Diyos Ko! Bakit Mo Ako Pinabayaan?

“Nang mag-aalas tres na ng hapon, sumigaw si Hesus, ‘Eli, Eli, lema sabachtani?’ na ang ibig sabihin ay, ‘Diyos ko, bakit mo ako pinabayaan?’ “ - Mateo 27: 46

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Marahil, karamihan sa atin ay nakapagtanong na minsan sa ating buhay ng mga katagang “Diyos ko? Diyos ko? Bakit mo ako pinabayaan?”

Sa mga puntong iyon ng ating buhay ay para bang nararamdaman nating wala ng Diyos o kung meron man, siya ay natutulog at nagpapabaya sa atin. O isang sadistang hinahayaan na lang ang kanyang mga nilikha na maghirap, magkagulo, at lamunin ng problema.

Totoo nga bang may Diyos? Totoo nga bang hindi natutulog ang diyos? Pero kung totoong nandiyan siya, bakit niya tayo pinababayaan?

Hindi kaila sa atin na sadyang mapagbiro ang tadhana. Dumadating ang mga pagkakataong para bang tayo na ang pinaka-abang tao sa mukha ng lupa. Na kahit ano mang bagay ang ating gawin para ito ay masolusyonan ay tila baga wala pa ring kahihinatnang malinaw na solusyon sa ating mga problema.

Dito pumapasok ang buhay at kaisipan ng kawalang pag-asa. Naiisip nating “Diyos nga ay walang pakialam sa akin at hindi ako tinutulungan, ako pa kayang hamak na tao ang makagawa?” Dito pumapasok ang buhay sa kadiliman. Ang buhay pagpapabaya. Ang buhay na malayo sa Diyos. Ilang beses na nating inakusahan ang diyos ng pagpapabaya sa atin? Kawawa naman si Lord, kahit walang sawang nagmamahal, lagi na lamang sinisisi sa mga hindi magagandang nangyayari sa buhay ng tao.

Ito ang isang klasikong halimbawa. May mga taong nasa banig ng karamdaman na halos isumpa na ang langit at lupa at ang Manlilikha. “Diyos ko! Bakit niyo naman ako binigyan ng ganitong sakit?”, marahil ang ilan sa mga linyang kanyang bibitawan. Ngunit naitanong na ba niya sa kanyang sarili, ano ang aking ginawa kaya ako nagkasakit? Ano ang aking naging lifestyle kaya ako nagkakaganito ngayon? May mga taong sinisisi ang Diyos sa lung cancer, chain smoker naman ng halos 40 taon; may mga sinisisi ang Diyos sa sakit sa puso, walang preno naman kung kumain at hindi nag-eehersisyo; sinisisi ang Diyos dahil sa karamdamang kung minsan - o madalas - bunga din naman ng sariling pagpapabaya.

Dahil sa mentalidad na “wala namang diyos” (kahit meron naman talaga) ay nabubuhay tayo sa isang buhay na walang direksyon at walang kaliwanagan. Sa pagtahak natin sa ganoong klase ng “trip” sa buhay, hindi maiiwasang may mga tao tayong isasama at hahatakin doon sa “kakaibang trip” na iyon. Imbes na maging tagapagdala ng liwanag at pag-asa, dahil nga tayo ay nabubuhay ng malayo sa Diyos, tayo ay nagiging instrumento pa upang mapariwara ng landas ng iba. Imbes na tayo lang ang nakakaramdam ng “pagpapabaya ng diyos” (kahit hindi naman talaga), ipinaparamdam pa natin ito sa iba. Ilang beses na ba tayong naging instrumento para ang ating kapwa ay “mabuhay sa kadiliman?”

Bakit nga ba kapag tayo ay malayo sa Diyos, tayo ay nabubuhay sa kadiliman? Ito ay sa kadahilanang Diyos ang siyang nagbibigay ng liwanag. Diyos ang talagang nagbibigay ng ilaw dahil ang Diyos ang ilaw, ang Diyos ang liwanag (1 Juan 1:5). Mas maliwanag pa ang diyos kumpara sa ilaw na ibinibigay ng Meralco. Mas Masaya, mas maganda, kapag may liwanag ang buhay. At ang liwanag ng buhay ay atin lamang makakamit sa diyos. Walang ibang nilalang ang makakapagbigay ng ganap na kaliwanagan bukod sa diyos (katunayan nga, ang Diyos ay hindi isang nilalang dahil wala naming lumalang sa kanya). Kung kaliwanagan ng buhay ang kailangan mo para sa madilim mong buhay, Diyos ang kailangan mo.

Sa katunayan, kapag dumadating ang mga “kadiliman” sa ating buhay, hindi naman ito talagang ganap na kadiliman. Sabihin na nating, isa lamang itong “kulimlim” ng buhay. Kung atin itong ikukumpara sa ating buhay at Diyos ang “araw”, hindi naman talaga nawawala o nagpapabaya ang Diyos, “nakakubli” lamang siya sa likod ng mga ulap ngunit hindi siya nawawala. Kung inaakala nating nawawala ang araw, o nawawala ang Diyos sa ating buhay, iyon ay isang pagkakamali. Tayo ang nawawala, hindi ang araw. Tayo ang lumalayo sa Diyos, hindi Diyos ang lumalayo sa atin.

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Hindi naman kaila sa atin na may mga taong hindi naniniwala sa Diyos. At may mga taong walang pakialam kung may Diyos ba o wala, basta’t mabubuhay sila ayon sa kanilang kagustuha at kaginhawahan.

Minsan ay naitanong ko sa isang kakilala kung bakit hindi siya naniniwala sa Diyos. Sinagot niya akong, kung may Diyos, bakit may paghihirap? Bakit may nagugutom? Bakit may sakit? Bakit may namamatay nang hindi ma lang nakatikim ng hustisya at kaginhawahan sa buhay.

Kasama sa pag-aaral ko sa Pilosopiya noong Kolehiyo ang pag-aaral tungkol sa katotohanang may Diyos at ang problema ng imperpeksyon at kasamaan sa mundo. Madali sa aking intindihin kung bakit nangyayari ang mga ganoong bagay. Hindi naman kasi kayang ‘kontrolin’ ng Diyos ang kalayaan ng tao. Binigyan niya tayo ng kalayaan - o free will - bilang mga nilalang. Malaya ang tao na gawin ang gusto niya. Ika nga, maituturing na free will ang ‘kahinaan’ ng Diyos.

