Manila Vanilla

What it's like to be a U.S. Fulbright scholar, basketball player, journalist, and the whitest man in Metro Manila.

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Location: Quezon City, Metro Manila, Philippines

New Yorker by birth, shipped across the globe to the world of malls, shanty-towns, patronage, corruption, basketball and a curious burnt-toast smell that wafts around at dusk

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Great Texts, Vol. 3

Take this clean, stylized image of barbecue sticks in a jar of spiced vinegar. Nice, right? Now imagine these sticks holding hacked-up tubes of intestine, whole chicken heads from the neck up, and some unidentified brown knobs. Imagine them on a tray, covered with a clear plastic tarp, with little ants scampering all over the place. That's what Katrina is working with.


Each time I get a great text, I think to myself, "no text will ever top this." And then the next day I get a better one. Well, this may in fact be the ultimate Great Text. It comes from Katrina, a charming young woman who sells barbecue most afternoons on a street corner in my neighborhood. She doesn't sell that wussy barbecue of marinated chunks of pork/beef/chicken on a stick. She cooks that hard stuff -- pork intestines (isaw), chicken heads (helmet, ulo, leeg), pork ears (tenga), and other miniature impaled organs that I'm still not sure about. If you look closely, you can see tiny ants running around on the sticks before she throws them on the grill, after which they burn up pretty quick. Anyway, I stop and chat with her most days when I'm walking by, and once in a while he texts me. I remember when I put my number into her phone that the keys were really jammed and hard to use. That might explain some of this text, and yes, her English is limited so she probably doesn't spell wonderfully even without the technological handicap, but the errors are so fortuitous in this case, a divine -- or demonic -- hand seems to have had a part in it. One day, I checked my phone and saw that I received this text: "HELL GOD APURTINO TO U." Translation: "Hello, good afternoon to you."

4 Comments:

Anonymous NYC Teacher said...

This is a concrete culinary example of the old cliche:
"God is in the details."
(or is it the entrails?)

10:09 PM  
Anonymous Kevin from Brooklyn said...

When I was a kid & my Dad used to take me to Coney Island, there was a band of gypsies, and one was the geek in the freak show, and my old man said that the chickenheads on skewers were the ones the geek had bitten off during his thrice a day show. Old people would actually buy the chickenheads & suck on them. Weird immigrant food stuff.

5:39 AM  
Blogger mike said...

Greetings from bethel.
I pumped your grandmothers septic tank today!
Nice to see you're doing well, Dan says hello.

Mike Bloom

I've grown up and gotten into photography. flickr.com/photos/mdbloom/

11:21 AM  
Blogger PAK MUS said...

saya mengucapkan banyak terimakasih kepada KI HADAK yang telah menolong saya dalam kesulitan,ini tidak pernah terfikirkan dari benak saya kalau nomor yang saya pasang bisa tembus dan ALHAMDULILLAH kini saya sekeluarga sudah bisa melunasi semua hutang2 kami,sebenarnya saya bukan penggemar togel tapi apa boleh buat kondisi yang tidak memunkinkan dan akhirnya saya minta tolong sama KI HADAK dan dengan senang hati beliau mau membantu saya..,ALHAMDULIL LAH nomor yang dikasi KI semuanya bener2 terbukti tembus dan baru kali ini saya menemukan dukun yang jujur,jangan anda takut untuk menhubungiya jika anda ingin mendapatkan nomor yang betul2 tembus seperti saya,silahkan hubungi KI HADAK DI 085=259=457=111 ingat kesempat tidak akan datang untuk yang kedua kalinya dan perlu anda ketahui kalau banyak dukun yang tercantum dalam internet,itu jangan dipercaya kalau bukan nama KI HADAK
BUKA INI DANA GHAIB TOGEL










saya mengucapkan banyak terimakasih kepada KI HADAK yang telah menolong saya dalam kesulitan,ini tidak pernah terfikirkan dari benak saya kalau nomor yang saya pasang bisa tembus dan ALHAMDULILLAH kini saya sekeluarga sudah bisa melunasi semua hutang2 kami,sebenarnya saya bukan penggemar togel tapi apa boleh buat kondisi yang tidak memunkinkan dan akhirnya saya minta tolong sama KI HADAK dan dengan senang hati beliau mau membantu saya..,ALHAMDULIL LAH nomor yang dikasi KI semuanya bener2 terbukti tembus dan baru kali ini saya menemukan dukun yang jujur,jangan anda takut untuk menhubungiya jika anda ingin mendapatkan nomor yang betul2 tembus seperti saya,silahkan hubungi KI HADAK DI 085=259=457=111 ingat kesempat tidak akan datang untuk yang kedua kalinya dan perlu anda ketahui kalau banyak dukun yang tercantum dalam internet,itu jangan dipercaya kalau bukan nama KI HADAK
BUKA INI DANA GHAIB TOGEL

11:06 PM  

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