A Love Triangle

While the typhoon wind was raging last Saturday, I was re-reading Hagar – one of the most dramatic stories in the hagar1 hagar book of Genesis, and one that’s truly universal in its portrayal of the complexity of human desires. Hagar was Abram’s Egyptian maidservant. When Abram’s wife Sarai in her advanced age could no longer bear a son for him, it was Sarai herself who told Abram to sleep with Hagar. Round as the Halloween moon, Hagar got pregnant as Abram’s wife. In a very fickle-minded manner, the news of Hagar’s pregnancy angered Sarai and soon despised and mistreated her. Hagar fled into the desert, found by the Lord’s angel, announcing to her a child she would name Ishmael will be born soon, telling her to go back to Sarai’s household and submit to her.

If blogging or facebook had been a fad then, Hagar could have handily hang out online, her FB wall streaming with the sense of betrayal and isolation that Sarai had caused. What could have been her blog titles, intentionally anonymous for the despicable thought that Sarai from the other end, could google her anytime and once found, would craft comments (also anonymously) to further degrade her? Some possible titles:

  • The Wife That Never Was
  • Desert Rodent
  • Hating S.
  • Point of No Return
  • Missing Abloy
  • Laylay Na, Sablay Pa

Haha – you can come up with your own… Our time, our age of information of course, is a point of no return, and is pointless to return, to the time when the world beyond our yards were largely unknown or unheard of. What’s known is known so that denying factual knowledge is like puking food forcibly. The point for this hypothetical set-up is to highlight differences of our time and Hagar’s: ours is a time of increasing speed and space to vent out our thoughts and emotions, a time of growing human solidarity with our personal malaise. Isang note lang sa FB ng sama ng loob at may makiki-simpatiya na kaagad. Hagar’s time must be doubly depressing for its snobbishly hard and isolating landscape. Ikaw kaya mapadpad sa disyerto bitbit ang mo ang yong love triangle drama? Desert life is survival at its extreme.

But hey – i need not be quick to judge desert time especially from the lens of our ‘information time’. One – i haven’t lived in a physical desert. Two – I’m not Hebrew for whom deserts are ambivalent places of struggle with the “demons” as well as transfiguring landscape of dialogues with God. And third – silence and solitude (space and intention to be alone with God) is not the staple habit of our tendentiously noisy ‘information time’. I can only approximate what the desert time was for Hagar in silence and solitude and less through our antsy information time. Every good thing has its own pathology they say. Parang siomai lang sa bagoong alamang pag too much daw.

On the contrary, what was good about the boring indifference of desert time that Hagar encountered was the gift of picking up “hints and guesses” from the Lord’s angel. Sinong gustong makausap ang anghel ni God, taas ang kamay? The problem is even the image of a conversation with an angel appears too mountainous to absorb for our ‘information time’ mindset, even laughable from our literal, scientific, and practical conditioning. But the greater point is in the silence and solitude of Hagar, painful as it was, anything can happen – even an angel’s appearance. Or a burning bush. Or being blessed with courage enough for Hagar to decide to go back to Sarai and face the love triangle drama head-on. Surely, more dramas await Hagar at Abe’s house. At wala pa ring broadband sa kanyang pagbalik kaya wala ring blogging at fezbuk hehe.


Photo credit: Lillylilla


If Yellow is for Democracy, Blogging is for Diversity

I mentioned democracy in my blog entry last Saturday, only to hear it again from SONA on Monday. I mentioned about some “imagined Lincolnian political brilliance” also last Saturday, PGMA felt like reviving the Gettysburg Address with a flair of warlike cavalry against her critics on Monday. What can I say: political games from both sides. I blogged about Tita Cory representing democracy, last night’s evening news replayed her last SONA. Hmmm.

Bear with me, there is now a field that is housing democracy in many senses: the blogosphere. A case in point is the swelling support from bloggers of different persuasions and passions, professions and locations, for the ailing Tita Cory; bloggers committing a prayer or support of their choice for Tita Cory. Thanks to Reynz of Reyna Elena who initiated this support brigade, a little compassionate switch from the ironclad that was SONA.

Definitely, many out there, in their anonynimity, have been casting their support in silence or individually, one way of saying one need not be on this list of course to proclaim one’s light from a hill. To some, committing to some prayer moments apparently is a personal task. True enough, prayer remains this way. What this brigade simply does is bring those personal commitment into a unified act, to a richer, diversified community level. Diverse as bloggers are, creatively communal they try. I have not read all the “support posts” but I like to highlight one that bids me into a deeper silence: Bluguy and his Yellow Pencil entry. Blu – I just feel thankful always for your gift of poetic depth!

