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.

32   At The Threshold

At the threshold of a momentous turn of a century, I still watch the evening news on my 110-volt Toshiba TV set in spite of the fact that it had been plugged several times into 220-volt outlets by one child or another as they grew up over the years.

Along the way, the US economy saw a dramatic turnaround from the depression that felled the Kuwaiti hero, George Bush, and heralded the intimate-encounter style governance of CNN and Bill Clinton – a style that, while bullish, is somewhat disappointingly Orwellian, with a twist: Big Brother being watched.

I am particularly fascinated with William Jefferson Clinton. Do not get me wrong here. It is not in any way similar to the stalking fascination of Monica. It is more of an estimation of the eloquence of the man between his histrionic ‘That woman…’ speech and his sober, almost solemn, ‘A new dawn for America…’ speech.

I do not normally write my elder brother Mehol a letter, but in November 1992, I had the historical (or prophetic, as Franz Arcellana would say) feeling that Bill was going to be something more than just a comeback kid, although I was personally rooting for George Bush, the Saudi hero.

I remember vividly that it kept on raining for almost a week in Jeddah. The skies of Jeddah remained gloomy and most of the streets were flooded.

If you realize that in Jeddah, there is hardly any rain throughout the year except for a few drizzles for an hour or two, one day or two days a year, then you know something profound transpired. Especially, when, on the first day the sun finally shone through the humongous gray clouds, Bill Clinton’s victorious face was littered all over the Jeddah newsstands like the first grass of spring. Then I knew I had to write my brother Mehol about a new dawn.

At the threshold of a momentous turn of a century, elsewhere, nothing much has changed: the Bosnia locust swarm now moves into Kosovo; the Tutsi-Hutu mardi gras transforms into the Ethiopia-Eritrea jambalaya; Hindu fanatics are now clawing through Christian churches instead of Muslim mosques.

Mindanao is still embroiled in a secessionist war which evolved from a national liberation front to an Islamic liberation front, whatever that signifies to the various hues and colors of actors in the centuries-old drama. And although the sarimanok never quite became the peace bird that many had hoped for, it is now a welcome emblem of TFC to the hundreds of thousands of Filipinos in Saudi Arabia.

And yes, we Filipino expatriates are now being referred to in the media by the softer, gentler, politically corrrect, even subliminal, nomenclature of OFW, overseas Filipino workers, rather than the milking cow-ish title of OCW, overseas contract workers, of the earlier decade.

 

 

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