In Nick Joaquin's story "Cándido's Apocalypse", the 17-year-old Bobby starts behaving rather strangely. After going "stowaway" and being brought back home, he wakes up the next morning and sees his father sitting on his bed. Bobby now sees his father in a different light than before,

and he was reminded about what they said was the difference between siga and rugged: that some boys thought they were rugged and acted siga until they got one real thrashing that knocked the wind out of them and after that they could never be confident again, but the real rugged could get beaten up till they were half-dead but they would only go for lost afterward and act as though life were just something to throw away—"Kung mapatay di madeadball"—and he saw now that the old Dad, so full of charm and jokes and pep and confidence was not the real man but just a siga (...).

It is not obvious from the context what the meaning of "Kung mapatay di madeadball" might be. Most other non-English words used in the story are either Spanish or Tagalog (e.g. siga), but I have not been able to find out what language this phrase or quote is in.

"Kung" appears to be a word in Cebuano and in Tagalog. I found "kung mapatay" in words attributed to president Duterte, a native speaker of Cebuano who also speaks Filipino/Tagalog. "Cándido's Apocalypse" was first published in 1965, so if the phrase is a quote, its source must be older.

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I found this question while reading the same story, but I was puzzled at what "go for lost" meant instead. Anyway, I think I might be able to help you. For context, I'm from the Philippines and my native language is Filipino.

The phrase "Kung mapatay 'di madedeadball." is in colloquial Filipino. Here's the breakdown:

Kung = if; mapatay = is/gets killed; 'di (short for edi) = then; madedeadball = die, 'deadball' is just slang for dying

So all together the sentence means "If [one] is/gets killed, then [they] die. In context it's basically alluding to the fatalistic and carefree ways of the real rugged man.

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