's top diving sites? Yes, they've participated in conventions in Japan and neighboring islands to promote the CNMI. Recent blogs (reading from various posts) that the Eagle Rays are now getting extinct? I had the chance to speak with diving icon Mike Tripp and hearing from him as he shared with business leaders before that something should be done to protect the eagle rays that are endemic to the CNMI waters.

I had the privilege to keep a copy of his DVD and when I saw the eagle rays marauding the bottom of the shallow waters around Saipan, it was like a miracle under the sea. I didn't know that the CNMI has these sea wonders.

Tripp shared that in Cayman Islands, the eagle rays or stingrays are one of the tourist destinations there reaping $9 million annually from tourists. An international organization mentioned that the CNMI is very lucky to have the advantage of seeing the eagle rays on shallow waters or near the shores. Something that should attract tourists.

Is it really complicated to market the CNMI with its strong points? Everything is interrelated. Enhancing the airport is also one development for the tourists. However, should we start first with the actual destinations here on the island? Beautifying them and promoting them? Is it really a long way to go for the CNMI? I know, I know at the rate we're going in terms of the number of the tourists visiting every month, indeed it's a long way to go.

The Candy and You

What does your favorite candy say about you and your personality? Since it's Halloween, Washington Post has this interesting poll on their website about your favorite candy and what it says about you. Happy Halloween evwibwadi!

Read entire article on WashingtonPost.Com

Oct 29, 2007

Stay Put and Relax!

These are the words coming from a masked man robbing a mini-supermarket located at Navy Hill last week. A colleague shared his encounter face-to-face or should I say face-to-mask with the robber. The grocery store is located at the ground floor of their Apartelle near Miha Housing.

My colleague was carrying his laundry basket when he ran into the robber. "Drop it and relax!" shouted the masked man. My colleague did what he was told and crossed his arms to relax staring at the robber. He said the guy was about 5'6" tall and with strong accent.

This week's robbery was recorded through the store's security cam. He was wearing a mask too. Are we going to have this robbery every week? What can the police do? What can the community do? I guess nothing but to stay put and relax....

Oct 28, 2007

USDA $1 Billion Power Loans

The paper today headlined a USDA loan for power utility companies. USDA announced yesterday that more than $1.6 billion in electric loans to finance 1,500 miles of new line, upgrades of nearly 1,000 miles of existing line, and improvements to power generation and transmission facilities for rural consumers in 13 states.

Hmmm...I wonder why CUC is not included in the list...Oh I guess we're too busy fixing power plants and writing for loans is not an option.

Speaking of rolling blackouts, it is so nice (clears throat) to live in a place with generators.

Oct 25, 2007

Grotto H&LL!

Gomenesai. Los Siento. I apologize for this post. Yes. I relied to the report on paper about renaming the Grotto, only to find out yesterday that the Legislature did only pass as the governor approved to have a "monument" installed at the Grotto, not renaming the place at all. Argh! So folks. It's safe. Grotto will always be called Grotto.

Yes, people. The current administration is renaming the internationally renowned Grotto diving site in Marpi on Saipan. The new name is BenKi (or Ben & Ki) after the first certified diver from the CNMI the late Vicente Ben Concepcion. See more on today's paper.


1. Would it be a huge adjustment telling those international media and diving magazines/journals that featured the Grotto as one of the world's finest diving sites?
2. What's going to be next renaming project? Suicide Cliff? Naming it after the first Japanese that jumped off that cliff (pardon this one)?
3. What would be the impact of renaming Grotto? Would there be one anyway?
4. Should the Legislature take center stage and override this one again? (Oh, this one's not a veto)

Nahal on TV

Flipping through the cable TV last night and I stumbled on a campaign ad where Fabulous Invalid Theater's Nahal Navidar is in the commercial. I thought it was a government public service ad. Nahal was funny in this ad, of course obviously because she's an excellent actress.

She talks about CUC bills, power outages, telephone bills and so on. Then she says all these problems are currently beleaguering us all the reason why she's voting for the Republican Party.

The Reveler

Oct 23, 2007

Flower Power!

