Thursday, April 26, 2018

Kalayaan na Tumakbo: Let “U and A” Meet

What if you only have a few more days left to live? Or what if you have a loved one in such a predicament? How about if you can actually help out in extending the days for one who’s about to “go”? Can we make that connection work amidst the digital connection that we’re currently more drawn into, investing in and spending on? Is there a fun way to do so?

When having fun could be a responsible thing...

Amidst today’s technological breakthrough and social media generation, a substantial means in manifesting fun is through the convenience of digital spectrum. One doesn’t have to leave a room (or should we say “one does not even leave a room”) yet virtually connects with that of anything that makes one have fun...

On the other hand, some go out of the way if only to project (or brand their image as) some “virtual reality” of their own version of fun as much as it is “more than a profile” but it is for validation, acceptance, affirmation or for whatever reason that suits them perhaps.

Ironically, despite online’s wide-ranging capacity for us to see and explore a bigger picture, we are limited to that of what we “preferably click on” so to speak. Little do we know, we’re already consumed by this digital influence. Backed by human nature’s opinionated frame of mind, everything seemed to be coursed through social media; may it be suggestions or solutions, expressions or concerns, even tantrums or sulking, make-believes or what-have-you... in exchange for what? Consensus?

Consumed as well by our own thoughts and temperament more than a better approach to address these issues/problems, lest we neglect or forget that these matters are actually petty compared to others whose bigger concern is how to even live for another day...

Take those patients undergoing dialysis for instance. The process which aids them to see the light of (the next) day costs about P2,000 per session; and they need to have 3 sessions a week. What if they don’t have the means? Wouldn’t it be generous and benevolent to extend a life even if it’s just for a day not only for the patient but for the family as well to be given an opportunity to spend the remaining (quality) time together until the last minute? What if you have even just a fraction of that amount to spare as a sacrifice instead for a supposed “cellphone load amount” perhaps?

You could be the answer... Time to make a difference...

Uncles and Aunties, let us unite for a cause. There have been requests for a meet-up (eyeball) among members for all its worth. Let us do so while we still have the capacity for it. More so, let it be more than for a good reason but more than anything else, let it be with noble essence.

We’ve been called to serve... We thought and conceptualized an event where we can actually achieve more than just the sharing of time and resources. We came up with the “Kalayaan Fun Run, Food and Music Festival” slated for June 9 in time for and in celebration of “Araw ng Kalayaan” (June 12). A fitting partnership with the brave men willing to fight for our lives (the 21st Armed Forces Group Reserve), we ask you to also reserve some of your generosity for our June 9 Kalayaan event for the benefit of the Baguio General Hospital and Medical Center dialysis patients.

Now, as insinuated, it’ll be a responsible kind of having fun as we‘d likewise address how to relive that old-Baguio feel. Uhmm, isn’t it a fitting Uncles and Aunties kind of experience, right? A possible family bonding moment (sans the “gadgets-on-hand”) while enjoying:

  • 3k Kiddie Run or
  • 5k Beer Run or
  • 10-Miler Trail Run (Yellow Trail)

Registration fee: P350, P550 and P1,000 respectively, inclusive of singlets, race bibs and drinks; registration area is at the ground floor of Porta Vaga Mall or at St. Vincent Gym.
This will somehow be a way (even for just a day) to do away with gadgets as some means to spend quality time together...

At the finish line where everyone is to convene for an epic gathering of “free spirited” peeps (hence, kalayaan), expected are the food festival’s wide array of delectable treats converged into a “chili cook-off sort of a set-up” similar to that of the 80’s. It’ll be at the (wide) open field of Scout Barrio (near Camp John Hay). Likewise a gathering of local food establishments in support of Baguio’s foodscape; thus, for those of you who are in the food business and are interested to participate, you can likewise course your benevolence through this. (It’ll be on a first come, first serve basis - we will keep you posted on the registration details).

