ON A Verona balcony, Juliet asked Romeo: “What’s in a name?” Plenty, says the US Immigration Service. That is if the names are those Filipinos picked when they became naturalized U.S. citizens. Former UN economist Conardo Sanchez, who emailed the list, wrote. Scan the names. Who knows you might bump into them one of them.

     Meet Jorge Talahib. He is now known as – what else? — George Bush. And Tomas Cruz? You guessed right: Tom Cruise. But Macario Maldonado opted for Mac Donald.  And Bienvenido Jurado, meanwhile, became Ben Hur.  

     Remigio Batungbacal took the moniker of Remington Steel.  But Juanito Lakarin now signs as Johnny Walker.  His fiancée Victoria Malihim changed her name to Victoria Secret.

     Guess how Esteban Magtaka is now called? Stevie Wonder. And Jaime Bondoc is not far behind with James Bond.  A golfer, Leon Mangubat, picked Tiger Woods. But Burgos Bahaghari reached for the far out Burger King.

     You’d never guess what Kasimira Bukaykay chose. Cashmere Bouquet, that’s what. Topacio Mamaril, however, preferred Top Gun. It didn’t take much imagination for Restituto Fruto to pick Tutti Fruiti  or Rogelio Dagdagan to become Roger Moore. But Maria Kalas as Mary Kay?

     Samuel Tampipi travels under his new name: Sam Sonite.  Franisco Portero merely shortened his name to Frank Porter. Roberto Controlado never got within spitting distance of the Population Commission. So, how come he is now known as Bert Control?

      It was December when Maria Pascua was naturalized. She is now known as Mary Christmas. And guess what day Ligaya Anonuveo became Happy New Year?

     Pinoy innovation isn’t limited to name selection, as Billioniarie Bill Gates discovered when recruited a new board chairman for his sprawling Microsoft Europe. No less than 5000 candidates assembled in a large Brussels room. One candidate was Mario Dimaculangan.

     Gates: “Thank you for coming. Those who do not know “Java” may leave” And 2000 people left. But Mario mumbles to himself, ‘I do not know Java. But I’ve nothing to lose if I stay. I’ll give it a try.

     Gates: “Candidates who’ve never managed more than 100 people may leave”. Another 2000 go. Now, Mario thinks harder: “I never managed anybody but myself. If I stay what can happen to me?”’ So he stays.

    Gates: “Candidates who lack management diplomas may leave”. Now, 500 people depart, leaving Mario who dropped out of high school at 15, asks: “What have I got to lose?’ So he stays put in the room.

     Finally, Gates asks: “Candidates who don’t speak Serbo – Croat, please leave. Now, 498 people rise and go. Mario says to himself: “I do not speak one word of Serbo – Croat. But what do I lose?’

     So he stays — and finds himself with one other candidate. Then, Gates joins them. “Apparently you are the only two candidates who speak Serbo – Croat,” he says. “I’d now like to hear you converse in that language.”’ 

     Calmly, Mario turns to the other candidate and says: ‘Ano ba yan, pare?’ And  the other candidate answers: ‘Ewan ko nga ba pare….’  

     And what about those smart Filipina girls who whip out snappy replies to turn down “unwanted men.” Here are some of those crackling replies from a smart Filipina executive — who is still single.

    He: “Can I buy you a drink?” :She: “Actually I’d rather have the money.”  He: I’m a photographer. I’ve been looking for a face like yours. She: I’m a plastic surgeon. I’ve been looking for a face like yours. He: Hi. Didn’t we go on a date once? Or was it twice? She: Must’ve been once. I never make the same mistake twice.                               .
     He: How did you get to be so beautiful?  She:” I must’ve been given your share.” He: “Will you go out with me this Saturday?”  She: “Sorry. I’m having a headache this weekend.” He: “Go on, don’t be shy. Ask me out”. She: “Okay, get out”. He: “I think I could make you very happy.  She: “Why? Are you leaving?”

     He: “What would you say if I ask you to marry me?  She: “Nothing. I can’t talk and laugh at the same time.” He: “Can I have your name?” She: “Why? Don’t you already have one?“ He: “Where have you been all my life?” She: “Hiding from you.”                                 .
     He: “Haven’t I seen you some place before?  She: Yes. That’s why I don’t go there anymore.  He: “Is this seat empty? She: Yes, and this one will be if you sit down. He: So, what do you do for a living?  She: I’m a female impersonator.

     The actress Zsa Zsa Gabor, however, didn’t have such problems. “I never hated a man enough to give his diamonds back,” she explained. The comedian Groucho Marx had a different perspective: “I was married by a judge. I should have asked for a jury.”

     Winston Churchill, however, waxed philosophical men-women tiffs. “Don’t worry about avoiding temptation,” he counseled. “As you grow older, it will avoid you.” And Billy Cyrstal agreed saying: “By the time a man is wise enough to watch his step, he’s too old to go

     Have a great weekend!