Want to read 36 personal essays on what it’s like to be lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer in the Philippines today? Then get a copy of the book entitled BUHAY BAHAGHARI: THE FILIPINO LGBT CHRONICLES published by the UP Center for Women’s Studies. The anthology will be launched on Wednesday, August 27, 2014 at 1:30-3:30pm inside the UP Center for Women’s Studies premises (Magsaysay Ave. cor. Ylanan Road near the CSWCD/ MassComm/Music college buildings inside the Diliman, QC campus).Lima pala ang kuwentong isinabak ko dito. Personal essays ang atak, sabi ni editor Bubbles. Dapat dito ko ilalabas 'yung isang bonggang-bonggang academic article kong icho-chopchop ko sana into bite-size friendlier forms pero sabi ng lola ko eh gumawa na lang ng bago dahil masyadong academic nosebleed 'yung lesbian indie film paper ko na 'yun hihi. So kebs na dun at kume-creative nonfiction na lang ang peg ng lola mo.
Yoiks may picture nga pala sa contribs page!
Buti na lang cute 'yung napili sa akin. Charut! :P
Kaya as usual, I have to tap into the well of my persona during the time I wrote this. What else is new? Life provides the ink and I am merely the recorder. Here are some behind-the-scenes chika of those pieces:
"Showbiz people like us 1: we got our backs" is about my experience as a cultural journalist a.k.a. lifestyle and entertainment journalist featuring closeted people like us and how we kinda have to protect each other in the dog-eat-dog a.k.a. judgmental-hetero-eats-marginalized-queer world of showbizlandia.
"Showbiz people like us 2: gaydar me, gaydar you" is about how clueless peeps ask queers like me to "detect" suspected queers like me, a.k.a. kapag gusto lang mang-canfeermd! ng mga chismosa sa mga kloseta sa showbiz. Yes, this happens. True story.
"The tabloidization of the tomboy: (don’t) print us o lord" is actually the first piece I wrote solely for this anthology. This chronicles my experience when I showed up for an interview as an entertainment editor in a newspaper that turned out to be in tabloid format, so all media vs. queers baggage broke loose.
Siyempre mawawala ba ang mga love chronicles ng buhay? "To fight the unbeatable fight" is my muni-muni about having relationships with women who are closeted and how I negotiate my openly out self in there. "To reach the unreachable love" is the chronicling of my foray into lesbian LDRdom or long distance relationships before, during and after.
Support for the book in the form of blurbs
from varied queers and queer allies
e.g. Boy Abunda, Dr. Margie Holmes,
Aida Santos, Danton Remoto, Neil Garcia.
Dumo-Don Quixote lang talaga ang peg? Ewan ko ba. Alam ko single na ako nung sinulat ko ang mga ito, lalo na itong dalawang love articles chenes. Sa tagal na nito, di ko na maalala exactly kung ano 'yung contribs ko at kung ano ang porma at ikot ng headspace ko nun hehe. Naaliw lang ako when I recalled what they were, so I reread them, and the ending of that unbeatable fight piece went something like this nga pala:
Ah, it’s a cycle, this closet of ours, of theirs. Is it somebody’s fault that we’re there, and is it somebody’s fault that it exists? Of course there is some fault somewhere. That’s why we fight an unbeatable fight sometimes. But still, we go on. Closet or no closet, we travel, until we find what what we’re looking for, or until we have to be found by someone looking for us.Wow. Indeed. And now, here we are, months after I wrote that, I bumped into someone and someone bumped into me. I'm ever so grateful to the universe that I walked that day, that I decided to show up in that seemingly random business meeting, that I decided to get out of my hibernation and socialize with a new soul. That soul turned out to be the love of my life right now, my kindred of all kindred spirits, and all my obra I dedicate to her. Yes, pati na this book's contributions. Thank you, sweetheart.
She’s out there. Just walk.
Mantakin mo nga naman, how our life narratives turn out. Wala lang, natutuwa lang ako. I guess we still can't believe we found each other, na magkalapit lang pala ang orbits namin sa isa't isa, all this time, but we were not fated to meet until the moment we did. Happy. Happy lang talaga. :) Sorry sumingit talaga ang #inlabsiBayli peg ulit ahihihi. #akona
Heniweys hemingways, kitakits sa book launch. Bonggabels din naman ang line-up ng contributors dahil for the first time, reprezent! talaga ang L, G, B, at T ditech, pati na Q because of me. So there. Here's some more info on the book:
Contributors come from different walks of life who also belong in different industries in society. Some of them are or have been active LGBT rights advocates. Their essays tackle topics like identities and struggles; tensions, anxieties, relations; challenges, changes and the community; and of course love and lessons that come with finding it, losing it, or keeping it. Some of the contributors include longtime queer advocates Fr. Richard Mickley, Chris Jo Salvatierra, Ging Cristobal and Bruce Amoroto; corporate professionals Fire Sia, Mel Abutin and Allan Carreon; development worker Miel Feria; former and current college professors Mikee Inton, Argel Tuason and Lorna Israel; National Youth Commission’s Percival Cendana and Ernest Lucas; and Carlos Palanca awardees Shakira Sison, Libay Linsangan Cantor and Jhoanna Lynn B. Cruz, to name a few. The essays are written in Filipino and English.Read the rest of my press release here sa pop media blog kesh. Sayang ang dami yatang di nakahabol sa deadline. Happy sana ito kung ang ibang kabatak ay nakapaglaan ng obra. Maybe a sequel should happen na lang.
Hehe at sorry kung mayabang pero paminsan-minsan kailangan din nating ipagmayabang na may mga award-winning among the rainbow community, na hindi porke't queer tayo ay kalunos-lunos tayo at hindi fabulous. Excuse me! Hahaha. And the Palanca is always a good marker of an award for us queer writers. Congrats nga rin pala is in order for another win for one of us. Hm not sure if na-announce na niya ang pagkapanalo niya this year ulit pero CONGRATS MAMU! 'Yun muna hehe. You know who you are. Always proud of you. :)
Eclectic lot! Life is like a rainbow indeed -- you never know which hue will rule you at times. So best to be prepared.
Congrats sa editing efforts ni Bubbles beks at nairaos din ito. Happy! :) Buy the book! Support Philippine literature and the Pinoy LGBTQ community.