Watch Me Entertain Myself!

Sacha Guitry once said, "You can pretend to be serious, but you can't pretend to be witty." Oh yes, I'm the great pretender.
(pilot episode: 20 January 2004)

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

McVie’s Most Favorite Episodes (Part 1)

Thanks to the Phil. Blog Awards, I began revisiting my older episodes of The McVie Show. I recalled some of my most popular or favorite episodes. One of my earliest episodes that gained extra popularity—or notoriety—is the following post (which I’m reprinting here because it’s already on “archive”) on a product that I don’t see anymore in the market: Sam Hotdog. I remember when, a week after I uploaded the episode, my officemate told me, “Hey, your blog post is now a viral! Someone just forwarded to me your post via email.” Back then, I had no idea what “viral” meant, and its implication was lost on me. A few weeks later I found out my brother, who’s also in advertising and whose client is actually the manufacturer of Sam Hotdog, told me that he and his client had actually read my blog episode. Uh-oh. Good thing his client had a healthy sense of humor.

Here again is the The McVie Show episode that first aired Sunday, June 25, 2006.

* * * * *

The Making Of…

…Sam Hotdog.

One afternoon in the RFM boardroom, management was pondering what to do next.

“Minerva, what’s the latest in R&D?” asked the chairman.

The head of research and development, the lone woman in a roomful of men, pushed back her glasses and, in a prim, I’m-the-school-principal tone, spoke up without rising from her seat. “Research has confirmed that, after kids, the next biggest number of consumers of hotdogs,” and here she gave a slight dramatic pause, “are gay men.”

Silence filled the room. All eyes were on her.

The R&D head, wearing a smug smile on her lips, prolonged the silence by just staring back at them.

The chairman had to say something. “Well,” he said.

The R&D head smiled even wider.

The marketing head spoke up. He always spoke whatever was first on his mind anyway. “Then,” he said, in a similar tone that connected the chairman’s previous one-word sentence, “I think we should really tap into the pink peso! I think we should make a hotdog and name it after a hunk.” His eyes widened as he fell silent, shocked at what he just said at the top of his head.

Again silence filled the room.

“Brilliant,” the chairman said.

Then the murmuring started. Some were scratching their heads, others were muttering to their seatmates. The marketing head, his spirits buoyed by what the chairman said, pushed on further. “The hunk should be from showbiz,” he added. “A star who is hot right now.” There were mumblings of agreement across the table.

The chairman spoke, “Who’s the hottest hunk right now for the gays?”

For the third time that afternoon, one could hear a pin drop on the carpeted floor of the boardroom.

The chairman, sensing his mistake, turned to the R&D head. “Minerva, do you know who’s the hottest hunk right now?” Unfortunately Minerva was a forty-two year old miss who had six dogs as her only companions in her apartment after her mother died five years ago. She stammered, “Well… ah… I think…” before the chairman mercifully cut her off. “I think,” he said, “that we should bring our secretaries in here and ask them.”

Suddenly a voice from the far end of the table was heard: “Sam Milby.”

All eyes turned to the assistant brand manager who spoke up. He started stammering when he realized that not only was everyone staring at him, but they also had puzzled, even accusing, expressions on their faces. “Ah, er, I mean… look, even my girlfriend told me she wants to get it on with that guy,” he quickly added. “I mean, I’m insanely jealous because of that!”

Relief swept across the room. The brand manager, who played badminton regularly with his assistant and had stripped so many times in front of him in the locker room after playing, immediately gave his two-cents’ worth. “Yeah, I agree,” he said. And that was the only thing he would ever say in the entire meeting.

“Sam Milby,” the chairman muttered. “Do we have any other options aside from Sam?”

Miss R&D, eager to make a contribution, chimed in. “Richard Gomez,” she said confidently.

“Too old,” said the marketing head. “I can imagine a foot-long that’s wrinkled and cold.” Ewww, said everyone in the room.

“How about Manny Pacquiao?” said another.

“He’s everywhere,” complained the marketing head, “and besides, I see a short, tough, sweaty cocktail sausage. That’s one salty hotdog.”

“What about Echo Rosales?” said another. The marketing head shook his head. “I’m seeing dark, burnt, brownish instead of bright, juicy red. Plus it looks like a long, thin one. We want tender, juicy, big, fat!” By this time everyone was so busy thinking of options that no one wondered how the marketing head could make a judgment call on Echo’s dick.

“Uhm, Rafael Rossel?”

“He’s half-Norwegian, isn’t he? Are we thinking salmon hotdogs here?” sneered the marketing head, “I don’t think so!”

“But ‘Norwegian Wood’ would be such a great name study,” said the assistant brand manager to no one in particular.

