Ambiguity and lack of intent – creative devices lost on Pinoys

For all the exposure that da Pinoys have to not only Western culture, but other Asian cultures, you would think that some of their more creative aspects, such as literary devices, would have rubbed off on them. Yet no, there remains a sizable part of the Pinoy population who remain imprisoned by their “heritage of smallness”, the inability to see the bigger picture, and their predilection towards finding offense in everything that they come across.

One such striking example we have recently come across is that of a commentator, by the name of “jong” from the Filipino Freethinkers, who made much ado about nothing in this portion of Ilda’s most recent write-up:

In the same manner, it is easy to judge Philippine President Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino by the way he treats his political enemies particularly former President and Pampanga Congresswoman, Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (GMA).

Commentator jong regarded the above statement as “tantamount to name calling”, and that it seems out of place with the finer points established in the article.

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So how do ambiguity and lack of intent fit in?

It is clear and evident that BS represents the initials of our President’s first name. Somewhere along the line, our “dear leader”, developed an ability to spout statements and to do actions within the scope of his presidency that ultimately amounted to bullsh*t. So put them together, BS Aquino can mean Benigno Simeon Aquino, and/or Bullsh*t Aquino.

The thing with the “BS” moniker is that it is an acronym which is open to multiple interpretations. In short, it is ambiguous. The author did not exactly give any reason for wanting to use BS, not that she has to; it’s a literary device! Therefore, since the use of the acronym is ambiguous, it is impossible to definitively glean or infer exactly what the intent of the author was in using BS. In short, there is lack of intent/motive.

Ambiguous statements are useful when an author desires that the readers draw their own conclusions from the context. If one can noisily claim that the author’s intention was to emphasize the “bullsh*t” definition, then that’s the bias of the reader, not the author. The reader has no right to claim that that was the intention of the author because:

1) He/she didn’t write the article
2) He/she gravitated towards his/her own biases, but blamed the author for putting it in his/her head

What exactly is difficult about taking statements at face value anyway? Kind of hard to grasp for a Pinoy mind that chooses to judge and/or suspect instead one that seeks to understand or just accept, isn’t it?

Perhaps, if jong had asked what Ilda’s intentions were in using BS instead of telling her outright what he thought it was, then this “debate” would not have occurred.

If you claim to be free from the dogmatic thinking of religion yet you cannot overcome the inborn Pinoy predilection toward judgmental thinking, paranoia and pettiness, then exactly what is your thinking free from?!

No wonder our country remains Asia’s basket case. Because we imprison ourselves with such “small” and “unimaginative” thinking, we remain unable to “move on” while we’re being left behind by other people who didn’t “sweat the small stuff”.

63 Replies to “Ambiguity and lack of intent – creative devices lost on Pinoys”

    1. How about you stop missing the point for once, hmm?

      And frankly, if people call him bullsh*t he deserves it. It’s all we’ve gotten from him. If he or anyone else like you is overly sensitive about criticism then don’t put yourselves in the firing line.

    2. Kris, that’s the point. Your kuya can’t handle criticism though it’s part of the job. Oh yeah, instead of working , he occupied himself with Call of Duty so criticism is foreign to him. Look at his replies every time the surveys dip. Never seen him take criticism in stride. He has no grace. Like you when you pinata-ed by Joey Marquez. Good or bad you want attention. Crocodile tears. I would run for president and win except my mom is not famous but she is alive nor would I ever use her corpse as a trampoline into Malacanang like your kuya did for lack of bullet points on a resume.

  1. blood sugar aquino

    this post was great until (in true grp style) author managed to turn it into another bash piece against pinoys. please do not flatter jong by making him representative (mascot?) of the filipino people. filipino humor for example is full of double entendres and ironies…

        1. Contradiction. Noynoy is a pro-communist because he got an adviser in Ronald Llamas, who is a member of the leftist group Akbayan.

          And hey, China isn’t a communist nation anymore. If anything, that’s North Korea. 😛

        2. @FA, Fishball/ Kris gets that conclusion same place she gets all her conclusions. To quote Krusty the Clown ” Pulls it out of her a.a. a. Hey Kids!!!! ” .

