Bobo Ka…nga ba?

A couple of nights ago, despite the piled up school assignments, I was tempted to design a logo which I will post here on my blog until next year’s election is over. Like most people (I assume), the recent development in the political arena is quite something that should be of concern to us Filipinos.

Once again, we see a circus of events and a mix of personality that seems to make a mockery of our intellects or whatever is left out of it. Politicians are now more active than ever with a few more months before the May 2010 event. Unfotunately, their sudden activity doesn’t translate to any benefit to the majority but on the contrary, large sums of money, likely from the taxpayers, are once again circulating to benefit these self-serving individuals.

This logo with the Filipino phrase, Boboto Ka ba? (Are you voting?) is a sign of both my frustration with the political development and my commitment to vote wisely. And by posting it on my blog site, I hope to help instill informed decision-making and critical thinking. With this logo, I encourage everyone to…

not get suckered into believing that those mingling with the poor are immediately for the poor.

not get emotional and get carried away into picking one because he is related to someone we adored so much.

not blindly follow someone because he said was called by god to lead his people.

not get jiggy with political campaign jingles (or songs) because most likely it’s there to sugarcoat our tamang akala.

not believe when they say that the info ads were paid by friends (and if it were, these friends will likely get a favor in return).

Let’s take a look what they really can offer and if they can get that offer done in the end. Let’s be properly informed and then let’s decide who gets to take our country’s top seat.

Remember that after 2010, there will be another 6 more years. Let’s rub off the thought that we can just go back to EDSA again, hold hands, say a prayer, sing another mushy song, wear yellow or whatever color is IN and kick (figuratively or literally) whoever is in power and then do it all over again. Being an informed voter isn’t easy but at least let’s try our best to be one. O ano, BOBOto KA nga ba? Sana oo.

 

 

Mood: 5/10 Honks! (hope he’ll decide against it.) 

Dead but not gone

I was trying to make sense of what is happening right now with almost everyone glorifying Cory Aquino’s life. What I find sad about it all is it just doesn’t seem to sink in to me. No offense, but since then I just knew Cory as probably a good mother but a weak leader.

For the first time, yesterday while I was on my way to school I tuned in to an AM station (630) mainly to check on how the traffic is doing since I’ll be passing by somewhere near Manila. That time I already conditioned my mind that I’ll be in for a long drive so I was never in a hurry and readied myself to give the reason why I’m late in class – traffic.

Driving in moderate speed starting from Cavite, I was able to listen intently to the radio host say a lot of good things about Cory. And with her describing how people (students, employees) are getting out of their building just to meet the convoy that was carrying Cory’s coffin made me reflect what these people see in her that I don’t.

On TV, over radio, in the newspapers, on the streets and even on Twitter and facebook, the number of people pouring their support while she was still in the hospital and grief over her death says it all – they see Cory as very good person. She was so good that some people even called for her proclamation as a saint. Hmmm. But wether or not she deserves to be one, I now think that a multitude of people all over the nation and even abroad can’t be that wrong or just be influenced by the the media coverage (and social networking sites) to take this chance to wear or carry anything that’s yellow.

Now I guess, I just have to concede that I was wrong, disrespectful and insensitive. I just hope however that whatever inspirations and influences she had left to all these people who flocked the streets, braved the erratic rains and sun’s heat to see her for the last time won’t get buried along with her. And as I’ve mentioned on my recent blog, that hopefully this time we will sustain (can’t stress this word enough) the unity that most of us have once again shown and that we won’t put to waste the unselfish love, sacrifice and patriotism that both Cory and Ninoy have imparted to all of us. Both are now dead, but hopefully not gone. May they rest in peace.

