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Manny of Cebu



Manny plays classical pieces at the mall, inspiring his audience, mostly senior citizens.

(Manny Canizares continues to play for the Cebuano audience.)

Manuel “Manny” Canizares’ story as pianist all started with a “colored” dream. A dream not in plain black nor white that made everything look real. It was story he thought I would not believe.

It was a sunny Sunday when he told me everyone has a purpose in this world. In his dream, he saw senior citizens on wheelchairs. Some were on their last days, unhappy. Someone unknown talked to him saying he can make these people happy even for five minutes. “Mao daw na akong purpose dinhi’s kalibutan” (That is what my purpose in this world.)


Not everyone may know him by name, but this man, always in black, surely got our attention in a different way. Through playing of melodic pieces at the mall, he draws out a variety of audiences, most of whom are senior citizens. That, for him, is his purpose.

Out of five children, Manny is the youngest. He was eight when his mom let him play through the piano keys, his first Do-Re-Mis. But as a little boy, he liked the computer’s keyboard more than that of the piano’s. He had no interest at all, until “pagka high school nako, naluoy kos piano ba kay giabugan ra bitaw,” (when I reached high school, I felt pity for the piano because it was already covered with dust,) he said, chuckling. Every day, he wakes up running to the piano, excited to play as if it was a new toy. It was what he always looked up to first thing in the morning. Playing the piano used to be his breakfast, and for Manny, that is how you know what kind of person you are.

However, today, his mornings are different than before. “Lahi na karon kay huna-huanon sa ang pamilya ug daghan ang buhatunon” (It’s different now. I have to think about my family, and do a lot of things.)

The family grew grapes for business in Mambaling, Cebu. It fed them; it gave them a living. Manny and his siblings had to help his father keep the business up to finish their studies. Sadly, it was a mischance for their family and business when their father died of stroke. Manny was studying at Cebu Institute of Technology-University at that time when he lost hope of finishing school. His siblings already got their degrees; he did not.

If a diploma can’t bring you to where you ought to be, talent will. Not being able to pursue college did not seem negative to Manny. Instead, he made a detour leading to where he is now. In the 1980s, he started being a pianist of a band named “The Pythons” serenading guests at a club here in Cebu City. Gigs can be very fun with all the music jams, beers, and friends of all kinds that one can enjoy for a night, but for once, Manny lost his way. He submitted himself to a rehabilitation program for a year and two months eventually making him well. People who are victims of illegal drugs should not be condemned by our society or be adjudged without due process. Like Manny, these people have, no matter how little, a light in them to change. This then drew him to swear to himself to never be part of a band anymore, and rather just be a sole pianist.

Performing solo did not really mean a sad solo. Every hotel in Cebu, you name it, Manny had already serenaded its guests. After seven years, abroad was his next stop. He’s been to Korea, UAE, and Hong Kong to work for his family, for his dreams, his passion. He still worked as a pianist not only in hotels, but in star cruises as well. But no matter how far we go in this world, we will still and always will find our way back home. Home is where the heart is, they say. For Manny, home is where the family is. “Mas nindot man na nga inig ka gabi-e, uli kas imong pamilya” (It’s nice that at the end of the day, you go home to your family.)

1st of May, year 2007, the day when this man played songs for the Cebuanos again. He auditioned twice before SM City Cebu had him as one of its pianists. For nine years, Manny has already been a seasoned, and an audience-oriented pianist. He does not play the piano for the sake of just playing it. He always makes sure to connect with his audience. “Once malingaw na nako sila, malipayon na jud ko” (Once I entertain them, I’m already happy.)

A pianist’s life is not different from anybody else’s. Manny has also his own flat and high notes. His days may be in synch or in harmony, but it may also be out of tune. As a husband and a father of two, he bears the great responsibility to give the needs of his family. His performance may get praises from people but this seems to be just a cloak of his real struggles. “Usahay wa gyud koy kwarta, usahay wa koy paningudto. Abi nimo diha nindot? Di uy, gigutom ko.” (Sometimes I don’t have money; sometimes I haven’t eaten lunch yet. You think it’s nice to be there? No, I’m hungry.) Despite all these, giving up has never been his nature. It never kept him from believing and holding on to his God.

