The Manny Pacquiao Victory

The victory of Manny Pacquiao has indeed ushered a surge in confidence among Filipinos, hungry for redemptions amidst all debacles faced on a daily basis.

I was watching again the movie Fan Chan (My Girl) while ironing clothes at home while listening to the Internet feed of GMA 7 on its partial coverage of the boxing between Manny Pacquiao and Erik Morales. Somewhere in the south, another Morales was being inaugurated as President of Latin American country of Bolivia.

And since the anchorman on air seemed not too interested in the coverage and had to rely on updates from a reporter fielded in a raucous rendezvous with local fans, I stopped listening and instead turned to ESPN boxing page to see whether there is a blow by blow coverage. There was none. But it was interesting to see their scorecard and analysis per round, with a web page updated every three minutes or so. Even if I see many articles in ESPN predicting Morales to win this fight, I never got disappointed. After all, I am rooting for a fellow Mindanaoan, win or lose.

The first two rounds were split between the two boxers. But the third to the fifth seemed to favor Morales’s way. I had no way to see whether their claim was true; I was a little partial with their scorecards especially that one of them has a Spanish name and may be a little bit biased with Morales. They also had good views on how each boxer made way through each of the rounds.

In the sixth round, the tables have been turned and Pacquiao’s punches were hitting at will and Morales was apparently becoming tired of the fight (I watched a short video highlight) showing he had a good grip of the ropes when he began to get manhandled, like a lizard clinging for its dear life on the ceiling of my childhood house). Consistently, 10-9 was scored in favor of Pacquiao on the later rounds.

Then I noticed the updating of the scoreboard seemed to stop. I was busy with the movie and my housework that I did not notice the commentary that indicated Manny Pacquiao exacted his revenge over Erik Morales.

I can only imagine how ecstatic the country has been, with this development. As barbershops, eateries, movie houses at shopping malls were filled with excited audience, anxious to see if their hero will bring home the bacon this time. He did! From the flag-waving Filipino fans by the ringside of Thomas and Mack Center to the flag-waving citizens at Plaza Miranda, the country is one in celebration.

With a bonanza of P200 million (plus pay-per-view receipts, minus tax) from his latest fight, Manny Pacquiao is now bounded with wealth. With firm support from the President of the Philippines, he is now bounded with power. With several commercial endorsements and movie appearances, he is now bounded with fame.

Hopefully, despite the lures of these luxuries of life, he will still continue to be a model for the entire Filipino people, for his victory has united a society divided a nation, something that the President of the Philippines could not do.

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During our SFC household meeting, Chito got us a recorded fight between Pacquiao and Morales. What Manny did was indeed heroic. The fight has the makings of an epic until Miguel Arroyo and Chavit Singson climbed the ring and tried to get as much publicity as they can. Worse, the President of the Philippines made her own way of being thoughtful, no matter how much boos she would be getting. Had Morales won the match, I won’t expect Mexico’s president Vicente Fox to give a call to congratulate him.

If English is Crazy Language, Tagalog Also the Same?

Melanie Marquez has been battered with similar “Erap Jokes” type of forwarded messages, allegedly more truer than fabricated.

At a talk show after her break-up with Derek Dee, when asked if she had some words for Derek’s mother, whom she partly blamed for the separation: “Oo nga,” said Melanie, “Pero i-English-in ko para maintindihan niya.” She looked into the camera and, with the peremptoriness of royalty, said, “And to you, Mrs. Dee, I have two words for you. Ang labo mo!”

Perhaps it was Melanie Marquez, maybe it was Kris Aquino or cr8ve phone SMS, but it’s alarming to see how the quality of English language deteriorates when it became part of the Tagalog lingo. Many call center applicants don’t get the job because of poor English proficiency. But honestly, it’s even more difficult to discuss the Pilipino topics as subject in my primary and high school years: pangungusap, pambalana, panag-uri, balarila, pangngalan even more for me who grew up talking in Cebuano dialect.

When I receive an SMS from someone I tend to be lenient to understand what the message means even if the grammar is wrong and the Taglish combination is rather freaky. “Kain muna me” or “BRB“.

When coños talk about things they mix everything up so their inability to speak straight English has become more obvious, “Let’s make tusok the fishball“, “I’m so init na; make paypay me naman o.“, “Pare, she’s so malabo, pare.

And even the not so coños have their own way of talking, seems like a cross between gaytalk “chuva” (what the heck is the meaning of this?), and commonly accepted phrases like “Deny to death” (may you die in denying?) or “Kaka touch naman!

Even when I was in Davao two years ago, I heard new terms “haller” (simply means hello) and “gerger” (sexual intercourse). I wonder when will this lexical imbroglio will lead us in a few years. It’s like people have nothing to do but try to revolutionize our language.

Ask the children to spell words and most of them will fail because many of such words have been twisted. Who told you to use the word “anywayz” in a sentence?

Even traffic reporters at AM and FM stations in Manila have been hit with this chronic malady. Too bad. Let’s get this strait and hope we can fix the mess. I don’t believe Tagalog is a crazy language. And so before foreigners go gaga on learning how to speak it, let’s first learn our own Tagalog dialect properly.

Bob Martin and Mindanao

Bob Martin deserves a mention about his positive feedback of Davao City and Mindanao. An American with Filipina wife, he has lived in Mindanao (mainly Davao and General Santos cities) for the past years. And even if his country of origin often issues travel advisories on Mindanao, his web site www.mindanao.com is a testament that Mindanao is not a land of conflict. It is a land of people from various ethnicities harmoniously living and looking for a progressive Mindanao.

I agree with his statement that most people who consider Mindanao a dangerous place are the ones who never got into the place and will probably have a hard time to disprove their thoughts (and from other media sources) until they go to Mindanao themselves. There are dangerous places to go, of course, but many areas in Mindanao are safe to go. I consider Davao City, Cagayan de Oro City or General Santos City even safer (read: better place to live) than Metro Manila. The thing is that if you go to Mindanao or any other place for the first time, you must exercise caution. He hit the nail when he said “common sense”. 🙂

Whenever I tell people I am from Davao City and they do not know where it is, I tell them it’s in Southern Philippines. They start to paint a grim look at their faces and ask me, “Is it safe there?”. I just shrug off their worries and tell them, “of course!”. Just like the lunch I had with clients at Harbour Plaza last Friday. Their perception about Mindanao is that it’s a land of war and kidnapping and bombing.

Davao City is hosting the Asean Tourism Forum in a few days and I hope it will be a successful one. It’s a chance for Davao City and Mindanao to be known as an area for tourism and not about war, kidnapping and bombing.

I wish journalists will be more responsible about what they write. And may they learn a thing or two from an American like Bob Martin.