Thursday, May 5, 2016

Para sa mga "Chito Miranda"

For the past weeks, I’ve been very vocal about my stand against the Mayor. I welcomed disagreeing comments and listened to what others had to say. I was also told to discontinue my advocacy because it is getting me nowhere, but no, I can no longer afford to do nothing. For this post, I am not asking the readers to have a change of mind and a change of vote in favor of what I think, but I would appreciate it if you will welcome this opposing stand and listen to what I have to say. These may not be the most intelligent arguments, but I used my values, my heart, and all that I have learned in life to defend my stand. These are for the Chito Mirandas out there who want somewhere to start as they review and rethink their options.

I know a lot of us have lost faith in the government, but I plead, let’s not give up on freedom, democracy, morality, and our human rights. Should we install someone who threatens these things we enjoy now all for the promise of change? Maraming tao na rin ang nangako sa akin ng magagandang bagay. Maraming beses na rin ako nabigo.

The Mayor is the radical, popular, and hopeful choice. I know that. I also know na mas cool at astig yung fist bump sign ni Mayor kaysa sa fist bump attempt ni Mar. To tell you the truth, I also once rooted for the Mayor because what he did to Davao is truly laudable. However, I will never condone the values and the culture that he promotes. Am I balimbing? No. I’d say I am enlightened.

Unang una, babae ako and I advocate the empowerment of women. Why would I want to vote for a misogynist who disrespects and undermines women? Yung ugali niyang yan, is that our guarantee na mapoprotektahan niya at mae-empower niya ang mga babae? No. I don’t think so.

Noong bata pa ako, kapag nagagalit ako sa Mama ko kahit na ako ang nasa mali, sinasabihan nya ako, “Hindi ako nagpakatulong at nagpa-alila sa ibang bansa para lang ganyanin mo ako.” Yup, my mom was a maid. And I can proudly say that she and my dad worked really hard as OFWs to give me and my sister the life we have right now. Madami rin akong mga kamag-anak na nagtatrabaho bilang maid sa ibang bansa and I am proud of them dahil tinataguyod nila ang pamilya nila kahit gaano pa kahirap. Ito ang dahilan kung kaya hinding hindi ko matatanggap na okay lang sila molestyahin ng amo nila “kasi maid lang sila.” Mapa-babae man o lalake, walang maid at walang taong nararapat na tratuhin that way.

When the Mayor showed his true misogynistic colors, I was immediately turned off. I said to myself, “No, I cannot overlook that.” The last straw was the rape joke. Kahit na joke pa yan, no. He should not have said that; he should be responsible with his words. He should not confuse the people with words that are open for different interpretations. He should be straightforward and he should mean what he says. Yung ugali niyang yan, is that our guarantee na may malasakit sya sa mga babae? No. I don’t think so. Si Inday Sarah nga na anak na niyang umaming narape din sya, hindi ba’t the Mayor dismissed her claim and just shrugged off his shoulders saying, “hindi totoo yang sinasabi niya.”

Kung babae ka at di mo pa makita ang problemang ito kay Mayor at okay lang ito sa iyo, sige, bahala ka.

Pangalawa, he admitted to being the man behind Davao Death Squad. Is that not reason enough to fear for our democracy and for our human rights? I’ll quote the article of Fr. Amado Picardal, CSsR of Davao: 

“Thus, one can say that majority of the victims of the DDS were young and poor–juvenile delinquents considered as the weeds of society. There were no reports of drug lords or big time criminals among those killed by the DDS.”

If this is the case, what good does the DDS have? Wala. Kasi kahit patayin nila yung mga maliliit na tao, hindi pa rin napuputol yung ugat; yung cause ng paglaganap ng droga at ng krimen. Kakapit at kakapit pa rin sa patalim ang mga mahihirap at sila-sila lang din ang mamamatay habang yung mga big time criminals, patuloy na nagooperate. What difference does this scenario make compared to what is currently happening in the country?

