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.
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