Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Who Are You Xander Ford?


All the lonely people, where do they all come from? - Eleonor Rigby/The Beatles

It was a feast day last Sunday as Marlou Arizala formerly of the group Hasht 5 comes out in public for the first time as Xander Ford via the talk show Rated K.

Audience in the studio and on television received the shock of their lives when Xander Ford comes out from the backstage wearing his thousands-worth new face - a total facial reconstruction. The skin is also in the works but for now, he'll have to settle with a lot of foundation and make up.

The revelation received mixed emotion (and opinion) from the public and in social media. Specially when he was asked by Korina about his bashers to which he answered "Hu U kayo sa kin,"

A lot has criticized him while a lot also supported his decision saying that 'let's just be happy with Marlou's decision'.

But are we really?

Are we really and truly happy for him?

Was it really his decision to go under the knife, was it really his choice?

Or did people (both bashers and supporters) forced the young lad into a corner where he can no longer make a choice for himself.

There are really a lot of questions that popped-out after that grand reveal, and people can't just brush up these issues because we are talking of a living person here - a young boy's life.

Was he just a puppet for corporate media?

Was he just the main attraction right now in a showbiz circus?

Was he just another propaganda, an escape route, an ego booster for the people around him and those who will make money from the stunt?

Was he just a very effective damage control marketing tool for the doctors who performed the cosmetic surgeries?

Did we just handed all the low life criminals in the country a key to their salvation? 

Did we just offered today's young rich and discontented youth a brand new hobby for their instant self-gratification?

Who is this really for? Is it really for Marlou AKA Xander Ford?

Or is it for the sake of other people?

Yes, it's true that plastic surgery and cosmetic surgery has helped a lot of people (specially those who were in an accident or those born with physical defects that hampers with their way of life) to be better - but I BELIEVE that this shouldn't be used in any other reasons other than that.

And I do hope that this will not be the way that we go through to deal with our own imperfections - because the truth of the matter is, we are not PERFECT. But at least we're 100% real.

Because what we saw on TV last Sunday - that's all fake.

But everyone's doing it nowadays!

Well, yeah because people sees cosmetic surgery like an expensive drug, a magic pill or the fountain of youth - but all of that is just an illusion.

But just because a lot of people are doing it, does that make it right? I don't really see the point in the argument that if everyone's doing it, then you should to. You know what that line of thinking takes away from you as a person? - Your individuality and your freedom to choose for yourself.

JESUS was a counter-culture person during his time. When the majority was going to the left he was going to the right - but not because he just felt like it, but because it was the right thing to do.

Yes, I know that we now have the science to do that to Marlou, but does that make it right?

We think we know everything and that science has all the answers to all our problems - but I hate to break it to you, science doesn't have all the answers - even the most brilliant doctors can't even say definitively what our appendix is for.

As parents, we try hard to teach our children the value of accepting, appreciating and nourishing one's gift. About loving others and loving oneself no matter who you are. Being true to others and being true to ourselves. That real beauty is from within and not what's on the outside. That happiness also works the same way. That to live free we must not live our lives from the opinion that other people have on us.

Now, what does this Marlou Arizala transformation media hype teaches our children now?

I saw nothing wrong with Marlou Arizala then. He's a young person trying his luck in showbiz - he may not look the part of a heartthrob but at least he's already made a big step up that ladder (a step that millions of hopefuls could only wish for) - he could've just chosen to try and make it in showbiz by his own God-given talents but he chose otherwise (and like I said with a lot of help from the people around him who seems to be so invested on changing the young man's face for reasons unclear).

I saw nothing wrong with Marlou then - I see a whole lot of wrong with Xander now.

Hu R U Xander Ford?

All the lonely people, where do they all come from? - Eleonor Rigby/The Beatles

PS: You know what, Vhong Navarro wasn't the cream of the crop during his street boys days too. He wasn't as good looking as his other mates but he was extremely talented and very funny and that became his ticket to stardom. Did you know that the only time he went under the knife was during that incident in 2014?  And it was because he needed it to fix all the damages.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

National Day of Protest

No Pain No Gain

It's my second day doing dumbbell exercise sets. I'm following two exercise routines on YouTube - my wife said that I should search for exercises that are suited for people who are already in their 40s.. but I feel so millennial right now. :)

I'm just a decade ahead by the way.