Ang mga paghihirap, pagkakasakit, at mga trahedya ay hindi dahil ito ay ginusto ng Diyos. O dahil walang pakialam ang Diyos. O dahil wala naman talagang Diyos. Ito ay dahil tayo ay may kalayaan ang tao. Maaaaring ang paghihirap ng isang tao ay bunga na din ng kapabayaan at pagsasamantala ng kapwa niya tao. 

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E bakit pa kinakailangang magkaroon ng mga “kulimlim” na parte ng ating buhay?

Ang buhay ng tao ay hindi palaging puno ng kasiyahan. Natural sa buhay ng tao na dumadating ang mga problema at pagsubok ng buhay. Ang mga pagsubok na ito ang nagdadagdag ng “kulay” at ganda ng buhay. Masyadong “patay” ang isang buhay kung pare-pareho na lamang ang kulay at lasa nito.

Paano nating masasabing masaya ang ating buhay kung wala tayong punto ng pagkukumparahan nito (point of comparison)? Nakakasawa ang isang buhay na punong-puno ng kasiyahan at walang halong kalungkutan. Perfection is boring. Masasabi kasi nating mas nagiging ganap ang kasiyahan ng buhay kung ang kasiyahang iyon ay ang pakiramdam ng tagumpay ng paglampas sa pagsubok ng buhay. Nakakaumay ang palaging matamis na buhay. Paminsan-minsan, kailangan din nating makatikim ng maalat, mapakla, at mapait na lasa ng buhay.

Ang buhay ay parang tiklada ng piano. Hindi lamang puro puting tiklada ang ating pinipindot, kinakailangan din nating daanan ang mga itim na tiklada. At alam ng mga musikero na ang kombinasyon ng mga itim at putting tiklada – na parang kombinasyon ng kaligayahan at kalungkutan ng buhay – ang siyang mas nakagagawa ng kaaya-aya at de kalidad na tunog.

Bukod sa pagbibigay ng lasa at kulay ng buhay, bakit kinakailangan pa nating maghirap? Bakit pa kinakailangang magbigay ni Lord ng mga pagsubok ng buhay?

Ang diyos ay diyos na kahit wala ang mga nilalang. Hindi dagdag o kabawasan sa pagiging Diyos niya ang mga nilalang. Kung tutuusin nga, hindi na niya kinakailangan pang lumikha dahil diyos na siya. Ngunit dahil sa kanyang pagmamahal ay nilikha niya tayo. Nilikha tayo ng Diyos dahil sa pagmamahal niya sa sanilibutan. Bilang mga nlalang, natural lamang na ibalik natin ang pagmamahal na iyon sa diyos na siyang unang nagmahal at lumikha sa atin.

May mga pagkakataon kasi na sa kadahilanang masyado na tayong nagiging makasarili bunga ng ating tagumpay, nakakalimutan na nating magpasalamat sa diyos. Paminsan-minsan, kinakailangan tayong “kalugin” ng diyos upang magising tayo sa katotohanang mayroong diyos na pinagmumulan ng lahat ng tagumpay at ganap na kaligayahan.

Gayundin naman, ang Diyos ay umaakto bilang mga “traffic signs” sa “highway ng paglalakbay natin sa buhay.” Huwag natin itong ituring bilang mga balakid sa paglalakbay sa buhay, bagkus, ituring natin ang diyos bilang isang gabay upang makarating tayo sa ating paroroonan ng ligtas. Dahil sa bandang huli, Diyos din naman ang patutunguhan nating lahat. Ang diyos ang simula at katapusan ng lahat ng mga bagay. Siya ang Alpha at Omega ng sanlibutan at ng ating mga buhay.

Ang plano ng diyos para sa kanyang mga nilalang ay palaging “happy ending.” Kung sa istorya ng buhay natin ay para bang gusto na nating sumuko dahil sa mga pagsubok at problema nating hinaharap, alalahanin na nating hindi pa iyon ang “happy ending” na itinakda ng Diyos para sa atin. Iyong mga iyon ay ituring nating “pampagana at pampaganda” ng istorya ng ating buhay.

Sa bandang huli, nais kong sabihing hindi naman talaga nagpapabaya ang Diyos.Kung sa tingin nating parang “nilalayasan” tayo ng diyos sa ating buhay, sana ay sumagi sa ating isipan na “nagtatago” lamang ang Diyos ngunit palagi pa rin siyang nagmamasid at gumagabay sa atin.

Nawa, ang ating isigaw sa buhay ay hindi ang “pagpapabaya ng diyos” kundi “DIYOS KO! DIYOS KO! SALAMAT AT HINDI MO AKO PINABAYAAN!”

Ano pa mang mga pagsubok ang dumating sa atin, kakayanin natin ito dahil alam nating may plano ang Diyos sa atin.

Pag-ibig, pagkakaisa, at pagmamahalan ang nawa’y sumaating lahat. Padayon!

This was originally written in 2009 but I tweaked it this year to tackle the issues of today. I decided to repost this one to reach wider audience. Have a blessed Good Friday everyone!

Commuter Woes
You might have already heard it on social media or in the television. Following the series of problems encountered by the ever-efficient Metro Rail Transit (MRT), the Malacanang Palace, through one of its mouthpieces Presidential Communications Operations Office head Herminio “Sonny” Coloma Jr., advised commuters to try other modes of transportation.
"Yung MRT lang ba ang puwedeng sakyan doon sa mga rutang dinadaanan nito? Baka naman puwedeng matuklasan yung iba pang mga options," he said during a press briefing.
He particularly urged the public to try riding the passenger buses saying that those are not overloaded.
He must be delusional. Just like our omniscient Government officials who keep on suggesting things to the commuters and the public – as if they have conducted a scientific study. Or have tried those things for themselves.
But seriously, what are the other options for commuters in this everyday hell-hole called commuting in Metro Manila?
Okay, let’s take Secretary Coloma’s suggestion. Buses. Killer buses. Almost every week, bus accidents are reported on the news with numerous injuries and fatalities. (Don’t get me started on writing an article about these buses from hell and the death of my life inspirations, Tado Jimenez. But I might save it for the next day.)
How about the so-called King of the Road, the Pinoy jeepneys? Setting aside the sweltering heat and the smoke from other vehicles that you will inhale, this might be a perfect alternative for the congested train. But good defending your life against pickpockets, robbers, laglag barya gang, budol-budol gang, salisi gang, and other gangs on the Philippine National Police’s checklist.
Okay, the taxicabs. They’re safe – aside from occasional holdaper na taxi driver. They’re efficient – unless you encounter a driver who chooses his passenger. And they are worth your money – unless he is a kontratista and uses batingting.
How about bicycles? These past years have seen the boom of cyclists not just for sports and recreation but also for commuting purposes. But unless they put up safe bike lanes in every city, or unless some drivers learn how to share the road, I won’t risk my safety on the concrete jungles of the Metro.
I wasn’t supposed to write a thing about the statement of Secretary Coloma that provoked the netizens’ ire the other day. It wasn’t my problem. I have a comfortable, commuter’s life here in the province (I take the jeep or my mountain bike on my way to work). I am not one of those souls who brave the MRT everyday on their way to work. It’s Imperial Manila’s problem, I thought myself. But that mentality, in my opinion, is also a problem on this issue.
In order to understand a situation, one must experience it personally or one must have a mentality of filling oneself in the shoe of another person. Empathy, if you may call it. I had my time struggling to ride the MRT and LRT and exchanging breath and faces with fellow commuters like a when I was still working in Manila a few years ago. And that everyday experience was inferno-esque.
Some people may think Sonny Coloma and the Malacanang Palace are delusional. That they do not fully understand the situation because they haven’t experienced it personally.
There have been repeated calls for public officials to take public transport but, if my memory serves me right, only MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino heed the call.
This may sound delusional, just like our Government officials, but if we cannot force them to ride public transport, maybe we should bring our Government officials to an alternate universe where they can experience the agony of the commuters.
Maybe we need the help of Puma-Lei-Ar’s executive assistant, Ida.
Time Space Warp, Ngayon Din!

