20 Feb2009

postura1

A lighthearted post about revenge of the bunso (or youngest in the family). I am the bunso in a brood of five. I have two older sisters, both of whom reside in the U.S., and whose families all watched the No Reservations Philippines episode, and two older brothers, who live in the Philippines. As a kid, yes, I was the “go to” one when siblings wanted a glass of water, or the fan turned on, or a snack requested, or the dog taken out. You know how it is, you are the youngest, so suffer. :) Mind you, if you can glean anything from the way I write on this blog, our family had some of the most amazing back and forth at the dinner table. Dad, the lawyer, encouraged critical thought and intelligent arguments and discussions. Mom, the home economics major, was more into her sewing and clothes and crafts than food and entertaining, though she did a lot of the latter in the 1960’s and 70’s. But if there was one word to describe mom sartorially, it was the term “postura” or literally translated, posture, attitude and stance. You may be dressed in a Crispa t-shirt (not, she never wore t-shirts), but you better exude postura-ness if you are to be seen in public. It is a word that has stuck with me even, but more so in the psyche of my two sisters who could out-postura 99.9% of the women on the planet. So some of you may have missed this little gem of a comment from Sister a few posts back:

postura3

“… This is Fashion Week in NYC and after a very chi-chi show in Soho (last night), I was introduced to the designer’s family as “this is the sister of Pig Man”. Uhuh, I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry. Marketman has come full circle, when we were children my grandmother would always have a Cebu lechon roasted, and rushed to the airport to make the 3pm flight and we would have it for the birthday dinner. Lola would have been very proud of marketman.”

postura2

So imagine the scene. Sister has been warned by niece to think about her wardrobe for this hip young fashion show. Sister reaches into her closet(s) and miraculously pulls together a stunning outfit with bling to boot. My mother, and grandmother, from their perch in postura heaven (probably animatedly discussing the resurgence of Balenciaga as a brand in recent years) beam their silent approval, and sister sweeps into the show and folks there wonder if the Asian editor of Vogue has deigned to make an appearance. And when introduced to the designer’s folks, she is referred to as the sister of Pig Man???!!! I nearly died of laughter when I read this. This is just too funny. Maybe it’s just too private a joke, but I couldn’t stop grinning. You see, all my life, I was the brother of X, the brilliant cook. Or younger brother of Y, the investment banker. Or you mean you are a brother of Z, the plane designer and skydiver extraordinaire? Or the brother, of T, the singer/actress? Hahaha. This is the bunso’s ultimate revenge. They are now all the siblings of Pig Man!!! Heeheehee. There is justice in this world after all! :)

postura4

Notes on photos. #1 Top, my mother in seriously postura mode. #2 Marketman in seriously bad choice of clothing, obviously in my dad’s genes. Check out the booties and socks, the massive disproportionate legs and thighs on this two year old…hahahaha. #3 A slight recovery on the earlier Beatles vision and #4, The Kid, now Teen, at 2 years old in an irish linen shift and straw hat on the beach in Palawan… thank God, the concept of being postura is alive and well in my mother’s granddaughter. :)

 

COMMENTS:

  1. edee says:

    thanks for sharing these photos, they’re so cute especially the teen’s one :)…..i think it’s so pinoy being ma-postura no? ….i mean we can’t just go out wearing our pambahay clothes dba?…..anyways enjoying your posts this week….kudos again on the NR show….

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:01 am

     
  2. dragon says:

    Hi MM, this post does not have anything to do with the (in)famous shirt you wore for NR? Like exorcism & redemption???

    LOL

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:01 am

     
  3. flip4ever says:

    Remember though MM, when your sister visits Cebu — you and Fredo(?) the lechonero better be on top of your game cuz she probably has higher standards for Cebu lechon than Tony — she’s had a few more than Tony would ever have. No pressure, right ? :)

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:04 am

     
  4. Cecilia MQ says:

    Hi Mr. MM, thanks for sharing those nostalgic pictures. Priceless! specially the 2nd pic :)

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:06 am

     
  5. Maricel says:

    MM, you had me laughing again! I can just imagine Sister’s consternation at the introduction.
    I thought that The Teen’s picture was that of a Little English Miss until I saw the banca in the background and read the rest of your post. She sure did inherit the “postura” gene.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:24 am

     
  6. Anna says:

    I’m laughing my @ss of watching the second photo…a very sweet revenge indeed =)

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:25 am

     
  7. millet says:

    hahaha… revenge does happen, eh? and on an international scale at that! and during NY Fashion Week pa! this was a fun read, MM, i kept laughing.

