i went back to the office after going to the gym tuesday night to pick up some things i forgot. just as i entered our department, i ran into one of our big bosses.
"uy naggygym ka pa ba? he asked.
"ay yes sir. kagagaling ko nga lang," i replied.
sabay pisil niya sa biceps ko.
"an tigas ah," he said while holding a cup of coffee.
nacurious tuloy ako. bat naman tong bosyo kong to nagka interes sa gym?
"alam mo si (name of his son) nagygym na rin. lagi. ganyan na nga rin yung muscles niya," he said.
under different circumstances, i would have taken this as an ordinary comment from a proud father--he's in his late 50s and with three kids, the son who is the panganay, and two daughters na kasunod.
but then i realized that there was a deeper meaning to what he was saying. as I tried to remember what his unico hijo looked like, i suddenly remembered that his son was gay.
utterly gay. as in walang duda. kung meron man parang pinagdududahan mo na rin kung sumisikat ba ang araw sa silangan.
i met the guy only twice at sa unang tingin pa lang, i already knew. pero cultured ang kanyang dating. not too loud. at successful na rin sa kanyang career.
kaya nga parang accepted na rin ni fadir. i could even say na this boss of mine who reeks of machismo---and is a gold card-carrying member of the old boys network in our field--is proud of his son.
habang nagkatinginan kami, hindi ko tuloy alam kung ano ang aking sasabihin. di namna pwedeng "uy tlaga. siguro umaalembong na si (name of his son) anoh? siguro mataas na ang kanyang market value?" my bad.
i bit my tongue. tried to smile. and quickly walked down the hallway.
memo to self: never again wear muscle shirts in the office.
my left hand was playing with a glass of red wine during a recent company dinner meeting when our boss--the matriarch of the firm---suddenly blurted out: "baklang-bakla pala si (a prominent married politician)."
that almost spilled my wine.
sure, the politician has long been rumored to be gay, but i wasn't expecting madame to wade into gossip territory, and of the gay kind, during our break.
worse, she said it while looking straight into my eyes--making eye contact for about two seconds--before disengaging and looking at the others.
"oh, it's not that i have anything against gays," she said, calming me a bit because i wasn't comfortable with the discussion.
and i guess she also had to make the disclaimer because, of the five men in the room, three--inlcuding moi---are closet cases (at least to us three. nyahahahaha).
"it's just that," she continued. "sila na pala ngayon ni (a very famous actor)."
"oh...there's an item," i said, trying to sound not too excited to hear this latest tidbit.
i was trying to imagine what the two looked like in bed but the picture was not to my liking.
"eh paano na sila ni (actor and another actor who shall not be named)?" asked a female officemate.
madame answered: "eh sila na ang mag-on ni (actor and politician)."
i remember the (gay?) laughter around the room--there were more than a dozen of us present--and i shared in it. the boss does not usually share these tidbits with us but when she does, one can expect that they're A-1.
but then after the meeting, my thoughts turned serious about that small incident (it had turned out to be a very long night).
i was wondering what it's like for these two celebs--and they are celebs--to live in their closets? if we ordinary gay mortals find it so hard inside, what more these paparazzi magnets?
and manila is such a small place. the next thing you know, your sex life is dinner meeting fodder or the topic of water-cooler conversations.
i remember one client asking me once, out of the blue, about one of the two other closet cases present in that dinner meeting: "kailan ba siya maglaladlad? sabihin mo sa kanya ang tanda na niya hindi pa rin siya naglaladlad."
i found myself walking along baywalk the other day just before sundown. i was there to catch the sunset but i got disappointed because there were no clouds.
clouds give out a more dramatic effect to sunsets. instead of just having a glowing red orb slowly disappearing into the sea, clouds can add drama by hiding the sun and slowly letting its rays come out. that i like.
but this time there were no clouds so i decided to pack up and leave for a scheduled dinner with friends. but after i put the cam inside my bag, i noticed the byutipul hues above me.
the sun had set but yep, the sky was still alight with calming colors. t'was dream time. those few precious minutes before the dark finally sets in and shrouds the last rays of the sun.
before i would usually take off immediately after sunset but this time i felt that something was in the air.. so i took out my cam and took some shots. here's one.
i don't know but there was something magical about those few minutes. it was like the air was pregnant with the so many possibilities that the night has to offer. and yet, there was also that relaxing feeling that a day had ended.
i lingered on and before i knew it I was already late for dinner. but my friends understood. the pics were worth it. =)