“I know! Richard Gutierrez!” shouted someone. “No,” shouted another, “Richard and Raymond Gutierrez! Twin hotdogs!”

The marketing head brightened. “Imagine, conjoined hotdogs! An alternative to the foot-long! We’ll have to make special hotdog buns for them! Think of the additional revenue avenues!”

“No.” The chairman’s voice was firm. “No twin hotdogs. I don’t want to deal with the mother. And that’s that,” he said, cutting off any objections from the marketing head. “I think I’ll go with Sam Milby. He’s young, fresh, white meat, and his name is very ‘Uncle Sam’ American, and we all know that the hotdog is as American as apple pie and baseball. Yeah, I’m comfortable with Sam.”

He then turned to the marketing head. “Now, I want you and your team to get cracking. I want every homosexual in the Philippines, from Luzon to Mindanao, to say, ‘I want to eat Sam’s hotdog!’ I want them to stuff their mouths with Sam’s hotdog every single day!”

And thus it came to pass:

(This was taken at 6am when the light wasn’t that bright yet. The copy says, “Swift Sam All-Meat Hotdogs. Bagong sarap, bagong kaibigan.”)

Monday, September 29, 2008

Anger Leads To Stress, Stress Leads To Poverty

Vexed, stressed, harassed. That was me from 11:30pm last night to around 9am this morning, broken only by a dreamless 3-hour sleep from 2 to 5am.

Long story short: Orlando (my beloved SUV) wouldn’t start. This I found out when I was about to leave Migs’ place after we recorded our latest Fabcast (up soon, pramis!); Tony and Gibbs had already left, and Migs had retired already. After failed attempts with my brother (who drove all the way from Marikina) to jump-start and push-start Orlando, we had to leave him overnight and come back early the next morning so that we can have Orlando towed to the shop. All that hassle—argh!

So when I arrived at our office building past noon, I was not at my chirpy-cheep-cheepest. Worse, last night I could already feel a bad cold coming; a major phlegm clog-up had lodged inside my throat, and I kept coughing. Whenever I know I’d be coming down with a terrible cough, I immediately try to drown it with lots of water. As in, liters and liters of water; I’d be peeing every 30 minutes.

So I dropped by the convenience store in our building and went straight for the bottled water section. I looked for the biggest bottle size I could find. There were only a few left at the lowest shelf, and at that angle I couldn’t see the brand. But at that time I wasn’t paying much attention anyway; I just wanted to get my water, pick up some apples, and punch in late at the office. So I grabbed one bottle and made a beeline for the counter.

The line I chose had a slow-moving cashier. It’s as if he had all the time in the world and was imposing his timeline on everyone else. So when I got to the counter I plopped the bottle and two packs of pre-sliced apples and stared at the cashier, screaming at him in my head, “Get with it, Slo-Mo Man!” He wasn’t looking at me; instead he was staring at the bottle I had. He then aimed the infrared gun at the barcode and I saw the price blip! on the screen. Then the cashier had the temerity to say out loud—it sounded like he was shouted out loud actually, for every one to hear—the price and the purchase: “190 pesos, Evian!”


And that’s when I looked closely at the 1.5 liter clear bottle the cashier was holding. Holee shite! It was Evian! Jeez.

So now I’m displaying my choice of water around the office. And I’m going to make sure the inside of that bottle is licked dry so that I get all my money’s worth.

Friday, September 26, 2008

iSpy With My iSight

McVie as seen by…

Say hello to my new MacBook. Sure, it’s office-issued and will be returned eventually (just like what happened to my iBook G4), but so what? More GBs equals more podcasts, maybe even videocasts!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The McVie Has Landed

The moment you step into the lobby, you half expect to hear the roar of airplanes taking off or landing, and a disembodied voice from the public address system to blare out, “Welcome to the City of Marikina! Outside it’s 28 degrees Celsius, but here inside SM Marikina we sell shoes!”

Yes folks, the latest SM looks like an airport.

Or rather, it’s an airport on stilts. The mall is located just beside the temperamental Marikina River, which always overflows during typhoon season. So the parking lot is the first to go, if the waters rise beyond the banks. Still, it will take an extra heavy downpour (around a whole day’s worth) for the waters to reach the lowest level of the basement parking.

Beyond you can see the lower portion of the Marcos Highway bridge.

The mall looks big on the outside, but it actually is surprisingly small—maybe just as big as Robinson’s Metro East (located in Cainta, just a few minutes away). SM supermarket and its department store occupy most of the three floors; that’s a good 65-70% of the mall. On the fourth and highest level are the cinemas and a small food court, as well as an entertainment area. And there’s no Starbucks in sight! (But a Figaro is set to open soon.)

