I met Alcuin, of all places, online. The funny thing is, I think we would have never met otherwise, although we practically moved in the same circles and knew each other’s friends. Why, I even know 2 girls he used to date; one of his ex-girlfriends, C, was formerly an officemate of mine who used to talk about her lovelife, and her exes, a LOT. She always hitched a ride home with me, because she lived in Marikina (come to think of it, the other girl J also lived in Marikina and had also hitched a ride with me a couple of times). But most often, she rode with me to Antipolo because the guy she was dating at the time (the dermatologist) lived just a few blocks from our house in Antipolo (and she visited him all the time which I thought was very strange). In all those car rides, I learned a lot about C’s affairs of the heart—about the person involved (the shortest relationship she had lasted 8 days), and the circumstances of each breakup. But one of the names caught, perhaps more than the others mainly because of its unusualness . With a name like Alcuin (there used to be a director named Al Quinn)—who she said wrote for the PDI ( I remember asking myself why I was being given too much information) and the Collegian in college (she also even asked me if the name didn't ring a bell and then I remember asking myself why it was at all even important)—it was easy for me to pick out the byline from the newspaper day after day. The name just practically jumped out of the page from all the bylines (he was still with the Metro beat, then) everytime I opened a copy of the PDI. I wouldn’t meet him till five years later, but I already knew back then much more than I would care to know about his love life: he used to date a girl named C back when he was still in college and a Collegian staffer, in UP.