A Year After: Is Justice Served Yet?

Time flies, but memories stay.

It has been a year since that tragic Quirino Grandstand hostage taking. I remember that day. It was a Monday. It was about noontime when news broke that a tourist bus containing Chinese nationals was held captive by a former police officer. Rolando Mendoza’s his name. It was only until the evening newscast when it occurred to me that this news was of national issue. OK. Let’s skip the details you would probably find online, shall we?

I was on Twitter when everything was happening. I was checking my timeline every now and then. I was actually feeling off about how everyone seem to know better than people on the field that time. Everybody knows something better than what the police was doing. Then everybody just started hating on the suspect. He’s the bad guy, anyways. And everybody hates the bad guy.

The outcome of that incident was tragic and pitiful. As rain covered the scene of the crime, gunshots were fired, lives were taken, cameras rolled and everything went downhill. Little did we know (or did we?) that that tragedy would scar the Philippines’ reputation. We were heavily criticized with the lack of competitiveness the people in authority showed when handling the crisis. Travel bans were issued. Non-complimentary articles were published. In-depth investigations were conducted. But everything boils down to one thing – justice and what seems to be an endless probe for it.

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“We win justice quickest by rendering justice to the other party.” -Mohandas Gandhi 

A year after that incident and the families of those who were killed are still seeking for justice. But when does one know when justice is served?

The Quirino Grandstand hostage taking incident started out from the disgruntled police officer Rolando Mendoza’s cry for justice. He was removed from service by the ombudsman’s ruling that he was guilty of a police-related crime. He said he wasn’t given a chance to air his side. Justice for him means getting his post back mainly because he wants his job back. He has mouths to feed and it was an injustice for him when he was fired. It was an injustice for him when his family mourned for his demise while everybody else calls him names for putting justice in his hands. Or is it?

It was an injustice for the tourists when a troubled man took them as hostages while they were having their holiday vacation in the Philippines. It was an injustice for them when Mendoza started shooting them one by one. It is an injustice when some people used their deaths to get media attention. It was an injustice when several lives were taken while some were scarred indefinitely by what took place inside that bus.

Justice, I believe, is something abstract. Something so big that it’s hard to have a full grasp of. Is it something that books tell us to be? Or is it of emotional standards?

Now that the violator’s dead, isn’t justice served? After all the investigations are over and done in due process and are found conclusive, is justice still out of the picture?

While the lack of apathy and remorse from some of the people  who were involved in the failure to prevent the tragic outcome of that incident is pure injustice and sheer cowardice, how sure are we that we have done justice to the offended party?

I guess justice is more of an emotional state than a thing of the law. Admit it or not, being bereft of justice is oftentimes a matter of emotional offense. And the seeking of justice is also a journey to finding emotional settlement. That’s the reason why some things go out of hand. And for a democratic country, our justice system here is more of a struggle than a journey.

I’m hoping for everyone to get the justice they deserve more than what they want, regardless of what form they want it.

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My prayers go out the spirits of the departed during last year’s hostage crisis. I hope that they find peace and hopefully they could transcend it to their families they left behind. Rest in peace.

 

*images from google

 

My Twitter WTF (Who To Follow)

It’s been two years since I joined Twitter. As we all know, Twitter is a micro-blogging site which enables its members to post random thoughts within its 140-character limit. I favor Twitter over other networking sites although it serves a different purpose just like other networking sites.

I have grown to love Twitter because of its utter simplicity. It has become my repository of random things. It’s like picking on someone’s brain virtually.

Over the years, Twitter has evolved into something that is very adaptable to everyone. From simple status updates called ‘tweets’, people on Twitter can now post images, videos and audios. These upgrades also made tweeting beyond Twitter’s 140-character limit possible.

Twitter’s format of ‘following’ accounts and having ‘followers’ also adds fun to the whole virtual world of stalking. Twitter has become a place for ‘guiltless’ stalking.

