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Thursday, December 04, 2008

The Biggest Bargains This December in Manila!

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The Big Garment Sale
Check out the Biggest Bargain Blog for Bargains you surely don't want to miss! I tried to collect the awesome ones and some cool Christmas Campaigns on the internet. Please share with me your biggest bargain secret in Manila! Email me at anton@diaz.ph.


December 4, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Syoti's Birthday

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Happy Birthday Syoti-2

Dear Syoti Joshua,

Happy Birthday Baby Joshua! (Related post: The Birth of Baby Joshua Xavier! )

On your birthday, your mom and I decided to go out-of-town to celebrate your birthday. We wanted to go somewhere that we have not been to and have a chance to explore another city -- like Davao. We were fortunate to get the zero fare of Cebu Pacific and to stay for free for four days at Crown Regency in Davao. We met with Tita Anna Vi, Tita Lani Ayala, and Tito Deq while we were in Davao.
Happy Birthday Syoti-9 Happy Birthday Syoti-7

We celebrated your birthday in Eden's Nature Park. Although it was raining, we had a fun tour of the park together with Ahiya Aidan. We would go back when you are older to do the 4km trail hike around the park. We were raving about the fresh salads for lunch, and the mango-bravo-like dessert. We ended the day celebrating in the downtown of Davao eating Aling Fofing's Halo Halo for appetizer, Antonio's Grill for Dinner and Bo's Coffee Sansrival for Dessert.

Mom and I went on our second White Water Rafting adventure in Davao. We plan to complete all the white water rafting courses this year in the Philippines. There are four (4) White Water rafting adventure in the Philippines - Cagayan de Oro River in CDO, Davao River in Davao, Cagayan River in Tuguegarao, and Chico River in Kalinga.

Finally, we visited Camp Sabros in Davao del Sur and flew in the 380m zip line together with Rache and Ahiya Aidan. I will show you a video of our short "superman" adventure. The two hours trip to Camp Sabros was worth it -- flying through all the zip line courses and the latest attraction, tree rappelling. I promise to go back when you are older so that we can fly together as a family :)

I do hope we get to establish this as a tradition -- to celebrate your birthday exploring another city or destination in the Philippines.


We love you Syoti Josh!!


Anton & Rache and Ahiya Aidan




November 18, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Thursday, November 06, 2008

OAP Garage Sale

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Garage Sale-3
We just launched our virtual Garage Sale -- www.ourawesomeplanet.com/sale/.
It is an online site for selling our personal things, prizes that we don't need and second hand belongings. We first publish it here, one month before selling them on eBay to give priority to OAP friends who might be interested with the items.

You might be interested with the following items:
FreeAgent Go 120 GB USB External Hard Drive (Brand New)
Sony 5.1 Surround Home Theater System
Shu uemura Eyelash Curler (Brand New)
Watsons Foot and Back Massager
Samsung S760 7.2 Mega-Pixel Digital Camera (Brand New)
Timbuk2 iPod Flip Case (Brand New)
Pinko Mirror For Sale Brand New
Sanyo 5 Mega-Pixel VPC-S500 Digital Camera
Adidas Sports Watch (Brand New)
Imarflex Rechargeable Vacuum Cleaner (Brand New)
Lowepro Computrekker AW Camera/Notebook Backpack
HP Laptop Bag (Brand New)

Check them out in the OAP Garage Sale!

anton signature

Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

Blog: www.OurAwesomePlanet.com
Mobile: +63917-LOVEOAP (5683627)
Email: anton@diaz.ph

November 6, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (8) | TrackBack

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Jon and Cathy Best Wishes!

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Jon and Cathy Lao-Lim-2
Congratulations to Jon and Cathy for the very nice and organized wedding yesterday! From the emotional entrance of the bride, to the Da Capo angelic music in the Church, and the flawless wedding flow organized by Christine Ong-Te Events.

Jon and Cathy Lao-Lim-3
We also love the Jason Magbanua Wedding Video, the Wedding Games and remarkable Best Man Speech from Don.

Congratulations and Best Wishes in your new life in New York!

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.


September 14, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (11) | TrackBack

Saturday, August 23, 2008

8 Best Things I Miss About P&G

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P&G Christmas Party - 4

8 Best Things I Miss About P&G.

It is very hard to leave a company you loved for more than a decade. Like in any other love, you need to put a proper closure to it before you can move on. Allow me to put a proper closure on this part of my life by sharing with you the 8 Best Things I Miss About P&G.

When I graduated from college, there are only two things that I gained from 4-years in the University. (1) I learned how to study and teach myself new skills. (this would include cramming skills if you are on a tri-semestral schedule) (2) I gained a network of college friends who would help me later on in my life. I never remembered the subjects taught or the different extra-curricular activities I did in school.

As I reflect on my professional IT career, there are only three things that I gained from it. (1) I learned skills on project management, coaching, strategy and leadership. (2) The legacy of people I recruited, coached, and trained in P&G. Lastly, (3) a handful of true friends who really care about me and my family. I never remembered the stressful projects I worked on or the superficial relationships with other people in the office.

1. I miss my true P&G friends -- Mong and Willeus. The three (3) of us entered P&G at the same time -- June 5, 1995 straight from college.

P&G batch of June 5, 1995

2. I miss my dream IT team. To my Phils MDO and GBS Consumer Solutions team, it was an honor working with you guys!
Dinner @ Bantayan Beach - 1
Despedida Lunch Pictures

3. I miss the P&G Marathon team. I am a marathoner. Thanks to Jim and all the pioneering members of the P&G Marathon Team.
finishers

4. I miss the sleep pod and innovative workspace environment that people loved. These days I work in innovative wi-fi cafes and hot spots.
The Greatest of All Time P&G Workspace-3.jpg
The Greatest of All Time P&G Workspace.jpg

5. I miss the Phils Leadership Team and the brand teams. I will continue to pray for you guys and keep up the fight! Pension Plan Presentation-10.jpgP&G Olay Team

6. I miss the Asia IDS team. You guys are the best IT professionals I worked with. Thanks for the support and camaraderie.

Asia IDS Awards-45-Edit
7. I miss the Halloween Children Parties. Aidan won the best Halloween Costume for two years in a row. Too bad, he won't be able to defend his title.
P&G Petron Trick Or Treat 2006 - 6

8. I miss the P&G Christmas Basket. Every December, we would often receive a basket of goodies for Santa enough for the noche buena.
P&G Christmas Party - 1
Thank you for listening to my sentimental post. I'm now ready to move on...

Live an Awesome Life,

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

August 23, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (32) | TrackBack

Nike Human Race 10K - 8 Days to Race Day!

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home_human_race
The Nike Human Race 10k -- Represent the Philippines and Join a Million Runners for a worldwide 10 Kilometers run on August 31, 2008, Sunday!

I love Nike+ ever since it motivated me to run my first 42k Marathon. One of the things I love about it is that I can join any race virtually as long as I have my Nike+ to record my runs. One of the biggest virtual race will happen on August 31, 2008 -- The Nike Human Race 10k . I will be traveling during that time but I can still join this race! I will be running my 10k Human Race with the giraffes and zebras on 8/31/2008.


How to join The Nike Human Race 10K
1. Of course, you need to have a Nike+ Ipod Sport Kit ipod sport kit or Nike+ Sportband sport bandto join the Human Race 10k on 8/31/2008.

OAP and NIKE GIFTS
For runners who are avid readers of OAP but don't have a Nike+ gadget, I'm giving away Five (5) Nike+ Sportbands. I will give the sportbands to the first 5 runners who commented on this post. (Note: The qualifier is you have to be a runner already and you have to join The Human Race 10K on Sunday 8/31/2008.

For the next 10 runners, I'll be giving away 20% discount off coupons when you purchase of Nike+ Sportband or Nike+ iPod Sport Kit (valid only until August 30, just before the race).

2. Register for the virtual Human Race 10K --> Nikeplus. Create your Nike+ Account and register for the virtual Human Race. Don't forget to join Team Philippines and select your charity (I selected the Lance Armstrong Foundation).

3. You can also register for FREE for the physical Human Race 10k organized by Coach Rio in Nike Park, Boni High Street. (Do it tomorrow, Sunday)

DATE: August 31, 2008, Sunday
TIME: Assembly Time 5:30 A.M. Start of Race 6:00 A.M.
VENUE: McKinley Hill, Bonifacio Global City
DISTANCE: 10km.
MAX PARTICIPANTS: 1,000 Runners
RACE KIT CLAIMING AREA: Nike Park, Bonifacio High Street, Taguig City
SPECIAL PRIZES: Finishers will receive Nike Drifit Socks and 4x6 photo courtesy of Photovendo after the race.FREE REGISTRATION

EMAIL: rio@runrio.com
CONTACT NUMBER: +63906 314 3807 | +63918 985 9211 | +632 3965170
CONTACT PERSON: COACH RIO DE LA CRUZ

4. Run on race day, 8/31/2008, Sunday and sync your Nike + afterwards.

humanrace_logo

Join me and other Filipino Runners for this one-of-a-kind 10k run on 8/31/08.

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

August 23, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines, Best Amazing Chefs-For-Hire | Permalink | Comments (17) | TrackBack

Monday, August 11, 2008

Mindanao Road Trip : Cagayan de Oro to Dipolog City

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Thanks for all those who shared tips on Bohol. Watch out for the ultimate guide on Bohol probably by end of the month.

I need your help again. I'm planning on a Mindanao Road Trip from Cagayan de Oro - Iligan City to Marine Oriental Aquamarine Park to Oroquieta, Ozamis City to Dapitan (Dakak) and finally to Dipolog City. These are a lot of towns to cover and I'm hoping to create an ultimate guide to those places. Any secret tips or must see places that we shouldn't miss?

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

August 11, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (29) | TrackBack

The Most Romantic or Tragic Love Story Ever Blogged

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A West Side Story Contest

Related Posts:
West Side Story Manila - 10 Things You Should Know Before Going on a West Side Story Romantic Date
West Side Story Complete List of Direct Show Buyers


West Side Story is one of the most popular storylines based on William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. Two feuding street gangs – the Jets and the Sharks – are on a collision course in the gritty slums of New York City. Out of the chaos, a passionate romance blooms between Tony and Maria, teenagers caught on opposite sides of the turf war. But can they find a place for their love amid the prejudice and turmoil that surrounds them?

Rache and I were wondering what is the most romantic or tragic love story ever blogged in the Philippines?

Two winners with the following prizes:
OAP's Choice (P4,400 Prize)
Two (2) Orchestra Center Tickets (P2,400 worth) to the Sept. 6, Saturday Opening Night of West Side Story
One (1) P2,000 Gift Certificate in Alchemy (Manila's Only 3 Floor Euro Superclub)

Mrs OAP's Choice (P 3,400 Prize)
Two (2) Orchestra Center Tickets (P2,400 worth) to the Sept. 5, Friday Opening Night of West Side Story
One (1) P1,000 Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf Gift Certificate


I'll start first. Rache and I met in college in 1991. We were classmates during our first year. We both took up the same Engineering course. During our time, there were only a handful of ladies that would take up Electronics and Communications Engineering.

When I saw Rache the first time, I instantly had a crush on her. I came from an exclusive all-boys school and I was focused on my studies only. So, the only courting technique I was familiar was called: "Style Ninja". (Not sure if this style is still relevant these days) This style ensures that I am not rejected outright but I have the opportunity to get to know my crush better. Basically, my goal was to become part of my crush's circle of friends. This way, I would have numerous occasion to be with her and get to know her more. My immediate goal was to become her confidant. We often meet in the Library for study sessions and I would tutor her on some subjects. All of this, under the disguise of being a concerned good friend instead of an admirer. It is a level above being torpe.

The style Ninja did not work for me during the first two years of college. We had separate relationships while in college. Eventually, we had our different group of friends and we got busy with our own school acitivites. At the same time, we have different cultural backgrounds -- a very pinoy family and a traditional chinese family. After graduation in 1995, we were both busy already with our respective love life and careers.


Not until a few years later, we met again because our common college friends left Philippines to work abroad. We, the three of us, were thrown back together just like our college years. It became an opportunity for us to get together once again and console each other's misery. I remembered one time, we had to drive all the way to Tagaytay just to forget our former partners. We went out together on gimmicks, road trips and barkada outings almost every weekend. I just grabbed every opportunity I had so I can show my pure intentions for Rache.

Finally, in 2001 (after 10 years), she finally said yes to our relationship. We got married in 2003 at a church where I prayed and prayed that Rache will become my lifetime partner. Aidan came into our life in 2005 and soon after, syoti Josh joined our family in 2007.

So what's your love story? To join this contest, you just need to put a comment and link back your most romantic or tragic love story ever blogged. It could be your own or your friend's story. It could be written years ago or just recently. Winners will be based on what we think is the most romantic or tragic story for us. Deadline will be by 11.59pm on August 25, 2008 and we will announce the winners on Sept. 1!

Two winners with the following prizes:

OAP's Choice (P4,400 Prize)
Two (2) Orchestra Center Tickets (P2,400 worth) to the Sept. 6, Saturday Opening Night of West Side Story
One (1) P2,000 Gift Certificate in Alchemy (Manila's Only 3 Floor Euro Superclub)

Mrs OAP's Choice (P 3,400 Prize)
Two (2) Orchestra Center Tickets (P2,400 worth) to the Sept. 5, Friday Opening Night of West Side Story
One (1) P1,000 Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf Gift Certificate

anton signature

Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

Our Awesome Planet in partnership with Ticket2Me invites you to the Saturday Opening Night of West Side Story Manila!
September 6, 2008,Opening Saturday Night 8pm at the Meralco Theater, Ortigas, Pasig

Buy Your West Side Story Tickets Now from OAP!

West Side Story - Phils

West Side Story Manila. (Click-->Seat Plan) Reserve Your Best Seats Now!

cart_button_8.gif Orchestra and Loge Center ($26) ~ P1,200
Orchestra and Loge Sides ($22) ~ P1,000
Balcony Center ($15) ~ P 700
Balcony Sides ($11) ~ P 500
Official PayPal SealIt is cheaper to buy online! All Major Credit Cards accepted.
Credit Card charges would be based on prevailing exchange rate. (see BSP Exchange Rate)


Email me: anton@diaz.ph or call me +63917-LOVEOAP (5683627) to order and pay via Bank Deposit

Related Posts: West Side Story Complete List of Direct Show Buyers

August 11, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (53) | TrackBack

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Secrets of PAL NAIA Terminal 2

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Ya Kun Kaya-4
Set A - Kaya Toast Set (P175). 2 Slices of Kaya Toast with Butter, Hot Coffee, 2 soft-boiled eggs.

I love flying via PAL in NAIA Terminal 2. It is the only place where you can find the best and original Kaya Toast and the best Arrozcaldo in Manila for FREE.

I've been addicted to Kaya, a singaporean local spread of egg and coconut. Like Frozen Yogurt, I've been tracking down all the places that serve it. Just check out all my posts about Kaya, :
My Kaya Addiction
Kopi Roti Love!
Toast Box opens in Trinoma!
Heads or Tails - a new kaya place in Mall of Asia
Old World Kopitiam, Banaue
[Singapore #1] Makan Food Trip - My Top 10 Favorites!

Ya Kun Kaya
Ya Kun Kaya Toast Menu | The History of Ya Kun

The best of them all is the original Ya Kun Kaya Toast of Singapore. Their one and only outlet is in NAIA terminal 2. Finally, Loi Ah Koon's coffee stall since 1944 has reached the shores of Manila after 64 years. The only downside is the Ya Kun price is almost double versus the local Kopi Roti since it is located in the airport. One cost saving tip: if you don't like to eat raw soft boiled egg, just order the coffee and Ya Kun kaya separately. This should cost only P150 versus the set meal of P175. ( I think eating soft boiled eggs is a chinese / Singapore thing.)

The Best Goto in Manila
The Best Arrozcaldo in Manila is only available in Mabuhay Lounge for FREE! Yes, I've never tasted any arrozcaldo in Manila that can rival this. Not even, the Jose Goto in SM Makati or any carinderia for that matter. It has generous servings of big chunks of chicken and a complete set of condiments to suit your taste. What's your favorite arrozcaldo?

Mabuhay Lounge
There are two ways you can have access to Mabuhay Lounge. It is either you fly Business Class OR you are a Mabuhay Miles Elite member. Recently, I just found out that my mabuhay miles elite membership was downgraded already. I was sad because I'm already craving for this goto which you cannot find anywhere. Time to earn miles again and buying promo fare tickets won't help.

With all the buzz about NAIA 3, I still prefer to fly via PAL NAIA 2 Terminal :)

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.


August 10, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (16) | TrackBack

Saturday, August 09, 2008

GK Taguig 2.0! - The Best for the Least

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On 8-8-08, instead of watching the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics, I witnessed the launching of the new GK Designer Village (GK 2.0) by Tony Meloto and the grand vision for Taguig 2.0 by Mayor Freddie R. Tiñga!

All the best architects in Manila will be helping to design the next level of GK community. The best architects for the least of our brothers (and for the least fees). The new GK community looks like the HDB (Housing & Development Board) Condos of Singapore. It would be low cost condominiums designed and supported by the countries top architects: Bobby Manosa, Bong Recio, Jun Palafox, Edith Oliveros, Budji Layug and the top architects of the United Architects of the Philippines! The first GK Designer Village site will be created in Taguig along C5. No doubt, GK is building a First World Philippines and raising a First Class Filipino.

"To build a nation is to have direct impact on the lives of the poor and to influence those who have the power and the means to help them. It can start with charity but it must be a work of social justice to even the playing field and to recognize that all Filipinos are equal in worth and dignity. It begins with the heart where love resides, but it must be sustained with excellence and stewardship. We have to raise Filipinos to be first-class citizens in the Philippines so none of our people will feel second-class anywhere in the world." - Tony Meloto

Aside from being a Tony Meloto fan, I'm now a fan of Mayor Freddie R. Tiñga. He is transforming Taguig to be world class city by leveraging on technology to solve social issues in our country today. To bridge the gap between the public school education and private schools, he is implementing a distance learning program in the public schools. It would be equipped with Video Conferencing facilities to get the best teachers to educate the students of Taguig.

He also envisions Taguig to be the first 100% WIMAX city in the country! Yahoo! He is doing it by creating his own telecommunications company in Taguig. In my previous job, I worked with Smart and Globe to influence them to give unlimited broadband access for free or minimal cost. But the Telco giants are controlling unlimited broadband access for fear that it might have a huge impact on their voice business. I admire Mayor Tiñga's vision and if Globe/ Smart won't do it, he will build his own telecommunication system. Clap! Clap!

Did you know that Taguig will be equipped with 194 surveillance cameras by the end of 2008 and 400 cameras by end of 2009? They use Israeli technology for their cameras such that they could monitor the entire city virtually and they can even zoom in on plate number as needed. This would significantly reduce the crime rate in Taguig.

Lastly, he is planning to build a new modern airport in Taguig with better runway facilities, and to automate 100% of all the government transactions. Wow! All I can say is, let me know how I can help you, Mayor Tiñga, and I can offer my services and expertise to the city of Taguig.

I'm glad that we made a great decision to move from Manila to Taguig City. I'm voting Tony Meloto for President in 2010!

