Wednesday, December 2, 2009

"May Toyo Ka Ba?": Do You Have Toyo/Patis (Soy Sauce/Fish Sauce)?

In Bacolod, patis (pa-TIS) in Hiligaynon means soy sauce, and the Tagalog patis is is Rufina patis. Thus, they are both patis, the only distinction is that the Ilonggos refer to soy sauce as patis, while fish sauce is Rufina patis, as if all fish sauces are rufina.

In Tagalog speaking areas, what the Ilonggos know as patis is called toyo (TO-yo^). So that Ilonggo speaking people must have to specify when ordering for patis condiment in a restaurant in Manila in order to be served with toyo (TO-yo^) or soy sauce, because for the Tagalogs, the Ilonggo patis is toyo and the Ilonggo Rufina patis is patis.

Makes you a bit crazy, huh? Well, for the Tagalog speaker, toyo also means a "loose screw" so that when someone asks you, "May toyo ka ba?". It either means, "Do you have toyo?" referring to the soy sauce, or to your state of mind.

Ah, this naughty Tagalog word for the Ilonggo patis.

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