Sunday, February 27, 2005

The Maningning Miclat Art Foundation announces the launching of the Maningning Miclat Poetry Awards competition for 2005. The competition is open to young poets age 28 and below. Contestants may join any or all of the three language divisions - Filipino, English and Chinese - but can submit only one (1) entry in every division. An entry must consist of at least eight (8) but not more than fifteen (15) poems. Each piece in an entry should be originally written in the language division it belongs and not a translation of a poem in another division.

The Maningning Miclat Poetry Awards is named after the late multiawarded artist, trilingual poet and writer, translator and teacher. Maningning Miclat left behind a book of poetry written in English, Chinese and Filipino, "Voice from the Underworld" (Anvil, 2000), a National Book Award finalist. Miclat was recognized during the International Women's Year held in Beijing as one of the World's top-rated 39 women poets writing in Chinese, having been included in an anthology published in China in 1995.

Equally recognized as an artist, Maningning won the 1992 Art Association of the Philippines grand prize for her abstract painting, "Trouble in Paradise." Last year, some 60 students from 17 universities, colleges, and high schools participated in the 1st Maningning Miclat Painting Competition. Dexter M. Sy of the Far Eastern University took the top prize which included a P28,000.00 check and a glass trophy by sculptor Ramon Orlina. Receiving honorable mention were three other young painters: Vicente H. Estandarte and Lady Diana Mendoza of the University of the Philippines Diliman and Fitzsimon Herrera of the University of the East. The next Maningning Miclat Painting Competition will be held in 2006.

The 1st Maningning Miclat Poetry Award in 3 languages was held in 2003. The grand prize winner in English, Naya S. Valdellon, went on to win the Palanca Awards' top prize the following year. Meanwhile, honorable mention awardee, Angelo Suarez, Jr., won the Struga Bridges Poetry Prize in 2004. The Filipino division's grand prize winner, Joselito delos Reyes and honorable mentions Mayo Uno Martin and Mesandel Arguelles all published their books of poetry last year.

The Maningning Miclat Poetry Award for 2005 will accept entries until April 15, 2005. Contest rules can be secured from MMAFI, c/o DCDC, 2/fl, Mile Long Bldg., Amorsolo St., Legaspi Village, Makati City or through the following email addresses: ; ; and Please watch out for announcements at the foundation's website : . The grand prize winners will receive cash awards amounting to P28,000.00 each, and a trophy by sculptor Julie Lluch.

2nd Floor Mile Long Building
Amorsolo St., Legaspi Village Makati City
Tel. No. 816-7490(1); Fax No. 817-1458

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Kung ibig mo akong makilala (via Soulfly)
Ruth Elynia S. Mabanglo

Kung ibig mo akong makilala,
lampasan mo ang guhit ng mahugis na balat,
ang titig kong dagat—
yumayapos nang mahigpit sa bawat saglit
ng kahapon ko’t bukas.

Kung ibig mo akong makilala
sunduin mo ako sa himlayang dilim
at sa madlang pagsukol ng inunang hilahil,
ibangon ako at saka palayain.

Isang pag-ibig na lipos ng lingap,
tahanang malaya sa pangamba at sumbat
may suhay ng tuwa’t ang kaluwalhatia’y
walang takda—
ialay mo lahat ito sa akin
kung mahal mo ako’t ibig kilalanin.

Kung ibig mo akong kilalanin,
sisirin mo ako hanggang buto,
liparin mo ako hanggang utak,
umilanlang ka hanggang kaluluwa—
hubad ako roon: mula ulo hanggang paa.

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Job opening
From my e-mail inbox:
I'm Luis G. Asuncion (High School Librarian) of Diliman Preparatory School... My head librarian asked my help to look for an audio-visual librarian in our school... the institution I am working with wants to organized an audio-visual librarian ASAP... we are looking forward for your cooperation and network to help the institution i am working with... please send your resume to my email address... august_12345ATyahooDOTcom... Thank you...
Currently reading:

Youth by J.M. Coetzee
Michael Jackson grand jury
The supposedly sealed grand jury proceedings that led to the indictment of Michael Jackson on charges of child molestation have been made available online by the Smoking Gun.

