October 18, 2014

High school get together. Actually unplanned. Nagtipon lang dahil sa hindi inaasahang pagkakataon ay namatay si papa ng kaibigan naming si Dhice. Masayahing tao mga ‘to kaya kahit nakikipaglamay kami e laughtrip pa din kami kasama pati namatayan. Yung picture kinunan sa bahay nina kadong, isa ding kaibigan. Nag-pagpag kasi kami sakanila (noong gabi ko lang din na ‘yon narinig yung ganoong pamahiin). Pero laughtrip lang talaga yung buong gabi, namiss ko mga ‘to. Masaya ‘ko makita sila kahit mga tulad na ganitong pagtitipon man lang din.

Photo: Princess G (mata niya ‘yang nasa harap) 

We are all the same
By Jim Wooten

Read it. It’s good for the heart.

It was a story of Xolani Nkosi, an HIV+ Zulu triben South African boy and Gail Johnson, an English white woman who stood as the most important woman in the life of the boy who was saved from the interracial injustices of his color and his tiny disease.

Wooten portrays as realistic as possible the impact of AIDS to innominate corners of Africa, which is truly heartbreaking, with her ignorant leader, after Nelson Mandela, who was ruled by pride and denial of the fatal disease. He tells how ignorance of the virus opens thousands and thousands of floodgates of its spreading. He tells how the virus weakens the immune system while consuming the life, the dreams and the rights of Afrikaners to freedom and health. He tells how South Africa’s government ban antiretroviral cures, believing that these are threats for her independence, depriving each of her people a day of life extension. He tells how a single boy and a fighting foster mother caught the attention of the world for moments in the early 21st century. He tells unpredicted conflicts and interests between races and blood. He tells politics and its putrefaction. He tells poverty. He tells tons of facts and statistics. And he tells a reservoir of goodwill in a land that long not existing in the world.

Verbatim:

South Africa could not continue to exist as a nation while systematically denying the rights or in some cases the very existence of 40 million of its citizen.
— Wooten

If it wasn’t for me, kids with AIDS wouldn’t even be allowed in. that would have been terrible, I think, because children with HIV also need to learn and to look after themselves.
— Nkosi, talking to Jim about his triumph in upholding the rights of AIDS children to be admitted in public schools.

Certainly the AIDS pandemic on the continent does not exist in a vacuum. Clearly its effect are greatly multiplied and exacerbated by famine, poor hygiene, poor education and poor infrastructure. In other words, by poverty. Yet poverty is only an aider and an abettor, a facilitator of the virus, not a cause of the disease.
— Wooten, criticizing the unbelief of former South African president Mbeki about the existence of HIV and his banning on drugs that would somehow extend the life of AIDS patients

Yeah, she agreed, but even the bravest warrior knows when the battle is over.
— Johnson, talking to Jim about the bravery of his son during his fight on complications caused by AIDS.

Care for us and accept us. We are all human beings. We are normal. We have hands. We have feet. We can walk, we can talk—and we have needs just like everyone else. Don’t be afraid of us. We are all the same.
— Nkosi, addressing the crowd during his speech in the United Nations Int’l AIDS convention

…if you prick us, won’t we bleed?
— Wooten, quoting William Shakespeare in Merchant of Venice

You’re white, you’re black, you’re brown, you’re yellow, and you’re whatever. We still fall under the same denominator; we’re same beneath that skin. We are soft. We are delicate. And we bleed. Equality is not an issue to be sought and be upheld but virtue that should be the state of affairs. It is equality that is so powerful and precious hiding inside the head of each people who are empowered by ignorance forgetting its true worth and its ability to change the world. Hoping we’ll hear it inside.

We are all the same is a book that was explicitly crafted, carefully written with profound choice of words: that is light but moving. It’s like reading a documentary film put into pure script.

It was a nice story worth the keep, and more inside. I suggest you find a copy. I found one wearing a cheap price tag of less than a hundred that touched my heart for good.

