Thursday, 31 December 2015

Same Old New Year in this Today's Plastic World

Same Old New Year in this Today's Plastic World

(And how some people still yearning 
for a new yet meaning world this New Year)


At first, this person conveys greetings this start of 2015. And like any other year, 2015 means a new start for everyone: new dreams, new challenges, new gadgets, new shows, new claptraps being vented all from January to December in the name of pleasure and enjoyment.

Can't deny it since it's true, knowing that everyone has waited for this since past few months, looking at every update, preparing, saving time and effort in order to gain at its possible time, be it movies, gadgets, dance steps, anything that is trendy like any other year this person and others concerned has sought through.
And inconveniently speaking, most are for the sake of impression, in a way those who brought acoustic guitars eventually gave up the following year and lately brought ukeleles for the sake of trend than for the love of music. Come to think of this, ukeleles and acoustic guitars are all the same string instruments, and this person believe that there are those afforded to play, make music, express as they enjoy using those string instruments, but how about the others driven by the trend, especially after last year's buying of varsity jackets, are they really serious or like any other year of throwing it away for another? 

Sorry for being inconvenient especially those who afforded to say words such as "choice", that has becoming a code word for unbridled spending for a mere material benefit especially after being enticed to buy in order to get in. Same styles for clothing and apparel coming from different well-known brands, all for profit from those entities trying to "maintain prestige"; and in movies, seeing same genres coming from different priducers especially those trying to win a pseudo-national prize. That oftentimes marred by scandals, if not criticisms coming from the concerned. 

To sum it all, the plastic world has won according to the late Letov. 2015 is like any other year full of something new, but whatever everyone says, still these same everyone still sees and feels same old problems. The problem is this: people chose not to understand these, worse, trying to be intentionally ignorant as they escape from these inconvenient realities, be it poverty, corruption, injustice, people care less about these least they enjoy these new sorts of things in this plastic world Letov has been saidth in his song. This plastic world called modernity continues to rule over everyone's lives and mindsets. Substituting reality for an illusion, of having state of the art this and that, a thriving populace whose mantra is work, buy, consume throughout the year. And in this 2015, it will always be like any other year, same old plastic changes, new trends and words to vent with, while at the same time, new scandals meant to be forgotten, new protests likely to be assailed in the name of illusory peace, new bullshit to be expressed. 
And these bullshit, protest, is coming from those people who had really demand a breakthrough out of their still struggling yet genuine hopes in this present day plastic world: all for a real social change, for a genuine application of social justice, for a realisation of an aspiration, far from what the system and its outlets has vented throughout the year. 

They want something new in this year, yet more than what is being depicted, they want a year where both material and spiritual wealth united all to create a healthy living whole. For a better individual, for a better community. And if possible, they will do by any means to the point of having their lives be sacrificed.

That's all, and С ноьвим годом. A Struggling yet Enjoying new year to all.

Wednesday, 30 December 2015

Reaffirming a Quixotic ideal

Reaffirming a Quixotic Ideal

A message for Rizal Day




Well, ever since people celebrated his martyrdom at Bagumbayan in 1896, Jose Rizal has represented a race willing to assert dreams and aspirations of his own land and race.

These dreams and aspirations, mostly in a form of writeups and discoveries of his own work, has showed how the Filipino as capable of enjoying its own self-government, what more of its own independence, in order to enjoy its hard work, of uniting material and spiritual wealth to create a healthy well-being, both the individual as well as its own society.

However, Jose Rizal was and is, more than a person; like all others who proved how great the Philippines is, is one of those who represented the quixotic ideal of the Filipino people. Rizal loved the Filipino nation more than his life. Rizal loved the independence of the Philippines more than his own independence, and with His death on the altar of freedom at Bagumbayan comes the dream and hope and warm beating of his heart shared by such other heroes as Gregorio H. del Pilar, Malvar, Mabini, and others.

However, despite years passed, of gaining independence, of facing tyrants, and enduring decades old hardships, Rizal's ideal remains quixotic as long as those who afforded to babble his ideas, aspirations, even his example, are in fact same as the corrupt friars and opportunistic men of the cloth during his period.

And regardless of having known for his contributions, be it in the field of medicine, science, engineering, literature, his life's work remains unfinished, and its up to the Filipino people to take that arduous, decades-old task.

And that task is more than what the system has stubbornly insisted. Not also wonder that out of patriotism and social awareness, there are those willing to set fires against an existing yet dilapidated social order. True that the country needs a long term process of reform, renewal, revolution. Rizal's dream to realise an aspiration comes a reaffirmation and assertion of a nation longing to stand up on its own feet, willing to confront the enemies and slanderers of one's homeland. 

Anyways, there may be people who treats Rizal as a person worthy of veneration; however, not all appreciates his word, such as having a nation that shelters the despot or the slave.

That's all.

Sunday, 27 December 2015

"Feels Trip at West Ave."

"Feels Trip at West Ave."


Background:

This poem was made on the same day during the event this person has participated with in a bar. Whilst drinking beer and listening to other's poems, rants, and summarising their featured works, he was making this work.


More friends more strangers
Gather at Black Kings late than never
Seeing some acquaintances yet going to eat first
Miso ramen so expensive but can't withstand hunger or thirst

Hearing statements, poems and feelings
Seeing pictures of people, nudes, young masses
Then a friend did not give me gift as promised weeks ago
Nevermind for the event's enough a gift, so why should not I go?

