The World is a Maze of Confusion and Conflict

The World is a Maze of Confusion

And Conflict

By Apolinario Villalobos


Here are some of my personal observations:


  1. The only “order” that can be felt and experienced in the world is the 24-hour cycle divided into night and day that further accumulates into seven days in a week, further accumulating into the 28/30/31 days in a month and finally into 12 months in a year – according to the Roman Catholic calendar, however, the Chinese, the Jews, and the Muslims have their own calendar in this regard.


  1. The long-respected Bible is now being touted as a source of various confusions, especially, because many religions have allegedly thwarted the original contents written in the original language, to serve their own purpose which is to prove their having the “true religion”. So, today, instead of being enlightened, many people became confused that they have gone to the extent of leaving the religion of their birth to become Atheist, Agnostic, or Satanic. They should not be blamed because they followed their own judgment, and nobody can rightly say that they are wrong, after having gone through the harrowing confusion.


  1. Due to survival instinct, countries have become hypocrites. Openly, leaders deal amiably with each other despite differences in ideology, and proof to this are photos splashed on the different social media where they are shown smiling at each other and shaking hands, but days after, the same leaders make pronouncements that run counter to their friendly stance shown earlier to the world. Citizens are confused which of the two “expressions” should be believed.


  1. Drugs are invented to prevent the onset of diseases and cure people of ailments but most of these drugs have contra-indications when used at the same time due to simultaneous inceptions of disorders. Even the long-traditionally used drugs, one of which is aspirin, are deemed to have negative effects on some organs. Most antibiotics today are also declared as ineffective and can harm many organs if used unabatedly, especially, without prescription. This confusion resulted to the loss of confidence to physicians by skeptic patients who have resorted to herbals, instead.


  1. Confusion did not spare the foods, as many of them are not just fit for anybody. Some people get sick when they drink milk, eat seafood, beans, and even peanut. Some people vomit when they eat any fibrous vegetable or get a sniff of banana. The list of foods that are not supposed to be eaten by some people is still getting longer by the day. This deprivation is confusing, for how can sources of nutrients for the body become poison to others? Explanations are offered by experts, but the question still remains because life is supposed to be viewed as full of promises, including health and happiness. But how can it be possible if one is deprived of things needed to live happily and glowing with health?


  1. Universities and colleges are supposed to breed intelligent graduates who are expected to be part of the effort in the development of their nation and betterment of society. But why are there corrupt government officials and even leaders who are supposed to have even earned Masters and Doctorates from these institutions of learning? Why are there evil-minded scientists, whose intellect and moral values have been bred in these institutions where only what’s good for mankind is supposed to be taught?


The confusion is compounded by greed that has muddled man’s mind making the upshots of his intellect become tools for his self-annihilation!

A Closer Look at the Filipino “Nationalistic” Groups

A Closer Look at the Filipino “Nationalistic” Groups

By Apolinario Villalobos


Even during the administration of Ferdinand Marcos, there were already problems with China as regards the South China Sea/West Philippine Sea, separatist movements and kidnapping in Mindanao, as well as, with Malaysia as regards Sabah, and most especially, corruption in the government. The same problems were inherited by subsequent administrations. But the “nationalistic” groups were more concerned in shouting invectives against America in front of the US Embassy and in burning effigies of American and Filipino presidents. They did not lift a finger in helping the government in its effort to recover Sabah, and not a single rally was held in front of the Chinese Embassy to express their revulsion over the issue on West Philippine Sea. Not even a question was raised as regards the effectiveness of the military against the separatist movement and kidnappings in Mindanao because of its inadequate facilities due to misused funds intended for its modernization. These groups cannot even lay claim on the success in deposing Marcos, because the religious groups and ordinary citizens were the ones responsible for such success.


Despite the open reclamations of China in the West Philippine Sea, these groups were silent, although, belatedly, they somehow held a lightning rally or two, after such, nothing was heard from them again. Despite the ongoing activities of the Abu Sayyaf and separatist groups in Mindanao, they remained silent. The overly grisly Maguindanao and Mamasapano massacres did not entice them a bit to make a move to show their support to the victims. Despite the moving of justice system at a snail’s pace and unabated proliferation of foreign “investors” who are exploiting the natural resources around the country, nothing is heard from them, too.  And despite the blatant control of domestic medium-scale trading in the country by these foreign “investors”, still nothing is heard from these groups.


