For the month of August FC is featuring the most requested confrere in town—the person who both confreres and parishioners alike are interested to know up-close and personal. He is no other than Rev. Bro. Thanapoom Manamuti, C.Ss.R, from Thailand, known to us as “Boy.” Fr. Senen fondly calls him “silent boy” but mind you, during this conversation he was not silent at all. Boy bares things other people may have not known about him and shares details of what the mysterious world of Boy is like.
Born on the 23rd day of June 1981, Boy is now on his last level of formation and is preparing himself for sacerdotal ordination. His hobbies include sleeping, photography, guitar playing, internet surfing, tennis, basketball and movie watching. He likes the color red because he sees it as a color for passion but at the same time likes black, white, yellow and blue. His palate is for Thai food but he also loves Japanese cuisine. He enjoys watching the TV shows like Iron Chef because he considers it appetizing and also enjoys shows like the Biggest Loser and Night Talk Shows about celebrities and famous people being interviewed. His favorite sport is tennis but likes basketball, football and car racing. When asked about things/activities that he loves but have not done yet, he gave a variety of answers ranging from scuba diving and yachting to driving an F1 car and then travelling around the world and flying a jet.
Boy is the kind of person who does not have one answer to every question. Before this conversation happened he was given a questionnaire to fill-up. He was asked to write one favorite for each category (like food, movie, color, etc.) he cooperated by answering the questions but he never allowed the conversation to end without him expressing his feelings about it: “Why do you have to ask me to name one that I like the most because I have a lot of things that I like. I always wonder why people have to only choose one…” FC appreciated much his honesty and it painted a new picture about him. Life is indeed complex and for him you can never have one answer to every aspect of life. He is maybe a man of few words but he is not at all thrifty in sharing himself. If there is one word that could best describe the things that he likes it would be: variety.
FC: Who is Boy?
Boy: (smiles)Boy? (thinks) Human being?
FC: If you were to introduce Boy to someone, how would you introduce him?
Boy: eeehh… tough question.. well maybe it would be a short introduction, just to leave them thinking…
My name is Boy, I am from Thailand, I am a Redemptorist.. yeah! that’s it! (smiles)
FC: How would you describe a typical day for a Thanapoom Manamuti?
Boy: Sleeping! (pause) .. Typical day? Maybe studying, praying — short prayer from time to time and sleep (giggles)… Drink Coke!
FC: What is in Photography that you love the most?
Boy: Being part of that is the memories because when you take photo it’s as if you capture the memories that you cannot describe by words
FC: What’s you favorite subject Boy?
FC: When did you start to love photography?
Boy: I think it has to go back like six years ago when I had the chance to actually take a photo. So I borrowed a camera from my mother, at that time I really did not know how to shoot and later on I became interested in it.
FC: Who influenced you in your love for photography?
Boy: Actually none. I cannot think of anybody. It’s like the first time we went into a vacation with the seminarians and then I borrowed my mother’s camera and I started shooting and after I looked at the pictures I liked it. I felt it’s nice to have it—something to capture beautiful scenes, memories, stuff like that.
FC: You also love to play guitar, is guitar playing for you a past time or a passion?
Boy: Now it’s a past time before it was a passion
FC: What made it just a past time now?
Boy: Because I am more interested in something else—photography! And study too… less time for guitar and we don’t have like venue to perform I only practice hard when there is an event coming up.
FC: So if we will have venues where you could showcase your talent in music, can you say that your interest in guitar would resurface?
Boy: Yeah! Yeah! I am not a musician, unlike Fr. Cruz and Dennis they are musicians…
FC: How do you define a musician?
Boy: A person who really loves music! I don’t love music, I just play for performance..
FC: Aside from guitar is there any other musical instrument that you play?
Boy: Drums. Bass. You have a short memory, do you? Last year during our performance I played drums.. it’s a very interesting instrument.. very fun to play.. very fun!
FC: If given a chance to learn another musical instrument what would it be and why?
Boy: Piano. I love the sound. I have tried but I did not succeed. Maybe I don’t like it that much that’s why I did not have enough determination (giggles) to pursue.
FC: Everybody knows you love sports, among the two sports you love—tennis and basketball
Which do you prefer most?(tennis) And why?
Boy: At the moment I prefer tennis. Considering the age and also the size of the playground.. before I used to play soccer in a big field, then basketball which is smaller, tennis even smaller (giggles) there’s a lot of fun in tennis.. just two players trying to hit the ball to each other. There’s a nice feeling when you hit the sweet spot, it feels great!
