While cooling myself from the intense summer heat of December, I bumped into the mother in law of Gerry Peñalosa, Virgie Odi Llido, (not to confuse with City Councilor Virgie Tiongson Llido) inside SM Gensan.
Ms. Llido was with her daughter and daughter in law.
A brief and casual conversation led to the revelation that Gerry was on his way to Los Angeles to shoot a commercial with eminent boxing trainer Freddie Roach.
Llido said Gerry was reluctant to leave the country with Christmas just a matter of days away.
But the mother in law prevailed over Gerry. And wife Goody was just so excited she posted it on her Facebook account.
I sent Gerry an SMS and asked what product he is endorsing for the commercial.
He was surprised I knew about it.
At any rate, he said he and Roach will shoot a commercial for Jaegermeister, an alcoholic drink. The ad shot will take only one day and he should be in Gensan on Christmas Eve to spend the holidays with wife, kids and in laws.
I never saw Gerry drink a strong drink like Jaegermeister but I knew he is a moderate drinker, with beer as a preferred brew of choice.
Gerry is one of the few former Filipino boxing champions who is making good and is living comfortably after quitting boxing.
He does two television shows and promotes boxing cards, most of them featuring his stable of boxers that includes nephews Dodie Boy Jr and Dave, both sons of elder brother Dodie. Dodie Sr himself is also a former world champion.
The former flyweight and bantamweight champion also owns two boxing gyms in Manila and recently told this writer he was being offered by SM Gensan to put up a branch inside the mall. Too bad, his bosom buddy Rep. Manny Pacquiao is also putting up a gym in the soon to be finished building owned by the Filipino boxing icon in front of SM Gensan just across San Miguel Street.
Even then, Gerry was humble enough to ask what kind of business will make good in the city.
Doing commercials and endorsing products even in the bliss of retirement can mean few things.
Gerry is still a recognizable face and it helps that he has been living a clean life after getting hitched with Goody.
Gerry reminds us of another Filipino boxing great, Gabriel ‘Flash’ Elorde, who also lived comfortably after the latter retired, or was forced to retire. Too bad lung cancer took away the chain-smoking Elorde from us very early.
Every Filipino boxer should look up to Gerry, who saved all his earnings and invested them wisely.
There can be life after boxing. And it could be comfortable.