After the announcement of the Supreme Court’ decision favoring the legality of the US military presence in the country, these groups suddenly came to life. They maintain their claim that such decision shall lead to the construction of the permanent US bases in the country when in fact, nothing of that sort is mentioned in the agreement.


They claim that the continued presence of the American soldiers in the country will lead to the revival of sex- related industry which is not true. Even without the presence of US bases, there is uncontrolled proliferation of the sex trade via the internet, bars and massage parlors, even in the decent districts of Metro Manila.  But still, if they want, they can knock at the doors of Congress and Senate for laws that shall control this kind of industry, and which should be appropriate for the time. On the other hand, they are supposed to know that even the local government can control such industry. And, just what have they done on the issue of poverty that contributed to the fast growth of such industry in the country? They should caution the sex workers if they are really bent on helping their countrymen involved in sex trade which needs to be treated as a separate issue, instead of using this alibi in pursuing their “nationalistic” objective. They seem to be blind to the fact that various sex deals are flourishing even without the issue on the US military presence in the Philippines due to weak national laws and LGU regulations that reek with corrupt motives.


What dedication to advocacy are they talking about when some of them are even holding passports stamped with US visa?  If these groups are really serious in their advocacy, why don’t they hold rallies against the ongoing corruption in the country and the vote-buying, a political tradition that got deeply-entrenched in the Filipino culture? Why don’t they consistently hold rallies for the removal of department secretaries who are being questioned on the issues of smuggling, ghost NGOs, drug trafficking, illegal recruitment, and deplorable state of mass transit facilities such as LRT and MRT, etc. Why don’t they consistently hold rallies for the removal of the president, if they find him to be ineffective just like what was done during the time of Marcos? Why don’t they hold rallies against the unfulfilled promise of the government to modernize the military facilities after prime public properties were sold to foreign investors? Why don’t they picket outside the detention facilities where the Ampatuans are, to show their disgust over the hideous crime that they purportedly committed? These are what the Filipinos want to see and expect from them, as they claim to be “nationalistic” and pro-Filipino.


Obviously, the Philippines has been under a long-tested democracy which unfortunately proved ineffective due to its loop-holed system that led to the propagation of various forms of corruption. And, this is what the left-wing groups want to be changed to a more “nationalistic” system. But what do they mean by “nationalistic”?…a communism-inspired system?


By the way, I just want to make myself clear that not all nationalistic Filipinos have a communistic mentality.



The Agony of Mother Nature

The Agony of Mother Nature

By Apolinario Villalobos


Her womb brought forth life of many sorts

On top of the list is man – wise, clever, shrewd

A creature so sharp, with ego that knows no bound

He, whose selfishness, lifted him up from the ground.


At the start, his simple desire brought him food

Also, skins and leaves to cover his bare fragile frame

Then, his carnal yearnings brought him abundant broods

Who later inhabited vast lands – plains, valleys and woods.


Man’s desire has no end, never satisfied, not a bit

He not only breached, what to others are sacred realms

Unmindful and blind to whatever will be the consequence –

He even dares to break Mother Nature’s idyllic, blissful silence.


Greed drove man to scalp mountains of their trapping –

Verdant and lush forests he fell by indiscriminate burning

Reverberating scream of his chainsaw fill nooks and crevices

That drowns panicky calls of birds and their desperate screeches.


Immaculate white and sandy beaches strewn with shells

Though, still practically fringing undiscovered islands and coves

They may no longer be what they are now, as found by those lucky

For their days are numbered just like the rest, now drowned in misery.


Islands pockmarked with diggings for much-coveted minerals

Pitifully belch residues to rivers, lakes, coves even gurgling springs

While man grins his widest for the cash, illicitly and cruelly-gained

Mother Nature just cringes in agony, abused, that for long she’ll pain.


The air that man breaths for whiffs of comfort, relief and dear life –

Now has become a mist of poison, the scourge of his irresponsibility

For bringing forth metallic contraptions belching toxin just everywhere

And even break auditory succor, shaking the world with so much clatter.


