Thursday, August 30, 2007

'News Media Coverage of the 2007 National Elections'

At last I got my copy of CMFR's latest study, "News Media Coverage of the 2007 National Elections."

Thanks, guys. I know, I know, this is my second copy. I gave the first copy to my boss. I hope you will be sending other media executives their own copies.

You would be happy to know that there's a temporary stoppage (at least five minutes) of work every time we in the newsroom receive a copy of CMFR publications, especially the PJR Reports.

There is always a moment of silence, then ohhhs and ahhhhs, when editors and deskpersons scan the Reports. Your "star and kalabasa" ratings section always gets the desk's attention and, I believe, is the most read part of the publication.

I hope your latest study will get the same attention from journalists, especially from media top guys.

I scanned the book and was impressed by the diligence you had in making the study. (The annexes are more reader-friendly compared to the annexes of the 2004 report, which were mostly statistics.)

Of course, there were some minor data that your researchers might have overlooked, but I'm sure the study will inspire journalists and media executives in planning and implementing future coverage.

Tama na muna ang pambobola, babasahin ko pa ang buong libro.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

'no pain, no gain'

I woke up sore all over. My feet were aching, My legs too. I did not want to leave the comfort of my bed. But, to hell, let me experience more.

I did it again early in the morning. I did three rounds in just an hour. (No, I'm not talking about sex here.)

I ran, I walked, while Buklod was playing on my second-hand Nano ipod. (I know, I know, it has only 2Gigs, pero mababaw lang kaligayahan ko. Aside from classical music and alternative songs, wala naman akong alam na ibang awitin.)

I'm planning to make five rounds tomorrow.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

At last I did it

Yup, I did it. I know my dear friend would be happy to know that I did it.

I woke up at 7 a.m. drove to the academic oval for a jog and a dose of fresh air. I lasted more than an hour, after which I had a cone of durian ice cream.

The last time I jogged around the campus was with a friend who ran a few meters and declared that she had enough. She then started a leisurely stroll before deciding that she was already tired and had enough exercise.

Great baby!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

war, bomb explosions, what's next?

A bomb has just exploded in Zamboanga City's Plaza Pershing while an assault against Abu Sayyaf bandits in nearby Basilan island is ongoing.

What's next?

The bishop of Basilan has already signified his support for the military operation.

The military has been rearing to go to war to avenge the death of their comrades.

Some journalists are covering the conflict from afar.

What's the picture on the ground. What are the stories of the soldiers in the front line? What's happening inside the huts and homes of Muslim and Christian farmers caught in the middle of the firefight?

These are stories that need to be written.

Monday, August 20, 2007

Pagkatapos ng bagyo

Dumaan din ang bagyo. Sana naanod na lahat na kitikiti at lamok na may dengue.

Dumaan na nga ang bagyo, pero mas malakas naman na bagyo ang kinakaharap ng mga tao sa Basilan.

Hindi tubig ang bumabaha doon. Dugo. Hindi ulan ang pumapatak doon. Bomba at tingga.

Kailan kaya matatapos ang gera sa Basilan? Kailan kaya mananahimik ang kagubatan doon?

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Fun with Neil Gaiman

After enjoying Neil Gaiman's "Smoke and Mirrors" and "Neverwhere" several months ago, I've started just this afternoon "American Gods."

I have only read the first chapter and aside from getting excited, I'm laughing my head off. The story about a man being swallowed by a woman's vagina was "too Filipino" a joke.

"This is what he sees:

"He is inside her to the chest, and as he stares at this in disbelief and wonder she rests both hands upon his shoulders and puts gentle pressure on his body.

"He slips further inside her."

"... He feels the lips of her vulva tight around his upper chest and back, constricting and enveloping him...."

"...Her labia pull slickly across his face, and his eyes slip into darkness."

I miss a dear friend who used to laugh with me when we come across books we love. Wherever you are, I will share Neil Gaiman with you someday.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

it's over

to all those who prayed for my daughter's recovery, thank you very much.

she is already out of the hospital after her blood pressure normalized and her platelets count stabilized at 180 early today.

thank you very much to all who wished her well.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007


thanks to ms i and to all the friends who prayed for ms s' immediate recovery. i'm touched by all your prayers. thanks too to my muslim friends in marawi, iligan, basilan and sulu who offered their prayers.

my dear daughter is still in the hospital trying to make her platelets count rise to normal. her blood pressure has already started to go back to normal with the help of the supplementation of intravenous fluids.

she started to have fever tuesday last week. by wednesday and thursday her temperature reached 45 degrees. i looked for rashes on her body. there was none. i looked for blood in her urine and stool. there was none. she said she just feel sleepy but had no headache. she had no appetite but she did vomit even once. i thought it was just an ordinary fever.

the fever was gone on saturday. we even went around the university of the philippines on sunday for a walk. on sunday afternoon she complained that her feet were itching. in the evening the rashes came out. it was good that i brought her immediately to the hospital. her blood pressure and platelets count were already very low.

everybody's prone to dengue. alfie, a kci member, stayed in the hospital for two weeks before he recovered from the virus. a three-year old daughter of a friend died of the virus. joega's daughter was hospitalized for a week.

there's no medicine or vaccine against the virus. what the doctors do is just monitor the blood pressure, get blood samples twice a day to check the platelets count, feed the patient with intravenous fluid if one is not eating, and that's it. there's nothing that can be done but wait.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

mobile blogging

this is a test blog from a nokia 5700 done from the er of st luke's hospital while waiting for ms s cbc

When things seem fine, something has to come up. This i learned from being a journalist.

