BUGS & BYTES,
In Bigger Prints

Table of Contents

 

Section I
PROLOGUE, EPILOGUE, IKLOG (O MANOK?)

1 The Egg

2 Hatsing! (Bless Me)

3 Arthropodic Wisdom

4 Dear Decision Maker

5 Letters To The World

6   A Pain In My Head

7 Something Happened On My Way To School
8   A Discourse on The Grand Laws of the Universe

9 Black or White

10 Bayanihan in Jeddah

11 Chair of The Interim Board

12 Breakaway Telephonic Existence

13 The 'R' in Mrs. Regis

14 One City, One School

15 Eggs Breaking

16 PESJ History

17 The Chicken Fence

18 Believing The Man

19   My Own Version of The Jolo-Caust

20 My Sister's Version

21 The Rifle Guitar

22   Cat Stevens Unplugged

23  Landing on D-Day

24 The Great O-O-Os of the Late 20th Century

25 He Kept On Stumbling Over Chickens And Eggs

26   The Renaissance of Tilapia Farming And The Likes

27   The Saga Continues

28   The Pigeons In Our Lives

29 The Essence of Education

30   A School Is A Home

31  Gentle Fire From The Qur'an

32  At The Threshold

33  A Brief Discourse On Dancing

34  Being First

35   At The Edge of Light-Blue Metallic

36   Grappling With The Colossus

 

Section II
BUGS & BYTES
In Bigger Prints

The Power To Be
Excerpts from B & B Vol. 1 # 1

Of Crabs & Men
Excerpts from B & B Vol. 2 # 2

PathWalks
Excerpts from B & B Vol. 2 # 2

An Inability To Understand
Excerpts from A Speech by Prince Charles,
B & B Vol. Vol. 3 # 1

'Educating Miriam'
Excerpts from A Case Study of A Philippine School,
B & B Vol 3 # 2

 

Section III
BABEL RISING

A millennial short story

 

A Glossary of Pilipino
(& Near-Pilipino) Terms
Wondering what iklog is?

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Prologue, Epilogue, Iklog (O Manok?)
Copyright 1999 by Said Sadain, Jr.

15   Eggs Breaking

At the height of all these PESJ activities, my boss, the general manager of my overseas-contracted workplace, was giving me long sharp looks already. To my credit, I had stashed away a lot of unused vacation days over the years. I gradually used these days up to compensate for my frequent absences from the office, or for the inadequate hours I could spend at the office in between school board meetings and general assemblies. Meanwhile, the cash continued to flow out of my pocket.

By mid-year of 1996, it was obvious the present facilities, even with the expansion steps, were not enough to accommodate the growing school. It was also obvious that parties who wanted the PESJ closed down were bent on doing just that.

On several occasions, some people posing as representatives from local government authorities came to the school, warning, harassing and threatening, even picking up one of our regular staff, Dadong, and one of our parent volunteers, Raymund Davis, and holding them briefly at the local police station, then deciding to let them go again before the school could react.

It was also apparent that internally, conflicts and factions were developing.

Some of my co-revolutionaries remained and acted as revolutionaries even when they were at the helm of government already, unbending, unrelenting to any compromises. Some of us continued to refuse to join and associate with other Filipino expat organizations in Jeddah, simply because these associations were closely linked with the consulate general offices.

Some switched goals with the intensity of an European football match and brazenly demanded more benefits, mainly monetary, from the school as if it was their natural birthright to do so.

Unknown assailants resorted to old school tactics of breaking car windshields.

Some board members abandoned their post prematurely.

It was a period of eggs and balls breaking.

In the meantime, with the opening of another school term, the PESJ interim school board further reduced the annual tuition fees by a couple more hundred riyals, with promises of more rebates at the end of the school year. PSJ had by now also reduced its tuition fees to a comparable level after all the years that its school officials so adamantly claimed it could not be done: from a high of SR 6,000 in early 1995, the tuition fees were now hovering at the level of SR 4,200 per student.

By late August 1996, as mandated by the PESJ school policies, the parents elected the first official school board composed of fresh blood.

None of us in the interim school board stood for re-election.

A shrink might have said to us at that juncture: you have been wrangling with each other, and with the other school, and with consulate and embassy officials and with local authorities for so long now, that you probably just wanted to take a much-needed break.

Of course, it was not exactly like that at all, but who can argue with a shrink?

For a while the interim board supported the fresh slate of parents-officials, especially when it was time to negotiate for moving the campus to a common, bigger area, 40% occupied by PESJ and the other 60% occupied by PSJ. The two schools were to be renamed as International Philippine School in Jeddah with two sections: the Science Education Section (which the PESJ claimed) and the General Education Section (which the PSJ did not want to claim), each section operating autonomously, with curriculum, management and finances of its own.

 

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