"I'll give you my three reasons for not conceding to your 'suggestions'...
"First, you are younger than I am--you absolutely don't have any power or authority over me.
"Next, you don't pay me--I am not your employee.
"Lastly, I am the teacher here. I am the one in charge.
"So when I say you have to leave at 1:50 p.m.,you will leave this room at exactly 1:50 p.m."

-My response to a student who had a "seat-on-fire" during the National Career Assessment Examination.
-Perhaps, I could have thought of nicer words or nicer ways of saying my retort--but hey, I didn't shout. But I think I had every reason to say those things since I had let the student complain for the nth time before I dropped the bomb.


prof ybasco is growing wisdom

...not during but after the 1st session with my 10 college students did i realize that it's real, i'm teaching in college (while i'm still teaching in high-school). so i got the jitters that i know anybody could have, given the opportunity of handling such a special class composed of HRM students.

...My immediate assistant supervisor herself had told me about it last monday. I couldn't react properly then. I was thinking that there are other seasoned teachers to choose from.

...I've never expected this to happen...point is I haven't taken up my GCAT yet (not until next week). I don't even have master's units yet...ok,,,so I get the point that they trust me--that much?

...and so i had my first day and it went on incredibly. It's as if, i was just hanging out in my dear old university (which i would probably do every weekend), talking with knowledgable enough people --not the --know-it-alls-...

so far so good...the only thing that ruined it is my tooth..literally.

i'm growing my wisdom tooth and it hurts...grrr


Writer's Block: Good Days and Bad Days

most exciting day is Sunday--since it gives a whole lot of anticipation

most energetic day is Monday--energized after slumber weekends

....nastiest day is Tuesday...it makes me think of the rest of the week. pretty boring...after monday all my energy is drained already

most promising day is wednesday--get to think of the plans i have for the weekend..it makes the week shorter (according to perspective that is)

most seat-spoiler day is thursday--get pretty much excited, can't stay in my seat...haha..

favorite day is Friday because it holds a lot of promises.harhar

most peaceful day is Saturday---i get to sleep all day (unless i'm called to this club meeting)

crests and troughs

...i wouldn't say that the entire day was spoiled...almost, though..
well, here it goes
..woke up early(we had a flag ceremony)
..facilitated a game that i think and hope my classes enjoyed.
...started writing the grades of my students on their cards.
....accepted another opportunity of teaching students, this time in college's language lab. (Thanks be to God)
...only to accept a scolding while walking along the corridors, thinking of being a professor even without a master's degree yet.
....and there...i wasn't even aware that i had been scolded at until it slipped in.


Slow to Speak, Slow to Wrath

I see dawn on the curtains of your hair
Blood pulsing, fast and slow.
The glow of your skin, it's making me wonder
How can life be so miserably sweet--

As Shakespeare's Romeo said
"Give me my sin again"
Divine is us, you once sang
Pleasure is a taste or so of your lips.

An issue of fire burning my soul
Followed by the light from your eyes.
If I could die now,
Don't stop me from falling.



I see

No word is needed

Just give me my sin again.


their fantasies

...so while they were off to their fantasies of ruining my life, i'm here updating my blogs and whatnots. i honestly don't care (although writing about 'em refutes my statement). ...gone were the days when i would just say yes to whatever they wanted me to do... they went away with the wind after i have succeeded the LET exam... ...i'm professional enough to know what i can and cannot do, what my expertise are and my waterloos. so if i say i can't and i don't want, i mean it.


just another blog entry

...im thinking of a title for a piece i'm currently editing...i have been laboring on it since i was in 3rd year high school.i just can't think of a proper title...just the title..actually, i've been considering "azalea azure" or azure azalea...but those are cheesy and so out of date.....grrr..



Tears welled sa mga mata ko
When I first tried to write this one.
Malay ko ba na someday, I have to say this to you
And end this and everything with a period.

Para na siguro akong sirang plaka—
No, I mean, pirated C.D.(wala na nga palang plaka ngayon)
Sa kauulit gaya ng Gin Blossoms’
“Repeating as if it matters everything I wanna say”

All my bags are packed, I’m ready to go
So babayoo na nga sa’ting dalawa.
I left a letter inside your drawer
Para naman(kung sakali) at least you’ll remember me pa.