Along with the changes and the growing number of people using Twitter, this site has transformed into something more fun, more informative and more addicting. People went beyond answering ‘What’s happening?’, the main Twitter question. And answering beyond what was asked could either be good or bad, but we just don’t care (which could also be good or bad.)

Twitter is something worth the time because amidst all the normal ‘I just ate a whatever’ and ‘Here at wherever’ tweets are interesting and unique tweets.

As of press time, I am following 96 people, 22 of which are persons I know personally. And there goes the joke that Facebook is for people you know, and Twitter’s for people you WISH you know. This statement holds water, right?

I’m happy with the people I follow on Twitter. Their posts vary from inspiring to profane, funny to touching, and informative to downright useless. I am greatly entertained by the diversity of thoughts from the people I follow. (Although I follow some people just to check on their stupidities. It makes me feel good about myself. I am THAT needy, yes.)

To cut all this shit off, I am putting up a list of people who I think are worthy of your follows.

 LC (@evrythingmustgo)

Followers: 15, 415

Claim to be Followed:

This guy is my favorite follow. His posts are very diverse. He touches you with a post about love and loneliness, then he posts something profane. His tweets speak of realities many of us choose to be left unsaid.

Sample Tweets:

If you can’t express your pain and suffering, where’s the fun in having it?

It’s no coincidence that “Holy” goes so well with crap, shit and fuck.

If you listen carefully, the silence is beautiful.

Sara Bareilles (@SaraBareilles)

Followers: 2, 054, 968

Claim to be Followed:

A self confessed potty-mouth, international singer-songwriter Sara Bareilles’ Twitter page isn’t always as sweet sounding as her voice. But that made me love her a little more. Reading her tweets will either paint a smile on your face or make your heart skip a beat. No, we are not complaining. A proof that she won’t be writing us a love song anytime soon.

Sample Tweets:

Watched a little of the MTV movie awards. They made me feel old. Or maybe the afghan blanket, knitting, hearing aid and sciatica did that.

Wrote a song called Beautiful Girl. About loving yourself. Made the mistake of looking up “beautifulgirl.com”. Should be renamed vagina.com.

Dear Fly who refuses to go out the window: I’m trying to save your life, you dumb piece of sh*t. Now I have no remorse for ruining your day.

Fake Noynoy Aquino (@fakenoynoy)

Followers: 10,565

Claim to be Followed:

Need I say more? This is the parody account of the 15th president of the Philippines. He makes fun of Kris Aquino and her kids, the Cabinet Members, even his love life and pretty much anything and everything the President dare not make fun of. This account is fun to follow because it talks about things that are relevant, something that the president don’t usually do.

Sample Tweets:

I just caught Boy Abunda secretly watching #Amaya. He REALLY wants to become a strong warrior princess some day.

My Sister’s capacity to shut her mouth was severely diminished by the hormones injected in her bosom so she can produce more milk for Nido.

CONFIRMED: Osama Bin Laden is dead. – I will issue a statement regarding this important matter after I play bingo with Joshua and Bimby.

KC Montero (@kcmontero)

Followers: 144, 360

Claim to be Followed:

Although he plugs his shows a lot, KC Montero’s tweets are beyond hilarious. He is my favorite DJ to follow on Twitter. (@djmotwister on a close second) He pokes fun on himself more than others, he’s cool with making a fool of himself and his sarcasm towards bashers is commendable. He doesn’t need to give himself entitlements to be considered relevant (read: HD Tweets. What the fuck?)

Sample Tweets:

When girls call you kuya, its hard to hit on them.

Athletes get endorsements: Phil younghusband is everywhere. Wtf! I’m a beer pong champ, where’s my billboards?..yes its a sport.

I’m supposed to wear something “car” related for party p opening. How about a car air freshener?

Ramon Bautista (@ramonbautista)

Followers: 97, 786

Claim to be Followed:

UP Professor, DJ, TV Host, internet superstar, actor- an eclectic mix of  jobs this guy is currently doing. One of the few ‘swabe’ guys on Twitter. When he tweets, 100+ retweets his tweets. He speaks of things everybody can relate to. He speaks of things everybody can say. He is the voice. He is Philippines’ multimedia king. He is the new ‘gwapo’.  He is the modern Ramon Bautista. He is THE Ramon Bautista. Follow mo na lang.

