Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Manila Gay Bar Guide: Part 2

(continued from Part 1: Introduction)

The Macho Dancing Gay Bars at the Pasay-Paranaque-Manila City areas

For those staying in Makati City, the best bars I can recommend due to its proximity to the city are those located in the cities of Pasay (pronounced PAH-sai, not PAH-sei) and Paranaque (pronounced Pah-ran-NYAH-keh, not Pah-rah-nah-cue like bar-be-cue). It takes around 15 to 20 minutes without heavy traffic from Makati to get to these cities. 

If you take a look at the map below, you can locate where Makati City is and the areas where the most popular gay bars are.

Let me then get into detail how to get to those bars in the map. Let's start with the closest to Makati.

Monday, December 26, 2011

The Manila Gay Bar Guide: Part 1

This week, to commemorate this blog's 1st year anniversary and to give a little holiday treat, I will finally feature my version of the Manila Gay Bar Guide. I've been planning to do this since September, after some conversations with a few foreigner visitors. But when I started creating this post, I realized that this task will require much effort. 

I am writing this with foreigner visitors in mind, as they are the most clueless about the gay bars in Manila. Local gay bar goers can also use this, but you guys would just have to adapt the information that's in this series of posts. Part 1 will mostly be about Introduction to Metro Manila, while Parts 2 and 3 will each focus on the two areas where most gay bars are located and how to get there. Insider information about those bars will be out of scope for this guide. 

Hope you find this guide useful in getting around Metro Manila to reach your target gay bar. 

Friday, December 23, 2011

All GB Goer Wants for Christmas

Dear Santa,

Hi. How are you? It's me, GB Goer. You don't know me? Maybe because I only started writing to you this year. Heck, my persona was only created just a few days before the end of 2010.

But check your lists again. I may be on your "nice" list. I wasn't that naughty the past year. Yes, I may have been going to the gay bars since last year, but both of us know I was well-behaved with the macho dancers. You can even ask the ____ number of men I've met just this year. Yes, ganun karami, and nope, I don't get affected nor offended when you say "Ho, ho, ho." Promise, those men will say something nice about me.

Because I was more good than bad this year, can I still ask for my Christmas wishes? Don't worry, my list is not that long, unlike some of my unedited, drawn-out, explanatory blog posts. Anyway, here goes. 

Friday, December 16, 2011

Gay Bar Advice: Just Say No

"Natatakot akong magpunta sa gay bar kasi hindi ko alam kung ano ang gagawin ko sa loob. Lalo na't kung may hingiin sa akin at hindi ko alam kung paano ako tatanggi. (I am afraid in going to the gay bar because I don't know what to do inside. Especially if something is asked from me and I wouldn't know how to refuse). " 
"Minsan nagpunta ako sa gay bar, at napilitan ako magbigay kasi nahihiya akong magsabi na ayaw ko yun, hindi ko gusto yun. (Once in the gay bar, I was forced into something because I was too reluctant to say that I really didn't want that)."
When I read revelations like these from email senders, I can sense their worries in going to the gay bar. These can be money matters: worried about not having enough money or worried about losing all your money to one guy (parang lang casino, but isn't love just one big gamble? chos). It can also be guy matters: worried about choosing the wrong guy or worried about being thrown out the bar for not tabling a guy (no, this does not happen).  

I started going to the gay bars with the same feeling of being not in control. A stranger would approach me inside the dark bar, and I wouldn't know what to do. As I wonder what the proper response should be in certain situations, I worried I couldn't refuse anything this stranger would offer. Thus, I would always just say yes with anything they pushed me. Looking back, the fear I felt back was actually coming from a feeling of powerlessness.

But a gay bar goer shouldn't feel powerless. On the contrary, he or she has power of what would happen in the bar. It includes the power to say No.

For illustration purpose only, and not misheard lyrics.

So all you single ladies (and bekis), here are some examples of when to decline offers and tips on how to say it.

Read more:

Friday, December 9, 2011

The Annual Mr. Gay Bar Title Competition

On a regular gay bar night, you always hear the gay bar DJ introduce some particular macho dancer onstage: "Up next is the 2010 Mr. Hot-Dream-God-Papa-Bird-King." And as you hear that single title, you turn your attention to whoever is coming next onstage. You ask yourself how this unique macho dancer might look like. As the song's first lines are played, your eyes are then expecting to see the most handsome, most muscular, and most talented macho dancer in that bar.  

Once you see the Mr. Gay Bar for 2011, you then ask yourself, how did HE win? 

It's already December, and to cap off the end of the year, most big gay bars would hold one of their biggest "Big Nights" (event) of the year. This event is the annual Search for the Mr. Gay Bar 20xx, a pageant held among the bar's existing macho dancers. This is supposedly the most prestigious title any macho dancer can hold, especially if the winner gets to carry the name of the bar for a year (as part of his resume for a future corporate job also?).  

"It's an honor", as the macho dancers say. "Makikilala ka talaga ng mga customer. Kahit sa mga first timer na customer, malalaman nilang ikaw ang pinaka sikat dahil may titulo ka."

So what happens behind these annual competitions? 

Monday, November 28, 2011

Anonymous Text Messages

Have you ever gotten a text message like this from an unknown number:
Niloloko ka lang niyang si Roman (or any other name for your macho dancer).
Your first reaction: Intriguing, right?

Then lots of questions will start to fill your head. From whom did this text come from? Is what this text message saying true? How did that texter know I am Roman's regular guest? And how the heck did that texter get my number? Then that might just mean... is my number being broadcasted and passed around by the macho dancers in the gay bar? Am I that in demand among hot men?

Before feeling all pretty with this "haba ng hair" moment, let me give you some context as to where this text message may actually come from. 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Pera Padala

Send your love with Western Union. Sa Cebuana, sigurado ka.

Love and Trust -- Common themes of money transfer services.

All along I thought that use of those money transfer services were limited to OFWs and their families. Or only those breadwinners from the provinces working in Manila to send money to their loved ones back home. Or anyone just needing to send payment for some debt or favor to a trusted friend in another location.

But nope, pera padala (literally, "money send/transfer") works too for gay bar customers and their macho dancer men.