Anyway, bought the dumbbell online for 1.7K Pesos - not sure if it's cheap or what, but the quality of the set that I got is okay.

My mantra right now is NO PAIN, NO GAIN or DIE TRYING whichever is more appropriate. I am starting with 7 kilos.

No GAINS yet but I can assure you that I am feeling a significant amount of PAIN right now.

Vivo V7

BTW, Vivo V7 was launched yesterday at Marriot. I was invited but I didn't go basically because it's at Marriot - such a hassle for commuters like myself. Also, because I think the event is jam packed with online media and influencers.

But don't get me wrong, I do love the Vivo brand! I am currently using a Vivo phone, my last phone was also a Vivo. I like it because it's cheap but the quality is good.

Like I said in my previous entries I am more inclined to go to events that has a little bit of exclusivity. I don't know if I qualify as an influencer (and I don't really care) but I am 100% a blogger. So give me an experience worth writing. 

Once in a while I force myself to attend big media events and parties but I make sure that the venue is very much accessible. But if it's not, well just send me a PR please. :)

National Day of Protest

Oh, today a confused PDU30 decided to suspend classes (or not) because it's the commemoration of the declaration of Martial Law in the Philippines. Out of the confusion, most schools have just decided to suspend classes.

Also, militant groups and other organizations have declared today as national day of protest, asking the President to be more accountable! - Well, good luck with that.

Politics here in the Philippines is just crazy!

A mega quake hits Mexico, still here we are talking about politics and killing people. What a lot of people don't get is that when the so-called "BIG ONE" hits us, all your politics won't buy you shit and killing people wouldn't be a problem anymore.

What our stupid politicians do not realize (specially those who voted for the 1K CHR budget with special mention to our very special congressman Farinas), that whatever POWER they think they have right now is just a pigment of their imagination. It's just their minds compensating for their weaknesses, insecurities and impotence.

I believe that the only TRUE POWER you have is the one given to you by your GOD.

Now the question is mga ka DDS, WHO IS YOUR GOD? Si Duterte po ba? 



Tuesday, September 19, 2017

JUST SAY NO

JUST SAY NO

I declared last week that I will SAY NO to some events to concentrate on my blog and YouTube channel - and so far, it's working.

I have finished all of my Urgent + Important pending tasks and I am now working on all of my Not So Urgent + Important.

Views on my main blog rainCHECK (www.raindeocampo.com) are doing okay while my YouTube channel (www.youtube.com/user/projectmotionrain) has already reached the 4.5K mark. So all is well.

I am planning to add some VeeLOG segments on the channel once it reached 5K subscribers. Kicking it off with Eat, Pray, Blog cause I really love to tell stories about my other blogger friends :)

So I am here now in my room, finishing some articles, nursing an exposed nerve on my gums, trying to stay away from other distractions and coping up with all the mess - literally.


"Hindi po masarap ang Instant Noodles pag lumamig na,"


  

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

So, Why Do You Blog?

This post is inspired, motivated and coerced by recent events in the blogging community. :)

I recently came across an inquiry post from a blogger-friend's FB page wall:

"Bakit gusto mo maging blogger? Why do you blog?"

And to which I briefly commented:

"I didn't... I just wanted an outlet for my thoughts other than my personal journal (pen & paper got really old).. and then things just kinda got out of hand."

With everything that's happening in local blogging, these are two valid and relative questions actually.

Like I said in the comment, I didn't set out to be a "blogger" - I was writing my stuff on the internet even before I learned the word "blog" or found out that there are others like myself out there who get invited to company media events.

And like I said in my previous blog post, my first media event was a restaurant food review in San Juan where I actually paid for my meal. I was curious so I joined. And it was Months after that before I was able to join another "blogging" event.

Blog or weblog to my understanding, is supposed to be, personal and unrestricted. It can be in a form of a journal or your very own personal web magazine.

Right now, it's being labeled as part of online media along with social media or micro-blogging sites, like Facebook and Twitter, which came a bit later. Recognizing that it's the future, newspapers, TV news programs and magazines later joined the online bandwagon. Entrepreneurial bloggers also formed online media sites to exploit information-rich niches like entertainment.

So how would you differentiate a blog from everything else that's written online?

Let's answer the second question, "Why Do You Blog?" and go back to the original purpose of our being (as bloggers) to find out.


