By Mortz C. Ortigoza
Not all graduates of Ivy League’s universities in the Philippines are smart and intelligent.
Here’s a graduate of Mababang Paaralan ng San Andres Bukid (my friend radio announcer Sammy Lusala calls it “Low School of Saint Andrew’s Field”) and finished his B.S (not Bull Shit but Bachelor of Science) in Commerce at the version of Wanbol University in Dagupan City.
“Noong ako pa ang maintainer or operator ng jueteng (illegal number game in the Philippines) ang mayor namin lawyer graduate ng University of the Philippines,” he told us media men.
He said the mayor has numerous mistresses and he always needs monies. The maintainer told the mayor that every month he has two hundred thousand pesos as payola.
“But he did not know that the allocation for a mayor in a town with x population is six hundred thousand monthly or twenty thousand pesos a day,” he cited.
There were cases where the mayor would ask for one hundred thousand in the first week of the month, and two successive fifty thousand pesos for the second and third week.
“Tapos doon sa fourth week hihirit uli si mayor ng fifty thousand pesos. But my my men would tell him na ubos na ang allocation niya for that month. Then he’ll beg to advance that amount in the next month’s payola. I allowed him but to the amusement of my men because in reality we still owed the mayor four hundred thousand a month” the bag man narrated.
“So Wanbol University graduate like you is smarter than those U.P guys like your mayor?” I posed.
“Siguro, but we call that smart as financial intelligence or smart-aleck if you prefer ha ha ha,” he chuckled.
When I divulged this story with some politicians they could just empathized with the duped shallow hizzoner.
I told them the mayor was just like Four – Star Army General William Westmoreland an artillery man and the commander of the Vietnam War - the war the well funded and superior armed Yanks lost against farmer-soldiers in the 1960s and early 1970s in a poor country in South East Asia.
"His generals and colonels looked at him poorly because he was shallow, just like many generals in the Philippines," I emphatically told them.
Here’s what author Thomas E. Rick of the book The Generals cited some generals about the Shallow as Marshmallow General Monty – a graduate of the United States Military Academy’s Class of 1936.
“Lt. General Charles Simmons said that General Westmoreland was intellectually very shallow and made no effort to study, read, or learn. He would not just read anything”.
Lt. General Philip Davidson” Westmoreland, told me he considered his lack of formal military education to be an advantaged in Vietnam.
“He attended neither the Army War College nor its Command and General Staff College but – in keeping with the Army’s new emphasis on corporate management – became the first Army officer to attend the Harvard Business School while on active duty, taking thirteen-week course in advanced management in the fall of 1954,” Davidson said.
Many generals did not like Westy because he was an artillery man (click hereabout Filipino general and artillery man GeneralRodolfo Canieso) in World War II now leading against peasant guerrillas in a new kind of war that needs a commander who was primordially an infantry man.
I stumbled into two middleaged Maranaos or Maranaws in Dagupan City selling quality but cheap baseball caps with branded products like Nike and Adidas embroid on the forehead part.
As I was brought up in Mindanao I talked to them in Bisaya or Cebuano the dominant Christian vernacular in Mindanao. To digress, I was born from Ilonggo parents and briefly raised at PMA, Baguio City as my military father was assigned at the war torn Cotabato Province thus I and my siblings being brought up there.
ME: Maka sulti kamog Bisaya (You speak Cebuano dialect)?
MARANAO 1: Makasulti (We can speak)
ME: Gubot man kaayo didto sa inyoha sa Lanao, tu-a sa Marawi (It’s anarchy there in Lanao, at your place in Marawi City (where Muslim terrorists shoot out with government soldiers).
MARANAO 2: Kuyaw imong shades sir. Ray Ban ba kaha? Murag original. Na-ay gamay nga hiwa sa iyahang salamin nga “B.L” (You have a beautiful sunglasses sir. Is it Ray Ban? It looks original because it has a tiny mark “B.L” etched on its glasses).’
(Note: B.L by the way is Bausch and Lomb, an American company that founded Ray Ban in 1937. Ray Ban B.L is best known for their Wayfarer and Aviator lines of sunglasses. In 1999, Bausch & Lomb sold the brand to the Italian eyewear conglomerate Luxottica Group, for a reported US$640 million. Headquartered in Arkansas, the company has over 55,000 employees (Wikipidea))
ME: Don’t you know Ray Ban sunglasses are made in Lanao and not in the U.S and Italy,” I told them in Bisaya.
The duo would not buy my declaration that one of the poorest provinces in the Philippines like Lanao del Sur could produce the dominant and primary sunglasses many people in the world called Aviators.
I posed to them again in the dialect: “ Do you know the meaning of B.L etched on the glasses? It only shows they are made from your province Lanao”.
MARANAO 2: Unsay kuneksiyon ug B.L sa Lanao (what is the connection of B.L in our province Lanao)? He curiously asked.
ME: Kanang B. L buot silingon is Buhat (made) sa Lanao (What B.L means “Made in Lanao”).
They guffawed because they knew I was bastardizing the meaning of B.L. Who said these people are ignorant?
I told them I’m a political radio commentator and gave them my newspapers where I have a column there at page 5.
“You invite me at Face Book so you can hear my radio/video commentary.” I told them.
MARANAO 1 then asked me if I speak some Muslim dialect.
ME: Gamay ra. Memorized ko pa hangtod karon but dili na ako kahibalo kung unsay iyahang meaning like “Andaw kapawang”, “Mapia mapita”, “Naka-kiyo ka na”
Both of them roared in laughter like bulls.
“Ha ha ha,” the wife, who wear a black hijab and veil on her face, of one of them who eavesdropped chuckled as if there is no tomorrow.
“Bastos iyan,” she said.
When I asked them their full name, Maranao 1 told me his was Abdul Salsalani while Maranao 2 said his was Rashed Jakolen, Jr.
“Language barrier,” I quipped in English.
They both asked me what I meant about it. I told them “Language Barrier” means its time for me to go and pay the cap I bought.
“No, sir we give the hat. It’s our honor to meet a jolly Christian like you. You made us smile and laugh,” one of them told me in Bisaya.
“If only Christians and Muslims in Marawi and Lanao could just banter like what we are doing, there would be no “gubot” “trouble or war” in Mindanao,” Maranao 2 declared.
(You can read my selected columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot.com and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too at firstname.lastname@example.org)