Thursday, February 24, 2011

White hair chronicles XL - EDSA@25 Parang kailan lang

At EDSA's silver anniversary we will relive the stories that made the event an international icon. Parang kailan lang, I was a young government employee, part of the hakot brigade ferried to support Marcos in the Batasan canvassing. Partly as childish mischief, I transferred from the silent hakot wing to the noisy and boisterous anti-Marcos side. Our delegation head mildly chastised me for endangering myself and his job if government agents (he said there were many) were taking photos. But more than mischief, I felt it was my Filipino duty to show whose side we were on. We have found our voice and it was rising to a deafening crescendo. It is now time for us to speak that one voice again.

Parang kailan lang. The images I remember are juxtaposed to today's realities -Jim Paredes' hair are all white now. Joker Arroyo now a grumpy old man. Enrile is still at the center of government after jumping from side to side. Kris Aquino has gone from sweet to sour (may asim pa?). Gringo from Rambo to hiding to Senate. The Marcoses from bitter to bittersweet, back in the power center. Ferdinand Marcos from heel to hero (malibing kaya sa Libingan ng Bayani?). I have gone from black haired mischief maker to white haired mischief maker.

If VP Binay decides to allow Marcos' burial at the Libingan ng mga Bayani, I propose to change the name of Libingan ng mga Bayani to LBM (Libingan ng mga Bayani at Marcos), to express dissatisfaction at an  excretably sh*tty move.

Parang kailan lang. The generals now in the controversial military fund scam must be young captains or majors then. Presumably they were reformists but one of them went from Ligot to limot, I hope he goes straight to Lagot.

Parang kailan lang. Our iconic revolution has become a model that many nations will emulate even 25 years after. Myopic historians will use what happened to us two and a half decades after as counter arguments for similar uprisings. It is our duty to make the spirit of EDSA matter. It is a positive development in history despite the many negative events that transpired hence.

Parang kailan lang. Many will argue that we have not changed at all. Maybe! But even with perceived failures or unfulfilled promises, we should not forget what EDSA was all about, lest we drift back to silent apathy.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Congrats to the Filipino Flash

Congratulations to Nonito "The Filipino Flash" Donaire for the very impressive win over the feared Mexican warrior Fernando "Ko-Chulito" Montiel. The screen caps show the grotesque shape of Montiel's head at the moment of impact of the fateful left hook.

I was rooting for Donaire but I was half expecting a Montiel win despite his being a huge underdog. It turned out that the more than 2-1 odds was well deserved. What was surprising was the quick violent ending.

I think the referee erred in allowing the fight to continue after Montiel seemed to beat the count. Maybe the referee, when he motioned Donaire to a neutral corner, didn't see Montiel's convulsive twitches. But when Montiel fell again as he was trying to get up, it was enough again to stop the fight. Then when the dazed Montiel didn't respond when ordered to come forward, it again should have been enough to wave off the fight. But instead, the referee just wiped the gloves and let the fight continue. Only when the hapless Montiel defenselessly ate two more Donaire bombs that the fight was stopped. Had the fight been closer and went on longer, I'm sure that referee would have done Montiel more favors.

Lost in the euphoria of the win are the side stories leading to the fight. There were rumors that Donaire was a pound overweight and was given an hour to shed off the weight. The rumors led to speculations that he could climb the ring dehydrated. It could also be the reason why the odds dropped from 4-1 to 2-1.

There was also a slight issue over the hand wraps, reminiscent of the Margarito-Mosley fight. Donaire tweeted that Montiel's camp asked a re-wrap. I'm not sure how he tweeted with a gloved hand.

What's next for the Filipino Flash?

He dislodged Sergio Martinez for third place in the pound-for-pound list. He is the youngest in the top five. With Pacquiao and Mayweather (inactive) advancing in years, he is ready to be the top P4P. Experts give him good chances over the younger kids in the top ten like JuanMa Lopez. He might be on top for a long reign.

I hope there's an alias change. There's been a Flash before, Flash Elorde, the most successful Filipino boxer before Pacquiao stormed the scene. The Filipino Flash monicker for Donaire is doubly unimaginative.

Next, I hope he reconciles with his family. No matter what.

I also hope he talks less. I know he walks the talk. But he talks too much. Sound bites are better. Talking less will also make him sound more humble. Stay humble. Don't be airy Donaire. The fans will love you more.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

A warrior comes clean in last battle for honor « Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism

The final words of Angelo T. Reyes
A warrior comes clean in last battle for honor « Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism

White hair chronicles XXXIX - Mubarak, from hero to heel in a generation

I was still in school when Egypt's Hosni Mubarak swooped into power after Sadat's assassination. Like a rock, Mubarak, has not moved from that position for close to thirty years now. In 1986, a few years after Sadat's sad death, we toppled our own immovable rock. We'll be celebrating the 25th anniversary of the event that inspired many other peaceful revolutions including this one in Egypt that removed a rock.

Back in those days, Mubarak, a war hero in his own right, heroically kept the peace that Sadat pursued. Mubarak's strong rule tactics maintained the peace. And in so doing, his nation and the world tolerated his clinging on to power.

The immovable rock eventually gave way to the irresistible force. We don't know if Barack told Mubarak to move like when they asked Marcos to cut and cut cleanly a generation ago.

Back then my niece was born. This year, she is about to become a mother herself. From hero to heel in a generation.

Friday, February 11, 2011

From Hello Angie to Hero Angie?

I got your back, Ma'am
For whatever his reason might be, Angelo Reyes' suicide should not make him a hero. He was a hero alright in his stint in the military For that alone he should be buried in the Libingan ng mga Bayani. But please don't make him a hero for stalling the corruption investigations.