Commuter Woes

You might have already heard it on social media or in the television. Following the series of problems encountered by the ever-efficient Metro Rail Transit (MRT), the Malacanang Palace, through one of its mouthpieces Presidential Communications Operations Office head Herminio “Sonny” Coloma Jr., advised commuters to try other modes of transportation.

"Yung MRT lang ba ang puwedeng sakyan doon sa mga rutang dinadaanan nito? Baka naman puwedeng matuklasan yung iba pang mga options," he said during a press briefing.

He particularly urged the public to try riding the passenger buses saying that those are not overloaded.

He must be delusional. Just like our omniscient Government officials who keep on suggesting things to the commuters and the public – as if they have conducted a scientific study. Or have tried those things for themselves.

But seriously, what are the other options for commuters in this everyday hell-hole called commuting in Metro Manila?

Okay, let’s take Secretary Coloma’s suggestion. Buses. Killer buses. Almost every week, bus accidents are reported on the news with numerous injuries and fatalities. (Don’t get me started on writing an article about these buses from hell and the death of my life inspirations, Tado Jimenez. But I might save it for the next day.)

How about the so-called King of the Road, the Pinoy jeepneys? Setting aside the sweltering heat and the smoke from other vehicles that you will inhale, this might be a perfect alternative for the congested train. But good defending your life against pickpockets, robbers, laglag barya gang, budol-budol gang, salisi gang, and other gangs on the Philippine National Police’s checklist.

Okay, the taxicabs. They’re safe – aside from occasional holdaper na taxi driver. They’re efficient – unless you encounter a driver who chooses his passenger. And they are worth your money – unless he is a kontratista and uses batingting.

How about bicycles? These past years have seen the boom of cyclists not just for sports and recreation but also for commuting purposes. But unless they put up safe bike lanes in every city, or unless some drivers learn how to share the road, I won’t risk my safety on the concrete jungles of the Metro.

I wasn’t supposed to write a thing about the statement of Secretary Coloma that provoked the netizens’ ire the other day. It wasn’t my problem. I have a comfortable, commuter’s life here in the province (I take the jeep or my mountain bike on my way to work). I am not one of those souls who brave the MRT everyday on their way to work. It’s Imperial Manila’s problem, I thought myself. But that mentality, in my opinion, is also a problem on this issue.

In order to understand a situation, one must experience it personally or one must have a mentality of filling oneself in the shoe of another person. Empathy, if you may call it. I had my time struggling to ride the MRT and LRT and exchanging breath and faces with fellow commuters like a when I was still working in Manila a few years ago. And that everyday experience was inferno-esque.

Some people may think Sonny Coloma and the Malacanang Palace are delusional. That they do not fully understand the situation because they haven’t experienced it personally.

There have been repeated calls for public officials to take public transport but, if my memory serves me right, only MMDA Chairman Francis Tolentino heed the call.

This may sound delusional, just like our Government officials, but if we cannot force them to ride public transport, maybe we should bring our Government officials to an alternate universe where they can experience the agony of the commuters.

Maybe we need the help of Puma-Lei-Ar’s executive assistant, Ida.

Time Space Warp, Ngayon Din!

The Things I Learned this Academic Year

A new academic year, new subjects to be taught, new colleagues, new students, different experience. Here are the things that I have learned for the past 10 months or so:

  1. This is a confession. I admit that when I was at school, when I was the age of my students, I used to despise some of my teachers – especially those who do not teach well. And now that I am a teacher for one-and-a-half years, I see my old self with some of my students. And I find it amusing, entertaining, and inspiring. I think that is the secret on understanding our students – by putting ourselves in their shoes. Empathy, if you may call it. Or metaphysical and psycho-emotional transcendence. I love students who challenge their teachers, who are not afraid to speak up and ask questions. And I am thankful that this school year, I already found some and they are also the reasons why I won’t leave this institution after this school year. I love challenges. And I love to speak with intelligent and brave students.

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  2. Fight for what you think is right, not for yourself, but for the future generation and the younger ones who look up to you. Last August 26, together with thousand other concerned taxpayers, I joined the so-called Million People March in Luneta, a protest against the pork barrel issue. It was a memorable experience for me as a concerned Filipino and as an educator of high school students. I used that experience to teach my students, especially in my Religion classes, the virtues of justice and honesty and the sense of social awareness. Before I became a teacher, I have this blog called Juan Republic and I used to contribute for different websites about my opinion and stand on different socio-political issues. And I have to say that my articles on the internet gained popularity and influence among young professionals and teenagers who follow my blog. And I told myself that I should use that influence to inspire the still-malleable high school students. Because I believe that these lessons will be carried by my students as they grow up, that they will remember life’s practical lessons more compared to Algebra, the different elements in Chemistry, and the memorized things inside the classroom.
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  3. Rest, if you must, but don’t quit. This academic year has been more tiring and burnout-inducing compared to last year because I hold 4 subjects on 8 sections. And I have less vacant periods this time (just one hour per day, usually the first period reserved for Class Advisers). I admit I almost gave up and ask for a relieve because doing 8 classes per day is exhausting and draining; I cannot do other responsibilities (doing lesson plans, checking test papers, and stuff) and I am always knocked out at the end of a day. But then I thought of my students, I thought of the young ones who are looking up to me as their teacher and their inspiration. So I decided to carry on. I think the secret of this craft is to use our time wisely (which, I am glad my 8-year stint in the Seminary has taught me), to balance work and other stuff, and to look at the students as an inspiration on everything that we do. At the end of the day, all things will zero in to our students. I vowed to teach them, to be an inspiration, to share my knowledge, talents and skills, to be of service. And that is one hell of a big responsibility. Who am I to give up and leave the future of the Patria Adorada hanging in mid-air?

