Brothers Bonifacio – Remember

Piss Off
I remember one New Year’s party where Josh called an acquaintance of my dad “Mr. Gallstone” the whole evening thinking that was his name. His real name is Mr. Johnston. I really burst out laughing when the angry gentleman said, “Piss off kid!”

Ok ok… He didn’t say “Piss off!” But it would have been hilarious if he did. I would say, “No sir. You piss off.”

Ok, some of you didn’t get that.

The Car That Gets the Girl
When we were kids, Joshua’s dream car was a pick-up truck because he always liked standing on the cargo bed while someone else drove. My dream car was a hearse. Seriously. And I had my reasons. First of all most hearses are black, and black is my favourite color. Second is the back can accommodate a fully stretched human being, meaning, I would be able to sleep comfortably in the back while someone else drove. I like sleeping in the car. I remember one time I fell asleep while driving on Edsa and woke to John Magpantay screaming at me while he held the steering wheel. Joe likes to read in the car, and just like my sleep driving, he reads while he drives. He has also recently taken to watching videos on his laptop while driving.

Joseph already has his dream junkshop on wheels.

Our family was never really into cars. To my dad, a car was a utility. “As long as it has air conditioning and can get me from Point A to Point B, I’m happy”, he would say. So that’s the way it’s been with us. Not that we could afford fancy cars anyway, and besides, as Josh recently put, “We’ve never had a hard time with girls.”

Losing My Title
I have these special listening abilities, sharpened by the many dinners with interesting females who think they’re interesting. I know that sounded sarcastic but I really do find them interesting. Of course that’s coming from a guy who likes Sudoku.


I have this skill. I can sit in a room and hear all the different conversations going on and sometimes even the ones in other rooms. I can hear people talking on their phones or to the people across them or whispering, saying things like, “F-bleep. I’m down again” or “Yes, sweety I’m just finishing my meeting” or “I promise I’m in the office” or “I’m sorry. I was wrong. Why do you have to be so difficult?” These conversations trigger all sorts of stories in my head which I file for future use.

There are times though that I hear things I don’t like. While visiting a Habitat for Humanity site at Baseco, Tondo that I used to visit quite regularly, I overheard two people talking, “Yan yung kapatid ng boyfriend ni Rica Peralejo. Mas pogi yung boyfriend niya.” (In English: That’s the brother of Rica Peralejo’s boyfriend. Her boyfriend is better looking.) I was shocked. I was too shocked to correct them. Are they blind??? Just because someone’s been on TV doesn’t mean he or she looks good.

Sorry… I’m being bitter.

So, after about 25 years of holding the title for best looking Bonifacio brother, I have now surrendered it to Joe – but not for long…

Quite a few people have emailed me saying how encouraged they are with this series. I don’t know how the stories of Joshua’s interest in Pamela Anderson’s breasts or Joe’s straight arrow ways have managed to do that though. I write these stories to remind myself of the people I value most, the people who have seen and experienced the worst of me and still hold me as family. Of course they don’t have a choice. None of us do. I don’t think the stories of my family are any better, or more interesting, or more special than those of others. All families have their stories and it’s pointless to compare. I’m just celebrating the realization that my family is perfect in its imperfection because it’s perfect for me.