Monthly Archives: August 2009

Happy 1st anniv, karikna!

AROUND this time last year, you and I gave birth to this humble column.

While I was not exactly new to writing—having previously published my works in newspapers, books, and websites—the thrill of composing an article on a weekly basis was unparalleled.

Among all the columns written by local journalists, Riknakem has appeared most frequently and most consistently in The Ilocos Times. In the past one year, I failed to pass my weekly article but once.

I still wonder how I do it. Teaching, we all know, is a very demanding job. In addition, I also work at the media office of MMSU, carry out research projects, and serve other publications either as writer or consultant.

Of course, it is not without sacrifices. There have been many times of whole nights spent out of bed, and vacations spent in front of the computer. Having this column also meant less time for my bicycling, which I used to do during my free time.

There are times when I am tempted to miss a column, but my friend Ianree Raquel always reminds me of my responsibility to readers, and I oblige.

But, no, I am not complaining. I have never looked at writing as a burden. Continue reading

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Filed under Media, Personals

Siyete-Tres

siyete-tres

(For those who can’t understand Iluko, you may proceed to the second part, an essay in Filipino. I write in the vernacular once every year on a day in August.)

“Umabot sa 7.3% ang GDP growth rate ng Pilipinas”

7-3 man, ading, order ni Mang Isidro sadiay karinderya ni Nana Dionisia. Continue reading

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Filed under Food, Ilocos, Iluko, The Good Life

Kris Ablan

Saramsam Cafe, Laoag City, July 7 (Tue), 6pm.  Kris has undergone a successful Lasik Eye Surgery but continues to wear his glasses because people have difficulty recognizing him sans the spectacles. Interview held while lone bodyguard waited outside.

Saramsam Cafe, Laoag City, July 7 (Tue), 6pm. Kris has undergone a successful Lasik Eye Surgery but continues to wear his glasses because people have difficulty recognizing him sans the spectacles. Interview held while lone bodyguard waited outside.

IT’S BEEN five weeks since I did an interview with the young man, but I have been dilly-dallying on writing about him.

    And it’s not because the congressional-son-cum-Sangguniang-Panlalawigan-member is uninteresting. In fact, Kris is any journalist’s ideal interviewee. He is brilliant, conversant, open, candid, reflexive, and, above all, sincere. He is also sensitive. You can talk to him for hours (in my case three) without ho-hum.

    But then you may say that I am an academic, and, being such, I can stand long conversations even with the nerd of nerds with the thickest spectacles ranting with nosebleed-inducing jargon. Maybe so, but not quite. Continue reading

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Filed under Government/Politics, Ilocos

Cory’s gift and Steve’s burden

ICON. HERO. SAINT. Every possible tribute has been paid to Corazon Aquino, now touted, and rightfully so, as the most loved Filipino of all time.

Still, allow me to give mine. After all, I have always been a Cory fan long before today, when it has become fashionable to be one. Dennis Estacio, my grade school seatmate at the old Divine Word College of Laoag, would attest to this. To the consternation of our teachers whose lectures we occasionally disrupted, albeit unintentionally, Dennis and I, then only in Grade 1, often had impassioned debates on politics. As with almost all Ilocanos, Dennis was maka-Marcos. I was maka-Cory.

In 1986, I accompanied my dad to the voting booth, and bent his hand into voting for Cory. That was the second best thing to voting for her, which I could not do yet because I was just seven. The teachers did not mind that I accompanied my dad. To them, I was just a child. Continue reading

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Filed under Government/Politics, Justice, Media