Monday, September 05, 2005

Making lemonade (Timpla ng limonada)| Noodles in a haystack (Mami sa dayami) [PJI Editorials 4-5 September 2005]

Making lemonade

WE have lemons—a lot of lemons. We can slice them. Squeeze the juice plus pulp out. Stir some sugar into that. Add water— dya-dya-dyaang! – and we have lemonade. Pools and pools and pools of lemonade we can swim, launch ships on, probably buoy up hopes of the 7, 107 islands we live in.

And don’t throw the zest off those lemons. The zest— also called rind, peel, skin that has a lot of wonderful smelling oils in it. That can be used to make lemon liqueur called lemoncillo. Making lemoncillo takes a longer time than lemonade. The process is not too complicated.

We’re considering a two-bit advice: Stuck up with lemons? Make lemonade. It’s much more potable, palatable than sour grapes and belly-aching.

See here. Of every 1,000 elementary school graduates turned up by the public school system, 994 are lemons. The six that are different must be freaks or oddballs.

Of every 100 high school graduates, 98 are lemons. The two non-lemons in that pack ought to be mutants or aliens from outer space.

Those lemons fared badly in Math, Science, and English as gleaned from various academic assessment and achievement tests plied over the years.

The lemons probably comprise the teeming numbers of voters who elect into public office a gallery of clowns, dullards, monsters, and fowls.

With an electorate like that, who needs a popular mandate? Their votes may or may not count. Those votes don’t carry much weight anyway—these are mere bulk of numbers and can be kneaded, massaged, overhauled, worked over to suit the highest bidder’s pleasure. No twinge of regret, pang of guilt, and nothing wrong in wringing desired results with such numbers.

These same numbers will be racked up to bolster ratings of TV shows appropriate for viewing by baboons.

Lest we forget, there’s the 250-member or so House of Representatives that can’t even turn up a lousy 80 members to sign up an impeachment complaint.

All told, we can’t heap the blames—or flames—on an educational system that turns up lemons for its fruits.

Reap what ye sow.

Timpla ng limonada

TALA-TALAKSAN ang ating inaning limon—hitik na hitik. Ubrang hiwain. Pigain ang katas at himaymay. Haluan ng asukal. Dagdagan ng tubig—dya-dya-dyaang!—meron na tayong limonada. Apaw na apaw na apaw na limonada na malalanguyan, paglulunsaran ng mga barko, o kahit magpalutang ng pag-asa sa 7,107 pulo na tirahan natin.

Huwag itapon ang balat ng mga limon. May mahalimuyak na langis na makakatas sa balat. Magagamit para lumikha ng masarap na alak—lemoncillo. Mas matagal gawin ang lemoncillo kaysa limonada. Pero madali lang din timplahin.

Alinsunod lang ang ganito sa isang payo. Natambakan ng limon? Gumawa ng limonada. Mas matutungga, mas masisikmura kaysa pamimintas at pagrereklamo.

Sipatin ‘to. Sa bawat 1,000 nakatapos sa mababang paaralan ng bansa, 994 ang limon. Tiyak na amuyong o asungot lang iyong kakatwang anim.

Sa bawat 100 nagtapos sa mataas na paaralan, 98 ang limon. Tiyak na mula sa ibang planeta o singaw lang ang kakaibang dalawa.

Semplang ang mga limon sa Math, Science, at English batay sa mga pagsubok at sukatan na isinalang nitong mga nakalipas na taon.

Tiyak na ang limon ang bumubuo sa bilang ng mga bobotante na naghahalal ng kalipunan ng mga hibang, bugok, buhong, at halimaw sa pamahalaan.

Kung ganoon ang manghahalal, kailangan pa ba ng kanilang sang-ayon? Mabibilang o kahit na hindi na ang boto nila—hindi naman kasi matimbang. Kaya mahihilot, malalamutak, malalamas o magugutay na kahit paano ang ganoong boto para umangkop sa nais ng may pinakamataas na bayad. Hindi dapat magsisi, magmukmok, at walang masama kung pumiga man ng kinakailangang resulta sa ganoong bunton ng bilang.

Titipunin lang din ang ganoong bilang para umangat ang TV ratings ng mga palabas na tahasang angkop panoorin ng mga unggoy.

Huwag ding kalimutan, 250 yata o higit pa ang kasapian ng Kamara na ni hindi makatipon ng kahit walang latoy na 80 kasapi para lumagda sa isang impeachment complaint.

Sa huling tuusan, hindi natin maibubunton ang sisi at siklab sa isang sistema ng edukasyon na namumunga ng sandamakmak na limon.

