Before you are born, and until you die, life is more or less a series of contingencies.
That missed light signal may have kept you from being run over by a truck, while that crinkled lotto ticket in the laundry, had you looked, could’ve been your path to absurd riches. And then there’s your parents, who in any infinite number of selfish, altruistic and unforeseen ways, could have set you out on a different path altogether.
Lawrence Sumulong, a Filipino-American photographer, went down this theoretical rabbit hole in “Dead to Rights,” his long-term project documenting his parents’ hometown, Manila. And, in an alternate reality, it’s his home, too.
“My life was determined, essentially, by my parents, in that it could have gone the other way, and that I could have been born in the Philippines,” Mr. Sumulong said. “And so throughout the entire story, I’m trying to see what came about while I was away.”
In 1980, Mr. Sumulong’s parents fled the Philippines — and dictatorial rule of Ferdinand Marcos — and wound up in New Jersey. Nearly three decades later, Mr. Sumulong traveled alone to Manila for the first time, where he documented an N.G.O.’s efforts to relieve poverty in the Baseco slums.
That first excursion gave him a sense of belonging that he explored over 11 years of visits: dropping in on relatives, pursuing the stories of those targeted by current President Rodrigo Duterte’s merciless drug war, even getting a museum commission. Squeezed into the back of jeepneys filled with clutter or darting among sweaty revelers on wedding dance floors, these moments — high and low — form a hazy rejoinder to his existential question of “What if?”
While Mr. Sumulong has cast himself as the guide, Manila, gripped by constant dualities in play even before his birth, proves to be the story’s underlying protagonist. Members of the moneyed elite whose wealth dates back to the colonial era can take pleasure in access to the new, exclusive Manila House social club, while just over 10 miles away, scrawny boys take a dip in the polluted waters near shanties. Locals and tourists indulge their pleasures at kaleidoscopic nightclubs or the red-light district’s L.A. Cafe, standing in stark contrast to taxis with lights reading “Simple Prayer” outside.
“If someone visits Manila and really gets into it, it’s quite bipolar,” he said, “in that it’s harsh light of day, and at nighttime, it turns into something completely different.”
But Mr. Sumulong admits his thought experiment can only go so far. Despite his kinship toward Manila’s various neighborhoods and constant return from abroad, the photographer is at heart a Filipino-American and New Yorker. An outsider. The use of a fisheye lens, he said, is a visual nod to his own present converging with Manila’s past: his lack of understanding of the Filipino language and the subsequent sense of alienation becomes apparent by the lens stretching the vista of pool halls and roulette tables into a distorted, almost inebriated gaze.
“It’s telling my relationship to the Philippines,” Mr. Sumulong said. “There’s definitely a personal connection, but at the same time, there’s an undeniable level of detachment that creates a certain sense of the uncanny or the surreal.”