The traditional "which restaurant or mall do we meet so that I can give you the money?" has been replaced by "which branch do you want me to send the money?" Of course, customers would like to personally meet up with their macho dancers, so that aside from giving them the "help", they can also see them in normal clothes under normal daylight or florescent light outside of the bar's premises. But if the macho dancer lives far and needs the money urgently, then the customer has to resort to more modern means of sending help.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Interview with a Macho Dancer: Behind The Scenes

Urgent daw, ayon sa paksa ng kanyang email. Akala ko kung ano ang ninais ni Jofti, isang freelance writer, sa kanyang pabor. Kailangan daw niya mag-interview ng isang macho dancer, para sa isusulat nya sa isang online magazine. Tinanong din niya kung may kakilala rin daw akong contacts na maaaring ipasa sa kanya. 

Natawa naman ako dahil ako talaga ang naisip nyang lapitan para humingi ng tulong. Bugaw ba ng MD? Haha. Ngunit, pumayag naman akong tulungan siya. 

Reply ko sa kanya: "Sige, samahan pa kita." Kung magpapasa lang ako sa kanya ng random contact at address ng bar para puntahan nya, natakot naman ako kung saang lumalop ng Maynila siya mapadpad, bilang isang babaeng hindi pa nakakapasok sa isang gay bar. Saka para rin maging komportable ang macho dancer na ibahagi ang kwento sa isang hindi nya kilala. 

Ang tanong, sino naman ang maaari niyang interview-hin? 

Saturday, November 5, 2011

A Gay Bar Goer's Hiatus

Hiatus [ha-yay-tus]: a pause or gap in a sequence, series, or process (New Oxford American Dictionary) 

"Titigil muna ako sa pagpunta sa gay bar (I'll stop going to the gay bar for a while)," I texted my gay bar going friends, Mary and Ringo. 

It was around this time last year, first week of November. It wasn't the first time I told someone that I'd take a break from something I loved doing for the past year. Three months prior, I told my regular macho dancer that I'd stop going to his gay bar. 

"Bakit naman? (Why?)," my partner macho dancer asked me. 

"Paalis-alis ako ng bansa. Mahihirapan akong magpunta nang madalas (I'd be flying in and out of the country. It would be difficult for me to keep going to the bar)" was my alibi. 

"Pero magkikita naman tayo? (But we'll still see each other?)" 

"Oo, pero sa labas lang ng bar. (Yes, but outside)."

I didn't want to tell him that going to the gay bar was draining on my finances. I didn't want to admit that supporting him in his bar was getting more difficult, especially after volunteering to give him a monthly allowance. I was stupidly in-love then, and I thought that the only thing that would make him love me back was that "support."

With him, I was tired financially, and I wanted to stop. As weeks went by, I eventually "broke up" with him, citing difficulties in keeping up with the relationship. It was a good, clean break up from the relationship and the support. What I didn't admit that I was going to another gay bar with my friends, and I wanted to spend more time, and more money, in that bar.

I eventually found a new guy in that new bar. I fell very much in love with the hosto "Air", who  eventually left me for another bar girl (and whom I have written much about in previous posts). Because I was still emotionally involved with him despite not being financially involved, as learning from my previous relationship, we had a very bad break up around end-October. 

That was when I texted my gay bar going friends, Mary and Ringo, that I'd stop going to the gay bars.  Just like my previous MD partner, they also asked why.

Lots of reasons are given by regular gay bar goers why they'd temporarily stop going to the bar. Working abroad is one. Being busy with work is another, more frequent response. Finding another gay bar or another macho dancer is another reason, which these gay bar goers don't usually admit. Or just like my friend Mary nowadays, they enjoyed living the "normal" non-gay bar centered life again. 

But for me, I was just tired. Both financially and emotionally. 

I stopped to focus on my work, which I had neglected a bit, months prior. I stopped because I wanted to re-earn the money that I seemingly lost for months already. I stopped because I wanted to let my heart rest, after the roller coaster of emotions felt for these men. 

And so, for a month, my weekend nights were only spent at home or at other more wholesome gimmicks. I stopped receiving the frequent "good am, pauwi na ako" or "good pm, kakagising ko lang" text messages. I enjoyed shopping for myself, which I haven't done for ages since I started going to the bar. I even texted Mary back then when I was in Singapore that it felt so liberating to go back to Manila without thinking of what pasalubong to bring home to a guy.  

Pero, hindi nagtagal...

Before that month ended, my gay friends, Mary and Ringo wanted to see another gay bar which we haven't visited before. Of course, not having been inside that bar, I was also very much curious. At least it was another new experience for all of us. 

For me, it was a perfect time to restart, in a completely new setting, with a completely new set of boys. Malay mo, I was thinking that I would meet that perfect macho dancer this time who would not tire me financially or emotionally. Physically tire me? Pwede!

And from then on, my November hiatus ended. I continued going to that bar even further, without thinking much if I'd tire eventually of throwing away money to a guy I fell head over heels for. To keep myself from doing so, however, at the start of my return, I decided not to get too much involved with these guys already. 

Gay bar goers undergo their own hiatus in their lifetime. My friend Ringo is currently on his 3rd or 4th hiatus since he started going to the gay bar last year; his reasons are all shallow (kidding, Ringo). My friend Mary has stopped going to gay bars altogether for six months already, after a hiatus at the middle of this year. For that, congrats to her for graduating.

As for me, I don't know when my next hiatus will be. I keep telling my friends that I'd slow down para magtipid. Still I eventually find myself visiting our favorite gay bar, weekend after weekend, out of habit (Slow down ba talaga yan? asked usually by Mary). But I strongly feel that my next hiatus will arrive soon. Not because I will get tired like the previous one, but perhaps because I am already getting a bit bored. Just slightly.

GB Goer
Learn more: Lessons from Gay Bars in Manila
twitter: @gbgoer

Monday, October 31, 2011

Top Stares of Macho Dancers in Gay Bars

Much have been said about the eye contact among gays. Like what I read from Simply Manila way back, on how to get someone's attention by making eye contact. Or how to spot gays or bisexuals from Manila Gay Guy, just by the so-called "deep eye contact." It happens quite a lot in gay clubs, where almost everyone in the club tries to look for their next trick just by staring, and hoping that their prospect stares back.  

Then there is the macho dancing gay bar. A feast for the gay guy's eyes. Where it's not illegal or shameful to stare at half-naked torsos or semi-erect bulges or full-frontal nudity. 

But what if the macho dancer looks back? He sees you looking at him as you try to undress him even more or imagine him how he looks like in bed, just with your eyes. His eyes lock in and focus on you. Exciting? Just like in your favorite cum shot where the actor looks lustfully into the camera after a big load. 