***

 

Just barely a year ago, I wrote this a blog with this title: Heroes Wanted: Dead or Alive. It was my own tribute to the iamninoy.com campaign wherein I promised myself that this year I’ll make my vote count – on top of trying to be a good citizen of this country. Well, I already had myself registered for next year’s election. Next step (and the hardest) is to make an informed choice and not just rely on what is being shown on TV. As my professor in TSLEADER (he is by the way a loyal supporter and friend of the Aquinos and have stayed most of the time with Cory’s family during her last ordeal) have lectured before, what we actually need now in this country is adaptive change. According to him such change isn’t easy, but the way I see and understand it, it is the way to go if we want to move on for good. And so whoever can offer it, and show he’s sincere about it, he’ll get my vote.

 

 

Mood: 3/10 Honks (killing time while waiting for my articles for editorial abstracting to be downloaded)

An unlikely compliment

Remember the saying, “give credit to whom credit is due”? Well, this is what I’m doing right now. After weeks of preparing for this day and setting my mind that today I’d be needing extra patience because I’m going to deal with people inside the municipal hall to have myself registered as a voter for next year’s election, I was actually surprised how everything went unexpectedly fast.

Contrary to what I’ve heard from personal feedbacks and from the tri-media news, the registration process was a breeze. I was already readying myself to spend at least a half day inside the municipal hall when I got stuck in the verification (first step) because the personnel has to leave his table every time just to go to another floor where the computer is located. But no cursing of any form came from my side – I brought along a book to read in anticipation of a long day. But guess what? I was wrong. After the inefficient step one, the next steps went so smoothly that after I had my picture taken I asked the personnel twice if the registration is indeed over.

So despite the recent exposés (from news on TV) like overpriced voter’s ID lamination and registrations ending way ahead of time thus leaving registrants frustrated, this time I’m giving credit to the Comelec people (probably some are volunteers) of Dasmarinas, Cavite. Hopefully it will remain this way until the last day of the registration process. Of course, it will help a lot if soon-to-be voters will not wait for the very last day and cram themselves inside the municipal hall which for sure will have an impact to the efficiency of both the Comelec personnel and their usually frail computer system.

 

 

Mood: 2/10 Honks! (had a nice afternoon with wifey and kid in the mall. met some ex-Intel folks as well)

Filipino cliches

“If you can’t beat them…make fun of them.” – me

 

Today I went to a nearby LTO office to have my motorcycle registered for the first time (it will turn just a year-old this August) and as usual I heard another not so surprising one-liner that it should have been made as this government office’s motto: “paumanhin sa lahat, meron lang tayong system slow down (our apologies but we have a system slow down).”

I’ve been hearing a lot of it for years since I started dealing (i.e., driver’s license, vehicle registration renewal) with them that such statement has become as predictable as sunrise (also a cliche). So instead of getting frustrated about the whole thing while standing still and staring blankly at the “efficiency” of LTO’s personnel, I tried to keep myself calm and composed and instead recall other amusing one-liners from different people. Here are some of them:

Sorry for the inconvenience” – DPWH, Maynilad, MWSS (usually seen on the same area but different time of the year due to poor planning and coordination)

P 1 – ihi, P 5 – dumi” – supposedly free public toilets.

Para sa kapakanan ng masa (for the poor people)” – Presidentiables and other politicians.

Paano yan sir?…” – Kotong cops after pulling over a motorist.

Mani, mani…mainit-init pa, bagong luto” – Peanut vendors (whose peanuts are obviously burnt after countless times of re-heat).

Nakainom ako, pero konti lang.” – Drunk drivers after a road mishap.

Hindi naman masagwa ang kuha.” – Wholesome-turned-sexy actresses justifying their adult magazine pictorials.

And the last but my all-time favorite:

Kumabyos ang preno, di umabot (brakes slipped, didn’t stopped on time)” – Public utility vehicle driver involved in a car crash.

How about you, any favorite one-liners? I’d love to read them.

***

I’ll be back this afternoon to claim my motorcycle registration renewal. I hope the LTO’s system is already up and running.

 

Mood: 3/10 Honks!

