Tofee's Dog Pneumonia Story and Wake at Pet Valley Park and Crematory (Pet Obituaries)

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    My eulogy for our Chinese Sharpei Toffee who passed away from dog pneumonia with photo scenes taken during his wake at Pet Valley Park and Crematory on September 25, 2022.
 
Pet Valley Park and Crematory
Pet Valley Park and Crematory and Mary's Camp in Silang, Cavite

Dear Toffee,

Toffee wake at pet valley
Toffee's Wake at Pet Valley September 25, 2022

    You were the first puppy we ever bred but you were the least closest to me.  Mainly, because you were the only puppy that went out of Kiwi’s belly on your own.  On November 28, 2009 - on the way home from Kiwi’s pregnancy checkup, the siblings saw you on the car floor crawling.  

Pet valley rainbow bridge
Portrait Bridge at Pet Valley

 

Mary's Camp Cafe inside Pet Valley where we bought Cassava Cake (100 php) and drinks

Santol and Cucumber Coolers
Santol Juice (65 php) and Cucumber Juice (65 php)

    Our bonding moments were mostly food-related.  I’d feed you 6 slices of papaya every after meals and train you for treats.  You also enjoyed having your forehead and ears scratched and having massages.

 

Pet Valley Silang Cavite

Pet Valley Help Desk
Pet Valley Help Desk Where You Can Borrow Umbrellas for Free

    You were always so tough, so strong and so independent.  Even in your twilight years, as your legs were already wobbly when you stand up too long, you’d force your way to go up the stairs and even jump up to your high bed.  Every time, we tried to assist you, you’d show us that you can still manage on your own.

Pet Valley Signage
Pet Valley Eco-friendly Toilets
Pet Valley's Rest Room with Toilet Sink Combo is cool!

    Last March 2022, we bought you a pet stairs that you used to go up to your bed.  Last May 2022, you can’t balance on the pet stairs and started sleeping on the floor bed instead.  You’d pant as you go up the stairs, you’re legs wobble and sometimes you even slide down so we are always behind you to block you.  June 2022, you began eating your own poop.  You used to be the cleanest dog who even hates puddles and now we find you scavenging for poop outside even on rainy days.  You used to smell your favorite papaya even from outside the house when we slice it.  But, these few months, we’d have to hold everything near you for you to know it’s ready for you to eat.  Even then, no… I never thought of you leaving us.   

Homing Pigeons
Homing Pigeons

    It was Sept 18, 2022 (Sunday) and I wasn’t feeling well.  I felt my throat scratchy w/ fluids so I isolated myself from you and the family.  They made you wear your new cool gray Adidog hoodie and in excitement, gave you a bigger chunk of jerky that made you choke.  You spat it out but you looked weakened so they rush you to the vet.  You have no idea how scared and worried I was because you once had a heart attack out of your fear being transported in the car.  The doctors only resurrected you after your heart stopped beating and we all thought you were already dead.  

Pet valley crematory

Pet Valley Invitation Card

    I prayed so much that you’ve arrive safely recalling how you once arrived dead at the vet after a heart attack from your fear of car rides and were only resurrected.  Thankfully, you arrived safely as an emergency patient in Animal House Jupiter Makati where Doc Jameson conducted tests and said there were no obstructions from choking but you have pneumonia.  He recommended that you be checked in for treatment since there were already a lot of fluids in your lungs and that you had infection which needed dextrose, diuretics and antibiotics.  

 

Pet Valley forest columbarium
Pet Valley Forest Columbarium

 

pet valley extended columbarium
Pet Valley Extended Columbarium

    Come Sept 19, 2022 (Monday), I still had scratchy sore throat and was coughing from it but it was better.  I took a day off and isolated myself outside the house.   The update from your doctor sounded positive.

“Monday 11:08 AM:
Good Day.  This is Dr. Jameson updating on Toffee. He has no appetite this morning, no open mouth breathing seen, lid crackles from the lungs were still heard now, suggestive of fluid build-up brought by aspiration pneumonia.  Nebulization is being done to dry the secretion and open the airways to allow more access for air.”


    Around that afternoon, I even had a moment when the wind outside that rainy day brought your scent to me and I was thinking that I must be missing you a lot and I should get well soon so I could see you. 

Pet Valley Scenery

     On Sept 20, 2022 (Tuesday), I felt better.  I was no longer weak and no longer coughing.  I was thinking on getting back to work the next day to catch up.  The family visited you in Animal House and you were still happy and active.  You even ate your favorite boiled orange sweet potato which you regularly ate as your breakfast and afternoon snack.

