On Job Opportunities

On Job Opportunities

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

They say, opportunity knocks only once and if that happens, one should seize it. Unfortunately, it is this dictum that most often puts the vulnerable in unlikely situations because of the opportunist that sometimes lurks not far behind. There may be opportunities that come as they are – plain opportunities, but the fussy let them pass by and later regret what they have done.

 

There are some people who may be considered lucky because of the seemingly unlimited opportunities that come their way. However, some of these people fail to utilize them due to inadequacy on their part that these opportunities require. This happens for instance, when job opportunities are laid down in front of a newly graduate, but he is helpless as his knowledge and skill just do not match what any of the jobs require.

 

Life is full of opportunities, if only we know how to recognize them. Sometimes we perceive some opportunities as hindrances just because we do not want to stretch even an inch of our muscle to seize them – we do not want to make a sacrifice to hurdle them.  We always thought that opportunities are easily obtained.

 

The onset of waves of unemployment throughout the world, has given the concerned governments more than one reason to take a second look at their educational systems and pre-employment programs for the undergraduates. Despite their effort, however, it seems that the educational institutions are far from cooperating because “junk” courses are still being offered. One of these is the “Airline Secretarial” being offered by schools in the Philippines. Just imagine the thousands of graduates from this course every year to be equated with the small number of airlines in the country. Even the so called “BS Tourism”, graduates of which end up working as sales girls in shopping malls, waiters in restaurants or bell boys in hotels. And, to think that taking up such course is not easy on the pockets of parents because of the costly pre-graduation requirements such as field trips and “practicums”. I admire those who take these jobs, just so, they have something to earn while waiting for the right opportunity to come their way.

 

On the human aspect of the situation, there are just finicky job seekers who do not want to start their career from the lowest rung. Just because they finished “management courses”, they thought they could immediately land on managerial positions. They do not want to start their career as “liaison officers” (glamorized title of messengers), or office clerks. These young graduates forgot that for them to understand how an office operates, they have to have a wide exposure to its operations. It seems, the schools forgot to remind their students about this situation. Yes, there are forums held about prospective employments, but sometimes, school authorities pick up wrong resource persons who are not honest enough to impart to graduates-to-be what to expect when they join the ever- growing throng of job seekers out in the field of cut-throat competition.

 

In a tourism forum, one speaker from a government agency spent the whole half day talking about the state of the tourism industry in a general tone. This could have been easily learned in several subjects of the students, if they were serious enough. So for the whole half day, the participants were fed with statistics on tourist arrivals, and other industry information which is far from what they need to know as future job seekers.  I was given the other half day slot and it was only this time that the students learned the real situation – that finding a job is not easy due to the glut of graduates that overwhelmed the demand, and that if ever lucky enough to land a most coveted job, it might not fit their course to a “T”. I saw disappointments in the faces of those in the audience. Some jokingly remarked that they should have taken up a vocational course in “welding”.

 

The real situation in seeking jobs is disheartening, but there is always even a bit of patience in every one. One failure should not give one a reason to lose heart in persisting to land a job. There is a popular adage that says, “while there is life, there is hope”, actually, a literal translation from Filipino which says, “habang may buhay, may pag-asa”.

Mga Palpak na Sistema ng Gobyerno

Mga Palpak na Sistema ng Gobyerno

Ni Apolinario Villalobos

 

Sa nasobrahan na yatang pagbo-broadcast ng kaso ng showbiz personality na si Vhong Navarro, hindi na raw mahagilap ang mga nasangkot dito na si Cedric Lee at iba pa…paano ba naman, hindi pa nailalabas ang warrant of arrest sa kanila, ay nagpaistaring na ng interview si de Lima at mga pulis tungkol sa nasabing mga warrant na ni hindi pa nga napipirmahan ng huwes. Sino ang tanga na magpapaaresto para sa kasong walang piyansa? Kaya ayon, nakatingin sa kawalan ang mga warrant officers.