Whereas for the music, other than there’ll be DJs playing varied genres in setting the mood and for added harmony, there’ll be several bands that will as well provide us with tuneful entertainment from revivals, 80’s music to reggae and so much more (Woodstock kind of concert probably?) For Uncles and Aunties who are into this or with a band, you might want to consider belting it out. Country music perhaps or what-not; why not?

We will be updating you on further details. For now, we need your support. For the right way to express freedom (kalayaan), this is it! More than a meet-and-greet sort of an “eyeball”, it’ll be “let’s MEET and be GREAT” for it’s for a greater good.

Mabuhay ang Kalayaan Uncles and Aunties!!

Friday, March 2, 2018


While there are good actresses in showbiz, the role of “Contessa” for GMA’s upcoming telenovela of the same title couldn’t be more fitting than to be portrayed by its Kapuso star Glaiza de Castro. “Wala lang, sinabi ko e, trip lang...” Nah! Kidding! I was just channeling the real Glaiza if only to sound like someone who could stir mixed reactions and emotions much like her versatility.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t know Glaiza that well (more so, not on a personal level) but neither would I like to sound bias. Fans and media peeps (depending on affiliation) may have a different take to which it may be founded on some partial inclination. Thus, I’d like to present a more balanced take on that.

And so having had the chance to sit down with her together with Jak Roberto at Outlook Ridge Residences (dinner c/o Café Adriana), we seized the moment for a rather casual conversation. Prior to that, I have no thorough grasp as to who Glaiza is in real life adapting to her every portrayal. Thus, our conversation focused on her personality relating to that of her Contessa’s character “Bea”.

Having been “hated” for her previous antagonist roles, I’d say she’s good, very good... I would have said 'effective' but that could be misconstrued for her being such a real “bad girl”, innately justifying the role. But you see, here’s the thing, despite of her “kontrabida looks” and imposing image, she’s quite nice. Now, that’s where her depiction of “Bea” comes in. She’s now on the other side of the drama.

...with The Other Bloggers

Yet, as “temperamental” as with any plot’s twists and turnaround telenovelas have, the actress in Glaiza lives up to that presumed characterization. And as audience, we don’t have to stereotype actors from that of their last or most compelling performance. A role is “just a role” set to be depictive of the character, not the other way around which Glaiza’s “Bea-to-Contessa” kind of adaptability could pull it off.

True enough, by all accounts, she “pulled” me (as much as I was fooled) into that assumption that she’s “intimidating” much like her wicked characters (and as a celebrity of course)... To my surprise, we were made to warm-up with her unpretentious demeanor. We got what we came there for, a pleasant conversational meet-up. Good girl, that Glaiza de Castro is. “BEAutiful!”

Whereas for Jak Roberto, he still has that hint of his “Andoy-bo (adobo) flavor” much like the “witty mainstay” he assumes in Bubble Gang. Though for his “Contessa” role as “Jong”, he managed to likewise transition himself from the like of his currently more popular role as Andoy (of Meant To Be) to that of Contessa’s “ever loyal BFF”. On this note, we asked him if he has, similarly, been “friend zoned” in real life to which he and Glaiza laughed it off, apparently an affirmation.

Possibly for any regular fan, with his fine attributes (not to “shallowly” mention the physique side of his package being known as “Pambansang Abs” and all), who’d think this hunk also gets relegated to being “second-fiddle”... Much like his “Jong” character to that of Mark Herras’ “Mark Caballero”, it’s possible. More so, like his life’s success story, there’s a good reason. He modestly admits his humbling limitations as means for better appreciation of his current windfalls.

The point, however, is that the life-seasoned person in this actor is very much an experienced young man who’d do justice portraying any role. His alter-ego “Jong” is a manifestation how he “alters” his ego if only to give relevance to a character’s purpose. Truly an actor, more true as a person, he’s a true-to-life inspiration. “Jak of all trades!”