    super-postura mom and grandma? i can sooo relate. seven hours after delivering my baby the natural way (no anesthesia), my mom tells me to comb my hair, put on makeup and lipstick because “the guests are arriving”. and she gifts me with a nightie and bathrobe set which to this day i call “the for-hospital-visitors’-viewing-set”. hahaha… my grandma on her deathbed would periodically call out for her comb and “pulbos” because she had to be beautiful when she finally met her (long-dead) husband!

    as to the sibs, MM has indeed come full circle. they will forever be referrred to as siblings of the guy who made and served the best pig…..ever. (so maybe you can ask Kuya to tie your shoes, or Ate to turn off the TV when you fall asleep…heehee….

    by the way, very nice picture of The Kid there…..early postura training – the hat, the arms folded, the dress, the gaze….precious!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:28 am

     
  8. AleXena says:

    The sister of the pig man… I could just imagine how your sister felt and how my brother would react if he read this post. I’m the panganay with only one younger brother hehehe!=P

    I have never been as postura as my lola would be and my mother was before she got sick. I was more of my father, wearing clothes with a whatever-you-got-from-the-closet attitude. But I’m changing hehehe!=)

    Your mom sure is pretty and you go her eyes in my opinion.=)

    You should have wore some cowboy hat though for pic number two to complete the look.=P

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:33 am

     
  9. Mimi says:

    mm, your mother looks absolutely fabulous! the whole photograph is filipiniana to the core – banig background, that classic hairstyle, classic bling and the pina baro’t saya. i want to have my posterity/postura photo taken like that too – kaya lang where to get those items.

    as long as the pig “tastes like candy” and the philippines (cebu) is the #1 roasted pig in the world, i would not mind being a sibling of the pig man, so i hope mm’s sisters and brothers are fine, and not offended.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 10:57 am

     
  10. Maria Clara says:

    Thank you for sharing your valuable memorabilia! Your Mother had a splendor beauty and knew how to carry her clothes and jewelries well! Look how stunning she was in her Maria Clara outfit with matching jewelries thereto. The jewelries are my ultimate desire to own but I could not find one around especially the cameo which I believe is made out of coral. With so many laboratory stones they create now, I cannot tell the difference. The tamburing bracelet and neck chain I believe they do not make them anymore. You are quite a head turner even at a young age. The Teen definitely is a carrier of the postura genes. To me postura is an inborn (genetically I suppose) and ingrained trait not acquired or developed later on in life regardless how much fortune you amassed. There are people paying seven figures for their wardrobe and they still look cheesy like they picked up their clothes from a thrift shop. I understand the feeling being at the end of the totem pole. I grew up handed down from older sisters – school uniforms, clothes, shoes, etc. My Mother was way ahead of her time and practiced and preached recycling in our household.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:02 am

     
  11. dizzy says:

    that could’ve been a very Nora Aunor moment:

    “My brother…is not…a PIG!”

    :-P

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:04 am

     
  12. Kat says:

    I want that Beatles shirt… if it’ll fit me haha. Thanks for sharing the story. I can see all the bunso clapping in glee :D

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:12 am

     
  13. uniok says:

    wow Ganda tsaka yung Haba ng Tamburin. Was she wearing a golden comb too? heheheh kasi mga matatanda mga isang set ng mga alahas nyan….antigo pa..

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:14 am

     
  14. lyna says:

    am in the office and laughing again while reading your blog, my staff calls out and says ” you’re reading that pig blog again right?”… branded ka na talaga..
    Your mom is so beautiful, she is wearing my idea of a real filipino dress complete with the tambourine and hairdo.
    And You… what to say?? sige na nga, cute!! he he
    Thanks for sharing the photos and congratulations on your happy revenge on your siblings.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:44 am

     
  15. Lee says:

    Marketman in a beatles shirt, shorts and boots.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:46 am

     
  16. bluegirl says:

    This post, The pictures, MM in a beatles shirt! PRICELESS!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:55 am

     
  17. DADD-F says:

    HHAHAHAHAHA…yes! Such sweet revenge. Never mind about …”my brother not being a pig” stuff. The point is, they, this time around are not just the sister and brother of…but of the “pig man”???…during the NYC fashion week at that!!! And after all the postura consciousness….hehe…. Ay naku, I can relate. Bunso din ako eh. But your mother is very lovely MM and your daughter’s photograph reminds me of gorgeous Agatha Christie settings…only this time, in the wonderful Philippines. :)

    Feb 20, 2009 | 12:48 pm

     
  18. ykmd says:

    Your pix made me smile…at least you can take comfort in knowing that you (hopefully) didn’t put that outfit together! heheh. Your mom looks gorgeous in her picture, so classy indeed. And I love the Teen’s pic! That would make a great cross-stitch project (seriously!) BTW MM, knowing how many “dry runs” of lechon-tasting you had before the NR shoot, it’s a wonder you didn’t balloon to 300 lbs! You looked quite fit in the episode.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 12:59 pm

     
  19. NYCMama says:

    OH MY GAWD! I had that exact same Beatles t-shirt!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 1:12 pm

     
  20. Jenny says:

    Who introduced Sister? Don’t tell me it was your niece?

