Paulo Avelino: Out of Contention

Well, it was good while it lasted. It would seem though that he just wasn’t able to galvanize support from the Cordilleras. Part of that, I think, is due to the fact that he had to be asked about his indigenous background before he admitted it. The right time for him to have said “Igorotak” is when his fellow contestants were saying: Ako ay Boholano or Ako ay Pampango or Ako ay Ilonggo. Unfortunately, he had to be asked before he said that he is an Igorot. Ang labas tuloy, it is as if he is not proud that he is one. In turn, Igorots were not as enthusiastic supporting him as they were with Marky.

The kid is good though. He is an intelligent actor according to those who saw him act. So there just might be a place for him in the industry. I’m sure you will agree that it is not always those who end up with the title who really wins at the end of the day. Chris Daughtry, for one, didn’t win American Idol but is now selling more records than the winner.

Anyways, for those of you who would like to read more about Paulo, you can read his blog here. Also, read Splasher’s take on this one.

RELATED POSTS: Will Igorots Be Starstruck With Paulo; More on Paulo Avelino. PHOTO CREDIT: GMA-7

18 thoughts on “Paulo Avelino: Out of Contention”

  1. Hmmm…interesting. I don’t know how to feel about this kid. Did he not claim his ethnicity earlier for fear of being made fun of? Does he even “own” his ethnicity as Igorot? I’ve only heard of him when you started featuring his stories on your blog. It’s great to hear that we have Igorots now in the acting industry. Still…I really don’t know how to feel about this kid…=). Kayni

  2. As most of us, most definitely “not starstruck”, my last and idol was “chiquito”, godless his soul. Just loved any of his facial expression from any direction!! To what I’ve read so far, Paulo was destined to lose. When you hesitate regardless how little about your ethnic background as in his case, he lost momentum and maybe more than half of Baguio and CAR didn’t cast their precious vote for him. Never undestood the logic why some igorots conceal their identity. I for one when asked, Baguio born aku, of course this idiot will inject, so you’re ilocano! No, i’m pure igorot! That’s the end of it. Same on foreigners if I’m on their land, they’d say pilipino? Politely I’ll say I’m from the Philippines but I’m an Igorot, just like american-indians in America, tribes you know? end of their questioning! Aysus!! back on track, Marky Cielo was quite different. My take on him, right when he said he was from the Mt Province, for some reason (to me), that he was destined to win. I’m really happy for him and his family and I mean that. Wish though he continue to obtain his Architectural degree.
    Back to the Losers on this show ss4, (Paulo and Stef) it’s pretty obvious GMA7 or ABSCBN for that matter, they don’t want another igorot or yet ilokano descent on their industry us winners, that’s no big deal since most of us don’t watch their stupid shows anyway.
    Idta Baguio ken Cordillera, napornadan ti party ni Paulo!! Agpulutan tayo langen ti mani ken tsitsaron….On the brite side, let’s wish both Paulo and Stef more success…


  3. Hi Kayni,
    He does generate mixed feelings, no. Ako din noong una (actually pati ngayon), I didn’t know how to feel about him. And I think he also doesn’t know how to feel about his being a half-Igorot. But I’m giving him some slack because he is a kid and might eventually learn to appreciate his roots and be damn proud of it 🙂

    Hi Trublue,
    Ha ha. Idol mo pala si Chiquito ha. And I think he is worth idolizing because he was (patay na yata siya di ba?) really funny.

    Napurnada nga ang blowout ni Paulo sa Baguio. By the way, I agree with the Marky comment. Sana ituloy niya ang kanyang pag-aaral.

  4. I read in this blog that Paulo lost some of his fans when he made a somewhat anti-gay comment towards the tomboy in the show. Oh, well. It is just a reality tv show. I prefer to look up to Igorot achievers who are doctors, philanthropists, lawyers, etc., not game show contestants. But that’s just me. 😉 Still I wish him all the best, just as I wish all the best to anyone. Peace. 😀