At the counter had to buy a bottle of beer
Pale pilsen, old school, like dad and his peers
While listening to their words drinking, here making a writeup to finish
Of Würtzbach and Maykel, Yankees and the once Vanquished

Then after long came I stood at the stage
Showing drawings, some hurting feelings, realtalk to fill the page
Poetries full of pasts likely to call mistakes
If not last lantern parade, or even rainy day feels

And deep inside as if trying to be Limonov
Of Grazhdanskaya Oborona and the late Egor Letov
For the reality of having hell being described in the poems
And the promise of Heaven to those being sown

Then came along two old men
Legend as others say but trying to low profile as they can
Some young end smiling noticing who are they then
Such as one who after seeing pictures, discounts has offered to them

But as they left later, this person seems feeling alone
Yes there may be friends around Black King's but most busy along
The sound of Imago often makes past memories prolong
As everyone listens if not singing to their song

And as I go home after I just find nevermind
The important is to meet them, and say the poems enough to understand
But in the end they only hear is my realtalk, some left and quite sorry if it feels rage
Obviously it is not even enough to fill the page

Friday, 25 December 2015

Making Nativity "Native-ity"

Making Nativity "Native-ity"




Inspired by western depictions of that Middle Eastern event, Filipino artists seemed inspired, and compelled to create depictions that reflects Christian faith in a Filipino setting such as those of a romanticised peasantry.


Likely being made in the mid-20th century, these artworks featured Filipino peasant attire, be it the straw hat or the Salakot, the Camisa de Chino and Peasant Trousers for men, as well as Kamison for women along with the veil reflecting the peasant wife's image as those of the Virgin Mary.


Besides those of the Carabao, Goats, Chickens, took place of the Sheep and Horses. Bethlehem became a barrio, and the Manger be situated at the tenant's stables where animals gathered to see the blessed couple taking care of the young Christ.


To add further cultural flavour of the isles, the so-called "Three Wise Men" or "Three Kings" seemed represented by those who represent the three major island groups of the Philippines: An Ifugao chieftain representing Luzon, a Visayan Cabeza representing Visayas, and a Moro Vizier representing Mindanao. These three prominent beings expressed reverence to the newborn King as they offered Gold, Frankincense, and Myrrh, that symbolises Christ as King, God, and Man. 


Quite nice to see the Nativity, or rather say "Native-ity" as it features biblical characters as "idealised" typical Filipinos. From the peasant-like setting to those of the "Three Kings" as Cordilleran chieftains or Moro viziers, the artists wanted to show that in a Christian country like the Philippines, they also want to show to the world that not all paintings depicting the Nativity has to be "western-centric" such as those from the Louvre or the National Museum of Art. 

Furthermore, the Nativity in the Filipino setting also showed the Filipino's yearness for Unity and Peace; but for this person's take, and maybe through the eyes of these artists involved in those artworks, that Unity and Peace is being rooted from Justice, as represented by the newborn Christ. 


Thursday, 24 December 2015

"Peace, Land, Bread, Justice"

"Peace, Land, Bread, Justice"

A Christmas Message




"Peace, Land, Bread, Justice." These are the basic words most poor people would ought to say this yuletide season. 

Commonly heard during protests as well as from various statements this person hath read, it seems that these calls aren't been given seriously, amidst press releases and "actions" likely to be called pretentions if not realisations in this present order enough to call "repressive" and "unjust".

And although most readers may find it haggard, especially with such serious words related to activism and even social revolution, this statement is posted at a right time, for this season is not meant just to celebrate, but to act for the love of God, family, country, fellowmen. And it is more than just what is commonly depicted on TV, Movie, Internet, or heard in the Radio. 

For according to Delmar Taclibon, he noticed the reality that is contrary to what is ideally seen especially in this season. True that everyone missed their love ones yet sometimes forgetting them as most confined to their wealth, comfort, what more of power and greed. 
Worse, having the reality of trampling rights of its own fellowmen, ignoring their rights against the actually existing terrorisms of poverty, social injstice, exploitation, abuse, callouseness, of having a system tainted by arrogant governance, mismanagement, crime, corruption, and others that further sink everyone including this person, and this country he belongs as well, down to the abyss of nowhere.

Come to think of this: what if God is a caroler who wears shabby clothes, will you give food, gifts, or just leave unnoticed? What if God is amongst the farmer, the worker, the student who clamour for peace, land, bread and justice, will you heed the call or nevermind about it claiming it has nothing to do with one's fantasy? The reality of having Christmas equating to those of consumerism with pretentions of being virtuous whilst not seriously heeding their statements and even putting shame those who call for what is just has really forgotten the words Christ has taught to its desciples such as serving the people, of sharing wealth equally, of bring justice to those who really desired. 

Or rather say, no wonder why one calls this event a "Merry Crisis and a Happy new Fear."

Anyways, in this so-called season of forgiveness, sharing, giving, these attributes related to Christmas should be more than what is commonly depicted in movies and TV commercials. Charity should become solidarity, and love has to be boundless, selfless as everyone really desire for words such as those attributed to this season, if not the virtue that makes Christians Christ-like. 

And hope that their simple call such as Peace, Land, Bread, and Justice be realised. 
Merry Christmas to all.


Tuesday, 22 December 2015

How a statement from a "Beauty Queen" comes a series of different Interpretations and criticism

How a statement from a "Beauty Queen"
comes a series of different Interpretations and criticism

(or how Pia Alonzo Würtzbach's statement
easily identified with reaffirming Yankee relations in the Philippines)


Source: Philippine Collegian

At first, this person congratulate ms. Pia Alonzo Würtzbach for winning the 2015 Miss Universe Beauty Pageant at Las Vegas, Nevada, USA. Her victory is a fine moment for the Filipino people who ceaselessly supported her bid for the crown.

However, despite her victory, it seems that her position, coming from her answer (as stated in the picture above), regarding the presence of United States Armed Forces in the Philippines is reflective of the sentiments of those who are unaware, intentionally or not, of the countless abuses and violence done by these forces, as well as its domestic counterpart, especially against Filipino women, children, communities, and even the environmenr on the pretense of security and stability.

To most people, her statement be justified on the pretext of the growing tremor with China. Along with a series of cold war-era rherotic and showbiz patriotism, it seems that the people who dare to criticise Würtzbach's statement leads to red tagging, harassment, rather than discourse to resolve different opinions regarding her statement.
Otherwise, those who create "counterstatements" on those who criticise Würtzbach's statement subjectively thinking that the pageant has nothing to do with foreign policy nor even politics, disregarding the fact that there are certain questions that are politically tainted in nature. After all, it is a beauty contest, and it has nothing to do with topics controversial in nature, if not Würtzbach speaks on her own statement according to them.