In the gay bar, we do get a lot of stares from macho dancers, mostly from those we do not know or got to know once before. It's not just limited to the seductive looks they give on-stage. It can be a simple "can you see me" look that they give when they're waiting at the far end of the bar as you're in your table and trying to see at the distance who among the macho dancers are available to be "tabled" beside you. 

And when they catch you staring, with their penetrating eyes, these men look back with a lingering stare, seeming as if they want to devour you as their next victim that night or so forth. Sounds familiar, especially with this weekend's fright night theme?

Thus, for this blog post, I am compiling the top stares and looks that gay bar customers can get inside the gay bar at night. And In keeping with the Halloween theme, I decided to depict these various looks using photos of whom I think are the best at that lingering stare: vampires. Or at least, the handsome actors who are part of vampire TV shows or movies, particularly the more recent ones which are growing in popularity.   

So, to show you how a macho dancer can look at you inside the gay bar at night, I present the various vampires of recent TV shows or movies:

Friday, October 28, 2011

Signs of a Newbie Macho Dancer

(Or the opposite: Signs that a Macho Dancer is NOT New in the Industry)

A question that's asked to a tabled macho dancer: How long have you been working as a macho dancer?

I don't know why, but for some reason, macho dancers want to give that aura to their customers that they're new in the business. Either they claim that this was their first time in this job. Or that particular bar was the first bar they entered in. Or that they say they're new in that particular bar, like 2-4 months or always less than a year (but don't mention that they've worked in other bars before). 

Lolobelles, retire na po.
Would customers not like them if they knew that the guy has been a macho dancer since he was in his teen years? Is there a "turned off" factor when we customers find out that they're not new in the industry anymore?

I don't think so. But maybe it's because there's a perception that older gay guys like fresh young meat, and not over-the-hill dancers in their late 20s. Or that virgin gay bar goers, girls and gays alike, would prefer tabling someone also new in the industry, for fear of being manipulated in their chosen guy's hands. 

Perhaps there are those who mind and those who don't. Matter of preference. 

To spot a macho dancer who has been in the business for quite some time (years of experience plus number of bars he has worked in previously) can be easy for a regular gay bar goer. The frequent customer can determine if the newly employed dancer in his favorite bar has had macho dancing experience before, just by the way the guy acts. That customer can also spot a very fresh newbie macho dancer, especially once that dancer steps on the stage to perform.

Here are the signs that a macho dancer is new in the industry or is just claiming that he's new (ie. working in the industry for a long time now) -- or the bagong-bago vs the bagong-lipat:

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Selos Factor

Oh, the games people play.

Jimmy was surprised why he was not chosen by Rhey.

The 24 year old macho dancer has been sitting with one of the walk-in lady customers, when he saw one of his regulars, Rhey, a 42 year old gay guy, enter the bar. 

Jimmy wondered. It was a weekday night, and that particular regular customer would only go on weekend nights. Also, Rhey didn't text him earlier that he'd be arriving. Come to think of it, he wondered, Rhey hasn't been texting him for a few days now.

Jimmy glanced where Rhey would be sitting. A few tables away. Good, far from where he is at. When Rhey scanned the room, Jimmy grabbed his beer, slouched on the couch, and averted his gaze. I hope Rhey wouldn't see me beside another customer, Jimmy thought.

Rhey has been that gay bar's customer for some months now. He's been going around the macho dancing gay bar circuit for years, and in every bar he's been to, he has had at least one dancer he became serious with. He has already asked two dancers before to stop working with a monthly allowance (known as "binahay" / "housed"). In the previous bar he used to frequent, he already gave close to P100K to the boy he got enamored with. Too bad, that boy left him for another customer, a woman in her late 30s who also proposed marriage. Heartbroken, Rhey transferred to a new bar and saw someone he knew he'd fall for. 

Jimmy was his type -- fair-skinned and boyish-looking, the types who join TV reality show contests as  skinny tambay boys, but with the right clothes, the right haircut, the right weight, the right smile, transform into matinee idols. 

The first time Rhey tabled Jimmy a couple of months ago, he knew he was smitten. They've been exchanging text messages once in a while, and the more Rhey got to know Jimmy, the more he got hooked. Rhey wanted them to have something more than the typical customer-MD relationship.

Thus, Rhey made sure Jimmy knew of his richness and power. He'd always buy Jimmy six to ten drinks in every visit. He made sure that Jimmy wouldn't get a tip lower than P1,500. He has even dangled the idea of buying a motorcycle for Jimmy, which made the macho dancer's eyes widen. 

That's why a few days ago, when Rhey asked Jimmy to spend a night with him in his condo, he wondered why Jimmy's reply was "Sorry, di ako pwede. May lakad ako sa gabing yun. (Sorry, I am not available. I have another thing that night)." 

Rhey insisted, and asked if they can reschedule. What Rhey got was another excuse, a lame one in his mind. They didn't exchange messages for a few days or nights after. Why Jimmy didn't even text back, Rhey just thought the macho dancer would just forget him for another customer. 

All that time, he was thinking of a simple plan to win Jimmy. Why not make him jealous? Rhey thought. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

That Inggitera Look

It was like a scene straight out of a cheap teleserye.

This line was among the hundreds of lines that stood out from the highest box-office Filipino film, "No Other Woman." For those who haven't watched the movie, the story is about a guy being torn between his wife and his I'm-not-a-mistress mistress. 

The movie's charm comes from the catty exchanges between these two equally stunning, equally rich (nouveau or old-money), equally fierce, equally palaban women. Before this film, the confrontation scenes of warring women in local cinemas or TV shows were often depicted with a tirade of insults, that leads to uncivilized sampalan, leading to sabunutan, ending with the lead actor separating the two jealous women. This movie showed that backhanded compliments, veiled insults, raised-eyebrow parinigs and bitchy one-liners give more powerful emotional blows than multiple slaps on the face.

Ironic, isn't it, that the line above was said by well-off characters who looked down upon confrontation scenes depicted in local soap operas, even if the movie from where the line came from was itself just like an extended local teleserye?

And where tall, dark and handsome men are involved, do confrontation among jealous women also occur? 

Where else, but in a macho dancing gay bar. But perhaps, not the extereme sabunutans and sampalans among the customers and these men's real wives. It can be as subtle as one look. Just one look that seems to be lifted straight out of any cheap teleserye.

