Wednesday, July 31, 2002

Kitty Power

Am typing here in front of the computer with little Yzma grooming himself in my lap. I have to admit, I am really getting attached to the little bugger, and I will miss him when I bring him back to Nelz's place. If I decide to actually bring him back, that is! hahahahahaha! (Just kidding love! For the most part.)

But seriously, when you do take custody again, you really should refrain from letting Yzma frolick around outside your apartment. This kitty is way too curious for his own good, and quite frankly he's not quick enough or strong enough to escape any trouble he's likely to get into.

Driving home from work today I had to avert my eyes from the road as I saw the splattered remains of what could have only been a little kitten, too adventurous for comfort and didn't comprehend yet that oncoming cars are something to be avoided. The first thing that went through my head as I drove by the corpse was: "That could have been Yzma"

Please, Nelz. Keep him in until he's older. Otherwise, let him stay here with me for now.

Finding Your Own Voice

I checked out Renaissance Girl's blog yesterday; the only one that ended up being featured in 2bU!. (I hope The Nelz Journal does get it's own feature, as Jason from PDI said it would) She is articulate, witty, entertaining and at times, downright vicious. I stayed up past midnight going through her archives, and it's not an exagerration to say that she could probably carry a weekly column in a newspaper.

Her appeal is different from Nelz's as she comes from a different place. Her temper, judging from some of her posts, is legendary, and I wouldn't want to piss her off, if we ever got the chance to meet. How she ripped into an idiotic ex-lover who misconstrued a request to go out for coffee as a desire to have an affair was utterly delicious. The way she masterfully set it all up describing her history with said idiot and then her reply to his unwanted advances has the effect of making you cheer for her; as who among us hasn't wished for the opportunity to just rip apart that one person who turned you inside-out emotionally and gave nothing in return?

Her style is similar to that of Jessica Zafra's in the sense that she can be bitchy when she wants to, but unlike the aforementioned Queen of Sass, she is also capable of posts that can be unabashedly sentimental. It made me wonder about my own 'style'. Nelz has his own. So does Renaissance Girl. I eventually would like to imbue this blog with my own personality, much like everything else that I get my hands on. As far as where my writing is headed, so far this is what I'm pretty sure of:

- I'm nowhere near as good at being sarcastic and vicious as RG and Nelz can be, nor do I think I'd want to. The whole "I've Got Attitude" thing is a bit too popular, and being the natural deviant that I am, I of course move in the opposite direction.

- I don't think I'll be quite as open as Nelz is detailing some of his more intimate moments. As I've said, I don't believe in hiding anything, but at the same time I don't believe in exhibitionism either.

- I'd like to imbue this column with humor, as I tend try to be funny in real life (operative term here is try). I have to watch out for trying too hard, because no one in the history of mankind who has described himself as 'funny' or 'irreverent' ends up actually being such.

- In that vein, if there is anyone that I would end up following, it would probably be Conan O'Brien, the King of self-deprecating humor. Rather that trashing other people, he gets most of his laughs playing up his natural dork-dom. He's also one of the funniest, hardest-working people in entertainment and a heck of a nice guy as well. Now all I have to do is figure out how to work in a reference to a masturbating bear.

- My posts will be filled with lots and lots and lots of words. The Stephen King of Blogs.

- My posts will have several errors and will require numerous updates to correct, since I'm not a very good editor yet and tend to let misstakes slip through.

Right now, I'm on the 'still getting my bearings' stage, learning the ropes and feeling everything out before I get comfortable. I guess the thing to do now is just keep writing.

So there you go.

Monday, July 29, 2002


When I came out, I promised myself that I wouldn't EVER be ashamed of being gay.

It's tricky of course, striking a balance between being okay with who you are and being malaswa, being all in people's faces about it. We hold hands in the car, but not in public. And before any acts of affection, I can't help darting my eyes around to see if it's still 'safe'; not from shame of being gay but more out of fear of becoming that disgustingly "cute couple" -- gay or straight-- that is sooooooo lovey-dovey to the point of exhibitionism.

When Nelz asked me if I was okay with being mentioned in the (now-delayed) 2bU! article on his blog, knowing that it would appear nationwide, I said go for it, because if I appear to be not okay with my sexuality, how can I convince anyone else that it is? I guess I've been up-front about it, largely on principle.