It was time for two of my tires to retire and get new ones and I went to this tire shop and a Chinese woman accommodated me. Then I was looking around to see of course the staff aka men who would change two of my tires, but there was none. Then she grabbed all the tools to start the job.

There she was replacing the tires of my car--something I honestly despise to do. Simply amazing. I heard from TacDer that there's another Chinese owned autoshop where another female that does the same.

Now, that's Girl Power! Attagirl! Go Gurlz!

Oct 22, 2007

Poll: Closing Down NMC Campuses

The latest report from the Northern Marianas College to the Western Association of Schools and Colleges, the college administrators decided to suspend academic degree programs being offered at its Tinian and Rota instructional sites. The college assessed that in order not to compromise the community college's accreditation status, the two sites should undergo restructuring of its academic programs.

At first the college president didn't want the public to know this yet, not until the involved islands would know it first. Thus our poll this time is all about the closure of these instructional sites.

<-----Cast your votes now!!!

Poll result on CUC Rollback:

53.3 percent of the voters said they are not happy with the CUC rollback this month.
26.7 percent said they are glad about it, while 20 percent of them agreed that this blog is dead for them, yet they still managed to vote (it's the return of the living dead)

Oct 20, 2007

Rewards for Lost Items: Free Beer For Life?

Free beer for life as reward for stolen laptop? Whoa! Should we have done the same when we lost two of our Macbooks and offered free pugua for life?
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) -- A New Zealand brewer is offering a lifetime supply of free beer in exchange for the return of a laptop stolen in a break-in. Croucher Brewing Co. co-owner Paul Croucher said Friday the computer contains "all our financials" as well as label designs for new beers and business contacts. "So we decided that if anyone does come into possession of it we'll be happy to offer them a reward -- a dozen (bottles) of beer a month for the rest of their life," he said. Croucher estimated the total value would likely be about $19,500 for a lifetime of beer. Since making the offer, "plenty of people" had called to say they were looking for the computer, he said. Coucher said he was optimistic the free beer offer would lead to the return of the stolen computer. "We'd love it back. We're at such a critical stage in our little business that every hit like that is quite big," he said. The microbrewery in the central North Island tourist town of Rotorua currently ships 160 gallons of its three beers -- an English-style pale ale, Czech-style pilsner and a cloudy German wheat beer -- each week. New Zealand winemaker Montana called to warn the brewery owners to make sure the terms of their free beer reward were precise. The winery had a difficult legal wrangle with the winner of an offer of five years' free wine who tried to extend the supply.

Black is What?

This is interesting. How different is this story from being called animals? Sorry, Tina can't get over it yet.
LONDON, England (CNN) -- Nobel laureate biologist James Watson was suspended Friday from his longtime post at a research laboratory and canceled his planned British book tour after controversial comments that black people are not as intelligent as white people.

James Watson won the 1962 Nobel prize for discovering the structure of DNA. Watson has apologized for the controversial remarks. Photos from CNN.com

Oct 18, 2007

Can't Do It. No PC in the Office...

Uh huh. This was was the line of the Nursing Board when they were asked by visiting officials and investors if the Board of Nursing has all ready reviewed the proposal forwarded by the administration for the new medical university that will soon be operating here on Saipan.

University of Loyola at the CNMI, Inc. had a presentation at the Governor's Office. Government officials led by the governor attended the presentation together with Licensing Board officials and the Nursing Board. The medical university is now waiting for the approval of its license to operate and recruit students from the mainland and some interested students from here. To the president's dismay, the Nursing Board representatives apologized that they couldn't get hold of a copy the school sent them through the Internet "because due to budget problem, we don't have computers in the office?"

For real? Oh well....

Tina Sablan on the Run...

Below are extracted from Tina Sablan's website. These are comments she received from callers and other people she meet here in the CNMI:
“I would like to hear your thoughts about the tribune’s headline yesterday where cohen mentioned the possibility of granting permanent residence here in the commonweath to approx 8K non-resident workers. you testified in congress last month that you did not see anything wrong with this move and i wonder if you still have the same view today.” — Nicky/John Jr.

