Saturday, March 17, 2007


I received an e-mail a month ago that set my life to "rewind" mode.

It was from a highschool classmate I hadn't seen nor heard from for upwards of 30 years. It was, uncannily, addressed to Annamanila!

Though I was floored and could hardly get up, I tried to coolly write back, basically asking an explanation how he traced annamanila (to me) -- when only a handful of "here-and-now" friends knew about this obscure blogsite.

His quick reply told me I had Google and boredom to thank or blame.

It seemed that he and I shared a common pasttime -- googling ourselves! He had run a search on his name before -- and found it in the lists of the Integrated Bar of the Philippines and the Philippine Institute of Certified Public Accountants, being a lawyer-CPA.

And on that one particular "nothing-better-to-do" day, he was surfing the Net again and. in his own inimitable words, he:

"Got bored, so I google my own name -- I know I am there because I've checked before -- that's the professional registrations I have, you know. Now, what's this, there's a brand-new entry from a blogsite I've never heard of before -- Ode2Old/the best is yet to come. I'm like, my God, what's this? I scroll down and even before I read that "tiny wisp of a campus leader" line, I'm about to fall off my chair. Of course, I recognize the writing. ANNA MANILA? Anna, you're just ... luminous.

"Now here I am still gobsmacked. ... Anna, you've got a fan in Australia. Didn't want to comment online as I felt like I would be intruding into very private space -- well, space that looks open only on invitation and kinda very women only looking. I knew you wouldn't want kibitzers barging in so I'm keeping the discovery private."

I am raring to write about who this old friend is, why his praise (of my writing) is important, and how he has come to occupy a time-honored page in the slumbook of my mind. But first he has to let me know it's okay to mention his name and other demographics. He has issued copyright permission on the use of his letters, though. In fact, he replied, when I asked:

"As Bert 'Tawa' Marcelo used to say, CENTERLY! Be my guest."


Asking permission to name him sounds silly, for I have already mentioned the guy's name in one of my first posts "Reunion Jitters" -- and that is how Google led him to ode2old and annamanila. But I guess this is different, ha?


dimaks said...

Wow, what a world to meet old folks once again :)

How I wish, someday i can also find my high school buddies :)

Jerry said...

Tama ka, Anna -- uncanny way to meet a friend of your youth. Galing ni Google. And we will wait for the story about this friend. He sounds interesting. Writes well too. Does he blog?

annamanila said...


If you want to meet old HS buddies again, then post a piece about them. Mention as many names as you can -- and one fine day one will google himself or herself and find your blogsite.

Or put up your own highschool blogsite or e-mail egroup. If you get just two or three initially into the loop, word of mouth will enlarge the loop. Good luck.

annamanila said...

He is one of the best writers I have ever met. Ay .. I don't wanna pre-empt my next blogpiece. Thank you Jerry. Please do wait.

Gina said...

He sounds like an interesting person, will wait for the blog about him. =)

sexy mom said...

it must have been a real surprise to you, and it could tickled you pink--you are now a real citizen of the blogosphere. i asked one of my readers how she found me--she saw "sexy mom" and was intrigued, clicked the link, and voila--i was the sexy mom! search for my real name--you will only get 2 links, one is even official (from my former office).

noemi dado said...

see the benefits of blogging? One gets reunited with old friends . I've had my share of experiences.

pining said...

you know what, that's what I'm hoping someday :-) I joined a yahoo group to find other classmates in high school, and so far, no luck. I'm beginning to wonder whether I'm a non-entity now. Mind you, I'm not popular in school, never been..

annamanila said...


Yes, very interesting person. Am impatient to write about him too. Thanks.

annamanila said...

Sexy Mom!

Tickled pink yes. And, in his words, "gobsmocked" -- how I was tracked down when I had this fictitious blogname. But I guess I have been shoddily dropping hints about who I am really, including my real name. But we in the blogging community have access to each other's email addresses, don't we? Mine has my name in it. Yours too.

annamanila said...


