Balitang Kutsero

By Perry Diaz   


Liz and Da Prez


The love story of “Liz and Da Prez” is a modern-day Cinderella story: the 50-year king of Pilipinas falling in love with his 28-year old hair stylist.  It was “love at first cut.”  Yup, the moment Liz made the first cut of Da Prez’s hair, he was bewitched by Liz’s simple beauty.  “Talagang kay ganda!” (So beautiful!), Da Prez mused.  He was never the same again.


Then, Da Prez called his spin meister Ricky and told him that Liz was “talagang kay ganda!” and that she personifies the true Pilipina.  Guess what?  Ricky called Mai Mai, Da Prez’s speechwriter, and told her that Liz personifies Pilipinas, “kay ganda!”  Mai Mai immediately posted a tweet in her Tweeter and Facebook pages, “Pilipinas kay ganda!”  The Tourism Secretary, Albert, read Mai Mai’s tweet and he liked it.  He took his young son’s crayons, drew “Pilipinas kay ganda!” and doodled some funny figures and the words “So beautiful”and then he announced to the whole world that that was the new logo of the Philippines’ tourism campaign.


When Da Prez asked Albert where he got the idea, Albert replied, “I got it from Mai Mai, sir.”  Da Prez asked Mai Mai where she got the idea, Mai Mai replied, “Sir, I got it from Ricky,po.  Da Prez asked Ricky where he got the idea, Ricky replied, “I got it from you, boss.”  Da Prez said, “From me? Hmm… I must be dreaming when I said that,” and scratched his head.  He then remembered telling Ricky that Liz was “talagang kay ganda!” and smiled.


Then Ricky said, “Boss, just curious, may I know why you shaved your head, sir?”  “Huh?” Da Prez said and touched his head.  It’s bald!!!  Then he remembered what Liz did when she cut his hair.  He smiled and said, “I like it this way, and do I look now like Yul Brynner? Ahem.”  “No, sir,” Ricky answered, “You look like Boy Abunda.  Hehehe…”


Onto better things… Prez Benigno “Noynoy”Aquino III’s former girlfriend, Shalani Soledad, didn’t waste any time moving on and not looking back.  She was hired to co-host the new game show, “Willing Willie,” with former Wowowee host Willie Revillame.  Indeed, when the door to Noynoy’s “Bahay Pangarap” (Dream House) closed, the door to the “world of entertainment” opened up to her.  Now she can chart her own destiny instead of waiting for six years hoping to marry Noynoy whose destiny was charted for him by others.   And there’s absolutely no truth to the rumor that Shalani was taking a course in hair styling.   She’s too “tall” for that.  


As an elected councilor of Valenzuela City, the 29-year old Shalani is on a course where she can chart her own destiny.  It’s a modest start for a budding politician, but she’ll grow into a political force in due time.


Talking about destiny… Last May 2010, Noynoy was swept to victory on the promise of hope and change.  A lot of people said that it was his destiny.  After five months in office, his performance and trust ratings remain very high considering several embarrassing incidents during his first 100 days.  While it’s too early to tell if he would be able to deliver on his promises, political pundits are apprehensive that Noynoy’s “bright star” might be losing its luster soon, if not later.  They’re concerned that Noynoy was heading into the same rough and bumpy road that U.S. President Barack Obama took after he was swept to victory on a promise of hope and change.  Does that sound familiar? Déjà vu?


It’s beginning to occur to me that “destiny” is not the end of a journey but a “journey in progress.”  While Obama has another year to change course in his journey to win reelection in 2012, Noynoy doesn’t have to worry because he has a six-year term with no reelection.  So he can just float around and let his journey go on autopilot until the end of his presidency in 2016. And by that time, either his journey ends in greatness or just another footnote in history.  


From destiny to greatness… But there is one man who – against all odds – charted his destiny and reached the unreachable star of “greatness.”  Born dirt poor, Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao slugged his way to greatness, one weight division at a time -- from flyweight to welterweight – and captured eight world titles in eight weight divisions.  Indeed, there is only one man on earth today who could break his record – himself. 


Quo vadis, Pacquiao?  At 31 years old, Pacquiao – who is now a congressman representing the province of Sarangani -- is getting older to stay in shape and win more fights.   If he continues to fight, it will just be for the moolah.  Yup, he can no longer be “greater”; he is already the “greatest”!


But Pacquiao must have realized that “greatness” is not measured in terms of championship titles and wealth.  He is no longer content with the greatness that he has achieved for himself.  He probably thought that there is a loftier greatness and that would be the greatness he could achieve for his people.  Does Pacquiao have a vision for his constituents in Sarangani?  Or better, does he have a vision for the Philippines?  That’s something to ponder, right?  But don’t hurry; Pacquiao still has two decades before he’d qualify for president.  But in the meantime, he can hone his political skills.  He has to hurdle all the obstacles to the top.  And it’s not easy.  But Pacquiao could be a diamond in the rough.  Watch him!


Pilipinas kay ganda… The Philippine Department of Tourism was thrown into the dark recesses of cyberspace two days after launching its “Pilipinas kay ganda!” tourism campaign.  What happened?

First, it abandoned its website because they found out that there’s a similarity to an existing porn site which uses the key words “beautifulpilipinas.” Immediately, they renamed the website to to “promote the P100 million new Philippines tourism brand that they have created.”


Well, it turned out that the tourism “brand” or logo that they created, “Pilipinas kay ganda,” was similar to Poland’s tourism logo.  Did it cost the government P100 million to “tweak” – or plagiarize – Poland’s tourism logo?  I hope it wasn’t paid to an account in Cayman Island.  Madaming buwaya doon! (There are a lot of crocodiles over there!)


And finally, some people were saying that the slogan seems like a “code name” for gays.  Although “Pilipinas kay ganda” translates to “Philippines so beautiful,” it also translates to “Philippines for Ganda,” which is causing a lot of buzz and fizz in the gay community. Television’s new “gay icon” in the country is “Vice Ganda,” a comedian and judge of the popular “Showtime” game show.  Ganda claims to be representing “gays who like to dress as girls.”  Like they say, “Ah-ya-yay!”


Perhaps, the Philippines should go back to its good ol’ brand, “WOW Philippines!”  It sold; it should still sell… and save money monkeying around with other countries’ tourism logos.