Partida friend, masakit pa ang pisngi ko nyan.
And, nga pala, I emptied your concealer(pasensya).
I even used the cap you bought for me
And the make-ups na hindi ko pa nagagalaw.

Lantang-lanta na ang mga cactus that I bought,
Galling pang Baguio yan so please don’t forget
You have to water them twice a week
Para hindi sila mag-end(ouch…)

Don’t worry, sinusunod pa rin kita
Although medyo mapait at mahirap
Silang lunukin. Tinalo ko pa ang uminom ng rat killer
at ng isang latang insecticide.

I hope you’ll keep our old pictures
Na sobrang contrast sa new ones natin na parang
Tumanda tayong bigla at nangayayat…ay..ako lang pala…

Ayan, bumagsak na ang tears ko.
Ang hirap pala nito, I didn’t imagine.
Tama nag si Celine Dion when she sang
“Goodbye’s the saddest word I’ve ever heard”

“Goodbye’s the last time I will hold you near” na nga
I didn’t know may senti-side pala ako.
Nga pala, don’t forget our deal:
Plain black ha, ‘wag yung mamahalin.

As I end this record (ang hirap nga eh)
“I made a wish for you” to “remember me this way”
As I succumb to my favorite color,
I bid you a line of a revival(don’t cry please…yun ay kung may balak ka..)

Goodbye to you my trusted friend…

*saludo kay Rolando S. Tinio


Paki-adjust yung antenna, malabo eh…

Pero kahit anong adjust ang gawin,
kung hindi mo gusto tingnan,
hindi mo makikita.

Ayusin mo yung frequency, nagsta-static…

Bakit hinihintay mong iba ang mag-ayos?
Gaya ng nasa patalastas:
Wala ka bang mga kamay?

Wala akong naiintindihan—pakilipat nga…
Hindi mo man lang ba iintindihin?
Humahanap ka ng iba na makakaaliw sa’yo
Hindi ng mga magpapaunawa sa’yo

Ayan na lang, puppet show.
Bagay sa’yo pero…
Kawawa ka naman.
Hinihintay mong may magpaunawa
Magpalaya sa’yo gayong takot kang lumaya.
Umaangal sa kahirapan
Nagrereklamo sa maling sistema
Nakatanghod, naghihintay
Dahil nais mo doon sa manlilibang sa’yo—pansamantala
Hindi sa magpapalaya.
PILIPINO: hindi ka pa ba sawa?


Isang pagpupugay sa mga kapita-pitagang tao na kayang itaya ang kanilang posisyon, katungkulan, para ipaglaban ang kapakanan hindi ng sa marami kundi ng sarili at piling mga tao.

Nakakamanghang kaya pa pala nilang kumain at matulog, lumunok at magpahinga, na hindi nababagabag ang kanilang kaluluwa. Hindi ba’t ekstraordinaryo na ang mga taong nababansagan—at nagsasabing sila ay—eksperto ngunit ang mga ekspertong ito mismo ang bumabali sa propesyong dapat sana’y itinatatag nila hindi para sa kanilang sarili kundi para sa karamihan. Nakakatuwa. Isang saludo para sa mga ekspertong ito.

Sining—hindi…hindi sapat ang salitang ito upang mabigyang hustisya ang walang kapantay na galing ng mga propesyonal na ito. Tama na ba ang sagradong sining? Sa sobrang sagrado pili lamang ang mga taong nabiyayaan ng ganitong kakayahan. Yung mga tipong nakapagtapos ng higit sa labingdalawang taon ng pag-aaral ngunit tila walang natutunan(saying naman ang matrikula ng mga taong ito). Sa sobrang sagrado kakaunti rin lamang ang nabibigyan ng benepisyo ng kanilang katangi-tanging serbisyo. Hay…

Ang hangaring mapabuti ang karamihan ay malayo na sa kanilang isipan. Nasa pangakong sinumpaan na lamang ang katagang serbisyo(hindi katulad ng mga dukhang nagnanais maglingkod ngunit tila tinanggalan ng karapatang maglingkod). Hay…

Ito ang mga kapita-pitagang taong ating ginagalang na dapat sana’y ating hinahangaan.
Bakit hindi natin sila palakpakan? Para man lang sa nakadidiring direksyon na tinutungo ng kanilang mga buhay, may baon silang pagsamba na hindi nila makukuha sa impyerno.


