The Chabacano future tense and the Chabacano ‘man’

My friend who spoke Chabacano only with her relatives at home and would mix Tagalog and English with it thought that the future tense in Chabacano is indicated by the word man. I would hear her say man anda kame na iglesia mañana. In this post (which I dedicate to her), I aim to clarify the Chabacano man, and explain how to form the Chabacano future tense.

In most books about the Chabacano language, it is explained that to form the future tense, one has to put the word ay in front of the sentence. For example:

Chabacano: Ay anda yo na tuyo casa.
English: I will go to your house.

However, what most books about the Chabacano language will not tell you is that you can also NOT put the word ay and it will still be the future tense. Thus, in the above sentence, if we remove the word ay, it will still have the same meaning. Note that this word is also spelled as hay.

Chabacano: Anda yo na tuyo casa.
English: I will go to your house.

Here are more examples:

Chabacano: Mira kame cine OR ay mira kame cine
English: We will watch a movie.

Chabacano: Compra yo arroz OR ay compra yo arroz.
English: I will buy rice.

Chabacano: Reza yo para contigo OR ay reza yo para contigo.
English: I will pray for you.

Putting the word ay in front of the sentence is in fact only used as a way of emphasizing that you are speaking in terms of the future. In fact, if you will listen to Chabacano conversations, you will not always encounter the word ay.

Now let me talk about the word man. This word can be added to certain nouns (normally of English origin) to form Chabacano verbs. For example, man swimming, man picnic, man reply, and man ulan.

Here are some sentences using the above words:

Chabacano: Cuando kita anda man swimming?
English: When will we go do some swimming?

Chabacano: Man picnic kame mañana.
English: We will have a picnic tomorrow.

Chabacano: Hinde yo man reply na suyo text.
English: I will not reply to his text message.

Chabacano: Segurao yo na man ulan luego.
English: I am sure that it will rain later.

Chabacano: Ya man picnic kame ayer.
English: We had a picnic yesterday.

Chabacano: Ta man picnic el dos.
English: The two are having a picnic.

Putting the word man in front of certain English verbs will change its meaning. For example:

Man rubber shoes (to wear rubber shoes)

Chabacano: Man rubber shoes tu. (instead of usa rubber shoes.)
English: Wear rubber shoes.

Man nursing (to take up nursing)

Chabacano: Man nursing ba tu? (instead of saca ba tu nursing?)
English: Will you take up nursing (college program)

Man Facebook  (to go on Facebook)

Chabacano: Man Facebook tu luego?
English: Will you be on facebook later?

The word ‘man’ can also appear in front of Spanish-derived nouns such as:

Man Compra (to go shopping)

Example sentences:

Chabacano: Man compra kita mañana.
English: We’ll go shopping tomorrow.

Chabacano: Esta quieto kay ta man misa pa el padre.
English: We’ll go shopping tomorrow.

Chabacano: Ya man compra kame ayer na mall.
English: We did some shopping yesterday at the mall.

As a noun, the stress on compra falls on the 'o'.

Here are other words that are formed with the word man and a Spanish derived word:

Man Encuentro [to bump into someone (by chance)]

Man Duda (to doubt)

Man Cuento  (to talk, tell, narrate or converse)

Here are some examples of how these are used.

Chabacano: Ya man encuentro yo con mio primo na restauran enantes.
English: I saw my cousin in the restaurant a while ago?

Chabacano: Por que ba tu ta man duda?
English: Why are you in doubt?

Chabacano: Mancuento le conaton cosa sila ya hace na Baguio.
English: He will be telling us what they did in Baguio.

Chabacano: Man fuguera kame luego.
English: We’ll be burning trash later.

Fuguera is defined as a bonfire or any blaze produced by burning things heaped together in the Chavacano de Zamboanga Compendio y Diccionario by Rolando Arquiza Santos.

The word man can also be used with words such as lejos, and junto and this will form a verb.

Chabacano: Puede ba man lejos ya tu conmigo?
English: Can you go far away from me? OR Can you leave me alone?

Chabacano: Man junto kita mañana.
English: We will have a gathering tomorrow.

The word man lejos is actually something I heard from a song so i don't think it is used widely. Meanwhile, man junto junto is something that I would hear often from the late mayor Maria Clara Lobregat. 

The usages of man in Chabacano are very extensive and I can’t possibly cover it all in just one article. As the author of the Chavacano de Zamboanga Compendio y Diccionario by Rolando Arquiza Santos said, mastery of the usage of particles in a language is a strong indicator of native proficiency.

As for my friend who thought that man means will, it is most probably my fault. I usually use English verbs when speaking in Chabacano. So I automatically say, man, even before I say the verb and sometimes the verb comes out in English and sometimes in Chabacano. When I do decide to say it in Chabacano, it is already too late to take the man back.