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  4. Pursue your passion.  When the Priests asked me to undergo the regency program, I told myself that I will continue to do the thing that I always like – to write, to talk, and to inspire young people. This profession, or shall I say, this vocation is not financially rewarding. I may not get rich by teaching but this dictum has been my mantra for some time now: Choose the job that you want and you don’t have to work for the rest of your life. If I work just for the money, I have long abandoned this institution. But life is all about happiness, and as long as I am happy with what I am doing, I will still stay on the same ship.

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  5. Thank God for everything. This school year has been a blessing for me in all aspects. And I thank the Lord for giving me an opportunity to stay on the institution and to continue to be of service to the young generation.

This academic year has been a fun ride. I thank my students, colleagues, superiors, and friends who in one way or another, has accompanied me on this journey.

 I’ll see you soon. And by that time, we will start writing again another chapter of this fun-filled journey called life.  Au revoir!

Note: This article is originally my year-end report for this academic year. I have decided to share this in my blog to give the readers a view of my life as a teacher - and the lessons that I learned from it. Some parts have been tweaked for brevity and clarity but more or less, this is the original report.

15 Minutes of ‘Cyber Fame’

I was a late convert of Esquire Magazine. I have always wanted to buy (and collect) this magazine since their maiden issue with Manny Pacquiao on the cover but I can’t manage (financial-wise) to maintain more than one magazine subscription. You see, I was a huge PULP Magazine collector then but things changed since their magazine turned into an Avon magazine-brochure (But that’s another issue. Let’s not go to that awful story). 

But things started to change when they featured Sen. Juan Ponce Enrile last year. You see, sans the issues surrounding the old man, I am a huge fan of the Pinoy PalapatineAnd when they featured him on the December-January issue last 2012-2013, it was a no-brainer that I buy it. I found the magazine classy, substantial, and educational so I dumped my old collection and on that moment, my relationship with the magazine began.

I have learned a lot about life, trends, culture, politics, literature, and social issues since I started reading and collecting Esquire. It is not your usual bikini-clad, sex talk-filled, AB Market-catering magazine. It has substance. It has sense. For me, this is the magazine.

As of writing, they have just previously released their March issue featuring the 90’s It Girl Mai Mai Cojuangco. And the new issue reminded me of something ‘crazy’ that I did last month, something that I forgot to blog, and something that I will forever cherish.

Last month’s Art issue of Esquire Magazine features a ‘back portrait’ of John Lloyd Cruz. Most people do not know this ‘other side’ of John Lloyd - that he is a huge collector of local artworks and that his house is a mino-art gallety of sort. Personally, being an occasional artsy-fartsy that I am, I was also surprised that this A-list actor has a different persona away from the lights and glamour of show business.

I am not a die-hard John Lloyd fan. I haven’t watched all of his movies. I am just that regular viewer who watches him on TV every time I have the chance to do so. (Though I admit I am a huge fan of ‘Rovic and Eds’ - his loveteam with Kaye Abad during their Tabing Ilog days.) But John Lloyd Cruz, being the epitome of guwapong-lalake-pero-walang-6-pack-abs, is the inspiration of my ‘alter ego’.

I am a high school teacher and my students fondly call me “Sir John Lloyd”. It started when I declared myself as a John Lloyd look-a-like. And whenever they tag me photos on Facebook, I would always comment ‘#TeamJohnLloyd’ - indicating my self-proclaimed resemblance with John Lloud Cruz. I even went into putting John Lloyd Cruz’s photo in my test papers with an ‘inspirational quote’ (basically quotes from his movies) from the great man. (I am telling you, I am one hell of a crazy teacher. Haha!)

So when Esquire featured John Lloyd Cruz (again, having graced the cover before on their The State of Man issue) on the cover of their Art Issue, I decided to do something crazy. Just for fun, I told myself, something to ‘cement’ my claim that I look like John Lloyd Cruz.

With the help of my siblings, I made a ‘back portrait’, imitating John Lloyd’s pose on the unique cover. I started sharing it on my social media accounts - Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram - for the purpose of bringing a smile to people’s, especially my students’, faces.

And then the unexpected happen. The official Twitter account of Esquire Philippines tweeted my picture with the caption "When Life imitates art. An Esquire reader does his own version of the February cover" 

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And then it snowballed. They also featured it on their official Facebook page:

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After the photo was posted, I was bombarded by messages and reactions from my friends, praising, laughing, and basically astounded by my crazy antic - and its unexpected aftermath. Being a man contented with third world cyber joys, I was so elated when the Esquire did this. I even joked that this may be the key on finally meeting John Lloyd Cruz. And fist-bumping and bro-hugging him if possible.

I slept that night with a smile on my face. Seriously. Tangina John Lloyd Cruz yan eh! Sorry, I just have to let that out.

Sans this ‘15 minutes of Cyber Fame’, I would like to express my admiration and gratitude to Esquire Philippines not for featuring my photo on their social media accounts but for providing readers with features and articles with substance. I wish longevity and more success for this badass magazine. I can’t wait to grab myself and read the latest issue.

And oh, Esquire Philippines, I am dead serious about meeting John Lloyd Cruz. It will be my greatest joy if this would see the light of reality.

Of Women and Fire

Today, March 8, the world  commemorates the International Women’s Day. Today is a celebration of women’s achievements, a day to speak about the different issues surrounding women worldwide, and a day of appreciation for their vital contribution to society.

I had my fair of the women’s Month Celebration last March 3, during the  opening of the Women’s Month at the Los Banos Municipal Hall spearheaded by the Gender and Development Division. I accompanied two of my students for a poster making contest. All of the posters created by the students, consequently, will be auctioned to fund the medication of the breast cancer patients within the municipality. 

Here in the Philippines, the month of March, aside from the celebration of the Women’s Month, is also a Fire Prevention Month. I have always thought that these two being celebrated simultaneously in a single month is not just a coincidence. There must be some reason, some force that binds and unites these two celebrations.

And I, with the help of my friend, thought of this explanation: 'Perhaps, women's month and fire prevention month are both celebrated during the month of March because they are both dangerous and vital for survival'.

