Saturday, May 8, 2010


What I thought to be an ordinary Saturday came out pleasurable with an exhilarating combo of trick and treat.

Saturday morning, I was asked if I am free in the afternoon. I don’t have a toastmasters meeting in the evening so she got a yes. My lab mate, our microbiologist, is thrilled to attend the graduation of her brother in the Negros Summer Workshop by the award-winning director Peque Gallaga. Her brother, a registered nurse, took basic acting. Now, I am excited too! What added more delight to her invitation is the treat she promised.

At around 10:00am, she came out from her room with a frown. She informed me, we will not anymore attend the graduation. Her brother decided not to. I inquired why. She explained that her brother is quite confused what to do with his life. He is torn.

So we had a change of plan. After office, instead of going to Bobs La Salle, we went to Bascon Café Lacson for the promised treat. I was starving when we arrived so I ordered a breakfast meal. I gobbled Hungarian sausage, sunny side-up egg, rice, bottomless orange juice at 5:00 in the afternoon.

Supposedly, her brother will follow. And we will act as advisers. Since when? Well, it would have launched our guidance counseling career.

Until a text message beeped. And guess what? Her brother can’t come. Because right now, he is already inside the Gallaga Theater at the University of Saint La Salle.

We were tricked! All the drama was a well-thought of plan to deceive us. So we cannot go. And so I wonder why. Suddenly I thought maybe there’s a recital where he will act on stage. And probably our presence will just add to his jitters that will render him incorrigible.

So we hurried our way to La Salle. Our steps doubled. When we entered the theater, it was full. People at the back were already standing. And so are we. But it was too late. We did not see her brother’s part. A sister who is just so thrilled to see her brother perform just missed it. The trick was victorious. I could even hear her brother’s well modulated, reverberating cackle.

That was the first time that I saw in person the iconic, long gray-haired Peque Galllaga.

There were short speeches delivered. Some are comical. Some are seriously dramatic. The speech of Peque capped the graduation night. It was both riveting and heart-warming. I quote from his speech, “Work is what you do for others, and Art is what you do for yourself.”

Friday, May 7, 2010


Two days ago, I was literally jumping for joy. Here I am again with my being “shallow” on being happy. I sold two books at eBay. Yippee!

I never thought of selling or should I say becoming an online entrepreneur. Until I get hold and voraciously read Chinkee Tan’s book, “For Richer or For Poorer. I thank the good-hearted TM Emmylou for actually introducing the book to me. I remember a toastmaster friend named TM Gay (I felt the need to name!) who exclaimed that after she read the book she does not want to ride a cabbie anymore. After enjoying our appetite for Hungarian sausage and mashed potato at Imbiss, we almost walked our way home. Huh! But she was still able to coax me to walk a little father to save some coins in our pocket.

I became a member of eBay on March 25, 2009. This piece of information is of course not im my memory bank. I researched it. That time, it was more of an act of feeding my curiosity.

Most books I acquired were classics. To mention a few were A Tale of Two Cities, The Good Earth, Moby Dick.

My first bank deposit to my seller felt like I was standing on loose ground. But not scared enough though. After all, it was just a petty sum of money. So I did try. Huh! Until I developed the addiction of bidding. I remember in less than five minutes, I bid in four items and luckily won. That’s how fast it can be! And exciting too!

Until one day, I saw my room shrinking in space. I have a miniature three-storey shelf already filled with books. That is how selling them came to be the answer. And that’s how I am reunited with EBay. Now I’m into online selling/marketing. And I am very excited of the idea. That is even an understatement.

People who are strictly on a timetable do not have the affluence of time to pick their books in bookstores. There are also those who have the time yet find searching-and-waiting-in-line-to-the-counter very taxing. Any of these two categories would prefer buying on-line. I, for one, am excited to receive a package even though I already expect one.

Nowadays, whenever I am in front of the computer, after I check my mail at yahoo and read rants and melodramatic expose at FB, I open my online store at eBay with heart pounding brimming with a smile!

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Wedding Singer

A month ago, I was invited to sing in a wedding and I was having second thoughts. Uh oh! I know that by now one of your eyebrows streaked upwards. But yes. I became reluctant even though singing is the first word in my vocabulary.

May 1, 2010. Nine days before I turn 26, I became a wedding singer. For the first time!

If you know so well how I have close affinity with music, then you are truly a friend. Most of my testimonials in social networking sites have one thing in common. That is, I sing most if not all the time. My life would be a blur without it. Ever since.

I even have a friend who complained and remarked, “Jay this is already exploitation.” This is when I cajole if not coerce them to sing like a choir with me in blissful illusion of being a choir master. I would excitedly arrange their voices and sing the way it should be sung. If they can’t sing according to my plans, the practice goes on. That’s how I exploit them as what a friend had said.

A month ago, I received this text message. “Jay, ma wedding singer ka!” (Jay you will be a wedding singer!). I replied, “Who’s going to march the aisle?” She replied, “I am getting married”. And that’s how I was invited.

Thoughts filled me in a second. They are lurking in all directions. I, as a wedding singer. Is that even conceivable? So I typed in the keypad, “Hahaha!” This cannot be. Maybe in the reception venue but in the church.” But she was too persistent where “No” is not an option, and so I said yes not knowing what comes next.

I tried to recall my music database if I have a song for a bridal march. Then the song “Ikaw” popped in by Martin Nievera. I sang along but failed. The vocal is just too demanding. If I force the issue, I will just sound like a hungry pig. So I felt giving up. But somehow along the way when I saw the painstaking preparation of a rush wedding, I said to myself, I don’t want to add to the burden of the soon to be couple. So I carried the burden to myself and sought help to some musically-inclined friends. Many suggestions came up.

One night I was browsing my dusty Compact disk organizer and get hold of a CD for wedding. It was already late night so I decided to play it while I lay myself in bed, lights off, and wait ‘til I fall asleep. Track number ten started to play and that’s how hope flickered in me and now excited for tomorrow.

Days rolled by with each line become part of my memory and the melody make a soft, soothing sound in the silence of the night.

And by the time that the music and lyrics meet in perfect harmony, that was the time that I became the official wedding singer!