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Bacolod City, Philippines Wednesday, March 7, 2018
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with Ninfa Leonardia
OPINIONS

This time itís a fish story

Ninfa Leonardia

It was not only the talk of the town, it was the talk of the country, and possibly majority of the civilized countries around the world. We are talking about the recent awarding of the Oscars to movieland’s best this past year, whose recipients will treasure them and regard them as the crowns of their career. Well, by this time it is well known who the awardees were, and who were the losers, some surprise winners, and other expected ones.

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Among the unexpected, probably was that awarded to one who is not known to belong to moviedom but to the world of sports. Whoever thought that Kobe Bryant, a Lakers stalwart and one of the most memorable basketball stars of this generation, would also be given that precious statuette, so sought and coveted by everyone in the industry? And yet, they gave one to Kobe, and I am not complaining, having been a Kobe fan for as long as he was on the court. Ironically, this award did not come together with his basketball championship trophies, as he retired already last season.

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And would you believe! He won it, not for starring or directing or even producing a movie, but by writing a poem titled “Dear Basketball” upon his retirement that was entered in an animated category. And he seemed to mean it when he said it felt better than winning all those championships. Oh, really? All of them including five NBA championships with the Lakers, two Olympic gold medals, NBA finals Most Valuable Player awards, and four All Star Games MVP awards? But these are all real, as reported by the Associated Press! I hope they will soon give him a star in Hollywood’s Walk of Fame, too.

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By the way, Harvey Weinstein, who used to be a fixture at the awards, was reported missing from this year’s big night. Maybe the organizers, or maybe he himself, was afraid a gaggle of women might stand up shouting “Me, too” if they see him. Also, a couple described as Fil-Am, Roberto Lopez and his wife Kristen, were again the winners of the Oscars for Best Song, that they also won last time. But I’m sure only our local media is underscoring the Fil-Am connection, the international press could have skipped it, since he, or both of them, must already be American citizens. One more thing, Rita Moreno, the winsome star of the Westside Story, came in a gown designed for her long ago by the late Pinoy couturier, Pitoy Moreno, who must be applauding from his grave.

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It is no wonder that the sale of illegal drugs goes on despite so many programs and agencies being created to run after the suspects. It looks as if those engage in it are so ingenuous in hatching up schemes to get the substance to their customers or peddlers that they can befuddle even the most perceptive of police officers. We have heard, locally, of shabu being delivered to jails inside coconuts, and recently buried in a block of “gianamos,” or “bagoong” to the Tagalog-speaking, and shrimp paste to the English speaking.

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Another innovative method apprehended recently involved the hiding of the illegal stuff inside a fish being sold in a tourist spot in Puerto Princesa, Oriental Mindoro. The seller must have signals with his clients and could have been in the trade for sometime until someone tipped the cops. One can just imagine what other means are being used just to get the illegal substance to their users, who must already be addicted to it and are desperate to get their “high “ by any means. Even if it is fishy.

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Well, well! Would you believe? Despite all the criticisms from our own natives about the state of our economy as a whole, here comes an American media company report, “U.S. News and World Report,” saying that the Philippines is the top investment destination now because of its gross domestic product, its population, and gross domestic product per capita. Goodness gracious! And we didn’t know about that. One can hardly believe it, but a report also says that Indonesia is only second, Malaysia, fourth, Singapore 5 th and Thailand seventh!

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Anyway, that is something to be happy about and let us hope and pray that investors around the world believe it, and come rushing to our shores. Surely we are ready for them, based on the criteria used by the World Report. So let us communicate this to all countries with funds to invest and roll out the red carpet for them. And bring some of them to our city, Bacolod, and our province, Negros Occidental, too.*

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