Sounds logical, right?

And there’s this classic John Lennon Song, Woman, that is very suitable for the celebration.

"Woman I can hardly express, My mixed emotion at my thoughtlessness, After all I’m forever in your debt, And woman I will try express, My inner feelings and thankfullness, For showing me the meaning of succsess.." 

Fire. It creates and destroys. A very powerful element.

During the time of ancient Greece, a philosopher named Heraclitus considered fire as the most fundamental element (urstoff) of the universe. He considered fire as gave rise to the other elements and thus to all things. He saw fire as the element that transforms everything through its flames.

We’ve seen fire’s benefit to mankind. It gives us light and heat. It cooks our raw food. It transforms the most obscure ore into precious gold. But we’ve also seen its wrath and menace. It’s vital and at the same time, dangerous.

"Woman I know you understand The little child inside the man, Please remember my life is in your hands, And woman hold me close to your heart, However, distant don’t keep us apart, After all it is written in the stars..

Woman. Without her, we are nothing. She is the instrument of God’s creating hands to create us human beings by carrying us in her womb for nine months. She’s vital for the survival of the human race.

And just like a fire, she’s dangerous. Her charm and beauty may appear to be frail and enchanting but her real power rests on the inside. And history has seen women with legacy balls more powerful and more influential than men. And up to this day, we still do.

"Woman please let me explain, I never meant to cause you sorrow or pain, So let me tell you again and again and again, I love you. now and forever, I love you.."

I would like to dedicate this lovely anthem from my favorite Beatle, John Lennon, to all the women out there. Our mothers, sisters, friends, fiancees, and to the great women in history who helped shape mankind. Let it be known that although we are (still) living in the society created by men with balls and discrimination against you are still rampant in some parts of the world, your contribution to society and history is priceless. Thank you. And please forgive us.

I may not be the most gentle of all the gentlemen out there (or I maybe not a gentleman at all). I may not be a Knight who will save a damsel in distress. I may not be some cutie patootsie young man idolized by the kids and the tweens with a big banner ‘I Respect Women’ on his blog. But all I have is this simple song, just for you. again, thank you.

Happy women’s month to all the women out there. Grazie mille!

Mabuhay ang mga Kababaihan!

(Photo Source)

#AshTag Wednesday

"It’s Ash Wednesday. Let us spread the #ashtag"

Today, the Catholic Church celebrates Ash Wednesday. This day marks the beginning of the Lenten season, or the 40-day period of fasting to prepare for the celebration of Jesus’ passion, death, and resurrection (Paschal Mystery). It is the season where we are reminded to repent from our sins, to fast and abstain, and to do charity works for the poor and needy.

It is an open secret here on Tumblr and in my blog that I am a former seminarian (or more appropriately, a seminarian on regency or break, if ever I decide to return and continue my formation). I studied in the Seminary for eight years - from high school to college, and I have been writing reflections about Lent and being of service to the poor and the needy since I was twelve (I entered the seminary at a young age, so there goes the explanation).

But there is something that I have to confess to you. Something that whenever I remember those events, I have a mix feelings of being ashamed and laughing at it. During my first years in the high school seminary, I look at Ash Wednesday as a punishment. You see, even the required age for fasting and abstinence is 14, there are no exemptions in the Seminary (for obvious reasons, of course). I treat Ash Wednesday then as a ‘hunger strike day’ for we are only served one full meal during the day without merienda. And if you personally know my eating capacity, you will know why I despise a meal-less day.

As I grow up and as I learn more in the Seminary, my perspective has changed. And I should, because Seminary is a place of formation - spiritually, academically, socially, and formation as a mature, young man with the direction to the Priesthood. And even after I left (or shall I say, after being advise to leave) the institution last March 2009 after graduating in Philosophy, even now that I am living in the real world away from the comforts of her confines, I continuously live (and share) most, if not all, the things that I have learned inside. There are no clear indications yet if I would return and pursue my Theological studies but the important thing is, I should and I must strive not to forget those good things. 

It has been a busy week for me. Yesterday, I had an epic Los Baños-Santo Tomas-Lipa City-San Jose-Batangas City-Taal-Los Baños to coordinate with different Churches for our school’s annual Lenten Pilgrimage. And today, I sited as a Room Examiner in the National Achievement Test (NAT) at Los Baños National High School. And I have yet to attend an Ash Wednesday Mass and have a cross placed on my forehead.

And to make things worse, I am not feeling were right now (perhaps) due to stress and over-fatigue brought by the activities of the past days and sleepless nights brought by making the examinations and grades of my students. And I am not sure if I can make it to the Church for the 6:00 PM Mass or not.

Looking for something that would inspire me in the beginning of the Lenten season, in case that this bad feeling leads into a knockout, I searched the internet for the homily of Cardinal Tagle and digged the archive of my blog for an Ash Wednesday homily that inspires me even up to this day.

It was the homily of Fr. Thor Villacarlos, former Parish Priest of Saint Therese of the Child Jesus Parish inside UPLB.

He started his homily sharing a stuff that he found on the internet. He said that a particular Christian denomination put up in their website that a mixture of ash and water burns the skin. As most of us know, the ashes being placed on our foreheads is a mixture of ashes (from the palms used on the previous year’s Palm Sunday) and (Holy) water. He consulted the Chemistry Professors of the University and they told him that yes, it is possible to burn one’s skin by a mixture of ash and water (he told us the name of the chemical compound but I forgot it) but the ashes used on Ash Wednesday have a very minimal effect to cause burning. So are they bluffing? Or scaring the faithful? We don’t know.

Why put ashes on our forehead? It is a reminder for us that we came from dust/earth and we would return to it after our death. Faher Thor told us that the mixture of ashes and water is very symbolic since ashes represents a lifeless man and water, the breath of God that created us (if you read the book of Genesis, this will be quite familiar to you). When God breathed to the earth, there was life.

So what is the challenge for us? Father Thor told us that when the Priest (or the Minister) put ashes on our foreheads, this is a invitation for us to ‘return to the earth’. It is an invitation for us to be stoop down from our level, be ‘dirty’, and to be humble. After all, humility came from the Latin word humus which means earth or soil.

But how could we do that in these modern times where everything is fast and everyone is busy? That is where fasting and abstinence would enter. Fasting and abstinence is not just eating less and abstaining from meat. It is also doing less the things that we find addictive - television, alcohol, cigarettes, internet, and everything considered as ‘excess’ and not an essential. And when we have a free time after abstaining (and fasting) from these, then it would be the time to go back to the earth and be dirty.

