|SEC.RAMON JIMENEZ JR. (RIGHT) WITH HIS WIFE ABBY AND DAUGHTERS SASSA AND NINA|
VN: Is there a need for a Department of Culture?
RJJ: Quite possibly, yes. Whatever we can do to strengthen and preserve Filipino culture, we must. I think we should study whether a Department of Culture can be made viable.
VN: What comes to your mind when you hear the following:
(a) Jollibee = great food
(b) Selecta = great ice cream
(d) San Miguel Beer = best beer in the world
(e) Cebu Pacific = great travel
(f) Ivory = purity
(g) Ninoy = a great role model
(i) PNoy = a great and emerging role model
VN:Could you tell us more about your book Generations: In Search of Family? What is the salient character or characteristic of your clan?
RJJ: Next to liking great food, I think it is the fact that we have a tremendous sense of family and that is meant very deeply. A tremendous sense of the idea that what keeps us connected is our common concern, and we do that by gathering not just for happy occasions, but also sad ones - being together through thick and thin.
VN: What did you learn from your lawyer dad? What did you teach your designer daughter?
RJJ: From my lawyer dad, I’ve always learned to be the best at what you do. That’s the only way you’re going to enjoy your career. What did I teach my designer daughter? Exactly the same thing my dad taught me.
VN: How do you value family?
RJJ: I value it enough to make it central to the whole idea of FUN in the Philippines. That’s what FUN in the Philippines is about. It’s about reconnecting with things that matter, and family is definitely one of the things that matter.
VN: How did your University of the Philippines education help you?
RJJ: For one thing, education is help in itself. Having a stronger sense of how the world works and the possibilities about what it can and what it should be are probably the greatest benefits coming out of the University of the Philippines.
VN: How successful are you in making tourism the people’s business and in selling our country like Chickenjoy?
RJJ: Well not quite as successful as I would hope to be about four years from now. We shall see.
VN: What made you say that “The Philippines is its people. And its people are the Philippines”?
RJJ: When you think about it, it is true. A nation is a nation because of its people, not because of its islands or geography. The Philippines is its people because we are what differentiate us from the rest of the world. We are a distinct and gloriously talented people.