About

Susan “Toots” Ople is the youngest daughter of the late Foreign Affairs Secretary Blas F. Ople. She has a Sunday column in Manila Bulletin’s Panorama Magazine and Tempo and two public service radio programs, “Bantay OFW” at DZXL RMN 558 every Monday to Friday, 12.30-2 pm and “Global Pinoy” at DWIZ 882 every Saturday from 5.30-6.30 pm.
Filipino graduates face tough economy

Filipino graduates face tough economy

It is graduation season in the Philippines, and one can’t help but wax nostalgic about youthful indulgences and daydreams about making it to the top. Unlike Saudi nationals whose own government has made it a mission to “nationalize” the workplace, in the Philippines, the jobless compete not only with each...
After the hoopla, the hard work begins

After the hoopla, the hard work begins

There is absolutely no doubt that the signing of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) was a historic milestone, not just for the Philippines, but also for Southeast Asia, if not the world. It took 17 years of on-again...
Human helplessness exposed

Human helplessness exposed

It seems something straight out of a mystery movie. A Malaysian airplane bearing 239 passengers that was bound for China never got there, and has yet to be found, more than a week after it disappeared. Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak recently called for a press conference where he announced...
Latest entries

Jobs, jobs, jobs

Kitaro Japanese Restaurant has job openings for the following: Store Managers – pref HRM graduate; at least 3 years experience as supervisor in a restaurant; knows how to handle personnel Management trainees – pref HRM graduate; not more than 30 years old; with at least one year experience in a restaurant Cooks – pref with...

Iblog2: A Newbie’s Perspective

My day at Iblog2 started later than most. I caught the middle of Manolo Quezon’s talk on a blogger’s rights and his or her readers’ expectations. I appreciate the generosity of spirit behind his advice for established bloggers to point the way to lesser known but equally deserving blogsites. Davao City councilor Pete Lavina expressed...

Missing father and a poem

I was searching for a poem. I wrote it a few months after my father died. I can’t recall specific lines but it was about missing the sound of his pen on paper. I stored it in my laptop and now it’s gone. Did I delete it by mistake? Or perhaps someone who borrowed my...

Important Food For Thought from Vaclav Havel

Excerpt from “The Power of the Powerless”, an essay written by Vaclav Havel during his days as a “dissident” in Czechoslovakia. Havel’s essay has had a profound impact on Eastern Europe and the Solidarity Movement during the Cold War era. “Between the aims of the post-totalitarian system and the aims of life, there is a...

Berong was his name

Berong was his name. He had a patrician nose, eyes that have that faraway look, and a built that was stocky yet capable of stealth. He used to be a boxer or so he claimed during his Ilocano youth. Berong Ople, that was his complete name. No relation by blood to us Oples of Bulacan....

Shifting Gears

On a daily basis, my inbox receives dire messages from readers seeking employment. Some readers make it a point to attach their resumes complete with photos perhaps hoping that I can pass these on to my own contacts. Unfortunately, my personal network is composed mostly of friends who are gainfully employed but not in a...

Because I write

Because I write, I live with extraordinary people Who don’t exist Except upon my say so. Because I write, Words come and go Like happy tourists Travelling without a map Because I write, I ponder, and in the melancholy Of my dreams, I cry Because I write, A choir of words Give music to my...

Why I am against charter change

A Constitution must reflect the basic principles that keep our nation together. Every time a new official is sworn in to serve government, he or she is asked to uphold the Constitution. It is the spoke in our wheel; the compass by which we all set our eyes on whenever the nation feels adrift. Opening...