July 15, 2024

President Ferdinand Marcos, Jr. greeted his BFF on her 45th birthday on May 31.
He said: “Inday Sara, happy birthday. I hope you make some time for yourself and ignore the tambaloslos around you.”
It started with a simple trip to Korea where former President and now Pampanga Rep. Gloria Macapagal Arroyo (GMA) travelled with fellow deputados on official vacation.
The House of Speaker suspected a plot to oust him. His knee-jerk reaction was to kick out GMA from her post as senior deputy speaker with his infamous quote: “Moves to destabilize the House should be nipped in the bud.”
The sentiment now of demoting GMA backfired as it was petty, unnecessary, even irresolute due to “Dumb, blind ambition.” Not my words though.
The speakership is a wrong platform for one to bid for presidency, if you ask me.
In 1998, former President Joseph “Erap” Estrada with the masa touch beat former House Speaker Jose De Venecia.
Right now, Vice President Sara Duterte seems formidable. Unless some stroke of divine intervention pops outs, she will be President in 2028.
So, Duterte felt hurt and betrayed by the move of her very own party-mates against GMA so she resigned from the ruling party Lakas-CMD.
On Instagram, she posted a cryptic message in Visayan: “Sa imong ambisyon (in your ambition), do not be tambaloslos.” More or less, she was referring to the Speaker, who like her and this early, has reportedly moist eyes to be president after his cousin’s term.
Tambaloslos is a small mythical monster in Bicol, Visayan, and Mindanao folklore, with a wide mouth who lures with his magical words girls into the jungle then rapes them repeatedly. The creature is also said to have the power to confuse people and make them lose their way or go around in circles.
It is a serious insult, if one is to believe our Visayan-speaking friends, especially since the tambaloslos is not just one fearful monster, but a rapist, a hated criminal in our country. It is used to mean somebody who is good at fooling people with his deft use of language; a really despicable person.
With indulgence, I remember Karlito who was following up the purchase of a car by a couple whose kasambahay is Visayan-speaking.
When he asked if he could speak with the spouses about his offer, the couple told yaya, pakisabi na lang kay Karlito na “nag se-second thoughts” kami kung bibili pa kami ng kotse at saka na lang bumalik.”
So, the yaya goes to the door and relays the message like a true Visayan-speaking Tagalog. “Ser Karl, saka ka nalang daw bumalik kasi nagse-sekan thot pa si ser and mam!”
Bilat ti baya man gid! Buang pa!

The insult is deep but can’t blame the Speaker’s paranoia. Duterte together with GMA and Iron lady Sen. Imee Marcos threw then Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez “under the bus” without knowing what hit him. Even if he was close to Duterte, he made a mistake of going against Inday Sara.
The trio took advantage of the fact that a lot of representatives were dissatisfied with his leadership especially his unequal distribution of funds and playing favorites. While it may not be true under the current Congress, I have seen during my time that representatives will literally sign any paper shoved in their table, “including the toilet paper” especially if there is a promise of a reward somewhere.
Also the whisper in the sidelines is the China-U.S. quest for kakampis.
My mole in Washington said during the state-visit of Marcos Jr. culminating in the Oval Office, only two officials were allowed inside, the President and the Speaker, while the former President was outside-the-bakod literally biting her nails in frustration and mumbling to herself that she did not deserve the treatment due a former president.
The perception is that Marcos Jr. and of course, the Speaker has joined the U.S. alliance against China, proof of which are nine military facilities aimed at the Spratlys (occupied by China) as well as Taiwan in case of a war over that island country. Of course, Duterte like her father is pro-China.
Seemingly, tambaloslos is a declaration of war by Duterte against whoever she feels she will face for the presidency or considers her enemy. What would take the cake is a contraction of the term tamba or worse loslos which now refers to guess who?
Sigh.