Going and there’s still more rooms in the sphere:

Reynz of Reyna Elena
Dinah of Okayukay
Monique of Kubyertos
Chi of Mabulaklak na dila
Silver of Dare to speak out
Jeri of Farm Land
Mahalia of Chocolateword
Yami of Mom writes for a cause
Reesie of Off the top of my head
Pehpot of Make or Break
Mel of the Misadventures of Mel Becham
Batchoi Boy of Extra Super Special Batchoy
Snow of Dearbloggery
Angela of Stuart Santiago
Darbs of Exodians
fjordz of Hiraya
noel of kotsengkuba
Agnes of heyokity
jaemark of firequinito
kk on adobong starfish
mys of thoughts and obsession
Roy of The Struggling Blogger
Tsi of Tsiremo
Jhong of Qlickblogs
Joyceinhills of the World of Womanity
Chuva Chienes of Chizmizan with Chuva
Malen of Mynosebleed
Jim of The Globe Watcher
E. Eder of Manila Blog Times
Gang of Kamalayan
H311ybean of My travels throughout time
Holly Jahangiri of Its all a matter of perspectives: Mine
JB Solis of Thoughtskoto
Dencios of Hisnameisdencios
KJB of True Love, Six Kids, One Old House
Rob of Social Media Philippines
Noel of NYC loves NYC
dFish of Desert Fishing
Ian of El Salvador Del Mundo
Ian of Safari so good (A lonely planet it is not!)
Style of Style People
Juleste of Bembotzki
bluepanjeet of On The Wings Of My Dream
amae d of little pink splotches
Anna of A Commuter’s Life
Anne of Katiwaldas
Amor of amorfrancis
Roy of the Struggling Blogger
MJ & Nhil of Simple Married Life
brainchild of life’s lemon to a forthy something crusader

Passion and Fascination: Coolwaterworks Style

“Find your life’s true passion and follow it, follow the path that is no path. “Follow your bliss.” When you have the unmistakable experience of the Aha! then you’ll know you’re riding on the mystery.”

This is Joseph Campbell, one great American scholar on religions and mythology, in his teaching mode. The guy was unemployed for 5 years after college. Then got to take care of a dog for one year to support himself. From there, teaching and writing books became his bliss. He found his.

I’m into blogging for one year now and any blogger knows that posting regularly demands some time – from collecting and collating information to reader interaction. The question that often bugs me is: is it worth the time, even if given the nature of my job affording me to bask on some? My blog seems to ask me also in turn:

DF: Why build me in the first place?

dFish: Aha! This is getting philosophical. You need to know your genesis? Why don’t you scan your About DF page?

DF: It’s been getting steady there. It’s you who need that post-it note!

dFish: Okay fine. So what’s the point of reading it over and over besides your screaming?

DF: I like it – you’re thinking and acknowledging my emotion. Let me get back to the rhetoric of blog-building – don’t you think a lot of the highs and lows in hammering and nailing have to do with purpose, passion, and fascination plus time?

dFish: I like purpose; he’s not as morose as passion, although fascination is a lot more playful of the two.”

DF: Whatever!

Coolwaterworks and the WordPress Year That Was

Yes, that gravatar guy in a blue shirt with his backpack and baseball cap on – that’s Coolwaterworks, engineer and proprietor of the blog Nooks and Crannies. I have known N and C only for a number of months but the mind and passion behind it, as if I’ve known beyond those numbers. (Lotto bettors also know better how long is long.)

Coolwaterworks is a careful, refreshing writer to read, seems always mindful of the difference in usage between a colon and a semicolon, between a chicken baticolon and Calle Colon. Dive through to his every entry and you sense a man who knows well, or perhaps a signatory, to the subject-verb agreement of 1898. If there are grammatical slips, I like to harbor those against some hurried time, like toothbrush left behind from the packed items out of haste to catch the last submarine to Spratlys. Coolwaterworks simply has the habit packing for excellence, for a total package, for perfection without being rigid and imposing, in contrast to being settled with a half-cooked crab, the mediocre, the semi-broken backpack or a pants’ zipper.

Perfection is the field of science and no doubt being an engineer himself, is shaped by this field. If those high-selling fishball vendors are also learning the science of concocting sauces of different flavors, likewise with Coolwaterworks. He blogs. He works. He travels. He makes shots. He writes. He prays. With the consciousness of a man of science, most likely mindful that one neutron in aberration could lead to a different material configuration. Engineers and physicists take no visible matter for granted the way Mother Ricky Reyes pays attention to every hair contour of her customer.

From science, let’s move to art because our guy is really that ambidextrous in my strong opinion (I am sometimes as opinionated as Secretary Raul Gonzales may reklamo?) Art is a different field the ground is not precision but playfulness; the fertilizer is less our capacity for logical thinking and more, by our capacity to play with the colours and textures, the heights and depths, the lights and shadows around us. Children know this capacity better with their coloring book or excursions to the Lower House Zoo.