Kapuso Mo, Glaiza de Castro at Jak Roberto! No Contessa'bout it!

Catch more of them, watch Contessa, malapit na! (March 19)

"Para sa showbiz happening,
pareho pala ang sapatos nila Jak Roberto at Lhar Santiago"

Wednesday, February 28, 2018

BENECO: Electrifying Servitude

The discovery of fire was a turning point (picture the cavemen’s reaction). Yet the discovery of electricity was, as it is, “electrifying”... Just imagine our lives today without it... And yet, we don’t really feel “electrified” considering we’re so accustomed to its actuality apparently reckoned as an overfamiliar necessity.

Today, fire is as useful; yet electricity is a “sure-fire” means to light up our lives... True enough, electricity is a manifestation of progress. And as indeed so, Baguio/Benguet, through BENECO (Benguet Electric Cooperative) as its electricity service provider, is as fortunate.

You see as above-implied, we apparently overlook such essential to simply rely on it as some “regular convenience” taken for granted with a bit of an overbearing inclination as it’s nevertheless a service that’s paid for... Lest we fail to appreciate the functionality in all its entirety. We only know BENECO as the service provider who charges us nonetheless and the receiving-end of related complaints and backlash.

Yup, guilty as “charged” (pun intended)... Speaking of which, do you know that our “current” rate here per kWh is one if not the cheapest across the nation? It is... and yet we actually get more service than what’s billed. At times if not often however, we even complain about a hefty bill which in point of fact is due to our own consumption. Whereas for the “system loss” charge, we also have the lowest all over the country.

While we may see how BENECO is benefiting from all of these, they’re in fact focused on the provision of public service being a non-stock/non-profit entity more than anything else. Their investment on some state of the art equipment and assets are likewise for better service. A sense of pride for the constituency/community in general actually as our BENECO has been awarded for pioneering such breakthrough among other electric companies. They’ve been likewise cited for their other extra service ~ from their corporate social responsibility (CSR) programs like providing basic education among the less fortunate to the installation of street lights and donation of high-end CCTV cameras to the city among their many other notable projects ~ past, ongoing or in the offing.

Come to think of it, considering these developments, charges upon us are quite negligible compared to that of other areas. There seems to be no “return of investments” for a cost that they have to pass on to us. Try to assume how heavy that’ll be for consumers if, say, BENECO has been privatized by some firm having to worry about ROI for the investors’ capital... Chances are, it’s going to be “shock wave” for a ripple effect of which such burden will be alleviated at the expense of consumerism.

This said, BENECO has come up with a consumer empowerment program wherein we have a voice. As a matter of fact, we have been consumed by whatever it is that kept us preoccupied to the point we don’t get to participate in the affairs of the cooperative supposedly involving us. Again, guilty as charged. Anyone among you who has voted for BENECO’s BOD for instance? --- Yeah right!

After this, they served lunch too...

Thus, it was worth the time having been invited to their Member Consumer Empowerment Program orientation. Quite aptly, I was “enLIGHTened” out of my naivety on matters pertaining to who as much as what BENECO is to us. From when complaints from consumers where justifiable up until they stood up to the challenge, got their acts together and live up to their calling. From the management to the linemen, their service-oriented dedication is “a beam of light that keeps us out of the dark-age” so to speak.

By this, I’m rediscovering fire... the fire in me as a consumer to likewise “light up the torch” if only to pass on this little knowledge (for now) to hopefully ignite your senses as to be in-the-know and to be more involved... fire up that appreciation... inflame our awareness... kindle openhandedness... spark that support for BENECO as their franchise contract’s end is drawing near and, most likely not far behind, interested private enterprises are on the prowl... Let there be no “dark kind of power interruption”... Let not our caves cave-in... Let there be light!

"Earliest Man"

Now we know...

