Saturday, November 17, 2018

Gonorrhea, Be Gone!


I received that message unceremoniously on a Tuesday afternoon from a guy whom I had intimate contact with during the most recent group fun activity (okay, okay, an orgy) I attended earlier this month. He then offered to refer me to his doctor.

By that same afternoon, I booked an appointment.

Day of the appointment, and I arrived on time at his clinic. Unlike most doctors I've encountered so far, he was early. When my turn came, he ushered me into his office. He asked me a series of questin in quick succession, then told me, "Look, to be safe, I'm going to give you a shot, then I'll prescribe an antibiotic which you need to take twice a day for 10 days. Is that okay?"

"Sure," I said. My friend had told me about the shot and meds, so I was prepared for the injection.

The doctor then ushered me to his examination room, where he instructed me to pull down my pants and lie down so he can examin my junk. After a few seconds of poking and probing, he declared, "Well, no signs of anything. Your skin there's just drier than usual. I'll prescribe a skin wask and lotion for that."

For a baby-skin soft, baby-skin smooth cock. Nice tagline.

The doctor then brought out his needle and medicine. It was a big-ass needle. "This is going to be a bit painful," he said, sounding apologetic.

Frankly, I was unperturbed. For the past several years I've had my blood extracted every three months for my regular HIV testing. Surely one big-ass needle is nothing. Still, when he positioned the needle on my left (non-dominant) arm, I decided to look away.

"Breathe deeply," he said, then I felt the needle puncture my skin.

The initial prick was nothing; they say it's like an ant's bite, but really it isn't. It's like a very light pinch, then it's gone. But after that I felt the medicine going in.

I saw what the medicine looked like; it was a clear liquid, and judging by the way it moved inside the bottle, its viscosity was similar to water. Yet as it entered my body, I felt a thick liquid coursing through my veins. When he finished, he pulled out the needle. Then I felt a steady, dull pain, like someone seriously punched me repeatedly on my arm. It began first from the injection area, then it spread down my left arm. The pain was increasing in small increments. It felt like I couldn't, or didn't want to, move my left arm. Damn doc was right, I thought.

After a while the pain subsided to a more comfortable level (though I do have a high pain threshold — just ask the dentist who did my root canal). What surprised me was how long the pain stayed steadily on my arm. I actually got worried that it'll be uncomfortable steering the wheel with both hands.

Happily, by the time I was settling my bill with his attendant, the pain retreated to a dull ache.

If you're reading this, and you've been sexually active with different sexual partners whose sexual health you have no idea about, then it wouldn't hurt to get yourself tested for various STDs. There are also vaccines against certain STDs (like HPV, for example) which you can avail of. Better be safe so you can continue to play safe.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

My ELO Singles 2018

Making lists like this is fun for me, although I must mention that such lists: [1] Are mostly arbitrary; [2] Change over time; [3] Are more like snapshots of my tastes in music at a particular point in time.

It also gives me an excuse to expound on one of my favorite bands of all time, Electric Light Orchestra, or ELO.

ELO is one of my difficult-to-defend favorites. True, Jeff Lynne and his fellow bandmates have been inducted into the Rock n’ Roll Hall of Fame, which accounts for something, I guess. But while Lynne is highly regarded as a producer and composer of music, just take one cursory glance at his songwriting and you’ll immediately realize that he’s not the most gifted of lyricists. He himself acknowledges that.

My introduction to ELO was back in the late 1970s. Around that time, I listened religiously to the radio program American Top 40, which aired (albeit a few days late) over Philippine radio (first at an AM station whose name I now forget, then at 99.5 RT FM). In 1977, “Turn To Stone” entered the AT40, and I was instantly hooked to their sound.

1971-1977
ELO started out in the early 70s as a band of long-haired rockers accompanied by a string section. The orchestral instruments distinguished ELO’s sound from other bands of that era, and paid tribute as well to Lynne’s love of the Beatles sound, especially Sgt. Peppers. In what I arbitrarily call the “classic rock meets classical sound, aka rockestral” phase, ELO churned out 7 album titles, each one more and more successful that the previous. In 1977 they released the double-album Out Of The Blue, which spawned several top 10 hits, including “Turn To Stone.” That was their biggest selling album in that phase.

1979-1983
By mid-70s disco had already exploded into the mainstream, and acts such as the Bee Gees and Donna Summer had disco hits that were either lavishly arranged with a full orchestral backup, or driven by a pulsating electronic beat and rhythm. Lynne must have taken his cues from both, because in 1979 ELO released their aptly-titled “Discovery”. It was their most discofied album. It produced their biggest hit ever, “Don’t Bring Me Down,” which ironically was also the most rocked out song in the album. With drum beats lifted directly from the Sgt. Peppers’ reprise, and flourishes that were more electronic and less orchestral, that thumping rock anthem also featured one of Lynne’s most head-scratching piece of lyric: “Don’t bring me down, groos!” For years I didn’t know if it was “please,” or “froosh,” or (some claimed) “Bruce!”

Lynne’s romance with disco continued on ELO’s half of the soundtrack to the 1980 movie, Xanadu. Success with the hit singles from that soundtrack, including the title track sung by Olivia Newton-John, apparently got into Lynne’s head.

He decided to stretch his talents and released 1981’s Time, a full-concept album about a time traveller who goes from 1981 to 2095. By this time, Lynne toned down the disco elements; instead, he favored the rock-meets-electronic combination. But while Time spawned several hit singles, the overall concept (thanks to his not-so-stellar lyrics) was met with a big “Huh?!” He followed up Time with 1983’s Secret Messages, again highlighting his fascination with technological flourishes meshed with his love for old-fashioned rock and roll (with the likes of Chuck Berry and Del Shannon). That’s why I call their second phase the “techno-rock (with some disco) sound” phase.

Time and Secret Messages shared similar structures, and even ended with two almost identical-sounding songs, “Hold On Tight” and “Rock & Roll Is King” (they’re so instantly mashable, which I suspect is why no one’s done that yet--it’s just too obvious). Lynne was repeating himself. 

1986-2015
It took Lynne 3 years to come up with another album. 1986’s Balance Of Power featured a more pared-down sound of ELO, an aesthetic echoed in the album cover that was simple and stark compared to the elaborate covers of their previous LPs. That album also carried two of Lynne’s most confessional songs to date, “Endless Lies,” which hinted at a love gone sour, and “Send It,” which had Lynne singing:

The dream is gone, the dream is just a memory
If you see my dream, send it back home to me.

Did he fall out of love with ELO? It was around this time that he started producing for other artists, most notably George Harrison, Tom Petty, and Roy Orbison. Later on the four added Bob Dylan and formed the supergroup The Traveling Wilburys. Lynne also released his first solo album, Armchair Theater. This is his “pared-down Wilburys sound” phase, which extended into the new millennium with 2001’s Zoom and 2015’s Alone In The Universe (billed as “Jeff Lynne’s ELO”). This phase also marked the longest duration between album releases, as there were legal battles between Lynne and his former bandmates over the use of the name “ELO”.

My ELO Singles
Are these songs my favorites? Or are they, in my judgement, the best ELO songs Jeff Lynne has ever written and produced? They’re a bit of both, although it’s just safer to say they’re personal favorites.

Because I was a young, avid, and impressionable listener back then, it’s understandable that the 70s and early 80s stuff dominate my top 10. Only one from 1986 cracked the top 10. ELO was at their best when they successfully combined their rock ‘n roll roots with symphonic and/or synthesizer flourishes, in a seamless blend of catchy melodies with hook-ladened instrumentation.

And so, presenting my Top 10:



Sunday, July 29, 2018

The Tale of Two Pairs of Eyeglasses

I’ve always wanted a pair of simple black frames for my reading glasses. But when I was choosing from the available styles, the frames that I really wanted were only in brown; their black version was out of stock. So I bought a slightly different shaped black pair, and planned to buy the style I really wanted next time. 

Yesterday I decided to check if the store had stocks of the pair I wanted. They did! But when I reached for my existing pair (so I can fill out the forms), GASP! It wasn’t in my bag. So as soon as I bought the new pair, I tried to retrace my steps. I also looked all over inside my car. Nada. I texted my siblings at home, hoping I had left it there (though I remember using it in the car before getting down). They replied that they can’t find it. I was crestfallen by the loss, but happy I had a new pair to replace it immediately.

Cut to this afternoon: As we prepared to go out to the mall, my brother sitting in the front passenger seat suddenly hit his foot on something on the floor. My missing pair! I must have overlooked it when I searched the car the night before. 

Or maybe a hitchhiking spirit is seated in the back, making his presence felt.