But for this person's take, her statement is also open to interpretations different from the officially accepted one of "totally reaffirming subservience of the Filipino to the Anglo-Saxon". For according to professor Maykel Andrada of the University of the Philippines, it is History that provide Pia Wurtzbach's answers in regards to US-Philippine relations. And it is full of irony, if not subversive or even parodical.

According to Andrada, he stated that After Würtzbach stated that the Philippines "have always had friendly relations", she stated that the United States had occupied the country and remained its colony from 1898 to 1946; and that is through McKinley's "Benevolent Assimilation" that is commonly studied in mainstream Philippine history, Würtzbach may have studied history quite well that the so-called friend was once a coloniser.

Secondly, Colonial Mentality has been revealed in her statement, given that American culture has also been Philippines's own for generations. Being described then and now as Brown Americans, having White supremacy as basis for beauty, having English as superior language for the learned, as well as Hollywood and its "Star System" for movies past and present. That somehow made the Philippine popular culture technically an annex of American culture, while those of its neighbours remained clinging to its own rooted yet modernised culture such as those of Indonesia and Malaysia (that was also colonised by the British and Dutch).

And lastly, the Philippines is a Neocolony, or even a Semicolony, through her statement that Americans are always welcome in the Philippines. It seemed quite general in referring to these "Americans", whether it is a "Tourist" looking for fine beaches, "Investor" seeking future markets, and even a "Soldier" known treating the Philippines as a "Rest and "Recreation" site. 
True indeed that Filipinos are "Friendly" towards to the American people due to long colonial and neocolonial relations between two countries. But with these Americans describing themselves as "Powerful", "Rich", "Progressive" in front of its vassals and being internalised as such, these words are enough to make the Philippines dependent in their aid rather than rolling its own sleeve and stand on its own to assert its independence. 

"Justice and Humanity" as its "basis" for occupying the Philippines
And yet, contrary to what most people thinks of as "affirmative", Würtzbach did not answer if she is in favor of US military presence in the country. Maybe she's intelligent enough to evade an answer in front of the American audience, particularly the sponsors who had made the Pageant well-known. For on the first place, who owns that beauty pageant such as "Miss Universe"? And obviously, that question is more of a "begging one" that can be answered simply by a "Yes" or "No."

But anyways, Würtzbach statement is open for interpretations, be it talking about the Americans whom afforded to solidarise the struggling Filipino people, supported its ideals and aspirations at the expense of being censored or imprisoned, or the Camouflaged men who once babbled "benevolent assimilation", "freedom", and "democracy". But the problem is that most people chose not to think deeply about her statement and instead merely nod as if enough for a good answer.

And if one afforded to criticise or reinterpret the statement other than the "official" one, they start to cry with a series of red tags and other whining rants, worse, attacking activists and other patriots out of "showbiz patriotism".

At first, it may sound offending about her statement, and once this person even think that "Antonio Luna should brought life to tell that the Philippines is a virgin yearning for a whore's love"; but since other activists (like Jose Maria Sison) has afforded to reinterpret Würtzbach's statement such as focusing on amicable relationships between American and Filipino people than those of governments (including the armed forces), this person would say that her statement is likely to open for interpretations. Remember: Mark Twain of Tom Sawyer was against American colonisation, that Jane Fonda visited the Philippines and met activists, that David Fagen defected and joined the Philippine revolutionaries, yet these people are Americans. 


After all, in a nation easily colonised by modern gadgets and promises of democracy and freedom, the Philippines has easily forgotten its heritage, its patriotism, save those meant for tourism. Pia Würtzbach may be right in her statement, but on the other hand, given that no one afforded to think critically and instead nod about Uncle Sam's right to interfere in someone else's business as its former colony, she showed that hers is a country of overdressed monkeys, an American experiment that created a generation of helpless "brown Americans" crying for the big white man.

People may have watched Heneral Luna and other movies featuring heroes just few months ago, memorising every phrase and even making fan art out of it; but then it easily forgets it altogether thinking that all is but history and meant to be forgotten. Yes, meant to be knowing that it has nothing to do with the current state of themselves as individuals, what more of a society that is less interested in statecraft and more of consumerism. Is this what independence and freedom the Philippines had after 1946? In 1946 there's still a generation of struggling patriots trying to assert that the revolution remains unfinished, while this coming 2016 what you see is a generation of whining kids becoming assholes thinking that to forget is divine.

You may call those who adhere in the ideals of the pasts with red tagging or any other bullshit, but in the end, it makes the name caller more of a marionette of a dying "republic".

Again, cheers to Würtzbach, but there are those who desired victory, a victory for Filipino Nationalism, a victory for the Filipino people and its realisation of an aspiration from an unfinished revolution.

Sunday, 20 December 2015

"Lantern Parade 2015"

"Lantern Parade 2015"


No pictures at all,
Feels trip to the core
Despite seeing friends
Still alone and no more

Waiting for text messages
Running looking for loading stations
Yet still most can't reply
If not telling tomorrow or next time

Sitting alone at the cab
Listening Boutros while looking at others
Trying myself to stave off the feels
Creeping in my mind

Then the rector is gone
His feet gone bad from walking
He went to a corner
Till not seen till he messaged later

Sudden rain and cold coffee
And going home via taxi
Only to be reprimanded at home through a threat
That for next week "or else you can't get home to rest"

When "Star Wars" Fan Art is done "Religiously"

When "Star Wars" Fan Art is done "Religiously"




At first, this person would say that these fan art has gone "religious" with artists making religious icons out of Star Wars characters. 


Made by artists like Alex Ramos or Chawakarn Khongprasert, these "Byzantine" or "Mediaeval"-like icons are a playful parody of what fans adored with, or as what Ramos described as "worship" with all the pseudo-religious titles include such as "Patron Saint of influencing the weak-minded" for Ben Kenobi.

Here are the works done by Alex Ramos, coming from his website






On the other hand, the work of Chawakarn Khongprasert seemed to be influenced by Mediaeval iconography, like Ramos, quite a fitting tribute to the movie.





