SORSOGON CITY (JGL) – When I was a young primary school boy growing up in Piot, a near west barangay of Sorsogon City, I often heard adult males praising boys my age to be “oragon” when we do a good turn.
I now realize that oragon comes from the word “orag” (when someone has sexual urges), which is described by Sigmund Freud as the third stage in psychoanalysis called phallic stage when boys between three to six years focus their desire (libido) on his or her genetalia.
This is the stage when children become aware of their bodies, the bodies of other children, and the bodies of their parents, they gratify physical curiosity by undressing and exploring each other and their genitals, the center of the phallic stage, in the course of which they learn the physical differences between “male” and “female”, and the gender differences between “boy” and “girl”, experiences which alter the psychologic dynamics of the parent and child relationship.
But “maorag,” which means the ability to carry out a sexual act to celebrate the boy’s manhood, comes into disuse because kids our age are not supposed to do such a thing.
Thanks to my friends and myself attending weekly catechism classes, a baby step towards professing Roman Catholic faith, “oragon” has never been part of our everyday vocabulary as it is considered an unspeakable, immoral word.
On the other hand, if we do something bad, adults call us young boys “paroton,” which means, we have a “parot” (pronounced pa-root),” slimy liquid that collects around the sex organ of an uncircumcised boy that has an unhygienic, smelly look.
But even when I grew up as an adult, I still avoid calling someone “oragon” or “paroton” given that I am not sure if the one I am calling out has a particular sexual orientation or has already been circumcised. For instance, what if the man I am calling is gay or a transgender, should I call him “oragon,” too?
Indeed, “oragon” has a very narrow meaning among Catholic Bikolanos.
But non-Bikolanos are being educated by my fellow Bikolanos to use “oragon” as a sweeping word for be-all and end-all description for a Bikolano, excelling in a certain, if not, general field. The oragon moniker can be applied to an alpha male, who can exercise dominance over his fellow Bikolanos by backing up his words with deeds.
“ORAGON” VS. “BAOG”
If same-sex marriage were to be acceptable among Filipinos someday, I figure the word “oragon” will be applied not only among Bikolanos but will also among women or Bikolanas and other LGBT’s (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender), who may be able to reproduce offsprings and those who may adopt abandoned children and raise these children as reproductive members of society. Oragon can find its opposite in “baog,” a term, which is now applied to both men and women, who are not capable of making babies.
In the coming May 9, 2016 Philippine presidential elections, a friend, Joey D. Nolasco, the executive editor of Philippine Daily Inquirer, whose mother hails from Sorsogon City, reminded me that there are “oragons” running for vice president of the Philippines.
But I told Joey that although, he’s right, the decision of the three Bikolanos and one Bikolana to run for the second highest official in the land is not something that Bikolanos are proud of.
Senators Chiz Escudero, Gringo Honasan and Antonio “Sonny” Trillanes and Rep. Leni Robredo all claim to be favorite sons and daughter of Bikol. And they are all running for vice presidents. Escudero’s father, the late Food and Agriculture Secretary Salvador H. Escudero, is from Casiguran, Sorsogon, while his mother, Rep. Evelina G. Escudero, is also from Sorsogon province. Honasan’s mother, Alice Ballesteros, a teacher, is also from Sorsogon. Robredo’s father, retired Naga City Regional Trial Court Judge Antonio Gerona, is from Bulan, Sorsogon. While Trillanes’ late father, Antonio Trillanes, Sr., is from Ligao, Albay.
I am sure all these candidates are capable of becoming vice president of the Philippines but when they explored running for the position, they did not consider their electabilities. They did not realize that running for vice president is very easy but winning the position is like winning a lottery or sweepstakes.
They should keep in mind that a part could never be bigger than a whole. The old proverb that says, “if you cannot beat them, join them,” should find application to candidates from Bikol and other regions in the Philippines. Never mind loyalties. It’s similar to the expression of Manuel L. Quezon, who said, “my loyalty to the party ends when my loyalty to the country begins.” Or as Mark 3:25 says, “If a house is divided against itself, that house cannot stand.”
“IN BASKETBALL, THE PLAYER WITH HOT HAND GETS THE BALL”
If these Bikolanos and “Bikoleni” only talked among themselves and decided to support a common candidate, I am sure they will not only elect a shoo-in vice president but they will also earn the respect not only of the region but also of the Filipino nation. If political parties in the Philippines would return to a two-party system observed before martial law, each party can hold a convention to choose their favorite candidates for president and vice president, just like the “elimination” process in the primary elections and caucuses leading to nominating convention in the United States. This procedure will eliminate the nuisance candidates in Philippine elections.
By running for vice president, these Bicolano candidates had reduced their chances of winning and increased their chances of losing. As Joey said, these vice presidential candidates have become crabs, which try to pull another crab down when a crab tries to escape from a container basket.
These Bikol candidates also bolstered the chances of the comeback of the Marcoses. By banking on the Solid North, Bongbong Marcos should be laughing all the way to the bank!
These Bikolanos would need a lot of personal sacrifice like what Salvador “Doy” Laurel did to Cory Aquino when Mr. Laurel slipped to the vice presidency and Mar Roxas played second fiddle to Noynoy Aquino, where both the mother-and-son won the presidential elections hands down. In the dying seconds of a basketball game, players throw the ball on an open player, who has a hot hand, if they want to win the game.
It’s not too late, though, for these candidates to back out and endorse one them as “Bikol Saro” (United Bikolanos). For doing so, they could be called a bunch of “oragon,” not a bunch of “paroton.” (firstname.lastname@example.org)