Baybayin is dead, long live Baybayin!

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I’m back on the Blog after a couple of years to discuss death and disruption. I’ve always been fascinated with death. One of my early childhood memories was watching a VHS tape of Faces of Death. I was a compilation of clips of people getting into accidents, beheadings, etc. You know, normal stuff you see on the internet now. Back then, it was more of a shock factor.

As I got older, I became interested in dying cultures in Africa and Asia. It was natural I would somehow connect death with Philippine cultural practices. My first instance was a section of my Intro to Baybayin book in 2009, where I had a section titled “The Death of Baybayin.” About four years later, I was taking part in a Super Bowl street fair. After talking to about 50 people and explaining the basic script history, it wasn’t resonating. Maybe it was my voice or lack of eye contact. Maybe it was the story I was telling. It was then; I decided to experiment with using a strong absolute term like DEATH. Death is a bulldozer that forces conversations. I learned when you use strong terms; you get strong reactions with strong emotions. Strong emotions cause action. Action kicks Idea’s ass all day long. Death = Action

Even though this was only a few years ago, much has changed in the “Baybayin scene.” Interest has increased every year. This is measurable with data from my FB Baybayin page and private group.

Facebook Page
Facebook Discussion Group

Scripts have frequent exposure in news programs, social media, and even movies. New advocates have popped-up in the Philippines to expose scripts to a new generation.

For years, I, along with others, have championed the term Baybayin kill the erroneous Alibata term. Now it’s time to kill the term Baybayin. This will be a much more difficult task because there isn’t an obvious replacement…yet but maybe there shouldn’t be. As a refresher, Baybayin is a term that means to spell. It’s not a name but a description of an action. Maybe there shouldn’t be a name, and it should be called whatever the term is for writing/spelling in someone’s local language. More on this on another article. The timing of this also coincides with the recent activity around the National Script Act AKA the Baybayin Bill.

As I mentioned above, Action beats Ideas. Here are my action items:
– Move the Baybayin.com blog domain under blog.Kabuay.com. I’ll keep the domain as a landing page because people will still use the search term. I did something similar with an Alibata domain landing page.
– Acknowledging the issues with the term when conducting lectures similar to what I’ve done with prePhilippine and preFilipino.
– Get rid of the Baybayin School branding in my upcoming BalaySchool.org project.

Baybayin is dead, long live Baybayin

EVENT: 7/29 Workshop – San Francisco

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7/29 at the Bayanihan Center in SF
For just a $10-20 donation learn about FIVE different art forms from some phenomenal Bay Area, SF based Pinoy artists:

12 – 1 · Baybayin with Kristian Kabuay
Workshop on the native ancient writing system, Baybayin

1 – 2:30 · Improv with Aureen Almario & Joe Cascasan
An intro to the art of improvisation ~ the exploration of “letting go of fear” & group collab AND Sketch Comedy with Granny Cart Gangstas Sketch comedy writing workshop with the all-female sketch comedy group Granny Cart Gangstas

2:30 – 3:30 · Eskrima with Gregory Manalo
Learn the basics of Maestro Sonny Umpad’s Visayan Style Corto Kadena Eskrima System

3:30 – 5 · Comic Storytelling with Raf Salazar
Watch a special comics demo, and learn about storytelling through the art of comics with group exercises

Baybayin Flashcards

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/baybayin/ancient-script-flashcards-save-an-endangered-writi/widget/video.html

I’ve launched my latest project: Baybayin Flashcards
The pre-sale is currently live on Kickstarter. <—Click here to purchase

BACKGROUND
Baybayin is an endangered writing system from the Philippines prior to Spanish colonization. Last June 2016, I was in the remote Mangyan village where I met elders of the the last tribe that still use the script. They were down to their last teacher! With success my first book, An Introduction to Baybayin and a coloring book for kids, a follow-up was needed to help my students memorize the characters. The 1st thing that popped in my head were the ABC flash cards I was exposed to as a kid.

THE PROJECT
A set of 18 flash cards of each of the characters of the writing system. There’s 3 vowels, 14 consonants and 1 info card.

EVENT: Workshop 3/26 @ Oakland

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This is for a pilot monthly Baybayin workshops. This initial session will be two parts: 1) “An Introduction to Baybayin” covering an overview of the script history to the modern context and 2) A hands-on activity with an in-depth overview of characters and techniques.

While the topic will be geared towards beginners, those who already know how to write the basics will learn my systematic techniques on strokes, teaching and transliterating.

At the end of the session, you’ll learn about:

  • The basic history of the script
  • How the script is being used today
  • How to write the basic characters
  • A technique that allows you to quickly translate words

You’ll get

  • A workbook
  • Paper
  • Calligraphy pen
  • Pencil

More details and register at my preFilipino.com online store

Event: Asian Art Museum 3/5-6 @ San Francisco

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I’ll be back at the Asian Art Museum in SF 3/5 & 3/6 for a large scale‪#‎baybayin‬ performance with my kulintang friends (Kulintronica & Titania Buchholdt) playing while I write. I’ll also have art on display and short talk. This is a collaboration with international Japanese calligraphy artist Aoi Yamaguchiwho’ll have taiko drumming. You won’t want to miss this!
https://www.facebook.com/events/1128208747219633/

SCPASA Summit 2016: Illustrate – 2/20

SCPASA Summit 2016: Illustrate
I’ll be back in LA at UCLA in a couple weeks to give a lecture on Baybayin and finding your passion. See you there!

2/20
10-6PM

University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA, US

Register via Eventbrite:
http://www.eventbrite.com/e/scpasa-summit-2016-illustrate-registration-20304578541?aff=efbevent

The Southern California Pilipinx American Student Alliance is proud to present its 9th annual Summit Conference. Summit is a one-day conference that features a wide variety of speakers, activities and entertainment. It is held at the university campus of one active SCPASA member organization and this year it is Samahang Pilipino at UCLA.

Numerous workshops are held throughout the day to give attendees various opportunities to learn about topics that concern a common theme that is chosen for that year. This year, SCPASA has chosen the theme ‘Illustrate’.

Culture is expressed every day through many different outlets, and it’s through these outlets that we are able to see how culture is created, developed and preserved. Fighting for a better community, sharing stories about adversity, performing in a PACN – culture is always being produced. This year, SCPASA asks you to find your voice and express yourself.

For questions or more information please contact your SCPASA Executive Board:
Chair – Zach Chaco (USC)
Vice Chair – Michelle Mekpongsatorn (MSMU)
Programming – Kristine de los Santos (UCLA)
Admin – Tuna Truong (CSUCI)
Finance – Joe Casabar (USC)
Co-Public Community and Relations – Marien Ann Padua (UCLA)
Co-Public Community and Relations – Marjie Panknin (USC)

SCPASA envisions a space where Pilipino-Americans come together to build a supportive network aimed toward helping one another surpass cultural, social, and professional boundaries to engender positive change within each other’s lives