And it continues to evolve. Now that some Beki words have made their way to mainstream slang, those in the gay community have found new ways of talking. One example is through wordplay using names of celebrities.Like that Indiana Jones reference.Here’s another: the Beki term “keri” (which means “okay”), has now evolved to “Keri Kylie Minogue and Dannii Minogue in tow.” It’s confusing to people who are out of the loop and that’s the point.Gayspeak has also learned to evolve with time and space. It varies in the different islands of the Philippines and it is hyperdynamic, which means that at any point, there can be different words for the same definition.Across different regions, there’s “aketch” and “akis,” but they are both used to refer to one’s self, like “I.” There’s also “watash” and “anetch,” which mean “what?”
“It was a way of avoiding cultural violence. Now they can talk about so many different things without society eavesdropping on them,” he said.
Of course, the fact that there are many gay men in Philippine media plays a role. Arguably the most popular celebrity at the moment is Vice Ganda, who started out as a stand-up comedian in gay bars. He now hosts a variety show on TV from Monday to Saturday and stars in box office hits every year.
“It appeals to the youth. It’s different, subversive — something their parents are not aware of,” he said.