Analyze This

July 31st, 2009 · No Comments

All the clubs and organisations who marched as “one” Filipino contingent at the Blacktown Street Parade deserve to be congratulated.  Despite the little hiccups behind the scenes, at least Filipinos were perceived as one group this time albeit the individual banners that were carried at the parade.


We’ve got a long way to go – and who knows if we’ll ever get there – but it’s a step in the right direction. Maybe next year, the marchers will come together with one purposeful stride.


What this illustrated is that we can stand together – walk together – march together – if and only if – someone in authority told us to do so.  When normal humans attempted to get the groups together in alphabetical order the reaction, as expected, was “Sino ka?” (Who are you?) The Philippine Community Council of NSW had said “NO” – and stipulated that they would march in alphabetical order only on the condition that they were going to be the first with their affiliates following their lead.  


However when the powers that be at Blacktown City Council issued the allocation of ‘No. 15” – everyone followed without a whimper.  Hence PCC came second to the last with the eleven or so affiliates they managed to pull – just before the PASC.


This simply illustrates that we have not yet arrived at a level of maturity to handle our own affairs.  Like adolescents, we need to abide by authority figures and as such will continue to grapple on title holders.  As the saying goes: Growing old is mandatory; growing up is optional. 


Perhaps next year, we might have grown a little to be able to discuss what’s best for us rather than relying on title holders to tell us what to do.


One thing puzzled me though.  The Diaz Foundation did not march with the Filipino contingent and had asked to be moved.  Was this because they were a Foundation and not an organization?  But then, one would refute that last year they did come marching after the PCC.  And besides, they had been an affiliate of PCC; renewed their membership on numerous occasions and had voted during PCC elections. 


Curiously too, Mr. Diaz was neither present at the Blacktown Flag Raising Ceremony nor at the evening party.  He was visible at the Consular affair, at FAME’s event at Rooty Hill and at the PCC event at Rosehill.  One can only wonder why now that he is a councilor of Blacktown would he skip the Flag Raising? 




One pleasant Saturday afternoon, I found myself in the company of a group of wise women who all agreed that Filipinos do not utter the niceties that a civilized society requires of us.  

Considering that Filipinos live by “Utang na Loob” (repaying a favor), it was simply hard to comprehend and yet after analyzing it, these ladies were absolutely correct. 


Filipinos are stingy with praise and appreciation. We wondered though if this was a result of shyness, ignorance, arrogance or all of the above.  Perhaps, we’re a passive-aggressive culture.


“Please”….is translated to an insistent repetition of  ‘sige na’; An apology is translated as “pasenisya na” or at best stone cold silence which is never the same as “I am sorry.” “Thank You” is muffled or absolutely unheard of.  And dare not ask or express an opinion, as questions and opinions are considered an affront to their fragile “amor propio.”


People do say “Thank You” – as a matter of fact – rehearsed, stated, not felt – simply loose words uttered without even meaning it.  It is the “Tupperware Thanks” – so fake and plastic, if only to project themselves as “nice” and their own sense of grandiose!  And only title-holders are given the privilege.  Everyday people – like you and I – aren’t given the thrill of it all.  It’s as if, to express gratitude and appreciation would rob them of their dignity and integrity. 


 ‘Thank you’s’ when said are superfluous, sugarcoated as a blatant attempt to ingratiate themselves which I personally find even more sickening than those who fail to say thank you.


And for somebody who pays, ‘thank you’ is unheard of!  It is as if – “I paid you so I don’t have to say thanks and you do what I asked you to do.” 


Gratitude like passion can never be measured by words.  It simply comes straight from the heart.  And it shows!




Tags: Grey Matter