Next read: Lourd de Veyra’s Little Book of Speeches

October 11, 2014

Exam week. Halos patapos na, isa nalang bukas. Assessment: lahat okay except subjects I took this day: Managerial Accounting tsaka Advanced Accounting, disaster la grabi. May mga pagkakataon sa buhay kung saan kailangang tanggapin na may mga bagay na di talaga meant na pag-aralan kahit ilang ulit mo pang ipilit. Uh obviously in state on indenial pa na talagang nganga lang ako ng 6hrs. Yung isa multiple choice na nga di mo pa maikot yung mga items. Goodbye Dean’s List. Mamimiss kita :’c

Lifegroup. After daddy Cham, amang PJ at kuya Pat. Ayan orphan na naman kami dahil nalet-go na naman kaming cell group. Wala na naman kaming lifegroup leader. Two things: One, di pa’ko nakakabalik ng church dahil dun. Two, kasi nakakalungkot lang na mag-aadjust na naman kami sa leader na inaassign samin ni Ptr. Gelo. Saying also na medyo yung stage namin critical dala ng panlalamig and the like attitudes, kaya hesitant na din magtuloy sa ganoong balakin. Nakakalungkot talagang nadaan pa kami sa ganitong point ng pananampalataya. Ssuggest ko sana maging independent na kami. Ehe ehe. Tutal it’s been four years. We’re ready. But we’re not that lenient and following-the-standards fellows. Kaya yung change na inooffer samin di ‘ko gaanong gusto. Oo it’s the best solution so far kesa madissolve kami. Pero may tiwala naman ako na hindi na kami mabubuwag, ngayon pang buo na yung bond. Kaya para sakin mas okay yung maiffacilitate na namin yung sarili naming lifegroup, kahit every week salit-salitan kaming mga kapatid sa pagllead. Then anytime na babalik mga leaders naming nagdaan, open-arms kaming babalik. That’s just it.

Internship. Batch 2 ako. Meaning January palang magstart. Uhh U-days T.T Mahirap na makasali ng contest niyan. Wala pa pala ‘ko mahanap na company na papasukan. Sana kung meron na man malapit nalang samin para tipid pamasahe.

This sem. Grateful akong sobra kay Lord for all the blessings, especially yung four remarkable awards na nakuha ko ngayong semester, finally binebless na ni Lord yung talent na binigay niya sakin, though anlayo ng creative writing sa accounting. Atleast inaalign pa rin ako ni Lord sa will niya, na gusto ko din. Sana Lord dalhin mo din ako sa Architecture. Gusto ko talaga doon. Hihi :D

Whatnot. Episode 12 nako ng Fairy Tail 2014. Soft copy please. Medyo nabarkada na naman ako sa mga anime. Ehe. Last week kakatapos ko lang nung Hunter x hunter latest episode. Ngayong sembreak baka magssulat lang ako. May sasalihan kasi kami ni Cham na contest next year.

thesearetheliesihavecreated:

“I know you’re afraid. But being afraid is all right. Because didn’t anybody ever tell you? Fear is a superpower. Fear can make you faster and cleverer and stronger. Fear doesn’t have to make you cruel or cowardly. Fear can make you kind. So listen. If you listen to nothing else, listen to this: you’re always gonna be afraid, even if you learn to hide it. Fear is like a companion. A constant companion, always there. But that’s okay. Because fear can bring us together. Fear can bring you home. Fear makes companions of us all.”

— Clara Oswald, “Listen,” Doctor Who (via cupsofcoffee77)

aadambautistaa:

The Weight Of The World

There are times when I feel like I have this pressure and responsibility to be great that I can begin to feel the weight of this enormous expectation begin to pull me down. Does anyone else feel this way? We all dream of becoming successful, all hope that we are at least financially stable, and wish that in the end of it all, we can at least say we were happy with the life that we have lived. And with all of that, we never want to fall short of these expectations. We don’t want to end up disappointing our parents, our friends who believe in us, and ourselves. 