The culture he promotes because of the DDS is one that is negligent of human rights and due process of law. With him as president, it will be easy to claim lives in the defense of “criminal naman yan e” kahit na hindi pa napapatunayan. Did you know that the DDS also killed innocent people? There was a case in Mindanao where an innocent, Jaypee Larosa, was mistaken for a criminal. All the gunman could say was, “Uy, mali. Di ito yung target natin!” Read the story here

Ngayon, paano kung ikaw yung napagkamalan? Papayag kang mamatay nang walang kalaban-laban? Hindi mo rin talaga masasabi na kapag wala kang ginagawang masama, dika dapat matakot. So kung babale-walain natin ang human rights and due process, madaming buhay ang masasayang. Madaming tao ang mawawalan ng opportunity na i-redeem ang sarili nila. Mahihirapan na tayo ipaglaban ang pagiging inosente natin until proven guilty.

If the Mayor wins, a national blood bath will take place. Madaming mamamatay na maliliit na criminal. Wala halos mamamatay na big time criminals. May mga madadamay pang inosente. Do you want that? I don’t.

Pangatlo, he may not be as clean and as credible as we think he is. Case in point: his bank accounts. I was not the best PolDy student during college, so I’m going to simplify it. Say for example, nasa mall ka. Paglabas mo ng pinto, sabi ni manong guard, may nakapag-tip sa kanya na nagbulsa ka raw ng ilang mamahaling items mula sa department store. Gusto ni manong guard kapkapan ka at buksan ang bag mo. Gusto niyang kuhanan ka ng litrato para ipaskil sa Beware Wall ng mall. Pero dahil may mga karapatan ka, pwede ka umangal, hindi ba? Pwede mo sabihing ayaw mo dahil wala silang concrete evidence. Pwede mo sabihing talk to my lawyer na lang. Pwede mo sabihing sinisiraan lang ako nung taong nagtip kay manong guard. Pwede mo gawin lahat para depensahan ang karapatan mo at ang sarili mo, but the truth remains: Di mo napatunayang inosente ka.

I think the issue on the bank accounts of the Mayor is as simple as this. Ano ba ang mahirap sa patunayan niyang mali si Trillanes? If he comes clean, e di si Trillanes ang mali at maaari pa niyang ipakulong. E di mas marami sana ang matutuwa dahil may nareprimand sa kasalanan niya.

It could be that simple, kaso ang dami na namang paligoy-ligoy ni Mayor. Personally, hindi ko na alam kung ano ang paniniwalaan sa kanya. He says one thing that incriminates him today and retracts it the next day. He says one thing that proves his innocence today and retracts it the next day. Ano ba talaga? It’s like he is playing me with rules I don’t know about. I think that is what’s happening to his supporters. That’s what’s happening to all of us. He is playing with our minds, using the law as his defense, knowing that we are not too knowledgeable and that he could get away with his blunders. He’s a good player. We see should all see that and be more cautious.

Pang-apat, he is a threat to our democracy. Yes, madali idisregard yung mga nagbuwis ng buhay para ipaglaban yung democracy natin ngayon. Kayang-kaya nating sabihin na okay lang mamatay si Noynoy sa pakikipaglaban sa ikinamatay ng tatay niya. Si Noynoy lang naman yan e; palpak yan, matigas ulo nyan, desperado na yan. Madali ring sabihin na yung mga oppressed noong Martial law ay yung mga rebelde at aktibista lang. Pero ano ang guarantee natin na mae-enjoy pa rin natin yung freedom at democracy natin ngayon kapag si Mayor na ang namuno? Demokrasya po ang pinaguusapan natin dito. Gaano tayo kasigurado na democratic ang government na isusulong ni Mayor? Handa na ba tayo sa panibagong diktaturya? Sa kanya na mismo nanggaling ang mga threats na ito. Ipapag walang-bahala pa rin ba natin?

