Monday, February 10, 2014

Disorganized Patterns of Thoughts 2

In the interim weeks following that dinner, I would often catch him hanging out on the floor past his shift. When asked why he was still at the office, he'd often times reply that he'd prefer to do internet rather than wade through the traffic. Sometimes, I'd invite him to have dinner at the pantry. Other times, he'd approach my station to do the invitation himself.

After a period of not having dinner with HIM due to conflicting schedules, I found myself having lunch with him, along with a straight guy and another straight girl.

Out of the blue, HIM suddenly blurted out, "Uy, miss ko na ang mga dinner dates natin."

I almost choked on the food. Better yet, I wanted to choke HIM.

Straight guy cracked a joked to the effect that HIM and I were dating all this time. Straight girl added a chortle of her own.

"Date agad-agad," I hastily answered back, perhaps a little too self-defensively. "Hindi ba pwede kumakain lang muna ng sabay sa pantry?"

That double whammy of being closeted at work and, looking back, being a tad guilty as well. No, I don't remotely consider those dinners as dates. What I'll admit to is that I found his company pleasant and congenial, if nothing else.


2. He is a subordinate of mine at the office. Not a direct report, but still, I have tried to keep a strict ethic of not shitting in my own backyard. Needlessly said, I am also not out at work.


Fast forward two or three months down the road. By that time, we already started to have dinners outside the office setting as well. I'd like to think I was getting to know him better and better. The opposite wasn't true though. No matter how hard he tried, he couldn't fish it out from me that I'm gay. I myself wasn't prepared to share that part of me to to him. Not in that way.


It's ironic how an epiphany can arrive at any given time, without much of a fanfare whatsoever. Mine happened to happen, in all the places, at Chowking.

HIM broke down while we were having dinner past 10 of the hour. He was particularly stressed out that he had to spend the nights at the hospital. In between sobs, he said that he hadn't gone home in days, and that he didn't expect that it would come down to that situation. I just listened and let him cry it all out. I let it be a catharsis for him. After he calmed down and wiped his tears, I stood up, hugged him, and kissed him on the head.

That's when the epiphany struck me.

Oh, fuck.

I do care for him.