Anyways, these artworks reflect how a fan seriously loved watching the movie or perhaps almost worshipped the characters particularly "the good guys" like Ben Kenobi or Luke Skywalker. Besides thatm the art itself shows a revisit, although some would cry heresy over these artworks given its "sacredness" as any other sacred artwork done in the past or made by those whose idea of these artworks are limited to religious figures. 

Saturday, 19 December 2015

After Nonoy's wrath: A possible political circus through "relief goods", While the Samareño is still calling for help

After Nonoy's wrath:
A possible political circus through "relief goods",
While the Samareño is still calling for help


People scavenge for something useful amidst the rain
Source: ABS-CBN News

For sure one would expect that after the tragic events lies a political circus supported by interests yearning to take over anything especially in the affected areas of Northern Samar.

Like Yolanda that had swept Tacloban and other parts of Eastern Visayas past years ago, Nonoy, or its revised name, Nona, has swept some villages like Laoang, Catarman, Allen, as well as others even those of Catubig and Las Navas. Rain, Flood and strong wind turned wooden houses to shattered sticks, if not concrete houses mudslided, enough to make ruin in this season supposed to be preparing for Christmas.

However, this writer as well as others knows that there's a politically laced expectation going on especially in those affected villages and towns. The system, like last year has "made efforts" in helping, but does not appease the hearts of everyone knowing that they are trying to curry for votes especially this next year's elections. And worse, The people and their communities are not just devastated from the storm but from the received spoiled goods from the Social Welfare Department. The rice that was distributed by DSWD has a foul smell and the noodle packs were already expired.

Again, no wonder why people expressed disgust in the system's mockery of relief through spoiled goods if not failure for immediate support for the people, including concerned local officials that perhaps happened to be from the opposition. That somehow one would make them say that they are freaking mad with all these incompetence of certain officials like Dinky Soliman, and why President Aquino still keeps her on his sleeves despite its inaction and mockery of relief through spoiled goods; or even why the system remains reluctant in efforts to make Eastern Visayas recover its environment after years of being exploited by logging interests and hordes of pseudo-development. Remember: some mountains are having kess trees due to deforestation, enough for a cause of floods during the rainy season. Lack of mangroves created less protection from sudden waves of the sea what more of a storm surge in case of Yolanda years ago. Again, the system showed its incompetence, reluctance, or even stupidity in resolving the existing problem to lessen the crisis, if not using the crisis itself as a means for mudslinging if not half-baked promises this coming elections.

But on the other hand, this person knows that through communal unity, the people themselves can able to recover their lost homes and renew their lives. Given the situation would say that they are making much effort to clean and bring back their communities as possible, of providing food what comes from theirs knowing that the system may likely to fail in providing what is immediate. Groups like "People Surge" and other mass organisations has making fund drives and relief efforts to support these affected communities ravaged by the storm, both by yesteryear's Yolanda and today's Nonoy. After all, Reality knows that typhoons pass through the Philippines and not just earthquakes and volcanic eruptions making the country part of the "Ring of Fire".

And perhaps, it is a duty for everyone, unaffected or not, to prepare and help to recover from this catastrophe. Well, on the first place, this person loves some of his friends, not just his relatives who happened to be there, and of course, lies the concern about them. Not just because they are there but the yearness of being with them in this Yuletide season. 

Wednesday, 16 December 2015

"The Girl From Smyrna"

"The Girl From Smyrna"

"Inspired by the song 'Izmir'in Dagarlinda'"


The girl from Smyrna is quite pretty nice
She is made of sugar and of fiery spice
Skin kissed by the heat of the morning sunrise
Embraced by the breeze of the sea where she lies

The girl from Smyrna is quite pretty nice
But she prefers to be with the so-called wise
Books over the fan, against the norm and flow
Reason over beauty as the few hath known

Love tempered with courage as the struggle lies
With her bayonet thrust her foes till it dies
Her songs heal the wounded so is her smile
Loving eyes from hers inspires all to the mile

The girl from Smyrna is quite pretty nice
Yet she firebomb the system once, twice, thrice
Shameless for her love is for all than alone
Till death is her oath, till the rising of the dawn

Every way, street, square lies the barricade
She and her men hath dutifully made
Hordes of the old order cannot pass on by
Yet for the long tired comes the way where it lie

The girl from Smyrna and her deviant kin
That the order think of them bandits and mean
No! Said by the have not for their eyes have seen
The love that makes them resist as they've been

Every march comes riot, all have bombs in hand
The system felt shaking with their just demand
No matter the latter impose martial law
She and all will never bow down low

Love tempered with courage as the struggle lies
With her bayonet thrust her foes till it dies
Hordes of the old order cannot pass on by
Yet for the long tired comes the way where it lie

"More than a picture"

"More than a picture"

(or how Karen Testibia prefers to be called 'witty' than 'pretty')


"For your beauty remains Enchanted...
there's a new music in the wind..."

At first, this person would say that it's been long overdue to made this writeup although he made some few poems for that person whom he befriend with. That based on her pictures, she is appreciated by people for being a model if not an artist, but to her closest friends (including yours truly), she is a thinker and a willing chemist. 

For a friend, it would say that despite her numerous pictures and videos featuring her as a talent, Karen is plain and simply doing her job. She just love her craft so much as she tries to humanise the image of her given character, if not wanting to make every film she had participated "too good to be true."

And based from observations would say that her's is more than just "beauty" and "charm". True indeed given her numerous appearances be it from the ramp, as a host at a certain event, as a talent in mainstream "drama", and an actress in independent cinema. That her appearance is of Malay-Pacific, skin kissed by the sun, "exotic" to the eyes of a stereotypical guy seeking for a girlfriend; 
but again, she is more than that, she prefers to describe herself as "witty" and "courageous", and based from her experiences, this writer would say that she loves to look at the microorganisms through the microscope if not willing to fight like a man when it comes to brawls, listening to Metal, assembling the gun, understanding the reality and the willingness to seek change in the society. Isn't it that far from what men think of her as just plain simple "beautiful?"

