Business, Personal + Finance

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Birthday Traditions and Wish

Wednesday, September 16, 2009 Posted by vernon go , , ,
I have heard of stories from my Grandparents and from Culture Majors with regards to the change in our birthday Traditions. It got me interested in these past few days since I was emo and was worried as to how to celebrate it, so I researched and reflected.

Before the World Wars, the way they celebrated Birthdays was very different, if not foreign compared to today. During those times, the birthday celebrant is celebrated, she said. It’s like a surprise type of party or celebration minus the western style of today. Early morning before the celebrant wakes, the family with friends prepare for the greeting. When the celebrant wakes up, he or she is then greeted with songs, cheers, food offerings and dedications. Native foods, poems or “tula,” dedications, and live song performance with matching musical instruments. After which they or those who are able to go with them to mass, see mass together with the celebrant to thank God. To my awe I said, not too expensive, not too complicated and very awesome (In my opinion, I wish I can experience this someday).

Next, was during the American occupation; of course American influence starts to sink in; Cakes and parties were introduced, night or day outs and the party hats with confetti. By this time I asked, did the celebrant treat the family or friends? No, lola & lolo said. A group of friends or the family prepares for everything while maintaining secrecy, they laugh and said: it a way it was like mission impossible, you can’t tell the celebrant. What about the Japanese? Well they added something too, the wearing or acquiring of new stuff on the day.

Then I fast forwarded, so that leaves our Spanish and Chinese influences. Well the Chinese style was more family oriented with a few friends around and with a bunch of extended families; Chinese food, ampaos, feng shui stuff and lots of noodles and red attire. I said with a grin on my face, I agree. Spanish is quite similar with: fine food, piƱatas, and in a way much more “Sosyal.” I asked again, so when did the celebrant’s treating of friends/families started? They can’t quite give quite a concrete answer.

I have actually tried to find these birthday history or traditions on the internet but was unable to, or maybe I didn’t try hard enough (most of what I find is the NOW traditions of celebrations).

Filipinos have a propensity for free-loading. In fact it’s in our vocabulary: “blow-out,” “balato,” “pakain,” “libre,” “Banka”. Sad, but this has become part of our culture, that foreigners scorn us Filipinos for being so thick-skinned. Just like what happens when a foreigner who marries a Filipina?! He is considered a “big catch” so he ends up marrying not just the Filipina, but the whole barangay – from parents, to siblings, to cousins, to second and third cousins, to grandfathers, grand children etc. And if it's "sweldo" or pay-day, once has to treat others? What is up with that? And if you have more money, you have more relatives..

So now I will no longer practice this Celebrant-treat people/friends, cause hey! it's my birthday! My birth and entry to this world is to be celebrated and why in heaven's name should we spend oh so much money? A birthday can be cheap and yet memorable, that's how I want it, to be surrounded with friends, family and love. It doesn't have to be on one day, one can have a pre-birthday celebration, on the day, or even a post birthday celebration, why not? have you ever wondered that what if we can make these birthday celebrations more proactive, vibrant, creative and memorable?

Well, maybe some of you have experienced new types of celebration, but I haven't. This should be listed in my birthday wish list. Talking about wishes, here are the stuff I want (LOL):

Netbook (Very useful for internet and future masters'), Mp3, A new phone (iphone? wahhaaha), Taste of new food, having fun, spending time with love ones, and I must not be the one to treat!

So with that, I will be finally turning 22 this coming September 19, 2009! Happy Birthday to me!!!