HEART OF GOLD (?!)
for the past few weeks scores of "student scholars" (not from UP) have been roaming around the UP grounds selling ballpoint pens with their built-in calendars. I have often been approached by some of them and have been subjected to their sales pitch which to me at best is both heartfelt and a bit disturbing. Who the hell makes scholars sell merchandise to finance their scholarship?! Ganun na ba kahirap ang public school system na kailangan na ng mga iskolar na magbenta ng ballpen sa kalsada?!
But of all the scholars i've encountered this particular girl gets first place among her peers who have tried (unsuccessfully) to convince me to buy their "cute" pen. Here's why:
I was on my way to my second home in UP (ang main library hehehe) when i was "accosted" (gin-gubat) by one of them "scholars". She started her sales pitch with a "good afternoon Kuya, pwede ba kayong ma-istorbo?" -- and we were in the middle of the road...
So i gently guided her to the side of the road saying, "Dito tayo hija, baka mabundol tayo..." and listened to her making her "sales talk". I was thinking this girl either had guts to confront me in the middle of street with vehicles speeding by, or she was so desperate to land her first sale of the day that she would risk bodily injury and death (both for herself and me)...
Either way, she must've caught me in a good mood for i was quite receptive to her sales pitch (even though i have to admit that her speech could've used a few improvements, and the way she presented the ballpen --complete with 'tsaraaaaan!' was just so pathetic and abysmal, but then she caught me during one of my good days...na-abutan niya ang good (and generous) side of ditch...
But before I could part with my P100 (thats how much the #%$@ng ballpen cost) I still had to pry regarding the "supposed" scholarship.
Ditch: "Meron ba kayong receipt for your ballpen? Para malaman namin na talagang pupunta yan sa scholarship niyo..."
"Scholar": wala po eh...
D: Ay naku, parang problema yan...I need to know that you're keeping a record of your sales for this. And para din ito sa mga bibili para malaman namin na pupunta talaga yan sa scholarship niyo..how do I know that this is really part of your scholarship program?
S: (produces an ID and a brochure of some organization called "CARP" -- not related to that vile instrument of exploitation and elitist greed that's the Comprehensive Agrarian Reform Program -- basta CARP...i just flipped through it quickly)...hindi po talaga kami binibigyan nu'n (receipt) kasi tine-train po kami ng mga "seniors" namin sa values...
D: (huh?! what values?) well they're teaching you wrong values, because you need to be transparent in your transactions...it's what you call HONESTY and proper procedures especially in a business transaction...(at this point ditch is now an a****le hehehe)
I no longer remember the rest of the conversation but at that point I was thinking, what the hell might, as well buy her ballpen, kawawa naman...and to have survived this long under my interrogation...she deserves that P100 (for putting up with an a****le like me hehehe)
But handing her my money (actually not my money, allowance from my parents yun) I reiterated my misgivings about the way they're doing their fund-raising. It might be with the best of intentions, but how they're doing it smells suspiciously of exploitation (on their part) and utter stupidity (for the organizers). I got a ballpen, with built-in calendar...colored YELLOW. (all she had were pink and yellow colored ballpens)
The girl thanked me and said, "...meron po kayong 'heart of gold'..."
To that I replied, "Well you've certainly overestimated me..." (insert evil laugh)
Damn, if I had a heart of gold, i would've pawned it already. hahahaha I could've just told her and her "seniors" to go you-know-where and marched off to the main lib but something told me to trust the sincerity of her words...whatever it was, it sure wasn't the prodding of a metallic mass of muscular tissue located near the center of my chest cavity...alam n'yo na kung ano yun...
Let's Party like it's 1945!!!
this week i'm stuck in the basement of the main library -- that's where the filipiniana and media services section are located. in my research for my kas 112 course I was poring over books and archival materials regarding the national elections held during 1946 which featured the entry of the Democratic Alliance in politics (the DA was the political wing of the Communist Party during that time). the fun started when i went into the microfilm collection and looked over the newspapers during that period.
Very interesting... I get to glimpse a relic from 60 years ago and learn something of life during that time. I keep getting distracted and would often read the whole newspaper instead of skimming for articles related with the DA. here's some of the things i've read:
1. a kilo of sugar cost 50 centavos during that time. that's because the gov't was guarding against abusive retailers who would increase sugar prices to as high as P2.50. may sugar shortage during that time and this was worsened by hoarding and price speculation from several businessmen and planters...many of them coming from Negros (ehem...)
2. newspapers depended upon the US Army to supply them with newsprint for the printing of their newspapers. That was during the first few months after the liberation of Manila (around Feb 1945) which explains the poor quality of the issues from the months of July until August after that the paper (even layouting) improved. but their editing could use some help, their copyreaders missed some misspellings which rendered some headlines comedic. e.g. ("Mathay Rapped with Charges" on Page 1 became "Mathay Raped..." when the article continued on Page 4)
3. our generation only heard (or read) a fraction of the atrocities committed during the liberation of Manila. Manila was second only to Poland for being the city which suffered the most destruction during the second world war. I happened to read articles regarding the trial of gen. tomoyuki yamashita and during his trial the military commission that heard his case was flooded with testimony of the most inhuman deeds of the Japanese...it's different if you've read it from people who've experienced it...
4. government scandals are not new to the filipino nation...a few months after liberation, a scandal involving the distribution of cloth among the provinces was reported. this concerned a certain number of congressmen who would receive an amount of cloth which was to be distributed in their respective districts. It was either the cloth didn't reach the people or a ridiculously large amount was requested by congressmen who often kept a large part for themselves. hay naku, some things never change...
5. there is a prevailing mysoginistic tone in the newspapers i've read. especially in advertisements and in some articles, feminists would surely howl in outrage if they read some of the articles i've read.
That's just a sample of the interesting things i stumble upon as i make galing the microfilm machine (hehehehe)
I've still got a few more rolls of microfilm to view and the past few days i have spent viewing records in the airconditioned microfilm-viewing room , which leads me to the last update
I'm So Sick
as in "sick" nga ginmasakit hahaha. I think i caught a cold because of too much exposure to the cold temparature inside the microfilm viewing room. That, and the alternating rain and warm weather didn't do a thing to improve my condition. My frequent exposure to old, dusty books was also a factor...
But despite not feeling well, i still attended classes and went to the library. not much time is left for me to complete my research. So what I did to combat my illness is buy medicine and eat chicken noodle soup at Chowking hehe. it seemed that the Neozep Forte-Chicken Noodle Soup formula was effective for today i'm feeling okay na.
Archival Research is Hazardous to your health pala...hahahaha
Stand Alone 1.14