The Desk

It’s the first after a long time.

I ever so gently. Ran my fingers over her.

Caressing her cold, white, smooth surface.

That frigid skin that had been calling out for my warmth –

For so                         l                          o                                     n                        g.

The metronome is speeding up-

I swallowed my fears.

I let my fingers explore. Till I find the right key – G.

I let out a smile.

Haven’t played the piano for a while now.


Driving Towards Change Using Toyota.


Charmaine Joy V. Zhang

4HR2 October 3, 2013


Driving Towards Change Using Toyota.

Students have been bombarded with too much theoretical information that they sometimes take it for granted; they began to not see beyond the thick pages or the pixel data they download. Student leaders especially, should be able to see and understand the real life application of what they study, or at least find connection with them. As a Human Resource (HR) student, studying culture change and the roles of an HR in a company, I feel the urgency of need to apply these concepts in order to test them out and see them work first-hand. What better outlet I can use than with my own publication. As an editor, among the many change concepts I’ve read in my HR-student lifetime, the Toyota way is the most applicable concept I find very useful. The three main concept I’ve come up with out of the Toyota’s way are: To Never Under steer, To Never Over steer, and to always Apply the Neutral Handling.

  1.  Never Under steer- Under steering means applying not enough force to the wheel and in turn would drift the car off the road course as it missed its intended turn. As an editor, I see among the others the need to apply Toyota’s Kaizen. Kaizen according to Toyota’s definition is the continual improvement. Our writers need to continuously study and improve their craft in order to become even better and competitive writers. Likewise, for me as an editor is an even more need to further harness my skills. Otherwise, we would see ourselves drift from being a college publication to type writing monkeys. It is a must to apply the right amount of force to maneuver our wheels towards improvement.
  2.   Never Over Steer- contrary to under steering according to motor jargon, over steering is applying too much force to the wheel causing it to make a sharp turn and ending up making a round trip spin back to where they started. While it is important to continue to harness one’s skills one may need to put into mind the need for it would also mean that weaknesses would surface in order to overcome it. Otherwise, if one would take the heed- for- improvement too seriously and not seeing past the mistakes, they may take it negatively instead of constructively hence to never over steer. Toyota teaches us to apply Hansei. According to Toyota, this means to self reflect, it is an attitude to reflect on the mistakes committed and positively make an effort to change and make up for it. This I find difficult to apply, as sometimes in an organization, mistake is not an option. But since most of the time mistakes are inevitable (even with all the measures conducted to avoid it), I try to study these mistakes and take it as positive reinforcement to correct myself. Let us not over steer our gear thinking we won’t need these improvement.
  3. Apply The Neutral Handling- Neutral handling driving is when you neither over steer nor under steer. Do you want to know what happens when neutral handling the steering wheel? Do you? Then go find out.  Watch, observe, and understand in order to know. That brings me to my last point, the Genchi Genbutsu. According to Toyota system’s creator Taiichi Ohno it means to Go and see the actual situation to understand. This concept means that you need to actually engage yourself to understand if you have problems over steering or under steering. How would you know when your skills need power steering or manual steering when you don’t understand your problem in the first place. It’s better to share something you know because you have experienced it first-hand than knowing it from books or from other people’s mouth. A similar case whenever I edit new articles, even though I have trust that my news writers gather their data from credible sources, I would still immerse myself with the actual data gathering to confirm the facts. Publishing credible facts is our business. So it is very important. To add another example. Since our publication also serves as an organization, sometimes internal conflict occurs. In order for me to present the problems we have at hand to the Editor-in-Chief, I need to engage myself, step back, and observe to understand what the problems are, why they are occurring, and how to propose solutions. That’s Genchi Genbutsu. So always remember that whenever you see problems under steering and over steering, go neutral handling. It’s safer.

With all said, these concepts would seem simple and easy to apply. However, it is undermining these concepts is what makes it harder to implement.  Put a break to ego and try to strictly implement these very simple concepts. A way towards visible change is to stick to the plan with integrity. It’s all the same banana in any other change theory books. But basically it’s all about gearing towards improvement, self improvement, and innovative solutions. Never Under Steer your wheel, always exert the right amount of effort towards improvement to get yourself on the right track, Never Over Steer, give the right amount of attitude towards change seeing past the mistakes committed to avoid spinning your wheel back to where you started, and lastly Apply Neutral Handling, put yourself out there, feel the track yourself and understand which curb is the right turn.  



