Friday, April 06, 2007


sabay sipa. tara, mag-sipa tayo gamit ang ating "tatak spartan, tibay spartan" tsinelas. pero habaianas yata yang nasa piktyur eh. hehe.


pwede rin namang roman. by now most people are outside the metro, having their "holy day" vacation, lending to this welcome peace and quiet. makes me think of how ironic the whole observance of lent has "evolved" here in the philippines. when i was growing up in a remote barrio in silang, this used to be the saddest and gloomiest of days. lahat bawal. bawal maglaro, maligo. bawal man lang ngumiti. even after the family finally "got the power!" (when my grandmother died; we needed electricity for the wake), i wasn't even allowed to listen to the radio or watch tv (when my ama finally got one; i was around 12 then).

the nights were horrible, especially during the years when the only comfort we had came from the poor vision of gas lamps, filled with the unseen and eerie wailing from nearby and faraway sinakulos. it seems to me now that this is because people in rustic provinces villages like ours are really much more superstitious than they are religious. patay si kristo ngayon, anak, my mother would warn me and my sister.

a horrible thing to say, really, to children. it equated to something like the temporary but annual triumph of all things evil. my ama once said this is the one day in the year when all the arbularyos and salamangkeros would go down to the distant brook to brew their potions and recharge their powers.

nowadays, my holy week routine really feels more like a "borrowed" or--at the risk of being redundant-"lent" time.

yet what we are really "observing" here is probably one of the most cruel way of giving criminals the perfect roman holiday--that ancient law that allows for crucifixion. ah, again the irony: the romans--after persecuting, hunting down, and crucifying all the disciples, peter's in the upside down manner (save for paul, and only because he was a roman citizen)--discarded their pagan beliefs and converted to Christianity. and dogma-wise, the Philippines became "baptized" by the spaniards, turning out and ending up to be a primarily Roman Catholic country.

where does Christ figure in all this? His most dominant image is that of the cross, and all the symbolisms that come with it--salvation, redemption, sacrifice, faith, God. and if we are to really meditate on his "death" today, then just look around. he resides everywhere: on that intersection before the winding road that curls up to cold baguio, in the horizontal, dipping line of the small letter "t", in the many tangles of antennae and wires that cover the entire city.

or even inside your houses, as you look out the window to stare at the figure above that still unvisited church, the skeletal grids that often get in the way of the scenery providing a grander, fuller view. if only for this day.

it's 3:55pm, notes the bottom right clock of my pc. have a good friday, everyone.