Underwhelming

28 Feb

I blame it on the hype I cooked inside my head.

We met two weeks ago. I was with the COCOPEA Congress Secretariat and them the Presidential Management Staff. Both contingents sat on opposite sides of a very long table. The meeting was to ensure that protocols are followed and presidential security in place. We met with those in charge of security, media, and good manners and right conduct.

No surprise questions for the President. Check!
Speeches must be submitted. Check!
Don’t bother with food. Check!
Only the UST President should welcome him. Check!
Elevator must be reserved. Check!
The DepEd Secretary should be the one to introduce the President. Check!
We need to do many ocular inspections. Check!
Let us have students in the background so it will look good in the news. Check!
Check!
Check!
Check!

I never knew until then how much it takes just to have the President at a gathering. But nevermind.

He will deliver the Keynote Address to a congregation of education leaders and private schools heads and owners–the government’s partners in providing education. They need to hear about the government’s educational reform agenda (K to 12 and CHED’s Quality Assurance Framework, among others). They need to be assured that the government is committed to it’s 10-point educational agenda. They need to hear that the President is still the same education President that we elected a couple of years ago.

The preparations were exacting. It had to be, most especially because, according to the PMS, this is the President’s first activity for the day.

And so it happened this morning.

The PSG men and women were all over. They inspected our IDs, they frisked us, and they also required me to turn my laptop on and off in front of them just to see that I am not carrying a bomb detonator. For some reasons, the bottle of water I was carrying was not allowed to come in with me, it joined the other water and juice bottles (probably from students) that were deemed as threat to national security. And before I reached the second floor there was another inspection. When i looked back, the queue behind me was as long as forever.

His arrival was announced 5 minutes before 10AM. I got to my seat just in the nick of time. And I still had time to set up my voice recorder, I have been planning to start producing podcasts and I thought this was a good time to start.

The moment had arrived. Then it was gone. It never happened.

He spoke relaxedly and without a script. He joked and we laughed. Naturally, we waited for big servings of substance but nothing was dished out. He even mentioned “They gave me several speeches yesterday and they gave me this speech immediately before I proceeded here. And from the joke up to the ending I didn’t like any portion of the speech.” Good thing that he admitted it, “I’m sorry if my speech goes here and there.” And for the first time, I got insulted by his penchant for referencing to his parents.

The congress theme was REFORMING PHILIPPINE EDUCATION: ISSUES, CHALLENGES, SOLUTIONS.

After the keynote address was the photo ops, which the association presidents and the members of the board practiced beforehand just so protocols will be followed.

I blame it on the hype I cooked inside my head. Who’s to blame I don’t know but it all come down to the question of whether he is really the Education President we elected. I don’t know. Surely, it was underwhelming and I can’t let it pass.

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3 Responses to “Underwhelming”

  1. Arn February 29, 2012 at 4:48 AM #

    Pnoy’s campaign from the beginning was anchored on the death of Tita Cory. Liberal Party found a chance to return to their old glory after the two party system with the Nationalista Party was thrown at the waste basket because these parties used to be home for many corrupt politicians, scions of the old rich and so on. And so, the two parties (PNoy and LP) found a way to get back at Malacanang. People believed them. I believed them. But for one working in the government, and for one who voted for PNoy and this government, I realized one thing – I am duped. One more thing, there were allegations, actually stories that this man plays … on second thought, wag na lang. Let’s just put it that way since all are hearsay stories. I hope, more people will realize that we were duped.

  2. vangie mutuc February 28, 2012 at 6:16 PM #

    guess your expectations are high, that you felt underwhelmed with what had happened. knowing you, with so much passion in everything you do and so much enthusiasm towards people. it was really a dismay but who won’t, if you are so excited to see and hear with high hopes that he may be able to make a difference or at least hear his efforts on the present condition of education. maybe, just maybe, he was not properly briefed on what really to say, or better yet he has no direct knowledge what so ever of what was really going on, thus he can’t give updates, or what he said before of his plan was not actually his own, reason why he has no idea whether or not it is now being met… anyway….relax. remember, we used to exchange this thought, sometimes it is really not in our hands nor any person’s hands, what should happen will happen.. on the other hand, you said it yourself you do not know until today how hard it is to have the president as a guest, at least you get to experience it and you saw him personified. nag eepal lang po 🙂 iyieee

    • Butch February 28, 2012 at 6:28 PM #

      Hi, Tita Vangie. Thanks for dropping by. Yes, I expected so much from him. Sabi kasi Nya Education President siya that’s why I even volunteered in his campaign. Sayang lang yung chance na makapagsimula siya ng malaking pagbabago sa edukasyon ng bansa natin.

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