Yes. Didn't I track you down through your pinoyidol blogs? Then you inspired me to be a blogger too. I hesitate to add -- "and the rest is history." Haha ... para namang big deal. But you're really an important part of my blogging history .. for all its worth. haha Ty ty

annamanila said...


Surely you must be in touch with one or two highschool friends? That's enough to begin an international movement ... haha. Or you can try what I accidentally did. Mention names of classmates in your blog.

I don't know about not being popular. But it is easy to see you are well-liked in our small blogging community and, like me, you blog and bloghop only edgewise. To me, you're POPU. :)

annamanila said...


I should have said in the 2nd paragraph of my response to your comment: "I don't know about your being not popular."

Because I don't know that you're not popular.

I have to edit myself. That's my work eh. hahaha

rhodora said...

Me too, sometimes I google on names, my name, my family's, friends' everybody I know!

A former student of mine also found my blog from google.. small world, indeed! Blame Google for it.. hehehe.

Anna, I can see what joy you feel upon bumping into an old friend. Sabi nga ng isa kong high school friend, - high school friends are 'treasurable'. :)

kate said...

oh the wonders of google talaga! gone are the days when you can hide behind an online persona completely (i think)... and well, what's so bad about being known both in and out of cyberspace? :) after all, reconnecting with ooooold friends is suuuuper nice :) hay. exciting na mejo nakakakilig na ewan hahah :)

ps - people are really identifiable by the "voice" they use in writing no? ang galing :)

Abaniko said...

You must be pleasantly surprised when you got his email. Thanks to Google. The wonders of technology no?

annamanila said...


Your said it bestest: "Highschool friends are treasurable." That's a treasury of a remark!

Hope you're having a great Sunday!

Leah said...

That is quite wonderful. I've googled my name quite a few times but only my married name shows. I should leave some marks of my maiden name somewhere I guess.

I've reunited through the internet ( or something like that or was it names database) with some high school friends as well.

Looking forward to your next entries. I dug into some of your archives and read about the reunion jitters, even the scrabble one.

annamanila said...


I think the advantage to complete anonymity (did I spell that right? haha) is that we can blog our heart and guts and bile out without fear of being mocked, or stigmatized and of getting (innocent and not so innocent) people involved in the process of unrestrained blogging.

But as it is, a number of friends and relatives know of this site, as I was initially twisting arms to insure I wasn't just talking to myself or to thin air.

Yes, I was delighted to be tracked down by this highschool friend. Will write more about him soon as he gives his imprimatur.

annamanila said...


Aba, namamasyal na si Abaniko. How was the Davao bloggers meet?

Yes, Google and IT is (mostly) wonderful!

annamanila said...


I use my hyphenated name when I get published as a concession to my late dad who got tickled whenever he saw my byline. You should too. That way, we not only give credit to our fathers but also get the side benefit of tractability by old friends.

You read my old pieces!! So you found out the name of my friend! hahaha But really, that's so sweet of you.

Names database, alumni net. Hmmm The first sounds familiar. Let's alert Pining about these sites as she seems anxious to reconnect with her highschool friends.

dimaks said...

actually i found 3 of them, using my wife's friendster account :) now im looking for more of them.. sadly until now, tatlo pa rin silang nakikita ko hehe

faith said...

Miss Anna,

We all have our reasons to thank blogging, and one of those is reconnecting with long-lost friends. Come to think of it, if it were not for blogging, how else would've we known someone like you who writes oh so wonderfully?

I'll be waiting for that post about your friend then.

vernaloo said...

trust me I google my name too..all the time! lolz I'm pathetic :)

Anyway its a small world after's a small small world! Malay mo pag nagkita tayo eh nakita na pala kita noon pa hehehe

Uhhmmm I missed that post so I have no idea who the person is....:)

annamanila said...


Good. You can form an alumni association na. Ikaw president, may secretary at treasurer ka na. Subukan mo daw yung names or for the rest of the names.

annamanila said...


