Wednesday, May 19

The Baklaan Hour

Yesterday was also the last hurrah of department work (for the time being, at least). Me and a couple other groupies were the groupies for the summer lecture series. Mostly, I tried looking like a normal person yesterday with my Buddha blouse and pretended that I knew a lot about CL as we moved the program along. Neil Garcia delivered a lecture on (Jose Garcia) Villa, (Severino) Montano, (Tony of Cubao) Perez and how they exhibited all that Postcoloniality blah in their supposedly gay works. In his short story collection A Footnote To Youth, there's an "autobiographical" story of a young Villa (who would have been the fairy godfather of Phil Lit in English if he owned up to it) in love with a couple of white guys. Now I vaguely remember this story because it's been so long since I've read the dilapidated Villa in the Filipiana section, so it necessitates checking it out again to verify.

But the most interesting tidbit came from Neil's little anecdote about meeting Nick Joaquin in one of those last dinners after his essay "outing" Villa came out. He was seated beside Nick Joaquin and the man supposedly told Neil, quietly: "You destroyed a great man." Neil upped and left. That's it.

Now back to the lecture, which prefer to call it the baklaan hour. Binabakla na pati reaction. I.e., from Judy "I'm a hybrid, just look at my name" Ick going: "Yung hybridity chuva na yan kasi..." How bonggacious, di ba?

The lecture went overtime by an hour and a half. We had to wait for everyone to get up and leave before I could wolf down the siomeow and coke. Learned a lot from the lecture, but I was just glad to have it done and over with. So that probably was how waiters feel when there are still customers at such a late hour in the restaurant. You want to shoo them away. I really was just hungry.

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