Thursday, February 21, 2008

manong/growing up filipino

Ever since my younger siblings started talking, their default name for me was "Manong". When the girls were in grade school and high school, even their friends called me "Manong". Even now, when chance places one of my sisters' friends in my path (and mind you, they are no longer the giggly little girls they were then), the inevitable "Hi, Manong!" comes my way. I am everyone's "Manong" (or these people actually think it's my real name).

"Manong" means elder brother, elder uncle, elder man, as well as (to me and Nikki) taxi driver, security guard, carpenter, gardener, waiter, gas station attendant, cigarette vendor, policeman - generally anyone who is older, whose name you do not know, that you want want to speak directly and respectfully to.

With the combination of our household with the step-household (in principle, if not in the actually moving-together-in-one-house manner), my sisters experienced the addition of several brothers and sisters, all but one older than me. These boys also ended up being called "Manong" too - but with each of their names appended Manong JayJay, Manong Ricky, Manong Roly, Manong Michael, Manong Joel. I fully expected to become Manong Dean or Manong Deanbo. But my sisters and youngest brother continued to simply call me "Manong".

One time, I asked one of them why. I think it was Maureen or Reb who said "Because you're the original Manong."

Just like buko pie, I guess.


Cecilia Manguerra Brainard has announced the roster of contributors to her new anthology "Growing Up Filipino II", which includes Amalia Bueno, Leslieann Hobayan, Rashaan Alexis Meneses, Paulino Lim, Marianne Villanueva, Jonathan Jimena Siason, Veronica Montes, Edgar Poma, Tony Robles, Kannika Claudine Pena, Erwin Cabucos, Aileen Suzura, Jaime L. An Lim, Elsa Orejudon Valdimiano, Dolores De Manuel, Maria Victoria Beltran, M. G. Bertulfo, Rebecca Mabanglo-Mayor, Katrina Ramos Atienza, Oscar Penaranda, Geronimo G. Tagatac and me.

The Young Adult antho will be published by Anvil and PALH later this year.

Labels: ,


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home