On drinking with bros

So it's Friday night and it's raining as I walk to the bus station. My roommate calls to say that he's in Encore and there's an open bar and he can get me in and would I like to join him and I say yes because what else do you say to that? And then five minutes later I change my mind and decide to go to my old dorm because it's that time of year again when we welcome the freshmen. My time is already * years past but as I watch them dance around the bonfire to the beat of Brigada's drums my body remembers and my blood quickens and I am taken back to when I was precious and innocent. (Why is calfskin so smooth? Because the calves are innocent when they die.) I'm calloused now, I'm too old, I've almost forgotten why these kids are so happy. This makes me sad but only for a while, because my friends are here and we're in C- and sitting at the table beside us is a boy. This is a boy who ran for the student council but lost, a boy who is reasonably attractive, a boy who is gay, a boy who has a girlfriend. I watch him watch the World Cup (Brazil vs Portugal) while I smoke. Then more friends appear and these guys are bros but they're not really my bros. We talk about a lot of shit and drink a lot of beer and before I know it I'm slurring my words and showing them the picture on my phone that I treasure most. The picture is of me and Andi Eigenmann and I have it because I like watching Agua Bendita but mainly so that I can show it off to the bros. And they all nod in appreciation at the picture and Mon playfully punches me in the shoulder 'you lucky dog' and Francis gives me a high five and Rob asks me if I've shaped up and decided to not be gay anymore. I just shrug and say, "no eh, I'm still gay", and I wink at Francis because it is him who cares the most about my being gay. We've kissed before. Then we move on to other shit and maybe I fall asleep for a bit or maybe I go to McDonalds to buy fries or maybe not, I'm not really thinking anymore. When 5am comes around my feet take me home on autopilot.

I find myself on the doorstep of the house I used to share with Santiago and his sister. I try ringing him but he doesn't answer. I knock on the door lightly because I don't want to disturb the neighbors. Nothing. I try ringing him again and I think I might be growing hysterical, or at least as hysterical as one can be when drunk and sleepy, and I imagine that I just might go to sleep on the doorstep. That doesn't really bother me. Thankfully, when I knock again Kay opens the door and I say good morning and it's been so long since we've seen each other and I'm glad she's awake. Then I promptly fall on the bed and doze off. When I wake up a few hours later Kay is watching Barney and Robin try not to have the talk. I ask her if she's gotten any sleep and she tells me that she's been busy packing up her stuff. And then I realize that I am lying on her bed and that probably explains why she's still awake. OMG what have I done? But it's okay, she's not mad at me, in fact she gives me some of the chocolate she's eating and we waste the rest of the morning watching TV. In the afternoon, Kay's friend comes around to take her stuff to her new apartment. We help a bit but he does most of the carrying. When that's done, Santiago and I go to the bayanCenter in Diliman to have their DSL disconnected. We get lost for a bit in Teacher's Village and that's where I realize that almost a year ago to the day (give or take a few weeks) we were lost in the same place on our way to apply for a DSL connection.

Talk about coming full circle. And then I realize how different I am now from the unemployed, hopeful, excited boy I was back then. I mean, I'm still unemployed, hopeful, and excited but I'm no longer a boy anymore. Just kidding. I am employed but hopeful and excited, not so much. I've been feeling very detached lately. I think reality is getting me down. Like this morning, I was at the corner of Shaw and EDSA waiting for the pedestrian light to turn green and while I stood there these huge buses came barrelling past and some of them would honk real fucking loud and it made me feel angry a bit but mostly I just felt a sense of resigned defeat. I need to go to sleep and start dreaming again.


On vegetable porridge

For breakfast I make oatmeal porridge (115 calories per 30g serving) because rolled oats are good for my health but mainly because I like the taste of oatmeal. The only problem I have with it is the texture, I am quite fussy about the consistency I like and it has to be just the right kind of thick. Mostly I follow the proportions recommended on the packaging, in this case 1:3, but in this case the porridge ends up runny. This makes me sad, but not for long. I just leave it in the rice cooker for a while longer and fuckit if the bottom burns, my sister will scrape that off later.

So five minutes, 1tbsp of sugar, and a splash of milk later, my oatmeal is ready, it is smelling good and begging for me to eat it. I am only too willing. While eating, I am reminded of when I was a young child, and never liked to eat my vegetables. Fortunately for me my mom is adventurous in the kitchen and one day she accidentally blended my dinner - vegetables, rice, and all - into a porridge. And you can guess that this porridge still tasted like vegetables but I didn't care about the taste, what I didn't like was the weird shapes and textures of the vegetables in my mouth. Even today I still can't eat okra, which is odd considering what I'm willing to put in my mouth. I'm so fucken dirty.

