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This morning, I got an email from JDA. She’s a friend from way way back, and now lives in California with her husband and kids. Hindi Noranian si JDA. Pero alam niyang Noranian ako. She saw my FB Wall with a photo from last night Nora Aunor’s National Artistry small group discussion, and took the time to send me an email to ask what my stand on the issue is, and what are our next steps.

I asked JDA permission to post her email in my site. This way, it’s hitting two birds with one stone. I can share my thoughts with her, and at the same time reach out to my Fellow Noranians who have been asking me on my stand.

So here goes:

Hi Orly,
Kamusta ka na? It’s been a while since I heard from you. The last time we spoke, nasa PeopleSupport ka pa. I miss the folks there. I miss you, Mother Domeng, and Romi. I miss the yosihan sessions sa Lung Center, dun sa 3rd floor. Kapag nasa abroad ka, puro trabaho lang. Yung natitirang oras, para na lang sa pamilya. But I’m not complaining. Alam mo naman na ito naman talaga ang dream ko noon pa, db?
I wrote because I heard about the news. Alam kong Noranian ka, at marami akong natutunan, pati ang mga agents ko noon about Nora through you and Mother Domeng. Siguro, iyak ka ng iyak ano? Nagkausap na ba kayo ni Domeng about it? It’s crazy. With everything Nora did for the country, the least PNoy could do is to give her what is due her. I voted for him pa naman.
Balita dito, si Kris Aquino daw ang nag-convince sa kapatid niya. Ganun na ba talaga ka-lampa si Noynoy? Saka db magkaibigan sila ni Boy Abunda na Noranian din? Anung sinasabi ni Kuya Boy ngayon? Nalungkot din ba siya?
But above all, how are you and Mother Domeng taking this? I read the write-up on your site just last night, and it made me cry. Hindi naman ako Noranian. Sharonian ako, alam mo yan. Pero I felt how immensely saddening this issue is for you and Nora’s fans. She deserves to be recognised. Ikahihirap pa ng Pilipinas ang pagbibigay sa kanya ng parangal na yun?
Nanggigigil talaga ako. I know how much you love Nora. Ako nga, hinila ko asawa ko nung ipalabas dito ung pelikula niya last year. Yung kumadrona siya. Thy Womb. Ang galing galing talaga niya! Maraming nanood na mga Pilipino. Mga Noranians daw yung iba. Pero may mga puti na nanood. After the show, nag-standing ovation ang mga tao. Pati ung mga puti tumayo. Naisip ko kayo ni Mother Domeng noon. Totoo ang sinabi niyo sa akin noon sa yosihan. Walang katulad si Nora.
Magrarally ba kayo sa EDSA? Hehehehehehe. E sa Malacanang? Alam mo Orly, kung nandiyan ako, sasama ako sa inyo. Tutal, binahiran na ni PNoy ng pulitika yan, e sama sama na tayo, kahit hindi Noranian.
I miss you so much. Lalo na ngayon. Balita ko independent management consultant ka na raw. Dyan ka naman magaling e. Pag nagsalita ka, nakikinig kaming lahat. Kung hindi ka lang ano – e ako na mismo nanligaw sayo nun e. Hehehehehe. Joke lang. Hindi pa rin talo!
I am sincerely hoping you are OK.
Mabuhay si Nora Aunor! – JDA

***

Hello, JDA!

Anu na?! Bigla naman akong natuyuan ng bibig sa English mo! Iba na talaga ang StateSide!

I suddenly missed being with you at the yosi area kapag GY. Hindi nauubos ang mga kwento natin, ano? Walang wallflower kapag nasa bidahan-mode tayo. Lalo na kapag pelikula ang pinaguusapan!

At saka si Ate Guy.

Oh well, actually ngayon, isang malaking yosi area ang Pilipinas at si Ate Guy ang trending topic. Nasapawan pa niya ang mga pag-da-drama ni Bong Revilla at ang poker-faced march ni Jinggoy papuntang Crame. Artista man silang lahat, talagang titiklop at titiklop sila sa Superstar.

Hindi ako magugulat kung isang araw, mag-release ng statement itong si Bong Revilla at sabihing kakampi siya ni Ate Guy. Alam mo naman si Kap, nanlilimos ngayon ng awa.

Sa usaping NA1 (National Artist), ay talagang nakakalungkot. Not just because I’m a Noranian, but because of proof that art and Philippine politics doesn’t mix well. Noon pa naman diba? Naging issue na rin yan kay GMA. Noong nag-submit ang NCCA sa kanya ng list of recommended awardees, she removed a name and added new names without any reason.

May nangyari ba noon? Yes, kapatid. Nag-rally ang mga artista sa CCP. Sumama na rin and iba pang National Artists.  Nangalampag ang mga tibak at mga anti-Gloria.

Naalis ba yung mga idinagdag sa listahan? Yes. Pero only until after the Macapagal Administration.

May mga usapang may bahid pulitika ang pag-alis sa pangalan ni NA2 (Nora Aunor). I gathered a few, really, intriguing reasons kung bakit inalis si NA2. May kinalaman kay Vilma at sa pagtakbo niya bilang Vice President para kay Mar Roxas sa 2016. As much as I’d like to share it with you, I just want to keep mum, at this point. But if that’s true, nakakalungkot na may presidente tayong katulad ni NA3 (Noynoy Aquino).