    Feb 20, 2009 | 1:15 pm

     
  21. sometime_lurker says:

    hahaha @ dizzy and MM.

    And woohoo for the bunso! :p

    Feb 20, 2009 | 1:20 pm

     
  22. Angela says:

    LOVE the pictures! Your mom was beautiful, you were adorable, and your daughter too precious. All very ‘postura’ with exception of picture #2, though it doesn’t take away from the adorableness. You could say that it was a 2-yr. old’s version of ‘postura’.

    Like you, I inherited my dad’s genes. My mom and grandmother? Very postura. Me? I used to be, until I had kids. Now, I’ll put on whatever is clean–bonus if it kinda matches. What?? It’s clean, right? Thank goodness I am a nurse by profession. All I have to do is wear scrubs ;)

    My grandmother had a similar tamburin (or is it tamburing?) set. The pieces were handed down to her daughters, then her granddaughters. My niece got the necklace, I got the earrings, and a cousin got the bracelet. It’s not worth much money, but it holds a lot of memories.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 1:48 pm

     
  23. Ley says:

    Hahahaha… I remember sister in prada at the palace of justice. So funny…

    Feb 20, 2009 | 1:54 pm

     
  24. Artisan Chocolatier says:

    Hahahaha….Love your boots!!!! Did you have it bronze for prosperity?

    Feb 20, 2009 | 1:56 pm

     
  25. Artisan Chocolatier says:

    oops….i meant to say posterity!!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 2:00 pm

     
  26. ria says:

    your little girl I mean teen is so adorable! very very very very Cute! with the capital C! lol!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 2:28 pm

     
  27. sonny sj says:

    dizzy, lyna, i nearly died laughing with your comments!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 2:35 pm

     
  28. Marketman says:

    OKAY, another personal tidbit. Ley’s comment needs background. Sorry sister at yet another amusing anecdote. Ley is referring to an incident at the Cebu Palace of Justice (where the courts are) and sister and I were there for a case being heard. Sister had flown in the day before from New York, where it was the middle of winter. On day 2, sister showed up in a sleeveless linen dress, and the female guard at the Palace of Justice says “mam, bawal ang sleeveless sa Palace of Justice…” (you can’t wear anything sleeveless…) perturbed, but cognizant of gatekeepers, rules (silly or not), and NEEDING to get into the courthouse, sister looked into her massive handbag and noticed that she had a pair of longjohns (thermal underwear) that she had probably removed on the plane ride to Manila. She had an aha! moment, stuck her left arm into the left leg and the right arm into the right leg of the thermal underwear, looked the female guard in the eye and said something like “O Miss, hindi na sleeveless…” and do you think the guard let her in? Of course she did! On Day 3, another day of hearings, when sister had to take the stand, she arrived dressed to the nines, hair blow-dryed, ready for a performance worthy of a television legal drama… I think it is the latter that Ley refers to as “Sister in Prada” though I think in retrospect it was Armani. Hahaha. I kid you not. These things happen to us. Dinner table conversation in our family is a bit more looney than usual… :)

    Feb 20, 2009 | 2:39 pm

     
  29. sonny sj says:

    sorry….should have typed: laughing at your comments

    Feb 20, 2009 | 2:40 pm

     
  30. jme says:

    OMG! This story is sooo funny! I’m a bunso myself, so I can relate… :D I wonder when I’ll have my own revenge? [BTW, I discovered your blog just yesterday and I am absolutely in love with it.]

    Feb 20, 2009 | 3:05 pm

     
  31. SimplePleasure says:

    hahahaha..I can so relate being the bunso for 8 years then my little brother came along! I’m still the go to person!:D

    Cute outfit MM! Your mom look so gorgeous with her terno love it!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 3:17 pm

     
  32. Katrina says:

    What a hilarious story! I can imagine how Sister must’ve felt — I’m the eldest of four, and yes, I used to often “ask” (though it was really “tell” or even “command”) my youngest brother to turn the fan on or off, tell the maid something, etc. This incident was really the ultimate revenge!

    I’m curious — who was the person who called you “pig man?” Someone from the NR crew, a Pinoy who watched the show, or just someone who knows all about the Bourdain visit here?