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

August 9, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (22) | TrackBack

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Bohol - More Than Your Usual Tarsier Experience?

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bohol
Congratulations again to Mich Guevara of Pinoy Lakwatsa! You've won a very nice Jansport Graphix Remix Bag that you can use on your next travel.

I'm going to Bohol which is the first leg of the seven (7) Havaianas Flipping for the Beach Trips. I'm excited to feature all of them.

Can you share with me your Bohol secret other than the usual Tarsier?

July 27, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (44) | TrackBack

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Let's talk About Gas

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Let's talk about Gas
Instead of complaining about how the prices of gasoline are continuing to go up, we need to adapt to the situation and be more efficient with our fuel consumption. I would like to share with you some strategies that we started to do:

1. Keep a Fuel Mileage Log.
We now keep a log of the distance (in kms) from our house to any of the destinations we go to. Then we keep track of the car's mileage in between fuel refills. We make sure that we go to the same gasoline station, the same gasoline pump and stick to the automatic stop. In this way, we are able to track the most efficient way to go to one place. For example, from De La Salle University in Malate to Serendra Fort Area, there are two ways to get there. One is via buendia and the other one via Villamor Gate 3. The latter route is 13.5kms versus the former route which is 9.5kms only.

2. Avoid Traffic!
To minimize fuel consumption, we need to apply constant gas pressure when driving. We have to avoid changing lanes or halting to an abrupt stop. One technique is to let the car roll to a stop just right before hitting the car in front of you. Another strategy is to wake up one hour earlier or to go home later at night to avoid traffic.

3. Use the most cost efficient fuel.
I need your help here. I wanted to know based on your experience, what is the most cost efficient fuel brand in Manila? Earl, one of OAP's friends, asked me this question via email and I don't know. Hopefully with the Fuel Economy Survey below, we can have an objective answer.
WHAT DO YOU THINK IS THE MOST COST EFFICIENT FUEL BRAND IN MANILA?

(Fuel Brand, Gasoline Octane Rating, Price as of July 19, Saturday)

Petron Unleaded 93 (P60.61)

Petron XCS 95 (P61.28)

Petron Blaze 96 (P62.01)

Caltex Gold with Techron 95 (P61.28

Caltex Silver with Techron 93 (P60.57)

Shell Super Unleaded 93 (P60.57)

Shell Super Premium 93 (P61.06)

Shell V-Power 95 (P62.35)

Shell Diesoline Ultra (P58.98)

Petron Diesel Max (P59.03)

Caltex Power Diesel (P59.03)


July 22, 2008 in 9. Blog's Eye View of the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (16) | TrackBack

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Mamma Mia in Manila! 2009?

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A Petition to bring the Smash Hit Musical Mamma Mia to Manila!
Mamma Mia

I just watched the movie Mamma Mia and enjoyed it, because of the songs and the wacky adaptation of the smash hit musical Mamma Mia on screen. Most of the Filipinos watching in the movie theaters were singing along the ABBA songs and having a great time. All of the people leaving the cinemas had a Last Song Syndrome of either Mamma Mia or Dancing Queen. Mamma Mia is a certified hit in Manila!

I watched the Mamma Mia musical live in Las Vegas in 2003. The live performance is 10x better than the movie. Just imagine bringing the live Broadway show Mamma Mia to Manila. This is the kind of show that would attract more Filipinos to watch and appreciate Broadway shows. Mamma Mia in Manila would be the greatest show ever played, in the tradition of Miss Saigon and Rent.

Why would Mamma Mia in Manila will be such a hit?

- We have so much talent here who can sing, dance and act as part of the cast of Mamma Mia Live.

- The sets of Mamma Mia are simple. We can even be more creative with the set.

- Manila has proven that it can successfully stage Rent, Miss Saigon, Avenue Q, and West Side Story.

- Filipinos love ABBA and any karaoke session is not complete without singing and gyrating to the song Dancing Queen.

- The target market of Broadway musical shows belong to the ABBA generation.


I do hope that Audie Gemora or Bobby Garcia will be able to get the rights for this show. I can't wait to see Mamma Mia in Manila.


anton signature

Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.


July 19, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Friday, July 18, 2008

About Diabetes - Why should we care about Diabetes?

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First 100 Buyers of West Side Story Tickets from OAP get a FREE copy of the book "What You Should Know About Diabetes."
What you should Know about diabetes West Side Story - Phils

In celebration of the Diabetes Awareness Week (July 14-20, 2008) in the Philippines, Our Awesome Planet in cooperation with Ampalaya Plus will be giving out 100 copies of the book "What You Should Know About Diabetes". We will give out the book to the first 100 buyers of West Side Story Tickets from OAP.

The book is written by doctors from UP College of Medicine It is written in very simple and easy to understand English and Tagalog. The book is geared towards educating the patient and the caregiver (from the patients relatives to their househelp). The book also includes a sample meal plan that is easy to follow.

I personally know of some bloggers and food writers who are diabetic. I'm very concerned about this as well and I want to contribute to the awareness of this disease in the blogosphere. Maybe you also have some tips on how to battle this disease.

Why should we care about Diabetes?
  • There is no denying that diabetes is a growing problem with an ever increasing number of diabetic being diagnosed of the condition at an alarmingly young age.

  • There is no cure for diabetes. The best way to control diabetes is by changing one's lifestyle. The way we live plays a strong part in determining how early the condition sets in and how fast the condition progresses. Most doctors agree that the best approach to diabetes would be diet and exercise. Medication is prescribed when the blood sugar level remains uncontrollable or if the patient admits being unable to comply to the diet and regular exercise.
  • There is a new label called Pre-Diabetic. This refers to those who are highly predisposed to diabetes either because of hereditary predisposition or because of the nature of their lifestyle (no execise, poor diet, stress, overweight, etc). Research shows that most Pre-Diabetic develop diabetes within 10-years from the time this condition is first recognized, UNLESS THE PATIENT SHIFTS TO A HEALTHIER LIFESTYLE.

  • The Philippines is poised to join the ranks of the top 10 countries with the most number of diabetics.

For more information regarding the book please visit www.gonatural.com.ph or email ampalayaplus@gmail.com.

What you should Know about diabetes What you should Know about diabetes

Our Awesome Planet in partnership with Ticket2Me invites you to the Saturday Opening Night of West Side Story Manila!
September 6, 2008,Opening Saturday Night 8pm at the Meralco Theater, Ortigas, Pasig

Buy Your West Side Story Tickets Now from OAP!

West Side Story - Phils

West Side Story Manila. Seat Plan: Reserve Your Best Seats Now!

cart_button_8.gif Orchestra and Loge Center (1,200)
Orchestra and Loge Sides (P1,000)
Balcony Center (P 700)
Balcony Sides (P 500)
Official PayPal SealAll Major Credit Cards accepted.


Email me: anton@diaz.ph or call me +63917-LOVEOAP (5683627) to order and pay via Bank Deposit

July 18, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Monday, June 23, 2008

Tacloban Fiesta

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Sinulog 2006 - 46

Good Morning friends of OAP! We sincerely hope that everyone's OK during the stormy weekend. Just a tip on weather forecasts: Always check out Wundergound.com for the most accurate weather forecast of Manila or any other city in the Planet.

I'm heading off to the Pintados Kasadyaan Festival in Tacloban this coming weekend. I'm working with the tourism committee of the local government to help them promote the city. I hear a lot about Tacloban but I don't see a lot of write-ups about the awesome places there. Any tips on awesome places, food and things to do in Tacloban?

anton signature

Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

June 23, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (15) | TrackBack

Monday, June 16, 2008

Have a Piquant Dinner before Watching Avenue Q

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Piquant-13

A great musical play like Avenue Q should go with a great dinner like Piquant in RCBC. It is surprising to find a restaurant that promises delicious healthy food inside an office buidling like RCBC.

With an engaging name like Piquant, expect the food to offer sharp and distinct taste. Piquant menu offers low fat diet meals, and Atkins/ South Beach diet-friendly dishes. Most of the food are either grilled, roasted, baked, broiled, poached, steamed or dry-sauteed. Brown rice, whole wheat bread and whole wheat spaghetti are readily available anytime of the day.

Welcome to Piquant and Beverages | Breakfast and Power Breakfast | Soups | Pinoy Please and Executive Meals | Salads and Sandwiches | Entrees | Pastas | Take-out Toppings and Desserts | Healthy Information from Piquant

For people watching Avenue Q on weekdays, don't miss dining at Piquant, 3rd floor of RCBC. Unfortunately, they are closed on weekends.
Piquant-1
Grilled Rosemary Chicken (P225 + SC) with Roasted Tomato and Cucumber Sauce. (Rosemary Marinated Chicken Breast)

This is a certified Atkins/ South Beach diet compliant meal. I loved the grilled chicken dipped in the sweetness of the tomato sauce accented by the taste of rosemary. I can eat this everyday.
Piquant-14
Broiled Tuna Steak (P175+) with Chilled Horseradish Cream Sauce. Served with White Beans Brittone.

Who says that a healthy meal needs to be expensive? Piquant was very creative in terms of serving healthy food with the right combination of taste and color of the ingredients.

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Thai Style Chopped Chicken with Basil and Chiles (P245+). sauteed chopped chicken with eggplant and bell peppers - served with brown rice.

This is a complete healthy meal in itself with a huge serving good for sharing. This is balanced diet meal with all the right quantity from the different food groups -- grains, meat, and vegetables.

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Pasta Florentine (P175+) with spinach, mushrooms, spring onions, anchovies and basil in light cream sauce.

Most of their pasta dishes are priced at less than P200. You have the option to order whole wheat spaghetti with your pasta with an additional P40.

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Piquant
+632 729-3452 or +63 905 241 7059
piquant.health@gmail.com
rt012 Podium 3 RCBC plaza Ayala Avenue, Makati
It is a corner restaurant hidden in the 3rd floor restaurant area near the Buendia side.

June 16, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

Best Piaya in the Philippines is available in Manila!

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Bailon-1
Bailon's Piaya (P70 per pack of 10).

I love Piaya and I just learned this foodie secret from Manny. The Best Piaya in the Philippines is Bailon's Piaya and it is available in Manila! It is crispy thin but airy. The thin coating of muzcovado inside is evenly spread out so that you get a taste of it in every bite. I love the toasty taste of sesame seeds with my piaya. It is crispy when you bite into it but it becomes chewy as you go along.

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Small Fresh Lumpiang Ubod (P18 per piece). They also sell these yummy bite-sized lumpia for P18 per piece which would be great for potluck sessions. Remember to keep them refrigerated because it can spoil easily.

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Big Lumpiang Ubod (P28 per piece). A bigger version of the lumpia.

Let me share with you this Piaya foodie find...

Bailon-4
Just enter this unassuming Bailon's carinderia. They don't display the piaya and lumpia. You have to order in advance to get the freshest lumpia and piaya available.

Bailon Homemade Ilonggo Delicacies
1115 Rodriguez Avenue, Bangkal, Makati City
+632 843 6673 / 843 3721
+ 63 916- 751 9071
bailonfoods@hotmail.com

Directions:
From SLEX Buendia, drive going to Magallanes. Don't take the ramp to the bridge going to the Magallanes. Instead, take the road going under the bridge on the rightmost side. Turn right on Bonifacio street and turn right again on the first corner.This area in Bangkal is full of one way street so read the signs before making a turn. Bailon is located in front of the Fatima church.

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

June 3, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (17) | TrackBack

Friday, May 30, 2008

Avenue Q: My Gigantic Heart Will Go On...

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Avenue Titanic Poster
2 Weeks to go to Avenue Q's Final Run. Thanks to all OAP friends who bought ticket from us. As promised, we will give your Genki Umbrellas before or after the show. Just look for either Rache or me near the main entrance.

Avenue Q Final Run - 5 Reasons Why You Should Not Miss the Opening Night of Avenue Q’s Final Run!

Avenue Titanic Poster
Rachel Alejandro's performance was one of the reasons for the smashing success of Avenue Q in Manila. I do hope Carla Guevarra - Laforteza can beat Rachel's performance. Join us on opening night to share your opinions and personal reviews in OAP after the show.

Avenue Q Final Run - 5 Reasons Why You Should Not Miss the Opening Night of Avenue Q’s Final Run!

Avenue Titanic Poster Avenue Q Opening Night
Good luck Carla and we will miss you Rachel!

Avenue Q Final Run - 5 Reasons Why You Should Not Miss the Opening Night of Avenue Q’s Final Run!

May 30, 2008 in 9. Blog's Eye View of the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

My Miele Votes

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My Miele Guide votes
" The Miele Guide will be Asia’s first truly independent regional restaurant guide when launched in October 2008, and also its most authoritative—we do not accept free meals or advertising from restaurants. Written by food lovers who know and love Asia, The Miele Guide will rank and profile restaurants across the region’s major cities, categorised by country, city and cuisine, in a slim, indispensable volume. " (www.mieleguide.com)

The Miele Guide is now in their second phase where the public can vote their best restaurants this month May 2008. I don't really believe that Miele Guide is 100% independent because they are sponsored by Visa and Hyatt Hotels. In order for you to vote, you need to key in your Visa card. I'm sure Visa and Hyatt would have a say on the judges, restaurant critics and respected foodies who would vote in the other phases. In any case, I participated in the online voting and I had to make sure that Claude Tayag's Bale Dutung and Chef Chris Locher's C Italian Dining are included in the list.

I'm campaigning for the top 3 finest restaurants in the Philippines. (You are only allowed to vote for 3 restaurants per country)

Antonio-1
Antonio's Restaurant in Tagaytay

Bale Dutung - 50
Claude Tayag's Bale Dutung in Pampanga

C Italian Dining-20
C's Italian Dining in Angeles, Pampanga.

Please VOTE for them to be included in the MieleGuide.com !

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

May 20, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (9) | TrackBack

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Kape Isla, Serendra - a Blogger's Secret Haven in Serendra

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Kape Isla-1
Kape Isla is turning out to be our favorite bloggers' hangout in Serendra. They have all the elements to enable a blogger to be productive:

FREE WI-FI. They are the only FREE WI-FI in Serendra. Internet access should be FREE! I don't understand why establishments continue to charge a fee to have internet access.

Good Advocacy. Kape Isla promotes Philippine Coffee. So every time you drink a cup of coffee, you support the Philippine Coffee Bean industry.

Writer's Ambiance. On weekdays, you can have all the cafe to yourself. Most people go here to write, to study or to surf the internet. I want to promote Kape Isla a bit so that it does not close down.

Kape Isla-2
For less than P100, you can enjoy Kape Isla all day long. However, they should have a killer dessert or meal to attract people to visit their place.
Kape Isla Menu
Hot Drinks, Coffee, Pandesal, Pasta, Salad, Rice Meals
House Specialties, Bars, Cookies, Loaves, Danishes and Cakes

May 13, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (15) | TrackBack

Monday, May 12, 2008

Rogin-E Update: Progressing Slowly

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Tapiya Falls-18
It is very hard for me to provide an update on the Rogin-E challenge because I'm progressing slowly. I would like to celebrate my small successes and share them with you:

1. The challenge was able to bring me back to the gym last April. That is a significant personal achievement for me because after 5 years, I am going back to the gym again. It feels good to feel those ab crunches' pain again.

2. I lost some weight enough for me to fit in my old clothes. This gives me the motivation to continue with my goal even without this Rogin E challenge.

3. I'm more determined now to replace the guy here in the Rogin-E website (someday...). Check out the Rogin-E unbreakable challenge section in the website.

My immediate goal is to weigh under 200lbs... a long way to go.... Thanks to Rogin-E for pushing me to pursue my personal unbreakable challenge.

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Text and Photos by Anton Diaz. Copyright 2008.

May 12, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Big Garments Sale in Bulacan this Summer...

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The Big Garment Sale
I was not planning to post this anymore but a lot of recent OAP readers requested me to post the next Big Garment Sale. They are not giving out invites anymore since they already issued membership cards as the gate pass for this sale. We love this sale but we try to avoid it because of the crowd and we always end up charging 5 digits to our credit card.

BIG GARMENTS SALE!!!

Top US UK Brands

May 1-3, 2008. 8am to 6pm

Blk. 4 Lot 3 Acefree St. Sterling Ind'l Park, Iba, Meycauayan City

Telefax: 02-2996061/Mobile +639189918677


Note: Please bring your membership card as your gate pass.


For first timers to this sale, it is either you go with a person who has a membership card or call them if you can apply for a membership card on site. You can mention that you are friends of Anton of Our Awesome Planet.

April 29, 2008 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Reedley International School

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Dr. Ho Anti-Bullying Seminar details

Reedley International School

We are at a stage in Aidan's life where we need to decide our education strategy. We want the best education for our kids but I believe that most traditional schools have outdated curriculum. Aidan belongs to the Generation Z and I believe that only progressive schools can meet their needs. We don't want to be close minded on this so we will be doing more research on the different schools in Metro Manila in the next few months. Suggestions are welcome.

Aidan's generation is different. As early as 2 years old, Aidan begun tinkering with our computer at home. He likes to visit the kiddie sites such as Starfall and Disney clubhouse on his own. We have stopped watching television(including us!) because of the negative impact of TV. When I was in Boracay, we were doing video calls via computer. Aidan's generation has NOT witnessed People Power 1&2, September 11 terrorist attacks, Glorietta bombings or the Tsunami in South East Asia. I believe that their generation would be more nationalistic, conscious about the environment and technologically connected in ways that we cannot imagine. Mandarin and English would still be the key to doing successful business in the future.

My preference would be the International Schools (like IS or Brent) but they are very expensive because you are paying for the Expat educators. Ateneo and La Salle, on the other hand, are more traditional in nature and I hear stories of 1 teacher: 40+ students ratio similar with our times. One consideration is Xavier School which already upgraded their curriculum and are very progressive. We are also interested with Reedley International School because of its core values and International School curriculum that they follow. We attended the orientation last December 2007 @ Reedley, and let me share with you what Reedley has to offer...

We are considering an international school program where the academic curriculum and knowledge is at PAR with the international schools outside the Philippines. They are required to learn another language which is Mandarin. Aidan will be expected to work with different nationalities and respect their customs and traditions at the same time valuing the Filipino traditions. The teaching style is more exchanging of ideas vs. the teacher downloading information and the student memorizing it.

Reedley International School-15

I liked Reedley's core values which is aligned with our core values. I want Aidan's school to be truly a second home for him where he knows most of the students and teachers by first name. I like the positive culture of discipline they are fostering with focus on understanding the reason for discipline and its consequence versus the focus on punishment. Reedley boast dozens of case studies on turnaround cases where a happy-go-lucky student became enthusiastic about school and a bullied student and pressured by peers in the big schools transforms into being assertive, confident and knowing all about conflict resolution. Finally, I like the focus on finding the child's unique skills, gifts and talents and aligning the child towards his divine destiny.

Reedley International School-9

I also like the very low student: teacher ratio where the teachers can really focus on the learning of the students. The maximum class size for lower school is 1teacher : 15 students.

Reedley International School-10

We interviewed a Reesian and we only get great rave reviews from the kid. Have you looked into Reedley? Or are your kids enrolled in this school? Maybe you can share your experience with us.