Smile as the camera zooms in.
After the flash, get going.

No one knows—
It’s ok.

Pose as the film rolls.
After the take, set your soul.

No one suspects—
It’s all right.

Sing as the tape records.
After the music is over, hop aboard.

As long as no one sees
You’ll be fine, absolutely fine.

At least, on picture, on film, on tape…
You are whole.


The greatest masterpiece
Yet ever made
Whats in the dark
That makes thousand people
Scream to death
Cringe in fright
Dream like hell
Curse like fire
By the pitch black
Lay quietly
Hush darling hold on tight
It really feels right
The solitude of the night
Theres no sense
Making sense
Yet wonderful
Brilliance makes everything glow
Like lost dream suddenly found somewhere
Within the orbs of the sky

written: 12 february 2006won: GEMS award 2008 Collection of poems


The wind blew it's lungs out, muting the other sounds that might had been heard during a fair weather. The trees doubled their heights, fighting the force. Adults held their umbrellas tightly, young women in skirts clutched their billowing garments. The rain continuously pelted and poured hitting the world like bullets sent by God to punish sinners.

I watched the street scenes from a pavement. I had been waiting for several minutes then but still the jeepneys to my part of the country were coming already full. The furious wind whipped my already wet hair. My damped clothes hugged me closely. I shivered. The biting cold crept to my spine. My feet were sore from walking and standing. I didn't have protection except my clothes, my umbrella, and a small tree planted on the left side of the pavement.

It's not that I didn't like it. In fact, I love rain. However, being exposed to its power for nearly an hour wasn't a good idea. The dark, heavy nimbus clouds loomed above while lightning flashed across the sky—very beautiful but frightening. As a thunder rolled and rumbled, my stomach grumbled. I was hungry. I looked back at the mall where I had been earlier. I had gone there to send some bad moods out of me but I had to leave to go home early.

I wished I had stayed a little longer. At least there, I had protection from the forces of nature and there were lots of things to see. Being at a pavement with the elements at their fullest couldn't be endured by a night student who had her own pandemonium inside. As I watched the steady fall of rain drops, memories of the events earlier that day spilled inside my head.

The rain didn't want to stop. I sighed, thinking that I should just walk a little further and see whether at the next block, I could get a ride. If this is punishment, I wish he gets more than I do, I thought. Nature continued pouring his wrath on man as I went on my way, engulfed by storm in and out. It's his fault, not mine.
*written last 06 august 05
*won me GEM's Award last 2008 under Essay Category


Hindi ito ang unang beses na ginusto kong mangarap sa ilalim ng bilog na buwan. Tawagin na akong baliw at mapanaginipin, sentimental at kung anu-ano pa. pero hindi ba kahit sinong pintor maakit sa ganda nito lalo pa’t full moon sa alas dose ng gabi. At pwede ba, hindi ko kailangang magpaliwanag na hindi ako aswang at kung anu-ano. Alipin ako ng sarili kong kasamaan, tanggap ko yun at dahil sa pagkakaaliping ‘yun, lagi kong gusto makita ang kagandahan ng gabi.

Liwanag sa gabi, at dilim sa umaga, ang mga tanging bagay na gusto kong Makita sa mundo. Mga bagay na kadalasang wala ngang kwenta gaya ng mga pangarap na hindi man lang nagkaroon ng pagkakataong maging totoo, mga bahagi ng isipang hindi man lang maigawang mailabas, mga bagay na pinaghirapang tunay, pinagaksayahan ng panahon, pawis na sa huli ay basura lang: bulok, mabaho, nakadiri.

Iniisip ko: nagpapakamakata ba ako para saw ala? Lagi na lang akong aasa—hanggang saan, kelan, ako aasa—hanggang pangarap na lang ba ako?
Tama nga ba si Rizal na ang manunulat ay kalaban ang lahat maging ang sarili? Kung talagang ganun, masasabi ko talagang bigo ako. Dahil sa pagpipilit kong makaahon, pilit kong inabot ang mga pangarap ko nang sabay-sabay. At nahulog ako.

Oras na para tumayo.

Pagkatapos lumubog, kailangan na akong lumabas at maghugas ng kamay. Hindi lang para umiwas sa responsibilidad na ako mismo ang kumuha kundi upang magsimula uli.