Though it’s been nearly four decades since Mr. Sumulong’s parents fled the threats of death and flagrant human rights violations in the Philippines, these horrors persist. “There is no half-life to the abuse and the conflict that is in the Filipino soul right now,” Mr. Sumulong said.
Interspersed among the photographs of men and women summarily executed in President Duterte’s antidrug offensive are letters to the deceased and to the Almighty, begging for clemency. That could have been his world, his fate, and it is a sobering thought.
The project of Mr. Sumulong’s what-if other life starts with a fake birth certificate, forged on Recto Avenue. But, true to what might have been, it ends with his death certificate: “3 gunshot wounds.”
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“【本】【座】【没】【兴】【趣】【结】【果】【他】【人】【性】【命】” 【寸】【心】【揉】【了】【揉】【有】【些】【疲】【惫】【抽】【痛】【的】【额】【角】，【现】【在】【的】【自】【己】【只】【想】【找】【个】【地】【方】【好】【好】【休】【息】【休】【息】【等】【待】【救】【援】。 【只】【要】【狗】【子】【他】【们】【到】【了】，【自】【己】【便】【能】【好】【好】【调】【理】【身】【体】【不】【至】【于】【这】【般】【虚】【弱】 【一】【心】【想】【要】【寻】【思】【的】【阿】【桐】【在】【听】【到】【寸】【心】【这】【般】【果】【决】【的】【拒】【绝】【后】，【漂】【亮】【的】【眸】【子】【瞬】【间】【暗】【淡】【许】【多】。 “【真】【是】【的】，【一】【个】【两】【个】【的】【梧】【桐】【树】【都】【这】【么】【奇】【怪】
【眼】【见】【德】【王】【欲】【起】【身】【离】【去】，【墨】【北】【川】【眼】【中】【犹】【豫】【一】【闪】，【终】【还】【是】【起】【身】【道】：“【王】【爷】【且】【慢】！” 【已】【经】【转】【过】【身】【朝】【着】【门】【口】【走】【去】【的】【德】【王】，【听】【到】【墨】【北】【川】【的】【声】【音】，【心】【中】【顿】【时】“【咯】【噔】”【一】【下】，【暗】【道】【不】【好】。 【德】【王】【面】【上】【依】【然】【故】【作】【平】【静】【的】【转】【身】，【看】【向】【同】【样】【已】【经】【站】【起】【身】【来】【的】【墨】【北】【川】，【声】【音】【尽】【量】【不】【含】【波】【动】【道】：“【你】【要】【留】【下】【本】【王】？” “【王】【叔】，【我】【本】【不】【欲】【如】
【梦】【中】【的】【自】【己】【经】【受】【了】【所】【有】【的】【恐】【怖】【却】【是】【不】【能】【逃】【避】，【所】【以】【她】【很】【难】【过】。 “【凌】【儿】【你】【有】【什】【么】【梦】【想】【吗】？”【后】【面】【程】【念】【青】【也】【跟】【着】【站】【在】【山】【坡】【上】【问】【道】。 “【有】【就】【是】【杀】【光】【天】【母】【和】【银】【溯】【所】【有】【已】【经】【派】【出】【来】【的】【人】”【她】【淡】【淡】【的】【回】【答】，【虽】【然】【说】【银】【溯】【的】【时】【候】【她】【有】【些】【难】【过】，【但】【是】【却】【是】【大】【义】【是】【之】【然】【不】【是】【么】？ “【嗯】，【那】【那】【天】【母】，【不】【是】【很】【难】【杀】【吗】？”【程】【念】【青】【果】【然】彩票开奖查询2018081期【曲】【家】【人】【起】【初】【以】【为】【徐】【铁】【军】【一】【行】【人】【也】【是】【来】【福】【聚】【岛】【旅】【游】【的】，【出】【于】【感】【激】，【执】【意】【要】【请】【他】【们】【去】【度】【假】【村】【餐】【厅】【吃】【饭】。 【徐】【铁】【军】【推】【脱】【不】【过】，【只】【好】【透】【露】：【自】【己】【女】【儿】【就】【是】【度】【假】【村】【的】【主】【人】。 【曲】【家】【人】【惊】【讶】【之】【余】，【依】【然】【坚】【持】：“【您】【女】【儿】【是】【度】【假】【村】【主】【人】，【我】【们】【难】【道】【就】【不】【能】【请】【你】【们】【吃】【饭】【了】？【走】【走】【走】！【把】【你】【女】【儿】、【女】【婿】【都】【叫】【上】！【请】【务】【必】【赏】【个】【脸】！” 【徐】
“【少】【夫】【人】【您】【来】【了】。” “【少】【夫】【人】【您】【请】【坐】。” 【所】【有】【人】【对】【她】【都】【是】【毕】【恭】【毕】【敬】，【之】【前】【她】【在】【这】【里】【做】【实】【习】【秘】【书】【的】【时】【候】，【态】【度】【还】【不】【如】【这】【般】【亲】【切】。 【那】【个】【时】【候】【的】【她】【们】，【以】【为】【沈】【曼】【妮】【只】【是】【运】【气】【好】【才】【能】【嫁】【入】【豪】【门】，【她】【们】【这】【些】【秘】【书】【室】【的】【秘】【书】【们】【也】【都】【对】【此】【抱】【有】【期】【待】。 【以】【为】【沈】【曼】【妮】【这】【花】【瓶】【没】【多】【久】【就】【会】【被】【副】【总】【给】【甩】【了】。 【可】【现】【实】【是】，【她】【们】
【就】【拿】【天】【子】【大】【婚】【之】【时】，【曹】【昂】【蔡】【琰】【入】【长】【安】，【蔡】【琰】【不】【是】【住】【在】【曹】【静】【这】【边】【吗】，【他】【估】【计】【都】【没】【回】【过】【蔡】【家】。【在】【家】【从】【夫】【啊】！ “【夫】【君】【尽】【管】【放】【心】，【意】【儿】【本】【来】【就】【聪】【慧】，【只】【是】【夫】【君】，【你】【要】【不】【要】【再】【带】【点】【人】。” 【董】【杭】【摆】【摆】【手】，【说】【道】：“【不】【用】，【有】【宋】【宪】【领】【着】【亲】【卫】【军】【就】【可】【以】【了】，【况】【且】【有】【校】【事】【府】【那】【四】【位】【女】【侠】【跟】【着】【我】【呢】，【她】【们】【和】【吴】【忧】【一】【样】，【都】【是】【江】【湖】【上】【一】【等】
【小】【郡】【主】【挑】【了】【马】【车】【的】【窗】【帘】【往】【外】【看】，【可】【惜】【现】【在】【是】【在】【官】【道】【上】，【马】【蹄】【扬】【起】【阵】【阵】【黄】【沙】，【见】【不】【到】【什】【么】【好】【风】【景】。【可】【她】【还】【是】【很】【开】【心】，【嘴】【角】【一】【直】【挂】【着】【抹】【不】【去】【的】【笑】。 【十】【二】【岁】【的】【娇】【龄】【少】【女】，【浑】【身】【上】【下】【透】【着】【青】【艾】【的】【气】【息】，【那】【一】【身】【麻】【布】【重】【孝】，【越】【发】【将】【她】【衬】【得】【娇】【俏】。【盈】【盈】【一】【笑】，【微】【露】【半】【齿】，【满】【面】【春】【风】【再】【难】【挡】。 【对】【面】【似】【乎】【有】【人】【看】【过】【来】，【折】【露】【警】【觉】【地】