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Web prowl
The US News and World Report delves into the life of the young Abraham Lincoln, who was recently voted by Americans as their greatest president. From Time magazine, Pankaj Mishra explores the deeper happiness offered by Buddhism. Also from the same newsmagazine, Alan Robles asks why, despite burdens like poverty and pollution, Filipinos tend to be happy. Der Spiegel reports on how Spain,led by its socialist prime minister fetes the novel Don Quixote, four hundred years after its first publication.
Job opening
Bachelors degree graduate, preferably in Mass Communication, Journalism
Excellent writing and editing skills (English and Filipino)
With initial experience in managing publications such as newsletter, periodicals, journals, etc.
Preferably with experience in media networking and conducting media campaigns
Preferably with experience in development work. Sensitive to the interest of marginalized fishers.
Must be computer literate and proficient in MS office programs, Pagemaker and other lay-outing program (website design skill is an advantage)
Team-worker and can perform multiple tasks with minimum supervision

Ipadala ang inyong resume sa:

NGOs for Fisheries Reform
Room 203, 59 C Salvador St.,
Loyola Heights, QC


Or e-mail on or before February 24, 2005, 5.30pm
Burmese Prime Minister Soe Win was delivering the usual Burmese junta's platitudes to democracy and human rights during his meeting with President Arroyo yesterday. President Arroyo, on her part, was also delivering the usual platitudes of concern for Aung San Suu Kyi. How predictable (Read the Philippine Star). (Doesn't this remind us of George Bush Senior's toast to Marcos's commitment to democratic principles?)

Anyone who has bothered to look at the record of the Burmese military junta with a sustained interest can tell that Prime Minister Soe Win is simply prevaricating. The Burmese junta has said over and over again in the past that it was democratizating Burma but only to crack down again on the opposition led by the National League for Democracy (NLD). Aung San Suu Kyi has been freed and re-arrested countless of times that she herself must have lost count. Whenever the Burmese junta thinks Aung San Suu Kyi's popularity is fading, it releases her from detention. When crowds begin to flock for her addresses, they arrest her back.

So why does our government choose to believe the military junta represented by Prime Minsiter Soe Win? We are either, one, naively gullible in international relations or, two, do not really believe in the democracy we so ostensibly espouse. Why, even former Malaysian Prime Mister Mahathir Mohamad, no great friend of democracy himself, has of late been stinging in his criticism of the Burmese junta. The much-heralded roadmap to democracy of the Burmese junta and its constituion-writing does no meet the standards laid out by the United Nations.

Senator Miriam Defensor-Santiago, probably bothered by the unprecedented display of high-level kaplastikan, filed a Senate resolution seeking to deny Burma chairmanship of the ASEAN next year, right after attending the Malacanang luncheon for PM Soe Win. But the resolution, I think, will not gain traction, because we now have a greater need for Burma: In view of the total log ban hastily pronounced by the Arroyo administration, the local furniture industry needs new forests to denude. The dense foliage of Shan State looks inviting.

Monday, February 21, 2005

Copi's "Eva Peron" Makes Philippine Debut
Alliance Française de Manille presents the Dramatis Personae production of "Eva Peron" – a play by Argentine playwright and cartoonist, Copi. The English translation by Anni Lee Taylor shall be staged at the Carlos P. Romulo Theatre, RCBC Plaza, Makati on Wednesday, March 2 at 8 p.m.

Originally written in French, this politically-charged satire has been played around the world since 1969. Raúl Damonte, better known as Copi, clearly shows his utter disdain for Evita Peron through this cutting-edge, avant garde theatre piece written while he was living in exile in Paris during the Peronian dictatorship.

Dramatis Personae's Lito Casaje directs the first Philippine run of "Eva Peron," featuring seasoned actors, Dingdong Rosales, Daniel Robert Magisa, Alfonso Deza, Gio Respall, and Ms. Linda Lupton. All actors shall be wearing specially designed costumes by Frederick Peralta and jewelry by French designer Muriel Biraghi.

The Alliance Française de Manille is one of the country's most active movers in cultural affairs and exchange. Its language school provides French lessons all year round, using the latest teaching methods and facilities.

