28 August 2006

an RPh's take on the RN leakage scandal

I've read the papers and I've seen the tv reports. Being a graduate of a health science course and being a board passer myself, It's hard not to give notice. I don't know when it all started but since the issue just won't die down, I might as well share my thoughts on it.

There was a leakage in the recent Nursing Board Exam, that's a fact. The SM Manila review, the powerpoint presentation, no one's denying that it happened. It all comes down to 2 things. First, who's to blame? And second, is a retake in order?

So who's to blame? Fingers are pointing everywhere but I think I know who the mastermind is. During the first week of the issue, I saw an ANC talk show with Tina Monsod Palma and her guests were the PNA president and a couple of nursing college deans. While the deans were thoroughly discussing the current problems of the nursing profession, Mr. Cordero was quick to point out that all the board members should resign. He was so negative and I tried to make sense out of his statements but it was so farfetched that I thought He was just a complete waste of time.

A week passed and the truth slowly took off its cover. Proof of the leakage was all over the place and it all pointed to one man. The SM Manila review, the plane tickets for the board members, and the threats to board members retracting their original testimonies, everything comes down to Mr. Cordero. Now I'm no detective and I know I don't know the Nursing profession that well but it's too obvious. With his son's failure to pass the exam as his excuse, he's got some explaining to do. I think we have ourselves a mastermind, former PNA president George Cordero. (Please don't kill me Mr. Cordero, I'm too young to die!)

Is there a need for a retake? I saw the footages of oath-takings and I'm not too pleased with it. Not including the fact that there was a TRO, i think it's just wrong. I don't want my license to have a footnote reading "exam still under investigation." I want my license to be legit, and if I have to take it again just so I can silence all the critics, I would.

I've seen the proud board passers making faces when one proposes a retake. Grow-up. Yes, you did not enroll in review centers, you self-studied. I'm not taking that away from you. But with that, I don't think retaking the exam would be such a big problem. The re-take is free of charge and only includes Test 3 and 5, parts that were said to be fraudulent. C'mon, we all know you're just being lazy. The time, effort and finance spent will all be worth a name extension without the dirt. (To the "No Retake" protesters, please don't kill me either!)

21 August 2006

way beyond

the short rain has provided a cold breeze, my body is tired from working out, and i drank a glass of milk. sleep should've been automatic. after more or less an hour of tossing and turning, i decided to get up and write the night away. what seemed to be a conducive environment for sleep, was a conducive environment for contemplation.

last month, i suddenly found myself able to return to philippine standard time and sleep like normal people do. but for the last 2 weeks i'm back in search of the sandman. maybe it's the startling information i found out a couple of weeks back or maybe it's the thought of waking up to a dull day the next day with nothing to look forward to. either way, it ain't fun. i just wish i have michael newman's remote in my hand right now and click on fast-forward.

yes, i've watched adam sandler's new movie and it was a great movie. plus kate beckinsale was so hot in her jammies! who wouldn't wanna wake-up next to her? if i could only find a clone that likes chinito guys who loves to write... forever and ever babe...

it was an awesome movie delivering the haha's and a moral lesson but i got a problem with the "remote" concept though. see michael can fast-forward to a time that he wishes, with his body on auto-pilot during the time warp. but on the other hand, when he wants to go back in time, he goes back as a third person viewing his life. but i guess the writer's concept fits in perfectly to deliver the moral of the movie. my idea of the universal remote that controls my universe would have a rewind button where i could correct the past.

but the movie butterfly effect thought us that changing the past is not necessarily the answer to the problems of today. so i take it back, i don't need michael newman's remote. i might as well follow on his footsteps and throw my universal remote, or even the concept of it, in the trashcan.

18 August 2006


troubled state, 8 days straight.
left behind, way ahead.
perfect timing.
neither tuesday nor wednesday.
days are over.
butterfly, bitterfly.
market, ice cream.
wishful thinking.
covered in rain.
quiet, still quiet.
blank, clarity.
love soon.
justify destiny.

15 August 2006

my bad

i was looking for some credit and maybe it was premature of me to say bad things about the school administration. yesterday was the college reception for the passers of the july 2006 pharmacy licensure examinations.

i got a call last week inviting me to the college reception. needless to say, i was surprised. then a few days later i got text messages from friends. they had a sighting of a banner in the college. really? was the administration reading my blog?

i went in the room, saw some guests, and saw some food. one handed me a piece of paper and in it i saw only 4 names including mine. out of 22 passers only 5 came on time. they didn't wait for the others so the more or less 30-minute program started with only 5 honorees. the dean gave a speech, so did a topnotcher. all in all it was well... i dunno...

i heard somewhere that the answer to life's disappointments is lowered expectations. i came with just that. if not for my lowered expectations, that reception would've sucked bigtime. the only thing great about that day was the fact that i was able to catch up with old friends.

in the spirit of giving credit where credit is due, i'll still give credit to the school admin. though i can read the disappointment on their faces for having only 4 UP students in the top 20, not to mention UST got no.1, they still observed tradition. and that's all i ever wanted.

