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When people speak of visionaries, they refer to people who dream big and talk big. People with vision usually know what they want to happen. They dream with the end in mind. A visionary will see a whole cathedral while other people will put it together for him.

Usually, visionaries don’t bother with the details–that’s for other people to worry about while he’s left to construct his vision. Usually.

I believe however, that vision is not limited with the broad stroke of a paintbrush. A true genius will know how his masterpiece will look like when it is finished and at every step of the process. He knows what colors to use, and what bases to utilize, whether to paint with oil or with water. He will sketch with a pencil first, and gradually fill the raw outline with minute details. Only a true master will know every excruciating detail that makes a piece whole.

True vision lies in the details. Vision that can be translated to concrete works and not just empty words needs details–knowledge that ย can be used as an armory against those who claim otherwise.

According to this news article, most of the congressmen think that President Noy Aquino’s first-ever State Of the Nation Address (SONA) was “dry”, “with no inspiration” “without a vision”, but “direct” and “filled with details”.

I beg to disagree with these congressmen.

P-Noy’s speech had a vision–a very clear one, in fact. It’s thesis was simple: these are the facts that show just how our nation has been raped and plundered by the previous government. These are the problems we face today. These are the problems the current administration will address. These are the problems that will be fixed by the dawn of a new government against corruption.

That, my dears, is a vision.

It’s not an empty promise. He has surrounded himself with the facts upon which he can build a new government. And if he fails to do anything to curb and turn around what the previous administration has done, or God forbid, he does something more, then the people can slap his face with the facts he has presented and ridicule his honor: “These are the numbers you gave us and you have not done anything to change them. You have failed us. Shame on you.”

Also, I think those congressmen are just bitter that as P-Noy said, this will be a time for sacrifices. According to the SONA, a new budget will be drafted based on material and legitimate needs. No more instances of just using last year’s budget with a few additions. Take that, pork barrel.

I hope – I really, really, really hope – that P-Noy comes through with his promises. If he can’t do it, then I don’t know anybody else who can. And if nobody can do it, then our country will die a slow, painful death due to hunger, poverty, rebellion, and corruption.

His words may not have had Barack Obama’s magnetic pull, but they are concrete and well-founded. Years from now, when examples of “exemplary” speeches are needed, then charisma may win over facts. But this speech is more than the words it contains. It heralds the death of corruption that festers on impunity. I have no naive belief that P-Noy can eradicate corruption completely, but I have faith that he will effect the first sparks of change that will turn us around.

Words are powerful; but they are only as powerful as the change they can inspire. And inspiration can come in many forms. Sometimes, mere words are enough. At other times, though, the words are just the beginning and the explanation. That may not be as exciting, but it does not mean that they are less effective catalysts. They hold the promise of concrete change–that’s what’s important.


Colayco Cup is done!

We didn’t win, but that’s okay. I guess it is disappointing to not “win” when you’ve worked hard for something, but then the experience was enough. I didn’t need to win; I just wanted to do well. And I think that based on the standards I set for myself (which was to not panic, finish my speech, say all my points, and answer the panel)–I did pretty well.

This just shows that I have to work harder if I want to become better–and I do, I really do. This may sound vain or selfish, but I want to see my face and my name on one of those tarps posted around school. I want to go abroad and represent my school.

This is something new for me because I’ve never wanted something so bad that I’m willing to work myself to the ground to earn it. Things always came so easily to me before, and I guess that lulled me in a state of complacency and safe orbit–I never wanted to do anything that I didn’t know I was good at because I didn’t want to risk not being able to get it.

But now, and I am completely being honest, I want to become a better mooter. So that next year, my blockmates and I will compete together ๐Ÿ˜€

I want to thank our coaches, Reese Faylon and Miku Lagarde, for being very patient with us and for helping us every step of the way. Super thank you, Coaches! And to the best teammates ever: Ernie, for being the most understanding captain; R, for your extensive knowledge on unmanned drones and boatloads of fun, and Anna, for always always being there! ๐Ÿ™‚

R doing his drills

R doing his drills

Anna caught unaware during practice

Anna caught unaware during practice

Hello from practice

Hello from practice

Anna says hi too

Anna says hi too

At least, for now, I can go back to regular studying :))

PS. Congratulations to Sansan’s team for winning! ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€ ๐Ÿ˜€

I have a ย nagging feeling that this blog will be entirely (or at least mostly) composed of Law School Journals. Oh well.