There is a fear that who I am at this very moment is not good enough; That I have to be better or forever be inadequate. I want to be able to say that my life meant something; that I made a difference in this world. I want to be able to say that I ended up doing something in my life that I loved to do surrounded by people I love. I want to be able to tell people that I didn’t fail; I want to look people in the eyes and see that I didn’t end up disappointing them.

All this combine to it feeling like I have the weight of the world on my shoulders. The truth is, having great expectations put on you is not a bad thing because it just means that people believe that you could do so much in your life. The important thing to remember is that achieving all those expectations and goals is not what will make you great; it is because people see that you are already great and they believe you can do anything. 

September 30, 2014 Culminating act, SPDPR

College friends, magffifthyr mga ‘to sa HAU. Uh, mamimiss ko mga ‘to. See you sa industry CPAs. Haha last sem nalang tayo magkkita sa corridor ng school. lol. 

Photo: Ruth

Looking for the fallen
The Angelite Poet of the Year Entry no. 1

Don’t look in the houses of the fallen
Where light flickers, turns on and turns off
Where fertile cells are as agitated as hell
And bills serve as passes to ecstatic floodgates
Because she has a peaceful dwelling

Never come on darkened street pavements
Where children are as high as the heaven’s ceiling
While they inhale the spirit of past’s shoe’s adhesive
So with disappearance of their virtue and innocence
Because she isn’t there filling her stomach

Don’t enter fancy buildings and great motels
Where decency just shrunk in the sea of oblivion
Or on casinos or national government offices
Where leaders enjoy the wealth of their constituents
Because she doesn’t reside there

Neither dare look in the underworld
That place is empty

Don’t come across the hating of the world
For the bombs and life-threatening arms
Of harsh and verge of offensive arguments
With hush of screeching disparagement
Because she speaks well

Don’t dwell across rejection and despair
On words of discouragement and failure
On the house of jealousy and fortress of hate
Or on speaking mediocrity and good-for-nothing
Because her tongue is wisdom-fed

Never put in mind all the curses she can bear
Nor the condemnation and the troublesome
And the disheartening phrases as well as discourse
With stinky sentences and paragraphs
Because her word is whiff to the ears

Her word is a two-edged sword
That slits my throat many times
But heals me like a paradox

Don’t imagine her like a hot foxy lady
With black boots and netted stockings
In a see-through-clothed tops, backless
With fiery lips and hellish make-up
Because she dresses well

Do not picture her seducing you
With the body curve that invigorates your entirety
Without anything covering her bare skin
Without anything covering your two naked eyes
Because she is decent

Don’t rape her with your sinning eyes
Don’t touch her with your rogue fingers
Don’t insult her with your stabbing wiles
You don’t dare take her life for granted!

Because she is my daughter
And I love her very much

One day she stood and took a ride away from us
Bound out from love, bound out from grace
Conceded by her choice of flightless journey
I counted the steps that slowly fade out

It took me vast times thinking
As finding for ways to win her back
But borders between desires and her will
Lets her be freed from my untainted dictation

I looked in the house of the fallen
She might be staying there for nights
In the darkened street pavements
Where she could be filling her stomach

I entered the fancy buildings and motels
Even casinos and gutters of the government
But never seen a girl as fair as she who left me

I imagined her with lucid thoughts
Like she already reached her goals in life
Or maybe not, and take steps aback

I imagined her falling, instead
With tongue of curse and whining in his belly
And waited for steps that may lead her abode
But long are the days and I recoiled

But a sudden jolt let me take one more stare
And there she sat

Behind the bars of her own mischief
Behind the pale and ill-faced lady indeed
Behind the misery tattooed in her skin
Behind the tears that drained her veins
I saw my child, my dearest little child

It took me vast times thinking
As finding for ways to bring her home
But restrictions and apathetic straight justice
Lets her sing a song less sung the rest of her life

Conceded by her choice of flightless journey
I got myself up and went home

So don’t wander around looking for her again
Because I already found her
And it breaks my heart that I found her

September 22, 2014

The Angelite Poet of the Year, Essayist of the Year

To think na pinangarap ko lang ‘to dati, naamaze talaga ako. This was the most remarkable award na natanggap ko buong college life ko kasi yung first take ko ni di man lang naging finalist mga entries and then this year, my second take e naging finalists lahat ng category na sinalihan ko (Tatlo: Fictionist of the Year, Poet of the Year & Essayist of the Year) tapos yung Essayist and Poet napili.

