This morning, friends I was with last night sent several text messages thanking everyone who joined them in their first Manila Pride March. Ain’t that sweet? It was my second. I mean, the second Pride March that I missed for some inane reason and just when I was already on my way to Malate. I don’t know why, but I’m prone to these: Pride March, friends’ weddings, special movie screenings.
Actually, I do. But it feels so much better to adapt a state of put-on bemusement.
The actual reason I missed the march was because I was in Quiapo, waiting for buttons I had made for our group in the march; the rest will be distributed to other people afterwards. I really couldn’t complain about the delay. It was a rushed job to beat other rushed job: I only commissioned them and submitted the design that morning. There was really no way they could create 500 buttons in 3 hours. But the man in the shop accepted my order and I was pretty desperate.
In hindsight, I should have split the 3 button designs between 3 shops instead. Realizing things in hindsight only adds further frustration to an already frustrating experience. I don’t know why I still indulge in it.
It was past 4 o’clock and they were still not done with the buttons. The shop owner’s mother, a salt-of-the-earth woman who was amiable enough to talk of the things they do in the shop, was still placing safety pins in the buttons. I decided to help them to speed up the process. It was easy; all I needed to know is learn the proper orientation of the pin as it’s placed into the holes in the back. We finished the last 100 button in 10 minutes. The woman probably sensed that I have not yet eaten all day so I was told to get myself something to eat and wait for an hour more.
The day wasn’t going that well for me. Blame procrastination. After several days of not getting enough sleep because of one thing or another, I realized we are totally unprepared for the march. I woke up early on Saturday morning to design three buttons, headed to Quiapo before lunch, tried to find someone to make a banner for us (no luck there), and ordered for balloons for the march instead. I learned that one could order 20 pink balloons to be ready in 30 minutes. That was pretty amazing.
I didn’t even had time to had my nails done. Bern got a haircut, Markee had a foot spa, Gelo had his nails manicured. I smelled of Quiapo, midday sun, panic, and mostly Quiapo. Bern was very kind to bring the balloons to Malate and have a little bit of adventure of his own. I had to go back to Manila to claim the buttons. While in the train, it hit me that the entire day felt like joining the Amazing race, except that I was not treated to those flashy editing to remove all the boring bits between challenges.
It was already 6:30 and a hundred butttons for PinoyG4M arrived at the shop. The shop boy said there were still 100 buttons ready in the next 30 minutes, which most likely mean at least 45. I told the shop I’m picking the rest tomorrow and was good with the 400 buttons that were already done.
At least most of the pins were popular. Several people kept asking for some. Except those for the Home for the Golden Gays, unfortunately. That was my fault: the design I did looked very politico-like, as if someone was campaigning for mayor. Which is a shame. The idea for the pins started as a way of promoting their website.