Anyway, back to the vegetable porridge story, well my mom made me eat that shit all the time. She even packed it in my lunch one day and that's where this story begins. Because you see this porridge did look like shit. It was green and gooey and unless it was force-fed to you, you wouldn't want to eat it. Well there I was, twelve-year-old me, sitting in the cafeteria. I open my red Spidey lunchbox, take out the Tupperware, open the lid and find a goopy, dark green mess. I look around the table and my classmates are happily taking out porkchops, fried chicken, and all sorts of real food from their boxes. I can feel my cheeks heating and my lips start to tremble. I was a crybaby then and I'm still a crybaby now. But I don't cry just yet, I try to suck it up like a little man and I start spooning the porridge into my mouth as fast as I can because maybe if I finish fast enough no one will notice what I'm eating. Wrong. Little mister nosey sitting across me can't mind his own business and asks me what I'm eating. I tell him it's vegetable porridge. He begs to disagree. I am eating shit he says. Green, runny shit. My ears turn red but I try to ignore him and keep on eating. Drew is eating shit, the little sucker announces to the whole table. Everyone turns to look at me and I can't stand it anymore, I can feel the tears escaping my eyes. I pick up my Tupperware and get up and everyone thinks I'm running away to some little corner but I'm not going to do that, what I'm doing is I'm walking over to mister fuckface and I fling the porridge in his face.

Then the rage flees and I'm standing there incredulous at what I've done and I don't know what I'm thinking but as my classmate is standing up, I grab his face and start to lick it clean. He's surprised by this but after a while, he's starting to enjoy, he even puts his arms around my back and presses my body to his. I can feel his pre-pubescent dick slowly harden as he rubs the front of his crotch against mine. Ooops wrong story.

What really happens is that after I fling the porridge in his face, he wipes it off with his arm, gets up, and throws a suckerpunch at me. I should have expected this but I'm unready, I'm just standing there with the empty Tupperware in my hand as his fist connects with my stomach. I drop the container in my surprise and my hands, finding themselves freed, take on a mind of their own and return the favor. He trips over a chair and falls on the floor and I think to myself, wow, it's over that fast. A smile is forming on my face when he grabs at my legs and pulls me down with him and now we're wrestling on the floor and I start to get hard and as we're rolling around I can feel that he's hard too. I look at his face and he's really mad at me but there's a glint in his eyes and a curl in his lips that tells me he's having fun too. I grab at his ass (and an admirably full ass it is), my fingers purposely close to his hole and this makes him squirm in delight. Fucken shit wrong story again.

What really really happens is that after I fling the porridge in his face, he wipes it off with his arm, gets up, and throws a suckerpunch at me. I double over in pain and then I run away to some little corner to cry like the fucken sissy that I am.


On letting go

Today at the office I interview two potential sales assistants. The second one passes with flying colors. The first one is a wreck right from the start. This girl is very nervous and scared of me and she can't stop tapping her feet or wringing her hands. She's treating this interview like a cross-examination and her answers come out all wrong and even after I try to put her at her ease she just can't relax. I give her lots of chances because I can see that she's a good person, a person who needs this job, but she doesn't make it. My heart breaks when I tell her that we're done and she can go home. After that I have to let go of another sales assistant, a girl who I know, a girl who spent a whole week sitting beside me while I oriented her on our products and how to sell them. She was supposed to be at the exhibit last Friday and Saturday but she didn't show up and this does not sit well with my boss so he asks me to tell her not to come back. What only I know is that it was my fault, I forgot to text her the schedule on Thursday and only managed to do so on Friday. And then I try to make myself feel better by thinking that I did text her the schedule after all and she still should have showed up on Saturday. And she didn't. And she didn't even reply to my text on Friday. So it's not really my fault. But even as I rationalize my guilt away the fact that I'm doing so is an indictment in itself.


On Tuesday night

We leave work early today because my officemates have to catch Karate Kid at 6.30. The tickets are free (c/o my boss) but I don't go with them because I won't enjoy their company but mainly because I'm still feeling unwell. Also, I don't have any money. I have like 58 pesos in my pocket and that's just enough for dinner. I hate being poor. I check my bank account to see if mom sent me some money like she said she would yesterday. She didn't. I have like 288 pesos in the bank and I try to take out the 200 but it won't fucking let me. The receipt tells me that 200 is "less than the minimum withdrawal amount" so I tell the receipt to go fuck itself and tear it up. As I'm walking from the bank to EDSA I'm feeling mad. I'm feeling mad and also a bit sad. I'm sad because I'm sick and I'm poor and I should be watching Karate Kid for free but I'm not. I don't want to go to the cinema and not have money to buy popcorn or a Blizzard from Dairy Queen. When I was in college I always had a Blizzard whenever I watched a movie. I always get one of the chocolate flavors. I haven't had a Blizzard in a long time but I won't get one now. Firstly because I've a sore throat and secondly because I don't have any fucking money.

When I get to Megamall it's very very noisy. Like I'm trying to concentrate all my energy on just making it home because each step makes me feel the tiredness in my body. But the buses aren't helping they're honking so insistently and it's so fucking loud like someone put a trumpet to my ear and blew on it. It's an insistent in your face sound that I can't get rid of and I wonder if it would go away if I close my eyes. So I close my eyes and it does help. I'm walking with my eyes closed and it doesn't matter that I can't see where I'm going because I can feel the people, their energy is stamped on my eyelids like neon and I'm floating through them. I'm walking with my eyes closed and I almost walk into traffic luckily I bump into a couple walking by. The man throws me a dirty look so I throw him my winningest smile but he's already walked past me and I'm smiling at nothing.

