This business of peddling yellow stuff

This is just a lazy and rambling Sunday piece about yellow in general, and nothing in particular. No earth-shaking stuff here about DAP or PDAF.

This morning, after having my once-in-a-blue-moon military haircut, I decided to take a relaxed stroll around the Kamuning neighborhood. It was partly to satisfy my curiosity about what typhoon Glenda had wrought, and partly to look for a near tire vulcanizing shop, since I needed to patch up my bike’s front tire that took a flat (probably from all that post-Glenda street debris).

The electric posts, as usual, were full of “Tubero” ads. No yellow ribbons were being tied to the old acacia, duhat, kaimito, kamias, atis, and sampalok trees — at least those that survived the storm. But, in fairness, I saw no peach-colored ribbons either.

My mind was full of these struggling fruit trees and fruit-colored political ribbons when, at the corner of  Erestain St and Kamuning Rd, I chanced upon this rolling cart of luscious tropical fruits. Most of Manong Fruit Vendor’s offerings were ripe golden yellow: bananas, papayas, mangoes, and pomelos.  Since I am a confirmed fruit addict (if you don’t know it yet), the foregone conclusion was that I was going to buy at least a kilo or two.

Manong Vendor explained that the bananas, which were of extra heft and nuanced sweetness, were from Davao. His direct source was a supplier based in the Port Area. Take note that I’m not merely a fruit addict; I always make sure to ask the vendor about his or her source of the fruit, if he harvested them himself or directly bought them from farmers, and so on.

The closer the vendor is to the original farm or orchard source, the bigger effort I would exert in befriending them. The longer I would chat with them about the state of the fruit industry, the ups and downs of supply and demand, and so on. I wouldn’t haggle even if their prices are a bit high. After all, preferring to buy from street vendors close to the soil rather than from a huge grocery chain is, for me, a political act. Each fruit bought even at a slightly higher price from a haggard and harassed vendor is, for me, an act of class struggle.

This time, Manong Vendor explains that he relies on the big capitalist fruit trade. But he remains a small ambulant peddler, oppressed and exploited by the system just the same. In short, I buy two kilos of Davao bananas, with a smile at P50 per kilo, and proudly carry my delicious yellow edibles home.

What can I do? I’m a yellow kind of fellow, and proud of it. I claim yellow for our country’s fruits and sunshine smiles, and more. The Philippine flag may have big swaths of red and blue, but our land and people are represented by its yellow sun and three stars. Even the Communist flag, overwhelming in its redness, proudly displays its hammer and sickle — symbolizing the oppressed workers and peasants — in resplendent golden yellow.

In short, I claim the yellow color as a symbol for our land and people.

Yellow is interwoven with the red, white and blue of our unfinished revolution, as our national colors blend with the black and white of Llanera’s skull flag and of mourned martyrs, and with the green, red and white of the Moro struggle for self-determination. All are part of our people’s militant history. I won’t let any arrogant haciendero regime claim this yellow on mere inheritance, just as I won’t let the same arrogant haciendero regime claim the vast Tarlac sugarlands, drenched by peasant blood, on mere inheritance.

Oh, to clarify further: I’m not about to wear a yellow ribbon and flaunt it, as the resident Gollum wishes. I’m just an ordinary citizen sitting at his humble dinner table, feasting on golden Davao bananas, and dreaming of other delicious yellow things to devour.

I don’t wear yellow. I devour yellow. All things yellow, I devour voraciously, so long as they are eminently edible. If, for some reason, I bump into someone wearing a Noytard ribbon, I’ll devour them too. Don’t worry. I’ll spit out any arguments that prove inedible.

So move along now, folks. Told you there’d be no earth-shaking stuff about DAP or PDAF to find here. #

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