Well, now you know where I’ll be hanging out for a couple of weeks. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve a plane to catch.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

At The UST Med Building

This is the cadaver room, where students study the human anatomy. It reeks of formalin, and while the room is well lit, the sight of rows and rows of bodies is unnerving for a non-med person like me. The first thing that entered my mind was, “I wonder if they all wake up and have a party every night?” I wouldn’t want to be locked inside a room like this for a night—I wouldn’t last five minutes.

Notice the two stairways? Before, female and male students were not allowed to walk up a flight of stairs together—why, I have no idea; ask Padre Damaso. Anyway, I asked Eugene, “So where will the gays and lesbians pass, in between?” Maybe we were all expected to fly up and down the building, using “Ding, ang bato!” and a lot of chutzpa.

Revealing Med

Last night I was highly judgmental.

Monday I got a text message from Eugene. His fellow med students in UST were holding Medisine, a short film competition. One of their judges backed out; could I step in? So last night I found myself together with two doctors and a music video director watching seven short movies in competition.

The theme was “Med Revealed”. For some reason the organizers decided to put an intermission after the first four entries. The last three entries, I thought, were also the strongest of the lot: Snel’s Anatomy, Pacencia and Medskool Bukol were all well-made, with a degree of polish that was pleasantly surprising. As I told the organizers when I met them before the start of the event, “You guys aren’t supposed to be doing this, and yet you are.” Either their professors aren’t giving them enough work to do, or they really love what they’re not supposed to be doing.

Pacencia was visually the most polished; no surprise that it took home best cinematography. The editing though could stand some sharper snipping here and there. And I do have a problem with the narrative flow in the end: the lead character gets stabbed, but in the next scene he is shown to have survived the attack, and his assailant lands in jail. The leap from attack to jail is a huge one, inviting questions from the viewer: What happened in between? How did he survive the attack? How did he get his assailant behind bars?

Medskool Bukol is a love story-musical about a girl who couldn’t choose between the best-friend-who-was-always-by-her-side and the hunk-she-admired-from-afar. It pulls off a neat hat trick, neatly stringing together several 70s OPM songs into a fairly coherent narrative (which I thought held together much better than the songs of Mamma Mia!, but then again this student production had less than one-fifth of the Abba oeuvre) that did not take itself too seriously, thus it entertained more than it could irritate (and believe me, with a plot premise and a playlist like that, it could easily teeter off into bad camp territory). Thankfully it stayed within the side of campy fun; it also helped that the audience was a most friendly one. Still, props for the smart, consistent choice of songs—as I exclaimed in surprise right after viewing, “70s OPM? You guys weren’t even born yet!”

I actually gave Snel’s Anatomy a perfect score of 100. (A disclosure: I gave pretty generous scores to all seven; I don’t think I gave a score less than 90.) Acting was spot-on hilarious (sure it’s caricature, but purposefully so). The script is also the wittiest of the lot; the title alone is a play on a character’s mispronunciation of the word “snail” and the author of an anatomy book (Richard Snell). The movie lovingly and inventively makes fun of a clerk’s miserable existence while showing us non-med students a glimpse of med life.

And that’s what I think a lot of those student online voters do not realize. In the judges’ score sheets, 30% goes to how the theme is shown; that’s quite a huge chunk. Medskool Bukol and Pacencia are movies set in med school; change the setting to, say, law school, and their plots can still work. Intrinsic in Snel’s Anatomy is the question: Why stay in med school, given all the hardship one has to endure? That the movie successfully shows the question and deftly answers it in an effectively touching (but not mawkish) resolution is a testament to writer-director Manny Espaldon’s talents—maybe he should ask himself why stay in med school when he could be making indie films or slaving in television.

* * * * *

Because all the noise and thunder last night concentrated on the last three entries, let me take this opportunity to give props to what I felt was an overlooked gem in the contest.

We’ve Only Just Begun is actually a great example of a well-made television plug, the kind that you see ABS-CBN and GMA do all the time. It uses actual video footage and still photographs edited to a song, interspersed by text onscreen and shots of actual med students and their dreams. The short mini-docu is a wonderful example of how truth, when told well, has more impact. The copy in particular is well-written, far more poetic than most of the scripts last night. The docu is not technically flawless though, and I cringe whenever I see too many different font types and sizes (a common flaw among graphic artist beginners). But it’s just too bad that it had to compete alongside fiction movies with traditional narrative structures—it’s apples to oranges.

Still, for me it had the most powerful impact that night. The audience may have laughed louder, cheered more and clapped heartily at the other entries, but the effect of We’ve Only Just Begun is quieter and digs deeper. Perhaps for many of the med students in the audience, the message is something that they’ve heard once too often. But for an outsider like me, by the end of the video I felt like giving a standing ovation to all those med students slogging it out for several merciless years just so that they can make a difference.

