Archive for June 6th, 2011
I went to the CBCP media office in Intramuros last week after I received a mail from the Apologia yahoo group that the CBCP needs a writers pool. I stopped the taxi at the corner of Real and Gen. Luna St., then walked. I imagined myself walking in this road 150 years ago, with the guardia civil standing upright, the religious priests in black soutana, and ordinary foks wearing hankies and camisa chino for men and striped skirts for women. It so different now: the streets are nearly empty.
I entered a narrow door and asked the guard where the CBCP media office is. He asked me to turn left, then turn left again. It’s the second room. I asked him if I have to leave my ID, he said no. So I left.
I don’t know how to interpret the guard’s directions. I turned left and saw a stairs to my left going to the second floor. This must be it, I said to myself.
I walked to the second room. The door is partially open. So I knocked and opened the door. I asked where the CBCP media office is.
There were three ladies in front of typewriters–or maybe they are just writing on their desks. A man approached me.
“I am Raymund,” he said.
“I am Quirino, a blogger,” I replied. “I heard that CBCP is forming a writers pool.”
“Yes,” he said. ”But there are very few responses. There was one person who came before you. We are very sorry. I sent an email this morning announcing the cancellation of the event.”
“It did not reach me,” I said. “It’s ok.”
“We shall schedule the next meeting on June 7, at 2-5 pm. We hope more will come,” said Raymund. “We don’t need simply writers, but informed writers–writers who knows the Catholic Faith. We need writers to expand the coverage of the CBCP monitor.”
“Is this a volunteer work or a paid job?” I asked.
“It would initially be a volunteer work, then later it would be a paid job” he replied. ”How old are you now?”
“I am already 35,” I said.
He smiled. “We are looking for someone in their 20′s. But Fr. [...] definitely wishes to meet you all, such as bloggers like you.”
He took four issues of the CBCP monitor and gave them to me.
“Here, take these, so that your coming would not be in vain.”
He spotted an old man in barong in the courtyard beneath a row of trees.
“That is Bishop Oscar Cruz,” he said to me. ”You may speak with him to say hi.”
I thanked Raymund and hurried downstairs. I approached Bishop Cruz, and took his right hand to my forehead–a custom taught by my father. (My father actually told me that I should kiss the bishops ring.)
“You have a sword with you,” he said.
“Yes, bishop,” and I brandished my yellow and black Don Bosco umbrella, a gift from a colleague at the Manila Observatory. I rarely lose umbrellas; I only destroy them after weeks of swordfight with imaginary foes, in the manner of Kenshin Himura, Jumong, or Achilles.
“Where do you work?” he asked.
“I teach physics in Ateneo,” I replied.
“So you are a professor,” he said.
A large SUV stopped beside us to fetch Bishop Cruz. I said goodbye and left.