Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Journalism's Future ... Now

The Mānoa Mirror

Murmurs From Manila II

A Daily Diary from the E-W Center’s Media Conference
David Usborne
Prof. Dave and and fellow moderator, East-West Center Fellow Jean Lee

Gas pump vines?!

Clinging on for dear life in the back of a Grab (Filipino Uber), praying our journey isn’t held up by the absolute chaos that is Filipino traffic, I was utterly bewildered when we passed a gas station of all things.

If you thought pumping gas Oregon style was unusual, then get a load of this… Like jungle vines, this Filipino gas station’s pumps dangle down from the ceiling. I’d never seen anything of the sort, yet in retrospect, I suppose it is rather clever. No more worrying about remembering which side the tank is on your vehicle and yelling out expletives after realizing you’ve parked on the wrong side of the pump. I suppose a system like this is a must when you take into account Philippine road traffic. There is no such thing as organized road traffic here, so gas pump lanes would inevitably wreak more havoc.

Trash cans don’t exist in Manila

I come from Norway… If you were to guess whether there are more public trash cans than people, I would probably suggest the number of public waste disposals over there outweighs the population. Back home they line the sidewalks consistently, no more than 60-something feet from one to the next.

Alas… in Manila, my handbag has become my own portable trash can as I am constantly on the hunt for a place to throw away old receipts and tissues while I’m on the go. My inner clean-freak has been going a little crazy since making this observation and it’s one of those things that I would never have thought to have acknowledged otherwise.


Dave’s laugh echoes through panel rooms like the monsoon thunders

Dave’s laughter reverberates through panel rooms like a Manila monsoon thunder. Amidst the whirlwind of the EWC IMC coverage these past two days, there is one particular sound that reigns supreme in the conference halls – David Usborne’s distinctive chuckle, punctuating what feels like an endless string of humorous instances. If you hear that chuckle and you’re not in the room, just know you’ve missed out on one cracking joke.

Listening to audio recordings I have taken from conference panels is like stumbling upon a treasure trove of joy. Dave’s unmistakeable laughter acts as a beacon that guides audience members through the sea of discussions.

Thank you Dave’s chuckle for making us… well… chuckle.


Despite affordable Manila capitalism, Lili Hurd refuses to purchase new sandals

Mānoa Mirror’s very own darling Lili struts around in her darling lace-up sandals that have garnered more praise than a little puppy in the park. While her shoes are a perfect blend of style and practicality in Manila’s sauna-like climate, poor Lili’s footwear love affair has turned out to be more of a rollercoaster ride than a leisurely stroll.

Each time Lili meticulously laces up her sandals, tightening those knots with the same determination as a sailor in a storm, those pesky straps play a game of Houdini, unraveling down her legs midway through conference panels and Manila explorations. The rhythmic clack of the beads tied to the end of each lace hitting the ground serves as a quirky theme song that announces Lili’s presence.

One could assume that constantly retying her shoes would drive the poor girl to the brink of a shopping spree, especially with such a favorable exchange rate too. But alas, Lili chooses to stand her ground, facing off against her rebellious footwear like our very own modern-day Cinderella in a battle of wills, defying all odds and refusing to let those sneaky laces trip her up.

Gavin the economics guy twitching with panel passion

And the award for the most fervent EWC IMC panel speaker goes to none other than Gavin, the economics guy!

During a panel discussing U.S. reporting, Gavin Bade was a sight to behold, radiating panel passion like a lighthouse – or perhaps he’d simply had one too many cups of coffee during the panel intervals.

The fellow was shaking like a bottle of Coca Cola that had been stuffed and shaked with Mentos, captivating the audience with his infectious zeal for what is actually a very interesting and timely topic.

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About the Contributor
Summer Steinsrud
Summer Steinsrud, Contributor
My name is Summer Steinsrud and I am a senior at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa majoring in Journalism. My interests in Journalism are centered mainly around sports and broadcast media. I am 22, originally from Oslo, Norway and have been living in Hawai'i for the past couple of years after transferring from the University of Nevada, Reno. I have previously worked as the Assistant News Editor for the Nevada Sagebrush and worked alongside Wolf Pack Athletics capturing content for MBB. During my time here in Hawai'i I hope to give back to the community by sharing the beauty that exists in the local culture and people through journalistic storytelling.

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