Thursday, July 12, 2018

Spirited NSA Fun

He’s 26 years old, fresh from the province of Bulacan where he grew up living with and working for his aunt. About two months ago he moved in with his married sister and her husband and kids in Katipunan so he can study for his civil service exams — he wants to apply for work in his hometown’s municipal hall afterwards.

He’s had a couple of girlfriends during his teens, had safe sex with them. But when he was in his pre-teens he also allowed a slightly older boy to fool around with him, culminating in the boy fucking him in the ass. After that, he’s always had this fascination with having sex with another guy.

So when he recently discovered by accident the world of hook up apps (while riding the FX, he saw his seat mate check out his Grindr app), he made an account and started meeting guys. He only met a few in Bulacan. I was the first one he met here in the metro.

On our first hook up, I brought him to the same motel with the cottages and the ghost in #44 (we stayed in a different cottage). Our stay there was uneventful in the supernatural realm, but pretty hot and heavy in the physical realm. Our post-sex chat was also interesting. He thinks he should identify as bisexual, but is also conscious that he not give off a vibe that screams, “I like men!” I assured him he’s straight-acting; he looks, sounds, and acts very masculine. Even his love for basketball (playing and watching the game) is an effective smokescreen, if ever he’s worried about tripping off gaydars everywhere.

Two days ago he messaged me on his new Grindr account — different name, different profile pic. He said he had deleted his account because he needed to go back to Bulacan for a couple of weeks. Upon returning to the metro, he tried to find me on the app but forgot my handle. So he decided to search using, sigh, the age filter.

We checked in at a different motel along Marcos highway. (I’m third-eye blind, and when I asked him, he said the most he’s experienced is occasionally feeling a presence just when he’s about to fall asleep. So he’s not sure if they’re real or just his imagination. But I decided not to take chances at being supernaturally cock-blocked.)

He’s like a clean slate; I can draw whatever I want, and it’s all new to him. I licked his nipples; he shuddered in excitement and ecstasy. I kissed him all over his neck; he couldn’t get enough of it. When I started licking and nibbling his ears, he fairly yelled out, “Ohmygod ohmygod shet ohmygod shet shet aaaaahhhh ohmygod!” My tongue eventually made its way down his spine and in between the cracks of his ass, eventually flicking at the entrance of his hot hole. By that time, he was panting and moaning non-stop. And when I plunged my tongue inside his hole, he buried his face in the pillow and screamed his pleasure, his whole body in a frenzy of shaking and twisting in delirious joy.

I turned him over, lifted his legs, and poised my condom-sheathed cock at the entrance of his hole. “Fuck me,” he pleaded. I pushed in. He moaned out loud. Then I began pumping.

I put some lube on my left hand and grabbed his thick, hardening cock. I pumped his throbbing shaft as I fucked his hole hard. I synched my pumping on both his cock and his ass. His breathing quickened, matching my movements. Suddenly he whispered, “I’m cumming, I’m cum—aaaahhh! AAAAHHH!” and then he was shouting as he shot off his load, his milky white cum landing on the pillow under his head.

Afterwards, when he came back to bed after showering off (and stepping outside for a quick smoke), I asked him, “Do you feel anything weird in this room?”

“Nah,” he replied. “As I said, when I’m wide awake, I don’t sense anything. Only when I’m half-asleep do I feel something weird. Sometimes.” Then he looked at me. “Well, you made sure I was pretty much wide awake the whole night!”

I should change my profile description: Seeking NSA safe fun — No Spirits Attached.

Saturday, July 7, 2018

An Unexpected Boo-king

I met my semi-regular fubu, and we checked-in our usual spot. It’s a motel which has individual cottages instead of rooms. We were given cottage #44, which the guard said was at the end of the row of cottages.

This place is discreet. Not only are the cottages at a proper distance from each other, there are lots of plants and trees beside and around the cottages.

When we got there, we saw that beside it was another cottage that was closed down; trash and other old stuff were stacked on the balcony, blocking the door. You knew no one goes inside that cottage.

When we went inside #44, we immediately noticed how older it was compared to the other cottages (yes, we’ve been there several times before, in different cottages). The floor even creaked, and we joked that we shouldn’t do it standing over that spot on the floor, otherwise we’d crash through.

Afterwards (sorry, this isn’t about the sex, although it was great) we were resting in bed, with him lying down by the side table of the bed. Suddenly he jumped up, and I knew he had freaked out because he saw something but was trying to hide that fact from me.

“Ano yun?” I asked. “What did you see? What is it?”

“No, nothing, nothing,” he replied.

“You saw something. I’m sure of it.”

He kept denying. I kept insisting.

After a pause, he asked, “Are you easily spooked?”

“No,” I replied. “What did you see? Tell me.”

“Nah, later. I’m fine, I’m fine,” he said, sounding more sure of himself. “I’m okay.”

I tried a couple of times, but he insisted he’s okay. So I decided to stop asking.

While we were talking about another topic, we heard a sudden sound, like the crumpling of a candy wrapper. Or a very dry leaf falling and hitting the ground. Except it was inside, in the middle of the cottage.

He raised his head and turned to me, “You heard that?”

“Yes I did.”

He lay down again. “Okay.”

“Do you want to check out now?” I asked.

“No, no, I’m okay,” he assured me. Then he looked at me, “Do you want to check out now?”

Honestly I did, but only because I really wanted to know what he saw, and he’d only tell me if we’re already in the car driving away.

“No, I’m fine,” I lied. “We can rest a bit.”

After a few minutes of discussing where we wanted to eat afterwards, we decided to check out. I noticed he sat on a chair away from the bed.

In the car as we drove off from the place, I asked, “So what did you see?”

“I saw his reflection on the TV screen,” he said. Each cottage has a small, old 12-inch TV hanging at the foot of the bed. The TV was off the whole time. When you look up, you can see your reflection on the dark TV screen. It’s blurred and ill-proportioned, but you know it’s your reflection.

He continued, “I saw his reflection. He looked like a masculine guy, well-built but not, like, muscular. Just ordinary. I could only see the upper half of his body. He was shirtless.”

“Did you recognise him?”

“No. The reflection isn’t that clear to distinguish his features,” he said. “But for a second, when I saw his reflection, he looked straight at me and nodded. That’s when I reacted.”

“Where was he? You said you saw his reflection—”

“He was seated on the side table beside me,” he said.

“He was beside you? Why didn’t you say so?” I asked. “And why did you agree to stay on? I offered to check out.”

“I have always been sensitive, even when I was a kid,” he said. “I was told to not mind them. They won’t bother you if you ignore them. So I just ignored him. Even when he made that sound. You also heard the sound, right?”

“Yes,” I answered.

“That was him.”

“And then what happened afterwards? I mean, we stayed for a bit more.”

“I was ignoring him the whole time,” he said. “So I think he was just there. I didn’t look towards him anymore. And when you called front desk to check out, he wasn’t there anymore.”

“I see,” I said. But I noticed he kept looking towards the back seat of my car. By this time, we were several kilometers away from the venue.

“Why are you looking at the back?” I asked. “Is there someone seated at the back? Did he follow us into the car?”

He looked at me, startled, but didn’t answer immediately.

I forced myself not to freak out. “Can you see someone in the back?!”

“No!” he replied.

I was not going to take chances. After I dropped him off, I parked to the side, took off my t-shirt, and wore it backwards.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

May Joke Sana Ako Kaso

This is what happens when you’re waiting for the shuttle to arrive, but the line at the station is long, it had just finished raining so hard, and it was rush hour. And you read the meme in someone’s FB wall. So….

May joke sana ako tungkol kay Bong Go,
Kaso inunahan niya ako.

May joke sana ako tungkol kay Harry R.,
Kaso ambaboy.

May joke sana ako tungkol sa Scarborough Shoal,
Kaso ibabaliwala lang.

May joke sana ako tungkol sa Ang Probinsyano,
Kaso di matapos-tapos.

May joke sana ako tungkol kay Sass, Nieto, at Mocha,
Kaso nakakainis eh.

May joke sana ako tungkol sa ating dalawa,
Kaso malabo eh.

May joke sana ako tungkol sa PCOO,
Kaso palpak.

May joke sana ako tungkol sa Supreme Court natin ngayon,
Kaso....

May joke sana ako tungkol kay APC,
Kaso nakakabobo eh.

May joke sana ako tungkol sa mga tambay,
Kaso baka hulihin ako.

May joke sana ako tungkol kay Duterte,
Kaso bastos eh.

May joke sana ako tungkol sa cheddar,
Keso....

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Really Now?

