So I realized that if I created a one-time character that seemed like he was on, say, amphetamines, and had seen a lot of, say, David Mamet plays, he would talk a lot, and I mean a lot, without having to really engage in dialogue. A great way of increasing your word count, plus he seemed like a good vehicle for some (obviously wrong-headed) ideas to put out there:
— Know what I think? Want to know what I think? I think this is the very… Pol pauses, thinking of the right word in Tagalog. — This is the very fruition of this history, our history. It has all led up to this. You and me, sitting right here. Right here. I think maybe that’s why we were chosen, for the changes, you know? Not happening to anyone else. We were chosen. You were chosen, Pol says, jabbing a finger in Tom Cruise’s direction. — Right? We read in English, we speak English, we write in English. That makes us more adaptable than anyone else. Only learning Tagalog or whatever, that’s what will make us a stunted nation. This is why we get to work all over the world, on cruise ships and ocean liners and restaurants and in Saudi, know what I mean? Because we can speak English. That’s how we got into the Navy in the first place. Because people could give us orders and we could follow them properly. Tagalog doesn’t earn you any money. Tell me of one industry, one profession, anywhere, where speaking Tagalog is an advantage. Just one. Tell me. I can’t think of any. It pulls you down if you ask me. It pulls you down if that’s all you know.
— You have to see the big picture though. What I’m saying is, this may all sound like some horrible disadvantage. Like the Americans and the Japanese and the Spaniards before them came and messed us up. But I can say that we can turn this into some sort of advantage. Advantages and disadvantages again. Turn the disadvantage into an advantage. Pol puts his hands together in a clasp, moves them from left to right. — Turn the disadvantage. Pol moves his hands to the right. — Into an advantage. See what I mean, huh? They may have messed us up, taken our land, polluted our rivers. But you got to think of it this way. It’s not a disadvantage, it’s an advantage. They can’t take our natural resources whatever they do. Our natural resources are our mind. It’s our mind. We must never forget that. It’s inside you, this gift, this gift of the Filipino mind. Forget this sky, forget the trees, all that stuff. Global warming will kill us all eventually, know what I’m saying? Let your kid watch cartoons all day. That will sharpen his mind, teach him better English. It’s our mind, our ingenuity that makes sense, that makes us better people. That capacity to speak English. All these people close their eyes, listen to us speak, and can’t tell us from the real thing. My god, it’s because we speak English in our sleep. We dream in English. We dream in English.