And after all of these, during the celebration of the Easter Vigil (or the end of the 40-day preparation) and the blessing of fire and water, it is there when we would burn ourselves and walk to God, our savior. So basically, those who posted that a mixture of ashes and water will burn us, is in a way, correct.

Seminarians are known to Priests as omniscient creatures (it is a inside joke actually). I am guilty of this when I was in college since there are Priests and speakers who give us something that we already know and I (together with most of my brothers) would just fake our attention, pretending to be listening. Evn until now that I am already a High School teacher, I sometimes fake my attention to boring speakers thinking that I already know what he/she is delivering. I know, it is a sign of being proud and not being humble.

But I have learned my lesson. Though I cannot say that I am totally doing it, I chose to listen and digest what Father has given us. I have learned that yes, we know things and sometimes, it is our expertise, but we should always be reminded. And we should see things from other people’s perspective.

The Season of Lent is about preparing ourselves. It is the period to give up something and be of service to the needy. Actually, as I have mentioned above, some of the things that we have saved during this season should go to helping the poor and the needy. Some would say that this is hypocrisy on our part, but should it be? I think doing something good at least during a particular period of a year is better than having done nothing at all. And as long as you know what you believe in, as long as you are steadfast on your faith, no hecklers, trolls, haters, and non-believers can shake you.

This is a period of giving up our excess. What would you give up? for me, I think it wold be extra rice. Aside from helping me lose wight, it will help those who are in need by giving them what I should have eaten for my excess consumption. (Lent, as they say, is the best way to lose weight and be of shape.)

In these modern times, is the celebration of Ash Wednesday still relevant? Yes. We need it more during these times when we seem to just think of ourselves and our personal gains.

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Let me share with you a beautiful anecdote that happened last year, Ash Wednesday. I accompanied our graduating students to the Retreat House. During the Mass, since the Priest has no one to assist him, I volunteered to render my services as a sacristan. I have avoided in purpose to do services in the Mass after my ‘eviction’ from the Seminary since I want to see things ‘from the opposite side’ and ‘from a different perspective’.The last time I rendered service at the Holy Mass was on April 22, 2009, as a Lector, during my cousin’s wedding. It was also the last time I wore my cassock. It feels good to be back at the Sanctuary, serving the Lord in the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.

Coincidentally, I was also mistaken as a Priest by some of the Augustinian Nuns at the retreat house. I politely said ‘No I’m not’ to the Nuns and told them that I am one of the students’ teachers. I was surprised to hear their next words. They told me that I have an ‘aura’ (or a ‘vibe’) of a Priest. I just stood there, speechless, and thanked them afterwards when they promised to pray for me and my return in the Seminary.

Even until now, in our school, gradeschoolers (and some high school students) would approach me, grab my hand, and ask for my “blessing” (the traditional “pagmamano”) as if I am a Priest. And who am I to refuse them? 

For years, I have turned away from the possibility of returning to the Seminary to continue my Theological studies. Maybe because I am ‘enjoying’ my life outside the Seminary’s confines. But what if these events are God’s way of waking me up from a deep sleep of denial? Of hardheartedness? Of not answering his call - again?

Personally, this Lenten Season is a challenge for me to pray hard(er) and to discern what path to choose in my life. But for now, I will try my best to live and share the message of the Lenten Season to my family, friends, and students. I will strive to give up my ‘excess loads’ - sin, self-centeredness, pride - and to burn myself with love, passion, and dedication to share God’s words and message.

How about you? What would you give up and burn this Lenten season?

Today is the beginning of the Lenten Season. Let us spread the #AshTag. Vaya con Dios!

Photo Above: Manila Archbishop Luis Antonio Cardinal Tagle marks foreheads with ashes to start the 40-day period of Lent. Photo by Paterno Esmaquel II/Rappler

Elsewhere:

Salary Grade 20 for Public School Teachers: A Few Thoughts

Senator Antonio Trillanes wants a Php 36,567 minimum salary for public school teachers.

As an *coughs* underpaid *coughs* private school teacher, these are my few thoughts:

  1. This will mean a massive diaspora from private to public schools by teachers. Even before the proposed salary increase, it’s happening now. Private schools are experiencing a mass resignation and transfer of their teachers to a higher-paying public school. We cannot blame those who leave. Their family needs them. There was even one joke among us teachers that “our take home pay cannot take us home”. With this in mind, this will lead to…
  2. The ‘death’ of some private schools that cannot match this salary grade. Take away the teachers from your school and what do you have? Nada. Or take this for example, if a school has no permanent teacher every school year (i.e. they transfer to public school after gaining a year of teaching experience), it would not thrive. There won’t be a continuity of the academic programs if you have new educators every year. 
  3. If this would materialize, there will be an increase in enrollment of education-related courses. I have nothing against that. We need teachers. But what we need more are quality teachers. Better teachers. Best teachers. Especially with the new K+12 curriculum. There are some teachers who are only good in demo teaching. Trust me, I know. Heh!
  4. I hope this would not be like what happened in the past when there was a sudden increase of students who took up nursing - only to end up being jobless and some nursing schools being closed due to its poor performance. We should not compromise quality of our educators by producing products of a another diploma mill.
  5. I hope they also consider those minimum-wage-earning private school teachers who would be left behind, if this would see the light of reality. I suggest they increase the FAPE subsidy that they give every year. As of now, licensed private school teachers only receive 10,000 pesos in Government subsidy (sans the tax) every year as a way to ‘level’ them with public school teachers.

I have nothing against public school teachers (Salute mga Ma’am Ser!) and Sen. Trillanes’ proposal. I just care about my comrades in the Private School. I do not plan to be a teacher forever. I just consider this as my ‘past time’, a furlough of sort while waiting for a better career option. But, just maybe, I reconsider my options since I love what I’m doing right now.

And to cap this post, here are some unnecessary pictures of me, being happy with my job, er, service as a private school teacher:

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Mabuhay ang mga guro!

Please take note that the things written here are my opinion and they do not reflect those of my employer’s and the school system that I work with. Thank you.

Drunk Ukulele Sessions (Episode  2)
Grow Old with You (Adam Sandler)

I’m back from the grave. What’s up ladies and gents? It’s been a while since I last posted here in my blog, Juan Republic. Being a busy high school teacher has taken its toll on the blogger in me (but it’s fun, seriously).

As what some of you may have already known, I started this project named Drunk Ukulele Sessions last year. Drunk Ukulele Sessions is not exactly me, drunk, playing a ukulele in front of the camera (though I might do that soon because I swear, I sound better when I’m drunk). I just named it as such because my uke sounds ‘drunk’ - in the broadest sense of being drunk. And because there is honesty, there is truth, there is a heart whenever one is dead drunk (Remember the Latin dictum In Vino Nobis Veritas?)

