Thursday, March 02, 2006

Coming Out and All That Hoopla

Okay, so I admit I was riveted to the TV set last night wondering how Pinoy Big Brother will "treat" Rustom Padilla's coming out. Overall, I would say they tried to sensationalize it, but unfortunately for them, two factors got in the way which were beyond their control. One was Keanna Reeves. The other one was a mariposa (butterfly). Of course, ABS-CBN will go to town with the revelation and PBB will keep on referring to the incident as if that house was a truth processor or something to that effect. Already, DZMM was talking this morning about how wonderful it would be if politicians would be locked up inside PBB so that they would also own up to their lies. Ehhhhh?

I have to hand it to this woman named Keanna Reeves. First of all, anyone who is willing to take on such a ludicrous screen name must either be so dumb or possessed with such a great sense of humor. I realize now that this spunky woman from Cebu is not dumb. No sir, she is anything but dumb. And she is so hilarious! Anyway, Rustom picked her as the person he would like to open up to (the medium or channel, shall we say, since it wasn't just Keanna he was really opening up to - it was the whole wide world!). It was Rustom's choice and PBB didn't have control over it. I am sure that if the lackeys at PBB had their way, they would have wanted a bull session with everyone there, or at least with the resident jocks Christian and Sanjoe in attendance, the better to highlight the contrast and the reaction (possibly homophobia? During their first night, John Pratts could not help commenting out loud before changing into his sleepwear: wala naman sigurong bakla dito).

Keanna broke the drama with a simple statement "naiihi ako!" said in the most natural way - and decided to pee in the bushes. What a moment! Rustom was bent over laughing and crying at the same time as Keanna peed on public television. Truly, life is stranger than fiction! (By the way, I took the chance that someone out there took stills of the moment, and came across this Blog devoted to PBB. He had pictures. So I filched them. The url of the site is in the pics. Rexwerx: thanks for the pics!)

The second factor that PBB had no control over (or at least that is what I think - they could not have programmed that butterfly to do that stunt!) was a mariposa. As Rustom was about to tell Keanna his "deepest secret" a mariposa hovered into view...perched on Rustom's leg and slowly crawled up to his hand before flying away. Whew! I am sure many people out there believed that was some sign. And maybe it was. Whatever, I think that emboldened Rustom to go ahead with his public revelation. (Interesting aside: I am superstitious when it comes to butterflies. In my family, a butterfly was always a portent of things to come. A black butterfly meant someone died, a white buttefly meant a letter was on the way, etc.)

So the gist of the revelation: he was effeminate growing up and his dad would beat him senseless for it , this conditioned him into thinking he can not be gay, he should not be gay; he grew up confused; he truly loved carmina (villarroel as if you did not know!) and did not see any conflict there - in other words, being gay did not exclude the possibility of truly loving another human being male or female; after the breakup he went to the USA to find himself; and he found himself there.

And there, ladies and gentlemen, is the classic story of an upperclass gay man in the Philippines. It is actually not unique - the plotline is pretty basic. The name Rustom Padilla can be replaced with a thousand other names.

I expect the denunciations and the expressions of support to come out soon. These should once again be interesting as we see just exactly how hypocritical we are as a people. I am sure the homophobics and the nutcases out there are already sharpening their axes.

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