I believe that romance, while good in general, can be a negative force in excess. And frankly, I think it's reached epedemic proportions in pop culture, especially in movies and television. The thrill-of-the-chase leading to the kiss-at-the-end-of-the-movie is the stuff of most romcoms and cheesy paperback romance novels. And it's easy to see why. It's the most exciting part of the relationship, and it climaxes with a happy ending. Structurally, it's sound.

It's also the reason why a lot of people have unrealistic notions of love and romance. And no amount of "my parents are separated/divorced/not together anymore" is enough to counter the power of beautiful actors and actresses falling for one another at a click of a screenwriter's keyboard.

I've been thinking I should start a movement. It means I need my own production company and/or my own publishing house, so yeah, it seems it'll be capital-heavy. But I want to start coming up with anti-romance romance movies. Yes, I know, it's contradictory. I'm just using that label cuz it's easy to remember. Okay, maybe it's more accurate to say that I'd want to produce a slew of romantic comedies that are more realistic, more grounded, and doesn't always end on a happy note. It could be sad, hopeful, ambivalent, or a mix of several. Whatever. But what it should do is not lie to its audience that there's a "happy ever after." There is no forever. There is only what you have, when you have it. And when it's gone, you appreciate it for what it was. And move on.

I'm thinking of calling it Get Real Productions, even though it sounds like I'm going to make a reality show.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

A Tale of Two Tweets (and Two Mothers)

On this Mother's Day, let me talk about two mothers.


True, Miriam may be the one who could have given the SC the tongue-lashing they deserve for the ouster of Chief Justice Sereno via quo warranto. She's someone who will not hesitate to speak her mind; in fact, she'll even relish the attention she'll get.

And there's the rub with Miriam. The reason why I didn't vote for her is simple. I don't agree with her on several things, most glaringly, her stand on the Marcoses. She was willing to allow them back into the country and back in to power, thinking that the law and civility will be enough to keep this greedy family in check. Now I understand why sometimes compassion should tak a back seat to justice, and that Filipinos should learn to be less accommodating. This is where the oft-praised "Filipino resiliency" fails us. Forgive? Give them another chance? Do leaopards change stripes? 


No wonder Delamar left The Morning Rush (TMR) after years of keeping the morning drive bearable for a lot of commuters. From her tweet, we can surmise that some higher-up from the station didn't want her to be a role model for single motherhood. Someone must have a real problem with strong, independent women. So I applaud her move to leave.

While it's unfair to ask Chico (and to a certain extent, Gino) to make a stand on behalf of Delamar, I wonder why the boys of TMR allowed this to happen. Yes, the boys' livelihoods are at stake, and they have much to lose--aside from a regular salary, they most probably will be not allowed to bring their show to another station, as per contract. Given Chico and Del's popularity, RX93.1 will be foolish to make the duo (or even trio, if Gino joined them) leave their stable. 

We may never know yet the full story behind the departure of Del, but with the surfacing of this tweet, I can't help but feel a bit disappointed by the boys. 

Friday, May 4, 2018

Irony (It Has Happened To Me)

Rain on your wedding day, a free ride when you’ve already paid, a black fly on your chardonnay—as rightly pointed out, these are more of a bummer than ironic. You know what’s ironic? Leaving your call center job for an ad agency, but only to leave said agency for a writing job—at a BPO.

Now isn’t that ironic, don’t you think?

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Re. Start

Ever since I left my cushy job at CNN Philippines, I have been hopping from one job to the next for two years now.

First I tried going back to an advertising agency but it turned out to be more of an events agency, so the fit wasn’t great; I stayed there for only half a year. When I left I told myself, that’s it, no more advertising agencies for me. After several months of burning whatever savings I earned from there, I was desperate for a job, so I applied for a job at a call center seven minutes away from our house. My schedule was turned upside-down (our client was US-based), but at least there was no traffic going to and coming back from work. The work itself was demanding and stressful—it’s no joke to be in that line of work, so I learned never to say, “He’s just a call center agent.” But despite that, the pay was not enough to even cover the cost of paying for my car. So when my friend Louie called me out of the blue and offered me a higher-paying job, I immediately jumped at the chance. I didn’t even give my call center employers a month’s notice; I gave my resignation letter around 9am; by lunch time, I was cleared by their HR (it helped that I was there for less than two months). I left the call center even though Louie’s offer was for an advertising agency position. What helped me convince myself were two things—the much-higher pay, and the fact that this was going to be an in-house creative agency for a ginormous multinational client. “An ad agency with a twist,” I told myself.

One month into my new job, I knew there was trouble brewing for me. I can see the reasons why Louie got me, but after a month of knowing more the job and my teammates, I realised that I was not the best fit for my position. Someone else with other qualities more suited for the job should be there. If I were to stay and be good at my job, I really needed to grow into the role. Luckily (or unluckily?), Fate intervened.

Let’s go back several months ago, when I had just left my job at an advertising/events agency, and way before I took on the call center job.

Even before my last day in at the agency, I was already looking for opportunities outside of the advertising industry—and outside of the country. Yes, I was very much okay with being away from the Philippines for the next six years. I saw a job as senior copywriter for an online marketing company based in Bangkok. Even better, I knew someone, a Filipino, who currently works there. He assured me it was a good, stable company. So I immediately applied, took their online tests, and forwarded to them some of my published works. Then I waited.

And waited. And waited.

By December my funds were non-existent; and it was Christmas time! I asked my friend in Bangkok what the status of my application was. He assured me that I was being seriously considered, but unluckily, December was also the time when most of the decision-makers there were on leave.

I took the call center job, thinking that it’s temporary.

By January I asked my friend again. He said it was just a toss-up between me and a local Thai girl. I though, “That’s not good. A local girl will cost less compared to an expat.”

When Louie called, I snapped up his offer. And in my mind, I shrugged off Bangkok.

January faded into February, and I was getting a better handle on my new role. In fact, I had decided that I would need to step up and evolve for this job. I even started hunting for places to stay near our office in BGC, so I don’t need to wake up at 4:45am to get to BGC by 7am so I can have a spot in the parking lot.

Towards the end of February, I received an email from Bangkok.

Apologies for the delay, they said. But the reason why they took so long in getting back to me was because they were busy setting up an office—in Manila! Specifically, in Ortigas! Then they asked me, “Are you still interested?”

Weeks of interviews and negotiations later, I told Louie I was resigning. I told him on Good Friday.

Tomorrow is my last day of work in BGC. On Monday next week, I start in Ortigas.

This was two years of jumping from one job to the next, grabbing whatever was available. The Bangkok-now-turned-Ortigas job was something I wanted. As my friend Leigh said, everything else was out of desperation; this was out of desire.

(Of course, there are no perfect jobs. So good luck to me in this new journey.)

Sunday, April 29, 2018

My 10 Favourite MCU Films

Now that 10 years of Marvel Cinematic Universe is culminating with Avengers: Infinity War, I decided to take this opportunity to come up with another list of my own—My 10 Favourite Marvel Cinematic Universe Films.

For this list I’m sticking with the ones produced solely by Marvel Studios. This excluded the Spiderman movies, which Sony Pictures still owns and has final creative control over the films. (As an aside, I prefer Tom Holland as Spiderman over Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield.)

Note too that I said “favourite” which means that while excellence in film craft factors in my ranking, I also take into account a movie’s over-all impact—how much did I like it? And reasons for liking a movie can go beyond filmmaking brilliance.

One last caveat: I also excluded Infinity War because: (1) I feel it’s too soon; and (2) it doesn’t feel like a stand-alone movie. It feels like the first of a two-parter. So I’m holding off on ranking it until Avengers 4 comes out.

With that, let’s begin:

[10] Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

7 out of 10 movies in my list are the “origin” movies. I think I have a soft spot for the movies that are tasked with setting things up. This isn’t one of them. Ragnarok’s achievement is in infusing new life into what seems to be a boring, problematic Marvel character. Thor started out as a Shakespearean-sounding god who, despite having a complex family backstory, is more interested in fighting, drinking, and whoring—in that order. With Ragnarok and Infinity War, Thor has evolved into a funny but tragic figure, his pride and arrogance his double shield against everything that the Fates have thrown against him. No wonder his latest solo caper was so hilarious—he really could use some levity.

[9] Thor (2011)

This movie starts with the grandeur that is Asgard, and quickly reveals the drama underneath all that pomp and circumstance. And from a Shakespearean tragedy, this movie shifts into a tale of a fish-out-of-water who finds love against impossible odds. This story of how the God of Thunder grows up to deserve his hammer also has the distinction of showing Thor shirtless and in jeans. No CGI can hold a candle to Chris Hemsworth’s most special effect.