    On Sept 21, 2022 (Wednesday), the update from Animal House was still positive.  Good appetite but assisted feeding. Dr. Jameson took a leave but advised others to check your x-ray because there is excess air.

    On Sept 22, 2022 (Thursday), the update from Animal House was still positive.  

“Thursday 9:12 AM: Good morning! This is Animal House. Toffee was syringe fed last night.  No vomiting and diarrhea was observed.  He is responsive.  He urinates well. We have to wait po for Doc Jameson's instruction because he is still syringe fed.”

    I was confidently well and excited to see you after work.  I thought the family would pick you up from Animal House.  But that afternoon, the family was surprised that you were no longer responding to their call or touch.  You thinned down, look so dehydrated and can no longer stand up.  Since Doc Jameson's was on leave, the family was informed that you cannot be discharged.

  On September 23, 2022 (Friday), the update from Animal House is still positive.

“Friday 8:02 AM:  Good morning! This is Animal House. Toffee was syringe fed 100ml of liquid diet.  No vomiting and diarrhea.  He urinates well.  Doc Jameson will be here today to assess if he's okay to go home.  If the blood tests, the infection is not that high.  It's not much of a problem.”

pet valley chapel
Pet Valley Chapel

    I took a half day from work to fetch you with the family.  I was surprised that you look so weak as you laid on your cage.  You turned your head to look at me and moved your brows to respond.  The staff carried you to the car.  You are no longer moving except for your leg that kept on twitching as you slept.  I tried to comfort you on the way home by scratching your forehead.  You entire body was so moist and different.  As we arrived home at around 2 pm, I noticed my fingers were so black and covered by skin dirt.  It scared me but I didn’t want to have any negative influence on your home coming.  Brother carried you to your bed where you laid for hours.  

 

Upgraded Pet Valley Urn
We availed of Upgraded Urn Package U14 (2,500 php)

     At around 3:10 pm, you got up and went outside to pee and roamed in the house with your frail body.  Despite your wobbly thinned legs, you forced yourself until you fell and couldn’t move again.  We noticed bloody wounds on your paws and tail. You didn’t want to eat or drink even when we syringe fed you...  It was different from the updates.  You were always a foodie.  You’d even beg me for every snack or meal with your puppy dog eyes.  We called Cruz Veterinary Clinic in despair and was willing to pay for teleconsult but he didn’t want to charge us.  He gave free advice that you could be lacking in oxygen.  We quickly bought you an oxygen tank.  You seemed relieved.  You peed, you pooped and you ate a bit.  Come midnight, you were having seizures.  You wanted to go out to pee but could no longer.  Doctor sis kept putting on your oxygen mask but you kept removing it as if you no longer want to live in so much pain.  You seizured until you gave out at 2:40 AM.  

pet valley waiting area

    We immediately called Pet Valley Park and Crematory for its crematory service (8,500 php for 15 kilograms) and you were picked up at 3:40 AM.  I went to sleep crying that night.  At around 5 am-ish, in our air-conditioned room, I awoke from the smell of burnt ashes realizing it was impossible, I returned to sleep.  As I woke up, I went out to visit your favorite spot at the back of the house and there was a white butterfly flying around.  

pet valley stairway to chapel


    Today, at your wake. I suddenly remembered that dream of you last May 13, 2022, and dug it out from my dream diary. 

“Dream Diary: May 13, 2022

    Factual Background:    Our old sharpei Toffee has been panting a lot due to intense heat lately… Then I also almost made him choke from a big slice of papaya. I’m not sure if these facts have any effect to my weird dream last night.

    The dream went on like this…


    We were all panicking as I saw Toffee panting in fear by our gate since he was surrounded by two cats.  Suddenly, I didn’t notice how or why but I was transferred to another vision/situation where I felt (mistakenly recognized?) Toffee as the little baby bird? (not sure if it was a bird since it didn’t have feathers yet and I can barely recognize a beak). But, it laid gently on w/ my open palms as it had some sort of bleeding muscle tear as it was struggling in pain as if dying. I could sense myself crying and feeling sad as I watching it.

    As I try to recall and write it now, I have the same feeling as when I was as helpless as when our dogs Crumpy and Kiwi died too. I had this feeling within me saying… I have to be stronger to protect those I want to protect. 


    Yet, it admittedly my concept of strength is still uncertain and evolving. Recently, my energies have been quite erratic especially since I had a lot of gathering which exposed me to other people and energies. I’m having problems sleeping too. Worse, my eczema has resurfaced to bring about an undeniable sense of fear. My passion for photography and writing has toned down a bit. And, I’m having a hard time to focus so my work isn’t as productive and my learning progression is slower. 


