Hustle and Bustle(2 of 2)

How 1st semester turned out?


This fourth year, I took an opportunity in a radio broadcasting contest, one of the contests in a District School Press Conference, out of interest in the said media. We practiced scriptwriting and news delivery for days. And at the day of the contest, the pressure was on. It was a challenging match for 2 hours, and we arrived at a script that's nice despite of the errors. Then, we delivered the script in a form of a 5-minute news broadcast. There was good teamwork working among our team of 7. Despite of the difficulties and slip-offs, I can say that we've done a great job.

But with this I had a doubt if I could do this further when while we're in this contest, my classmates are busy in the classroom with our teachers. I fear of the activities and seatworks and quizzes that I'll miss. I'm unsure if I can handle the matters in both sides—the curricular and the extra-curricular. I prayed that others will be picked for the team to compete on the next contest that will be in the regional level. I hoped that I won't reach the top spots.


2 days after the contest, the winners were awarded. I had that strong hope that others will win. It turned out that we won 3rd in scriptwriting, and I won 3rd in best news presenter, of which I'm thankful. With that I'm assured that I'm not picked for the next contest, finally looking up to working back in the classroom. But our school paper adviser has to confirm that first, as I've learned last Friday.

I was alarmed again. Shocked. Don't know what to do. Nothing to do but to brace myself. I thought, I've had enough. I'm now contented with what I've got. Do I have to do this?

I'm afraid that I probably have to attend another extra-curricular activity. In a school where the expectations are high and maybe can explode a galvanometer, where seatwork+homework+other works=a seemingly exhausting game to play, balancing the curricular and the extra-curricular seems to be overwhelming. That's why I pray that I could finally settle on my chair and do what has to be done so that I won't miss anything, and also so that I'll learn more. I hope I'll get working more inside the classroom rather than out of it.

But if ever I'm needed in the contest, if ever God will challenge me in the following days, I hope I won't forget what He says in the Bible:

"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose"—Romans 8:28(NIV)

"But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.""—2 Corinthians 12:9(NIV)

"For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all."—2 Corinthians 4:17(NIV)

""For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.""—Jeremiah 29:11(NIV)


Third quarter is just starting, and the hustle and bustle will continue after this one-week break. Things are soon to unfold, but I hope that I'll get through. I just have to go on facing the music. But I'm not alone.  

Hustle and Bustle(1 of 2)

How 1st semester turned out?


'Semester' is more applicable in college, but as a high school student, 'semestral break' rings as a sign of relief and repose after the hustle and bustle of first and second quarters. It always turns out, though, to be a one-week holiday when it could have been two weeks, because the suspension of classes during the devastating monsoons takes those days away. More suspension equates to less sembreak.

I should be thankful, anyway. It's good enough to rest and relax for a week before we, science high school students, ignite our engines and start functioning again. Another thing, the fear and anticipation for another week will be relieved for at least one Sunday. And we can take longer rests at last, although it still depends on the person.

As I take the time to both work and play this sembreak, I also reminisce the past two quarters. We've just started on third quarter, and I think it's now time for me to improve in the last two parts of my final year in high school.


As long as I can remember, first quarter went well. After so much hardship and stress that I've been through last school year, I had a restart.

Fourth year is not much easy, but every piece of hard work, every exertion of effort helps me get through. Though I fail sometimes, I still do my best to do better. Every end of the week is a victory, and a preparation for the next.

Of course, there is still play behind the work. I've met and got close to new classmates, most of them I get to know more. There were laughs, talks, and teamwork.


Throughout the first quarter, there were still times where I have to stay late at night just to get things done. As always, there's the work in TLE, where we now work on our own houses(more about that later).

At some nights I'll deal with our research study. That was really the time where I really worked overnight, while listening to either Jam 88.3 or Absolute 80s. As a student in a high school like ours, it's often normal to work overnight, unless you really want to use your time efficiently and not starve yourself of sleep, unless you're quicker than I am.