Feast on Coolwaterworks’ photos, his picturesque travelogues and his countryside ecstasy and you see less an adult man of science at aim for Strunkian precision and more a child living and playing with his sense of wonder within. That’s Coolwaterworks. Parang si Mommy Dionisia lang minsan – dancing, going to the parlor, happy with her Louis Vuitton bag. From N and C, you can sense how he frolics with time and with those that fascinate him and he is passionate about. He may not own a Louis Vuitton bag for grannies but at least, he has WordPress. This is his virtual bliss. Happy Anniversary Mark!



Photo Credit: Nooks and Crannies

Tough 10 New Blogs of 2009: Thanks to Reyna Elena

Whew! Magbinisaya sa ko bay!

Kinsa guy magdahum nga kining simple nga isda sa disyerto, maapil sa nominasyon ni Reyna Elena sa Tough 10 Emerging Influential Blogs for 2009 nga gipasiugdahan ni Ms. Janette Toral (her bio here.) Ambot unsay nakita sa atong halangdon nga Reyna sa disyerto? Ang akong nahibal-an, kini si Reynz sikat sa blogosphere, gikoronahan sa mga kalidad sa usa ka malampuson nga blager sama sa pagka-mahigalaon (sa iyang term – social climbing); simple nga pagpasabot sa masalimuot na kalibutan sa pinansya; pagpukaw sa nahikatulog nga daw mantika nga kaamguhan nahilambigit sa mga isyu sa nasud and beyond; pagkamaisugong pagsuong sa tunukon nga sampinit sa blogospiriya nga dali rang mabalayan sa mga daw mautukanon; paghatag ug bili sa Pilipinhong edukasyon; walay kakapoy nga pagtuon sa mga ga-usbong pang mga teknikalidad sa blogging; pagsulong sa sibil nga pakipagdebate ug sakto nga pangatarungan; ug ang pagpakatawa sa iyang mga kontra ug loyalista. Sa walay pabor-pabor, Reynz is the epitome of a civil, educated blogging-out-of-the-box! And one does not have to agree with him and his medium all the time to find his platinum crown in between posts. Sa imoha Reynz, lipay na kaayo ko sama ni Cool Mom na maapil sa imong listahan. Ug sama pud ni Cool Mom, kay hinay pa man lagi ning akong technical blogging vocabularies, basin dili na siguro kaapil ang DF sa search. The recognition itself is already an honor.


Exodians, salamat sa capture…

Sa akong mga ka-nominees, more power in your blogging time. Mao ni ilang links:

Dare To Speak Out
Dear Bloggery
It’s Johnonymous
The Struggling Blogger
Millionaire Acts
Cool Mom
Sa labas ng Mandaluyong
Brother Utoy

Mabuhay ang malayang blogging…

Happy Easter 2009 Everyone!

Papa Jesus,
I am not rich nor popular haha, candle
but I am famous to my family,
despite, or because of, my receding hairline.
Actually, my son loves malling,
that’s why he likes me.
I guess the space there,
affords some mental freedom.
He loves being free, at least spatially.
And sweet stuff, too.

Days before the Vigil,
I was mentally tormented, a residue of my previous post.
So I had vanilla cone twirl at Jollibee,
and read Kung and Moltmann,
and had wishing, floating candle at the foot of Mother.
Simple freeing moments: I am your playing child.

And the sweetest stuff?

when we held up our Easter candles in church,
lighting the darkness within.

Easter Vigil is over,
but the Light keeps burning,
even virtually.
So I pray:
bless my fellow bloggers
and curious readers
who visit this desert tent, pond, and playground.
May the blogging ground,
become our “mall of freedom,”
our simple response to Your call
to live as children of the Risen, Free God.

Happy Easter Everyone…
You, too Papa Jesus…


Photo credit: Alan’s photostream

Kagandahang Espi ang Pangalan

Ano ang ibig mong gawin ko sa iyo. ”
“Panginoon, ibig kong makakita.

Kahit hindi kasintagal ng mga beteranong blagista ay mahaba-haba na rin marketang oras na inilaan ko sa paglalathala sa blogospiriya, marahil na rin sa uri ng illegal recruitment agency na pinapasukan ko at sa klase ng trabaho na na-assign sa akin. Yung oras at panahon na yon ay mahuhulog lang kaya sa wala na parang investment sa lintek na Lunacy Plans na yan? Hindi naman siguro. Ang panahon ay panahon at kung pangil ng krisis pang-ekonomiya ang pag-uusapan, ito ay napakahalagang yaman. Sa madaling sabi – ayokong mawalan ng trabaho dahil lang sa walang kwentang pagba-blog. At isa pa, at malamang ay nakakauntog-ulo na rin na katotohanan – gaano nga ba kahaba ang buhay? “Our span is 70 years, or 80 for those who are strong (Psalm 90)”. Mga lolo’t lola ko – pinakamahaba na ang 70. Kaya, ba’t ko pagsasawaan ang pansit kung ito’y nagpapahaba pala ng buhay. Alam nyo na ibig kong sabihin – wag mag-aksaya ng LPG habambuhay kasi sa langit walang LPG.

