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Tungkol sa pag-upo ni Ynik Ante, mga rally, at anik-anik pang cheverloo March 3, 2012

Posted by pilibustero in Random Thoughts.
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Note: This repost is an opinion essay by an org brod on the case involving our sis, Ynik Ante (SAKBAYAN), the duly elected Chairperson of the UPLB University Student Council last February 22-24 elections. Despite the legitimate mandate of the Iskolar ng Bayan of UPLB, the Central Electoral Board maliciously decided not to proclaim Ante and instead recommended the proclamation of BUKLOD-UPLB’s standard bearer, Joyce Divino (2nd Place) on grounds of technicality due to a supposed late-payment of tuition fee of Ms Ante. Apparently, Ante was able to have her Form 5 marked registered on the same day the CEB ruled against her. This is in effect rendered the CEB ruling moot. However, the CEB led by OSA Director Lt. Col Vivian Gonzales continues to disregard the mandate of Ms Ante, which is an utter insult and brazen violation of students rights. 

ni John Mervin Embate

Studyante ka muna bago ka maging leader?

Sa ibang aspekto, oo, maaari. Subalit sa kabilang banda,alalahanin mo na mamamayan ka muna ng bayan bago ka naging estudyante, at tungkulin mo na maglingkod. Mandatory yun, mga hijo at hija. Kung mag-aaral ka ng Pamantasan ng Pilipinas, wala kang choice kung hindi ang maglingkod. Yun nga lang, may tunay at may japeyk — kahit naman sa totoong buhay hindi ba?

At papaano mo ihihiwalay ang mga tunay na naglilingkod sa naglilingkod-lingkuran lang?

Ang naglilingkod, kayang magsakripisyo. Kayang ihanay ang prayoridad sa buhay — iuna ang pagsisilbi kaysa sa gimik, kaysa pamilya, kaysa sarili, at oo, sa pag-aaral.

Nakatrabaho ko si Ynik sa maraming pagkakataon. Sis ko siya. Kaibigan ko siya. At alam ko kung ano ang inilalaan niya para magsilbi, para maglingkod sa bayan, para sa mga estudyante. Sabihin na natin, na, oo, medyo hindi nga siya kabilang sa mga estudyante sa unibersidad na laging nagta-top sa klase, hindi nga siya yung tipo na tuta ng mga professors, pero hindi matatawaran ang oras at pawis at dugo na inaalay niya para sa pamantasan, at para sa mga estudyante na bumubuo sa kalakhan nito.

Tapos sasabihin ninyo na hindi siya mabuting ehemplo sa mga estudyante?

Hindi ko ito sinasabi dahil lang sa Sis ko sya. O dahil kaibigan ko siya. O dahil pula ako (oo, inaamin ko) at suportado ko ang pag-rarally sa lansangan. Sinasabi ko ito dahil ito ang alam kong tama, at ito ang ipinamulat sa akin ng apat na taon kong pananatili sa unibersidad.

At hindi ko lubos na masikmura ang paninira sa kanya ng mga tao. Hiling niyo at pakiusap ang katotohanan sa bawat posts niyo, sa bawat rantings niyo, ngunit laman ba nitong mga “sabi-sabi” na to ang katotohanan at katotohanan lamang?

Mahaba at nakakaburat ang usapin tungkol dito sa karapatan ni Ynik na maupo bilang USC Chair. Pero nagsalita na ang balota. Pinayagan syang kumandidato. Hinarang nung una, oo. Pero pumayag din. At ngayong nanalo. Tapos biglang babawiin?! Ano to, pawnshop?

Subalit ang hindi ko mas lalong matanggap ay ang mga estudyante na may negatibong pagkiling sa pagrarally. Well, hindi naman trabaho ng mga nag-rarally na i-please at i-pamper ang lahat ng estudyante. Pero nakakatawa lang. Tila lumalabas kasi na ang mga estudyante ngayon ay wala ng utang na loob at respeto sa mga taong naglalaan ng oras, ng panahon, nagsasakripisyo na magbilad sa araw, magpakabasa sa ulan, pipigilan pa ng mga pulis, mumurahin (kulang na lang duraan sa mukha), aarestuhin, ikulong, yapakan ang karapatan — lahat ng ito para lamang maisulong at maihain ang kanilang pinaglalaban. At sa impormasyon niyo lamang po, KAYO po ang kanilang pinaglalaban. Hindi po nila ito ginagawa para lamang makalamang. Hindi po nila ito ginagawa bilang pogi-points. Ginagawa po nila ito dahil ang layon po nila ay mapanatiling matatag ang karapatan ng mga estudyante at ng mga marginalized sector ng lipunan.