The Desk

I was dreaming away on my sleep when it was–


by muffled sounds of sobbing. My mom is crying again.

So I stood up and went to my parents’ bedroom.

there, I saw Dad seating across the bathroom door outside- looking old and worn out.

“She told me it’ll be her last” he explained sleepily.

Her sobs grew louder, I could hear our dog hurrying up the stairs to be with my mom.

“Shall I knock, Dad?” I asked

He said “It’s okay, –

she said it’s the last episode of her Kdrama. ”



Dad doesn’t know…

Season two was just released.





PAGIBIG Chronicles ni Chameme


Minsan sa buhay natin, may darating na hindi mo aakalain. Hindi mo hiningi. Hindi mo rin inantay. Chill ka lang sa kinalalagyan mong Space habang unti unting bumabangon mula sa iyong nakaraan. At nung dumating iyon, para siyang Switch na Nag papaTurn On sa lahat lahat ng pagkatao mo. Mga bagay na di mo sukat akalaing magagawa mo, napaka-Automatic nalang ngayon. Samut-Saring pag lalabag na sa iyong BRO-Code ang nagagawa mo mula nang dumating siya. Wala e, tinamaan ka. Ganon raw talaga iyon. Sa pagkakataong ito, lahat ng mga bagay na nagawa at hind nagawa sa dati, binubuhos dito. Andun ang takot masaktan at naroon rin ang handang magsugal. Pag success ehdi WOW, pag hindi… charge to experience nanaman.

Lahat naman nagumpisa sa Forever. Wala namang papasok sa relasyon at hahangarin agad ang katapusan nito. Ngunit, naroon ang reyalidad. Magpaparamdam at magpaparamdam talaga iyan. Hindi sapat ang Mahal Ko at Mahal Ako Concept. Kelangan gamitin ang utak. Kasabay nito ang isang matinding salitang Effort. Effort talaga ang magmahal. Hindi sapat na mahal lang, walang effort para patakbuhin ito. Ang Love hindi lang puro kilig.  Kung yun lang hanap mo ehdi sana, nagpa kuryente ka nalang o di kaya subukang pigilan ang ihi mo ng matagal at pag di na kaya tsaka mo ilabas. Yun’ ang KILIG talaga.

Effort. Effort. Madali lang raw iyan, Consistency daw ang mahirap. Oo, totoo yan.  Yun ang tunay na challenge sa salitang Effort. Hindi porket matagal na kayo o panatag na sa isa’t-isa eh, keme –keme nalang. Aba’y di pwede yan Chong’. Lagyan mo ng thrill, sweetness, bitterness, kung pwede pa nga. Anghang para walang sawaan.

Kasama rin dito ang hangaring mapabuti ang kapareha. Sa oras na pinasok mo ang yugtong ito, hindi na IKAW ang usapan. KAYO na.  Importanteng Ibuild up siya towards betterment. Ika nga, push him to be what he is capable of.  Kung kelangang gumising ng mas maaga para gisingin siya at nang hindi ma-Late. O kaya naman, Kurutin sa tenga para lang mag Church. Lahat ng ikabuButi para sa kanya- hangarin at gawin mo. Minsan, pwedeng hindi niya ito gugustuhin, pero kung iyon ay alam mong para sa kanyang ikabubuti. Why Not, Choc-Nut diba? Dapat malayo ang bato, dapat pang hinaharap na ang Focus sa mga bagay bagay, hindi sapat na isipin at magpakaEnjoy ka lang sa kung anu merun ngyon. Dapat mag-ala Madame Auring ka sa mga pangyayari. Isipin ang hinaharap. Always want the best for the other and for the both of you. Uulitin ko lang ang paborito kong line mula sa Terror ngunit genius kong Prof nung College na si Thor-Mentor “Malayo dapat ang Bato, guiizze. “

Hindi porket Buy1-take1 package na eh babaliwalain na ang kanya kanyang mundo. Kung ang Araw at Buwan ay nagpakasal at naging housewife nalang si Araw, papano na init sa Earth?? Ang punto ko, we all have our own worlds. We should still continue to strive to make OURSELVES better. Para rin naman ito sa iyong partner.  Hayaan siyang mag Basketball with the boys; GO. Manood ng PBA; GO. hilig niya yun eh, wag kang epal, malay mo naman, pwede siyang future MVP sa PBA, e balakid ka. Maging personal cheerleader ng isat-isa Minus the pompons and short kinky skirts haha.  Ituloy mong gawin ang dati mong ginagawa; pagsusulat, pagkanta, musika, lakwatsa pero with consent and approval na may 30 days Notice and Date-Leave Credits XD. Ang naiba lang naman eh. Nadagdagan ka lang ng isa pang papel sa buhay.  Pero ikaw parin yan, sa ganyan ka niya minahal eh kung magbago at mawala yan, Who You Na?!