“all i ask of you is to PLEASE side with us.protect our future.DON’T GIVE PERMANENT RESIDENCY TO ALL NON-RESIDENT PEOPLE! this ideas spells D-I-S-A-S-T-E-R!!!! and this is your statement to the US CONGRESS.that is another issue i have with you, by the way.i like you, BUT YOU ARE SCARING ME.” — Nicky/John Jr.

“Tina, how can you put those animals above your own people?” — Anonymous caller, after the federal hearing in August
Read her response to this on Oct. 18 (Friday) paper

Oct 17, 2007

Caught in the Boycott

Saipan Chamber of Commerce was terribly disappointed the other night when its first election forum was deliberately boycotted by some candidates running for House seats. SCC president expressed his disappointment and wondered why they didn't show up. Apparently he was aware of the buzz around the island that the precinct 3 candidates would boycott the forum because of what he wrote on the paper about the SCC's disappointment with the Legislature's overriding of the Gov. veto on CUC bill.

SCC president said it was the position of the SCC and the current members of the Legislature especially those that are seeking re-election did not consult or seek advice from the Chamber.

"If you can't take the heat, get out of the kitchen," he said.

Oct 15, 2007

Club 200's Dread

Joeten Motors won big bucks ($15,000) during recently held American Red Cross Club 200. Ms. Frances Demapan went up the stage and in utter ecstasy for winning the grand prize announced to the audience that Joeten Motors bigwigs would agree with her that the prize money should be given back to Red Cross [for its community services].

To Joeten Motors officials' surprise, Red Cross decided to redraw a new winner because Joeten Motors decided to give it back. Witnesses saw the Joeten Motors officials' faces and looked at each other in utter surprise, but did not show it.

According to Red Cross, people that bought a $100 ticket that night hoped to win the prizes; thus, the civic group redrew the raffle for the grand prize.

Joeten Motors might have meant to donate the prize money to Red Cross immediately but still would claim the name as the winner. They donated the money to Red Cross because they knew that Red Cross needs money to fill all its services. Shouldn't Red Cross have consulted the winner first if it was okay to redraw the grand prize, when Joeten Motors meant to donate the money to Red Cross. It was luck that they won. They bought tickets too. It's sheer luck but I guess Joeten doesn't need more dough, right? Joeten Motors should have taken the money instead then give it to its Joeten Charitable Foundation to give to more deserving entities in the CNMI.

The new winner, though, they say deserves the prize money to help pay for hospital expenses of a member of the family. Hmmm...in this case....oh well.

Oct 14, 2007


Thanks to Weird Elle for taking time to document this graffiti. If you look closer or at least zoom the photo in, the word "priest" was blotched. The comments are right and that erased word was indeed "priest."

Delving on this topic, would just let me rant about the priests that serve on this island. Yes. Majority of these priests are believed to be pretty alternative in their lifestyles. One priest according to sources even owns partly one of the gay clubs/bars in Manila. I don't mean to demean any one here especially the subject of the grammarians in the comment section.

Priest or no priest, however, being gay is never illegal.

Back-to-Back Concert and Accidents

Last night's Back to Back Concert with exiting resident band Streetbeat Band and new band Switchgroove at the Club V was sure a megahit as over 500 people went in and out of the club. Cars were all piling up outside the parking lot of the Saipan Grand Hotel as most of them parked along the highway and across the hotel.

Past midnight, people coming in were mumbling about a terrible accident just outside the road going in to the hotel. A terrible accident that the police said the unidentified could-be Korean guy could end up dead. Police said, "Well, 90-percent he could be dead." The Asian driver was with a passenger who ran away, bloody all over the face, when he was asked to show his ID.

The two colliding cars hit two others after collision.

Didn't we say to prevent such accident because more likely CHC wouldn't be able to help at all. Now that they don't do INR or lab test for blood coagulation before surgery?

