Che!

Hi. Titigilan ko muna ang pagffeeling englishera ko ngayon kasi yamot na yamot ako. Kung nakasakay ka na ng jeep around Metro Manila, sigurado akong alam mo kung ano ang susunod kong tutukuyin. Yung mga batang nanghihitch ng jeep tapos mamimigay ng envelope tapos tutugtog ng tribal song na whatever? Hindi yun yung ikinakainis ko. Ang nakakairita eh yung mga taong ang first instinct pag nakakakita ng ganun e mang-irap, magtago ng kanilang oh-so-precious cellphones, at umilag hanggang sa abot ng makakaya nila para ang kanilang white and fair na skin (NOT!) ay hindi mahawakan ng mga batang kawawa.

I don’t know if I should hate the justice system in the Philippines for being so fcking crappy that it breeded people who’d doubt even kids, or are these people really just downright mean? Mga ate at kuya, most of the time ate, kung ayaw nyong nakakakita ng ganun, edi bumili kayong kotse! Kung makapangmata kayo ng kapwa–at hindi lang basta kapwa, bata yung mga yun e–akala nyo e mas mayaman pa kayo sa mga Ayala! Pwede ba, mag-asawa muna kayo ng boksingero at magpaoverhaul ng mukha. Akala mo e kagaganda.

Having been raised by a mother who has only one daughter, accompanied by Disney fairytales, Nick toons, and an anime about a girl who has 7 bodyguards who have extraordinary abilities, you’d expect that being street smart isn’t one of my strong suits. But if being street smart means glaring at kids who probably have 13 siblings and jobless parents, I’d rather pass.

Kung ikaw ba yung nasa posisyon ng bata, nanlilimos ka lang naman tapos ang reaksyon ng mga tao, i-clutch yung bags nila at umiwas ng tingin. Gutom ka na, na-judge ka pa. And these are kids we’re talking about. Once they see that the world just sees them as snatchers e wala naman silang ginagawa, what would they turn out to be? Palagay nyo ba, in their hopeless situation, maiisip nilang, “Ay. Tingin ng mga tao kukunin ko lang yung iPhone nila. Papatunayan kong nagkakamali sila.” Siguro yung ilan. Pero lahat ba magiging ganun? Kung wala ka nang makain and the whole world already thinks of you as a bad person, would you still give a damn?

I’ve been told na kahit gano ka na naaawa, it’s still wrong to give alms. Because it makes these people lazy, kasi kung nakakasurvive naman sila sa panlilimos, ano pang rason nila para magtrabaho. And okay, I get that. But if yung hindi mo naman pagbibigay is of ill intention o dahil nandidiri ka, e ayus-ayusin mo buhay mo.

I don’t really know where I’m getting at here or what my point is, I just wanted to let that out. And maybe, if you really have nothing to give, the least you could do is politely refuse and just give a nice smile. Offer the kids even a little bit of hope.

xx,
V

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