December 25, 2006 was the first time I formally tried blogging, which makes today my 11th year doing so. The first post I did was about ABS-CBN’s linkage to its sister company SKYcable, which should be common knowledge to everyone nowadays.
I’ve never done a proper year-end recap post in my life, so to honor the year that will pass, I’ve decided to enumerate 17 things (from around 30 or so) that I’ve seen, and done. These moments moved me, shaped me, or simply just made me happy.
① H.U. Sison’s “Adventures in Digongland” art exhibition is, as I consider it, a meme. Artworks depicting President Duterte in popular culture got me curious.
After meeting Mr. Sison, I ended up being introduced to Herbalife (he and his beloved wife, a fellow Rotarian, are Herbalife distributors). I think our fellow supporter has another round coming next year, but that’s me hoping to see another set of art installations from him (guess what, it’s already announced — and I hope you can join me explore it).
② Speaking of President Duterte, I was part of the team who went to Davao to organize the Manila Times’ Business Forum, of which the President is a honored guest (and a recipient of the Times’ “Man of the Year” award). This means I’m just a few feet away from him.
After this, I learned more about Davao, its function as a charter city, and why we should consider it as an example of how federalism in the Philippines should work.
③ A major undertaking that I did as part of the advocacy group DTV Pilipinas is to provide the voice for what will be the introductory presentation in the history of Philippine television as we know it, during the country’s first Digital TV Summit held in Quezon City.
I watched the video and listened to myself once again after a long time, and to think that we showed this to the stakeholders is a moment I will never forget. This was the start of what’s to come as the country shifts to the Japanese ISDB-T broadcast standard for digital television.
Trivia: The voice-over was recorded on day zero, at the room where we are staying.
④ The Rotary International District 3800 held its sports fest for Rotarians and its families called the PalaRotary D3800 at hte Marikina Sports Center last March 12, and I was there as part of the Pasig Zone as a fellow Rotarian of the Rotary club of Mutya ng Pasig. I guess this is the first time I received a medal from a sports festival, yes?
⑤ The month of May gave me my first visit to Fairview, and what will be perhaps my first stint in moderating a panel discussion. Amid some cringey reactions, I’m confident to say that I am satisfied with the genre panel I did at the Pinoy Otaku Festival 2017. Rest assured I’ll ask Naruto Cosplayers to extend the time as there are a lot of genres to introduce in brief.
⑥ A week after that, I went to Red Monster Cafe for the first time and met with fellow seiyuu fanatics, which is awesome! Wish I could meet them again sooner so I can talk about muh Aochan and muh Dookiewhile they talk about their Mamo and Ayumu Murase.
⑦ The month of ToyCon helped me pursue vlogging more. This year’s event had their “Creators’ Stage” where notable YouTubers are gathered to discuss what tickles their fancy.
This got me so much that after this I made a a video that will lead me to do the “Habal-Habal Diaries” video series where I record myself travelling to places in what is perhaps one of the most risky ways to do so. The whole playlist is up on YouTube.
⑧ The Philippines has been marked in the list of yakkai(bothersome) countries for idol fans as we celebrated the birthday of Yoshiko Tsushima inside a fastfood chain with our very own mascot. It’s really creative in its own way, and I’m sure that fans of LoveLive! Sunshine!! got shookt with this. I am one with them in celebrating Yohane’s birthday and our culture. (Prior to this, they celebrated You Watanabe’s birthday inside a foodcourt and that’s their thing.)
⑨ I was finally able to utilize the Open Broadcasting Software to record / stream on Facebook Live, which is reflected on my coverage of the 2017 World Cosplay Summit Championships in Nagoya. There’s more fixes needed (some are beyond my control), but hopefully it gets better as time goes by.
⑩ August is also the month of the APCC, and aside from Ping and SJ, Serena Kozuki and Jaga the potato from Jack n’ Jill Calbee (of all characters), I got to see Shoji Kawamori in person. Then I was able to do a handshake with him. Bliss.
⑪ I officially became a Tito after my older brother’s wife gave birth to this cute guy by the name of Levi, so Ma got him a baby basket in which I delivered to him. Of course I added that to my itinerary composed of going to the ASEAN-Japan TV Festival Concert (sadly I didn’t stay there before it actually started). Afterwards I went to The Best of Anime, where I supported Seishun Kakumei (covering iRis) who bested two other Love Live! groups in the Idol Dance Competition.
⑫ My second speaking engagement happened at #iBlog13, and while my talk is basically “If you want to get real on blogging, don’t stick to just one platform,” I have yet to put this into practice for keepsakes. 100%, sad to say. I’ll take my time as I get a good grasp of what I preached.
⑬ T’was another two weeks of events, and things got awry and busy. The perks of getting to these events is that I got to see an actual taping for an upcoming Hollywood movie; and I got to meet Sir Ian Livingstone CBE and other creators respectively.
Doing these tasks blessed me with the funds to watch Aqours’ Second Love Live! Happy Party Train Tour, so even when I’m flat-out stressed during the course of the taping so much, I can’t help but express my gratitude for it.
⑭ Perhaps my most-read post for this year is about Hana Chan. I’ve been to some interments of my family relatives before, and each time I go take a closer look at their faces as you look at the casket, their smiles will determine how their life had been. Same goes with Hana.
“I may have neither known Hana nor took a picture of her, but I learned more about her from her friends and family. Memories of her will not be forgotten by her peers. She will definitely be missed.”
Two weeks after, I saw our beloved college dean also smiling in his wake. Losing a loved one is really saddening, and at these times their relatives and friends gather strength from everyone who are also saddened by the loss.
⑮ This year led me to visit the event venues located inside casinos (of all places), such as Solaire and City of Dreams. I got into Solaire to be a spectator for a handover ceremony, while I got into CoD for this year’s Blogapalooza. At the CoD, I ended up being at Chaos bar with my fellow blogger friends to witness the RAWR Awards in the invitation of LionhearTV who is at that time already talking with Blogapalooza for a partnership.
⑯ Having been experienced out-of-town trips, I decided to risk going on my own as I got a plane ticket to Davao for April 2018, where I will be seeing in person who will win the right to represent the country in the World Cosplay Summit next year.
⑰ It’s my first THE [email protected] Pmeet and I was called a “lucksack,” having my name called twice during the raffle. In my experience, THE [email protected]’s fanbase in the country is perhaps the one I’m sticking to the most, next to LoveLive!.
Now, what will happen to me in 2018? Chances are I’ll be out of town twice or thrice, and I’m going to decide if I am going to bring back a few projects from the dead or not. As always, there will be challenging times, and I shall grit my teeth all the way to more triumphs.
I’m capping off this post with an excerpt from Max Ehrmann’s Desiderata(1952), and this should be fitting for these times:
You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Strive to be happy.
This has been Jay Agonoy, and I will see you in 2018. Advanced Happy New Year to everyone.