FC: You love sports and also love to play guitar, do you consider yourself more athletic or artistic?
FC: What sort of movies do you watch?
Boy: I watch movies a lot, not just one type, because I think they are good in different ways.. I like comedy (specially Thai comedy), love story, war, action, and animations. I like inspiring movies the most- like the ones that make you wanna do something…
FC: You like love stories, do you consider yourself a loving person?
Boy: Yes. I am a loving person but I am not romantic. I haven’t been romantic.
FC: How would Boy express love?
Boy: …die for somebody.
FC: What makes Boy sad?
Boy: when my loved ones are sad…(smiles)
FC: What makes Boy angry?
Boy: …small stuffs, like when I do something and it doesn’t go my way.. I don’t know how to explain it… it’s like when I’m doing something and things just fall down.. very small stuff! I’m angry at small things but I’m not angry at big things.. like when you spill your coffee on the table I get very angry or when the internet connection is not working, I would really curse. But for big things, I kinda suppress my anger.
FC: What’s the joke the Boy would enjoy?
Boy: dirty jokes… (laughs) any kind of joke… I enjoy jokes…
FC: If somebody wants to engage in a conversation with you, what type of conversations do you enjoy?
Boy: …try to begin with something natural… don’t push it too hard like try talking with things that I’m interested in because I think I can sense that.. so don’t come to me and talk about photography if you’re not interested in photography… just be natural… I can engage in any conversation but I’m not the one who initiates the conversation. I’m not good at that.
FC: Scuba diving, flying a jet, travelling around the world, yachting, driving an F1 car, all these are very interesting… what’s in these activities that you long to experience?
Boy: Maybe the sensational aspects…like in travelling, the sight seeing… and driving the adrenalin (giggles) and flying a jet—that’s my favorite career…
FC: If there is one thing that you would reveal to the community, something that you want to tell them or things we do not know about you, what would it be?
Boy: I have always been honest to myself, I have been myself… (pause) maybe becoming a priest in a sense that we have to celebrate mass has never been my dream.. like to wear women’s clothing is something I never dreamt of…like celebrating mass in church is not my inspiration…
FC: What made you want to continue?
Boy: …the work… to live for others, the poor and the commitment
FC: What makes you SMILE?
Boy: good jokes… and just to be with the one , those whom I love..
FC: Love is Boy’s favorite word…
Boy: I’m a loving person maybe that’s what I would like to tell the community—loving in my own special way…
FC: Thank you Boy… Salamat
Boy: Yeah! Salamat… what do I say?
FC: Is there anything else that you would like to say?
Boy: No. Oh by the way, why do you have to ask me to name one that I like the most because I have a lot of things that I like. I always wonder why people have to only choose one… because I have a lot… I cannot name one.
FC: (laughs out loud) I’m sorry! I thought you are a man of few words..
Boy: Like you asked me of my favorite food, I said I like Thai but you see I also like Japanese…
(and the conversation went on…)
(Here are some of Boy’s answers from the Proust Questionnaire)
Your favorite virtue: Perseverance
Your favorite quality
in man: Courage
Your favorite quality
in a woman: Tenderness
occupation: Fighting Jet Pilot
Your idea of
happiness: Happiness is a state of mind
Your idea of misery: a personal choice
Your favorite color: Red
If not yourself, who
would you be: another Jesus
Where would you like
to live: anywhere with people I love and care
Your favorite heroes
now: Pope John XXIII
Your favorite heroine
in real life: Mother Theresa of Calcutta
Your favorite heroes
in fiction: Batman
Your favorite food
and drink: Coke
Your favorite names: Boy
Your pet peeve: punctuality
What is your present
state of mind: happy
For what fault
have you the most tolerance: I can tolerate all. I’m a very understanding person.
Your favorite motto: where there is a will, there is a way
Boy has always been a man of few words. His words are what one can consider short and sweet-- short enough to be interesting and long enough to cover the essentials. His words are sweet because he speaks of caring and helping others, of being with those people he loves, of being like the historical Jesus who laid down his life for one’s friend. The name “Boy” is such a short and sweet name. And our very own Boy Manamuti here in SATMI lives to that name who speaks words short and sweet. And at the very core of his being, he speaks of the shortest and the sweetest word he knows: LOVE.