A God-fearing man. A hard-working person. A versatile pianist. Some would even ask, “daghana kay nimog chicks no?”(You probably have a lot of girls,) but he never chose to fall for such temptations. How one handles oneself is what’s important for him. To have admirers is normal for any musician or performer, but like Manny, he never forgets to respect himself and his wife, Susan. “Akong asawa wa man mainlove sa akong tukar. The way I dress, diha siya ganahan” (My wife did not fall in love with me because of my talent. The way I dress, that’s what she liked.)

He is just one in a million of fathers who never falls out of love for his family; working to give them a good life, to make them happy. But in this big world, he has found his second family among Cebuanos whom he is fulfilling his purpose with up today. “Wa ko nag apas sa akong sweldo; nag apas ko nga sa akong tukar, daghan kog malingaw nga tawo” (I’m not after my salary; what I’m after are the people I can entertain in playing the piano.”

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Feature: Planning for Your Summer Get-Away? Palawan Is the Ultimate Place to Go




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Looking for your summer getaway this year? Maybe 2018 is the best time to take a dive in Palawan.

Vacationers who read the New York-based Travel+Leisure Magazine raved about Palawan’s natural gems midway through 2017.

Gathering a score of 93.15 at Travel+Leisure World Best Survey last year, writer Rebecca Ashcer -Walsh reported readers have been describing Palawan as ‘”rustic, romantic, affordable, and relaxing” and “It’s the single, most beautiful place on earth.”

Nobody says it better than third party commentaries.

“For the second year in a row, the Philippine paradise Palawan wins first place as the best island in the world, thanks to its hidden lagoons, teeming ocean life, and rustic-luxe resorts,” said Ascher-Walsh in her article on Travel+ Leisure mag.

The magazine’s World’s Best Islands survey, Ashcer-Walsh explained, is where readers were asked to “weigh in travel experience around the globe… readers rated islands according to their activities and sights, natural attractions and beaches, food, friendliness, and overall value.”

Palawan is known for its Puerto Princesa City Underground River, the blue waters of El Nido, Coron’s Kayangan Lake and World War II shipwrecks and the Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park of Cagayancillo.

Accessibility is also accelerating in Palawan: Puerto Princesa City International Airport has been expanded for a bigger volume of passengers and a cruise service between Palawan and Kudat, Malaysia is set to open in the coming months.

With the consistent pouring of positive reviews from travellers, the chief of Provincial Tourism Promotions and Development Office (TPDO), Maribel Buñi, expressed delight over good feedback, which she says are proof of the drawing power of Palawan’s natural beauty.

She urged fellow countrymen to help protect and maintain this paradise in southwestern side of the Philippines.

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Unleash Your Hugot This Valentine’s Day with OPPO’s #HaveYouEver Promo



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On the most romantic day of the year, OPPO Philippines challenges you to reminisce your heartaches responsibly and learn from the past with their #HaveYouEver Facebook promo. OPPO will be posting a different #HaveYouEver question at 2 PM daily via their Facebook page which participants must answer by sharing their story through a video submission. Feel free to release your hugot every day, starting from February 1 until February 14, for a chance to win Php25,000 worth of SM Gift Certificates.

“This love month, we want to create an opportunity for our fans to express and share their hugot stories. We want to continuously become a part of their love stories and journey, and there isn’t any better way to share it than getting rewarded as well”, said Eason De Guzman, OPPO Philippines’ PR Manager.

For more information about the promo, customers may follow OPPO on Facebook for the latest updates.

For the complete mechanics, please see below:

1. To join the promo, the participants must visit OPPO FB page  and register their full name, email address, registered address, contact number, and submit a video to the #HaveYouEver question for the day by telling his/her story (file size: maximum of 100MB (5 minutes); file format: mp4) to get (1) one raffle entry.

2. A #HaveYouEver question will be posted every day at 2PM from February 1, 2018 until February 14, 2018. A participant can submit a video answering the question of the day within 24 hours until another question is posted.

3. It is not required of the participants to submit an entry for every #HaveYouEver question. However, in order to get more raffle entries, participants are encouraged to answer each question and tell his/her #HaveYouEver story which is equivalent to (1) one raffle entry.

4. Each question can only be accomplished once per account. A participant can only obtain a maximum of 14 entries for the whole promo period.

