A Bangsamoro Millennial’s Reflections on the Plebiscite

The campaign period for the BOL (Bangsamoro Organic Law) Plebiscite has a lot of twists and turns for us. If I were to summarize some of the lessons I learned during the campaign period, it would be the following: 1. ‘WHAT WORKS’ OVERRIDES ‘WHAT’S RIGHT’  We may have an ideal way of persuading the public…

From the Sidelines of the War on Illegal Drugs

“’Yang mga drug adik na yan, dapat lang patayin ‘yang mga ‘yan, mga salot sa lipunan.” “Bagay lang sa kanila ‘yan, patayin na ‘yang mga adik na ‘yan.” “Mga pusher at adik, salot sa lipunan!” These are just some of the remarks that have circulated on social media since the Duterte administration announced its war…

Scarborough Shoal: Close Encounters with China

Technically, the place is merely a collection of rocks and reefs. But its numerous names mirror the tension that has engulfed its waters. China believes it is Huangyan Dao based on their historical claims. Filipino fishermen from Zambales refer to it as Kalburo or Bajo de Masinloc or Panatag Shoal — a safe haven against storms. But…

Inside A Refugee Camp

Filipinos are among the minorities living in deplorable conditions in one of the oldest refugee camps in Lebanon set-up in 1949: the Shatila camp. The vulnerable population, mostly comprised of Syrian and Palestinian refugees, suffers less from the acute trauma of war than from shifts in family dynamics and relationships caused by displacement. To address…

Why I Left My Job as a TV News Reporter in a Popular Network

It’s not the pay. To be honest, it’s the pay that had held me back. For years, I postponed any pursuit of relatable opportunities because of bonuses and pay raise that were at stake. Bills and payables were also powerful grounding forces. Then one day, everything imploded into a thought: kung puro pera at bayarin…

Mula sa Buwan’s #HulingLipad: Wounds Cut Anew

Raw, vivid and emotionally haunting—that was how I felt when I first saw Pat Valera and William Manzano’s Mula sa Buwan two years ago. This majestic Filipino Zarsuela was an adaptation of Edmund’s Rostand’s timeless piece, Cyrano de Bergerac but instead of 17th century France as its setting, the play brought us to Manila during the 1940s…

The Reason For Frat-Related Violence Could Be You

By all means, rage against the corrupt, elitist, mysoginistic, padrino system-loving culture of fraternities — but please do not forget to check on the company you keep. This culture of toxic masculinity is alive and well because it feeds off from our own inaction, our being complicit, if only because we refrain or refuse to…

Peeking into ‘The Dressing Room’

Staging re-runs is equally challenging than staging original theatre productions. One works with the same material but newer elements have to be added to make it more powerful and visually stunning. Hence, a re-run isn’t just a re-play but a whole reimagination of the same story. Dulaang UP’s The Dressing Room might be a re-run, but…

Manila’s Downtown Cinemas: Flicks and Memories

What was once a beacon of vibrant, colorful, and glamorous entertainment is now a forgotten, struggling and lonely place. Downtown Manila has been known as a center of educational and commercial activities. Movie houses were very prominent as early as 1930s with the screening of local films. First-run theaters such as Times, Dilson, Roben, Vista…

Wheel of Fate: A Short Film About Police Torture

At a secret detention facility, a criminal suspect learns that some games should never be played. #HumanRights #PoliceTorture [Entry 266, The SubSelfie Blog] About the Filmmaker: By day, Emannuel Escalona Jr. is a humble wedding videographer for Pixelfish Concept, taking accounts on conceptualizations, shoots and editing wedding videos. By night, he takes the cape of…

Still Waters: A Docu Film on Depression

More than three million Filipinos are affected with depression, according to the Department of Health. But in countries like the Philippines, mental health is rarely discussed, let alone acknowledged. Oftentimes, a high profile case is required to trigger conversations regarding the matter. “Still Waters” is a documentary about the journey of a girl who struggles…

25

At 8 years old, it was easier to be 25. For career day, your teacher asked you to dress up like your hero. You grabbed a white coat and put it over your little shoulders, and just like that, you were a doctor. But being 8 was hard when you were 8. You didn’t know it…

Crossing Borders

“We meet people for a purpose, and it is up to us to define that purpose.”