    Feb 20, 2009 | 4:01 pm

     
  33. Marketman says:

    My nephew, Sister’s son, has a friend that is one of the industrial partners of sort of the designer who had the show. So the designer and friends at my nephews suggestion, had watched the episode the night before, while they were rushing the final touches to the collection. So I imagine it was one of the American ladies that saw the show that referred to me as “pig man”…. :)

    Feb 20, 2009 | 4:07 pm

     
  34. kate says:

    beautiful photos :) i especially like the teen’s pic. so precious!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 4:24 pm

     
  35. smiles4angels says:

    love the fashion sense of “the teen”!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 5:32 pm

     
  36. millet says:

    hahaha….longjohns as sleeves, and in the Hall of Justice, at that! that is sooo hilarious. i bet the guard thought nothing at all about it..so long as she got her sleeves!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 5:49 pm

     
  37. Bubut says:

    so watch out MM when you go to NY and someone notices you… they wil say “Hey! that’s the Pig Man from AB’s NR, lets ask for his autograph! “

    Feb 20, 2009 | 7:07 pm

     
  38. kulasa says:

    Ay postura.. sure made me miss my mom, my aunts and grandma. I hated being asked to turn around so they can check the way I looked – duh.

    MM, I can say your taste in shirts have improved, considering what you’ve worn in the NR show – I wonder what they’d think if you showed up wearing that Beatles outfit.

    PIG man? I’d say it stands for Pretty Incredible Guy.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 8:06 pm

     
  39. marilen rodriguez says:

    the joy of the stories and the photos – thank you MM!! for sharing

    Feb 20, 2009 | 9:14 pm

     
  40. Vanessa says:

    That is a lovely photo of your daughter!

    Feb 20, 2009 | 9:42 pm

     
  41. Dennis says:

    Another great post MM. I’m laughing like crazy! And your mention of CRISPA t-shirt brought back a lot of memories from more than 30 years ago. Are they still in business?

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:03 pm

     
  42. sister says:

    I’ll never be able to live this down or go to an Eyeball where folks will find out I am so ordinary… being “postura” now requires serious effort when it once was SOP. I have to say I am proud to be “Pig Man’s Sister”. Someday I may just run into AB in NYC and heap blame on NR. But being the oldest I had rank but no clout, highly unusual for a Philippine family where hierarchy usually counts. Marketman may have been the youngest, but he was also the most favoured by the stars in the long run, in a family that makes “crazy” a very mild pejorative word. If we wrote a book no one would believe all that has happened in our lives, and it would definitely outclass anybody else’s tale of woe. But a highly developed sense of the absurd has made it all all very funny and memorable.

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:07 pm

     
  43. eej says:

    Ah, being the youngest does have its perils. You become the go-fer around the house. On the upside however, you do end up with the lion’s share on the dining table ;)

    Feb 20, 2009 | 11:16 pm

     
  44. Cookie says:

    I absolutely agree – Filipinos like dressing up. I wouldn’t be caught dead in sneakers or sweats running errands – I might run into someone I know! This I learned early on from grandma and my mom. Millet, I have the same experience. Before I gave birth, my grandmother’s sister, bought me something to wear for when visitors start arriving. Mom was brushing my hair, had to make sure I had at least powdered my face and put gloss on.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:00 am

     
  45. Cookie says:

    I absolutely agree – Filipinos like dressing up. I wouldn’t be caught dead in sneakers or sweats running errands – I might run into someone I know! This I learned early on from grandma and my mom. Millet, I have the same experience. Before I gave birth, my grandmother’s sister, bought me something to wear for when visitors start arriving. Mom was brushing my hair, had to make sure I had at least powdered my face and put gloss on. Oh and by the way, Mom would also have your “face” on for visitors.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:00 am

     
  46. Joni says:

    Hahahaha! :) Love it!

    Pig Man and Sister’s Longjohns. :D

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:10 am

     
  47. Mandy says:

    So funny! Your sister must’ve been so mortified. :)

    That picture of you with the boots–I wonder if they made you wear double socks because your boots were too big? Hence the massive thighs & calves? haha.

    Cookie–I know what you mean. My mom when I gave birth to my first child brought me to the lingerie section and was looking for a bed jacket to buy for me. Hindi sha makahanap kasi hindi na uso! The sales ladies didn’t even know what she was talking about. ;)

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:36 am

     
  48. Anupama, India says:

    Having missed all the eyeballs, I was delighted to finally see the face behind one of my favorite blogs. Thank you for sharing your pictures and hilarious “revenge” story. How does it feel with the veil of anonymity finally removed ?

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:53 am

     
  49. Rafael Castillo says:

    @MM & Sister:

    Thanks for sharing these little tidbits & photos of your family life. Perhaps instead of saying “my brother is Pigman”, you should say, “Anthony Bourdain says my brother makes the best roast pig ever”. Haha. Remember, coming from an unapologetic omnivore that Tony is, that’s one heck of a compliment.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:57 am

     
  50. angelbride says:

    Absolutely hilarious MM, thanks for sharing. Love the teen picture!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:59 am

     
  51. ECC says:

    MM, could you please share some pictures of Sister? I have always been in awe of Sister. And, Sister, could you please share some stories about MM?

