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Thrill or threat

Netnet Camomot .

“THRILLER” was on a loop at a Cagayan de Oro supermarket on Oct. 31. Its sales staff were also in Halloween mood with their costumes and makeup.

“‘Cause this is thriller/Thriller night,” as I tried to choose between popcorn or peanuts, chips or cookies, or how about chocolate chip cookies.

Meanwhile, children, also in costume and sometimes with makeup to match, roamed around the mall for trick or treat. I don’t know if any of the malls’ tenants chose trick, because if it were up to me, that should be treat or treats—one piece of chocolate truffle or one box of Royce Nama Chocolate.

President Rody Duterte, though, would probably prefer threat or threats.

The long Halloween weekend was the perfect time to experiment with treats. More particularly, to find out what’s making me fat. Kinahanglan pa diay na ipangutana? Obvious na man, di ba?

So, on Friday, I had a sumptuous breakfast and that somehow paved the way to a feast for the rest of the day. The morning after, one pound gain. Ouch. Which made me think: Had I drunk water instead of mindlessly filling up the tummy with peanuts and chips for midnight snacks, it would have been a one-pound loss instead.

Unlike Duterte who loves to tell jokes—that is, according to his current spokesperson Salvador Panelo—food is serious business. First of all, we won’t survive without food. So, trees are cut to have more space for cattle, piggies, chickens, plus their food. And then you find out that meat, processed food, milk, sugar, white flour are bad for your health—but their lobbyists will try to convince you that veggies and fresh fruits are loaded with fertilizers and chemicals. And then, because of uncontrolled food consumption, diet books, diet gurus and gyms are attracting much moolah, thanks to health-conscious people who have learned that losing weight is no joke.

So, what was Duterte’s joke this time? He wondered why there’s an All Saints’ Day. Hmmm. Is that supposed to be funny? Where’s the joke there?

Well, this must be the joke: Duterte said he could be the Catholic Pinoy’s patron saint—Santo Rodrigo.

Har. Har. Har.

I’ve stopped taking the president’s informal speeches seriously. I guess the only time he’s not joking is when he’s talking in private with his cabinet members, government officials, business leaders, his family, and when he’s with presidents, government officials and business leaders of other countries. Outside of that, he will always manage to insert a joke or two. If only he could acquire the habit of adding the word “joke” to each joke, then the dilawan will finally get it—Aha! He’s joking! Haha!

For example. He says, Get hold of a picture of mine, ’yan ang ilagay niyo sa altar—Santo Rodrigo. Joke.

Or this: Bakit naman may All Souls’ Day tapos may All Saints’ Day? Hindi nga natin alam ’yung mga santo, na kung sino mga g**o na ’yun, mga lasenggo. Joke.

And this: P***ng in*! Joke.

The funniest joke I’ve ever heard, though, is this story about a public school’s septic tank that ended up growing taller than the rest room. Hmmm. Growth hormones, anyone?

Apparently, Duterte’s “Build, Build, Build” has burdened the government’s big time suki contractors with too much construction, so, they subcontract projects, resulting to substandard work such as the septic tank. Joke? Nope! It’s a true story, and a friend told me, “Reklamo ang mga teacher. Dili mosaka pag-flush.” Do I have to specify kung unsa ang dili mosaka?

The ever reliable—hehe—Wikipedia describes a septic tank as “an underground chamber made of concrete, fiberglass or plastic, through which domestic wastewater (sewage) flows for basic treatment.” So, if it’s taller than the rest room, that means… Well, feel free to calculate, let’s see—pronounced as the Spanish word for milk—if it’s worth the government funds wasted on it. By the way, those funds are from the taxes the Pinoy pays whether he likes to or not.

We have also noticed damaged faucets in other public schools. Due to the hard-habit-to-break of the government to “Build, Build, Build” and leave, leave, leave the area once the project is completed? We’re ending that with a question mark to give them the benefit of the doubt.

Whenever the government asks for favors, the Pinoy’s basic instinct is to wonder who will benefit from the favor—the government, the government’s close friend, the madlang pehpohl? Most probably, the first two.

The madlang pehpohl are then left to flush the toilet and to hope their s**t won’t hit the fan.

The long Halloween weekend was a well-deserved respite from the neighborhood’s “Build, Build, Build,” and it gave me time to read books so I could finally let go of them. Too many books, too little space.

I did realize how “occupied” my room is when a succulent needed a daily sunbath and I couldn’t find an empty space by the window. Hmmm. It’s time to build, build, build a new window.

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TREND MAKER. Mindanao Gold Star Daily was established in 1989 to set ablaze a new meaning & flame to the local newspaper business. Throughout the years it continued its focus and interest in the rural areas & pioneered the growth of countryside journalism.

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