On that cold night of April 15, 1979, nature decided to work wonders by producing another life. Two human beings who are deeply in love with each other decided to express their love for each other by engaging in rapturous love-making—sweaty bodies rubbing against each other, breathing heavily as both rhythmically dance to the music of each other’s love and as their dance build up in a manic crescendo, their bodies spasmodically twitch and jerk and they cap their ecstasy by letting out a moan of satisfaction. Not only have were they joyous in their physical expression of love, unbeknownst to them they have produced life. Nine months after, a bouncing baby boy was born. His name: Oliver Ofiana y Santiago. All I can say is…..eeeewww!!!! I wanted a novel way to open this tribute of my dear friend on his birthday but I guess saying that I went overboard is the greatest understatement of my life! (I will never be able to look at Tito Oca and Tita Yoly the same way again. Eew, eew, eew! Failed attempt to control-alt-delete mental image! Hwaaa!) What’s done is done.
First Meeting (Let’s Play, “What’s the First Thing that Popped in My Mind?”)
If there is one thing that sticks out in my memory of meeting Oliver for the first time, it’s what popped in my mind with matching cloud callout ha: “Sixth member of the Backstreet Boys?” Hahahaha! The image of this towering almost-6-footer in cargo shorts, shirt, fisherman’s vest, rubber shoes, with matching huge headphones that reminded me of the movie “Pushing Tin” (as in ganun kalaki ang headphones). And just like seeing the Backstreet Boys for the first time, the first thing that came in my mind was the question: “He’s so stylish. Is he gay?” Hahahaha! Then he spoke in a deep, well-modulated voice and I squinted my eyes thinking: “Hmm….still ambivalent.” Hahahaha! Then came the famous movie trivia of which I found my match. (thinking cloud callout pops out: Gaydar’s now officially given a nudge from ambivalent to potentially gay. Hahaha!). When Oliver left, I knew we will be very good friends from then on.
Why twisted? Oh…my…God! He is twisted in two ways. First, he’s the only living replacement to Rex Navarette. Oliver’s wit is unbelievable and that’s one thing that I really miss about him. The spectrum of comedy that we cover ranges from jologs to Robin Williams-esque. Kaya lang he’s still guilty of the “3rd-Joke Syndrome” which he never quite seem to get rid of. (winks at Oliver) Second, when it comes to love, he becomes twisted. Just like Ely, his Achilles heel is women. I have witnessed Oliver’s twisted surrender to love and life when his girlfriend broke up with him. His billiards sessions and affairs with Red Horse were heartbreaking and maddening to watch. (oh, by the way, his official version of this bum period is that he was just “socializing with his constituency as part of building camaraderie.” What a load of crap….) Well, those were the days. He is currently hitched and happy—but still twisted in a good (?) way. Why the (?)? Oh, the “high school-ness” of his manner of expressing his love makes me queasy! Classic is the “lunar reference”—he told his girlfriend, Ann, that every night on the same time, they should look at the moon for them to be “together even when they are apart.” Damn! It does not end there—it has become an obsession for them with the existence of pillows with moon prints, pictures edited using Photoshop to include the moon, moon notebooks, and moon pet names (Lunar Bear and Lunar Pout). Need I say more? But however twisted he may be, I still am very fond of him because he is fun to be with.
Fabulously Yours, Oliver
Yes. He signs his letters that way. “Queer Eye’s” Fab 5 should have been Fab 6. He is very stylish and very conscious about color schemes and combinations. He actually knows colors like magenta, chartreuse, and periwinkle, and can identify all hues of the green family of colors. He carries his own kikay bag contents of which are “male products” (yeah right!). Can’t live without his facial scrub and leave-on conditioner. Who can blame him? He’s Mr. AMA, male model extraordinaire. Hahahaha!
When Oliver left for Canada, we felt the loss. ISP is one twisted and fabulous individual less. That’s life. People move on and explore. Though I’m sad of his leaving, I am also happy coz my dear friend is testing his endurance and capacity to make priorities. So far, he sucks…hahaha! Hence the title. Joke! No, I’m proud coz as of this writing, he is idle no more. Even though he is not physically present, I still feel his presence…parang ghost ba. I will always have my memories of him. Till we meet again, Jack McFarlane! Mwah!