"Eva Peron" shall be open to the public at a first-come-first-seated basis. A special staging of the play's Filipino-version, translated by Lito Casaje, shall be held at the Puerto Real garden, Intramuros, Manila later in the month of March. For more details and headcount monitoring, please contact 8957441 / 8957585 or
Mendiola protest
I've just arrived from a protest demonstration at Mendiola, denouncing the visit of Burmese Prime Minister Soe Win. All in all, I must say it was a well-attended mobilization, especially considering the fact that it was only on Saturday that we learned Prime Minister Soe Win would be arriving in Manila. In such short notice, the Free Burma Coalition-Philippines was able to assemble a crowd of about seventy to ninety at Mendiola. Congressman Mayong Aguja of AKBAYAN was also with us.The media showed up, including the wire services. It was also nice to meet old friends from Amnesty International.

Sunday, February 20, 2005

Currently listening to:

The Best of Hugh Masekela
The Center for Women's Resources invites you to its ULAT LILA - an annual forum to discuss women and national issues, concerns and situation...


March 4, 2005 (Friday)
9:30am - 12 noon
Bulwagang Tandang Sora
CSWCD, UP Diliman
Quezon City

For inquiries and confirmations, please contact Noemi, Libay or Philline @ 926-1956 or 411-2796

Saturday, February 19, 2005

No to Burma chairmanship of ASEAN
The Free Burma Coalition-Philippines (FBC) is organizing a demonstration on Monday, 10 am, at the Don Chino Roces Bridge (formerly Mendiola) in Manila to protest the visit of Burmese Prime Minister Soe Win.

Prime Minister Soe Win, who will be arriving in Manila tomorrow night, will meet with President Arroyo on Monday as part of his official round of visits to ASEAN countries after he assumed office as Prime Minister in October 2004. He will be accompanied by Minister of Foreign Affairs Nyan Win and other officials in meeting with President Arroyo.

The FBC Philippines will be calling for the Philippines to upset Burma's scheduled chairmanship of ASEAN next year.
Burmese PM to visit Manila
Gen. Soe Win, the man who replaced ousted Gen Khin Nyunt as Burmese prime minister, is arriving in Manila tommorrow night. Read the Inquirer and the Philippine Star reports.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

The German newsmagazine Spiegel interviews Bill Gates:

SPIEGEL: When one puts the sentence "Bill Gates is the devil" into the Internet search engine Google, one gets thousands of hits. Does this bother you?

Gates: I have never searched for such a sentence. Plus: if you understand the search engine properly, it doesn't mean that you will find exactly this sentence on these pages.
Ligtas Buntis
In a meeting on an altogether different matter, I heard DOH Undersecretary Ethelyn Nieto bewail the many poison letters the DOH has been receiving for their February-March 2005 Ligtas Buntis family planning program. At first, I thought the poison letters were coming from the liberal pro-choice sectors (after all, the DOH is known for its half-hearted and anemic family planning program before); but it turned out the said malicious missives were coming from the conservative pro-life sectors that cannot stomach the "abortionist" Ligtas Buntis program. Nieto was at pains to point out that the Ligtas Buntis is a nationwide campaign for Ligtas sa Pagbubuntis and Ligtas na Pagbubuntis. The DOH is, therefore, not exactly abortionist and Satanist.

I am personally fascinated by the intense conservatism of some people when it comes to family planning. Where were these guys raised? In a galaxy far,far away? I am yet to hear of a friend or an acquaintance espousing these views. Everywhere I see, artificial contaception is being taken up as if it's part and parcel of a married life. Even President Arroyo used artificial contraception (now that she's menopause, she says she should have tried the rhythm method instead--how convenient) without, gathering from her quotations by the press, much soul-searching during the "Satanist" period of her married life.

I myself never really understood the theology backing up the rhythm method. I mean, even if you're not "killing" a zygote there, you still have the intent to frustrate the formation of life. In the ryhthm method, in my opinion, one still sins. If one follows the logic of the pro-lifers to its ultimate conclusion, all contraception methods should be denounced, including the rhythm method. We may fool ourselves with the rhythm method, but we surely are not fooling God.

While our overpopulation is certainly not the root cause of all our miseries, it remains a great burden to our economic growth as the paper Population and Poverty: The Real Score (pdf) by UP economists points out. The government’s target of reducing poverty incidence to 20% or lower by 2010 would not be feasible, according to the economists, given historical growth rates of population and the economy.

