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a couple named Hugo and Imelda. Every mealtime they quesrreled over the chore of washing the dishes. Imelda would scold Hugo if he refused to wash the dishes. Sometimes she would become angry and call him names, and if he talked back she would get her coconut midrib broom and chase him with it. He would run to the house of his ‘Compadre’ and hide there till his wife’s anger had passed. The neighbor familiarly called cross Imelda; Ka Maldang, and Hugo, Ka Ugong. One day just as they were finishing their lunch, Ka Ugong announced, Ugong: I am not going to wash the dishes any more. He threw out his chest and lifted his chin. Maldang: Why say so? asked Ka Maldang, holding up her chin higher. Ugong: I say so, I worked hard in the field this morning. I am not going to wash any dishes. Maldang: Ka Maldang stood up and, with her arms akimbo, she glared down at Ka Ugong across the table. Narrator: Her arms were stout. She was a big woman. Maldang: Her voic was also big. And who, Mister Hugo, is going to wash these dishes? she asked. Narrator: Ka Ugong’s chest sank again. Hugo: His chin also went down. Narrator: He held on the edge of the table nervously. Ugong: You, he said in a much lower tone. You are the woman. You should do all the housework. Maldang: And what do you do? asked Ka Maldang. You tie the carabao to the reeds in the field and then you lie down on the grass to watch it graze. You call that hard work? I cook, clean the house, wash your clothes; scrub the floor, I do all the work that only slaves do. And yet, you even refuse to help me wash the plate from which you have eaten? Narrator: Ka Maldang’s voice was now raised to a high pitch and her tears poised on her eyelids ready to pur down. Maldang: She looked at Ka Ugong and her broom. She grabbed the broom. She raised the
Maldang: That’s easy. You. Come out. wiping her eyes. not mew like a cat under the table. The cat jumped upon the dryingdishes to lick the left-overs. Ugong: Wait. Listen. said Ka Ugong. or to anybody. You cannot. said Ka Ugong. She nodded her head. you coward. Maldang: Only that? asked Ka Maldang. You even talk to your carabao. Always? Ugong: Right. Ugong: All right. all right. I can keep my mouth shut even for a week.broom to strike him. Ka Maldang did not drive it away. Ugong: Begin! Narrator: They both fell silent. and pots and pans. Let us have a wager. said Ka Maldang. and Ka Ugong said. He still crouched under the table. If you even say just one word to me. Ka Maldang put her broom behind the door. or to anything. The first one of us who will speak after I have said the word “begin” will wash the dishes. Come out and speak like a man. you will always wash the dishes. The first one who talks will always wash the plates. after i had said “begin”. Ugong: Lay down your broom. Maldang: Come out of there. Mladang: All right. Maldang: What have you to say? asked Ka Maldang. Ugong: Let’s stop quarreling over the plates. Narrator: Ka Maldang sat upright in front of him across the table. I got a plan that should decide who should wash the dishes. you lazy man! Ugong: Ka Ugong ducked under the table. and bowls. neither did Ka Ugong. said Ka Ugong. . Always. Soon the cat began to mew its food. They sat there just staring. They sat at the table looking at each other across the unwashed plates and bowls and spoons. Are you ready? asked Ka Ugong. Ugong: Ka Ugong returned to his seat opposite her at the table. Neither Ka Maldang nor Ka Ugong paid any attention to its mewing. Don’t strike me! Maldang: Come out from under the table. They did not like to leave each other for fear that one would talk to himself without other’s hearing. don’t strike me. Don’t! he cried. crying. compressed her lips. ordered Ka Maldang.
He hurried towards them.The cat licked the plates. get the ax and return it later. Neighbor: A neighbor called. Neighbor: Did you eat something poisonous? Some food that has made you dumb? He shook each one alternately. and trickled down to the sides of her face. Well. Tears began to roll down their cheeks. Ka Ugong’s shirt became damp with his sweat. Ka Ugong pretended that nothing happened. Their eyes were tired down staring hard at each other. “Compadre” Ugong Oh. Neighbor: But why did they leave their ladder at the door? They usually remove the ladder when they go away. too. I will just go up. Neighbor: The neighbor turned to Ka Maldang. Narrator: They heard the neighbor say to himself. Speak “Comadre” what happened? He shook her shoulders. . what happened? he asked Ka Ugong. Narrator: Ka Ugong did not answer. What happened to you “Compadre”. Narrator: Ka Ugong let him shake him. Ka Maldang’s sweat gathered on her forehead. Narrator: Ka Ugong neither moved nor talked. and fell drop by drop to her breast. May i borrow your ax? Narrator: Ka Ugong did not answer. Neighbor: The neighbor repeated his question: What happened to you “Compadre”? He took Ka Ugong’s shoulders. “Comadre” Maldang! Yoohoo! “Comadre” Maldang! Yoohoo “Compadre” Ugong. Soon it was getting late in the afternoon but they went on sitting mutely at the lunch table. jumped to the stove to lick the pot and pan on it. “Compadre”. When the neighbor went up the bamboo ladder he was surprised to see K Maldang and Ka Ugong sitting silently at the table where plates had dried p with left-overs. The neighbor went up. Over turned a kettle. Narrator: Perhaps nobody is home. closing his lips lighter. and so did Ka Maldang. Neighbor: The neighbor called again. Ka Ugong looked at her silently Neighbor: Perhaps nobody is home. He continued to sit still. But still neither stood up or talked. Narrator: She pushed him roughly aside but did not speak.
