With the advent of “Facebook,” people who can very well meet face to face choose to communicate on their “walls. What should have been a private matter is now for everyone to see. Reactions from people, even from complete strangers, are then inevitable.

Below is an anecdote on how Facebook’s walls can affect people around us. The anecdote has a universal theme which we can identify with. “Bato-bato sa langit, ang tamaan ‘wag magalit.”

A pastor of a small Christian denomination sought his community’s help to build the pastor’s quarter. He campaigned hard so people would contribute any amount for this worthy endeavor – after all, Christian communities must take care of their pastors.

However, after months of campaigning and soliciting both on the pulpit and the net, the pastor found time to “shout out” at his FB’s wall. He updated his friends of the latest happenings in his life.

He wrote, “Wow, finally I got my latest iPod series of IO” (the series is imaginary).

A fellow pastor from another Christian community commented in the first pastor’s wall, saying: “Hey, Bro, a new series will come out next month. I’ve just ordered mine…”

The exchange of comments was quite innocent. However, unknown to the two pastors, a member of the first pastor’s community read their respective FB walls since they were broadcast to all their friends. This member has been working hard to bring more people to contribute for the first pastor’s quarter. While many extended help and money, the expenses in building the quarter seemed to balloon… and now, this writing on the walls!

This member of the first pastor’s Christian community shrugged her shoulders, telling herself, “Could it be the gadget?”


Are you a Filipino?

I watched Matanglawin over ABS-CBN 2 last Sunday (November 7, 2010). Atom Aurollo, who was pitching in for Kuya Kim Atienza, featured and toured Guam and its culture and life. He observed how Guam’s locals, the Chamorros, were so different and at the same time similar with Filipinos. Atom’s tour brought me back to the memories of my Dad, who was a Filipino overseas contract worker in Guam. I remember how Guam was both kind and cruel to my father (but that’s another post).

What caught my attention in this Matanglawin episode was how a Filipino claimed his race. Atom was then walking around a marketplace where both Chamorros and Filipinos were found. Some were sellers and others were buyers. As Atom went around the marketplace, he sought out his fellow Filipinos. At one point, he chanced upon a man who looked like a Chamorro, but also has Filipino features. Atom tried to say something to identify the man’s race, when the man said: “I am a Filipino!” and smiled and shook Atom’s hands.

This man’s claim of his Filipino ancestry made me think if we too can be proud of our race whenever we find ourselves among other races. For Filipinos who have not yet gone out of their country, like me, being proud of one’s race may not be a “big deal” question. But for those who have been outside the country, and who witnessed how other races respect their laws and their way of life, and how government took care of their people, could they be proud of their origin and say: “Yes, I am a Filipino”?

Some say the Filipino is a flawed race. With its vast natural resources and talented people, why does the Philippines remain a third world country? With its facility in language, why does she remain a second class citizen of the world?
Do you agree with this? Please send in your insights.


Last September 21, 2010, I took a bus  from a station in our house in Santa Rosa City, Laguna. The said bus exhibited no trouble. However, when it reached the Susana Heights Exit at SLEX, and after the conductor collected our payments, the said bus suddenly stopped. The conductor said it has some trouble, “may naputol daw.” The conductor asked us to alight from the bus. I and some other passengers asked the conductor to contact their office in Biñan to send another bus, but he did not mind us. I even offered my phone for his use, but he insisted that we take the passing buses from their company. At first, we refused to do so because those buses were also crowded and we would have to stand from Susana Heights to LRT in Pasay. But the conductor did not contact the Biñan office. Thus, we had to bear the hassle of standing from Susana Heights to our destination for almost an hour because of the traffic. To make matters worst, he (the conductor) insisted on collecting full payments despite the inconvenience to the riding public. I must also add that I just recovered from flu then, and I had to bear the long ride, standing while carrying my bag. As a result, I got a relapse and suffered all the more.

I would have not complained if this was the first time. Unfortunately, this was not the first time. Two months ago, I experienced the same modus operandi, and upon search from the internet, I found that this is a modus operandi among bus drivers and conductors in that company.  And so, I decided to file a complaint at the Land Transportation Franchising Regulatory Board (LTFRB). I filed my complaint through LTFRB’s customer service and finally the same was heard yesterday at the LTFRB Office in Quezon City.

To facilitate this, I filed a leave of absence to attend this hearing. An officemate told me not “to make patol” na lang on this case. But I cut her short because I was doing this for the many senior citizens who take this bus from our place. I was also thinking of my mother who might endure the same ordeal.

When I attended the hearing yesterday, I must say that I almost gave up and wished I did not file the complaint. I had to wait for a long time and I thought it was a waste of time.  To my dismay, the bus company sent no representative. I remembered my officemate and thought she was right. However, when I started recounting again to the hearing officer my ordeal, and after telling her my reason why I filed the case, I realized that I did right.

I cannot complain and do nothing. If I want change, I must be the change that I dream of. And, so I will file the formal complaint for all the “lolas and lolos” taking this bus. This is a small sacrifice in exchange for the convenience of our senior citizens.