As I look back into my own history of following showbiz thingies, I say I haven’t been that much into it. I heard the name Rustom from a dormitory roommate in college who went semi-hysterical over him. Day and night it was Rustom in her breath coupled with occasional screams at the latest bit she finds about the actor. I looked at her and thought, “who the heck is that?!” Showbiz magazines were non-existent in our library; and there were no TVs and movies except in faculty homes where we sometimes got invited to. That boarding college we attended imposed extremely conservative practices of the denomination that runs it, and expected every student to adhere or they are out.

Fast forward almost two decades after graduation, out from that boarding school and into a whole new world of freedom which earlier I wasn’t that well-equipped to handle: my knowledge of screen celebs has not expanded enough to speak well on the subject. However, I
read reviews or when there’s a movie I particularly like, then I go read about the talents behind it. Gradschool talked about socially acceptable behavior towards members of society who are neither male nor female. Side discussions included restraint on using derogatory terms and even presented us with an analysis of offensive phrases and expressions about them.

Yesterday I watched BB Gandanghari on GMA news. The inner reason why I watched the clip is because she is Robin Padilla’s sibling. A few months ago, I found a way of filling my free time by spending it on youtube. I was missing Pinas; I wanted to hear pinoy singers so I clicked on Regine until I was led to her movie with Robin (Til I Met You). Now I’m as gaga over Robin as my old roommate was over Rustom. Hormones? Temporary insanity? It could be a mixture of both.

Robin’s comment on BB’s transformation was well, brotherly. Acceptance and understanding – Robin has it all for her. Now I am not heaping positive views on BB Gandanghari because I love her charming brother or because she is an attractive celebrity. I do not have anything against gays, lesbians, homosexuals, bi-sexuals, transvestites or what-else-is-there. Whether they are well-known figures or not I accord them the respect any human being deserves. No question. When a personal friend finally accepted his true sexuality (a gay after all these years!) and confessed to me about it, my reaction was, “So? … shall we get on with the party?”

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