A woman named Susan called me a few days ago, looking for Jade. She told me she was a PA for DZMM, and that I was recommended by a former colleague (during my semi-regular Tarot reading days in Ortigas), and would I like to guest at Stargazer’s program?
The show was called Pinoyvibes and was hosted by Stargazer, a local celebrity psychic. I have heard of the radio program but have not had the chance to tune in, partly because of its schedule and partly because I don’t have access to AM radio. Likewise with its host, whose name is frequently mentioned among friends in the psychic and occult circles, but whom I have not yet met.
Initially I declined, thinking that the radio program schedule would clash with work. And then I realized it doesn’t, so I sent a message to Susan saying I’m free, after all.
It’s obvious that I’m keen on guesting to Stargazer’s program. I’ve never guested in a radio program before, so I figured what the heck. Even if I suck, at least I could say for myself that I’ve done it and laugh about it afterwards. Susan gave me directions on how to reach DZMM and we agreed that I will be there before one in the morning of Sunday.
So earlier, half past midnight, I found myself entering the ABS-CBN compound, telling guards “Hi, I’m Jade; I’m a guest for Ms. Stargazer’s program,” and told to walk straight ahead then make a right for the DZMM studios.
I’m no stranger to radio stations. I had friends who were disc jockeys before and we’d hang out by the DJ booth during their shift really during the wee hours of the morning. Radio stations are almost dead during those hours, with only a few remaining crew left.
I was met by Raymond, the guy answering the phones and minding the little knobs and switches outside the booth. He showed me where the toilets are, as well as the make up room. Make up?
While I was peeing, I remembered Bern joking that I will be appearing on DZMM’s cable TV broadcast. No, really? I tried to fix my hair into a less unruly mess, wore my gray sweater and made sure my face was clean. I decided against make-up since there was no one to help me put it on and I really don’t know how to put make up on myself.
Yes, some gay men don’t know shit about make up.
I finally met Charlie, the executive producer and Stargazer herself. She was a middle aged woman with a dignified air around her. She has a well-modulated and soothing speaking voice; she told me later that we worked as a disc jockey when she was in college.
We had a pleasant chat while she asked me to read cards for her and briefed me on what to expect in her program. She herself does not use cards as she mentioned she’s clairvoyant and sees people’s auras.
We finally entered the booth and Charlie showed me where the cameras are. Oh man, there are TV cameras. If I’ve known it sooner, I probably would have changed my mind; i have a mild aversion to appearing on TV. Not knowing about it is sort of funny, too, considering I was there as part of a community of people mostly approached by clients to foretell their future. But hey, I was already there; it’s not like I could fake sudden illness so I could excuse myself and go. I asked if the cards I brought will be shown on camera and was told they weren’t. That was a relief, since both the cards I have with me (I used the Golden Tarot of Klimt, with the Tarot of Secrets as my back-up deck) display quite a lot of nudity in the images.
The first thirty minutes of her show was meditation. A recording of Stargazer’s voice speaks to her listerners and viewers, guiding them to meditation, while we chat some more in the radio booth. I was trying to calm myself; although, to be honest, I was not as nervous as I thought I was. Maybe it was because the cameras were not much different from security cameras installed near the booth’s ceilings. It was just Stargazer and me, with Raymond outside; it was easy to forgot about the cameras.
When the callers started coming in, I realized it’s difficult to do my usual style of reading in that kind of set-up. I was used to reading at my own pace, amiably chatting with clients. While in the program, I must draw and interpret cards quickly, and immediately give an answer relevant to the callers questions. There were several times when I was slightly panicky. Stargazer seemed to enjoy how our answers to callers often agree; there were only a few instances when we were in slight disagreement. Sometimes, I’d catch myself in the monitor but quickly look away; I still don’t like the idea of seeing myself on TV.
The phoned in questions ran for an hour and a half. Before the program ended, I was asked by Stargazer to give my email address (“You’ll be flooded by SMS inquiries if you give out your number,” she advised before the show started) for listeners and viewers who wish to contact me. Until that time, I was successful in introducing myself merely using my first name. And then I realized that the only email address that I could give on-air contains my full name. Argh.
After the show, we stepped out of the booth as the people for the next program stepped in. I said good-bye to Stargazer and shook her hand. I stepped out of the ABS-CBN compound and walked towards EDSA under a drizzle for the bus ride home. I could take a cab, but I wanted to mull things over and read a book while commuting.
Except for my housemates, I never told anyone else that I was guesting at Pinoyvibes. Except that someone will always find out about things like that even when not told. I was already in Mandaluyong when I received this SMS from Anniel:
Congrats! Pinakinggan kita at pinanood ka ni Carlos. [I listened to you and Carlos watched you.] He told me you looked good on t.v. Too bad di kita nakita. [Too bad, I didn’t see you.] :)
Oh man. There goes comfort behind anonymity.