SEASON 65 of the University Athletic Association of the Philippines (UAAP) is in the books and UST has run off with its 30th general championship. I must say that this latest feat by UST gives me more pride to be a Thomasian. This just goes to show how excellent UST’s sports program is. So kudos to the Thomasian athletes and coaches, Fr. Ermito De Sagon, O.P., Ma’am Felicitas Francisco, Sir Mike Silbor, and the rest of the Institute of Physical Education and Athletics (IPEA) for a job well done.

However, I can’t help but think that the competition in the UAAP is not fair for all the participating schools.

Take the case of Adamson University, Far Eastern University, and National University. These universities do not field teams in all of the UAAP sporting events. How then would they be able to put up a decent fight for the overall crown?

Some of these schools may not have the budget to put up a team for every UAAP event, but can’t those schools’ alumni and the league itself do something to help them out?

Assistance should be extended to these schools so that the race for the general championship would not be limited only to UST, De La Salle University and University of the Philippines. This would also be very beneficial to the league because there would be more interest in non-basketball events. The students would then have more reasons to watch their favorite teams and root for their respective universities.

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I must say that I am totally against the war that just took place in Iraq. Wars bring nothing but death. The US may have won that “war,” but they fail to realize that there is an even bigger “war” that they should have been worried about – the one against terrorism.

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Unless countries reach an agreement to keep the peace, the war cycle would just go on and on. More lives and more livelihood will be lost and nothing good will ever come out of it.

Prayers do work. It has always worked for me. So if everyone would only pray for peace, then I’m sure that God would listen. So let’s all end this madness and pray for everlasting peace in the world.

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And if this is indeed the last time for me to write a column for my beloved Varsitarian, then I would like to give the remaining space to the people who have earned it.

To the incoming staff – Abbie, Bimbo, Djinn, Richard, Ryan, Julienne, Nick, Rupert, Cherrie, Sharline, Jason, Chuck – love the V. Please. If you think you cannot give the V the love that it deserves, then don’t bother associating yourself with it.

To my writers who gave me hell all year long, thank you. Not for what we’ve gone through in the office but for your friendship outside of it.

To the editors who made college life even harder than it already is, thank you. Not for acting like total jerks sometimes just to make sure that the paper comes out on time, but for the lessons that I have learned while working under your regime.

To my V friends – Kuya Ipe, Gladi, A, Ace, Barli, Dompy, Bos Dre, Feli, Girard, Jayme, Kris, Leah, Louie, Lyn, Lynda, Marlon, Meg, Reyann, Ron, Steve, Succor, Treb, Alder, Brix, Carlo, Charlz, Dumy, Eldric, Elka, JC, Jo, Jules, Ken, Lea, Melvs, Myra, Pat, Paul Friendship, RJ, Stephan, Sheila, Tina, TL, Yek, Steph, Rachelle, and Marichelle – thank you.

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To Ma’am Chrisma, thank you. I will never forget what you did for me and Bennet two years ago. It meant so much to me that up to this day, whenever I think of it, it makes me smile. I should have mentioned it as a happy moment during the team building we had recently.

To Sir Lito, who falls under the editor category (just kidding!), my wholehearted thank you. Not for the free premiere night tickets, the free dinners and coffee, but for the many times that you made the office light up with your mere presence. I dread to think just what the V would be like without you. That’s why I am deeply honored to have worked for you. More importantly, sir, thank you for being the V staffers’ father and friend.

To the Varsitarian itself, thank you. Not for the allowances and the perks that come with being a staffer, but for giving me a home that I can call my own aside from our home in Parañaque.

To our guidance counselor, Ma’am Chatt, thank you. Not just for the patience you show every time I visit your office, carrying my big bag of problems. But also for opening that bag and one by one finding solutions to those problems. You’re the only one in our Faculty whom I consider as my friend.

To UST, thank you. Not for the academic years and the money that I wasted, but for actually taking a chance on me and developing me into a true Thomasian. The money is nothing compared to the lessons I’ve learned. When I do leave, I will take my Thomasian virtues with me and show the world what I’m truly made of.

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To my parents, thank you. Not for the misunderstandings we may have but for the tears, sweat and labor you go through for me.

To the most beautiful woman in the world, Bernardette Sto. Domingo, thank you. Not for the two pairs of shoes but for the gift of your love. You will always be my comedian, my life partner, and my soulmate. You have my undying love.

To our Lord Jesus Christ, thank you. Thank you for the challenges that You keep throwing my way. I know You allow those things to happen because You love me and You want me to develop my Christianity. Thank you for always being my source of hope and light. All the beautiful things in my life would not have been possible if You had not allowed them. Praised be to You.

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I know this one’s a little overdue, but I would like to give credit where credit is due. Congratulations to Christian Bautista and Alder Almo for winning second and third places, respectively, in the Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) Press Corps Sportswriting Contest last December.

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