"Ask America!"

Edition 2013.01

Let’s talk American!
Do you have a problem that needs solving? A mystery that has been nagging at you? A point of information about America that is simply not available on Wiki? Then “Ask America!” Get a read-out from the foremost expert on just about everything American, that esteemed authority on all things red white and blue, Mr. Joseph August America. Gather up those questions and fire away!
Dear Joe. Thank you for offering to explain to us Filipinos what Americans think about things. I’ve wanted to know for a long time how it came about that Americans use paper in the bathroom for “number 2” rather than water. Thanks, Ralph.
  • Wow, Ralph. You have the distinction of being the first “Ask America!” guest and you have asked a doozy. I’m happy to explain. The central part of America is known as “the great American desert”. Oddly, it is not desert, but is a vast expanse of plains stretching across the interior region between Canada and Mexico from Denver to Peoria.  When this region was explored and populated only a couple of hundred years ago, it was often a long hike or horseback ride to get from the farm to the nearest river. There were no water pipes of course. Wells were not very deep and not reliable. Crops relied upon rainwater. So water was precious. The bathrooms in those days were little wooden sheds called “outhouses”, a tiny shack with furniture consisting of a bench with a hole over a dark, deep pit in the ground that gave odoriferous its finer meaning. Boy howdy, it was also cold in the outhouse on a snowy winter day and the settlers didn’t care much for  applying ice to their sensitive nether parts. The farmers would hang corn husks, or the outer leaves of a cob of corn, on the interior wall of the outhouse for clean-up duty. As the nation modernized, the corn husks were replaced by old newspapers, then the rolled tissue that is popularly used in America to this day. The Philippines is blessed with lots of water, warm and friendly to  the anteriors.
Room with a view . . . . . and a phew!
Hi, Joe. Can you tell me what happened to Hudson automobiles? Thanks. Sammy
  • My, you must be an old fart, Sammy. I remember those Hudsons. Man they were goliaths, rather like giant bugs or upside down bathtubs. I’ve never seen such an ugly car.  I don’t know what happened to Hudson but it reminds me of my old Nash Rambler. That was a classic, too. It had this innovation called fold-down seats that went all the way flat and made a bed in the car. My old ’57 rattled and ran about 25 downhill, down wind, but helped put me through college. I’d rent it to my college classmates for use after basketball games or dates. They didn’t need the keys. They just liked the seats.
Dear Joe. Is it true that American companies are greedy? I hear a lot about “greedy American capitalists”. I’m thinking about going for a business degree in college, but not if my friends are going to call me greedy. Irene
  • No worries, Irene. A business degree is very valuable and you should hold no shame for choosing that profession. “Greedy” is the name failures attach to successful companies that make a lot of money. It derives from envy that other people are doing what they cannot themselves do, create wealth from nothing more than guts, innovation and effort. Americans are great competitors, as you know. Running a business is not much different than playing baseball. Scoring a lot of runs is not greed. It is winning. Good luck.
Dear Joe, I was shocked to read the other day about the murderous rampage of a former American naval officer, killing several policemen in California. What’s with these mass murderers in America? Is it because of an overload of movie, television and video-game violence, or what?

