As you can imagine, we get a lot of comments on RTTP, and the fact is, we don’t publish them all.
It’s not that we’re drowning in a sea of comments, that would be a nice ‘problem’ to have.
The reason that comments don’t get published is that either, they add nothing to the conversation or have no relation to the article.
To most reasonable people, this makes complete sense but never a day goes by when I don’t get a nasty, hate-filled email from a visitor who’s angry that we didn’t publish his particular comment.
I say ‘his’ because it always seems to be men that take it as a personal insult that they didn’t get to have their voices heard on a mostly anonymous forum.
In 3 years of administrating RTTP, I’ve never had a single hate-filled email from a woman, so I guess that says something.
Let the Vitriol Flow
One such email arrived in my inbox last week in response to my recent article about how I never actually chose to live in the Philippines.
I’m guessing it must have struck quite a nerve with the author as he seems like he was apoplectic while writing his email.
I don’t want to give his warped view of life in the Philippines too much air-time, but here are just a few of the highlights (or should that be lowlights?)
- ignorant locals
- wild, uneducated kids
- too hot, most of the time
- don’t understand English (to my desired standard)
- women go to work while the men go to cockfights
And the list goes on, and on and on.
I didn’t waste too much time counting all his grievances, but I’d make a rough estimate that there was about 20-25.
Some of his claims I might not necessarily disagree with, but I would argue that most of them could be said about any country in the World.
It was interesting to me how he made mention of the idea that anybody who disagrees with him must be wearing ‘rose colored glasses.’
I’ve spoken about the various color of people’s glasses in another article, so I won’t write about it again here, other than to say that if my glasses are rose colored, then yours are brown colored.
The color of dog shit!
Why Won’t You Let Me Speak!
He’d used the contact form on RTTP rather than post a comment, but yet towards the end of the email, he ponders to himself whether his ‘comment’ will make it to the pages of our site.
Three reasons it won’t be making it onto the site buddy.
1. It’s not a comment.
2. It doesn’t comply with our, very reasonable, comment policy, and, most importantly
3. It’s just a long list of things you hate and find objectionable about living in the Philippines as a foreigner.
What I found almost laughable about reading his email was that he’d been coming here from the UK, since 1998 but apparently he hates it with a passion.
Now I don’t know about you, but if I hated something as much as he obviously does, then I certainly wouldn’t be doing it for almost 20 years!
Some (Not So) Friendly Advice
Here’s my advice to him and anybody else that hates it over here and feels so strongly that they are driven to sit down for 20 minutes and write an email to somebody that they’ve never met or conversed with, to make their feelings known.
DON’T KEEP COMING HERE!!!
Seems logical enough, right?
He has a Filipina wife so is that the reason he keeps coming back?
Is life in the UK so shitty that the guy is willing to suffer such terrible hardships, just to make his wife happy?
Having lived in the UK for the first 30 years of my life I can say that that country didn’t suit me, but I was never tempted to spend my evenings flailing my body with a bull whip just to exorcise the demons that were lurking inside.
Reading his email reminded me of something I saw when I was in Cagayan De Oro a few years ago, visiting a friend, and it just so happened to be Easter.
There was a religious procession that passed by his house, so I went outside to see what all the commotion was.
What I saw almost knocked me off my feet.
In the middle of the procession, there were about 20-30 men with their shirts off, and they were flailing themselves with whips.
You could see the blood flowing from their wounds, and it certainly didn’t look very pleasant.
It looked damn painful, to be honest.
You can read more about it by checking out this interesting article that I found on the Vice website.
Stop the Tangents and Get On With It!
Anyway, I digress – which is something I’m prone to do both in life and while writing.
We at RTTP enjoy and encourage reader interaction through comments. It says it right there on our comment policy page, so it must be true.
What we don’t welcome are lengthy diatribes that list all the things that the bitter individual doesn’t like about the Philippines or its people.
My advice to the guy that wrote the email is simple.
If you don’t like it here, then leave and never come back.
If you don’t agree with something that is written on this website, or any website for that matter, post a calm, well thought out comment, and let’s have a debate.
If you feel yourself slipping into a hate-filled tirade, then stop yourself quickly.
Don’t waste our time or yours because, guess what my friend, it will end up in the digital trash bin, where it belongs.
If all of the above fails and you still feel the need to vent your spleen then why not set up your own blog?
If you don’t have the technical knowledge to set up a website, there are plenty of tutorials that will show you how to do it.
If you can’t afford the hosting, then there are plenty of free hosting providers.
WordPress — which is the platform that RTTP and many other popular sites on the Internet use — have their own free blogging solution.
In short, there’s plenty of ways for you to get rid of your anger, but posting on this website won’t ever be one of them.
If you’ve posted a comment and it does not appear on RTTP, then the first thing you should do is to check the comment policy.
