June 12th is nearing, time to dust off whatever bit of patriotic spirit I've kept hidden since I lost faith in the vision inspired by the first EDSA uprising.
Just the other evening, while waiting for a cab on the corner of Buendia (Sen. Gil Puyat) and Chino Roces St., I heard two foreigners talking about the wonderful time they had the night before at a bar in P. Burgos and one of them remarked that it would have been better if the girls weren't such hustlers, then complained about having spent $200 too much on what he described as one of the sorriest lays he has ever had.
"I shouldn't have paid her at all. That bitch! If I wanted a lousy fuck, I would've stayed home with my wife -- she's a Filipina too." he had said, laughing heartily.
Feeling a bit disgusted with their conversation, I was thankful enough to finally see an empty cab cruising towards the direction I was going. As soon as the cab driver stopped in front of me, he rolled the window down and asked where I was headed, with an expression that seemed to tell me that he was just deciding whether or not he would drive me over. Even before I could answer, his eyes spotted the two foreigners staring intently at his cab and he suddenly blurted out that he wouldn't be able to drive me to wherever I was headed because he needed to get the taxi back to the garage. Thereafter he promptly drove a few meters down the road to a spot where the two foreigners had walked over to in an attempt to find another cab and in a matter of seconds, the foreigners were climbing in the taxi, speeding off presumably to another girly bar.
After a few more minutes of waiting, I was able to hail another cab and this time the driver agreed to convey me to my destination but on the condition that I pay an extra P20.00 on top of whatever his meter charge would be. Of course, I had to agree to this unfair situation because I was just too darned tired to get angry over getting bilked by a cab driver.
On the radio, news regarding the so-called Erap 5 was blaring and then there was some tidbit about a child that had been abandoned in a mall. The cab driver seemd quite intent on listening about the wrong doings of government and society at large, cursing President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and former President Fidel Ramos for screwing everything up.
"They don't know how to do anything except steal our money and make life harder." he said.
Finally, upon arriving at my house's threshold and looking forward to some rest, I realize that my garbage had not been collected. On top of that, the neighbor's dog had managed to turnover the large plastic garbage bin where the garbage truck boys would get it from along with P10.00 snack money. The neighbor's dog did one hell of a job munching through all the trash and spreading it around in front of my gate. Then all hell breaks lose as two rival groups of colorum or illegal tricycle drivers begin hurling rocks and invectives at each other for purportedly making unwanted incursions into each other's territory. Another neighbor, a suspected druggie tries to drown out the noise by turning up the volume of his karaoke, which he had set up on his front pavement along with a couple bottles of beer.
This is more or less the kind of Philippines I see everyday and on June 12, I'll see if I can blot out this reality with a couple rounds of beer, enough to start celebrating whatever good I can remember about being a Filipino.