Ngayon pa lang, kapag may reports against the Mayor, madami sa mga supporters niya ang nagagalit. Nandiyan yung tatawaging bayaran yung media outfit. Nandiyan yung sasabihing biased yung reporter. Nandiyan yung sisigaw ng tanga at bobo yung mga nang chachallenge sa kandidato nila. Kitang-kita natin kung gaano sila ka-aggressive. Supporters pa lang iyan. Si Mayor, ano kaya ang kaya gawin? Sabi sa article ni Fr. Picardal:

“There were two journalists who were believed to have been murdered by the DDS–Jun Pala and Ferdie ‘Batman’ Limtungan. Jun Pala was a radio commentator who constantly spoke out against the DDS and Mayor Duterte. There were two previous attempts on his life and he accused Duterte of being behind these attacks. He was finally killed by motorcycle riding men on the third try. Ferdie ‘Batman’ Lintuan also spoke out against the DDS and also the alleged anomalies in the construction of the People’s Park which he linked with Mayor Duterte. He was also killed by motorcycle riding men.”

Sa ngayon, wala pang namamatay na bumabatikos kay Mayor. Sabi kasi sa article ni Fr. Picardal, the DDS lies low during election period and resumes operations after. Iluluklok pa ba natin siya sa puwesto para mapatunayang ganito ang ginagawa niya?

Human nature dictates us to avoid threats when we see them coming our way. Kapag may king cobra sa daan, do we welcome it with open arms? No! Duterte is a threat to our lives, to our freedom, to our democracy. We should walk as far away as possible from him.

Yes, I am scared of a Duterte presidency, but not because I am a criminal or because I resist a disciplined nation. I am scared of a Duterte presidency because he is a man I cannot trust my life and safety with. He is a man I cannot trust my family with. He is a man I cannot trust my country with.

Unfortunately, I won’t be able to vote on May 9, but that does not mean that I should be passive and just do nothing; it does not mean that I should not have a say on this elections. As a Filipino, I will do everything within my means to have a united and a free nation.

Again, while I still can, I plead: Let’s not give up on freedom, democracy, morality, and our human rights. Let us not vote for someone who threatens these things we enjoy now. What for? for the promise of change? for the promise of dissolving congress? for the promise of being a dictator? for the promise of a revolutionary government? for the promise of a national blood bath? And at whose expense? at the expense of the marginalized? at the expense of the bayot? at the expense of the maids? at the expense of women? at the expense of the innocent?


Change is inevitable. When change happens, we must move on, we must adapt, we must thrive. But this election, let us make sure one thing never happens when change comes—we must not suffer.

TOUGH TIMES NEVER LAST.
TOUGH PEOPLE DO.
★ HAPPIDEZZ

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

My Take on the Starbucks Planner Craze

While I'm sleepy and being unproductive at work, let me be productive at least with my blogging. Hopefully, I'll be in a more motivated state after writing this.

Earlier, I got to read an article about today's generation's inclination to the expensive and impractical planner that is the Starbucks planner. According to the article, getting the planner for Christmas has been the new tradition of the youth. Regardless of how unreasonably-priced the planner is, people are more than willing to pay not just for the planner but also for the Starbucks experience -- the feeling of belonging to an environment where everyone (loners, barkadas, yuppies, students, parents, etc.) is welcome to do what they do, be what they want to be. In short, fuck the latte factor! People will spend their money on Starbucks because they want to and because they can.

While I also love my White Chocolate Mocha Frappe topped with more than enough chocolate powder, I've never been really addicted to Starbucks and was never really inclined to availing of the planner. Yes, I get the whole Starbucks experience thing -- their cofeeshops are really cozy, but I don't really go there to work (I get easily distracted especially when the shops become too noisy) or to hang out with friends (we're the practical bunch who'd rather spend on hearty meals; not just coffeeshop meals). I got a planner once, but was not able to maximize it; plus, I prefer the Belle De Jour Planner more. It wasn't even me who collected the stickers. I don't think I'll enjoy collecting stickers too, cos I only know one drink by heart: my white chocolate mocha frappe and I'm not the adventurous coffee drinker. I go to Starbucks once in a while, but only to treat myself when I believe I deserve something for myself. Yup, to me, one Starbucks frappe is a luxury. Yeah, boo me.

