Regular visitors of any of my websites will see me called “Mindanao Bob” and if they don’t know the story of the name, they may wonder where it came from. Do you know? If not, I plan to explain a little bit about that today.
As I recall, I believe that I first got that moniker in November or possibly December 2006, so it is 2 years old now. I was at NCCC Mall in Davao City one day and had a haircut at Big Tom’s Barbershop there. After my haircut, I was walking around the mall doing a little window shopping, and after I had walked all through the mall, I was ready to go home, so I started walking toward the exit. Before I made it to the exit, though, somebody came running up from behind me and sort of jumped in front of me. Honestly, it scared me a little bit, because I was not expecting anybody to jump in front of me like that. The guy said “Are you Bob?” “Well, yes,” I responded. The man kind of looked at me and paused, then asked further, “Mindanao Bob?” I said, “Well, I guess so.” And a new nickname was born!
After about 30 seconds, a lady came running and the fellow exclaimed to her, “Yeah, it’s him!” Hmm… I was feeling kind of strange, and not sure what was going on. The fellow introduced himself as Scott, and explained to me that he and his wife were regular readers of this site and also my Mindanao Blog (now relaunched as Mindanao Magazine) and it was because of my Mindanao website that Scott came up with the name “Mindanao Bob.”
I had never thought of such a name before, but upon reflection it seemed to kind of fit, because I have had a sort of love affair with Mindanao for many years now. I fell in love with Mindanao before I even set foot on the Island, in 1990. When I was flying over Mindanao to land for the first time in General Santos City, just looking at the scenery, the lay of the land, I felt a special feeling in my heart, and it has only grown over the years. So, to me, it was kind of a special thing to be called “Mindanao Bob” for the first time. After that, I told the story a few times, and people picked up on the name, and it stuck.
Now, there is another thing that kind of ties in with this. My haircut. I never had really short hair until we moved to Davao. Even when we lived in General Santos, I had longer hair. Not too long, but much longer than now. When we moved to Davao, just a couple weeks after arriving, I decided I was going to get a really short haircut. I told Feyma, and she was not too fond of the idea. But, I wanted to do it. Ever since then, I have had the haircut, which I call the “Mindanao Bob Haircut” these days. My main reason for having extremely short hair is that it is comfortable, and it is also cooler. The weather can be quite hot here, as we all know, and having such short hair helps keep me feeling cooler, I find.
I get teased by people about my hair being so short, but it’s OK. The main people that tease me are my kids. I still tease them, when they are going for a haircut, I always ask, “are you going to get a Mindanao Bob cut?” They laugh at me on the way out the door. I especially like to tease my daughter, Jean, about this, and she gets a kick out of it. A while back, Migs wrote an article saying that he gets a “Dos” cut, meaning that the barber uses the “number two” setting on the clippers, which regulates the length of the hair. Well, for any of you who want to get a “Mindanao Bob cut,” I go with a “Dos” or number 2 on the top, and number 1 on the sides! Go for it, you won’t regret it!
So, anyway, this is the story of the name “Mindanao Bob” and I’d like to offer my thanks to Scott, if he is still reading, for pinning this moniker on me! Thanks also to Macky, a regular reader and commenter, who drew my “Mindanao Bob” caricature that you see often on my sites. That caricature that Macky drew for me is part of the whole “Mindanao Bob” character these days! Thanks again, guys.