2 days after the conclusion of the World 9-Ball Pool Championships held in Manila, Philippines and triumphed by our very own Ronato Alcano, my prediction happened.
About 3 or 4 days after the prestigious tournament attended by 128 professional pool players from all over the world, I predicted that either a local or a Taiwanese will end up hoisting the world championship trophy. More importantly I foresaw that if a local would end up winning the tournament, our “not-so-publicity-and-camera-shy” president would again take the opportunity to share the glory of the champ.
I have nothing against the new champion Ronnie Alcano. I am not saying that he doesn’t deserve any of the attention he’s getting from the Filipinos, foreigners and “politicians”, heck he deserves all of those and more. The point I’m trying to give emphasis on is that “why the fuck do we allow these politicians to bask in the sunshine of Ronnie’s glory (that rhymed huh?!).
Ronato Alcano, 34 years old from Calamba, Laguna, rose from humble beginnings. Introduced to the game of billiards by his late father Ricardo who ran a billiard hall at the old market plaza. He and his brothers honed their billiard skills in that very same pool hall, but like all responsible parents, they wanted Ronnie to concentrate on his studies rather than playing billiards. But then, Ronnie’s love of the game got the better of him and he chose to play billiards instead of concentrating on his studies. His mother was featured on television a day after he won the championship. Living in a 50-square meter, one-bedroom house situated on a privately owned lot that was bare of any electrical appliances aside from a television set and two electric fans. The house had a rusty roof and had no ceiling, causing the heat to build up inside like a baking oven and walls made of unfinished hollow blocks. From a small time pool shark he progressed to becoming a professional player and eventually to a world champion with the help of Mr. Perry Mariano, a pool enthusiast himself.
Question, where were these ____ (insert profane adjective here) politicians during the times he wasn’t a champion yet? Answer, they are nowhere near him. Probably somewhere, again, basking in somebody else’s glory who made a name for themselves before Ronnie. Were they instrumental, in any way, in Ronnie’s success? Definitely not! Now, why would they start making these “courtesy calls” to Ronnie and getting all these photo-ops with the champ? Simple, P-O-L-I-T-I-C-S. Election period is nearing and they need all the exposure they can get. As for madam president, Order of Lakandula?? Champion for Life??? Very much deserved, yes. Giving him one million pesos together with the medal and the award? Definitely appreciated. But then again and again and again proving that the good president (note the sarcasm here) will never pass up an opportunity to get a photo opportunity with famous people who made their way to success on their own.
One word for these people, “saw-saw”.
(photo courtesy of the Matchroom Sports World Pool Championships 2006 Official website.)