Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Understanding football.

The Oranje lost. We lost. The desire to win and the determination not to be defeated has made a long journey. The Dutch is defeated and made an outcast, while Spain became the Reyes --- the unico hijo.

It is true that Oranje fought to dominate, control, lead, and protect its territory. Iniesta, Xavi, and even Puyol were, after all, trained by a former Dutch professional football player (said to be one of the greatest, who is known for his signature game, Total Football), Johan Cruijff. Of course, they will protect their territory .... their game against the clones.

What I have learned from this match is, man always wants to defeat the other. It does not matter whether he/she is a friend, a neighbor, classmate, or just a plain acquaintance. Man is bound to lead, control, and defend. It is pretty much like football.

Meanwhile, the fear of defeat and the desire to win made its debut on my facebook's wall. It actually took me by surprise. I thought the present day man is more sophisticated... more logical.

Then it dawned to me. The game was not really about who's the best. Victory meant that the Reyeses were able to withstand pressure longer than the Oranje. Was victory real then? How could it be real when the defeated was merely exhausted. When strength returns again, life will roll again on the field. The defeated will challenge again when the opportunity is presented, and this time they may be victorious and the winner may be defeated.

Believe it or not, this phenomenon happens everyday and everywhere, in the form of an argument or merely showing off. Meantime, there is no question of winning or losing because the real winner is Life itself. Why? Because it never argues. Life doesn't have the need to prove itself. It does not show off. It is merely a bystander.... an observer.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

I love you, Mom.

I was told that hours before my dear friend Amelia passed on to a higher form of existence, she scribbled on a piece of paper `I love you, Mom.´ She was blind, had suffered from myasthenia gravis for more than 2 decades and therefore could barely move... but there was that note. I love you, Mom.

I love you, Mom.

How often do we have the chance to say that to our mothers? And how often do we refrain ourselves from saying it because we are encumbered with pride and don't want to sound clingy and childish?

I always have a lump in my throat whenever I think of Amelia´s note.

Whereas here in the west, children are eager to cut ties with their parents and especially with their mothers, in the east we tend to cling on to our mothers for comfort, love, and wisdom. We feel elated to be told that we are like our mothers. We are proud when people compare us with our mothers.

When we are happy, we talk to our mothers. When we are deeply bothered by or consumed with something, we go to our mothers. When we are confused and couldn´t make a decision, we turn to our mothers. When we baked a nice pie, we share it with our mothers. When we are ill and suffering, we find comfort on the thought that our mothers are close by. Indeed, our mother is our first trusted, girlfriend.

Is it the Filipino folk Catholicism? You know, the Blessed Virgin Mary and Mother of God, is also our mother. And while others cringe with embarrassment and annoyance at the very thought that in the Philippines, we call the Blessed Virgin, Mamma Mary, we Filipino Catholics actually take comfort in knowing that we have another Mamma .....in heaven, that is.

As for Amelia, her last note said it all. I love you, Mom.