This car isn’t meant to be in the Philippines

(Picture originally uploaded by Trente-deux)
 
 

 

Late last night, while just several kilometers away from home and while cautiously avoiding a number of potholes that seem to appear out of nowhere (every night), I noticed a black car with its hazard lights on coming from my right side view mirror.

The sleek car has a low and wide profile and as it overtook me, I saw that it has this appealing 4 overlapping ring emblem – it was an Audi. Other than being fascinated at the rare sight of one lovely car, I was as well shaking my head (just as much as the bob head on my dashboard did) in disbelief while this Audi attacked the potholes and the uneven asphalt patches.

The Audi’s low profile, and probably the stiff sports suspension, made it act just like a stylus in a phonograph does – it went up and down, left and right as dictated by the bumpy and rough road. I don’t know if its driver cared less, but I was thinking that luxury cars such as this just aren’t meant for the Philippine roads…well, unless, he’s among those who are getting their car maintenance fees from the bottomless taxpayers’ fund. Hmmm.

***

Here’s another reason why an Audi, specifically the TT isn’t for the pinoy and more so to be talked about in Tagalog. Imagine hearing this conversation:

Pare ganda a, ang itim at ang kintab…pwede ba mahipo yan TT mo?
Sige pero wag masyadong diinan ha…bibigay ko yan sa girlfriend ko.

If you didn’t understand this conversation, good for you. If you did, fine. But if you did and you smiled…well, just call it an Audi next time.

 

 

Mood: 4/10 Honks!

Rain: love and hate

 

Rain, rain go away. Come again another day,” goes one of the most recognized nursery rhymes. There’s just something about the rain that makes most people love and hate it at the same time. I for one is among those who share such mixed emotions every time the dark heavens open up.  

Here are some of the things I find annoying every time it rain cats and dogs (sorry, I can’t help not using the expression):

  • Bad drivers. Someone who has taken defensive driving lessons will know that continuing to drive with the hazard lights on is a no-no. Why? Because it doesn’t allow other drivers, especially someone driving right behind, to see when you’re signaling a turn – that is, if one even cared doing so. If one finds it necessary to turn on the hazard lights because he sees it dangerous to drive under the heavy rain, he must instead pull over the shoulder and remain there until he thinks the road if visible enough for him to continue.

  • Pretentious road improvement projects. One doesn’t need to listen/watch/read the news to know that the Philippines ranks high among other nations when it comes to corruption. All it takes is for one to go out during the rainy season, take either a public transport or his own car, observe the roads he/she pass by and presto, he’ll know that those road improvement projects that most of the politicians bragged about in summer are something they should be ashamed of come June when rain pours hard and seeps in the meringue-like asphalt pavement. It wouldn’t even take a couple of days of continuous rainfall to expose these potholes that as an immediate effect slows down traffic flow to almost a standstill.

  • Bad house construction shows. Just like our “well-paved” roads, the rain too exposes bad workmanships of self-declared carpenters and construction workers. In fact, someone gave me a tip before, that it is best to check for a prospective residential place during the rainy season because this is when house leaks become very obvious at the very least. Other things such as clogged village drainage and poorly waterproofed walls appear even under a novice’s eyes. Unfortunately for me, I heard about that tip years after we settled in our current house which is now leaking as if some adult with incontinence.

  • Diseases come out. This is what I hate the most about the rainy season because it’s not just colds and flu that becomes almost unavoidable but it is the risk of getting mosquito-borne disease like dengue that scares me the most, especially now that we got a baby boy to look out for. Come to think of it isn’t this part of the task that our good mayors and village officers should have taken cared of? Ti abi.

To be fair, the rain of course has its own appeal and good effect:

  • I’m sucker for movies of any genre with scenes where it rains except for cliché love scenes where lovers meet, hug and kiss as if being wet doesn’t matter doesn’t count – it’s so overused and needless to say, I hate it…well most of it, anyway;

  • Likewise, I love being inside the cinema watching a rainy scene while it is raining hard outside at the same time.

