Monday, September 15


Last Friday, I tagged along Ma'am C and hopped on a bus to a meeting for what we refer to in our nightly Twitter support group as that which had temporarily stolen our little lives from us. The coaster was small, probably a 20-seater, and of course I thought about what would happen if this bus, full of chitchatting culture experts, would well, you know. This is Manila. I think I said a prayer. A convo via SMS with M:

G: Andito sa bus si Betsy, editor ng broadcast volume.
M: Bechay! Hehe.
G: Sana hindi ko siya matawag nyan.
M: Mag-ingat ka.

On the carpeted walkway to the meeting's venue, Nic T. said hi to me. I pissed myself a bit; as a young gay boy who spent some time in Plaridel Hall, I had wanted to take Sir Nic's classes, but, well, I was a young gay boy. I didn't know any better. What took place in the meeting ought to stay private (I suppose), but perhaps can say that it was the funnest seven-hour meeting I've been to. And genuine laughter. Meaning, I actually laughed because I found things funny. Not because the six-figure contract is contingent on how loudly we collectively chuckled. Maybe it's presumptuous to claim to belong to this milieu--was probably the only one in that huge hall who isn't in the academe--and of course it's a political exercise, the canon-making and the fallible, arbitrary whimsy that informs it. But there was also well-intentioned effort in that room, a self-awareness, and a concern for the same things that I love, or at least hold dear.

I am putting it here because it is September, a historically fascist month along with August. On a stolen yogurt date with M, she said it might be rooted in indigenous culture after all--August being the leanest month for rice--not superstitious guesswork or convenient scapegoat. So will focus on good things: thesis successfully, if anticlimactically, defended; representation contract with agency signed (more or less); and direction for manuscript more or less settled. A talk/reading is scheduled in two weeks, and had chipped away at Everest of CCP deliverables. Nearing 30, had gotten used to the constant alarm, but think have been making headways in appeasing it, mostly along the lines of do-not-rush-it-G. During the meeting, couldn't help but occasionally gawk at the people around the table. Cases in point, laughing and making fun of all the frivolity and absurdity. It's OK, it tells me, it's fine.

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