Archive for the ‘Rant’ Category

“Masteral” is not a word. Or is it?

Sunday, October 28th, 2007

Go ahead. Go to Google and enter the word masteral. Or if you’re lazy, just click here. The first few pages all list sites coming from the Philippines or written by Filipinos.

I admit I may have used that word myself before, and today I’ve heard someone say it again. I don’t think I’ve heard that word uttered while living in the U.S. for more than 3 years now. Not surprisingly, today it was a fellow Filipino who said it.

I decided to look it up online, and I think I can safely say that this word is a purely Filipino concoction. It isn’t on the Merriam-Webster dictionary. Nor is it in the Oxford English Dictionary. It may not be an official word by the OED’s standards. Judging from the results from that Google search though, it is a word that is definitely in common use in the Philippines. It most definitely looks like applying the -al suffix in doctoral (which definitely is an official word), to master — hence, masteral. I’m sure linguists have a term for such type of word form. If I may follow the OED’s definition of doctoral, then:

masteral, a.

Of or belonging to one who has received the degree of Master.

Its use in the Philippines is such that even universities and government officials use the word as if it is an official English word. It may not belong to the OED, but if there’s such a thing as a Dictionary of Filipino English, it should definitely be in it. To be fair though, I’ve found at least one U.S. site that uses the word though I won’t be surprised if that site’s webmaster is a Filipino.

DHL 2nd Day beats UPS 2nd Day Air

Tuesday, June 26th, 2007

(… or When UPS Says 2nd Day Air, they really mean it.)

I ordered a few items from — same item but different colors.  Apparently, Amazon didn’t keep stock of the same item in one workshop, since one package shipped from Tulsa, OK and another shipped from Coffeyville, KS. According to Google Maps, they’re just 73 miles from each other. Since I have an Amazon Prime membership, both packages were shipped using 2-day shipping. The one from Tulsa used UPS, while the one from Coffeyville, KS used DHL.  Both shipped out on Friday, so both were scheduled to be delivered today (06/26/2007).

The UPS package was already in Philadelphia, PA by 11:51 AM on Sunday, 6/24/2007.  On the other hand, the DHL package scanned in Allentown, PA by 11:42 PM on the same day. I would think that it would be more likely that UPS could deliver the following day, ahead of the Tuesday schedule. The destination is Elmsford, NY

But, as the title of this post implies, only DHL delivered yesterday. UPS takes the name of its 2-day service too literally, as I’ve posted here before.

When UPS says 3 Day Select, they really mean it.

Thursday, June 7th, 2007

So I ordered something that gets shipped out of Seattle on Tuesday. I chose to have it shipped by UPS 3 Day Select so I would receive it by Friday. So when I checked the tracking last night, I was pleasantly surprised that it was already in Newark, NJ as of 5:38 p.m on Wednesday. I was expecting UPS to outperform their promised scheduled delivery date by 1 day, since the destination (Elmsford, NY) is less than 40 miles from Newark.

But when I checked the tracking information this morning, not only was the package not yet marked Out for delivery as I hoping it would be, UPS also had the package moved to Philadelphia, 120 miles from the delivery destination. Here’s part of the tracking information:

Philadelphia, PA, US 06/07/2007 12:30 A.M. ARRIVAL SCAN
Newark, NJ, US 06/06/2007 10:23 P.M. DEPARTURE SCAN
Newark, NJ, US 06/06/2007 5:38 P.M. ARRIVAL SCAN

Not that I’m complaining since the scheduled delivery day is Friday, 06/08/2007. Since the service was UPS 3 Day Select, UPS must have decided to let my package take the scenic route before finally delivering it, as promised, tomorrow.

(A quick search on Google yielded this similar experience.)