Bong Eliab is a Film Appreciation Teacher at Ateneo de Davao.
GALENGA TALAGA NIYA GYUD, UY!
Friday, October 21, 2005
by Sir Bong Eliab
How can one distinguish a Davaoeno to a Cebuano? Or to a Cagayanon? Difficult? Easy. Davaoenos are one of the most unique people in the world. We can easily stand out if we are placed in a crowd of Filipinos from other parts of the country. And how, you say? Language.
Davao City, aptly called the melting pot of cultures, is home to many dialects. Tagalog, Cebuano, Ilonggo, Ilocano, Chavacano, Moslem, Bicolano. Name it, we'll speak it. If the Filipino language is a composition of all the dialects and languages in the Philippines , you might as well say that the language we speak in Davao City is the real Filipino language, and not Tagalog.
However, since it is a hodgepodge of different tongues, it is sometimes funny to hear our language "bastardizing" , for lack of better word, the other dialects. Strangely, that distinguishes us from the rest. Try these.
In stating a fact, Manilenos say, "Talagang mabait si Weng."
In Davao , we say. "Mabait bitaw gyud si Weng".
Too assertive? One asks, "Ano nga `yong pangalan mo?".
In Davao we say, "Ano gani `yong pangalan (or worst, ngalan) mo?".
When somebody commits a mistake or surprises someone, we always never fail to say, "Halaka!". Duh.
We are fond of re-constructing the language.
There's the GI+ verb, such as,
"Gisabi kasi ni Helen na mag-absent si Bernerd bukas", or
"Ginanon ni Lalai si Belinda sa mukha". You'll never find "ginanon" in any dictionary, I swear to God.
There's the KA+ adjective, as in, "Kaputi gyud ng mukha ni Yang-yang" or
"Kapayat gyud ni Jason ngayon."
The MAKA + verb form, such as, "Maka-inis talaga si Albert, uy!" or
"Maka-uwi talaga ako ng matagal ngayon".
The NAG+ verb, as in,"Nagsabi kasi si Tita Prescy na pupunta daw tayo ng airport" or
"Hindi pa man siya nagdating, uy!"
Adding new words or new meanings to old words to the dictionary is one of our favorite past time.
NAKIN: "Alam man nakin `yan ba!", "Saan nakin kita nakita gani?".
KU-AN: "Ku- an daw ang gawin mo", "Si ku-an kasi ano masyado". (No sense at all.)
ANO: "Na-ano ka diyan, Bryan !", "Ano man yan si Van, uy!".
HA: "Lake-ha na ng tiyan ni Lulu uy!", "Gwapa-ha niya uy!"
BEH: "Sige daw beh, dare!", "Pakipasa daw ng ballpen ni Tzaris beh".
KAY: "Huwag na, Wowie, kay nandito naman si Norma", "Umupo ka muna kay
nasa-CR pa si Elma."
To express disgust over someone, we utter,
"Gago kaba diay para maniwala sa kanya", or
"Ano man yan siya uy!", or
"Maka-inis man yan siya, uy!", or
when pestered when doing something,
you'd quip ,"Huwag lagi ba!"
On the other hand, when we praise somebody's extra special deed or talent, our Davaoeno tongue slips words like,
"Kuyaw lagi `yan siya!", "Galenga niya uy!", "Ayusa niya uy!", "Kuyawa ni Orly uy!" or "Hindi ako makatu-o sa ginawa niya!" . Hay, makatawa talaga. Ooops!
There are just so too many words to mention. Just check out the words you spew everyday. Sometimes you just laugh at yourself when you realize that you've just said those very words. No matter how long you stay in Manila or in the States, the moment you're back to Davao , your tongue feels as at home as you do. Language is the very soul of every being. You just can't do anything about it. Or as how we say it,"Anohin man natin yan?"
Posted by Bong S. Eliab at Friday, October 21, 2005