Sometime early this month, a new found acquaintance from Twitter asked me to go out and see a movie. I would usually decline such invitation given my habit of watching a film only with someone I'd probably date with. But he was into indie local films, and after seeing the movie trailer on YouTube, I thought it would be worthwhile to see the feature about a local and foreign couple trying to adjust to living together despite their cultural differences. It was a comedy, slice-of-life flick and since I had declared a week-long respite from work, I said yes to the stranger and saw the movie with him at Greenhills.
Although the cliches made my eyes squint, the film deserves my time, and so was the guy who took the extra mile to see that I was comfortable in his company. We parted ways without ever crossing the threshold between platonic friends and flirty mates and for that, there was a cause for continued engagement. It's after a few hours later, over the company of friends and bottles of beers that he said the "L" word.
"I think I like you." He sent over SMS.
If I were not holding back, I would have replied. "Too fast bro."
"Thank you." I tapped on my touch screen. "Let's evaluate that the next time we get to meet."
The next time is not forthcoming.
That same night, I found myself drunk and raving at O-Bar after joining the table where Nishiboy and some old friends were. While hooking up was never a plan (I broke the no-clubbing rule after hearing that my favorite DJ, Cal Soesanto will be spinning at the club), I had a feeling that I was being eyed on the dance floor. One guy wrapped his arm around my waist, and before daybreak, made his intentions clear that he wanted a companion. Instead of going with him to some place away from the club, I walked straight to the exit, hailed a cab, and went home without saying goodbye. Because of my inebriated state, I only knew from Nishi that the guy who was eyeing me was a secret crush on Social Media.
Fortunately, I wasn't aware.
This walk out incident didn't stop us from seeing each other, and after a few days of daily correspondence on Viber, decided to meet for a late dinner on a Thursday evening. The guy was a contemporary, who like me, wasted half of his twenties dancing from Wednesday to Sunday at Government when we could have been preoccupied by other things - like saving the world. The only difference is that I made my death too slow, that it was almost unfelt: I religiously went to the clubs only during weekends, never made friends on the dance floor, and never binged on drinks like he said, he did. We too came from the same university, and became members of the opposing political parties. Too bad he already left the campus when I took the reigns of power from our seniors.
The late night dinner was extended until past midnight, when we found ourselves looking at the distance, on a curb somewhere at the Cultural Center grounds. By then we knew there was mutual attraction, only that it was still in its infancy, and could change at any moment. We sealed the night with a kiss, and I went home a little doubtful of my true feelings for him.
"Let's find out," I told myself while taking out the pair of boxers I slid inside my bag. The events would unravel in a matter of days.
For some reasons the correspondence just ceased to continue, like what happened with Jake the Dog and the rest, who, I considered as more than just a passing fancy. It so happened that it was never my habit to pursue or waste people's time when I feel a pinch of indifference. While letting go is easy, at a hindsight, you cannot help but question what made two intimate people drift apart. Is it because no one wants to show how the other is badly needed? Or because things are happening too fast, life refuses to accept the new order? Or maybe, all we ever wanted from someone is a moment of distraction, because deep within, there are hang-ups that remain unresolved? Eventually, you end up accepting the simplest of conclusions: timing, and you move on without regretting your decision not to stay.
The events of this month showed how quick the turnover is, with two strangers succeeding in getting my attention in just a single night. It may also be seen as a demonstration of my charm had I been active in the dating scene. But instead of marching forward, and continuing the search for a pair, (or another temporal object of affection) this apparent cycle serves as a wake up call: face the present disposition with the person who caused this all, or repeat the same meet up story until they all pile into your puddle of guilt.
After all, just days before you met these men, you watched an Azkals game with Him, and made out on a bus as it cruised the expressway going home, and simply because you are losing your mind thinking how long this complex arrangement will go on, you look for another way out, to find a more permanent settlement with another, or at least a counter should a time come these random hang outs with that one guy, who meant everything to you, would no longer happen.
You were never serious on letting go.