All I've been through at "first stage" lead me to a grade of 88.78, which is good enough for me. Besides, we're just starting. With that I've ranked near the 3 topnotchers. Aren't those blessings? They are.


Then, I reached to the point that I'm really facing the music. 2nd quarter brought more and more work and opportunities. The weight that I carry increased. The battle became more challenging. Each day of class I push myself to wake up before 5 a.m., and then strive to get things finished throughout the day. Like in first quarter, I stayed awake in the early mornings, and I even sacrificed sleep one morning(actually, for many nights this school year I've already sacrificed sleep).

That morning was when I have to finish a project in TLE. I've mentioned earlier that we're working on our houses. So, my project was blueprints which consist of plans, elevations and details, from doors to beam. That was the time when some of us in the class were already done with those, and many of us are catching up. That was the time when I realized a lesson I have to learn again and again—the value of time.

The realization came while I did those blueprints and listened to 98.7 DZFE, the classical music station. I heard something like an infomercial about time itself and how it relates to a student, to an editor, to an athlete, etc. The message is simply this: value your time, it's only borrowed.


I also found out that we're ignoring Research, and so I now pray that we won't miss time and opportunities to have a successful study. It's one of the tickets to high school victory.

It also alarmed me that I'm still losing some momentum to achieve high, or simply passing scores on exams. I failed in Research, I failed in Math(but still passing on the final grade), but got a high score in Physics, which I really didn't expect. I just hope that I've received passing grades in 2nd quarter, and pray that I'll do better in 3rd and 4th.

I don't want to do the same things again. I hope for a better time management. It's vital for me, and for everyone too. I'm looking forward to well-spent productivity this time, but how if something else just come around and may get me out of balance?

To be continued

101 Songs of My Third Year (Part 10)

We're finally at the final 10! At last! What to expect? It's yours to unfold. Well, you really have to listen. You may find these songs nice and put it in your cellphones—ahem—smartphones. So why don't you give them a try?

Let's unfold these remarkable songs I listened at third year.

10. "You got to push, got to shove"

Life On The Nickel|Foster The People

Yeah yeah yeah. We have FTP again...or FTPs. Anyway, aside from the unique electronic and pop-ish sound of FTP, the words of "Hustling", a.k.a. "Life On The Nickel", is relative to how my day to day life turned out before.

For me, the word hustling is like working in the wee hours of the night and staying awake like an insomniac. Working here, working there.

I also like the pumped-up live version.

9. "But then I act like I know everything"

Broken Jaw|Foster The People

Yeah yeah...A slow progression followed by a DJ-like upbeat tempo. That's how I'll describe "Broken Jaw".

8. "Your social guides give you swollen eyes /But what I've got can't be bought"

Call It What You Want|Foster The People

Yeah. 3 songs in a row from FTP. Because they're really the band that I can relate myself to.

Here, we have a classic piano riff combined with things electro. Also, we hear what it conveys. And what it conveys to me is something I can grasp at an instant.

Otis(autistic). Serious. Demure. Formal. Whatever. Call me what you want. What's important is that I am being myself and not "themselves".

7. "Most nights I don't know anymore"

Some Nights|Fun.

It's a cry that I'll cry aloud. It's a battle hymn I'll hum.

Coming from their second album, "Some Nights" reveals a more powerful power pop that's really fun.'s.

Look at it. Some nights. And it's true. Some nights I stay up late in the dark. And some nights I think that life's so uncertain.

6. "And I'll kneel down/Know my ground"

I Will Wait|Mumford and Sons

A very energetic folk rock song from an emerging band named Mumford and Sons.

It's unusual for me to see orchestrated guitars, banjo, bass, piano, and even membranophones...until I saw Mumford and Sons on Late Show with David Letterman. So great. Harmonic vocals and heartwarming words summed up into 3 words: I will wait.