I blog because even before the arrival of the internet, I was already writing my stories with pen and paper. It's a passion and at the same time an outlet for all my thoughts and creative outputs.

The problem, I think, started when brands and advertising realized the immense power of some credible online outputs to influence other people and then capitalized on the idea as part of their marketing strategies.

Which became beneficial to both brand and blogger. Brands are able to get their stuff online to a wider audience. Plus, once it's out there, it stays there until the blogger decides to delete the post. It's actually an ingenious way of promoting their stuff. Some brands through their PR handlers provide bloggers with compensation for their efforts as a token of their appreciation. However, some brands (and PRs) just like to take advantage.

The blogger, aside from the offered compensation or token, gets a first-hand experience and all the information that they can use for their blog post. Sometimes brand also offers exclusive contents to selected bloggers.

However, some bloggers like to think that blogging is a way for them to make a living (which is not entirely bad) since it's really way too expensive to maintain a blog and it's only right that when a PR or a brand requests your presence to attend (or cover) an event that they make it worth your while. Because contrary to popular belief, bloggers spend TIME, TALENT and TREASURES when they go out to cover and write a blog.

But the thing is, bloggers (real bloggers) are the ones that don't need EVENTS to blog. They're the ones that offer original contents and not press releases all the time. They're the ones that even when their posts are not boosted on social media sites still generate organic reads.

For those who will ask, yes I do attend events. But I make sure that I attend events that I like not only because it's well compensated but because the story will be great for my blog. Sometimes, I attend events because of peer pressure but there are three things that determine my decision to attend an event.

  • STORY 
  • AVAILABILITY
  • COMPENSATION (Is It Worth My While?)     

I also choose events that provide me with exclusive contents. That's why I would always choose GMA over ABS CBN because of the chance to talk to the personalities. That's why I would always choose a small brand who invited a select number of bloggers than a big brand who invited the entire blogging community for a party-party event.

For those who will ask, yes I do post Press Releases. While it is not a priority, I do post press releases because as a solo blogger, I cannot be in all the places that I want to be all the time. But when I do post a press release, I make sure of the following:

  • STORY (A story that I like or something that my readers would be interested in)
  • I AM ALLOWED TO EDIT THE MATERIAL
  • YOU'RE EITHER A FRIEND OR IT'S PAID ADVERTORIAL
I have given you all these background information to read and understand so you'll know where I'm coming from with my view on that recent Malacanang accreditation issue.

My take is that to GIVE TO CAESAR WHAT IS CAESAR'S.

I have the highest respect for Journalists specially those who also respect the blogging community and those who have also recently joined the community.

Journalists can have their own blog - but non-journalist bloggers can never be a journalist, well at least not until the blogger decides to study and pursue a career as one. Let's get that fact out in the open first.

However, that doesn't mean that bloggers are not as good as a writer than a Journalist. I know of some bloggers who write pretty well and some Journalists who write sloppy articles too. So we can never generalize on that.

Now with regards to the accreditation, while I am inclined to say that it's a clear manifestation of a double standard practice - but what else is new? Bloggers experience that all the time specially when covering entertainment events.

I hear it all the time, social media and blogging are very powerful tools nowadays, but we (bloggers) often forget, because of the pressure exerted on us by brands and traditional media to bend or roll over to their bidding, that the real power resides on us being independent and unrestricted.

When we focus so much on getting accreditation and recognition from groups and brands, we lose that power. We are restricted, chained and limited.

Bloggers can and will get their stories out, with or without, the authorization of other people. We are our own authors.

I CAN ALWAYS CHOOSE TO WRITE about Smart, Globe, Starbucks, Oppo, Samsung and any other brand if I want to, but I can always choose not to. And that's the beauty of blogging isn't it? :)

Journalists who are tied to a publication or a news organization can never have the freedom and power that we are now currently enjoying. So I say to hell with those accreditation and double standards. #MaliitNaBagay

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

MAY 23, 2017 - TUESDAY

May 23 is a sad and eventful day here in the Philippines and perhaps all over the world.

Tuesday begins with news of a terrorist bombing attack in Manchester Arena, England where Ariana Grande was having her Dangerous Woman World Tour Concert.

The attack left 22 dead and wounded more than a hundred, 59 of whom are still being treated in 8 different hospitals. According to reports, the bomb exploded moments after the concert at around 10:30pm, Monday (UK Time) or 5:30am, Tuesday here in the Philippines.