This post will be more aptly titled as “Colayco Cup Journal # 2”. However, it’s only two days before Colayco Cup and I’ve already failed to blog about most of my experience, so let’s just settle with another Law School Journal.

It’s 12AM and my teammates and I, together with our coaches and the other teams, are still in school, drilling for our Oral rounds. Tomorrow is Big 3 day (that’s Persons, Crim1, and Consti1) and I have not read anything for school. I’m currently listening to my teammate and partner, R, say his speech. I did mine already earlier, once for one of my coaches, Reese, and the other for Alphie, an alumni who Reese asked to drill me. I was immensely thankful that he drilled me because he was more “chill” than the coaches (I think from three different teams, not including ours) drilling R now. He was also very helpful. But then now, all my confidence from earlier is dissipating from the intense way they’re paneling R now. What’ll happen if I can’t answer them on Sunday?


On the other hand, I am having more fun with Colayco Cup now than when we started. ๐Ÿ™‚

BTW, Colayco Cup is a moot court competition for ASIL applicants. Moot court is a simulation of a proceeding before the International Court of Justice. It’s very hard to study, but it’s also very interesting, once you get the hang of the concepts you’re reading about and trying to defend.

This is not my first post about law school, but I’ve decided to keep a regular tab on updates about what’s been happening and how I’ve been doing in school, for two reasons:

1) so that four years from now (hopefully), when I’m preparing for the bar and I want a break, I can spend idle time looking back through my journey, and

2) to keep this blog alive.

So, I bring you, the Law School Journals.


The past two weeks have been challenging. I’d use the word “hell”, but I’ve often used that term to refer to college “hell” weeks, and back then (as if it was such a long time ago), I’ve always used the term “hell” in a semi-joking manner. Sure, it was hell, but it was more like a lick of purgatory. I don’t want to use an oft-abused term to describe this raging fire I’ve gotten myself into.

My blockmates and I decided to join the Ateneo Society of International Law (ASIL). It’s the Ateneo Debate Society of Law School, except that it’s moot court instead of parliamentary debate (incidentally, I also joined the debate team, hehe). I think this was born out of my frustration of not making the debate team back in college. Part of it was my automatic allergic reaction against challenging work. I never wanted to challenge myself because I didn’t want to be proven incapable. So put less than my best effort in some things. I never really took anything seriously.

I think that’s also part of the reason I wanted to go to law school. Some of my friends told me that I should have worked straight out of college and that they didn’t see me in law school. And even now, when I read about how some of my friends and batchmates are starting to work, I feel a pang of jealousy that they’re out in the “real” world and I’m still stuck inside a classroom.

But then, I want to make sure that I’m mature enough before I unleash myself in the work force; and I definitely know that right now, I am still more like a kid than anything else. I need to earn and envelop a sense of responsibility–something which I think I can find in Law School. I know it’s hard for my parents to support my education, and I feel really sorry that I chose Ateneo, but I know that this institution will push me the furthest–and this is proving true.

For the past two weeks, we’ve been undergoing a crash course on International Law through a competition that’s normally prepared for and done in months. Everything is crammed in two weeks. Some have dropped already but a lot of us are still holding on, even just until Sunday, where the competition will finally end. My blockmates and I have already planned having a sumptuous celebratory dinner afterwards. Hehe.

Because of Colayco Cup, I’ve been sick again, I’ve neglected to read for my other subjects, and I’ve been a patron of the library. It’s hard, and it’s very grueling work, especially when you have no idea (as in squat) about what you’re doing, and you’re just learning along the way through the numerous edits and drills.

It’s not enjoyable and it’s really a hassle, but I will not quit–not just because not quitting means automatic acceptance, but because I find growth in what I’m doing. I can’t quite find the most apt way of describing it, but it feels like this whole two weeks served as another bout of emotional and mental puberty.

It’s challenging, and I am definitely appreciating the whole challenge.

The Days Go By

July 2010
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