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If you’re looking for an avenue for expression of care for the community, and a means of purporting change through pragmatic means via the development of one small seed of an idea for change, then, you better watch out next year, youth. For Unilab has promised us that most likely, their recently concluded Ideas Positive Workshop just might happen again.

What exactly is being Ideas Positive?

Directly from their website, here is what Unilab has to say, aside from the fact that this campaign was initiated by none other than my OC 152 professor, Sir Barry 😉 :

As a culminating event, last September 25, Unilab held the last day of their campaign at the Unilab Bayanihan Centre, after screening teams that came from different universities. These teams were tasked in bringing their ideas while wishing to implement a distinct change on the lives of a certain community, with a solution put as a foundation for their platform. After posting their videos on the Unilab site, the top 5 teams, out of the total of 21, with the most ‘likes.’ reached the final screening and judging.

With hosts Riki Flores and Job de Leon, the positive and competitive tension was distinct as, one by one, the teams presented their proposals to the panel of judges that were called, as to quote, “it seemed that there was more than one Simon Cowell.” They are none other than Dr. Nina Gloriani, dean from our very own UP Manila’s College of Public Health, The fierce Dr. Ed Morato Jr. from ABS-CBN’s Bayan Foundation, entrepreneur Mr. Mark Ruiz from Hapinoy, Dr. Oscar Tinio from the Philippine Medical Association, Mr. Randy Aquino from the well-known PR firm Ogilvy & Mather, and Mr. Bert Manlapit, directly from Unilab.

Who were the final 5?

Teams were the following:

  1. The PET Society with Adopt-a-PET
  2. SERVE with “Ugnayan ng Nagkakaisang Inisyatibo, Layunin, at Adbokasiyang Pangkalusugan Barangay Sta Mercedes, Maragondon, Cavite”
  3. UB and G with “May Papel Ako”
  4. Team BIGGKAS with “Buklod Bukid Sowing Nutrition Reaping Hope”
  5. CLPH with “Mamamayang Ayaw sa Dengue”

And the winner is… Team BIGGKAS, notably from University of Asia and the Pacific (UA&P)! 😀 Hopefully, your proposed movement for efficient greenhouses will truly render an effective impact for the propagation of vegetables the in the Filipino child’s diet.

We hope to reap more ideas soon. Positive in ideas, positive in action. 🙂

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I never forget her. Never have, never will. I may be distracted by the toxicity I face in school, may be distracted by the happiness of being with people who make me happy, may be lost sometimes in my thoughts that even I cannot fathom. But forget her? Pfft. Never.

I smile, I laugh. Which is really good. But at night, when I’m alone, whilst I’m looking at her picture… Yeah, the usual. I cry. I used to wail (silently), you know? Like bawl out, screaming without a sound, asking disbelievingly why she had to go. Seems unreal that’s it’s been a year and a month, and 16 days since I last heard her voice and saw her still, cold body and face.

I could still remember what people kept on telling me after what happened. I’m so sorry, life goes on, you’re the mother of the family now, she loved you so much, you were her reason for surviving, etc.  Yeah, she was mine, too. That’s why I wanted to die when she left. Left this world. Left my Dad, my then 9-year-old brother. Left me.

Hey, this is not an emo post. I’m actually glad tears aren’t falling down my face as I’m typing this, unlike last year, just a mention of the word “Mom” makes me depressed and want to throw myself into the pits of hell, wailing in agony and grief. But a post regarding her is quite connected to new social media, so don’t go chewing me off yet.

Here goes my “what if” list. Out of the many.

1. What if she had a Facebook account?

I’m quite envious of some of my classmates and friends who have their parents on their “Friends” list (though it really sounds weird). Up to some point, it seems nice. Until they see that tagged picture of you in a sexy pose and a drink in your hand while in a party hosted by your organization. Gee, that scenario is so great.

But I do think about it. What if she had an FB account, and she invited me to be her friend? What if she had a Twitter account, and she started following me? It would seem that the online world would not have much hold on me since I’m quite limited in my online actions. She was very strict and conservative. But, I remember her allowing me liberties since she trusted my rational, responsible, intellectual mind. That I am old and smart enough to know the consequences of my actions.So, then again, it might be fun to have her online.

And so the question continues: What if?

2. What if UnliCall arrived way earlier?

Telebabad. That’s what. Every minute I’m out of the classroom.

