Nov 18, 2011

What’s your number?


Have you watched What’s Your Number?, a romantic comedy film starring Anna Faris and Chris Evans (who was as hot as ever in the movie)? The movie is about this girl named Ally (Faris) who read a magazine article that women have an average of 10 sexual partners, and that those who have had 20 or more were unlikely to get married. Ally then panicked when she realized that she has already had 19 partners (that inadvertently became 20) and when she saw how one of her exes had become quite the dashing (but taken) man, she decided to look up her exes—with the help of her womanizing neighbor Colin (Evans)—to see who deserves a second chance (just so she doesn’t go over 20). Of course, romantic comedies being what they are, Ally predictably ends up with Colin.

While the movie is a good watch (and Chris Evans is one big reason why), I was more intrigued with the idea of keeping a tally of the number of sexual partners one has ever had. (But not because we PLU guys want to get married.) Well, I’m the type of person who likes to keep track of things (as if it wasn’t obvious from my blog), but sad to say, I already lost count years ago. One general problem is that it’s hard to define what exactly constitutes a sexual partnership. Does it have to involve penetration (either orally or down there)? Does it have to involve an ejaculation? What if you just kissed and jerked each other off in the back seat of a car but nobody came to orgasm? What if you had a threesome or participated in an O party—do you count all or some of the guys?

Chris Evans’ character in the movie jokingly said that his number was probably around 200. Well, if I was to give a ballpark figure for mine, I would have say that it’s around 250, using a very loose definition of a “sexual encounter,” one which involves some non-trivial contact in the groin area. Between the encounters I have had in the gym, spas, and bathhouses (especially if you have a quota), and SEBs, chance encounters, and one night stands with guys met at gay clubs, I would have to say that 250 is my number.

I’m personally a bit shocked by that figure. But if I were to be honest with myself (and with you readers), it’s a reasonable estimate given that I have been sexually active for more than a decade already and pretty much single for most of those years. So that comes to around once every two weeks. (Hmmm, compare with Tristan’s goal of 30 boys in 30 days. Hehehe.) I would guess that my number is higher than the average Filipino gay guy’s and I probably deserve to be labeled “promiscuous.” Fortunately, I’ve been quite lucky and safe in my encounters and I intend for it to remain that way.

Speaking of promiscuity, people generally think that gay men are more promiscuous than straight men. I believe that to be true. Well, gay men are as equally horny as straight men, but because there is no risk of pregnancy and because gay men don’t have to contend with hard-to-get women, we guys generally have more of it. (The 70s was a particularly hedonistic era in gay America.) The problem is, unwanted pregnancy is not the only problem and gay sex became an unfortunate medium for the early worldwide transmission of AIDS. (AIDS was originally called GRID: gay-related immune deficiency.) The dreaded disease thus became an instrument for the increase of stigma against people like us.

Promiscuous or not, and whether you have only had one sexual encounter or one hundred, keeping it safe is a must for everyone. Wear protection and get yourself tested. There are a lot of support groups such as The Love Yourself Project to help you get over your fears. All right?

So, what’s your number?

Nov 2, 2011

Ang Sayaw ng Dalawang Kaliwang Paa


I think it was Tony who said that there’s something mesmerizing about watching two men dance together and that you’d forget the background dialogue. Well, watching Ang Sayaw ng Dalawang Kaliwang Paa this past long weekend, I knew exactly what he meant. Paulo Avelino is cute and Rocco Nacino is handsome, and seeing them dance the tango set to beautiful background music was definitely a sight to behold.

While Sayaw isn't perfect (a cotillion scene in the middle was unnecessarily awkward, for example), the movie was undeniably beautiful. The first part of the film was a masterpiece in melding poetry, music, and dance into one of the best montages I’ve seen this year. And the subtle drama expressed in body language and facial expressions were a welcome break from all the stupid melodrama the mainstream movie industry has been producing.

And while this Cinemalaya award-winning entry is not an all-out gay indie film, having some of the least in-your-face homosexual themes, I wish local gay indie film producers would take a lesson or two from Sayaw on how to make quality independent movies. While showing skin is expected in order to appeal to the prurient side of the gay audience, cinematography, plot, technicals, and acting are all equally important. If I wanted to see some skin without all of those cinematic niceties, I’d rather get it free on the Internet rather than going out and wasting 180 pesos to watch some crap in a cinema.

Sayaw is such a nice film that it actually makes me angry to learn that some big bully of a local movie studio is using its influence in the local cinemas to shut Sayaw out of its commercial run in favor of its own movie. (Sounds familiar?) Sayaw was supposed to have a week-long schedule of screenings in several theaters but was cut short. Thanks to the negotiations of the producer, Ayala Cinemas relented and granted 2 screenings of Sayaw per day until November 1: one at 11pm in Glorietta 4 and the other at 11pm in TriNoma. That’s the only reason why I was able to watch this movie at all.

Did you enjoy this movie as much as I did? Say so in the comments!