I will wait for the completion of third year, I thought. I will wait for the completion of my academic life. I will wait for the fulfillment of my dreams. I will wait for love (I don't even have time to think of that in the meantime). Seriously. Everything is settled in God's timetable.

5. "There's been a lot of talk of love/But that don't amount to nothing"

Hold On When You Get Love and Let Go When You Give It|Stars

The first song I've ever heard from Stars, thanks to Jam 88.3. A very heartfelt and heartwarming song colored with synthesizer lines and New Wave-ish guitars and drums.

It's true. It's a lesson I've learned and even learning—so far. Give without asking back. Accept when you're given. How simple to read, but how challenging to do.

4. "If you're lost and alone/Or you're sinking like a stone."

Carry On|Fun.

A lever that will wake you up and push you through. It's an encouragement brought to you by fun.

No matter how hard life is, we have to carry on. We have to go on and go forward with God's help.

Power pop again...From a piano line to a pulsating interference of beats and rock sounds.

3. "I played soldier, you played king"

Burn It Down|Linkin Park

"Burn It Down", one of LP's current singles, is the most electrifying among the tracks in their latest album Living Things. More of synths, and more of LP's energy.

And more of LP's meaningful words. And I've sensed that I can relate to this one.

Like a wave, we're brought up, then we learn that we're being put down. We're lifted up, then in time we're down below.

2. "...Ayoko maging robot"


The band's recent single, which also introduced me to the band. Not only do I like the homegrown electronic sound made by the 5-piece band of a guitar, a professional drums, a bass synth, a touch-here-touch-there effects, and a different kind of vocals.

I also like the the content of it: the reality that we tend to burn out and still working on something. It's such a burden, because we're humans. Not robots. Therefore, we have limitations, and we hope that we will take a break from this daily routine of work and being restless.

I can't afford being stressed for a long time, and how stressful the last school year has been!

1. "Do you need you take my youth to.."

Turn It Well|Up Dharma Down

And finally, we have reached #1...with Up Dharma Down's "Turn It Well", out from their currently released album Capacities.

It is the song that rekindled my awareness about UDD. A great and harmonious combination of 80's-like keyboard sounds, drum-pad-played loops, good guitars, and a sweet voice.

Also, "Turn It Well" is a nice reminder for all of us to take a break from our busyness and get relaxed for some time. I refer this thought to the title of the song.

And here it goes..My 101 songs in third year. It's been a hard series to work on because I lost the time to consequently post part after part. Finally, it's done. I hope you've found something new to listen out of all these songs.

Let's keep the music going.

10 Old Songs of My Third Year

Before I unfold the top 10 songs of my third year, I now share these songs that I've found out from the 80s that made its way to my ears during third year.

10. "There is no historical precedent/To put the words in the mouth of the President"


One thing's for sure: I was fond of Sting during third year. I've learned this song from a Sting concert aired on Myx. I like the origin of this song: an invention of a friend of Sting. They just watched a Russian broadcast through the invention, and so Sting made this song of his hopes that Russians will love their children as lovely as their cartoons.

In case you don't know him, he's the vocalist and bassist of one of the most heard bands in the 80s—The Police. He's a very talented musician.

9. "In times like these I have no answer/Nothing to say at all"

Coming Home|Fra Lippo Lippi

A melodramatic, piano-tuned song from a favorite of Filipinos who grew up listening to them—Fra Lippo Lippi.

Sometimes, I tend to miss home...After all the pain and getting tired of everything in school.

And so I miss my self too. That's "home" for me.

8. "On and on the rain will say/How fragile we are"


Back to Sting. He makes realistic and heartfelt songs, and you hear them in different tones. Take "Fragile", for example. It makes me think of cold summer nights or simply a sunset by the bay.

But again, I like the realistic words shown here. It's true guys. "How fragile we are".

7. "Don't you go it makes no sense/When all your talking supermen"

Ghost In You|Psychedelic Furs

Actually, I started hearing this at my younger years. But I just knew at my older age the way it strikes the mind and heart. This can also sound nice if a band covers this at promenade.