I change tack and try walking with my stoic face. My stoic face is expressionless, jaws clenched, teeth grinding, and a blank glassy stare. The jaws part is pretty easy, I can feel that throbbing on my cheeks that happens when I clench my teeth but I'm not sure if I pull off the eyes part. Maybe I do because I see people who meet my stare recoil. They quickly avert their eyes as if they'd just seen me naked. Maybe they have.

When I get to Libertad I start thinking about what I should have for dinner. I can stop by one of the cafeterias and blow all of my money on one meal but that won't be so smart because I don't know if my sister's gonna pay me back tomorrow and I can't make it through the day without something to eat in the morning. Crackers from the office pantry don't count. I decide that it's better to buy canned tuna instead. I love tuna anyway. It might even get a Superbod from eating lots of canned tuna, like the commercials say. That's something I so desperately want to believe in but I know it's not true. It's a lie, just like everything else advertising trys to sell you. Advertising is just so fucking fucked up I so want to believe that some of what I see on TV is true but it never is. Whenever I give up my trust I inevitably get shafted, like when I had really bad dandruff so I switched to Clear but the dandruff didn't go away. So is the lesson here never to trust anyone? Wrong. Just don't trust your TV. You can trust Google and Wikipedia but not all the time.

At the supermarket I debate buying corned tuna or afritada-flavored tuna. 330g of afritada tuna costs 22 pesos while corned tuna is 24.75 pesos so guess what I buy. Yeah, I have no more money but I buy two cans of the corned tuna because hey, I've never tried this before, and also, fuckit, if my sister still won't pay me back tomorrow then I'm just gonna suck it up and be sad about not having anything to eat. So I go and pay for the tuna and as usual I tell the lady at the counter not to put it in a plastic bag (yes folks, please get in the habit of refusing those plastic bags. I mean come on, you've got your bag with you, and what you're buying will fit just right in there. what do you need the plastic bag for anyway? to contribute to the number of birds dying because they choked on plastic bags floating in the sea?) and since I don't have a plastic bag I just hold on to them for the rest of the walk home. I don't think that looks weird at all.

When I get home I get some rice going in the rice cooker and it ended up burnt as usual. But before the rice ends up burnt, while it's still cooking, I have a smoke, I wash a shirt for tomorrow, I have a beer, and I try to write this down. And then the rice is done and I put the tuna on top for a bit and then I have dinner. 

Corned tuna tastes like regular fucking tuna.


On how to get sick

Friday night

I invite my friends over to the condo to drink. It is supposed to be a housewarming party but because I'm lame there are only three of us at this party. We decide to watch Glee while waiting for more people to come. Two episodes and three beers later, two other friends arrive bearing vodka so we switch to the hard drinks. We stop watching Glee as well and watch Kick Ass instead. I thought it was really funny but around the part where Hit Girl kills the gangsters I decide to go up to my room and sleep. I do this on the floor because my mattress is watching Kick Ass downstairs.


I wake up to find a text message from my boss: You cn do haf day in Mafbex 2day. C- wil be there.

This makes me so happy I could jump for joy out of bed. Except I'm not sleeping on a bed but on the floor so there's really nothing to jump out of. I decide to jump down the last three steps of the stairs instead. I take a shower, wash the dishes, look for food, fail, then head off to the World Trade Center in Pasay. The day goes by real slowly but not unbearably so. There are enough customers to keep me entertained. Not so much eye candy and by the afternoon, my standards get lower and lower. I do remember a gay couple stopping by the booth beside ours. They look to be in their late twenties, buffed, and not overly handsome but fine nevertheless. When they leave, I hassle the sales rep for details: they've been partners for several years already and together operate a business. Hay. I would like to be one of them someday. The only other customer I really remember is a woman who I guess to be in her thirties. She walks past the booth and then does a double-take, approaches me and asks the most random questions about our products. Then she asks for my name. Hahaha. If I were more fast-thinking I would have given her my card as well but I'm not, I've been thrown off guard and I can only look at her retreating back with a stupid smile on my face. The ego boost keeps me alive until we close up at eight. We sold a ton of stuff, but not the one we joined to exhibit!

Saturday night

When I get home, I take off my suit, leave the keys on the mantel, and call out "Honey I'm home." My wife in her pretty little apron calls out from the kitchen, "Dinner's ready" and when I walk in my three kids are seated on the chairs waiting for me. They run to me and kiss me on the cheek and say "Good evening daddy." But that's not me, I'm one of those kids when I was younger. What really happens when I get home is that I go straight to the kitchen and get a beer from the fridge and I flop down on my mattress which is still in the living room and I pop open the beer and drink it. I do all of this in the dark because I can. Also, I like to conserve energy. Five minutes of staring at a dark wall I get bored so I go upstairs and my sister is on the computer. It is 10 o'clock. We watch the first episode of Kara no Kyokai (Boundary of Emptiness) and in it eight girls commit suicide and I feel no sympathy for these girls at all. Wanting to watch something more engaging we decide to watch Glee instead. We're still an the first two episodes but already I am in love with Schuester. And then it's 12 midnight so I greet my sister a happy birthday and go off to party.