Monday, February 26, 2018

The Clash ...with the Truth

Truth be told as I’ve pointed out from a previous post how Baguio peeps seem impassive over celebrities, it’s not the manifestation of condescension but more on our respect for their privacy commensurate to that of our reservedness. That’s from a personal standpoint at least or from how I’ve known Baguio people to be from way back... Considering how we don’t know these celebrities personally, it’s unfair to rather assume that they have our apathy coming.

Thus, having been invited to a press conference at Forest House for GMA’s upcoming reality TV for a singing competition kind of a show ‘The Clash’, there was an apparent “clash” of thoughts going on in my head as well on how I’d be addressing questions as much as how “that Baguio person” in me will still be as composed conversing with the show’s host, no less than the Asia’s Songbird herself Ms. Regine Velasquez-Alcasid. Being the big star that she is, my initial supposition was if she’s some prima donna who’d most likely come in as strong as my apparent assumption of her celebrity status. Damn, I was wrong.

She even came in earlier than the rest of the press people to our surprise. “A” and I were the first one to arrive and as soon as the network’s PR staff introduced us, it was so casual. Nothing really big there, though “A” got starstruck in a way. Dumbfounded, we were limited to a few questions and listening to her as she made sense in answering other inquiries and addressing issues... You see, there was another “clash” there for us as the line of questioning from the more seasoned traditional media people were as typical in gaining some “juicy” info... I would have preferred it to be a casual conversation corresponding with spontaneity as an old-school blogger and, as above-mentioned, being “from Baguio” for that matter.

Kapuso Mo 'Diay sika Apo

Those “clashing of thoughts” slowly faded as Regine warmly addressed queries related to the show “The Clash” as I somehow gauged and equated her every take on raised concerns to that of how she is as a person if only to gain a deeper understanding of people of similar stature which Baguio people seem to prematurely surmise.

I’d say, there was that conscious effort from her to be as sensible behind some levelheaded sarcasm. She was as professional without being offensive however pragmatic. On balancing that complementing “clash” for a note, it gives her even more credibility to host “The Clash”. Well yes, as everyone knows, she’s likewise an exceptional singer which merits her that credit but ‘The Clash’ presents far more “clashing” twists wherein Regine’s persona and overall background fit that role. As additional background for people like me who, on the face of it, lack supplementary insights to be fairly analytical, she’s as down-to-earth which could most likely be a characteristic of would-be ‘The Clash’ contestants as they sing their way towards their aspirations much like how Regine started through the show “Ang Bagong Kampeon” years ago. That said, she can empathize or for a more “harmonious” compassion, be-in-tune with every contestant.

The Songbird and "Some Beard(ed guy)"

Auditions have started. For Baguio, it was at Sunshine Park during the Panagbenga celebration and Regine was there to show her support... As per Regine, her language of love is through giving, she could as well give more than just the chance to get a glimpse of her presence; talk about being the “in-tune to your track” kind of person you want to be associated with as you “clash” (with others) for a shot to “Sing with Clash!” 

The Clash, coming soon at GMA!

with Lhar Santiago...
"para sa showbiz happening" (na 'to), Omeng Fallarme 😜

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Uncles and Aunties in the Middle

Being “Uncles and Aunties” currently, we’re actually in the middle age. Pun-intentionally, we’re “in-between” the age of old-school propriety and the generation of modern “notoriety”. We balance yesteryears’ simplicity and the complexity of today’s technological breakthrough. Yet, mostly among the young ones as we traverse “middle age”, they seem to deem it as midlife crisis. Apparently, the “psychological crossroad” though is the variability of one’s age group as to where they actually belong to, considering that there are varying generation classifications, age-wise.

It’s within that turning point along a clash between getting pulled by one’s youth and being pushed to full maturity. Outwardly a case of “contend or content”.

