Sunday, April 06, 2008

Middle ground

Here's an excerpt from a draft for an essay I've been working on. Yeah, brain fart. (I've been reading Seneca for crying out loud!) But believe me, it's going somewhere. At least it's supposed to. To the minotaurs: this is part of a reworked workshop piece; guess w/c 1.

"I am told, in this selfish world, that empathy—common understanding—is the cure for conflict. There is, they tell me, a proverbial middle ground where we can all live. Over the course of over-analysis and the institutionalization of living-well formulas, a warp was invented where I living in a gated subdivision while you living on the streets need not be a paradox where one is guilty and the other jealous. In this warp, animosity is not a word. The human spirit can transcend; if only we would reach out to each other, and even before helping, attain full knowledge of the other’s situation.

"There are signs of the human desire to understand the other. Consider when we read stories: everyday readers coast along pages like they do in life, treading along singular moments of aliw, latching on to characters that they can oh so relate to; the discerning readers seek to understand the most complex of characters, even the most scathing of villains. We seek an explanation because our hope lies in the fact that there’s always an explanation for when good was derailed, when the Samaritan’s heart turned into that of a Hannibal.

"Too easy, I think, to describe those like the latter as being sympathetically mature. I’d say conveniently placed in the pecking order, if not deranged altogether. If only we understood, they say, what Islam entailed, we would be fairer in our judgment of them, wouldn’t be so afraid. Furthermore, others will argue if only Muslims could understand where we were coming from as Christians, so they would convert to do things our way, the right way. On the other side, the Muslims are saying the same things about us.

"The middle ground is not a place rather a void, a point where one perspective is blinded from the other and vice-versa. And what we are left with is an illusion of an imagined Utopia, some purgatorial space disguised as Heaven.

"Think about that person down the street, that police officer by the bridge, that man driving your cab. Never mind how he looks, what he tells you. Through conversation and your keen discernment, you will understand him—but only while shackled by what you would like to project him to be. He will never be understood."

* * *

Torch passing

Had the pleasure, over the past few months, because of an invitation extended by the 2007-08 senior editors, to be involved in an advisory position in the selection of the 2008-09 Heights editorial board. I read the applications & was part of the panel of interviewers for all the candidates for the 3 executive positions as well as the candidates for the English & Filipino staff editors.

We (JPaul, Audrey, Kat, Joey, & myself) had a spirited conference (most candidates brought forth strong cases for themselves) about our appointments this past Monday & as made official thru a circulated email from JPaul, our appointments have been finalized:

Fidelis Tan, editor in chief
Petra Magno, associate editor
Panch Alvarez, managing editor

Marie La Viña, English editor
Wy Ong, associate English editor
Brandz Dollente, Filipino editor
Walther Hontiveros, associate Filipino editor
Elie Javier, art editor
Migs Mercado, associate art editor

Stef Macam, design editor
Sel Uy, special projects head
Angelica Candano, special projects head
Jay Alim, secretary general
Julio Julongbayan, secretary general

We are quite happy w/ next year’s team & are confident that they, along w/ a strong cast of returning members, will continue the rich tradition of Heights w/c I am proud to say I was once a part of as member & now as an alum.

Congrats to all!

Homeless pugs!

On the eve of New Year’s Eve, w/c is a whopping 4 months ago now, Sasha & I cut short our silly reminiscing & witnessed the birth of a little pug we for some reason decided to name Dalao. Little Dalao, now renamed Tryrone by Tita Chi Chi, along w/ Tyra, Georgia, & the rest, looks to find a new home w/ new loving humanoids (Sasha umiiyak sabay tapon ng yosi).

Here are the pics. Text me if interested, or email at


Post a Comment

<< Home