With Mother Nature in agony –

man is left…alone,

to determine his destiny!

Ang Hamunan nina Roxas at Duterte ay Pagpapakita ng Maruming Pulitika sa Pilipinas

Ang Hamunan nina Roxas at Duterte

ay Pagpapakita ng Maruming Pulitika sa Pilipinas

ni Apolinario Villalobos


Ang namumukod-tanging katangian ng pulitika sa Pilipinas ay pagiging marumi nito. Ang mga kandidato ay nagbabatuhan ng mga putik. Kaya may kasabihan sa Pilipinas na kung ayaw mong mabisto ang katauhan mo ay huwag kang pumasok sa pulitika. Ang dahilan noong-noon pa ng mga pulitiko, na “pagtulong sa kapwa” ang dahilan ng pagpasok nila sa pulitika ay pinagtatawanan na ngayon. Sinasabi pa ng iba na ang pulitika ay isa sa mga larangan kung saan ay yayaman ang isang tao – na unfair naman sa mga talagang walang intensiyong mangurakot….ng malaki. Tanggap naman ang 10% na komisyon na ang tawag noon pa man ay “for the boys”, na ayaw pa ngang tanggapin ng iba dahil nakakahiya sa sinumpaan nilang tungkulin. Ang masama lang kasi sa ibang nanalo at nakaupo na sa puwesto, hindi lang 70% ang gustong kurakutin, kundi 100% dahil ang project ay hanggang papel lang!


Hindi sana umabot sa hamunan ang dalawang kandidato sa pagka-pangulo ng bansa kung hindi sana pinakialaman ni Roxas ang nananahimik na Davao City. Alam naman niyang alagang-alaga ito ni Duterte pati na ng mga Davaweἧo, pati ng mga taong nakatira sa mga bayang nakapaligid dito. Kung papansinin, nagpakumbaba pa nga si Duterte nang punahin ang pagmumura niya at tinanggap pa ang “lecture” ng Obispo sa Davao City. Ito ay pakita lang na okey sa kanyang punahin ang mga personal niyang pagkakamali sa mata ng mga moralista, pero ang kantihin ang inaalagaan niyang katahimikan sa Davao na kung ilang taon din niyang nilinis at pinatahimik ay maituturing na “below the belt”.


Nang gantihan naman ni Duterte si Roxas tungkol sa nakakadudang pag-graduate niya sa hindi naman gaanong kilalang eskwelahan sa Amerika, pumalag din siya. Ngayon ay nagsisisi siya dahil pati ang kredibilidad niya sa larangan ng edukasyon na isa sa mga pinagmamalaki niya ay nalagay sa balag ng alanganin. Dahil sa panggagalaiti niya, marami tuloy ay nagsasabing baka nga totoong hanggang kodakan lang ang pag-graduate niya  sa Amerika.


Ang daming maaaring ipaliwanag ni Roxas sa mga tao upang magkaroon ng linaw ang mga isyu na may kinalaman din sa sinasandalan niyang presidente ng Pilipinas…bakit hindi na lang niya dito ituon ang kanyang effort sa pangangampanya? Bakit kailangang siraan pa niya si Duterte na nananahimik na nga? Mag-concentrate na lang sana siya sa “tuwid na daan” na pinangako niyang ipagpapatuloy, para marami pang mahatak kung sakali. Huwag na niyang pakialaman si Duterte na ang kapalaran ay nasa kamay ng COMELEC. Sa ginagawa niya, halatang ninenerbiyos siya dahil malakas ang hatak pareho ni Duterte at Poe. Mukhang pumalpak na naman ang campaign machinery na tumutulak kay Roxas.


Sa interbyu kay Duterte sa isang radio station sa Manila tungkol sa kanyang pagkandidato, nakiusap siya sa mga sumusuporta sa kanya na maging mahinahon at itigil na ang pagbabanta ng “rebolusyon” kung siya ay ma-disqualify. Bukambibig niya ang pagtanggap ng disqualification  kung ito ang desisyon ng COMELEC, kaya sinabi pa niya na kung maaari ay ituon din ng mga sumusuporta sa kanya ang atensiyon nila sa ibang mga kandidato, upang makapili sila ng karapat-dapat kung sakali ngang siya ay ma-disqualify. Pinapakita ni Duterte na hindi siya sakim, dahil ang gusto lamang niya ay maging realistic ang mga supporter niya batay sa mga umiiral na sitwasyon. Sa isang banda, malinaw pa rin ang pahayag niya na hindi siya umuurong sa pagtakbo bilang presidente ng Pilipinas.