5. Deadline of submission of entries is on February 14, 2018 at 11:59 PM.

6. There will be three (3) winners of Php 25,000 worth of SM gift certificates. The winners will be drawn using

7. The draw for the prizes will be held on February 15, 2018, 5PM at 6/F Viva Communications Inc. East Tower Philippine Stock Exchange Center, Exchange Road, Ortigas Center, Pasig City in the presence of a DTI representative and authorized representatives of Viva Communications Inc.

8. The announcement of winners will be done via Facebook post on February 16, 2018. Registered mail will also be sent to the winners.

9. Twenty percent (20%) tax for the prize exceeding PHP10,000 shall be shouldered by the Philippine OPPO Mobile Technology Inc.

10. Winners can claim their prizes from the OPPO Concept Store nearest to them. They must present at least one (1) valid ID and the registered notice for verification upon claiming. The winners must present a valid ID which contains the same information as his/her registered details. If the participant cannot claim his/her prize, the one who will claim the prize on his/her behalf must present an authorization letter, a photocopy of his/her ID and a photocopy of the winner’s ID. The winners can claim their prizes until 60 days after they receive their registered mail.

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Pag-IBIG to Sponsor Free Mass Wedding of 150 Couples on Valentine’s Day




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The Pag-IBIG Fund will sponsor the mass wedding for around 150 couples tying the knot during Valentine’s Day in their 8th annual free mass wedding dubbed “I Do, I Do, Araw ng Pag–IBIG.

The event will be hosted by Pag-IBIG Fund Mactan Branch in cooperation with the Municipal Government of Cordova.

The activity aims to help Pag–IBIG Fund members who do not have any budget to spend for their wedding and at the same time legalize their union.

The free civil wedding is open to all Pag–IBIG Fund members who are single or even couples who have been cohabiting for five years or more, provided that they are already 24 years old and above.

The couples will be given free ceremonial wedding rings, flower bouquet for the bride, free photo-op, and souvenir.

They will also be taking part in a lottery of a “Kabuhayan” showcase that will be raffled off during the reception.

Other than the “Kabuhayan” showcase, appliances and cash gifts will also be raffled off.

This year’s free mass will be held on Feb. 14, 2018 at 3:00 pm at the 10,000 Roses, Barangay Day-as, Cordova, Cebu with Mayor Mary Therese P. Sitoy-Cho as the solemnizing officer.

Those interested may contact Anette Taneda, Marketing Head or Teofredo Garcia, Branch Head of Pag-IBIG Mactan Branch, thru mobile number 0922-8263329 or email them at (jsme/PIA7-Cebu/Pag-IBIG)

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PH Witnesses Rare, ‘Super Blue Blood’ Moon




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A phenomenon described as a “once in a lifetime opportunity,” not seen since 1866 — a super blue blood moon sighting — is occurring on Wednesday evening.

In an advisory, the Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said the sighting started at 6:49 p.m., Jan. 31 and ended 12:09 a.m. of Feb. 1.

The super blue blood moon could also be seen by the naked eye throughout the country.

Astronomer and Rizal Technological University professor Frank Kevin Martinez said the super blue blood moon could be seen in the country “because at this point, it is day time in other parts of the world, and they could only see a partial lunar eclipse.”

Martinez said the super blue blood moon occurs because of three lunar events happening at the same time: a super moon, a blue moon and a total lunar eclipse.

He said people see this moon as reddish because of the total lunar eclipse, adding that the earth covers the light that comes from the sun.

Martinez said this moon is also 14 times bigger than the ordinary, and is the second full moon in the month.

“The moon will pass by the earth’s shadow at a time when it is evening here, that’s why people could see the super blue blood moon vividly here in the Philippines,” Martinez emphasized.

A super moon occurs when the moon is at its nearest point to Earth in elliptical orbit during the full phase.

Based on the definition of astrologer Richard Noelle, a super moon comes around 361,000 kilometers of Earth, measured from the center of the moon and Earth.

A blue moon, meanwhile, does not refer to hue, but refers to the second full moon of the calendar month. The first full moon occurred last January 2.

PAGASA, however, said a blue moon might appear in certain atmospheric conditions, such as areas where there are volcanic eruptions or when large fires leave particles in the atmosphere.

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