The problem is that somewhere along the way I forgot that while I've adopted a policy of not hiding anything, not everyone shares that same view. They're not be hiding anything, they just want to preserve their privacy over what is a very public forum. I've made the mistake of mentioning some names here without considering the consequences of my action. And my words -- complementary or no -- should have gone through the proper channels before being posted online.

The only positive I can get out of this is that I learned this particular lesson with a friend, and didn't commit this trespass against someone less forgiving. Again, I would like to publicly apologize. it won't happen again.

Hey, Payday today! :)

Sunday, July 28, 2002

Peace in Me
by Ian Carandang, all rights reserved

Baby it's all right
I'll be fine you see
Done my share of getting drunk
leaned-on shoulders and of crying all my tears

Maybe this is how
It's supposed to feel
When you love someone to the point of no return
'Cause I've never felt emotions quite this real

Refrain I
And I am not bitter
That you turned me down
You aren't obligated
To return the love I offered back to me
Moving on feels so sweet
Now that I let you go and found my peace in me

Found my peace in me

Yes I will admit
That I have been burned
But what I have lost is far
Outweighed by all the things that I have learned

Just another part in my
Journey to complete
From the person that I am right now
To the person that I know I'm going to be

Refrain II
And I am not jaded
I've looked into myself and I have found
It's not that complicated
It's simply that we weren't meant to be
The one at fault was neither you nor me
And accepting that's what finally set me free

Finally set me free

And I want you to know
I'm filled with love, love that transcends
Still as deep but changed
From intimates into friends
I would wonder how I'd find
Out it was real or true at all
Now I know what it's like
Because I've already, already fallen

And I can say

Refrain III
That I am not bitter
That you turned me down
And I am not jaded
I've looked into myself and I have found
It's not that complicated
It's simply that we weren't meant to be
And you aren't obligated
To return the love I offered back to me
The one at fault was neither you nor me
Accepting that's what finally set me free
Now that I let you go and found my peace in me

Found my peace in me

And it feels so sweet

Coming Out

A while back in October, I met this guy. He was outgoing, confident, a little wierd, and utterly unlike anything I had come to expect from a gay person. Up until this point, I had resigned myself to the notion that most gay people in this country were limp-wristed hairdresser-types who I would never be attracted to (which shows how in touch I was with the gay populace at the time). So when I found out that this guy was gay, a part of me was switched on: Hey, here's someone I could actually like!. he wasn't the best-looking guy in the room, but at that time, it didn't matter to me.

He was the first person I ever came out to, and in the process, came out to myself. That was the most important part; finally acknowledging my sexuality as such and not some option or secret feeling that I could lock away. Talking with him felt wonderful, and for the next five months, I found myself falling in love with him.

Alas, things were not to be. After first agreeing to try things out, he called it off before things even got off the ground. I was devastated. I tried being friends with him, in the hopes of showing him how much I cared for him and how good we could be together.

Then he told me he was going after a girl.

All the hopes that I had been clinging to for the past five months -- that he would be with me if I was just strong enough, if I was just patient enough, if I loved him enough -- were ripped away in an instant. It was like a priest being given incontrovertible proof that God didn't exist.

For a while after that, I don't know how long, it was like I was walking in a fog. I barely ate, I couldn't concentrate at work. My friends became my well-worn shoulder for me to cry on and pour my heart out to, over and over again. I kept wondering, asking myself what I could have done differently? Was it me? What if I had done this instead of that? I thought I had finally met someone that would have been worth coming out for; to face the stigma and prejudice associated with being gay, and I was left with nothing. The voices inside were threatening to drive me mad.

The one night, I was watching Will and Grace, where the titular characters were asked to read vows for their friends' gay wedding. Most of it I glossed over, but the final passages called out to me, as if it was meant to be heard by me at that particular time:

I'm complete within myself
everything I really need I already have
And whatever I don't have will come to me when I am ready to receive

At that moment, I got it. The words I needed to tell myself. That as hard as everything was, I had everything that I really needed. And whatever I didn't have -- in this case, love -- would come to me, when I was ready. When I was a complete person.

Charmaine told me pretty much the same thing, as I sat there with her and Adam in Fullhouse at Katipunan, over Chicken Crepes and buttered rice, as I cried for the first time in front of them. No sobbing, just tears falling unbidden from my eyes as I tried to verbalize how much pain I was feeling. She told me to remember that above all else, walang nawala sa akin. Because I had finally learned how to Love.

