The Precipice

I vividly recall walking along the overpass that connected the Maharlika, the Igorot park and Sunshine grocery in Baguio City. This was in the early 2000's. Donning a maong jacket, I savored the mixture of the cool Baguio breeze, the distinct Baguio market smell, the cigarette smoke of some pedestrians and carbon monoxide wafting from the jeepneys below. This is where I saw many a crowd transfixed on their own journeys unmindful of the events and actions of others - until it touched them.

The lady in front was wearing a backpack. Behind her were two short male teenagers with unkempt hair. I could tell that they were from further up North. The hairstyle was quite common up there. Yung parang bunot and with the Star Wars like small hair braid at the side of the ear. Parang ayaw ata nila sa mga barbero. They also kept their bell bottom like dirty maong pants long and wore slippers despite the edge of their pants touching the ground. They also wore those leather vests or jackets that…

The Presidential Question

Dear Mr. President,
I'm sorry to say Mr. President that I cannot give you a selfie picture with God.
I know that at your age, that you may be nearing the valley and that is why you are asking for the improbable, despite the strong need to address other more pressing worldly concerns.
If I could, Mr. President, I would.
But that is beyond me.
I can understand how you may be feeling right now. When my grandfather was about to die a couple of years ago from cancer, on his death bed, he made one wish, "that he could be young again - like a child."
It baffled our family during a very difficult moment.
But we all knew, that we can never turn back the hands of time.
We could not time travel to fix regrets, correct some mistakes we did and alter whatever it is that we have decided, done or what has been done to us in the past.
And that's part of the beauty of life - and death. There can only be one time that we could right all the wrongs, and that is the present.
Nobody could ever con…

Leadership that Inspires: Part 2 The Assassination of Mayors

Justice Denied

I remember an episode of Marvel's Agents of Shield, season 4 episode 13.

Senator Nadeer was a political nemesis of SHIELD and one of its staunchest critics. Later on in the series, she got assassinated by her allies, the "Watchdogs", an anti-meta human group that espouses exterminating meta-humans.

SHIELD director Mace's dialog with Quake after the event went like this:

We're just getting confirmation from the FBI.We have four confirmed casualties and one positive identification.We are sad to confirm that Senator Ellen Nadeer, leader in the Humans First movement, is among the dead.Reporting live for CNB, we'll send it back Okay.
Quake: Well, we can't be too sad.Quake: She did try to have you killed.Director Mace: She could've been brought to justice.Director Mace: Now we won't get that chance.Back to Reality...

Today, the Mayor of Tanauan City was assassinated in broad daylight, during the flag ceremony, along with City Hall employees…

The Insecurity of the Filipino Braggadocio

""Valar Dohaeris". All men must serve. Faceless Men most of all."

―"Jaqen H'ghar"

It is not very uncommon to see a Filipino admit they were wrong. 

It is rarer for you to see a Filipino who will say, "I'm sorry, I was wrong." - and then actually atone for the mistake and then some more.

What you almost always see rather, are these two: projection and deflection.  

This permeates Filipino social discourse all throughout and on all levels.

Sometimes, I even think that my generalized statement is mostly accurate because of cultural factors.

In the era of fake news and an over-saturated social media stream, the best narcissist always takes center stage.

I know that this may also be true for other cultures.

But then again, I am constantly confronted with the swagger of the Filipino braggadocio.

The braggadocio, swishes his sword of greatness with words like a red ribbon on a Chinese New Year

Hidden in crass language, the Filipino braggadocio is a…

Leadership That Inspires

A long time ago, the Catholic Church held a very strong sway in the voting behavior of Filipino citizens. Hence, in politics. This was seen in delayed or aborted legislation concerning contraception, abortion and divorce. This was seen in the first EDSA peaceful revolution and many more.

I'll leave it up to you to do your own historical research.

Duterte's election was a pivotal turning point against this 'traditional Catholic vote'

Fast forward to 2016...

Duterte seemed to be the candidate who usurped everything that traditional politicians exemplified. He was outspoken against the Catholic church. He was decisive in curbing the narcotic problem. He was uncivil and uncouth - a man who bowed down to no one, (except maybe Xi Jinping). He seemed to be the one who will overturn the traditional structures that gave and made the Philippines its character for the last decades.

He definitely isn't a traditional politician.

That anti-thetical character appealed to enough v…

Falling on Deaf Ears: Duterte Curses and Calls God Stupid

Study: People who use the Internet a lot tend to have less religious tendencies. 
"Tinkering with Technology and Religion in the Digital Age: The Effects of Internet Use on Religious Belief, Behavior, and Belonging" McClure, Paul K. 13 December 2017.
Dear Mr. President, 

You cannot have or give love, 
if you do not have free will. 
Love is consensual. 

Love can only arise if we have the option to say 'No we don't love... '
For it is in the voluntary act of saying that 'we do' or 'we love' 
that our faith is affirmed.

As the 'created', 
we would be nothing more than automatons (robots).
compiled, made and executed to do God's bidding if we cannot 
dare say 'no'.


Man's Great Spiritual Turmoil

Something more disconcerting than the President's tirades are the reaction of people through the comments section of various social media sites. Some openly hate Duterte's anti-progressive, anti-libe…

Kumusta na Pinoy Freelance Writer?

Dear fellow freelance writer,
Kumusta? (How are you?)
I hope you're in great spirits. It's quite rainy where I am now and it's always cloudy. I'm beginning to think that Google's weather app is broken because it keeps showing me this icon for the next 10 days or so.
I also hope that you're doing great in your freelance writing projects. Now, on to the blog post! review

After finishing a very lucrative freelance project, I've started looking for another gig. That's when I found via Google.

I dunno...

I can't write a proper review of it since you need to shell out $47 to get in. But everything in their video is everything a freelance writer could dream of:

Appropriate pay (I'm reticent to put "High", since I haven't tried it yet.)Flexible working hours (Duh)Guaranteed pay dates (Really now?)No fees (Mmmm)
Note that they have a "Pay Disclaimer" at the bottom which states:
"While we ma…