At around 2 in the afternoon, a firefight erupts at Barangay Basak Malutlut in Marawi City between AFP and PNP troops against the alleged Maute (Isis) group. Events on the ground are still sketchy and there have been a lot of conflicting news.

Meanwhile, at 10 in the evening Philippine President Duterte (who is in his state visit to Russia) declared Martial Law in Mindanao.

In other news, James Bond actor Sir Roger Moore dies of cancer at age 89 in Switzerland. Moore starred in seven Bond movies from the 70's to the 80's.

  • Live and Let Die (1973)
  • The Man with the Golden Gun (1974)
  • The Spy Who Loved Me (1977)
  • Moonraker (1979)
  • For Your Eyes Only (1981)
  • Octopussy (1983)
  • A View To A Kill (1985)

As for my own little corner in this crazy-by-the-minute world we lived in, I was at Salu Restaurant earlier this afternoon interviewing SLEEPLESS stars Glaiza De Castro and Dominic Roco. MORE about that story on www.raindeocampo.com

 

Monday, May 8, 2017

Three Things Philippine Politics Teach Filipinos About Prosperity and Justice

Here are THREE important things that PHILIPPINE POLITICS have taught Filipinos about prosperity and justice:

  • The sure way to get rich quick is by way of a scam! - Get the most amount of money in the shortest possible time. Enough money to get you the best sleazy lawyer and enough money to bribe even the least corrupt government official to keep you off bars.
  • There's big money in PUBLIC SERVICE!  - All you need to do is learn the art of charismatic leadership and win the hearts of people - talk big during your campaign about fighting graft and corruption and hope that everyone believes you, the more people who believes in you the better your chances of getting the money people (specially those with malicious intent) in many industries to notice you as someone to win over. This usually translates into special favors and cash proposals (or bribe).
  • CROOKED POLITICIANS always get special treatments specially when you're a Robin Hood. You build your public service career as someone who is pro-poor. Steal money from the RICH (and the government) and then spread 10 to 20 percent of what you've stolen to the masses (specially the most gullible sectors) to make them fall in love with you. You keep the rest of the money as profit. When you get caught, these people will defend you, keep you out of jail, vote for you or keep you in office still.
Do I need to site examples? :)  
 

Thursday, March 16, 2017

5 Ways To Make Roads Safer For Filipinos #RoadSafetyPH

I recently attended a Road Safety Idea Hack Forum held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel.

The event was sponsored by GRAB Philippines and The World Bank with the over-all aim of getting some fresh new recommendations on how to make the streets more safer for Filipinos.


We were asked to make recommendations, and here are my 2cents on #roadsafetyph:

✔ No need for new laws, just strictly enforce all #LTO & #LTFRB regulations - wag kasi gawing negosyo.

✔ Regulate number and type of service vehicles in specific areas. e.g. Pag may bumibyahe na jeep or bus sa isang lugar ipagbawal na ang tricycle at padyak. Likewise, kung maliit naman ang kalye sa isang lugar ipagbawal ang pag byahe ng mga jeep at ipalit ang tricycle at padyak.. pero dapat bilang ang dami ng mga bumibyahe at walang colorum.


✔ Fast Track developments of mass transport systems (PNR, LRT, MRT) yun mga corporation na nagpapabagal at humahadlang, pagbayarin ng fees sa taong bayan for the cost of delay!


✔ Coding schemes should be applied to all private and non-service vehicles pati mga motorcycles and scooters to help ease traffic and encourage people to take mass transport systems.


✔ Lastly, magkaroon sana ng system kung saan pwede ipagbawal ang pagbibigay ng lisensya sa mga tanga, bangag, may topak at mga mainitin ang ulo na drivers.

Yun lang. I thank You.

Let's Talk About Priorities


Let's TALK priorities:

✔ Yun sing laki ng bagong bili na flatscreen LED TV ang buong dingding ng bahay/kwarto/kusina/sala/cr n'yo

✔ Yun sa tricycle nakatira buong pamilya mo, halos walang damit at makain pero lahat kayo may cellphone kahit si bunso

✔ Yun isang-kahig, isang-tuka na parang chairman kung magpainom tuwing sweldo pero ipina-pangutang ang ulam sa araw araw

✔ Yun mas mabilis ka pa magpalit ng cellphone kaysa sa toothbrush

✔ Yun mayor at mayora sa social media dahil sa dami ng friends at followers pero sa totoong buhay... me, myself and I

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Ang Mga Butas Na Batas Sa Bayan Ni Juan

Halos linggo-linggo may mga bagong proclamations, executive orders (e.o.), republic acts (r.a.), house bills and resolutions tayong naririnig.