[8] Marvel’s The Avengers (2012)

The Avengers assemble for the first time to fight off Loki and Chitauri. It takes a while to get everyone on the same side (Agent Coulson’s fake death galvanises them), and the final battle in New York, on hindsight, now feels smaller and more lightweight. But the way the characters play off one another is still a joy to watch (the “Puny god!” scene of Loki and the Hulk is as hilarious as ever). And after pulling off that kind of assembly, the possibilities for the Marvel Cinematic Universe seemed endless.

[7] Ant-Man (2015)

Bigger isn’t necessarily better, and this origin movie proves that many small joys put together can equally pack a huge wallop. A hilarious script, great casting (to me, Paul Rudd is the most “I didn’t expect him but it works!” actor working for Marvel), and the best dubsmash storytelling sequences all make this a huge personal favourite.

[6] Guardians Of The Galaxy (2014)

Of all the Marvel characters introduced in the movies, the Guardians were the ones I had absolutely no clue whatsoever. I mean, I knew of Black Panther even though I never read any of his books. But the Guardians? Who were they? What were they? But that cool trailer (using “Hooked On A Feeling” by Blue Suede) was just a preview of the seriously hilarious mayhem that’s present from beginning to end in their origins movie. Hooga-chaka, hooga, hooga!

[5] Black Panther (2018)

When I first saw this groundbreaking film in the moviehouse, I didn’t have any inkling of the cultural impact that this movie was about to make. I was just in awe of the world-building skills of the filmmakers in pulling off a living, breathing Wakanda. I did take note the many strong females of colour, which was refreshing to watch (Shuri is surely one of the biggest breakout characters from the film, and I can imagine her and Okoye as having a spin-off of their own). I was actually not that impressed by the men in this movie (while Killmonger’s motives make for a compelling case, the way he and T’Challa duke it out in the falls was so-so for me). But the more I watched the movie and read/watched the audience reactions (especially among African-Americans), the more I realised that this is a Hollywood game-changer.

[4] Iron Man (2008)

The movie that started it all. I have no idea if Kevin Feige, Robert Downey, Jr., Jon Favreau, and company realised or were aware that they were creating what would become the winning formula of an MCU blockbuster: awesome effects, kick-ass characters (preferably with complications but not too much that they end up navel-gazing), and healthy doses of humour. What I liked most about the origin story is that Tony Stark uses his own ingenuity to defeat the weapons his own company makes. When Iron Man swoops down on an Afghanistan village and defeats the bad guys armed with Stark Industry weapons, Iron Man makes me want to be Tony.

[3] Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

Captain America begins as a simple all-American goody-two-shoes soldier who is ever-loyal to his government and his country. Throughout his three stand-alone films, the Captain transforms into a lone wolf who’s distrustful of the very government that created him. Winter Soldier marks the beginning of Captain’s transformation into an “it’s complicated” hero. Magnificent set pieces, a more-complex-than-the-usual-superhero-movie story line, and awesome SFXs elevates the superhero movie into something akin to a spy movie.

[2] Doctor Strange (2016)

Here is where the caveat “favourite” kicks in—I am a sucker for the mystical arts, and for huge, flowing cloaks. I love its visuals; this is the kind of movie that’s perfect for IMAX 3D. Benedict Cumberbatch is also one of my favourite actors, so to have him play the Sorcerer Supreme is a major plus for this film. The plot and the characterisation of the main villain aren’t as sharp as in the other MCU movies, but the moment those rings appear on the Doctor’s wrists, I’m so there.

[1] Captain America: Civil War (2016)

The best Avenger movie that’s not an Avenger movie. I love it that there are no bad guys; just friends who are on opposite sides of the issues. Both Steve Rogers and Tony Stark have personal tragedies that inform their choices in this film. When it is revealed that Bucky a.k.a. the Winter Soldier was responsible for Stark’s parents’ deaths, the stakes become very personal even to us viewers. Civil War succeeds in mixing blockbuster spectacle with moral complexities that are not usually present in Hollywood big-budget movies. This is The Dark Knight of the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

* * * * *

What are your Top 10?

Friday, April 13, 2018

Bluer Than Blued, Sadder Than Sad

Normally I maintain a certain level of equanimity in my engagements online. But I am human, and I do get triggered—sometimes from unexpected displays of, uhm, carelessness.

Recently I have been meeting some of these careless peeps online in the hugely popular gay social network site, Blued. It is a Chinese social network, but a lot of Filipino gay men are on it, which makes me wonder if hordes of ka-DDS’s are going to migrate there after deleting their Facebook. I’m waiting for the Presidential Spokesperson and Thinking Pinoy to appear there—and be promptly fat-shamed by Mr. Desperate-For-Your-Clicks Franco Mabanta. Anyway. Within a series of a few hours this morning, I received three messages from three different guys. And I don’t know what came over me today, I don’t know if it’s something I ate for breakfast, but I seemed to be extra triggered this morning. Or I was just unlucky to get three in a row.

To wit, see the following (my replies are in blue on the right).

Exhibit A:


Exhibit B:




Exhibit C:


A few more of these, and I will make Blued my online venue to practice my comedy-bar host routine.

Sunday, April 8, 2018

If The Shoe… Nga Naman!

After several weeks on the job, my officemates and I realised that there were no cute guys in our office—or at least on our floor. Which was a bummer, because we had hoped there would be male eye candy while we slogged through the day’s tasks.

Until one day when I went to the pantry to get a cup of coffee, and there he was, seated near the entrance, talking to a female officemate. He looked like he was in his mid- to late-20s, handsome, very put together. He was talking animatedly to a girl whom I assumed was a staff of his, because she looked fresh out of college. His voice had a manly yet thoughtful tone, like he would think first before speaking. I thought, “Looks good, sounds good, hmmm, good enough!” I was excited to go back to my officemates and tell them to go to the pantry and check him out.

He was talking to her about a fellow officemate; I and the few others in the pantry knew that because he wasn’t whispering. It seems that his staff member was having a difficult time dealing with that officemate, so Cute Guy was giving her pointers.

Then he said this: “Look, look. Put your shoes in her shoes, okay?”

I almost dropped the coffee cup I was holding.

*cricket, cricket*

When I got back to our room, I asked out loud to no one in particular, “Wala bang guwapo at okey sa opis na ‘to?”

Friday, March 30, 2018

Fare Thee Well, Richard S. Cunanan

Back in college, Richard always played second-fiddle to his best friend, G. It was G who got the girl, who got the lead part, who grabbed more attention. He also became my ultimate college crush; I fell hard for him while Richard became the “best-friend barrier” I had to overcome. Meanwhile Richard was contented with playing his wing-man, making sharp observations and snide comments along the way. That was first year, when we were all classmates in our English homeroom section.

By second year the two besties were separated because of their chosen courses. G and I became inseparable during our Communication Arts classes, while Richard had to attend his Psychology classes. I thought I succeeded in bumping him off. But then we all joined the college theatre company. There I realised that while I could potentially replace Richard as G’s constant companion, it will take more than proximity to get him to fall for me.

Of course neither guys knew what I was up to. To them, I was just a close friend. In fact, Richard was very gracious in acknowledging that I was spending more time with his best friend than him; not once did he take that against me.

On our fourth year I decided to tell G about my feelings. Needless to say, I crashed and burned.

Eventually we graduated from college. Because I never hung out with Richard in school, we didn’t seek each other out after college. G eventually moved away from me both emotionally and physically (he got married and moved to the US). Richard was someone I’d often bump into again and again. He became very involved in local theatre, appearing in different productions of various school-based and professional companies. Even onstage, he was rarely the lead. But he was truly the epitome of a supporting player—someone who ably did his part to make sure that the others and the entire play would shine as a whole.

He extended that attitude offstage. The rare times we’d bump into each other he would always be genuinely curious about how I was and what I was doing. And while he was sharply funny, Richard had an easy laugh which he’d let loose anywhere to show appreciation of a good joke or two.

Richard was physically huge, but he never let that stop him from acting. And directors kept getting him in spite of, or maybe because of, his massive frame. At least every Christmas he had a sure gig playing Santa Claus.

His huge frame couldn’t hide his big, generous heart—but it managed to hide the sickness that was inside him. He was unhealthy for years, but his joie de vivre successfully masked his deteriorating health.

Two weeks ago his cold and cough developed into pneumonia, and he was brought to the hospital. His kidneys failed, but doctors managed to stabilise his condition. On Friday, March 23, he suffered a cardiac arrest and breathed his last.

Because Richard was a freelance actor, he worked and became friends with many members of the different theatre companies in the metro. His wake managed to do the near impossible—unite these diverse companies. For one night, Richard was the lead.


Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Chamorro! Chamorro! I Love You, Chamorro!

He messaged me on Grindr: “Bottom boy here, visiting.”

