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Tuesday, February 22, 2005

"...and Dodong got the job"

by Maria Eleanor Elape Valeros
September 27, 2004; posted at www.thefreeman.com

“SA pag-pangapply og trabaho, guts gyod ang mo-play og important role,” says Leonido ‘Dodong’ Tala, a Filipino aquaculture project manager in Madagascar, Africa, in answer to the first set of questions I sent him through my yahoo email box.

I convinced this gentleman from Tangub City, Misamis Occidental, one of avid readers of The Freeman online version, to let me borrow his story for this column to give my readers an idea on how in the world was Dodong able to get a space in that part of the Dark Continent.

“I remember when I applied for my very first job, I arrived in the office late for the preliminary screening,” he noted in bold letters. I could read through the capitalized message a mixture of embarrassment and pride that despite being tardy he still got the job. Read: The glory that guts won!

Dodong mentioned of ten applicants out of nearly a hundred who were already up for an interview before the Malaysian consultant.

“The ordeal was exhausting kay sudlonon pa kaayo ang farm, plus sugaton pa ka’g unpleasant information that the screening was already done. I decided to sit next to the last interviewee, mapping out in my mind my next move as I’m already in the area,” he recounted.

Dodong said he wanted the job so badly that he thought of befriending the last guy scheduled for the interview.
“I implored the guy to tell the Malaysian consultant that I would like to talk to him.My wish was granted and when I spoke to the consultant, I told him if he could let me work sans pay as I was not on the list of applicants that he was supposed to interview. I told him it would be nice to gain some exposure in the industry, “Dodong recounted.

The line “working without pay” worked wonders.

Dodong got the job ahead of those on the list. The Malaysian assured him he would be paid, of course.

Dodong and I shared a common denominator. We took some unpopular jobs before ending up in our present workstations today. I worked as messenger for an old, ill Briton national in Gun-ob, Lapu-Lapu City; an English tutor to a Japanese kid in Bacayan, Talamban; an encoder for an Australian water service provider consultant in Sto. Niño Village in Banilad; and a bookkeeper for a resort gift shop in Buyong, Lapu-Lapu City before I made my way to the first-ever data capture company in Cebu, and finally to the editorial section of The Freeman.

“Like you, Eleanor, dili sab gyud ko mauwaw mo trabaho and mangita ug panguwarta. I did odd jobs back then from being a shoeshine boy to construction helper. When I was in college I was with the test paper printing facility of the school,” Dodong wrote.

I thanked Dodong for letting me borrow his story for this column. Having been born a poor child, he said it made him strong and tough against difficulties. In my case, having been firstborn and poor, it dawned on me to bushwhack for a clearer path in life.

And then I found myself smiling at Dodong’s formula of getting a good job. “Find the smallest and less attractive job first. You can easily get it kay menos man ang competition. Then from there, work on to get the next best job. It would be easier to apply for another job if you already have some work experiences.”

Regarding the shrimp industry of which I have a special interest on and of which Dodong has loads of technical expertise, I found him chuckling at the thought on why the Philippine government just “allowed the shrimp industry to be destroyed by the so— called technology transfer in aqua-farming”.

The importation of the P. vanamei or the Pacific shrimp specie hurts the industry, says Dodong, “Kay kuno ang P. vanamei specific pathogen free nga dili daw mataptan ug sakit? I find it ridiculous. Logically, any organism for that matter is always capable of contracting a disease. Take note that the resistance to disease is developed in a monitored condition. It’s totally different in ponds, particularly in commercial culture,” he reasoned out.

“Misleading propositions regarding aquaculture makalusot sa Pilipinas because of politics ug sa kawalay expertise nga mo-handle ug deep analytical study that would help in decision making before programs are pushed,” he pointed out.

Asked on what could be the best measure to adopt in order to preserve our shrimp culture, Dodong keyed in “simply go back to basics”. Traditional or backyard culture should be given an emphasis coupled with strong government support. Laws should be enacted on the protection of endemic shrimp species and on intensive shrimp farming.

(For your comments, reactions, suggestions, and contributions crank up my addy wild_pechay@yahoo.com. Celebrate your space in space!)


Addy buddies. “Hello! I read your article on The Freeman, “Chalk dust in Siam”. That was great! (Writer’s note: Thank you very much!). It amazes me a lot because I will be a future teacher. I’m now on my fourth year in the education discipline.” - Girlie girly_fariola@yahoo.com.

“Hi! I’m Cito, a nautical science student. Thanks for coming up with the article “Having sense of sex”. I find it helpful for us young people on our attitude towards sex and our response to this natural biological function. Plenty of us young people are confused on the significance of sex in our lives. And I really appreciate the article as it presented a healthy view about sex. Thank you for the attention given to this note. I’ll be looking forward to your next write-up.” - Lucito Pacaldo vj_cito2000@yahoo.com.

“Hi there! Good day Ms. Ma. Eleanor E. Valeros, just wondering how long have you been writing or contributing? (Writer’s Note: At The Freeman, almost seven years now.) - Art Ramos .

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9/27/2006 09:43:00 PM | Anonymous raine said....   

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