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My Daddy Love

Eduardo Soriano Lopez Jr.: The staff often recognize “Mr. Lopez” from maybe some other place where they encountered him or just remember him as a client. That is because he treats everyone with utmost respect — not to mention, he tips them very well

I don’t believe in eulogies, which is why I am very generous with my tributes.  

Today I would like to take advantage of this occasion because this is not only the month when we celebrate Father’s Day, but very close (June 6) to my own father’s birthday. I want to pay tribute to my dad and tell him that I love him; I want to tell him the kind of person he is so he knows how much he has affected my life and the lives of the people he has touched.

Eduardo Soriano Lopez Jr. — better known as “Plangs” (Plangga) to my mom, “Junior” or “Manong Junior” to his siblings and cousins, “Jun” to his friends, “ESL” in the office, “Lolo” to the grandkids and “Daddy Love” to me. He calls me “Love” so I call him “Daddy Love.”  

Some of the most successful and famous people in the world have been kings, popes, presidents or leaders of countries, geniuses who invented some gadget or rich people who have made it to the Forbes list of billionaires. My dad is successful and famous and he did not have to be any of those. You can go to a place that he has been to and they will all know “Mr. Lopez,” from the janitor to the general manager. I remember we were in the airport in Cebu on the way back to Manila and someone greeted my dad. It was Ferdz from Shangri-La Hotel Mactan. I only know Ferdz because I saw his nametag; but he recognized “Mr. Lopez” as soon as he saw him. Ferdz even volunteered to help my dad with his things even though, at that time, we were not staying at Shangri-La Hotel. And this was not the first time this had happened. The staff often recognize “Mr. Lopez” from maybe some other place where they encountered him or just remember him as a client. That is because he treats everyone with utmost respect — not to mention, he tips them very well. He always tells me not to scrimp on tips because that is people’s means of livelihood. “Kawawa naman,” he will say. Aside from tipping very well, he always takes time to talk to people. He just always makes an impression with every person he meets. 

It’s not very hard to describe Dad because he is very predictable and he is a person who really stands out. He does not have to sing or dance and he does not have to brag or show off for him to be noticed. In fact, he does not like doing things to call attention to himself. My dad does things quietly and on his own, yet he always makes a statement. 

You cannot miss him because he is usually wearing a hat. If not a hat, it will be his “groovy” shirt or his very fashionable torn jeans with leather patches that will get your attention. He has his own fashion sense and I tell him he is “groovy”! But that is what makes him unique.

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He loves animals and has quite a number of pets in his house. He is known for his mini zoo and it has become an attraction especially for kids that come over with their friends or classmates for a field trip. He does not collect only live pets, but animal skins, stuffed pets and life-size versions of different film characters — like the Alien, Frankenstein’s monster, a Stormtrooper from Star Wars, to name a few.  Aside from that he likes collecting gadgets both old and new — watches, old airplane controls, chests, swords, guns, helmets and armor. These are just some of the things he likes to collect. So you can imagine how colorful and lively his collection is. And people are attracted to him because he shares his passion with them.  

It’s really in the genes I guess, because my passion for taking photos and videos and documenting people and events is something Dad likes to do as well. Ever since we were kids, he would take videos and photos of us and he would bring out his portable movie screen and we would watch them all together as a family. That was one of my most memorable moments as a child.  Up to today, he takes videos and photos but now he has taken that interest further and now enjoys editing his own videos and making a story out of them.

He has many quirks. 

He has to have a backup for everything: his generator, his aircon, and other things that he is picky about like the kind of toilet paper that he uses. We are trying to analyze this behavior and we think it is because Dad was born during World War II. Ha-ha!

He is also a cleanliness freak. Whenever he visited a Rustan’s Supermarket (when he was still president) or when he visits a Starbucks store now, the first thing he does is go straight behind the counter and to the backroom to check that everything is clean. Whenever we travel, his best friend is the vacuum cleaner because he likes to clean up to make sure the place is free of dirt. He nags us all the time to pick up our mess and clean up.

He is very particular about replying to calls, emails and texts. He always tells us, “Communication is an art” whenever something goes wrong because someone misunderstood an instruction or misinterpreted something. This is written as a template on all his emails, kind of like his mantra. And truly, many of the frustrations in this world are caused by miscommunication.

He is also very particular about greeting him when we see him. He makes sure we all kiss him when saying hello or goodbye. Without fail, he will call your attention if you do not do this and he will even text you to tell you if you have forgotten this very important gesture.

The most glaring quirk is his insistence on being punctual. I call it a “quirk” because though it actually should not be an exception but the rule, he is really very particular about it. He gets upset when people are not on time.  He will always say, “You have to give allowance just in case someone is in traffic or if something happens.” 

These are all his quirks, but then again when you think about it, these are very good lessons in life that he teaches us. He makes a lot of sense.

 

 

My dad may not be perfect but I would say he is 98 percent perfect. You will hardly hear anything negative about my dad because he is truly one of the nicest and most sincere human beings on earth.

He can be very nagging in telling us what to do and how to do things, yet at the same time he leads by example — very loud and clear.

He teaches us about generosity by always helping anyone in need. This explains his habit of giving tips to everyone in the service industry. He also always offers to help and give to those in need.

Dad is very religious. He kisses all the saints in any place and he goes to church and prays the rosary every day.  God is always in the center of our lives and Dad made sure of this.

One thing I noticed about my dad as a husband is his amazing ability to be a very masunurin husband and at the same time not be “under the saya” and still be the boss in the relationship. He will always tell us “Ask your mom,” yet my mom, though she makes the decisions for the family, always puts my dad at the center of the plans. There is a lot of give and take in the relationship but my dad just makes it easier; that is how amazing he is.

My dad has a relationship with each and every member of my family — my eldest son Jaime and my youngest son Javier and my husband, James, even before my children were born. We travel together and eat together all the time. I love my dad because he is always very present in my life.  He is the number one supporter of my website and never fails to respond to each and every blog that I post. I am sure he gives the same attention to each and every one of us siblings. I am not one to brag but I am very lucky and blessed to have my “Daddy Love” — there is only one of him and he is mine!

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