For quite a while, I have been on a few U.S.-based forums trying to figure out who I really am. The story actually begins below.
Since I was in grade school, I have had admired Harvard as one of the top universities in the world. But, to begin with, I have no relatives or close friends who studied there. But still, for some unclear reason, I started to admire its athletics programs as well. At the same time, I started cheering for two other Philippine athletic programs with whom I had no connections with before.
As for my favorite Philippine NCAA program, Colegio de San Juan de Letran, it started when my male grade school friends started attending high school there in 2003. Although no one remained there for college, still, because of their great men's basketball program, I still cheer for the Knights.
But go back a year before I started cheering for Letran, and there you'll have it. The roots of my ever-present obsession with a Catholic university, De La Salle University-Manila.
This obsession with the UAAP school started in September 2002, when I was in Grade 7. One of my classmates at the time had started a pick'em for our classmates between Ateneo and La Salle, the two schools then battling for the UAAP men's basketball title that year. For a reason I've long since forgotten, I picked La Salle. The rest was history.
In February 2005, when I was a sophomore in high school, my obsession with La Salle was at its peak when I was selected as an alternate at a DLSU-sponsored quiz bee. In the months after that, I became best friends with a high school classmate whose mom works at DLSU's athletics department. Over the years, she brought for me a towel, a jacket, ballers and T-shirts.
Before my senior year in high school, I finally chose DLSU as my first choice of college.
But then, as my senior year in high school progressed, I even fought with my parents about extending my obsession with DLSU (since the Green Archers were suspended from the UAAP that year.)
Because they (and both of my siblings) were graduates of UP (University of the Philippines), they were encouraging me to continue their tradition.
I fought to keep my DLSU insistence alive until the month after my high school graduation, when I applied for reconsideration at DLSU and UP Manila, I got accepted at both schools. But my mom chose the latter, partly for financial reasons.
I am currently in my sixth year of my Computer Science studies at UP Manila. But in my heart, DLSU, Letran and Harvard remain.
Although I am going to cheer for National University's men's basketball program this year, I cheer for DLSU in most other sports, particularly in women's volleyball.
The reason I cheer for other schools is that UP is a perennial doormat in some UAAP sports, particularly in men's basketball and women's volleyball.
I hope you understand why you sometimes think I am out of place. Thank you.