A reprint from a the original text posted in 'Pinoy Masons', a Yahoo group of Masons withersoever dispersed.
Hahaha, that was a cool story. Well, some twenty years ago, while still in the active military service, I had a similar experience with dog poo, bully neighbors and getting even. It seems that these are pitfalls in neighbor relations be they in Canada or Manila.
Those days, we lived inside camp with manicured lawns and all. But the downside was that we had several lousy neighbors who stay consistent with the Pinoy culture’s lack of pet responsibility that you so vividly described but in Canada.
In the Pinoy Marine Corps there were about five grunts surnamed Ilao. I once had the impression that they were all from Batangas and that all Ilaos had that typical explosive Batanguenio temper. Well, my next door neighbor Salustiano was an exception. He was a senior captain then and I was a major. Tiano was as silent as the grave and I never saw him lose his temper. I asked him about this seeming aberration and he said his branch of the surname came from Baco, Mindoro Oriental, the homeland of the Mangyans. The Ilaos there absorbed the stoic demeanor of the native Mangyans but also acquired their vengeful attitude towards injustice.
We had this bully of a neighbor, a colonel. His wife was also a bully and his tomboyish daughter was also a bully. Worse, they had this boxer, boy was that dog a bully, but a mean one. The boxer dog bully needed to unload every three hours during the day (I don’t know what they fed it). They lived across the street and they would shoo their dog away from their own lawn into Tiano’s or mine. Needless to say, we were scared stiff of this bully family. Tiano and I were also sure that in a confrontation, the powers that be would side with the colonel rather than us.
Well, I am Ilonggo and my promdi upbringing told me that getting mad is stupid, getting even is smarter. So I kept things to myself and bought the most powerful paint gun in the market. I then concocted a potent brew of ground siling labuyo mixed with alcohol and injected the stuff into a neutral color paint ball. Well, I got lucky the first opportunity. I hit the mutt on the asshole before it could unload. Moments later, I heard a great commotion inside the bully’s house. The mutt froze upon being hit and wasn’t able to unload but ran back to their house and started licking its burning asshole, lost control and scattered poo all over their carpet. I had a smile that big.
When Tiano got home, he also had a smile that big and he brought along a case of beer. I guess I wasn’t as secretive as I thought I was. After about six San Migs, Tiano eyed me and said the incident could only involve me in some way and that as his drinking buddy, it was my moral duty to share the secret with him. So I told him. Heck, to this day I knew it was a wrong thing to brag, but dang these San Migs, they have a way of breaking down even the best trained resolve. Too late, my telling Tiano awakened in him the worst in his Mangyan upbringing (you should have seen the wicked glint in his eyes - scary).. The bully daughter was frequently harassing Tiano’s youngest daughter, it was about time the bully paid.
Tiano borrowed my paint gun, another of my mistakes in this sordid affair. A few days later, Tiano had a visitor, an authentic Mangyan, who brought along a bag of berries. Having grown in the province, I instantly recognized the variety. Nipay is a wild berry covered with a thick veneer of itchy pollen. As kids we used to coat our sumpak (bamboo airguns) paper mache ammo with Nipay pollen. Whoever gets hit with Nipay during the sumpak gang fights along the dried river beds in summer, would need to go to a dermatologist to get rid of the terrible itching.
Some days later, the bully daughter was pulling their still traumatized boxer towards Tiano’s yard to unload. She was wearing short shorts that exposed portions of her behind. First the mutt gets it on the nose and it makes a sudden burst towards home. Then as the bully was struggling to pull it back, she gets it high on her exposed leg. Both ran back inside the house. Let us draw a curtain of charity over the language blurted during all the commotion.
The whole neighborhood was aware of the events but kept silent. Peace and harmony reigned in our neighborhood thereafter. But alas, as Josef Broz Tito is known to have said, “martyrdom is the hallmark of partisanship”. The cause of justice and peace demands that a price be paid. In the case of Tiano’s and mine, the price paid was levied under the table and below the belt. Tiano was posted for 14 months in the Pinoy Navy’s Siberia, the Spratlies. I was groomed to be promoted ahead of my contemporaries that year, I got promoted with my juniors two years later.
Tiano has since retired and has migrated to Australia, where I hope he is working on a job not connected with paint guns. I became a Mason and retired also. I now work with YMCA Iloilo and just finished constructing our Ecumenism Hall for eight different prayer groups.
The life of a Mason can turn out in mysterious ways, no?
From the Land of the Ilonggas