Sangkatutak na mga bagong batas ang ipinapasa sa kongreso, sa tingin ko karamihan naman dito ay kailangan talaga natin, pero ang tanong, sa dinami-dami ng mga panukalang ito.... napapatupad nga ba?
Noong nakaraan taon, ipinasa ang batas na nagbabawal sa mga drivers na gumamit ng telepono habang nagmamaneho - kumusta naman ang pagpapatupad nito?

Kahapon lang, may mga nakita ako na mga nagmamaneho habang may kausap sa telepono. Yun ilang mga driver ng Jeepney sa Paco, may mga ka-text habang nagda-drive kahit pa may makasalubong na pulis. Hindi naman kasi sila sinisita.

Alam kaya nila ang tungkol sa batas na ito?

Alam n'yo rin ba na ipinasa na rin noong nakaraaang taon ang Anti-Age Discrimination Law?
"An act prohibiting discrimination against any individual in employment on account of age"
Kumusta naman ang pag-aaply sa trabaho? Di po ba't uso pa din ang tinatawag na "age limit" sa karamihan ng mga trabaho? Of course, di mo sya mababasa sa mga classified jobs listings pero pag nag-apply ka na - ang kawawang aplikante na naglagay ng edad o birth date sa kanyang resume, auomatically screened-out na sa list pag di pumasa sa age requirements nila. Syempre di nila aaminin at sasabihin ito.

Sino ba ang mga nagbabantay dito? 

Ilan lang yan sa mga batas na naipasa, na parang wala namang kinahantungan dahil wala namang sapat na kakayahan o kasiglahan na ipatupad ng mabuti.

Tapos ngayong taon, meron na namang mga bagong inilalabas. Matunog na matunog ngayon ang pag apruba ng congress sa Vanity Tax at pati na rin ang mahigpit na pagbabawal sa 5:6 na pautang.

Nakakalungkot isipin na napakaraming magagandang batas o ordinansa ang mga naipasa ng ilan sa matatalino nating mga mambabatas ngunit napunta lang sa wala dahil hindi naman ito seryosong ipinapatupad.

Gaya na nga ng naimungkahi noon pa man, bakit hindi muna bigyan ng pansin at tyaga na ipatupad ng maayos ang ilan sa mga simpleng batas na nagawa na bago tayo gumawa ng gumawa na naman ng mga bagong batas.

Ang problema kasi sa mga nasa gobyerno, inuuna muna ang mga sariling agenda bago ang bayan.
  • SA MGA GUMAGAWA NG BATAS: Gagawa ng gagawa ng batas hindi dahil kailangan ng bayan, kundi dahil para mailagay sa pangalan o maidagdag ika-nga sa kanilang credentials. Para nga naman sikat. Gawain din yan sa corporate, maganda na ang sistema, babaguhin pa, para lang masabi na meron siyang nagawa. Isang uri ng pagbubuhat ng sariling upuan.
  • SA MGA DAPAT MAGPATUPAD NG BATAS: Pag hindi mapagkakakitaan, dedma! Pag may perang makukulimbat sa batas, kahit mahirap naguunahan pa!
Sayang ang mga pinag-aambag ambagan ng mga Pilipino para ipang sweldo sa mga taong katulad nito!
Para malinaw, WALA PONG PROBLEMA SA BATAS. Ang problema ay kung ito ay napapatupad ng maayos.

Simple lang ang basehan ko kung epektibo ang makinarya ng gobyerno na nagpapatupad ng batas. Tignan natin ang mga naunang mga simpleng batas kung ito ay may kinahantungan.

Republic Act 9211 (No Smoking in Public Areas) - Nawala na po ba ang mga naninigarilyo sa mga pang publikong lugar? Halos araw-araw ako nakakakita ng mga Jeepney driver na naninigarilyo habang bumibyahe. Wala namang nanghuhuli. Noong una lang sila masigasig. Pag ordinaryong mamamayan ang sisita, sasabihin lang ng driver na lumipat siya ng ibang sasakyan kung ayaw mausukan. Ano nangyari sa batas mo congressman?