These social groupings isn’t any different from being in the middle age as it depends on life expectancy. If we are to base it on the current Filipinos’ average life expectancy rate being at around the age of 68, middle age I’d say is around 35 to 55 as compared to that of Wikipedia’s general definition to be around 45 to 65. We might as well agree then that it’s 35 to 65 if only to cover a safer assumption (Regardless, I’m in either category lol; although for Baguio, given our laidback disposition and lifestyle, I suppose we have a longer life expectancy.)


For the middle aged group however, there’s no point in arguing if it’s indeed some sort of a midlife crisis as we’re more mature than that to even refute and justify it to be anything other than an emotional critical point. Being “in the middle” after all is serving to be a balancing factor.

True enough, we’re old enough to have lived through both worlds to know better... and it’s adequate enough to prove them otherwise. A weighty head start in fact if we are to likely reason out “Papunta ka pa lang, pabalik na ako” just as how such dictum was likewise used by our predecessors addressed to us back then. We’ve experienced the best (and probably the not so good part) of both worlds where we’d most likely get-by regardless of time. Imagine today’s generation if they could survive “budget” over gadget? Yet, if they’ve been accustomed to it like how we did, they’d probably be as flexible and they’d be able to adapt; I’d at least openly give them that.

We become the glue that makes that connection. I believe that we’re the “Generation X” for a binding reason. Through us, we “X-pound and X-plicate an X-cceptable X-planation” for that of Generation Y and iGeneration’s “Whys and i’s”. We X-tend those excuses to “Why not” and “We instead of I”... Possibly a “pretXt” as our fleXibility makes us the pre-Millennials to their Millennial and Post Millennial orientation as much as we are post-Baby Boomers (“Boomer’s Baby”). We’re X-marked as the “middle child”.

It is our generation that is X-pected to X-ude rationality as we absorb the “compartmental resistance” like the “magnetic force” that we become to their magnets’ opposite poles. Yes, there is that “interconnection”... more of composite than opposite actually. Seemingly, we become the parents of our children we introduce to their grandparents (and vice versa); that kind of connection... It’s our role to balance that and “make both ends meet”. Thus, let us refrain from focusing on the pride-inducing differences but rather embrace the correlation. We have our respective eras.

By “respective”, I mean we could apply the key word there to be “respect”. While respect is something earned and not demanded, we earn it by likewise showing it. For instance in looking back at our time (the good ol’ days) vis-à-vis with that of their’s, let us rather integrate the “purposeful comparison” in lieu of an “egocentric difference”. Similarly, let us not assume as to who or what’s better considering we all have a role to play along the way that of which are all intermingled in a way.

We have to be cautious as well as conscious on what our children turn out to be notwithstanding the difference in time and environs because it’s somehow a reflection of our guidance.

That’s what makes “Uncles and Aunties of Baguio” different. With that “customary Baguio term for proper courtesy”, we’re all related/connected with Baguio as our common denominator. For us Gen X, the current Uncles and Aunties, we owe it to our “Uncles and Aunties” (the Baby Boomers) that kind of connection we are to pass on to the next generation of Uncles and Aunties.

Baguio is (or shall I say was) one household so to speak. If we are to describe what we were as to how they say it now, we were “In a Relationship”. We thrived in being passive of positivities yet outwardly impassive of the opposing thing with due civility to whom/where courtesy was due while giving “affinity” considerable thought. Our relationship now seems "It's Complicated".

What happened? Where did it go?

Take note of (that lost) respect:

  • We may be as opinionated then, but we did not resort to bashing or even rallies (shout-out of collision of coalition) as we respected the tradition of the elders’ diplomatic way of addressing issues; we were not “political”. (Now, we abuse self-entitlement partial to our preference without regard for others’ choice and rights.)
  • We may have a voice but we know when to “just keep quiet” or just ignore what “should not” bother us as some means to respect our difference in opinion. (Now, we're too sensitive thus there’s that need to “scratch that itchy tongue” by blurting out even uncalled for comment/s and a similarly partial belief...)
  • We may be of mixed race, an immigrant or of Cordilleran-lineage and influenced by various factors but it’s what made us well-rounded and respectful of others’ penchant, color, language/mother-tongue and even racial background. (Now, we’ve become overly clannish and “hardcore exclusive” as if we’re the only one that matters disregarding others' contribution and respective style/approach...)
  • We may not go gaga over celebrities but it didn’t mean we don’t admire them; we just respected their personal space as much as we respected our Baguio-accustomed “local” decorum. (Now, it’s reasoned out more as a conceited propensity like we’re “a star shining brighter”.)
  • We may have valued our simple and casual bearings, but back then, we were sincerely welcoming and respected guests and visitors’ appreciation of our city as a tourist destination. (Now, we generalize tourists as those “unwelcomed ones” we want driven away.)
  • These are just a few of the many changes...

Again, what happened to us?

Back then, every body KNEW everybody, thus “Uncles and Aunties of Baguio” aims to relive or hopefully regain that lost “relationship” among us/those lost ties between us. Because despite of the “naivety” on the ever-changing technological innovations, the grey hair, the back pains, the rheumatism and all, we can still make a difference. And we can (re)start by reconnecting and injecting good vibes through positivity and happiness instead. “Uncles and Aunties of Baguio” are after all “Uncle-lit at Auntie-bay”. We’re here for that... It's "Uncle" for unity "Auntie" relive happy memories.

Mabuhay po tayong lahat!

as of Dec 17 and counting...

Monday, November 20, 2017

Uncles and Aunties of Baguio: Who We Are is Who We Were

While it’s true that it was patterned from, as well as inspired by the far more reaching “Titos and Titas of Manila” Facebook group which apparently has been conceptualized from its recently implied premise, “Uncles and Aunties of Baguio“ on the other hand was initially thought of and created for the purpose of a more nonchalant acceptance given its commonplace exclusivity other than reliving the good old times as an acknowledgment of the difference from any other generation.

Come to think of it, the connotation behind “Tito/Tita of (what place)” as currently referred to doesn’t actually have “that sweet” forethought. It’s almost leaning towards “that sourness” caught between “nagmumurang kamatis” and being “may asim pa”... Imagine (say) one in his 40s at a party among a bunch most likely half his age “leveling” with the young ones still yet courteously addressed as “Tito” (not to mention, that’s with ”po” and ”opo”)...

However, not to appear defensive and at the same time brush off that seeming denial phase, it’s deemed by “Titos and Titas” as some means to counteract with a “comparative difference” based on partiality to their time and the outward projection that they can still keep up.

Here in Baguio however, Uncle and Auntie (Tito and Tita) has a “relatively familiar and traditional” undertone; at least, during the time of “Titos and Titas”. Its use extends further to courteously address anyone old enough to qualify as such. Even those manning sari-sari stores were referred to as Uncle or Auntie; “Manong and Manang” were for those just-a-bit-older than us...

There seemed to be no strangers considering how small Baguio (population-wise) was. The “every body knows everybody” frame of reference back then manifests in that “you’re from Baguio” familiarity. I remember how we greet or acknowledge our “acquaintance” upon seeing a co-Baguio resident anywhere outside of the city (“Uy, taga Baguio...”). There was one instance sometime ago when I saw former Mayor then-City Councilor Peter Rey Bautista at SM City North Edsa, we nodded in recognition and even shook hands... Had the same experience with other “familiar faces” several times.

As an “Uncle (or Tito of Baguio and Manila)” myself, I’ve seen the difference and the progression of/from both ends from back then to now. Like anyone else, we may not know everything but we’re certain though of the fact based on our own discretion and discrimination that we grew up along the best music era as we were in harmony. In fact, you can expect one of the best night life of fun for a party even among today’s generation (or millennials as we call them) with a DJ from the 80’s behind the turntable. Yes, “turn the tables” even, no prob; we’re flexible that way. We’ve also donned a colorful array of overlays (physically and figuratively) as cool as we thought we were only to be included among the “worst fashion styles” today... This said, we’ve had our share of ups and downs, enough to confirm we’re far from the epitome of what and how life should be... Yet we manage... We're not perfect but, at least, we're happy. Similarly with the "Uncles and Aunties" Facebook group, despite the "imperfection", it's better than the likewise annoying social media posts from clashing parties and what-not.

