EM’s very first photo essay. She seeks to tell our stories. Set in simple black white, this photo essay will take you into Cebu’s story. Take a peek at this simple collection which collaborates culture, motion, and most especially, you.


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I am Sorry.

You know what I did. Or more precisely, what I didn’t 

And what’s worse, I don’t even feel an ounce of guilt. But I’ll say sorry anyway.

So last month, I challenged myself to post pending blog entries. Check this blog post to know what I’m talking about. If in case I failed to do so, I obliged myself to abstain from Ice Cream at ALL cost (yeah, it’s as silly as it sounds).

Since you’re reading an Apology Note, I guess you know what happened. I completed at least up to number 2, and there were 5 posts to complete. Talk about lazy bloggers.

I apologize. I am sorry. And yes, I am not supposed to eat Ice Cream for the WHOLE (VERY LOOOONG) month of AUGUST.

Lesson learned? Irresponsibility will soon snatch you of your lawful human right to eat Ice Cream.

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About 4 months ago, I turned 18 and I continually told myself to be more mature and responsible.

Of course, things don’t work out the way we want them to. Despite my deepest efforts to change and grow-up, my old self grew stronger, and later wreaked havoc in the first few months of being an, eheeerm, adult.

Responsibility – a word that conjures 2 images in my head.

1st, the freedom and all the open doors and opportunities brought about by being an official adult.

And 2nd, the fear of being not enough for people and for yourself.

I guess the past few months showed me how distorted my picture of reality was. I took my responsibilities lightly and gave unmerited attention to stupid things (I  make awesome decisions. Hahahays)

Now, a lot of things are over for me. I kind of screwed up my internship. I ruined my friendship with someone very dear. I lost my life group (soon you’ll know what a life group is). I and the list continues to roll.

I have developed a sense of hatred over responsibilities. And why they have to exist. (See? I am still so immature). They always cut the fun off. They make me get out of bed early. Dugh!

In spite of it all, responsibilities taught me to let go.

To let go of my childish self and embrace the realities of life. This was where I experienced God’s mighty hand and miracles. This was where I was reminded that no matter how heavy the burdens I carry, God will always be strong and loving enough to take those burdens off my shoulder and carry it for Himself. This love has made me walk into freedom even in the face of a thousand responsibilities.

Responsibilities exposed my weaknesses, but made room for God to move in my life.

Responsibilities exposed my weaknesses, but made room for God to move in my life.

Now tell me, should I still hate responsibilities?


It has been 4 months since I blew my birthday candles out. Life, as usual, is stubborn and refuses to give me what I want. But it has to be that way. At least, I know that now.

I am still not ready to take a lot of responsibilities. But I must start at the beginning.

And it all starts with a heart fully submitted to God and His word.

On Submitting Late Stories and other Realizations

At the last day of internship, I left the office at around 8 in the evening. My story wasn’t published yet because I submitted late. The next day, I surfed through, and I found my story in the most hidden part of the site.

To an online journalist, much more an intern, finding one’s story at such area of isolation means only one thing: the story didn’t make impact because it was published late.

Online journalism is about speed. Had my story been written and completed earlier, someone would have already clicked the link to my story and read it.

It works that way. The news website who gets to publish first gathers more readers. This is where speed and competence are highly required from online journalists. My last story proved that I didn’t have both.

But then, working fast isn’t everything. I’ve learned too, that a journalist must work smart, especially on field. We don’t just write stories. We tweet, we take videos, and we ask questions. The list goes on.

Judgment matters as well. It is election season after all and suspicious groups supporting this candidate and that are hungry for media attention. An Intern like me would have fallen into such easy stories, but thanks to the editors, we know what to cover and what not to.

Being ready is also a plus. The race on who posts first on social media sites are tight. Having all the tools and a fast internet speed can change lives.

Given all those duties, online journalism also has this thrill that is both addicting and stressful. But then, it’s always worth the try. And I’m glad that I did.

In less than a year, I would soon take my diploma and move out of the university. The question whether I’d pursue journalism or not is already in my mind. If I continue in doing things via slow-motion, I shouldn’t let the question bother me anymore. I should not pursue journalism.

But if I commit to discipline and instruction, a job in the media firms will always be at my reach. If God would allow and help me in turning things around, I know the idea is possible.

And in God’s time, hopefully, I wouldn’t be too late.

Vispop 4.0 | Stop, Look, Listen and Listen some more

The first tunes that hit my ears made me stop to hear for more. And then, I searched for it everywhere, may it be in the radio or the net. Finally finding it, my ears craved for more and more

About a week has passed since the grand finals night of Vispop 4.0. Since then, the top 6 songs still get me into LSS mode. Thanks to them, a wonderful platter of songs just got added to my #LifePlaylist.

And in their 4th year, this all-Bisaya songwriting campaign has a fresh roster of tracks to offer.

In fact, last June 18, “Paghunas”, composed by Joseph Gara and interpreted by Jayniel Enriquez and himself, was hailed as the grand prize winner.

While “Pep ­Pep” took the 2nd place, interpreted and composed by Kenneth Corvera.

Vispop alumni Marie Salvaleon was 3rd placer with her song “Suwat Ni Maria”, interpreted by Joe Branzuela.

Special Awards:

Netizens Choice Award
“Imoha ra ang akong kasingkasing”
by Sherwin Fugoso & Mara Monton
performed by Von Saw & Aine Abella

MOR 97.1 Listener’s Choice Award
“Imuha ra ang akong kasingkasing”

FILSCAP Choice Award
by Jerika Teodorico

Best Interpreter
by Joseph Gara
performed by Jayneil Enriquez & Joseph Gara

Not only did Vispop 4.0 set higher criteria for Filipino music, it also paved the way for Visayan music to be heard throughout the country.
Visayan means not only from Cebu, but also from other visayan-speaking regions.

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And if you’re an avid radio listener, you’ll notice that these songs seem to flood the bisdak airwaves. Who to blame? They are just so good.

With its growing number of patrons each year, the campaign promises more #BisayaFeels. And the thought of it makes me more excited than I thought I would ever be for Visayan music.

Vispop is co presented by FILSCAP, LIVETECH, SM Seaside City Cebu, MOR Cebu 97.1 Lupig Sila, and CBM 2016.


– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
Photo credits to my amazing blogger friends, Channel Marie Imperial and Isabeau Jane Gomez. *Thanks for the photos!

Pop Corn credits to sir Carlo Olano. I really had much fun biting on those sour cream-flavored goodies!

*Videos embedded on the article are taken from various Youtube accounts. I do not own them 🙂