27 February 2011


There was still a fairly large crowd of students at the football field when I arrived at the end of the work day this afternoon. Second day of the high school intramurals; and today was the first day of the major events.

I honestly do not have the foggiest idea how they do things these days, but for all of the time I was in what used to be the high school, the intramurals were crammed together inside a week.

This was just the way things were done; even back when I myself was a high school kid, the intramurals were a break from the ennui of classroom work, with games held in rapid succession one after the other in different venues.

I have no idea whose bright idea this was, but I surmise this was thought up by somebody from the Department of Education God knows how many years back. And nobody has bothered to ponder the logic of it or think outside the box.

For starters, there is utter disregard for the merits of Murphy’s Law. Yah know… What can go wrong…

Remember, some kids have to play three, four games a day for several days in succession. Not all participants are athletically gifted. The mental and physical preparation is not necessarily what one could call sufficient for the days of stress and physical exertion.

Cases of professional athletes – with their thorough and scientific physical and mental preparation – collapsing and dying whilst in competition are well documented. What are the probabilities of the same happening to young students whose preparation for the intramurals can best be described as run of the mill?

Significantly higher, I would imagine… And I am just thankful that nothing of the sort has happened all the time I have been associated with this school… Knock on wood…!!!

Don’t for one moment think that I have not tried to reason with organizers of these events. Let us just say that while some might have agreed that, yah I had a point, there was not enough conviction to alter the way things are done.

If it were up to me, I would organize league style competitions played over the whole school year. That way, the participants are active for prolonged periods of time instead of being suddenly called to participate in strength sapping competitions and situations of extreme stress after months of inactivity.

Oh, well…

At least, today, the weather cooperated. I understand the intramurals actually started last Thursday, mostly indoor events held at the SENTRUM. I was afraid Marce, the recent typhoon which raised hell in Taiwan, was going to spoil the party.

Time was when bringing eggs to the monghas at the Carmelite convent was part of the to-do list for these intramurals. If the rains fell, anyway, since September has always been very much within the rainy season, then that was because saw√Ę na raw ang mga mongha sa itlog

[This story was first published on Facebook on 15 September 2008.]

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