I asked him where he was staying. Belmont Resorts World Manila, he replied. He then sent two pictures, one showing his face (though the file was low-res) and the other showing his naked ass for the camera.

“I’ll go there after work,” I told him.

He said he was 28 years old. He revealed that he was already married with a kid. But they were back home while he was here on business.

“I’ll definitely go there after work,” I told myself.

*****

When he fetched me at lobby, I was struck by how tall he is. He also looked Pinoy, so I assumed he was from the province.

Turns out, he’s from Guam. He’s Chamorro (the indigenous peoples of the Mariana Islands) and while he looked Pinoy, his height didn’t. His cock size also was American in its size and uncut glory—at least a 7, semi-hard.

He sat in his hotel bed and stared at the TV that was showing some stupid US reality show. So I decided to start things by sitting beside him and rubbing my hand on his thigh. Sensing that I was waiting for him, he took off his t-shirt, then, in one move, stripped off his shorts and underwear. He lay down on the bed and watched me take my clothes off, looking expectingly at the hard on I already had.

He clearly preferred that I do the moves while he happy lay in bed, although he liked running his hands all over my back, even cupping and squeezing my butt. With the way his hands stroked my body I could tell he missed touching another man’s body.

I loved how his cock grew thicker and harder as I swallowed it whole. He loved how I licked his cock, balls, and perineum… and when I flicked my tongue on his hole, he let out an audible moan. After I tongue-fucked his hole for a few minutes, he couldn’t take it anymore. He grabbed his tube of lube on the bedside. I grabbed the box of condoms from my bag.

I placed his legs on my shoulders and moved in closer. When I entered him, he let out a sigh, grabbed his hardened cock, and started jacking off. I matched his strokes with my thrusts. Eventually we were moving as one, breathing and panting and sweating in unison. And when I felt I couldn’t take it any more, I gasped through my teeth, “Oh god, I’m close, I’m close!” He quickened his pumping. And just before I exploded, I saw his milky white cum shoot out of his cock.

*****

Afterwards we chatted a bit.

He asked me what Filipinos do for entertainment. I said, “During weekdays, ManileƱos like to eat and shop.”

“Same with us Guamanians,” he said. Noting my puzzled expression, he added, “Guamanians and Chamorro, they’re the same.”

“Aaaahhh,” I said.

I asked him what he was doing in Manila. He said he was taking his annual physical here instead of in Guam, because it’s cheaper here, plus we have more skilled doctors than back in his home.

“So what do you do back home?” I asked.

“I’m with law enforcement,” he replied.

Ooooohhh. I was speechless for about half a minute.

“You’re a cop?” I asked.

“No,” he said. “Probations officer.”

I must admit, I was slightly disappointed. I wanted him to don his uniform, but he didn’t have it with him.

But at least, man-in-uniform, check! Fucked a Guamanian for the first time, check! Two down from my sexual bucket list.

Maybe during his next annual medical, we’ll hook up again. Same time next year?

Friday, March 9, 2018

Excuse The Occasional Political Post

I have two long-time friends who, whenever we talk about the current Philippine president, they say, “But the surveys say that many Filipinos are still behind him. I don’t get that, but there you go.”

To them and to those who use his popularity as a reason to say “Wait, let’s see what else he will do,” I offer you this article by Krip Yuson. It’s a long read, but ultimately it boils down to something that adults believe in: Wrong is wrong.

Saturday, March 3, 2018

Confession

HIM: I still don’t get why you find me attractive.

ME: Well, most people naman don’t really look at themselves and be so GGSS (gandang-ganda sa sarili). So yeah, you’re pretty normal, hahaha. I mean, look. You have a boyfriend—do you think he’ll be with you if he wasn’t attracted to you?

HIM: Yeah.

ME: Speaking of, how are you two guys now?

HIM: We’re okay, I guess.

ME: Is he less “freaked out” nowadays with your status? Has it already sunk in?

HIM: Put it this way, and please don’t take this against him because I don’t hahaha, but we haven’t kissed lips to lips since, hahaha!

ME: Okay, I get it. I totally get where he’s coming from.

HIM: Same. It’s a bit hard for me though, but well, haha I have to understand. Hahaha.

ME: Someone warned me I should not be doing it with someone whose status isn't “undetectable” yet, but I feel that kind of attitude is defeatist. Besides, that’s why I use condoms and taking PrEP.

HIM: Yeah, that attitude’s kind of… not cool. Hahaha.

ME: Can I confess something that’s a little... well... not ordinary?

HIM: Go!

ME: I actually find you sexier now, especially with your status. It’s as if you are now a ‘limited edition” like a comic book, and so only those who really are worthy of you can enjoy your sexiness.

HIM: Hahahahaha! I actually find the comparison funny.

ME: Better you find it funny than weird or creepy!

HIM: Nah. I mean, much like a comic book, I feel like I should be wrapped in plastic and shoved in a closet. HAHAHAHAHA. I’m kidding, hehehe.

* * * * *

Strangely enough (or maybe I really ought to not think of it as strange at all), after confessing that to him, I got a semi-hard on. I invited him for another session with me, but he begged off, saying he wasn’t in the mood that time. But he promised he’ll contact me when he feels like it.

Funny how the human mind works. Trust me, it’s not just my mind. I’m sure you have your own inner freaks on. But just how willing you are to listen—mush less act—on them, well, that’s up to you.

Sunday, February 25, 2018

Orgy Porgy

So this is the third(?) time I joined this group of guys (two of them are the organisers and the venue sponsors) who are into “group fun”. These guys are, to merely simplify descriptions, in their 30s and 40s, can easily be lumped into the gay category of “daddies,” and are mostly top. That’s why they try to invite younger, more fit, and very game bottoms to the group fun. The rules are simple. No drugs. Bring your own condoms and lube. No cameras (photos or videos are not allowed). What happens in the room stays in the room (since several of them have wives, as in, actual wives—you know, the female variety—with matching children).

This latest group fun, compared to others I’ve been to, was one of the better orgies. The versa-bottoms who joined that night were four in total, which was a good number because the tops, who numbered around 6-10 guys (some left early, some came late, some preferred to just be sucked) had a variety of guys to fuck—from the slim and twinkish to the short but muscle-packed. One was absolutely talented with his mouth—let me call him Magic Mouth—and he gave blow jobs like his mouth had a life of its own. One wore porn-ready underwear (the open-at-the-back kind of t-back) which was sexy and inviting. All were very willing and able in their roles. All were able to take in the varying cock sizes of the tops, and everyone made sure they cleaned up nicely before going to the hotel room. And there were a lot of condoms and lube available. Guys could easily protect themselves while having fun.

When I hook up, I normally just get off once and that’s it, because my recovery period in between ejaculations takes a lot longer, given my age. With group fun, I can pace myself better because I just enjoy watching the others while I recover. I was able to cum three times that night.

But while it was quite a fun night, I couldn’t help but turn introspective afterwards. Attending such activities has triggered some of my insecurities, which I thought I had overcome already, to come back. I worry that my “average Pinoy-size” penis isn’t enough for cock-hungry bottoms, that I am not be able to satisfy them because I may not hit their G-spot, that my girth and length will not fill them to their satisfaction. I worry that because I cannot recover as quickly as the others, I end up missing out on the other guys. I worry that I tend to ejaculate prematurely, especially if there’s a long time gap in-between hook-ups—I get excited easily, and reach climax much faster than usual.

I know these thoughts are neither healthy nor helpful to my sense of well-being and self-confidence. I do hope I can shake them off before they fester and balloon into inconvenient insecurities.

Maybe I should take my cues from some of the participants in the group fun. They didn’t pressure themselves with pleasuring others; they just watched and enjoyed themselves. But I find it a little bit selfish, though.

I will find a middle ground and make peace with my insecurities.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

OMG at BGC

Remember my “Lumandi Ka, Papa” post? I got to hook up with that boy again, now that I am working in BGC.

One evening I got a message on Grindr—it was from him. He had moved to McKinley Hills (his parents got him a studio to rent) because he now works in BGC too. He had the whole place to himself, so I could come on over. He said he was about to go to the gym, but then he saw my profile on Grindr. So instead of a workout in some 24/7 gym, he decided to have a personal trainer come over—namely, moi—and give him a work out.

And yes, I did get to fuck and cum inside him—wearing a condom, of course.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Cuts Like A

I guess I'm a glutton for punishment.

I must have gotten my masochistic streak when I was still in my teens, a student always on the unrequited end of several one-way streets. After falling for straight guys one after the other, I adapted the attitude of, "Better I know things early than be led on. Better just tell it to me straight."

