I’ve been reviewing my bible from Genesis to Revelation and boy, am I now running out to ideas for countdowns! Isa pa, some bloggers caught on with the idea of My Top Five so I thought I have to move on with a fresh gimmick. And so… Readers, I bring you UTOY’S APPROVAL RATINGS!!! How is it done? Simple. Given a topic, say Prophets in the Bible, I get to give grades to each candidates I choose, and depending on how I see them, some would get high grades while some, well, would just have to do better next time. This way, I get to bash a candidate if he happens to fail my expectations. Odiba, may katayan! Ansaya!
I find the Ten Plagues of Moses as a good place to start this rating thingy, kasi everyone who read their bibles, listened to their catechists (or Sunday School teacher) or at least watched the Prince of Egypt is familiar with them. who’d forget Moses when he shouted in his deep stentorian voice: “Let my people go!” So ano pa ang hinihintay natin? Let’s rate ’em!
According to their order of appearance in the bible, the Ten Plagues of Egypt!
Plague # 1: Turning Water into Blood. This particular plague turned the Egyptian people into Englishmen. Everyone goes to the bloody kitchen, stand by the bloody sink, open the bloody spigot and out comes whot? Bloody ‘ell! One can be very subjective with this plague because you see, as the saying goes, “One man’s poison, another man’s cure.” While maybe the Egyptians are now cursing yet another dinuguan dinner, the curse may be a blessing to the Rosa Rosal and the Red Cross, to Fear Factor set designers and horror flick propsmen and most specially to Lestat and the whole vampire community. Utoy’s Approval Rating: 85%
Plague #2: Frogs. Now this IS my idea of a plague: campy, fun and downright messy. Plus, there’s no casualty here, only annoyance, where the Egyptians were croaked to submission by these harmless pond-dwellers. This particular punishment given to the Egyptian citizenry has the trappings of a Hollywood B movie, setting the tradition for the Attack of the Killer Tomatoes and The Blob: The Invasion of the Mutant Frogs!!! From the blood-soaked river of Nile emerges a murderous horde of viscous amphibians determined to dominate the entire Egypt! See eyeliner-ed Egyptians and their mothers run for their lives as they try to elude the inevitable doom brought by… The Invasion of Mutant Frogs!!! Utoy’s Approval Rating: 96%
Plague # 3: Gnats I had to google up what gnats really are, and it turned out they’re somewhat related to our native “niknik.” Every carabao owner knows these creatures can really be pesky, tenaciously stalking the poor beast wherever he goes. Still, I just can’t believe a whole country can be humiliated by storming its people with puny “niknik.” A simple fumigation from Mapecon could have solved the problem in no time. Utoy’s Approval Rating: 65%
Plague # 4: Flies. When I was 12, I get to read the book, The Amityville Horror, where at each chapter, as the fright and dread escalate, the number of flies on the page increases. Since then, I tend to associate flies with evil. They’re evil enough to do waltz on surface of a steaming feces then innocently land on your dinner, adding flavor and germs to the now-soiled chicken galantina. Also, these disease-carrying insects are really the universal symbol for plague, something every culture would agree about. Utoy’s Approval Rating: 92%
Plague # 5: Pestilence. You might have thought by now, where have all the frogs from Plague # 2 gone? Well, the old Testament happily noted that they all died and the whole Egypt stank. Then came gnats and flies which we presumed to have feasted on rotting frogs before swarming on people. This unavoidably lead to the fifth plague: Pestilence. It’s a motley mix of biblical Mad Cow Disease, Avian Flu and Foot-and-Mouth Disease that had done the livestock of pre-vaccination Egypt. Wicked. Utoy’s Approval Rating: 90%
Plague # 6: Boils. Locally known as pigsa, to be afflicted with boils is graphically translated in Pinoy Bible as “matadtad ng bukol na nagnanaknak.” Wow. Pinoy Bible, ladies and gentlemen. A little trivia here. It seems that the ingenious technology of “bote para paputukin ang pigsa” is not yet available not just to the pre-Christianity Egypt, but to the whole modern Europe as well. The Philippine Inquirer recently ran a story how the Philippine entry to Cannes Film Festival, “Serbis” with its gratuitous sex and deliberate grittiness was hissed for showing a scene of popping a boil with a Coke bottle. Apparently, that is just too gross for them. But oral sex involving children isn’t. Huh? I can’t figure it out myself. Utoy’s Approval Rating: 76%
Plague # 7: Feiry Hail. The triumph of the human spirit against all adversities is best illustrated in film, not by My Left Foot, The Gridiron Gang, The Mighty Ducks series or any other movies involving paraplegics, nerds, misfits and underdog sports team, but rather by our all-time favorite, Armaggedon. Why? Because in the average human mind, the ultimate picture of disaster involves a rain of fire and brimstone. And this disaster, believe me, can surely be remedied or shielded away by the US Government, or at least that’s what Hollywood said so. Too bad for Egypt, it would take a few thousand more years before the United State of America be born. Utoy’s Approval Rating: 97%
Plague # 8: Locust. Of all insect plagues, this one went with a bit of a wrong timing. After the bloody water, the litter of dead frogs, pestilence on crops and livestock, various insect infestations, and the storm of fire and hail, I couldn’t imagine, for the life of me, what lifeform could have survived the ordeal. There’s nothing left for the locusts to destroy! I mean if these attacked after all the food source were devastated, the the few remaining Egyptians would have surely said, “Hey look, big fat grasshoppers! Grab some for dinner!” Not a plague. Not a plague at all. Utoy’s Approval Rating: 68%
Plague # 9: Darkness. Someone is misbehaving in the house? Send him to his room, turn his lights off and let’s just see if he won’t be back begging for forgiveness… Come on, Moses! Can’t anything be more infantile than this punishment? This goes at the same level with No TV For Three Days and A Whack of Ruler on the Butt. Besides, when pretty much of everything is destroyed by flaming storms and swarms of pests, why not just stay at home, munch on some deep-fried locusts (they said it’s high in protein) and do what normal people do when it’s dark… like, uhhmmm, sleep. Utoy’s Approval Rating: 60%
Plague # 10: Death of First-born. This one puzzles me a lot. I mean, did the angel of death first made a preliminary census survey to determine who is the first-born in the family or did they just knock at each household and ask? Would the first born mean, that of the father alone, that of the mother alone or that of the couple? Does it apply to how far a generation, like your grandpa’s first-born, your great grandpa’s first-born, etc…? In cases of twins, would they die both or only the one who got out first? If the first-born already died, does that mean the punishment is waived on his family to avoid double jeopardy? Having said that, I think it’s cool that the Jews had ways for the angel of death pass over them: mark your doorjambs with blood. For some Jewish household who’s first-born might have been a sort of a jackass in the family, Daddy might have just conveniently forgotten about brushing bloody hyssop on the doorpost. “Bye-bye, Junior. You’ll surely be missed!” Utoy’s Approval Rating: 89%
So there you go, Bro. Utoy’s Approval Ratings. The candidates may not necessarily be that many (can be as few as three) and the topic may not be purely biblical. This will be a regular feature on my blog so if you think it sucks, well then, that’s how life goes. Deal with it.