God is really not breaking his promises. Once he gives you the word, all you can do is trust because He mean it. Thank you Lord, I will not forget the favor :)

Fragile ozone layer shows first sign of recovery, UN says

GENEVA, Switzerland - The ozone layer that shields life from cancer-causing solar rays is showing its first sign of recovery after years of dangerous depletion, a U.N. study said on Wednesday, in a rare piece of good news on the environment.
Experts said it was largely down to global action - a 1987 ban on man-made gases that damage the fragile high-altitude screen. The agreement would help prevent millions of cases of skin cancer and other conditions, they added.
The ozone hole that appears over Antarctica has also stopped growing bigger every year, though it will be about a decade before it starts shrinking, said the report co-produced by the World Meteorological Organization and the U.N. Environment Programme.
"International action on the ozone layer is a major environmental success story … This should encourage us to display the same level of urgency and unity to tackle the even greater challenge of tackling climate change," said WMO Secretary-General Michel Jarraud.
Past studies have suggested the ozone layer has stopped getting worse.
"Now for the first time in this report we say that we see indications of a small increase in total ozone. That means recovery of the ozone layer in terms of total ozone has just started," said WMO senior scientific officer Geir Braathen.
The 1987 Montreal Protocol that banned or phased out ozone depleting chemicals, including chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) once widely used in refrigerators and spray cans, would prevent 2 million cases of skin cancer annually by 2030 according to UNEP.
The agreement would also help avert damage to wildlife, agriculture, human eyes and immune systems, the agency added.
 
CLIMATE IMPACT
 
The ozone layer was expected to recover towards its 1980 level by mid-century, or slightly later for Antarctica, where it gets dangerously thin every year between mid-August and November or December.
"The development you saw during the 1990s that the ozone hole got bigger from year to year - that development has stopped, so it has levelled off," said Braathen.
"We think in about 2025 or thereabouts we’ll be able to say with certainty that the ozone hole is getting smaller," he added.
Progress could be sped up by as much as 11 years if existing stocks of ozone-depleting substances - many of them stored up in old fridges and fire-extinguishers - were destroyed.
The largest ozone hole on record was about 30 million square km in 2006. The hole now covers about 20 million square km - big enough for the moon to pass through - but may not have peaked this season.
The size of the hole varies from year to year, partly due to temperature in the upper atmosphere.
The reduction of ozone-damaging chemicals would also help the environment, the report said, as many of the substances were also greenhouses gases blamed for global warming.
But the rising levels of other greenhouses gases in the atmosphere had “the potential to undermine these gains,” said the report.

One of the ozone-depleting substances that was supposed to have been phased out - carbon tetrachloride, a solvent - was still being released into the atmosphere suggesting, the report said, illicit production and usage over the past decade

Source: Reporting by Tom Miles; Editing by Andrew Heavens

The verdict to the Juan Dela Cruz murder case
Fiction Story Entry- Finalist, 10th Gawad Digmaang Rosas

It was an unusual November morning when a stranger knocked on my tombstone. I was in the middle of the contemplation of my nonexistence, revisiting the life I lost, somewhere twelve years ago when it kept on making an annoyance. It was a distressing knock coming six feet above me.

“What?” irritatingly answering him as I popped my head out.

“You know what day is today, Koyang?” asked the stranger.

