where good deeds are rewarded with apples & the bad with lemons

The coveted APPLES & dreaded LEMONS 2010 Awardees

Saturday, December 18, 2010
SUNSTAR DAVAO
MY, MY how time flies. 2010 breezed through ending another decade. Ten years after the millennium bug shook the electronic world, we look back on the initial ten years of the 21st century and remember how it was.
The patchwork of events, both good and less than good (balance is expected), filled the headlines and the web that were greatly instrumental in shaping everybody’s lives. We just have to be thankful for the experience, for life and for the blessings that came our way.
We are now ushering in a new year and another decade. Again, there is a shift in our consciousness these past few years brought about by the economic trend. The wheel is just turning too fast for comfort.
After the opulent living lifestyle in the period of financial upswing, these less fortunate times made us look into ourselves and see everything in a different light. Contentment, frugality, spirituality and the search for inner peace are the “trend” once more and essentials to get by in this ever changing world.
Yoga, organic living, positive thinking, Karma. These mental and physical disciplines and philosophies have been with us for centuries, again, waiting to be utilized. The Secret and Avatar- are all rehash of these ancient scripts. Like children, we just have to be constantly reminded while the new storytellers’ are raking it in.
A preparation, perhaps, for the much-talked about Mayan calendar and the major transformation occurring in 2012. Their calendar starts a new cycle and arising are modern man’s doomsday predictions of environmental destruction, social chaos, war. Aren’t those happening now?
Whatever the future holds for us, we do not know. But each of us can map our own destiny with the choices we make today.
And choices these people made in the past year that are worth relating.
Crash courses, big egos.
These are career bowls where all fingers want to dip into. Before, it was nursing, then event organizing and call centers. Now it’s culinary arts and photography. After a crash course, they don the hats of the trade, speak the lingo and act as if they’re the best… until the trend shifts. The best, though, always prevail, for nothing beats experience and talent.
The upside is people now have more choices. Whatever the outcome, they have to deal with it.
The real talents can pick an apple. The pa-talented, of course, you won’t admit it, I will just hurl the lemon at you.
Sweet Treats.
With faux chefs fresh from certificate courses milling about town, the home-trained few still gets the recognition. My sweet tooth found treats to sink into with Booboo Maramba’s rich Pinoy dessert, the Latik Cake (Natalie’s 296-1004), and hobbyist Joel Rodriguez’s decadent chili-spiked wonder-Peppered Dark Chocolate Cupcake (sorry he’s relocating). Sinful delights that get top scores – 5 apples!

Joel Rodriguez’s decadent & chili spiked creation- Peppered Dark Chocolate Cupcake
Morality vs Life.
Life on earth evolves, nature keeps everything in check and a religion wants its flock to live by their self-righteously defined morality. It’s still “no” to contraceptive even if it can mean contra-disease and save millions of lives and alleviate the quality of life in the long run. Davao is on fire and HIV is spreading like wildfire. Out city ranks second on the list of HIV positive cases nationwide. Scary. The libido clouding sensibility, vengeance, profit driven flesh trade, ignorance or the new generation becoming fearless- social responsibility is absent. It’s the kiss of death passed on and on.
There is just not enough lemons for the morally irresponsible!
Celebrate life!
If there is an HIV/Aids information shout out in the city, it is not heard enough. Volunteers? No help is too small. Together, it will amount to something significant. Take these young professionals’ efforts for example. They love to party, they made a party and used the event to get the message across. Who says you can’t teach/ learn while having fun? Keep up the great work guys. Take five apples each.
And this just in… Man officially cured of HIV (http://gizmodo.com/5713498/man-officially-cured-of-hiv). Amazing news and I’m wishing that this breakthrough is the jump-off point to more medical innovations. How many apples do you want for this?

Spreading HIV/Aids awareness with flair & fun.
Impress yourself.
You before others. Just when I thought Davao fashion sense was picking up, it is reverting to its lackluster state. The look is too relaxed. A couple of events got the Dabawenyos donning the stepped-out-of-a-fashion-magazine look but it just simply stopped there.
Why is it that only the Birkins get to see the light of day? Saving that Pucci and Gucci garb for special occasions? Every day, you wake up to gorgeous day, life is a gift, that’s special. Are you certain you’ll see this Christmas day sunrise?
Impress yourself before others! Take an apple each day you go out in style. Weddings and debuts don’t count.
Best dressed citizens partied in Hijos de Davao and the MarTish anniversary event. Kudos!

