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…

One Light’s Out

It’s been more than three months since his light was put out. That one light that lit up one dim moment of my life. When I was in grade school, I barely had true friends. Most of my so-called friends then are just people I had to be with because of same advanced classes and…

Mula sa Buwan: When a French Classic Becomes a Filipino Zarzuela

There are modern clichés, cheesy movies and hugot plays — and then there is Mula sa Buwan, a theatrical play that gets your hopes up then leaves you devastated as you experience a forgotten story worth remembering. Mula sa Buwan is the adaptation of Edmund Rostand’s timeless French piece, Cyrano de Bergerac. Instead of 17th century France as its…

Sa Wakas: A Realistic Finale

A boy meets a girl. They go through a series of dilemmas and may even be separated for period of time, but they would still eventually end up together. This has been the typical formula for cliché love stories — no matter if the film is foreign or Filipino. But this is not the kind…

For the Unemployed

Just when there were about 2.6 million jobless Filipinos according to the Philippine Statistics Authority, I chose to leave from my company. I had been working for a well-known production outfit with big clients. Some people said it was a wasted opportunity. But it was not a hasty and easy decision. I thought about it for months,…

Para kay Ama: Makuha Ka Po sa Isang Salita

Haligi ng tahanan kung ituring, ilaw din tahanan para sa ibang pamilya, marami ang tawag natin sa kanya: Ama, Tatay, Papa, Pa, Paps, Daddy, Dad at marami pang ibang sa inyo lang may kahulugan. ‘Di man nagdugtong ang pusod natin sa kanila, siguradong sila rin ang dahilan kaya naririto tayo ngayon. Kaya naman sa hirap…

The Ghosts of Siquijor

Siquijor has the distinction of being the mystical island of the Philippines, a name the province may have earned through numerous tales of supernatural superstitions that originated here. I don’t know if it helped that Siquijor rhymes with horror. But this province has always been at the forefront of conversations when it comes to sorcerers,…

My Father’s Promise

My father worked abroad for years in order to earn more for the family. Back then, he already had a loving wife and two boys. But he still wished and prayed fervently for a daughter. He had this promise that he would permanently return home if God would answer his prayers. And then I was…

The Culture of Blaming the Victim: The Nirbhaya Gang Rape Case

The BBC Four documentary India’s Daughter prompted outrage because of the statement of Mukesh Singh, one of the six perpetrators of the notorious December 2012 Delhi gang rape in India. He said the victim Jyoti Singh (Nirbhaya) was to blame for her sexual assault and murder. Jyoti was returning from an evening at the cinema…

Have to Go

I have now left a place I considered my second home for almost five years. A few weeks ago, I received a phone call informing me that I have been fired. I was no longer required to report for work the next day for the morning newscast, News to Go. A few days later, my contract with the afternoon newscast GMA…

Indochina: Four Tales of Heartbreak

Love has a quota. That’s according to Ricky Lee in his masterpiece “Para kay B.” Only one in every five people who fall in love will have a happy ending. The others might love someone who will not love them back. Or love without learning. Or love hopelessly. And some might not love at all….

Living with AIDS

It happened August last year. Despite his difficulty in breathing, he had to go out of the house alone to go to the local medical clinic. After numerous tests, he received a diagnosis of pneumonia with prescriptions that would last him a week. He took them secretly and religiously but had chills and nights filled with pain and silent…