Now that’s med revealed.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Post-Awards Podcast

(the “conversation piece” trophy)

As promised: presenting the podcast that Migs, Gibbs and I recorded after the 2008 Philippine Blog Awards. You can click here or click on “The McVie Show In Stereo” link on the left.

Monday, September 22, 2008

At The 2008 Phil. Blog Awards

Held at One Esplanade last night, 21 September 2008. Congrats to Cokskiblue for winning in the videocast/podcast division. Congrats also to Gibbs for winning in the culture and arts division; that’s one nifty birthday gift for him (happy birthday, sis!) today. I wanted Misterhubs to win in the personal blog; he asked me if I could accept it on his behalf should he win (he couldn’t make it ‘cuz he was out on a date with the Hubby-wubby—now that’s an excuse not to attend an awards night, hehehe). I even mapped out a short but sweet thank you speech on his behalf, but with 36 awards to be given that night, the organizers rightfully did away with speeches—except for the keynote speech of Mar Roxas (himself a blogger; see pic above) and the closing one from Jayvee Fernandez.

Short but sweet podcast to follow. Pramis!

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Clap If You Like The Fabcasters!

The Fabcasters are finalists in the 2008 Philippine Blog Awards, in the category of Best Blog: Videocast/Podcast. But if you click on the link, you will see “The McVie Show, Season Seven” in the list.

How’s that?

It’s like this. Unfortunately the Fabcasts aren’t posted in just one site. After I produce them, I send each and every Fabcaster a copy, so that they have the option to post the Fabcasts on their own sites. Normally I wait for Migs to post it in Manila Gay Guy before I post it in The McVie Show. (I do that for two reasons: [1] It’s out of deference to our humble podcast beginnings, when it was just Migs, Gibbs and me, collectively known then as the Troikasters. Back then our podcasts were posted only on MGG. [2] Of the Fabcasters’ sites, MGG has the most hits; ergo, it makes sense to debut the Fabcast there.) However, when AJ (and apparently Poyt too, in a separate effort according to her) nominated the Fabcasters, he submitted my site. I submitted the Danton Remoto interview and the Tenchu/long-distance-relationships Fabcasts. Thus you see “The McVie Show” on the list.

Needless to say, what’s being considered is not my blog (I never submitted any of my blog entries) but our Fabcasts.

I’m thrilled that the Fabcasters are with such great company: “The Dan & Rye Show”, “Cokskiblue” and “Funny Is The New Sexy” are part of the list.

Also, congratulations to Gibbs Cadiz. His is nominated for Best Blog under the “Culture and Arts” category.

I really don’t know how the voting goes, and frankly I don’t care. Right now, I’m more than happy to just be grinning from ear to ear.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

No Doubt Gwen Stefani Isn’t In This

Wanna get a nosebleed from all that Acting with a capital “A”? No doubt you’ll get one when this comes out:

New KFC TVC Is Out!

A gay friend sent me an SMS about it, saying it was hilarious. The Bakla Review’d it, giving it a B+. I love it for its casting and acting. Sure, the guy who squealed makes an excuse in the end (“Nabigla lang ako. Sarap kasi ng shrimp!”), but for me that sounds suspiciously like Agency giving in to Client’s request of, “Can we have the product benefit mentioned somewhere in the copy?” Besides, he doesn’t really deny anything, right?

Now, where oh where can I find an office where all the guys are that cute and gay-friendly?! (Oo, komersyal nga ito!)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

McVie’s “On Repeat Play” Of The Moment

Some think that with the introduction of the “shuffle” feature in the iPod (and other mp3 players), the notion of listening to the tracks of an album in sequence is as Jurassic as a T-rex. Well, dinosaurs still fascinate a lot of folks, including Steven Spielberg and me.

Case in point: David Byrne and Brian Eno. The collaboration of the former lead singer of Talking Heads and the producer of seminal works by such 80s acts like U2, Devo and Ultravox prove to be an irresistible mix for someone whose musical tastes were heavily influenced by the sound of that decade. The album is Everything That Happens Will Happen Today, and there is joy in listening to the songs in sequence.

From the wistful “Home” that opens the album to the elegiac “The Lighthouse” that closes it, Byrne and Eno craft a musical soundscape that evokes a past era yet pitched perfectly in the present. The album’s tracks are not as obviously “programmed” as Coldplay’s Viva La Vida or Death And All His Friends (another Eno co-production), but heard one after the other they gradually build up to an elegant majesty, the kind that makes one wistful once the last strains of the last cut fades out.