Quite an interesting night. I grind with a lesbian, get turned down by a tranny, and have a short but sweet conversation that begins with: "Kanina ka pa nakangiti ah. Naka-unli ba yan?" Also, there is now one person who I want to see and two who I prefer not to.


Mostly I just sleep.


On being and going

Read GBV's opening speech.
Read my rebuttal.
Read his riposte.

What matters more - achieving something or working towards achieving it? In any result-oriented setting, effort definitely does not count. You may get partial points on your Ma 21 exam for an attempted solution but you still got the question wrong. You don't get promoted because you "tried hard to reach his quota", you get promoted because you do, and consistently.  Oh wait, I am mistaken. Effort does count - the way by which you achieve what you do is rewarded too.  After all, we live in a 'more' modern age. Efficiency is valued above all. Why take the long and tortuous route when the shortest way between two points is a straight line? Look at the people who occupy high positions in society, hell, look at how Gloria managed to stay in power for so long. One has to be ma-abilidad and ma-diskarte.

But does the same reasoning really apply to relationships? Can the laws of physics really help us to understand the workings of the heart? An easy one: the Law of Attraction. That's a yes. How about "Opposites attract"? Not always. Or Joker's koan: what happens when an unstoppable force meets an unmovable object? Who knows. There are many such questions and no answers.The Universal Theory is an infinity away from being completely worked out.

These things - science and laws and breaking down processes into their component parts to be more efficient - these things are conceits of modernity. We are so consumed with speed and getting things done and underlying this, the immediate gratification from having what we (think we) want. Fast forward buttons. Fastfood. Fast love. Whatever happened to taking it slow? I am always happy for the opportunity to cook my own meals, or if not, at least to savor each spoonful when I eat. Have we forgotten that the joy of travelling is not in the being but in the going? The whole of our life is a testament to this fact: the point is not that we die in the end but that we have lived.

So yes, I insist that dating should be a requirement before getting committed, if only as a foil to highlight how important commitment is. One doesn't go from a white belt to a black belt. Or to use the speed metaphor, one doesn't accelerate from 1 to 100 without giving up a measure of control over velocity. Unless you are God.

PS. Ok, so I overdid the Physics thing a bit pero palaban ako eh. ;)

On commitment

GBV posted an interesting piece on friendships and dating on his blog today. I was going to leave a comment, an anecdote to illustrate my disagreement with some of his statements but my comment evolved into a full-blown essay so I decided it would be more appropriate to put it in my blog. Also because I can't think of anything else to post for today. On to my comment.

Each person has their own definition of dating. From the onset, it is very confusing because meeting someone and hanging out, for romantic or platonic reasons, can be called a date. That aside some people consider dating as a stage where you spend time with someone with the intention of getting to know each other better and find out if a commitment is worth entering. Dating can be open, which means that you can see other people too, or it can be exclusive. The latter is frequently mistaken for being equivalent to or interchangeable with an exclusive committed relationship.  Particularly when people are impatient. Atat. This is something I've noticed a lot among gays. I read it on the blogs all the time - people committing themselves after one night in a club and a date. Or people who get together through text. I've been there too. I once hooked up with a guy with whom I had intense chemistry. That night, in between rounds of sex, he said he really liked me, and could we be together. I didn't want to be callous (yes, wala pang callousness noon) and there was definitely a spark so I said yes. After five dates, I broke up with him.  Sayang lang all the tears that could have been saved if we'd dated before committing ourselves.

Commitment is a monumental, profound, and heavy agreement. It is something that shouldn't be so easily entered into or broken. A committed relationship is ironic because you should get it only when you don't need it. It is like the icing on an already very sweet cake. It is also a ball-and-chain you put on because of love. I don't think any other reason could justify such a responsibility.  If you need somebody to be there when you're sick, you have your family. If you need someone to hold your hand through problems, you have your friends. If you need to feel in love, you have your crushes. If you really need someone to receive your passions, you have your fuckbuddy. If you need someone to love you, you have yourself. When you have no more needs, when you are complete, then you are ready to love and be in a relationship.

It is relatively easy to get into a relationship. It is just as easy to get out if it turns out to be a bad one. But I think this kind of easy-peasy attitude destroys the value of commitment and the person's integrity. It is much harder to enter into a healthy relationship, one that lasts and fosters growth. More difficult not in terms of effort but because of the amount of resolve and dedication you need to say "I love you" and then to walk the talk. Obviously this is quite a responsibility so you have to make sure you do it for someone who is worth it. And don't be mistaken, I'm not talking about his market value. I'm talking about you deciding whether this is a person that because and in spite of all that he is, you are willing to love.

The preparation involved requires getting to know a person, one which can be accomplished through dating (mutual or otherwise). Dating as a step is important because this is where you level your expectations and like hedging, it reduces your exposure to risk. You both know that it could lead somewhere or nowhere at all. So it is not at all wasting time because the deal is this, let's be friends and see if it leads anywhere. If yes, then good. If not, then at least you have a friend. Of course, this implies that both parties are mature enough to accept "defeat". If you are complete and ready to love, as I've said, then you both will be able to move on as friends. And how long should you date before calling it? My stand is to take as much time as you need. After all, bonds with higher maturities yield higher returns don't they?

PS. I hope my readers excuse the banking references in the last paragraph. I couldn't resist, and this is after all, a response for the GBV.