And what I saw in the gay bar a few weekends ago, almost around the same time as the movie's opening weekend, was a perfect example. 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Songs in a Gay Bar: Pinoy Band Love Songs

Last weekend, I decided to forego my usual gay-bar going night out and do something more wholesome with my ex-gaybar-going friend, Mary. No, we didn't go to church and confessed one year of lusting after various macho dancers. And if we did, what if the priest instructed me for my penance to pray one Hail Mary for each macho dancer I've tabled? In that case, I would have finished an entire rosary... wait, hindi pa pala aabot.

So we went videoke-singing, and not in those KTVs where customers can also get hostesses to join them in their group. 

In the middle of our singing session, I got surprised about myself when I tried to remember the title of one particular song I wanted to sing. I knew who the singer was, but I couldn't recall any of the song's phrases nor its melody. So I texted a friend for a favor: 
"Rico*, favor. Pwedeng paki hanap yung isang kanta ni Eric Santos? First single nya ata. Kung hindi mo makita, punta ka sa blog ko. Nandoon sa post abt OPM Love Songs (Can you search for this song by Erik Santos? It was one of his first singles. If you can't find it, go to my blog, then look at the post about OPM Love Songs)."  
It seemed to be a silly favor at first. But that was when I realized, shucks, why did I want to sing something that I heard in a gay bar. After going through the repertoire of songs we played in the videoke place, I also realized that a lot of those songs we chose are those we heard in the gay bar. Kahit wala na kami sa gay bar, mga kanta pa rin ng gay bar ang naririnig (at kinakanta) namin.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Mga Saloobin ng Baguhan sa Night-men

Isang Sabado ng gabi, nagpunta ako sa isang gay bar sa Aurora, na itatago ko sa pangalang Night-men*. Kilala itong bar dahil sa dami ng lantarang notes na pinapakita rito sa loob, at lalo na ng malayang paghawak ng customer sa mga notes ng lalaki. Padaan ako sa bar, at naisipang magpunta, kahit sandali lang.   

Pagkatapos ng dalawang bote, paglabas ko ng bar, niyaya ako ng inupo kong macho dancer na si Archie* na kumain ng agahan bago kami magsiuwian.

Archie (short for Archuleta): Antayin mo ako sa labas. Bibihis lang ako. Kain tayo ha.

GBG: Okay. Sa kotse mo na ako puntahan. (Sa loob-loob ko: Akala ko ang usapan natin may iba tayong gagawin, at hindi ang pagkain ng agahan?)

Archie (pagkalabas at bihis na): Sama natin si Nicos* ha.

GBG: Ahhh....

At sa likod ni Archie, lumabas si Nicos, na nakabihis na rin ng pang-uwi. Si Nicos naman ang inupo ko sa bar na yun noong nakaraang araw, bago si Archie. Tulad ng gabing yun, hindi rin ako nagtagal sa bar. Dalawang drinks lang. Sa lahat ng dancer sa bar na yun, si Nicos lang ang natipuhan ko. Ngunit, noong pagbalik ko noong Sabado, mas marami nang dancer ang pumasok. At doon ko nakitang may mga mas okay pa pala kay Nicos. Kaya si Archie ang inupo ko.     

GBG: Okay sige. (Sa loob-loob ko: Akala ko tayong dalawa lang? Ano kaya magagawa nating tatlo? Di ako ready mag-tatluhan... ie. threesome. Ah. Siguro, kaya mo rin siya isinama no? Para chaperone na hindi lang tayong dalawa sa kotse, at hindi mangyari yung tinutukso at binubulong mo sakin kanina...)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Hosto Files: Part 3

(Continued from Part 2)

Ang mga hosutos ng Japan

All-hosto bar. Macho dancing bar. Despite these bars employing similar kinds of guys offering paid personal entertainment, my experience inside the hosto bar is different from the macho dancing bar.

For one thing, the bar's stage is without any stripping man. There is nothing to look at, except for the stage lights, the clean walls, the occasional shows on the bar's TV set, and the waiters walking about. There are bars which have some singing on-stage, some comedic performances, and some dance routines, performed all throughout the night. But depending on the bar's entertainment lineup (if they do have performances scheduled that night), these usually happen at a much later time in the night. 

Yes, at a later time. While the bar usually opens around 10 or 11PM, the party only peaks at 3AM. I remember my friends and I being the only customers in the all-hosto bar around 12 midnight. We were not bored as we had some hostos in our company. But we were wondering why, time and again, the bar gets filled only after 3AM. What's so special about the time?

Oh yes, the bar girls. This is the time they arrive.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Hosto Files: Part 2

(Continued from Part 1)

Our first foray into a hosto bar was around this time last year, when my friends and I got somewhat tired of the macho dancing bars and decided to explore other types of bars. 

When we entered the bar, we knew the bar didn't feature naked strippers. But that fact didn't stop us from staying and even returning again and again. What got us hooked were how decent-looking the men were -- properly gelled/waxed hair, their version of porma clothing, and entertaining one-on-one conversations. The lack of something to watch (ie. male strippers on stage) forced these men to entertain us with stories and jokes, unlike in the macho dancing bars where a customer can be content with just watching a naked guy dance onstage.

And of course, what we liked the most was how cheap the MD drinks were in that bar. Our bill was way below our average in the macho dancing gay bar. Even just half, I think. Not bad for a paid one-on-one "date" with a guy of your choice. 

Some hostos during their modeling

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Hosto Files: Part 1

There was a time in my gay bar going that I frequented a hosto bar. Almost every weekend night, and including some weekdays, I was there with my gay bar going friend.

Now I realized, it's been a year since my misadventures with hostos.

Thinking about it, I haven't written about hostos that much in this blog, despite the term being included in this blog's URL "machos and hostos." Most of the entries focused on macho dancers, but nothing specifically on hostos. 

It may be because I haven't encountered them again since I started this blog.

What is a hosto anyway? Funny thing is, I get a lot of questions about this, even though I thought the term was widely known, as the term "macho dancer." Perhaps, talking to actual hostos, I got a sense of what they are, and how different they are from macho dancers.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

The Stage Light Effect

"Napuntahan ko na ang gay bar na may pinakamaraming guwapong macho dancer na nakita ko (I have been to the gay bar with the most handsome macho dancers)," I keep telling my friends over the past few weeks. 

I've been to that gay bar once previously, but was not really impressed with the selection of men they had that time, which were few and a bit on the oldie side. However, when I visited the bar again, together with my MD friend, two weeks ago, I was surprised to see a great bunch of guys that fit in my concept of male beauty. 

