June 2014. The pool tables were being repaired as presumably a birthday gift from the Properties Manager of the UP Alumni Association, the manager of the UPAA Bowling and Billiards Hall. They have also granted our organizations bulletin boards for the incoming promotion purposes.
Little did I realize that it would be the catalyst of a tumultuous chapter in my life that would challenge on my now accommodating stance on extending relations to other students and my leadership and political will on both organizations.
I would include my accounts about this chapter of my organizational life in the Part 2 of As UP Pool Club President. What I will be reminiscing here in the parallel chapter as tumultuous as my hardships as president during that time.
I never thought that I would be involved in a scandal that would test my bluntness, uncompromising behavior and steel demeanor, so great that for the first time of my life, I bowed my head out of defeat.
That girl was once a patron of the billiard hall in UP. It was around the start of 2014 that she began to frequent on the pool hall with her friends. Her friends were offering themselves to teach her how to play. And when I saw how they taught her, I just scoffed at their ignorance.
It was always during the afternoons of Wednesdays and Fridays that they were playing there. That always coincided with my afternoon siestas in the pinboys’ quarters. It was quite understandable that these people would enjoy the sport, given its wonders and difficult. But what I don’t understand was that why they must be so noisy that the annoying shrieks would snap me, who was situated about 65 feet away, out of my nap.
Out of annoyance, I presented myself to teach them how to play, so that they could be a little serious about the sport. It was then I noticed that she was always wearing alluring outfits. But since, I’ve been with someone worse, I was immune to its charms and temptations. My professionalism prevailed and I was able to present the basics without problems.
I only got to know her name when my orgmates began asking to whom I had a little crush on. That was a different girl from the one that frequented on the pool hall. They began guessing names of my colleagues who happened to wear glasses (they both wear glasses). There were two names I picked up and later searched on Facebook: Mau and Nikka. The former was that crush and the latter was the one that frequented on the pool hall.
It was after that I broke up with my girlfriend that time that I took notice of the latter, who was still frequenting herself on the pool hall. The UP Pool Club’s muse, Sophie, has just graduated. Another female member, Ana, also graduated. The muse’s post was vacant. And I immediately thought of a candidate.
Gradually, I began my hands-on intervention on their play. I wanted to initiate her full interest towards the sport. But also, I had to be cautious not to establish attachments (having just received a painful life lesson from my former girlfriend, who happened to be one of my members).
Wearing alluring outfits is fine, if it means to allure someone. But wearing it to show on a public place invites lascivious eyes. She had a reason: she brings her used clothes back to Bulacan and her clothes must not be heavy. So it must be thin and short all the time?
I’ve been itching every moment I saw her back then to reprimand her. I’ve had every grounds to assert myself to do that thing as the unofficial student manager of the establishment. However, my moral conscience dictated that it would be too awkward and the shame that my intervention brings would give embarrassment to her.
I then asked an orgmate of hers why she always associated herself with men. Her orgmate defended it well, convincing me that girl-girl friendships were more complicated than a boy-girl ones. And so I rested my case on her attire and her companions.
It was one day when I and one of my deputies were playing when they played on a near table. The management had been anomalously cutting expenses on the establishment. The five tables had to share only one mechanical bridge, or in the British tongue, rest.
I took the opening break and the position of the balls required me to play right-handed. I was a left-handed player and I had been toying with the idea of playing right-handed instead of using the rest. But we had a bet during that match and I had to play seriously. I went to their table to reach for the rest, which was awkwardly right at the foot of that girl. As I bent down to reach it, all of the sudden, she who was right in front on me, danced seductively, sending chills down my spine.
Being a hopeless romantic, I detested those kind of acts. I wiggled my way towards our table, making facing expressions to my deputy telling him how detested I was to that act of hers. Those kinds of instances bring prejudices towards our subconscious. I was dissuaded from making her the organization’s muse.
It was during the penultimate summer term before the academic shift that I got to know more about her from her orgmates. We formed an inner circle, often camping out at night at the sidewalks or in the wilderness.
Our ringleader was the one who shared the rumors about that girl. These were the following gossips:
- She admitted for once that she went on 3rd base.
- When she was drunk, she admitted that she once made homosexual sex with one of her orgmates.
I think what started the revelations was the fact that the Kapampangan crush of some members of our inner circle, on which I openly ridiculed and berated, because her acts were quite disrespectful, ironic to the name she has, was being invited by that girl to her inner circle, thus the beginning of the narration of her sexual exploits.
From time and again, I was telling my inner circle that given her personality and traits, as noble as I am, I would be presenting myself to change her if given a chance. My nobility made most of inner circle puke, misinterpreting it as hypocrisy.
But that notion of mine was tested in time. I’ve been subject to scrutiny back when I was a freshmen. I was invited to a night-out with the libertines, with only myself as the male in the party. I rejected it. In the mountains that a classmate of mine stripped in front of me, I just looked away and urged her to put her clothes back on. In the same mountain, it was now my crush who was drunk at that time and joined me on my bed. I never did anything malicious. I just invited her to play card games and I would woo her to sleep. Back in my grand-aunt’s house in Sampaloc, when my female boardmates would knock themselves into joining me in the bathroom. I just kept a promise to never yield for those acts.
