Wednesday, December 22, 2004
Merry Christmas, bum
Now I know how it feels to be a bum.

I've been staying at home for the past few days, and there's virtually nothing for me to do. Why not go out, you may ask... well, the reason for me not going out would be that my funds are insufficient at the moment. That's why I'm planning to shop after Christmas, since I can't shop right now. It's so hard to if you can't buy everything you want to buy. I know... I know... I must also think about the other people who are less fortunate than me. Those who literally beg for food on the street. Those who ask for money in dark alley places everywhere in Manila and Quezon City. Those who are always affected by numerous outreach programs and medical missions and other forms of charity works. The people from and beyond the poverty line.

I'm not rich or anything but I can't help but feel really pissed off with these people at times, under special circumstances. And it would be wrong if we say that it's not their fault that they're like that. We've all heard success stories by those who once had nothing and then after some time, had virtually everything. These success stories tends to move people (and I really don't know why I'm not one of those 'people'). And that's just it. Why instead of looking for a job to support their families, fathers end up in 'from morning-till-dawn' drinking sessions with other fathers. Mothers end up gossiping with other mothers about someone that would not even affect their lives. And the children... oh my god... the children are just unfortunate. Instead of going to school, they beg for money on the street or do synthetic drugs like rugby and the like. No wonder the poor remains poor.

I think it's from a movie that I heard a line, delivered by this fat lady, about being poor. She said "Wherever rich country you may be, there will always be the poor." But I guess the poor people from our country is way different that the poor people from other countries. Even our poeple from or beyond the poverty line has certain traits and characteristics that would tell the world: "I'm a Filipino poor person" or something. Truly we Filipinos know how to leave a mark for the whole world to see.

I was at a shop just outside our campus a few weeks back with 2 of my blockmates - a guy and a girl. Let's call the guy Siopao and let's call the girl Princess. We were waiting for something when this kid shows up from nowhere and asks us for money. Estimating his age was easy. I would say he was about 6 or 7, wearing really dirty worn-out clothes which was big for his thin little body and a pair of mismatched slippers. Of course, we all know that girls are emotional. So princess was the first one to give the kid some change. Siopao too was really generous when it came to kids. So he gave the kid some coins. I was the only one who didn't know how to be generous enough when it comes to kids.

After a few minutes, the kid reappears, but this time, with an older kid who was twice as dirty as the first one. The younger kid asked us again for coins (which surprised me) and then, the older kid intervened. The older kid snatched the coins we just gave the younger kid a few minutes back and they started a battle of tug-of-war fort he coins. We told them to stop the commotion but all they did was continue doing it.

Another life-changing story about kids from the street was experienced by one of my blockmates when she was on her way to her dorm. Let's call her Gwen. Gwen was walking when this kid pulls her skirt. Of course she looked at the kid. She asked the kid what he wanted. The kid just stared at her and pointed this place. Gwen gave the "so-what-about-that-place" look. Then the kid told her that he wants her to feed him at where he was pointing his dirty little fingers.
After these events, I actually managed to make a theory. These kids, together with their parents and their people, are already rich. They're only squeezing out more money from the ones who are seemingly middle-class or rich so that there will come a time when they will be richer than the Chinese and Spanish businessmen in our country. I wonder how Greenbelt would look like if this happens. No more techno sounds to dance with, only those songs by April Boy and Salbakuta to listen to and use on the dance floor. No offense to the artists said, but all of us do know that its the masses who listen to them. So in general, my theory states that these people, the people who asks for money on the street, who dresses up really dirty and tries to emoionally blackmail you, are already rich from years and years of money begging. Plus all the charity works that had been conducted even before I was born helped these people one way or another.

Enlighten me... exactly what is wrong with our society? Didn't we used to be a well-off country before? But why are currently in the state where we are in right now. It seems that we're in this hole where no one could help us all out. Even our government is really messed-up. Our politics should be turned to a soap opera. The politicians would be the characters and the media would serve as the camera men. Just think of how they are going to call it. They could use "Malacanang" or "Ang pag-ibig sa bayang kupas". Really, we should do something about our country.

Yet I'm still wondering what would happen if nothing's fixed, and the reality show Survivor makes a show on one of our islands. We could house the new "survivor: Basilan"... now, that's something really worth watching.

But as for the moment, I'm a bum and I don't have sufficient funds and I live in this coutry. Merry Christmas to me.


I am complicated.
I don't believe in love. I believe in fucking. It's honest, it's efficient.
You get in and out with a maximum of pleasure and a minimum of bullshit. - Brian Kinney
What do we say about ourselves? Some of us would say good things and the others would do otherwise. We are complex and even if we write down everything we think about ourselves, any amount of paper and ink won't do. Explaining or describing yourself is hard. It's like solving problems but only this time, you actually know what the problem is, and its solution is something that would either shatter you or complete you.