MMDA Regulation No. 96-009 (Anti-Littering Law) - Ayos lang kayo? E kahit nga mga pulis at MMDA officials kung san-san lang nagtatapon ng mga balat na kendi nila. Kanina may isang grupo ng mga estudyante na umiinom ng samalamig at basta lang itinapon sa kalsada ang mga plastic cups nila kung saan sila naguumpukan - sa tapat mismo ng istasyon ng pulis sa may EAC. Wala naman pumansin at nagbawal.

Naglakas loob ako magtanong, ang sabi ng mga tambay, winawalis naman daw yun pagkatapos ng mga vendors, kasi sila ang may sagot na noon.

Pero hindi yun ang point, so ibig sabihin, okay lang na magtapon sa kalsada ng mga kalat kasi may mga nagwawalis naman? Anong klaseng pag-didisiplina ang binibigay natin sa ating mga kabataan? Tinuturuan natin silang maging tamad at walang pakialam sa kapaligiran. Kasi ganun din ang mga taong dapat nagpapatupad sa batas na iyan.

Republic Act 4136 (Land Transportation and Traffic Code) - Basahin nyo ang act na ito at matatawa kayo dahil siguro halos 1/3 ng mga nakasulat dito ay hindi nasusunod. Mula sa requirements para sa registration of motor vehicles hanggang sa Traffic Rules. Bigyan ko kayo ng example sa Section 52.
SECTION 52. Driving or Parking on Sidewalk. – No person shall drive or park a motor vehicle upon or along any sidewalk, path or alley not intended for vehicular traffic or parking.
Isa sa mga sanhi ng pagkakabuhol-buhol ng traffic ay ang mga sandamakmak na sasakyan na naka-park sa mga kalsada - mga lugar na "not intended for parking." Bakit kaya hindi ito naipapatupad mga kagawad?

Mga simpleng batas at ordinansa tulad ng pagbabawal sa pag-dumi, pag-ihi, pag-dura at pagtatapon ng basura sa mga pampublikong lugar. Nagagawa ba? Paki-amoy nga po ang carriedo pag dating ng hapon?
E kung yun mga simple hindi nagagawa, paano pa ang mga kumplikadong mga batas? Tapos nagtataka tayo kung bakit kahit may mga batas na patungkol sa pandarambong, panloloko o pagnanakaw sa kaban ng bayan ay nagagawa pa rin maka-lusot sa kulungan ang mga naakusahan tapos nakaka-takbo pa ulit at nananalo sa eleksyon!

Napakarami siguro talagang mga nagtatanga-tangahan gamit ang mga batas dito sa bayan ni Juan. 

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

A Wise Man or a King | Who Would You Rather Be?

There's no way knowing if the Gentiles (non-Jewish people) who searched and found Jesus mentioned in the Gospel of Matthew's Epiphany story were indeed kings or if they were really only three.

Like what the priest said during the homily last Sunday at St. Mary Goretti Parish, three kings together leaving their palaces to follow a star on a foreign land without any entourage or body guards? Highly, unlikely.

So that's it for the song "We Three Kings."

But what's sure is that Matthew Chapter 2 Verse 1 to 12 (Mt 2: 1-12) is filled with a lot of important symbolism that shows more meaning to our own salvation story and it starts with the manifestation of Jesus Christ to the Magi from the east.

It tells us that Jesus' message of hope about God's salvation is for all - not just for the Jewish people at that time (or any other religious sect) and Christians, but it is given to everyone.

The word magi also refers to the wise. Not kings, but wise people are the ones who searched for the Christ Jesus. And to stress on that enlightening new perspective, our mass celebrant also gave us a couple of pointers on how to practically apply the true message of Epiphany in our lives.

Here are some bullet points that I took note of:

Sit among the wise and you go home a little wiser.

You always learn from wise people, whether by just observing them or listening intently to what they have to say. People pay good money to attend seminars given by seasoned motivational speakers and people who are known to have excel in certain expertise - with the hope to bring home some fresh new knowledge or even a renewed sense of purpose.

Wise men can be kings but not all kings can be wise.

Not all kings are wise! Some are just influential, charismatic, has a good social media manager and a lot of political networks. So, if you're going to choose between kings or wise people, I suggest you go for the wise.