Though how Progressive a Country is, there will always be Poverty because of Corruption

Though how Progressive a Country is, there will always be

Poverty because of Corruption

By Apolinario Villalobos


Perfection should be ruled out in the reckoning of a progressive country, because there will always be poverty due to corruption somewhere in the system of governance. In other words, the glitter of progress cannot hide poverty. For ultra-progressive countries, the signs may be insignificant as they try to blend with the glamour of urbanity. But in other countries, especially, the third-world, the signs are very prevalent, so that there is always a massive effort to cover them up occasionally, literally, as it is done every time there are special occasions such as visits of foreign dignitaries. This practice is successful in the Philippines.


Practically, poverty is the shadow of progress, and literally, too, as where there are looming high-rise buildings that are pockmarks of progress, not far from them are slums or homeless citizens who huddle together under bridges and nooks. These are misguided citizens who flock to the cities after selling their homestead, that have been farmed for several generations, to deceitful land developers, at a measly price. These are the urban squatters willing to be relocated but found out that the promised “paradise” do not even have a deep well so they go back to their sidewalk “homes”. These are contractual workers who have no job securities as they earn only for five to six months, after which they leave their fate to luck while looking for another job.


How does corruption ever be involved in the sad fate of the exploited? Simply, by the government’s negligence  in providing decent relocation sites with job opportunities and basic facilities to those uprooted from their city abodes for more than so many years; by its cuddling of the spurious contractualization perpetrated by greedy employers; by its failure to guide and protect the rights of farmers who sell their rice fields to subdivision developers at measly prices that are not even enough to sustain them for six months; by its failure to provide the citizens with the basic necessities as funds are allowed to be pocketed by corrupt officials; and practically by looking the other way despite the availability of laws against vote buying.


Third- world country leaders should stop using the word “progressive”, but instead they should use “surviving” to describe their respective economy. If a country’s economy cannot sustain, much less, provide a “comfortable life” to majority of its citizens, then it is still “ailing”…hence, expect poverty to be trailing behind, just a few steps away from the pretentious allegations!




Do Not Feel Bad About Unfulfilled Dreams

Do Not Feel Bad

About Unfulfilled Dreams

By Apolinario Villalobos


There is a popular adage, “life is what we make it”. All of us have limitations, hence, it follows that the life we live is based on our best effort, but hampered by limitations. We cannot be like what others are. We can strive, yes…but the result may not be the same as what others have accomplished. The problem with some of us is that they dream to be like somebody else which is impossible. Successful people can be looked up to as models or be admired, but cannot be exactly copied.


Success is relative. The degree and kind of success varies. In this regard, to avoid getting disappointed, one should accept what he has accomplished based on his capability and just strive a little harder to be able to accomplish more. He should not feel bad, for instance, because he did not become a manager like his friend, or a physician like another friend, or a mayor, etc.


Those who develop grudge because of their “failure” supposedly, equate success to fame which is wrong. Others feel that just because they did not become famous like others, they have become a failure. I can say that such kind of feeling is a manifestation of jealousy which breeds grudge….nothing else. Success in life is the happiness and contentment one feels every morning as he wakes up to another day….it is the joy felt in what he does.


We should not be occupied with gawking at what others are doing or be jealous with what they have accomplished. Each one of us has a different kind of life to live and concerns much different from the rest. On the other hand, the jealous attitude is most often the result of unnecessary and unhealthy rivalry in offices and other work sites. This is called professional jealousy which affects the operation and atmosphere.


Finally, successful people may wonder why some friends have suddenly kept a distance from them for no reason at all that they know of. There is something for these shunned successful people to ponder about…jealousy developed by their friends who have the habit of comparing themselves with others. Such unnecessary feeling made them jealous resulting to grudge that time may not expunge easily. My suggestion: a change in attitude…by being positive in living one’s life….and changing it for the better.


