31 January 2012

What I will be in 2012...


Putting up an expectation is actually not a good idea for anyone for it will hurt severely once we ended up not meeting our expectations. Many are afraid to list their own list about this matter... I am not! So here's the list of what I should be and should have in 2012:

1. Pass the PUP College of Law Entrance Test (PASSED!)

There's a saying that goes like this : "Make your PASSION your PROFESSION" so I took the PUP College of Law Entrance Test (written and oral) and last January 28, 2012 they revealed the result and thank GOD !! I PASSED IT ! And Yes! My Mom's so proud of me :))

2. My first Valentine with my significant other...

Our relationship started last May 2011 and this will be our first time to celebrate Valentine's day together. So, I am expecting to have this love season with him and probably I'll also be expecting something romantic from him (cummon' girls, we all expect this) hahaha!

3. Be regularized!

This coming February 29 will be the date of my regularization (hopefully) here in Spicus. This is my second job as an Online English Teacher or ESL Tutor as they call it. I know that working in this kind of industry is not really as stable a other field but I can't see anything bad in this career so I'm still hoping to continue.

4. Pass all my subjects!
This semester I must say is one of the hardest part of College life. This is like a test not only of knowledge... not only of guts... but also the test of flexibility. Restless days and sleepless nights for our examinations every meeting! To God be the Glory!

5. Lose some weight :)) Seriously!

I have to achieve my summer-ready body back!! I noticed that I gained weight after the festive season last year and my goal is to have my smokin' hot body back! I still have two months to make it happen :))

6. Rock the Graduation March!!

I want to look dazzling on my graduation march so others won't feel we experience"hagardo versoza" moments.

7. Start my first class in Law School with a BANG!!!

I don't want to look nerdy nor out-of-control on the first day of my class in Law school, I just want to look respectable yet approachable so my new classmates will not make a wrong impression out of me :))

*** that will be all for now but i still have a lot to expect ^^

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Stuck in transition


Philippine Daily Inquirer

January 25th, 2012

When I was much younger, I thought I had my future figured out: poetry writing in grade school, a student council seat in high school, theater work in college, and then law school. What came next in this simple yet ambitious life plan was no less than a successful law practice (much like my father’s) which my parents had imagined and hoped for their unplanned little bundle of joy.

Fast forward to today. After two resignations in a span of one year and six months, I must admit that my dream, which was greatly influenced by my family’s achievements, is nowhere near getting accomplished. At least the greater, more crucial part of it.

I told my parents that I would apply to law school only if my survival depended on it. I also told them that I intended to become a journalist (in which medium it didn’t matter at that time) and work my way into earning a much-deserved byline. But since no life-or-death situation came, applying for admission to law school was out of the question.

Fortunately I was born into a family that values personal goals and believes in dreaming big. When I finally decided to focus on breaking into the publishing industry, my parents expressed their approval and delight. I was finally making progress.

My first real job saw me working as an editorial assistant in a business magazine. But after only nine months, I realized I wasn’t cut out for the job. I loved my former boss and had a very high regard for the team I worked with, but I was robbing someone of his/her dream job. While I was learning a lot about such things as business trends, local franchising and the country’s economic climate, I couldn’t deny that something entirely different appealed to me. Or so I thought.

A combination of good timing and luck led me to my second job in a high society and lifestyle magazine. I knew that my new job was much different from the previous one—from the dress code to the connections it opened for me to a whole, new and distant concept of luxurious living. There my resourcefulness, and not my writing, was recognized as my greatest asset. Not that it was a bad thing, but I had looked forward to practicing my chosen craft.

Another nine months passed before I woke up one day feeling at peace with the decision to turn in my resignation letter primarily because I wanted to write again about topics that are closest to my interests (read: teens, DIYs, etc.). This was met with an unexpected and generous offer, to which I responded with gratitude. Even when I was given two weeks to “thoroughly consider it,” I was certain about leaving to rediscover my love for writing.

To be honest about it, I wouldn’t say that my writing is among the most brilliant when compared with those of my contemporaries. In fact, a colleague whose command of the English language is commendable said that my pieces read like they were produced in a “mediocre writing summer camp.” According to him, my writing does nothing for no one. “Flush your ideas down the drain, where they belong,” he wrote in an angry e-mail.