 

Isang maliit na kalye sa Maynila, sa panulukan ng Recto, na kung tawagin ay Arranque ang kilala na noon pa na bagsakan ng mga nakaw na gamit. Subali’t may mga nagbebenta rin ng mga gamit na hindi naman nakaw kundi yong buraot –  mga junks o mga “kalakal” na mapapakinabangan pa, mga napupulot sa mga basurahan. Malalaman sa isang tingin pa lang ang lehitimong mga taong yagit na nagbebenta ng mga ito na nakalatag sa bangketa. Ang masama lang, kinukumpiska ng mga pulis ang mga junk na paninda – dinadala sa presinto para “ipatubos”, at ang dahilan ay nakakasagabal daw sila sa daloy ng “trapiko”. Anong trapiko ang sinasabi nila, ganoong, ang tinutukoy na lugar ay sidestreet, at sa bangketa nakalatag ang mga paninda? Ang mga kawawang yagit ay lalong nagmumukhang kawawa dahil sa pagkawala ng kakarampot na kabuhayan nila. Ang inaasahang baryang kikitain para pambili ng maski isang kilong bigas at gamot ay nawala at hindi na nila inaasahang makukuha pa o “matutubos” sa napakalaki daw na halaga. May nagsabi na bago daw itinatapon ng mga pulis ang mga “kalakal” ay pinipilian muna ng mapapakinabangan nila. Sa kabila ng “kahigpitan” ng mga pulis, bakit hindi nila masawata ang mga hantarang “snatching” o pang-aagaw ng mga alahas at ibang gamit? Ilang araw lang ang nakaraan, mismong asawa ni Ping Lacson ang naagawan ng hikaw sa Divisoria. Ilang sandali lang, “nahuli” na raw ang mga magnanakaw? Bakit kung hindi kilala ang ninakawan, sori na lang ang inaasahan?

 

Sa isyu ng kurodo at iba pang produkto ng langis, alam na maski ng mga bata na kaya hindi makontrol ang pagsirit palagi ng mga presyo ay dahil sa “oil deregulation law”. Bakit hindi ito ang tumbukin ng gobyerno? Bakit hindi ibalik sa gobyerno ang pagkontrol sa presyo ng langis?  Dahil may mawawalan ba ng komisyon? May mga pondo naman palang magagamit pero hinahayaan lamang nakawin ng mga tiwaling mga opisyal at mga mambabatas.  Ang isa pang ayaw bigyan ng pansin ng gobyerno ay ang mga alternatibong mapagkukunan ng enerhiya na magagamit maski sa pailaw at mga gamit pambahay, hindi bale na ang gasolina o krudo para sa sasakyan. Ito ang kailangan ng mga liblib na lugar sa ating bansa. Ang tinutukoy ko ay mga panggagalingan na tulad ng araw at hangin. Ano ang silbi ng mga naimbento nang mga paraan at gamit para dito kung hindi rin lang mapapakinabangan? Hanggang piktyuran na lamang ba ang Department of Science and Technology? Ang nakakahiya, may mga liblib na mga baryo at isla ang nabibigyan ng mga gamit na solar lights subalit ang mga ito ay proyekto ng mga banyaga at mga misyonaryo.

 

Sa isyu ng pagpapaayos ng mga kalye sa Maynila, palagi na lang hindi nasusunod ang iskedyul sa pagtapos ng mga ito. Maski noong panahon na wala pang cellphone, alam na ng lahat ang mga kapalpakan ng mga ganitong klaseng proyekto. Subali’t palagi na lang nagtuturuan ang mga ahensiya ng gobyerno kung sino ang pumalpak. Ang mga kontraktor naman na sangkot, tuwang-tuwang pumapalakpak dahil hindi man lang sila napapatawan ng karampatang parusa.

 

Sa mga aksidente sa kalsada…kapag nabangga ng trak ang isang motorcycle na animo ahas sa paglusot sa trapik, ang maysala ay ang driver ng trak. Kapag nasagasaan ng kotse ang isang taong desperado na kusang nagpasagasa, ang may sala ay ang driver ng kotse. Kapag nasagasaan ng tren ang isang taong lasing na nakahiga sa riles, ang may sala ay ang operator ng tren. Kapag nahulog ang isang bus sa isang bangin kahit na mabagal ang takbo, ngunit dahil sa kawalan ng babala sa tabi ng daanan, ang maysala ay ang driver ng bus. Paanong madidisiplina ang mga driver ng mga motorcycle na walang respeto sa batas trapiko kung sila ang papanigan palagi maski sila ang maysala sa isang aksidente? Paanong masawata ang mga sindikato na kunwaring nagpapasagasa upang makapangikil sa mga driver ng kotse kung walang batas para dito? Nasaan ang budget na para sana sa pagpapaayos ng mga highway, kasama na ang mga paglalagay ng mga harang at mga reflectorized warning signs sa mga delikadong highways sa mga gilid ng kabundukan  at tabi ng mga bangin? At, paanong mawawala ang mga aksidente sa mga riles ng tren kung sa tabi ng kahabaan nito ay may mga iskwater pa rin?

