At 70, columnist-manager Alfie Lorenzo simply couldn'task for more.
"Pasalamat na lang akoinabot ko ang edad na 'to. I'm healthy and wealthy," Alfie proudly enthused lastnight, January 26, to the entertainment reporters at the birthday party preparedfor him by Regal Films matriarch Lily Monteverde. The celebration was held at the penthousepoolside of the Imperial Palace Suites in Quezon City.
The outspoken talentmanager is particularly proud of his stable health—something that he greatly attributesto his long-standing faith in the highly-revered Black Nazarene.
"Patron ako ng Nazarenosa Quiapo, noon pa," Alfie said. "When I was 12 years old, inari ko Siyang ama and then as I growolder, nalalaman ko na ‘yang mga operasyon na ‘yan, sabi ko, ‘Sana po, takot akosa injection, sana po kung puwede, no knife shall touch my body.' So sa awanaman ng Nazareno... Akala nila miracle man ako. At 70, naninigarilyo pa ako, kumakainng chicharon, balat ng chicharon, balat ng lechon—lahat ng bawal sa mga50-year-old lang na nagpapa-doktor. The first and last time I've seen a doctorwas when I was in high school in 1952. Pagkatapos nun, wala."
LUCKYYEAR. Alfie would rather celebrate his birthday quietly,which was his usual practice anyway for the past 13 years.
"Nung last birthday ko namay big, big celebration, may pa-raffle sa mga bading [entertainment press], ganun, may sharing, thatwas 1996. [After that] Punta ako ng Pampanga, tapos sabi ko ‘Hay, gusto ko nangmanahimik.'"
It was Mother Lily whoconvinced Alfie to reconsider his yearly routine. The Regalmatriarch even offered to host the party in time for the celebrationof the Chinese New Year.
Alfie animatedly sharedthe details: "Ito na nga, biglang-bigla si Mother, sabi niya, ‘Ano, join tayo ng celebrationng Chinese New Year? Sabi ko, ‘Ayoko! Hindi ba 'kako nagpa-party kayo ‘pag Wednesday?'Sabi niya, ‘Hindi, hindi puwede.'
"Kasi sabi niya, firsttime in the history ng Chinese New Year, ngayon lang naging January 26, hindiba lucky ‘yon? Ako naman, naisip ko, ‘Ay, baka nga!' Kasi unang-una, itong ChineseNew Year, nag-fall on my birthday, eksaktong January 26. And then, ang mga Tigerdaw, suwerte ngayong year na ‘to and I'm a Tiger. And ang masuwerteng number dawngayon is number eight. Nung in-add ko naman ‘yong 26, di ba, 2 plus 6 equals 8?'Ay, triple ang suwerte, o sige join na!' sabi ko."
Among those spotted byPEP (Philippine Entertainment Portal) at last night's party were ABS-CBNbigwigs led by Charo Santos-Concio; GMA-7 senior program manager Redgie Magno;Annabelle Rama with husband Eddie Gutierrez; Richard Gomez; Lani Mercado; Joem Bascon; RonnieLiang; TAPE Inc. lady boss Malou Choa-Fagar; managers Douglas Quijano, Alfred Vegafria, andManny Valera; Bobby Andrews; directors Joel Lamangan and Joey Seneneng; veterancharacter actor Amay Bisaya; and of course, Alfie's prized talent Judy AnnSantos, who came with fiancé Ryan Agoncillo.
Judy Ann endearingly addressed the birthday celebrant, "Tito A, thank you somuch sa lahat. May mga tampuhan man tayo, pero hanggang ganyan lang naman tayo.Alam naman ng lahat ng tao 'yan. Kung hindi ako aawayin ni Tito A, ibig sabihinhindi niya ko mahal."