For the nth time in my blogging history, I'm writing about him.
Yes, him. The one who adores the Beatles, the one whose passion for learning and service is so contagious it boggles my mind and many others' conscience each time he speaks. He's one of those strangely fascinating big time creatures great enough to stoop down to your level so you can be lifted an inch higher than the slumdog you really are.
For the past three years since I came to my senses and started hitching my wagon to his star, I made it a point to attend his talks during the plenary sessions of the Philippine College of Physicians' Annual Convention. Today I dragged my still sleepy post-duty bulk to SMX Convention Center in Mall of Asia expecting to be enlightened. And as before, I was one of the first to arrive, so I managed to grab a seat only a few rows away from the podium, where I can listen more closely, each moment amazed at his message, the nobility of his ideas, the sincerity of his dreams.
This morning, Dr. D talked of the great crisis facing the specialty of internal medicine. He discussed why the internist is a dying breed, how this group of doctors who would have had the capacity to do great things and to bring about revolutionary changes for the country is silently dying and facing extinction - a sad death that would most likely proceed unnoticed. Not only was he able to depict the problem so vividly, he also provided concrete and novel solutions. Not only did he manage to terrify, he also managed to inspire.
Dr. D, of course, is not a stranger to great talks such as this. He always draws standing ovations from whatever crowd he addresses. But this time, he was able to convey a special message. And the message is not the talk. It is the man behind the talk.
His voice broke when he said we need more heroes.
Yes sir, we do. And people like me still believe in heroes because of people like you.
"When you speak, always speak from the heart. People will often forget what you tell them. But they will never forget how you made them feel.'
- AMLD, my favorite teacher
(some time in November 2008 during a workshop in Tagaytay)