If using a condom or an IUD is a sin, we probably will all burn in hell for it (and a couple of other things as well), except perhaps for some self-righteous clergymen who will burn for pederasty instead.
Poetry reading
may TULAAN ang #MAKATA (irc, undernet) sa LIKHA DIWA sa PEBRERO 25 na magsisimula sa ika-pito (7 pm) nang gabi.

ang likha diwa ay matatagpuan sa UP diliman, kalye cp garcia. kung kayo ay maglalakbay sa pamamagitan ng pampublikong sasakyan, bumaba kayo sa philcoa. sabihin nyo lang sa tsuper ng tsubibong may tatlong gulong na dalhin kayo sa likhadiwa sa krus na ligas. kung hindi pa rin nya alam, sabihin nyo sa sarah's ang inyong patutunguhan. alam na nila yun. katabi lang ng arko sa krus na ligas ang likha. dalawampung piso ang bayad. wag magpapaloko.

ang mga tula ay may tatlong kategorya: ingles, filipino, bernakyular. wala tayong tema na sinusunod. ang mga tula nyo ay pwedeng tungkol sa kahit saan.

kung nais nyo naman tumugtog, sabihin nyo agad nang maaga para mailagay kayo sa programa.

paki tawagan o teks na lang ang 09198477472(hanapin si marc) o magpadala ng malupet na liham sa kung may iba pa kayong katanungan. pakiiwan na rin ang inyong pangalan at numero para mahanap namin kayo.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Call for contributions
Announcing the call for contributions to the 1st edition of an Anthology of Essays by Young Moro Writers.

This anthology intends to present the various expressions and experiences of young Moros in a society that grapples with tradition, religion, and change.

Writers must be 45 years old or below. They could be of pure Moro lineage or mixed parentage. Writings are limited to informal essays (no academic papers, please!). Experimental works are also welcome. There is no general theme for the anthology although writers are encouraged to concentrate on one specific topic. For example, one writer has submitted two essays on his struggles being gay in a conservative Maguindanaon society. Writers can submit up to five essays to maximize the chances for selection.

Deadline of the submission is March 15, 2005. For inquiries and submission, email the editor Gutierrez Mangansakan II at; text or call 0920-9049336.

Tuesday, February 08, 2005

New year's resolutions once more
As some of you may have observed, I'be been a lazy blogger for a month now. What is irritating about this blogging downtime is that one of my new year's resolutions last january 1 was precisely to blog more assiduously. Most people's resolves flag, I know, but I was disturbed by my resolve's over-early flagging. So I am taking the Chinese New Year to re-state my Gregorian New Year's resolutions:

1. Live in a more earth-friendly way.
2. Learn tai chi.
3. Invite more friends to join our reading group.
4. Read business books.
5. Enrol in an entrepreneurship workshop/course.
6. Volunteer.
7. Read authors from the South.
8. Learn how to swim well (to increase chance of surviving a tsunami).
9. Give away or lend books needlessly accumulating dust in the shelves.
10. Become a more participative member of the e-groups I subscribe to.
11. Travel more and see new places.
12. Attend workshops.
13. Stop buying dead-tree books I can’t possibly have the time to read.
14. Get vaccinated for Hepatitis A and B.
15. Learn how to cook.
16. Learn how to use Adobe InDesign.
17. Expand musical horizon, discover artists, borrow friends’ CDS and rip songs.
18. Watch less TV.
19. Blog everyday.
20. Wake up earlier in the morning.
21. Visit places I’ve never been to: Bahay Tsinoy, Quezon Memorial Circle, National Museum, Manila Zoo...
22. Read the Bible (and not drowse).
23. Forget Virra Mall; Quiapo’s cheaper.
24. Try to limit internet usage.
25. Meet new friends.
26. Do something about my massive knowledge gap in Philippine history.
27. Ask for other people’s lists of favorite books.
28. Stop buying DVD’s/VCd’s; borrow and rip instead.
29. Stop drinking softdrinks.
30. Eat nuts/dried fruits for snacks instead of burgers.
31. Get vegetarian meals from Bodhi.
32. Eat more protein-rich food.