Summer of 2014
Several related news items in the last few weeks caught my attention. First, the results of a recent Social Weather Stations survey which said that Filipinos ranked toiletries (bath soap, toothpaste, etc) as more important than, say, rice or sugar. This had some academics stumped because of the way it redefined the notion of what comprises basic survival needs. Then there was the human interest story about National boxing champion Emmanuel Manny Pacquiao’s amused reaction to Timothy Bradley’s revelation that he (Bradley) does not bathe for the entire week leading to his fights in keeping with the superstitious belief that doing so negatively affects one’s chances of winning. Pacquiao was supposed to have reacted with incomprehension; like most Filipinos, not taking a bath was an alien concept to the boxer.