Face to face with Ms Maria Ressa and the Professional Heckler at the 1st Globe Tatt Awards!
Last Friday night can be easily be considered one of the most memorable in my life. I mentioned in my previous post that I won an invite to the 1st ever Globe Tatt Awards for bloggers (held in Manila Peninsula’s Rigodon Ballroom). I also wrote there how I was selected. Since it was originally announced that the program would start by 6PM, I decided to leave work shortly before 5PM. So what if I’ll be slapped with a miniscule salary deduction for the under time? The event is a rare opportunity for me to meet the country’s top social media personalities, and I will never forgive myself if I miss it.
Event attendees were allowed to get inside the venue at around 6:30 PM. There’s a red carpet entrance, with photographers taking pictures of everyone who enters the function hall (and this reminds me of the Oscars!). Afterwards, we were asked to post our pictures (and our respective shoutouts) on a makeshift freedom wall. As expected, I promoted this blog again. Ha-ha. We enjoyed the free-flowing drinks (take your pick: wine or tea?), the siomai (fried and steamed), and other small meals. My goal is to have a picture with multi-awarded international broadcast journalist Maria Ressa (who served as one of the judges for the competition) and the King of Philippine humor blogging, the Professional Heckler.
Ms Ressa arrived at around 7PM, and photographers immediately mobbed her. I approached her to ask if we can have a picture together, and she obliged. After that, I told her that we had a Twitter conversation about her previous book Seeds of Terror two weeks ago. I think we exchanged about five tweets about MILF’s links to Al Qaeda. You can easily see in her face how elated she was to know that I read her book.
I borrowed it from the UP College of Mass Communication library. I asked her to write a dedicatory note in the book for the college, and she did! Ever the Maria Ressa fan, I asked her to write a separate note for me. I also reminded her about our first encounter four years ago during the Gawad Plaridel when I literally ran after her to ask for an autograph (she was with Ms Charie Villa then). She said: “Ikaw pala yun!” She even gave me a hug and a beso after! How nice of her! How surreal can things get?
The winner in the Wordslayer category was the first one to be announced. As expected, the Professional Heckler won. To my surprise, the Heckler (Loi Reyes Landicho in “real life”) did not give an acceptance speech after getting his award from event host Tim Yap and award presenter Gang Badoy. I went to the place where Mr. Landicho was seated to have a picture with him. He said yes but he requested that we have the picture taken outside the function room. I also took a picture of him with his trophy. Wearing his favorite Kobe Bryant shirt and a black jacket, Mr. Landicho stands out for his simplicity and approachability. Last Thursday (my birthday), he replied to my piece about him.
I also talked to young Youtube sensation Arjohn Gilbert (search for his video titled “Kid Singing in Pure Gold,” in case you haven’t yet). The program started with him singing Bruno Mars’ “Just The Way You Are” and Justin Bieber’s “Baby.” The kid showed entertaining dance moves, too! I’m looking forward to interviewing him soon. After being able to do all of those, I decided to go home already. For one, it’s almost 9PM already. I may have not finished the entire awards event, but it was a night I will never forget.
*The Professional Heckler has mentioned me in his “Thank You” blog. Wow!: