Monday, November 5, 2012

Johnny and the Drama Triangle

Guest Article
by Cha Coronel Datu

“When we are young we do not look into mirrors. It is when we are old, concerned with our name, our legend, what our lives will mean to the future. We become vain with the names we own, our claims to have been the first eyes, the strongest army, the cleverest merchant. It is when he is old that Narcissus wants a graven image of himself.” (Michael Ondaatje, The English Patient)

Time Magazine: Enrile rallies rebels against Marcos, Feb 24, 1986
"All the world's a stage . . ."
Juan Ponce Enrile or Juanito Furraganan as he was then known might not even have had a mirror to look into as a child. Had it been otherwise, had he grown up in a house that didn't want for any mirrors, might we be reading a far different story from that which he penned in his memoir? Might the image he now desires to leave of himself perhaps be much more faithful to the truth, closer to the image that looks back at him in his mirror?

There must have been a mix-up in the casting department when little Johnny was born. Instead of getting the part of the golden boy that everyone adored, he got cast as the impoverished "bastardo"; ridiculed by playmates because of the circumstances of his birth, ordered around as a houseboy by the relatives who sent him to school where he then gets set upon and mauled by some rich bullies.

"All the world's a stage and all the men and women merely players; they have their exits and entrances, and one man in his time plays many parts."

Little Johnny’s first steps in life lead to a trail of what psychologists would call a Drama Triangle. The Drama Triangle, first described by psychiatrist Stephen Karpman, is a psychological and social model of human interactions where the protagonists alternately act out any of three archetypal roles: victim, rescuer or persecutor.

You would recognise these roles in your own relationships, there’s always plenty enough of each type that find their way into our own life dramas: the victim who feels oppressed, helpless, hopeless, powerless, and ashamed; the persecutor who pressures, bullies, blames, criticizes, and keeps the victim oppressed; and the rescuer who rushes to defend the victim, saving and protecting him from the persecutor.

The young Enrile looks to have been miscast. He resented and struggled with his assignment. He did not have the predisposition or the constitution for victimhood. Here's what he thought of the school authorities who expelled him after complaining to local police of being assaulted by the child whose parents were part owners of the school he went to:

"The action of the supposed educators in the school totally dismayed me. They condoned the desecration of elementary justice. They had no compassion at all… For the first time, I saw a naked example of ‘palakasan,’ the evil that I was to encounter many times in my life."

Little Johnny would have wanted more. He must have envisioned for himself a life beyond the sorry script handed him at birth. With the help of a few relatives, he sought to escape poverty, and ultimately his persecutors, through hard work and the sheer determination to get himself a good education. When his biological father finally acknowledged him and committed to providing for him from thereon, his rescue became complete. He finally found the way out of the drama triangle that subjugated his young life.

"Yesterday's victims become tomorrow's oppressors.”

Armed later on with stellar academic credentials and a promising legal career, his transformation would have been unmistakeable. If he had looked into a mirror around about that time, the man he would have seen could not have looked anything like the little Johnny that once upon a time was held captive inside a drama triangle.

Judge Johnny Bravo
But Johnny Bravo wanted more.

In 1965, he campaigned for Marcos’ first presidential bid. “I decided to hitch my future and that of my family to the single goal of ensuring Marcos’s victory for it was a matter of make or break for me.” Marcos won and the rest is history; his version of it captured in Manong Johnny’s memoir.

Johnny Bravo inadvertently made his way back to the Drama Triangle through his new benefactor Marcos. As Marcos’ Defense Chief in 1972, he became the co-author of Martial Law, which among others gave him, and the armed forces which he managed, the authority to “prevent or supress…any act of insurrection or rebellion."

This time around, Enrile took on the role of persecutor with eyes wide open. He earned for himself the title “Butcher of Martial Law” among human rights victims and their families. The Communist Party of the Philippines claims that he has "signed countless arrest warrants that led to the capture and detention of thousands of farmer leaders, workers, students, activists in the Church and other critics and opponents of martial law."

Johnny Bravo wanted more.

In 1986, he and his RAM boys attempted to take over the reign of government from an ailing Marcos. But their plans got waylaid. The Filipino people he willingly oppressed ended up rescuing him from Ver and the rest of Marcos’ loyal armed forces. Johnny came out of Camp Crame still undefeated.

But Johnny Bravo wants even more.

He was no longer content being someone’s Defense Chief, and especially not of the housewife Cory Aquino. He and his RAM boys plotted one unsuccessful coup d’├ętat after another throughout Cory Aquino’s presidency. Cory Aquino prevailed. Johnny got bravo no more.

Twenty or so years later, Manong Johnny strikes gold. A brilliant performance as presiding officer at Corona’s impeachment trial earns him the respect and admiration of both his detractors and supporters. That it leads to the hoped for ouster of Corona made it almost heroic in the eyes of many of his countrymen. It would have been the perfect exit from political and public life for this octogenarian.

Still, Manong Johnny wants more.

Enrile becomes part of the UNA leadership triumvirate, possibly to ensure the election of his son, Jack, as senator in 2013. Everything was going well; the son was doing well in the polls because of the father's still high satisfaction rating and popularity with voters.

Trillanes and Enrile, sans pistols at 10 paces
And then the young upstart Trillanes dared stand in his way on the Camarines Sur Bill. Trillanes refused to back down on his objection to the splitting of his province and is suspected of purposely delaying voting on the Bill by calling in sick on the day of his scheduled interpellation. Enrile calls him a coward. Trillanes fights back, delivers a privilege speech, and announces his departure from the majority coalition because of dissatisfaction with Enrile's leadership who he further claims has lost the moral authority to lead as Senate President.

Manong Johnny sees red, crimson red. Johnny Storm is unleashed from his den. A rumble not seen before in the august body is played out on national TV, spills over all other media in the ensuing days and does not look to be over just yet.

Manong Johnny has well and truly marched back into the drama triangle; in full battle gear at that. The proverbial knives have been taken out, aimed at Trillanes and just about anyone who has crossed him since then. Little Johnny may have finally gotten what he always wanted.

"For in every adult there dwells the child that was, and in every child there lies the adult that will be.” (John Connolly, The Book of Lost Things)

55 comments:

  1. Epilogue:

    On the Inquirer today, another Johnny Storm sighting. Little Johnny is having a field day.

    http://newsinfo.inquirer.net/301568/cagayan-election-registrar-decries-treatment-by-enrile

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    1. From your account it looks like JPE would like to cast himself as Jean Valjean when obviously he's just Javert with a law degree.

      DocB

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    2. Oh I love Les Miserables.

      And yes, it's definitely Javert.

      "I am reaching but I fall. And the night is closing in. And I stare into the void. To the whirlpool of my sin."

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  2. Great thesis. Starts as Horatio Alger and ends as Idi Amin. Or something like that. Haven't read the book. Like one of my idols, Senator Saguisag, I don't want to spend money on history that was hyped to be a revisionist version of the EDSA revolution that I know. Unlike Saguisag, I was not present at the creation, to double check versions of the same events. But sometimes I ask myself what would have happened to this benighted country were JPE our President. Would he make like Lee Kuan Yew. Benevolent dictatoship. Iron hand with a heart. But the Left says one couldn't get off riding the rampaging tiger. Singapore is no comparison. President Ramos's great tactician, Jose Almonte, might disagree with the Left that were purging their ranks at that time.

    DocB

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    1. 1. Aah, JPE as President, that's interesting. I reckon he would have been far more dangerous than Marcos, whose main character flaw I think is an insatiable greed. Enrile on the other hand, seems to have a thirst for blood (your Idi Amin comparison is on the mark), perhaps driven by his desire to even up the score with his childhood bullies.

      2. I was a great fan of Saguisag too, pre- and early post EDSA; but then there came that episode as Estrada's impeachment lawyer. I was already out of the country then so don't know how that came out, but I was disappointed at the very least. Have been rediscovering him lately through his columns though. One of these days I'll have the guy figured out.



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    2. JPE = LKY? Are you nuts?

      Lee Kwan Yew would never go, "I was abandoned/bullied/abused before, so I'll bully/abandon/abuse others now." He's too intelligent, mature and classy for that kind of thinking.

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    3. Both score poorly on human rights but revenge for past hurts may have gotten the better of JPE. LKY may appear classy in comparison.

      DocB

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  3. JPE: SURVIVAL IS THE ONLY THING

    After browsing Enrile's memoirs, my impression is that survival became an end into itself for him. Not ideals or principles; just plain survival. His boyhood experiences made sure of that.

    In his later years, even with immense wealth and power, it remained the same- he would fight for political survival no matter what.

    Interesting contrast with the likes of Robredo or Pepe Diokno who lived their lives according to principle, not just mere survival.

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    1. Survival and getting the upper hand, like he's constantly engaged in a game of arm wrestling.

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    2. Simply put, Enrile is just a hurt little boy trapped in an old man's body.

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    3. JPE's book should have been titled Revenge, A Memoir.

      DocB

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  4. “Lyrical!” – Time

    “Brilliant insights coupled with trenchant analysis!” – Newsweek

    “Neatly skewers Enrile like rump steak on the barbie!” – The Atlantic

    1. So Juanito Furraganan was a victim (Little Johnny) as a child, persecutor (Johnny Bravo) for most of his adult life, briefly a rescuer (Manong Johnny) for some victims of martial law and on Corona’s impeachment, then back to being a persecutor (Johnny Storm).

    1.1 He has been a persecutor for most of his life.

    1.2 The naming convention is fantastic.

    1.3 You must be cha-rming Cha.

    2. Wikipedia provides that even as a rescuer, the person “has a hidden motive to not succeed, or to succeed in a way that they benefit. For example, they may feel a sense of self-esteem or status as a rescuer, or enjoy having someone dependent or trusting of them - and act in a way that ostensibly seems to be trying to help, but at a deeper level plays upon the victim in order to continue getting their payoff.”

    2.1 This describes Enrile to a T. The payoffs were social acceptance (because of rejection as a child) and the ever out-of-reach presidency.

    3. Apart from the Drama Triangle model, the epigraph and the opening paragraph paint Enrile as narcissistic.

    3.1 This is characteristic of Enrile – “egotistic, vain, conceited and selfish.”

    3.2 But it is also characteristic of Filipinos as a whole – “elitist and indifferent to the plight of others”.

    4. This drama has the scope of a Shakespearian tragedy – don’t know which one.

    5. The Filipino people has been a victim of the persecutor Johnny Bravo for a long, long time. Perhaps it is past time to reverse the roles and not perpetuate the dynasty?

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  5. 1. First things first, re: 1.3 , the hubby can attest to that :)

    2. That's right, the rescuer does not always have the purest of intentions. Even the victim oftentimes milks the situation to score his own points. It's all part of the games people play.

    3. I think Philippine society is one big blockbuster production of the drama triangle.

    4. Hah! I need to brush up on my Shakespeare (which isn't really much. Hehe). Let's just say for now, it isn't Romeo and Juliet.

    5. Yes, we'll just have to extricate ourselves out of the game. Step up to the oppressors and faux rescuers, look them in the eye, and say No More. No more political dynasties, no more kowtowing to the Bishops, no more suppression of our freedom of speech, no more holding back our right to know, et cetera


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    1. I've tasked Maude to work on number 5. She promised delivery of a blog by Thursday. Then she stormed out the door flinging a rather well know gesture in the general direction of Manila. She's one angry woman.

      Enrile is like a wayward uncle. We know his so well, like his backroom dealing and shifting allegiances. Our wayward uncles do drugs or steal things. We shake our heads but in the end, have to accept he is from the family Filipino.

      You have captured his personal drama so very very well.

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    2. Well then, that is one blog I eagerly await. An Angry Maude blog is like an espresso coffee with a rich full bodied flavor that commands attention. A Very Angry Maude, I imagine would still be an espresso butt laced with Smirnoff vodka :)

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    3. Oops, that's but laced with. But I suppose the other one works as well. Hahaha.

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    4. Number 3 may be an awesome insight. If you look at the dramatis personae in recent history:

      1. Marcos with Martial Law was initially a rescuer, who turned persecutor during the long years of Martial Law, then victim after the snap elections.

      2. Ninoy was initially an ordinary persecuting politician before Martial Law, then a rescuer and victim during Martial Law.

      3. PNoy was initially a victim before he became President, then a rescuer up to Robredo's death, then a persecutor with the Cybercrime Law? I hope not.

      4. During the impeachment trial, Miriam Santiago alternated in the 3 roles in a single day, persecuting the prosecutors, rescuing the defense, and playing the victim to the attorney (Aguirre?) who covered his ears!

      5. Corona himself is the classic example. Prosecutor of Mang Indo, rescuer of San Luisita farmers, and victim of impeachment.

      6. Sotto, hah! Defending the RH Bill, rescuing the Church, claiming he was a victim of bloggers, then persecuting the netizens with the Cybercrime Bill.

      7. Poltical dynasties! Rescuing the people during campaigns with their honeyed promises, persecuting them once in office with their narrow, vested interests, and playing victims when the issue of dynasties is raised.

      8. The clergy! Rescuing the poor, persecuting the people with their sexual crimes and opposition to the RH Bill, and playing the victim in order to get SUVs and now attempting to practice humility.

      9. And the Filipino people - Ayayay! Playing victims most of the time, always asking to be rescued by strong leaders, persecuting each other with their unethical behavior, and glorying in triumph when rescued by Bernas, Tagle, PNoy or Pacquiao.

      Bah, humbug!

      Cha, you're not only charming, you are an absolute genius!

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    5. That's quite a comprehensive review of the cast and characters of the Philippine telenovela, you've got there. It's so accurate it's almost depressing.

      Maybe part of it has to do with our colonial history, a history of oppression, false rescues, even more oppression and then self induced harm.

      Having said that, there really is no reason why we should be stuck. There's no reason why our story can not be one of those where the protagonist starts out ill equipped for a daunting task but undergoes a character transformation, feels empowered as a result such that in the end he actually succeeds, that's the kind of story that can in us an equivalent of an Oscar for best picture.

      I think Noynoy is going for this storyline but Is now suffering the dreaded writer's block. Maybe he needs some inpiration. Not to be flippant, but I think this President is in dire need of a wife.

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    6. I thought espresso butt was civet coffee... ha ha ha

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    7. Cha, now you've gone and done it. She thinks you called her "espresso butt". She's very sensitive about that part of her anatomy, finding it difficult to keep down to a size smaller than a Chinese aircraft carrier. She's into her second jug of Kickapoo Joy Juice and you may wish to avoid her Thursday blog altogether.

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    8. How 'bout I send over some Smirnoff to appease her? I hope she likes Vodka.

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  6. What really is the story why Enrile "defect" from Marcos?
    Why Filipinos "supported" Enrile's "defection"?
    Do Filipios know why at that point in time?
    Or, they just support anyone that opposes Marcos including communist benign0 Sr.
    Once these hypocrites took over then Filipinos deals with them? Like, one person at a time?
    Or Filipinos are just looney loosey kind of people?

    Lookit, take Filipino communities in America. Let us train our sights at Azusa and Amar Blvds in West Covina were Filipino congregates. Now, get off your gleaming hybrids, buy me Los Angeles Times or any English American Newspaper, any at all. See if you can find one.

    Again, go out and look for Barnes & Nobles or Borders(bankrupt already). Do you find any? Go to their libraries. Do you Find Filipinos inside?

    ALL ANSWERS IS ALL OF THE ABOVE. You cannot find Los Angeles times or english american newspapers. You cannot find Barnes & Nobles. You cannot find Filipinos in libraries.

    That is why Filipionos believe what they are fed because they only watch TFC ('toopid Filipino Channelj) and read libreng Filipino newspapers.

    Filipinos think that it is American to watch TFC misinformation low-intellect Filipino channel. And they accuse me of hating Filipinos.

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    1. Ahaha, Toopid Filipino Channel, what a gem! When I'm in Manila I do cringe when I see the kind of stuff that's played out on TV, the idiotic game shows, the sensationalist news coverage and don't even get me started on the soap operas or telenovelas. I think the Lopezes, Manny Pangilinan, and whoever owns GMA 7 now can do better. They should stop dumbing down their audience,

      You're also right that Filipinos don't read enough, and those that do are not reading the right material. I think it's not always a case of lack of interest though, sometimes people just don't have access or can't afford the good books. I read about this former school teacher in Manila who just decided to share his book collection with others by setting up his own public library in front of his house. It was a big hit. Children, teenagers and even adults started coming in and just started reading and borrowing his books. Book donations also started coming in from other people. Wouldn't the Philippines be so much the better if only there were more people like this school teacher?

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  7. Datu's pure analysis cannot be found in mainstream Philippine Media. Why? Why can we only read Datu's column in blogs ? And I really thought 93,000,000 Filipinos are geniuses. Because each Filipino I encounter always advice me "not to make sweeping statements". Each of them. So, therefore, every Filipinos are geniuses. EXCEPT ME or is it "I".

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    1. Mariano, write me a blog, eh? You can use me or I and absolutely crush the English language in your special brilliant style. I don't care. You make more sense than all the snobs in the Senate put together and led by choirboy Aquino.

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    2. Mariano,

      1. Pinoys are a shallow people. The "reading" fare, as I recall, were komiks, Tiktik and any number of movies/stars magazines. As you say, we watch channels which concentrate on earth-shaking news with no analyses and a major portion devoted to tsismis.

      2. We are not analytical by nature. We depend on authority - politician or priest - to explain things and we accept their simple explanations. We tend not to ask "Why?" but "How much?"

      3. We do not have the width of mind to consider multiple factors, the depth of mind to look beneath appearances, and the persistency of will and mind to accomplish. Pacquiao has/had the persistency of will and brawn. But I can only think of Rizal who had both will and mind. I think we have many smart people, but all are dilettantes.

      4. Canada, with population of 34M, has won 10 Nobel prizes; Australia, with 22M, has won 6. The Philippines, with 94M, has none. The Jews, with 0.2% of the world's population, have won over 20% (about 165). If there was a Nobel for shallowness...

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    3. 2. We have the education system to blame for that, students are taught what to think not how to think. Learning about history is a matter of memorising dates, names and events not their significance. Learning English is simply a matter of knowing your nouns from your verbs, not analysing the meaning behind the words, choosing the right words so we can inform, persuade, inspire. You get the drift.

      4. Well, for whatever it's worth there is this book called Ilustrado, written by Miguel Syjuco, born and bred in the Philippines (educated at the Ateneo), which received the Man Asian Literary Prize in 2008. It's not quite a Nobel Prize but it's still something.

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    4. On a bright note, there's Rappler.

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    5. Edgar, we may not have Nobel prize fighters but we do have two saints ! :) And many more in the making the way Filipinos are struggling and sacrificing like all the saints. There will be 93,000,000 saints before the end of the world.

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    6. Mariano, appreciate your wit!

      1. This morning I woke up with two things: a question and a prediction.

      2. The question was: Are Filipinos connoisseurs in anything?

      2.1 The only answer I could think of was that abusive priest who had this obscene collection of ivory images.

      2.2 The exception in mind was a close friend of mine, a professor of the humanities, who was a true connoisseur of classical music and opera.

      2.3 We are mere consumers, not producers, of what we think are the fine things in life. And what we think are fine are mostly what experts tell us are fine. We do not know for ourselves that they are fine. We have no true appreciation of fine things for their intrinsic beauty. Our pride rests not in our discernment of fineness but more in our possession of it. (Present company excepted.)

      3. The prediction was: If ever a Filipino wins a Nobel, it would be, not the scientific, cultural or artistic categories, but the Peace prize. I would be happy to be proved wrong. A possibility: PNoy for making peace with the Muslims.

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    7. Edgar, not to be argumentative so early in the morning, but I think there are a good number of Filipino artistic connoisseurs, such as writer Syjuco (who I think is going into filmmaking now) or artist Malang (new to me, and whose work I really enjoy) or everyday people like Ellen Tordesillas (who comments regularly about the arts) and brianitus (who regularly comments here and enjoys cooking and cuisine). Or the writers such as yourself (who have the aptitude to match with anybody in the world, but not the platform or the fame).

      Yes, the arts core is small (few read my literature blogs) but that is because schools fail, not because the natural talent does not exist.

      Science . . . I'll leave to others to argue.

      Indeed, President Aquino deserves global peace recognition if the bare Mindanao agreement gets some peaceful meat on it.

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    8. Ed, I woke up this morning with a recollection. Cory Aquino was actually nominated for the Nobel in 1986. Did a google check and found out she lost to Ellie Wiesel, the holocaust survivor. Just like with the Oscars, the holocaust story always gets the awards.

      Mariano, you just made my day. Santissima!

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    9. Joe,

      Check out CANVAS also (Center for Art, New Ventures and Sustanaible Development). They're doing a pretty unique job promoting Philippine art and culture. They're marryIng art and children's literature (starting them young) through a storywriting contest called the Romeo Forbes Children's Literature Initiative. There's also the Looking for Juan program where local artists get to have their say on social issues through their art. I think they have the collection in their website,

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    10. Cha,

      Sorry, on Syjuco, I haven't read his book except for the first paragraph. A friend brought the book with him on a visit and asked me what my opinion was. This was late last year. As I recall, we had two major points of criticism:

      1. The choice of words was jarring. I recall the use of "terminus" instead of "death", and there was an adjective or adverb describing the scene or the death itself where we thought that something like "unremarkable" might be better. The use of "terminus" seemed show-offy, pretentious.

      2. The logic left something to be desired. Syjuco uses the adjective "controversial" to describe an unpublished book. How can that be?

      My friend had read a good portion of the book and had underlined many passages on many pages that seemed questionable in his eyes. He even had stickers on some pages. I think he was reading with a very critical eye and was no longer able to suspend disbelief. Incidentally, my friend did not like Hosseini's "A Thousand Splendid Suns" which I did.

      I would have to read the book myself to form a better opinion, but you are right in that there is at least one Filipino in the modern generation that has produced a book. Yay.

      As a reader, I was contemporaneous with such writers as N.V.M. Gonzalez, F. Sionil Jose, Bienvenido Santos, Kerima Polotan Tuvera and A.G. Uranza. I have not read them extensively but, of what I have, I cannot recall being thrilled. Admittedly, I was young and green and did not have the proper faculties. The one exception was Nick Joaquin. Not his novels, but more his Free Press articles.

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    11. Joe,

      It's energizing to be argumentative in the morning. Then we can skip the Kickapoo Joy Juice or the Espresso Butt!

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  8. That's what the writer F. Sionil-Jose says about us Pinoys being shallow and mayabang and like to hoard abubots and flashy accessories but that we cannot afford to be deliberately shallow like the Americans whenever they show it because of the widespread poverty in our midst. Being shallow is only good for a few laughs. At our expense.

    DocB

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    1. "Being shallow is only good for a few laughs. At our expense."

      Zinnnnggggggg!!!

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    2. We cannot afford to be deliberately shallow like the Americans...

      That's one double edged sword you're flashing there, Doc :)

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  9. ‎"He changes times and seasons; he removes kings and sets up kings; he gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to those who have understanding" - Daniel 2:21 ESV

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    1. In the context of the quote, Daniel is touting the wisdom of God and His ability to do great things. Daniel is working as one of the king's favored counselors because his advice has proved very striking and wise. The king is having trouble with a dream. Daniel interprets it and, wow, the king gets really hign on Daniel. Unfortunately, the king doesn't quite get the message straight. He makes a lovely gold idol and asks people to "fall down brothers". But three of the faithful refuse to bow and say they'd rather get tossed into the fire. The king agrees and pitches them into the fire. They show no ill effects, and the king is amazed. Indeed, he sees FOUR men in the fire, the fourth appearing to be the Son of God. And so thus, Jesus pops up in the Old Testament.

      Daniel is a fantastic book. The stories are rich and provide a year's worth of bible study lessons.

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  10. Just a final thought, you may want to add their blog to the Philippine Blog Center, here's the address:

    http://lookingforjuan.blogspot.com.au/

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    1. Got it, thanks. I especially like that it focuses on children.

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  11. Edgar,

    I read Syjuco's Illustrado 2 year's ago, I think, and I cannot remember much about it except for the lovemaking scene inside the car and flooding all around. No resonance for me, no sympathy for the protagonist. I don't care. I just read it because a Pinoy won an international writer's prize (something to be proud of any way) and because I wanted to know what the hell was the fuss about. About the only Pinoy novel (including Sionil-Jose and Rizal) that moved me in a melodramatic and heartbreaking way (hey, I was in high school) was Javellana's Without Seeing the Dawn. Rather like an FPJ or a Rudy Fernandez's starrer where the hero dies in the end. I also like Rizal' s words made a title-I die without seeing the dawn brighten over my native land but you who have it too see welcome it and forget not those who have fallen over the night.

    DocB

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    1. DocB,

      You're just like me or vice-versa. I go for the juicy parts. I haven't had the chance to read Javellana; I will if I get the chance. Thanks.

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    2. I read the book as well. There is a lot I didn't like about it, too. i especially hated the corny jokes that he kept injecting into the pages but were not even relevant to the story. (but isn't that just so pinoy? Hehe). What I do like about the book, I don't want to share now because it might ruin it for Ed. For now, I'll just say that Syjuco proves himself a clever writer.

      I think Syjuco went for technique with this project, the story itself seems secondary.


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    3. Well, and Joe makes three. At the beginning, it was disjointed and I kept asking, what is this REALLY about? At the end, I said, "Wow, I wasn't expecting that." Well worth reading, beginning to end, rather like hiking a mountain is not the same as coasting downhill.

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  12. If you'll ask me, the only thing accurate in Enrile's memoir is that he is a bastard.

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    1. If JPE's memoir were made into a movie, who's a good actor to play JPE? Sotto's out, of course. Right now, I'm thinking Lilia Cuntapay.

      DocB

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    2. Ayeeh, DocB. Didn't know who Cuntapay is. Almost fell off the chair laughing at the image that came out in my google search.

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    3. Sorry about that Cha.

      DocB

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  13. I like the bilingual juxtaposition. "Apay" in Ilocano - which happens to be Enrile's mother tongue - translates to "Why".

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