12 August 2006

the sub

i never thought i'd feel this way again. all this time i thought i'll never have a taste of it again. tonight i'll be sleeping with a smile.

i looked forward to a promise to be fulfilled. after a long day, even a single bite would be great. my mom and dad left, then i was alone, eagerly waiting for their return. i looked at the clock but looking at it seemed to slow the hands of time. the anticipation was killing me but i had to wait some more.

my parents then came and with them was my joy. subway sandwiches! there were two, each cut in three's. my mom, my dad, and my sister all had a piece. i had a whole subway sandwich all for myself. the foot-long bread jam-packed with all sorts of veggies and bacon strips was well worth the long wait. a couple of oatmeal cookies more and i'll be in heaven.

damn i love subway!

from pharma to graphic design?

i'm still on the hunt for the big J, waiting for a ring from a number of potential employers. and even if they call, i don't think it's the job i want. ok, i understand that i have to start from the bottom up, that i need to gain experience first before i can demand the job i want, but can u blame me for looking for a shortcut? i mean, i've heard it's possible, so why can't it happen to me?

i'm feeling the pressure, so much that i psyched myself up to average to below-average jobs. after all, they say it's not the hiring season, the opportunities are scarce, and time is of the essence...

a ray of light. i received a text message from a schoolmate that offers a job for 3 months at wyeth. cool. but here's the catch, i'll be hired not as a registered pharmacist but as a graphic designer. say what? graphic designer... graphic designer... nope, i remember well that i graduated BS Industrial Pharmacy. did i drink too much again? wait, let me ask my imaginary friends...

i guess i was known in the college as a techie guy, doing great things bound only by the capabilities of my desktop. did that impress people? it was just a hobby, perfection was not a requirement. my skills, on a scale of 1 to 10 is at 6 and that's a generous assumption. i never thought the products of my fun-time can give such a thing as big as a... (excuse the pun) as big as a J.

and the pressure keeps on mounting. i got a message this morning regarding the job. the graphic designer will create artworks using adobe photoshop or corel draw, programs i'm familiar with but not good at. to top it all off, the artworks will be on the carton boxes and tin cans of wyeth products. so you're telling me that if i get the job, my work will be displayed on cans of infant formulas all over the philippines? thats huge! no, check that, that's HUGE!

last i heard, the candidates are down to two, me and some other dude. i hope i get i, God willing!

08 August 2006


a few raindrops and some mellow music, the nostalgia is once again in session...

i think it was march when gp asked me to go to tiendesitas to watch the band tribe of levi. or was it the band he watched? wink. moving on... a couple of our friends didn't make it due to prior commitments, and so after the band played their last song, it became a roni-gp drink, talk and reminisce affair. out of nowhere i asked him what year in his life was his glory year. a year, if given the chance to go back in time, you'd go back to in a snap. i was thinking third year highschool was my year. he was thinking third year high too.

april in cavite, i asked a similar question to my housemates. and like a scripted afternoon tv show they one by one responded with "third year highschool!"

third year highschool, a time when our name patches had the "III" indicating 3 years in Notre Dame. i remember back in first year, a classmate told me that the best year in highschool was the third. he could never be more right.

so what was so special about 3rd year high? here's my list (the ones i can recall right now):

  1. i won the award for mathematician of the year. i think the final score was 3 to 5, out of a possible 15. pretty low score for a so-called "mathematician." good thing i was up against a dumber opponent.
  2. i sang in front of the whole highschool batch and our band got a 3rd place finish.
  3. junior prom. need i say more?
  4. the first time i fell in love
  5. i was introduced to alcohol and all its perks
  6. breaking out on the dancefloor at HRC or anywhere there's a dancefloor
  7. recalling everything that happened that year was like watching my own version of "can't hardly wait" or any other highschool movie...

