Trial by Fire

We don’t even have to wait for March to talk about fire prevention. We can have this discussion during the first day of every New Year. Instead of enjoying Media Noche with their families, our firefighters are busy babysitting reckless people who are literally playing with fire through firecrackers. Some say it’s our custom. Some say it’s tradition….

The Road to Paris: Dingdong Dantes and A.G. Sano

Mention Paris, France and most people will think about the recent terror attacks that dominated global headlines and social media timelines a few weeks ago. But Paris is now tackling a larger terror that also requires the attention of the entire world: climate change and how it can cause a literal hell on Earth if…

AlDub and the APEC Summit

Forget YouTube for a while if you’re tired of watching AlDub replays. Chances are, you can watch Eat Bulaga at home for a few days. Thank the long weekend courtesy of the Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) Summit. But if the APEC Summit seems like an alien concept to you or if it may sound…

The Wonder Vendors: Mudjur Clemente and Gladys dela Cruz

Thankfully, we now have Facebook to remind us of days like our birthdays. Sometimes it’s hard to distinguish between people who really remembered your birthday or those who just saw a notification. But hey, it’s the thought that counts. It’s a good feeling to have most of your family, friends and acquaintances fill your timeline…

Separation of Decency and Cyberbullying

I woke up to my Facebook timeline with all sorts of opinions, arguments and analysis about the gathering of Iglesia ni Cristo members in EDSA. In social media, everything has something to say. If I’m reading it right, many have become overnight experts as well. This should be a healthy indication of democracy, right? But…

Children of the 90s: The Fallen Officers of Oplan Exodus

During the first People Power Revolution in EDSA, these six brave men pictured above were babies or simply biding their time inside the wombs of their mothers. Like me, they grew up in the 1990s — when songs from the Eraserheads ruled the radio airwaves and when brownout was rampant. Years ago, they were just children. And they were still young when…

The Murder of a Minor in Malabon

I have covered numerous murder incidents and similar crimes. But I encountered a curious case over the weekend: the death of 16-year-old Jerico Riano Santos whose wake was merely in a sidewalk in Barangay Tanong, Malabon City. Days after I covered the story, it still disturbs me. He sustained two gunshots in the head and had signs…

Ormoc and the Onslaught of Super Typhoon Yolanda

It may seem like a movie. But there was no exaggeration to it. It was real. And I was there. Super Typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) became one of the strongest recorded tropical cyclones in global history. On November 8, 2013, thousands of people died in Tacloban, Leyte, my mother’s hometown. It wasn’t just the strong wind…

Caught in Conflict: Golan Heights and Trapped Filipino Soldiers

Co-written with Lian Buan While Gilas Pilipinas is bravely representing the Philippines in the ongoing FIBA World Cup, we also have a different team of Filipinos who should make you feel proud. They are the 75 Filipino soldiers carrying the banner of the United Nations in the middle of a heated conflict in Golan Heights. Heightened Tension Golan Heights…

The Burial of Anria Espiritu: Justice and the Death Penalty

When people bid a dead person farewell, most would say rest in peace. But for casualties of crime, will there really be peace for families and loved ones left behind? More importantly, will there be justice? This was on my mind while I was covering the burial of Anria Espiritu. For days, I’ve read and heard…

The Problem with UP

What if you could revisit and download the questions you took during the UPCAT (University of the Philippines College Admission Test)? I received information that this will be a possibility. It’s not yet official though. For some people including yours truly, these were the same set of questions that made and unmade dreams. Not all UPCAT takers make it. Only…

Reporter Notes: Year One

July 24, 2012. It has only been a month since I became a reporter. But I received an important assignment: the arrival of former President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo from the hospital to her home in La Vista, Quezon City. I waited in my position for hours. And then in a flash, the convoy of Congresswoman Arroyo arrived….