    Feb 21, 2009 | 1:58 am

     
  52. sister says:

    I would like to remain anonymous, unlike Pig Man who has given you a full frontal view, albeit with clothes on.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 2:32 am

     
  53. lady promdi says:

    Hello Marketman, was hovering and landed upon your site. What a magnificent find.
    Thank you. My mouth watered as I swam over your letchon, biko and inun-unan and so much more…

    I’m so liking and enjoying these and oh… I watched AB’s NR PI (10:00 and again 11:00 pm, 2/16) had no idea it was you. Is this find “serendipity”? “Luck”? Tell me.

    Cherry dahlin’ please go fly a kite.

    Great photos.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 2:35 am

     
  54. quiapo says:

    I wonder if the ladies in your family inherited your mother’s beauty.
    “Postura” must be a culture-bound concept, perhaps closely related to “bearing” in English, but not used as extensively in that culture (except for “military bearing” of our cadet days); the closest word in Spanish I can think of is “presencia”. Neither word seems to be the same as “postura”. It seems to require a more subtle effect than the other 2 concepts. Interesting! I grew up unaware of such a concept.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 4:06 am

     
  55. butsoy says:

    was your a mom a moviestar back in the day? coz she looked like one! she’s beutiful….

    Feb 21, 2009 | 5:42 am

     
  56. Fembot says:

    PigMan just looooves to show off, fer sur!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 5:44 am

     
  57. butsoy says:

    sorry missing an “a” in beautiful there

    Feb 21, 2009 | 5:44 am

     
  58. jun says:

    I can relate as I myself is a bunso. one thing that I always miss though is during Christmas I receive the most no. of toys being the youngest and of course a favorite of the lola’s & auntie. oh and one more thing remember for every gathering you have to make Mano to everyone wah it feels like and endless routine.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 7:07 am

     
  59. Brother says:

    Hahahahaha!!
    This one had me in stitches

    I am proud to be your brother “pigman” and sorry if I made you “utos” back then, but there were no remotes for the tv yet ;-)
    Great to see a reminder (pic of mom) of why Sister is so beautiful

    Feb 21, 2009 | 9:50 am

     
  60. chinky says:

    Shall we now call you Pigman?!?!?

    I remember my grandmothers who always took their time in front of the mirror after a bath. They always came out looking so pretty and smelling so good!!! They looked gorgeous even in a housedress or what we called “duster”

    This post is so refreshing–pictures of kids are always the best.

    Congrats for NR–haven’t seen it yet but am sure you did one heck of a job!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 10:18 am

     
  61. Laura says:

    What’s great about your foodblog is it’s never boring…there’s drama, suspense & now…comedy!
    Very cute – thanks for sharing :)

    Feb 21, 2009 | 11:13 am

     
  62. deirdregurl says:

    Your mom has a classic beauty…she’s illuminating!

    My mom also is a believer in postura. She never goes out of the house unkempt. It is always made up and blow-dried hair. If the clothes have been sitting in her closet for awhile, she will ask the house-help to iron it again. Ayaw nya kasi ng may kusot sa damit. Baka akalain wala kaming plantsa sa bahay :) I haven’t gotten the genes from my mom who by the way is such a clothes horse. I am the jeans/shirt kind of girl for daily wear. Though when the occasions call for it, I dress appropriately–with a lot of effort!

    Love the cutie photo when you were a toddler. Guess we are all the same at that age—walang pakialam sa fashion ;) Pero bumawi ka sa third photo—-impressive!! :) the last photo was great—-silent stillness! the teen is such a beauty even at a young age!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:24 pm

     
  63. bagito says:

    OMG, I can so relate! I’m the bunso, too, and I was the living, breathing TV remote control. My sister would nudge me w/ her foot to change the channel, that was the remote. Hahaha!
    Love the beatles shirt, I was reminded of those beatles peanut butter cookies you could get for 10 cents at the neighborhood sari-sari store.