Reedley International School-12

Life Skills are also taught which includes teaching the 7 habits of highly effective teens, instilling virtues, learning conflict resolution skills, understanding emotional quotient, and reaching out to less fortunate brothers and sisters.

Reedley International School-2

Mrs. Ong, founder of Reedley, shared her beliefs during the December orientation:

" I believe that with an international education, our kids are given lots of opportunities and seemingly more unique ways of learning, inside and outside of the classroom, less structured but more participatory discussions on: Global issues, economics and polities, 21st century technology, society's ills, and other relevant and worldly concerns. "

" I believe that a good school highly enables its students to have an excellent grasp of the English language in order to survive, to communicate well, and to promote Bi-lingualism."

" I believe that a both Parents and the School are responsible to help children discover ways to make good use of Life's Greatest Gift... the Gift of Learning."

" I believe that a good school is one where: RESPONSIBILITY and HARD WORK are deeply instilled; GOOD MORALS and DISCIPLINE become our children's way of life."

The tuition fee is twice that of a traditional school but a lot lower than the other International School in the country because they don't employ expats. Since they are an IS school, they don't have a focus on Christian formation which is one of the criteria I was looking for in a school. I grew up with Salesian brothers and priest in Don Bosco Makati and I was hoping Aidan to get the same Catholic formation which I won't get in Reedley International School.

We still have time to do research about other progressive schools before Aidan turns 6. Any suggestions on awesome progressive schools in Metro Manila?

For more information on Reedley: Reedley International School

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January 16, 2008 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, 9. Blog's Eye View of the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (95) | TrackBack

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas To You!

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Christmas Photos-3

Merry Christmas to all friends of Our Awesome Planet!

We celebrated Christmas with Aidan and baby Josh at home. When Aidan woke up, he saw a lot of gifts but it did not occur to him that all of the gifts were for him. He still does not understand the concept of Santa Claus giving gifts on Christmas. We don't want to hype up Santa Claus but rather emphasize that it is the birthday of Jesus and we should spend Christmas together as a family.

How did you spend your Christmas?

Christmas Photos-5

Our Christmas gift to Momma Rache is this paper clay caricature art from JNBM Art Shop at Mall of Asia. It is very addicting but it is also a bit challenging to complete than I expected. Looks easy huh! 

I will share with you a photo once we complete the art work.

HAVE A MERRY CHRISTMAS!


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December 25, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (9) | TrackBack

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Old Manila Walks Gmail Account Hacked!

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Santos - Hizon House-12

So That You May Know...and keep your eyes OPEN! 

The email address of OLD MANILA WALKS (oldmanilawalks@gmail.com)  was hacked last December 18, 2007. There has been VERY DUBIOUS messages under this specific email address going around about us being stranded in an African country and soliciting money. Please DISREGARD this as it is a HOAX. 

We are not sure if we'll be able to get back to our system but  unless we do, please be wary of any messages from oldmanilawalks@gmail.com, especially those that involve ASKING FOR MONEY. If it doesn't concern Manila or walking tours for that matter, then it was probably not sent by us.

Lessons of the Day:

1. Please be wary of your mails, even if its from the same email company as yours.These hackers can be very, very, VERY deceiving with the way they word their email.

2. This can NEVER be overstated but never, never, NEVER give out VITAL INFORMATION to any one or any company apart from those whom you personally know.

3. Sometimes, the simplest reminders are the ones over looked. In the end, they're the ones who cause the biggest headaches.  For those have received the HOAX email and are not sure what it's all about, please visit our website or drop us a message at oldmanilawalks2@gmail.com.

Thanks for your patience and we apologize for any inconvenience, this is a major stub on our toe and we're limping at the moment but for sure, WE'RE  STILL WALKING….

Ivan Man Dy
Old Manila Walks
www.oldmanilawalks.com

 

P.S. Thank you Anton of Our Awesome Planet for helping disseminate our message. Over the last few days, we have received over 30 text messages and phone calls confirming this HOAX email. Thank you to all those who took time to inform us.

December 22, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Friday, December 21, 2007

Barney Live in Manila!

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Barney Live
Aidan was speechless. It was priceless to see the wonder on his face when we saw Barney Live on its opening night last Wednesday, Dec. 19, 2007. We told him that there is a surprise that awaits him that night. I'm sure he did not expect to see Barney live :)

Together with his cousin Carlos, they danced the night away with Barney. He was so happy.

Barney Live-3
Baby Bop, B.J. and Riff joined Barney in his adventures in Manila. It is like watching the actual Barney CDs live. Rache and I enjoyed seeing Aidan, Carlos and other kids dance with Barney.

Barney Live-2

This is our favorite Barney song "I Love You, You Love Me" which was the last but memorable song for the night.

I love you, You love me
We're a happy family,
With a great big hug And a kiss from me to you
Won't you say you love me too?

I love you, You love me
We're best friends Like friends should be
With a great big hug And a kiss from me to you
Won't you say you love me too?

 

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You still have time to catch it until Dec. 23, Sunday @ the Araneta Coliseum.
For ticket inquiries call  911-5555.  P1,575 | P1,260 | P1,050 | P945 | P735 | P525

December 21, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Friday, December 14, 2007

The Why Not Forum 2.0

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WHY NOT FORUM

For those who missed the first Why Not Forum, check out the second Why Not Forum at Mag:Net Cafe Bonifacio High Street

The Why Not Forum 2.0
Jim Paredes of the Apo Hiking Society
Leonard Co, Ethnobotanist
Erik Mana, Master Illusionist
Grace Dimaranan, President of the Animation Council of the Philippines
Fr. Jomar Legaspi, Founder of Learn.Ph
The Philippine Everest Team
+ spoken word performance by Juddha Paolo and Kooky Chua

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December 14, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (9) | TrackBack

Monday, December 10, 2007

Silverlens Portfolio Review with Romy Vitug, Derek Soriano, and Isa Lorenzo

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Silver Lens Photo Critique Sessions-3
I wanted to take my photography to the next level and I'm glad that Silverlens organized these portfolio reviews with the photography masters. I submitted my best pictures to the PAL photo contest and it failed to even reach the short list. I was devastated and thanks to Silverlens photos for organizing these portfolio reviews to get direct feedback from the masters on how I can take my photography to the next level.

Silver Lens Photo Critique Sessions-5 Silver Lens Photo Critique Sessions-2 Silver Lens Photo Critique Sessions Silver Lens Photo Critique Sessions-4
Portfolio Review with Isa Lorenzo, Derek Soriano, and Romy Vitug. (Dec. 8, 2008)

All of them gave me the feedback that most of my photos were generic. They were postcard perfect but they do not reflect my personality or my own signature style of photography. The photos don't jump out except for those pictures taken with Aidan. It was devastating to hear na walang kwenta ang mga larawan ko.

Isa had some useful suggestions to create a collection of photos about a place and take a lot of photos about that place. I do hope to discover my own artistic style to the point that people looking at my photos will immediately identify that it was my photo.

I also learned that one of my photo strength is Aidan as the subject. Most of the photos were taken with love that's why Aidan comes out alive. I plan to create a portfolio of photos in time for Aidan's 3rd Birthday in January. Maybe I can do an exhibit somewhere in Serendra (if possible)

In the meantime, I'm thinking of selling my photos as postcards :)

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December 10, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

No More World Pyro...

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World Pyro Olympics!
I was sad when I learned that there won't be any World Pyro Olympics for this year. What happened? I was looking for more info from the net and I can't find one. Have you heard anything about why they decided to cancel World Pyro this year?

December 10, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (13) | TrackBack

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Big Garment Sale (Nov 29-Dec 1)

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The Big Garment Sale

The Great Bulacan Sale. November 29, Thursday to December 2, Sunday.  We usually would go on Thursday/ Friday so that the crowd is still manageable. We do most of the Christmas Shopping here for the ina-anaks.  But I think we will have to pass this time because Rache is still recuperating.

During the last sale, they issued membership cards already which serves as the gate pass. No need for invites. If you are not registered yet, just bring one valid ID. For inquiries, pls call 2996061.

All the clothes that are not sold here are sent to their Off Price Stores in Ortigas/ Makati/ Malate.

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November 28, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (27) | TrackBack

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

MV Doulos is back!

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M/V Doulos Floating Bookstore - 5

Read: Doulos Bookstore: The Floating Bookstore in Manila
Official Website: Doulos. Bringing knowledge, help and hope.

It is now currently docked in Batangas and will go back to Manila on Nov 29th until Christmas (Dec. 26, 2007).  During the visit to Batangas, the vessel is undergoing a routine period of maintenance that takes place annually. (see: Where's The Water Gone?) The best time to go is on the first day it is opened to the public. All of the best books would be gone by that time.

Can anyone give our family a tour of M/V Doulos? Aidan would love to go around a big ship. It will be a surprise for him and syoti this coming December :)

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November 20, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (8) | TrackBack

Monday, November 19, 2007

Food From The Heart - a Gourmet Charity Dinner by Executive Chef, Mike Figdor

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foodfromtheheart

Food From The Heart will benefit 250 residents at Golden Acres. This institution is open for males and females over the age of 60 who were abandoned, neglected and needy. The event hopes to raise enough money to provide residents with the following items:

  • Healthy snacks
  • Daily Vitamins 
  • Soap
  • Shampoo
  • Towels
  • Toothbrush
  • Toothpaste
  • Clothing

Requested Items for the whole institution:

  • Laundry Soap
  • Janitorial Supplies 
  • Medical Dressing Set 
  • Minor Surgery Kits

A Christmas gathering on the 15th of December is also in line with these donations. Hearty food prepared by our chefs, a small program, games, gifts, possibly even ballroom dancing and karaoke for their enjoyment.

We have just visited the institution and have been deeply touched by our now extended lolo's and lola's. Their warm welcome to us despite being strangers was truly a heartwarming experience.

The team behind Essentiel Events is counting on your support. Thank you!

For more information: Food From the Heart by Essential Events

food from the heart Menu

November 19, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Happy Diwali!

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Diwali Mela

Happy Diwali to our Indian friends in Manila!  We saw a Diwali Mela (Indian Trade Fair) last Sunday when we went to Mall of Asia. I started to realize that there are a lot of Indians now in Manila. Just in our company, we have three holding key leadership positions. The Diwali Mela is very interesting because it showcases Indian dances, fashion and food (which is why I went there). I would think that Diwali will become a big occasion next year in Manila. Rumor has it that next year, it will be a holiday already because Bollywood is already investing in Manila. (can someone confirm this?)

Tina Vaswani gave me Jamoos on Diwali and these are the round balls soak in sweet liquid which I first tasted during the Pink Kitchen event. She was proud to say that they create one of the best Jamoos in Manila.  This got me interested to explore the different flavours of India in Manila and see which ones are the best. I'm looking for Indian foodies out there who can show me the secrets of Indian cuisine in Manila (aside from the usual Swagat/ Bombay Kitchen/ Prince of Jaipur).

On a personal note, my wife has not given birth yet. The dilations got stuck at 4cm and she is experiencing no regular contractions. It is the 40th week and we have been walking around the Mall of Asia this weekend but still Baby Joshua won't come out. While waiting for Baby Joshua, we already signed up for StemCord where you bank the stem cells from the baby's umbilical cord for future use ( which I will feature separately). We have eaten in the newly opened Haagen Daz in Mall of Asia (watch out for that post). I'm dying to post the Pampanga tour we had and a definitive guide to Claude tayag's Bale Dutung.

November 13, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (12) | TrackBack

Monday, October 08, 2007

A Great Day for Philippines Sports

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October 7, 2007 was a great day for Philippines Sports!   It was a memorable day for me and let me tell you why...

La Salle Champions 
First, La Salle won the 2007 UAAP Basketball Championship by defeating UE with 73-64 points (a convincing 9 points lead).  Everybody thought that UE was unbeatable since they had swept the elimination rounds. If you look at each of the UE Red Warriors individually, La Salle Green Archers were no match for them. But we beat Red Warriors because of the heart and determination to win as one team. More than 1/2 of the Araneta was filled with Green Archers fan. The Green Archers had led the game all the way from the first to the last quarter. Thanks to MVP Jayvee Casio and MVP Cholo Villanueva for hitting the key shots when it mattered most.

I knew it when we beat Ateneo, we could win the UAAP Championship!  ANIMO LA SALLE!!

P.S. Now I know why the WAVE is unlucky... Franz Pumaren was right and the only wave we saw yesterday was the one from UE. No more waves for the Green Archers gallery.

Manny Pacquiao Defeats Barrera 
Second, Pacquiao retained his WBC International Super Featerweight Title by defeating Barrera in a 12 rounds unanimous decision. His new record is 45-3-2  with 34 KO's at the age of 28. All the Filipinos were hoping for a knockout but we saw how Barrera was avoiding Manny's punches. Barrera's goal was to survive his last 12 rounds of his career and enjoy his $2 Million dollars pay out. Thanks Manny for making us all proud once again.

Breast Cancer Run.jpg
Lastly, I achieved a personal best record for my 10k run at 1 hour and 15 minutes when I joined Soroptimist's Breast Cancer Run yesterday. Yahoo! My goal is to achieve a sub hour in 2008.   

P.S. No, I'm not that guy!  The photo above is Zorro from ABS-CBN running club (according to him) during yesterday's breast cancer run. He gives a comic relief in most of the major runs in Manila.

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October 8, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (17)

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Learnings from the Transit Photo Contest

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Mayon Seaport by Gary Mart Domingo.jpg
1st Place: Mayon Seaport by Gary Mart Domingo

Congratulations to the Transit Photo Contests Winners Gary Mart Domingo, Arnold Jumpay, and Maylene Espera! I want to share my thoughts on why my photos did not win so that I can improve my shots for the succeeding contest. You might benefit from this too especially for those who wants to join such contest in the future. But I'm still happy that two of my photos were short listed as finalist. (You can see all the photos below)

On the Go, Lokal! Transit Photo Contest

Transit Photo Contest Theme:
Summer Destination Pictures of the Best Destinations the Philippines - like Siargao, Bohol, Boracay, Pagudpud, Batanes, Cebu , and other vacation destinations. Photos may include famous landmarks like historical churches and houses, animals, rivers, beaches, etc.

Learnings from the Transit Photo Contest

1. Tell a unique story about the Philippines' Destination.
First, you need to be able to identify where the place is by taking photos of the popular landmarks and places. I noticed that there are a lot of great shots of unknown beautiful places but the judges might not appreciate where it is. At least that is my hypothesis. Since it is a popular travel destination, you need to make sure that you take a unique angle on it like Mayon and the Port, Boracay and the silver surfer. Most importantly, the photo needs to tell a story especially that this is a newsprint medium so it needs to have a photo journalistic appeal.

2. Take the shot, Enter the contest, and Do a Post Analysis
You don't need to be a pro to win in these contest. What is important is that whenever you take photos, you have to automatically have these kind of contests in mind. Make sure that you submit your photos so that you have a fighting chance because you'll never know if you'll win. It does not matter if you win or lose, what is important is that you learn from it. So, visit the exhibit of the winners and this is a good way also to develop your photographic eye.

That's it! See the other winning photos below and my two photos that entered as finalist.

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Bora Beach by Arnold Jumpay.jpg
2nd Place: Bora Beach by Arnold Jumpay

Not Your Silver Surfer by Maylene Espera.jpg
3rd Place: Not Your Silver Surfer by Maylene Espera

Solitude in an Island of Balesin by Jose Antonio Diaz.jpg
Finalist: Solitude in an Island of Balesin by Jose Antonio Diaz

Kayaking in Big Lagoon by Jose Antonio Diaz.jpg

Finalist: Kayaking in Big Lagoon by Jose Antonio Diaz

October 2, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5)

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

The Greatest of All Time LT Presentation

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Pension Plan Presentation-2.jpg
The LT team dancing to the tune of Fame.

Every year, P&G Philippines has this unique tradition of celebrating how successful our pension plan fund is. (I know it is kinda weird). This is the biggest celebration in our company which is held around September. It is bigger than Christmas because this is the only time we have a joint celebration with the plant, the shared service center, and the sales and marketing organization. One of our pride as P&Gers, is to retire in P&G and this night also serves as a venue for honoring the retirees.

Every pension plan celebration night, there is an inter-department competition on the best musical presentation given a particular theme. This year's theme was 80's Ballroom Dancing. For the first time in the Pension Plan celebration history, the leadership team of the company presented in the Pension Plan. Thanks to Direk Mel Soriano and team for creating a memorable fun presentation (that we won't forget and won't happen again :)

We really had fun with this presentation. I wanted to capture that joy and share it with you (even if this post is kinda personal). Here is a glimpse of the LT presentation.

Pension Plan Presentation-6.jpg
Our boss Jim Lafferty was flying through the air in this graceful solo performance.

Pension Plan Presentation-10.jpg
A decent attempt of a High School musical performance where each person will show the pom-poms one after another to create a wave effect.

Pension Plan Presentation-4.jpg
Pauline, our media manager, was the only female in the team so we had to improvise and make our Corporate Lawyer, Junie and Shared Service Center manager, Patrick be in female roles.

Pension Plan Presentation-9.jpg
I was in front together with Pauline as we danced our last High School musical sequence.

Pension Plan Presentation-11.jpg
The star of the night was the beautiful Miss China, Patricia.

It was indeed a greatest of all time performance from the leadership team. We were a 3rd placer for this! Congrats!

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September 26, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (3)

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Olay White Radiance Launch

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Fwd: P&G Olay Tea
Photo courtesy of Cyrus of Lumina Photography

Congratulations to the Olay White Radiance Team for the successful launch last Night!

Olay White Radiance Endorsers

Photo Courtesy of Tony Oquias

The New Olay White Radiance Endorsers: Denise Go and Isabelle Diaz Daza

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August 25, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Friday, August 24, 2007

The Camera That Blogging Won

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Blogger's Taste of Asia Meet

I have a unique pasalubong for Aidan today -- His First Digital Camera!  Thanks to SM Hypermarket for the camera which is the prize for the runner's up award in the recently concluded SM Hypermarket Blogging Contest.  Congratulations to all the winners and for Anito Kid for winning the Round Trip Ticket to Malaysia -- you deserve it !

We had fun last night in the Taste of Asia Bloggers Meet. Here are some of the photos of last night's event.

travel bloggers
Travel Bloggers having fun @ Cliquebooth

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Blogger's Taste of Asia Meet 
The barbecue was tasty and everybody agrees that it was very good.

Blogger's Taste of Asia Meet
I met the wonderful mommy bloggers from the pinoy moms network.

Blogger's Taste of Asia Meet

Thanks to SM "Hypermarket" for a nice bloggers event!  The Blogging community will be forever grateful for recognizing our collective influence as "an alternative media".

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August 24, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (18) | TrackBack

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Manila Baywalk's New Look

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Manila Baywalk 
Yes, Manila Baywalk is now clean.  The only remaining evidence that there was once commercial activities happening here is the still standing huge Cafe Puro cup. There is a debate going on in Carlos blog about pros and cons of closing Manila Baywalk. The blogosphere started to get emotional about it. These are the type of news that you won't ever see in Manila's newspapers.