  2. Fallen Angel:

    Google the following BS Aquino:

    –BS Aquino National High School, Concepcion, Tarlac
    –BS Aquino Drive, Bacolod City
    –BS Aquino Avenue, Bagong Nayon, Baliuag, Bulacan
    –BS Aquino Avenue, Mandurriao, Iloilo City
    –Barangay BS Aquino Jr., Norala, South Cotabato,

    I’ll probably stumble into a BS Aquino Barbershop later. Will let you know.

    1. I can just imagine a conversation that goes like:

      P1: Where do you live?
      P2: I live on BS Aquino street!
      P1: Really, that’s a lot of BS. 😛

  3. It could could also mean an interjection such as; “But Sire!” from one of his staff to get his attention since he is Royalty…..:-)

  4. @Fallen Angel

    Kudos to your nice post.

    Again, the issue is comprehension. Their comprehension.

    BTW, I have in my FB Note this Penoy’s Obama-esque note.

    Penoy was Noynoy then, suddenly, he became Pinoy during his presidential campaign.

    Just like Obama. He was Barry Sotero then this Barack Obama’s name (and he does not want to have the “Hussein” in his name even up to present time).

    “BS” Aquino…

    For me he is Penoy or Benignoramus. That’s a name calling but calling himself Pinoy is also a name calling in my book.

  5. I remember the campaign website of Noynoy Aquino having a whole bunch of campaign promises. I did a quick Google just now ” noynoy aquino campaign promises”. I did not see any url of any official Noynoy site reminding us of what he is accountable for. It’s like it swept under the rug. Sweeping under the rug and lack of accountability. Sounds like “BS” to me.

      1. The Thundering Herd , Dan Patrick, John Madden, Scot Van Pelt, NFL Rants and Raves, NFL Now with Coach Sal and Johnny Von, BS Report

  6. No matter what you say, we have become Wowoowee people. We already degenerated to YellowTards. Most of us, are watching senseless Telenovela. We listen to the “good” advises of Kris Aquino, on Kris TV. Boy Abundia is also our source of good advises. So, I’m not surprised, if we elected a barely literate Senator, like Lapid…and a President with questionable sanity and competence, like Noynoy Aquino…

    1. variety shows, showbiz talk shows and soap operas are the highest rated programs in all countries. because people watch to be entertained. in the US, jersey shore and dancing with the stars are tops.

      try again hyden. try harder. think.

      1. Hey, troll. You’re missing Hyden’s point. At least those kind of shows are much better compared to the most Filipino shows same formula in that keeps us feeding in our mouths for years. Not to mention telenovelas. Even their talk shows and variety shows in the US is much better compared here.

        Try again jaks. Try harder. THINK, NOT TROLL.

        Oh, I watch Game of Thrones. 😀

        1. why would say they are better? did you watch them all? hehehe the point is in all countries the no. 1 rated show is always these kinds of programs. people want to relax and be entertained when they watch tv. but how can you grasp the point if you are preconditioned to discriminate against anything filipino.

          i will not discriminate against anyone who chooses to indulge in such programs once in a while. everyone has their own guilty pleasure. but i dont expect you to understand its ok.

        2. @jaks: What I’m saying is all about the QUALITY. I mean, there is such things like Wowowee types in other countries. And the Filipino entertainment industry nowadays sucked compared to the last 50 years so we get a lot of Filipino shows and films that are nothing but full of remakes, too much drama, force-fed comedies and stuff. And who’s the target audience? It’s the masa people! Onli in da Pilipins. 😛

          I’m not discriminating anything Filipino. Because that’s what it shows: MEDIOCRITY. And Filipinos are bad copycats; the second Panday film (which it ripped off many parts from the 2010 Clash of the Titans remake) is a proof of it. Now the lineup for the 2012 Metro Manila Film Festival features another Enteng Kabisote x Agimat crossover and another SRR film. There you have it. Nothing new. Manila Kingpin, a number of indie films, and films directed by Brillante Mendoza are considered to be ‘anything Filipino’ kind of cinema.

          In benign0’s words in his other article: Media holds the key to the Filipino’s prospects for much-needed intellectual and cultural uplift. But like every opportunity that presents itself to this wretched society, politics, its politicians, and their patronage get in the way.

      2. And… there is not much Wowowee-esque programs in other countries unlike here. Don’t tell me that you’re a Wowowee guy!

