Yep. I Was Once a Heartthrob.

Well, sort of. Words to that effect. Bear with me.

I was a 16-year old, cute, naive college freshman with bangs that I blow with my lips pursed asymmetrically so that the air rushes upward. I lived with my two brothers and a cousin in the ground floor of a three-story house in Tondo, Manila. Our landlord and his family occupied the rest.

Now this family had two maids. And we are getting into the exciting part of this post.

And you guessed it right: the maids had a crush on me. They didn’t show their admiration by shrieking wildly with placards that say, “Marry Me” or “I ❤️ U” whenever I enter the house. Instead, they stole glances every once in a while and, this: brought food like hamburgers and kakanin not just for me but for all of us.

My cousin, who is older than me was the playboy of the brood. He knew how to play this game.

He told me to stay often in the backyard where the laundry hang. This was an open area where anyone from above can see us. He also told me to smile at every opportunity for them to see. And to wear tank tops. And to practice my tennis swings at the laundry area even if I had yet to pick up the game then. But who cares, right? Pancit is good anytime of the day.

I shot down the idea of doing Integral Calculus housework by the clotheslines, though. I wanted to graduate on time. Money is precious.

So is food. Free food. We all loved it, so I played on. Hamburgers kept coming. Our cholesterol levels went up the roof.

The entire brood graduated from college and got jobs and went on to live our separate lives. As for the maids who would drop their mops for a glimpse of my shadow, I don’t know. Not that I didn’t care. I did. It’s still a good feel knowing I was appreciated.

I raise this cup to them.


If you’ve been touched, amused, or entertained by this post, or it put a smile on your face, please favor me with a cup of coffee. I will continue writing.

Subscribe to receive an email whenever a new story is published.


Leave a Comment