For the second episode (a third in the series, including episode 1.5), I decided to do a cover of the Adam Sandler classic ‘Grow Old with You’ because I thought it sounds good in the uke.

And to add a twist on this project, I requested my sister to make covers with me. Because I admit, she sings far, far better than me. Haha! This is also my first video with my new (well, technically old since I bought this last August) ukuleke -  a Greg Bennett Samick UK-50 concerto.

Please forgive us for the poor quality since I have yet to invest for a good recording equipment. I hpe you enjoy the music. Cheers!

Let’s all get drunk and play that ukulele!

________________

Drunk Ukulele Sessions (Episode 1) - Read more about Drunk Ukulele Sessions and watch the first episode featuring Robin Gibb’s ‘Boys do Fall In Love’.

Drunk Ukulele Sessions (Episode 1.5) - Our impromptu attempt to cover Coldplay’s ‘Viva La Vida’.

A few thoughts after watching Jerrold Tarog's SANA DATI earlier at D.L. Umali Hall, UPLB:1. I’m not really into love stories but this one redefined the ‘typical’ Pinoy love flicks that we see on the big screen. It was indeed a very brave movie.2. Lovi Poe. Paolo Avelino. What a powerful combination.3. Jerrold Tarog, you are evil. And I’m not ashamed to say that I almost screamed earlier when I saw you at the stage. Hands down, idol.4. Personally, this movie gave a me new meaning and appreciation for Up Dharma Down's 'Indak'.5. This is one of the finest movies that I’ve seen to date. Thanks for the opportunity,UPLB pelikuLAB.P.S. And kids, a little reminder: During the open forum after the screening, please don’t waste the precious opportunity of asking the director by throwing useless questions and inquiries with obvious answers. Susko.

A few thoughts after watching Jerrold Tarog's SANA DATI earlier at D.L. Umali Hall, UPLB:

1. I’m not really into love stories but this one redefined the ‘typical’ Pinoy love flicks that we see on the big screen. It was indeed a very brave movie.
2. Lovi Poe. Paolo Avelino. What a powerful combination.
3. Jerrold Tarog, you are evil. And I’m not ashamed to say that I almost screamed earlier when I saw you at the stage. Hands down, idol.
4. Personally, this movie gave a me new meaning and appreciation for Up Dharma Down's 'Indak'.
5. This is one of the finest movies that I’ve seen to date. Thanks for the opportunity,UPLB pelikuLAB.

P.S. And kids, a little reminder: During the open forum after the screening, please don’t waste the precious opportunity of asking the director by throwing useless questions and inquiries with obvious answers. Susko.

Ampatuan Massacre: Four Years After

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This day marks the 4thyear, the 1,461st day of the gruesome Ampatuan Massacre, a horrible event in our history where 58 people were killed, 34 of whom were journalists or working for the broadcast industry. Justice is yet to be served, but do you still care?

It seems like the attention of the public on this issue is slowly going to the depths of the abyss of the forgotten. It’s in one of the infamous characteristics of the Filipinos. We have a short attention span. We tend to forget our past easily. Mabilis makalimot. Mabilis magpatawad.Or it is being overshadowed by other news and events.

I partly blame this mentality in our Teleserye culture. For years, or for decades, we have been fed by these drama series shown every weeknights. The stories, though made of recycled plots and formulas, are fast-paced. We are not given an ample time to processwhat we have seen. We are bombarded every night by the same stories to the point that most of us hardly remember the development of the story, the plot, and the characters. Most TV series abroad are shown on a weekly basis. After each episode - with a definite plot and development - viewers are given an ample time to think, to scrutinize, to discuss, and to process what happened. That ample time, in my opinion, is the way people remember what they have received. And in a larger view, I view this as the way of constantly remembering events that affect our lives in general. 

Or perhaps we no longer care about the issue anymore? As I write this piece, the local Twitter trending topics are filled with obscure statements of support for these pseudo-reality love teams and famewhores and other unimportant, self-gratifying topics that would make oneself ‘known’ on the cyber universe. I have always believed that the trending topics on Twitter in a particular country reflects its people’s priority, interest, and views. It’s a tragedy that these fantards behind the so-called ‘famewhore trends’ on Twitter seem to be more influential than the people behind the voices of reform, vital information, advocacy, and policy making. What a shame!

Whenever there is a viral sensation sweeping online, most of the Filipinos (or those with access on the internet which, I think, is a substantial number) rally behind that thing - giving opinions, fumed reactions, and emotional outbursts. Like an angry mob during the medieval era holding torches and pitchforks, storming the house of an alleged witch or heretic. Take for example the Anderson Cooper-Korina Sanchez flak last week. Almost every Filipinos with social media accounts like Facebook and Twitter expressed their two cents on the issue. It even caught a national attention when the news programs and news portals made a story out of the Anderson Cooper 360-versus-Rated K incident.

If we can stand, forgive me for the term, united on this showbiz-esque brouhaha with lesser significance, then why can’t we do the same with the issues of health, education, poverty alleviation, information, and social reform? Why can’t we do the same thing to rattle the authorities, the justice system, to call for justice for the victims of the Ampatuan Massacre and other extrajudicial killings?

By letting this event just pass us by our consciousness; it would appear that we are condoning the perpetrators of this crime; or depriving justice to the victims and their families; or killing the fifty-eight (58) victims repeatedly. The victims’ death will not be given justice if the perpetrators of the crime are not prosecuted and punished.

The victims of this gruesome massacre died doing what is right - the victims, in the sense of a change of leadership by means of a lawful and honest election and the media men, by telling their (victims’) story and by acting as our eyes, ears, and mouthpiece of that event.

This massacre is caused by the warlord’s struggle to keep their power and to protect their self-interest against any possible threats. Bad politics, bad leadership, and people continuously feeding these beasts by means of the culture of tolerance, impunity, and patronage politics. But we have seen that it is not impossible to have a good, efficient, and selfless leader to rule among us.

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One of the factors why these horrible events happen is because nobody seems to be punished. People choose to be silent for fear of retribution. People choose not to speak out to avoid trouble for them and their family. We are allowing the culture of impunity in our country

Impunity. Kawalang pakundangan. It’s like saying "Go ahead, kill everyone who are against your plans! Shoot the story tellers! We allow murder in our country! No one is punished by the way."

And we don’t want it that way, right? So what can we do as an ordinary citizen?