Months later, when I was supervising the repair on the pool tables along with my deputy on tournament management, I happened to meet her again, playing billiards with her friends as her birthday celebration.
It was the first time we engaged in a real conversation.
It was also the time that I extended my invitation to her into joining my organization, UP Pool Club, on which she heartily began to consider, much to the glaring eyes of her companions as if they were throwing daggers with their glare.
A week later, I followed up on her intent to join. That was when the questions begin to pester on my wall on ask.fm (http://ask.fm/JoshuaCAgar). I was just being sport and played along to not beat the social media site’s purpose.
It started with the question dated June 18, 2014, :
Kamusta kayo ni Nikka?
I feigned ignorance. It was then the askers, who were enjoying the anonymity granted to them, began to explicitly pointing out specifics. I immediately contacted one member of our inner circle asking who the hell was asking. Round and round they went pointing their fingers towards each other.
I tried to address the issue with an implied statement:
Siya ang tanungin nyo sa mga bagay na iyan. At kung totoo man iyan, at nabigyan ako ng pagkakataon, babaguhin ko siya.
However, the askers never relented. It was until mid-July that the girl was informed on the fiasco of my ask.fm wall. She told me to stop and I did. I just then settled on parrying some ambiguous questions, although they implied that it was her.
December 2014. I was still feeling melodramatic of the upset of that fiasco. Out of loneliness, I drew that girl’s Facebook profile picture.
Pedro Paterno, after being captured in Antimok, Benguet in 1900, was contemplating in his jail out of loneliness. He, upon eventual swearing allegiance to Uncle Sam’s flag, took off to organize massive protests inside Manila much to the chagrin of the Americans, for it was a mere sight of embarrassment. Don Pedro’s action was seen as some kind of hypocrisy.
However, he still delivered his final swan song, which he boldly compared to Jose Rizal’s Mi Ultimo Adios, orally. William Howard Taft was fed up to his act and decided to not go to see Paterno. Later, people would see Paterno prostrating himself in front of Gov. Taft’s house, pleading him to see him. It was a shameful act.
People tend to do stupid things. And I was not also immune into committing them. Just before my supposed date of my field survey for my thesis, I was having nightmares that my plane would crash, thanks to my subscription to BBC’s Mayday. I then left a parting post on Facebook, holding my sketch on her, telling to the public that she was my crush. It was as if I was leaving a last will and testament. Hahahaha.
That sparked another barrage of unwanted questions on my ask.fm wall again. The questions were so indignant that I was brought to a resolve to solve this problem once and for all. I went to fish more question in order to give a picture of the askers’ inclinations. I was a person who sorted people based on the personal information I fed to them. But my main suspicion was still on my inner circle. And second, I wanted these instances to be investigated and these questions would act as evidences.
I just interpreted these questions as:
- Why do you have to make me the scapegoat of your gossip-spreading?
- Why it must be through me?
- What am I to Nikka to receive these kind of questions?
It finally took the notice of her close friends which was relayed to her organization’s officers. But much to my disappointment, instead of an investigation, the organization has told me to yield.
Really? After all the injustices that was done?
I never relented. I developed a blind faith. I hoped that that organization would heed my suggestion: round all of its members up and scan them and their social media accounts one by one. I knew it was an arduous task. But if they wanted to prove their organizational integrity, they must be able to do so. Only they didn’t.
I was in the midst of despair. My organizations were already facing disputes with the UPAA for exposing the illegality of their jurisdictions. I was also the center of the political dispute between UPAA and UP-OSA and USC. I was also the center of the feud between UPDBC and UPEBA. Everywhere, they would put me into countless hearings. And when I am supposed to take a rest, I would be then addressing this issue on ask.fm.
My friends were already advising me to yield. But I cannot, because that only proves that nobody can stop this detrimental tradition of faux friendships within school organizations after giving you the impression that they were a big united family. I was very pressured and my choices ere narrowed down to the point that I made the same decision on both cases: to never yield.
It was only then when I was summoned by that organization’s faculty adviser, who happened to be a fellow of our Structural Engineering Group, that, in tears, I was able to voice out some of my bitterness towards the situation, finally relieving the pressure that was building up. He pointed out that the one that I was supposed to be protecting, Nikka, was the one who suffered the damage the most. It was then I yielded to their pleas. He inquired to point out the identity of those askers, but out of delicadeza, I only gave ambiguous answers, taking the full responsibility for this fiasco, although I did pointed out some premises to the event.
I was defeated and ruined. Their adviser told me to just focus on my ongoing undergraduate thesis to recover. When I finally made my field survey, a member of that inner circle texted me, if I still like Nikka. I said no. He then asked me if I dished them out to their faculty adviser. I said no.
I am now compiling the questions asked on my ask.fm wall which I put down and are in store in the Questions section. I’ll be uploading it in a pdf file along with my timestamp, my sarcastic commentaries and supposed answers (Refresh this page for updates). I’ll leave the judgment to you guys.