I particularly love the slower-tempo tracks, including “My Big Nurse” (country by way of Eno), “The River” (an elegant round song that flows just like, well, you know), “One Fine Day” (its mournful chorus will stick in your head upon first hearing) and the title track with its ending chorus that reaches up in redemption, something I never thought Byrne had in him during his Head days. In the website, both men admitted that the sound they eventually created skewed towards a “gospel-folk-electronic” direction, and those four songs are standout favorites.

The obvious breakout hit is “Strange Overtones” which combines Eno’s mastery of ambient structure with Byrne’s more playful songwriting that’s reminiscent of Talking Heads. And while Byrne acknowledges that “this groove is out of fashion / these beats are 20 years old”, one can’t help but marvel at how great the Byrne-Eno collaboration still sounds today. They may claim to be out of fashion, but they can still make it happen today.

Go to to find out more and listen to streaming music.

Kiss Off

This morning I entered the gym sauna to find MF there. (Remember the Michael Flores kinda-look-alike whom I met in the sauna, the one with the murdered boyfriend-in-secret? Click here to refresh your memory.) He looked glad to see me; I on the other hand was not in any mood for anything.

After a bit of chit-chat (“Did you hear? Someone complained about a gay member doing stuff inside the steam room, so the gay member is now banned from the premises.”), he looked at me and said, “May I kiss you?”

“Sorry,” I said, “but I’m not in the mood.” That was true. “I was just in the bathhouse last night.” That I made up. Truth is, I felt that a reasonable excuse like “I was in the bathhouse” wouldn’t make him feel too rejected at nine in the morning. I see no reason to be unnecessarily unkind that early in the day.

“Ah I see,” he said. So he asked me about the bathhouse. We chatted about it for a while. All this time I kept my towel firmly in place around my waist.

He ran out of questions to ask. He stood up, fixed his towel around his waist (making sure he offered me a view of his privates in what I perceived to be a last-ditch attempt to excite me) and announced, “I’m going to take a shower now. I’ve stayed too long in here already.”

“Sure, sure,” I said.

He suddenly leaned towards me and said, “May I kiss you?” and planted his lips on mine.

Generally I’m an understanding guy. And I do believe we all make judgment calls. No one is truly non-judgmental; they either just withhold final judgment for the moment, or they judge but with a perceptive understanding that people can and do change.

Right there and then, with his lips pressed against mine and his tongue pushing its way inside my mouth, I decided he had emotional needs that I cannot give him. But I still didn’t feel the need to be unkind. So I returned his kiss, but I broke it off first.

He smiled and whispered, “I missed that kiss.” Ooo-kay! Warning bells are ringing, spidey senses tingling.

He continued, “You were my first kiss since _______.” Oh good lord, now he’s invoking the name of his dead ex.

Then he said, “Which reminds me, it’ll be his birthday on the 20th! And it’ll be mine on the 25th.” And his point of telling me his birthday is… wait, lemme guess, gee I wonder why?

“Advanced happy birthday,” I said, in a manner that I hoped was cordial enough without sounding too friendly or too dismissive.

“See you,” he leaned over one more time and kissed me on the lips, a little longer and more passionately. This time I let him be the one to break it off.

As he opened the sauna door, he turned to me and repeated, “I missed that kiss.” A pause. “Really.” Then he stepped out and shut the door gently.

Alone in the heat and semi-darkness of the sauna I muttered, “Well, I didn’t. Really.” to no one in particular.

(Except perhaps the viewers of The McVie Show.)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Almula Night

The thumping sounds of Bed greeted me, and I parted the curtains expecting to see the usual Friday-sized crowd—not as plenty as Saturday, but jumping just the same. Lo and behold, the dance ramp was already crammed with gyrating bodies, and a collective yell or two would reverberate from them. Wow! I knew that guest DJ Jomel Carpela (a Pinoy who now spins for Volume in HongKong and knows Dan & Rye—shout out!) was spinning, but I never thought that a guest DJ was enough to bring in a crowd of this size.

I quickly plowed my way through the undulating crowd to the side of the DJ booth. I saw DJs Toy and Brian and greeted them with a hug. Brian, sporting an Abu Sayaffish scarf and a fabulous bag (don’t ask me about bags, I just know he sports only fabulous ones, the kind whose price tag can feed a small orphanage), leaned close to my ear and shouted, “Happy ALMULA! Happy ALMULA!”

I guess his rebel-esque scarf made his greeting sound like he was celebrating a corruption of the Ramadan.

“What?!” I shouted back, with matching exaggerated quizzical expression on my face to make sure he got my puzzlement. (In Bed, communication is better when done with an audio-video lock. Of course the best form of Bed communication is still body language; let your eyes—and fingers and lips and tongue—do the talking.)