6. "There is a future left to find"

This Heaven|Marginal Era

I unearthed this New Wave-ish song while searching about a music video program in New Zealand in the 80s entitled Radio with Pictures. They used this song in the intro.

5. "Frankenstein's monster..."

ABC Auto-Industry|Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark

"Wait, wait, wait...You included this? What's that?!", you might ask.

Well...That's again the thing in electronic music or synthpop...They have fillers! And this one came from an 80s band that I really like—Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark or OMD.

It comes from their album Dazzle Ships. There are many fillers there, actually, from a radio recording to a collage of announcing time checks.

And this? Simply layering voices uttering A-B-C and 1-2-3, plus radio and industrial sounds. Such a creative musical art.

Take some time to listen. Live video here.

4. "Maybe I don't know if I should change"

Such A Shame|Talk Talk

This really is a discovery... After "It's My Life", this is another song that I heard from the band.

Bongo drum-like intro to exploding synth lines to guitar riffs. Then, of course, those words: such a shame.

It's just harmonic and definitely 80s.

3. "Then let me build a bridge/For I cannot fill the chasm"

Fortress Around Your Heart|Sting

And we're back to Sting...again.

I've stumbled upon this one last year, after knowing that he'll perform here.

This is really heartfelt. But I also appreciate the words: those metaphors of battle and weapons connected to his struggling relationship with his wife at that time.

It's really a wonderful song that comes from the heart.

2. "Be yourself no matter what they say"

Englishman In New York|Sting

I can really relate to this. It reminds me to be myself, to be who I am regardless of what people think or say.

Sometimes, I felt I am such an alien. I'm so different and unusual...But it's who I am, so I just have to live with that and enjoy the life I'm living—with honesty to myself.

1. "There's a little black spot on the sun today"

King of Pain|The Police

Finally, this single of The Police topped them all!

So why I picked this? I already knew it before I entered third year and face the pains of growing up. But it just fitted right at that single school year.

From academical to personal pain, it seems like I'm already the king. The sun just not shines so bright because I see a black spot...It's just not going well.

But thankfully, I conquered such pains. "No pain, no gain" indeed. Life has opposites. And with joy or comfort comes pain. We are to get into pain, and even growing up consists of pains.

But should we always be in pain? Not at all. There is pain for a purpose. Most likely you won't learn the lessons you now know without pain. And if you question God why there should be pain, the answer will most likely be the fact that we need to learn and understand. "All things work together for good." (Romans 8:28, KJV)

There you go, friends. Songs which you may not know, or you think are already out of tune in today's generation. Yet for me, these songs have meanings. Most of all, they are worth hearing. I hope you'll also be open to this kind of music, and hopefully you'll realize that great music doesn't only come from today, but also from yesterday. 

101 Songs of My Third Year (Part 9)

Please bear with me. This list runs for almost 7 months! I missed updating this 101 songs because—guess what—I'm busy doing what has to be done this 4th year. I told it on my past post.

But speaking of school...We're already down to the top 20 songs of my third year. These songs are pieces and parts of my past school year. These songs were the songs I got to listen to most of the time.

For this part, we have a new band to be featured—a distinctive band in the Philippines named Up Dharma Down. Also expect some Linkin Park, M83, FTP, and James Blake.

Don't know them yet? Know them here.

20. "Can you feel the rush rush?"

Davenport|Never The Strangers

At 20 we have a synth-filled, dramatic song of Never The Strangers. I don't really know why this is entitled "Davenport". It is either a place or the type of sofa.

But what I liked in this track is that it speaks of going away and being away, and it is spoken thoroughly. 

19. "Iindak na lamang ba sa tibok ng puso mo/At aasahan ko/Hindi mo lamang aapakan ang aking mga paa"

Indak|Up Dharma Down

I really like Up Dharma Down. I like their sound and the sweet vocals of Armi Millare, as well as the lyrics that are poetic and impressive.

