20 Things You Need to Know About Manila: It's More Fun in the Philippines

After travelling around the world, I noticed that Filipinos and the Philippines in general are quite misunderstood. Granted, this is mostly because of the fact that there are Filipinos all over the world and their interaction with the local population has caused a stereotype to form.

Let me take this opportunity to shoot down some common misconceptions and tell you more about our country and our people.

1. We speak English- Many new acquaintances seem surprised when they find out I’m from the Philippines because they say I sound American. Most educated people in the Philippines speak very good English. Not everyone pronounces fifty-five as pipty payb. Really.

2. Yes, most of us will in fact die or at least faint if we are unable to eat rice for an extended period. OK, at the very least we will throw a tantrum.

3. Metro Manila is the capital, not just Manila. Don’t get scared to go to Pasig, Makati, Quezon City, Mandaluyong or any of the other cities inside Metro Manila. You don’t need malaria shots to go there. “Manila” is actually the older part of town. Believe me when I say old does not translate to charming.

4. No, you won’t get kidnapped in Metro Manila unless of course you are stupid enough to walk around flashing your wealth or insist on inviting random women (or men) to your hotel room. You have a bigger chance of losing all your money in a nightclub buying drinks (or women) than getting kidnapped unless you go to remote mountains in the already well-defined Muslim areas in the south of the country.

5. If you found your wife in a nightclub, and by nightclub I mean the ones where there are ladies’ drinks, well, don’t be surprised if all she wants is your money. Seriously, you expect it to be love? There are however, the lucky ones who found “the one’ from the great treasure trove of perfect Filipina wives. ;p

6. We wash our asses with water and soap. There is no way we will stop doing this. No amount of toilet paper can replace water. Tell me, if a bird pooped on your head, will wiping it with paper suffice?  Point.

7. We are not all great singers. Ariel Pineda, Charice and Jessica Sanchez are great and there are many more like them. But, we have our fair share of croakers, myself included.

8. Not everyone is pre-disposed to be a good domestic helper. We also have a lot of entitled spoiled brats.

9. People do not walk around with guns. Yes, our security guards do have shotguns which I just realized was a big deal to many foreign people, but other than that, people do not walk around carrying guns.

10. We do not eat our dogs. (ok, we do…but this is very rare and you won’t find it in restaurants.)

11. Balut is great (duck embryo). You’re a sissy if you won’t eat it.

12. List of chicken parts according to best tasting: 1. intestines, 2. gizzard, 3. ass, 4. feet, 5. wings, 6. thighs,7. breast. Yes, the exact opposite of your list.

13. Whitening is one of the biggest sectors of the beauty industry here mostly because it’s human nature to want what you don’t have. That’s why if you’re white, you’re instantly a big deal. Don’t get so full of yourself 🙂

14. Our garbage collectors probably have a better mobile device than you do.

15. No, most Filipinos do not speak Spanish. Just because we can count in Spanish doesn’t mean we can speak it.

16. We do have a lot of great looking women. I’m not entirely certain about foreign preferences though. We often find your tastes questionable at best. (Before I get any violent reactions, I am dating a foreigner so yeah, some have good taste too)

17. Every Filipino man plays basketball. Nevermind that the average height is only 5’5″

18. San Miguel Beer did not originate in Spain. It was in fact, first brewed here. The one you’re drinking in Europe used to be the subsidiary of ours but has long since become independent.

19. Beer is taken with ice (I don’t necessarily agree with this), Spaghetti is sweet and we have the best mangoes in the world.

20. It really is more fun in the Philippines