Last night in a coffee shop

Last night I was supposed to meet a friend in a coffee shop. Half an our passed and I received a message from him saying that he would not be able to come. Wanting to finish transcribing my data, I just shrugged off being stood up and continued with my business.

Minutes later, I found myself transferring from the couch area to the long table because the girl beside me just decided to air-dry her feet. The stench of her sweaty feet was giving me a headache. I really felt sorry for my nose for having to endure that disgusting odor.

At the long table, I immediately noticed a good-looking guy across me. He seemed to work in a corporate setting judging from his attire of a combination of long sleeves and black slacks. As he was intently reading his book, I kept on stealing glances and just appreciating the pleasant face that he has. Even at first glance I already knew he was gay. I have a knack of being right ninety percent of the time thanks to my valid gaydar.

With my earphones placed, I started to continue my transcription. In the duration of typing, I would occasionally pause and play the audio recording. During a time when the recording was paused, I heard guy across the table (GA) inviting a good friend (GF) to come over and accompany him.  When GF arrived, I confirmed they're both gays through eavesdropping in their conversation whenever I was typing. They were talking about Bed and Obar, and of their friends' partners.

A part of their conversation stuck in my head..

GF: Nagkakagusto ka ba doon sa ganoon? sa girlie-girlie.

I was eager to hear their conversation because I wanted to know if the statement that straight-acting gay guys are strictly looking for the same is true.

GA: Hindi.

GF: ah. ako rin. isang beses kasi na kela.... ako, nakaupo ako sa sofa, narinig ko si... kumakanta ng regine velasquez song. nakaka-turn-off. hehehe

Incredible. I've long accepted that gays do have preferences. We are composed of different colors and shades that we choose who we would want to be with. But to look down on other gay men just because they sing Regine, Beyonce, or Mariah songs is, in my opinion, unnecessary. What's wrong with singing along with these divas? Though we gay guys are different, aren't we all still the same? We all like dicks, don't we?

Not really wanting to ruin my night and get angry, I just concentrated listening at the recording and typing what I hear. But during an interval, I caught another part of their conversation.

GA: dahil dun sa friend kong iyon kaya ako nakapasok jan sa Bed at OBar.

GF: ah baka ganoon ka na rin ah [doing the mapilantik hand gesture] haha Di ko alam, di naman kasi kita madalas makasama e.

GA: hehe hindi naman.

Who's he to say that? I just couldn't believe what I was hearing. It seems like there's discrimination even in a diverse community which fights for equality. Such a douche-bag. What surprised me more was they seem to be affluent educated individuals, yet they show narrow-mindedness with people in the same community.

I immediately turned back my attention to my laptop before I get really infuriated with those two. As I gazed through the glass window, I saw my friend, the one I was supposed to meet, walk towards the door. I greeted him as he approached the table before having a seat. He sat across me and beside GA. He greeted me, and then turned to GA and greeted him as well. And to my surprise, they're also friends. Talk about having an awkward small world.
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Falling in and out of love


Something I read days ago suddenly helped me remember an entry I was supposed to write. This was supposed to be a post long time ago after a known couple broke up. They were together for  how many years and everybody in the the blogging and microblogging worlds know of their relationship. That is why there was shock when news of their separation broke out. Word has it that one of them may have fallen out of love. And later it was discovered that he had already been seeing someone. So observers like me can't help but wonder, which came first, falling out of love or falling in love with somebody else.

To shed more light on the topic, I asked some friends regarding the subject at hand. To elicit unbiased  and general answers, I purposely omitted the inspiration of my inquiry.

When someone is breaking up and reasoned that he already "fallen out of love", does it mean he has already "fallen in love" with somebody else?

- Hindi naman. Pero pedeng un ang reason kaya na fell out of love siya dun sa current jowa

- No. You may fall out of love simply because you want your freedom back. Ibang case ang you fell for someone else.

- Falling out of Love is born out of feeling lost and nowhere in a supposed right time and place, with the supposed right person. Falling in Love with someone else, I guess, is just simply what stupid people do. right? :)

- I think they're distinct from each other. You can fall out of love with your lover, without falling in love with somebody else. I've seen it

- hmm should be two different things. Some people claim they could love two people at the same time. I believe it can happen that you just fall out love. It has happened to me, with no third party around.

Then a follow up question:

Can you give me an example where you would believe or not believe you're partner's reason: "fell out of love?"

- My ex "fell out of love." before he said it. It was gut feel. I believed him. I set him free. I "fell out of love" sa ex ko before the most recent. I gave him 6-8 months of steady distance before i broke up. Took me two years to start a relationship again.

- Naku haha, when your partner says he fell out of love, yun na yun. Wala ka ng laban. That's the kindest way for him to tell you it's over.

- Well it would start with determining if there's reason to think there might be a third party.

In my general opinion, I believe that just like people can grow in love with someone over time, they can also grow out of love. Because people change, and so do feelings. You can't expect someone to have the same intensity or quality of love as when you first met them and last after 5, 10 years or so. That would be highly idealistic, bordering on false hope.