When I returned to that gay bar after my first visit a year ago, I sat down non-chalantly and expecting nothing new would surprise me.  The one dancing when I arrived was just so-so (I can't even remember who he is or how he looked like). But then those who followed him made me re-think my view of the bar. 

I even remember texting my friend at that time, "Ngayon lang ako nakakita na sunud-sunod na guwapo ang umakyat sa stage (This is the only time I've seen handsome guys going up the stage one after the other)."

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Hanggang Saan Aabot Ang P2,000 Mo?

(Or, what can your P2000 buy you?)

Thanks to the commercial for the screen shot

So you're a gay boy who wants to have his first ever gay bar experience. You have been dreaming of seeing the insides of a macho dancing gay bar since you were a teenage gaylet. As excited as you are,  you however wouldn't know where to go, what time you're going, how you'll get there, who you'll bring along, and especially, how much to spend.

Oh yes. How much to spend. But unlike little boy Sef of the infamous Selecta Cornetto ice cream stick commercial, who seems to be savoring every lick and bite of a phallic symbol, you're given more than P20 to spend. (Seriously, what can you get in a gay bar with P20? Handshake from the parking attendant [hindi ka kasi pinapasok]? O baka, yung matabang mamang guard biglang mag macho dancing on his own while singing tugs, tugs, tugs?)

So because we're generous, let's increase it to P2,000. It's more than the average Friday night or Saturday night gimik spend. 

P2,000 can buy you a dinner date for two in Friday's or Chilli's, then catch the last full show (may pam-popcorn ka pa). It will allow you entrance in a Malate gay club, order 4 bottles of beer, pick-up a trick, then pay a 3-hour room in the nearest motel (may pambili ka rin ng condom -- priority!). If you want to do retail therapy, you can go to the mall and buy two new pairs of Havaianas, or a nifty shoulder bag, or a nice new collared top. 

But how about in a gay bar? How much do you bring when you go into a gay bar? And what if you only have P2,000? Let me show you what it can buy:  

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Private Lap Dances

A lap dance is a type of erotic dance performed in some strip clubs in which the patron is seated, and the dancer is either in immediate contact (contact dancing) with the patron, or within a very short distance.” – Wikipedia

I don’t often hear this term used in Manila. Maybe it’s used in the upscale girlie bars where the male patrons request for a solo dance with the girl stripper of his choice. Or it may be used during private off-bar bridal showers and hen nights, where the bride-to-be is seated by herself, perhaps strapped or hand-cuffed to her seat, with the hired male erotic dancer seducing her one-on-one. But used as a term in the gay bars of Manila, I haven't, yet.

We are more familiar with “macho dancing”, where the male stripper is dancing on-stage from a distance. It differs hugely from a "lap dance" as no physical contact between the dancer and the customer is involved. The nearest one-on-one experience a customer can get with a dancer is during the "area", when an all-the-way dancer approaches the customer for a tip. But this act only involves the naked dancer standing beside the customer for a few seconds. No private nights, no personal dance, nor intimate moment there. 

That is, if the customer is willing to take the dancer into a private room, called the VIP Room or “Showcase”, in some bars. This is where those moments in private, like your own special dance, can happen.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

The Korean Invasion: Part 2

(Continued from Part 1)

Based on the number of tourists from South Korea that the Philippines gets yearly, it is estimated that around $1 billion (or P44 billion) is being pumped annually into the Philippine economy. That means that if there are around 500K-700K tourists yearly, then the average Korean tourist spends around P70,000 per trip. That's just the average tourist; what more for the immigrant Koreana who stays longer for education or business.

That's why targeting these moneyed demographic is so lucrative for these gay bars. Before it used to be the Japanese and Taiwanese, but recent years saw an influx of young or middle-aged Korean tourists, even to the point of seeing bus loads of Korean women going to some of these bars. The challenge for these gay bars is how to market to these tourists, to ensure the constant influx of revenue.

In gay bars where a lot of these Koreans go to, you'd see the gay bar's obvious tactics of attracting that specific market, just by looking at their selection of men. In their line-up, you'd see this particular type of boy (see previous post on types of macho dancers and hostos). These are the few macho dancers with the unique K-Pop boy band-inspired haircut, that's long, layered, with bangs or fringes, and often with light brown highlights or in entirely blonde with their natural dark roots showing. These guys intentionally alter their entire look to mimic the young popular men of their customer's homeland (see styles below).

Take your pick from Super Junior  

And somehow, the Koreanization makeover actually works. The ones that Korean women always get are the same-looking guys who have not only adopted the distinct hairstyle but also East Asian-sounding names like Koji or Ryu. Interestingly though, these same guys who look so attractive to the Korean women oddly don't get picked by the typical Pinoy gay bar customer or matrona market. That's why some dancers are labeled by their workmates as "Pang Koreana lang yan (Only for the Koreans)."

I remember talking about hair cut with Japoy*, a macho dancer I met in Home Base* and who somewhat looks like Eun Hyuk in the photo above (top right most). Being a half-Chinese, he was very popular among these Korean customers, as feedback was he really looked like someone these women would meet in their home cities. He shared with me how he once got tired of his glorious blonde hair, and had it cut short and re-colored to its natural dark shade. The effect: his sales went down, especially among Korean customers. Without his blonde layered locks, he wouldn't stand out to catch the attention of his target market.

Not only do these men alter the way they look, they also dance to K-Pop just to attract this specific customer group. If the typical Pinoy-looking macho dancer would gyrate to an English R&B track or an OPM Ballad, these Koreanized guys would dance to a fast-paced K-Pop dance song or a romantic song from a K-Pop balladeer (I will dedicate another blog post entirely on top K-Pop songs heard in a gay bar). And it's even sometimes obvious when the entertainment manager starts to cue a series of Korean songs a few minutes after a group of Korean gay bar virgins arrive in the bar. Halata kung sino tina-target so that these women would be enticed to choose among the "Only For Koreans" guys to table with.

What happens when these Koreans table a Filipino macho dancer? They are either very quiet or very noisy. The silent ones I understand. The one-word discussions between the Korean and the dancer stem from language barrier obviously. So unless the tabled dancer would understand the broken English of these women (eg. "You just talk and talk there okay" or "I give beer why not kiss you me"), some men actually learn to speak Korean (not just "Annyeong Haseyo") to the delight of these customers, to help them converse easily.

But the noisy ones? Urg.