Sa totoo lang, yung pagka-mapagnilay ko ay katuwang na rin ng pagka-introvert ko. Kaya hanggang ngayon ay wala akong Facebook account at kailanma’y hindi nagka-Friendster account din. Email lang talaga at lately, Linux keep me relevant in the information highway. Pero nung mag-umpisa akong mag-blog, kakaibang biyahe ang tinahak ko dahil dito, nagta-tug of war ang pagiging mapagnilay ko at ang pagiging bukas sa walang hangganang mundo ng blogospiriya. Hindi madali kasi ikanga sa Englis: being vulnerable is almost unescapable.

Sa samu’t saring kadahilanan nahuhumaling ang isang blagista sa ganitong obsession-compulsion gawain. Hindi ko na kelangang gumawa ng listahan. Pero mula sa aking tolda, ito ay ang paghalo-halo Chowking ng iba’t-ibang pangangailangan upang mahabi ang isang payak ngunit mapanuring mosaic: pananampalataya at panalangin, pamilya at dabarkads, kahapon at ang pangkasalukuyan, kirot at galak, pangangatwiran at pagkamangha, paglakbay tungo sa tunay na sarili at panunuri sa mga pangyayari sa labas. Kung merong salita na magbubuklod sa mga ito, ito ay ang ESPIRITWALIDAD (Spirituality).

Kung ang pag-unawa mo sa espiritwalidad ay yaong mariing pagtutok lamang sa mga gawaing pang-relihiyoso gaya ng pagluhod sa simbahan o pagkaway ng palaspas at ang mga ito’y walang kaugnayan sa ating pampulitikang pamumuhay bilang mamamayan, aba’y sasabihin ko na sa yo ngayon din na ang social networking ay isa ding mukha ng espiritwalidad sapagkat nandyan na rin ang hangaring mapabilang sa isang safe at mapagtanggap na komunidad. May kaibahan kaya ito sa hangaring matapyasan ang korapsyon sa gobyerno para maging safe din ang ating mga pamilya? It’s a tie, sabi pa ni Ai-Ai!

Kaya hanggang ngayon ay nag-aaksaya naglalaan pa rin ako ng panahon sa isang halimaw kagandahang nagngangalang Espi kasi sya na rin ang unti-unting nagmumulat sa akin para mas lalo ko pang maalintanaw ang Kagandahang Kabuuan. Amen.


Photo credit: Ze Eduardo

In-Formation of the “Intestine” – Part I

N.B. I’m in a hurry to outread the previous post. Either I have psyched myself out, or sensed it forthcoming. The sad thing is there aren’t much sunsets this rainy season. Pardon for being earthy. Those crumbs of discomfort and bodily turmoil are equally vital to be negligible – which lead me to this post.

It’s been a while that the world was initiated into the era of information, with the internet as its main tool.


credit: daylife

For those who have access, limited or bottomless, information via the internet is almost as essential as water is to the body. Beyond feeding the neural senses, there is also the simple satisfaction stemming out of connecting through emails and the growing number of social networks. Undoubtedly, the virtual world, while very hard to tally its pros and cons ratio especially across generational strata, is eating up a considerable pie of our time.

My Korean colleague confirmed that internet speed in South Korea is 100 times faster than that of the Philippines. Such a speed is quite a run down considering that the Philippines has a horde of highly competitive IT professionals in the world.

But my colleague also confirmed about a growing phenomenon that is socially alarming. Being host to the largest Pentecostal church in the world, the phenomenon is being outlined in pastors’ sermons – the phenomenon of “connection frigidity.” It is about students, who upon coming home from school, impulsively run to their computer rooms and connect virtually or play their bookmarked games. The same phenomenon is also infecting both office and non-office based personnel. Absence from their monitors, or even smacked by an empty inbox could make them frigid and fidgety. Something is amiss in the absence of a virtual connection and capable enough to make them restless. Nowadays, Korean parents are fabricating scarecrows out of technology to discipline their young – no computer games for 1 hour for a misdemeanor. Quite a divergence from the discipline of the days of old when tots were psychologically terrorized by the mere mention of policemen.

Is the “connection frigidity” the new angst of our age that’s going to cause more “intestinal,” inner disorders? How much of the human choice is being held hostage by technology at the expense of one’s health – both physical and spiritual?