20th February 2006
It had a Queen. She was pretty.
It had Princesses. They were jealous.
It had speeches. They were long.
It was very similar to the Tabucan Fiesta.
Things that I found interesting include:
They were taught the dances by a guy called Pong. Pong is as gay as the day is long and I'm sure he could put a lisp in the word "wheelbarrow". He has more cleavage than most supermodels. I'm unsure how he actually got his cleavage. It may have been via hormones or via some tissues stuffed down his bra. I was too embarrassed to ask and wasn't sneaky enough to take a peek.
Pong spent many hours with the kids teaching them the dances. I thanked him afterwards, which was more difficult than it sounds. I was unsure whether to say "He" or "She", or call him Amiga (friend who is a girl), or Amigo (friend who is a guy). A good guy/girl nevertheless.
The practices were done during class time, which was very annoying as I often had half the class get up and leave so that they could practice. At one point I had six students left in a class of 33. The most annoying point was when half my class left to practice the Big Brother dance. Everybody here knows the Big Brother dance. It is done to death. It is a very important that I teach the kids at the moment as their final exams are about two weeks away. The order of importance seems to be:
Dance the Big Brother Dance > Pass Math Exam
This is what I think of the Big Brother Dance.
The Junior Basketball Tournament
The final was contested between Bugnay and The Green Team*. Bugnay were the heavy favorites to win. While they were obviously not "rich", they still appeared to be the better funded team. Their uniforms all matched and they all wore sports shoes. The Green Team on the other hand had many missed matched uniforms.
Bugnay was also a lot bigger, which is a big advantage in basketball. John Paul is a very big twelve year old. His sheer size, strength and skill allowed him to dominate large portions of the game. The Green Team had the better team work though, and this allowed them to keep in touch.
The Green Team eventually won by two points. The winning goal was scored by a little guy just before the final buzzer went. He'd done nothing for practically the whole game, but managed to steal the game for his team.
I really enjoyed watching the game. It was a good example of the little guys winning and a Champion Team beating a Team of Champions.
A special mention has to go to Leo Cabrera though, who played exceptionally well for the Green Team. He wasn't nearly as big as John Paul, but his skill level was exceptional. He made plays that he shouldn't of been able to, and shot hoops that a much older kid would of been proud of. A real team player too. I really love this photo. It shows Leo being surrounded by the entire other team, and still making his way out. Leo won the MVP award for the tournament, which I was just stoked about. Leo is also one of the cleverest kids in Grade 5 and a really nice kid too.
Being a Karaoke Superstar
Most of the houses in my "middle-class" suburb have Video CD players that play Karaoke songs. Another volunteer swears that they saw a karaoke player in the slums of Manila.
Most of the other volunteers are quite shy about singing some karaoke, but I'm the complete opposite. I lurv singing karaoke. I play to crowds quite well, which helps a lot. Most people sit down to sing in the Philippines, but I get up and groove.
There was a small karaoke bar set up at the Pulao Fiesta. The kids that I was wandering with asked me to sing some songs, so I paid my five pesos and belted out versions of:
I danced and pranced around and hit the big notes, much to the amusement of the drunk guys who were watching. There was lots of high fives and clapping after each of my songs. The Karaoke machine only gave me a 96 out of 100, which is a pretty average score. Boo!
I usually tell people that I can't sing (which is true), but I really like singing Karaoke.
For some reason they were all run by gay people.
My favorite was the bingo, with its "Modern" Electric Bingo Board, which was a grid of lights that were turned on my throwing balls into a grid of switches. Very cool.
The bingo cost one peso a pop, and the winner got everyone else's pesos. I paid for the flock of school kids that was following me around as well. We all had a lot of fun.
Mam Thercy (a teacher of Pulao), seemed to clean up big time at the block game.
Hanging With The Kids
* I can't remember their name, so Green Team will
have to to.
2005 and 2006 Malcolm Trevena.