PPS. I have never been in a real relationship. In fact, I am wary of commitment, precisely because I see it as a thing not to be taken lightly. This post is not meant to be advice for anyone but future me. I do hope that this personal manifesto provokes you and makes you think.


On cooking

Once when I was a young boy I played dolls with my sister. We were in her room hiding behind the big table of drawers. I spread a towel on the wooden floor and sat myself on one end. My sister was opposite me. I placed one of her Barbies in between us and announced, "we're going on a picnic."

"But we don't have any food!" my sister protested.

"Oh yes we do," I replied as I unclasped the hook of Barbie's black slacks and pulled them down.

"Where? Mama's not done cooking yet."

"We're going to have lechon manok!" I undid the tiny buttons of the pink jacket. The sequins glittered and felt rough beneath my fingers. My sisters eyes widened with excitement.

"Really? But I didn't see any chicken downstairs."

"Basta, go get the utensils in the drawer."

My sister got up to get the utensils. I slipped Barbie's jacket off her arms. She lay naked in front of me. I ran a finger down from in between her breasts to her smooth plastic stomach. My sister came back and set the plastic cutlery on the towel.

"There's no chicken, but we're going to pretend Barbie is a chicken and cook her!" I announced. I grabbed the knife and sawed at Barbie's legs. The plastic edge bit a little into the rubber and no further. Annoyed, I took one leg in each of my hands and stretched them apart until the joints joining the leg to the torso popped.

"See, a drumstick!" I bit into the thigh triumphantly. My sister was silent, her eyes tearing up. "Don't you want one?" I asked as I offered her the other leg. She shook her head sadly. I bit away contentedly. "What a picnic!"

Several years later, rummaging through that chest of drawers, I found the quartered Barbie under an old table cloth. Her leg still bore the marks my nine-year-old teeth left on them


I can trace the history of my failed relationship with cooking back to my early childhood. My sister and I baked too-soft mudcakes, brewed pungent bougainvillea wine, and burnt barbequed leaves on a stick.

When I was in the UKR, I tried making plov. (Plov, by the way, is such an amazing way to cook rice that I am surprised it is not more popular in our country.) On the day I decided to try my hand at it, I went on the Internet and got a dozen recipes, read all about the proper cooking techniques in forums, and interviewed my friends on how their moms cooked it. I was as prepared as prepared could be. Anyway, at last the big day came and I made my claim. "Oh don't take away the baby," they shrieked and screeched. Oops, I digress. Anyway, at last the big day came. Recipes in hand, I took the leap and came back with... a sloppy porridge and a burned pot to show for my trouble. :| Well, as they say, slowly and surely wins the race and practice makes better so I cooked and cooked and ate plov in varying degrees of bad cooking for a month. By the time I came home I was an expert at cooking it. I still can't be trusted with the rice cooker though.


On the third day of clubbing (part 2)

I don't even stop to consider. Like a lamb to the slaughter, I let Edwin lead me up. We dance like crazy. After a while Edwin slips away but I'm too carried away to notice. A group of young guys egg me on. They're taking turns screaming and making hipo me like I'm a go-go boy. I'm twenty something pounds short of qualifying for the position but if it floats their boat, I'm glad to bask in their attention. The real go-go dancer looks at me with what-the-hell-is-this-guy-thinking written in his eyes. Well, okay, I didn't see his eyes but that's what I thought he was thinking. I don't care. The go-go dancer is replaced by a woman. I still don't care. I grind with her, my hands all over her, grazing her breasts and her ass until she can't take it anymore.

"Tangina malibog 'to. Kuya, bading ka ha," she reminds me while pushing me away and down the ledge. I just laugh and keep on dancing.

Back on the dance floor, I see Edwin again.

"Where did you go?" He says something but I don't hear.

I give him my best pa-cute smile. "I missed you."

He laughs. "Thanks for dancing with me tonight." I don't realize that he's saying goodbye.

"No problem." I don't think that was the best thing to say, but it's an automatic response. Because yeah, I'm polite like that. Edwin slips away again and I'm by myself again, but not for long.

I grab the guy beside me and start dancing with him. Cute lopsided smile. He's wearing a sleeveless shirt that displays his biceps to great advantage. Jackpot. The dancing starts to get dirtier. I run my hands up inside his shirt. He grabs my ass. I turn him around and grind into him from behind. I kiss his neck, and then his ears. I run my tongue along his jawline and he twists to face me so my mouth lands on his. Pucha. Our tongues battle it out while we suck face. And this guy takes it very seriously, literally giving me inverse mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Ako naman, ayaw patalo, so I give him a run for his money by sucking back. I think we might have created a near-vacuum in our mouths. Still, no one is giving in and breaking the kiss. I don't think we're even dancing anymore. I get the crazy idea to pull up his shirt. He doesn't resist. I can hear the college gays hooting, shouting "show!" and we give them what they want. He takes his shirt off completely and then takes mine off. Glistening with sweat we grind hard, still kissing each other. I slip my hand into his shorts and massage his ass. He does the same, but his fingers are too inquisitive and I don't like it. I pull his hands out, put my shirt back on, and tell him I'm going out for a while. I can feel my thighs start to cramp and I'm thirsty.