“Happy ALMULA!” he shouted again, as if saying something repeatedly will explain things clearer. Obviously Brian was enjoying my cluelessness.

“AL-MU-LA,” he said, enunciating each syllable. “The ALabang-MUntinlupa-LAguna Clan of Guys4Men!” he finished his explanation with a flourish. His eyes were twinkling with the unspoken message: Fresh meat for you to take home and eat!




I looked around. Sure, there were kids (hey, at my age, majority of those who go to Bed are kids!), faces and some shirtless bodies whom I was seeing for the first time. Not that I have a photographic memory, mind you. But when you visit a place often, you instinctively develop a sixth sense for the familiar as well as the fresh faces. And in such places, fresh equals premium. And there were quite a few premium cuts in the crowd.

But I turned to Brian and said, “Oh no. No hook-ups for me tonight.”

“What?!” Taken aback, Brian paused from his dancing. “Why?!”

I smiled my widest and said, “Mahal ang toll fees ng Skyway eh!”

Brian’s hysterical laughter rose above the thumping music.

For You Nigahiga Fans

Because I am a fan
of Nigahiga’s Ryan and Sean,
their movie trailer I will post—
it’s gonna be bigger than Ghost!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

From The Mouth Of Babes

We attended this children’s party in Bulacan. My cousin’s first-born celebrated his first birthday, so it was a major bash. They even hired a magician to entertain the kids. Part of the magician’s act to warm up the audience of unruly, hyperactive kids was to ask them some questions.

Magician: “O mga kids, bakit tayo nandito?”

Kid 1: “Para kumain!”

Magician: (after momentarily being thrown off-guard) “At pagkatapos kumain, ano’ng susunod?!”

Kid 2: “Balot!”

Much later, the magician tried to impress his audience with a series of magic tricks with a deck of cards. Because the tricks required sleight of hand, the magician decided to impress the kids.

Magician: “Kids, para saan ang malilikot na daliri?”

Kid 3: “Sa Walter Mart!”

I tell you, those kids were cute but what are their parents teaching them?

Are You A Lemon Or A Raspberry?

Had a great time at fellow Fabcasters’ AJ / Gibbs / Migs concelebrated birthday bash (now that’s gay bashing!) last night.

I immediately clicked with Migs’ ex-officemate (who insists she’s also an ex-fag hag) and his current officemates (who I’m assuming are all proudly out in the workplace, judging from their stories). What sealed the deal for me was when we bonded over the first five books of the Old Testament (in order: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy) and their collective name (the Pentateuch).

Don’t ask.

Anyway, I got from them this very interesting test. We all know that no gaydar is 100% accurate. But they stumbled upon an intriguing experiment to determine if a guy is gay or not.

Ladies and gentlemen, presenting: “Gay Or No Gay?!” (delivered ala-Kris Aquino in her trademark malapit na akong mamaos manner)

They stumbled upon it when they were ordering in this Italian restaurant, where their iced tea comes in two flavors. So whenever someone ordered iced tea, the waitress would patiently ask, “Sir, lemon or raspberry?” Invariably all the gay guys chose the raspberry flavor.

After hearing the origins of the “Gay Or No Gay?!” test, I immediately put it to a test. And lo and behold, almost all chose the raspberry flavor. Only two gay guys chose lemon, and one of them was Corporate Closet. I cornered CC to probe his answer further.

“So why did you choose raspberry?” I asked CC, after I explained to him all about the test.

“Well you see, I was thinking kasi na here in the Philippines, it will be difficult for a manufacturer to get the taste of raspberry right,” he explained.

In fairness ang sagot ng lola natin!

“Oh!” I said. “You approached the question like a manufacturer, not a consumer.”

“Yes,” he replied.

“So let’s change the question,” I pushed on. “Assuming that the manufacturer is a trusted company and that they got the flavor of raspberry down pat, what would you choose?”

CC thought for a moment. “I think I’d still choose the lemon,” he said, with a giggle.

I rolled my eyes and walked off to smoke.

How about “Ploggers”? Or “Bloggots”?