Love for real. Unconditionally. Blindly. Without asking for anything in return, and without judging by appearances. She was right. Up until that point, I had courted, I had crushes, but nothing this intense, nothing that had driven me to do the things that I had done (or almost did) for this person.

You know that old scene in movies and television, where the young lover asks the experienced older friend how you know when it's really love, and the friend says: "You just know". I always thought that was just a silly cliche, but you know what? It's totally true. There's no way for you to really know, until you know.

Knowing that I was capable of love made the pain a little lighter. After the hurt subsided, as all hurts eventually do, I went back to the task of living my life: I threw myself into my work and my hobbies. I joined the choir, and wrote three songs about the entire experience in its various stages. I worked towards the goal of making me Complete Unto Myself. I did good, not in the hopes of garnering 'karma' points towards earning a boyfriend, but for myself. Whether or not I'd meet someone, I had to be comfortable with myself. Being alone, at least for a while, was a very real possibility, and I had to be okay with that.

There was a bit of Serendipity at work that night when I saw that show, and I never really forgot that episode and what it did for me.
So I was pleased when I saw the same episode being re-aired, I rushed to tape it and transcribe the vows in its' entirety:

When I'm feeling like there's no love coming to me
And I have no love to give
When I'm feeling separated from the world
And cut off from myself
When I'm feeling annoyed by every little thing
Because i'm not getting what I want,
I'll remember that there is an infinite amount of love available to me
And I'll see it in you.
I'll remember that I'm complete within myself
So I'll never have to look to you to complete me
And most of all:
I'll remember that everything I really need I already have
And whatever I don't have will come to me when I am ready to receive.

And you did.

Saturday, July 27, 2002


My upper lip has shrunk to almost normal. Go me. :)

Struck Down

For those of you wondering why I haven't posted anything lately (all three of you) I've been suffering a pair of oral maladies: namely, a hyperallergenic reaction to my acne medication on my upper lip, causing it to swell and making me look like an extra from AMISTAD, and a singaw on my lower lip, which is rather painful, as all singaws are. Lovely, no? The effects are more embarassing than painful since there is no WAY I am going outside in this condition. The swelling has actually gone down since the medication the doc prescribed me, so I'm just going to ride this out.

I was supposed to go to Alabang Town Center with 3/5ths of Where's Joe?: Adam, Charmaine and Cedric. We were planning to watch Cynthia Alexander, back from her vacation in Scotland. Watching a Cynthia gig is always an amazing experience; she and her group are all consummate musicians and if you are a musician yourself, you cannot help but be impressed by them.

After the show, we were planning to eat dinner at Herc's, an italian restaurant that I sorely miss ever since it closed its' branch next to Starbuck's Ortigas. Nelz and I were in Alabang the other week and stumbled upon this branch and its too-good-to-be-true offer for all you can eat and drink for P120. Assuming the quality hasn't gone down since the last time I ate there, how can you beat a deal like that?

Anyhoo, all that planning for naught. Spent the entire Saturday at home, sleeping the afternoon away and on the computer playing PC games and surfing all night. (Thank god for Warcraft 3) While it was fun, it was not the way I would have wished to spend the weekend, I assure you.

As Nelz would say: Fleh.

Tuesday, July 23, 2002

Welcome to IMODO.COM.


Tinkered around with the coding of my blog template. Want to make it more distinctive, being the egomaniac-slash-control freak that I am. Bwahahahahahahahaha!!

I used to be pretty good at this in College. One of the better ones in the class, if I do say so myself. Just never felt the need or the desire to pursue it. Must admit that it IS fun. *Celine Dion mode* it's all coming back to me noooowwwwww.......

Go me!

Getting Gigs

Finally called Big Sky Mind last night after nearly talking myself out of it again (I really must do something about my predilection for putting things off). Talked to Cindi (Michelle malong's sister, who is Yce's friend). magkilala naman kami since I (used to) go there a lot.

She said her schedule was filled right now, but I told her that's okay. I wanted to be paired up with either Imago or Itchyworms!, so at least magkilala kami. The 'worms just played last friday night, so it looks like a front-act for Imago looms in our future. Which is just fine with me, since out of all my band-barkada (Fatal Posporos, Twisted Halo, Imago, Itchyworms, Sugar Free) Imago seems to be the band that Nelz likes the best.

