Three things 5 – 15 February 2012

I must apologize if my last post in this series only came up tonight–I saved it as a draft by accident without publishing it. So on we go, without any technical hitches hopefully!

1. I am now listening to Forgiven Not Forgotten, the first album by the Irish pop group The Corrs. Why am I doing this? Simply put, I am trying to put away something I heard yesterday at the Alabang Town Center. Without giving too much away and without being needlessly harsh, let me just say that there are just some Corrs songs one cannot ruin. There were very good memories tied with some of those songs. Before I leap back into music, I will have my first food-related item in the series. I have been meaning to do that, actually…

2. Just after the Dialogues @ Starbucks event tonight, which was held at their Fort drive-through branch, I visited the nearby Army Navy burger and burrito store. (Link is down as of posting time by the way.) There used to be a branch much closer to home (which is up north and therefore far from the maddening crowd) but it closed because the market seemed not to enjoy, for instance, the breakfast burrito. It was as tasty as ever when I had it, and it was a quiet night there. The branch had a good view from the rear of the new football pitch. And the musical programming had taste. They played Fleetwood Mac‘s “Don’t Stop (Thinking About Tomorrow).” Unlike what I have to purge from my mind, wondering why the Philippine International Jazz Festival is too generous with its understanding of “jazz.”

3. This was a thought shared by an acquaintance I met tonight, who works for an online radio station and whom I have seen at some music gigs. She was one of the people I met, apart from two independent TV producers, some documentary filmmakers, a marketing intern, a multimedia strategist, the head of CSR for Starbucks Philippines and two people I also knew from the Ateneo de Manila. The occasion was Camille Faylona‘s star turn at the Dialogues @ Starbucks event. Camille was one of my colleagues at The Guidon, Ateneo’s student newspaper, and has been based in Singapore since 2003. Now she is a documentary producer, writer, and director, and her work has been shown on different cable television outlets. She was able to give a talk that was succinct and inspiring, and she also handled the open forum that followed with aplomb, which got everyone, myself included, excited about the possibilities of the documentary medium far beyond the usual brand prevalent in this country.

I did have one minor quibble though, and this had to do with her characterization of the ABS-CBN News Channel documentary series Storyline. Far from being the usual “expose of what’s wrong,” which she thought it was–though she admitted that her exposure to the local scene, and this show in particular, was limited–it is a show that tells stories. There are triumphant stories, and sad ones, and stories of what’s wrong and of what’s right. I have seen quite a few to know that the producers intended this series to be nothing more than a storytelling exercise, with the kind of breadth I have described. To be fair to Camille, though, it is the stories of the controversial, of what’s wrong, that tend to stand out. However, to be fair to Storyline, my favorite episode was an early one that involved the heartwarming story of single father Gabe Mercado, and it did not, by any means, aim to make a point other than that single-parent families are possible.

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