To this day, I still cannot comprehend where his hatred for my writing style comes from. His opinion doesn’t count and I doubt that jealousy is driving all his attempts to get me to stop writing. We haven’t had any face-to-face interaction since college, so I find his anger intriguing.

True that my use of an optimistic tone in my compositions isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. But I must say that my words, however raw and unpolished, always strive to inspire hope, channel positivity and most importantly encourage readers to take risks. What I lack in terms of mustering big words I make up for by my honesty.

Perhaps this encounter with a successful yet miserable fellow has made me a little concerned about getting left behind by the rest of my generation, the ones who have settled in their jobs for life. The good things began for them while I was still keeping my fingers crossed, patiently waiting for my turn.

I am aware that 22 seems like a young age to be so confused but I have reached the point when I feel that I must break free from the clasps of transition and be where I am supposed to be. Many of my friends are convinced that I give up easily. Some however say they wish they had my guts. Some batchmates who have managed to stick to one job since graduation told me I am lucky to be able to prioritize my heart’s desire over securing a source of stable income.

I have my parents to thank for not rushing me into anything I cannot be 200 percent committed to. Despite my choosing not to follow in his footsteps, my father remains confident that I will be able to figure something out (“like you always do”) eventually. My mother believes that the beauty in not knowing is that endless possibilities will keep coming my way.

Of course I won’t have this privilege forever, so I constantly remind myself to grow up because my parents are growing old.

Throughout all these, I have come to accept that quitting isn’t always a sign of weakness and that being stranded in limbo allows time for reflection. To keep on doing what everyone expects me to do is the genuine symptom of weakness. It takes real courage to leave a job that pays well, knowing your heart is invested in something else.

Right now none of my back-up plans have materialized yet, but I will be fine. I will get to my destination someday, somehow.

Portia Silva, 22, graduated from the Ateneo de Manila University with a major in communication. Part of her New Year’s resolution is to stay for at least one year in her next job.

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‘Daang Matuwid’ defined


Philippine Daily Inquirer

Jose Osias
Tuesday, January 31st, 2012

Is there much progress on the “Daang Matuwid”? Some cases are being filed against plunderers, but no significant convictions or recovery to date. Economic programs end at conditional cash transfer (CCT) and/or Pantawid Pamilyang Pilipino Program (4Ps) doles and at announcements of putative efforts like the National Greening Program (NGP). Meantime, the prices of oil, electricity, transport, water and key food staples are soaring, making an already difficult life even more oppressive for Filipinos.

Daang Matuwid can’t be just about legal redress: it must include immediately providing livelihood and a vision for the future—which President Aquino hasn’t done. Strategic initiatives and priority industries must be established across the archipelago, transforming substantial natural resources into world-class products, by tapping an educable and hard-working populace whose skills and spirit are already known to be world-class, thanks to the overseas Filipino workers. If P-Noy can really recast old politics into new opportunities, he will find a willing private sector ready for the challenge.

Government officials must show private citizens that the days of plunder, impunity and cover-ups are over. That is why the Corona impeachment case, the cases against Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and the Ampatuans are key: Daang Matuwid must even playing fields for ordinary folk and the powerful rich. And if P-Noy can turn the outdated employment-dependency mindset into a capability for opportunity discernment, the spirit of entrepreneurship that this would spark in the countryside will, by 2015, trigger an irreversible momentum that will expand the reach of the Daang Matuwid all over the Philippines.

But the first phase must be for leaders to set the example to be matuwid. Letting prices rise according to the caprice of concessionaires, even when this clearly violates Philippine laws, is certainly not part of Daang Matuwid. It is hoped that P-Noy can help lighten the load of Filipino consumers by being decisive on keeping prices within the reach of all.

In this connection, the MWSS is clearly not heeding the warnings issued by P-Noy in his 2010 Sona: Can P-Noy do anything about the new unjustified and illegal MWSS water rate increases?

Let’s see.

—JOSE OSIAS, jzosias@gmail.com

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Race and destination


By Betheena C. Dizon
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 00:57:00 06/05/2008

I am hardly moved by what I see on television.

But there was this particular scene that really touched me to the core: Marc Nelson and Rovilson Fernandez running toward the final pit stop in The Amazing Race Asia Season 2, carrying the Philippine flag. What struck me about this scene was that these guys made it a point to show the world that as they competed, they were thinking not only of themselves but of this country as well. And to think that Nelson does not even have a drop of Filipino blood in his veins! It seemed to me that he was also running the race for the country that he had adopted as his own. These guys have not forgotten the Philippines at all. But the realization also made me sad because, today, there are quite a lot of Filipinos who have forgotten their own country.

