I was amazed the first time I learned about Rafe Bartholomew. Who’s Rafe by the way? For those who didn’t know, he is the author of “Pacific Rims” – a book about basketball in the Philippines, who’s started living here since 2005, not to mention that he doesn’t have any Filipino blood – yeah, he’s from New York (not Cubao I guess.. :)).
I started checking information about him after I read an article about him in Men’s Health (November 2010 issue). Undoubtedly, he really loves basketball and what makes it more interesting is of all places, he chose our native land. As he explains in the article, there’s something deeper into Philippine basketball that caught his attention. It’s really not much of how good we are at this sport, but how basketball has become a lifestyle to many. He always says that basketball is rich in our country. I always admire people finding their purpose in an unlikely place. They are the courageous, the risk-takers and the adventurous. Philippines is a very unlikely place for Bartholomew because we have a different way of life, culture and of course, race. Despite that, he stayed as long as he can while enjoying his journey. I do hope that he can inspire other people (esp Pinoys) not only to play basketball but how to embrace and deal with the challenges coming in if you’re a stranger to where you’re going. You can read his blogs thru his website (www.rafebartholomew.com) and his previous blog site (http://katipunani.blogspot.com)
All of us knew that Filipinos love to watch basketball – not all plays it but surely whenever there’s a PBA game in Channel 13 or Channel 4 many years ago (say the Toyota-Crispa era), some can’t resist to tune in. Or if it’s a battle between the Green Archers and the Blue Eagles, the Araneta Coliseum goes wild. Basketball (not even our National sport) is part of every Filipino that’s why every “kalye” in the Philippines is considered to be a hardcourt.