It’s weird that out of nowhere, a soul of an alien broke my silence just to ask me what day it was. But it was weirder to encountering such an unusual soul. He was a boy. It appeared that he died when he was in his seventh year because it reflected to how I saw him that time. His description—almond eyes, short face, tiny nose, loose lower lip and most remarkably, a closed-teethed creepy smile should I recognize the additional chromosome he was bringing with him.

“I don’t know” I told him, as if it matters to me and to people with the same situation as I am. Obviously, time is not as important as it was when we were still alive. Because for the living, every beautiful moment is worth waiting, worth remembering and worth recording, whilst there are only two distinct moments that dead people are still longing: the moment that a gem they call Magellan’s red stone turn into lucidly crystal diamond for my fellow deprived, and the Lord’s coming. Because by those whiles only, whichever comes first, although in my situation, the Lord’s coming is I expect more and  I think is more realistic than the former,that we would be able to enter our real dwelling place, detached to this place we share with the living and the demons.

“It’s the 23rd, sir!” he shouted with excitement. I was also stunned, recalling the date when I last saw a calendar and yes! That day was the twenty-third of November: the day of my murder; and the day of my annual “trial”.

Let me tell you about this case:

Twelve years ago, I was mercilessly killed. Found struck and hanging in the sword of the statue of Miguel Arkanghel, who by any chance had his sword pointing upward unlike the ones of his typical genus. I was wrapped in a sack of my country’s obreros’ rice, night when the votes were accounted declaring me as the seventeenth and new president of the Philippines.

According to the autopsy report, I had three stabs in my right shoulder blade, using an 11-inch ice pick; had bruises all over the body caused by a baseball bat; had been struck in the back head; internal bleeding; two broken thigh bones; three crushed rib cages in the left chest; and the sword that hit my heart,which did the final blow. To make it short, it was not a classy murder.

The case was filed in the court in the 27th; “Trial of the Century” as the media calls it. Mentioning for the record that five high judges committed suicide short enough before the too-closed-yet-too-far final verdict I am waiting will be lifted. While there were ten lawyers in my prosecution panel who had resigned, all in all. By the latest time anyway, it was under the ruling of Lady Justice, the current chief of the highest court.

I tell you this: I don’t trust that woman.

Twenty seven witnesses connecting the thread of my incident with my rival, Aurelio Dasig, the current president whom was actually the one who did it to me, were all dismissed by Lady Justice. The only fair thing there was the fact that the president waved his immunity against criminal charges, knowing his intention to getting the sympathy of the populace; he assumes office inside the detention cell. Too sad that soon, the president will be acquitted from all charges, through his power, network and argumentum misericordiam. And to think that the high judge misled the public about this convinces me that I’ll be ending up a double-dead old man.

I am not expecting things to turn out well. Because I’m sure I will not receive my exact remedy. But there was still an inkling that tells me to keep believing that somehow, no matter how seemingly impossible it was, the red stone will turn crystal clear.

I decided to follow the boy in the hall of justice. Living people praise the lobby for its high-class facade, cleanliness and size that measured half a sport complex oval. But to wit furthermore, my fellow dead sees it dirtier than a pig’s den—dried blood on the slackened doors and cracked walls, the slouching calls of degradation, the weeping and the hurting and the stinky smell of hatred and despair. It was a dying market, a slaughter house filled with walking dead, never seen and never felt by a naked eye and of the flaccid society.

We took more steps forward. I saw familiar individuals: fifty-eight faceless people entering one courtroom, some people I once had acquainted, people I read in the news, and people who died ahead of me. They recognized me. I smiled back at them. I took a little talking and soon some of them decided to accompany me.

Few more doors, and then there I was.

It was an open trial, a national issue; therefore it’s not unusual that hours before it started it was filled with all kinds of creature. It was quite bigger than any typical courtroom. I thought it really can’t be helped, especially when it was aired live on national TV.