Ang Tao, Kalinisan, Pagkain, at Iba Pa

Ang Tao, Kalinisan, Pagkain, at Iba Pa

Ni Apolinario Villalobos


Hindi maganda sa isang tao ang sobra-sobrang pagiging malinis, kaya makakita lang ng pagala-galang inosenteng ipis ay animo naholdap na kung magsisigaw. Hindi masama ang maging malinis sa paligid, lalo na sa tahanan at katawan. Dapat lang nating alalahanin na lahat ng bagay, mabuti man, ay may limitasyon, tulad ng pag-inom ng gamot at pagkain. Ang binabakuna sa katawan ng tao upang magkaroon ito ng panlaban sa virus na nagiging sanhi ng iba’t ibang uri ng sakit ay virus din, kaya ang unang epekto nito ay pagkakaroon ng lagnat hanggang “masanay” ang katawan sa pagkakaroon nito. Ibig sabihin, may mga mikrobyo ding napapakinabangan ng tao, kahit ang mga ito ay itinuturing na marumi at salot.


May isa akong kaibigan na sa sobrang kalinisan sa bahay ay palaging pinapansin ang nalulugas na buhok ng kanyang misis kaya tuwing magsusuklay ito ay sinusundan niya at pinupulot ang mga buhok na nalalaglag sa sahig. Isang beses sinabihan uli niya ang kanyang misis ng, “o, marami na namang buhok ang nalugas mula sa ulo mo”. Napuno na yata ang misis kaya sinagot niya ang mister ng, “mabuti…ipunin mo para maihalo sa scrambled eggs bukas!”. Pinayuhan ko ang kaibigan ko na hindi tinatanggap sa korte ang nalulugas na buhok ng asawa na kumakalat sa sahig bilang dahilan ng annulment ng kasal, nang minsang humingi siya sa akin ng payo. Sa halip ay sinabihan ko siyang kumbinsihin ang asawang magpakalbo upang maibili niya ng maraming wig na iba’t iba ang pagkaayos at kulay para umayon sa kanyang mood! Hindi ko na nakita ang kaibigan ko… sana hindi sinaksak ng misis!


May mag-asawa naman akong kilala na dati ay bugnutin pero hinayaan ko na lang dahil parehong mahigit 70 na ang edad. Pero nang makita ko uli ay sila pa ang unang bumati sa akin. Nang tanungin ko kung ano ang pagbabago sa buhay nila, ang sabi nila, “hindi na kami madalas maglinis ng bahay”. Noon kasi habang naglilinis sila ng bahay ay minumura nila ang alikabok, at maghapon silang nakasimangot lalo pa at nakikita nila ang pagkakalat ng dalawang apo. Nadiskubre din nila na mula noong hindi na sila madalas maglinis, tuwing umaga ay may dalawa hanggang tatlong ipis silang nakikita na nagkikisay. Sabi ko sa kanila ay malamang na-“suffocate” o nalason ng naipong alikabok sa sahig ang mga ipis na ginagapangan nila. Dagdag- paliwanag ko pa ay, kaya siguro mas gustong manirahan ng ipis sa cabinet at mga sulok ay dahil wala halos alikabok sa mga ito. Bilang payo, sinabihan ko silang mag-ball room dancing na rin.


Maraming ospital na hi-tech ang naglilipana ngayon saan mang panig ng mundo, kasama na diyan ang Pilipinas at nagpapataasan pa ng singil. Dahil sa kamahalan ng kanilang singil, ang nakakakaya lang magpa-admit ay mayayaman, na ang kadalasang sakit ay sa puso, kanser at iba pang sakit na pangmayaman.  Subali’t hindi maipagkakaila na ang mga sakit na nabanggit ay nakukuha rin sa mga “maruming pagkain”. Ito yong mga pagkaing ipinagbawal na nga ng doctor ay patuloy pa ring kinakain. Alam na ng lahat kung ano ang mga “maruming” pagkain kaya kalabisan na kung babanggitin ko pa. Upang pabalik-balik sa mga doktor ang mga pasyente, siyempre dahil sa kikitain mula sa mahal na konsultasyon, sinasabihan na lang nila ang mga ito na kumain ng mga dapat ay bawal na pagkain “in moderation”, o hinay-hinay, o paunti-unti. Obviously, ay upang hindi bigla ang pag-goodbye sa mundo….at tulad ng nabanggit na, tuloy pa rin ang mahal na konsultasyon!