 

Kung ililista ang mga kapalpakan sa gobyerno, hindi lang siguro isang aklat ang magagawa. Dahil sa kawalan ng isang centralized na coordinative system, ang mga ahensiya ay nagtuturuan kung sino ang may sala kapag may pumutok na problema. Tuluy-tuloy ang nakakalungkot na mga pangyayaring nakakasuka. Kung may ginagawa man, ay hanggang imbestigasyon na lamang dahil sa excitement na dala nito kaya palaging may nakaumang na mga kamera ng TV at mikropono ng media. Walang napaparusahan kaya tuloy ang ligaya ng mga salot sa lipunan at mga kawatan na alam na natin kung saan-saang panig nakaluklok! Sila yong mga kawatan na hindi nahihiyang magsabi sa madla na wala silang kasalanan.

God’s Omnipotence

God’s Omnipotence

By Apolinario Villalobos

 

Instead of being negative to the realities about man’s fallibility such that he keeps on sinning after the almost regular repentance, we should look deeper and seek the reason or reasons for it. There are two issues about man’s existence – whether his fate is pre-destined or dependent on his free will. But first we have to accept that the cycle of sinning and repenting is happening. We cannot just play blind, dumb or worse, be hypocrites.

 

God’s omnipotence is such that He deemed it necessary for man to work hard for his existence.  That is why life is floating on temptations – a reality from which we can never escape. So what is wrong with the truth that indeed, we commit sins again and again but we try our best to show our intention to repent, also, again and again?

 

The activities or the things that go with life such as the businesses that flourish during religious festivals are part of the phenomenon of existence. God knows that we have to work and earn in order for us to live. So what is wrong with the tons of candles being sold to the faithful to be lighted during processions and vigils? What is wrong with the t-shirts sold to be worn by the faithful to identify themselves as members of certain religious groups?

 

What I am driving at in my observations (blogged: The Vicious Cycle of Repenting and Erring), is the hypocrisy of some “religious” who swear to heavens that they are sure of salvation and even go to the extent of despising others who cannot join religious activities. Also, the gull of those who visit churches in the guise of fulfilling a vow but in reality would like to brag to others through selfies that they have indeed, “been there”. And, for those who flog themselves, well, I have plenty of friends who do such penance, and after a week, they “celebrate” their “redemption from sin” by going into drinking binges for days…one of them even go back to his sideline of selling illegal drugs, and still another one continue with his habit of beating his wife. Most especially, I am not alone in these observations because even the Catholic Church keeps on reminding the faithful about their behavior, even radio commentators and TV anchors are one in their reminders about the excessive practices.

 

I just want to emphasize that nobody is free from sin. Whatever righteousness we do and show to others can help us lighten our load, but not totally free us from such. Hypocrites of today should take the cue from the new pope himself, Francis, who confessed to a priest. The pope has been humble enough to accept his sins, but did not confess directly to God as expected of him, instead, he whispered all his misdoings to a priest. Is the pope’s gesture not enough to open our eyes so that we can accept the realities of man’s vulnerability? The ultimate show of humility is Christ’s washing of his disciples’ feet. He bowed to them as He did it, to show that there is nothing wrong with being humble in anything that we do, including the acceptance of our shortcomings as man. This could be all part of God’s omnipotent plan for mankind – that by the time we die, He will know who among us are consistent enough in repenting and really mean it, until our time of reckoning finally comes, so He allows the vicious cycle of sinning and repenting to happen. I am not being judgmental because I, too, am a sinner. I am just being observant and loud about it, because I cannot stand hypocrisy.