My legs feel like lead as I make my way out. I cross the street to buy a bottle of C2 but they only have mineral water left. The boy says it's 25 pesos. I pull out a 20 from my wallet. "Pwede 20 na lang?" I ask. The boys says yes. Immediately I think that my money must have been a 50 and not a 20 after all but my thighs are hurting so bad now so I make my back to the outdoor tables and sit down for a while. I drink half the bottle in one gulp and almost pour the rest of it on my head because I'm feeling really hot.

As soon as I feel my muscles loosen up I head back in to find my kissing guy. He's right where I left him. I'm wary about my legs giving in so I content myself with sitting on the bar chair for a while. I pull him in for another kiss. Grabe di talaga kami nagsawa. After some time he breaks away and pulls me to the restrooms. We kiss some more and try to jerk off but I'm too distracted by the queue I imagine is forming outside. I button up and go out and feel relieved because there is no queue after all. My kissing guy follows me out and back to the dance floor. We hug for a bit and then he says he'll be right back. I notice that the place is almost empty. I go outside and disintegrate in the daylight it's already morning.

Remembering my resolution to not hook up in Malate, I made my way home.

PS. The street kids there are kinda scary pala, they were so kulit asking me for money. As I was walking to Taft on Nakpil this one kid was literally hanging on to my leg while begging and then I noticed his fingers were trying to wiggle into my pocket na pala. I was so pissed I wanted to punch him but instead I said, "wag na nga kayo baka dumaan pa dito ang mobile" and the other kid just replied, "di kami takot dun, babatuhin lang namin yun." They really wouldn't give up so to be safe, I turned back na lang and went one block up.


On the third day of clubbing

I graduated to dancing on the ledge. But lets take it from the beginning.

The night started quietly enough. Being the n00b that I am I arrived at the club tres early; there were only ten people inside when I waltzed in and for a moment I froze as ten heads swiveled in my direction. I quickly got over my stage fright and walked over to the bar to get a beer. I found myself a corner to stand in while I soaked up the beat. The fever started in my feet, spread to my hands, then to my shoulders and head. I was in a trance. My less adventurous and self-doubting atler-ego tried to convince me that I looked stupid dancing all by myself but I shut him up and closed my eyes and danced on. When I opened my eyes again the club was almost full so I started cruising.

I did some warm-ups with the chinito guy standing across from me. His name was Bobby and he made kitchen equipment and would I like to try his drink? It was a vodka mixer with too much juice and not enough vodka.

"Vodka is so much better when you drink it straight, but then we're not straight are we?" I said, and I thought that was very clever but in hindsight it was very very lame. Not as lame though as Bobby reporting back to his friend every five minutes. Was he actually repeating our conversation to his friend? And was that his friend saying "ok lang" and making the ok sign with his hand? Whatever. Bobby came back.

"So do you know how to cook?"

"Not really."

"Dude, you make the stuff, you should know how to use it!"

"Well, I know how to spend."

I laughed. "That's good too."

"Would you like more of the vodka?"

"Yes," I said, but he never did buy me the drink.

i wanna dance with you - m4m
Date: 2010-06-15, 11:09AM

saw you near the entrance with your friend. tall, fair-skinned, and looking good in that tight black shirt, I couldn't help but notice you.

I was standing across the DJ's booth, right at the part where the floor is stepped up. looked your way several times and I think you looked at me too. don't know why but I only smiled once and maybe you smiled back but I'm not sure.

see you this saturday.
  • Location: malate
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I went and got myself another beer. Coming back I found my spot in front of the mirror taken. Nonplussed I shouldered myself in. Haha I am such a sonofabitch sometimes. I scanned the entrance again but black muscle shirt was gone. In his place was a tall chinito older guy who reminded me of my classmate in English class. Glass of something blue in hand, he was standing by himself looking hesitant to dance. Every once in a while, I'd see him bob his head and shake his shoulders but otherwise he was so reserved. The effect was very cute.

"You shouldn't be standing all the way back there," I shouted at him. Of course the music killed whatever I said but he must have seen me mouth something and point at him because he smiled and raised his glass.

I smiled back and made my way to his side. "I said, you're too cute to be be standing back here. Let's go and dance."

"But my drink."

"Let me help you with that."

He brought the glass to my lips and tipped everything into my mouth. I managed to drink most of it but the rest got on my shirt and the floor. Whatever.

"Let's go." He led me to the dance floor and we started to dance.

"What's your name, by the way?"

"Drew. What's yours?" 

I don't remember what he says so let's call him Edwin.

"Why me?" He asks out of the blue.


"Why did you choose me?"

"Kailangan pa ba mag fish?" I put my hands around his waist.

"Meganon talaga?" and then "would you like another drink?"


When the waiter comes back Edwin makes me drink it in one go.

"Are you trying to get me drunk?" (I know it's so cliche but I'm kinda sabaw na by now)

He just smiles at me. "Pare why me?" Grabe this guy is so kulit talaga ha.

"Because I'm random. Everything in life is arbitrary." I tend to philosophize when I'm drunk. "And because you're hot," I add almost as an afterthought.

"I don't think I'm hot."

