Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Wait until they get a skating rink...

Junel Baculi sits silently taking in everything thats going on around him. National University is playing Ateneo De Manila and however tough the Bulldogs are it looks like the Blue Eagles will pull through with a win. "Iba yung may pride... at syempre, good recruiting and training. A good school with all the tradition and history to play for."

Recently appointed as the Athletic Director of NU, the former basketball player stresses one thing: patience. "You don't get to where you are without being patient," he says as he taps my arms for emphasis. "Cliche, pero it's true that you must first learn how to lose before you win."

He appreciates my remembering him from his Philips Sardines days when he teamed up with Benjie Paras, Bennett Palad, Benjie Gutierrez, and Aris Franco under Joe Lipa to battle the all-star squads of RFM and Magnolia. He laughs, "Bata pa ako noon. Pero ibang iba yung labanan noon, right?"

He confirms though that there's a fresh air of hope billowing through Sampaloc as SM Prime Holdings has become a partner with the venerable school. "We're going to bring the pride back and restore NU to where it once was."

The groundbreaking for the school's new athletic building is this Thursday. "You know what SM can do," he says leaving my thoughts to wonder and imagine about having such a powerful business entity behind the school. He laughs at the jokes that the facility will contain a cinema, a skating rink, and a food court. "All I can say is that we'll have good facilities and quality education that will help our enrollees. It's a lofty vision but it's doable. Excited ako just to be a part of it."

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