  • Yes, lunatics abound in America it sometimes seems. Another word for lunatic is “deviant”. That is a statistical term derived from drawing the normal curve of any human tendencies. The reach from centerpoint normal (the “mean) is calculated in terms of “standard deviations”.  If you get beyond one standard deviation from the mean, you are into extremes, and the extreme extremes are lunatic. Or deviant. I did a calculation, using “Wikistats”. In America, there are precisely 1.06 deviants per one hundred thousand people.  In France, there are precisely 1.06 deviants per one hundred thousand people. In Russia, 1.06. In China, 1.06. In the Philippines, 1.06. In Iran, 14.98. Go figure.
Hey Hotshot JoeAm, you think you’re hot stuff, don’t you, coming to the Philippines and telling us how to live? I have a question for you. Why don’t you go back to America? We wouldn’t miss you. Juan
  • Juan, I appreciate the candid question. You suck, too.
Dear JoeAm, what is the difference between a Canadian, an American, and a Mexican? I read in my history lesson that they are all from North America. I’d think everyone would be the same. Thank you, Julie.
  • Hi, Julie. Think of America as a club sandwich between white and wheat bread. Canada, to the north of the U.S., is a former British colony, and is a member of the British Commonwealth, which is rather like the carcass of a dead empire. It has strong British origins except for the province of Quebec, which is French and talks funny. It has a lot of snow and is colder than a witch’s bum. That’s the white bread. Mexico, to the south, is a former part of the Spanish empire, like the Philippines, and it has its Catholic Churches and murderous, corrupt ways, like the Philippines. Not that there is any connection between Catholics and murderous, corrupt ways. Mexico has lots of sunshine, cacti and rattlesnakes and is hotter than a harlot in Hades.  That’s the wheat bread, and it’s toasted. America has three main components, ham, chicken and tuna. The ham derives mainly from Europe and lives in the Northeast and across the plains. The chicken is from Mexico and Africa and lives cheaply, mostly in the south or in big cities. The tuna is slathered across the western states along the coastal cities, and derives mainly from Asia. Filipinos are a part of the tuna. But they breed faster.
Hi, Joe. I can’t tell half the time if you are serious or not. What advice can you give me as to how to get the most from your articles. Joe, too.
  • Ah, Joe, too, thanks for that challenging question to end today’s advice column. Statistically speaking, I am serious only 11.3% of the time, not half, so you can be reasonably assured of being correct if you figure I am doing little more than blowing smoke or peddling wayward wild ideas detached from fact or maybe even reason. Now, the critical question is, does reading keep your brain from falling asleep, or inspire it to think new thoughts which you CAN attach to facts that you run into? If you get one new idea every five articles, I figure my job is well done. But maybe it is best not to risk your life on what Joe says.


16 Responses to “"Ask America!"”
  1. Aha! ha! ha! ha! Joe should have an equivalent to Orange County Weekly ASK A MEXICAN by Gustavo Arellano. I like to read this column. It's very entertaining and educatively informative.ASK A FILIPINO.1. Why do Filipinos speak English?2. Do Filipinos appreciate art? TFC is tastesless and artless3. Why Filipinos hate Americans, yet, wanted to go to America to be Americans and look like Americans.4. Why do Filipinos look down on Koreans, Chinese, Indians, Hispanics and all people that struggle with English language.5. Why do Filipinos measure Intelligence by the English they speak6. Why do Filipinos measure beauty by the whiteness of the skin… and so many many others …Allow me to answer Ralph's question. Americans can afford paper to wipe their behind. Filipinos cannot afford toilet paper. Joe do not know this, FILIPINOS USE NEWSPAPER because it is cheaper than soft toilet paper, SERIOUSLY !!! Water is also used, too, but cannot be found in SM Supermart nor toilet paper. There are malls that sells toilet paper by the fold. 25 centavos per fold !!!In America, it is free!!!! But they do not have water. Water is only used to wash fingers after done. Americans also provide liquid soap.Yes, Virginia, I am eco-friendly. I do not wash my hands. I only wash my fingers. If nobody is around, I DO NOT WASH AT ALL. TO SAVE THE ENVIRONMENT.

  2. Dear Irene,Yes, Americans are greedy UNLIKE FILIPINO ENTERPRISES. Go ask your friendly U.P.-Journalism Graduate S/he will tell you that PETRON WILL LOWER THE PRICE OF PETROL effective Valentines Day.In America, they lower the petrol because of market forces. See? Filipino businessmen are charitable and magnanimous. They lower their prices so Filipinos can afford. NOTHING LIKE THAT FROM THE AMERICANS.

  3. That American Naval Officer that went wild was because of being fired for ratting on his training officer for kicking a perpetrator in the chest and on the face. RATTING IN AMERICA IS NOT ACCEPTABLE. They may have laws favoring whistleblowers but the BURDEN OF PROOF IS ON WHISTLEBLOWERS. If rat cannot prove, the rat is doomed.In the Philippines, whistleblowing is by virtue of Affidavits. Pure and simple. If accusation is not proven, they may not go to jail, BUT THEY WILL BE BRANDED FOREVER. Example: Corona and Aling GloriaThey do not have proof but since Filipinos believe in David and Goliath they also believe if There-is-Fire-There-must-Be-Smoke or is it the other way around? Well, anyways, I already have said it. No need to take it back. It is already Bridge Under the Water.In America they have justice system. It may be flowed but it is just find and dandy. But in the Philippines they use flawed justice system to get back to their perceive enemies. Fortunately, Filipinos are bunch of lunatics that still believe those sleeping dozing 188 congressmen read the articles of impeachment and should be re-voted for this May election.

