The “Statement” in Today’s World

The “STATEMENT” in Today’s World

By Apolinario Villalobos


The “statement” in today’s world is not necessarily uttered but “made”, “shown”, or “manifested”. A guy with a mohawk haircut is making a statement. A girl wearing a black lipstick is making a statement. An old woman wearing a pair of short shorts is making a statement, etc.


The “statement” in today’s world is an effort of a person to make him/her unique, a standout in a crowd…but the end motive is to be satisfied…and nobody should question that. For as long as the person who makes a “statement” does not hurt anybody, he/she should be left alone. A STATEMENT CAN SPELL HAPPINESS.


On the other hand, these guys are considered trendsetters that make the world consistently on the go and dynamic, instead of stagnating in a pool of monotony. Without uttering a world, they make manufacturers of goods realize what are needed by a certain segment of consumers….great for economy. They are also great advocates of recycling as most of what they wear are pre-loved outfit, albeit, originals and worn by well-known personalities….garments that somehow found their way to ukay-ukay outlets….great for the environment.


These guys should also be admired for their courage to be different. Imagine a 70-year old lady wearing a mini-skirt as her intention is to move around comfortably, never mind the pair of legs. Imagine, too, the courage of a macho body builder who wears pink gym shirt, as by wearing such color, he helps calm down the snooty people around him. And, imagine, too, a 4-foot woman with a big bag slung over her shoulder…her shoulder bag that contains a small make-up kit, a piece of Skyflakes cracker, and a bottle of mineral water.


If we want harmony, we should try to be tolerant and appreciative of things that others are doing but we failed to do. If being amused can make our day…then, let it be that way.



The Need to Downsize our Lifestyle as we Advance in Age



By Cristina Valeriano



At a young age, many of us have been carefree, especially, those who belong to the upper echelon of the society. For the working class, the 15/30 wage is nothing but loose change compared to their family’s affluence. Also, for them, the job is just a reason for socializing and the jobsite, a venue for meeting friends.


But anything can happen, as what a popular adage says, “what goes up must come down”. Seriously now, rich or otherwise, there is a need to prepare ourselves in downsizing our lifestyle as we approach the threshold of our retirement. And for this writer, the situation is where I am now.


Retirement opportunity comes in many ways: one is in a package offered by the employer with the end objective of giving way to younger blood; two, is upon reaching the age of 60 which is an optional; three, is at the age of 65 which is the point of no turning back; and four, is when the company is in financial distress.


Retirees in the Philippines have lifetime securities, such as the pension from either the SSS or GSIS, aside from the “plans” that have been purchased while employed. With the soaring of the cost of living, the big chunk of the retiree population, though, has become helpless with their meager pension which is not even enough to buy two health maintenance drugs and a regular check up.


Downsizing of lifestyle needs a lot sacrifice on the part of the retirees, especially, if retirement came early due to uncontrolled circumstances. Worst is the situation wherein their children refuse to cooperate by maintaining their idle status despite having earned college degrees. Many retirees are found to be still supporting their idle “graduate” children whose alibi in failure to find a job is the distance of the workplace from home or the pittance wage which for them is not worth the sacrifice of waking up early in the morning.


Despite the aforementioned disheartening situations, it is worthy to note that many retirees find solace in their church and community volunteer service in place of the frequent partying with “amigas” or drinking sprees in beerhouses with “kumpares” before. Some venture into home-based business such as making bead jewelries and baking. But to keep them abreast with the happening in the world, many are into cyber-socialization, a laudable effort, for it does not only divert the attention of the retirees from the cafes and expensive restos, but keeps the brain working. However, it is important that leg muscles are stretched occasionally, so that, a weekly trip to the mall with the grandchildren is still very necessary for a grab of sandwich and juice!