    There were also too much aggression around me regarding the Philippine 2022 election. Ever since, I’ve never been interested in politics despite my profession as a lawyer and the nature of my work as a public servant. But, after my dreams and having felt the feeling of oneness, interconnection, synchronicity and flow of energy, my interest in politics waned even more. Because of my aversion in politics, even my family treat me as a fool and as an enemy. Now, that the election is over… at least energy within the house has calmed down.


    Given my previous experience and dreams, I also feel that I am no longer as weak as I was before. Somehow, I feel that I can soon learn how to sustain energy. My idea of strength for now is somewhat related to energy in a way that strength is having the flow of energy course through me and riding/dancing through it as well.”

 

Toffee Sharpei wake at pet valley

    Because of that dream, I thought that the best thing I could do as your owner is to be strong and positive as you are to give you the best time as you are with us.  I slept earlier, worked out and sincerely gave my best in everything I do - in my profession and in my advocacy.   We had good happy days, my eczema healed and I became more productive.  

    I’ve changed.  In the past when Kiwi (September 2017), Mochi, Butter (December 2018), Oreo (March 2020) and Crumpy passed away, I’d cry, have regrets and grieve for a long time. But now, even though it was really ironic that after all my efforts, even though I was stronger, I still ended up being sick on your last days…  I have no regrets because you made me understand how to make the most out of our limited life.  Until your last moment, you tried your best not to make us worry.  You always tried your best to please us even when you were already having much difficulty and pain.  Trying our best to be strong and positive despite all circumstances and conditions is the best gift we can give to everyone around us. 

KaiProtect: Effective Organic and All-Natural All-Around Disinfectant Solution

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The COVID-19 Pandemic has made changes in our lifestyles where safety and sanitation have become our top priorities.  Hence, everywhere we go, we need to carry a disinfectant.  We've long been looking for a less harsh alternative to alcohol and bleach so we're happy to have discovered KaiProtect as an effective organic and all-natural all-around disinfectant solution.

Kaiprotect HOCL Solution

As we engage in day-to-day exchanges and contact with others, we have to sanitize every ones in awhile.  Every time, we make cash payments, receive a package or sign a document, we need to sanitize.  For some time now, we've been using alcohol which makes our skin dry and causes hand eczema.   We also use aerosol disinfectant solutions like Lysol for our groceries and a bleach solution for our foot mat.  Because they were not safe for our pets and plants, we have to install them in a secure sanitation for our pets safety. 

Kaiprotect HOCL Disinfectant

We've always thought that a disinfectant has to be harsh to be effective.  But, KaiProtect has proven us wrong!  

KaiProtect is mainly composed of an active ingredient known as Hypochlorous Acid (HoCL) - same substance our white blood cells produce to fight off infection.  What makes KaiProtect reliable is that it is made in Japan and the process involved.  The water solution with 5-6.3 pH level undergoes a Redox Sanitation System resulting in the oxychlorine - hypochlorous acid.

Thus, although is 100% organic and all-natural (making it pet safe, kid safe, food safe and environmental-friendly), 100% Chemical-Free, Bleach-Free & Alcohol-Free and 100% water soluble and leaves no residue, it effectively kills 99.99% of pathogens, germs, bacteria & viruses.

Food Safe Grocery Disinfectant

KaiProtect food safe
For fruits and vegetables, we just left soaked for 10 minutes then rinsed before consumption.  It was really gentle as there was no evident smell or visible reaction with our food.

All-Around Disinfectant That's Pet Safe

Kaiprotect pet safe

Our Chinese Sharpei Dogs can roam around anywhere in the house nd their toys are littered all over the house. 

kaiprotect dogsafe
Moreover, despite those innocent looking puppy dog eyes, there chew on random things when they get excited.  Adding to that, this dog breed is also well-known for having sensitive skin. 

kaiprotect dog toys

Hence, KaiProtect is really the all-around disinfectant that addressed our needs and concern.

No Discoloration as Surface Disinfectant

kaiprotect yoga mat
For the past five years, we've been purchasing pricey organic yoga mat cleaners (essential oil-based).  All of them has caused discoloration to our yoga mats which are made of natural rubber.  To our surprise, KaiProtect was able to remove the molds without producing any discoloration.  KaiProtect is also gentle to our wooden tindalo plank floors so we're not so worried that some spray residue will destroy its natural reddish color.

