More often than not, people with a common destination in mind tend to think of taking the same path towards it. They see others reaching it and get convinced that all they have to do to get there themselves is do what the successful have done.
The arrows all point to the same direction, convincing many that there is but one established way of doing things. “If others can do it, so can I” becomes misconstrued to mean “If others can do it this way and make it, so can I.” They join the mainstream, the popular, the “safe” and the status quo where the pioneers have made their mark and throngs of conformists have already flocked towards.
I believe we are all better than that. That each of us can look within us and find something only we can offer, something that we can use to reach our goals without having to look at how others do it and pulling a monkey-see-monkey-do.
There is value in refusing to just go with the flow, about resisting the bandwagon, about veering away from blind groupthink.
In sitting ourselves down and assessing things from our perspective and standards, not others’. In considering channels other than the beaten path.
In a world where every industry is saturated, governed by a silently acknowledged hierarchy, controlled by networks and machinery, it would be naive to think that taking the alternative route—the best one depending on our identity, values, belief system, skill set, and unique characteristics—can guarantee success a hundred percent.
What it does, however, is guarantee that we would never end up compromising who we are and giving up what we believe in for the sake of making it.
It guarantees that whatever and however long it takes, we would have a better chance of getting to our destination much happier and content with the path we’ve chosen to take.
And whether there are others with us or none, we would be able to say, “Go ahead, everyone else. I’ll make my way through this other route.
See you at the end of this tunnel, whoever gets there first.” :)
Shot by Don Michael De Leon of Happyfingers Photography. Shop This Easy dress, my friend Magel's jacket, H&M stockings, New Era baseball cap, Janylin flats. Hype this on Lookbook here, vote on Chictopia here.
Hollywood pop star Joe Jonas visited Manila last week to join Bench’s lineup of international endorsers.
I’ll always be a sucker for accessories. I try to make up a little story or theme behind the pieces I put together. Can you guess what this one is about?
My favorite F21 booties for making me look taller without making my feet hurt walking or standing around in events.
The Rizal ballroom at the Makati Shangri-la, abuzz with anticipation while everyone waited for the presscon to start.
PR maven Thysz Estrada flanked by blogger sisters Verniece and Vern Enciso
Starstruck with bigshot producer Mike Carandang (America’s Next Top Model, The Tyra Banks Show, Jerry Springer). It took us a few minutes and a lot of coaxing from Thysz before we could approach him, because being a producer herself, Shai is a huge fan.
The day’s host Raymond Gutierrez addressing Joe Jonas fans, who had gathered at the event for a meet-and-greet with their idol. At left, Mike and Shai trying to capture the flurry.
As soon as Raymond took to the stage to announce Joe’s arrival, the fans were all screaming, “I love you Joe!” And then, there was popstar pandemonium.
Joe in his “More fun in the Philippines” Bench outfit. Best known as the lead vocalist of teenybopper pop-rock band The Jonas Brothers with his brothers Nick and Kevin, Joe has since done away with his heartthrob-next-door image in favor of a more mature one, both in terms of his looks and his sound.
He sang three songs from his debut album Fastlife, and you could hear the fans singing along in between shrieks of “Marry me, Joe!” and “I love you!”
…to which Joe graciously responded with a smile and a thank you peppered with a few Tagalog words: "Mabuhay" and “Mahal ko kayo!”
It was awfully nice of the Bench and Joe Jonas teams not to cordon off the stage area. Bloggers and members of the press were allowed to get as near to Joe as it gets, allowing us to take a lot of close-up photos.
After the mini-performance, Raymond proceeded with the Q&A session.
We got to ask: “What’s the most memorable thing a fan has ever done for you, whether it be sweet or weird?”
Joe gave two answers: a hippopotamus named Joe Jonas, and a few stars in the galaxy named after him.
Mr. Ben Chan thanking Joe and the press for being there that day: “It’s more fun with Bench!”
With Patricia Prieto and Alyssa Lapid. Getting together with fellow bloggers is one of the main reasons events like these are worth going to!
Class picture: Thysz, Reg Rodriguez, Aisa Ipac, Tin Iglesias, Anagon, Kaye Awatin, Sarah Tirona, Tracy Ayson, Paul Chuapoco. We’re all getting together again this Saturday at Bloggers United 3. Details about the bazaar and how to get there here!
Outfit photos by Jeru Czar