Jennylyn Mercado is funny. If it’s not her who’s making you laugh, it would be her “bessies” a.k.a. her makeup and hair stylists that have already become her friends, or the combination of both. She loves to surround herself with fun people like her. I have to admit that I have never watched a TV series that she was in, as well as any of her movies, not until English Only, Please, which she co-starred with Derek Ramsay, who introduced me to her. So you can say that I’m a late bloomer when it comes to all things Jennylyn. That term “ang dami kong tawa” really happened to me while watching English Only, Please. In real life, she cracks me up even more. Jen is not scared to make fun of herself. She likes to dance crazily while she or somebody else is singing; she likes to catch people off-guard by being endearingly loud, she loves to smile and laugh a lot. Jen prefers everything to just be OKAY and uncomplicated.She also loves to keep herself busy. Aside from the fact that she has movies to finish (she’s actually shooting one right now), she has a gym and a spa that she runs, she also trains for triathlons, but most of all, she’s a doting mother to Jazz. But with every good thing that she’s blessed with lately, you’ll never see a bit of arrogance on how she acts, only that very animated, lovely, and silly woman that she is.
“Ano ba itong alaga mo, Ate Rosie? Ang gulo gulo,” that’s what I told Jen’s trusted and loyal assistant when we met up for this interview at Johnny Rockets in Tomas Morato. She wants to drink a root beer float, something that I haven’t tried for a very long time. She asked me “keri mo magKTV?” and my reply to her “ay! PUSH!” It’s that easy, uncomplicated. Here’s a very candid Jennylyn, read on!
HOW DID WE MEET?
Ay sa Kpub! Kumanta ka. Pinilit kang kumanta ni Derek (Ramsay), well, gustong gusto mo naman. Ha ha! Tsaka nagpahatid ka sa kanya sa stage, naalala ko pa yun. Para shang stage father na parang “anak, galingan mo!” Pero kailangan ko ng umalis agad pagkatapos kong kumain, so eat and run lang ako.
We met at Kpub, that Korean restaurant at The Fort. Derek asked me to meet him there. I didn’t know that Jen was with them. At first, I thought she was a bit standoffish, she wasn’t really talking that much, but little did I know that she’s like a car that runs on diesel, nagpapainit lang. Ha ha! Anyway, there was a band playing and they were asking for participants to join them on stage. I don’t know what happened that I was the one that was suggested to go up on stage when I was with two of the most celebrated actors in the country. They ganged up on me. Derek was like “please, D. Sing for me. I’m sad.” Yeah, right! And Jen was like “sige na! Kanta ka na! Sabi ni Derek ang ganda ng boses mo.” Yeah, riggghhht! Ha ha! I wasn’t even done with my beer and I was up on stage. While she was cheering me on, he was taking a video while I was singing, like a proud stage father until he realized what he was doing and went back to his seat. And that was it, that was how I met Jennylyn Mercado, who is now one of my favorite KTV mates.
WHAT FOR YOU CLASSIFIES AS A GOOD FRIEND?
Jen: Yung anytime tawagin mo, nandun sha.
D: Kahit anung oras?
Jen: Kahit anung oras, like, anytime? Ha ha! Hindi, yung kahit na siguro anung mangyari sa buhay mo, may sasalo sa’yo. Tsaka kahit up ka or down ka, hindi nya pinipili, basta lagi lang sha nandyan kahit anung mangyari, kahit anung sitwasyon. Kahit na mahirap, kahit na buhay nya pa ang kapalit, ganun yung tunay na kaibigan.
D: So do you think you are a good friend?
Jen: Of course! What kind of a question is that?! Ha ha!
WHAT DISAPPOINTS YOU?
Jen: Lies at yung pagiging plastic talaga.
D: Pano mo nalalaman kapag hindi totoo sa’yo yung tao?