Masarap daw ang pagibig. Totoo naman. Masarap ngumiti nang walang dahilan. Masarap ang feeling na may biglang hahalik sa noo mo. Ganon talaga eh, humahava ang hair. Pero wag masyadong padala. Gamiting ang utak. Maging mature sa mga bagay bagay. Magmahal na walag masyadong ineexpect, lagyan ng adventure ang buhay, ituloy mo lang ang takbo ng mundo mo habang sabay kayong umiikot sa bago ninyong Orbit at higit sa lahat pagyamanin ang buhay ng isat-isa.


Salamat sa pagbabasa. Ikaw, ano sa tingin mo?





My Badass 2015 Top 10 life lessons

The Desk, Uncategorized

Hey 2015, good bye now. But just wanna say thank you for an amazing year. reminds me of a Wushu Master who lets his student go through hardships in order to become a great fighter. Thank you for chiseling me into becoming a woman I call myself now. Thank you for breaking me into pieces to become a better version of me. To pay tribute, I’ve jotted down my top 10 list of life’s important lessons your year taught me

  1. to forgive even when it is difficult.
  2. to forgive even when you don’t know how.
  3. to forgive even when it was not asked.
  4. to forgive and love myself again.
  5. to be vigilant and cautious before giving trust.
  6. players are everywhere.
  7. standards are ideal
  8. real friends are those who stick with you through your ugly days. Even when your mascara is running down your face from crying and you reek of alcohol.
  9. Love shouldn’t be taken for granted. Nmn
  10. I am capable of love, regardless of age and status. I mustn’t harden myself just because I got hurt.

.. Actually. The list just goes on. These are just by far. My top 10.

Bye 2015, twas an amazing ride. You’ve given me so much tears and happiness. Wisdom and a whole lot of craziness. Thanks for teaching me lessons. I used to hate you so much to be honest, but never expected to appreciate what you brought me. Thank you, you are by far, THE MOST unforgettable year..

Rosette Love

The Desk, Uncategorized

Love, as cliche as it may sound is similar to a rose they say. I am at a point in my life where I’m beginning to understand this metaphor. To love someone is to hurt as it is adoring a rose and getting pricked. Then I asked, how come others can touch a thorny rose without getting hurt while I bask in my own bloodbath? A lot of answers came up, but the best so far is : Honey, that rose is an asshole, doesn’t even belong in your garden. It’s not worthy to be called a rose. As true as I may believe so, the prick still stuns me.
Spending all energy and effort not to mention talent to water that flower which apparently is made out of plastic. That piece of realistically non Bio-degradable material struts around as if it did nothing. Clean conscience. Such creature baffles me and yet I desire for its own goodness. Couldn’t find it in me to speak ill about it; even defended his name.
Everyday is a reminder; every whisper and inside jokes. I sponged them.
A price to pay. For being naked and true to something unreal.

What is Happiness?

The Desk

“What is happiness?
I asked everyday-
while I look at your smile.

How is happiness?
I asked,  while I-
look at mine.”

Happiness? What is it? Where is it? When is it? How is it? Lastly, which is it?
Could it be heard –
On the gasp of a child receiving her first puppy.
Could it be seen –
On the arms of a soldier who had longed for his family after the war.
Could it be felt –
On the face of a woman with a man standing in front of her, knee bent over with a ring.
why is it that happiness is always something that is sought to find ?  always being found to achieve. Can one find happiness after it is lost? Can you say you found it while it remained lost? Can you be happy without happiness? So which is it? How do you define happiness?  Is it possible for happiness without happiness?
I don’t know yet but so far…
I think it is when you let it go. Happiness is holding on to the beautiful memories and letting it go one by one everyday even though it hurts. Happiness is smiling despite the tears. Happiness is accepting defeat against oneself but feeling the triumphed for acceptance. Happiness is when you find it but can never have. Happiness is being there but can never hold. Happiness is closing your eyes trying not see though it is very clear. Happiness is trying to feel numb despite it all. Happiness is now but lives in the past. Happiness is being there while not at the same time. So which is it? How do you define happiness? It’s just simply  letting the one thing that had made you found your happiness find its own though you are not there to cause it. It gives you both joy and tremendous sadness. It is as simple as trying hard  to be happy for happiness to find its happiness.

