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PhotobucketYou must have noticed the video clips that have proliferated lately on YouTube. The ones that attract viewers by the thousands show very public meltdown of people driven beyond their temper’s snapping point.

The most infamous is the “Amalayer” video, showing an English-speaking girl making a scene in an LRT station. She is shown berating a lady security guard over the manner the guard inspected her bag.

The video set the Philippine social media on fire with most online comments heaping contempt on the enraged girl for her outburst. The online ridicules, jeers, and taunts morphed into lampoons performed by name comedians on national television.

I belonged to the minority who did not comment online on the burning topic. But today let me break my silence.

PhotobucketI have had such episodes also when I became unhinged, so I can relate to her situation. It was just unfortunate that someone captured on video the episode when she blew her tops. She beat me on YouTube for most viewed record, even though I had comparable meltdowns that happened before hers did. I was just lucky nobody took a video of my Incredible Hulk transformation.

I had once gone through a security check in a five-star hotel, and the guard on duty ordered us (my staff and me) to list down all our equipment. Dutifully, peacefully and without rancor we did—until I felt he tried to delay our entry into the hotel.

I couldn’t put a finger on his issues against us, but he nitpicked over our stuff. He kept asking what was this and that box for. Of course, I couldn’t be forthright with him. This and that box have secret workings, so I dodged his questions—nay, his probing—as best as a magician could.

I reached my boiling point when he ordered us to list one by one the playing cards I had in my bag. I brought with me five decks of cards—some gaffed, some straight decks. And he wanted me to list each card in each deck, as in this deck had an Ace of Spades, Seven of Hearts, Seven of Diamonds, etc…

If somebody took a video of my reaction, I would have been a YouTube sensation much earlier than Amalayer.

PhotobucketAt another time, I was in this clubhouse of a golf course. Nursing a full bladder, I walked briskly from the parking lot located in a far, far away land from the clubhouse. The first thing I did when I arrived at the party area was to rush to the toilet to relieve myself of my watery burden. Imagine my consternation when a janitor blocked the toilet’s door and refused me entry.  He said authoritatively, “Bawal pumasok. Para lang sa mga guests.” (You are not allowed entry. The toilet is for guests’ use only.”)

Until then, I didn’t fathom the American slang of being “pissed off”, but I felt it in my kidney while looking at the janitor’s face. He used the Tagalog word bawal, which by connotation is closer to “illegal” than “forbidden.”

PhotobucketThree things that turned me into a demented carabao that day. One, why would it be illegal to use the toilet?

Two, I was a guest too. The fact that the parents of the birthday child invited me to the party made me a guest, not a gatecrasher.

Three, he let the photographer and the emcee in, but he barred me and my staff.

So I snapped and melted down like the Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant. I must be so enraged because I heard myself speak in tongues. Not only was I speaking in tongues, I was also talking incoherently.

I have had other similar incidents that featured my loss of cool even though as a normal person I’m colder than Antarctica. I won’t bore you with those stories. To be honest, I regretted the times I lost my temper. I’m not proud of those outbursts and those rages. I know I look silly losing my composure over petty matters like lavatory rights, but I will not reign myself in when I feel people look down on me because I’m a magician.

If I feel a slight—imaginary or real—on account of my being a magic performer, I’ll always stand up for my rights. I will not allow overbearing guards to delay my team’s entry into the party venue with irrational security checks or zealous janitors to discriminate against us, just because I’m a magician.

humandignityposter_zps16cfab54Yes, I’m onion-skinned when my magician’s pride is pricked. If someone treats me as an inferior species of a human being or shows prejudice against me on account of my profession, I hope you will excuse me when I make a scene worthy of a video on YouTube.

You probably will know it when I become a YouTube sensation.

Stay magical,

Leodini

www.leodini.com

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