"She loves Mixing Chemicals and how to weave cloth" 
Sorry for the words, but her life and work is more than just the pictures being shown. She may be as pretty as any other model like Cindy Crawford with all her elegance, but she prefers to speak and think like Ninotchka Rosca; she may be sexier like Ina Raymundo but wanting to become like Marie Curie, she may be charming like Bangs Garcia but she chose the courage of Gabriela Cariño Silang, men may have appreciated her for what she is shown, but will these same men also understood what really comes from her such as yearning for social change or even her love for mixing chemicals for a formula? Hope so. 

Well, like her, women tries to break from the conventions, what more of showing far from the usual descriptions, it takes two to tango or good hands to play the piano, and to use Florentino Cruz's essay, he said:

"Rizal spoke of womanhood, and the most telling document he bequeathed to the Filipino race is his 'A letter to the young women of Malolos', which in effect demands courage." 

To become a fighter like Gabriela Cariño Silang? 
Or to become a Chemist like Marie Curie?
And perhaps the courage of these young women is embedded in that person's persona, like a Spartan  girl of the past willing to face the odds as possible, that during her High School days she got good grades like those in section 5 regardless of actually being in the 14th section; that she passed the admission test of the premier state university regardless of her school's pessimism thinking that none will able to pass that test. That she joined the militant struggle with a feeling that with a system such as today's, with its tailored mass-mediocrity in the name of curbing possible dissent, specifically, replacing a persona such as politically aware woman with those of a nagging yet socio-politically apathetic bitch. And of course! It is disagreeable! 
Such circumstances demands courage, and this person sees the wit and courage than the typical beauty and charm.  Her roles shows the flexibility, but she temper it with a real, human character like any other thespian who tends to show more than emotion when it comes to drama. Again, she is just doing her job but she tempers it "with some value" to appear more than "just taking a role and nothing else."


Maybe time comes that with her friends, she would have fulfilled her wish to be a girl who loves the frontline, whose role preferring the scent of gunpowder than rose-scent perfume, if not the iron sword over the silk fan. 
And to paraphrase Jose Maria Sison's poem "the forest remains enchanted", this person would say that: 

"Her beauty remains enchanted, 
And there's a new music in the wind, 
With a new magic in her loving face 
Admired by her folks and friends,
And with a fighting spirit has imbued over
To lure and astonish the intruders..."

To this person, her's is more than a series of pictures or roles he had sought in the screen, enough to be loved.

Thus, no wonder why he made few poems for her.

Thank you. 


(pictures coming from Karen Testibia, Patricia Pelita, and Francis Camballa)

"Dear Karen,"

"Dear Karen,"


Dear Karen,

It's been weeks passed when I last met you
It was the day I brought you goodies, having dinner, and having music sessions 
venting my problems through
And listening to your suggestions, to your redinitions of existing songs
That makes me feel at ease, regardless of expecting problems along

Earlier, when you were sick at that time
I hath brought you goodies, answered some of our questions
Enough to create our dreams and aspirations
Fit for the picture if not for the sketchbooks 

And during those times perhaps it makes me quite happy to be with you despite loneliness
Quite saddening for that word "loneliness", but what's wrong in being single-blessedness?
Comrade, despite the enjoys of being alone we also yearn for love,
After all, we didn't live in this world without someone.

Thanks for the times that I met a friend whom happened to talk to for long in person
Yet your friend has more to do with you and less to deal with me 
Ironically, I like her before, we even talk through the phone, yet I think all is but hopeless
But because of you I feel enough having a renewed sense of happiness

But on the other hand you chose not to deal with love after what was happened to you
You broke up with someone from abroad, and even you turn down an offer from a suitor-friend,
But I know you still love most of your friends, and perhaps that includes me
What's wrong in getting friendzoned? At least there's communication between we

But I admit, I like you so much, and maybe it is more than a friend
Yet on the other hand I don't want to hurt you, nor even offend
It happened that you renew my interest in history and art all my life
Like waves once silent this time through a long rage day and night

And the fact that you inspire me making time well spent
At Krus Na Ligas, or at Maguinhawa, it's pleasure to have you for a loving friend 

Thursday, 10 December 2015

"Christmas" for the "Sick" and "Tired" of the Present System

"Christmas" for the "Sick" and "Tired" 
of the Present System




"When I feed the hungry, they call me a saint. When I ask why people are hungry, they call me a Communist."
- Dom Helder Camara

Well, as expected, this season is truly a season of sharing, of giving, of rekindling love and various virtues if not those of gifts, mouthwatering dishes, and repetitive music. However, to the sick and tired of actually-existing repressive realities, Christmas is a season of yearning for a just peace, far from what commonly described by mainstream media outlets with its star-studded videos.

However, not all would say find such impressions as Christ-like. As Christmas has been commercialised and focused heavily on Santa Claus and other commercialised personalities including those of "Christian Virtues" and "Morals", this person sees the inconvenient fact that those who are "sick" and "tired" of the reality has demanding the impossible, such as the above statement. For as far as this person knows that the reality brought by today's order failed to produce justice not just peace, various policies supposed to amelioriate social problems failed to be enacted by so-called "representatives of the people" as protests for peace, land, and bread been overheard from the streets to social media. 

