'Essential si lugaw': Netizens react to viral video of man barred from delivering lugaw in Bulacan
Stock image of a lugaw.

'Essential si lugaw': Netizens react to viral video of man barred from delivering lugaw in Bulacan

Kathleen A. Llemit (Philstar.com) - March 31, 2021 - 6:33pm

MANILA, Philippines — "Is lugaw essential or non-essential?"

This is the question that currently preoccupies netizens after the video of a Grab driver being apprehended for delivering lugaw (hot rice porridge) went viral on March 31. The hashtag #lugaw trended on the 6th spot of Twitter Philippines trending list at around 6 p.m. on March 31.

The incident

A certain Marvin Ignacio went live on his Facebook on the wee hours of Wednesday. His live video ran for 35 minutes and 32 seconds. After several hours, it was spliced into shorter versions by different netizens, among them was by a Facebook user that goes by the name Tito Kevs. This version has 55,000 angry and laughing emojis; 15,000 comments, 78,000 shares and 1 million views.

The shorter 3:41-minute video features a Grab driver and a lady barangay official in a conversation about the situation the driver found himself in.

The driver was initially mistaken for a tambay but when he said he was on standby nearby a lugawan store for an order. The lady barangay official proceeded to remind him of the existing Inter-Agency Task Force (IATF) rules on the ongoing enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) in place in the National Capital Region, including neighboring provinces Laguna, Rizal, Cavite and Bulacan until April 4.

It states that curfew is in place from 6 p.m. to 5 a.m. Food preparation commissaries, restaurants and eateries are allowed but only with "limited to take-out and delivery".

"Para sa private establishments, essential goods and services. Essential po ba si lugaw? Hindi kasi mabubuhay ang tao ng walang lugaw. Ang essential, tubig, gatas, groceries," said the lady official while pointing out her handout where the IATF rules were printed on.

The Grab driver reasoned out, "Pagkain po yun, Ma'am".

The lady official replied, "Hindi nga. Eh 'di sana lahat ng pagkain bukas. Eto si pulis, palilinawagan kayo ni pulis. (points to the policeman). Okay? Naiintidihan po? Naiintindihan. Tapos, may nakasulat din tayo dito, Sir, na ang pupuwede lang ay provision of foods and essential. Hindi essential si lugaw. Sana bukas si bakery. Naintindihan?"

The driver said that the Grab company only followed the rules and had permits. The lady official reiterated what she had said earlier about lugaw as not being essential. The shorter video ended with the driver wondering what to do with the order and the lady official replying to check with the food delivery company.

Ignacio posted a few hours after the incident. "Awit sa inyo Barangay Munzon! 'Di niyo alam sinasabi niyo. Ewan ko sa inyo 'di ako makasagot naka display panicket nung pulis sakin. 'Di daw essential si Lugaw Pilipinas pero yun yung pinapakain ni Leni Robredo sa feeding program niya. Asan yung logic? Please enlighten me. Iba talaga pananaw ng Brgy. Muzon sakit niyo po sa ulo."

In one of his posts, he said that the lugaw came from Harmony Hills in Barangay Muzon in San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan.

Netizens react

Many netizens took to Twitter to react on the incident.

Actress and singer Gab Pangilinan tweeted: "Essential si lugaw. That's the tweet."

"Dear @grabph, you need to revise your advisory like this: 'We're serving you 24/7 this ECQ so that you can stay at home while we bring you food, essentials and lugaw," tweeted @call_me_jason.

Another listed why lugaw is "an essential". Netizen @GLOCOgaming wrote: "Why Lugaw is Essential: It's food. It's healthy. It's the go-to food when you're too weak to eat harder food (pun intended). It's cost efficient. B@#%, lugaw is life."

While another found humor and said that after last year's food trends, lugaw takes centerstage. "Move over Dalgona Coffee, Sushi Bake and Ube Pandesal. Lugaw is here to claim its spotlight this ECQ! Lugaw this ECQ!" wrote @Rukie3101.

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