  1. Never forget. Let us always put the Ampatuan massacre into consciousness. One way of doing it is to post something about it every 23rd of the month for everyone to see (on Facebook, Twitter, and in your blogs). This will help those who have forgotten to remember. You may notice, especially those who frequent on my blog, that I see to it that I post something every 23rd of the month to commemorate the Ampatuan Massacre and to raise awareness for those who seem to have forgotten.
  2. Be an educated and wise voter. The Ampatuan massacre is an election-related violence which involves (an alleged) private army. Choose your leaders wisely. Do not be swayed by their goods during the campaign season. Yes, we can always say our criticisms against these politicians via our tweets, blog entries, and Facebook posts. But do you know what’s more powerful? Our vote. One single vote can help kick the ass of these ‘powerful’ men of power.
  3. Be vigilant.Stay on guard, be watchful. Let us be our brother’s keeper. And let us keep an eye on the proceedings of the trial (even if it takes 55,000 years, according to Atty. Harry Roque). Let us not lose hope even though it may appear that there is no end in sight for the trial. Believe. Have faith. By means of our watchful eyes, we can achieve justice.

It is painful to admit that the wheels of justice in our country are not well-oiled, causing it to roll slowly. And it is more heart-wrenching to know that the witnesses of this massacre are either being killed one-by-one or being abducted never to be seen again.

But let us not give up, let us not lose hope. As cliche as it may sound, the only way for evil people to triumph - or the culture of impunity to prevail in this country - is for good and responsible people to do nothing.

Let us chase Lady Justice no matter how exhausting, no matter how it seems to be hopeless, and no matter how long it takes.

Justice for the Victims of the Ampatuan Massacre. Never Forget. Never again. 

Elsewhere:

Source: juanrepublic

Because screw being waterproof! We, Filipinos, are resilient.

Because screw being waterproof! We, Filipinos, are resilient.

Saw Erik Matti’s OTJ “On The Job” earlier and here are my few thoughts about the movie:1. The cinematography and the screenplay was superb. I am no film nor movie expert but this has to be one of the best that I have seen!2. The dark theme and noir-esque mood of the movie was perfect!3. The musical score! And the sound track! Dong Abay's version of Juan Dela Cruz's 'Maskara' and his 'Mateo Singko' fits perfectly in the movie!4. Erik Matti has redefined Pinoy action movies - and Filipino movie, in particular - with OTJ.5. JOEL TORRE! YOU BLEW MY MIND! ‘Nuff said.6. And oh, never forget Gerald Anderson, Papa Piolo, and other Pinoy movie greats like Michael De Mesa and the perennial politician, Mr. Leo Martinez.7. Tsong Joey Marquez’s role could have been played by another, more serious actor but that’s just me.8. Bonus points: Shaina Magdayao and Dawn Jimenez. Plus Empress. Hihi.9. I have stopped watching Star Cinema movies in theaters after ‘When Love Begins’ but this movie has lifted my curse against the film outfit.I might post a full-length review in my blog sometime this week.YOU. SHOULD. DEFINITELY. SEE. THE MOVIE. NOW!

Saw Erik Matti’s OTJ “On The Job” earlier and here are my few thoughts about the movie:

1. The cinematography and the screenplay was superb. I am no film nor movie expert but this has to be one of the best that I have seen!
2. The dark theme and noir-esque mood of the movie was perfect!
3. The musical score! And the sound track! Dong Abay's version of Juan Dela Cruz's 'Maskara' and his 'Mateo Singko' fits perfectly in the movie!
4. Erik Matti has redefined Pinoy action movies - and Filipino movie, in particular - with OTJ.
5. JOEL TORRE! YOU BLEW MY MIND! ‘Nuff said.
6. And oh, never forget Gerald Anderson, Papa Piolo, and other Pinoy movie greats like Michael De Mesa and the perennial politician, Mr. Leo Martinez.
7. Tsong Joey Marquez’s role could have been played by another, more serious actor but that’s just me.
8. Bonus points: Shaina Magdayao and Dawn Jimenez. Plus Empress. Hihi.
9. I have stopped watching Star Cinema movies in theaters after ‘When Love Begins’ but this movie has lifted my curse against the film outfit.

I might post a full-length review in my blog sometime this week.
YOU. SHOULD. DEFINITELY. SEE. THE MOVIE. NOW!

Galit kami ni Ronnie Lazaro sa Pork Barrel system.

Galit kami ni Ronnie Lazaro sa Pork Barrel system.

Drunk Ukulele Sessions (Episode 1.5)
Viva La Vida (Coldplay)

What’s up, ladies and gents? It has been a while since I posted here in my blog. My work as a high school teacher has been keeping me busy over the past months and I have already, in a way, neglected this blog. But from time to time, I always find ways to revive this blog and post something (even though most of the time, it has turned into an Instagram dump site, sorry).

As what some of you may have already known, I started this project named Drunk Ukulele Sessions last summer. Drunk Ukulele Sessions is not exactly me, drunk, playing a ukulele in front of the camera (though I might do that soon because I swear, I sound better when I’m drunk). I just named it as such because my uke sounds ‘drunk’ - in the broadest sense of being drunk. And because there is honesty, there is truth, there is a heart whenever one is dead drunk (Remember the Latin dictum In Vino Nobis Veritas?)

For this second video, I have decided to share this impromptu session with my siblings. I put episode 1.5 because technically, this isn’t exactly the second episode. It was just a product of us, having a good time, and our mother grabbing the camera and recording this session (so much foe being a supportive and proud Nanay. Haha!).

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And just to give you an update, as promised on the previous episode, I have already bought a new, better-sounding ukulele a few weeks ago. On the right is my new Greg Bennett Samick UK-50 (beside the Cebu-made ukulele which I used in this video) which produces a better and fuller sound. But I have yet to post a video using that new ukulele. Hopefully, it will come soon.

Please forgive us for the poor quality of this video (and our performance, you judgmental, omniscient creature! Haha!). As what I have written above, we were just having fun. I hope you enjoy listening to this beautiful song by Coldplay.

Let’s all get drunk and play that ukulele!

________________

Drunk Ukulele Sessions (Episode 1) - Read more about Drunk Ukulele Sessions and watch the first episode featuring Robin Gibb’s ‘Boys do Fall In Love’.


This is a personal blog where rants, raves, and everything in between is written and posted.

About the Blogger: His name is Juan, a frustrated writer who hails from a sauna town at the foot of Mount Makiling. He spends his being an overworked and underpaid High School teacher and being a self-proclaimed superhero who is dreaming and trying to make a difference, one post at a time.

For correspondence, please email me at juanrepublica@gmail.com

You can also find me at these websites:



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