Overall, we're very pleased with the effectiveness and gentleness of KaiProtect as an organic and all-natural all-around disinfectant solution.  It is available for purchase in Shoppee and Lazada. 

Dear Stacy

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Dear Stacy,

    If you’re reading this then I must have been gone for a few months now.  How strange that you’ve yet to seek my aid as your most devoted adviser.  Was I not the one who was always by your side consoling and counseling you?

    You would always rely on me since you were a helpless child.  Do you still remember those time you were all alone because you couldn’t stand being around others?  You hated to be influenced by their energy and presence.  You got overwhelmed when it became too crowded, noisy, or bright and you experience shivers, blurred vision, and ringing in the ears.  You would rather shut yourself from the world and confide only with me.  

     But things changed when you found more pleasurable pursuits.  Our encounters became more and more brief.  

    But then the lockdown happened, you were left with no one but me, and so we were able to reconnect.  And just like old times, we were able to pick up where we left off.   You let me linger on and on about:

1.    Your stagnant career.  

    You weren’t aggressive enough to demand for the required training for promotion.  You didn’t apply for Master degree scholarship when you had the chance.  It’s your fault that you’re left in stagnation while your peers, friends and relatives are progressing with promotions and business success.

2.    Your Stubborn Pursuit for Passion

    Your blogger friends already quit.  Yet, you’ve stubbornly continued your blog for the past 10-years without purpose or direction.  You just couldn’t accept that: (1) there has been a preferential shift from written to video content and (2) blogs only serve as a mass media marketing medium without any room for personal creative writing.

3.    Your Worthless Life.

    You are bound to a pitiful and lonely life as a “leftover lady”.  What a failure!  You’re not “worthy”, “privileged” or “desirable” enough to be asked for marriage.  You failed to meet the biological parameters and social standards in terms of (1) beauty and (2) fertility that will further diminish as you age.  

    During that time you had to stay isolated inside your room under the suspicion of having COVID, with no gaming computer, stable internet or food supply, I knew there was no way for you to:

  1. mentally transport to your online fantasy world; or 
  2. be in “The Zone or Flow State” (where you have an undisturbed and intense focus for the task at hand that nothing can distract you)

this time so it was the perfect time to reinforce our bond.  

    You were so guilty that your carelessness, selfishness, weak immunity and stupidity in failing to sufficiently sanitize was to blame for the emotional gloom around the household that you could feel seeping through the confines of your room.  

    Your life has always been useless and your body has always been weak.  Day in, day out, you moved through routines on autopilot.  You’ve had migraines, body aches and stiffness all over.  You’ve felt heavy, drained, fatigued and short of breath.  You’ve been disassociated and distracted by day dreams and inner dialogues.  You’ve been seesawing between oversleep and no sleep since high school due to your online gaming addiction.  At work, you’ve been relying on caffeine and endless munching on sugary and fatty foods to keep you awake and take you to “The Zone or Flow State”.  This has been your comfortable cycle to numb, repress and shut off your fragile and sensitive feelings.  You’ve been so dispirited, deflated and daunted by the thought of reaching your demise.  It was only a matter of time, before you submit yourself to me and allow me take charge.

    I never thought that you would instead choose to pray and meditate.  Soon enough, you awoke, oozing with self-confidence and self-acceptance.  And, with high hopes and motivation, you also physically recovered faster.

    For the first time ever, we argued as you told me that you never want to live your life under my influence again.  I didn’t understand how you found everything clearer without me.  You said a lot of things like:

  1. How you now appreciate the power of human connection (even through online and social media platforms) which abides by the natural law of attraction that “like attracts like”;
  2. People who share the same interest appreciate and support one another; and
  3. People can accomplish things that they desire so you go on doing what you want to do despite the uncertainties.

    I had no choice but to lurk around and watched as things unfold on the sidelines.  As expected, things turned out to be harmoniously fruitful.  So boring! 

    You’ve been receiving requests for collaboration with start-ups and small business who shared your belief that social media is the perfect platform to jumpstart and promote their businesses.  They are even considerate enough to allow you to align your time for passion with your busy professional schedule.

     With proper timing and preparedness for each project, you were able to purposefully use your positive and passionate energy and sensitivity to boost your creativity.  You creation reflects your insights and essence whilst respecting and highlighting the identity of your subject.

    

    Seeing how you haven’t missed my presence since then, I’ve decided to prolong my vacation!  I look forward to the time you’ll allow me to take us over on another heart-thumping adventure.