    Love the pic of The Teen as The Toddler. Beautiful pic.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 12:31 pm

     
  64. chrisb says:

    haha, is the “Palace of Justice” a uniquely cebu thing? In our province they call the courthouse an equally impressive, but less grand (and more marvel comics superfriends-esque) “Hall of Justice.” =)

    I am a bunso too but I was a feisty little kid. I defended my territory very well (by running to mum when harassed by older sibs) Haha

    Feb 21, 2009 | 1:53 pm

     
  65. bemarvin says:

    Very often we feel frustrated, as when AB asked about food and by extension culture, and do not have a ready answer. Sometimes culture is easier explained by monuments like the Colosseum for the Romans so that even a dead civilization like the Incas are defined by Macchu Picchu. Unfortunately for us, we have not yet reached a stage of development or of empire [a comment inspired by Karl Marx in his remaining achievement as philosopher of history(Schumpeter, 1942)] where we can claim evidences of culture like McDonalds and Coca Cola, the Apollo program or .45 caliber pistol and the M-1 battle tank for modern America. This ‘stage of development’ concept is important because we often accept false premises like Filipino as ‘damaged culture’ (Fallows, 1987) when in fact culture cannot be superior or damaged but is just is [the set of shared attitudes, values, goals, and practices that characterizes an institution, organization or group (Wikipedia)]; a descriptive set – that cannot be value-judged.

    I bring up this high-fallutin’ paragraph because of something very Filipino I observed from this MM entry. In times of stress like fear, happiness or pain (the true Cebuano will shout Aguy! instead of Aray! when struck by a big stone in Manila), we viscerally revert to type. So MM, the leader of this community, invites us to his family to share his personal success and we, like true Filipinos would, merrily jump in. Note that Sister and Brother affirmed it. Brother even seems to agree that Sister’s pic should be posted – the one when she was 18 ought to be ok – even after she demures. Like the wooden spoon and fork, don’t you agree that the family albums on the sala coffee table is likewise very Filipino?

    Family relations as expression of culture is very powerful. While the Vietnamese do not have similar monuments as the Plain of Jars of Laos or Angkor Wat of Kampuchea, they managed to defeat four superpowers – China Tang (938), China Yuan (1255-1285), French (1954) and America (1975) with family. Ho Chi Minh successfully used the extended family concept of Vietnam as one family to defeat the French and later the Americans (Duiker, 2000).

    And bringing in Mom is something we share with our distant relatives from Borneo. Some of our ancestors probably first crossed the land bridges during the mini Ice Age 18,000 years ago (Tarling ed., 1992) and kept contact by balangay boats after the sea rose. At present day, some Bornean communities still practice Matriarchy where, hear these guys, inheritances are through the mother line and men are given away to the wive’s family. Even after a millennium of Islam, the ascendancy of Megawati Sukarnoputri was accepted in Indonesia. And even after 400 years of latin machismo overlay with the Spaniards, we were among the first in Asia to grant women suffrage and to have lady Senators and now (2) Presidents. I do not think many would disagree that, in our experience, Mom was very often the real power behind Dad in the family.

    Finally, one reason we get confused when someone – like AB with his western perspective – asks questions on culture is precisely because we are half Western and half Eastern in education and socialization. Our Western half accepts that the categorizing question (from Western deductive deductive mind set) is the legitimate one and are thus stumped for an answer. We should learn from our Eastern half that the question is not the relevant one. As the emptiness also defines the half full glass of water, the one that we cannot describe is there (which two concrete manifestations above), both the categorization and the complementary non-categorization describes us. We think so we are; and move on.

    Rather than defining our culture ourselves which can lead to triumphalism and chauvinism, we should let others define it from our merit and achievement. If you ask the Indian on the Taj Mahal or the Chinese on the Great Wall, there is some question of as so much death and sadness especially among the poor and the minorities to build the monuments. Strong family values, the instinctive nurturing care of Filipino nurses, the navigating skills of our seamen (a throwback perhaps to balangay days or our ancestor cousins who reached New Zealand and the Easter Islands – we probably share a mother with them from DNA evidence). These are merits leading to culture. For me they are good enough to help define my culture

    P.S. If interested, I can post the references above in Google search key words and/or APA standard.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 2:12 pm

     
  66. sister says:

    Mandy, They still sell bed jackets in very ritzy shops-check out Sweitzer linen, Bra Smyth, or Bergdorf Goodman.Probably none at Victoria’s Secret. They are great not only for new Moms but for the chronically ill or malingerers who like to read in bed.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 2:18 pm

     
  67. Boljo-anon says:

    Chrisb, the complete name is actually Marcelo Fernan Memorial Hall of Justice. But lawyers in Cebu usually refer to it as the palace of justice. I dont know why…:)

    Feb 21, 2009 | 4:35 pm

     
  68. suzette says:

    photos are so cute! especially your daughter’s. makes me want to go into a “postura” mode to. i’m the bunso in the family also and i can very well relate to you being the perennial “go to’. well, that’s life hehehe :)

    Feb 21, 2009 | 5:28 pm

     
  69. siegrez says:

    Very Cute MM :-)

    Feb 21, 2009 | 5:41 pm

     
  70. marissewalangkaparis says:

    Such beautiful photos…I like the second one best. teen looks so cute.
    I can relate to being “postura”. My lola was so postura. But my Mom the exacy opposite. I guess I inherited my Lola’s genes…I love this post…thsnk you for sharing part of your life with us MM. You belong to a “blest” family….Salute!! Am dying to meet sister!! Pigman’s sister!! Indeed!!Hahahaha

    Feb 21, 2009 | 5:53 pm

     
  71. Bong says:

    hi MM. my friend introduced me to your site and now i’m a big fan of yours.

    we have a few things in common. my dad was also a lawyer and my mom was a professional homemaker (with 9 children) who also did a lot of sewing and other crafts, but was awesome in the kitchen. i have a long saga about her cooking, but i can share that with you some other time.

    i’m the 8th of 9 children, so i know what you meant about being the “go to,” which we now call “gofer,” or shall we say “utusan.” :-)

    i also have a photo of my mom dressed in a similar outfit as your mom in the photo you shared; both our moms were posturiosa and very pretty.

    thanks for all that you share through your site. i’m so bummed that i missed no reservations, but i’m looking forward to recording it. they’re replaying it on feb. 23rd at 11:00 AM (ET). btw, congratulations for being, shall i say, the “best pigman ever?”

    Feb 21, 2009 | 6:01 pm

     
  72. Mangaranon says:

    MM — why don’t you publish a cookbook? Put all the recipes you have posted from the beginning and separate them into categories for easy reference. I’ll give them away for Christmas!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 6:25 pm

     
  73. Ellen says:

    Mabuhay ang mga Bunso!

    I can totally relate, Marketman! I am the youngest in a family of seven children. Even worse, I came so late in the day because my mom got pregnant with me when she was 43 (an embarrassing occurrence back in the days, hehehe)! so, I was the ultimate utusan of my brothers and sisters who came before me.

    But, I studied and made a little something of myself over the years. Now, my brothers and sisters all come to the bunso for help of all sorts. Come to think of it…i’m still the ultimate utusan after all.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 7:31 pm

     
  74. lee says:

    first time i see a comment from brother.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 8:09 pm

     
  75. Apicio says:

    Please excuse redundancy, did not have sufficient time to read preceeding comments. We used posturiosa for sartorially aware individuals. The first name that comes to mind when I hear Balenciaga is Ramon Valera, one of the pioneers of Philippine couture when it was just starting to be dominated by his gender who incidentally, was an apprentice to a grandaunt who was a custorera.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 9:24 pm

     
  76. natie says:

    Apicio IS BACK!! early…yey!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 9:38 pm

     
  77. JOHN PAUL SARABIA says:

    nice pictures.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 9:47 pm

     
  78. zena says:

    Cute pictures! Especially the one in the suit =)
    Is THAT really Apicio? He is back!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 10:47 pm

     
  79. Rhea says:

    New lesson learned: do not go to the grocery or run errands in sweats anymore!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 11:14 pm

     
  80. chris says:

    thank you, mr.mm for giving us a glimpse of your intimate, though sometimes wacky family moments.
    love the pictures, love the fashion, love the retro… looks like even as a young kid you have your own style na – “fashionista” na. more than the fashion, its poise and style, and it runs in your family… just look at the kid!

    but man oh man… will the title “pigman” stick forever? but knowing the story behind it, it would be an honor to be identified as the maker of the best pig ever!

    kudos again, mr.mm and to the family. so proud to be a part of this blog community!

    Feb 21, 2009 | 11:45 pm

     
  81. Lizzy says:

    Your mother looks quite the lady.

    Beautiful pictures, beautiful family.

    Your daughter’s picture is so lovely, it has a lot of movement, it’s just awesome. Her pose, the way she has her head turned towards the ocean breeze gently blowing at her skirt, just beautiful. It’s one of those pictures that you hope to get but rarely catch right.

    Feb 21, 2009 | 11:56 pm

     
  82. millet says:

    was about to say “Apicio would have loved this”…and he really does, he’s back! welcome back, apicio!

    Feb 22, 2009 | 12:03 am

     
  83. sister says:

    I do not think our mother would want to be known as “Pig Man’s Mom”, definitely not appropriate to the “posturaness” of her being.

    Feb 22, 2009 | 12:04 am

     
  84. lee says:

    Welcome back Apicio!

    Feb 22, 2009 | 12:13 am

     
  85. The Steak Lady says:

    Great pics MM! :) this is such a fun read, lots of personal tidbits :D

    May i suggest another Lechon eyeball in Cebu (close to the holidays?) and maybe sister can join us then ☺

    Welcome back Apicio!! :-)

    Feb 22, 2009 | 1:07 am

     
  86. jadedfork says:

    what a great post!

    after living here in the US for almost twenty years, i almost forgot the term “postura” and how ladies in Manila would dress up even just to go grocery shopping :D

    Feb 22, 2009 | 2:20 am

     
  87. sonia says:

    linen as beach wear? wow– that is style. the teen’s photo is a treasure.
    apicio welcome back!