IN MEMORIAM... and WTF... by Carlos Celdran
Why Baywalk Deserve to Close by Annalyn
F*CK. I knew this would happen: Mayor Lim shuts down BAYWALK!!! by Manila Boy

Manila Baywalk 
Ever since Manila Baywalk was commercialized the entire place became dirty (with trash all around) and non-family friendly entertainment.  I'm not sure if I'm going to thank Alfredo Lim just yet because we don't want the baywalk to be dark and unsafe again.

Manila Baywalk
Just to be clear, I'm happy that the establishments are gone to keep the area clean from trash. I do hope that it remains clean and safe where families can go to and enjoy the manila sunset.

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August 21, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (21) | TrackBack

Monday, August 20, 2007

Oh Boy, Oh Boy! It is another Boy!

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It's Another Boy! 
Oh yes, It is another boy!  Aidan is now an Ahiya with a Syoti (younger brother).

It's Another Boy!
We are trying this 4D technology of In My Womb and our first attempt was not really successful. Baby 4 was being covered by the placenta so we have to return to get a full and moving shot. This is a first-come first-served basis. All the re-scans are done Tuesday/ Thursday only to avoid the long queue. By the way, no cameras nor video cameras were allowed during the procedure.

We took the cheapest 3D/4D Package (Ruby) for P3,300. It includes:
20-30 min 2D, 3D, 4D session
DVD recording set to music.
5 glossy, high resolution black/ white 3D photos
2 glossy, high resolution Sepia-toned 3D photoes
Medical Report, baby weights, estimated due date, heart rate, gender determination
Free return visit within 14 days if baby does NOT cooperate during your session.

Happy Christening Sophia Danielle 
Aidan is growing up quickly and this is his latest picture in Sophia Danielle Jabob's Baptism.  I can just imagine having two boys with almost 3 years old apart.

It's Another Boy!
In My Womb 3D/ 4D Ultrasound Centre
G/F Park Square 2, Ayala Mall, Makati City
Mobile No. +63 917 818 6888
Website: www.inmywomb.com.ph
Email: inmywomb@yahoo.com.ph

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August 20, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (35) | TrackBack

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

The Sale

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The Big Garment Sale

"BIG GARMENTS SALE"
Aug 9-11, 2007
Star Trends, Sterling Industrial Park, Meycauyan, Bulacan
Tel# +632 2996061
Email: biggarmentssale@gmail.com

Related Posts:
Mango and branded apparels at Factory Prices!  July 2005
The Big Garment Sale: By Invitation Only August 2006
The Great Bulacan Sale November 2006

DEAR FRIENDS , COLLEAGUES, FAMILY!

We are having another sale of our garments this coming August 9 to 11 (Thursday to Saturday).  Some of you have already been to our sales before, you are welcome to bring your friends along, especially if they are Jaycees.

No minimums, no fakes, only original stocklot overruns from factories across Asia.  Prices will be as usual, which is the lowest you can get anywhere else..for this sale we have much more of mens tops, like Tommy, A/X, CK, Timberland, Ecko, ETC.  For ladies, we have MNG but in very small quantities so you have to come early. (you should go on Thursday) Lots of other ladies' brands too. There are a lot of styles and brands, hope you can see for yourself.

When you arrive, you will be handed a membership card which we are using as gate pass for future sales.  YOU CAN PURCHASE ONLY WITH THE MEMBERSHIP CARD SO PLEASE SIGN UP FOR ONE. (this is the first time this is being done) EVERYONE GETS ONE EACH.

No need for print outs anymore, (yehey) but most probably you need the map, so here it is attached.  Our address is Acefree Street, Sterling Industrial Park, Meycauayan, Bulacan.  Just take NLEX and get off Meycauayan exit, and turn towards Iba (there is a sign), and you should be by the gate of Sterling 2kms after Caltex.

The sale dates are August 9 to 11, gate opens at 8am and we close only when nobody else is around (usually around 8pm).  For inquiries, kindly text me at 0922-8856627.

Regards to all and see you!

JONAS

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August 8, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (23) | TrackBack

Friday, August 03, 2007

Philippines Photo Contests Galore

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Three of the Photo Contest I intend to join this year. Hoping for the best! (Updated Aug. 20,2007)

Canon Photo Marathon Asia 
Canon Photo Marathon Asia 2007
Official Website: Canon Photo Marathon Asia
Philippines Competition is on September 15

UNLEASH YOUR CREATIVITY AND PUSH THE BOUNDARIES OF PHOTOGRAPHY
To celebrate Canon’s 70th Anniversary, Canon in Malaysia, Philippines, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam bring you Canon Photo Marathon Asia 2007 - a unique photography contest that challenges your imagination and empowers you to set new standards in photography.

Show us what you can do based on various themes assigned to you under the pressure of time. Your creativity and endurance to complete the marathon will give you a chance to win attractive Canon prizes and/or a Photo Clinic with a professional photographer to Japan.

Each country will organise local photo marathons where 2 winners will be selected and stand a chance to win the grand prize of a Photo Clinic to Japan.

WIN A TRIP OF SCENIC EXPERIENCE
Experience the sights and sounds of Kyushu, Japan as you go on a Photo Clinic with professional photographer Triston Yeo who will provide you with varied photo opportunities to enhance your skills and capture unique insights into this amazing island.

From the bustling Fukuoka Street Culture to one of the world’s largest active volcanos - Mount Aso at Aso National Park, Kyushu offers many fascinating sights. Enjoy the Beppu hot spring bath and visit the well-known ‘Dragon Whirlpool’ - a fiery geyser that erupts violently every 22 minutes. At the same time, experience traditional Japanese rituals such as the Yutoku Inari Shrine Fire Festival, all with the insider view of a local guide.

PAL Photo Contest
Capture the Beauty of the Philippines PAL Photo Contest (Deadline: September 29, 2007)
Official Website: PAL Photo Contest

THE THEME: Capture “The Beauty of the Philippines!”
Send in your most superb images that illustrate the best of anything and everything about the Philippines. The theme is divided into the following:

CATEGORIES:
The Beauty of Philippine Scapes (Scenic shots. If the shots include people in the frame, the ratio to the total composition should be very minimal)
- landscapes
- seascapes
- cityscapes
- nightscapes
- underwater shots
- historical landmarks
- architecture
- leisure spots
- night-out hotspots

The Beauty of the Filipino Spirit (portraits, people, values)
- People (the major element in the composition should be a person/people)
- Remarkable depictions of Filipino values (i.e., industriousness, sincerity, simplicity, earnestness, etc.);
- human emotions (i.e. triumph, love, happiness, etc.); Family, Friendship, Childhood, etc.

The Beauty of Filipino Culture (fests, events, arts, lifestyle)
- festivities
- events
- traditions
- arts
- food

And remember to LET YOUR PASSION FLY HIGH!
*The indicated elements are suggestions, ideas, and guides as to subjects that can fall under the theme. Subjects for the entries, however, ARE NOT LIMITED TO THESE elements alone.

Participants may use any Digital or Film based camera, provided that the photo Entry/s will be printed on an EPSON printer (Printer’s serial number is needed) and on any brand of photo papers.

photocontest
Transit Photo Contest (Deadline: August 31, 2007)
Official Site: Transit Photo Contest

Set for a local destination this summer?

Armed with your digicam? (of course!) Do you keep on taking pictures? (whether you develop them or not)
Sounds very much like us - so we’ve found a way for you to make use of these pictures - we, serial trigger happy summer people keep on taking…

So, Earn big prizes! by sending us your LOCAL summer destination pictures - here’s what we’re looking for:
Summer Destination Pictures of the Best Destinations the Philippines - like Siargao, Bohol, Boracay, Pagudpud, Batanes, Cebu , and other vacation destinations. Photos may include famous landmarks like historical churches and houses, animals, rivers, beaches, etc.

How to Join? Submit your photo entries to Transit Publishing Corp. (5F Diamond Hotel, Roxas Blvd corner Dr. J Quintos St., Manila) on or before the last day of submission of entries.

*You must include a 10″ x 11″ or 10″x14″ sized print of your photo entry and the printed copy of the contest’s application form (click to download). Please affix your signature at the back of the developed copy of your picture.

When does it start? Contest period is from May 30, 2007 - extended to August 31, 2007

Who can join? Anyone with a camera (digital or not) or mobile camera phone - except professionals.

August 3, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Sunday, July 29, 2007

Avenue Q-Manila: Is Manila ready for the Puppet's Full Frontal Nudity?

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Avenue Q - Final Run June 2008. 5 Reasons Why You Should Not Miss the Opening Night of Avenue Q’s Final Run!

2004_06_aveqtony

Avenue Q, Broadway’s smash-hit 2004 Tony Award winner for Best Musical, Best Score and Best Book, will soon be opening in Manila on September 7, 2007. I can't wait to see the great cast which includes Rachel Alejandro (dual role of Kate Monster and Lucy The Slut,), Frenchie Dy (as Christmas Eve) and Aiza Seguerra (as Gary Coleman). Chari Arespacochaga is co-directing Avenue Q with Bobby Garcia, so expect that this will be a world class show, similar to Rent.

What is AVENUE Q about?
" AVENUE Q is the story of Princeton, a bright-eyed college grad who comes to New York City with big dreams and a tiny bank account. He soon discovers that the only neighborhood in his price range is Avenue Q; still, the neighbors seem nice. There's Brian the out-of-work comedian and his therapist fianceé Christmas Eve; Nicky the good-hearted slacker and his roommate Rod -- a Republican investment banker who seems to have some sort of secret; an Internet addict called Trekkie Monster; and a very cute kindergarten teaching assistant named Kate. And would you believe the building's superintendent is Gary Coleman?!? (Yes, that Gary Coleman.) Together, Princeton and his newfound friends struggle to find jobs, dates, and their ever-elusive purpose in life." (About Avenue Q the Musical)

Here is another fun fact:
"As it turns out, Avenue Q, the Tony Award winning Broadway musical that continues to run on Broadway, has Pinoy blood behind it. Bobby Lopez, who wrote the show with his collaborator Jeff Marx, is half-Filipino." (The Pinoy who wrote Avenue Q)

Start listening to songs such as "Schadenfreude", "The Internet is For Porn" and "It Sucks to be Me", etc.. So that you are not left out -- there is still time. Do you think Filipinos will be ready for the Puppet's full frontal nudity and explicit, vulgar lyrics? What's your Favorite Avenue Q song?

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P.S. 15 Sept 2007 3pm matinee performance
On the 15 Sept 2007 3pm matinee performance of Ave Q, P&G Employees are entitled to a 10% discount (yahoo!). Although the tickets for the 15 Sept 2007 3pm performance of Ave Q will be available mid-August, you can start reserving tickets for those interested. Ticket prices are (P&G employees are entitled to a 10% discount):

Balcony Php 500
Loge Php 1,000
Orchestra Php 1,250

Update 8/7/2007
FYI, Atlantis has decided that all the Saturday Matinee shows, including ours on 15 Sept 2007, will be moved from 3pm to 2pm.

We have decided as well to give Early Bird Discounts for Cash Purchases for the 15 Sept 2pm show:
10% Discount—Tickets bought from 06-19 August 2007
5% Discount—Tickets bought from 20-31 August 2007
5% Discount— On every 10 Tickets bought from 01-14 Sept 2007

They may only avail of the discounts if the tickets are bought directly from me. My contact details remain the same.

Contact Lorna Lopez for ticket reservations:
(Sun) 0922.3875729
(Globe) 0917.9256505
(email) llornalopez@gmail.com
www.thebachelorgirl.com

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July 29, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Thursday, June 14, 2007

My First 21K and Blog Withdrawal Syndromes

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Run for P.E.A.C.E 21k - 9


I'm dying to blog!  I've been pretty busy lately with preparations for a management visit coupled with the fact that for the first time, my broadband died on me. At last, my broadband is back and we are wrapping up the management visit. I think it is almost 10 days that I have not really updated the blog. After a period of no blogging, I felt uneasy not seeing new updates on the blog. It felt as if my day is not complete and I'm mad at my broadband provider for being inconsiderate. I won't mention the provider anymore, but thanks for visiting us yesterday to fix the issue!

I ran my first 21k (yes, 21 kilometers) last Sunday. It was a half-marathon run in preparation for July 22, Milo Marathon.  I almost died and for a second, I was tempted not to finish the race. I finished the course for 3 hours and 19 minutes. This is too slow, and I was second to the last to cross the finish line. We were annoyed by the ambulance tailing us when we run and tempting us to give up. I'm not the type of person who would easily give up.

It was not an easy feat. I'm starting to run the marathon to lose all the weight I gained through blogging. I gained 40 lbs (can you imagine) and I'm running at my heaviest.  I plan to organize a marathon-for-a-cause for my first Marathon run on July 22 and I'm looking for a charity institution to partner with. I will announce more details of the marathon-for-a-cause but simply I plan to solicit monetary support for the charity institution depending on how many kilometers I run during the marathon. One could pledge P100 for every Kilometer that I finish. If I finish 42 kilometers, the donor will contribute P420 to the marathon-for-a-cause.  I want to do this so that my first run becomes very meaningful and I have something to motivate me when my knees are giving up at the 30k point. I do hope you can support me on this :)

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21k race 
I'm a techno freak and I'm inspired to run because of the running "costume" and gadget. Running a marathon is a good justification for me to buy the Nike Plus Shoes, Ipod Nano and Nike+ pedometer. It was so cool to run with Nike! I wish I was a certified runner and not a blogger so that Nike can think of sponsoring me...

Run for P.E.A.C.E 21k - 1 
The race started at 5.40am and it runs through from the Fort Bonifacio Grand Stand  to the Libingan ng mga Bayani, passes through C5 and make a U-turn in the bridge after Petron, then back.  There are water stations along the route, and I had to bring a gatorade with me. My boss said that there are people who dies in Marathon because they only drink water.  Btw, I've tried Pocari Sweat for the first time, and it was a hundred times better than gatorade. However, I can't find it in the convenience stores because I want to use that instead.

Run for P.E.A.C.E 21k - 5
The sunrise run around Libingan ng mga Bayani was very nice. It was my first time to see these crosses. This was the only scenic route in the 21k course and the rest are public streets where you could inhale all the possible pollution from the cars and motor bikes.

Run for P.E.A.C.E 21k - 7 
In the end, I finished 21k in 3 hours and 19 minutes. My 10k record is 1 hour and 10 minutes.  They were almost packing up when we crossed the finished line. After the run, my entire legs are arching to that point that I would question myself, why am I running and doing this to myself? In the end, I'm still determined to finish the marathon on July 22. Only 0.001% of the world's population, finish a marathon. I want to be part of that elite group. P&G will be the biggest delegation in the July 22 Milo Marathon and we are estimating that we will finish the course in 7 hours!
 
Run for P.E.A.C.E 21k - 10
One of these days, I'll join Aidan in my runs. After the 21k, we celebrated this milestone by having breakfast at Portico in Serendra!

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June 14, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (13) | TrackBack

Thursday, May 31, 2007

P&G Philippines Career Opportunities

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P&G Phils


Here is a shameless plug for those who are interested to apply in P&G. The Official P&G Philippines Website is up and running at http://www.pg.com/en_PH/ . You can apply for internship or regular employment through the online application process. (Here is the 7 step process for applying in P&G. )  We are looking for qualified individuals who have a balance between academic excellence and leadership skills. We are not  limiting our search to the top 3 schools because I personally believe that there are a lot of qualified people out there outside the usual Ateneo, UP and La Salle graduates.  As we usually say, we offer a career where you can live up to your potential and truly make a difference. This is an exciting time to be part of P&G because you will become a part of the Greatest P&G Operation of all time in P&G's History globally.

Also, just a tip for those applying, better read the website so that you'll know the history of the company and the P&G brands.  Let me know if you have questions. You can contact the recruitment team via these contact information:

Corporate Recruitment Manager
recphilippines.im@pg.com
Phone: +63-2-8148112
Fax:+63-2-8148107

Procter & Gamble Distriuting (Phils.) Inc.
6750 Ayala Office Tower
Ayala Avenue, Makati City
Metro Manila, Philippines 1226

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May 31, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (16) | TrackBack

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

San Fo Treats - Apple in Caramel Chocolate

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San Fo Treats

Have you tried one of these Apple coated in Caramel Chocolate?  It looks yummy and we cannot resist it despite its P80 price tag for this apple coated with caramel, chocolate and nuts. The apple treats ranges from P60-P85 and you'll wonder is it really worth it?

The only problem with this dessert is the apple. How long has the apple been there? Will it not rot after several days? Well, we got our answer when we sliced our apple. Two-third part of the apple was already rotten so we were only able to eat the top 1/3 part.  Next time, I will ask the lady to cut the apple so that I'll see the insides before paying the hefty price of P80 but my wife says otherwise. The apple was there for days already. It would have survived a week if it was just a plain apple but with the coatings, it would just be a few days.


Sanfo Treats - 2
Can Aidan resist these apple? Can you?

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Sanfo Treats - 3
The  Apple or Pears coated in Caramel Chocolate with toppings are available at SanFo Treats, Glorietta (Fun Ranch and other malls).

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May 23, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (106) | TrackBack

Saturday, May 19, 2007

A Turning Point in Philippines History?

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Enroute to Corregidor - 9.jpg

I've always believe that if only Filipinos believe and love the Philippines, we can achieve any goals we set our minds and hearts to. This May 2007 marks the turning point in Philippine History. Perhaps this is the start of a tipping point towards Philippines' greatness. I can feel it in the air and there is so much hope that we will become a great nation.  Let me share with you why I'm so proud to be a Filipino today:

1. Congratulations to Noelle Wenceslao, Carina Dayondon, and Janet Belarmino  for becoming the first Southeast Asian women to summit Everest, and the first women in the world to traverse Everest! I must admit that at first I did not have faith that they can do it but they proved us wrong. If they can climb Mount Everest, this gives hope and inspiration for all of us to conquer our own Everest. To think that Janet just gave birth to their five month old baby boy Himalaya. Ang galing ng Pinay! (Official Blog: Pinays on Everest)

2. God truly works in mysterious ways. Fr. Eddie Panlilio became the first Catholic priest in the country to be elected to public office in what is being touted as a “people-powered” unprecedented run for governor of Pampanga.

"Panlilio who got a total of 219,706 votes in the six-cornered race, winning by a lead of only 1,147 votes...The decisive votes that clinched his victory came from Magalang, a predominantly Catholic town, where 11,095 residents voted for him.Panlilio’s major rivals were Lilia Pineda, an incumbent provincial board member, who got 218,559 votes, and reelectionist Gov. Mark Lapid who received 210,875 votes." (Miracle in Pampanga by Tonette Orejas )

3. The Filipino voters have matured politically!! Yes!! Finally, Filipinos are voting based on performance, results and credentials.

"The citizenry has become sick and tired of actors and actresses in elective posts. Cesar Montano, Richard Gomez, Christopher de Leon, Lito Lapid and his son Mark, all movie idols, suffered humiliation at the hands of lesser known personalities....The only exception is actress Vilma Santos who won by a big margin over incumbent Armand Sanchez in the Batangas gubernatorial race. The reason behind her victory is her exemplary performance as Lipa City mayor." 