Oh eto. Isang bulok pero relevant na halimbawa. Nung pumutok ang TOFI, sino ang naunang ipinaglaban ang karapatan mong magbayad ng tamang tuition para sa isang state university? At ano nga bang batch mo, hijo, hija? ‘08? ‘09? ‘10? Teh, hindi ka pa estudyante ng UP, yung kapakanan mo na ang ibinabalandra nila sa kalsada.

At pagkatapos, sasabihin niyo na naiinis kayo sa mga nagrarally? Na porke may karapatan silang magrally, e pwede na silang magrally kahit kelan nila gusto? Hindi po ito pagtetext, o pag-iinternet, o pag-mamasturbate na pwede niyong gawin kung kelan niyo naisin. May purpose po ito. May halaga. At nakakalungkot na ipinaglalaban nila ang mga taong walang-pake, mga taong-kebs, kumbaga, mga taong tae.

Ikaw ba, ano na bang nagawa mo sa pamantasan? Sa palagay mo ba ang pag-aaral at pag-eexcel sa klase ay sapat lang? Isa kang mabuting estudyante kung gagraduate ka with honors. Pero naging mabuti ka bang mamamayan?

Tandaan mo, hindi ka lang estudyante sa Pamantasan ng Pilipinas; estudyante ka NG Pamantasan ng Pilipinas. Magkaibang-bagay yun. Bitibit mo ang pangalan ng iyong bayan kaya mayroong nakapatong na responsibilidad sa’yo para maglingkod. At ang paglilingkod na iyon ay tagus-tagusan mula sa simpleng pag-upo sa klase, pakikinig sa titser, pagsusulat ng notes, pagpapaphoto-copy ng handouts, at pampeperpek sa eksam. Kung ganoon kang klaseng estudyante, sabihin mo nga, anong pinagkaiba mo sa estudyante ng ibang pamantasan? (Pero sa loob-loob mo, kung makapagsabi ka ng UP and Others, aba, kapal mo lang!)

Justice for Given Grace! October 14, 2011

Posted by pilibustero in Personal.
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Given Grace Cebanico was a BS Computer Science junior at the University of the Philippines Los Baños when she fell victim to ‘rape’ and then murder around the the university’s vicinity last Tuesday.Let’s offer our prayers for the repose of her soul. May she REST IN PEACE!

JUSTICE for GIVEN GRACE.

Report here.

Living Independently June 27, 2011

Posted by pilibustero in Personal.
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Living away from home is a recurring idea that comes and goes in my mind since I decided to study in Los Baños almost a decade ago. Now it’s timely since we just moved in to our new apartment, relatively near to my workplace. The catch, however, is that I’m with Ive, of course. Well, speaking of living in together among couple, mostly students in this nature setting is a common occurrence. Not to mention the mostly co-ed arrangement in dormitories and apartments alike. This is also apparent among organizations (org houses). But this is done on assumption of regularity and wholesomeness.

This same setup reminds me of how my parents were surprised upon learning during a visit to our apartment that I am sharing the unit with my org mates (brods/sisses) before I graduated. Proactively though, by the time they arrived there, we were able to keep the bottles of alcohol and ashtrays off their sight.

Indeed, college living, hundred, if not thousand kilometers away from home, is once in a lifetime experience. Many students can share a wide range of formidable and unforgettable stories, some even become legends. For the well-off students, a fully furnished dormitory or apartment (the likes of Westbrook, St Therese, 5th of September, Del Ray, etc) is the ideal choice. But for struggling students, the modest dorms inside the campus (Men’s, Women’s, New, Vet and Forestry dorms) and the makeshift bed spaces (along Grove) are a better and affordable choices (actually you got no choice).

This is the reality away from home where no one could prevent or stop you from your indulgences, except maybe for lack of money and when neighbors alert the barangay due to excessive noise, either because of music or indiscriminate laughter.
When it comes to food, mostly I guess everyone has a piece to share on skipping meals or crashing on a friend’s house to partake of any food there is to survive the day while waiting for your allowance. Good thing for me, I was then staying in Ellen’s which allows me to add on my meals to my rent.