    Feb 22, 2009 | 6:12 am

     
  88. marissewalangkaparis says:

    Hope to see “brother” more often on the posts…first time here….now we’re dying to meet the entire family of “pigman” hahaha….

    Feb 22, 2009 | 9:44 am

     
  89. Angela says:

    Welcome back, Apicio!

    Feb 22, 2009 | 10:38 am

     
  90. Marketman says:

    Apicio, hello! I suspect you are still beach side enjoying a mojito or strong coffee… waiting out the last remnants of winter before you head North… thanks for checking in, it was certainly a good week to browse the blog… :)

    Feb 22, 2009 | 11:09 am

     
  91. currystrumpet says:

    the photos in the post are so lovely!

    Feb 22, 2009 | 1:12 pm

     
  92. Apicio says:

    Going back a bit in the archives, I seem to have missed a most exciting patch of the blog and definitely everyone. I am now deep in the interior fleeing the madness of carnaval where they say “nao tem mares, tem bares” no beaches, only bars, so MM is half right though the intoxicant of choice here is the caipirinha chasing salt cod cocletas.

    Feb 22, 2009 | 7:47 pm

     
  93. natie says:

    Oi, Apicio!! as you can see, you were missed…go easy on the cachaca..ate breve!

    MM, what a lovely family! so,so cosmopolitan!! i always maintain postura when i go grocery shopping in the US…i get more “respect”

    Feb 22, 2009 | 8:54 pm

     
  94. renee says:

    I think, as far as family hierarchy goes, the 2nd born are more independent and free.
    #1 – they don’t have to carry the family name, or family business
    #2 – they are not the one who gets nagged for not having kids (unless everyone is married)
    #3 – they can pass on to the youngest whatever ate orders =D

    Feb 22, 2009 | 9:13 pm

     
  95. grace says:

    OUT of Topic but – I just saw you on the season 2 teaser for world cafe asia

    Feb 22, 2009 | 10:02 pm

     
  96. Nina says:

    What is World Cafe Asia? Is it a program showing also in US? Would love another MM shot.

    Feb 23, 2009 | 3:54 am

     
  97. Pinaycook says:

    MM, you should read AB’s most recent blog. Hats off to Anthony Bourdain, good man with a good heart!

    Feb 23, 2009 | 5:01 am

     
  98. joyce says:

    i absolutely love The Teen’s picture. :)

    Feb 23, 2009 | 9:46 am

     
  99. Good Life says:

    Maria Clara, tamburing jewelry is still being made in Meycuayan ,Bulacan. I do not have the address.If I find the business card, I will post it here for you.

    Feb 24, 2009 | 8:10 am

     
  100. Good Life says:

    MM, I vividly remember my great grandmother. She dressed up just like on the picture to attend a parent conference. Back then we just call it meeting, since mom never had time to attend school function it’s always my great grandmother, which I love dearly, more than anyhing. That is where I got my sense of style. Love your pictures

    Feb 24, 2009 | 8:17 am

     
  101. Mila says:

    Oh goody! Apicio returns!

    Feb 24, 2009 | 10:49 am

     
  102. sister says:

    bemarvin,
    I have aged gracefully, thank you, without cosmetic assistance.

    Feb 25, 2009 | 3:04 am

     
  103. mrs lavendula says:

    what a hilariously wonderful blog entry! i watched the phil visit of no reservations, that lechon looked de-li-ciou!!! congrats for having anthony bourdain over!

    Feb 26, 2009 | 4:48 pm

     
  104. sister says:

    Here is Manang’s revenge. Some one asked for a story about Pigman re “bunso”.
    At one point all of us were at the same school, I was in high school and marketman has just started kindergarten. He asked Mom one dinnertime if she would come a little earlier to pick him up so she could see “Show and tell” time.
    Next day our mother, properly postura in heels and dress, made up, with appropriate acessories, went to school, tardy as usual.
    “Hurry, Mom,” he said spying her in the corridor,
    “Everyone is waiting for you”.
    He triumphantly says to his teacher “I can do my show and tell now” leading our mother to the center of the circle.
    “Mom” he said, “Show everyone how you can take off your hair and your teeth!”.
    Uhuh, that is a true story about Pigman.

    Mar 5, 2009 | 2:49 am

     
  105. ECC says:

    Oh, that is so funny Sister!

    Apr 5, 2009 | 10:05 am

     
 

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