Have you been to Palawan?

Yes, that gay bar in Cubao. Apparently there is a new gay bar in town and it is right in the middle of Cubao. I haven’t been there but I have heard that, knowing it’s novelty factor, it is , er, good. I’m just wondering about the crowd in that place, with gay bar biggies Bed in Malate and Government in Makati in mind. Maybe there is an eastern bloc of gays there, you know, the Antipolo-Cainta-Binangonan guys who are too far away from Malate or Makati. Which means there could be a new crowd out there, the ones you do not regularly see in the bars mentioned.

Model below is Paul Guesande, one of the three macho dancer siblings who teased Manila gay males. Oldest among the three, Paul “revolutionized” exotic dancing in gay bars by making his moves more frisky and sprightly as opposed to the willowy ways of dancers of yore. Apparently retired, last thing I heard he now drives a taxicab around the metro.

Gym Crush: Chris Nepomuceno

This guy who regularly works out at Gold’s Gym Makati, finished 2nd runner-up to Fil-British model Jon Mulally in the Century Tuna Superbods Model Search in Boracay Island last year. He is only 22 years old, stands 5’10 and get this guys, he has green freakin’ eyes! He is also known as Chris Samson in the modeling biz. [Special thanks to my friend who sent the photos taken during the contest. Visit his site at http://malephotography.multiply.com/photos ]

“It’s the silence that’s most dangerous.”

Derek Jarman [British filmmaker] once said: “All men are homosexuals, some turn straight. It must be very odd to be a straight man because your sexuality is hopelessly defensive. It’s like an ideal of racial purity.” Which got me thinking, why some gay males act effeminate while others tend to act masculine, like a “normal” male. In other words, why is Rustom Padilla acting that way [virginal, chaste, giggly, Im-not-looking-for-a-relationship-and-I-haven’t-slept-with-a-male-person guy] after outing himself on Big Brother?

Gawd, I promised myself this won’t be a chronicles of the closet guy in Manila. I’m not out and proud but definitely queer and here to stay. In the sidelines. With the others who prefer not to speak out in the open, watching as the pink cavalcade glides by [Reminds me of the annual Gay Pride parade in Malate where most of the participants are either the very butch lesbians and the feminine badings in the city. There is even a batallion of teens, slim and very feminine, who dress up in tribal costumes and don black makeup as Ati-Atihan warrior queens thud-thumping with the rumbling drums.]

Undeniably, there is this broad spectrum of the feminine/masculine wiles of gay males. When I was growing up, my idea of the gay male was Charlot [tsarrr-lot], my mum’s gay hairdresser as I was not fully aware then that there were others out there, the “normal” guys. I would like to think that some prefer to be butch because of the still threatening environment of hate, prejudice and aversion that still exists. The others have, in some unfathomable way, courageously dispensed with this gender-related affectation and found support [and pride] in their individuality. My friend M, mannish and loving it, however, says it all boils down to the fact that you’ll get laid more if you act manly and less feminine and that the prized gay males in Manila would want to hump a “straight-acting” gay guy more than the “effems.” Wham bam alakazam!

And then again, there simply is just no one way of being gay [or straight], if you ask me.

Model is 26-year old Mark James dela Cerna, UPH’s [see http://ultimatepinoyhunks.blogspot.com] Hunky Hipon [literally, shrimp, referring to the fact that shrimps are eaten heads off]. He is another veteran bikini contest contestant and a part-time ramp model for minor designers in the metro.

The first naked Filipino onscreen

Nowadays, Filipino male celebs and wannabes have no qualms stripping down to their jockeys and speedos just to get noticed. Some even show up in pictures in their birthday suits. Which circumstances made me wonder, Who was the first Filipino actor who bared all onscreen? Matinee idols then merely bared their torsos onscreen, such as Armando Goyena in Hawayana, Nestor de Villa in Pitong Gabi sa Paris, Cesar Ramirez in Bernardo Carpio, and former Mr. Philippines Jesus Ramos who starred as Og, the local version of Tarzan. The shirtless look was quite daring then in those modest times of Philippine cinema. It was only in 1970 when the first and biggest Filipino sex film, Uhaw [literally, thirst] starring Merle Fernandez [Rudy Fernandez’s mum], Lito Legaspi [dad of Zoren, Kier and Brandon] and Tito Galla, revolutionized local sex cinema. Yet still, no male nudity [read: dick shots] was shown in that sexploitation movie, which was clearly a naked Merle Fernandez movie.

During those times, a young actor by the name of Vic Vargas has been appearing in movies with gratuitous shots of his muscled physique. He was introduced without his shirt on in Diegong Tabak opposite Lolita Rodriguez. He appeared in a loincloth as Tarzan in the comedy movie, Tarzan vs. Tanzan opposite Dolphy. Immediately after that, he had a series of sexy photoshoots in his trunks, promoting his movie Sabado ng Gabi, Linggo ng Umaga opposite 60’s sex symbol Divina Valencia [the mother of gay artist and erstwhile child actor Dranreb Belleza].

Vic Vargas became the staple hunk of local sex movies, most memorable of which were his frontal nudity scene in May Lihim ang Gabi, his white briefs costume all throughout the movie Apoy ng Kaligayahan [he was the only guy in a remote island alternately humping four shipwrecked women], and the infamous Saging ni Pacing.

So there, that pretty much settles the question on the first Filipino who bared all in film.