We sat beside the prosecution panel. My wife Lucy, my daughter Anna and my son Arthur were present, wearing white shirts and black arm bands. I miss my family, really, because that fine line between me and them keeps on telling me to back off. I am near. But I am gone. While on the other side there was Mr Dasig, his family and fellow suspects, surrounded by security agents being paid from the tax of my supposed-to-be constituents. I still see that demonic smirk he had in his damnable face. At the back also I saw a lot of sympathizers and media men, pity for my fellow friends in the afterlife, for they had no more place to seat in. Aggregately, I just laughed at the atmosphere.

The trial started minutes after some chitchats.

“All rise.”

 I did not.

There entered the fifty-eight-year-old Lady Justice, straight and proud, in her robe of mud and blood that the living thought as milky shining linen. She sat in her iron chair, a small table in her front with an apple above it. That apple, stranger than any apple I see in my entire afterlife, was somehow making a connection with me. Short enough should I notice that it was Magellan’s red stone. It was an enthralling experience glancing such as gem. My eyeballs just fixated with it. Is it time to part ways? Would the verdict lifted today free me? Things kept on storming my deoxygenated brain.

Going back to my sense of the situation, or must I call it sense when it was a senseless narration? Either way.What makes Lady Justice different from other justices was her symbolical undertaking of any trial. Instead of a mallet, she rather holds a sword. She uses it to cut the apple into halves when she delivers any final verdict. And the most dramatic above all dramas was she, entering the courtroom blindfolded. That probably explains everything to why I don’t trust her. She’s an insanely-overacting-creepier-than-the-statue-of-liberty judge.

“Your Honor, may we request the presence of our new witness to stand in this court?” said the old attorney of the defendant who was confident enough to resist the mocking staring of my panel.

“Granted” approved the judge. Then they proceeded.

Upon the entrance of the witness of Mr Dasig, the living public rose in deafening silence and wonder. At first I had no idea why. But when I saw who’s coming, I understood. In the irony, I stood with my friends in amazement and sarcasm. The boy beside me started a creepy griming sound that turned into a scary laughter and laughter that was so contagious that made the entire afterlife drop from their civility. I join them because I can’t help but really laugh. The utmost reason and the reason alone was the witness himself, entering the room in eternal glory. He was San Miguel Arkanghel but he was not San Miguel Arkanghel. It was the statue of San Miguel Arkanghel!

To reroute your thinking, we laughed not because Miguel is a statue, because naturally, statues are not ignorant. Once you give them the freedom to respond, they will respond the truth. But they will not speak of it. The reason was because it’s the defendant’s counsel who requested his presence. It’s like asking for a knife to slit their respective dry throats.

“Make some noise!” said the high judge who seemed the most troubled among all people around because of the sudden silence breathed by the living crowd. She’s lucky enough because she was not hearing the roaring laughter we had created at the exact moment. The statue stayed in the witness stand standing. Obviously, he’s been standing all days of his existence.

We had a feeling that the show will carry out a surprise. And we love surprises therefore we shut our mouths and tuned in the questioning.

“In front of this court, your Honor, is the statue of Mr Miguel Arkanghel, the same statue who’s sword barbequed the corpse, Mr Dela Cruz. I will start asking question, your Honor” continued their counsel.

“Are you mocking this court, gentleman from the defense? The entire universe knows that statues can’t speak!” blurted out the enraged lady.

“No, your honor” I had no idea then where this madness will end. They were just playing and messing around. It is impossible to convince a stone to speak, unless someone speaks in behalf of it. But before my thoughts fly further out of the courtroom, the defense explained the answer: according to them, it was possible, only with a little effort. The statue’s sword handle reacts with litmus solution. When it wishes to tell a yes, it turns the solution to red, whilst turns it blue for a no. 

“Proceed” said the judge, convinced of the technique. We didn’t object.

“Mr Arkanghel, were you or were you not in St. Martha Memorial Park on the 23rd night of November, 2009?” the lawyer poured out a glass of litmus solution. Before the liquid reach the ground, all turned red.”

The crowd was carried away and was impressed as chemistry class suddenly popped out.

“Were you or were you not standing beside the body of Mr Juan Dela Cruz on the 23rd night of November, 2009?”

