Monday, July 7, 2008


Carlos Vincent Ruiz, the Prince of Silay, arrived late during the screening of Hari ng Negros held last March in Canlaon City. He was still having doubts in joining the said competition. What scared him most was what his fellow seminarians will think of him if he joined. He just recently left the seminary in search of new hope and purpose.

"Are you sure you want to join Hari ng Negros?" a member of the screening panel asked him after reading his credentials.

"No, I'm not sure. But if it will help me become a stronger person, then I will give it a try."

You see, Carlos was already an achiever in many ways. His God-given talent is his art. He has been commissioned by the Province of Negros Occidental to make the painted portraits of all the Provincial Governors to be permanently displayed at the Negros Museum. His prize winning work has appeared on a Philippine postage stamp. He has had several art exhibits and is an active member of the both the Silay United Group of Artists and the Art Association of Bacolod.

"May you find the fulfillment you seek in Hari ng Negros."

Because of his artistic and seminary background, he was already in the forefront of wielding the Sword of Negros. To the surprise of many, Carlos even designed his own tribal costume which won Best Costume in the pre-judging because of its simple yet intricate design.

Carlos placed in the Top 7 because of his superb performance that night barely missing the Top 3. A few days after the competition, very depressed and still worn out, Carlos found himself in a squabble, a victim of alleged lies, deceit and subjected to public humiliation. For the first time in his life, he fought back hard physically concentrating all his anger and emotions in his fists finally finding the strength he had hidden inside him for so long.

At that moment he realized a new Carlos has emerged. One stronger and capable of accepting life's greatest challenges. Like some kind of wonderful.

There's a hero in all of Carlos. You just have to believe.

Forever, Hari ng Negros.