Confessions of a 5th-wheel

The Desk

Fifth- wheeling. The art of moving on in the sea of couples. When things just kept on tumbling over you.
For some bizarre phenomenon. Whenever we go through an ‘after’ break-up or at least the so called emotional detachment, Cupid would suddenly start shooting arrows to everyone around you.  Everyday the universe would remind you of how pathetic it is being single. You wake up ; wear a pair of pants, a pair of shoes, a pair of scissors. A pair this and that. And when you get to work, you’d be with your girlfriends. That’s cool. But during breaks and after-office bond. You are bombarded with the effin powers of Two’s. It’s cool, your troops had just found their halves; conveniently after you have lost yours. No biggie.
Third-wheeling is old school, the bigger the group the better and easier it is to become more bitter about yourself. You’d start walking off in 3’s then eventually you’ll be wandered off a bit inch to give way for their naughty hands to find each other. You’d engage in a group discussion of just about anything; then you slowly find yourself walking behind a pair while they tacitly whisper sweet nothings, to apparently start their own dyad-discussion. What’s more fun, is when you’d go out with the whole troops. We are a troops of 5. Originally, there are only 3. Then Big bang happened so out comes love in unexpected ways: We became 5.  You guessed right! That’s two sets of couple-power and 1 lonely flower. It bites being left out. Especially after you have just been ‘left’. The feelings seem to magnify.  Whenever they cuddle, kiss, play-fight., you are being reminded of the past. How you were and how it should’ve been us.
That’s cool tho. It’s. Part of life. Be Bitter Betty once in a while.  Coz that’s a reminder that you have had precious memories together. You were happy. You loved. Yes, it was over and hell yes it hurts. But you loved. Look past the pain and see the beauty of being hurt. No matter how shitty and how down the hill the love may went. Remember how it made you smile.   You were the Been- there–that girl. True, you miss it. Like badly, more than necessary in fact. But.. Wala eh. Accept Lang. Use that feeling as a reminder, that love is still beautiful to you and that you should not give up on it. See your lovey-doveyd troops and remember how it made you smile. That you once went gaga in love and that you’d want your girlfriends to feel the beauty of love. Let them be, support them. Dont feel bad. But be a proud 5th-wheel instead and be happy for them.

When I finally chose not to wait.


The day I decide to stop waiting.
I’m tired of crying. I’m tired of the drama. My life back when I was a student isn’t as tormenting as it is now that I am working. No more. My brakes are pulled. So I lost my Mr. Would’ve- Could’ve-Should’ve, I gotta move up.  No more Miss hopeless romantic. 😃 it’s time for a new chapter-  but with a new strategy.
I won’t wait for the right guy to come along like a knight in shining armor. With flashing red carpet , spotlight, and glitters. I will just let him come along. No more waiting. I’ll leave it all in time. If it comes so shall it be. If it doesn’t , then that is okay. I am no damsel in distress. I won’t send out distress signal for available singles in the area. I am not that desperate.  I’m fine. I’m going spend what little energy that’s left of me to heal and love myself more. Apparently, loving oneself is a much more bigger task than loving someone else. I easily fell for someone whom I never expected to fall with. And damn, did I fell – on cold, hard, painful concrete. Haha anyway.. As of this writing, I’m still learning to love me. It ain’t easy. I have lapses time to time. I’ll allow myself to focus on being Miss Right to my future Mister Right ( hopeless romantic ehem*).

To my fellow singles, let’s not wait. There is nothing to wait for. In life, there is never really anything to be ready for. We can never really be prepared to what is coming. Love comes by unexpectedly. Do not go looking for love to fill the void that was emptied. Do not force it. Do not stay stagnant while waiting for the next ride of relationship to pass by. Use this quiet time to be a better version of You. Be a 2.0 version of you!. Forget about love for now (intimate love) and start loving yourself! Be with friends and family more. Invest on those. Their rebate is bigger and much more certain.t

So we got hurt. We can always love . Ang importante babangon. Pero for now, love gotta start from us.

