Sunday, April 21, 2013

Instaboylet 2.0 (Last Part)

Ric and I have been trailing each other's Twitter account for as long as I remember. He has never shown his face, but a mere glimpse of his half-naked display picture conjures one's fantasy of inviting him to bed. He has this penchant for revealing too much - when being overwhelmed by the trappings of lust. While I don't mind catching him uploading pictures of his family jewels, I find such moments intriguing. I never fail to inform the one who has genuine hots for him - Ternie.

Our conversations tend to dwell on the mundane and ordinary. Questions that begin with "kamusta na?" and "gawa mo?" receive a one-word reply. It is in those moments of revelation - his job hunting frustration, the boredom of doing nothing at home, and the isolation of lacking real-life gay friends that I found him endearing. For this reason, Ric never became an object of masturbation.

He was more of a brother to me.

So when we are put in a situation where we are to make everyone believe we are a couple, the act was organic. It didn't require ice breakers or encountered pauses of awkwardness for the chemistry is there. Despite him being an A-lister, to me we are co-equals. Who cares if dozen others find him a good catch? He is mine for a day, and I belong to him.

I wouldn't deny the times I tipped overboard. "I love you's" were said without putting meaning to the magic words. At times, I was a tease. "tabihan kita sa bed ha?" which he gamely replied. "uu gusto ko yun." raising eyebrows across our shared social spheres. The tease didn't go beyond the confines of Twitter. We resumed the cheesy banter the next day with the same passion we had, when Alistair forced us to be virtual partners.

For all the game's silliness, there were times I had to make conscious reminders that it was all but a charade. A ruse to measure our commitment to real-life relationships. Ric was so into it, that I had to step up, lest be seen as someone neglecting the virtual partner. He had me by the neck. I won't deny the pull of his gravity.

Time continues to clock our remaining hours, and every milestone of that day of my life was reported to my buddy. On Twitter, Ric was told of the time I woke up, went to the gym, and arrived home. The trivial details like the food I gobbled, the stuff I bought for my nephews, and the reason for sleeping late the night before reached his eyes as well. Never in recent memory did I open my life to one person, and I felt assured sharing the details with him.

"Must it be love?" I chuckled while traipsing along the breakwater. "Or maybe a part of me still longs to belong to the right person." I stopped to snap a photo of the bay. I would return later at dusk to capture the famed sunset to dedicate the picture to Ric.

The game of make-believe would eventually blur the lines of truth and fiction. Alistair even posted a tweet - a comment about the apparent seriousness we put into the game. I would receive congratulatory marks on direct message. Even Beej (Panda) sent an SMS. 

"Ikaw ang talk of town." I scratched my head. "Kabog mo pa si Kris Aquino."

"So di kayo?"

"Hindi." Insert smiley face there.

At the end of the day, I had to make the virtual, one day relationship work partly to make up for Ric's effort. I'm used to acting roles and pretending my affections that it doesn't matter whether I get something from the simulation. 

But looking back, one thing I can never deny is that he was in my thoughts the whole time. Observers will talk about our crazy antics for weeks to come. But for me, it was a social experiment that left me soul searching after the digital ties have been severed.

To be sure, it was an exercise in artificiality. Feelings must be purged after our time has come. But as the final minutes came to a close, there lies a sliver of humanity mourning for the dissolution. The return to reality.

"Behind the masquerade, you're an awesome lover." I almost sent as a tweet.

"Swerte ng magiging boyfriend mo."

As Ric readied himself to sleep, I quietly reverted my Twitter profile back to what it was. "Ric M.O." had once again become "JM," and "Taken Kunware" was replaced by the all-fitting maxim best describing me.

"Wake up, I'm just a dream."

Instaboylet 1.0

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