Nation of Servants

Heard about this article from Ninong Q.  HK writer Chip Tsao found Manila’s attempt to claim ownership of Spratly Islands as an insult to their race.

Manila has just claimed sovereignty over the scattered rocks in the South China Sea called the Spratly Islands, complete with a blatant threat from its congress to send gunboats to the South China Sea to defend the islands from China if necessary. This is beyond reproach. The reason: there are more than 130,000 Filipina maids working as $3,580-a-month cheap labor in Hong Kong. As a nation of servants, you don’t flex your muscles at your master, from whom you earn most of your bread and butter.

As expected, Filipino netizens here and abroad are passionately fighting the supposed “racism” of the former BBC reporter. HK magazine had to add a reminder on the page where the article was published as ballistic comments started coming in.

Please refrain from using profanity or making inappropriate comments. Comments will be disabled if profane or inappropriate comments continue. Please don’t ruin the discussion for everyone.

How did the article affect you?

My thoughts and comments below.

  • Hindi nga, puwede kang maging BBC reporter kung ganito ka magsulat?
  • Freedom of expression eh. Hindi natin puwede icensor si Sir.
  • Totoo naman diba? Nilalako natin ang ating human capital na parang kutsinta. Bakit tayo mao-offend kung sabihan tayong nation of servants?
  • Ayan, manggagalaiti na ang lahat ng pulitikong tatakbo sa susunod na eleksyon. Awww… patriotism. Heartt…
  • Kamukha ni Chip Tsao si Dr. Ang mula sa Shaider

Really now… Let’s not take ourselves too seriously.

Ang lahat ay naidadaan sa ligo.


Check Operator Services

The best phone I ever had WAS a shutterbug-friendly SEK810i. The phone was a Christmas gift from Sharksfin. I fell in love with the phone due to these features:

  • Sony Cyber-shot camera (3.2 megapixels) – didn’t spend any day without taking at least one pic
  • MS Outlook calendar sync function – for work and play 🙂
  • Music – 512 MB may be too small for some, but it was enough for me. I listened to music on my way to work – Madonna (Hard Candy Album) was with me all the time. SEK810i sounds “better” than any Nokia phone.

The phone, unfortunately, dived into a toilet bowl. This was after I saw my mucus plug (I think). My sister attempted to revive the phone throug the rice grains/silica gel technique. She was successful. The grains sucked all the water/moisture out of the phone. But something must have been injured badly as the phone died after a few days.

I’ve already accepted the fact that the phone’s gone. Despite the sadness, I find the SIMPLER life without a mobile phone refreshing and rejuvenating. There is no pressure to reply to messages and phone calls. There’s a handful of people that I miss. But I know, that this “temporary” set-up will only make our next hello’s sweeter.


Kung puwede lang,
idudugsong kita sa makirot kong balakang
sa dakong tadyang
kung saan, ayon sa alamat,
dinukot ako para ka makapisan

Ang pugad ng ating supling
ay tatawid sa iyong tagiliran
sabay tayong ngingiwi sa bawat tadyak
at bundol ng bumbunan
sa ating mga pantog

Pareho tayong matatali
sa bahay
sa higaan
sa upuan
Pikit mata, kakalimutang may trabaho sa opisina
(at mapabalitang iresponsable o sadyang maarte dahil daw
“Pregnancy is not a disease”)

Dahil ang pagiging inahin/amahin
ay trabahong hindi maaaring paghintayin

Pero dahil kami,
ayon sa alamat,
ang kumagat sa mansanas
Mananalangin na lang

Na kung puwede lang
Hindi na sana kailangang magpaliwanag
Para maunawaan

Para sa lahat ng buntis ngayong tag-init.

Love Letter After Marriage

From Robert to Elizabeth

You will only expect a few words, what will those be?

When the heart is full it may run over, but the real fullness stays within.

You asked me yesterday “if I should repent?”

Yes, my own Ba, I could with all the past were to do over again, that in it I might somewhat more, never so little more, conform in the outward homage, to the inward feeling, What I have professed, (for I have performed nothing) seems to fall short of what my first love required even, and when I think of this moment’s love…I could repent, as I say.

