IT is said that when God wanted to separate light from darkness, day and night were created. When media men had a similar itch, they bonded together.
One can count the press clubs that are recognized, sued, demolished, resurrected until one grew grey hair. Just putting all that brain power together in one room without starting a world war, would make the parting of the Red Sea a walk in the park that compelled us to take stock of ourselves and evaluate whether, as media people, we are progressing the way we should. Among these are to pause and reflect on the tears and laughter of the past decades, of that what has been done or undone.
He sauntered and the cameras kept snapping and adored him. He does not feel invaded. Has the media captured him, or has he captured us?
With that human imperative to celebrate the biggest media party took place at the Glendale Hilton last Sunday, September 25. Every breathing lensmen, reporter and marketing person joined PR practitioners, digital buffs, advertising folks, artists, producers and those who counted. They dragged their families, friends, almost friends, soon to be friends. In turn, they dragged other creatures.
Tables after tables were filled with guests, as well as spilling into half of the dancing area. They feasted on stupefying meals, capped by the coveted awards galore and tributes, with Consul General Adelio Cruz as the guest of honor.
The awards were a guarantee of eternal adolescence, in the phantom words — it was a night reinvented just for you and me.
There were news people out there making a difference in the media world, while celebrating their lives with inexhaustible achievements. It was an eclectic mix of wondrous people who are doing good and great works at what they do. Some are heavyweights, some lightweights; yet united in their effort in their drive to do the best they can whatever their circumstances. Even though we are aware that all tenets of the media are circling the wagon, each vulnerable to falling circulation, down slide advertising and aging demographics, we remain undaunted.
But no one could no longer pretend that nothing has changed in the newspaper business in this age of social media and the Internet.
How is the ConGen handling the demands of his time?
Of the 400 or more Filipino community organizations how will he convey his boundless efforts for unification in Southern California? Community events ranged from the sublime to mediocre, bigwig politicians drop bys, working visits, inaugurals, memorials, fashion shows, weddings, baptisms, beauty contests and tournaments, not to mention random visits of government top guns and their families who make Los Angeles a must stopover.
In his heart, the ConGen knows that in these gatherings, fierce regionalism and parochial beliefs never fail to rear ugly heads. Unpleasant skirmishes and ruffled feathers to smooth out, paradoxical alliances are stitched together. Compromises within bounds of propriety are reached, as well as how to assure the Fil-Am community that the government he represents understands their needs and aspirations. After all, isn’t the deepest human yearns acceptance and recognition?
You can’t profile the ConGen. He has all the good character you want your Consul General to be. He is a true gentleman, whose remarks are graceful and unstudied. We already know that he is a problem solver who reacts to specific facts, rather than extreme ideology. He did not enter nor advance, but progressed with a sangfroid so deliberate, unconquered by weariness, given a work schedule, that could break the back of a 200-pound truck driver.
He has a task force he could tap and count on. A club induction (there are more than 400 Fil-Am clubs, and is still growing) doesn’t count unless he is the induction officer. Every dinner-dance (big, small, or grand) organizer would adjust the date, to be sure he graces the occasion as guest of honor. His demeanor is impeccable.
The ConGen is known to be subtle, disciplined, and infinitely patient. He has to socialize beyond human endurance, in order to know everyone, whether they counted or not. He is also expected to listen to grief and pain, as well as impossible demands, beside whom James Bond becomes a flavorless character. He must also protect and understand his staff, so vulnerable to a demanding— if not abusive —public.
The art of diplomacy, we’ve read, is a blend of fact, fiction and poetry. With its peculiar commerce of hints and harmonious overtures, it is about the important, the unimportant, the tragic, and the humane. Its persuasive message: truth, accuracy, calmness, patience, good temper, modesty and loyalty, intelligence, discernment, prudence, hospitality charm, industry courage or test. These are the qualities expected of an ideal diplomat.