Quite offending to some but is there really a person who is capable to question the reality despite giving something to the less fortunate? This person may have quoted some verses equating Christ to the sun of justice as the children of god has yearned for a person able to understand their plight and bring justice as its goal. People, particularly those called "rich" and "famous" may able to provide gifts to the poor, making some vows of charity as they could, but amongst these people, are, sorry to say but likely to be described as "pretentious" as their actions are done all for the sake of impressing the way yuletide-themed videoes trying to invoke as such. But did they question reality? Maybe, or maybe not as they focused on pretentious impression trying to act saintly just to cover up their scandal. Certain artists, politicians, personalities enjoying fame and fortune has greatly done so to show how "charitable" they are, but for sure few able to question the reality yet prefering to keep on to themselves. 
And the poor? For sure amidst having canned goods for the yuletide feast they are tired of being given, and they want to demand something that they themselves can do so. Obviously they wanted jobs with a real living wage, an arable land to till, livelihoods to sustain themselves and their communities, but is the system, amidst promising and trying to enact their calls are truly given? The living wage as what workers said are called "libing" (a Filipino term referring to "Burial") for it does not sustain their income especially in a time prices increasing; lands coming from landlords and corrupt bureaucrats aren't being justly distributed to the needy farmers what more of being converted these arable lands into something far from agricultural; livelihoods may have been given by certain personalities particularly politicians, but did these livelihoods sustained needy individuals and communities in a policy where cheap imports crippled their hardships? Again, the poor may have enjoyed the canned goods, but these poor cannot stop from complaining about the reality and asserting the alternative. That even the learned has afforded to complain the inconvenient reality behind such virtuous actions as the quote from above clearly stated.

Again, sorry for the rant, but as giving and sharing has becoming a promotional feat than a virtue, its value may likely to deem nothing except promoting age-old patronage politics if not trying to appease the people with pseudo-promises and some piecemeal "solutions". For time and again, this person sees Christmas with all its fund drives and less immersions, more profits and less contributions, and for politicians, piecemeal reforms than real implementation of social justice; and for sure these vast mass of "sedated" masses, if awakened and agitated, will show the world about what "Yuletide Madness" look like, in a way the poster from Limonov's "NazBol" has featured such as Santa Claus showing gifts of guns to a willing.

And by the way, here's a song from the band Гражданская оборона, with its well-known song Моя оборона. Sorry for it is Russian.



"Karen's theme"

"Karen's theme"


The legends from the ancient past makes me think all's but true
Of castles, warriors, and dragons fearing till one became blue
But one tale that I heard before it all reminds of you
A beauty yet tempered with courage yes I know its true

You ain't like princess nor a lady but of knighted dame
You are not a storybook girl who is soft if not quite lame
You chose the path less wandered than what most likely called fame
Thinking the latter if too much will end up ye insane

You choose the iron and of bronze than silver and gold
You love to listen stories young men told by the dying old
You chose the fight to become brave and thus to be bold
Maybe its true to say that the tales were all true as what they told

The sound of battle accompanies the strings of harps
The yells and clashing of swords creating terrific sparks
Sea of blood and vultures crows create a scene called dark
Eating corpses of fallen friends, foes in that arable mark

And as you survive the battle you stood by at the field and weep
For friends and loved ones killed by swords, arrows of foes quite creep
Now they're at Valhalla, enjoyed after fetched by Valkyries in horses leap
That eventually end in stories like Tolkien wrote and its readers keep

You ain't a princess nor a lady but more of a dame
Preferring the iron sword than the folded fan, gold crown of lame
Liking the sound of battle screaming till the world gone insane
Valhalla's waiting for you Karen​, seeing the eternal flame.


For Karen Testibia,
2015

Monday, 30 November 2015

"For a Renewed Patriotism, and a True Solidarity of Peoples"

"For a Renewed Patriotism, 
and a True Solidarity of Peoples"


In this past few months, it's good to hear about solidarity all for the sake of building a growing country. However, not all people can be solidarised as such. 

Looking at the significant events of 1896 till the present, both of its successes and shortcomings, shows that the unity of the people should exclude those who chose to intentionally remain backwards in favour of their interests, if not trying to disregard the true clamour of the people amidst parroting their sentiments. True that the country today is independent with its flag, anthem, and laws, of being recognised by several countries abroad, but as long as centuries old repression remains, of clamouring for land, labour, and a decent living wage, of what is solidarity if that includes the repressors whom afforded to babble the same words of freedom and justice so as to sneer the ears of the yearning mass? Again, it's been years passed, and still the country heroes fought for is still in its continuing past. 

And since media outlets and machineries of the system afforded to parrot the words this person thinks of, then it is indeed pleasant to hear words like respect and solidarity, or even unity, of seeing people remembering the deeds heroes done for the country's sake, but to see these same people doesn't internalise the value coming from these heroes especially those who had really fought and died for it, with all its sworn acts such as those of defending and serving the repressed, then this person would say that these so-called flag-waving, Filipiniana-wearing people making an impression aren't really patriotic despite what they are trying to impress with, knowing that some, if not most of them think there is no chance to stand up on its own yet can't even have the urge to assert what the nation needs as it favours its own interests. 

Imagine, in an article related to mass transport systems, it shows that its Chinese "enemy" has afforded to roll their sleeves and work such as making a Maglev train despite imitating Western design and technology. Least the Chinese tried to like its neighbours, and this person cannot blame them since these Chinese are for years trying to make an impression of tangible progress such as technology and modernisation. Remember, they create their own version of German Mausers during the Manchu era and Russian T-54s during its Maoist phase, and today they want to look at German or French or even American examples so as to create an improved Chinese one in an era wherein trying to bridge their brand of socialism with globalisation. 
While on the other hand, Filipinos, driven by the recent events over Spratlys and Scarborough, are rather making fuss out of it, and it shows insecurity that made them crying for Uncle Sam, the Japanese Samurai, or whatsoever from the ASEAN countries for help than rolling their sleeves and create their own so as to add their strength and build a lasting expression of progress and stability. Ironically, they also create be it the Road Train, or the Automated Guideway Transit which is still in its expreimental stage, or perhaps merely for the sake of cosmetic impression rather than resolving the problem of mass transportation, and perhaps others important like national defence, agriculture, unemployement, modernisation. 
Both China and the Philippines has undergone struggle and consolidation, of war and peace, of construction and reform, both hath babbled the terms this person ever heard of such as "solidarity" or "unity", but come to think of this, how come China, the rouge country described by mainstream media, has been serious in its commitment? 

