Entry for April 15, 2009 – Filipino Time Dos

15 04 2009

I’m back.

And I know you are too. So come in, relax & enjoy this time as you listen to me talk or write my mind again about this little funny thing we call Filipino Time.

I just got back from my web-surfing daily excercise, you do know that you have to work hard at your wrist, your pointy finger & the two or three other fingers you use to type fast on your keyboard. You know, we have to keep them in shape. But a word of caution though, do not over work it as you know injuries such as the dreaded carpal tunnel, or the tendinitis, or is it the tendonitis & even arthritis & all the other wrist & finger injuritises-suses-suses. But don’t you ever hate it when you go see a doctor and complain about pain in your wrist, all they say is that you have carpal tunnel syndrome, without even doing a single test.

Okay I digress, so after my regular wrist/finger/web surfing workout, I got to see the first episode of the 24/7 Pacquiao-Patton HBO Show. Where HBO features the training being done of both camps for their East versus West Boxing Showdown on May the 2nd.

Well of course as always, I am always overjoyed to see our country & our people featured in a documentary that is seen worldwide. I might add that at the last 24/7 HBO Series of Manny (Pacquiao) it was titled Dela Hoya-Pacquiao 24/7. Now it is Pacquiao-Hatton 24/7. So now here, Manny has the top billing, rightly so as he is on the Top of the (Boxing) World, as the Philippines is on Top of the Boxing Map right now. Yes, Go Philippines. Yes even though Hatton is the rich White guy & the World Champion & only lost once, etc. etc. etc. Yes that is finally some real respect for the real minority.

Okay that is not what I wanted to talk about (I do not even want to talk about racism or discrimation or all that) but it is a good intro to this little topic that I am starting to do a mini-series on–Filipino Time. Yes, for in case you are not aware of it, boxing as a sport has always been big in the Philippines & for Filipinos. Big with a capital B. So wait, did you even try to figure out a good reason why the King of Philippine Movies, Fernando Poe Jr. was so popular in his day & even when he run for public office in his later days. Yes, he was known for his rapid boxing style of fighting plus the single arm lock & turn manuever, turning his opponent the other way & doing his patented semi-slow motion mini-uppercuts in the mid-section & the chin while the other arm is locking one arm of his sorry looking enemy, which seem to stand just a little bit too long before he finally falls down for the count. So did you ever figure that out? Yes his Pinoy fans loved him because they loved boxing.

And now there is a documentary that will come out or has come out, I’m not sure but it is about that most famour Heavyweight fight between Ali & Frazier in the early 70s. It was called Thrilla in Manila, it was to be I think the rubber match between the two giants of boxing.

http://www.hbo.com/boxing/features/greatest/thrilla_manila.html

And of course that famous fight was held in Manila.

Of course not. It was held in Quezon City. Okay technically Manila for any average non-Filipino. It was held at the Araneta Coliseum in Cubao, Quezon City. I was about, I believe a reed thin 7 year old at that time. It was a school day I fully remember that. It was fever pitch, Ali Fever (if there is even such a term) in the entire Philippines at that time. Classes stopped so that we can watch the fight I think at the cafeteria or in many other common areas throughout our elementary school. And of course the Greatest, Muhammad Ali knocked out Smokin Joe Frazier in a looong fight. And it was just like what we have today when Manny climbs up the ring & knocks down his opponent.

And at that time, we commemorated that victory by giving Muhammad Ali a Shopping Mall named after him. It was the Ali Mall of course, which I believe is still where it is right now, about a couple hundred meters away from the Araneta Coliseum, one of the very first malls in Metro Manila, which we are now known for.

Yes, those where the days & that was the early 1970s. The Philippines was among the best in the East. I think the Philippines peso is about 7 Php to 1 US$, I think, but it could be as high as 2 Php is to 1 US$ or any amount in between, I just don’t remember now. But I do very well remember the Thrilla in Manila.

And now after all these years, what, some 35 long years later, the Philippines is again at the World Boxing Map. And once again getting some respect & recognition.

Especially now that our own Manny Pacman will be climbing up the ring with Manchester England’s most popular native, the Hitman Ricky Hatton, in a bout that is being called The Battle of East and West.

Yes that is Filipino Time for you. Always late, but yes better late than never.

