A Fabrique-less Decembre

ni Repressed ang Ribcage

Allô! Bonjour mes amis! It ees ze season to be jolly once again, und eet ees also ze season to deck yoor ‘alls with boughs of… les photos of naked men??? Oui, messieurs und mademoiselles, eet ees ze time of year whaire ‘undreds (figurateevely speeking) of cloth-less males run ze length of l’Université’s Palma ‘All! ‘

Let us look back a leetle. Accordeeng to ze Wikipedia, ”Oblation is the iconic symbol of the University of the Philippines, represented by a man with arms wide-stretched, facing up, symbolizing selfless offering of one's self to his country.”

Ze sculpture eetself was built een 1935 to 1936 by Professeur Guillermo E. Tolentino with ze ‘elp of Anastacio T. Caedo, ‘is student apprentees. Ze Oblation Run, ‘owever, was started een 1977 by ze members of Alpha Phi Omega (APO) fraternity. Eet was to protest ze banning of “Hubad na Bayani,” a movie about human rights abuse een ze martial law era. Eet ‘as been a tradition ever since.

Normally ‘eld on or about ze seexteenth of Decembre, an exception was made for ze commemoration of UP’s un ‘undred years: ze “UP Oblation Run." Un ‘undred members und alumni of Alpha Phi Omega spreented nakud, 18th of July, 2008.

Ze oldaire members of the UP population know whot to expect, but ‘ow about ze freshies like moi? What do ze freshies of ze Université theenk of zis traditión? Fascinating? ‘Orrible? Exciting?

I ‘ave asked a few eestudents, all of who want to remaine anonymous in zis article.

“Excited, siyempre,” says une freshie from anozaire college. “Tradition ‘yan eh. I think most of the freshies are looking forward to that.”

“Maganda kasi naipaparating ‘yung issues sa pamamagitan nito. At naitutuloy pa ‘yung tradition. It’s one of the things that’s uniquely UP kaya dapat pahalagahan,” says a CSSP eestudent.

“Okay lang… Hindi naman ako ganun ka-atat na makita yun…” ees a common reply.

“It sparks my curiosity because there’s a lot of hype about it.”

“Dapat panuorin ng freshies, kasi parte ng ‘education’.”

“Weird.” (Anozaire common reply.)

“Medyo hindi ko lang naintindihan yung point but it’s… amusing.”

“Papanuorin ko, kasi saan ka pa ba makakakita ng ganyan kundi sa UP?”

“Alam ko na may political significance, pero mas napapansin yung nakahubad sila kaysa dun sa sinasabi nila...”

I agree with zis. But I donna zink zis iz le fault of ze event. Zis iz just a matter of perzpectif. Ze zifnificunce of zee evant iz left for audiance to pick up.

“Bakit hindi puwede ang babae sa Oblation?”

“Napanuod ko na ‘yung una, nung July, so I know what to expect. Okay naman eh, nothing malicious about it. Just UP students expressing their love for the country.”

Zis tradition certainly never fails to catch ze attention of peeple—not just UP students. Zat is why eet ees a great opportunity to shout out ze issues zat need to be ‘eard.. Und ze nakudness? Mon dieu, do not ask moi! Let us just say I am une of those who ‘ave nevair seen “Buns on the run,” as Sidney Ventura once called eet.

Some say “oui,” some “oui, oui!!” and some say “non.” Some are apathetique, or in ah-zaire words, “meh.” I suppose zaire are very few who are fearful of seeing nakudness, und some who do not like ze practice. But to most freshies, eet eez a must-see event simply because eet ees one of ze theengs that complete a UP experience. Eet gives UP students une opportunity to be ‘eard , und be undeniably entertaining at ze same time.

Though our opinions may differ, ze centennial freshies will be thaire to watch ze auspicious momunt in UP ‘istory! See you zaire! ▪