Along with that, I also chatted with Jay Salas, manager of Strawberry Fields and the organizer of the "Tangina Its Monday" show, held in Kafe the other night. he told me that they are looking for up-and-coming bands (along with Strawberry Fields, of course) so Where's Joe? looks to be right up their alley. He looked amenable to let us play, so here's keeping my fingers crossed. Must keep in touch with him and not let him forget us.

During that night, I talked with Ebe (the heart-cum-manager of Sugar Free) and we discussed how difficult it is to manage a band, let alone be a part of it at the same time. You have to be tireless in looking for and cultivating connections, not bashful about promoting yourself and your band, and you have to do the rounds of shows to see prospective places for your band to play next. On it's own, it's fricking exhausting. On top of THAT, trying to find the time to let your inspiration show through so you can write more songs...... bleah.

Rody (of Summitstar) mentioned that he's playing at Green Planet, fronting for Makiling Ensemble. I know that envy of someone else's success usually means an insecurity of one's own lack of it, and that I like to think I'm above that. despite that however, I couldn't help feeling a tiny bit green when I heard about it, since Green Planet is one place I would dearly like to play in for personal reasons: I took Nelz there on our very first date, on my birthday no less.

Rody is a bit of a wonder, actually. Talent-wise, he is questionable. And he's not the best-looking guy in the room either. But what he has, more than anyone I've ever met in the band scene, is Desire. As far back as I knew him, he was out there at all the shows, making friends, fostering connections. Trying to make things happen with the Lemonskrews, quite possibly the most amateurish band I've ever had the pleasure of listening to.

I remember my Worst Gig: it was the FA Chirstmas Party after the Lantern Parade in my senior year. That year I had worn a Beast Costume which while accurate, I had failed to take into accout how fricking HOT it was inside that thing. I had put in plenty of padding to mimic Beast's bulk, and in the process had made a walking sauna. Halfway through the parade I had to lie down and remove half of it lest I collapse in heat exhaustion.

Anyway, that night, as winded as I was, we played "It's The End of the World as We Know It" by R.E.M. signifying the turn of the Millennium. It was Horrible. Just horrible. I was still very lazy with the guitar, preferring to rely on others to carry me. Joe was still very green. And we barely practiced. I messed up chords all over, and to make things a TOTAL disaster, the power cut off mid song. Total apathy. Like the audience was relieved that it was over, but were too polite to clap. But they sure as HELL weren't asking for an encore.

And what I did? I dunno, pride na lang yan, because the show must go on, we repeated the song and finished it. Dammit, if I'm going to finish dead last, at least I'm going to FINISH. Myles was livid that night, barely able to contain his frustration. And my anger at myself was even worse. I knew that our disaster of a gig was fodder for conversation and ridicule behind our backs.

I could have quit right there, but I didn't. In fact, it was the wake-up call I needed that I could rely on no one but myself if I had any hope of taking this where I wanted it to go. Matigas ulo e. The Fire.

And look where we are now. Arguably further along and closer to my -- our -- dream than we have ever been. I can look people in the eye and ask for a front act gig without looking embarassed, because I know we're worth it. The Fire.

Rody's got The Fire. And despite his lack of talent, and his penchant for self-promotion which sometimes borders on annoying, I respect and admire him for it. He knows what he wants, and he's going to do whatever it takes to get there. And now he's playing at Green Planet.

I'm gonna play there too. Soon.


Nelz went home coughing last night. I had choir practice and we agreed that we weren't gonna see each other Tuesday. When I read about his health on his blog however, I couldn't help feeling guilty.

Yes, I know you've been talking care of yourself way before I came into the picture; and we DID just discuss the other night that sometimes we need time to ourselves just to reconnect. I totally understand and agree with that so that's exactly what we did.

But I still want to take care of you. Hope that's okay. :)

Take Two

Someone from the Philippine Daily Inquirer emailed Nelz today. Apparently they want to do a 2bU! story on his journal, presumably to cover the ever-growing online phenomenon that is Blogging. He called me and told me about it, asking if I had any misgivings (if I wanted to have my name changed or anything). I told him I had nothing to hide, and for him to go for it.