  5. Wil – agree with u in looking up to our kailians who achieved something! Wish I can say that to myself (after 2nd yr college) drop out na) Kenneth comprehend, kenneth understand, kenneth digest da chemistry/math, which were requirements to what I’m aspiring for!! Anyway, I have a newphew who is a Pilot for Asian Air (manila to cebu/davao routes). I only mention this coz his dad (not even hs grad i think) worked his ass-off as OFW so his son’s dreams will be fulfilled. Jeffrey Basawil is his name (parents from Sagada area). What’s so heartwarming about this was Jeffrey reciprocated as I knew his dad spent millions for him. Paul, my cousin, is still plying the Baguio/La trinidad route as a jeepney driver…Kudos to him and I applauded Jeff for achieving his dreams as a Pilot. For me, wish I can figure out how to operate a electric can-opener or better yet, figure how to become a blogger. Well, that’s what I expect from a college drop-out….
    guess i’m too harsh on myself!


  6. I also have very young children. Their upbringing is middle-class or should I say they are luckier than many Igorot children. But they are acquainted with and proud of their ethnolinguistic origins even at young ages. Why? It was not the TV or the educational system that introduced them to their ethnic origin. We, their, parents did. And so it is automatic for them to say they are Igorots.

    I think Paulo was not raised in the same manner. If I am right, I would like to think that his Igorot mother had her reasons and I only hope they are valid. I pity Paulo for not sharing in that pride we feel when we tell people we are Igorots.

    I voted for Paulo many times, because I was still hopeful that he would win and that with Marky, he would help in repairing public perception of Igorots. This I did even if I watch only the news and discussion programs on TV. Truth to tell, I haven’t watched a single episode of Starstruck but I got updates from other people who assured me that my candidate has talents. My gut feel is the Igorot community did not support him with as much alacrity as they did Marky because they found his “silence” or hesitation to claim his ethnic identity offensive if not insulting.

    Bill, you are right. He should have declared “Igorotak” on day one. Sayang. Lesson too late for the learning? Or too early or timely lesson for future Markys and Paulos? Whatever. Moral of the story: Be proud to be an Igorot because it makes every other Igorot proud of you.

  7. Hi Wil,
    Thanks for that link. It would seem that Paulo lost a lot of support (from various groups) for his unnecessary comments like that lesbian thing. He also said something about a fellow contestant’s ability to speak English. Meron yata siyang foot in mouth disease (the inability to shut up one’s mouth). But we do wish him well.

    Hi TruBlue,
    I emailed you about your cousin. Hope the person who was interested in OFW stories will pursue this story and that the interview works out.

    Hey, don’t be too hard on yourself. Lahat naman tayo there are things we kenneth do. At buti ka pa merong electric can opener 🙂

    Hi Anonymous,
    Your kids are lucky indeed. Taking pride in ourselves as a people really starts in the home most especially if the family lives outside the Cordilleras where there would be no Igorot community where the kids can learn and appreciate the value of their roots.

    I also voted for him online, partly because he is one of us and partly because he is talented, but not as enthusiastically as I voted for Marky.

    I agree with your assessment as to the moral of the story. By the way, thanks for visiting and I hope you (kasama na rin kids mo he he) continue to visit us.

  8. I don’t know but I think it’s because of his mixed backgroud? Filipinos tend to be too ethnocentric. While I advocate the preservation of indigenous cultures I don’t like ethnocentricity.

    When you’re mixed it’s difficult

    I don’t directly say I’m Igorot..I say I’m 1/4 Igorot because I do not want to deny my Ilocano and Pangasinense heritage.


    May fraction pa talaga..

    Maybe Paulo just feels Filipino… he didn’t say I’m Ilocano, I’m Bisaya, I’m Spanish…


  9. Hi Betelnut,
    Good point. It is understandable that those from different ethnic backgrounds would have some difficulty in identifying who they are. That’s why I agree with those who say that parent’s do play an important role in teaching their kids about their roots, otherwise they would feel rootless. Thanks again.

  10. I agree with Betelnut. As a half-Igorot myself, it’s kinda weird saying I’m Igorot because it’s not 100% accurate. It’s even weirder to say I’m half-Igorot and half-Caviteno. So sometimes, we non-FBIs end up getting tongue-tied. That doesn’t mean we’re denying our Igorot heritage. In fact, I’m closer to my igorot heritage than my Caviteno heritage. I guess I’ll say I’m Igoteno next time. 😉

  11. lol wil, parang maaskal sa tenga yung igotenyo; hehe, ICAVIROT na lang… sa mga Igorot languages the i- could stand for “from” … (katulad ng “ibilbilig” ni Bill meaning from the mountains nga) so ang mangyayari sa’yo, “from-Cavite na Igorot,” tutal naman sabi mo mas feel mo na igorot ka. 🙂 Di baaa?