“Objection your honor!” pointed out my counsel before the defense pour another liquid. “Why ask question we already know the answer? This line of questioning is vague. This is disrespectful to the witness!” I agreed.

 “Continue”, rebutted the high judge. She probably missed the word disrespectful uttered by my counsel. Then the defense repeated the question and poured the liquid. Again, it turned red.

“Mr Arkanghel, have you or have you not seen, through your own eyes, a man by the real name Aurelio Dasig?” As the solution touches the sword handle, it turns blue.

“No further question, your Honor.”

“The prosecution requests for cross-examination, your Honor”, as appeared that it was our turn to question.

“Proceed.”

A smirk came from the mouth of the prosecutor, cuing me that somehow, a chance of winning awaits for us deprived. He stood in front of the witness and started the cross-examination.  The courtroom was flooded in purple, a foot high flood on the floor, and the hand of the witness grew tired of the pouring, until my counsel delivered his winning piece:

“Mr Arkanghel, I will rephrase this question of the defense and expect that you’ll tell nothing but the truth. Have you, or have you not seen, through your very own eyes, a man with the name Mr Aurelio Dasig, or should I say, having a real name of Mateo Rodriguez?”

“Objection, your Honor!” shouted the defense as if his throat doesn’t love him anymore.  Mr Dasig stood from where he was sitting, hearing what my counsel had asked, looking shocked and guilty to death. And a sudden uproar was heard from the earth and the underworld due to conflicting sentiments of both worlds.

I smelled victory. Lady Justice who’s lording the entire proceeding, for once in her life had blessed my case. She let my lawyer pour the same solution. The crowd went silent. I prayed to God that it will turn red. He heard me before I uttered my psalms.

It did turn red!

The heat was on. I jumped so high that I could touch the heaven’s ceiling. That moment was the best part of my afterlife, seeing my family celebrating in my triumph. In fact, there were two kinds of tears that filled the room: the tears that say I will soon be freed and the tears that say it’s payback time. Yet I didn’t cry because I can’t. But the joy was expressed in my big smile, which I haven’t thought I can still wear. There is no such noise as loud as that very moment. Even the foundation of the entire hall joined us in our merriment.

A five-minute recession was ordered before the verdict will be read. And when I say five minutes, I mean an hour and a half break. It didn’t matter. At least I know in that day I will receive my full and overdue compensation. I never believe that justice will be served in this country anymore, but my own murder case proved me wrong—that’s what I was thinking until Lady Justice and her affiliates stood to read the verdict.

Here how it went:

The Philippine Highest Court, in aide of the Philippine Constitution and remedy provided by the Revised Penal Code, wereserve the verdict to the murder case of Dela Cruz, Juan Emmanuel y De Dios filed in the 27th of November, 2009, and to following entities to receiving the charge recommend hereby, full executed from this day onwards:

Those introductory words were beautiful songs to the ear. And all of a sudden, glorious light started entering from the cracks of the room and soon consumed us. I started embracing the air beginning from my left foot that ran off the ground. Then I found myself swimming in mid-air. My fellow friends in the afterlife saw this moment and get envied by it. That could probably be the feeling of their so-called detachment.

 To Mr Roland Valdez, accomplice to the murder. Guilty. To serve fifteen years of imprisonment. Another foot higher. I was touching the ceiling already. More names were sentenced to imprisonment, too. I can taste the sweetness of this happening- euphoric and ecstatic.

Lastly, the ultimate verdict followed.

To Mr Aurelio Dasig or Mateo Rodriguez. Guilty. He will serve a maximum of ten years imprisonment… What? I heard it wrong, didn’t I?! For getting in touch with the crime scene and purposely giving consent to the act. Otherwise proven not the primary actor. The whole earth was shaken aggressively. The light went out. And the place was filled with murmuring wonder. Mr Dasig fell from his feet thanking his god. While my God closed his heavenly dwelling from my sight, and put the gravity back to my buttocks as I fall down in great impact.