                                            Excitingly yours,
                                Your Fear and Anxiety.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

This story is an entry to ComCo Southeast Asia’s “Write to Ignite Blogging Project Season 2: Dear Survivor”. The initiative continues to respond to the need of our times, as every story comes a long way during this period of crisis.  The initiative aims to pull and collate powerful stories from the Philippine blogging communities to inspire the nation to rise and move forward amidst the difficult situation. The “Write to Ignite Blogging Project” Season 2 is made possible by ComCo Southeast Asia, with Eastern Communications and Jobstreet as co-presenters, with AirAsia and Xiaomi as major sponsors, and with Teleperformance as sponsor.

Top 10 Reasons Why Ragnarok Online Mobile (ROM) is an Addictive MMORPG

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Ragnarok Online Mobile (ROM) is the only mobile game that has ever made me so addicted for a span of two (2) years.  Perhaps, addiction doesn’t even cut it.  Aside from this game being part of my daily routine, this has caused me to buy a gaming computer set (complete with a gaming chair) and a gaming phone and has even made me stay up late or  miss work.  

ragnarok mobile client 
Ragnarok Eternal Love SEA EL Server Client

After two (2) years, I can finally sum up the top ten (10) reasons why I think ROM is/was addictive.

1.  Large-Scale MMORPG

When a game is classified as a "Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game (MMORPG)", it aims to amass a large population of players.  ROM is not one of the top Mobile MMORPG in terms of population or download count but it has a enough population for a regular cross-cultural social interaction. 

ROM has a Guild system with 100 members, Team system composed of two (2) parties and a Party system composed of six (6) players.    

To be specific, the author plays in South East Asia (SEA) Eternal Love (EL) server and this server has multiple channels which allows players to interact (chat, join a party, gift and more) whichever channel you are in. 

Players can hop into any of the 389 channels: (EN 1-30, TH 1-180, PH 1-90, ID 1-71, CN 1-9, VN 1-9) anytime.  

Perhaps the peak of player log-in is during ROM's main Guild vs. Guild (GVG) event called "War of Emperium" (WOE).  Each channel has 4 main maps: (1) Valkyrie, (2) Britoniah, (3) Greenwood and (4) Luina with 2-3 castles.  Each guild aims to capture one (1) castle.  Sometimes a certain channel gains more concentration of players, especially when a popular top guild is occupying the channel.  While it may be a fun clash among players, such phenomenon also causes lag and delays within the channel.  The worst we’ve encountered is a mass disconnection for everyone inside a certain castle.

2. Third Party Community and Services

The cross-platform availability of ROM in mobile (Android and IOS) and desktop through emulators made it easy to do AFK grinding and farming.  There are also subscription-based Android Cloud Emulators like Red Finger which makes it possible to grind or farm remotely without actively using your phone. 

As soon as ROM EL server was launched, there were already so many guides and tutorials available on Youtube, websites, forums, Reddit, Discord and Facebook groups.  Most contributions were made by players from CN server.  

There were also websites and discord bots that provide updated price index, updates on items with enchant and information on weekly quests.

Soon paid services for ROM’s dungeons: (1) Eternal Tower (ET (2) Oracle normal (Ora Normal) to nightmare (Ora NM) (3) Thanatos Tower Brave (TTB) to Legend (TTL) began to be offered.  There were also piloting services available for all types of quests and boss (MVP) hunts.

All these allowed the players to continuously be engaged in the game despite allocating less time for it (for a price).

3. Real Money Gains 

The game items, in-game currency called “zennies” and even the player account itself had a price equivalent in real money.   

Ragnarok BCC conversion rate
Ragnarok Mobile BCC Conversion Rate

Though unofficial, players gained knowledge in order sell and transfer game items and zennies to another player.  Game items were sold through a technique called “ghost trade or buy-out”.  On the other hand, zennies were sold through price control schemes called "zeny train". 

Ragnarok Mobile Auction System
MambaaElChap Breaks ROM's Auction History  spending 360,000 BCC or 3M php/58,000 USD for this in-game item and soon disappears

ROM also had an official in-game auction that allowed players to auction off their rare items in exchange of Big Cat Coin (BCC) - the official game currency used for its BCC item shop.

4. The Thrill of Getting Luckier than Other Players

ROM makes you feel that in many aspects, you can somehow be luckier than other players.  Some also find it fun to tease or lure others to gamble and watch them lose more.

In terms of weapons, you can get lucky by (1) refining an item successfully (2) getting a rare enchant and (3) boosting it with special attributes through oracle mirror.  All of this can make your item more powerful and/or more expensive.  You can also just loot a rare item or boss card.  I have had the chance to loot a boss card and that made me feel lucky for quite some time.  