Why?

People are the ones who make kings in this world - that position of power is oftentimes elected, appointed or bought. It's not permanent.

Now wise people? Only God can make people wise! And that is a gift you take with you till the end of your days.

Wise people are not afraid to swallow their pride.

Wise people are always willing to learn. They always maintain their glasses only half full and open - they are not only great but they are also good!

Raise wise children not kings.

In an age where you get everything at a touch of a button. Teach your children to work and show them the value of hard work, perseverance, patience, understanding and learning.
The priest asked the young people in the church if they know how to cook rice. A couple of the older kids raised their hands. Then he asked how many of those who raised their hands can cook rice without using a rice cooker. Only two of the older kids was confident enough to raise their hands and they were able to elaborate the procedures of cooking the rice without the aid of a rice cooker - where usually we just add water on the rice and let it basically boil and simmer until it's cooked. And then the priest asked the two, did you know that you can also allow the water to boil first before adding the rice? The two kids didn't know. Actually, most of the adults in the church didn't know either. And the priest explained, letting the water boil first especially when you're cooking 1 to 3 kilos of rice on a big pot is customary so that the rice will cook evenly. And so those who attended the mass service came home a little bit wiser.  
Wise kids will make a better world for the future, not kings!
"Ang matalino alam ang tama at mali, ang marunong ginagawa ang tama at iniiwasan ang mali."

Monday, January 9, 2017

Five Things All Christians Must Know About the Epiphany Story

Catholics all over the world celebrated the FEAST OF THE EPIPHANY last Sunday.

And what this celebration teaches me today is that although I have been an active member of Church organizations since after graduating from elementary school, is that there are a lot of things about the Catholic faith that I still don't know about.

For instance, EPIPHANY. I know about the Feast only as the "Three Kings Day" but... there's actually more to it than what we have learned from the carol songs.

Here are 5 things about the Feast of the Epiphany that all Christians must know about:

  1. Epiphany came from the Greek word "Epiphainein" and Latin word "Epiphania" which literally means "reveal", referring to the manifestation of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles (non-Jewish people) coming from the East.
  2. In the Gospel of Matthew (Mt 2: 1-12), the Gentiles were represented by the Magi (Wise Men from the East). There were no mention in the Gospel about the exact number of Magi who visited Jesus and from where they came from or if the Magi were kings but old tradition have placed the number of visitors to three and named them Melchior, Caspar and Bhaltazar representing the nations of Africa, Europe and Arabia. Also, for purposes unknown, the word Magi was translated to Kings at that time- hence the origin of the old-time favorite Christmas tune "We Three Kings" and the "Three Kings Day" celebration in most Spanish-speaking nations.
  3. The Feast of the Epiphany is also called as the 12th day (or 12th Night) of Christmas as it is in fact traditionally celebrated 12 days after Christmas which falls on the 6th of January. Today, the Feast of the Epiphany is celebrated on the Sunday after January 6. Interestingly, the Gospel of Matthew that talks about the Epiphany story also runs in 12 verses (Mt 2: 1-12). 
  4. The story of the Epiphany in the Gospel of Matthew is full symbolism, for example the gifts that the Magi offered to Christ Jesus - Gold, Myrrh and Frankincense. These represent Jesus' three personas here on Earth as Priest (Frankincense), Prophet (Myrrh) and King (Gold).
  5. The Feast of the Epiphany also signals the end of the Christmas season. But did you know that here in the Philippines (as approved by the Vatican), the Christmas season officially ends after the Feast of the Sto. Nino which is scheduled on the third Sunday of January right after the Feast of the Traslacion.     

The greater message of the Feast of the Epiphany can be summed up in two things.

That Christ's message of salvation is open to everyone and that we must follow the examples of the Magi (the wise) - to seek for him with perseverance (through the guiding light of the Church) and upon meeting Jesus, we must all change our ways and cherish our new life with him to the end of our lives.

"And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route." - Matthew 2: 12   

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Thank You 2016

Saying GOODBYE and THANK YOU to 2016 and welcoming the new year with more FAITH, HOPE and LOVE!

Like what the priest said during last Sunday's homily,
"We wish each other a Happy New Year because however unfortunate or troublesome the past year was, the first day of the new year is always a symbol of hope and also a gift of another chance from our creator. To right the wrongs, to make amends and to work on being a better person in the years to come."
And that's more than enough reason for us to celebrate the new year and to wish everyone a happy 2017!