Words can never tell you, however, form them, transform them anyway, how perfectly dear you are to me, perfectly dear to my heart and soul.

I look back, and in every one point, every word and gesture, every letter, every silence, you have been entirely perfect to me, I would not change one word, one look.

My hope and aim are to preserve this love, not to fall from it, for which I trust to God who procured it for me, and doubtless can preserve it.

Enough now, my dearest, dearest, own Ba!

You have given me the highest, completest proof of love that ever one human being gave another.

I am all gratitude, and all pride (under the proper feeling which ascribes pride to the right source) all pride that my life has been so crowned by you.

God bless you prays your very own R.

Love Letter Project – FAIL

And now for a long overdue confession.

I am extremely disappointed with the results (or the lack of it) of the LOVE LETTER PROJECT.

I requested for love letters last December and set a February deadline.

There were promises and verbal commitments. I received 5 love letters.

I therefore conclude that I was wrong about the world once again.

There is a special breed of people that love to write. And most of them are dead.

And as always, promises are made to be broken.

And like always,  friendships override disappointments.

Landline = Land Mine

Sa lahat ng ayoko, yung sasagot ng telepono sa bahay. Kasi hindi mo alam kung sino ang nasa kabilang linya. Kahit may caller ID, ayoko pa rin. Sa dami ng tumatawag sa bahay namin hindi mo na alam kung sino ang puwedeng bumulaga sa kabilang linya. Siguro childhood/pre-puberty/puberty trauma ito. Ang dami kasing epal na tumatawag sa bahay at ginagawang greeting ang mga killer lines na:

  • Mataba ka pa rin?
  • Magkano na ang suweldo mo?
  • Ipasok mo naman ako/kamag-anak/kapitbahay/kakilala riyan sa trabaho mo.
  • Ang yaman yaman mo na siguro.
  • Hirap na hirap nga kami ngayon sa buhay, di gaya niyo.

Siguro rin, likas lang akong anti-social sa totoong buhay. Sa opisina, napipilitan lang akong sumagot ng telepono dahil parte yun ng trabaho ko. Mayayari ako kapag may nagsabing hindi ako sumasagot ng desk phone.

Mga tatlong minuto na ang nakalipas. Hinugot ko ang kable ng telepono. May tawag nang tawag. Walang tao rito sa bahay kundi ako (at tulog ang isa kong kapatid). Natuturete ako sa makulit na kiriring. Isang mabilis na hugot lang ang solusyon. Hah.

I’m free. Sorry sa kung sinumang caller. Walang personalan. Quirk lang.

Vincent Jan Rubio Killed

Sharksfin and I met VJ when we were still writing for the Philippine Collegian. Aside from being part of the Kultura section, the only thing that we knew about VJ was the Sto. Nino story. Rumors had it that his mom chanced upon him dancing in front of the mirror.  His mom thought that he was being possessed by infant Jesus and told the neighborhood about the Dancing Sto. Nino scene. The story earned him the “Dancing Sto. Nino” title.  Please note that we only heard about the story from the veteran staffers – story may, or may not, be true.

Almost 8 years after our Collegian days, we found out from Facebook that VJ was killed. We do not have access to any decent news article about his death. We found three articles online and they are all clearly SS (salsal) stories. We can tell. And we hate it. These articles shouldn’t have been published.

I find it quite awkward to write about the death of people I didn’t know too well. It feels like I’m bound to do injustice to the one that passed on. It’s just that when someone you know dies this way, you cannot help but feel an unexplainable loss and an overwhelming fear.

We are swimming in the same seas. What happened to VJ can happen to anyone. Is it still right to bring children into this kind of life? I’m due to give birth in the next few days. I am already scared for Potling. The mere thought of losing Sharksfin never fails to bring palpitations and tears. Visions of  tragic deaths for the important people in my life horrify me. Now, more than ever.

Condolences to VJ’s family and loved ones.

VJ, please help everyone heal – and make the bastards pay.