The Naked Cross

In Bible times, execution on the cross was the cruelest, most unforgettable way to punish the worst criminalstotally humiliating and dehumanizing.

And yet, Jesus chose the cross to redeem us from the mire of sin. Galatians 3:13(ESV), “Christ redeemed us from the curse of the law by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, 'Cursed is everyone who is hanged on a tree' . . .”

“From this cross He would rob hell and populate heaven,” wrote Joseph Chambers, a preacher. 


Off Duty

Writing is not a duty for me. It has always been a privilege, a time of great feelings, a mountain-top joy, and . . . an undeserved grace of a lifetime. 

Some of my friends in church say it is my assignment from above, and therefore I am duty bound to do it well. I try.  

My writing hours are thus: the actual computer time is all day; the thinking time is all night.


The Kiram, Kristel, and Kris Brouhaha

Every Tom, Dick, and Harry has commented on the current hot issues involving Sultan Kiram of Sulu, Kristel, and Kris Aquino.
Some blame the Media for sensationalizing all three. Some blame the militants for agitating the student population. Some blame the politicians for taking advantage of the situations. Some blame President Aquino for not showing enough concern.

Some blame the government for everything, period. 


Surprise Homecoming

Do you enjoy surprising others?  

Well, I have a surprise for you. You might end up being surprised yourself.

My brother Dave loves to spring a surprise on us. In the last 10 years or so, however, he hasn't had too many opportunities to do that, because he and his wife, Glad, lived abroad. The only chance, then, to surprise us is when he, she, or both come home for vacation.



On TV last week, I watched a show that featured same-sex pairs who looked very much alike but who, in reality, are not twins.

Unbelievable. As each pair talked to the camera, I looked at their individual features—eyes, nose, lips, shape of face, hair—and they were the same. If you saw them in person, you'd say, “Twins!”

They are not. They are not even remotely related to each other; they just happen to look so similar. 

Is this possible?


Beware the Ides of March

“Ides,” as we learned in school, comes from the Latin word "idus," used widely in the old Roman calendar to indicate the middle of the month.  

Over time, the phrase “Ides of March” evolved into “Beware the ides of March,” a warning of bad things to come because of William Shakespeare's play, “Julius Caesar.”


The Christian Atheist:

A sort of review 

I discovered this book in faraway Cagayan de Oro (CDO) OMFLit bookstore. In between sporadic book signing, I sat down beside a shelf and took the first book that nudged my arm.

The title caught me off guard. I thought it was blasphemous and therefore I shouldn't read it. But as I often do, I talked to myself:

Where have all your years of training in creative work gone? “Expect the unexpected” you used to say. Well, this one's unexpected. When have you become a bigot?


City of White Water Rafting

Mention Cagayan de Oro (CDO) City to anyone who has been there and he'll say, white water rafting and river trekking!

Well, I've just come from CDO and the only water I saw was bottled and came free with my hotel room. Okay, I got a glimpse of the CDO river when we crossed a scenic bridge, but it was only for a few seconds, the time it took our taxi to zoom past it.

Nevertheless, in between meetings and short trips to town for meals that consisted of energy-giving food. boasting of cholesterol galore and one book signing event (OMFLit Book Shop), I got a chance to take photos of the tricycle which looked so strange, compared to what what I see in Manila. They so fascinated me I stayed at a curb clicking away for a good ten minutes.  

CDO is the gateway to Northern Mindanao and described in its Website as a “City in bloom, in blossom, and in boom.”  I have been to many parts of Mindanao but never to CDO so I thought I'd wander through its suburbia and enjoy the bloom, blossom, and bloom, but our schedule permitted only the usual things busy business people do—airport to hotel to boardroom, then reverse the process—and before you know it, the trip is ended.


Disabled Parking

For twenty long minutes we had been driving round and round the parking lot. It was unusually full. Suddenly, a car whizzed past us and parked in the space reserved for Persons With Disability (PWD).

When the driver got out of the car, she looked like she stepped out of a fashion magazine—she was tottering on a five-inch heels in animal prints! Tony and I thought she might have a PWD passenger.

She was alone.