To the Man Who Broke My Heart. Toast! Raise ’em glass high.

To you Sir, I’d like to pour it out. I’m a writer therefore there is so much for me to write than to say. Words couldn’t find me that night we ended what we had. Or at least I thought we had. Having you look at me shattered and weak makes things even worst. It’s how the mighty fall. I couldn’t bear you see how you  broke me. But you did and I wonder what could’ve been going thru that little head of yours. ” do you mock my weakness? Are you proud of it?”
Everyday is an epiphany of emotions, one by one you proved to be the man you told me you never were and never will be. You could’ve at least let me hold on to that lifeline we call Friendship. But you went and tell words to others that shattered me even more. I could never understand how you’d do that to a friend. I wanted so much to heal and mend but seeing you makes all memories flow back to me. All the promises. All the words. The memories. The lies. But I remained docile. Silent.
That’s over now. It’s tiring to have to cry every single day. That’s why for the sake of what little humanity that is left in me. I’d like to say thank you.
Thank you dear. Thank you for picking up the little pieces of me. Though you broke me as did the ones before but worst. I’m Thankful that at least you came at some point to mend me even for a brief moment.
Thank you for falling in and out of love with me. Though brief it may be and I had began to doubt if I had just dreamt it all. You made me felt that I am lovable. That I am an endless possibility of love. That I can love beyond appearances, race, and status.
Thank you for breaking my heart beyond my hurt capacity because for the first time I actually learned how it is to love. I never knew that before. All the little hurts are a pinch compared to this. I never expected to come out of it as shiny as I am now.
Thank you for shattering me. Because for the first time in my 22 years of existence, I’m beginning to love myself without other people’s validation. I don’t need a man beside me to move on. I just need ME. You have no idea how much I’ve spent so far in order to pick myself up again. (a lil around 10k *ehem)
Thank you for catching me after I fell from someone else’s cloud-nine. Though, only having you drop me off from your cliff eventually. Because I’ve learned to value the word Trust. It’s Not as simple as it is. This 5-letter word is too precious to just give away. As simple as it may sound, in every goodness of everyone there will come a time they will hurt you.  But I have not yet lost my trust in humanity. There is no bad in us all, only bad decision.
Thank you for playing with my heart and leaving it to collect dust on the shelf. Because I’ve learned that no matter how long you’ve known someone, there will always be a possibility of chaos. I never wanted to play games. I was very clear at that from the beginning, didn’t I?. But little did I know, I’m already in the game even if I don’t want to. I got played and lost. Without my knowledge and intention to begin with. Now I know better. But I still do not plan on playing. I will not stoop down.
Thank you dear for taking away so much and I know you don’t know that. Because your loss became the greatest gain lil’ 22 year old me would truly appreciate. I see the true meaning of compassion and friendship. I see now, how many people who would not want to see my smile die out. Who still believes that I am still that little ball of Sunshine they’ve always known. For the first time, I see crying over someone else’s shoulders as a strength. You’ve known me. You’ve known how I cope with my struggles. This time it is different. I did different. I am beautifully hurt and loved. Losing just your affection gained me insurmountable love and self love from friends and new- found friends!
Thank you, and for one last time allow me to call you Dear. Because you were dear to me. To see you now and then, I will simply remember the good I once found in you. I’ll use the sad memories as the greatest learning curve for my future. For now. Thank you. Because I love myself more now. And it is an internal decision. Not because someone thinks I am lovable but because I think I Am and guess what!… Heck I am!
Id also like to commend you Sir. It is better to have broken just 1 heart than 2 at the same time. And that 1 happens to be me. The Cj who then joined a spiritual journey simulation of become a missionary. The Cj who had gotten in to FLEX (Foundation for Leadership Excellence) and will now be taking the ALC (Advance Leadership Course). Im good and getting better. I’m not moving on. But I am moving up.
At the end of the day, I can proudly ask myself how I have loved, and I will smile.  I am a canvass of this battle I that I have conquered. You may believe me or you may not, either way.
I am Cj Zhang. My commitment statement I got out from FLEX is: I am a worthy, loving, and forgiving woman.
Thanks for reading


To My Used-To Be. Mr. Would’ve, Could’ve, and Should’ve

The Desk