For the majority of comments that don’t get approved, not complying with our policy is by far the most common reason.
If you’re sure that you’ve followed the guidelines, then please use the contact form and drop us a quick message.
Once again, we love to get your feedback and welcome reasonable, thoughtful debate, so feel free to reply to this or any other post on the website.
Your feedback helps to make the site better so keep them coming.
You can quickly read the most recent comments and get involved in the conversation by visiting our recent comments page.
If you’re living in the Philippines and can help another reader out, then please feel free.
I’ve been here for over 12 years, but there’s plenty I don’t know about the islands.
No amount of time living here will make a person an ‘expert’ and anybody that claims otherwise is most likely lying or delusional.
Am I a fascist? You decide.
If not wanting to promote hate means being a fascist then color me Trump!
Perry Enriquez says
Well said. Well done.?
Steve Fleming says
Thanks Perry. Glad you liked it. – Steve
Steve, I am sorry this bloke gave you such trouble. He is obvious jaundiced and would be unhappy no matter where he lives. For as many negatives about the Philippines, as many or more positive things can be said. Keep up the good work. If this post does not meet guidelines, I will not be mad, will not throw a tantrum and will not go on a tirade. Peace to you.
Steve Fleming says
Bob – No, your post is fine my friend. I usually just throw the comments or emails directly in the trash, but this one really got my goat. The idea that he’d taken so much time to write about his disgust with the Philippines, it just baffles me.
Totally agree that there are more positives than negatives. You can stretch it even further if you choose to see the ‘negatives’ differently.
David Boxall says
It seems that this guy was a bit extreme with his ranting, but to be honest I have also detected a fairly negative view from several members on different Philippines forums.
Maybe it is something that sets in after being in country for an extended period, but it seems that for some people that are living here, just nothing sits right for them, from the weather to the politics and everything in between.
My thoughts echo your own, i.e. if you really don’t like it here and life is so much better back “home”, stop griping and feel free to jump on a plane outa here……
Steve Fleming says
David – I’ve had way too much negativity in my life and just can’t be bothered with it anymore. It does nothing for me and only serves to bring me down. I don’t really visit expat blogs because, as you say, there tends to be too many wingers and whiners.
Thanks for your comment and I hope you enjoy the site.
Well said! I bet that guy needs exactly your advice.
Steve Fleming says
Elm – Thanks for your comment.
James Cahalan says
I have a love affair with Philippine
Islands for over 30 years. I lived in Marakina and than moved to Negroes Occedental. I am married 28 years to Filipina. We have 3 sons. We right now live in TX. But will be retiring back home in 2018. The problem with a lot of folks they expect culture in PI. to be American.When you live in a foregnation you have to except the culture .Filipinos by and large have a love affair with everything U.S. My family in the Philippines is the best.If you respect and care be honest you will never have a problem. Now that doesn’t mean the you don’t live smart.Be humble,not showy be local and low key. We lived in the islands 10 years,than my wife’s mother who lived Hawaii suggested we go there .So we went for 2 year’s .Housing in Honolulu is expensive.family in Tx invited us there Dallas we have been here 19 years. We have always planned to go back to Bacolad city.So this we will do.
My advice to anyone is test the waters before moving to any country.If possible spend at least a month or more in a place before making a total move.Check health care,banking housing.Most of all ask questions.
John Craig says
Good morning, I just found this site, and I like it. Lived in PI for three years as a young US Navy sailor. I loved it. I meet my wife there. I am now in CA. But I plan on retiring there in a few years. I have been back many times since I returned to the States in ’84. One key I found early on to a happy time there is learn even basic Tagalog words and phrases. I speak Tagalog now enough to do what I need to do without help. It is amazing how much the Filipinos appreciate even a little Tagalog from a Westerner. The Ugly American or British is certainly not welcome. Try it and your experience will certainly change. Granted there are still a few Filipinos who wont give an inch to you even if you try. But they are few and nearly all the locals I dealt with are completely taken aback by me using their language. Good Luck and thank you for your time. John
Bruce B says
I’m a 61-year-old American who moved to the Phils in December 2019 (Gary’s book and this site both helped me make that decision). Are things perfect here? Of course not. They’re not perfect anywhere human beings live because we have this innate ability to screw up any paradise we find.
Even though there are things about the USA I will likely always miss, I think I made the right choice and only plan to return to the States long enough to clear out my storage (to ship what I keep and give away what I don’t), and then it’s back to Baguio for good. I’m still adjusting but this is “home” now.
As for the guy venting at you, Steve, he’s Exhibit A for why I generally try steering clear of expats. I think most are probably okay but it’s the ones that act like this guy who made it an easy decision to move 6,000 miles/nine time zones away from home in the first place. Moral to the story: If you dislike a country that much, THEN DON’T MOVE THERE.