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Poverty threshold

Netnet Camomot .

IN case you’re not convinced yet of going vegan, try living in Cuba where government officials are mulling over the idea of having ostrich and rodent farms to solve their food-shortage problem.

Ostrich as a main ingredient for Pinoy food is nothing new. But rodents? As in rats? Juice colored!

The Cuban rodent, called hutia, can be as heavy as 8.5 kilograms, and as tall, er, long as 18.1 inches. It’s a humongous, gigantic and fat rat. How can anyone eat that? Ugh. With that as dinner, I’ll lose all my excess fats in a week. Talk of diet tips. Whew. “Desperate times call for desperate measures” indeed.

In Pinas, where the poverty threshold is P10,481 for a family of five, ostrich is a specialty in restos, and rodents are eaten by cats.

If ever a five-member family earns a total amount of less than P10,481 per month, should they switch their food intake to rats? Que horror!

There’s this friend who still has the same polo shirt he wore the first time we met at a meeting three years ago. I’m sure of that because of Facebook memories’ daily notifications.

For a recent meeting, he was wearing that same top, and I consciously avoided telling him about our three-year-old photo that popped up on FB. A few days later, though, I finally told him. That’s me—I can’t stay silent for long. And guess what his reply was: Gamiton nako ni nga shirt hangtud di na gyud puede kay daghang gutom nga wala gyuy makaon.

Aguy. Nahilom tawon si Netnet. Wala koy ikatubag ana.

It so happened that I’ve been buying shoes in the last few months to find out which ones are comfortable and hiyang for my feet, recovering left knee, and excess pounds.

Konsensya galore.

In case you haven’t noticed, shoes can be expensive, depending on the brand. So, the better option is to stick with your suki brand because surely there’s a reason why that’s your suki.

P10,481 is, of course, not enough for a pair of shoes that costs more than that. But the same amount can feed a Pinoy family of five for a month, and also enables them to pay for other expenses.

Thus, the need to think twice, thrice, a million times before buying unnecessary things—Do I really need this? Especially now that the KonMari method of spring cleaning is trending, for which your question for each potential purchase should be, Does it spark joy?

For the fashionista who has the $2-million Hermes Kelly Rose Gold, P10,481 could even be less than the monthly salary of her yaya.

By the way, that Hermes Kelly is the second most expensive bag for 2019. The top on the list is the $3.8-million Mouawad 1001 Nights Diamond Purse.

Take note, these bags are in US dollars. If converted to Philippine pesos, the Kelly is P103.5 million, while the Mouawad is P196.4 million. Wow.

So, there’s the wide gap between P196.4 million and P10,481. Onli in da Pilipins? Not exactly. Other countries have this same challenge of how to reduce the rich-poor gap.

If the fashionista decides to forgo her next bag purchase and use the money for a livelihood project instead, will that reduce the rich-poor gap? Hmmm.

When presidential spokesperson Salvador Panelo was asked if a family of five could survive with P10,481 per month, he replied, “It might depend on the lifestyle of the family. If you ask the poor, they might say that they will be content to eat rice with salt.” Uh. I have the perfect emoji for this: “face screaming fear.” Look it up in

Since salt and dried fish are easily produced now due to the summer heat, Panelo could be right. In Dagupan City, what used to be five days to dry fish have been reduced to three days, and salt production has doubled, with much thanks to faster evaporation and all that jazz.

Salt and dried fish can be dangerous to your health. But for a vegan to grow organic veggies in his backyard may be a challenge, though, because of El Niño. So, does that mean hello, salt, for him, too?

Food choices may seem fewer when there’s a limited budget but the family should have healthy food despite the meager resources because health is wealth.


About mindanao goldstar daily

mindanao goldstar daily
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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