Anyways, that example shows that the system's failure to make more effort in responding the needs of its constituents. Again, as said earlier, they afforded to babble that they are serving the people, yet in stubbornly keeping their interests, their words are as empty as their souls. There may be few bureaucrats who would still afford to provide trying to show a semblance of a national concern, but, how about the others whose goal is to enrich themselves, making façades all for the sake of impression and be supported by apologetics trying to justify such stupid, if not horrific actions besides those of babbling every optimistic-sounding word or phrase showing how desperate trying to appease the people? 

Well, sorry for incorrectness though, but since these people afforded to make a fuss especially in social media sites, when was the time the Philippines tried to create a serious act in resolving a social problem besides stop-gap solutions if not mere self-help? Or rather say when was the time the country truly build that is sturdier and better than its neighbours, all not for impression but to address the clear and present situation? As said before, there are earlier proposals that are left collecting dust in the archives of the government, and most of which are relevant including those of regaining "forces" that made a nation "great". Words like "solidarity", "justice", "unity", were inscribed in those texts same as their plans, be it a canal, extending train network, or any kind of infrastructure trying to knit the country in spirit of those words this person stated. But will these be realised in a system that emphasises its own interests? No.
And sorry to say this, that the more people assert its hollow, cosmetic "pride", the more its neighbours call them "overdressed monkeys" as in the past. And thanks to that goddamn Uncle Sam for making that happen as its former colony, that one after another wondering why protests for land and justice happen amidst façades of modernity and progress.

Sunday, 29 November 2015

Seeing an old edifice demolished (plus an incident happened)

Seeing an old edifice demolished
(plus an incident happened)

or all after seeing one of Leandro Locsin's work being demolished 
followed by an incident out of fallen debris


It's been months passed, and lately everyone's heard the news about the sad fate of the late "Mandarin Oriental" in Makati, Metro Manila. 

With its demolition undergoing, the once-familiar edifice has been heared in every news report such as an Australian woman being injured and a Toyota Fortuner sports utility vehicle damaged after debris came showering during the demolition of the edifice days ago. And Makati Mayor Romulo "Kid" Peña then ordered a suspension of the demolition of the Mandarin Oriental hotel as authorities continue to investigate that said incident. He also directed the Makati Public Safety Department (MAPSA) to cordon off the affected area on a 24/7 basis to prevent a repeat of the incident and ensure the protection and safety of motorists and pedestrians. 

Well, as expected, regardless of all the clamour for preserving the familiar edifice, the developers rather chose to proceed having it be demolished as shown by this picture below, with a caption coming from Matthew Lopez of "Manila Nostalgia" as it says.

The demolition of the iconic Mandarin Oriental Hotel
has caused major traffic and has hurt a passerby.
 This could have been instead a major iconic cultural centre like a modern art museum
like the Centré Georges Pompidou in Paris
or the National Gallery Singapore
through adaptive reuse.

(Image courtesy from the Twitter Account
of Former Rep. Gilbert Remulla;
©2015 All Rights Reserved)
Well, it's been decades old to end familiarised,  if not done by a national artist, to justify that the late great Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Makati has to be preserved instead of being currently demolished for a new "commerical-financial" complex like any other building situted in the Philippines "Little Manhattan".

This writer, as well as some others concerned, may have not entered its halls, but in seeing the recognisable concrete edifice and eventually be demolished would ask "how come a work of a national artist has end up being destroyed all in favour of building a new one?" Sooner the much older Hotel Intercontinental Manila will be demolished as well, and that is also a creation of a well-known national artist who is also the man behind that now-demolished edifice. 

Maybe sooner or later there are familiar buildings that has to be vacated and be demolished afterwards in the name of "modernity". Worse, as what Irish Constantinou said: 

"Unfortunately old buildings are not important for us. Commercialism comes first before preservation of history. I am sure that they figured it would be economically rewarding to demolish and replace with a new high rise."

Well, that's all for now. Remember the Mandarin, and if demolished, Remember the Intercon!

Monday, 23 November 2015

Never Forgive, Never Forget

Never Forgive, Never Forget

A message for the 6th anniversary of the Maguindanao Massacre



At first, this person, regardless of having its title smilar to what was made few years ago, conveys sympathies to the still-bereaved families of those who were being killed by the bureaucratic thugs last 2009. It also tells everyone that amidst pretensions of democracy, freedom, and justice, the system failed to put an end to impunity and injustice as it really benefited from it. The tragic events at Ampatuan, Maguindanao is one of the examples every Journalist, every Filipino hath ought to remember.

And regardless having culprits end in bars, there are those who are still roaming free and unrepentant in their murderous act. Their impunity tends to put down those who are committed in seeking truth from facts, as well as appealing people the reality that runs contrary to the system's statements such as those of corruption and poverty. Maguindanao then, and until now, has been wallowing in poverty, corrupt officials has still trying to keep firm in their interests as they toe down their exploitative acts.

There may be no issues of killings in that said province, but in other provinces there are men and women who end killed out of their belief that their work sets everyone free from the inconsistencies the system has trying to insist. The system may still coddle its murderers regardless of denying it altogether their involvement in such murderous acts, if not sacrificing their own thug so as to appear themselves "invoking the same word" as the bereaved families and friends of the murdered. If these thugs in uniform had sacrificed their victims to the altar of "order", can the system able to sacrifice their thugs as well to the altar of "justice" to appear they are committed? Anyways, since the "dawn of democracy and freedom" in 1986 until present there are incidents of killings of those who were truly committed in their devotion; call them "subversive" as any other rebel with a cause, but come to think that is seeking truth from facts a form of subversion? No wonder why the people has gone tired and yearning to take down the present system called "exploitative" and "unjust".

Anyways, today is the 6th anniversary of the said incident, and everyone has offered flowers, candles, prayers, and cries for justice. And this person, as well as others, appeal to everyone that being a journalist, a writer, a propagandist, is a serious task, and that is to seek and show truth from facts.





