MIBF Bookworms: Stanley Chi, Tado Jimenez, Ramon Bautista, and Carlos Celdran

Thursday, August 30, 2012 Stef dela Cruz 4 Comments

The Manila International Book Fair (MIBF) has always been sacred to me. When I first found out about it back when I was still a med student, I made it a point to go there every year thereafter. I felt silly whenever I get excited for MIBF, but I couldn’t help it - there’s a nerd in me I can’t quite quash! And to make things even more exciting, MIBF is launching a campaign for literacy this year, with the aid of four impressive “MIBF bookworms” for 2012.

MIBF Bookworms

I got the chance to know more about all four bookworms – a.k.a. official ambassadors of the 2012 Manila International Book Fair – and it felt like peeling an onion. Allow me to dish out what I’ve learned about the four MIBF bookworms.

MIBF Bookworm Tado Jimenez

Tado Jimenez is funny in a caught-you-off-guard way. I can’t predict what he’ll say next; I’m sure, however, that it will be shocking and funny. I can’t count how many times I mouthed “Oh my God” whenever he answered questions from the press. Yes, when Tado talks, the press laps it up.

Tado Jimenez MIBF

Tado is also quite down to earth. It’s like he’s not a celebrity (except that you’re acutely aware that he is). There’s no VIP aura anywhere around him. And his political will is apparent in his words and actions. If he’s running for candidacy, I believe he deserves to win.

MIBF Bookworm Stanley Chi

Stanley Chi is no stranger to me. He has been my partner (in crime) for more than a year now. It still surprises me, however, that he could do so much in so little time. How on earth does he manage his time?

Stanley Chi MIBF

Stanley, unbeknown even to his own peers, has been doing his share in promoting education. He is an art teacher and has given free classes to NGOs catering to orphaned and abused children. He told me in confidence (oops, sorry for divulging your secret!) that he wanted to use his earnings from his latest book for a literacy fund meant for one of his pet organizations.

MIBF Bookworm Ramon Bautista

Ramon Bautista is beloved by many, given his internet antics. His social media reputation also precedes him, given the outrageous tweets and videos he posts regularly. All that, I’ve known ever since. But I didn’t know that his being a director also meant he had the drive to make every video look as good as it should, even if he was in front of the camera, not behind it.

Ramon Bautista MIBF

The suggestions and extra effort he put into his character for the MIBF videos did not escape my attention. He transformed into a different but similar Ramon Bautista when the camera started rolling. He’s also a professor, giving him credence to exalt the MIBF advocacy for literacy.

MIBF Bookworm Carlos Celdran

The first time I met Carlos Celdran, I didn’t realize how nice he was. But during the video shoot for the MIBF literacy campaign, he was funny and quite endearing. He shared stories on past misadventures without a hint of pretense. His being “Carlos Celdran” was the real deal.

Carlos Celdran MIBF

I find it weird, surreal, and wonderful that he voiced out his opinions as honestly as he does. Maybe that’s why everybody loves him: he’s keeping it real. And yes, he loves books, even the most morbid ones – and yeah, I can relate.

MIBF Bookworms Teaser Video

Do watch the teaser video of the MIBF bookworms – and tell your friends about it. I couldn’t stop laughing and replaying the video. It’s just hilarious in an almost painful way! But don’t take my word for it; check it out and judge for yourself.

The 33rd Manila International Book Fair will be on September 12 to 16, 2012 at the SMX Convention Center. Oh yes, I’ll definitely be there, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed! 

MIBF Bookworms

All MIBF bookworms deserve to be ambassadors of literacy. And believe me when I say they have signed up for this because they believe this campaign will help promote reading and education. It’s so amazing to see four wonderful people, all driven to do their part as literacy advocates, endorsing the country’s biggest, baddest book fair ever. Now, it’s our turn to promote literacy: let’s SHARE their video and get the word out!

Stef dela CruzAbout the blogger
Stef dela Cruz is a doctor and writer. She received the 2013 Award for Health Media from the Department of Health. She maintains a health column in Health.Care Magazine and contributes to The Manila Bulletin. Add her to your circles.


  1. Nice poster! My only gripe is that the only credible endorser here is Carlos Celdran. I'm all for his nationalistic advocacy. And Tado is a shoo-in for geekiness for sure, but he's an idiot for a lot of things, just like his shirts for being controversial.

  2. Haha, thanks, Itin. Carlos is a great guy indeed. But Tado is just as great! I met him and he is so smart that he can "fake" being not.

    It takes a lot of smarts to come up with witty quips on your feet, and that's something all four MIBF bookworms can do effortlessly. See them in action and you can see that their comedy, albeit sometimes self-deprecating, is smart - and 100% funny. No idiots here, I assure you. ;)

  3. Addendum: Tado Jimenez is also doing wonders for his flooded Marikina community. He has started such wonderful campaigns, such as free laundry service to everyone affected by the flooding in Marikina. A great leader with political will - and the chutzpah to back it up.

    Ramon, Tado, and Stanley have been basking in fame because of their comedic antics, but this belies their education and intelligence. For instance, Ramon is a professor at the University of the Philippines (WHEW!) and Stanley is also a teacher and literacy advocate. They have "silent" parts of their lives that show their wise commitments. :)

    But don't just take my word for it: Join them at the 33rd Manila International Book Fair! Get to see them upfront and you'll see what I mean. ;)

  4. Wishing for a "like" button in the comments section. I totally agree with your addendum. Most people are not aware of these guys' background and what they're doing for the community. The organizers wouldn't have chosen them to become ambassadors if they were not smart or credible enough.