The truth is hard to swallow. But you have to swallow it anyway.

Basketball supremacy is not really destined to get by the Filipinos. We may say that have victories in the past, but it's not relevant anymore. Besides, most of those victories we have had in basketball since the olden days were limited to Asian tournaments. And the fourth place we had at a World Championship in the 1950s was, although commendable, not really something to be used as a motivation to be in the top 10 in the sports. The wind's direction has completely shifted. This territory now belongs to China, Korea and some Middle East countries. Take a look at the 7'6 Yao Ming who toyed with Asi Taulava last Asian Games. What about Korea's 7'4 Ha Seung Jin who couldn't be stopped by our prayers? Even James Yap, our best shooter today, couldn't catch up. How then can we possibly beat these guys and confine them back to playing ping pong other than basketball?

Ha Seung Jin: You want to beat us? Eat lots of Kimchi!

We need to become taller! Basketball is 75 percent about height! It is something that we Filipinos lack.

But why height? Basketball is not just about height, you may protest. I know, but it's like saying a ridiculously skinny model can win eating contest against a sumo wrestler. You can't be serious pitting David against Goliath in a game of basketball, right? There are three areas in basketball where taller guy is at advantage against a smaller guy. Rebounding, scoring and defending. Although scoring is the area one is always not sure about, rebounding and defending are totally different. Once you control these departments, only sudden bouts of retardation can make you lose a game (e.g. you all forgot you had a scheduled game that day). How can you win a game when you can't even attempt to shoot for fear of getting blocked? How can you win a game when you know you would just be tiring yourself out jumping and jumping up for the ball that is already in your taller opponent's hand?

The story of my schoolmate serves as an example. For a time, he was so good, a talented guy who could have been given a chance to play for PBA (at least that's what we believed). He could shoot, rebound, defend and pass very well. People encouraged him to play for a varsity, which he eventually did, when he accepted an offer from an impressed varsity to play with them. We paid handsomely to get the best front row seat so we can watch him closely in action on his first game and, perhaps, have the face to cheer for him. But like the audience who felt like sinking in their seats watching Binibining Pilipinas candidate Janina San Miguel, we half-closed our eyes as we watched him played the worst, pathetic game in his life. It was like a nightmare. He, who used to score at will against players in our Barangay, could not even score a single point against varsity players. But how, if you may ask? Didn't I say he was good? He was. But well, unfortunately, he was, from head to toe, a Filipino with a height of, what else, a Filipino. He was 5'4! Just two inches taller than Jose Rizal. That made an effing difference! He couldn't drive into the basket without getting stopped and blocked. He couldn't defend either (try guarding a six footer). And while he could jump higher than a normal guy, it was embarrassingly useless against a six footer who could jump as high as he could. To make this goddamn story short, he was benched for all season and never even got the chance to hold the tournament's ball again other than his! The last time I heard about him, he was playing serious chess with his niece.

Playing chess is fun. No goddamn loudmouthed coach, no disgustingly sweating teammate, and definitely no height requirement!

Now that we have identified the problem, it's time to solve it. If it's all about height, then the solution lies in, err, becoming taller of course(what else, stupid!). I enumerated the solutions I found to become taller as to play and win a basketball game. I actually managed to squeeze it into three types, deciding against my previous plan of stuffing this entry with nonsensical adjective-filled sentences just to be called an awesome blogger.

1)Take Vitamins! --- If we wanna grow taller so we can ram ourselves against the Great walls of China, then it's time to take our vitamins and some supplements. One of which is Vitamin A which is required very badly to promote the growth and strengthen our bones. Certain supplements such as calcium and Vitamin D are also helpful to make those bones stretched like rubber band (see Monkey D. Luffy of One Piece). Taking glucosamine and chondroitin are also helpful, said one user in a forum named “DrQuack2009” (let's just trust the Internet, can we?). Vitamin C is also good as researchers working for a Vitamin C manufacturer have recently discovered (they are also finding another discovery about condom which they will release in the future once their new condom is sold in public). B1 and B12 are also good, as they are found in growth-taller products. Taking Vitamin E and Vitamin K can also help. And don't forget Vitamin B6. In short, just take all those goddamn vitamins!!!

2)Wear rubber shoes with thick soles and high heels --- Bingo! This is the easiest time-tested trick I could think of. Though it could empty their pocket in one shopping, this is the closest thing to making them feel like inches taller, so it's worth it. Besides, our players get as much as P300,000 a month cursing spectators and “cooking” some games, so spending a little over P5,000 won't hurt them that much. Rumor has it that Ryan Agoncillo, who stands at 5'6, used this kind of trick to avoid getting bullied by his girlfriends (I wonder if this is effective against Judy Ann Santos' massive arms, though). John Prats has also tried this while with Heart Evangelista, but I presumed Jericho Rosales wore much higher shoes than his. Just imagine the situation when our players are playing one on one against a guy five inches taller than they are. Now their rebounding ability is going to be equal to that of their taller opponents. And not only they can defend squarely against him, they can also intimidate him by showing how their big shoes can crush their feet. When things heat up inside the court and all hell break loose---they know what to do with their new shoes. To be honest, we have high percentage of winning in a riot than in basketball. So we're actually hitting two birds with one stone here.

3)Bribe the referee! ---I don't know why I tired myself out thinking about the previous two bullshit solutions when frankly speaking, those are nothing compared to this. When all “legal” ways have been exhausted and their freaking opponents are still unfairly determined to embarrass the team in front of millions of Filipinos watching inside the court and at home, then it's time to use our trump card---bribe the referees! This is the secret all those stupid people are ignorant of: it's the referees who control the game! Remember that the final decision about fouls, scoring, rebounding, assisting, blocks, line, etc. lie in the hands of referees. It's even their goddamn call to throw players, coaches, managers and consultants out of the game. Bribery is where we Filipinos are best at, and we'll be doing ourselves a really huge favor if we can utilize it not just in the local arena but in international scene as well. All we need are dollars which we can ask from the FG (he's going to get it from our taxes anyway). But first, we need to spot who among the referees are hungry or greedy... or both. I learned this from GMA herself, when she did her aging generals huge favor in return of their loyalty, thereby controlling the AFP completely. We can certainly do it with referees who are underpaid like most rank and file employees in this country are. These type of guys are easily controlled. Let's control those who control the game. Man, I'm so genius.

If these three still don't work, then let our players just play their own goddamn balls. After all, Filipinos are also good at it.

To play with the balls, you sometimes need to use your tongue!

This is too easy even for a third-grader who has just been introduced to the dark side of Adobe Photoshop. But the caption was NOT photoshopped, I can assure you. Instead of 'Aquino,' it's really 'Arroyo' you're seeing here. This appeared at the issue of Manila Bulletin today. It's the second time something like this happened since ABS-CBN mistyped 'Aquino' as 'Arroyo' in their news last Tuesday (which also appeared in Yahoo News). We don't know how the Arroyos and her minions would react to this, but one thing is sure: this will NOT put her down. It's already been proven that no amount of criticism and sarcasm can put her down. I'm more worried about the person behind the caption. He or she may be searching for a new job at this moment...
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