Ang industriya sa paggawa ng mga pagkaing dapat ay “moderate” lang daw kung kainin ay tuloy sa paglago at pagkita ng limpak-limpak upang  masupurtahan naman ang gobyerno sa pamamagitan ng buwis na binabayad nila. Ang ilang mababanggit na produkto ay processed foods na may salitre o preservative, maraming asin, food coloring, na tulad ng hot dog, corned beef,  bacon, ham, smoked fish, at mga inuming may kulay at artipisyal na lasa.


Sa puntong ito, gustong ipakita ng mga Tsino na nangunguna sila sa lahat ng bagay kaya pati ang paggawa ng nakalalasong artificial na bigas, sotanghon, alak, at pati ang itinanim na ngang bawang ay inaabunuhan din ng isang uri ng fertilizer na nakakalason sa tao, upang maging “matibay” at hindi mabulok agad sa imbakan. Ang masama lang, artificial at nilason na nga ang mga pagkain ay nakikipagsabwatan pa ang mga Tsino sa mga walang puso at konsiyensiyang mangangalakal sa Pilipinas upang maipuslit ang mga ito kaya hindi napapatawan ng karampatang buwis. Kung sa bagay, paano nga namang maipapadaan sa legal na proseso ang mga produktong bawal?  Maliban lang siyempre…. kung palulusutin naman ng mga buwaya at buwitre sa Customs!


Ang legal namang buwis na nalilikom ay ginagamit ng gobyerno sa mga proyektong kailangan ng bansa at mga mamamayan sa pangkalahatan. Kaya masasabing may pakinabang din pala ang paggawa ng pagkaing unti-unting pumapatay sa tao…. isang paraan nga lang ng pagsi-self annihilate o pagpapakamatay…. upang makontrol ang paglobo ng populasyon…na ang ibang paraan ay giyera, kalamidad tulad ng bagyo, baha, lindol, at matinding tag-tuyot!


Kung hindi dahil sa nabanggit na mga paraan, baka pati sa tuktok ng mga bulkan ay may mga condominium at subdivision dahil sa dami ng mga taong aabutin ng mahigit 100 taong gulang bago mamatay…at  baka biglang mawala ang wildlife na magiging delicacy na rin dahil sa kakulangan ng pagkain…at baka magiging bahagi na rin ng pagkain ng tao ang minatamis na mga dahon at balat ng kahoy!


Sa Tsina ay delicacy ang talampakan ng oso o bear. Sana ang magagaling na Tsinong chef ay makadiskubre ng masasarap na recipe para sa buwaya, buwitre, at hunyango…marami kasi nito sa Pilipinas para mapandagdag sa pagkain ng mga Pilipinong nagugutom dahil ninanakaw ng mga walang kaluluwa ang pera ng bayan!


Nang Dahil sa Sobrang Privacy at Kayabangan…(mga kuwentong kapupulutan ng leksiyon)

Nang Dahil sa Sobrang Privacy at Kayabangan…

(mga kuwentong kapupulutan ng leksiyon)

Ni Apolinario Villalobos


Mahalaga sa buhay ng tao ang pakikipagkapwa at ang pagiging simple lang sa buhay. Pwedeng ipagmalaki ang mga biyayang natamo dahil pinaghirapan pero hindi dapat ipagyabang. Ang pagmamalaki ay hindi masyadong mabigat ang dating hindi tulad ng pagyayabang kahit halos pareho lang ang ibig sabihin ng dalawang kataga.


