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'I have a boss. His name is God'

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jericho RosalesFUNFARE By Ricardo F. Lo
March 11, 2009 12:00 AM 

Echo came to the interview dressed in a style he calls ‘Echo Romantiko’: Necktied, long sleeves rolled up to his elbow and sans socks
I share one thing with Jericho “Echo” Rosales and it’s inside the drawer of my desk at home and in The STAR office. It has been my “savior” for years, in fact since I was at Tabaco Pei Ching High School in (now) Tabaco City, Albay. It’s one thing I can’t live without, especially when I’m traveling.

You didn’t guess what it is, did you? Yes, SkyFlakes! That’s the product Echo is endorsing. Tastes better dunked in milk. Try it.

According to Joy B., drumbeater for the product, SkyFlakes Fit Oat Fiber Crackers contains the same, if not more, fiber than most commercially-available fiber-rich breads. Present in vegetables, fruits and complex carbohydrates, fiber (a.k.a. “nature’s broom”) promotes digestive health and weight management. Studies show that people who follow a fiber-rich diet are less likely to develop debilitating illnesses like cancer and heart disease.

“I’ve been a SkyFlakes-eater way back when,” confessed Echo who displays his well-trimmed body in the TV commercial as if he’s endorsing underwear. “I look fit, don’t I? I don’t like a hunky body. For me, a perfect body is one with some imperfections, ‘yung may konting trace na kumakain ‘yung may katawan.”

For the SkyFlakes commercial, Echo said he had to do extra workout before the shoot.

“I did jumping rope, I boxed, I did sit-ups, I swam more often, I jogged along Katipunan Road near Ateneo where I live,” said Echo in an exclusive interview with Funfare at the Drake Room of Discovery Suites in Ortigas Center. “Ordinarily, I drive out of town and surf. It’s also a good workout.”

Jericho RosalesBut he didn’t have to starve for it.

“I never deprive myself of food. Look,” he pointed to the plateful of desserts before him, “I have a sweet tooth. I love candies. But when I have a pictorial, I cut down on carbo. I substitute it with either potato, camote or sweet corn which I buy from those stalls along Katipunan Road. The work schedule in showbiz is very demanding; you work for 18 to 24 hours taping or shooting and your body must be ready for it, so you must eat.”

There was a time when Echo suffered from heartburn due to excessive intake of coffee, soft drinks and going to bed with a full stomach. Acid reflux, you know.

“And I must sleep eight hours per night.”

No nightlife?

“Very seldom, even now that I’ve been single for more than a year.”

He swore, short of crossing his heart and hoping to die, that he had never been unfaithful, dismissing as “totally false” the rumors linking him to three women (a Swiss girl, and Malaysian actress Carmen Soo and starlet Brianna Evigan, his leading ladies in the ABS-CBN soap Kahit Isang Saglit and the Hollywood movie Subject: I Love You respectively) and suspected of having caused the break-up of his romance with Heart Evangelista.

“Not guilty as charged,” he smiled.

Especially now that he’s a Born-Again Christian, Echo said his sex life has been a “big zero” and he doesn’t regret it. No pre-marital sex, please!

Asked if he and Heart remained, well, chaste during their relationship, Echo said yes. “It was one of our struggles.”

But reminded that he has a love son (named Santino, 8, whom Echo calls Saint), Echo became defensive.

“Now, I run away from temptation. I have to. But I don’t have any regrets having a child (out of wedlock). I consider a child a blessing. Saint is a wonderful boy. I was young when I had him.”

Celibate (or so he claimed) since he got that “Christian spirit,” Echo said that he has beautifully managed so far, thank you.

“I am reserving ‘it’ for the woman I will marry,” he said without batting an eyelash (okay, let down your soaring eyebrows now, hehehe!).

Echo admitted that, although he didn’t want to sound “very religious,” he consults The One Above before making any decision, including what product to endorse and what role to do.

“I have a boss and his name is God. I follow whatever He tells me to do. I even consulted Him before I accepted the SkyFlakes commercial.”

Make him work (sometimes overtime) Mondays through Fridays but never on Saturdays and Sundays which he sets aside for his family (meaning his mom and his son who stays with him on weekends).

“How do I unwind? When I’m alone, I skate or surf. With my family, I eat out and watch movies. Or we just stay home and enjoy our time together.”

Echo ended our interview by offering me a bagful of SkyFlakes.

Hand me a glass of milk, please!

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