I don’t believe that Kris has anything to do with it. Kahit papano’y, I’m still giving NA3 the benefit of the doubt. But other folks would say otherwise.

Boy Abunda hasn’t spoken his mind, yet. Ang kwento, he doesn’t want to be in the hot seat. But that’s him. Nora Aunor will still be Nora Aunor, even without Boy Abunda, yes?

Hindi kaya totoo na kaya inalis ni NA3 si NA2 sa listahan ay dahil kamukha niya ang dating Presidente? Ambabaw diba? Pero ang sabi ng ibang mga taga-Opposition, the President can have that stream of reasoning, more often than not. Kung totoo, naku, nakakatakot na dito sa Pinas!

On a more focused note, it doesn’t matter to me what the reasons might be. A National Artist once said that, “an award is not an evidence of one’s vindication. It’s just a confirmation that you are part of a certain group, be it prestigious or otherwise.” Tama siya. Walang award, ni isa, sa mundo ang sumasakop sa kabuan ng kung ano mang pinararangalan nito.

At mahal ko si NA2. Noong isinulong ang nominasyon niya for NA1, I was a bit apprehensive. National Artist na siya para sa amin. Para sa akin, ay tama na siguro yun. Pero ang ibang mga tao wanted her to be more than that. They want to offer Ate Guy to the country. They want her to remind us of an industry that once had its golden years. Supporters want to show the world, how Nora, with her brown skin and rags-to-riches story, symbolises the Filipino struggle to outlive his/her circumstance.

Tama sila. Hindi ko nakita yun.

So when the much awaited verdict was handed back to NCCA last week, nalungkot talaga ako. Nora has been through hell and back. And then, this?! Eto na naman. Itsipuera na naman siya. At sa sarili pa niyang bansa.

Yes, I’ve been hearing talks about rallies, symposiums and demonstrations. But I don’t think it will work. Para ka lang naghahabol sa Tambol Mayor nyan, if you get my drift. Mauubos ang mga sigaw mo at mapapaos ka sa walang humpay na mga FB shout outs, e napakadaling magbingi-bingihan ang Malacanang.

Besides, detractors are starting join the party.

Nora is maintaining her silence until now. Yan ang totoong tao. It’s as if she’s saying that she’s bigger than the recognition. Kung ibigay, ibigay. Kung hinde, e salamat na rin. Hindi siya katulad ni Caparas na noong binabawi na ang award, ay pilit kung yumakap sa kanyang medalyang hilaw. Pati ang mga dati ng hinirang na mga National Artists (Rio Alma), e inaway!

With her silence, I am becoming more of a Noranian. Hindi talaga ako nagkamali sa pagpili ko.

PNoy may seem to have snubbed and judged Nora based on her past. But what he really did was he spat on the face of the masses! At ang sabi ng Pastor namin, the face of the people is the face of God. PNoy, a Haciendero, seems to have spat on the talent of the Tindera. Maxist ba masyado? Well, ganyan naman dito sa Pinas. Ang nasa itaas ng Trayanggulo ang siyang nanatili doon, habang tayong mga nasa ibaba naman, ay pilit lalong ibinababa.

Funny, but Nora Aunor is starting to become PNoy’s karma. The Tindera has the People at her back. The Haciendero only has his fountain pen.

At this point, I want to turn this issue into an advantage. Being an educator, I see this as an opportunity to teach those who are still unclear on what true art is. Nora Aunor is a symbol of the arts. Hindi maikakaila yan. Her talent goes beyond the borders of her country and her culture. Our little brown Cinderella has captured the raves of international critics, and is still gathering support even from non-Noranians. Parang ikaw. Katulad mo.

Gusto kong gawing paraan ang kanyang di-pagkakahirang sa mas mabuting paraan,  JDA. Tapos na ko sa Anger phase.

May mga nagtanong na rin sa akin kung sasali daw ba ako sa mga:

  • rallies
  • press conferences
  • hate posts
  • online surveys

Ang sagot ko ay NA4 (None of the Above). Kasi, kung maging epektibo man ang pangangalampag kay NA3 ngayon, at kung sakaling magbago ang isip niya, tatanggapin ko pa ba ang National Artist na ibibigay niya kay Nora?

Hello? Thanks, but no thanks! Sa kanya na yan! Nora Aunor has bigger things to do!

Kagabi, I moderated a small group discussion on NA2’s artistry, and most of my attendees were from the media, the government, and other civic groups. Dalawa lang kaming Noranians sa meeting. The discussion was very overwhelming. They have decided to sponsor a leadership/arts conference on Nora Aunor. They are tapping a major university in Manila as the venue and invite students, leaders, the media and Noranians to discuss Nora’s artistry, her contribution and legacy.

It’s time to let the People know how worthy the fight for excellence is.

This way, siguro, by the time when a more rightful President will award her the honor she most deserved, mas marami na tayong tatayo, papalakpak, at magpupugay!

Mabuhay si Nora Aunor!
Orly

Tags : artsculturenational artistnora aunorpnoysnubbed
Orly S. Agawin

The author Orly S. Agawin

Orly has been writing for The Jellicle Blog since 2008. He is a training and development consultant by day and an art enthusiast by night. He lives in Parañaque with his mom.

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