Blogging also put me in touch with Faith and Faith's dad and mom. I like that very much. I loved your stories of waiting and reuniting with your pilot and saying goodbye to him again. That's how the love recharges and refreshes, doesn't it? You write well too and being young plenty of time to get even better.

annamanila said...


Googling one's name is ego-tripping and we are all entitled to that trip every now and then. After all, it doesn't require visa nor passport.

Read my Reunion Jitters, then. I think it's my third post (February) I hear its good for a few laughs. Hope you can find the time, Ms. Popularity/Sunshine.

Gypsy said...

Nyark...this tells me to be careful about what I post...Hehe. Great to know you found an old friend--ay mali, he found you pala. Hehe.

houseband00 said...

I really would not now how my high school classmates would react if they found out about my blog.

Even my best friend doesn't know about it.


annamanila said...


hahaha I guess you could say I was really begging to be tracked down.

TY for dropping by.

annamanila said...


Oh wow! So yours is an absolutely hidden persona. Nice ... in a sense. Am toying with the idea of putting up another blog that is totally anonymous where I can rave and rant and curse and be crazy and manic and sad all I want.

dimaks said...

i got already.. but not the ..will try this one too :) ty

Heart of Rachel said...

How nice to get in touch with old friends. I hope you'll have a great time catching up with each other's lives.

Have a great week ahead.

Chateau said...

It's always great to be reunited with old friends. is how my high school friends and I found one another. From there, we created a yahoo group, from where we organized a class reunion, and then a grand alumni homecoming! See how the net has really shrunk the world? :D

nao said...

aba aba! secret admirer huh!

kathy said...

Looks like I'm not the only one doing a Google on my own name (and others too, admittedly), hahah. It's a favorite pasttime. I've regained many of my old friends through Friendster, though.

That's a nice suggestion - to write down names in your blog, and wait for those serendipitous Google searches that will eventually lead them to you. :)

annamanila said...

H of Rachel!

Yes, isn't it? Thanks for good wishes. Have a good week too.

annamanila said...


Tingnan mo nga naman. You were able to mount a grand reunion out of small beginnings. Hope we can pull one through too.

Yes, indeed, our world is shrinking. It must be true that in the world, there is really no separation .. and IT helps make it happen.

annamanila said...


Tingnan mo nga naman. You were able to mount a grand reunion out of small beginnings. Hope we can pull one through too.

Yes, indeed, our world is shrinking. It must be true that in the world, there is really no separation .. and IT helps make it happen.

annamanila said...


When I was writing this post, I thought of the (slim) possibility someone would make tukso. Awa ng Diyos, wala naman -- until you. LOL

Am so glad you're ok enough to make pasyal. Keep it up.

annamanila said...


Yes, that's the word - serendipidity. We encounter much of it in the blogworld?!

And as Faith has also perceptively observed, meeting each other here is serendipitious enough.

Juan (yur catfish friend) said...

well seems like i finally made it here Oh what a relief after all the frustration I can finally seem to be able to post a lil sumptin here for my friend. well Myrna u know i dont read much it none at all but when i come to yur blog u get me crazy glued here . every word carefully chosen every sentence is a scene so vivid so catching all i wanna do is read and read . u are amazing with words keep on writing good luck . yur catfish

annamanila said...


I know how you tried and tried. See what persistence can do? Oooh my, did you really like it? Then read more. hahaha Then you can read books. You're a good scrabbler and in love with words .. and i know you love poetry too. So read, read read. And pretty soon you can blog too. How does blog buddy sound to you? Thanks, catfish!!

Juan said...

Oi mon thats a lot of asking i can read and read and read yur posts cause like i said they catchy . :) but seriously who do u think would wanna read mine ? lemme take a wild guess noone else but u . thats why u are the best friends forever love ya mi catfish friend.

Prab said...

I wonder what keywords he used? Now I know that you're not the only "detective" out there. It rubs off on your friends and aquaintances pala. hahahah!

Stat Counter