Sample Tweets:

LSS labadami, labango…

e kung gawing parang driver’s license yung kasal, tipong dapat i-renew every 3 years?

pwede wag muna mag end of the world, kakabayad ko lang ng kuryente? pag dumating na yung disconnection notice, yan…

Funny One Liners (@funnyoneliners)

Followers: 272, 153

Claim to be Followed:

If you like reading funny tweets from different people but are too number conscious, then follow this account. He posts only the funniest tweets and he credits the owners, too. And he also tweets his own jokes. You won’t feel cheated because you know that the funny tweets are stolen from other accounts. He follows back, too.

Sample Tweets:

I just sprayed a mosquito with mosquito repellant. Now, he’ll never have any friends. RT @funnyhumour

Don’t insult my intelligense. RT @xflansx

I’m giving up on the silent treatment. Going to start talking to myself again.

Rhian Ramos (@whianwamos)

Followers: 190, 568

Claim to be Followed:

She’s one of local tinsel town’s prettiest faces but don’t be fooled, she has more than beauty to make her worth your follow. She posts thoughts that are hers, and only hers. Love her because she’s pretty. Follow her because she’s witty and funny, a combination not all actresses on Twitter have.

Sample Tweets:

With the way he drives, i feel like it’s only a matter of time before my driver kills me.. or at least gets me injured…

glad i’m home, safe. – i assume.

well thank you for breaking into my twitter. nice job. i hope you get all the sympathy you hoped for.

Jason Mraz (@jason_mraz)

Followers: 1, 894, 887

Claim to be Followed:

An international singer with numerous worldwide hits under his bet. Not good enough for your follow? Then you have to know that he is humorous. He’s the male version of Ms. Bareilles’ Twitter page. He’s less profane, though. He seldom tweets but his random tweets are too good to be missed. Don’t hesitate no more, his follow button cannot wait.

Sample Tweets:

Riding a bike with no hands is like riding a unicycle with a large training wheel. Pedestrians Beware, I’m doing it right now as I tweet!

To my friends who put the RAD in graduation, congratulations.

“Party Boobytrap” – Best Palindrome Ever. I think I just found my next album title.

Gabe Mercado (@gabemercado)

Followers: 22, 536

Claim to be Followed:

He tweets about parenthood, technology, pop culture, things about the 80’s, sports and every random thought that comes into him (even adding girls in bikinis on FB). Following him is picking one’s brain at its finest. You don’t have to relate to everything he posts for you to know that he’s making sense and he’s funny.

Sample Tweets:

Your kilays are disturbingly thick. Shudder.

And tonight is 80’s dance night with The Body Buddy Dancers!

I want to eat your Kropek.

_____

There. 9 people who I think are worth your follows. I know there are a lot of good accounts out there, choices are pretty much based on preferences. Whatever. They are the people I like to follow. I would love to put more entries there but I guess my mind has adapted to Twitter’s character limit. Everything more than what my laziness can adjust to is too much.

I actually made this post because it’s my second year on Twitter *yay!*

So happy Tweeting to me and may all my tweet dreams come true.

 

#128: Solenn Heussaff on FHM March 2011

It is March and we know what this means, it’s FHM’s anniversary. They are turning 11 this year, like a kid experiencing puberty had the magazine been a real person. We all remember that phase in our lives- awkward voice, things popping out of our skins, hair growing here and there, and some skin and blood being moved out of our systems and all that jazz. But FHM is not like us humans. And this 11th year marker of this magazine is anything but awkward.

What do we have here? Oh, it’s a lucky horse kissing this month’s cover muse, the multi-hyphenated (READ designer, make-up artist, model, singer, Survivor finalist, painter, product endorser, movie star, soon-to-be TV star, It Girl….) Solenn Heussaff. The timing for her much anticipated FHM appearance couldn’t have been more perfect. After her stint in Survivor Philippines, she has captured the hearts of the Filipino masses despite the ‘socialite’ tag given to her by the said reality show. The public asked craved for more of Solenn. Although she has been a hot item for the longest time now, it is the mass appreciation brought about by Survivor Philippines that made her the next big thing on the local tinsel town.