* * * * *

I've always had the hots for him for the longest time, but he was in a long-term relationship. Even so, he always took time to like almost each and every one of my Facebook posts, no matter how mundane they were to me. So I mistook that for interest; can you blame li'l old me? And for the past few years he's been working out regularly, so now he's even yummier.

Last night, lo and behold, I saw him in the mall with a different guy, not his partner. That got me curious, so I messaged him, and we got to chatting online. I found that he broke up with his partner of 11 years last January, and he was "just out on a date."

I thought, this is really is it! Maybe at the very least, we can hook up, and I'd get to live my fantasy of doing it with someone of that borta-level. But if it can lead to more, well, why not?

On hindsight the "date" part should have tipped me off, but he said it so nonchalantly, I didn't think it was anything serious, like it was their first date together. Also at the start of the chat he kept calling me "sir" which, to be honest, isn't an issue with me. But that should also have triggered warning bells.

After talking about why they broke up, I segued into my spiel. After he told me he was always in a hurry while his ex's pace was too slow for him, I joked, "Naku, dapat siguro pumila na ako sa iyo, bago ka pa magka-jowa na bago."

His reply? "Hahahaha," then changed the topic.

I wasn't going to let him get away that easily. "Noon pa ako attracted sa iyo," I messaged back.

Silence.

I was getting the hint. My better I know things early than be led on, better just tell it to me straight attitude kicked in. I offered him a way out: "Pero kung hindi mo naman feel, okey lang to just say so."

He replied: "I really like the guy na ka-date ko kanina, sir."

Ayun. At may "sir" pa.

So I messaged back: "Okay, got it. Don't worry, I won't bring it up again."

He replied: "Okay lang sir. Katabi ko siya actually tonight. Tulog na kami. Hatid ko pa siya bukas ng maaga. Good night, sir."

NAMPUCHA. Nang-inggit pa. Stabbing me in front wasn't enough. He had to twist the knife too.

Oh well. I did ask.

Monday, February 19, 2018

What’s Going On?

So suddenly this blog shifted from call center to sex stories. And the header is now different, with a new subtitle, “Just Call Me Daddy.” What’s happening?

Long story short: At the start of my fifth week as a BPO agent, I received a call from a classmate of mine whom I’ve known since grade school. He was looking for someone to help him manage a new creative services team that he was setting up with a foreign partner, a creative agency based in England. Was I interested?

I received his call on a Friday. On Monday first thing in the morning, I walked into the HR Dept. and handed in my resignation letter and my headset. Before lunch time I was officially resigned from the BPO company. They said I needed to go to their head office in Makati towards the end of April to pick up my final pay check. Three months to process a minuscule fraction of what their company earns in $US?! Jeez.

Anyway.

No, I did not get to hook up with anyone from the other accounts in the BPO. (I came this close, though, with one guy. But our schedules couldn’t align, and we ended up ghosting one another.) To be honest, I did fantasise about it prior to joining the BPO. But in reality, it’s more difficult to just hook up with your fellow officemates.

So now I’m working in BGC. It’s quite a distance from Marikina, and I’ve learned the hard way that it’s best to leave home before 6am. I hope one of these days I can find a place of my own within walking distance our office. I saw a male dormitory near the office; if I decide to be a bedspacer there, I wonder what stories may come out of living with three other guys and sharing a common shower room?

Abangan.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Sex Therapy

I decided to check up on him after a week.

Me: “So when will you get the results of the confirmatory tests?”

Him: “End of the month.”

Me: “How are you now?”

He told me that the reality has sunk in with his boyfriend, and now it seems that his HIV status is stressing out his partner more than they expected. “He’s more preoccupied, and a bit stand-offish than usual. I understand that he’s coping, but it’s stressing me out, too. I don’t think I’ll be getting any action from him any time soon.”

Me: “Why do you say that?”

Him: “He’s not saying it outright, but he seems fully bothered by the news.”

Which seemed like my cue to offer my services as a sex therapist—sex as therapy.

Me: “Wanna meet this weekend?”

* * * * *

Him: “I’m nervous and excited for later.”

We met up again, and because I wanted to respect their space, I decided to check us into a motel this time.

Once we were inside the room, we immediately lunged at each other.

He was hungry for physical contact; I was hungry for his man-child body (yes, he’s in his early 20s, and because he’s more sedentary than most, his figure looks the same as when he was still in college). He said he liked how I “took command” of his body. So I showed him who his daddy is.

I went down on him. I licked not just his stiff shaft but also his balls and all around them. Then when my tongue touched the edge of his hole, he let out a moan so loud, I had to stop and shush him. But he couldn’t help himself moan again when I played with his nipples with my mouth and tongue. And the moans got even louder when I licked the undersides of his feet and sucked his big toe. This time I decided not to shush him.

When I spread his legs apart and asked him, “Want me inside?” he almost begged, “Yes, please, please fuck me.”

I pounded his hole as I mashed his breasts and squeezed his nipples. Then I leaned over to french-kiss him and to mask his moans.

I felt myself peaking. “Oh god I’m cumming, I’m cumming…!”

He said, “Shoot it, shoot it!” And he started jacking off frantically to match my thrusts.

I shot my load, and as I let out an ecstatic “Aaaaaaahhhh! Aaaaaaaaahhhh!” he said, “Don’t take it out! I wanna cum with you inside me!” And he furiously pounded his cock. I stayed inside him, thrusting my pelvis to and fro so he can feel me inside while he jacked off. “Aaaaaaaahhhh! Aaaaaaahhhhh! I’m cumming, Joel!” And white, hot, sticky cum spewed forth and landed on his neck, his chest, his stomach.

* * * * *

After I dropped him off at his place, he sent me a message.

Him: “Thank you.”

Me: “For what?”

Him: “For everything. Honestly, this is helping me cope with my BF being stressed and all.”

Me: “Well, I’m glad to be of help in this way. And really, helping someone by having sex with him isn’t a task but a treat, hahaha!”

Him: “It was one of the most fun moments of sex I’ve had in a while.”

Me: “Next time I’ll bring mascots and we’ll have them dance.”

He’s already made up his mind that the results of the confirmatory test will be positive. I wonder how his boyfriend will cope with that news in the following weeks. I offered to talk to his BF and introduce him to my poz friends with non-poz partners (to form some sort of support system), but he nixed the idea.

I hope they get through this together.

Monday, January 29, 2018

Gang Bang Into The Room, Gang Bang All Over You

I've always liked P ever since I discovered him online. He's hot, sexy, got a good head on his shoulders, open-minded, and is sex-positive. Before I thought he was out of my league (he's tweeted about the hot guys he's hooked up with), but when I found out that he also liked daddy-types, I took a chance. Happily, it was also good of him to give me a chance, too.

Since it was his birthday recently, I wanted to give P something that meant stripping down to our birthday suits again. Unfortunately he was free only on a weekend. But that Saturday I was also invited to a "group fun" session in a hotel in QC. I've been with these guys before, and they're a safe, fun group. So I took a chance and invited P to go with me to this group fun thing. He agreed, saying it had been a while since his last orgy. Happy f*cking birthday, indeed.

When we got to the place, one of our hosts/sponsors (the guys who paid for the room, so that their guests don't have to pay for anything) immediately took a liking to P. I let P decide for himself how he'll behave with the group. Since P was my guest, I didn't want it to look like I wanted him only for myself that night. After all, it is an orgy; had I done that, it would appear that either I'm being possessive (which is an unwritten no-no in a group fun), or I just used the orgy as an excuse to get a free room for P and I to fuck in. But I also kept an eye on him the whole night to make sure he was okay and having fun, especially when our host kept coming back to him. As in, literally. Binakuran siya.

Since it was an orgy, I made the rounds and played with whoever wanted to play with me. But I also got to fuck P at one point, because I didn't want our host to be the only one enjoying himself with P. (Strangely, there was a point when I felt slightly competitive--that was when our host kept banging away, and P would go, "Oooh shet ansarap! G-spot! G-spot!" which meant his sweet spot was being hit.)

By the third or fourth time our host (let's call him Host 1) mounted P again, I thought, "Fine, I can always hook up with P in private next time." One of the other hosts (let's call him Host 2) had been watching Host 1 the whole night. As Host 1 was banging away doggie-style with P, with me beside the two of them in the bed, Host 2 went up to me and said loudly for Host 1 to hear, "McVie, thank you for bringing P, ha."

I thought to speak out the obvious: "Uhm, parang nakakasira ng moment yung pinasasalamatan mo ako sa harap nila." That got me and Host 2 giggling.

Soon enough, I heard P laugh as well and mumble to Host 1, "O, lumambot ka, ano?"

Host 1 (more to Host 2 than to me): "Puntang ina n'yo. Nasira ninyo momentum ko eh. Punyeta kayo." and dismounted P. Which made Host 2 and I laugh out loud even more.