        Try again, troll. Try harder. THINK. I pity morons who love to glorify squatter mentality and that was evident on your troll posts. 😛

        1. So jaks, you really think the people screaming in the studio audience over lame dancing and O.A. Put wowwowwee in perspective? Ok , let’s differ there

      3. You do understand that people like Jersey Shore precisely because they are morons, trashy and vain. Most of the audience for that do not view it the way pinoys love Wowwowweee etc. With awe filled reverence.

        1. “awe filled reverence? this is a stretch its just entertainment”

          When I read, “awe-filled reverence,” the ULTRA Stampede comes into mind. You know, that incident where people died in a stampede that happened because people got too impatient and wanted to get into Wowowee that badly? I’d classify that as “awe-filled reverence”.

        2. @aaaaa thank you! It’s moronic entertainment made by morons for morons who are too moronic to know what is in front of them is moronic. What’s scary is those people vote. Fishball/ Kris and Jaks and mean to tell me you don’t see the relationship between the moronic tv shows that rate high and the morons elected to office? Sorry Kris I forgot you are one of the morons who make moronic entertainment.

        3. @Gogs

          Anytime. It’s depressing to know that this kind of entertainment, a game show, no less, got people killed. Quite embarrassing, as well.

      4. jaks,

        variety shows, showbiz talk shows and soap operas are the highest rated programs in all countries. because people watch to be entertained.

        Then what does THAT exactly tell you about us as a people? Don’t just give me statements, why don’t you try providing your own insight as well, hmm?

        try again jaks. try harder. think.

        1. i tells me that tv watching is not really the primary avenue for intellectual pursuit. it tells me sometimes we like to kick back and relax and laugh and not take everything too seriously. like every other people. like i said all countries in the world im willing to bet, the number one rated programs are similar types. ok?

        2. Perhaps. But it gets grating when there’s NOTHING but those kinds of shows, and that those shows follow the same formula, to the point where you can already tell what happens just by looking at the title.

          I’m OK with mindless entertainment, but when every channel offers nothing but mindless entertainment, it ends up crossing the line.

        3. @jaks: Clearly missing the point. Actually, South Park is an animated sitcom yet it has valuable lessons. Sadly, Da Pinoy turds were not ready for South Park’s humor. So does Family Guy. 😛

          Like every other people? Well, it depends on their culture. And unfortunately, ours is dysfunctional so the media is glorifying such things like what we see in telenovelas and Wowowee-esque programs. Oh, and even treating children as tools for entertainment.

        4. @jaks:

          TV may not be the primary avenue for intellectual pursuit, but it does contribute to how information is disseminated. In a way, it has a cultural effect of sorts.

          No need to dismiss TV as a non-entity of how a society develops.

        5. are you saying daido that tv is your source for “valuable lessons”? kaya pala. do you know what a veline is? google it (my favorite is belen rodriguez). since you brought up dancing girls. check out italian tv. daytime. are you gonna criticize that or is it ok because they’re a “sophisticated society”?

          back to the point, we started on the claim that filipino mediocrity is reflected on the what are the most watched shows. but look at any country, the number one channel or program is always general entertainment not the discovery channel (or what channel you consider to be intellectual). jersey shore, toddlers and tiaras, i could go on. are you gonna say that the entire world is now mediocre?

        6. @daido. I might have read that when it came out. I have a few blog entries trying to make sense of Willie over the years. Make no mistake , he takes advantage of the moronic and does not improve his audience. Thanks for reading !!!

        7. @jaks: Still missing the point. Don’t tell me you’re just TROLLING, aren’t you?

          You cite Jersey Shore & Toddlers and Tiaras but if you compare American society to our current society, then they have leagues better. But in case of TV programs, local shows are like this: “we poor and we are oppressed by the rich,” and “we won’t change.” You never see that in American TV and other countries.

          And bringing Italian TV on the subject? Nice try, but most Italians are more responsible since every nation in Europe have their own red-light district. Pure trolling to be exact.

        8. @jaks garbage in garbage out . The typical audience of wowwowwee etc , I doubt they read Dale Carnegie or Steven Covey. They might be reading Kislap or something of that ilk that will appeal to them. For some that is their only source of “lessons” . I will not deny that the US has a segment called “Trailer Trash” but that is just one segment and not the overwhelming majority like here. You are in a no win position trying to defend/ justify relevance of the Willing Willie’s of this world. Take the US, smart shows like Lost and X Files exist. Tell me the smart shows here. Let’s put it this way, would you want your kid watching Willing Willie and other similar rubbish?