  12. Hi Wil,
    I agree with you and Betelnut. Identifying one’s identity is really challenging. I actually had a school mate who said that she is a hybrid and I thought it was weird. I thought kasi that hybrid is a word that you use for plants and animals but not for people. But maybe I’m wrong.

    I agree with Ferri that Igoteno doesn’t sound good. Baka mamis-interpret at sabihin nilang you are egoistic or egotistic which I’m sure you are not 🙂

    Hi Ferri,
    iCavirot does sound better but it also sounds like a dental procedure 🙂 Haaay, this tricky search on how to call ourselves.

  13. I think it is also accurate to say you are Igorot even if 50% of your genetic make-up is not. I remember what Atty. Honorato Aquino (former Baguio Congressman)said, “I am an Igorot, by choice,” or something to that effect. So being Igorot is not a result of the accident of birth; it may also be a matter of choice. One person may be an Ilokano by blood but he/she has adopted the Igorot culture. Is he/she an Igorot? I would say so. Another is an Igorot by blood but disdains the culture or his/her ethnic origin. Is he/she an Igorot? I would hope not.

    Oo nga, Bill, iCavirot sounds like a dental procedure. More than that, it sounds really painful.

  14. T’was a clever political move by Mr. H. Aquino which eventually catapulted him thru the halls of congress. But, was his statement at that time unadulterated??? Heaven knows. He was loads of talent though. His younger brod was my co-hi school grad at old BCF.
    Now, as we know Ka Ramon (Labo) is planning a comeback as mayor, he might as well plagiarize the statement and proclaim “hoy mga Igorots, Igorot na pala ako sa kapilitan”. What an idiot and antiquated brain this Ka Labo has! Makes me sick!! Malabo talaga!!!


  15. Hi Chyt,
    I agree that one’s Igorotness can also be by choice. And that Igorots by blood who disdain their origins are no Igorots at all.

    Hi Ferri,
    Go Igorote. Ang hirap hanapan ng term si Wil ano? Wil, sabihin mo na lang that you are From the Boondocks. Hehehe.

    Hi TruBlue,
    I’m not familiar with the circumstances which prompted Aquino to say what he said so no comment ako diyan 🙂 But, from what I’ve heard/read of him, he seems to be an upstanding person.

    As Chyt stated above, one must have adopted the Igorot culture before one can make such a claim. I think it’s also appropriate to add that one is not doing it for political gain or any other gain for that matter. OFF TOPIC BUT RELEVANT: Which reminds me, marami daw police sa Makati na Mangyan. The police kasi has height requirements for applicants but apparently exempted yata indigenous peoples from this requirement. So ginagawa ng marami who fall below the height requirement, they get NCIP certificates claiming that they are Mangyans just so they can be exempted.

    Hmmm, Labo claiming that he is an Igorot? That’s something.

  16. Anyone with true blue blood running thru their veins and rejects it should be barred from entering CAR as persona non grata.
    Robin Padilla (isn’t her mom ibaloi?) – Martin Nievera (dad is kalinga/apayao descent) – Gwen Garci (heard her mom is from Besao?). For Paulo Avelino, he admitted he was unsure, so he can only stay in Kennon Road or Lamtang Irisan if he takes Naguilian Road…hahaha


  17. Hi Trublue,
    LOL. Persona non grata. Kawawa naman sila hehe. It’s actually their loss if they deny their heritage so I wouldn’t bother about them at all. Iba siyempre if they say things like, “Hindi ako Igorot! Ang mga Igorot na iyan ganito ganito ganito sila.”

    In fairness to Paulo, hindi naman siya unsure of his roots. He was just hesitant to admit it or didn’t do the admission at the appropriate time. Kumbaga late siya. So siguro ang dapat gawin, instead of granting him only partial access to the Cordilleras, is to grant him full access but to make him wait at the gate.

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