*originally written: 15 april 2006


A Book

Bound, I am, with so much and nothing.
Many have tried to read, plenty of interpretations
Yet completely nil;
A child’s eyes know me, the gentle elder’s palm endure by heart,
A lot of teens despise, some ignore.

Laid down,in some corners rusty or clean.
Open or close, see my covers can be immaculate
But sometimes can scare a priest. Sacred and blasphemous.

I am more than a clown. Entertain, horrify, educate,
Ridicule and insult, make people fall in love,
Make myself loved, and hated, I do.

Patience, to see what’s lurking somewhere,
waiting stupidly for the next coming day
when someone will endure sleepless nights thinking of reading
so shallow and deep.

Of the millions, I am one of them; fascinating,
Wonderful, worthless, rotten, appreciated, destroyed.
Who knows? It has always been in the eyes of
The Beholder.

Ain’t it funny?
The more you tell me you know me
The more you proclaim you have read me
The more you prove to me
You do not know a single thing.


It Was All A Joke

“How will I use this one, hey! How will I use this mahrt(s)elyo?”

“Ah! Don’t question me again. Mind your own business, will you, Vicente?”

That was very Vincent Vicente. I remembered seeing him the first time when I came to the construction site one Saturday evening when the moon was out, full of glory. I stood facing the wall, estimating the length of a particular wood. I didn’t take a good notice at him when I stepped in for the nightshift. However, one couldn’t ignore an accentuated sentence—a foreign-American-accent at that. I was no exception. I looked back and saw a bald dark man, about twenty-eight years old, and lean. He wasn’t at all tall, only five feet, eight inches, and he had a mole between his upper lip. The queer thing was, he didn’t at all look like a foreigner. How queer! I asked the nearest soul to me, “Who is that?”

“Oh, new ...”

“I know he’s new, but who is he?”

“Vincent Vicente: executive turned to construction worker.”

“Where did he come from?”

“I’m sure from where he came from,” he said with finality.

Suddenly, without warning, a gust of wind blew hard and closes the aluminum door toward the kitchen. The men, construction workers, shuddered. A thick cloud covered the bright moon; a shrill howl from a mongrel could be heard. We stopped, alarmed. The construction had been going on for its thirteenth week and by that time, no one was new (except may be for Vincent Vicente, the FilAm) to the rumors about the Balete Drive.

On that night, obviously, everybody remembered the ghosts, kapre, manananggal, tikbalang, dumende, and other supernatural beings believed to be roaming around New Manila. The new one Vincent Vicente looked around with disbelief. “What happened to you?”

“Hush! Close your mouth or the gods will cut your tongue,” one said in the bravest sound he could muster.

Tok, tok, tok, tok, tok.

Someone knocked at the door. Petrified by the memories of the ghost stories, no one moved (spare Vicente) even an inch to answer the door. Vicente looked at each stupefied face.

“Oh! It’s only a knock! Are you all doe-wagsz?”

Vicente turned and headed towards the door. He was only a step from it when a big voice, muffled because of the door, boomed: “Ngngabbii nnaahh ... nah nah ... Mmaakit nanditohh pa kayo … yo yo yoh.”

Vicente stepped back and shivered.

“W ... wa ... what was that?” he asked in a whisper.“Oh my ...”

“Bathala save us ...”

“Oh Lord, I have a family ...”

“Mary, Mother of God ... oh ...”

“St. Katherine ...”


The door opened with a smash. An ear splitting yelp broke the silence, almost like an animal but it’s not because it had an American accent. Ghosts or not, each one saw how the aluminum door jammed on Vicente’s face and knocked him down. Blood issued from his broken nose. His eyes stared widely at the ceiling. Screams erupted inside the room. We obviously didn’t know what to do. Some shivered at a corner, cried for mercy, and asked for the forgiveness of their sins. Some (including me) went to Vicente. I looked at everyone’s faces. They were concerned. I asked the very same being I had asked earlier.

“Dead, isn’t he?”

“Probably,” he said, gave me a ghastly look he always wore and went away...

There were murmurs. One brave soul knelt and felt Vicente’s neck. He looked up gravely and announced, “He’s gone.”

