Real Estate Marketer

99.99% Sagada Igorot

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Moma Arinola

While eating, I and two of my friends from Sagada were having some meaningful conversations. They bought a bag of vegetable and two cans of sardines that dined for  dinner. One of my companions, Lawrence, is a student president of a high school in Sagada. He was elected prior to this upcoming school year. 

The question was simple that squeezed our coconut shells: “what could be a good student council project?”. According to Lawrence, their school homes less than 500 students from the Northern part of Sagada.

What came first to my mind was a typical journalism workshop for the student publication  team. I even bragged to get me for free. I told him I volunteer my time and even my money to suffice my expenses when going there. Sagada is a six-hour drive from Baguio and it takes P220 to reach the town resort  using the GL/ Lizardo bus line.

But smart Lawrence argued. A good project should benefit everyone. Sean on the other corner of the room spoke. “Pagbasuraan di moma”. He was suggesting a spitting bin for beetle nut users.

I burst to a good laugh. I bet, no lawyer would come up with an idea like that. Lawrence admitted that part of their campus has turned reddish due to some students spitting anywhere when chewing beetle nut. 

In the City of Pines, spitting is regulated so fellow Igorots have come up with a strategy of bringing a mineral water bottle to spit into. The culture of spitting is very strong in the province of Ifugao where the tradition is super strong (Colgate, Hapee and Close Up hate that province). Laws there were passed to control NOT THE CULTURE BUT THE  IRRESPONSIBLE SPITTING. I call it "barbaric spitting". 

In areas here in the city where fellow Igorots spend their free time, you would see red spots. And EWWWWWWWW, as lowlanders exclaim, not cool at all! I do not understand why these barbaric people use the "tradition" excuse of chewing beetle nut to cover up their barbaric act of spitting anywhere. For sure, their home walls are already red!

These people who just spit anywhere do not know how dirty their spits are. Even though you are not chewing anything, it is DIRRRRRTY to just spit anywhere. I remember a neighbor during one overnight ritual at our home in Sagada. He asked me to prepare him a container filled with soil. He will be spitting on the soil. It was perfect!

I laughed at the idea. 

I asked. “Should we call project that MOMA ARINOLA?”.

Christian is a Marketing Communications practitioner in Quezon City. He is an Igorot from Sagada, Mountain Province. To get in touch with him, please shoot an email to christianaligonow@gmail.com.


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