Neighbor: The “Compadre” was very much worried. She pretended to be asleep. Narrator: Ka Uging knew that she did so to avoid at the neighbors. Woman 1: K Maldang looked at her husband threateningly for a moment then closed her eyes. He spread a woven buri mat in the sala and asked the “bewtiched” couple lie down. Man 1: They took turns trying to make them speak.Narrator: The neighbor was alarmed. the spirit which has taken possession of her is very stubborn. I must break its spell. Woman 2: nine pisces of betl leaf. Man 2: But the two continued to sit staring at each other in silence. Narrator: Ka Maldang was very angry with her “Compadres’s” interference but she dared not speak her mind. The neighbors gathered at Ka Maldang’s dining room. Man 2: But Ka Maldang refused to get up from where she sat at the dining table. Herb-man: and when he saw the motionless. Herb-man: He examined the leaves closely to choose those which had veins running in identical . Woman 2: He curled up and went to sleep. Woman 3: a piece of areca nut. Narrator: He then produced from a small bag which he always carried. He did not get the ax but ran out of the house to the rest of the neighbors. Neigbor: He also closed his eyes and ignored everyone who had come up to his house. He ran to the village herb-man Narrator: The herb-man came to the village. he declared that they were bewitched. Woman 1: a little lime from a tiny bone. Man 1: Ka Ugong obediently lay down and closed his eyes. Herb-man: The herb-man said. He told them that something terrible had happened to his “Comadre” Maldang and “Compadre” Ugong. silent husband and wife sitting at the table. Ah.
. Man 2: Ka Ugong did not seem to feel the old man’s fingers on his forehead Herb-man: and Ka Maldang. He chewed the leaf and nut. Narrator: The old herb “doctor” cried. Herb-man: Come. Woman 3: Ka Maldang caught the man’s finger and twisted it.Come home to your body now. Come. Man 2: He spread a little lime on each betel leaf.. Woman 1: When he had chewed it. he said. Neighbor: He spat on his palm.. Maldang.. Come Ugong.. Herb-man: Aray! Neighbor: and pulled back his hand Heb-man: He moved toward Ka Ugong who was lying down. Come back. frightened because the herb “doctor” said that the spell might be cast on some other villagers besides Ka Ugong and Ka Maldang. All: He now had nine rings of the leaves Herb-man: This represents the lost spirit of the couple. rolled them Man 1: and wrapped them around each piece of areca nut. Ugong! The men: Ka Ugong did not move or speak.. Neighbor: He cut the nut into nine pieces...arrangements on each side of them midrib. Maldang. He called to the bewitched couple softly at first. Herb-man: dipped a forefinger of the other hand into the nut-colored saliva and marked with it a cross on the forehead of Ka Ugong. The Women: Ka Maldang did not answer Narrator: Evening fall on the frightened village. calling his name and slowly several times. . chanted the old man.
Herb-man: This is the first witchery of its kind that I have met here. The only thing to do now in order to keep their souls in peace and to prevent this witchcraft from spreading among us is to bury them.. Woman 1: The women began to weep for Ka Maldang. Narrator: . Narrator: The men easily lifted Ka Ugong and placed him inside his coffin. How he would frighten them all when he returned from his gravel. He would not be afraid of being buried. He thought everything going on was great fun and he was enjoying himself. Some of us have to stay to keep the wake for the dead. Maldang. Maldang. Woman 3: and shut her lips tight. Narrator: The herb-man asked the men gathered around to lift the couple into their coffins. Herb-man: The herb-man approached Ka Maldang.Come. All: But still they did not move.. the two coffins made of bamboos. Herb-man: Come. Their spirits. She hoped her husband wold object to the men’s lifting of her into the coffin.. Narrator: Although her eyes were closed she had been listening to his directions She was afraid that he would surely force her into her coffin if she did not tell him to go away. By their silence I believe that they are dead. he would win the wager. But she did not like to talk. Ugong. have left their bodies. Herb-man: We shall bury them at sunrise. he said... .. In no time.. Come.. Surely.Herb-man: Come.. Woman 2: She leaned rigidly against the back of her chair.and then louder.. Surely. Ka Ugong said to himself. Why. Woman 2: Ka Maldang soon became tired so she reclined against the bamboo chair. he would just get out of the grave when the neighbors were gone. Narator: The old herb-man said. Narrator: The herb-man ordered some of the men to look for bamboos to make two coffins immediately before the malady would go to them. Ugong. driven away by the witch. hurriedly tied together were finished.
I am afraid to sleep in that coffin tonight. I knew i would win! Now i will never wash the dishes. meddling with our lives! Narrator: Ka Ugong leaped to his feet. Don’t touch me! Get out! Get out of my house! Shame on you for coming here. Woman 2: She opened her eyes just as the herb-man. put his arms around her to lift her up from her chair. i will not let them lift me into it.Hugo will not let me buried tomorrow. Ugong: He also shouted. Now. aided by two other men. still shouting happily and saying. She talked first. she said to herself. You talked first! He jumped about clapping his hands and saying to the astonished neighbors. typed for you by: Jen B. We have a wager. go to her feet and shouted.S. she will always wash the dishes! Maldang: Ka Maldang lifted the lid of Ka Ugong’s coffin to strike his head Ugong: but he ran out with his neighbors. But she did not hear Ka Ugong speak. dedicated to those students who don’t have a copy :) . Maldang: Ka Maldang pushed the men. No. Narrator: I won.
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