Belle of the ball. VIntage sighting in Davao’s annual gathering, Hijos de Davao
Pinoy Pride. Culture for all.
It’s not reserved for the elite. Culture and heritage is further enriched by bringing it to high-traffic areas like the malls.
More than two decades after its debut, Davao finally caught Agnes Locsin’s iconic ballet piece, Igorot. This plus the other masterworks of BP got an SRO. Thanks to SM and Ballet Philippines for reaching out.
Music is art. Classical music performances rarely come to town. So, when Davao Museum brought in an all women ensemble of the best classical musicians in the country to play for a night, it didn’t come as a surprise that the music lovers came flooding in. Musika Museo was indeed art for the ears. Here’s looking forward to more art of this genre in the future. My hats off to the hardworking volunteers of the Davao Museum.
Marco Polo became the stage of Rachy Cuna’s floral art installations in HABI NATIN: A Celebration of Mindanao’s Woven Heritage during the celebration of the Filipino Heritage Festival. This just shows what we can create with our abundant resources. Love our own! Five apples for NCCA and the DOT.

Igorot. Dabawenya Agnes Locsin’s iconic dance piece was finally shown in Davao more than two decades after its debut.
Chef showcases second-rate meal for the media.
For the second time, this hotel showcased the skills of the city’s three culinary schools. The media got first shot at the treat to spread the news. Opening day disaster.
Last minute menu changes were fine but when the entry was presented by an Arrogant Student (AS) of this school, the fun in dining went kaput.
After fellow meek student presented their dish, “This is the herb-crusted tenderloin of beef. blah, blah.” AS then butted in and with pride, delivered his disastrous statement: “And this is not the best. The best is yet to come.” Media eyebrows rose. “When are you serving the best so can come back for that instead?” we asked.
Staying true to his words, the beef was dry, tough, not good at all. Worst, he got a good scolding from one of the writers.
If I were him I wouldn’t even brag around saying. “I am a Chef!” Bus out the dishes and take 5 lemons with you.
Courtesy, anyone?
On a stopover at the Queen City heading home from the Land of the Rising Sun, I had a night’s accommodation in this hotel chain’s grandest property.
Heading out for dinner, I spotted Top-Level Executive (TLE) and took that chance to extend my gratitude. I made my polite excuses for interrupting his meal and introduced myself. He was so gracious to receive me and stood up. But in the middle of my thank yous, he saw Friend (F), turned F’s way and started chatting with him. I stood frozen for a good minute, got uncomfortable and decided to move away.
While I was moving away..
F: “O, may kausap ka pa yata ha.”
TLE: Waving his hand like brushing off a fly, “Ah, okey lang yan.”
Me: masked “toink” expression. Inhaling deeply. Moving away, moving away.
Bumping into TLE many minutes after.
TLE: “I’ll get back to you.”
He walks away.
Me: “toink” expression Part II. Shaking head in disbelief.
Totally hilarious, totally unexpected, totally out of this world! I never thought I would experience “drowning” in this place.
I’ll leave it up to you my dear readers what to make out of this and award the appropriate fruit.
Party Loot(ing) Bags.
There is this special private celebration that conceived a very new party concept: No loot bags for the guests. But you certainly can loot the other guests’ bags!
Fun? Not if you’re the victim in a roomful of strangers. Not, if you’re still sober and realize you’re missing an accessory- your bag and its contents. Not, even if it’s done in jest, or was it?
Not a nice concept. Do not follow. Five lemons for the play timers, whoever they are.
Share. Give. Love.
For Halad Kapwa Inc., a non-government, non-profit organization, the spirit of Christmas lives 365 days a year. They properly feed malnourished public school children regularly in the hopes of rehabilitating them to good health. It started with one public school and with enough volunteers and donations. They are looking at nourishing more children to health soon and achieve their goal of zero child malnutrition. A kid’s beaming smile and thank you is very heart-warming, good enough reason to see this program work. Great job guys, truly admirable. Apples are very healthy. Pick as much as you like.
Feeling good this Christmas. CROCS is doing their part as well and spreading the spirit of giving. Crocs is donating a portion of their sales from the comfortable footwear you have purchased to the Boys Village in Baracatan in your name. Spread your love and have a Feel Good Christmas! An apple for every ball you hang on the Christmas tree.
Best Wishes.
Before the year and decade comes to a close, let me wish everyone love and prosperity this Christmas and the new decade to come.
Keep in mind that there is an apple for your good deed. The lemons are just waiting on the side, ready to be hurled to anyone who deserves it.

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