Nevertheless, I still had experienced skipping many meals and settling on the infamous pancit canton and bread diet for a week. We also have the toppings n’ soup and proven n’ rice meals or avail of the orientation-hoppings or open tambayan roundups. You just have to endure the long lines or the look in other’s eyes if you’re sensitive.

Well that was yesterday. Now that I am already working, and relies mainly on my minimal earnings from work, I can well avail of other things I don’t get used to avail, especially food or gadgets. But the challenge is to strike a balance in every aspect of my finances (read: budgeting). Unlike the budgeting in college, I am now on my own. I can’t afford anymore to just ask my parents or siblings that I needed this and that. In fact, by choice that, if possible, I tried to lend a little to them. Plus, as mother would always remind me, save on for the future.

So when Ive graduated last semester, we decided that it’s wise and economical to stay together and share on expenses. We got a two-bedroom modest apartment at a reasonable rate. Since it’s within a village and inside a compound, we find it relatively safe and quiet. And since its bigger than my previous houses the past 8 years, we’re opening it for transient friends and meetings of our orgs.

Indeed, the advantage of studying or working away from home enables you to stand on your own. You can opt to do what you want, but marrying independence with responsibility is another case.

Ode to the Summer Snow April 15, 2011

Posted by pilibustero in Arts & Culture, Personal.
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Indeed, UPLB, or Los Baños for that matter, is tantamount to nature and its underlying wonders.

When I was still in college, it awes me to see the unique display of nature’s wonders expressed through the shedding of cotton like material from the kapok (Ceiba pentandra) tree prevalent in Mt Makiling and inside the campus. This emergent tree of tropical adaptation has the ability to produce its own cotton-like fibers within its elongated ‘fruit’, which imminently cracks during summer, giving way to the shedding. The fiber is light, highly buoyant and very resilient, hence, the illusion of a snow fall during these times of the year. However, in recent years, some individuals (including my former professor) observed an unusual delay if not non-occurence of the ‘snow fall’, including that of the narra leaves and flowers surrounding the Humanities building. Hypothetical ideas suggest that this may have to do with climate change.


Ode to the UPLB Winter (2009)

This year’s nature extravaganza of some sort is exceptional (see photo). But more than than the aesthetic appeal of the shedding, lies a meaningful semblance to students. That these times of the year highlighted by the snow fall, signify survival and triumph from the rigid education in UP. On the other hand, for others whose fate are hanging, the kapok tree is a constant reminder of determination and consistency. While for alumni (like me) and others who frequent the campus, this is an added purse to UPLB’s identity. Remembering this summer scene ellicit some amounts of nostalgia and reminiscence.

(photo courtesy of kreg) *This was originally posted in April 2009

Ode to the Summer Snow April 17, 2009

Posted by pilibustero in Personal.
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Indeed, UPLB, or Los Baños for that matter, is tantamount to nature and its underlying wonders.

When I was still in college, it awes me to see the unique display of nature’s wonders expressed through the shedding of cotton like material from the kapok (Ceiba pentandra) tree prevalent in Mt Makiling and inside the campus. This emergent tree of tropical adaptation has the ability to produce its own cotton-like fibers within its elongated ‘fruit’, which imminently cracks during summer, giving way to the shedding. The fiber is light, highly buoyant and very resilient, hence, the illusion of a snow fall during these times of the year. However, in recent years, some individuals  (including my former professor) observed an unusual delay if not non-occurence of the ‘snow fall’, including that of the narra leaves and flowers surrounding the Humanities building. Hypothetical ideas suggest that this may have to do with climate change.

3203764_b2a538caeca7e98ed6cf94541a7d4296
Ode to the UPLB Winter

This year’s nature extravaganza of some sort is exceptional (see photo). But more than than the aesthetic appeal of the shedding, lies a meaningful semblance to students. That these times of the year highlighted by the snow fall, signify survival and triumph from the rigid education in UP. On the other hand, for others whose fate are hanging, the kapok tree is a constant reminder of determination and consistency. While for alumni (like me) and others who frequent the campus, this is an added purse to UPLB’s identity. Remembering this summer scene ellicit some amounts of nostalgia and reminiscence.

(photo courtesy of kreg)