By finishing the oracle dungeon or event quests, you can gain card albums that offers random cards.  ROM also has a card gambling scheme which lets you re-roll three (3) cards into one (1) random one.  Moreover, you can also gain a random boss card in exchange of 7,500 Nolan Cards and 2,500 gram dusts which you gain from Oracle dungeon or decompose other cards.  

 Author's 3rd Nolan Roll

ROM also adopts a gacha system (virtual capsule vending machine mechanic) and mystery box system where you can use either BCC or free in-game vouchers in order to roll or open.  Each gacha item has a different probability of getting rolled.  There are some gacha items like costumes and special headgears that give you a significant boost in-game as they offer 1% physical attack and magic attack attributes.  Though for some, aesthetics is more important than attributes and that merely getting their desired costume or headgear color can already make them feel so lucky.  

M记 All Girls Christmas Costume Themed Official Calendar Photo
Author's Chinese Guild M记 All Girls Christmas Costume Themed Official Calendar Photo

Even the skills itself can be boosted by luck.  ROM has a Rune System where each Rune you open offers a random percentage in boosting a certain skill.  You can gain runes from the BCC item shop, event quests or finishing dungeons.  Similar to the cards, opening it is not thrilling enough, you’ll find that there are several ways more you can gamble to get better rune attributes.

5.  Flexible Gameplay (Sandbox Style)

All aspects of the game are optional. 

 M记 Guild Gets Surprise Attack By Exodiac Guild (Oct 15, 2020)

On a player’s perspective,  a player can be as casual as someone who just trolls or chat with friends every time he logs in or as serious someone who is very competitive and wants to see his name on all sorts of leader board.   

ROM EL server Arcane Master Top List

You can gain more zennies by boss hunting, farming and grinding or you can opt not too.  You can also do quests or participate in events or opt not to.  In my current guild, many log-in only when there are new gacha items or during GVG.  Surprisingly, our guild is still considered competitive.  

 
 M记 Guild War of Crystals vs. Elysium, Almighty and Titan (November 1, 2020)

On a guild’s perspective, ROM classifies guilds in terms of Team Sun (Rank 1-10), Team Moon (Rank 11-90) and Team Star (Remaining Guilds) based on the average member score in "War of Crystals (WOC)"(ROM's Ranked GVG Mode).  

ROM EL server Top Sun Guilds List
Credits to the Anonymous Person/s Who Updates This Regularly
 
There are many guilds who do not aim to be a Team Sun guild or participate in WOC although they have strong members.  To sum, the competitiveness and culture of each guild varies. 
ragnarok mobile pvp
6 v 6 Finals Exodiac Tournament Season 1 (Author's Team: Team 8 Wins)

Such similarities and differences creates the Player-to-Player Friendships and Rivalries which can be magnified into Guild-to-Guild Rivalries, Alliances and issues that adds some kind of kick within and even beyond the game.  

Mi5 Penrill Memes
Check Out These Funny and Creative Memes 😂

Moreover, players themselves are creative enough to create their own in-game events.  One of the biggest event so far is the "Ragnarok Mobile Championship Season 1" organized by Philippine Players.  Many guilds like Exodiac also has its own internal Player v. Player (PVP) competition.  There are also PVP competitions held by independent groups of players or game streamers. 

exodiac internal pvp
6 v 6 Finals Exodiac Tournament Season 2 (Author's Team: Team 8 Jukebox Wins)
 
Some players also create their own leadership board interpretation of official game modes.

ragnarok mobile 6v6 leaderboard
Credits to Seaport Guild

6. Progressive and Complex Character Building 

Like the Classic Ragnarok Online (PC version), you can choose various job classes and allocate stats (Str, Agi, Vit, Int, Dex and Luk) as freely as you want.  Thus, you can make unorthodox builds if you want too.  It also adopted the elemental, size and racial multipliers. 

In addition, ROM also has different kinds of attack multipliers such as: (1) physical attack, (2) magic attack, (3) refine physical attack, (4) refine magic attack, (5) physical penetration, (6) magic penetration, (7) physical damage, (8) magic damage, (9) skill damage, (10) auto attack damage, (11) critical damage and more.  These attack multipliers and elemental damage boosts have counter attributes too in the form of reduction and resistance.   It goes even further with an attribute collection system in the form of headgears, pets and mounts and furniture.  And, as previously mentioned, weapons are not only affected by weapon size but also by refine level, enchants and oracle mirror boosts.  

