#30DayWritingChallenge: Something that made me angry.

Day Twenty-Nine: Something that made me angry.

For a few years, I helped organize the Metro Manila Pride March. It’s called Metro Manila Pride now because it expanded beyond the marching. It was, at the same time, the best, the worst, and the craziest thing I ever did.

What a lot of people, even those who attend the parade, don’t realize is that the organizers often don’t have a lot of money for the whole thing. Not counting the program that is set after the parade (where participating organizations expect to give a speech on whatever that org stands for), the permits, the publicity, the registration materials, and all those stuff people don’t notice but are needed to bring about the entire thing cost money.

Every year is a miracle.

Needless to say, organizing the entire parade is stressful work. And that’s not unsurprising at all. But there are some things that needlessly add to the stress. Sometimes, you just wish you can punch some people in the face.

Pride March 2012 by Bardo Wu

Read the rest: It was the first time we’re doing the parade in Makati.

#30DayWritingChallenge: A wedding.

Day Twenty-Seven: A wedding.

A favorite among the weddings I have been in was one where we blew bubbles as the newlyweds went out of the church. In most weddings, the guests would be throwing rice or flower petals. This couple thought of a nod to wedding tradition that was more environment-friendly.

The couple then both rode in bicycles — one for the bride, one for the groom — instead of taking a car to the wedding reception. It must have been a sight, seeing the bride still in her gown, riding a bicycle along the streets of Makati. People who saw them thought that it was a scene from a movie shoot.

Bride on a bicycle.

Sadly, it was also a marriage that did not last. The couple separated a few years later, possibly breaking many of the former couple’s friends’ hearts. Some love stories just do not end up in an ever after.

#30DayWritingChallenge: A moment that filled me with fear.

Day Seventeen: A moment that filled me with fear.

There had been a few times in my life when I was really afraid: One semester when I failed most of my subjects. Jerking awake after I fell asleep, drunk, during a jeepney from Marikina to Pasig. While waiting for my test results during an HIV scare.

One vivid memory which stands out was when I nearly crashed into a train. This was back when I was still a fanboy for a local band and became good friends with two of the band members.

They had a gig in Manila which I went to. The two guys lived in the south and they offered me to hitch a ride with them since we will be going the same way.

We were all chatty during the ride along Buendia until we approached the train tracks parallel to the South Superhighway. Except for the guitarist (who wasn’t the driver), none of us in the car drank much during the gig. But none of us did not see that a train has already started crossing the road ahead of us.

We probably would not have even when we were all quiet. It was a couple of hours past midnight and there were not many street lights along the intersection. The alarm that tells of an incoming train did not go off.

The car skidded to a halt when the driver slammed the breaks. We stopped some five meters way from the train, a really close call.

We were shocked for a minute or two while we waited for the train to pass. There was a release of held breaths and then we started laughing and talking at the same time. We just had a Final Destination prelude, how else should we react?

Artisan Sellers Raise Relief Funds In ‘BANGON VISAYAS!’

Bangon Visayas poster

Your early holiday shopping will help bring relief to the Visayas.

BAGA Manila, Bazaar Pilipinas and A.Venue Mall present BANGON VISAYAS!, a fundraising bazaar for the benefit of victims of the Bohol earthquake and Typhoon Yolanda.

Artisan sellers from Bazaar Pilipinas will showcase unique locally crafted and handmade wares, dry goods, and special vintage items.

Bazaar proceeds will be donated to the Philippine National Red Cross. Cash and in-kind donations will also be accepted from bazaar guests and buyers.

BANGON VISAYAS! will run on November 29 and 30, from 2pm until 2am, at the A.Venue Mall Open Parking, Makati Avenue, Makati. The bazaar will coincide with Baga Manila’s Park & Bargain second anniversary.

Visit BANGON VISAYAS! on Facebook.
Download a copy of the BANGON VISAYAS! press release

Who’s gonna steal the show? Baby, it’s the Guitar Man.

Nolit Aurillo at Fete de la Musique 2013

This was Nolit Aurillo at the Fete de la Musique main stage. The man won the crowd’s attention with his unassuming air and killer guitar playing.

“I was asked to play a Michael Jackson song. I’m not going to do that,” he told the crowd at the start of his set. “I’m going to play A LOT of Michael Jackson songs!”

And with just his guitar, he went to a medley of A LOT of the King of Pop’s famous songs.

Several times, the crowd was singing along, without prompting: Now THAT is a great musician.

He was asked several times to finish his set early for the next band. While each player was only given a few minutes of stage time, that was still a little rude to the old man who was sharing his passion of music to everyone. And everyone else shared it back at him.

The next band onstage took ages to set up; the setup time was probably half as long as their set. They even had to stop after their first song to adjust their equipment.Wtf.

Kids, this is what a real musician is like. This is what “mind-blowing” is; not some giggly girl who can even bother memorizing song lyrics.