Life was simple back then, nonetheless, we know how to be “passive impassive” when dealing with intricacies as well as complications. Notwithstanding, we rather maintain our even-tempered disposition.

For the current “Uncles and Aunties”, we’ve seen as much as experienced the time of our lives growing in a laidback and peaceful community and along the way, have gone through leaps-and-bounds kind of changes and technological breakthrough in every aspect of our being; more so, becoming today’s “Uncles and Aunties” (of Baguio). While today’s generation, our children’s (or “nephews/nieces’) generation continues to grow and thrive in this modern “world wide web (www)” so to speak, we’ve gone through both worlds with our own “www” for a reason giving us “that edge”. That “www” might as well stand for “Who We Were!” or “Ways We Went-through/by...” It sure gave us a formidable foundation.

Through this “Uncles and Aunties of Baguio” Facebook group, we hope to bring back Baguio’s old glory even just through our happy memories if only to serve as some basis for all of us to look back where we came from and, if possible, to apply the same virtue, tranquility, love and warmth (for our own kind/our Baguio/visitors given its tourist destination status/others, etc.) amidst today’s social media noise, detrimental issues, political turmoil and even proliferation of fake news among other concerns. Because Uncles and Aunties of Baguio are as real as we can get as much as how fun and real it was were our good ol’ days...

Thinning hairline, bulging waistline and all, “maasim na kam- este may asim pa kami noh!! Adda pay ibuga mi met or in this case, addu pay ibaga/i-post mi...”

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Spread The Love

Like the profound essence of love, this is the previous post, Stop The Hate’s continuation... A ‘Part 2’ if you will... a sequel, a spin-off, an extension, a supplement, an annex, a growth, a reason, a portion, a plot, a subplot or anything in between, a story, the “spreading” of it and everything else... It could as well be a “prequel”.

A “prequel” since ‘love’ has always been the beginning of everything. We’re all here because of love. No matter what and how our coming-into-being’s circumstance maybe, we’re here for a reason. Love is a purpose. To love and be loved is our quintessential objective.

An unending affair supposedly, considering letting go is likewise a manifestation of love. Love for one’s self is a primal requisite. Thus, don’t be too hard on yourself and others... Similarly, life’s lessons are love essentials. Love endures.

Along the way though, there’ll be trials and heartaches for one to possibly feel the opposite. Hate is as potent in dictating how you’d most likely react. This reaction will confirm another side of yourself. It’ll define a dark side of your personality or reputation. Consequently, it’ll pave the way to a corresponding response.

Hate, as intense as love is, is as strong a word capable of stirring psychological imbalance; an even stronger inkling when emotionally manifested. An obstacle for love to prosper. Yet an essential consciousness for one to appreciate love.

Love sets free... only if one freely understands and accepts hate as its perceptive however adverse flip side. We may know what love is, what it’s about, how it feels and all that but if insensible on hate’s repercussion brought about by its similarly unthought-of instigation, it renders love’s objective useless.

We are by nature (and understandably) sensitive to our own well-being, yet, consequently prompting intolerance for things that don’t go our way. It confines us within our limitations amidst the promise of moral sensibility. Even with such gift of prudence, we ironically fail to acknowledge our individualities and peculiarities. Hate instigated by pride and ego locks up our common sense, it detains our better judgment.