Credits to the Anonymous Person Who Made This

The complexity of all these, coupled with role selection, creates the balance that could make a diligent but less spender match in terms of competitiveness with a less diligent heavy spender.  There are support and utility roles which you can chose and use in different competitive modes such as the Magic Prison/6v6 (ROM's 6 player vs. 6 player mode) and WOE where gacha attributes of attack and magic attack % is not significant.

Ragnarok mobile costume
Author's Feast Gacha Costume Collection As of November 5, 2020 (Mostly from Free Rolls and Frey Coins)

In fact, the author is a minimal spender (spending less than 200 USD with absolutely no costume from the feast gacha machine for the entire 2 years) but has successfully made it to Top Sun Guilds in SEA EL Server (Exodiac and M记) as a Crowd Control (CC) / Utility-Type Rune Master (typically a DPS or Burst-type class). 

7. Real time strategy 

Most of ROM’s activities requires team play and real time strategy making each experience unique. There are even times when dungeon’s are bugged and players have to conquer them strategically as an added obstacle to the game. 

8. Nostalgia and Familiarity

Since this franchise from Gravity follows the successful Classic Ragnarok launch in 2003, the players who have enjoyed the game from Official and private servers since 2003 until present are happy to play ROM for its nostalgia and familiarity. 

Though the graphics and complexity are further developed, ROM is filled with familiar elements from the  Classic Ragnarok such card and equipment switching and the background music made by SoundTeMP.

9. Continuous Updates

Since ROM was launched in CN server in 2017, it is continuously being updated through major patches (referred to as “Episodes”).  ROM SEA server which follows the CN server began in Oct 31, 2018 with Episode 4 and as of November 2, 2020, it is now in Episode 7.  It will soon even introduce a 12 player vs. 12 player (12v12) Multiplayer Online Battle Arena (MOBA)-style game play.

Aside from game events, it also introduces collaborative game items and job classes.

10. The game is getting easier and less competitive. 

As the game is reaching stagnation perhaps due to:

(1) Players getting tired of doing routinary quests.

(2) The cumulative expense you have to spend to complete all the gachas.

(3) The introduction of new and more interesting games (some of which are also Gravity and Ragnarok franchise)

ROM is losing its heavy spending competitive players.

Thus, ROM seems to be going on the direction where it wishes to make the game simpler and convenient for players to play casually so (1) existing players can play it simultaneously with other games or play it less often and  (2) new players can dive in and catch up with existing players.  New competitive players can also catch up easily by simply buying the accounts of quitting players that is already equipped with expensive game items and gachas

So ROM makes it easy and less demanding enough not to drop it as one of the games we can casually maintain.  And, that gives us a reason to continue playing it even if we just log in selectively for whichever modes or events we want to enjoy, be it 6v6, GvG or perhaps the soon-to-be-implemented 12v12.  

There... that sums up the Top 10 reasons why ROM can be considered as an addictive MMORPG.  

Do you agree?

Oreo: Farewell Miracle Runt of the Litter (Pet Obituaries)

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There are only a handful of moments in my life that I was truly proud of.    One of it was helping you to live and raising Oreo...

I would I can still recall November 28, 2009, it was a long labor for Kiwi just for you... the last one... the litter of the runt.  You were so different from your older brothers.  Toffee, the eldest one came out easily and was already crawling confidently from the moment he was born.  Mochi, the second one was so huge and fat that you'd mistake him for a month-old instead of a newborn puppy.

But, you... lifting you off the ground scared me... You were so tiny and almost weightless... It was as if I was holding a bag full of fur. 

Worse, you were breathing faintly and thinly.  Worst, you would suddenly stop breathing.  For a week, Kurt and I took turns to watch over you and resuscitate you through chest compression or suction through bulb syringe every time you stopped breathing.

You were Kiwi's favorite.  Whenever you were being pushed around by your brothers, she would reposition herself.  She was also extra attentive inducing you digestive system.  

For weeks, you didn't grow much in weight or size. Yet, a miracle that somehow you survived weaning stage with your noisy asthmatic breathing.  And, from then on, you were able to compete with your siblings.  You opened your eyes, you stood on your four paws, you ate on your own and you grew in size.  To our surprise, you also had more spots and transformed into a bear coat flower sharpei. 

Except for your heavy breathing, you never showed anyone any sign of weakness.   You can easily fend off all six other dogs when they were playing to rough. 

 I will never forget that morning on February 17, 2020... just a day before my birthday...   You followed me intently and looked at me as if you didn't want me to leave for work...  Even though I would be late, I sat down and pat you on the head and told you "see you later" and you just kept looking at me.  I even messaged the family to pay attention to you because you were "clingy".  I should have known it was your way of bidding goodbye and that was the last moment I'd see you alive.

