Pacman's Defeat

photo from Esquire Philippines
   It is no longer surprising that Manny "Pacman" Pacquiao  was defeated by Juan Manuel Marquez. The majority of the Filipinos ( as well as fans all over the world) who watched the fight were shocked. They were in disbelief that their idol lost this battle. But for some who knows how this thing works, it is just another game.

   Boxing draws the attention of poor but hopeful individuals who wish to escape the fangs of poverty. They see boxing as the answer to their problems. Pacquiao's story (a Cinderella man, as they call it) serves as inspiration to those aspiring boxers who want to taste the sweetness of success.

   Personally, I am not fond of watching this spectacle. For me it's a modern day version of gladiator fighting. Admit or not, boxing (as well as other sports) is a business enterprise. "Athletic contents that were once governed by the purity of the amateur ideal and a devotion to tradition are now being retailored to suit advertisers and corporate sponsors who need to be assured of a sufficient market to justify their investment (1)." Pacquiao and other sports figures are marketed to the public to gain profit. Unlike before that sports is simple, fun and for friendship, now it aims for money.

   Since Pacquiao is considered as "hero" for most Filipinos, his defeat is not a big deal. The public will forgive his lost. But as you observe, his popularity is starting to wane. Many young boxers are marketed every year for public consumption. They should make a good strategy to stay on the game. But after all, Pacman's defeat could be his undisclosed "victory". A victory only few could put a smile on it.


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1. Maasik Sonia & Solomon Jack. Signs of Life in the USA: Readings of Popular Culture for Writers, 4th ed. Boston. Bedford/St. Martin's. 2003