But first, here's another look at what happened to MY 2016!
  • It's an election year and I was able to personally talk with two Senatorial candidate (Mark Lapid, Francis Tolentino), one VP candidate (Gringo Honasan) and a Presidentiable (Boboy Syjuco). I also attended a star-studded endorsement meeting for Liberal party standard bearer Mar Roxas. But of course, PDU30 won the election.
  • I started the year also with an ugly ankle sprain that got me crippled for almost three weeks. My Chinese horoscope actually warned me about being prone to accidents last year - My animal sign is an Ox. And speaking about accidents, my Acer laptop also got a nasty one when my bag strap snapped after an event in BGC. The laptop is still working but the casing is already scrap metal.
  • Took a quickie staycation at Island Cove, Aquaria, Club Balai Isabel and a couple of other resorts in the South. I also got invited to a Vigan and Bukidnon trip but sadly I wasn't able to join.
  • I went on another solo pilgrimage and visited two of the oldest churches in Cavite. 
  • It was also a milestone for my kiddos as they both graduated and shifted school this year. Sky moved from STA to Paco Catholic School for her middle school education while Neo is now a proud Senior High Student at St. Paul University Manila after graduating from Junior High at St. Joseph Pandacan.
  • I also got me a couple of cool gadgets this year like the Fuji Instax Camera, a lot of awesome sound gears, a smart watch from Acer, VR gears, power banks, smartphones and many others.
  • I was able to meet a lot of celebrities also this year but the highlights of my year in entertainment is of course meeting Lea Salongga in person for the first time and being invited to the house of Dingdong, Jessa and Jayda Avanzado for a private Christmas party.
  • My blog www.raindeocampo.com was also nominated as a finalist to the Lagawan Blogger of the Year awards.
I have met a lot of new people this year, went to a lot of places and discovered a lot of things about myself and other things.

But probably the most memorable of all would be two things:
  1. My first Taal Lake Boat Ride & Taal Volcano adventure trek, and;
  2. Watching Neo in his first stage play performance.
Overall. it was indeed a great year! So, thank you 2016 and may God bless everyone in 2017! 

Monday, January 2, 2017

Nakakahiya Naman Mag-Jogging Sa Manila Bay Walk

Dahil sa dami ng lamunan na nangyari noong nakaraang pasko at bagong taon, naisipan naming mag jogging kaninang umaga.

Usually sa Luneta lang kami, pero dahil matinding bigat ang kailangan malagas, we decided to take the road less traveled...

Mula sa Paco ay nilakad namin ang Roxas Boulevard, galing sa Padre Faura patungo sa CCP.

Nakakamiss din mag jogging sa Manila Bay area at siguro matatagalan ulit kaming makabalik doon dahil sa mga nakita namin.

Nakakahiya naman sa titulong "Isa sa pinaka-magandang sunset sa buong mundo" pero hindi mo naman ma-feel na magtagal sa bay area kasi...

1. Ang sasalubong agad sa yo ay sandamakmak na samut-saring dumi ng hayop at tao. Isipin mo na lang na para kang nag jo-jogging noong panahon ng giyera na bawat daanan mo ay may landmines.

2. Ginawa na rin palang libreng apartment ng mga streetdwellers ang buong baywalk kaya naman kahit saan ka tumingin ay may mga natutulog at bawat sulok ay amoy CR.

3. At kaya naman pala ang daming basura, e madami ring mga illegal vendors.

Habang nagjo-jogging kami kanina, may mga hapon din na namamasyal. Bilang Pilipino parang bigla ako nahiya.

Ang hirap ipagmalaki.

Alam ko na may mag-cocomment na matagal ng problema ng Manila Bay Walk yan. At totoo naman yun.. So, ang tanong e bakit nangyayari pa rin hanggang ngayon?

Kung tutuusin, simple lang naman ang solusyon, mag talaga ng mga pulis o gwardiya na magdidisiplina sa mga tao at magpapatupad ng kalinisan at kaayusan sa lugar ng Manila Bay.

Kailangan pa ba ibenta at ipaubaya sa SM o mga Ayala ang buong Bay Walk para lang maisaayos ang lahat?

E ano ginagawa ng lungsod ng Maynila at ng gobyerno?

Inutil lang? Wag naman sana!