Laughter is the best medicine. And the sweetest revenge.

Friday, January 26, 2018

One More Time

I always fancied him the first time we were introduced more than five years ago. Unfortunately he was in a relationship, which made him, in my eyes back then, an Untouchable.

We'd bump into each other maybe two or three more times, always brief, fleeting, and with others. I did try and interact with him on social media, but his replies were mostly to the point, polite, and merely friendly. He's not interested in me, I thought.

Fast forward to a few months ago. I found out he had moved in with his current boyfriend in an area that's very accesible to me. Not only that, he was playing househusband while in between jobs. So I reached out to him and asked if we could meet up after his morning workout. He agreed, if I didn't mind him all sweaty. I actually found the idea a turn on.

So we met up, and he invited me to their place. He said his boyfriend won't be home until evening, so we had the whole place to ourselves. We sat on their bed and started that subtle dance of figuring out what the other wanted. We talked TV shows, the place where they were staying, common friends, movies, how Twitter has turned into Pornhub... and I showed him some samples from my phone. Naturally he leaned over to look, his arm brushing mine, his face so close I could smell his sweet sweat. He was breathing heavily, I guess partly because he had worked out, and partly because of the video we were watching. I looked at him and said, "I'm sorry," and without skipping a beat, kissed him full on the lips. Instead of pulling back in surprise, he matched my mouth movements, pushing his tongue into my mouth.

In a few moments we were lying naked in the sheets, exploring every inch of the other's body. He moaned when I tongued his nipple, then licked upwards towards his armpit, full of juicy, sweaty hair. He wrapped his legs around my waist and raised his bottom. But because I didn't bring any condoms or lube, I decided to just rub my cock across his open, willing asshole. That drove him wild. We ended up rubbing each other, 69-ing, and jacking off one another.

Afterwards, I said my farewells. We said we'd keep in touch. In cases like these, I knew better than to expect we'd hook up once again. Once is enough.

True enough, I never got any private message from him again (though he'd post once in a while on his social media).

* * * * *

One afternoon last week I got a message from him. "Do you know where the closest HIV testing place is?" I told him I knew only of Love Yourself Anglo in Mandaluyong, and the Social Hygiene Clinic in the Marikina City Health Center. But since he needed to do something by 2pm, that ruled out Anglo. Since I've never been to the Marikina Social Hygiene Clinic, I said he should go there early because I had no idea if there'll be a long queue or not.

"Can you accompany me?" he asked. He explained that if he brought his partner and he turned out positive, he cannot handle it if his partner freaks out. "You're calm and steady, McVie," he said. He sounded like he was getting himself ready for the worst, which to me was a sign that he had an inkling of his status.

We agreed on a date to get himself tested.

* * * * *

Marikina City Health Center turned out to be a pleasant surprise. The pleasant, ever-smiling lady in the Social Hygiene Clinic accommpanied us to the third floor, where there was a Satellite Clinic dedicated to HIV testing and treatment. There was only one other person ahead of us. And since the clinic was situated at the end of the hall, it was very private, with not much foot traffic disturbing those going there.

The staff politely asked me to wait outside while they extracted blood from my friend. Then we both sat at the waiting area. Less than 15 minutes later, my friend was called back inside. I wasn't able to finish one level of Candy Crush when he came back and sat beside me. "I guess I was expecting as much," he said. "I'm reactive."

"Oh, I see," I said. "So what did they say are the next steps?"

He was to come back next week for the confirmatory tests. From there, they'll determine if he needs to start taking ARVs or not.

"So... when will you tell your partner?" I asked. He had assured me earlier that they had the "What would you do if I turned out positive?" talk before, and both assured one another that HIV would not automatically be a deal breaker for them. Besides, he was sure he got the virus before he and his current boyfriend met. It was only now that he had himself tested.

"Tonight, when he gets home. But after dinner."

* * * * *

He was calm the whole time. I asked him twice, "How are you?" The first time he replied, "I don't see the point of worrying. What will worrying achieve? I'd rather accept it, and deal with it." The second time I asked, he said, "I knew I was right in asking you to accompany me to the test. Anybody else I know would have freaked out. Or at least get more stressed than me. I know you've done this before. The fact that you know what to do helps keep me calm."

I drove him back to their place. We chatted as we walked up to their unit. Inside, he asked me to pardon the mess. I told him it was messier the last time. He again thanked me for accompanying him. I hugged him. Then our lips searched and found one another.

I guess he really appreciated my help.

A little later we were naked in bed, fully appreciating one another. Funny enough, this morning when I stepped out of the house, I thought it best to bring condoms and lube. I thought that no matter what the results are, especially if he tested positive, if he wants to have a second go at it, I'm game. Having sex with him will help relieve him of the stress he's feeling at the moment. Having sex with him is proof that being positive does not mean the end of having safe, satisfying sex. Having sex with him also means I'm a sex-positive person who will not discriminate against PLHIV. Dammit, I have my advocacy to uphold!

He kept arching his back and thrusting his ass towards my cock. "I brought condoms," I whispered to him.

"Do you have lube?"

"Yes," I replied.

"Yes!" he said.

* * * * *

Afterwards, panting and smiling, with our sweat and cum mixed together on his chest, he said, "Well, this has been one very eventful morning." All this happened before noon.

I said my goodbyes. He offered to walk me out to the car, but I told him I knew my way out, he can just rest in bed. I kissed him then walked out.

As I was about to drive off, he messaged me: "Thanks again."

I replied, "My pleasure. And I hope yours, too."

"Of course," he replied, with a smiley face.

He'll be alright. He and his boyfriend, they'll be fine. They'll get through this.

Monday, January 22, 2018

Week One: My Classmates Are Spokening Dollars

We were 25 in our batch, composed mostly of girls. As far as I can tell, I was the only gay guy in our batch; we had an openly gay lesbian whom the guards always thought was a guy and kept stopping her from entering the ladies bathroom. There were young moms, fresh graduates, and a couple of transferees from other call centers. Only one other batchmate was older than me; he was 53, and was previously assigned to a different account. Everyone else was younger than me. Interestingly, most of use were working for the first time at a call center.

I was kinda disappointed that out of the 9 guys besides me in class, I only found one who was kinda cute, in a little boy way. He was quite young, short in stature, and with a high pitched voice that American callers would later on mistake for a woman. On our first day, he kept looking my way. I wondered if he was checking me out, or he was just curious as to why someone my age would be in a call center. As the lessons progressed and we bonded as a group, the girls decided to make Ruzzel (yes, he spells his name with two Z's) our class bunso.

Meanwhile the girls started calling me "Daddy Joel", which I didn't mind. The boys called me "po" at first, but I quickly dissuaded them from that. After a while of being called daddy, I decided in one class recitation to mention matter-of-factly that I was gay. Afterwards while most of the girls still called me daddy, the cheekier ones called me "mamshie".

Our first week of training was spent reviewing our English lessons. Our instructor kept emphasizing that it was a review; we were hired because we had a better command of the English language than most. But hearing some of my batchmates speak in English, I wondered how low that bar was. Or maybe the bar wasn't low; I was just operating at a higher plane.

Now, before you shoot me for being all-haughty and prideful, let me explain. My first week at training showed me how much of an advantage my Arneow training gave me in terms of speaking in English. I didn't even bother to review my tenses; I never even got tense at all in any of the tests. I coasted on stock knowledge and ended up at the top of the class by the end of the week. Top 2 got a 92%. I got 98% without breaking a sweat.

And I have the Jesuits to thank for that. You see, the moment I stepped into Prep, I was surrounded by priests, teachers, and classmates speaking in English. The masses and homilies were in impeccable English. They were talking about TV shows and movies that were in English, so I started watching those shows and movies (it helped that my mom also favored the American TV series; the only local shows she'd watch were Tang Tarangtang and John En Marsha). My classmates read Hardy Boys, so I started reading them too. I learned American idioms because I heard them used and figured out their meaning through context. Our grade 5 teacher even taught us the word "preposterous". At grade 5!

So yes, I was feeling high on my first week. But I knew things would change on the second and third week, when we start studying the product. I may have an advantage over these millennials with the English language, but they're more computer-literate and computer-savvy than me. And their youthful minds can still be stuffed with a lot of new knowledge. I fear my mental processor may not have enough space for a gigaton of new data.

Let's see.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Big Fish, Small Pond: Do What You Have To Do

So the second call center I went to is located inside a mall.

When I got to their recruitment area, I was asked to log in my application online, which, to me, was impressive. At least this office looks like they want to reduce their carbon footprint.