"The biggest loser in the electoral contest is boxing idol Manny Pacquiao who ran for the congressional seat of South Cotabato. He suffered a knockout at the hands of a woman, reelectionist Darlene Antonino-Custodio, who was running scared and was the underdog."
(Upsets in the just-concluded polls  by Ramon Tulfo

4.  There is a mysterious reform movement happening in the country because everyone is sick and tired of the corruption in the government! Most of the Genuine Opposition are winning in the National Elections!  I was surprised when I asked my mom who to vote, she said if you don't know the candidates, just vote for the Genuine Opposition candidates.  For the record, I voted for Noynoy Aquino, Joker Arroyo, Alan Cayetano, Chiz Escudero, Kiko Pangilinan, Sonia Roco, Antonio Trillanes, Manny Villar, Migz Zubiri, and Ang Kapatiran: Dr. B Bautista, Adrian Sison and Jess Pares. We were hoping for the Kapatiran to win but at least Trillanes was able to get in the top 12.

5. I can't believe that the Peso to Dollar conversion rate is now at its all time low P46.xx to a $1 despite the elections! I love the graph below :) Can we see a P40 to a $1 conversion rate? At this point, I am very optimistic :)

 
Chart

We are three years away from having a great leader for the Philippines. All of us need to be vigilant and this is an exciting time to be in the Philippines. Time to celebrate and invest in our country. We love the Philippines!

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May 19, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (37) | TrackBack

Friday, May 18, 2007

Trinoma Misadventures

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Tri-No-Ma - 7


Trinoma, Triangle North of Manila, "soft" opened last 16th of May 2007. The much-awaited opening of an Ayala Mall outside Makati was disappointing. The misadventure started with a game of "Find a Parking Spot" where guards were there to confuse you so you get to tour the mall and you don't get a parking space immediately. Don't just park in the open space parking outside the mall, because you will miss on all the fun in playing the game. The fee for playing the game is P30 for the first 4 hours :) Most of the malls that opened which includes Mall of Asia and Serendra, usually have free parking on their first 2 weeks but not Trinoma.

After you get your parking spot, the architects created a maze disguised as a mall which is not characteristic of an Ayala Mall but more of a Robinson's Galleria Mall. Good luck in finding the shops or resto you want to go to but I'm glad that customer service is available, if you find the information counters. The main lobby area (pictured above) is well landscaped but nothing really to rave about. Don't you think there's so much vertical beams around the mall?  There is also a road block in the maze where you will have to find your way to enter the mall if you are caught having dinner outside the Main Lobby area after 9pm.  Another good luck in finding your way back to your parking.

I was just having fun at this post because "soft" opening for Trinoma means stay away from this mall until the dust settles.  I've checked out the list of restaurants and shop in the hope of finding something uniquely Trinoma but there was none. Let me know if you find something interesting in Trinoma that is worth raving about. I live in the Malate area so it was not worth the hassle to go to Trinoma. We should have just eaten in SM's The Block which have more interesting restaurants and shops.

Check out the rest of our Trinoma Misadventures....

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Tri-No-Ma - 3 
The main activity center resembles that of Glorietta Mall. I can imagine how crowded it would be during the weekends.

Tri-No-Ma - 2 Tri-No-Ma - 1 
Perhaps, the most entertaining part of the evening was when Aidan met Ronald Mcdonald himself.  Surprisingly, Aidan was not scared of Ronald.

Tri-No-Ma - 4 
The Food Choices have interesting couches amidst the dining tables. It was just claustrophobic because of the low ceiling.

Tri-No-Ma - 6 
There were booths located on the dark left side of the photo above. Food Choices have a good variety of restaurants that is why this place is packed with crowd.

Crustacea @ Tri-No-Ma - 4 
We decided to eat at Crustacia Crabs & Seafood which have a small area but interesting interiors.

Crustacea @ Tri-No-Ma - 1 
Vietnamese Fresh Spring Rolls (P195++).  This was not bad for a P50 for each roll.  Shrimp was not fresh nor the rice paper was not in good quality.  This was one healthy choice.

Crustacea @ Tri-No-Ma - 2 
Thai Catfish Salad (P165++).  Just the right amount of serving and it tasted OK.

Crustacea @ Tri-No-Ma - 3 
Thai BBQ Chicken, half (P230++).  Chicken was not marinated very well and hence it was not tasty. We had to request for a lot of sauces to compensate for its taste.  Better to buy a cheaper whole Andok's lechon manok.

Tri-No-Ma - 8 
This was the highlight of my night, when Aidan was in the mood to pose in front of my camera. I'm not sure why he poses this way or who are the people he was imitating. He likes tilting his head towards his right shoulders.

Tri-No-Ma - 9
This is yet another pose and he likes the no look pose with hands behind his head. I should take a picture of Aidan with just his Pampers on in this pose.

Let me know if you have a Trinoma secret place. Thanks!!

May 18, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (78) | TrackBack

Monday, May 07, 2007

P&G Exec saves a man’s life

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We are proud of this! This is my big boss @ work :)

Exec saves a man’s life
By Tina Arceo-Dumlao
Inquirer

" MANILA, Philippines -- On Oct. 24, 2006, Romil Silva of Lipa, Batangas, believed he saw Christ.

And no, he did not have shoulder-length hair, kind eyes or a two-inch beard. Rather, the person he saw had the build of a wrestler; wore rubber shoes, shorts and a marathon shirt and was furiously giving CPR to his father who had suffered a heart attack.

It was more than two months later before he realized that the person who had saved his father’s life that chaotic day at the Nagoya airport in Japan was James M. Lafferty, president of Procter & Gamble Philippines."

Read More @ Inquirer.Net: Exec saves a man’s life By Tina Arceo-Dumlao Inquirer

May 7, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Bonifacio High Street and Serendra Piazza (a Photo Essay)

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As predicted, Serendra area is one of the coolest place to hang out during weekdays/ weekends. Although, lately it feels too crowded but you cannot ignore how cool the place look. Here is a sneak peak on the latest places to see in Serendra and Bonifacio High Street. I'm sure by now you have a favorite place to hang-out, or places that you are anticipating to open. Let me know what are your favorites.

For me, my favorite resto is Chelsea -- I love it, and I can't wait for The Spa to open! Aidan loves a Different Bookstore, and Gymboree -- wee! Rache loves the shopping places in the second floor of the Piazza and I'm sure she can't wait for Charles & Keith to open :)

Bonifacio High Street - 2
Very innovative rock waterfall which looks like aliens invading Bonifacio High Street.

Serendra
Chelsea just opened and probably one of the Best Resto in Serendra (watch out for my detailed post on this)!

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Bonifacio High Street - 1
After eating, walking along Bonifacio High Street is the popular past time. It is just humid this summer, so expect to sweat after walking the entire area.

Conti's
Conti's Serendra is now open and Zao vietnamese Bistro adds to the asian cuisine of Serendra.

Mickey Mouse - 1
Aidan recognizes this as the "mouse". Interesting art work.

Telephone
Here is a traditional phone setup. You can speak on one end and be heard on the other end. See Aidan in green talking to Mommy Rache in Red on the other end.

Croc's Outlet
Check out the complete assortment of Crocs!

Dessert's Trio
A Trio of Dessert Places : Sonja's Cupcakes, Miss Desserts and Xocolat.

Krispy Kreme
After the fading of the Krisky Kreme hype, you can now comfortably check out KK's flagship store without any hassle.

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April 17, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (12) | TrackBack

An Inconvenient Truth

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We always talk about this movie within our leadership team but I never got a chance to watch it. We talk about it in the sense of how well the movie provided the truth about global warming that no one can dispute. Despite this fact, most would still turn a blind eye from the truth or decide to continue what they are doing to make the situation worse. If you have not watched it yet, watch it this Sunday in SM Cinema Malls. I'm sure there will be a lot of people watching this since it is free, but I will try my luck in Mall of Asia.

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Global Warming affects everyone. See how you can help.

Watch it only at SM Cinemas.

April 22, 2007 - 1pm, 3pm and 5pm. Admission is FREE!

For more information, please call 831.7000 loc 2671 or log on to www.smcinema.com.

Participating branches: Mall of Asia, SM Megamall, SM North Edsa, SM Manila, SM Centerpoint,
SM Fairview, SM Southmall, SM San Lazaro, SM Cebu, SM Clark, SM Pampanga, SM Davao

April 17, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

a Silver Lining for Mothers of Bicol Project

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SILVER LINING '82: Women helping women heal.

"We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give." - Winston Churchill

Twenty-five years ago this year, we left the confines of our respective high schools to step into the Ateneo de Manila University, where one of the principles drilled into us by our Jesuit mentors was to become "Women for others." The challenge back then was to live it after we left the hallowed halls of Ateneo. Twenty-five years down the road, as we celebrate our respective high school silver jubilees, we asked ourselves—have we lived up to that ideal?

Early last month, five of us, representing various exclusive girl's schools, got together to form Silver Lining '82, a group whose mission is to help bring cheer to women and children affected by calamities throughout the Philippines . Our group is made up of Dimples Reyes-Rara for St. Paul, Mickey Rodriguez for St. Scholastica, Alya Honasan for Institucion Teresiana (now Poveda Learning Center), Vina Francisco for Assumption, and myself for Maryknoll (now Miriam College).

For our first project, it is our hope to bring some cheer and hope to the women in the towns of Daraga and Guinobatan, Albay, who to this day languish in evacuation centers, caring for their children while living under appalling conditions and suffering from various women's illnesses. Urinary tract infection is the most widespread and prevalent ailment among the women. Many of these women are single parents, having lost their husbands because of Typhoon Reming. Now, they have become the sole breadwinners and caregiver for their families.

To help alleviate their plight, our target is to bring 500 bags containing toiletries and underwear to the women in these centers. Five hundred may not be much, but providing care and kindness to even one soul can sometimes spell the difference between hope and despair in the life of a woman who toils day and night for her family.

Each bag is worth P200, and contains the following items—one toothbrush, a tube of toothpaste, bath soap, three pieces of underwear, a wash towel, a bottle of shampoo, and a bar of laundry soap. The items will be placed in a re-usable katsa bag to be sewn by a community of indigent women here in Manila. These seemingly insignificant items, basic stuff which we often take for granted, will mean a lot to the women we hope to reach. When you think about it, the price of one bag is equivalent only to a medium-sized coffee at your favorite coffee shop. Our target is to raise P100,000 by May 13, Mother's Day, so that we can bring the bags to the Bicol mothers the week after.

How can you help? You can either commit to sponsor a number of bags or commit to donate a number of goods to place in the gift bags. Please let us know via e-mail how you wish to help out. We can pick up cash donations of at least P2,000 pesos (to subsidize 10 bags) or a minimum of 50 pieces of whichever item you choose to donate.

We hope that you will partner with us in bringing some degree of joy and hope to these women this coming May. May God bless you more as you become a blessing to other women. We thank you in advance for helping us.

Sincerely,

Cathy S. Babao Guballa
For Silver Lining '82
cathybabao@gmail.com

April 17, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Spidey 3 on Imax!

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Spidey!

The Biggest Sticker Wrap in the World -- 113ft by 75ft Spiderman 3 (may be a Guiness Book of World Record in the making)

Yes! Spidey is coming to town! This is another reason to go back and watch Spiderman in the Imax big screen! I'm excited and I'm very happy that SM Cinema gave me a few tickets to the premier opening on May 2 12.01am which is also the press screening. (I don't consider myself as press, but I would like to have the freedom to take pictures inside IMAX -- hopefully) As shared during the iBlog 3 talk, I'll be sharing two tickets to the blogger who would give me a great feedback about the presentation. I'll just wait for a few days before I select the winner.

Here are the official dates from SM Cinema and reserve your tickets now (after reading this) for the May 4,5,6 weekend!

May 1(Tuesday) first day opening of Spiderman on regular cinemas
May 1 (Tuesday) first day opening of Spiderman on IMAX Theatre ( it is 2d just like the normal movies but you get to watch it in the biggest movie screen in the country.)

For ticket inquiries and reservations for IMAX Theatre you can call 556-0242 or 556-4629

If you are not going out of town on May 1, you can check out the Spiderman 3 launch events starting 4pm onwards in SM Mall of Asia. Most notably, there will be a local group of college students from U.P., Ateneo, & La Salle who will do a Parkour stunt similar to the chase scene in Casino Royale. If you are not familiar with the Parkour group, check out this You Tube video on Parkour.

Thanks SM Cinema for the insider's tip on this!

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Here's an excerpt of an early review posted online:
"Raimi has proven himself a spider god thrice over now, and really I want this film to be the last one. It ends every major plot line and doesn’t leave much open, albeit it doesn’t really zip things shut either, but really this is a great ending. This is the most emotional, and epic entry in the series, and like its predecessors, it never loses sight that action is a bonus to the character drama, and not the main attraction, it really is amazing.

I loved this film and I think critics will too, and it will probably be the fan favorite as well, don’t worry guys; Raimi hasn’t let us down yet.

My scores for all three movies:
Spider-Man: 8/10
Spider-Man 2: 9/10
Spider-Man 3: 9.5/10

That’s right folks 3 is my favorite, the trilogy curse is broken at last and we finally have a complete vision of a comic book character, which was yet to be done until now."

Please click link to see full AICN review. (Warning: some spoilers.)

April 17, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Falling In Love with His Divine Mercy

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In observance of the Holy Week, I will be on blogging fast for the rest of the week. I will leave you with this touching article by Suzette, Rache's ICA friend, to serve as a Lenten reflection. What would you do now if you know that we are to witness the Second Coming in our lifetime?

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Falling In Love with His Divine Mercy
by Suzette T. Yu-Kho (ICA batch 1991)

Like many Catholics, I once took my faith for granted: I did not attend Mass regularly, stopped going to Confession and avoided religious people. I strayed away from the Faith and began dabbling in other forms of worship. I even took part in an East Indian “healing” seminar (it only lasted for a day). Each of them guaranteed the same results: true peace and happiness.

Yet despite all their sweet words and the promise of Eden, I felt empty. As I plunged deeper into sin, I thought there was no escape. There was no way that I could go back to the Church and face God being the sinner that I was--I was incredibly ashamed of myself! How could I stand there singing hymns with other “saintly” people who never committed such atrocious deeds? I could not fathom confessing to a priest once again who in my mind would surely rebuke me; consequently, for a quite a long time, I did not receive the Holy Eucharist either.

Years later, I was still in my predicament when I heard of Stanley Villavicencio: a Filipino lay person who touched the lives of sinners from all around the world and opened their hearts to Jesus Christ’s Divine Mercy. His testimony was mind-boggling: after three days of being pronounced “clinically dead” in Chong Hua Hospital in Cebu, he came back to life, much to the shock of his doctors and family members who were busy arranging his funeral. He claimed to have seen Jesus upon his death amidst a garden filled with various kinds of beautiful flowers. Jesus then showed him the film of his life starting from the time he was a young boy up to the moment of his death. Whenever he committed a venial sin, the film would slow down; whenever he committed a mortal sin, the film would stop and enlarge itself. Nothing could be denied since the film had the exact date and time of when the sins were done--even the minutes and seconds were recorded! He also said the sins he confessed to a priest felt lighter compared to the sins he did not confess.

After reviewing the film of his life, Jesus then sent Stanley back to earth with a mission and that was to spread the word of His Divine Mercy. He told Stanley that He would be communicating with him very often. In this dream-like state, Stanley could see, touch and even embrace Christ. Stanley was also asked to obey his authorities (Cardinal Vidal and Msgr. Cris Garcia, his spiritual director) who instructed him to write down the messages he would receive every time there was an encounter with Jesus. Msgr. Cris Garcia who had been endowed with the gift of internal locution was made aware of each encounter simultaneously by Jesus Himself; he in turn would confirm the messages with Cardinal Vidal. To date there have been 31 encounters with our Lord since 1993.

Jesus’ main message is simple: the doors of His Mercy are still wide open to penitent sinners. Souls should not hesitate to come back to Him even if their “sins be as plentiful as the stars in the sky”. If people refuse to pass through the doors of His Mercy, they have to pass through the doors of His Justice after the period of time He allots. He is also asking us to pray the Chaplet of Divine Mercy unceasingly, receive the Sacraments of Penance and Holy Eucharist often and celebrate the Mass regularly. The Chaplet of Divine Mercy is a powerful tool against hell for a dying soul: if prayed for a dying soul, God will see the soul through the wounds of His Son instead of through that person’s sins. If a repentant sinner prays the Chaplet for himself even just once, God will also be merciful to him because Jesus says that He will stand between the sinner and His Father upon that person’s death. Furthermore, Jesus promises that on the Feast of the Divine Mercy (the first Sunday after Easter) “the soul that will go to Confession and receive Holy Communion shall obtain complete forgiveness of sins and punishments”. Church officials say that the graces one receives during Divine Mercy Sunday is similar to the graces obtained during baptism.

Stanley’s resurrection was so miraculous that the doctor who attended to him decided to enter the seminary. He is now a Jesuit priest doing missionary work in Africa besides being the head of the Jesuit Hospital of the Philippines. Stanley’s testimony is also supported by 22 bishops and 2 cardinals in the Philippines as well as various Church leaders throughout the world including the late Pope John Paul II (who during his lifetime was promoting the Divine Mercy devotion and fulfilled the vision of Saint Faustina in the 1930s by declaring the first Sunday after Easter as the Divine Mercy Sunday in 2000; Pope John Paul II incidentally died on the eve of the Divine Mercy Sunday in 2005). His story has attracted a huge number of people from different countries and has converted many to Christianity. When he went to China to deliver his message, he miraculously started speaking in Mandarin even though he had no background on the language. By the end of his speech, the Chinese audience had tears in their eyes: they understood every word he said and 200 of them embraced the Catholic Faith right away!

Last July 16th, I was able to bring Stanley Villavicencio to our community via his Divine Mercy volunteer team. I was fortunate and honored that he was able to spare some time for our villagers despite his impossibly-busy schedule. He was indeed tireless and passionate about his mission. Besides narrating his experience with death and encounters with our Lord, he also adeptly answered questions especially on the Sacrament of Penance and why it was so necessary.

Towards the end of his talk, there was a veneration of the images of Jesus and Mary. Since Cardinal Vidal did not allow Stanley to lay hands on individuals for healing, people were just asked to approach the images themselves and many miraculous incidents have occurred worldwide during the veneration.

In my case, one of those people I prayed for during the veneration was my second son who was only 19 months old at the time. He was diagnosed with asthma then and was wheezing. He also developed big red spots all over his arms and torso that morning and I had no idea where they came from. Almost immediately after I prayed for him at the veneration, however, his skin condition improved and we did not have to give him medication beginning the next day at all! His asthma disappeared as well!

Perhaps one of the greatest miracles that took place was the fact that the participants were awakened by his message. We realized that reconciliation with our Lord also starts with reconciling with our enemies. If we want to obtain our Lord’s Mercy, we should be merciful towards one another, too. There is also this urgent need to spread the apostolate for we do not know when our hour will come and we need to save as many souls as we can. As Jesus told Stanley, “He who saves a soul saves his own.”

In spite of his hectic schedule, Stanley was so kind to grant me an interview for the benefit of our readers:

Question: Many of us are delighted to hear that Jesus has chosen a Filipino to relay his Divine Mercy message. Does God have a special plan for the Philippines?

Stanley: There is a bright future for the Philippines because Jesus loves us. He says we should not lose hope. There is a special plan for us: Filipinos around the world are being used by the Lord. They are not only there to work but they are also being used to evangelize.