So what am I writing about again? Oh, yeah. My take on the whole Starbucks planner craze. For me, it really is an impractical Christmas tradition and I'd rather spend my money on other things. But there's nothing wrong about being hooked on the yearly Starbucks tradition so long as people can afford their penchant for expensive and impractical planners. And there's also nothing wrong about being the practical, non "Starbucks planner crazy" people. Different folks, different strokes. Yun lang!

TOUGH TIMES NEVER LAST.
TOUGH PEOPLE DO.
★ HAPPIDEZZ

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

What are the chances?

My boyfriend's birthday is in May 15. Interestingly, I have this blog entry dated May 15, 2007 which has a line about me marrying a chef.
I cooked ginisang corned beef for us. Nyahaha. That's the only thing I know I can cook well. I think I'll have to marry a chef someday. By that, my ignorance in the kitchen would be compensated.
Guess what? My boyfriend graduated from CSB with a Culinary Arts degree! What are the chances nga naman! Is he the ONE? :)



Here's the link to the blog entry:
HappiDEZz: one down, three to go.



TOUGH TIMES NEVER LAST.
TOUGH PEOPLE DO.
★ HAPPIDEZZ

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Jobs for Journalism Majors

Disclaimer: Sorry, this isn't a recruitment website!

I've had enough of people telling me that I shouldn't be in a particular industry because that's not where journalists belong. I've been told that I won't be able to practice my degree in a BPO company nor would I be able to have a blossoming career in a hospital. Who are these people to conclude that journalists cannot thrive in such industries?

With my experience in the workforce, I'd have to disagree with people who put me inside a box and dictate what I can and cannot do as a journalist. To date, I've been with four different companies from four different industries and by far, I believe I had been an efficient employee in each job.

Journalism majors are flexible and can easily blend in other industries apart from the Media (TV, radio, print media). Let me share the jobs I took on for the past seven years.

1. A Junior Editor in a Textbook Publishing House
Journalists are Grammar Nazis. Their command of the English language is above average and that comes in handy in the textbook publishing industry. As a junior editor, I was tasked to copy read manuscripts and make sure that our textbooks are error-free before they get published. The books we make are used by students from pre-school to high school. This means that I have to read manuscripts of English, Science, Math, Filipino, History books from cover to cover. Every day, I learn and re-learn old and new knowledge. It was fun and fulfilling knowing that you are part of the youth's education.

The Perks: I got to author a pre-school text book! Apart from the honoraria and royalties I got, it was the biggest achievement of my life. I was 24 then.

2. A Marketing Communications Supervisor in a Cosmetics Company
Yes, journalism and makeup! At first, I found it a weird combination because I used to be a plain Jane (still am, actually) who doesn't have any idea on how to apply makeup, but eventually, I learned how fun it was to be in that industry! As a marketing communications supervisor, I wrote numerous articles and edited outsources editorials for the company's partner magazines and newspapers. I also wrote scripts for the company's TV segment on a morning show. I maintained their FB fanpage and website, scheduled when our TVCs would air, conceptualized monthly campaigns, and worked with graphic artists to execute the campaigns. To be able to write decent advertorials, press releases, copies, tag lines, and various write ups, I had to learn how to use cosmetics. I joined workshops, read blogs, watched videos, and eventually learned to do my brows, blend my smokey eye shadow, apply blush on, etc.

The Perks: I had a quarterly supply of makeup! How cool is that? I also got to travel and meet different people/celebrities! I got to interview Sonia Rocco, Sen. Leni Robredo, Miss Earth candidates, etc.