  4. Do not even redicule Filipinos justice system on Corona and Aling Glo because no matter how judiciously compelling the argument, THEY WILL ACCUSE ANYONE OF BEING PRO-CORONA just by mentioning HUSTISYA MATUWID.ASK ALAN and his IGNORANT ELKS. But when they go to America, they insist on Justice Matuwid.Crazy Filipinos and I thought Mexicans were insane.

  5. Hey, Juan. Philippines has freedom of speech, right? Go tell your fellow brown-skin'-unk'd nose suckling brothers to go back to Philippines and stop sucking our Social Security benefits just because you walked the Death March in Bataan. Remember it is the Americans that gave you liberation that you people been under Spanish tutleage for 500 years.Get Real. Kneel, dog. Pray.

  6. Julie, the more you go up north the more whitier, intelligent and wealthy the people are. The more you go down south below the equator anywhere on earth they become from brown to black and blue and low intellect.God made this so.

  7. Oh, I forgot one more important information, Julie. The more you go north the less religious they are and the more you go south the more religious they become. It holds true in the U.S. It holds true in the Philippines. It holds true in California. It holds true in the East Coast. It holds true anywhere in the U.S. Real properties are more expensive if it is situated north of the east-west freeway.Unfurl your map, Julie. Point out the the capital of each country. They are mostly in the north. I just do not get it why. Maybe Tito Soto has the answer.

  8. Oh, Joe is definitely SERIOUS. It may appear Joe Am is not serious because you thought that Philippines are run by Americans like heaven. No it is not. Philippines is run by Filipinos who are not serious at all.So, when Joe Am presents the Filipino problem it may appear not serious just because it did not exist in your 'hood. but the Philippine problem IS SERIOUS TO FUNNY.That is why It is Fun in the Philippines because Filipinos are not serious. IT IS FUNNY.

  9. Edgar Lores says:

    1. Har! Har! Har!2. In Oz, outhouses are known as dunnies (singular: dunny).2.1 Corn husks? Must have hurt. Newspapers were used in my time as well. I believe The Manila Times was favoured over The Manila Chronicle, but The Free Press magazine did not live up to its no-hands claim.3. Hudson? Is not in my voc, although the river is and I remember the Nash Rambler.4. Three guys walk into a bar – a Canadian, an American and a Mexican.Canadian: We use maple leaves to wipe.Mexican: Amigos, we hide behind our sombreros while doing numero dos and use our ma-chetes.American: For Pete’s sake, haven’t you guys heard of corn husks?5. Deviants, like rebels, redefine the norm. They are outliers. There is a web site called Deviant Art which shows astonishing artwork.6. Dear Joe, Who is the greatest American alive? Is it President Obama? Hugh Hefner? Donald Trump? Or Bill Gates?

  10. 2. And I thought those people from Quebec talked funny.2.1 Hawr hawr hawr4. Ouch, those Mexicans. Think I'll stick with the corn. 6.0 Look for the answer in the next edition. You may be surprised! Thanks for the superb question.

  11. When we meet, remind me to shake fingers with you.ahahahahahaKeep up that ecologically sensible lifestyle!

  12. Edgar Lores says:

    1. I have noticed that too. 2. But generally, North and East are classier than South and West. I guess because North is in an upper direction while East is the direction of sunrise.2.1 In Sydney, North Sydney is a yuppy eastern suburb and the people in the western suburbs, which have cheaper housing and delinquent youth, are snidely referred to as "westies". Then there's the "West Side Story".3. There are exceptions though like North Korea and Eastern Europe. And the Western world, the forefront of technology and civilization, currently leads the Eastern world, the storehouse of ancient wisdom.

  13. "Fine and dandy" What an expression. That's like early 1950's.Mexicans ARE insane but their food is innovative. I really miss the guacamole. Filipinos are lunatic but they cook good too. Those who read Joe Am are not lunatic, of course. Well, except for maybe GabbyD. ahahahahahahaThat's a joke. Gab and I actually found something to agree on the other day. It took us four days and 356 blog exchanges.

  14. Easy, Mariano. You're going Maude on us.

  15. See Hudson, right column . . .

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