Friday, January 11, 2019

The Bragging Rights

   In the Philippines, when you apply for a job, you will need a diploma and transcript of records from the university that issued the diploma.  That’s because diplomas are easily faked.  There’s a street called Recto Avenue which is termed as “diploma mill”.  You will find numerous street vendors selling diploma falsification services.  If you want one that should have been issued decades back, it can be arranged.  The paper is soaked in tea to make it look brownish antiquated prior to printing.  Lately a transcript of records  with shining grades from any university is also available for sale.  What does this serve, you might ask?  Answer: Bragging rights!

   In Kentucky, I met a Filipina who claimed she’s a graduate of Lyceum of the Philippines University.  Her only job in America was serving at McDonalds.

   I met another one here in California, who brandished multiple diplomas for several college degrees such as Nursing, UP College of Law, etc.  She even showed me the antique looking laminated diplomas on her wall.  I was curious about the employment history.  I was told by someone else that she was “stocking shelves in Walgreens” until fired.

   Another bragging right for Filipinos is money, whether they have it or not.  I once asked an associate if he also gets “brown bag”, a benefit of free groceries for seniors.  He replied “Oh, I’m not qualified.  I have a lot of money in the bank!”

   Last week I was overheard saying, “I’m broke but happy.”  I got mixed reactions.  One who drives a crappy car and lives in a place worse than mine offered to lend me money saying she has $5000 laying around at home.  I declined.  

   Another response to my “broke” comment came from a wealthy associate.  Out of the kindness of her heart, she gave me a rotten vegetable.  I thanked her sincerely.  When I showed it to my friend who’s also a dialysis patient, my friend said “Where do you find these people?!”

My dining table
   I get social security monthly, so technically, I’m not broke.  I drive an old car but miles away from crappy.  I live in a nice enough two bedroom unit with my daughter.  I have written two books published in Amazon.  I have a blog and YouTube channel.  I hardly ever speak about my place, my car or my books.  
My bedroom

   My only bragging right is I married three times.  The first one looks like Jason Momoa, the second looks like Joey Marquez, the third, an American looks like Matthew McConaughey.  Not bad for one lifetime, not bad at all.

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