In some websites, I've read that some Korean tourists are observed as "difficult to deal with. They are demanding and rude." While I haven't had first-hand experience on dealing with these supposed "spoiled" and "aggressive" Koreans, I've heard a lot of stories of their attitude in gay bars already. Like how they seem to do anything they want to do in the bar. Some just go up on stage as if drunk ledge-dancing in a disco or dance club, while a macho dancer is in the middle of his performance. A lot I hear just cheer wildly when their favorite man is onstage.

What do the gay bar managers do? Sometimes, encourage them more to have the most fun they could have. "Kailangan lang patawanin yang mga yan (You just need to make them laugh)," a gay bar worker informed me. Another said, "bola-bolahin mo lang yan, matutuwa na sila (Just flatter them, they'd enjoy it)."

The most extreme cases I've heard, and even seen at one point, were regular Korean guests who would actually get so jealous and make sugod (charge, advance, like in an army) to other customers tabling their guy. Like there was this Koreana matrona I wrote about before who got so jealous and angry that she got up and "attacked" the other Korean women who previously tabled her guy. A few weeks back, I also saw a young Korean woman who was obviously drunk and from her booth, she went inside the enclosed booth of a Pinoy gay guy with another macho dancer. Apparently, the guy was also a regular guest of that drunk Koreana's chosen macho dancer. She wanted to confront the other customer, but the bar's staff blocked her, and tried to lead her away. She refused to leave the customer's booth, and sat on the couch like a spoiled brat. Guess who was the only one who could force her out of the gay man's area. Her macho dancer, the guy in the middle of it all.

I guess with the money they are bringing in, they'd want to get even more special treatment. As the gay bar obliges with some special requests they have, such as coming as late as 5AM and requesting for an all-cast show up, even when the dancers are already departing from the bar. With their attitude, do these Koreans even care how much money they spend? No, according to Japoy and the gay bar managers I've chatted with. While their receipts can average about P3K to P6K per person, the tips they give can get really high. Especially the regular ones, who sometimes even get tricked into tipping every single waiter in the bar. And that is the main reason why this demographic, with their demands and eccentricities, are so lucrative for Manila's gay bars and their macho men.

So not only do Korean tourists in general bring in the money to the Philippine economy. They also bring in money to Manila's gay bars too.

To some of the macho dancers, I even give advice, that if they want to really earn in their industry, they'd just change their hairstyle to look more Korean. Because if an average Korean spends around P70K per visit in Manila, and would just decide to go to one gay bar at 5AM, then the Koreanized macho dancer has more chances of getting picked to be tabled and getting some share of the P70K spend. The question then is how that single macho dancer, or the whole gay bar industry of Manila, or even the entire Philippine tourism, can ensure that their Korean guests, their Korean customers, or their #1 Korean tourists, would keep coming back for more.

GB Goer
twitter: @gbgoer

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Korean Invasion: Part 1

You see them almost everywhere. You see them walking along the busy streets of Quezon City or the sloping streets of Baguio. You see their shops and restaurants near the red-light district of Burgos Street in Makati or the dark alleys around Remedios, Guerrero, and Bocobo in Malate. You see them surfing inside the internet cafes of Timog, or working inside some high end beauty parlor in Buendia or strolling inside the Mall of Asia. You see newly set up institutions focusing on teaching them English. Heck, you even see their soap operas on local primetime TV and topping local music video charts, supported by advertising of some local packaged noodles, with a distinct flavor inspired by their cuisine.

And more recently in the past how many years, you see them in the gay bars of Manila as well.

Annyeong Haseyo!
Based on Department of Tourism's statistics, tourists from South Korea were the top visitors in the country the past year. They consistently rank either top 1 or 2 over the past few years, ranging from around 500K to 700K annual visitors. And supposedly, part of these visitors go to Manila's gay bars.

Every top gay bar I've been to, I've asked the gay floor managers what kind of patrons they would usually get. Typically, it would be the standard answer of gay men and matronas, with some groups of curious first timer women.

"How about Koreans?" I ask them. Every single gay bar manager, from the ones in Quezon City to the ones in Manila, would then reply, "Oh yes, even the Koreans."

Case in point
I was then wondering what would attract these Koreans to the Pinoy macho dancer. If it is said that Koreans are attracted to visit and eventually live in the Philippines because of cheap English education, plus the pleasant warm weather and tourist spots that are easily accessible by inexpensive flights, then what would make them enter a male strip bar and spend huge sums of money to sit with a young Pinoy male?

As with all virgin gay bar goers, the primary reason to enter a gay bar is curiosity. But how would they get curious if they wouldn't be aware of the presence of these seedy bars in the first place?

Well, for that, these Koreans should thank the local tour guides. Apparently, some tours include a night out in the macho dancing gay bar. Maybe not all of the tourists would want to see a half-naked Pinoy male dancing on stage; the Korean men might then proceed to the girly bars, while the women to the manly ones. Then what the tour guides would get in return with their referrals is a cut from the entrance fee. They'd tell these visitors that the entrance fee would be P500, which is more than twice the actual entrance fee in some bars, but still inexpensive for the won-earning tourists. The result: Korean women happy, gay bar happy, tour guide happy.

On promos and advertisements, I doubt there are TV ads in Seoul promoting "Wow Macho!" for Philippines tourism. But, according to one gay bar manager, as part of their promotions, their bar had a Korean website. They even have tie-ups with travel agencies in Korea. Hmmm... I wonder if the brochures for Boracay are being outsold by the brochures of a macho bar featuring a beaming Sandara Park beside a shirtless Joseph Bitangcol.

There is of course the so-called power of "word of mouth." For instance, a Korean girl living in the Philippines to study English enjoys her one-night experience beside a macho dancer. She then tells her Korean friends living with her in their close-knit little Korean town. These Korean friends then try the gay bar, spending only a small fraction of their huge allowance, enjoy themselves extremely, then recommend their other Korean girl friends visiting from Seoul. The word about an entertaining night spot, that features naked men for cheap fun conversation, then spreads to other curious girls in Korea. Idagdag mo pa si kurakot na tour guide. You then have a recipe for a good kimchi, err, booming market of giggly, wild Korean women.

Then there are the Korean matronas.

Before, I've asked one of the macho dancers about the deal regarding their bar's top patron, who was a Korean matrona. How could she afford to go to the expensive gay bar every night? Did she even have a job? Where does she get the money? Does she even have kids at her ripe age? Where are they? Where is her husband? Does she even have one?

