Posts Tagged ‘Bicol Culture’

The other week, we went to Iriga City to visit some friends. The city is indeed changing including the location of one of its radio stations — the DWIR-Radyo Natin (107.1 FM).

In one of the visitors’ corner of Radyo Natin is posted a sort of a Ten Commandments for Drinkers allegedly authored by DWIR News Manager, Raul Sodsod. These are as follows:

According to Voltaire, translations can either be graceful or truthful but not both. Even then, below is an attempt to capture the spirit of the piece… at least the spirit. The melody and the beauty of it… well, uhhh… never mind. Can DTN help us here?

1. Thou shall not drink hungry.

2. Thou shall place the liquor inside your stomach and not in your head.

3. Thou shall not drink without ‘pulutan’ (or side dish or appetizer when drinking liquor).

4. “Pulutans” are side dishes not the main dish.

5. Thou shall not always argue and argue during drinking sprees to avoid getting hurt.

6. Thou shall not stall the glass in your hand because other drinkers are also waiting.

7. Thou shall not sleep in the midst of the drinking session.

8. Thou shall tell your wife that you are going to a drinking session to avoid getting fetched.

9.  Thou shall drink everything inside the shot glass and never throw a drop because liquors are expensive.

10. Thou shall not always avail of free drinks. Treat others also for a drink.

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By: Nery Nuyda Ronatay

Sa katotohanan maimon kong sambay
An satuyang minamawot sa mga pagtaram
Iyong pagkamoot na luway-luway nangingidam

Bagay na gusto niyatong tunay makaputan
Bako sanang pirming mapangatorogan.

Nata, bako daw kitang tunay na mga para-habol
Sa unibersong nakabado kan satuyang ilusiyon?

Bakong kita nanggad ang matinios na santo
Duman sa satuyang mamuraway na impiyerno?

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The Tagalogs are known for “balagtasan” or the tradition of debating in verse. The Bikolanos, too, has a similar art and it is known as “Tigsikan”. Tigsikan is derived from “Tigsik” or the art of expressing a toast or an idea in the form similar to that of the Japanese “Haiku”.

Tigsikan is usually heard in drinking sprees (“turungaan” or “irinuman”) though this practice is not anymore common nowadays due to the invasion of “video-singko”. (more…)

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There are three posts that have been very active these days. These are

While the Rizal post is understandable being a part of the academics, the last two are surprising. But of course, these give some sense of elation and enlightenment as they are a partial realization of the objective of this blog. Second, they also prove some theories on the culture of the Bicolanos one of which is the love for literature. As Disciple-To-None (DTN) said in a comment on one of the poems “Masiramon sa talinga (pagdangogon)” which is also the comment of Juliet and Junasun of Bulan Observer. Third, this also shows that there are still a number of Bicolanos who know how to write pieces of literature in Bikol. Well, we can also add some debates about love like what Orange and Atty. Benjie (also of Bulan Observer) had been engaged in which are also insightful and stimulating.


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(Another version and almost exact translation of the folksong “Bahay Kubo” shared by Atty. Benjie of Bulan Observer)

An harong ko nipa
Minsan ngani sadit
Manga maritas diyan nasasaray
Singkamas asin talong
Sigarilyas asin mani
Sitaw, bataw patani

Kundol, patola, upo kalabasa
Sa kadakul-dakul pang labanos
Mustasa, sibulyas, kamatis
Bawang saka luya
Sa palibot may langa.

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