So Manny Pacquiao decided to be a coach of a professional basketball team. It was a complex mix of feelings for me personally. He has been one too many things apart from being a boxer in the past years — movie star; singer; cock-fighting debonaire; a high-rolling gambler; born-again; pastor; Congressman... the list goes on. (I swear to God the moment he becomes president is when I know that it's time to give up on the Filipino people). I honestly didn't know if I was amused or saddened about it. But one thing that's certain is that I don't like it.
I love Pacquiao and these are just the personal sentiments of a a Filipino fan who has seen how much he has done for the country. I love shooting him and he's the most hilarious, kindest celebrity here in the local scene. I've seen how much pride and joy he brings to the faces on our countrymen even at their worst. But a basketball coach? Even the everyday Filipino would just shake their heads in disagreement. Go on, try it. More or less you will get the same answer. This isn't because I don't think he'll ever succeed or I don't want him to, but it's because I think he's doing too many things that actually prevents him from what he is already great at — being the country's biggest source of inspiration.
In a country that seems to keep trying to be many things — politicians becoming rock stars; rock stars and celebrities becoming politicians; media men trying to be rock stars and celebrities (you get the picture), he has already transcended all of these. I wish he just stays at what he's great at. Not just because it's good for the country, but it's certainly seems like it would be good for him as well. It's understood that he can't box forever, but that is the very reason why he should just focus on that now while he still can. Give this country a couple more reasons to be intoxicated with pride and joy. We do not know when we will have something like it again.
Stick to being an inspiration and a source of pride, not ridicule, Manny. While you still can. This country needs you to do so.