Question: What is Jesus’ stance on artificial contraception?

Stanley: Jesus is very sad because our Church also has family planning, but it should be natural family planning. It’s not the family-planning problem which makes children live in the streets: it’s the parents’ irresponsibility. God will find a way to feed the children. It is not us who will feed them, it is the Lord. We just have to trust Him but we also have to work. We can’t just sit and waste time by gambling, drinking…

Question: Do you have any clues as to when Jesus’ Second Coming will be?

Stanley: He said that I will witness His Final Coming but He did not say how or when.

Question: What can you say to people who deny the existence of hell?

Stanley: There is a hell because Jesus mentioned to me that there are only two choices: heaven or hell. There is also purgatory but then purgatory is part of heaven; it is just a cleansing area because heaven is only for the clean and the pure and nobody is clean. All of us are sinners so we have to pass through purgatory for cleansing. Jesus has mentioned hell to me several times. The souls there suffer much, and it’s for eternity. You can never get out.

Question: How exactly does Jesus look like?

Stanley: You cannot totally describe the Lord. You cannot just totally describe your feeling, your happiness, and your satisfaction. He is everything. As I see it He’s taller than me and if you look at Him from a distance His hair is blonde because of His golden aura and its reflection on Him. But when He is just in front of you, His hair is black, straight, but wavy. He’s very handsome: eyes are blue, skin is pinkish, sharp nose, and his teeth are all white and even. He has a moustache and when He smiles you can see His dimples. He is more polite than me because in every conversation He always says “Please”. So I say to myself, “How humble is our Lord!”

Question: Why is there so much suffering in the world?

Stanley: Jesus allows suffering because it makes us closer to the Lord. The more we suffer, the more we pray. Suffering is purification, suffering is cleansing. We should not blame the Lord whenever we suffer.

Question: Will rich people be able to make it to heaven?

Stanley: Yes, rich people can also make it to heaven because it is not in wealth or poverty but in how good your heart is. If God were given the chance He would want everyone to enter heaven but we have free will which is why we make our own destinations. Without free will we all become robots.

Question: Will the Divine Mercy message help those who have already died?

Stanley: Jesus explained to me that Mercy is only possible when you are alive; justice takes over when you are dead. While you are still living, breathing, Mercy is still possible. When you die, there is no more Mercy. When you pray for someone who has already died, your prayers will help him if he is in purgatory but if he is in hell, there is nothing that you can do.

Question: How will we know if we are saved?

Stanley: In truth, we do not know because salvation is a free gift from God. If God were to have a choice, He wants all of us to be saved but because of free will, man chooses where to go. Religion cannot save us. Religion will only guide us to salvation; however, among all the religions, it is only the Catholic Church which has plenary indulgences. When Jesus explained the Feast of the Divine Mercy, He said that if you are in a state of grace and receive Holy Communion that day, there is a complete forgiveness of sins and punishments. That grace is also called a plenary indulgence by the Church.

Question: Is it a sin when people claim that they are saved?

Stanley: Yes, it is a sin. They think they are righteous. That’s pride.

Question: Many feel that it is not necessary to confess to a priest when they can confess directly to God Himself. What can you say about this?

Stanley: It’s written in the Bible, “Whatever sins you forgive on earth will be forgiven in heaven and whatever sins you retain on earth will be retained in heaven.” If we believe that the Bible is the Word of God then we have to obey the Bible.

Whenever we go to confession, we should see the priest through his vocation as a priest and not through his sins. It is our Lord sitting there listening to us as we confess. If the priest is a sinner, it is he who will answer to God, not us. Whenever we attend Mass, don’t we receive graces from the Mass through the priest, too? If we keep on thinking of the priest as a sinner, how can we obtain graces from the Mass? Don’t we use a broom to clean our homes before a visitor comes? Isn’t a broom dirty yet why do we use something dirty to clean our homes? In the same way, we should receive the Sacraments through the priest (a sinner ordained by God) who is God’s instrument and view him through his priesthood, not through his sins to receive the graces our Lord wants us to receive.

Question: Can you share your thoughts on the Sacrament of the Holy Eucharist?

Stanley: We should prepare ourselves before taking Holy Communion. Jesus mentioned that He observed that during the Mass, most people receive Communion but are they prepared? I often ask my audiences what they do before a visitor comes over. They reply that they clean their homes and prepare. If Christ were to enter our bodies, we also have to prepare by going to Confession. We don’t just keep receiving the Holy Host without proper preparation because by doing so, we are just adding to our sins. It is not ordinary bread that we are taking. It is the Body and Blood of our Lord. Look at the Divine Mercy image. During the time of St. Faustina it was explained that the white rays represented water and the red rays represented blood. When Jesus and I spoke, He said that the white rays represented the Sacrament of Confession, the cleansing of our soul while the red rays represented the Holy Eucharist. He is really present in the Eucharist. What we are truly receiving is His Body and Blood.

Question: The Catholic Church has many traditions which are being questioned by other religious sects. What are your thoughts on this?

Stanley: Actually they say that we worship images. In the Old Testament when Moses went up the mountain the people left down below made images of animals and birds and worshipped them. When Moses came down he destroyed all the idols. It was because they made images of animals. In the New Testament, though, Jesus became flesh and many people saw Him which was why they were able to make images of Him; however, those are images of our Lord, not images of animals. Also, we are not worshipping the pictures. Those are just our guides in worshipping the Lord. In the same way, we are not worshipping Mama Mary. We are just asking for her intercession like we ask for help from the saints. The saints are similar to our lawyers here on earth. When the judge gives you a subpoena, you don’t go directly to the judge; you look for lawyers to accompany you to the judge. It’s the same way when you die. The saints are our lawyers and they really help especially the saints you’re devoted to. The saints are our good examples because they sacrificed so much.

After thanking Stanley and being touched by His Divine Mercy, I concluded that the greatest weapon Satan has is despair. Jesus offers hope to every one of us. He calls us to His flock no matter how horrible our sins are and yes, He can forgive. According to Stanley, the only sin which Jesus cannot forgive is if one cannot believe that He has the power to forgive ALL sins because by doing so that person does not believe that He is God. That is the sin which hurts Him the most: the sin of distrust.

Isn’t it funny that the young woman who used to shy away from the Faith is presently an ardent believer and promoter of the Catholic teachings? Isn’t it ironic that the same lady who never prayed the Rosary on her own initiative was able to convince her husband to joyfully pray the Rosary with her every night? Indeed, the Lord works in wonderful ways!

THE CHAPLET OF THE DIVINE MERCY

Using ordinary rosary beads, say one Our Father, Hail Mary and The Creed.

On the large Our Father beads pray the following: “Eternal Father, I offer You the Body and Blood, Soul and Divinity of Your dearly beloved Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, in atonement for our sins and those of the whole world.”

On each of the small beads pray the following: “For the sake of His sorrowful passion have mercy on us and on the whole world.”

Conclude the fifth decade with: “Holy God, Holy Mighty One, Holy Immortal One, have mercy on us and on the whole world.” (3x)

“Jesus, King of mercy, we trust in You.”

April 4, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (13) | TrackBack

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Love Strip Contest Finalists

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Vote Couple # 1 @ Mimiandkarl's Site

couple#1
Jay and Cathy of ClicktheCity.com (Wedding Blog: Jay & Cathy: The Wedding)

VS.

couple#7

Who is the "Most in Love" couple between the two couples above? These are the two leading couples competing for the free Clique Photo Booth during their wedding @ the Love Strip Contest. How I wish the photobooth concept was already available on my wedding 4 years ago! Jay and Cathy are my friends from ClicktheCity.Com and let's help them win this Photo Booth. Please Vote Couple # 1 @ Mimiandkarl's Site! It only takes less than a minute to help a couple in love. (Poll expires on April 15.)

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April 3, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Best Business Plan of the World Competition 2007 (www.bestbusinessplan.ph)

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I'm so proud of this BBP Competition that I agreed to lead this search for the Manila Jaycees. We are on the 4th year of looking for that Filipino entrepreneur team who would bring the glory for the Philippines for four straight years. Our media usually don't cover stories like these (sad to say) not unless you would have to pay for it. For those awesome entrepreneurs out there, submit your Best Business Plan for this year's 4th Philippine Young Entrepreneur Best Business Plan Competition 2007! Check out the website for details: (www.bestbusinessplan.ph). Deadline for entries is on April 30, 2007!! Who knows, you might win $5,000 and an all expense paid trip to beautiful Antalya, Turkey!


The Pride of the Philippines:
Filipinos bag the ‘Best Business Plan of the World’ title 3 years in a row

For three consecutive years now – 2004, 2005 and 2006 – the Philippines has emerged the winner in JCI’s ‘Best Business Plan of the World’ competition, besting thousands of entries from some 100 countries. Thus, Manila Jaycees and all its sponsors take pride in helping bring out the best in budding Filipino entrepreneurs through its flagship project, the ‘Best Business Plan’ competition (www.bestbusinessplan.ph).

The contest is held yearly by Manila Jaycees as part of its search for Philippine entries to the JCI’s ‘Best Business Plan of the World’ competition. Now on its 4th year, the 2007 contest aims to sustain the Philippines’ strong performance in the international tilt. More importantly, Manila Jaycees hopes to inspire more of our young breed of entrepreneurs to come up with the best among the best business plans that are not only feasible but are capable of creating a positive impact on society.

Success Stories

2004 Winner: X-Tal Farms, Inc. by Christian Guerrero of Thames Business School

In 2004, a 27-year-old student-farmer-entrepreneur, Christian Guerrero of Thames Business School in Quezon City, became the first Filipino champion in the world congress held in Fukuoka, Japan for his franchise farming business, X-Tal Farms, Inc. Guerrero won US$5,000 as seed money for his cause-oriented venture, which aimed at helping his fellow farmers in Zambales to adopt modern farming techniques and be able to market their produce profitably. Photo shows Guerrero receiving a replica of his US$5,000 check prize from JCI President Fernando Sanchez-Arias and JCI Interim Secretary General Edson Kodama at the awarding ceremony in Fukuoka.

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2005 Winner: Xilworx by Ruth Michelle Ariem, Alexis Lozano, Michael Estorninos of Far Eastern University bbp vienna2

The following year, a group of business students from Far Eastern University (FEU) called Xilworx won world acclaim in the same contest held in Vienna, Austria for their “clean” technology of extracting silver from spent X-ray solutions. Using appropriate technology to collect and process these highly toxic waste materials, Xilworx hopes to augment the local supply of silver and assist industries such as the jewelry sector while still protecting the environment. The FEU team was composed of Ruth Michelle Ariem, Alexis Lozano, Michael Estorninos and their adviser, Prof. Ramon Adviento. Photo shows Alexis Lozano and Ruth Michelle Ariem posing for posterity with a replica of their US$5,000 check prize. With them is 2005 JCI WP Kevin Cullinane.

2006 Winner: MedCorp by Mark Steven King, Ma. Cecilia Mahilum, Faye Zarate, Dhan Morris Samson, and Palarca of Ateneo de Manila University 3rd BBPC Winner Last 2006, the Filipino excellence continues to shine abroad, this time gaining recognition for endeavoring to market a product that can have significant impact on lowering the cost of health care for developing countries. A group of students from the Ateneo de Manila University, under the name of MedCorp, bagged the grand prize in the Best Business Plan competition sponsored by the Junior Chamber International (JCI) and held in Seoul, South Korea. MedCorp intends to market a product called Carragel. This substance is derived from carrageenan, a red seaweed extract, and is designed as a hemostatic agent, something that stops the flow of blood during operations. The Philippines supplies 80% of the global demand for carrageenan, hence Carragel can be priced over 60% lower than the other absorbable gel and foam variety of hemostats currently used in hospitals. In addition, Carragel is completely safe to use, has a faster absorption time, exhibits much more versatility, and even has the ability to inhibit the growth of cancer cells.

MedCorp was formed as part of a marketing course assignment in college, which required students to come up with a business plan to market a new or little know product or service. The team members stumbled upon Carragel through its original developer, Dr. Lucille Abad, a senior science research specialist at the Philippine Nuclear Research Institute. Now, the team – composed of Mark Steven King, Ma. Cecilia Mahilum, Faye Zarate, Dhan Morris Samson, and Palarca – has plans of partnering with Zuellig Pharmaceuticals to tap its distribution network, starting with Southeast Asia and on to the Pacific rim countries within five to six years. Manila Jaycees looks forward to another success story in the 2007 International Best Business Plan competition – and eventually at the 2007 JCI World Conference in Antalya, Turkey! (www.bestbusinessplan.ph)

March 31, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Philippine Blog Awards Interview

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pba07_web336x280

Home & Living Blog Finalist @ 2007 Philippine Blog Awards
dessert comes first
Finestkind Clinic and fish market
MarketManila.com
Our Awesome Planet
Wifely Steps

Jhay, of The Four-eyed Journal (http://jrocas.com.ph) sent me a list of interview questions for the Philippine Blog Awards for his blogging series entitled: " The road to the PhilippineBlogAwards: Nominees Spotlight". I decided to answer some of them.

How does it feel to be nominated for the PBA?
I'm honored to be one of the finalist in the Home & Living Category. Although, honestly, I would have wanted to be in the Photoblog or Travel Category.

Who do you think will win in your category?
I think categorically in terms of hits, popularity, and alignment with the category, Joel, of Marketmanila.com will win this.

Why do you think you should win?
If ever, it is because I'm passionate about promoting the best of the Philippines.

What would you do if you win?
Good Question. Win or lose, we will party after the awards night!

What do you think of the Philippineblogawards?
It is about time. This should be a lot lot better than the webby awards.

Is there a blog that's not nominated but deserves to be nominated in the PBA?
We should also honor the bloggers who are part of the committee :)

Would you join the next Philippineblogawards?
I would join to meet new blogger friends.

Any messages to your fellow nominees?
Lets party on March 31!!

anton signature
email: anton@diaz.ph

March 28, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Monday, March 19, 2007

Power Max Breakfast !

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Max Breakfast Meals - 5
Triple Chocolate Champorado (P59) - A tasty chocolate flavored champorado.

By this time, you should see a lot of blog posts on Max Power Breakfast. It is great that Max which is the same owner as Krispy Kreme is now leveraging bloggers and the internet as part of their below the line activities. They gave out free breakfast coupons valid last Monday morning. I requested for 10 and it was granted (Thanks Max!) I decided to invite my team to have a Max's Power Breakfast.

The only unique meal in Max breakfast line up is the Triple Chocolate Champorado and the Gourmet Tuyo (take note, it is a gourmet tuyo and not an ordinary one). The tapsilog and bangsilog meal tasted ordinary and it was not able to justify its P150 expensive price tag. What I like about the breakfast meal is the cheesy love songs and bossa nova songs to perk up your day in the Max Glorietta branch. The acoustics of the Max restaurant is not conducive for a breakfast meeting when everybody is talking.

Still the most memorable power breakfast meal for me was the P250 Angus Beef Tafa at Country Waffles. We missed it now and not even Heaven and Eggs was able to address our craving. I would only go to Max if I was craving for a P75 meal of Triple Chocolate Champorado and Gourmet Tuyo -- what a combination!

Max Breakfast Meals - 4
Add P15 for two pieces of gourmet tuyo.

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Max Breakfast Meals - 8
Max Breakfast 7am to 10am only

Max Breakfast Meals - 6
Pepperoni Omelet MEal (P120) -- A savory Omelet stuffed with Pepperoni and cheese. Served with Orange slices, fresh bread loaf and brewed coffee. Also available in vegetable omelet.

Max Breakfast Meals - 3
Tapa Meal (P155). Tender Slices of beef marinated in a tapa mix with zesty hint of pineapple. Served with rice, fried eggs and brewed coffee.

Max Breakfast Meals - 1
Bangus Meal (P155). A half-sized bangus marinated in garlic and vinegar for that real daing flavor. Served with rice, fried eggs and brewed coffee.

Max Breakfast Meals - 2
Adobo Flakes Meal (P120). Shredded bits of chicken pork adobo fried to crispy perfection. Served with rice, fried eggs and brewed coffee

Max Breakfast Meals - 7
Power Breakfast Team Meeting (L-R): Mark, Ethel, Toffee, Kats, Men, Camille, Anton, Herbert and Joyce.

Thank you Max for the breakfast treat!!

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March 19, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Photoblogging Success Story @ Iblog 3

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Attend iBlog 3, the Philippines' 3rd Blogging Summit!

I'm sharing a bit of my photo blogging success story @ the iBlog3: the 3rd Philippine Blogging Summit. It will be held in School of Economics Auditorium, in UP Diliman, Quezon City on April 14, 2007, Saturday. I'm speaking after the famous Yuga and I do hope to inspire more people to photo blog their way to success. The event is free and you just need to sign up before the event.

April 14, 2007 Agenda
Blogging for Newbies
9:00 - 9:20 Abraham Olandres: Blogging Success Story (Philippines’ Most Read Blogger)
9:20 - 9:40 Photoblogging Success Story (Anton Diaz)
9:40 - 10:00 Philippine Politics and the Blogosphere (Manuel L. Quezon III)
10:00 to 10:30 Break

Blogging Trends Track
10:30 to 10:50 Podcasting/Videocasting Growth Trends (Wilson Chua of eRadioPortal.)
10:50 to 11:10 Blogging / Web Marketing Trends (Aileen Apolo of Google.)
11:10 to 11:30 The New Prosumer (Eduardo Mapa Jr. of Euro 4D.)
11:30 to 12:00 Panel Discussion (Moderated by Janette Toral)

12:00 - 1:00 Lunch
1:00 to 1:15 Sponsor Talk

Blogging and Journalism Track
1:15 - 1:40 Blogging and Investigative Journalism (Alecks Pabico of PCIJ)
1:40 - 2:00 Blogging as Mainstream Media (Angelo Racoma of the Blog Herald)
2:00 - 2:20 TV Journalism and Blogging (Malou Mangahas of GMA Network)
2:20- 240 Panel Discussion (Moderated by Rachel Khan)

2:40 - 3:00 Break

Professional Blogging Track
3:00 - 3:30 Blogging for advancing one’s career (Marc Hil Macalua)
3:30 - 4:00 Professional blogging (Jayvee Fernandez)
4:00 - 4:30 Increasing blog popularity (Gail Dela Cruz - Villanueva)
4:30 - 5:00 Raffle, group picture, networking

March 14, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Top 10 Pinay Celebrity Bloggers

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*** Updated 2/22/07 ***

I admire celebrities who blog and don't let their celebrity status get in the way of self expression. Most of the time I find the celebrities who blog are smart, witty and able to convey what they think clearly without being afraid of what others would think. It is also entertaining to read their blogs and let readers/ fans have a sneak peek at their lives.

1. The Diary of a Supergirl Wannabe by SuperBianca also known as Bianca Gonzalez. (http://superbianca.blogspot.com/) She has been on blogging hiatus for a year ever since she entered Pinoy Big Brother around Nov 2005. Recently, she started to post again to the delight of her readers/ fans last Feb.7. She wrote:

" what a year 2006 has been for me. what a year, i tell you. lahat ng posibleng maramdaman ng isang tao sa buhay, naramdaman ko lahat sa loob ng isang taon.extreme happiness, extreme sadness, love, extreme love, fear, guilt, excitement, peace, uncertainty, certainty, denial, longing, comfort, security, satisfaction, embarrassment, pride, confidence, strength, anxiety, jealousy, helplessness, reassurance, courage, faith, hope.. and the list goes on."