What you can and should expect is that over the course of your relationship, you should have planted enough memories, moments, and values that could not wither as years go by. That those years spent together helped your relationship grow stronger even if storms of lust, boredom, and temptation pass.

But in the event that these planted seeds of memories are not enough to keep your feelings from flying away, it should still demand respect from you. Falling or growing out of love should not throw away the respect and gratitude towards your soon-to-be previous partner. No matter how you fell out of love, those times you spent with that person should have enough weight  that you still consider his feelings as you go in your separate ways. You owe him that.

He deserves your honesty. He deserves to know that you're having doubts, and what's going through your mind. You can't just drop a bomb on him all of a sudden as if you are the only one in that relationship. And most especially, he deserves not to be cheated on. Just because your love is lesser should not mean you can treat that person any lesser too.

I'd like to acknowledge and extend my gratitude to my respondents for sharing their time and experience in answering those questions.
Kyllick of [A] Paper Xparrow

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Ano'ng feeling? pabulong na tanong ko sa kanya habang binabaybay namin ang kalsada sa campus.

Masakit. ang mabilis niyang sagot waring alam na niya ang ibig kong sabihin. Mas mabuti pa yung ma-break-an kaysa yung mamatayan.

Tumango na lamang ako sa kanyang sinabi, nagtitiwala sa kanyang salita, sabay tingin sa tinatahak ng aming sasakyan. Hindi ko alam kung ano sunod na sasabihin. Hindi ko kayang magkunyaring alam ang kanyang nararamdaman dahil di pa naman ako namamatayan ng minamahal. At sa puntong iyon, hindi pa rin ako sigurado kung ano sila noong pumanaw.

Noong mamatay ang lola ko, na ka-close ko, mga ilang linggo pa lang, ok na ako. Iba kasi ito, biglaan. Hindi namin inaasahan, ang pagpatuloy niya. Siya kasi, 10 years kaming magkasama. Simula college pa lang ako. Araw-araw ko siyang nakikita. Lagi kaming magkasama sa bahay. Mahirap mag-move on sa ganoon.

Akala ko mag-isa ka na lang sa bahay.

Hindi, magkasama pa rin kami. Siyempre, press release ko na lang yun. Pero ngayon wala na kong itatago. Wala ng mawawala sa akin kung malaman ng iba.

Sa puntong iyon, nasigurado ko na. Sila nga ay mag-partner.

Bumaba siya ng sasakyan sandali upang ihatid ang ilang gamit ng kanyang namayapang partner sa kaniyang opisina. Naiwan ako sa kotse upang magbantay.

Ang daming tumatakbo sa isip ko noong mga sandaling iyon. Katulad ko rin pala siya. Ngunit hindi sumagi sa isip kong pareho pala kami. Wala siya typical profile ng discreet gay guy na nakilala ko. 

Sampung taon sila nagsama. Sa mga nakilala kong mag-partners, never pa ko nakakilala na umabot ng ganoon katagal. 10 years of living together. 10 years of love. Ang tagal noon. Kung umabot sila ng ganoon katagal, it must be for forever. Sila na talaga para sa isa't isa.

Only death separated them. Para talagang mag-asawa na. For sickness and in health. Til death do they part. Sa kalusugan. Sa sakit, nang maospital ang partner niya. Hanggang sa kamatayan, sila pa rin.

Sa pagkakataong iyon, di ko namalayang namumuo na ang luha sa mga mata ko. Sumpa talaga ang pagiging emphatic. Tila naramdaman ko ang sakit at lungkot na bumabalot sa kanya at sa sasakyang iyong sila ang madalas magkasama.

Naalala ko ang post niya sa facebook sa pagluluksa. Mayroon pa silang planong magsama at manirahan sa ibang bansa at doon na mamuhay ng malaya at masaya. Nakaramdam tuloy ako ng hinayang.

Ang huling thought na pumasok sa isip ko noon ay posible pala iyon. Ang maging masaya at kuntento sa isang tao ng ganoong katagal. Kung yung iba ay nabo-bore na after 5 or 6 years, sila umabot pa ng 10 years at malamang tatagal pa kung hindi lang namaalam ng maaga yung isa.

Pareho silang guwapo ng partner niya. Parehong matipuno. Malamang marami rin silang nakakasalamuhang mas maganda ang katawan, mas gwapo, mas mabait, at mas pa sa iba't ibang bagay. Pero sa kabila ng lahat, pati mga problema sa pamilya, nagtagal pa rin sila. They endured it all. Their love endured.

Napabulong na lang ako sa universe na sana'y makatagpo rin ako ng ganoon, ng wagas na pag-ibig.

Naputol ang pagmumuni ko nang kumatok siya sa salamin upang i-unlock ang pinto ng sasakyan. Nagpatuloy ang aming byahe palabas na ng campus.
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