‘Allah Valley’ at mga Lumad

Wala pa ring katulad. Ang langit, isang karagatan ng asul. Nakakalat ang malabulak na mga ulap na minsa’y naghuhugis ayon sa lawak ng imahinasyon. Ilang dipa na lang ang layo nito sa lupa, halos abot kamay na ng mga tao. Pinapagitnaan ng bulubundukin sa kanluran at silangan ang mga sakahan ng palay at mga tirahan….

The Disappearance of Carl Angelo Arnaiz and Kulot de Guzman

The mysterious turn of events started in this particular place in West Bank, Cainta, Rizal on August 18, 2017. At around past 12 o’clock midnight, 19-year-old Carl Angelo Arnaiz was in his home tending to his sari-sari store by this window. Three of his neighbors were idly spending time here. Gelo, as his family would…

Fathers and Sons: A Dulaang UP Masterpiece of Two National Artists

What do you get when a Nick Joaquin classic gets translated by Virgilio Almario and Jose Lacaba, directed by Tony Mabesa, and brought to life by veteran thespians like Leo Rialp and Rody Vera? For the opening salvo of its 42nd season, Dulaang UP stages Fathers and Sons – a powerful work of not just…

No, Mr. President, I Do Not Feel Safe

I live in Barangay Holy Spirit, Quezon City, adjacent to the Camanava district in Northern Metro Manila. Early morning, Friday, August 18, the Northern Police District was wrapping up their overnight drug sweep of Camanava that yielded 24 deaths, and 36 arrests. That same Friday, at around 1:30 am, I went home later than usual…

The Ten Commandments for the Millennials

Here are some insights that will help millennials live a better life. 1. Never discriminate people based on race, gender, religion, social status, and cultural beliefs. And if possible, never discriminate at all. The world is better when we respect each other. After all, we are created equal. 2. Drive defensively. Imagine if all drivers…

Defense Against Fake News: Three Simple Rules to Follow

In any information we encounter, it is important to exercise media literacy. It is a tool of analysis we need in order to protect our online space and in order to preserve our freedom of speech and of expression. Media literacy protects us from questionable and fake media content. It allows us to not be…

Sta. Mocha dela Revisionista

Between this article’s time of writing and publication—which is only a couple of days, to be honest—I am sure there has already been a new viral video, another “pasikatin na ‘yan” post, and a widely shared status update analyzing President Duterte’s latest soundbite. To say that social media has become a huge part of our…

Fake News May Shorten Life Expectancy

Dahil sa confirmation bias, lumalaganap ang fake news. Ano nga ba ito? Basta pabor sa atin ang isang bagay, iisipin na natin na totoo ‘yon. Sources be damned. Ito ang paghahanap at pag-alala sa mga impormasyong sang-ayon sa mga pinaniniwalaan natin. Kaya minsan kahit peke talaga ang balita, pero sumasang-ayon tayo rito, malaki ang posibilidad na maniwala…

After the M6.5 Leyte Quake: Images of Destruction

On July 6, 2017, at 4:03:53 pm, a Magnitude 6.5 tectonic earthquake jolted the Philippines, with its epicenter in Leyte. PHIVOLCS has expected damages and more aftershocks. Here are images from the town of Kananga and from Ormoc City where seismologists reported Intensity-7 tremors. Still recovering from the ravages of super typhoon Haiyan (Yolanda), the…

My Last Day at PTV

I was just writing my script for PTV’s 9pm newscast when my news desk approached me that the department head, Mr. Edgar Reyes, wanted to talk to me. Little did I know, he would tell me to no longer report to work. That was the night before the end of my contract as a News…

The ‘Female Oblation’: After #UPlift, Ferdie Cacnio Will Continue to Create

​ He wasn’t able to sleep the night his masterpiece, “Uplift,” was shown to the public, in front of the University Theater of UP Diliman, during the full bloom of sunflowers along University Avenue, at a celebratory time of commencement exercises. It wasn’t because of uncontainable sense of achievement that the visual artist was still…

Kung Paano Hinaharap ng Babae ang Hirap

Alas-tres ng umaga, gising na si Aling Irma.* Sa totoo lang, aniya, parang wala na siyang tulog. “Minsan, pag yung humihiga na ako, alas-diyes, ganun, tinatawag pa ako dun sa kabila. May iniuutos pa, ganun. Sa kagustuhan ko naman na ako ay may kita, hala sige kahit pagod na ako, sige pa rin. Tapos wala…

“It Would Be Unfair to the Kids”

It was late afternoon on a summer day about seven years ago and I was fake-sleeping inside my mom’s hospital room because it was my turn to guard her. She was admitted because of a mild stroke and she was talking to her attending physician about what happened to her. “Will I still be able…

Three Days in Benham Rise

May 5, 2017—It was a dry and humid day in Infanta, Quezon. I wandered around the fish port, quietly observing the locals. I would occasionally glance on my phone, snap a shot, and try to post it on Facebook. But the entire town is practically a dead spot, making it extremely hard for us to…

The Transgender Couple

Our pseudo-conservative society will judge them and the mysoginists will bash them. But for Pau and Aiju, both 25, they simply made a decision to choose, and that is to choose love—no matter how cliché it may sound. These lovers met only days after Valentine’s Day in 2015. The last two years was not smooth sailing…

Understanding the Angry Christ

I am no theatre critic, but I’ve seen every single production of Dulaang UP since its 33rd season—that’s more or less 30 plays. There were hits and misses, but hands down, Angry Christ easily ranks as one of the most enigmatic and beautiful. I would admit, for each Dulaang UP season, it is Sir Dexter…

The Rising Burma

Five years ago around this time, in one hot summer day in Singapore, I woke up to a good news from a dear friend that I’ll get a chance to tour Myanmar for free.  I was set to go back home in Manila after finishing a 10 month-contract in an F&B company, so I thought…

Ang Resureksyon ng ROTC

Pormal nang inaprubahan ni Pangulong Rodrigo Duterte ang sapilitang pagpasok ng lahat ng mag-aaral sa Grade 11 at 12 o Senior High School sa Reserve Officers Training Course (ROTC). Sa pagbubukas ng Palarong Pambansa sa Antique noong Abril 24, nagbanta pa ang Pangulo sa mga umaalma sa ROTC na posible pa siyang magpatupad ng sapilitang pagsisilbi sa…

Farewell

I hope this message finds you well. The world calls you millennials — and with your diverse skills, the possibilities are endless. Yet understandably, it is also a time of uncertainty since you are about to leave the comfort zone of the classroom. If you may have entertained doubts, everything is still alright. We live in a time when…

#Taiwanderlust: Discovering the Underrated Asian Dragon

It’s only been half a year since Taiwan has opened up and relaxed its visa rules for its Asia Pacific neighbors, and already we’re seeing a surge in tourists arrivals in Taipei. In 2016 alone, there was a 25% spike in the number of Filipinos who visited this island-nation barely the size of Luzon. These were 172,475…