  7. Many are bashing ABS CBN here, here is a fact about the broadcast corp:

    ABS CBN is Number 1
    in overall
    ratings, Local Box Office
    Movie Charts, Local Music
    Album Productions, sold out live concerts, other
    multimedia platforms,
    patronized artists and
    many more.
    Others say they are
    number one in AGB Nationwide TV ratings

    So whether you like it or not, you still watch. Lumabas na si Black Lily kahapon sa Walang Hanggan.

    1. The fact is that ABS-CBN was owned by the Lopez family, who are allies with the Aquino-Cojuangco clan. And that’s why they’re BIASED. They’re not number 1 after all.

      Good thing that I’ve watched GMA7. And cable. 😛

    2. Very loyal to your Kuya Kris and of course very loyal to your employer. ABIAS CBN is a name that does not come lightly. Imagine Holy Week 2010 before election, breaks holy week tradition and shows movie of your parents love story. Abuse of public air waves Kris. They are a lot like you . Word rhymes with bore .

    3. Typical Kris, we criticize Abs CBN on stupidity and bias and you counter with Something copy pasted from their website . A P R piece . Way to counter argue.

    4. I don’t watch that crap FISHCRAP.
      I prefer watching BETTER shows on CABLE TV.
      Shows that are not stupid and doesn’t feature whores and attention whores like YOU.

      It is a known fact that ABS CBN was the one that accused GMA7 of cheating the ratings just to cover up the OBVIOUS rigging of Wowowee.

  8. So you watch that crap fishcrap? It is no wonder that you are always showing us how STUPID you are.

    Bettet lay off watching channel 2 because it is becoming
    clear that your brain is getting smaller because of their shitty and retarded shows.

  9. good article fallenangel

    as i posted in ilda’s article, fact is, it’s not our fault dear leader’s initial is “bsc aquino”. it just is! why don’t jong complain to cory or ninoy for naming their kid that way. i agree, it’s the reader who puts meaning to it, and declares it name-calling.

  10. Hi Fallen “F” Angel.

    You’re right. Saying “Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino” in no way intends to prejudice the reader, whether explicitly or subliminally, against Noynoy as a bullsh*t president, because those letters happen to be part of his initials and that’s how we are supposed to refer to people, right? It’s not enough to simply call him BS Aquino, like what the Daily Tribune did in 2011; the initials should be emphasized by placing them under quotation marks right after spelling his given names: Benigno Simeon “BS” Aquino. Because initials are not supposed to be used for the convenience of shortening a name, but to emphasize what the first letters of his given names are.

    Take for example the late president Ferdinand Emmanuel Marcos. We don’t refer to him simply as “FE Marcos,” right? It has to be “Ferdinand Emmanuel “FE” Marcos.” As for GMA, it has to be “Maria Gloria “MG” Macapagal-Arroyo.”

    As for people with only one given name, we can use his/her middle name or maiden name. For example, we refer to MDS as “Mirriam Defensor “MD” Santiago” and to Erap as “Joseph Ejercito “JE” Estrada”. And I think we should do the same for titles, hence, “Chief Justice “CJ” Corona” and not just “CJ Corona” because that wouldn’t be right.

    I am amazed by the fact that of all the pressing problems like poverty and corruption that afflict our country today – the Republic Of The “ROT” Philippines – you managed to churn out an entire article in response to one lousy comment that wasn’t even directed to you. You really are indeed a big picture person, unlike me and others who, to quote from your article, “remain unable to move on while we’re being left behind by other people who didn’t sweat the small stuff.”

    I concede to your brilliant argument.

    More power to the Get Real “GR” Philippines blog!

  11. Darn. And all I ever thought was “BS” was “Balding/Single”. Leave it to the yellow herd to attach swear words to the mundane. *snicker*

    1. It could be worse… It might have been “Bading, Ser!”



      The Yellow Emperor does have a given name that lends to itself the Fun With Acronyms trope.

  12. Contrary to the pronouncements made here, the Filipino is not a literary savage; but try merely living and coping, and see if you can concentrate on enriching the Filipino language with literary devices.

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