It was 7:00 PM when the group met up for the exposure trip. At first we decided on going to a strip club, but we figured there might be someplace else more enjoyable than what was previously decided upon. After deliberating for several more minutes, we then finally decided to head on to a comedy bar in Tomas Morato. The name of the bar was Zirkoh.
We took a while getting a taxi. We were worried we might be late for the show. To our surprise, the program starts at 9:00 PM. The entrance fee was expensive, it cost us PHP 300. Not to mention there was a dress code. Good thing we left wearing decent apparel instead of the usual garb of shirt, shorts, and slippers. Those who come in sandos, shorts, and slippers, are not allowed inside. Guess the place was a lot fancier than expected.
Having arrived early, we got to get good seats. The security guard let us in, saying that we were lucky for later in the night people would be filing in and it would be difficult finding decent seats. We rushed in eagerly and contented ourselves with seats on the second row.
While waiting for the program to start, we checked the place out. The place was air-conditioned and dimly lit, loud music was playing on a plasma screen T.V., there was a drinking station, and there were waiters in uniforms. One of them approached us and handed us menus. Since it was dim, we had to make use of flashlights to see what they had to offer. The drinks were really expensive, so we chose not to buy anything.
Minutes before the show began, only a third of the venue was full. Most of the guests were women in their late thirties and above. Perhaps a typical girl’s night out, by the way they interact with one another. There were only a few men and foreigners who came with their families. They seated themselves in groups of three to ten.
The show finally started at around 9:30 PM. Six cross dressers came out, and each appeared to be nicknamed after an actual personality, such as ‘Boobay’. They first sang songs as a group, and then individually. During their individual presentations, they interview foreigners in the audience. Some of them even made jokes about these foreign guests, making the audience laugh, and their ‘victim’ too. All of them, save for one, were very fluent in English. When the last presentation ended, they came again as a group, interviewing other customers. Most of the jokes were green, which the crowd found funny. They seem to be very fond of foreigners as they spend more time with them (or always make them the subject of their joke). In the middle of the program, they started asking the audience if they had a particular request. They at the same time encourage people to sing in front. One man was not that lucky. He actually was pulled up stage to perform. The man was tall and young, and we thought he was a college student. When the hosts interviewed him, he surprised everyone by saying he was a senior high school student.
People were undeniably having a good time. They were eating, drinking, smoking, and chatting. The hosts went on interviewing people, and from that we found out that some came from Laguna and one was a balikbayan from London.
We meant to stay longer, but the night was over for us. The danger of going home late at night, and the fact we had other stuff to do, moved us to leave after two hours. It was enjoyable and interesting. Something worthy of a second.
Group: Keight Yabut and Arielle Vidal