Why can’t you have muscles like that?” asked Number Two Son.
“I do,” I replied. “They are just covered by a protective layer of fat!”
The above is the conversation that my son usually has with me when he sees a really cut guy like Phillipe Nover. Phillipe “the Filipino Assassin” Nover is on the reality show The Ultimate Fighter where he is shown trying to get a contract in the UFC MMA promotion. Nover is half Polish and half Filipino, but spent his summers in the Philippines and unlike many Filipinos, is proud of his heritage. The latest episode featured Nover, and to my great surprise, it played up his Filipinoness. It shows him having his housemates eating balut. I don’t eat that stuff – abortion may be legal but it doesn’t mean that I want to eat one. His blog mentions (I missed this) that you can see a sign in Tagalog saying “Sipag and Tiyaga” (Hardwork and Patience) that he made to inspire him and teammates. He also has a very stereotypical Filipino profession– he is registered nurse. Quite a contrast in his life — healer by day and fighter by night!
We usually don’t see many Filipinos on TV, much less see any aspects of Filipino culture, so this was a very pleasant surprise. His opponent disparaged Nover’s skills, saying that the only two things that Phillipe was better at than him as making his veins stick out and being Filipino. That make the fact that Phillipe choked him out even more gratifying.