Things have been slow lately. I’d been flicking through posts about blogging and remembered that I wanted to write about this–why we don’t post hugot memes in our Facebook page or joke about that here–even though hugot posts are a proven way to get likes and shares.
For our non-Filipino readers, hugot (literally “to draw” or “pull out”) is a slang referring to bringing up of a painful emotional past and associating it to a current (often unrelated) situation. Or just expressing of deep emotion in an honest way. It’s a millennial way of expressing #feels, basically.
When #hugot became a thing, it was actually fun. The thing with hugot is it can be very random and thus funny. Even now, I enjoy the occasional meme in Facebook, particularly by Travel Thoughts PH.
Here’s a memory from my Tumblr account in Alibijaban Island (2015):
(With starfishes slightly buried in the sand due to low tide, some hard to see and avoid)
Hali: Kawawa naman sila.
Me: Lagi naman naglolow tide dito e, sanay na yan.
Hali: Na tinatapak-tapakan?
Friend: Na nasasaktan?
Me: Bakit kayo ganyan???
Like I said, it was fun. It was novel. Then it exploded into social media, and everyone was posting hugot memes and lines. It got a little bit too much… but that’s not what I’m going at.
A lot of hugot lines are written and aimed at people who are single. In its worst, it promotes bitterness and loneliness over not having a romantic partner, and it’s the very same tool people use to lash out at others.
We’ve had experiences wherein people got outright rude. When Hali and I were sitting over a cliff in Nagudungan Hill, talking, a group of local tourists came close and shouted “Merong forever!” (“Forever exists!”) and then proceeded to take photos of us without asking for our permission. The guy said he’d upload it as his Facebook cover photo. It happened so fast (“What the hell was that..?”) that we didn’t have time to react. By the time it sinked in, I was angry.
The same thing happened when we were walking on a beach.
The same thing happened when we were walking, holding hands, on a street at night. A couple in a motorcycle wheezed by and shouted at us, this time, “Walang forever!” (“There is no forever!”)
When we join group trips, it’s not uncommon for someone to whine about having to go with a “couple.” Sometimes it’s funny, sometimes it isn’t.
A lot of times… and I know I’ll probably get eyebrows raised at this… it’s just pathetic.
Last Valentines Day, I purposedly logged out of Facebook because I didn’t want to see the rush of posts about “bitter” singles, those who say “Magbibreak din yan” (“They will break up anyway”). For the life of me, I could not understand why anyone would wish ill-wish upon someone else, even under the guise of a “joke.”
When I was on a solo vacation in Coron, I met another couple in one of the island hopping tours. We talked about travels with our respective partners and how (you guessed it) others in group tours would often give parinig or snide comments directed to couples. It was such a relief to find other people who understand. What happened to the spirit of traveling, exactly?
Basically, I went from being confused, frustrated to tired. Now I just want to be with friends where this isn’t an issue and whom are happy to be with other friends, period.
Thoughts on hugot memes and lines
So, here are my thoughts on hugot memes and lines.
- When you wish ill on someone, it will reflect back to you. That’s karma. The vibrations you give out goes back in. If you’re one of those who make “jokes”: Maybe you should think about this the next time you make fun or become rude to a couple just because you feel inadequate being alone.
- There’s nothing wrong with being single. I said this before: it’s a wonderful time to discover–or rather recreate–yourself.
- Hugot is fine as long as it’s done on good fun. However, it doesn’t give anyone an excuse to be inconsiderate to other people.
So all in all, I do enjoy reading hugot materials every now and then… just not to an extent when it’s used to target other innocuous people (read: couples) with negative thoughts or when it’s promoting inadequacy due to singlehood. I guess as with everything else, it’s best served in moderate amounts.
This is why we don’t post hugot memes. We have enough of that in the internet, and we prefer to give space to ideas that resonate personally with us.
What are your thoughts on this? Have any similar experiences?