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Showing posts from June, 2008

Corrections to Diss Excerpt #9

As one does, I reviewed my fieldnotes and interviews. As it happens, I wrote some errors or inaccuracies into the re-telling of Baun Bango's settlement history . As one does, I had to revise, which doesn't necessarily mean the new paragraph is free of errors and more accurate. It's merely made more honest about the inaccuracies and omissions through accompanying notes. Some day, when I have the time, I'd love to write about my experiences of the fine line between accuracy and inaccuracy in qualitative research... When I have the time -- wishful thinking! Here's the revised paragraph and some notes that show the existence of many versions of one story, and suggest the complications of trying to put forward only one version (which in the end, may even be the wrong version! Ah, anthropology), which further suggests that one should always question seamless accounts of culture as a unified and unifying whole. But I digress. Below, the paragraph containing corrections. O

Palengkera: I heart the Baguio market

Here's one of many reasons: Food diversity! Consumers are not at the mercy of the deals struck between chain supermarkets and their suppliers. There is not only one kind of banana (the boring, tasteless, expensive kind) but on any given day in the market you can find at least three native varieties (and a wide price range, too). Today I was lucky! Red bananas! Yum! May we always have such choices.

Random Diss Excerpt #9

ADVISORY: If you like old stories passed down through generations that tell of how villages came about then skip the first two paragraphs, which are merely the obligatory academic preludes to an otherwise satisfying story. The oral history of the genesis of the settlement of Baun Bango is a tale of an ancestor traveling from downriver, along the coast, and back upriver to find work. It alludes to an ethnohistory of migration and livelihood that was dependent on the resources available in shifting landscapes and riverscapes. The narrative also represents a progression towards a prosperous life through hard work, which parallels 21st century aspirations for the future. The re-telling that follows was reconstructed through a series of oral accounts given by village elders, 60 – 70 years of age. As told by these elders, the history of Baun Bango began at the time when there were only ten villages along the length of the Katingan River. A man named Bango, from the upriver village of Tewang

Flowers Delivered by Mountain Bike

Last year on All Soul’s Day I joined a motley crew (when it comes to mountain biking in groups it’s always a motley crew) of 14 beloved Baguio biker boys on a long ride through beautiful, utterly satisfying trails skirting Mt. Yabnong and Mt. Ugo. I carried a small bundle of flowers strapped to my backpack, along with my water, my home-made oatmeal bars, and my marble potatoes baked with olive oil, butter, rosemary, and smoked pork. After about four hours of biking through wonderful forests on a rough single track trail, we came upon a waiting shed (the only cement structure to be seen in the middle of nowhere!) with a clear view of Ugo. We stopped for lunch and thick, cold fog closed in on us. After eating, I tied the flowers to a post and silently said a prayer to my Lola, telling her how much we miss her, how we try to live up to her. She was no less than Super Woman, after all. When I was done, we continued biking. The fog cleared, and the warmth of the sun on my skin felt like Lo

Week 1: Whisky, Sambal, and Carbo

So far, so good.

Obituary for Public Art

The mosaics on Session Road are gone; erased from the face of the earth by public order from City Hall. In this article I wrote three years ago (Frank beat me to it and posted my article on the mosaics and my wonder child's poem, which she wrote when she was ten years old. Thanks, Frankie), I was gushing and optimistic about the possibilities of collaboration between our putative public servants in City Hall and our local artists. I thought the creation of the Session Road Mosaics heralded the beginnings of the practice of public art in Baguio city. I thought our elected officials (yes, we chose these people) in City Hall were finally opening their minds and expanding their idea of “beautification” so that it would include creativity, a plurality of visions and, well to put it simply, good taste! I was so effing wrong.


I'm done with my pink phase.

Found Poem

The Sea Horse and the Cockerel’s Spur The modern geography of the brain, deliciously antiquated – There are mysterious regions bearing names of otherwise-forgotten discoverers such as the tract of Goll, the fields of Forel, Monro’s holes and the radiations of Zuckerlandl. Others seem inexplicable (brain sand), starkly functional (the bridge) or ludicrously florid (nucleus motorius dissipatus formationis reticularis). Some are just plain defeatist (substantia innominata or “unnamed stuff”). – the known world encircled by terra incognita. (David Bainbridge, New Scientist Vol. 197, No. 2,640)

Friday the 13th Gory Crime Scene

21:30, Session Road, Baguio City.

This is Santori Whisky Kurowa-san

Whisky is 4 months old and has been my resident furry animal for all of 4 weeks. Soon, two more furry animals will be taking up residence with us. Sambal, who is 3/4 German Shepherd and 1/4 Labrador, and Carbon Copy a.k.a Carbo, who is 1/2 German Shepherd and 1/2 Labrador. Both of them are 4 months old. Why am I doing this? I've always wanted a cat. I can't live without dogs. I'm greedy. I wonder whether I'm making a big mistake in thinking I can tweak an ancient animal enmity. I have two pictures in my mind. One of Whisky, Sambal, and Carbo sleeping peacefully in one big cuddly heap. And another of Whisky... No never mind, it's too horrible to write it down. If things work out, it will be bliss! My first-ever cat, Ikura, was killed by neighboring dogs just six-weeks into his residency. That was last year, and I've moved from that place now. In some twisted subconscious semi-perverted corner of my mind, I am attempting to rectify the death of Ikura, to turn