I admire Bianca for blogging ever since September 2003 way before she became famous. Remember, most of the known bloggers in the Philippines only started in 2005. Blog on, Bianca.

2. Lemon.Chamomile by Kooki also known as KC Concepcion. (http://kooki.multiply.com/journal) There are a lot of fake celebrity blogs out there hoping to get accidental traffic and earn a few bucks. KC wrote in her multiply:

"This is my ONLY online journal, meaning I have NO Friendster, NO MySpace, NO OTHER BLOG ACCOUNT out there. Just this one."

It is hard not to fall in love with KC after reading her blog. She is very witty, smart and cute. No wonder, FHM, Maxim and Manual agrees that KC is one of their dream covers for their magazine. Her Europe adventures are colorful and her love for languages is infectious.

3. DaphneOP by Daphne Osena. (http://www.flickr.com/photos/daphneosena/) It is refreshing to see a celebrity having an online photo blog like Daphne. It is great to see her family pictures with her kids and she takes time to post the photos and put caption on them. Her Flickr account also serves as a showroom for her necklace business and my wife loves to look at them. It is fun to see the photos of Daphne as if watching a reality F show using photos. She often interacts with ka-flickrs and I admire her openness in sharing her lives in the photos of her family.

4. indie · boys · are · neurotic by sugarcandypop also known as Mitch Dulce (http://sugarcandypop.livejournal.com/). I've known Mitch blog because she is one of the designers and owners of the Store for All Season (SFAS) along Mandaluyong. To refresh your memory, Mitch was part of the Pinoy Big Brother Celebrity Edition and she was the up and coming Fashion Designer in that batch. She was one of those more popular LJ bloggers who is not afraid to speak her mind out. I love her stories on Mich Dulce school of passion.

5. Ala-ism by VJ Ala. (http://ala-ism.pansitan.net/) Daughter of Apo Hiking Society's Jim Paredes who regularly blogs also at Writing on Air (http://haringliwanag.pansitan.net/). I love her cute valentines posts on: How to make Ala Paredes fall in love with you. She wrote:

"1) Feed me well. Take me to really good places to eat. Give me unforgettable gastronomic experiences. Overeat with me. I will love you to pieces.
2) Indulge my geekiness. Ask me about my Mac. Engage in heated debates with me over the advantages of OS X versus Windows. Gift me with flashdrives instead of flowers. Be able to understand the humor behind 'Dilbert'. Compose a love letter in binary... you have to be able to tell when I'm kidding, ok?
....
8) Be able to make me laugh. You have no license to kiss me until you've proven that you can.
....
12) And now that you know all the rules, surprise me totally."

I am definitely hooked. She has been blogging ever since July of 2003 (can you imagine?)

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6. Oohhh LaLa!!! Come waste your time with me!! with Patty Laurel (http://pattylaurel.blogspot.com/). I actually started tuning out of my channel 23 breakfast habit when they changed the original cast (of Angel Jacob and Ria Tantuatco). I just learned about Patty Laurel's blog (from Dawn) and I'm hooked with her witty comments and funny photos. Now, I have a reason to watch Studio 23 Breakfast threesome (JC Cuadrado, Patty Laurel and Atom Araullo) and see Patty Laurel live and not just on her blog. I warn you don't read her blog because I'm sure you'll be wasting a lot of time reading it's two years archive since Jan. 2005.

7. Lea's Multiply Site by Lea Salonga (http://bigsis222.multiply.com/journal). It is cool to see her occasional posts on major happenings in her life which includes the recent release of her album Inspired. I like her blog post on her pet peeves:

"...
2. When my name is spelled wrong. It's L-E-A. No H. There's a specific reason why my name is spelled that way; I was named after my maternal grandfather, LEO.
...
9. Being asked for an autograph while I'm eating. Kindly wait until I'm done, or if you can't, ask a waiter to approach. It'll give me time to swallow my mouthful.
...
11. Name dropping. Don't try to impress me by rattling off a list of who you know. You should be impressive enough by yourself.
...
20. Drinking 11 kamikazes and not getting a buzz... or drinking 2 and feeling like crap. What the f*ck is that???
...
22. Seeing big-bellied men with their shirts raised just enough to display their midsections."

8. SnowWhite 2006 Flickr Photos (http://www.flickr.com/photos/snowhite/) also known as Pia Magalona, wife of Francis M blogging at a Free Mind (http://francismagalona.multiply.com/) and flickr site ( http://www.flickr.com/photos/francism/ ). Pia's flickr site contains her collection of Havianas and occasional pictures of the family. I envy Francis M for becoming a member of the Camera Club of the Philippines (I want to join this group!! I'm dying to be part of this club). I must admit that Francis site is well updated and he is definitely a gifted photographer.

9. Anna Bayle, Website of the First Asian Model (http://www.annabayle.com/modelblog.html ) by Anna known as "The first Asian 'supermodel'. Became in the 1980's one of the top ten models of the world in only 2 years. Touted the “Model of the 80s.” " Anna Bayle is a living proof that models have brains too and can write. I do wish that she writes more often and consistently.

10. Charmant Papillon by Natalie-Wood also known as Ciara Sotto. (http://natalie-wood.livejournal.com/). I must confess that when I work from home, I watch Bulagaan and have fun watching the Ciao Pao tandem. She does not post as much but one of these days, I will write her a fan letter that I love watching them in Bulagaan :) I do hope she writes more consistently.

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anton.blogs.com

February 21, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (17) | TrackBack

Monday, February 05, 2007

Olay.com.ph Total Effects 50g Free Samples

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olaysample

Finally, we had the Olay.com.ph up and running. Check it out and let me know what you think.

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February 5, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Flickristas @ The Jewellery (Ika-2 Banat)

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Flickristas @ the_jewellery Photo Exhibit
Aidan putting a favorite blue button sticker on Poppa's photo.

I'm a member of Flickr Philippines, otherwise known as Flickristas. The Flickristas Exhibit @ the 2nd Floor Jewellery in Greenhills is still on-going until January 31. If you happen to be shopping in the Greenhills area, don't forget to drop by the Jewellery and check out the photo exhibit.

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Invitation (final), originally uploaded by Stitch.

FLICKRISTAS @ THE JEWELLERY

"After satisfying your stomach during the holiday feast, it’s time to indulge your eyes on images that will surely be a treat!

Troop to Greenhills Shopping Center this January and be wowed by captivating images on exhibit at The Jewellery Gallery located at the second floor of the shopping complex.

Dubbed as “Ikalawang Banat: Flickristas@The Jewellery,” this month-long photo exhibit is being staged by a group of photography enthusiasts with skills and talents at par with the best in the industry. The exhibit is expected to attract people from all walks of life as featured photos will be of people, nature, urban life, and of ordinary objects seen from a fresh angle.

The photographers are members of the Philippines group in flickr.com, a photo-sharing site owned by Yahoo!. “Ikalawang Banat: Flickristas@The Jewellery” is the group’s second photo exhibit. It will be divided into two shows, each lasting two weeks and featuring different set of photos. The first show will run on January 1-15 and the second on January 16-31.

It will also be an opportune time for families to deck their walls with fresh images for the new year as the photos on show will also be available for purchase to viewers. "

January 16, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Monday, January 15, 2007

The Chocolate Sale (Jan. 31-Feb 4)

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Some of you have been asking me the next Chocolate Sale and I promised to inform you the moment I get a notice about this sale. So, here it is!

Chocolate Clothing Co's. WAREHOUSE SALE!!!

CHOCOLATE CLOTHING COMPANY
invites you to its End of Season WAREHOUSE CLEARANCE SALE!

Grab jeans, tops, dresses, tees and more... Enjoy 50% to 70% OFF on all items.

From January 31 to February 4, 2007
at 25 S. Santos St. Sto. Rosario, Buting, Pasig City. See you there!

See attached flyer for details. Bring a copy and get a FREE gift.

Genevieve R. Matabang
CHOCOLATE CLOTHING CO.
25 S. Santos St., Sto.Rosario,
Pateros, Metro Manila 1620
Phone: +632-6436993/94
Fax: +632-6414526



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January 15, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Pan Fried Mameng @ Portico 1771, Serendra

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Napoleon Wrasse

There is an email going around about Portico 1771 @ Serendra offering Pan-fried Mameng which is an endangered species. I'm glad that Portico already removed it from their menu and website. Here is the official press release:

PORTICO 1771 TAKES STEPS TO PRESERVE THE ENDANGERED MAMENG

After being informed that Napoleon Wrasse, or more appropriately Humphead Maori Wrasse (Cheilinus undulatus), referred to locally as "Mameng" is an endangered species throughout the Asia Pacific region, Portico 1771 in Serendra, Bonifacio Global City has immediately stopped serving the fish and has taken it off the restaurant's menu.

As a member of the Chateau 1771 Group of Restaurants that includes such reputable fine dining addresses as Chateau 1771 in El Pueblo Ortigas, Sentro 1771 in Greenbelt 3 and Sidebar, El Pueblo Ortigas, Portico 1771 takes pride in its dedication to help preserve the environment by consciously prohibiting the sale of protected and endangered species of plants and animals.

The management of Portico 1771 was unaware of Mameng's endangered status but deliberately removed it from the menu after it got information about the species' precarious condition. Portico 1771, along with its sister restaurants under the Chateau 1771 Group of Restaurants, has taken steps to ensure the public that no such oversight takes place in the future. The Chateau 1771 Group reiterates its commitment to the preservation of the environment and its endangered flora and fauna.

Meanwhile, the public is invited to sample Portico 1771's other culinary delights--a delectable selection of East Asian cookery prepared in the grand haute cuisine tradition. Here, diners are given the option to order individual servings or larger family portions to avoid leftovers. In the true Asian tradition of dining, family members, couples and friends can share and enjoy food that inspires togetherness. This is the essence of Portico's culinary offering--Global Asian Cuisine that combines the best of Asian and European cooking cultures to bring about feelings of warmth, sharing and goodwill. For reservations and other information, please call us (02)8560581.

January 10, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Popit de Leon Valentines Menu (P1,250/person)

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Valentines is around the corner so you might want to give Popit a try :)

i am popit - 9

Read this first: A Popit De Leon Experience

Valentine Menu 1

Cocktail: Sweet martini
Canape: Bruschetta
Soup: Pumpkin
Salad: Mixed seafood on greens
Appetizer: Grilled vegetable tower with pesto
Entrées:
Pan seared mahi mahi with caper cream sauce on a bed of carrot vermicelli
Chicken Florentines on pommodoro sauce
Beef stewed in a rosemary wine sauce served with baby potatoes
Dessert:
Tiramisu
Coffee or tea

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Valentine Menu 2
Cocktail: Screwdriver
Canape: Tapenade toasts
Soup: Soupe de poisson
Salad: Mixed greens with raspberry vinaigrette
Appetizer: Tomate farcie
Entrées:
Baked mahi mahi with a sweet pepper sauce on a red onion compote
Chicken cordon bleu with cream sauce
Lamb chop with jus lis on risotto
Dessert:
Crème brulee
Coffee or tea

Valentine Menu 3
Cocktail: Old fashioned scotch
Hors d’oevres: Succulent sausages on sticks
Soup: Potato-leek
Salad: Waldorf on the greens
Appetizer: Tomate farcie
Entrées:
Phyllo fish on creamed spinach
Chicken piccatta with pommodoro
Braised baby back ribs with rum sauce and baked potatoes
Dessert:
Crepe suzette
Coffee or tea

January 9, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Avenue Q is coming to Manila

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Avenue Q - Final Run June 2008. 5 Reasons Why You Should Not Miss the Opening Night of Avenue Q’s Final Run!

Yehey!! Avenue Q is coming to town! I tried to watch this in London's West End but it was fully booked and Standing Room Only. This is hilarious and you should never miss this puppet show. Finally, I can watch it in Manila; AVENUE Q runs in August/September 2007. Good luck to Bobby Garcia and Atlantis productions!

I want to watch the premier of Avenue Q in Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium, RCBC!

avenueqposter


AVENUE Q (by www.atlantisproductionsinc.com)

" Life may suck on Avenue Q, but for a bright-eyed college graduate called Princeton, this is his new neighborhood. A tiny bank balance and a variety of weird and wonderful friends and neighbors lead Princeton on a hilarious journey of self-discovery. Performed by an unholy comedic alliance of humans and puppets(!), AVENUE Q was the winner of the 2004 TONY AWARDS® for BEST NEW MUSICAL, BEST BOOK OF A MUSICAL and BEST ORIGINAL SCORE! It continues to run on Broadway and in London's West End to SRO crowds. "


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January 9, 2007 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Merry Christmas to You and Your Family!!

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Merry Christmas to you and your family!!

Our Sincerest Merry Christmas to You and Your Family ! From Anton, Rache, and Aidan

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December 24, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Thousand Bears for Bicol Project Successful

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Thousand Bears and Bonakid
Thousand Bears for Bicol Project (Bonakid Aidan not included)

I'm sure most of you were skeptical (like me) when I posted Cathy's Thousand Bears Project for Bicol. But there is something in me that made me post that article on Thousand Bears Project. This is a great psychological help for the trauma that the kids experienced during typhoon Reming. I was following the development via her blog Midlife Mysteries, and I was amazed that she reached 1,000 bears last Dec. 17, Sunday. I was touched also when Cathy wrote in his blog post, A Thousand Bears and More!!:

"In a text message from Col. Mike Asperin, who had just returned from Albay I found my affirmation. Last Wednesday, Col. Asperin brought with him the 500 bear pillows that were donated by KFC earlier this week. " I'm now in Manila. Got you tons of pictures for the teddy bear giveaways. I gave one to a child who embraced it and uttered words I could not understand. The lola who was accompanying the child was so overjoyed because it was the first time her apo spoke since they lost their family. It was a heart-rending scene and I cried so hard... the bears are helping the kids cope. None of them would let go of the teddy bears!" The tears just flowed after I read his message. It was then that I realized then how a little gesture could make such a huge impact on the life of a child. I thank the Lord for the inspiration of TBB. Truly, when HE plants a dream in your heart, He will see it through, all the way."

I was soo busy these past few days and still been battling with my cough sickness until today. But I'm glad I was able to finally send our family of bears to Cathy yesterday after my visit to the doctor. The first batch of the bears have been shipped out already (see Bears, bears! By land, sea and air!) and I'm not sure if my bears made it to the batch last night or this morning. Anyway, the Bears project will continue with a second mission: Bearhugs for Bicol that has been set for February. So keep the bears coming and send them to Cathy.

HE indeed works in mysterious ways :)

Related Posts:
A Thousand Bears for Bicol and Red Cross

December 21, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Krispy Kreme MegaMall Opening

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I'm over the Krispy Kreme hype and in fact, so far I haven't been to the Krispy Kreme branch in the Fort. I just wanted to post this for those people who still want to line up in the Megamall opening. Remember the Philippine record is 24 hours for lining up to get a FREE one year supply. Megamall will be tricky since it opens at 10am. Also, you should avoid megamall this coming Friday! Here is the press release:

----------------------------------------

Here's another chance to grab the prize!

Krispy Kreme, America’s most loved doughnut, opens in Megamall!

On Thursday, December 21, the second Krispy Kreme store opens, at SM Megamall Building B Upper Ground Floor .

Opening day at a Krispy Kreme store is a fun event and we'd love to have you come by, join in the festivities and experience a Hot Original Glazed fresh off the line

Here are reasons why you families, friends, barkadas, school and church organizations, and everybody should line up before the doors open on December 21 at 10 a.m.

You will be among the first to experience the hot doughnut phenomenon and sample Hot Krispy Kreme Original Glazed doughnut.

The first customer to ring the cash register will win a FREE ONE YEAR SUPPLY of Original Glazed doughnut, one dozen per week!

Free limited edition Krispy Kreme original t-shirt for the first 300 customers!

Lots of raffle prizes – SIX MONTHS free doughnuts, THREE MONTHS free doughnuts, and ONE MONTH free doughnuts, for the 2nd up to the 300th customers!

The HOT Light is ON at Megamall on December 21.
See you there!

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December 19, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Monday, December 04, 2006

What happens if a Category 5 Typhoon hits you?

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Geoff Mackley, the film maker from New Zealand was literally chasing Typhoon Durian in Naga City. He actually has pictures from his site: www.rambocam.com on the experience of an actual Category 5 typhoon hit. According to this veteran calamity chaser, this is one of the Strongest typhoon he has ever experience. This reminds me of the movie, Twister :) about hurricanes and storm chasers. (I forgot what is the name of the movie featuring helen hunt). Typhoon Milenyo is just category 3 and I just wish and pray that we won't experience a Category 5 direct hit in our lifetime.

BTW, I had our office buildings, 6750 and Petron Megaplaza checked as to the pressure rating of the windows of the building. As usual, 6750 passed our design standards but unfortunately, the Petron building used inferior windows that could crack if a Category 5 typhoon hits Manila directly. You should have your buildings check to and it may mean the difference between life and death.

December 4, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Sunday, December 03, 2006

A Thousand Bears for Bicol and Red Cross

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pdi foto, originally uploaded by cathyguballa. (Philippine Daily Inquirer's (PDI) Edwin Bacasmas Photo)

I knew that Typhoon Durian/ Reming would be devastating since it was a Category 5 typhoon (the highest ever category) and a lot stronger than Typhoon Milenyo (category 3). After seeing the photo of this devastation from Cathy's Nancydrewandme Blog, I'm determined to help out in any way I can. My mom's province is in Catanduanes, Bicol and the devastation left the island with estimated 6 months without electricity and water. In Legaspi, our family friend Sarah's father died of heart attack because of the sound of the typhoon as the entire city was engulf by water-shed-deep mud flood. The worst thing about Typhoon Durian was not only because it was a category 5 typhoon but also it stayed steady in Bicol for 4 hours.

We are blessed that the typhoon did not pass Metro Manila. You can send some bears over to Cathy @ A Thousand Bears for Bicol, 41 Milkyway Drive, Blue Ridge, Quezon City with a some noodles or canned goods. Please help in any way you can via this Thousand bear project or in cash via Red Cross.

From the Red Cross Site:

Typhoon Reming has left death and destruction in its wake. Many families have lost their homes and property after a series of mudslides and flash floods struck their villages. Schools and other makeshift centers are now crammed with thousands of evacuees with no other place to stay. They are in dire need of your help. You may send you donations to the Philippine National Red Cross through: Metrobank Port Area Branch

1) Peso Account
Account name: The Philippine National Red Cross
Account number: 151 – 3 – 041 – 63122 – 8 – MBTC

2) Dollar Account
Account name: The Philippine National Red Cross
Account number: 151 – 2 – 151 – 00218 – 2
Swift Code: MBTC PH MM

B. Globe G-Cash
Just text: DONATE <space> <AMOUNT> <space> <4-digit MPIN> <space> RED CROSS then send to 2882

C. Globe Donate-A-Load
Just text RED <space> <AMOUNT in 5/25/50/100/300> then send to 2899

Related Posts:
A Thousand Bears for Bicol from Nancydrewandme Blog
More bodies found in mud-swamped Bicol villages from Inq7.net

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December 3, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Saturday, November 25, 2006

THE BIG GARMENTS SALE Nov30-Dec2

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For Sale - 2


I'm actually sick since Thursday. I guess the fatigue of hosting our regional guests got to me. I'm resting the entire weekend and no blogging for me until Monday (hopefully). I'll leave you with this post on the next Bulacan Sale since most of you might be planning for the long weekend. You need to have the email invite to be able to enter this sale. In the invite, they don't have Mango brands anymore for this sale but instead here are the other brands: CK, Diesel, A/X, D&G, Replay, A&F, True Religion, Hollister, FCUK, AEO, Esprit, Zara, Anne Klein, Tommy, Juicy.

