June 9, 2023

LITERALLY, OUR TITLE should be read in English: (“cockroach, poss, EMPH, EXPR!”)
COCKROACH – AN ORDER (or sub-order) of Blattaria, to the Westerner is an insect, an infest – rendering untidy the bathrooms and kitchens or people’s homes. Sometimes it is classified as a pest or niff in English; a kind of peste in español; thus the negative Visayan EXPR: a pesteng yawa (?), i.e. = “bad pest”. But
BACK TO ITS Etymology, it has another reference in Spanish; it is referred to as La cucaracha.. that’s where English got the word: cockroach. So,
IT IS NOT that ‘bad’, or harmful as other insects that it straddles also on another, different reference, or that-a-way? If you and I will remember, there is an old Spanish song entitled La Cucaracha. (I know the tune, but hardly the lyrics; except the first two or three lines which is you begin with: La cucaracha, la cucaracha.. ya no puede caminar; porque no tiene, porque le faltan, las dos patitas de atras.
IT IS “SPECIAL reference due to its indirect utilities too? Like it serves as ready feed for bigger mammals – as in the cases of some cats, ducks and chickens, other fowls? What sayest thou, dear reader?
ELDER-INFORMANT JULY Lampitao says the Badahi is food for owls and snakes; Ex-councilor Pat B. Cuilan says: the duck, the turkey, and the goose – some he domesticated: savour deep-biting the Badahis: shaka pan ba-nokka! (Personal Interviews: Feb. 15, 2020; Feb 21, 2020; Bingaan, Itogon and Baguio City, respectively).
MOST SPECIAL A reference of the Badahi often obtains among the Ibaloi-Iowaks living in the communities below the Binga Dam; for two main reasons viz. it serves as: 1) a bait (Teppan) for the traditional bird catcher-trap or Katig; and 2) Tafang (“charmers”, i.e. several Badahis) of the Bukattot – a recent version of the original Afejaw or fish cage-trap. (n.b. the Bukattot is bigger, made of wire-screen, and ‘as durable’ as: the Afejaw which is smaller, made of rattan). Now, to some specifics.
THE KATIG. YOU start with a vertical pole – the length about double of your height. Match the pole with a perpendicular middle floor the length of which is about one-third that of the pole. Get a string – preferably of cotton, then tie this somewhere at the upper part of the pole. Then
PULL DOWN THE string and make a secure loop from it – somewhere in the middle floor. The bait or Teppan cockroach should be inside the loop; so that, the moment the bird steps on the said floor, the looped string shall engulf the bird’s foot – as said string is pressured to spring back, in accordance with the tip of the pole, reverting to its normal vertical position. Then, you’ll hear the bird shrieking and swaying to and fro trapped now in the tightened loop!
THE BUKATTOT IS oblong somewhat in shape, made of screen – the spaces tiny enough so as not to allow caught fishes to escape. It has a diameter of about one foot; and a length of one meter or so.
LAID HORIZONTALLY, ONE end is closed; the other end is the allowed entrance of the prey. Said entrance end is made (up) of tie-wire bristles (or specially-designed bamboo sticks sharpened at the tip); so that, when the trapped prey tries to come back – out, it cannot; the pointed bristles or sticks are en garde to prick!
MEANWHILE, THE BADAHI ‘charmers’ are safely located inside-middle of the Bukattot.. like attracting the would-be preys e.g. Tilapia, milk fish, carpa, even river eels or snake-fish, et cetera, to ‘come in’!
FOR ‘MORE EXPERIENCED’ Fish-trappers or Maiddag, they’ll design Bukattots with both ends(!) – as ‘entrance ends’, thereby enabling ‘maximum’ purpose of the fish-trap.. to lure preys from both ends!
[YOU CAN ASK some of them if interested – to try the details. Entre alii, you can ask Informants and Maiddags Marvic Pascua, Toravent Lacya, Arjona Lampitao, Lam-en Alod, Johnny McBrown, etc. They all know and expertly use the Bukattot – using those Badahis as ‘charmers’ or Tafang!).
SO, THE BADAHI – as a Teppan or Tafang is that important, useful, and ‘in-demand’ after all? Answer is: Yes! at least among the Ibaloi-Iowaks living within the peripheries of and the communities below, the Binga Dam. The Badahi..
DESPITE ITS DEROGATION as an infest, a disturbing insect, even a pest-or-niff, its utilities as feed for larger domesticates are noteworthy to reflect on (cf. Supra).
THERE MAYBE OTHER utilities or ‘benefits’ derivable from the now beleaguered Badahi [As was the former case of the bees, two varieties here – the Putyukan and the Dinuwan, perceived before as dangerous and poisonous – but now much-sought, even ‘cultivated’]; but
LET IT BE known: if somebody is ‘hunting’ for Badahis that bad, remind yourself: it is not for food nor medicine, nor anything fancy as you may imagine, rather, candidly:
IT MAY BE for his pet bird or parrot; goose or turkey or his rooster fighting cock, Pang-sabong.
IF HE LIVES in the farm, maybe he seeks from you more Badahis for the Teppan bait of his Katig; if he is a fisher – the Maiddag-type, he’ll need those Badahis to ‘charm’ more fishes and eels to his trap, the Bukattot. Ah Badahi: now truly quaint and yet unknown, you are! Ahoj!