I recently felt like a misfit in an event for dressing up differently. Sometimes I feel like I was born in the wrong decade. I wish I was already partying during the time when it was cool to be different in Manila.
Everything was so raw and so authentic during the 90's. Unlike the kids today who dress up in front of their camera to update their fashion blogs (I'm also guilty with that), the kids way back dressed up to be photographed in an event. There used to be an epic event photographer named Eddie Boy Escudero who took photos of people dressed differently. I heard stories that you're a failure if he didn't take your photo that night. The more you look normal, the more you'd be out of place.
Everyone tried to go beyond the fashion norms. Since the internet wasn't as convenient as how it is now, people didn't look for outfit pegs online. They were more experimental and imaginative. Those were the days when they prepared their outfits 1 week ahead of time because it's DIY. Those were also the days when you can rub shoulders with celebrities and socialites alike without feeling too embarrassed about it because everyone were in their crazy outfits. The 90's was so much fun and exciting and I envy all the moments I missed.
Here are the photos of the authentic 90's events that inspire me a lot. All photos taken from Eddie Boy Escudero's Facebook page.
I wish I were here.
I couldn't understand most of what's written here (because I wasn't there), but it's so inspiring because it's so different from what we have now.
When We Danced
by Karen Kunawicz
When Hank was tending bar at Verve.
When everyone met up at 2:00 am in abg’s on a weekend.
When a sober kid like me got really happy everyone ditched the alcohol in favor of mineral water.
Until someone would explain why.
When Halloween happened several times a year.
When Angelo would ask questions instead of charge gate.
He’d ask “What are the names of the Little Twin Stars?”
“What is the name of Jose Rizal’s girlfriend?”
“What are the colors of a stoplight?”
And there were people who couldn’t give answers.
When there was always someone to dance with in the rain.
When every party had a “massage corner.”
When, at some parties, there was also a special “gulong-gulong” area where kids would sort of just laugh and roll around on the cement floor.
Unaware their arms were speckled with dust and little rocks.
When Ryan E. shared his mentholated eye drops with everyone.
When people brought Vicks Inhaler and Alcogel and lotion to parties.
When people liked glowsticks.
When Epy would come over and hug you and say “Spread the Love” and then put a nice hole in your cheek the next day during wargames.
When the parking outside Laureano compound would snake around for blocks and blocks.
When there was actually a place called Club Fun.
When Chuck Syjuco and Triccia David entranced us with their voices speaking in entrancing poetic cadence.
When Erich and Miko were our den mothers.
When the moon held sway.
When for once, the unusual had a chance to be models at Warp, Grocery and Havoc fashion shows.
When Katrina met Felipe! If this was a survival show, they’d have made it to the end and won a million dollars.
When Eddie Boy would out dance us all on the dance floor. And he’s 50 now and still at it.
When people would dance more and text less!
When after dancing to Juan Atkins, and Pure Science you could still do more dancing at abg’s. before breakfast.
When NU107 put up this huge Santa Claus in the Laureano parking lot to commemorate the “Go” premiere. And Christmas was six months away.
If they had any snow in the area, I didn’t know about it.
When Joey Mead drove her Miyata around.
When Lava Lounge opened too and we could go there to watch Quadrophenia on a weeknight.
When Christian Fletcher would talk to you at 4:00 am about Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Masque of the Red Death.”
And his blue eyes would look like they had something strange and electrical going on behind them.
When Mariel D would talk about her grade school education and faulty ways true intelligence was measured.
When you could wear that chain and lock around your neck, that fuchsia feather boa, those devil horns, those angel wings, knee high boots, bondage pants, spiky jackets and bags, platform shoes, no shoes, underwear on the outside, no underwear on the inside, costumes, it didn’t matter whether you were male or female. You’d feel out of place if you showed up “normal.”
When as far as we were concerned, 911 was a show hosted by William Shatner.
When Edwin was spinning and Ed was dressed like some sort of S & M mermaid and serving drinks.
When you looked out of the window at Verve and you could say hi to your friend sitting in front of Matina or standing outside Insomnia.
You could also use the same window to check out your crush, or point some creep out to your friends.
When some of us thought the Jamaican Chicken Jerk at Café Caribana was pretty special.
When we knew our dates truly loved by the way they kissed us after eating at the Garlic Rose.
When Tim Yap was slowly, steadily starting his career (he didn’t just come out of nowhere.)
When Brando and Ronald were compared to rock stars.
When three goth kids coming from Club Dredd EDSA could go all the way to Blue Café to say goodbye to it before it closed by dancing in 3am monsoon rain and watching someone lipsynch to George Micheal’s “Fast Love.”
When you could wear goth clothes and shameless dance to reggae music at a Fete De La Musique street party along Nakpil. And just laugh at yourself.
When Aslie could tell someone to shut up, and if you can believe it, her eyes would be more commanding than her voice.
When it was still too early to go home if the sun wasn’t coming up yet.
When Y was going out with X but not anymore.
When we were young and restless.
When we were decadent, yet non-judgmental.