Inaani anuman ang naitanim.
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Noodles in a haystack

FORGIVE that lapse in judgment over a figure of speech—we are sorry.

The search for a few needles—usually of iron-- in a haystack that’s the 250-member House of Representatives ought to end today as the House panel on justice plies out its report to the plenary session. It will be told how three impeachment complaints against the President were dumped dead like the victim of summary execution done in by vigilantes.

The impeachment complaint isn’t exactly dead and buried. Not yet.

Such a dead horse can be flogged to life in the plenary session. That is if the opposition can promise the moon, twist a few arms here and there, or do deep hypnosis on their colleagues to trot around 80 members voting against the House justice committee decision.

Over the weekend, e-mail addresses and mobile phones of about 125 lawmakers must have been barraged with mails and text messages from total strangers pleading, goading, threatening ‘em lawmakers to affix their signature to the impeachment complaint. A group called TXTPower is behind this quaint assault.

TXTPower sent out via e-mail a spreadsheet of lawmakers’ names tabbed as “gray” on their stance on impeachment. The group must have surmised that those 125 or so lawmakers needed a little push off their warm seats, maybe shared indifference or non-participation in the shaping of current events.

It was an earnest try at looking for needles in a haystack that could sew—as one Victor Frankenstein stitched together parts of corpses—and cobble up the amended impeachment complaint against the President.

Nice try.

Today’s plenary session could see that corpse of a complaint brought back to life. We may yet see a Frankenstein feat.

Or the dead will finally be buried. The fragmented opposition and their allies may weep and mourn.

The search for a few needles is done—a well-rummaged haystack ought to look like a smelly pile of ukay-ukay after that.

We need not set high expectations as chaff is separated from grain.

We need not despair if the search for needles reveals a lot more of limp noodles.
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Mami sa dayami

IPAGPATAWAD na kung sablay ang pasya ukol sa tayutay na needle in a haystack, naging noodle in a haystack—ikinalulungkot namin.

Iyang paghahagilap ng ilang karayom—karaniwang sa bakal gawa—sa bunton ng dayaming tulad ng 250-kataong Kamara ay magwawakas ngayon sa pagpapalabas ng ulat sa plenary session. Isasaad lang sa ulat na ang tatlong impeachment complaint sa Pangulo ay tahasang itinapon na tila biktima ng salvage ng mga vigilante.

Hindi pa masasabing tigok at nakabaon na ang impeachment complaint. Hindi pa naman.

Ubrang hambalusin ng latigo para bumangon ang patay nang kabayo sa plenary session. Mangyayari iyan kung ang oposisyon ay ipapangako ang buwan, pumilipit ng ilang braso, o ihipnotismo ang kanilang mga katoto para makatipon ng may 80 kasapi na kokontra sa pasya ng House justice committee.

Nitong nagdaang linggo, tiyak na pinutakte ang e-mail at mobile phone ng kalatas at text message na humihimok, rumarahuyo, nanlalait o nananakot sa mga 125 kinatawan upang isama ang kanilang lagda sa impeachment complaint. Nasa likod ng ganitong gawa ang isang pangkat, TXTPower.

Nagpadala ang TXTPower sa e-mail ng isang listahan ng mga kinatawang itinuturing na “wala pang pinapanigan” sa usaping pagpapatalsik sa Pangulo. Inakala marahil na ang humigit-kumulang na 125 kinatawan ay mahihimok na tumindig, o ipagpag muna ang kawalan ng pakikisangkot sa paghubog ng mga nagaganap na pangyayari sa bansa.

Paghahagilap ng karayom sa bunton ng dayami ang tinangka. Karayom na maitatahi—gaya ng ginawa ng isang Victor Frankenstein sa mga piraso ng bangkay—at mabuo na ang hanay ng magtataguyod sa binagong impeachment complaint kontra Pangulo.

Mainam na tangka.

Sa plenary session ngayon maaaring saksihan na mabubuhay ang pinatay—tulad ng nagawa na nga ni Frankenstein.

O baka tahasang ibaon na ang bangkay. Ang watak-watak na oposisyon at kanilang mga kakampi ay maaaring humagulgol at magdalamhati.

Tapos na ang paghahagilap ng mga karayom—dapat lang na magmukhang hinalukay na talaksan ng ukay-ukay ang bunton ng dayami.

Hindi dapat umasa’t umasam habang natatahip ang butil sa ipa.

Hindi dapat malungkot kung ang paghahanap ng mga karayom (needles) ay magtatambad lang ng mga lambuting mami (noodles).



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