"You probably need to get new mirrors then."

He laughs. "Let's dance on the ledge."

(to be continued)


On Independence Day, a love letter

Lyubimaya strana, mahal kong Pilipinas,

Je t'aime forte. I love you in your innocence and your exuberant youth. I love you for your beauty, your regal crown, your onyx eyes, your chocolate skin. I love your broad shoulders and the silent pride with which you carry your struggles, always with a smile on your face. Who can resist the impish curl of your lips and your relentless humor? When you laugh it is as the church bells ringing bold and clear. I would give anything to hear your laughter and to see you happy. How I treasure the moments we are together; and when we are apart nothing is more forward in my thoughts than the desire to be in your arms again, to lay my head against your chest and hear your heart beat in time with mine.

Until next we meet, my tenderest regards.

Forever yours,

Your faithful and loving servant,



On changing addresses

Penny couldn't wait two days and sent me a text last night.
Sorry again for disturbing you this morning. I'm so embarrassed about the things I told you - we hardly even know each other!
That's alright. As you said, we're meant to be friends. :)
 Haha, ok. I'm going to prepare for our set now. Take care! Catch me again early in the morning next time.
But I won't be able to anymore. While she was texting me, I was on my way to the broker to sign the lease contract and pay the security deposit on the condo I will be sharing with my sister and some friends. I'm moving in on Sunday.

Since leaving my parents' house five years ago, I've counted eight different places as home. The first was CH where I spent the first three years of college life. That room saw me have my first college heartbreak, not to mention scandals galore. Oh, if those walls could speak I would die of SHAME. In my senior year we were all moved to the brand-spanking-new UD which did not feel quite so homey but whose fire exit provided a convenient smoking area for my friends and I. After graduation, I lived for a few months with my roommate and his sister in an apartment compound in VH. I will always remember smoking in the driveway to the sounds of our neighbors next door having sex. (To be fair, they did have songs-to-make-love-to playing in the background but they were enjoying so much their moans could still be heard.) And then I left for UKR on an exchange program. I stayed in a student hostel where I met Andriy S, Andriy D, Andriy B, and Vova. After two months our landlady kicked us out on charges of inflicting death-by-urination on her flowers. That was a completely baseless allegation and I maintained that winter was the real culprit but the Andriys, Vova, and I moved out anyway. I stayed for a week with a widower, her seven year old daughter, and a kitten called Dima. My room had no door and every night Dima would creep into my room and fall asleep with me. I was fine with this until he began having nightmares dreams and started pouncing on me like I was a giant mouse. Then I moved to another hostel where I reunited with my fellow accused in Crazy Landlady v Boarders. This was where I finally succeeded in seducing Andriy S. And then I came home and lived with my grandma's house in Caloocan which is so fucking far from everywhere else in Metro Manila. I couldn't survive the long bus rides twice a day and so now here I am in my present (but not for long) situation.

I recently told a friend that I was moving again and she asked, don't you find moving around so much a hassle? To which I replied, I've been living a minimalist life. And I think I truly have been - there are not that many things in my backpack, figuratively and otherwise. I don't live with just 50 things but sans my ancient PC, I can fit all my stuff into two large moving boxes. It feels very liberating to own so little and you know why? The things we think we own own us too! Big things like cars demand a lot of us - money for gas, time for repairs, etc. Small things too can encroach on our lives. If you didn't own that TV you wouldn't waste so much time on those cheesy soaps! I'm afraid my minimalist philosophy will soon be endangered. The lease is for a year and I foresee the condo accruing furniture, appliances, decor, et cetera ad infinitum. How long before I get pwned owned?


On waking up early

The sun is unforgivingly hot as I walk the three blocks from the metro station to my office but that doesn't wipe the smile off my face. I'm still on a high from the cup of coffee I was able to have because of waking up early. This is a habit I am so desperately trying to pick up because as Ben says, "Early to bed, early to rise, makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise." As I did not have an excuse to stay up late last night, I promptly went to bed at 10pm. I must have been tired because instead of chatting with my sister about how poor we are (this is something we do every night while we lay in bed waiting to fall asleep) I just dozed right off.

The next things I am aware of: a door slamming, a woman's voice "Allan!", a car engine revving, wheels on asphalt. I reach for my phone beneath the pillow and check the time, it is 5am. Good Lord, I mutter to myself. I go out of the room to the kitchen and splash some water on my face. Something is up with the neighbors. I go back to the room and get my pack of cigarettes. I think about putting on some clothes and then decide against it - more natural to stay in my boxer shorts.

Penny, my hot, beautiful, nice neighbor who sings in a band is at the balcony, crying.
"Morning," I mumble.
"Morning," she replies. "Can I have a cigarette?"
"Sure." I offer her my pack. Fortune Lights. I was feeling cheap yesterday.
She takes one and I light it. As I do so, she cups my hand in hers to steady the flame. Her hands are shaking. "Why is it like this?" She asks me, tears forming in her eyes.
She tells me that she and her boyfriend have been fighting, and that today, finally, Allan took his stuff and left. She tells me about her work/lifestyle, about her romance with him, about his womanizing and how she tolerated it. She shows me the scars on her wrists and apologizes for waking me up. I nod and listen. I don't know this girl. She moved in two weeks ago and I've talked to her just once before. Penny says it's destiny that I woke up so that she could have someone to talk to. That's how she got the scars - having no one to talk to. I talk to her. We smoke and we talk and finally she manages to laugh. I know it's forced, but it's good medicine. And then it is 7am and she decides to turn in. She's been working all night and she's tired. Before she goes back to her room, she hugs me.
"Thank you," she says for the umpteenth time. "I'll text you in two days."
"No problem. I'll be here."
And then I go downstairs to have breakfast: pan de sal, a cup of coffee, and Atom Araullo giving me the traffic update. Waking up early is the shiz!