3. A Writer-Editor in a BPO Company
When finding a job, I always stick to my strongest skill -- writing. I knew I wouldn't be an effective call center agent, so I tried to apply to this position instead. I have to say, this is the highest-paying job I ever had. And if I'd be given a chance to go back, I'd accept the offer in a heartbeat! As a writer-editor, I copy read marketing collaterals and made sure they adhered to the company's branding guidelines. I responded to requests for proposals and maintained a database of responses. The job was kinda boring, but my awesome workmates compensated for the very formal environment.

The Perks: It's a high-paying job. Health benefits & travel allowance (75% of my employers did not offer this!). And finally, get this: WORK-LIFE BALANCE!!!

4. Corporate Communications Officer in a Hospital
Journalists have good communication skills. So I use that skill to communicate the hospital's services to its stake holders. This job is basically the same as Job #2, but it's a different kind of fun. This time, I'm in the hospital industry. I write, take pictures, run errands, manage social media accounts, update the website, spearhead events, assist in TV appearances of our doctors, plan and execute campaigns, etc. Most times, it is tiring but at least it's never boring!

The Perks: The company loves throwing parties! So yeah, what diet?! Plus, being friends with doctors means zero professional fees for surgeries and checkups!

See? For journalism majors who wish to deviate from being part of the Media (after all, the Philippines is a dangerous place for journalists), there are other jobs that need your communication skills! Though I envy my practicing journalist batch mates, I am very much happy with the path I took.


TOUGH TIMES NEVER LAST.
TOUGH PEOPLE DO.
★ HAPPIDEZZ

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Things that Make You Feel Bad at Work

Our jobs play a huge part in our lives. To some, their job is their life. Like any other aspect of life, our jobs bring bad days to our years. Here are the reasons for mine:

1. What work-life balance?
In my current job, I extend work hours almost all the time. I'm usually the last to leave the office at 7pm--two hours after the official time out. That's cos 9 hours is not enough for this sole communications officer who wears different hats--writer, graphic & layout artist, website content manager, Facebook administrator, photographer, events manager, purchase requester, etc. Just last week, I worked on weekends. Worse, the call time on Sunday was at 2 am. So yeah, what 9-to-5 job? What work-life balance? It sucks that this is not a thing in our company.

2. Office politics
I'm a really silent worker. I don't brag about my accomplishments nor do I complain about being overworked. In my mind, I'm being paid here to do my job and that is to deliver quality output when it is needed. It's just unfair when office politics makes you the most worthless person in the workplace. After getting migraine for working on two major events and not enjoying your weekend, you'll get the "wala kang ginagawa" comment. Thanks to people who do a good job of complaining about their responsibilities and to people who make a living through bad-mouthing employees who actually do their jobs.

3. The "thankless" nature of the job
We were once told that being in the Marketing Department is a thankless job. I personally think that is bullshit. Yes, marketing people should be aggressive and pro-active, but that doesn't mean that they are robots who don't need affirmation and appreciation. We're not demanding recognition and rewards for our little successes, we know we are paid for these. But to say we don't deserve to be given pats in the back is just plain arrogant and heartless.

4. There will always be favorites
I don't have a problem if I am not a favorite. That's okay. As long as my employer is satisfied with my contributions to the company, that's the only thing that should matter. I just don't think it's fair when the favorites get babied and favored by the boss. One sumbong and their lives are better, responsibilities lighter. Oh well. But what is fair in this Earth? Right?

5. "Pwede na" standards in recruitment
In one of our meetings, I was disappointed to hear this: "Di naman kailangang magaling at maalam sa paglalagyang departamento. Matuturuan naman yan." That's exactly why skill mismatch is prominent in our workplace and you see people being transferred from one position to another all the time (i.e., re-organization, restructuring). The bad effect of this is that expectations are not met and deliverables are also substandard.

6. Overworked, underpaid
People who can't relate to this are very lucky! My next mission in life is to scratch this off my "Things that Make You Feel Bad at Work" list.