Nagpapakita ng sobrang privacy ang iba kung ayaw nilang lapitan sila ng mga nagso-solicit, o ng mga namumulot ng basurang makikiinom na kumakatok sa gate, o di kaya ay mismong mga kapitbahay na feeling nila ay “poor” at hihingi lang ng walang katapusang tulong . Halos hindi din sila nakikita sa labas ng bahay, dahil wala silang pakialam sa mga kapitbahay, na okey sana kahit papaano, subalit kung haluan ng pagmamataas dahil sila ay nakakaangat sa buhay daw…iba na ang usapan. Ang isang paraan sa pagpapahiwatig na ayaw nilang maistorbo dahil hindi naman daw sila nakikialam sa iba, ay ang pagpapalakas nila ng tugtog. Kung magpa-party naman, ang mga imbitado ay mga taga-ibang lugar, puro may kotse kaya ang kahabaan ng kalye sa tapat nila ay umaapaw sa mga ito. Alam ko ito dahil kuwento ito ng isa kong kaibigan na ganito ang ugali, na nagkaroon ng mga kaibigang nakilala lang niya sa mga party kaya hindi niya gaanong alam ang mga pagkatao.


Ang kaibigan kong ito ay kumakagat sa mga business proposal na inaalok  sa kanya ng mga taong tingin niya ay mayaman naman. Hindi pumasok sa isip niyang siya ay ginagamit lang. At upang ipakita na kahanay siya ng mga ito sa “mataas na lipunan”, kahit walang alam sa golf ay bumili ng mga gamit upang makasabit sa paggo-golf ng mga ito. Puro naman siya sablay sa palo, kaya kadalasan ay nakaka-tatlong kape siya habang nanonood na lang. Paanong hindi sasablay ay mataas lang siya ng one foot sa mga golf clubs! Siya din ang nagkukuwento ng mga “adventure” daw niya pati ang pagsasama niya sa mga casino, sabay tawa.  Pagkatapos ng golf ay naghahatid pa siya sa dalawang kaibigang tamad magmaneho ng kotse nila, pero ang gamit naman ay kotse niya.  Hinihiraman din siya ng mga gamit na kailangan daw sa opisina. Upang ipakitang kaya niyang gumastos, bumibili pa siya ng ibang mga kailangang gamit.


Sa kasamaang palad, bago niya namalayan ay nalusaw na pala ang kanyang mga investment, laspag ang kotse at ang mga gamit na pinahiram para sa opisina ay hindi na naibalik. Naka-apat siya ng “business ventures” na inalok ng mga ka-golf niya, na puro nauwi sa wala. Nang mag-usap kami minsan nalaman ko na ang gusto lang sana niyang mangyari ay “makita” ng ibang tao na siya ay isang “businessman” tulad ng dalawa niyang kapitbahay na may mga puwesto sa mall…kaya ang inipong pera para sa retirement nilang mag-asawa ay halos nasaid. Ngayon ang bahay nila ay nakasangla, may sakit pa silang mag-asawa sa puso dahil sa nervous breakdown. Ang mga dating ka-sosyo at ka-golf ay halos hindi na pumapansin sa kanya. Pinaliwanagan naman daw siya, pero ang sabi ay, “…ganoon talaga sa negosyo, minsan ay sinusuwerte pero kadalasan ay bumabagsak”.  Ang kaibigan ko ay dating manager ng isang multi-national company sa Saudi….na ang kuwento ng buhay ay “from rags to riches”….na kadalasan namang nagreresulta sa pagiging social climber.


Yon namang isa kong kilala ay mahilig magpakita ng mga biyaya, ibig sabihin ay mayabang. Setyembre pa lang ay nagtodo na sa paglagay ng mga Christmas lights sa loob at labas ng bahay na dati na niyang ginagawa.  Kahit masikip na ang bahay, ay may Christmas tree pa rin na umabot ang taas sa kisame. Nang pumunta ako sa kanila sa Pasay isang gabi ng Oktubre, nakita kong halos naglalagablab na ang bahay nila sa dami ng Christmas bulbs. Nagpayo uli ako na baka masunog sila. Ang sagot sa akin ay hayaan na lang dahil mura lang naman daw ang pagkabili ng mga Christmas bulbs at mabuti nga dahil napapansin agad ang bahay nila.


Makalipas ang dalawang linggo, nang pasyalan ko uli, nagulat ako dahil mahigit kalahati ng bahay nila ay naging uling. Ang kaibigan ko naman at pamilya niya ay nakikitira na lang ngayon sa isang pinsan na binabayaran niya ng tatlong libong piso isang buwan para sa isang entresuwelo o extension ng bahay – sa isang slum area malapit sa kanila.