This one, written in Filipino, amazes me. The piano notes, and that electronically produced beat before the refrain, and those remarkable lyrics. Wow!

For your information, the song tells me of dance, first of all. Then, it speaks of a person's confusion on who to dance with, on who will she choose. 

It tells me that this person isn't sure of what her decision will be, but she'll choose. And she'll dance, while someone is watching...While someone is sad.

Since it's "Indak", it'll be nice to be played at prom.

Actually, there's an album version of this song, but the one featured here is the first one I've heard, and I like it better.

18. "Nalilito na ako hindi na dapat gan'to"

Sana|Up Dharma Down

Yes. It's UDD again. It's another Filipino song worth hearing. 

From the beating intro to the video game-inspired music video, it's awesome. Here, we get to hear Armi's magnificent vocals in a more dynamic level. Also, we hear those heartfelt lines of wishes, somehow emptying to zero.

17. "Just waiting! Just waiting!"

Steve Mcqueen|M83

We have another M83 song here, which still comes from their recent album. The first seconds are like an entrance to a story-book world, or a different dimension, like Narnia. Then, synths and beats will burst like whirling matter.

It is a combination of the synthetic and the ambient. Of something from synthpop and something from house music and something from rock.

16. "Sana'y nagtanong ka lang kung 'di mo lang alam"

Oo|Up Dharma Down

Back to UDD.

This expressive song focuses on a person's frustration over another and his/her interest. This speaks of a hopeless feeling, or a regret over liking someone. But what I like here is that the lyrics is so clear and direct.

It's another dimension of UDD that is heard here, away from electronica and more of jazz. It's so brilliantly orchestrated.

15. "I tie my hands up to a chair so I don’t fall that way"

Helena Beat|Foster The People

FTP impresses us once again with their upbeat, keyboard-filled sounds, together with lyrics with deeper meanings.

"Helena Beat" is a party-perfect song. It tells us of a fall in humans, a fall they don't care about.

The beats that are heard as the song opens are what I think is the 'Helena Beat". It's an "ear-opener" for me.

14. "Waiting for the end to come/Wishing I had strength to stand"

Waiting For The End|Linkin Park

I felt this song all throughout, because—really—I waited for the end.

I waited for the end of the school year, the end of every tasks, the end of every hardships, the end of every sorrow.

And so this song hums with me.

13. "Is this the way I've always been?"

The Reeling|Passion Pit

The banging and dancing and running of every note and beat makes this Passion Pit single great. Another thing to consider is the additional choir sound care of PS22 Chorus.

Thanks to 99.5 before it became Play FM, I heard this electro-pop piece.

12. "Like a waterfall in slow motion"

Limit To Your Love|James Blake

Let's now slow it down.

I found this out from Live From Abbey Road. It was the first time that I heard something classical fused with something modern. The first time I heard a classical piano contained with drum-pad beats, push-button effects, and sounds coming from a Prophet synthesizer that's better than an Autotune.

But also, the emotions and colors that are conveyed in this track makes it good to hear. The lines travel through your consciousness, and somehow you're already in the vibe of the music.

11. "It doesn't even matter"

In The End|Linkin Park

LP's songs are really heartfelt and emotion-filled, aside from being distinctively rock.

This one is something that I felt anytime. Doing everything that you could, but having its value lost in the end. Having trust, then losing it when it's all over, even when it's not all over yet.

Do they sound good for you? Let's add one more.

Bonus track: "All of my life/In every season/You are still God"

Desert Song|Hillsong

Of course, contemporary Christian music isn't ignored by this blogger. This is my pick because it fits right into what I've gone through the past school year.

Here I was, barren, dry, baffled...But here's my God, who was—and still is—with me. He has a plan. He knows what's best for me—all of us. So there's still a reason to live...and to depend on God each day.

Get ready for the last 10 songs very soon! In case you've missed the songs before these, you may start here. Thank you so much for hanging out!