I’ll be honest: I didn’t reply that often to her text messages containing “Haus ka na?” It’s one of the many things I truly regret. I kept turning it in my head how much she wanted to hear from me more often than I updated her back then. I feel that I am such a bad daughter because of that. I should have. I could have. But I didn’t.

Oh wait. No what if’s here. Just regret.

3. What if Heaven had Wi-fi?

She still wouldn’t be able to contact me. Did God give her a laptop? A desktop? A netbook? I sure hope He did.

But now that I think about it, she still wouldn’t be able to surf the Internet well. She doesn’t know how to do so! *chuckles* I can still remember when she would shriek at me, “Anak, anong nangyari? Bakit nawala? Ay, bumalik! Ay, tatay mong kalbo, nawala ulit! Ayoko na!” Don’t worry. The computer’s fine. She wasn’t.

One more: What if God taught her how to now that she’s up there? That would be cool. 😉

Mama, my beloved Mama, you are always in my heart, my mind, my memories. I wish I had the chance to teach you better how the Net works, or show you games other than Zuma (which you loved tremendously). I wish I was there when you were in pain. I wish I was there when you breathe your last breath. I wish I was holding your hand while it was still warm with life that was slowly ebbing away from you. I wish you’re still alive to finally see your wish fulfilled: that of me graduating on time. I wish. I hope. I pray.

19 years later, you're still as beautiful. 🙂

I love you. Always.

As Britney Spears sang it, we all have things that we hide, things that other people never thought we would be. Secrets. In that one word, it evokes something from you. A thought that can either be pleasant or unpleasant. Mostly the latter.

We all have the tendency to hide. The tendency to shirk away from the idea of talking about our secrets and sharing them with others, let alone think about them. But as another quote says (which I remember was mentioned by Mr. Weasley in HP Movie 5 — Hello, Movie 7! :-)), “Truth will out.” Unless you’re that good at keeping it, of course. Or you don’t get bothered by the fact that you inadvertently were the reason why someone died or something. Theoretical scenario, of course.

However, if you feel that you can’t just go on with life without letting at least one person know about whatever devastating clandestine fact you have tucked away in your heart and mind, or if you can’t bear it that you just want to let it out, scream it, just this one time… Believe or not, the Internet has a solution for you.

Such an easy step: just post your secret here.

Pooled secrets, yet each are unique.

As you can see, it’s a very literal site. Literary and creative. According to Wikipedia,

The simple concept of the project was that completely anonymous people decorate a postcard and portray a secret that they had never previously revealed. No restrictions are made on the content of the secret; only that it must be completely truthful and must never have been spoken before.

The site, which started as an experiment on Blogspot, was updated every Sunday with 10 new secrets, all of which share a relatively constant style, giving the artists who participate some guidelines on how their secrets should be represented. It recently began posting approximately 20 new pieces each Sunday after a week when Warren mysteriously did not post any new secrets for one week.

It was founded between January 1 2005 – 2007 by Frank Warren, who for me is one brilliant human being that enabled a freedom that cannot be experienced justly through other means.

Frank Warren. The man who showed you could (post secrets).

Honestly, when I first discovered this site, I was a tad scandalized. The first secret I saw posted was of a naked woman, and a secret with something between the lines of “rape” and “avenge.” I was in 2nd year that time, and I wasn’t even 18. But when I started going back to the site (don’t get any ideas), I realized the variety of thoughts these people had, and yet they are able to find people who could relate to and understand them. The comments section allowed efficient responses, especially to those who really needed them. Like this moving secret:

I surely hope whoever sent this didn't do so. 😦

This postcard sparked a movement right on Post Secret. There was a flood of post cards and comments that told the sender, “Please don’t jump!” At first, for any apathetic person, it’s just another being who wants to get the spotlight a.k.a. KSP. But have you ever thought of that person who lives far away, in the middle of a city full of people yet feeling so alone? Everyday he/she passes by the Golden Gate, looks down on the dark waters and contemplates death?

If anything, I thank Post Secret for showing me that there are people out there who have their own dirty laundry, but they still have the courage to admit these even though it’s through a clandestine, beautifully-crafted post card. No matter how weird, scary, or angsty these things might be.

Thank you, online world, for providing us our privacy (still, regardless of the privacy issues right now) and allowing us to voice ourselves and making us realize that in this Earth full of 6.6 billion people (and counting), we can make a change in another person’s life, or be changed by the concern of others.

