Notes from the Gates of Hell
So a few days ago I managed to get my head out of the hole that my work put me into long enough to wonder what the heck was wrong with people reportedly being upset by Dan Brown’s latest novel.
Apparently, my beloved home city of Manila was not only portrayed in all its grimy glory but also referred to as “the Gates of Hell’ by one of the characters in said novel. Suddenly the net was abuzz with people’s outrage at this. My Facebook and Twitter feeds erupted in patriotic defense of Manila. I was taken aback by this sudden show of affection and caring for my city, when just a few days ago, the very same people were laughing at us for electing a convicted plunderer and a political traitor as its mayor and vice-mayor, respectively.
Mob mentality has crossed over to the internet.
I didn’t know whether to laugh, scratch my head, or join the fray. In this case, laughter proved to be the best choice. This is the same laughter I expressed when dealing with the religious idiots who desperately argues that our country is not over-populated hence there is no need for the Reproductive Health Law. However, that is another story.
I mean, over-reacting people, you are forgetting that “Inferno” is a work of fiction. It’s not journalism, or an op-ed piece, or even a travel essay. It’s bad enough that you’re over-reacting to a work of fiction. But you’re getting upset with a critically-panned novel from an author whose writing skills are debatable.
The most pathetic reaction? This letter from our government–a grim indication that this government is either out-of-touch with reality or its officials like MMDA Chair Tolentino got too much time on their hands!
I only read a hundred or so pages of The Da Vinci Code years ago and I didn’t like the way it was written so I never read Dan Brown again. I watched the film, though, and derived all my pleasure looking at Tom Hanks’ strange hair. So there, I’m not a fan. And I’m not raising my fists because my beloved city is indeed polluted, jammed with traffic, and populated with unsavory characters. Like every other city anywhere in the world.