There weren't as many applicants here, perhaps due to the location. For the first interview, I was with 4 other applicants only. I breezed through it. Then we were brought into a room where we took several tests online. Then another interview over the phone with someone (I forget who), then I was asked to wait in the lobby.

A few minutes later, the HR woman who was taking us through the application process called me and two others back into her office. She told us we passed and that we were going to be given offer sheets. We signed the sheets, she took our photos (for our ID badges), gave us the number and address of the clinic for our physicals, and welcomed us into the company.

It was that easy. I entered the lobby at around 1:30 in the afternoon; before 7pm that night, I was already being offered a job. I thought, is it going to be this easy all throughout? That can't be, it's too good to be true. I was waiting for the other shoe to drop.

And it did, in the form of our salary. We were offered less than what the Cubao center offered (they explained that the account was a seasonal one). At that salary rate, I could barely pay for my monthly car loan. I may need to do some sideline stuff (like freelance writing jobs) to augment my earnings as an agent.

I was mulling over things while driving home. Should I continue with this company, or apply to the Cubao center where Resourceful Douchebag TL invited me to join?

When I got home, I was browsing over the posts in my LinkedIn app, when I came across this post (apologies for not being able to attribute the writer; I can't find the post anymore):

* * * * *

“I just can’t get a job.” they say. I hear it all the time.
(I ordered a Dominos last night. They're hiring by the way.)
When my first business imploded...
I scaled back massively.
I took a job selling broadband.
I took a job delivering Indian takeaways.
I did whatever I had to, despite the massive ego drop.
Despite losing my S-Class and my flat.
Despite hearing “told you so” at every turn.
I had bills and obligations, so I got to work.
I kept my head down for a year, tidied my mess, and regrouped.
And then I got back on it. Harsh lessons learned.

When the shit hits the fan; you flip burgers, you clean floors, you stack shelves - you do what you must.

Agree or disagree?

* * * * *

Oh well. When life gives you lemons, make lemonade. See you on the first day of training.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Step One: Recruitment

I knew that as an entry-level agent, I'll be earning a fraction of what I was getting in my previous job. Which was not a problem for me; I just needed some money coming in so that I have something for the car and insurance payments. Food? At home I eat for free. And I have no problem scaling back my dietary consumption. (Strangely, I also noticed that I easily get full these days. Was that just a product of aging? Or was that my consciousness convincing myself to save on food costs?) Transpo? I needed a job in a place near home--less traffic, less gas consumption; just worry about overnight parking fees.

The first call center I went to was located approximately 7-10 minutes away from the house. But when I inquired there, they told me recruitment was at their main office in Cubao. So off I went.

When I stepped into the lobby, there were many young kids filling out application forms and waiting for their turn. I also saw one or two "older" guys; we were the ones quietly waiting by our lonesome; everyone else had friends or batchmates with them. It's like they needed the comfort of the herd to navigate this jungle called recruitment. Meanwhile, us oldies were lone hunters, quietly eyeing our competition. Well, most of us anyway. I saw one guy, probably older than me, looked like he was in over his head. Later on, just before the group interview started, he excused himself to go to the bathroom; he never returned.

After a few minutes of waiting, they called around 18 of us, and we were herded into a conference room. The chairs were flushed against the wall; in the middle was a huge conference table with a desktop on it. We were asked to occupy the seats and wait for the interviewer to arrive.

While waiting, the young'uns started chatting among themselves. "Pang-ilang center mo na ito?" "Saan ka ba nag-apply before?" "Naku, hindi ako pumasa doon eh!" "Kinakabahan ako." There were two other oldies aside from me; one left for the bathroom and escaped before the interview, and one was a 40+ year old guy who had a confident air about him. The way he was assuring the first-timers and giving them tips, I assumed he had worked in several BPOs before.

The two interviewers, a guy and a lesbian, came in. I thought both were fresh graduates--they looked so young! It didn't help that the taller of the two, the guy, looked like he can see eye-to-eye with Nora Aunor (whose height, so goes the joke, is 4'12"). The lesbian (yes she is, trust me, I'm not being judgemental!) was even shorter. I thought I was going to be interviewed by hobbits. (To be fair, the guy was too much of a twink to be a hobbit; he was also quite cute, and when I say cute, I mean "let's play with him like a toy" cute.)

Then they started talking to us. You know, before I applied to call centers, I used to hate Filipinos who'd put on this American twang or accent. Such a put on, such pretentiousness! But the more I saw the inner workings of a BPO, the more I realized that they were just doing their jobs. They're talking to Americans, and Americans have a hard time understanding someone speaking in English if they didn't have that familiar twaye-ng or aye-k-scent. (Eventually when I was on the floor, I noticed myself putting on a bit of that accent, depending on the caller.)

It made sense why the initial interview had to be a big group; with the number of applicants, Recruitment needed a quick way to trim off the ones who will have a hard time speaking and expressing themselves in English.

Oompa-Loompa Cutie wlecomed us, and introduced his fellow HR staffer, Oompa-Loompa Tibs, who busied herself at the computer typing God-knows-what during the whole process. We were asked to introduce ourselves, and say why we wanted to join that particular BPO. Then we were asked to pick a number corresponding to a question which we needed to answer, ala-Beaucon Q&A portion. I fought the urge to place my hands on my hips while answering.

When it came to me, I used my mother as the reason why I wanted to go into the BPO industry. "She's pushing 80 (a lie), so I went back to take care of her (another lie, but that one elicited a couple of "Awwws"), and now I needed a job near the house so I can be near her." My beaucon question was easy: "What do you do for recreation?" I mentioned watching theater (yeah right, show them how elitist I am!) and movies, and in the process gave a 5-minute review that compared and contrasted Justice League with Thor: Ragnarok ("JL isn't that bad, but DC's still finding its way; meanwhile, Marvel's got the superhero genere down pat, and now they're pushing its boundaries").

Needless to say, pasok ako sa finals.

Interestingly, while waiting for the rest to finish their turn, the 40+ year old guy who sat beside me (I should have picked up on that immediately) started whispering to me.

Him: "First time mo bang mag-call center?"

Me: "Uh-huh."

Him: "Alam mo ba kung magkano ino-offer nila dito?"

Me: "Uhm, 16 yata? Yun yung narinig ko."

Him: "Magaling ka eh. Apply ka sa kabila, doon puwede kang kumita ng 20 agad."

Wait a minute. What did he say?

Me: "Sa kabila?"

Him: "Pagkatapos dito, sama ka sa akin. Di ko tatapusin itong recruitment dito. Mas malaking sahod sa kabila, doon ka na."

It turned out the guy is already a Team Leader (fondly called TL) in another BPO down the street. His account was currently in a low-traffic period, so most of the members of his team were on Voluntary Time Off (they can be absent, but they don't earn anything). Apparently he was using his idle time to check out if there are greener pastures for him to move to, and at the same time, see if he can pirate applicants to go to his company. What a douchebag, but what a resourceful douchebag.

When I mentioned during my Q&A that I wanted to be posted in their Marikina office, Oompa-Loompa Tibs butted in, "Sorry, our Marikina office does not have an opening right now, are you okay with working in Cubao or in our Alabang office instead?" Of course I immediately replied, "Oh sure Cubao is fine," but what I really wanted to say was, "Naiintindihan ko pa yung Marikina to Cubao, pero Marikina to Alabang araw-araw?! Ano ka, kundoktora sa isang Alabang-Novaliches bus?!"

I knew I had to apply to another BPO.

Fortunately, one of the millennial bagets approached me and said, "Naghahanap ka sa may Marikina? May alam ako, sa Antipolo lang nga, pero malapit pa rin sa Marikina. May openings doon."

Ayun. (sings) "Tayo naaaa... sa Antipolo!"

Saturday, January 13, 2018

In The Beginning: Biting The Bullet

Around the third quarter of 2016, I handed my resignation letter to HR. I was leaving the network I called home for nearly 7 years.

If you're planning on moving to another company, apply during the early part of the year. Most people will tell you December is the worst month to look for a job, because instead of hiring, HR is busy with office Christmas parties. I should know. I've gone through 3 Christmases wherein my gift was, "Next time na lang, ha?" to all my loved ones.

Luckily, by March 2017 I got a job at a small agency for events and advertising. I thought going back to advertising would be fun. Instead, six months later, I was again handing in a resignation letter. But this time, even before went to HR, I was already applying left anf right, here and abroad.

Sadly, I found out that people of my age and level of experience will have a harder time moving companies. There's less vacancies, naturally.

So when December 2017 came around, I had to bite the bullet. I had bills to pay. I needed a job that was in or near Marikina (since I moved back home). And I needed one fast.

Only one industry I knew fit the bill.

And that's how I came to be a call daddy.