I had the girliest crush on Shalani Soledad

Until she opened her mouth.

There I was, inside one of our building’s offices, for a colleague’s birthday. And to celebrate, the television was tuned in to Willie Revillame’s reincarnated TV5 show. Two things jumped out: 1) Willie had always been the lunchtime hero of the poor so it’s weird to see him on primetime; 2) watching Willie is really not the best way to celebrate (unless you’re the one being handed loads of cash to).

So in between chomping on my third slice of pesto pizza, looking for a non-alcoholic beverage, and marveling at the giant tube of electric-blue tonic mixed specially by the birthday boy, I spent part of my Wednesday night looking at Willie’s face.

After a few minutes and already more than double my monthly salary given away, I was getting sorely depressed at seeing people get instant cash. But before anyone could change the channel, Shalani Soledad appeared, soft and subdued but roaringly beautiful. So we stopped in mid-channel-changing to endure a few more minutes of the show.

She was, in short, simply breathtaking–with her pearl-like skin, her mestiza-hin features, her humble but determined smile. She has the kind of face that men like and women have plastic surgery for. What a welcome change from the cash-desperate, all fawning at the cash cow that is Willie Revillame, that dominated the show. So so beautiful, I kept thinking. Why the hell did Noynoy let her go (and almost replaced by a woman who resembles a bulldog)?

As the show was just getting better visually, Shalani grabbed hold of the mic, opened her mouth, and a dead rat fell out. Well, no not really, but you can imagine how much viewers would fall all over that. Her voice was a dull, depressing monotone that rivaled a dead rat’s vigor. She said “Kantanong,” (a modified guess the lyrics game) the same way people say “funeral,” or “cancer,” or “Mike Arroyo.”

Now I understood. Perhaps they needed that to counter the hyperness of everyone else on the damn show? Maybe.

With a face like this, an awesome voice would have been nice to match. God is fair.

But you know what’s sadder? For a woman with so much so-called style and substance, majority of Pinoys would always remember as primarily as the first lady that got away.

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