On sleeping late

Last night it took me three hours to fall asleep and it was awful, but that's what I get for kicking my circadian rhythm out of wack by staying up until 7am Saturday. And the deal with that is I went to Malate late Friday night/early Saturday morning. Or tried to at least, because somewhere betwen deciding to partay and actually partaying I got off at the wrong stop and got lost. I had been intending to take a walking tour of Manila but doing it alone at 3am is not what I had in mind. I did find Nakpil Street and the familiar O-bar but the night sky was beginning to take on that lighter hue of almost-dawn by then so I found myself a street corner and stood there and watched. It felt strange to just stand there and not do anything, and I kept on thinking that someone was bound to notice me and think I was weird. Hell, even if no one did notice, I thought I was weird. But some sick, compulsive, drive in me kept me rooted to that spot until the sun finally came out and it was time to go home.

I lay awake last night to the tune of so many random second voices in my head. I have AD/HD and when I can't move spatially I do it temporally. My second voice just wouldn't shut up and I remembered the Magus' advice to Brida so I let them ramble on and on about how I would take up ballet (which would be the gayest thing ever, but so what, I *am* gay) and move to New York, how I would study psychology and be a clinical psychiatrist and make tons of money listening to rich kids (and maybe sleep with the hot ones too), how I would soon be moving to a new condo and what furniture I would need to buy, how I missed Andriy and what if I told him I loved him (I didn't, but that doesn't matter), etc.

I finally dozed off like really late probably, because I had the hardest time getting myself out of bed this morning. I had to rush through my morning ritual I forgot to take my vitamins and brush my hair probably. I also had to skip my usual trip to the bakery. And I still arrived at work late. Hay.


On dusk and summer

So it has begun, the rainy season, and soon I will find myself complaining about the endless rain and how it never fails to bless our messy streets with mud and flood. Soon my sneakers will be impractical and my handy-dandy umbrella indispensable. Inconvenience aside, along with this season comes my favorite weather - cloudy with a chance of meatballs overcast but no rain, windy, and with tiny slivers of sunlight shining through the clouds like little rays of hope.

Gray makes a lot of people feel down but for me, I find it the perfect weather for falling in love; falling out of love; sitting on my windowsill with a cup of coffee by my feet and a book in my hands while staring out over the city; listening to Dashboard Confessional; and as it turns out, being horny. This week I've started getting into a habit I thought I'd finally kicked for good a few months ago - masturbation.

I discovered the joy of jerking when I was in grade school. There was no great moment. I wish I could tell a great first time story where my cute classmate sleeps over one night and teaches me about it and we start jerking off together all the time. Or one where I have a horny older cousin who I catch beating the monkey one night so he has to show me how it's done and then we have incestuous manual sex. But I'm so boring I don't have any such stories. In fact, I don't remember the first time I ever touched myself. 

What I do remember is that I did it a lot. I went through so many cumrags socks that eventually I learned to wash up after every use because my parents were wondering where they all went. My habit got worse when I began getting bouts of insomnia. Counting sheep never did work for me but jerking off always did the trick. By the time I got to college it was so bad I would jerk off every time I took a shower. Even when I wasn't horny. I would spend up to half an hour running all sorts of scenarios looking for one that would excite me (because by this time, all of my brain porn had been watched a million times) just because showering didn't feel complete without it.

And then two months ago I got a job and wonder of wonders the compulsion disappeared. It was as if the well had dried up. In fact, the thought never even crossed my mind - until two days ago. 

Like so many other stories, it begins with me getting on the metro. Funnily, I have no funny business on my mind when I get on that train. I am tired, worried about finances, and I just want to get home - I am so completely self-centered my arms and hands are awkwardly glued to my side. Unfortunately, I am standing at an angle to the guy beside me so that my left hand is right on his thigh. I don't think anything about this. He doesn't either. Or so I thought. And then he twists his body ever so slightly and now my hand is grazing his crotch and I can feel a slight bulge. I tsk-tsk in faux annoyance at this overt invasion and adjust my position. Now my hand is right on his bulge and it feels solid and warm. He pushes lightly into the back of my hand. Ever the master of disguise, I fake reaching into my pocket as an excuse to rub his bulge. For a moment everything else is tuned out and all I am aware of is that my heart is beating wildly and that my hands are hot and that the dick beneath his pants is hot. Then the intercom announces my station and for a second I consider not getting off and following the guy but the doors open and before I make a decision my feet are on the station platform and I've walked away.

Before falling asleep that night, I jerked off to that big bulge and the fantasy of what might have happened. Last night I did it again.