Breaking News: Frigid wives in Baguio

I’m starting to gain a real appreciation for news in Manila — if only for its humor value. There’s usually something on the front page of one of the major dailies that just makes my day.

A headline about Baguio City’s “frigid wives” appeared on the front page of the Philippine Star Monday. Of course I had to read it — who could possibly ignore such a funny headline? But about three graphs into it, I realized that in fact, the story wasn’t really about frigid wives, but about an assembly where couples aired their grievances about their marriages.

Here’s what married couples said:

“…deteriorating respect between couples, domineering wives, loneliness because the wife is working abroad, low income, religious differences, different interests, low education, unemployment due to lack of job opportunities, large family size, early marriages, poverty and vices such as drunkenness and gambling are among the irritants in the relationship of couples.”

The story continues…

Most of the participants said these family problems lead to serious conflicts, resulting in broken families and juvenile delinquencies which add to the social problem of the community, said Dan Codamon of PIA-Ifugao.

I was particulary impressed that “domineering wives” was among the traits singled out as contributing to the community’s social problems. Of course it’s the frigid wives complaint that sticks out, because that’s what I was expecting to read about. It turns out it was just one of the many complaints of the men of Baguio, a city north of Manila.

But that didn’t stop anyone from running this headline and lead.

‘Frigid’ Ifugao wives breaking up marriages — hubbies

BAGUIO CITY — It’s not just the weather. Men in this normally cool mountain
province are blaming their wives for turning “frigid,” eventually resulting in
marital breakups.

Some people call the press here “rambunctious.” I’d say that’s an optimistic evaluation. But at least, without The Daily Show, I can still laugh about the news.

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