Sunday, February 6, 2011

The New Yorker in Tondo

"New Yorker in Tondo" is a classic Filipino Play by Marcelino Agana, Jr. It is a satire written in the 50's. It is a story about a girl named Kikay who goes to New York and fell in love with it. She acquires all the New Yorkish things - style, looks, language and manners. These things are very obvious when she arrives in the Philippines specifically in Tondo.

Aling Atang, mother of Kikay, has been carried away by her daughters way of living. She tries to converse with everybody in broken English.

Tony, childhood sweetheart of Kikay, decides to visit and catch things up with her friend. He is a simple guy who got secretly engaged with their other childhood friend, Nena.

Nena is a tomboyish type of girl. On her visit in Kikay's house, she finds her friend different and weird. She gets irritated and even imitates Kikay's ways.

Totoy, the Tondo "canto boy" is their other friend who is funny and has a secret love for Nenan which has only been revealded when the two females had a clash.

Near the end, the secret love of the characters in the story is revealded. And the two pairs end up in each other's arms. Kikay is back to her old self -- simple and kind. Most of all, the Filipino value learned by the protagonist which is "there is no place like home", is a lesson on love of country and its culture.


  1. Culture is a little like dropping an Alka-Seltzer into a glass-you don’t see it, but somehow it does something.

  2. If we are to achieve a richer culture, rich in contrasting values, we must recognize the whole gamut of human potentialities, and so weave a less arbitrary social fabric, one in which each diverse gift will find a fitting place.

  3. As the soil, however rich it may be, cannot be productive without cultivation, so the mind without culture can never produce good fruit.

  4. The poor have no business with culture and should beware of it. They cannot eat it; they cannot sell it; they can only pass it on to others and that is why the world is full of hungry people ready to teach us anything under the sun.

  5. It's acquainting ourselves with the best that has been known and said in the world, and thus with the history of the human spirit, that "there is no place like home", simply says that home gives us a special feeling that no other place can give us; home is the best place to be.