Yong isa pang kuwento ng kayabangan at sobrang privacy ay tungkol naman sa isang pamilya na feeling mayaman na, kahit hindi pa naman. Malakas magpatugtog kaya hanggang sa ikaapat na bahay mula sa kanila ay abot ang ingay na animo ay galing sa isang videoke unit. Gusto yatang ipabatid na palaging may party sa kanila. Hindi rin sila nakikisama sa mga kapitbahay.


Isang araw ay pinasok sila ng mga magnanakaw. Ang nakita ng isang kapitabahay ay nakaparadang mamahaling kotse at van sa labas nila at naririnig pa rin ang malakas na tugtog. Sunod na nakita naman ay tatlong lalaki na disente ang mga ayos at mukha na lumabas ng bahay at may mga bitbit na gamit.  Hindi sila pinansin ng mga kapitbahay, kahit nakailang beses sila ng hakot ng iba’t ibang gamit sa van. Bandang huli, nakita silang lumabas ng pinto na halos pasigaw pang “nagpaalam” sa kung sino man sa loob ng bahay.


Nalaman na lang mga kapitbahay na may nangyari palang nakawan nang dumating ang nanay ng kasambahay ng may–ari ng tinutukoy kong bahay. Pabalik-balik na pala ito at inabot na ng hapon sa katatawag sa gate pero hindi pinagbubuksan. Dahil nag-alalang baka ikinulong ng mga amo ang anak niya, tulad ng mga kuwentong napapanood sa TV, humingi ito ng tulong sa Barangay. Ang ginawa ng isang Barangay tanod ay umakyat sa pader na lampas-tao at sumilip sa bintana, pero nagulat siya dahil hindi nakakandado ang pinto nang subukan niya itong buksan. Nang pumasok siya, naghinala siya na pinagnakawan ang bahay dahil halata ang mga pinagtanggalan ng mga appliances, may mga kawad pa kasing naiwan. Ang mga miyembro naman ng pamilya na nakagapos at may mga tape sa bibig ay pinagsisiksikan na parang sardinas sa banyo. Ang anak na dalagita ay nakita sa isang kwarto at nalamang na-rape pala! Ang hinala ng mga taga-barangay ay pinalitan ng mga magnanakaw ang kandado ng gate upang hindi mabuksan ng sasaklolo kaya nai-lock nila ito nang sila ay umalis.


Ang hirap lang sa iba nating kapwa nilalang ng Diyos, nang magkaroon ng pera ay “feeling secured” na kaya para sa kanila ay hindi na nila kailangan ang tulong ng ibang tao. Ang dasal ko….sana ay magbago sila ngayong pasko….Amen?

The Self-Destruction of Man

The Self-Destruction of Man

By Apolinario Villalobos

The uncontrolled greed of man is manifested in his acts of self-destruction. Despite incessant reminder that what is too much is deadly, man still goes on with his caprices for overindulgence in everything he thinks is for his comfort and survival.

Man invents gadgets, tools, and equipment. Also develops new breed of vegetables, marine foods, livestock, even concoct supposedly healthy substances in laboratories as food supplement to prevent sicknesses. Healing properties of plants are cloned to assume long-lasting elements so that they can be packed as “medicines”. Unfortunately, all the good intent has been overshadowed by man’s evil greed and desire that practically made all the aforementioned into killing devices, instead of healing resources.

The microwave oven is lately found to cause cancer because of the radiation it emits that cooks or heat food at a speedy rate. Expensive antibiotic drugs are found to impair the kidney. Even so-called helpful aspirin can eventually destroy the guts. Most drugs cannot be used at the same time at the onset of complications because of counter-indications. Some drugs do not even allow the imbibing of herbal drinks, still because of counter-indications.

It is true that misuse and abuse can cause the deadly effects of inventions of man. But because of selfishness and pride, man has totally forgotten to observe precaution. Man thinks that he is intelligent enough to know what he is doing. Man concocted synthetic drugs in laboratories to be sold to unsuspecting patients who practically gobble them up with the help of medical practitioners. Man invents gadgets that send out fatal electronic waves that destroy his brain. And, man invents instruments of destruction guaranteed to wipe out the entire population of a city!

Greed and pride push man not to be outdone by his intelligent fellow creatures. This nasty attitude spells the rule: survival of the fittest…and eventually, destruction!