COVER

I think this is the second time that the magazine used translucent color for their logo. (the first one was for Ehra Madrigal’s ‘white’ cover for June 2008)

That’s my only observation (MML). You be the judge.

LAYOUT

There are minor changes (or is there only one?) on the layout. Thankfully it’s the table of contents that they changed. It is less confusing now. (Wait, who reads the table of contents anyway?)

COVER STORY

Lucky horses. Lucky, lucky horses. Solenn, being the refined lady that she is, smoldered on the pages of FHM. Her shoot made up for the (somehow) lack of spark of last year’s anniversary issue cover shoots. Kudos to the photographer, the stylist and the make-up artist for the classy photos we are enjoying. Kudos to the FHM team for yet another classy photoshoot. Solenn was indeed polished to perfection for this one.

I can’t help but smile while reading Solenn’s interview. I can imagine her speaking whenever she was quoted in Filipino. She talked about her career plan, her Survivor experience, her passions, her life before the stardom and she managed to clarify some misconceptions about her and her lifestyle.

She truly heated up the 11th year of FHM with her cowgirl/equestrienne themed photos. She managed to show enough to ignite our thoughts while keeping some to tickle our imaginations. Plus her tattoos are hot.

Check out some of the behind the scenes photos of her pictorial:

PS. I have a strong feeling that Ms. Heussaff has a BIG chance of topping this year’s sexiest list. LET’S DO IT!

*I love the transition from Solenn’s warm hued photos to Paloma’s photos in cooler hues. It’s rad.

FEATURED BABES

It is March and we know what this means, it’s summer time. Aptly so, FHM did their Bikini Special this month (they did last year’s on their May issue). I liked this year’s Bikini Special because they featured girls with tanner complexions (some of them are Filipinas). Last year, the bikini special featured more white chicks  (although I have nothing against them, it’s just that bikinis look better on tanned skin).

I also commend FHM for doing the photo shoots around the Philippines. They shot FHM favorite Paloma and car show model Shanna Solideo on the shores of Baler in Aurora Province. The shores of Subic, Zambales became witness to Australian-Pinay Richelle Prickett’s and Brazilian Model Ana Corado’s bikini-clad bodies. Jenny posed along the shores of her hometown Davao and Cebu’s  Aireen Estel, in her bikini, posed in one of the Queen City of the South’s A-list resorts (Maribago Blue Water Beach Resort). Not to forget Australia’s bet, Half Filipina Shiralee Coleman.

Other girls featured were Incoming babe, Lae Lusung and March GF Janna Tiangco (it’s kinda disappointing that they reduced the GF’s photos to two, again.)

PLUS Sam Pinto’s San Mig Light ad is there again. 🙂

FEATURED READS

Among the featured articles this month are 60 driving tips, Extreme Sportsmen, Vanity for Men, Dog Breeds and the Death of ‘Pinoy Rock ‘n Roll.

I liked the article about the dogs because it gave everything an aspiring dog owner needs to know. From the behavior, health, intelligence, price and the impact it will give the ladies.

The article on the ‘Death’ of ‘Pinoy rock ‘n roll caught my interest even though I am not a big fan of the genre. It managed to tell how everything started, from underground to mainstream, the impact of NU’s downfall, the signing of indie bands for major record labels and how the genre is slowly losing pace with pop music, which is more appreciated by the majority.

EXTRAS

*or my queries*

  • So Pauline So is the ‘real’ Premiere Vixen. Whatever happened to Christine and Karen?
  • What is the font name of the ones used for the Bikini portion?
  • How about the one used for Solenn?
  • Why is this issue worth every peso spent?
  • Will I ever get answers to my questions?

*images courtesy of fhm.com.ph and Solenn Heussaff’s Twitter page