I was wrong. Justice rests in the eyes of those who seek for it, yet can’t touch it. Justice is not a gem but a sedimentary rock that is weathered and weary. The mere fact that it is exposed to worldly culture, different principles and ideologies that contradict each other, makes it settle to weaker dignity and pull backs. Justice is porous sediment that is tossed by different winds and waves. Parts of it are scattered anywhere, displaying the sediment by sediment loss of its firmness and strength. And to more years that will follow, it weighs lesser than it was when she was first conceived by the underground and crystallized.

I dwell long enough in my ideal of this so-called justice system, asking myself so many times, it is unfair, then who shall bear it? By then, more words coming from the decision lectured the courtroom:

And to Mr Miguel Arkanghel, the sole and primary actor in the murder case, for killing the victim using his sword, which was found genuine without any fingerprints in the handle pointing his accomplices but him alone. Guilty. It will be crushed into dust and be paved in the walls of this humble justice edifice.

Lady Justice cut the apple in halves and the case was dismissed. I saw the stone cut in halves, too. In my distress, I didn’t notice that one part of the red stone rolled in the soles of my feet. I looked down and I grabbed it. Magically, it turned into an elegant diamond.

Everybody saw what happened on the half I was holding. I smiled. Then, chuckle came out of my lungs. I didn’t expect that this twelve-year trial had ended as satiric as no one had imagined. So I laughed and my laughter that was so infectious brought the afterlife into sudden burst of genuine mirth.

Hours passed until everybody left me with the boy in the courtroom.

“I realized something” I said to the boy.

“Yes, Koyang?” still wearing his creepy smile.

“Justice is never absolute. Pressures and power can transform it; depending on who is in touch and what environment it is exposed. It is relative, I guess. It may not be the justice that others think as what justice is, but it remains prevailing despite the crushing and tossing. Sooner or later, those pressures it had endured for long time will press it to become a diamond.”

And I went back to my home, six feet below the living grassroots.

When people finally realized how hateful reality is, they started exaggerating things just as creating fiction.

Books touching lives. I had contracted myself about facebook posting therefore dito ko nalang ip’post sayang naman yung thoughts.

1. The Gospel of John (and the Bible)
2. The Book Thief: Markus Zusak
3. Series of Unfortunate Events: Lemony Snickets
4. Macbeth: William Shakespeare
5. Noli Me Tangere: Jose Rizal
6. Sherlock Holmes: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
7. The Divine Comedy: Dante A.
8. Stainless Longanisa: Bob Ong
9. The Fault in our Stars: John Green
10. The Phantom of the Opera: Gaston Leroux

Some are classics. Because old world’s authorship is timeless, gentle but penetrating; just amazing I don’t know why. 

Parade of proud and deviant saints.

People will come and say words that aren’t pleasing to hear to call our attention and tell us that we’ve gone the wrong path. Accept them, but don’t tolerate their judgment that just came from nowhere. Words are daggers. They can protect you, they can kill depending to where you point them. 

I’ve been so wrong. I am also right. You judge me before asking me what’s wrong. I judge you and neglect your stories. Both should be sorry.

It’s hard to fit your standards with theirs, especially when yours is kind of out of this world. Therefore next time you lead, ask their capacity first. And you adjust up to the certain point to which your works aren’t works of mediocre. Because those are outputs that are unacceptable. 

August 15, 2014

BLUE ARCTURUS— After days of napakaagang pagpasok sa school para magawa props nang kung anu-anong mga events, ayun we stood strong ‘til body meeting. Pagod man lahat sulit pa din. Di man nanalo sa body meeting yung house, may kalakihan naman ang nainvest sa relationship. Dami ko nameet na bagong mga friends, fourth year at mga fifth year people. Congratulations guys! especially kay Ate Rhea na super dedicated.

Ching, Michael at Kuya Edward. Congrats dun sa emblem natin, champion :D Haha glory to God. Lakas niyo po!

Photo: Nicole Tubiera (Blue Guardian of the Galaxy)