I received the following in my comments section. It was posted by Yffar, and it’s about a gay blogger’s community:

* * * * *

Proposed Names:
A. Pink Bloggers Community
B. The Pink Chronicles
C. Rainbow Blogs Philippines
D. Other suggested names that may arise

To create a united community of Filipino LGBT Bloggers, that may act as an organization for aspiring LGBT writers and hone their skills by guiding , recognizing their works, and inspiring them to pursue an inner motivation for blogging whether it’s personal, informative or other reasons why they created their blog.

a. Making a LGBT Bloggers Directory
b. Providing Weekly Reviews
c. Creating a weekly/ Monthly Award
d. Organizing a Monthly/Weekly chat conference
e. Gathering in an Annual/ Quarterly Eyeball
f. Participating in LGBT Advocacies

Proposed Committees:
a. Marketing and Networking. A separate committee shall search for potential blogs that can join the community and communicate with possible allies such as organizations, publications, etc. that may help in pursuing the goals of the said community.

b. Membership. A committee shall handle possible members of the community and review the contents of the blog whether it is related to the LGBT category or not. Upon approval of the committee, the blog shall now be placed in the Directory.

c. Reviews. A committee will have to conduct weekly reviews on a certain blog about the good features of the blog. Negative feedbacks to improve the blog shall not be posted on the review, it will be discussed in a private manner such as a personal mail to the author by the reviewer. The committee must ensure that all blogs shall be given a review. A member of the committee shall not create a review of his own blog.
d. Events. The committee shall create monthly events that will focus on the interactions between memb ers of the community. Such activities may be held online, via chat/conference, or in a general assembly/ eyeball gathering.

e. Awards. This committee shall conduct a surveys/poll sor other contest s that may recognize the LGBT blogger and his site, e.g. Pink Blog of the Week, or annual LGBT Blog Awards. The committee must have no bias in giving out awards.

f. Web Masters. This committee shall be composed of the committee heads of each team that may discuss on the overall design of the website, input necessary information, create posts, and act as the executive heads of the said community.

g. Other committees shall be created and some proposed above may be dissolved depending on the actual need of the community.

a. As a part of the LGBT community, ethical principles must be upheld and violators of the community rules shall cause a member’s blog be out of the directory and he/she will be removed as a member of the said community. Possible violations: Plagiarism, Libel, etc.
b. It will be the discretion of the committee heads if they will include a blog that contains pornography or simple nudity. Proper judgment shall be applied.
c. Other provisions that might arise shall be discussed upon the completion of the said community.

Bloggers that agreed on the creation of the community:
a. Kiks of ABBA
b. Lyka Bergen of The Lyka Bergen Show
c. Mrs J of The Reigning Mizis
d. Jericho of Kape’t Yosi
e. Wilberchie of Wilberchie’s World
f. Yffar of The Rainbow Halohalo Project
g. other bloggers are all welcome to help in building this new community.

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Friday, September 12, 2008

Hahahappy Weekend

One humorist I really envy is David Sedaris. While I do find that reading his essays one after the other gets tedious for me, I cannot deny that when an essay of his flies, it really goes through the roof. Plus he’s rich because of his humorous essays, while my blog can’t even muster anything beyond US$0.01 after almost a year of online ads.

I stumbled upon this video in YouTube—it’s David reading his essay on “Letterman”—and I thought I’d share it with you. That, and the fact that I don’t have a Friday episode yet and it’s almost 8pm.

Have a happy weekend, folks!

Thursday, September 11, 2008


My cellphone rang. It was P.

“Friend!” His voice was pitched higher than usual. Given that his regular tone of voice is just several notches lower than a falsetto, I’m surprised I didn’t mistake him for a Bee Gee. I could tell he was holding back his palpable excitement.

“O, what?” I replied.

“Friend! I. Have. Two. Tickets. To. The. Cosmo. Bachelor. Bash.” He paused for a giggle. “Wanna go?”

My knee-jerk been-there-been-that reaction kicked in. Parading half-naked men again? Look but no touch? Ho-hum.

“Uhm, when is this?” I asked.

“To-niiight,” and he giggled again.

Aha! I had my truthful excuse: “Friend, sorry I can’t. We have OT work tonight.”

“Aaaaaaahhh… okaaaay,” P said, not sounding a wee bit disappointed. Obviously he was going to the event, McVie or no McVie. This must be some event, I thought.

And then it hit me.

“Wait! Isn’t this the one where it’s only for a female audience?” I asked.

P giggled yet again. “Hihihi. Yeeeeeees.”

“But how did you…?” I didn’t finish my question.

“Basta, hihihi,” P replied. “Let’s just say I have my sources, hihihihi.” He sounded like a schoolgirl who figured out for the first time how to finger her clitoris.

Oh well, that still didn’t change my mind (I mean, I’m someone who actually declined a VIP pass to the Eraserheads reunion concert). “Basta friend, if the security guards grope you and find out you have a bulge, gudlak to you!”

And P giggled some more.

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Bed Riddance

Growing up in a 1-storey bungalow in a middle class village in Marikina, I used to share a bed with my older brother until we were about 5 or 6 years old. That’s when our parents decided it’s time we slept in our own beds. I got used to having my own space, where I could toss and turn and was not bothered by anyone beside me.

