Tuesday, October 24, 2006

What's The Kwento?

While on the bus into Central this week, I saw a group of teenagers walking out of our residential area. I wondered where they were going and what their conversations would be like. It made me think back to those days when I used to hang out with my friends and make kwento (gossip) during lunch breaks or when we met up on weekends. Then when I was abit older, kwentos would usually be at someone's house or at a coffee shop. Since we were all single or just started dating, what made these kwentos so fun and lively were the topic of boys. We talked about who had a crush on whom, who got a promising smile or grin from some guy or who actually received a call from their crush.

Most of us had an underlying excitement each time we met. There were endless "what if's" or "you know what's!" with an exclamation mark. Every minute detail would send us into a fit of giddiness or "kilig". We were all so looking forward to having a boyfriend and so every party we were invited to boiled down to who we might meet and who might potentially end up as our boyfriend.

It was this underlying theme that made shallow me enjoy hanging out with my friends so much when I was in highschool and college. I was so eager to meet someone and go through that initial kilig, that initial contact, that initial confirmation of mutual attraction. It was like a drug. Everything I did boiled down to what I hoped would happen at these parties. What would I wear, how would I do my hair, what attitude do I present when I talk to someone. All these were part of the master plan. Then after the evening was over, it was on to the phones and analysing and reanalysing everything that was said and done. What exactly did he mean when he said this? Did I sound uninterested when I said this? Wasn't so and so super cute? Conversations on the phone with my friends were just endless.

And when I got older, kwentos got even juicier because things were no longer rated PG-13. We were grown up, experienced, not afraid to really say what was on our minds and more so to ask what was on our minds. Although that meant my circle of friends decreased in size, the intensity of our kwentos increased by leaps and bounds. We kissed and blurted out almost everything. We asked and almost blushed, but the thrill of finding out some new information about my friends were wonderful. When else in our lives would we have the opportunity to take a peek into each other's initimate moments, to compare, envy and laugh about?

But now that we're mostly married, kwentos have mainly stuck to the topics of children, jobs and anything not intimate nor private. Because we all function now as a couple, everything we say has to have our husband, wife of partner's reputation considered. If we do get into the deep kwento mood, most of us would start our kwento with a quick disclamer or warning: "Hey, don't tell anyone ha! Not even your partners, ok?" To which we would always say: "Of course not. I don't tell my partner everything. Especially private matters of my friends."

But the best part comes after the initial flood gates have been opened. I realize that although those juicy and so so interesting kwentos have died down since I "grew" up, I am still fortunate enough to be able to participate in juicy kwentos of another dimension or level. Gone are the kilig topics, crushes, first kisses and instead what has evolved are deeper topics, emotional topics and topics that make you think. I have enjoyed many conversations with my friends and have now reached another realization. Although our topics are so grown up now, its after we have dished out all these "grown up' topics that makes it all the more fun and hilarious when we revert back and start gossiping. Its great to just let go of our reservations and make those shallow comments. To actually sit down with your group of friends and not be ashamed of saying so and so isn't here, so let's talk about him/her. We may be adults now, but deep down inside we're still those teenagers eager to gossip and make kwento into the wee hours of the evening.

1 comment:

chris said...

Interesting post. That's something that I feel like is largely absent in my life and has been mostly since graduating from SCU. Especially because of the amount that I'm moved about, I don't really have a group of friends with whom I'm regularly in touch.

Many very close friends, but still ones who are some distance away. And not many with whom I can talk in a "kwento" way.