At times, I’ve thought of sending one. But there’s still the hesitation that my art won’t be as good as theirs, or that people will mock me when they realize that secret was mine. 😦 One day, I just might step up.

Would you care to try? Let me know.

Secretly. 😉

My damned glittery hero (not)

One, Edward was a (sexy) vamp

No. Wrong entry start. Sorry. *Stuffs a struggling, forever-mouth-is-agape Bella into a closet*

Blog entry title isn’t wrong, though. There are three things I am positive about. Based on the thoughts of a human who has dominated and mastered the information technology field (hi, Bill). So don’t kill me (yet) for starting this post with a “Twilight” approach (and misleading you into thinking this is a love blog for some sparkly supposedly-fanged being).

But, going back. 🙂

What are those 3 things that a pessimist like me would be positive about (regarding Internet, that is)?

1. Progress was never weightless.

Imagine a chart or a graph. There’s the red line that just keeps going up, as the numbers continue to increase as well. 6.2 billion and counting. With that number, a certain proportional amount of pressure is exerted on the red line, as it continues to support it, way up in its progress. Up, up, and…

There it goes... careful.

It breaks. The red streak of development breaks, snap! right in the middle. Why so? Think of that red streak as the popularity and usage of the Internet. There will come a time that people won’t use it simply for re-connecting, downloading, Facebooking, or Tweeting. It would be for conspiring, uploading scandals, easy trading of secrets across nations, delving into a person’s privacy and identity…

Hold on. That’s already happening. It’s already starting. And it isn’t stopping, is it?

With mass numbers turning to the Internet as their main medium for daily living, the time will come when it would be too saturated, too overpopulated, that, like your computer’s hard drive, you would have to clean it up. And you only did clean it up because a major virus has destroyed nearly half of the memory. A virus that you didn’t see because there were just too many inside.

I don’t want to know what that virus would be.

2. Virtual neighbors won’t exist (anymore).

“Hey, you’re my Farmville neighbor! No, wait… you really are my neighbor?”

Hiya there, neighbor. Need a hand?

In the future, if as Bill Gates said, “[it] makes the world smaller. The ability to communicate and exchange information instantaneously and across vast distances has enabled more individuals and businesses to participate in the economy, regardless of their location,” then, at the increased rate of progress that it is making, virtual friends won’t exist because the line between real and virtual has become blurred, in more ways than one.

By that time, the Internet would most likely be supporting holographic images and “real-time-you’re-standing-in-the-room presence” video calling that everyone you know seems ‘real’ to you. Access to information and details about your seatmate would be as easy as looking at the back of the hand of that seatmate.

Lines and distances are becoming smaller at present. They won’t be existing in the nearest future. “It’s a small world after all” had always been a prophetic song, and it is bound to come true. Privacy isn’t just a word, and by then it’ll be just a memory.

Welcome to Stalker’s Wonderland.

3. This was not a positive post.

Apparently, I’ve been sounding like a paranoid/anti-Internet freak for the past 500 words. So why am I still using the Internet? Ironically, I just had to post this blog via the thing that I seem to hate.

I don’t hate it. But it is inevitable that I fear it.

Bill Gates’ article said it all, and partially gave us an idea of what is to come. But it’s not all bad.

“Ensuring that the Internet can have the broadest and most positive impact on the greatest possible number of people will be a tremendous challenge for our political and business leaders. There are some key issues that need to be overcome to realize the Internet’s full potential, but although they are challenging, they are not entirely new and definitely not insurmountable.

And it’s clear that these are challenges worth facing–like the printing press, the telephone, electricity or the automobile, the Internet is a revolutionary technology that is transforming our world.”

Yes, we gain a lot of risks and harm by continuing in on this path of modernization and technology. But it is not an imbalance between the forces. For when there is a Yin, there will always be a Yang. There will be an equal development of applications that prevent and stop the dangers performed easily through this free medium. There is pressure on our governments to pass laws that correspond to growing need to cover these “online crimes.”

There’s hope. Hope that the future will not only be technologically cool, but properly safeguarded as well. And that’s about the most positive thing I’ve said in this post.

Oh, and one more thing.

This hasn’t been a Twilight eulogy. Positive? You bet. 😉

Can you hear (the birds) tweeting?

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