  • The rain is a perfect match for coffee whether it’s from a 3-in-1 sachet or a Starbucks brew, it doesn’t matter.

  • I don’t know if this is weird, but I love the sound of the rain hitting the steel roof top, more so if it doesn’t leak. I’m so amused by it that when a real estate agent once proudly mentioned that the concrete-tiled roof insulates the sound of the rain, I for a moment thought that it’s a turn-off rather than an appeal.

  • And how can I forget that the rain makes it great excuse just to snuggle together and enjoy the cooling effect of the heavy downpour. Hmmm. Got to hit the sack. Good night!

 

Photo credits: 

Albert – car splash

Marcelgermain – man with the colorful umbrella

 

Mood: 3/10 Honks!

More on the Chip Tsao Issue

Someone posted a very long comment on my recent post about Chip Tsao and I tried writing my reply on the comment field but it’s too long to be in there. And so this blog is intended as a reply to that.

Vlad,

Wow! I was overwhelmed by your comment, but let me try to answer one point you presented:

Your analogy about the reaction to the girlfriend-called-whore-incident may be valid…IF AND ONLY IF it was the first time that it was done to me. Obviously, and out of testosterone power, the immediate reaction could be as more violent than the act itself. HOWEVER, if, on another instance, I’m once again walking with her and out of nowhere ANOTHER guy comes along shouting and calling her whore for everyone to hear, then I might think, “hey, there must some valid reason why everyone is calling her a whore.”

This second scenario is where we are currently at. I can’t recall how many times we’ve reacted like most of us did with Chip Tsao but I can say that we’ve reacted very inappropriately.

Most of us attacked the BBC when the pinay katulong thing was shown. Later, we all learned that the Filipina actress who portrayed as the maid agreed to play the script. And so probably after that, the British have looked for other races to be cast in their shows thinking that Filipinos cannot appreciate their humor because we are too busy “protecting” the rights of our workers abroad.

Most of us were also angered and demanded public apology from Teri Hatcher when she mentioned something about not wanting any doctors coming from the Philippines in of the episodes of her show, Desperate Housewives. Once again, wrong person was targeted. She was only saying what was written in her script. Secondly, we got so offended but most of us are fully aware of the existence of diploma factories in Carriedo. That I attribute to corruption. We really need to do better come 2010.

I also remember we we’re all out when Claire Danes commented on Manila being a land of cockroaches. Yes, that may be wrong generalization, but then again, let’s face it, there is truth to that. And such is the same with Chip Tsao’s article. Let’s be frank, how many of us will disagree that we send to Hong Kong a lot of domestic helpers? I’m neither being sarcastic nor offending, but yes, we send a whole lot. In fact, I know one and I’m proud of her.

Once again I will make it clear that I recognize the fact that a demeaning remark was made by Chip Tsao. What I just don’t understand why there’s so much negative hype, emotion and effort (like writing this comment) being wasted on such issue. And I can’t think of a better comparison to what we are currently doing but we’re like one big mob. We only join forces when we are stirred. Matapang lang tayo kung may kukuyugin. Once the issue subsides, we are all back to our own old ways not until another one calls or writes something derogatory about us. That to me is really pathetic.

Let’s all start identifying the main problem first before we make solutions. It’s just basic problem solving. If we don’t do this, we make loose actions that do nothing more than aggravate the problem, sever our diplomatic ties and lessen our life expectancy. Finally, I’d leave with this, which I know every Filipino will understand, “And hindi marunong lumingon sa pinanggalingan, di makararating sa parurounan.” Let’s remember and learn from the past. Let’s face the truth and deal with it. And if we don’t we might as well start appreciating more articles like what was written by Chip Tsao.

Thanks once again for dropping by, reading my blog and giving your well written argument. I’m not offended by it.

Hopefully, this will be my last post on this issue; although, I like the fact that it has boosted my blog hits. Isn’t this what they call, bad publicity is still publicity? Hmmm.

 

 

Mood: 3/10 Honks!