Oct 12, 2007

CNMI's David Copper(field) wire thief

This will give you a lift. Reuters reported days ago about copper wire thief in Germany that was charred beyond recognition when he tried to steal a live copper cable. Now don't you admire the thieves here in the CNMI especially when they stole the over 5-inch thick copper wire at La Fiesta that was worth $400,000. Such sly piece of meat huh? By the way, it was a live wire too. Just when you thought copper wire theft is only in the CNMI. Oh well....
BERLIN (Reuters) - A thief in Germany was charred beyond recognition by a 10,000 volt electric shock when he tried to steal a live copper cable, authorities said Monday.

Police in the western city of Duisburg found the 32-year-old man's blackened remains by a set of cable cutters and pile of non-live cables he had already stolen.

Only because one of his hands survived incineration were officers able to identify the man as German of Kazakh origin.

"His fingerprints were already logged on police files," a local police spokesman said. "The force of the shock was so great that the hand was severed from his body."

Oct 10, 2007

Book Now, Fly 'Chamorro!'

Though it's been discussed before, the Marianas Visitors Authority board officials had a presentation before that to increase the traffic of tourists going to the CNMI, it would be better to have the CNMI's very own flag carrier.

It was predicted that September would be the worst month of the year with fewer tourists visiting the island. The plan was conceived to alleviate the continuing losses in air seats, thus MVA is now looking at a possible low-cost carrier that will be managed by the local government.

The project was reported to improve air service for the Japan, Korea and China markets, among others. With CNMI's very own flag carrier, there would be 26 flights per week creating stable flights from eight secondary cities in Japan, 14 cities to replace charter flights from China, two from Hong Kong and two from Taipei.

MVA said with 85 percent average load factor, the carrier could bring in additional 212,000 tourists to the CNMI.

What do you think?

Oct 9, 2007

Your Computer and You

It’s something a lot of bloggers already knew. A livescience.com article says one’s relationship with his computer is one he spends more time on than any other; it has become his most significant other. But is there supposed to be a ‘normal’ number of hours spent with someone’s PC or laptop, especially for those whose jobs are not tied to computers?

The same article points out that the results of a survey conducted earlier this year show 64 percent of Americans say they spend more time with their computer than with their significant other, and 84 percent said they were more dependent on their computer than they were three years ago.

Most parents do limit the number of hours their kids spend in front of the computer (same with watching TV, playing video games). But adults?

Oct 7, 2007

Saipan's sexiest men revisited

The list that started it all has been revisited -- some names were added, others needed to be removed.

Again, sexiness means more than having a gorgeous body and a beautiful face (or not at all) but also about having a brain, a big heart, a warm smile, charm, an 'x' factor, a sunny disposition and most of all, having a civic or social relevance; those who go beyond the call of duty to make a difference in the lives of others...

In alphabetical order:

Dr. Marvin Ali
Cuci Alvarez
Jim Benedetto
Jeff Boyer
Lawrence Boyer
Dr. Richard Brostrom
David Burger
Glen Buultjens
Ian Catlett
Charles Cepeda
SandCastle magicians Chris and Ryan
David Cohen
Rex Cosack
Ricky Delgado
Greg Elliot
Joseph Flores
Yosh Gabaldon
Tony Gomez
Jonathan Grayson
Matthew Gregory
Nick Gross
Adam Hardwicke
Cris Hilario
Glen Hunter
Katie's Joe
Robert Jordan
Tyce Mister
Tim Moran
Nabil Murday
Chris Nelson
Bob O'Connor
Jessie Palacios
Ken Pierson
Eric Plinske
Ed Propst
Russ Quinn
Brad Ruszala
Mike Sablan
Yoshi Suzuki
Robert Torres
Angelo Villagomez
Jeffrey Warfield

Oct 6, 2007

Poll: Power to the people

It is sad to hear stories about how the island community is now coping with the high cost of utilities here in the CNMI. Which brings us to our next poll about being happy that the recent turn of events about the legislature overriding a veto of the Governor regarding CUC bill reduction.

We had this nice chitchat with someone who shared with us that there are now families somewhere here on the island that have been disconnected and have not had power for so many months now. The story even told us that these families have to share connections with their neighbors. Some families are now into candles.