Apparently, she does, and the poor guy is living in Korea. Well, he's not really poor, as he supposedly owns numerous buildings for rent here in Manila and back in Korea. Her children are also studying, but I am unsure if in Manila or in Korea. That perfectly exemplifies what I read in an article why some Korean fathers can still work in Korea while leaving their families to live in luxury in the Philippines, where cost of living is lower. A few managers admit that while there are van-loads of Korean tourists seen almost every weeknight in the gay bar, those Koreans who became gay bar regulars are the migrant negosyantes who already own retail shops or restaurants in Manila, and even more specifically, their wives who are given huge monthly allowances by their rich absentee spouse.

And those huge sums of money is what makes this Korean market very attractive for Manila's gay bars.

(to be continued...)

GB Goer
twitter: @gbgoer

Friday, August 5, 2011

Ang Muling Pagpasabog

May nag-text. Madaling araw na noong natanggap ko ang pinaka una niyang mensahe. Pauwi ako sa isang lakad noon, at noong nabasa ko kung kanino galing, nagulat ako.

Aba, nagparamdam. Ang para na lang naglahong hosto na si Air* (na naisulat ko na dati). Kaboom (cue in Boy Abunda's "Pasabog!" tuwing lingo sa The Buzz).
Left (in gray): Si Air*
Right (in green): Me
Syempre, dahil may nakaraan, napa-ngiti ako. Mga ilang buwan ko na rin siyang hindi nakikita. Siguro, wala pang closure sa aming relasyon, kaya't mayroon pa rin akong nadarama para sa kanya. Kinilig ako kahit na masakit ang naging nakaraan.

Hanggang sa nabasa ko ang mga susunod na text...

Sunday, July 31, 2011

This Macho Dancer’s Last Harana

Friday and Saturday nights in the macho dancing gay bar are usually packed, with ladies wanting to be seduced and matronas wanting to fall in love. In the middle of the night, after a series of men dancing naked in their routine moves, the gay bar would feature a series of production numbers.

These production numbers are composed of various acts. They have in-house hired tranny performers doing a cabaret show or lip-synching to impersonate famous divas. Some bars have hiphop dance crews to liven up the show with upbeat dance routines. Some bars even create a full production act with a featured macho dancer, complete with full acting, back-up dancers, sound and musical effects, props, sets, and costumes.

However, out of all the macho dancing gay bars I’ve been, there was only one which had quite a unique performance. No, it wasn’t a live toro show, but something more wholesome. And in this particular gay bar, when all the macho dancers only flaunted their naked bodies on stage, there was only one who flaunted his vocal talent.

And that was before he told me that he decided to stop singing altogether.

This is his story. Our story.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Touched: Part 2

(Continued from Part 1)

The gay bar goer then awaits for the first comfortable breaking of personal space. He has been visually aroused by the performances by the manly eye candy on stage, and is already eager to elevate this with the sense of touch.

But the gay man needs to wait. Especially if with the boy of his choice.

He can start feeling up the dime a dozen (or P100 each) all-the-way dancers as much as he wants to. The bigger gay bars openly release them to the customers who are eager to get close to the rock hard dicks of these less-than-quality men. In the smaller gay bars, these men in the nude go directly beside the customer (an act the bar terms as "area"), where, for a tip, they allow themselves and their rock-hard thingies to be tapped, squeezed, fondled, grasped, and even shockingly stroked repeatedly. But to do that with his preferred macho dancer may take more than a hundred pesos and a one-time visit.

Friday, July 22, 2011

Touched: Part 1

The macho dancing gay bar of Manila has been known to be a very visual place. Patrons go there for the sights of dancing men in various states of undress. "Nude men, right before your eyes" seems to be a catch phrase for the curious wanting to enter the gay bar. Those who frequent the bar even find it as a feast for the lusty eyes.  

What I experienced last weekend in the gay bar got me into thinking though. I got the services of one of the fully dressed masseurs roaming the bar. Not the happy-ending type of massages, mind you (yeah, who would like to get it on with an er-ish oldie male masseur). For a tip of P100, these men try to give a 20-minute less-than-spa-treatment, if not painful, rub on the neck, shoulders, and back. It's a service offered to customers wanting to be relaxed, while watching the entertainment on-stage. 

The massage I got from this particular male masseur opened me up -- his warm hands stroking the grooves of my shoulder, his knuckles forcing the tight knots out of my back muscles, and his thumbs pressing deeply yet carefully into my palms. It was quietly arousing, without intending to be. And then, I thought:

Why can touch become so important in a very visual place?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Early Morning, Sundays

5:00 AM. 

Gay bar house lights open. DJ plays the closing song. The half-naked dancers start to dress up in their casual clothes, usually the same clothes they wore going to the bar. 

Inside the bar, the gay bar addict asks for the bill and pays another enormous sum after a night of partying. The dancers from the dressing room head straight to the cashier to collect their 6-day allowance from working the entire week. After paying, the customer stands from the seats, then heads out the gay bar door. Outside, the night sky lightens to a dark shade of blue-gray.

The customer leaves via riding a taxi or driving his own vehicle. One by one, the cars leave the once-filled parking lot in front of the bar. The remaining motorcycles outside the bar, those owned by the monied macho dancers, leave next. 

Friday, July 15, 2011

Beware the Invitation

You go to your favorite macho dancing gay bar, with the intention of spending another P3,000 like you did the previous week. You order your macho dancer espesyal, and while waiting for him to be served, the gay floor manager sits beside you. He chats you up, and mentions the upcoming male pageant search to be held in their bar. You've heard about this before, so you nod in agreement as he asks if you'd be going. 

"Kunin po namin kayong judge ha (We'll get you as a judge)," he tells you with a shy smile.   


Of course, you've now become part of this elite group of very important guests who already has the power and unique skill in determining the top macho dancer in the bar. Fantastic! Imagine a stage filled with semi-nude men trying to get your attention and your vote.

You go again to their bar. The gay floor manager chats you up, and shares his excitement about their upcoming outing to this private beach resort. You've heard about this, as casually mentioned by your frequently-tabled macho dancer a few weeks back. You ask the gay floor manager about their overnight trip.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Overheard at the Gay Bar Banyo

One of the benefits of being a gay male in a gay bar is sharing the same comfort room with the male models working there. Wait, that did not sound right. I'm not talking about the peaking that happens between two men standing beside two adjacent urinals. Nor am I talking about an illicit quickie or "song" number done in a locked cubicle. Pervert!

