I started debating during my freshman year in college. It was my English teacher who ‘discovered’ me. Well, sort of. Being in a class of science geeks, I didn’t know anything at all about debating. My only experience in debate was arguing with my teacher for a particular grade I wanted and she was loathe to give.
But she did give in- after making me promise that I would be joining the inter-class debate. I guess it was a sort of quid-pro-quo. A set-up that completely and literally changed my life. I know, I know, that life-changing thingy is a bit cliche. However, it was because of debate that I met her and that alone is well, life changing.
Anyways, I kept my promise and debated against seasoned debaters under the legendary Sir Jesse Invierno. We used an archaic format that is not seen in tournaments nowadays- complete with interpellations and posed POI’s. Of course we lost.
So I was surprised when Sir Jesse who approached me, and seriously asked me to join the debate varsity. “You’re good. You should join debate”. Me being me (science geek), I once again shrugged and chalked it up to a teacher’s attempt to console a student who just lost.
A few weeks later, I received an invitation to debate again- this time in the gym. In public. I was mortified. I just humiliated myself in the classroom! I wasn’t about to humiliate myself again. So I ignored the letter.
The next thing I knew, Ruth Tabuniar was standing outside our house on a Sunday afternoon to convince me to debate. How she found out where I lived, I still do not know. I humiliated myself for the second time the following day. But then I realized, I liked the rush. That feeling of pressure and nerves that ended with a release very much akin to an orgasm. That was when I learned how to masturbate with my mind. I was hooked.
I joined debate and the rest as they say, just unfolded (I refuse to write another cliche). I went on to join numerous debate tournaments and won a few accolades, and soon started to teach debate to help support my med school expenses (I always will be a science geek). I’ve been Chief Adjudicator countless times and for the first time directed a tourney.
So I could say that I’ve finally come full circle. Five years since I started teaching debate (nine since I started debating), I am finally ready to close this chapter of my life, get that license, and start a whole new adventure.