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."
they eventually know.
5 days ago