During its 26th anniversary celebration in June 2009. Coast Guard District Western Visayas adopted seemingly “old-new” theme- passionate coastguarding. Old because “passion” is an oft-used word to describe something or someone of intensity, to the point of being a cliché. New because the word is not a favorite to describe or characterize a technical thing, more so a technical service that is engaged in the serious business of safety and security. But despite the lack of bravado, they are interesting and substantial words that one can live by.
As the Philippine Coast Guard celebrates its 108th founding anniversary, there is that compelling urge to visit those words anew. For the words seem to sound a theme good not only for one anniversary but for many anniversaries. It might even be a theme for “all seasons”.
At a glance it may seem unlikely theme. The words do not seem to fit, or go along well like a mismatched pair. It doesn’t evoke the aura of loftiness, nay seriousness of common themes – say “Dedicated and Committed Coast Guard”. It also doesn’t conjure the nationalistic fervor of one framed in the national language, like – “Malinis, mapayapa at ligtas na karagatan” Still, the words have certain charm and appeal that seem to resonate well to those who desire (or demand) more from the Coast Guard. They reflect the yearning better and go beyond the normal. Although the operative word is coast guarding, one cannot help to be titillated by the modifier. Indeed, one is wont to think of the sensual or temporal when we speak of “passionate”, ignoring its other equally interesting meanings. Even the Greek ‘pathos’ where the word passionate was derived exudes several meanings e.g. – something that happen to you bad or good, intense feelings of want or need, showing great love and affection, etc. Just the first two definitions could already evoke a wide spectrum of meanings and interpretations, a testament to the encompassing and overarching power of the word.