Let me rephrase my first statement: One of the benefits of being a chismoso gay male in a gay bar is sharing the same comfort room with the male models working there.

When I go on bathroom breaks in the gay bar, I get to chance upon one or two dancers on their phones. I don't intend to listen in to their conversations while doing my own business. But because they always seem to shout loudly while on the phone, thinking they're still at the customer area (ever notice how people shout loudly on the phone if the background noise is too loud?), I can't help but hear what they're saying. 

Here, I compiled some oft-mentioned lines, including a few shady ones, that I've heard when a macho dancer is on the phone in the rest room. The chismoso in me can't help but over-analyze what I overhear inside those rooms.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Butterfly: Part 2

(Continued from Part 1)

So in this scenario, on one Saturday night in a bar filled with customers except for a few empty tables, our fictional MD will do what bars call the "butterfly." It simply means a dancer or hosto hopping from one table to another, like a butterfly flying from flower to flower, until he is sent away. 

Our fictional gay customer, Lei, sees their gay manager with his chosen boy in tow. Lei smiles as the gay manager introduces John, who extends a handshake, smiles, and greets with a "nice to see you again." The waiter asks for the boy's order of drink, which he promptly replies with "lights." Lei initiates a conversation, the usual how are yous. Their conversation extends for a few minutes, until the waiter arrives with the boy's drink. The tabled dancer takes a few sips from the bottle. Lei asks if John has already performed that night, which prompted the dancer to excuse himself to take a look in the dressing room. 

Good exit, John thinks to himself. 

He goes to the dressing room, then makes his way through the crowded bar to sit again beside the middle aged woman who was chatting with her friends. She notices John beside her, then jokingly comments how a toilet break can possibly take 15 minutes long. John smiles sheepishly, gives some lame excuse of talking with another MD, then takes a few good sips from his beer. He glances at the other end of the crowded bar if his other customer can see him. No. Good. John intermittently chats up the woman customer and drinks his beer, until the bottle is 3/4 empty. He excuses himself again to go to the toilet, with an explanation of how drinking beer can make someone pee often.

So this table-hopping goes on for the next hour or so: John goes back to Lei, chats loudly with him and with his group, drinks the beer, then tells him he'll be up on stage in the few minutes, so he needs to prepare. John returns to the woman customer, saying some sweet nothings, finishes the beer, orders another one, then excuses himself to go prepare for dance. John then actually dances, glancing secretly at either customer. He returns to Lei right after, still sweaty. John drinks his beer, then to appear close, puts his arms around Lei, which prompts him to react "you're still sweaty." This gives John another excuse to go back to the dressing room. All-fresh, John sits with the woman, then apologizes for taking so long as he had to freshen up after the dance. He then gives another lame excuse about the toilet, leaves, goes to the other customer, lame excuse about a text message or being called by the supervisor, returns to the first, apologize, and so on and so forth.

Messy. Trabaho kung trabaho.

But this butterfly concept does not happen in all bars, depending on their policies. Most bars respect the first-come-first-served rule. They know that allowing this butterfly system may lead to ugly fights, not only among the customers but also among the men. Preventing table-hopping among the men opens up opportunities for the other non-sellable macho dancers to be tabled by customers. 

On the other hand, those other bars who allow this concept want to "spread the joy" among customers who go to the bar specifically for a guy. That's their press release. But in reality, it's also added income not only for the bar, but for the macho dancer who has a daily quota of drinks to achieve himself. 

For the customer's sake, to inform or not to inform them -- that's the tricky part in butterfly. The risk a dancer makes in asking permission from their first customer is being sent back to the dressing room, and possibly losing that customer forever. Unless the customer does not mind or just simply accepts the bar's policies. And that type of understanding customer, I believe, is a rare breed.

So those sly macho dancers, like John, choose to keep their butterflies secret. According to a few hostos and dancers, it takes some skill to execute a butterfly perfectly, without either customer knowing they're being two-timed by their chosen men. They ensure their customers are seated far apart, with the help of the managers or waiters. They seem extra sweet or extra chatty when seated with either customer. By walking from one end of the bar to another, they try to appear as if they're simply roaming around the bar. Our fictional macho dancer, John, actually gives the most common reasons to excuse himself to go to another customer.

Think about it, what does a scheming macho dancer really do during a so-called 20-minute toilet break? Poop? Yeah, with bull shit.

But in general, if a dancer decides to butterfly, most are respectful enough to ask first from their customers if they can do table-hopping. If the customer does not allow it, then the guy can opt to "check out" or "out" himself in that table, making himself available for the other customer. In this case, it's the guy's choice if he prefers to sit with whoever got him first or whoever he has a better relationship with or whoever would provide him with a larger tip.

What's a customer to feel when the dancer does a butterfly on him/her? Imagine being two-timed in a bar, while paying for the time with the guy. It's like spending money for a guy who can sit with you and at the same time, canoodle with some other woman or gay man just a few tables away.

So for customers who don't want to share macho dancers or hostos with others, the gay bar provides simple suggestions:
  • First, arrive early. Especially on customer-filled weekend nights. This way, the earlier customer gets the so-called "right of first refusal" to share his or her men. 
  • If not, the customer can text the gay bar managers to reserve the man in advance. This may require some advanced payment or bagsak of drinks though, depending on the bar's policies. 
  • Last, be the macho dancer's regular guest by returning again and again. These men tend to "reserve" themselves or, if seated, "out" themselves from their table, if they find out in advance that their regular guest is arriving that night.
Notice how all the above suggestions benefit the bar. Arriving earlier = More drinks spent. Advanced reservations = Sure drinks spent. Regular guest = frequent drinks spent. Customer is happy. Hunky man is happy. Bar is very happy.

Good thing that our fictional macho dancer, John, gets away with a butterfly done in secret. Middle aged woman satisfied. Gay customer satisfied. With drinks and tips from both. But little does he know that our fictional customer, Lei, has taken notice but chose to keep silent.

Or will he? On that Saturday night, in the bar filled with customers, except for a few empty tables, Lei just decides to blog about it. 

(And no, Lei is not GB Goer, nor is GB Goer this Lei guy).

GB Goer
Learn more: Lessons from Gay Bars in Manila
twitter: @gbgoer

*All persons here in this specific post are purely fictional. Any resemblance to real persons or real macho dancers or real hostos, living or dead, is purely coincidental.

Photo credits: Painting "Winged spirit buttoning his underpants (1966)"  by Yannis Tsarouchis at–1989/