Several years ago when I was seeing someone, I’d spend the weekend at his place. His was a single bed, but we’d snuggle and fit comfortably in it. He was a good person, and his mom even liked me a lot. But after several weeks of seeing him, I began wondering where we were headed. However I pushed all questions to the back of my mind.

One evening I suddenly woke up in the middle of the night. To my right, his back was towards me, and to my left was the wall; I was pinned in between. This was nothing new; he always took the outer side of the bed (maybe to make sure that he—rather than I—would fall off the bed, if ever). And yet I had this overwhelming need to push him away. I needed space. I couldn’t move.

And that’s when I decided I had to tell him soonest that things weren’t working out between us.

And we moved on.

* * * * *

We met in Bed. And we ended up in his bed. It was queen-size (how fitting) so there was lots of room to flip and tumble. And we slept comfortably in each other’s arms.

The next morning, with his head much clearer without the alcohol, he realized we moved in the same industry circles, possibly going after the same business opportunities. He never returned my text messages. I guess I was too close for comfort.

And we moved on.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Hang Up

Last week I heard that a member of a college theater group committed suicide. Bit by bit I pieced together information about the death—how (he hanged himself), when (two Sundays ago), where (in their garage) and possibly why (a recent break-up seemed like the straw that broke the camel’s back). But no one told me who; I guess they all assumed I knew. So I was quite shocked when I finally found out; I personally knew him, though I wasn’t that close to him.

This morning I remembered he was in my Facebook. Before his Facebook’s page loaded, I panicked for a second: What if his status read something, uhm… scary? But his status line was blank. How fitting.

A friend wrote on his wall: “bakit naman baby boy”. But he left no note that fateful Sunday. Besides, questions like “Why?” will never have a sufficient answer.

* * * * *

P.S. – Conrado de Quiros writes about the tragedy. Click here to read.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Screech To A Halt

I knew that day would come. I already had a plan in mind, what to do in case it happened. Still nothing prepared me for it: a guy coming up to me, looking closely into my face and asking, “Are you McVie?”

It’s especially unnerving, when a few minutes earlier I was just inviting him for a threesome.

It’s a good thing my mental switch kicked in seconds afterwards; there was no time for awkward “Oh-uhm-errr-ahhhh’s” to escape from my lips. Instead, I thanked him and interviewed him as to how he stumbled upon The McVie Show.

Afterwards when I told my friend—the one-third of the threesome—about the meeting, he had to cover his mouth with his hand to keep his laughter from disturbing the “thrill is in silence” atmosphere of the bathhouse.

Watch This!

Okay, while I’m busy and unable to make new episodes for The McVie Show, go ahead and watch this. I bet you won’t be able to watch it just once. Click here or copy-and-paste the following on your browser:

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

“What Are Beaches For, But To Beach With Other Beaches!”

Last night my friend E invited me to watch the Search for Mister International Philippines 2008. He had an extra ticket. I was never a fan of beauty contests—male or female—and ogling men in skimpy trunks have lost much of their appeal to me (I prefer a more active role, hehehe). But because there was a veneer of seriousness to this competition, and I owe E a gimmik night, I agreed.

Though the show started late (which was not surprising), the staging was paced briskly and with no glaring major hitches (which was a pleasant surprise).

* * * * *

At the gate the ushers noticed that we were holding “for media” tickets. So they placed us in the reserved seating area in the center block. While waiting for the show to start, E and I looked around us. There seemed to be uniformity in the crowd, in terms of age and “look”. A couple or so guests distinguished themselves by flaunting the prerequisite accessory to such an event—a hunkylicious boy toy in tow. E and I decided to amuse ourselves. One guy’s hunk-ccessory in particular caught our eye; he was wearing a predominantly yellow t-shirt with blue and red accents. He and his date sat several rows ahead of us.

E: Friend, look at that guy’s date. He looks like he just came from Worlds of Fun.

McVie: He asked his manager if he could leave work early.

Then both of us noticed the same thing at the same time.

E: Friend, did you see…

McVie: …the pants he’s wearing…

E: …looks like…

McVie: …I think he really IS wearing…

The hunk-ccessory stood up from his seat to make way for someone. E and I looked at each other, wide-eyed.

Both: …Fitness First pants?!

E: Friend, trainor?!

McVie: Friend, staff.

Both of us stifled our laughter.

McVie: In fairness, he works hard for the money. Imagine, two jobs! (I noticed his date inched closer to him.) Wait, make it three.

And then the event started.

Monday, September 01, 2008


The Miss-ing Fabcast. Click and find out for yourself.