Freedom and diplomacy, it’s taken for granted in consideration of spreading your wings or clipping it as an expression of freewill either way, why choose the latter... Why not fly away/soar high to get a bird’s eye view for better understanding? Why swoop down on a prey from a one-sided angle? Tactful or confrontational? How could one be truly liberated, is it by wisely letting go or to belligerently hold your ground? Would you rather cross your fingers and have faith or cross your arms and be up in arms to confront one’s fate? If it’s destiny under one’s discretion, why settle for a path towards animosity?

Don’t you think that “We are but humans” is a weak justification of our human nature given our capacity for discernment as an advantage over other life forms? Another thing that gives us ascendancy among the living is love. It allows us to act appropriately, unlike other species relying on either instinct or through the course of nature. Yet such aptitude turns into attitude...

Accordingly, it’s really up to us. We were after all gifted with a consummate substantiation of love ~ freewill. From the word itself, “free will” ~ a self-determining preference/intent/decision, thus it’s not overbearing. Therefore, we might as well use it to spread the positive side of it... Constructive criticism is not ‘hate’ or, at least, there’s a diplomatic way to address and deliver such things. Modesty is one thing. Kindness is another. There’s a thin line between simply being proud and boastfully having pride.

Say an accomplishment of someone for instance, nevertheless, “spread” how it is such an achievement indeed. Lean towards the deed’s good points. Do not spread it in a way that it’ll be at the expense of and by being detrimental to the opposing party as to the difference and feasibility of its attainment or the lack thereof from the opposite end. By all means, gain fulfillment over such success, not over the other one’s failure; celebrate the love, not the hate.

Or to give a more precise paragon (yet relative to life), let’s refer to “choosing love” itself. When you have suitors for example, rejoice in being privileged to even have options, some don’t even have a choice. Be grateful of your advantage but do not be judgmental of other’s “downside”. Of these suitors, one could be the eventual lucky one. Get excited over the courtship process or a new relationship perhaps but you don’t have to rub-in the “ugly reason behind the rejection” of which you deem the others to be guilty of. Likewise, in justifying your choice, do not rob him off of his worthy attributes that led him to be your “top pick” by pointing out his rival/s’ negative traits instead. Your love for him or your love for each other being more impactful and rightfully matched regardless of circumstance and after those “series of tests” should be the edge he’d feel meritorious about celebrating with you. Yet now, people are more inclined to talk about the “juicier negativities” in such a way that “sour grapes” become “sweet lemons”. Outwardly, “hate is disguised as love” so to speak...

Love is not a competition. It’s not about gaining advantage over others as much as a “rejected suitor” should feel thankful to have given the opportunity to express his love (“It’s better to have loved and lost than to have never loved at all”). On the other hand, imagine having suitors with the same “likable qualities”, thus, don’t rely on what’s likable as ‘love’ is the answer. As I’ve always pointed out, when you like, you take; on the contrary, when you love, you give. When you base your decision on what you like instead of who you love, not far-fetched is a hate-inducing dislike lurking over possible disappointments due to failure of expectations... Whereas when it’s love, it’s more accepting, it understands...

Quite discordant though, we become more disappointed at people whom we’ve invested love for (I, myself, am guilty of this). Apparently reconciled to be pleased with a better treatment, the more hurtful it is when a letdown is from that of a loved one, even so, no matter how petty. We expect too much basing it on our own standards notwithstanding due deference for varying dispositions. Pride is more intense on this one, while ego is more strident among unfamiliar characters... Either way, it causes friction. Such heaviness takes a toll on pleasantries and good-natured affection. Love stalls.

Then again, why subject yourself to a destabilizing weight when you can actually drop that “off-balancing” heavy load and just carry-on with what’s rather beautiful. Fact is, as emphasized in Stop The Hate”, some people just can’t help but “spread hate”. They’re as crucial in serving a function if only for us to further spread love. Much like the existence of the serpent in the Garden of Eden in all its (supposedly) perfect glory, it is for us to understand now how we don’t have to be as weak to just fall for one fruit in exchange for what’s more fulfilling, to love and be loved... (to be continued...) err To be carried out...