So let the battle begin…





Entry for April 06, 2009 – Filipino Time

6 04 2009

I know, I know, I should be in here more often for this place to be even remotely interesting.

But anyway I’m here now & you are here–& that is all we need, so welcome & come in, sit down, make yourself at home.

I know that most Filipinos run on a special kind of time that we local Filipinos affectionately call Filipino time. You can actually google the term & get a lot of hits explaining this term. And if you look at the times I have been here & actually writing something is probably proof of that. Well better late than never right?

And if you know of that bad joke that circulated during the 9-11 tragedy & this is not to make fun of that bad time in our recent history, then you would see how even in the worst of the time, Filipino time can actually be beneficial. Anyway the joke goes something like this, Why do you think there wasn’t any Filipino who was killed in the attack at the Twin Towers as we all know that there should be lots of Filipinos in that building? Why? Because the attacks happened about early in the morning, all the Filipinos were still on their way to work or their appointments. Okay, I have no idea if there is some truth to that, but there might be right?

Anyway, if you are like anything like me, you would probably notice that during the start of this century especially the last four or five years, you would see that the real Filipino time have actually arrived. I mean the Filipinos have finally made a name for itself in the areas of film, television, stage, music, dance, etc. etc.

And I am not saying that the likes of Lea Salonga who won a Lawrence Olivier Award in the early 1990s & appearing in Ms. Saigon & Les Miserable & recording a song for a Disney movie as well as the entire cast of Filipinos in Ms. Saigon have not made a name for the Filipinos at that time or at some other times earlier than that. No, we have been out there all this time. It’s just that there has just been no real respect given the Filipino. And why is that?

But not anymore right?

And what I am saying is that, lately as in the last four to five years, the world has finally come to give recognition & maybe even respect for the many talented Filipino singers, actors, dancers & other perfroming artists who have appeared in the world/global stage, especially in the age of youtube & the internet.

And if you would just think that it was probably in the early 1900s that the Filipinos have first wowed the world with the Philippine Constabulary Band winning the Grand Prize at the St. Louis World Exposition. (Yes only about a hundred years ago)

http://exhibits.slpl.org/lpe/data/lpe240024227.asp?Image=45060617

And even if you would think that it was in the 1960s when the Philippine Madrigal Singers have first wowed the world & have since consistently won all the top prizes in the world’s prestigious choral competitions for last four or five decades. (Yes only for the last 50 years or so)

http://www.philippinemadrigalsingers.com/profile.html

You would then realize that we indeed have a knack for Filipino time, or for being late, even fashionably late. But we should have, as a race of people, who should have excelled in these art forms. But the world have just not been that kind to us, giving us no respect.

But no, not anymore I hope. No, at least not unless during the last four or five years or so.

Because now finally we have Allan Pineda, apl of Black Eyed Peas, a Fil-American.

We have Arnel Pineda, lead singer of Journey.

We have Charice, first Filipino to sing at a Macy’s Parade or at an inaguration ball for a US President. Not to mention to sing on US National tv shows & at major concerts of world-class singers.

We have Jokoy, first Fil-American (comedian/stand-up) to have a one-hour show in US television & appear on US National tv shows.

We have Vanessa Hudgens, half Filipina of High School Musical fame.

We have Anna Maria Perez, a granddaughter of Sylvia Latorre of Hannah Montana & Camp Rock fame.

We have Billy Crawford, a Fil-American who for a couple of years had made it big in the European singing market.

We have Cheryl Burke, a half Filipina who is now a two time professional winner in the US reality tv show ‘Dancing with the Stars’.

And of course one of this shows’s three judges is a Filipina, Carrie Ann Inaba, dancer, singer, actress, choreographer, etc. Carrie Ann also had a spin-off reality tv show with another judge of ‘Dancing’.

We have the three Filipino dancers of the dance group, JabbaWockeez, who won the title of America’s Best Dance Crew.

We have also a lot of Filipina newscasters/news anchors, among those in Socal are Cher Calvin who already won an Emmy award. And there is at least three other Filipina newscasters whose names I cannot remember at this time.

And if you want to include boxing as an art form, then we should include Manny Pacman in this list as he is the Boxer of the Year for 2008 & the current Best Pound for Pound Fighter.

So what says you, have the Filipinos finally gotten the respect & the recognition we should have had as far back as 100 years ago?

Yes then that’s Filipino time for you.