The original article was published 11 years ago in the Philippine Star, May 15, 2005.
I’m reposting it here with edits because my old writing makes me cringe.
In 2005, producer Tommy Ng texted me. He was looking for a modern house to shoot a print ad with either Piolo Pascual or Claudine Barretto. I offered my home.
After an ocular inspection, Tommy Ng asked: “O, who do you want: Piolo or Claudine?”
“What do you think?” I shot back.
“Tommy, do you honestly think I can brag about Claudine to my friends?”
The next day while reading the Star, I came across a press release saying Boy George was going to DJ at the NBC Tent with DJ Mark Vedo.
Boy George, my high-school crush, my idol! I used to dress like him, wear makeup like him, paint T-shirts and murals of him.
“Boy George ruined your life,” my Dad once told me.
“Because you dressed like him and became like that.”
I still do, actually.
On Saturday night, my friend and I decided to stalk Boy George at the NBC Tent. We waited until 1 AM. My body was tired. We gave up when we heard that he would play his set at 2 AM.
But not before I saw Mimi Tan, an old schoolmate from Assumption. Mimi was one of the coolest girls in school. She and her sister Juliet had been taking care of Boy George and his group while in Manila, and I thanked my lucky stars I had been nice to Mimi.
She told me about a dinner they were planning for Boy George and invited me!
The following morning, Piolo Pasual arrived at our house for the 9 AM call time.
He was friendly, down-to-earth, easy to work with, and impossibly gorgeous.
I took these photos during the lunch break.
During lunch, Mimi Tan called to confirm dinner with Boy George: 9 PM at the original Sala in Malate.
I went straight to Juan Sarte, makeup artist to the stars, and said, “Juan, makeup-an mo ko please. I have a dinner with Boy George!”
Juan said sure.
At 7 PM, while I sat on Juan’s makeup chair, Piolo was changing for the next layout. He wore black cargo jeans, two kinds of shoes on each foot, and no top. He was asking Juan which shoe to wear.
Now, Piolo is half-naked, I’m looking at his feet and trying very hard not to look up and stare at him. So help me God.
Piolo settled for the blue Converse and went back to work.
After makeup and changing for dinner, I came out and Piolo said, “Uy, transformation!”
I left as they were wrapping up and rushed out to Malate.
This was 2005, so I arrived at Sala exactly 9 PM.
No sign of Boy George, only three tables with foreigners and our host, chef Colin Mackay.
Leah Puyat and Anton Barretto arrived. Then Pepper Teehankee, followed by Liza Ilarde and Elbert Cuenca.
To pass time we talked about New Wave bands. I told them that Mimi warned: Do NOT bring up the ’80s to Boy George. He doesn’t like it.
After teaching him basic bad words in Tagalog, we listened to his funny statements about Elton John, David Gest, and Cyndi Lauper. I wished I could’ve taken down notes, but Mimi had told us not to as George was very wary of press people.
At that time, George had been living in New York (“near Canal Street”) for one and a half years, having moved there to stage the musical Taboo which was based on the ’80s club scene and the story club icon Leigh Bowery.