In this age of Filipino diaspora, there are quite a number of our countrymen who seem to be intent on forgetting not only their land of birth but also their nation's heritage. I know this for a fact because my mother was at the receiving end of a diatribe from an acerbic ex-Filipino. She slammed my mom for choosing to live in the Philippines, trying to make it better. The woman is now a naturalized American citizen; and by her looks, my mother said, she had exhausted every opportunity to make herself look like an American. I am saddened by the fact that there are people like her who have chosen to forget their origins. Upon arriving in a prosperous and ultra-modern city, usually in the United States or in some European country, they begin to erase from their minds their Filipino heritage. They work hard to imitate the accent of the people living there; they have their noses re-done just to remove what is more often than not a trademark of Filipinos; and do other stuff that would make them look more and more fair-skinned. Basically, they begin to systematically change their outward appearance, thinking that their Filipino identity will vanish along with it. But what they do not realize is that no matter how hard they change their appearance, it stays? and will stay with them until the day they die.

Where we come from defines who we are and what we will become. Our present selves are the results of all that we have been through. We are products of our heritage, the hardships, the trials, and all that we have grown accustomed to. If we are strong now, it is because the storms of life that buffeted us have made us sturdier to withstand anything that may come our way. If we are weak, it may be because we have chosen not to fight life's vicissitudes or to learn the lessons that life has been teaching us.

And we are the people that what we are now because we have been raised in a culture that is full of incredible contradictions. We are God-fearing but we tolerate corruption because it has already become an accepted part of the bureaucracy. We are a kind people but have grown apathetic to the plight of poor kids living in the streets. We profess to be poor but we have unashamedly wasted and continue to waste our natural resources which take a long time for Mother Earth to replenish. But despite these contradictions, it is a fact that we Filipinos are among the nicest, most polite and most caring people in Asia and, possibly, in the world.

This is what has been forgotten by our countrymen who are now on a mission to eradicate their Filipino identity. They have forgotten that what they are now is the result of living in this Third World country. They have become what they are because of the culture and heritage that they were raised in. They are struggling to make their lives better because they have lived through difficult circumstances. This has made them determined, persevering and hardworking. Incidentally, these traits are the identifying qualities of Filipinos.

This striking reality brings back to my mind a Filipino saying: Ang hindi marunong lumingon sa kanyang pinanggalingan ay hindi makakarating sa kanyang paroroonan. He who does not know how to look back to where he came from will not get to where he s going. Indeed, where we came from and what we have been through are mere stages or pit stops in our journey through life. These are sort of clues that lead us to the finish line. And that finish line is the better life that we are all dreaming of.

Now, these people may argue that they have already reached the finish line, that they are now living prosperously, which has always been their dream. But to me, having a better life is not all about living in comfort and security. To my mind, having a better life is the actualization and acknowledgment of who you are. And it is this actualization and acknowledgment that will drive us to strive for better lives. If we realize and acknowledge where we come from and what we have been through, we will feel at ease with who we really are.

People who have chosen to forget where they come from may live better lives, but they will never be at peace with themselves because they have chosen to forget who they really are. And it is in this sense that they will never reach their destinations. They will never have that sense of fulfillment of having accepted every facet of their identity. They will never completely know themselves because they have chosen to forget their beginnings.

In times like these, when accusations of cheating, greed and lies can be heard at every corner, the temptation to forget our identity as Filipinos becomes more and more alluring. Who wants to be part of a nation where leaders profess to be working hard for the good of the people, when in truth and in fact, they are working hard just to satisfy their selfish interests? Who wants to be a member of a race that has become apathetic to dirty politics even though it greatly affects the future and their children? However, we should not forget that God has a purpose in creating us to be Filipinos. We may not see the good behind it yet, but let us trust that God has a perfectly good reason why He made us to be citizens of this country. If we truly learn to accept who we are and embrace our identity willingly, we will not only reach our destinations, we will also become better persons living better lives in this challenging world. It is then that we will become proud of what we are and where we come from and in everything we do.

Then, we just might be able to carry the Philippine flag with pride and fervor in our hearts as we run in this amazing race called life.

Betheena C. Dizon, 23, is a third year student at the San Beda College of Law.

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