It is sad to learn about these realities that extremely bite hard.


Btw, our last poll got 58 percent of the votes saying that the government should not allow CNMI resident to pay their utility bills within a year, while 23 percent of the voters said yes.

Now, on to our next poll, related to CUC again.

<---- Cast your votes now!

"Tour" the Fire.....

"Tour" the fire, "Tour" the limit, "Tour" the wall....(to the tune of Chaka Khan's song)

What the hell? Three tour buses set on fire? Were the arsonists blaming the continuing decline of tourists in the CNMI that they muster all their anger and set three tour buses on fire? (See the story here)It's just so sad that maybe our cars won't be safe anymore if you park it outside your house or building when there's no parking spaces anywhere.

What could be the motive of the culprits? Could it be they had a bad experience with the tour operator because they failed to drop by Winchell's for a donut?

You tell me.

Oct 3, 2007

Remembering Ben

It's been two years since I met judge Govendo's son Ben, who died when his car fell into a ravine, now called the Govendo Curve. I read his dad's letter in the paper and i believe he raised some important points there. Below is some part of his letter.
October 1 marked the second anniversary of my son Ben's death at the 1,000-foot curve in Sadog Tasi. I am happy to see the “jersey” guardrails in place and would like to take this opportunity to thank all the people who successfully designed and implemented the building of these guardrails. I am thankful that no one died during the exceptionally long time it took to complete these guardrails.

Special thanks are due to Lt. Gov. Tim Villagomez who ordered it done, Rep. Justo Quitugua who found the money to do it and Rep. Cinta Kaipat who kept me advised of what was happening.

When I drive by the area where my son died and I see these new guardrails in place, I can't help but wonder, what if. What if these guardrails had been in place two years ago? Would he be dead?
The night before he left us, I was there partying with him at a common friend's place. It was a birthday party. Then, during the toast he said it was his birthday like days before too. His birthday was on Sept. 29. He was a delight in the party for being charming as well. We were all shocked the next day when the small group of people in that party called one another and shared the bad news.

I still remember Ben with his book in his hands whenever he'd eat at Oleai Bar. What an interesting person he was.

Troubleshooter and the Troublemaker

This morning was the Saipan Chamber of Commerce's meeting highlighted its second Career Exploration Day and a presentation from Budget man Tony Muna.

SCC president JuanPan in his verbal effervescence introduced guests. One thing that struck us on our seats was when he introduced a government prominent staff as the "Troubleshooter but also the troublemaker" Ray Mafnas. Laughter in the hall.

See, You See What It Means?

Our dear CUC is now rubbing off sweat bullets on its forehead fearing to lose most of its grants due to the "forced work stoppage of more than 20 nonresident workers and six engineers at the Commonwealth Utilities Corp." since Sunday. CUC deems this as a serious problem that could impact on the multi-million federal funding being awarded to utilities corporation.

Yesterday CUC officials met with the Legislature and the Executive Branch on a closed-door meeting to request for an extension of the employment of the non-resident workers at CUC. CUC said the lack of engineers and their technical expertise is against some of CUC's agreements with the federal government.

Oct 1, 2007

The Buzz: Who's to Blame?

Didn't mean to bring this up but people have come up to me asking me questions I have no and have not gotten any answer. This is with regard to the death of the Tinian high school student three weeks ago. The kid died inside the school right after his PE class. He was interred last Friday.

Questions of these people now:

1. Should PSS be liable to this loss since it happened within the school premises. Should the PE teacher be blamed for this?
2. Shouldn't schools or at least administrators be aware of the health status or condition of their students?
3. Don't school have surveys before school opens?

These are just some of the community's inquisitions.

The Reveler

Translate: saipanmiddleroad.blogspot.com


About this site

This site is the Saipan Middle Roaders' blog--the wannabes, the frustrated ones, and the repressed ones...

There are several thoughts that have been written on paper, online or on the walls of every NMI building's bathrooms.

This site is for the geeks, for the shameless bitches, and for the restless drunks.

This site is for everyone.


Posts on this weblog are entirely the authors' opinions and views only.