Thursday, 19 November 2015

Nonetheless, a reaffirmation of keeping interests

Nonetheless, a reaffirmation of keeping interests

Notes after events surrounding the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation summit
And the people's assertion to break the shackles of interest
And neocolonial dependence


World leaders pose in their respective barongs
Photo courtesy of gmanetwork.com

The system and its apologetics are stared in disbelief, if not trying to counter with their words after walls in the major thoroughfares of the metro has been sprayed with the words urging to junk the Philippines's affiliation with the neoliberal-inclined "Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation" (APEC) if not a call to oppose the system.

And in the throroughfares of Manila and Pasay, riot policemen felt the anger of the majority despite attempts to push them with truncheons and spraying them with water from their water cannons. Like yesterday and the other day, these activists assert the same words as the sprayed walls.

These occasions were coinceded with the recent APEC summit in which the system has taken pride and its apologetics greatly appreciated. But amidst the pretensions of development it failed to appease many with proofs such as slow internet connections, traffic jams, to still failure to readress agrarian and  labor issues: of land and bread despite all its promises. It was the organised masses that took the lead in asserting their call, despite media outlets trying to malign them; and with their combined strength somehow enough to cower the ranks of the policemen no matter they afforded to fire them with water from their cannons and beat them with their sticks and pushing through their truncheons. 
Apologetics may still insist their optimistic stand when it comes to the recent summit and even neoliberalism in the Philippines, if not for the sake of opposing the protests with its blatant anti-left hysteria. But the continuing connivance between U.S. Imperialism and the present system lies exposing latter's pretention as nationalists, if not patriots. 
But regardless of the system's statements, the summit is nonetheless a reaffirmation of keeping interests, if not seeing the system's willingness to accept new agreements regardless of the people's strongerst opposition. Farmers continue to insist land reform while landlords willing to give way to corporate farming, workers call for wage increase while the business sector call for low wages, students urge an end to deregulation and commercialisation while educator-businessmen insisting the relevance of education trying up to those of cheap labor exports, and consumers complaining about rising costs of goods and services while compradore-bureaucrats can't even addressed their problem.

Admittingly speaking, by the time the Philippines has reclaimed its independence in 1946, it remains tied to the interests of the west. Independent as it appears yet its sovereignity remains limited. Like the Soviet Union over Czechoslovakia in the former eastern bloc, and the United States over its so-called "Banana Republics" in America Central, sovereignty is subordinated to the overall needs and interests of international interests such as the first world. Its agreements means reaffirming the country's description as agricultural and less, if not entirely uncapable of being economically independent via those of nationalist industrialisation alongside agrarian reform and scientific-patriotic instruction. The country has been exported its raw materials in exchange to those of processed if not semiprocessed goods, the country has been dependent on its diaspora's remittance and stubbornly insisting its people to join the massed ranks of diaspora all for remittances coming from their seasonal work as labourers, and worse, the country chose to submit to the whims all for pittances and redescribed as aid if not investment by its media outlets.

Sorry for those who speak on behalf of the system as they think they greatly benefited from it, such as modern goods and stuff enough to take pride with as individuals. Good it may be those modern, imported goods but does it require selling souls to the whims of others for the sake of these state-of-the-art stuff? True indeed that these countries are well-developed compared to a country with stunted development, but to keep follow still the neocolonial pattern of exporting every raw or semiprocessed goods for the sake of imported products does not guarantee progress and even independence, and since the system did afford to take pride in having a knowledgable and skilled populace, why not create industries to spend wisely the knowledge and skill as well as the resources the country used to take pride have? For sure even at once some apologetics wanted a semblance of economic independence the way they take pride "Filipino-made" phones and tablets that are actually imported from China and India. 
Again, despite the hypocritical complaints aired to its masters and posturings as "nationalist", the system's rabid obedience in all important orders of its masters is conspicuous as in the past. After all, is the system that made Buencamino or Paterno known for flag-waving yet kissing their master's arses, so is Aquino and his clique who uses the state for their interests that somehow adds criticism to its so-called "beloved subjects."

It may find agreebale some of the statements APEC has been made, but to create sustainable communities a nation has to create solid and stable foundations such as ending the centuries old bondage from the soil through a sound agrarian reform program, building new and strengthening existing industries for  manpower and rural development, of stronger safety nets for laborers and employees, an education and culture that is patriotic, scientific, and mass oriented in character, and others enough to really reclaim a nation's prestige and honour the way its neighbours in Asia had like Korea, the two Chinas, Vietnam, and Malaysia. 
Admittingly speaking, this person knows that nonetheless it is a reaffirmation of leaders involved to keep firm in their interests as members of the ruling class and gentries and to "cooperate" as possible. People may still continue being "optimistic" because of APEC or any other partnership agreements leading to international or transnational organisations, but incorrectly speaking, the world is a social pyramid as in this present society: the developed nations are those from above totally advanced with all its self-proclaimed feats, while the developing societies are most likely near below with few yet moving foundations yet still depending on the developed. And the underdeveloped? Below, having abundant natural resources and manpower yet little or no stronger economic foundations, totally dependent on the "aid" of the developed.

And the Philippines is in the middle between the latter two. Having little yet moving foundations, abundant in natural resources and manpower, yet still relying on the aid of developed countries with agreements "telling to remain as it is" if not "providing piecemeal improvements". Call it "in a transition"  as in any other society around the world, but in the end the Philippines is more likely a proletarian nation willing to lose its chains at having a country to win.
And agreements such as Trans-Pacific Partnership and groups like APEC does not guarantee development, but rather, reaffirming the world's social structure as a pyramid. Imagine the traffic brought by a system that can't even say no to its neighbours out of an illusory pride? Slow internet speed? The policies tailored to suit neoliberal-globalist-neocolonial demands? A system that can't even heed the genuine call of majority such as peace, land, bread, labour, and justice? Why is it these issues deeply affected countries whose citizens demand economic independence and social justice?

source: Anakbayan
Perhaps, Lin Biao may be right to use some of his thought, that the Philippines, as well as other developing and underdeveloped nations and societies, comprises the countryside of the world that is exploited by the developed "cities" of the world. The system may continue benefited from being expolited, that somehow enough to create disgust for past, present, and even future patriots and nationalists yearning for genuine independence, solidarity, and development amongst nations and societies.