Jen: Ewan ko. Basta nararamdaman ko. Yung alam ko kahit na sabihin mong hindi? Alam ko na ginawa mo. Malakas lang ang kutob. Tapos sasabihin ko yun sa muka mo, sasabihin ko talaga na “linoloko mo ako, sinungaling ka!” Ganun.
DO YOU TALK TO YOURSELF?
Jen: Yes! All the time! Yung tipong “Oh my God! Tama ba yung ginawa mo?” Yung “mali e! Di ka dapat naggagaganyan! Kalma, kalma” Yung mga ganun lang! Hindi naman yung mga question and answer na sinasagot ko na yung sarili ko. Ha ha! “This is your first question” tapos sasagutin ko rin.
“My mom gives the best advice kasi alam nya lahat ng nangyayari sa buhay ko, so alam nya kung paano nya ako pakakalmahin, alam nya kung paano nya ako ihahandle na hindi ako masasaktan, na hindi ako maiiyak.”
WHO IN YOUR LIFE GIVES THE BEST ADVICE?
Jen: My mom gives the best advice kasi alam nya lahat ng nangyayari sa buhay ko, so alam nya kung paano nya ako pakakalmahin, alam nya kung paano nya ako ihahandle na hindi ako masasaktan, na hindi ako maiiyak. Alam nya yung timpla ko.
D: But do you normally follow her?
Jen: Of course not! Ha ha! Loko lang. Oo naman. Shempre!
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE TIME OF DAY?
Jen: Morning. Yun yung magsisimula ng buong araw mo e. Kung maganda kang gumising, maganda ka rin magtatapos ng araw. Kung maganda yung mood mo sa umaga, buong araw na yan maganda na. Kaya siguraduhin mo na sa paggising sa umaga dapat laging “it’s a good day! It’s gonna be a nice day!”
WHAT FOOD IS A FAVORITE OF EVERYONE THAT YOU DON’T LIKE?
Jen: Ang hirap naman ng tanong mo kasi parang wala.
D: Lahat kinakain mo?
D: Kahit chocolate?
Jen: Ay oo. Kailangan araw araw lagi akong may kinakain na matamis.
“Kung maganda kang gumising, maganda ka rin magtatapos ng araw.”
WHAT MAKES YOUR DAY COMPLETE?
Jen: Good morning kiss from my son.
WHAT’S ONE THING YOU DO CONSTANTLY EVERY DAY?
Jen: Constantly? Pagligo hindi e. Ha ha! Pag hindi madumi, hindi naliligo. Ha ha! Pero ano ba? Hhhmmm… Panunuod ng TV.
D: What’s your favorite channel?
Jen: Nat Geo. Tsaka hindi ako nagpapatay ng TV.
Jen: Kahit natutulog ako bukas yung TV. Gusto ko paggigising ko bukas sha, na anytime na magising ako sa buong gabi, nakaandar sha. Kapag patay sha, hindi ako makakatulog.
IF YOU’LL BE GIVEN A CHANCE TO GO ON A VACATION TOMORROW, WHERE WILL YOU GO?
Jen: Maldives. Isa yun talaga sa mga lugar na sabi ko bago ako maging 30, mapuntahan ko na sha. Kung magpapabook ako ng flight ngayon, dun ako pupunta. Dream place ko talaga sha. Ang khonda khonda kasi talaga nya! Ha ha!
D: Ang baliw! Ha ha! Pano ko isespell yun?! Ang khonda khonda.
Jen: Ha ha!
WHAT’S THE BEST PART OF BEING JAZZ’S MOM?
Jen: Siguro yung nakikita mo na lumalaki shang mabait, mapagmahal, and smart. Siguro yun yung the best! Tsaka yung alam mo rin na naturuan mo sha ng tamang values.
WHY IS ROOT BEER FLOAT YOUR FAVORITE DRINK?
Jen: Masarap yung combination ng cream tsaka soda. Hindi ako masyadong mahilig sa soda, pero mahilig ako sa dairy, kaya mas tolerable sa akin uminom ng soda or ng root beer kasi may ice cream.