Showing posts from April, 2021

The Filipino Toxic Culture and How to Deal With It.

I have been married to a Filipina for 20 years now and I know a thing or two about the Philippines and its culture. I do love the Philippines and its outstanding landscapes, its mixture of Spanish, Asian and American architectures, its cuisine and so much more, and I would go back there one million times to explore every nook and cranny of the archipelago. What are some of the toxic traits of the Filipino mentality? But, unfortunately, the Philippines is not just those amazing and fascinating things. It is also some of the nasty things that, from time to time, I mention in my blog and that qualify as "toxic". These include: Bahala-na (basically leaving things to chance and then expecting a higher power to take care of the consequences) Ningas kugon (when Filipinos have no clear plans or goals and their plans and goals easily fizzle out) Filipino time (the habit of always showing up late at an appointment or not showing up at all)

General Gregorio Del Pilar & General Del "Pilay"

The famous Filipino general Gregorio Del Pilar was born in the province of Bulacan. My wife was also born in the province of Bulacan, so I am half Bulaquenyo. Now, because last November I stumbled and fell very badly and, as a result, had a 5th metatarsal fracture in my right foot and had to spend 5 weeks at home, unable to go anywhere, I became "general" Gregorio Del "pilay". Pilay is a Tagalog term for "lame" and, because I have experienced what it is like to be "pilay", I am Gregorio Del Pilay, the bayani ng biak na "buto", a play of words for the "Biak na Bato" National Park in San Miguel, Bulacan. While in Bulacan I visited the famous "Biak na Bato", a historic place where another bayani, general Aguinaldo, hid in the "kuweba ni Aguinaldo". So I have become another Bulaquenyong "bayani", si Heneral Del Pilay from "Biak na Buto", because biak na biak ang aking masakit pa..

Why Filipinos are Coping with the Pandemic Better than Others

I live in a country that has completely been turned upside down by the pandemic. Millions of people are mesmerized and immobilized by the pandemic and its destructive effects on the economy. Much of Italy hinges on tourism and entire regions of the country rely almost exclusively on it. For example in the area my parents are from, the Amalfi Coast, the bulk of the working population works in hotels, B&Bs, restaurants, travel agencies and the like and, right now, all of that is almost dead. But, apart from the businesses that are directly or indirectly linked to tourism, a lot of other activities have been heavily affected by the pandemic. What about Filipinos? How are they coping? An expression that I like to use to describe them is: "kahit bumabagsak ang mundo ang mga Pilipino ay lagi nakatayo". Yes, Filipinos are bulletproof and fireproof and "even if the entire world around them collapses they figure out ways to remain standing". But why is that? Mental flexi