Those who were at the corners moaned and pleaded to the heavens. Those around Vicente made a sign of the cross. I being a, well, former Catholic, was compelled to do the same.

“Oh my ... Nid I ngkil ngim?”

We turned to the direction of the voice. The person who smashed the door open was a stout man, had a very big nose, chipped front tooth and a slit, cutting his upper lip to the left hole of his breathing organ. He was carrying a big yellow candle and wearing a white nightgown.

Louder screams filled the night. I looked to the left and to the right and all around. Men scampered until only I, standing in the middle, the stout man at the door step to the kitchen, and Vicente lying dead on the floor, remained. I could still hear the construction people’s cries and yells for help to the moon and the vast sky, only to be answered by the howl of the dogs lurking in dark places.

“Mest nu ngkol da molis,” the stout man said, got his cellphone, and called. “Ngello, wan wan seben, imestigador?”

He turned away leaving me there and then, asking myself why he was calling the Investigator. I shook my head and “Tsk tsk tsk” was all I could muster. I looked at Vicente. Slowly, very slowly, a replica of him sat, then stood up. He brushed an invisible dust on his black, almost transparent (that makes it translucent) pants. He touched his face with his left hand and felt for non-existing blood. He looked at his hand.

“Oh, my ...”

Through his hand, he could see my shoes and through my shoes, he could see a pair of feet, lying on the floor. He looked down.

“Oh Lord, that’s me,” he gasped as he saw his face with blood staring at him. Vicente attempted to walk but found himself floating instead. He came face to face with me and I saw how brown his mole was, how abnormal his right eye winked, and how Filipino he looked; even he said mahrt(s)elyow. He gaped at me stupidly as if he were seeing me for the first time.

The dogs howled to the full moon again; bats danced and made a shrill music. Vicente swallowed as he looked at me from head to foot. I swear he saw the deep portion of my temple, almost the size of the mallet’s head that I’d be carrying all my life (if I still have a life). He swallowed again and said, “Are you tutuohw?”

Oh, how I pitied him! I rolled my eyes upward and asked why this FilAm was so stupid. I fixed him with an exasperated look before saying: “Isn’t that obvious? What do you think?”

who would you like to meet and spend the whole day with

Some people would call choosing one among my family members hypocricy. Obviously they expect me to choose my former-or-current-or-future knight on a white steed--I do not deny that. I hope to meet "him" one day. However, if i were given a chance to meet and spend the whole day with someone, I would definitely choose my grandmother.
Lola Pacita Ybasco y Frio brought me up. She never told me than "honesty is a virtue" and "time is gold." She showed me how to live.
There was even a time when I gave more importance to her than to my own mother. But that ended sometime in 2004 when I learned that I needed to move forward and tears could not bring her back. And probably, she wouldn't like me to be too hard with my mother.
Not a day passes by that I wouldn't regret that I didn't tell her how much she meant and means to me before she died.
So given a chance like that, I would want to hold her hand again as we walk along the streets of Makati at dawn. and simply tell her that she was and still is my childhood. and I could only look back at my childhood with her in mind.
My lola shared a part of her life with me and I am proud to choose her against princes-or-knights on horses in the world.


Nunc Luyx, Munc Nox

Now it is Light, suddenly it is Night.

A line taken from a book called Lightland by HL McCutchen.

Pretty nice book: short enough to be interesting. Not the typical thick novels anybody can buy but nobody can read.

what i liked about this book is the choice of characters: a girl who wears pajama to school, Charlotte Cook, and a boy who doesn't talk, Lewis Weaver. Nice match.

Also, it's a breather considering the vampire stories that dominate bookshelves today.



.'twas the first thing i heard this morning. I was still picking my eyes and yawning--y'know the routines in waking up. and there, my bro's voice rang in my ears: patay na raw si Cory.

.and we immediately checked the tv. there, Vicky Morales and Arnold Clavio confirmed the news.
.and they flashed some scenes from the past.

.and i cried--not of course like she was a relative.
. and i wore black today ...but of course, i always wear black; i myself wouldn't call that significant.
.until now, after going to the crowded SM North Edsa (it's the great northern sale), i still don't know why i cried for her.and goodness knows how i wondered in the mall why there were still a lot of people in SM despite the news--some of 'em even wore red! (really, do i have to react like this...)
.the sooner that i'll find out the better.