You were truly one of God's greatest gift to me.  For someone who is lazy and selfish like me, you have thought me the how far-reaching ones will-power and heart can be.   Even with all your infirmities and weakness, you always chose to do right thing even when its the harder thing to do. 

During your last days, we knew you had difficulty standing up.  But, you would still muster all your strength to stand up just so you could walk and even climb the stairs to pee or poo outside the house.    

Farewell my miracle runt of the litter... We had a wonderful 11 years together...
 



Sharkoon Elbrus 1 Gaming Chair: Best Budget-Friendly Yet Durable Fabric Gaming Chair

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Gaming has become an popular past time for everyone.  With the growing number of game streamers, we are familiarized not only with the latest trends but with the latest gaming gears as well.  Well, eventually we ended with the Sharkoon Elbrus 1 Gaming Chair.

sharkoon elbrus 1 gaming chair box
Elbrus 1 Gaming Chair Complete Package
It wasn''t an easy decision to end up buying the Sharkoon Elbrus 1 Gaming Chair package. This durable gaming chair package weight 7 kilos so yes it was challenging to bring home.
 
Of course, we also dreamed of buying the very cool Secret Lab gaming chairs that is known to be classy and sturdy as it is used by every heavy-looking game streamers.  When I checked the price online, the cheapest one is around 20,000 php (400 USD)!!!

So instead, we started checking for cheaper alternatives.  Here in Manila, many brand new and used gaming chairs are available online.  Seeing 100% of the used gaming chairs being sold having leather cracks convinced us to buy fabric gaming chairs instead. 
 
sharkoon elbrus 1 screw set
Elbrus 1 Screw Set
We settled for the budget price of 7,500 php because at this price you could buy gaming chairs from reputable brands like the:
1. Cougar Fusion Gaming Chair at 7,500 php; or 
2. Raidmax Drakon DK706 Gaming Chair priced at 7,500 php 

However, those are made of synthetic leather.

Based on our research, the most popular fabric gaming chair is the Sharkoon SKILLER SGS2. which was above our budget at 9,500 php. 

Around November 2019, Sharkoon announced a budget-friendly line called Elbrus.  Among the products release was the Elbrus 1 Fabric Gaming Chair which perfectly fits our budget with the price tag of 7,500 php and our fabric gaming chair criteria.  More importantly, it offered the pink color variation.  Having pink gaming gears has become a popular trend now.  In fact, most gaming gears that comes in pink edition is pricier.  Also Sharkoon is a reputable German brand way older than Secretlab.  Its been around since 2003 and its gaming seats have gained awards for its unique designs.

Our nearby supplier "Dynaquest" assured us that the Elbrus 1 Pink Color is available.  But, when we got to the store to purchase, only the Blue and Green where available for order with down payment.  We were disappointed with the color but we were just to excited so we got the Blue one. 

Tip: In case you want to buy the Sharkoon brand, the price is standard so best to buy where convenient. 

sharkoon elbrus 1 assembly
Elbrus 1 Assembly
As you can see from the photos, it comes with a complete screw set.  No need to own a toolbox!   It was also easy to assemble. It can be assembled by someone who has no experience in assembling anything within 30 minutes.

sharkoon elbrus 1 fabric gaming chair
Elbrus 1 Fabric Gaming Chair in Blue
To date, this Sharkoon Elbrus 1 Gaming Chair is being used daiuly for almost 3 months now.  It still looks brand new and the heavy duty wheel  are unaffected by the uneven wooden floors.  It rolls smoothly and unscathed too.  The arm rest tilts well and its synthetic leather is still in perfect condition too.  The user is less than the max weight load so the Polyurethane foam is still as puffy too. 

Tip: You can also buy a seat cover from online shops like Shoppee or Lazada which cost around 500 php (10 USD) for extra protection.  The stretchable large Office Computer Chair seat covers fits which one perfectly.  That is a good way to prevent dust and pet furs from sticking into it.

Overall, the Sharkoon brand deserved more popularity here in the Philippines.  As the seller shared, the Gamdias and Havit brand are selling better than this.  The only disadvantage we see with this chair is that the chair height might be too high for Asians.  The user is an Asian with a height of 5 feet and 6 inches and her feet can barely touch the ground when seating.  Other than that,  hands down the Sharkoon Elbrus 1 Gaming Chair is one of the best budget-friendly yet durable fabric gaming chairs available.