So when i was all set to fly to the visayas, my dear s has to be rushed to the hospital.

I've been trying to post this entry for the fifth time to prove that even in the midst of unpredictable moments one can do and learn something new.

Let's see if this will work, baby.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Thanks Matthew, Stacy

Two of the most accessible people at the US Embassy here in Manila will finish their tour of duty in the Philippines this month.

Matthew Lussenhop, First Secretary and Embassy spokesman, and Stacy MacTaggert, who has been described also as Embassy spokesman in some news reports (Sorry Stacy, you forgot to give me your card so I don’t know your official designation), are going back to Washington for, well, more job.

Mat and Stacy have been very accessible to the media during their short stint in the country. I remembered greeting Matthew a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year even as I have to quiz him late in the night about the whereabouts of the US Marine who was accused of raping a Filipino woman in Subic.

I remembered teasing Mat during a welcome dinner for him three years ago if he was that tough to face the Philippine media. He just smiled and said he's ready to learn.

A friend, who was with me at the dinner, told Mat that every US Embassy information officer will leave the Philippines with an unforgettable experience - like the departure of the US Bases in 1991, the plot to kill the Pope and the US President during the Apec summit in 1997, the kidnapping of American nationals, the war against the Abu Sayyaf, etc.

Mat said he hopes there would be no such incidents during his tour of duty. Unfortunately for him there was the Subic Rape case issue.

It’s a tough job for Mat and Stacy especially when working with critical media practitioners in the country who are not that easy to please and who rejoice in digging every juicy detail especially when a story involves Americans.

Nice job, guys. Thanks for being such good sports! Good luck in your next assignment.

Monday, August 06, 2007

'Learning from Harry'

Good will always triumph over evil, ika nga.

Isa lamang 'yan sa mga mensahe ng nobela ni J.K. Rowling tungkol sa buhay ng isang batang ang pangalan ay Harry Potter.

Katatapos ko lang basahin ang ika-pito at huling aklat ng tinaguriang Harry Potter series. Sampung taon ko ring sinubaybayan ang kwento ng batang may angking kapangyarihan ng mahika.

Subalit, higit sa mga pagsubok na kinaharap ni Harry Potter at sa mga natuklasan niyang sikreto sa buhay habang nasa Hogwarts, nakagiliwan ko ring pag-aralan ang buhay ng iba't-ibang mga tauhan sa aklat.

Pilit kong inintindi at inabangan ang paglalahad ng buhay ni Tom Marvolo Riddle na sa kalauna'y naging si Lord Voldemort. Bakit siya naging masama? Sabi nga ng isang akda: "It is difficult to know how much 'nature' rather than 'nurture' contributed to Riddle's personality."

Isipin nyo nga naman, pinatay ni Tom Riddle ang kanyang ama na si Tom Riddle Sr. at ang kanyang lolo't lola na si Thomas at Mary Riddle. Bakit niya nagawa ito?

Ambisyon at kasakiman sa kapangyarihan ang nagtulak kay Tom, mga katangiang makikita natin sa maraming tao sa ating lipunan kung hindi man sa pamahalaan.

Gusto ni Tom Riddle na maging guro ng "Defense Against the Dark Arts" sa Hogwarts, pero hindi siya nagtagumpay. Gusto niyang maging "immortal" at maghari sa sanlibutan subalit nahadlangan ang ambisyon niya ng isang batang ang hangad lamang ay hanapin ang sarili at gawin ang tama.

Isa rin sa mga tauhang may natatanging misyon sa buhay si Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore. Ano ang mga sikretong dala niya hanggang sa hukay? Anong klaseng tao ang gumagamit ng kapwa matupad lamang ang gusto niyang makamit o mangyari.

Sino naman si Severus Snape? Isa ba talaga siyang masamang tao o biktima lamang ng pag-ibig? Napakaganda ng "love story" ni Snape na pati si Harry Potter ay namangha. Meron pa kayang mga Severus Snape sa ating paligid na handang mag-alay ng lahat sa ngalan ng pag-ibig?

Maraming aral na makukuha sa pagsusubaybay sa buhay ni Harry Potter. Alam kong liban sa akin, at kay Pat na nagpahiram sa akin ng "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows," marami pa ang "nabaliw" sa kakaabang kung ano ang mangyayari kay Harry at kay Voldemort.

Sa mga 'di nakabasa ng libro, sana napanood n'yo ang pelikula.

Sana liban sa "adventure," may matutunan din tayo sa kwento. Baka kasi ma-take over na tayo ng mga kampon ni Lord Voldemort at pamumunuan na tayo ng "Death Eaters" kung hindi tayo maging mapagmatyag.