Letters from Jinggoy and Jojo

SINCE I stayed in the Big City last week, the Holy Week saw me rummaging through my files.

Two letters had caught my eye.  The first one:


Sen. Jinggoy Ejercito Estrada

“Anak ng Masa”

January 18, 2005


Philippine Daily Inquirer

PDI Building

Chino Roces Ave. corner

Yague and Mascardo Sts.

Makati City


Dear Al,

I write to sincerely thank you for your article entitled “Encounter with Jinggoy” which appeared in your column today [Spectator], January 18, 2005.

Your article has made other people aware of my humble endeavors as well as my support for our athletes.  Also, I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your invaluable contribution in the field of sports in our country.  I am sure your readers are also grateful knowing that they have a voice in the media who has their interests at heart.


Again thank you and warmest regards.


                (Signed) JINGGOY


The second letter:




April 19, 2007


Sports Editor

Philippine Daily Inquirer

Chino Roces cor. Yague & Mascardo Sts.

Makati City


Dear Mr. Mendoza,


Warmest greetings on your birthday!

It is said that birthdays are among the best times for one to look back at the year that has just passed, and to count one’s blessings.

But I believe that it is likewise the best time for loved ones, friends, and other people to rejoice and give thanks that you have been part of their lives, which, in itself, is a blessing.

On this special day, I wish you better health, greater wisdom, and many more years of a purposeful and meaningful life.

Very truly yours,


(Signed) JEJOMAR “Jojo” C. BINAY


Say what you want to say but it gives me a thrill to receive letters from big shots.  Always.

Jinggoy is now into his second six-year term as senator of the republic ending in 2016, while Jojo is now vice president of the Philippines.  They now belong to the same political party that is much-ballyhooed as being all set to gun for Malacanang in 2016—with Jojo for president and Jinggoy as Jojo’s possible running mate.

The letters of Jinggoy and Jojo are artifacts that belong to my treasure trove since I chose journalism as my profession in 1974.  That long, fellas.

Jinggoy.  Jojo.  Journalism.  Three Js.

The letter J seems to have a special attachment to me. My compadre is a J (Jaworski).  My wife is a J (Juvida).  And my one and only Boss is a J (Jesus).

 I’m sorry if I was a bore today; my apologies.

 OK, I confess, I received one more letter from a politician.  It came from Fidel V. Ramos.  When he was our President, he invited me to play golf.

 Please join me in a plane flight to the South,” he wrote to me.  “As my special guest, you will be my seatmate.  We will play golf in Davao.”

 I was flattered.  I was speechless.  I declined.

 We became close friends after that.

  *   *   *

 ALL IN   With Kia’s admission to the Philippine Basketball Association, it became the second car company to join the league after the now-disbanded Toyota.  Demosthenes “Bobby” Rosales, a Kia top gun, is extra-excited over Kia’s PBA debut in the next season.  This early, he said they have accepted thousands of suggested names for the Kia franchise.  I have two entries but they remain secret—for now.

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