05 August 2006


the question is still unanswered but it led to another question. what happened to tradition?

in my years in the college of pharmacy, i noticed a pattern of some sort. after every board exam, i'll receive a text message "UP did it again!" forwarded to me by a number of friends indicating another 100% passing percentage for UP Manila College of Pharmacy. i never really give a crap about it then; i was still 2-3 years away from my board exam.

after the text messages, a banner will be put up at the building entrance congratulating the successful examinees with all their names on it. again it was nothing to me. i passed over it almost everyday like it was just a shade from the sun.

next up was the celebration. the college will have a thanksgiving party, inviting the board passers for some food. i remember going downstairs after finishing a class, a friend would hand me a plate of spaghetti, pancit, or any excess food from the party. free snacks for today, then tomorrow will be just like any other day.

now it's our turn, i have the checklist on my left hand and a pen on the other.

i went to the college more than a week after the results but saw no banners. instead i saw a piece of white paper with our names begging to be noticed on the bulletin board.
i was eagerly awaiting the text message from the school wondering if we passed or not. but the "UP did it again" message was nowhere in sight and i found out the results by myself.
it has been almost a month since i took the exam and i'm still waiting for that cheap pancit and ketchup spaghetti.

okay, so UP Manila did not have the top 1 in the recent board exams and only 2 are on the top 10, get over it! i just want my fair share of college pride. they didn't even bother to know if other students made it in the top 20. hey, i could be one of them. i don't think they're even planning on spending less than a thousand pesos to feed the successful examinees. UP Manila College of Pharmacy, proud to be no.1 but can't be seen or felt otherwise. go UP! crap.

04 August 2006

the ?

behind the smiles and hiding in the celebrations was the anticipation for something bigger other than the big J.

i was registering for my professional id card when the PRC handed me a paper that incited my curiosity. i was supposed to just sign the paper and give it right back but i saw a handwritten "86.20" on it. i assumed it was my board rating and i started to contemplate on what it means. could it be that the glory i achieved by having an "RPh" extension has something more to offer? seeing the scores of the top 10, i knew i had a shot at the top 20. the 10th placer only had an 87.45 rating, just more than a point away from mine. this'll be interesting...

for weeks after the results were published, i tried to look for the list of the top 20. i checked every online publication, i asked friends working in the academe, anything to find answers, but to no avail. for a while, i gave up, knowing that my grade was just speculation. i also knew that the board rating and ranking would be given at the oathtaking ceremonies together with the id's and certificates. i waited for august 1 but it only answered half of the question. yes, i did have a score of 86.20, but did i make it to the top 20?

the answer, we might never know...

02 August 2006


with so many things going on, to blog is indispensable. the first of august has only 20 minutes left. my legs are sore, my body is exhausted, my eyes sleepy but my spirit is wide-awake.

i've given myself this day as my deadline for living the bum life. right after i was made aware that i aced the licensure exams, i looked forward to the oathtaking ceremonies as a second graduation. the following day will be the start of a new chapter in my life. this day will be my last day to live without worries and i only have 15 minutes left.

unlike my college graduation, i took a different approach to the oathtaking ceremonies. i must admit that i really looked forward to this day, the day i'll be officially Ron Gilbert G. Go, RPh but i knew i'll only be disappointed if i expect too much out of this experience. my college graduation was not even half of what i expected it to be, mainly because i thought it'd be the best day of my life. it was definitely not. but with lowered expectations and warnings of pancit worth the P800 peso ticket, i would say this was better than my previous graduation.

it was a short program lasting for less than 3 hours. a board member started his closing remarks while we were still finishing our food. we got out of fiesta pavilion and were in line to get our certificates, id cards, and some manila hotel souvenirs. i never really felt the oathtaking ceremonies but i feel great about it. my prc id and almost 30 minutes of posing for pictures was well worth the wait.

after manila hotel, my next stop was chino roces ave. to pick up a friend at roche and then meet with a couple more at the shang. i thought the day wouldn't be complete without college friends, my real friends (stop crying gp, you guys are my real friends too! f4!). stuck in traffic, i thought i wouldn't make it. taft was a real pain in the ass and it started to get dark. personal detours leading to mixed up directions coupled with a disconnected phone line, the odds are against me. but God wasn't. a couple of phone calls cleared things out in the nick of time, just before i was about to get lost in makati. whew, what a relief.

the shangri-la was again the place to catch up with friends. after some conversation and laughter over less than mediocre food, we were set to be dessert critics again. after deciding on where our "spoons" or "yums" would be of worth, closing time would have its way and postponed our taste-test to another time. we settled for some coffee instead. things would've been better if we were complete but the 4 of us was fun nonetheless. all in all, the night, though short, was sweet.

at 10pm, the mrt closes its doors. with one of us utilizing the train service, the night had to be cut short. the other two, i gave a ride home. from the shang to fairview, one got off at commonwealth. and then there was only one left. from fairview to munoz, irony was defined. who would have thought i'll be talking to the first strike about love and the craziness it bestows upon us? my butterfly was mentioned, so was her present, my past, her past, even our past if there was one.

i'm officially a registered pharmacist and it's officially a new day. a new season for misadventures...