In the Philippines, the sari-sari (Tagalog for "variety") store is an avenue for economic and social activity. Aside from allowing customers to buy items by piece or by small portions (e.g. half a liter of cooking oil), the sari-sari store credit purchases. Store owners can make a list of outstanding balances, and payments can be made depending on the agreement between owner and customer.
Friends and neighbors can stay outside the store and talk about topics, ranging from the most inane to the most relevant, during business hours. Sari-sari stores also function as makeshift drinking bars. If a brawl ensues due to excessive drunkenness, the help of barangay patrols or policemen is necessary.
The sari-sari store and the people inside and around it have been depicted in Filipino popular culture countless times. In the universe of the sitcom Home Along Da Riles, Mang Tomas is the sari-sari store owner to whom Kevin Kosme depends on.
The following screen captures from Home Along Da Riles: The Movie show Kevin Kosme (Dolphy) and Mang Tomas (Tommy Angeles):