Tuesday, June 8, 2010

OMG! The kids were allowed to bet and play gambling in town.

I arrived in Inopacan on the eve of the town fiesta (14 May2010). My folks at home warmly welcomed me and ushered me to my room. After having our dinner, I went to the town proper supposedly to watch the search for Mr. and Mrs. Inopacan 2010, but was disappointed when I found out that the organizers did not pay much attention in organizing the affair as well as in their preparations. 

It was around 10:00 PM and I saw nobody (not a single guest) on any of the chairs arranged in clusters along the side of the open-field tennis court. The venue of the supposed beauty pageant's night was empty.
There were about four ladies posing as gate keepers. When asked why the place is empty, it was an excuse for them that the organizers and committee members of the fiesta celebration were busy attending to and supporting the campaign sorties of their local candidates - the May 10 national and local elections were their priorities that almost coincided with the fiesta celebration (the same reason why there was also no follow-up presentation for the Inong Pak-an festival this year). 

The supposed candidates for the search of Mr. and Mrs Inopacan did not come on time, some begged off because for them it was not after all a competition as the supposed winners were handpicked and pre-selected already. Besides, the coronation ceremony they set on that night was uninviting. 

After a long wait, the pseudo-beauty contest went through late that night (or was it already past midnight) while I was somewhere spending my time watching games at the "peryahan" (carnival) instead.


The amusement games were held at the reclamation area (formerly called Pasil), side by side with the ukay-ukay (used cloth ing sale) and night sale. It was hard for me to enjoy at the peryahan when the place was swarmed by young kids. 

To my estimate, 80% of the people at the peryahan were children. Not simply because they were children. What bothered me a lot was the fact that everywhere were young kids betting their games, errr...what I mean exactly is that they were into gambling. 

I saw no law enforcers around the place or any committee member of the amusement games organizer to oversee the temporary amusement park they installed. 

There were young and older mothers betting the games while nursing their babies. 


I even saw hantak (the game of cara y cruz, where 3 coins are tossed on a slab of stone and bets are placed on which side of the coins would face up - head or tail.) played in open sight with a father coaching his son on what side of the coin to bet for. 

The pictures here would tell you more.


If you were me, would you not bother to criticize? 

Is this the kind of amusement that we should offer to our innocent kids in town? 

Should we excuse the kids because it was only during fiestas? 

Can we tolerate this values?

On the other side, why nobody was policing the activities? 

Where the officers and leaders too tired to sleep away the night after losing the election?

OMG! If the statue of Jose Rizal (that remains standing a hundred meters away from the peryahan) could only speak and walk down the pedestal, it could have already scolded and preached us that "the youth is the hope of our nation" and we should not corrupt their minds with vices and other immoralities.


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Author of Philippine Food, Cooking, and Dining Dictionary. A lexicographer since the age of 14.  Filipino Linguist. Blogger with 11 blog sites. Researcher of food culture, pop culture, places, structures, transportations, churches and whatever interest him about the Philippines. Visual artist. Photographer. Traveler who had been to all four corners of the Philippine archipelago, and still setting more footprints. 

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