I must admit, the more I think about it, I'm getting a perverse pleasure from the mental image of seeing my mother opening the paper to that section (shyeah, like she reads 2bU!), reading the article about an Online Journal from this gay writer named "Nelz" and his paramour "Ian". She wonders: "Nelson?"..."Nelz?" With a chill down her spine, she worries if I am the Ian in question. Then she goes "Naaaaah!", and retreats into her house of denial. Or she realizes I've just been outed in the country's leading paper, and she goes ballistic. I'm honestly not sure which scenario I prefer. Hee!

Some questions tho: Is it just going to be his blog? (unlikely) How many blogs will they feature? Will they do any coverage on the people behind these blogs? Photos? Interviews and bios?

One thing I am sure of: How happy I am for him and how utterly cool this all is. *beams*

I must admit, although I knew a lot of people read the Nelz Journal, I had no idea just how much his readership actually was. But the more I think about it, I guess I shouldn't really be surprised: His writing skills are without question, and he has a lot of friends from all sorts of circles. His veiled-yet-confessional entries are compelling; holding nothing back, he writes about his angsts, his joys, his sordid sexcapades, sometimes down to the last detail. If you don't know him personally, one might think that he was making it all up, that no one would have the courage to put that much of himself up online for everyone to see. And when you do find out that it's 100% true? That makes it all the more irresistible.

With these current goings on, I find myself thinking back to that old comedy storyline that's been used everywhere from Archie comics to television sitcoms: the "Someone Gets Famous" plot. That old horse ranks alongside the the "Someone Gets Amnesia" plot (where absolutely NO ONE figures out that you only need to hit them on the head a second time to return their memory. Geez!...).

The story usually goes like this: Someone comes into town wanting to do a story on either the protagonist (given today's trends they would probably put him on a reality show) or the neighborhood he lives in ("a slice of small-town life!"). At first, everyone is happy about all of the attention, but then things start to change: The hero, either on his own or under the advice of his well-meaning friends, becomes more media-savvy. The supporting characters are also affected, conducting themselves in a stilted manner for the cameras or outright grabbing as much of the spotlight as they can for themselves. The people in charge realize that whatever charm they wanted to capture no longer exists. They call the whole thing off, pack up and leave. The hero learns his lesson, laugh track plays, credits roll.

Am I worried that this increased readership might affect how Nelz writes his blog? That he might become more guarded or -- heaven forbid, I have no idea how but I have no doubt he could do it if he wanted to -- even MORE revealing? Not in the slightest.

Being as good-looking and charismatic as he is, Nelz has had a lot of experience dealing with people looking at him or vying for his attention. He may not have invented the term deadma, but he sure as hell embodies it. If you looked it up in the dictionary, you'd see a picture of Nelz looking totally disinterested. Who knows: Maybe this Inquirer thing might even open a few doors for him to some writing gigs. I'm positive that Nelz is taking this all in stride. I guess I should too.

As for me? The only thing I can think of that I might do under the spotlight is that I spoil Nelz rotten, loving him as much as I can and making him as happy as humanly possible.

But I was already planning on doing that anyway. *smiles*

Love ya, babe.


Wrote a long-ass post about Nelz Inquirer story and hit "post" and NOTHING came out!! ARRRRRRRRRRGHGHHGHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!


Monday, July 22, 2002


Nelz saw my blog yesterday. He told me he saw soooooooo many sporting the same template. (understandable, if I liked it, chances are others did too.) Nakakainis nga lang; makes my place feel that less unique.

Times like this I wish I did know how to write code and stuff.....

Sunday, July 21, 2002

Adjusted the clock to Manila time.

Why am I still up? Got a fairly normal enough amount of sleep last night (as in, not too much) and didn't really grab any naps today. If anything, today was pretty draining, both physically and emotionally. I should be asleep by now, but I find myself in front of the computer at 2 in the morning with absolutely nothing to do, clicking from one page to the next. Hope I'm not turning into an insomniac.

I'm going to be feeling this tomorrow morning.......

FINALLY decided on a blog template that appealed to me! I just couldn't see myself start posting on my Blog until I was completely happy with it. I was just waiting fof the right design, I guess.

Kinda like hairstlyles, right Nelz? ;)

Expect to see some changes and adjustments in the profiles and the like in the coming days however......

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