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November 25, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (111) | TrackBack

Friday, November 24, 2006

Up close and personal with Ms. Earth Candidates

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Partying with Ms. Earth Candidates

I have a hectic week now because my team are hosting our regional team mates for a week's conference here in Manila. Being a Filipino host, I would like to make sure that our guests had a good time (in a good sense) and enjoy memorable experiences in Manila. I surprised them last night and I was able to pull off an awesome surprise.

My plan was to invite them to the World Music Room for a Karaoke gimmick. Little did they know that there was a Ms. Earth party where you can be up close and personal with the Beauties. Upon arriving at the second floor of the World Music Room, it took them 30 whole minutes to finally figure out that they are partying with real Ms. Earth beauties. They can't believe it at first and thought that the sash was made up and everything was a hoax. What a clever gimmick huh? It was cool fun and they left with smiles on their faces including our lady friends :)

I do hope that they had one memorable fun evening. Unfortunately, Ms. Earth Philippines and Canada were on another batch for a different event that night. This the second consecutive year that we were fortunate to have the Ms. Earth pageant held here in the Philippines. To all the ladies, Good Luck on Sunday!!

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Partying with Ms. Earth Candidates
Adrian, our Australian friend, was noticed immediately by the ladies. Too bad, by the time, he realized that the Ms. earth ladies were for real, it was time for them to have their beauty sleep.

Partying with Ms. Earth Candidates
Job, our Thailand friend, finally found the chance to have this photo with Ms. Thailand. We were wondering why Ms. Thailand do not know how to speak Thai. A controversy maybe?

Partying with Ms. Earth Candidates
Prem, our Indian friend, chose Ms. Slovak Republic as the most beautiful Ms. Earth candidate of the night.

Partying with Ms. Earth Candidates
The event was open to the public for P500 which already includes a beer. Thanks to Wars and our Jaycee friends for the invite to this awesome party! I'm not sure if OAP readers will be interested to know about parties like this in the future. Who knows, the Ms. Earth pageant might be held in Manila again in the near future.


November 24, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Fuyu Persimmons

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Fuyu Persimons


My fruit vocabulary has just been expanded after tasting these sweet Fuyu Persimmons, also known as Japanese Persimmons. Thank you very much to Naz, one of my online friends, who gave these goodies as "pasalubong" from San Francisco for our family :) I hope they didn't have a hard time bringing the persimmons here.

I would call it a tomato apple. The persimmons, look like tomato in color and skin smoothness. It is eaten just the way they are and have a bite crunch like an apple. Though it is still hard, it is sweet already and the inside texture resembles that of a tomato. Best of all, there was no seed to interrupt your eating. It is deliciously sweet! Unfortunately, this was bought back in the US. But I'm pretty sure, there are stores around Greenhills or Manila that are importing persimmons here in Manila maybe a different variety called Hachiya.

Another treat were the chocolates, Nestle Crunch with four flavors (Original, Double Chocolate, Peanut Butter and Caramel) and Ghiradelli!!! I just hope I can control myself and just stick on eating those juicy persimmons. My wife has a sweet tooth so when she saw all those goodies on the table, she got excited (don't women just love them?) and asked me where it came from (yeah, she knows me well enough that I'm not buying those for her). She was surprised and at the same time thought it was so sweet of Naz and his family to bring us pasalubongs from SF. Surprised because they chose to allot a space in their luggage to bring home these treats to us instead of bringing something home to their families and close friends. And oh, last but not the least, a supply of the clean and fresh smelling lotion from Body Works!

Thanks Naz and family for these wonderful treat!!! And I'm really sorry for not meeting you the first time, this week is a very hectic week for me but I was glad that you were still able to fit me in your limited time here in Manila. Once again, thank you and hope you have a nice trip back to SF!

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November 24, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Monday, November 13, 2006

"The Good Body", Review

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I must admit that I was not able to relate to the show.

Don't get me wrong... the entire show was very entertaining from the moment Pinky Amador started her monologue and showed her belly button to Eve's last entry #18 in her diary about Afghan Women eating ice cream illegally. The performances by Monique Wilson, Pinky Amador, and Juno Henares were excellent with their eloquent delivery with the right accent to the emotional facial expressions. Pinky Amador played the role of Eve, she was very funny. Her timing was excellent and her confidence showed through out the entire show. Monique played the role of Woman 1 which means, she would play a lot of roles and have to transform herself through the different woman she portrayed for 2 hours. What was memorable for me was the time she played an aggresive Indian woman in the gym -- it was a hilarious scene! Lastly, this was the first time we saw Juno Henares in a play. She has a very beautiful expressive face and a not-so-slim body which fits very well with the role. The highlight for me was her performance on the "spread tuck" -- I can still imagine the spread until now...

There was no dull moment except for Entry #13 on Isabella Rossellini portrayal that we ask what was the point of that monologue? This was an adult show obviously and it was very vulgar. I originally thought it was all about women's obsession on her stomach but it attacks issues on women's obsession in conforming to society's standard of beauty defined by a slim and young body. The show is an essay and a deep dive on these issues and provokes the audience to reprogram their minds and love the body they are in. This reminds me of Olay's tagline "Love the Skin you are in" and Dove's Natural beauty campaign.

Now, this is where I can't relate: why women around the world have been "programmed" to hate their body for what it is and always strive to make it a "good body" as defined by society. I guess this would remain a mystery to me and a subject of debate between me and my wife. There was no mention of the Filipina in the show but I bet these issues are also prevalent in our society brought about by the "Kris Aquino" generation.  For me, a Good Body is a Healthy Body and that is the standard that we should aim for.

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November 13, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

The Good Body by Eve Ensler (creator of Vagina Monologues)

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The good body

Finally , Eve Ensler's The Good Body will be showing in the Philippines courtesy of the New Voice Company. I was happy to receive the email below and I'm sure would not miss its premier shows either on Nov. 10 or 11 @ 9pm. I'm sure it would be a night of laughter, and intellectual stimulation on the subject of Flabby Stomach. The main cast of the show would be theater veterans MONIQUE WILSON, PINKY AMADOR, and JUNO HENARES.

See you there! I do hope that the show won't be disappointing because I heard mixed reviews about it.

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NEW VOICE COMPANY PREMIERES EVE ENSLER’S “THE GOOD BODY”

The New Voice Company, fresh from its success in Singapore with Andrew Lloyd Webber’s Aspects of Love, premieres a brand new, provocative, hilarious play at the Music Museum on November 10 and 11 – Eve Ensler’s THE GOOD BODY.

Botox, bulimia, breast implants: Eve Ensler, author of the international sensation The Vagina Monologues, is back, this time to rock our view of what it means to have a “good body”.

“In the fifties”, Eve writes, girls were “pretty, perky. They wore girdles and waist cinchers….In recent years, good girls climb the corporate ladder, go to the gym, wear pointy, painful shoes…..They don’t eat too much. They don’t eat at all. They stay perfect. They stay thin. I could never be good.”

THE GOOD BODY talks about our tortured relationships with our weight, body image and self-acceptance – with voices of women from L.A. to Kabul : A young Latina candidly critiques her humiliating “spread”, a stubborn layer of fat that she calls “a second pair of thighs”. The wife of a plastic surgeon recounts being systematically reconstructed, inch by inch, by her “perfectionist husband”. An aging magazine executive, still haunted by her mother’s long-ago criticism, describes her desperate pursuit of youth as she relentlessly does sit-ups.

Along the way, Eve also introduces us to women who have found a hard-won peace with their bodies: an African mother who celebrates each individual body as a sign of nature’s diversity, and Indian woman who delights in her curves. Then there is the veiled Afghani woman who is willing to risk imprisonment for a taste of ice-cream. These are just few of the inspiring stories woven through Eve’s global journey from obsession to enlightenment. Ultimately, these monologues become a personal wake-up call for us to love the “good bodies” we inhabit.

International critics have showered acclaim on the show, calling it – “forthrightly funny, bristling with wisecracks and exotically harvested snippets of wisdom” (The New York Times), “Fascinating, engaging and scaldingly funny!”( Philadelphia Inquirer) – and Newsday says: “This good humoured, uplifting show is not merely a hoot, it is an inspiration!”

The New Voice Company, producers of The Vagina Monologues around Asia since 2000, will be premiering Eve Ensler’s new international hit play, before it embarks on a national and Asian tour.

The formidable cast is composed of theatre stalwarts Monique Wilson, Juno Henares and Pinky Amador.

Directing the company’s exciting new play is NVC’s Associate Artistic Director Rito Asilo, who recently received critical acclaim for directing past season productions Sacrilege, Stones In His Pockets, The Vagina Monologues and Cabaret which he co-directed.

THE GOOD BODY premieres at the Music Museum on November 10 and 11. For corporate sponsorship, show-buying sponsors and group/ school tickets, call the New Voice Company on 896-6695, 896-5497 or 899-0630, email at nvc@pldtdsl. net or visit www.newvoicecompany .com.

November 1, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Skin Discovery Weekend :)

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OLAY POSTER EMAIL

Read this first: Olay Beauty Imaging System  - Finally in the Philippines!!

Some of you have emailed me where you can have your skin check using the patented Beauty Imaging System. Finally, the beauty imaging system is now available to the public. Our brand guys in cooperation with SM are running a Skin Discovery Weekend in SM Makati Department Store. You might want to check it out. Alternatively, the Olay flagship store which would have the Beauty Imaging System is  permanently located in Watsons, SM Makati. So if you have free time or you happen to be in the Makati area, you can drop by and have your skin check. It is for FREE but of course, you need to listen to a sell-in on Olay :)

Here are the detailed mechanics:
OLAY POSTER EMAIL(3)

Here is the Olay Flagship Counter in Watsons SM Makati.
Olay Counter 2

The Olay beauty counselors would be more than happy to assist you with testing your skin.
Olay Counter

Please let me know your entire experience with the Beauty Imaging System.

October 11, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Monday, October 02, 2006

Hope After Milenyo

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After Milenyo.01

I do hope that everybody is OK after the storm Milenyo last Thursday. I was in our building in Makati when the storm hit Manila, and entire building shook due to the intensity of the storm. We were watching the cars along Ayala Avenue trying their best to avoid the flying tree branches and other objects. Most of the trees are uprooted and I was tempted to take pictures of the devastation to post it in my blog.

Instead, I decided to take a picture of this beautiful sunrise sky a day after the storm. During this time, there is still no electricity and most of Metro Manila's power was restored only last Sunday, October 1. I've never seen the sky so beautiful when I woke up on a friday morning. There are establishments and places which stood the test of typhoon, Milenyo. But also, there are those who failed and their weaknesses revealed.

After Milenyo.02
A day after, there is still no power and I was looking for breakfast for my family. I was glad to see that this Taho vendor is business as usual as early as 7am on a Friday morning. The Jollibee store along Diosdado Macapagal was also open for business and I surprised my wife with a Longganisa breakfast when she woke up :)

After Milenyo.03
The generator in our building is still functioning with limited capacity to supply the elevators and outside utility outlets. It was funny to see this one guy who can't resist to cook using these outside outlets.

Another thing, check out Wunderground.com which provides accurate forecasts of the weather. In the last typhoon, it was able to predict accurately the exact day the storm will be arriving in Manila.

Anton

October 2, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Saturday, August 19, 2006

Olay Beauty Imaging System - Finally in the Philippines!!

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Olay BIS 13.jpg

At last, I can finally share with you an interesting piece of patented beauty imaging system that our company is introducing along with the launch of Olay. This week we launched Olay Total Effects to the trade and to the who's who of Philippines society. Baghag has the scoop on the Olay Launch in Shangrila last Thursday:

Socialclimbing hag Log: OLAY Total Effects + TRESOR (thebaghag.blogspot.com)
" After a few times of usage of Total Effects, we met up with the other women who were part of this group, and had a nice lunch at Shangrila Hotel, to discuss the after effects of the product. Our skin underwent this "age test" through this cool machine which basically mapped out pores, age spots, wrinkles, and fine lines. Let me say this first-- my skin, is actually pretty bad. I have a lot of age spots and fine lines. To top that, I have huge pores. So when I took that skin test, and the result was that my skin fell on the 21- year old age group, I laughed it all off. But hey, it felt great! :D So I religiously used this product to this day :) Olay is the same product that our mothers used back when we were just tiny tots, and now I guess it is really our turn to start using the product. Our moms have sworn by it, and now I am one of the moms who swear by it :) (Olay Total Effects is not yet available in the local market, but soon will be :D)"


This cool machine that baghag was talking about is what we call the Olay Total Effects Beauty Imaging System. You will love this! The system identifies your facial skin defects such as age spots, and wrinkles. It objectively quantifies the severity of those skin defects vs that of your peers (in terms of age and race). The system provides accurate analysis for the women because its database is mostly women. Furthermore, all the people who have been tested to date in the Philippines is included in the database. How cool is that? So for men, you can also try it but your skin will be compared to a higher standard of women's skin. The first versions were developed in Japan and made commercially available as early as June of 1999 in Kyoto, Japan. These imaging systems are used in our SK-II prestige counters.

Of course, I have to try it and I was alarmed that my wrinkles are similar to a 40 years old woman! My skin spots and textures are in line with my age group (at least). I need to live a stress-free life! I'm also starting to be convinced that I need to use a skin care product. I was going to use my free Olay total effects sample, but my wife gave me THE look. BTW, you can have your skin tested over time so that you can track skin improvements specially, if you use a skin care product. The consultation is for FREE but of course, you just have to listen to an Olay sales pitch (which is not bad at all).

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Olay BIS 06.jpg
Olay Total Effects Beauty Imaging System. This system will be available in Olay Total Effects Flagship store and other Olay counters. We are bringing in six (6) beauty imaging system in the Philippines -- woohoo! I'll give you the scoop on where you can find these Olay Beauty Imaging Systems... very very soon.

Olay BIS 01.jpg
It was such a hit in all our Olay launches and among the test group of women as baghag could attest.

Olay BIS 03.jpg
It takes a digital image of your face under controlled lighting conditions. So this is just like going to a photo me booth for your face only :)

Olay BIS 05.jpg
The entire test is only for 5 minutes. After taking the picture, you need to specify your age and race. Race is important because an Asian skin is different from a caucasian, and so forth. You will instantly know how your texture, pores, wrinkles, and spots compare with your peers. My wife can't wait to have her skin tested...

Olay BIS 02.jpg
Olay -- Love the Skin You're In! Very soon in the Philippines!

Olay BIS 09.jpg
The men and women of Olay Philippines during the trade launch in Top of the Citi :)


August 19, 2006 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (19) | TrackBack

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Please Save the Sheep!

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Isdaan -002.jpg

Public Service Announcement: Please save the sheep!

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August 16, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

a 6 Underground Party

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6 Underground -05


I must admit that I'm too old for drinking all night at a bar. I was down all weekend and the suspect may be because of that nasty hangover. After drinking 4+ glasses of red wine, 1 tanqueray cocktail, and 4++ bottles of red horse last friday night, I realized that my body can only take so much alcohol abuse in one night. The celebration was all about Romi Garduce's treat to his colleagues which he decided to celebrate at the 6 Underground Bar along C. Palanca in Makati.

The crowd normally arrives around 10ish (as they would say these days) once the front act band starts. So if you want to have the place all to yourself then i suggest that you be there before 10pm. Once the clock strikes 10, the program starts it with two groups of amateur band, working their ass off for free. In exchange, 6UG gives them jam time to showcase their talents. If you are into pinoy rock, then you might enjoy the music. As for me, I find it too loud and felt too old for these kind of stuff :) But I had to hear the music of Mayonnaise band who sang "Jopay". They started to show their stuff by midnight. It was a Red horse night which means most of the bands are sponsored by Red horse. However, only Red horse beers are served at a buy one take one promo for that night.

Even though loud rock music is not my cup of tea, I still had fun listening to them with the company of my officemates. However, I learned my lesson that night on my body's limit in drinking alcohol. This is one of the reason I don't really blog about bars in the metro even though I wanted to include Embassy, Temple Bar and others. Thanks to Romi for the treat last Friday. Check out some images of 6UG...

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6 Underground -08
6 underground bar interiors.

6 Underground -11
Mayonnaise band playing.

6 Underground -10
Graffiti inspired walls

6 Underground -12
Guitarist playing

6 Underground -09
Billiards inside where we spent the rest of the night playing under the influence of Red horse beer.

6 Underground -20
another view of the bar

6 Underground -07
Romi and friends....

Party People
His Colleagues

6 Underground -18
6 Underground
C. Palanca St., Makati City
Call Rommel @ +63 917 8589849


July 25, 2006 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Thursday, June 15, 2006

Pacquiao Larios Fight Ticket Prices -- Outrageous!

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Mano-a-Mano

I break my blog silence to complain about the outrageous ticket prices for the Pacquiao vs. Larios Mano a Mano fight this coming July 2. Sorry for this rant but this is unbelievably the most expensive prices ever for a live show in the Philippines! Tickets are available via ticketnet and was recently released last Monday, June 12. Check out these prices -- totally outrageous at P31,680 for a ring side ticket and I thought before that the F4 concert with P20,000+ ring side ticket was already crazy at that time.

Mano A Mano, Pacquiao vs Larios
Pilipinas vs Mexico
Manny Pacquiao versus Oscar Larios

Venue: Araneta Coliseum
Event Date/Time:
July 2, 2006 | Sunday at 8:00am
Seat and Price:
Patron (Reserved Seating) - 31, 680
Lower Box (Reserved Seating) - 21,120
Upper Box A (Reserved Seating) - 7, 920
Upper Box B (Free Seating) - 2,640

I can't believe it myself and if you buy via credit card there is still a 5% surcharge. Inspite of this, I still bought two Upper Box B tickets at P2,772 as a gift for my dad on father's day. He loves Manny. I was kinda guilty when he asked me for a SM cinema ticket for Manny's last fight when he knocked out Morales last January 2006 and with all my powers, I was not able to get a ticket on the last minute. So this time around, I'm giving him the gift of watching Manny Pacquiao live in Manila. But still, the prices are unbelievably high and there were reports that general admin tickets are sold for P1,000 but manny wants to slice it down so that it could be affordable to the filipino people.

So how much would you pay for a world class fight of Manny Pacquiao live in Manila?

June 15, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Thursday, May 18, 2006

The Mall of Asia (Opening May 21)

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Mall of Asia
The much awaited and controversial Mall of Asia will have its Grand opening on Sunday May 21. There is a mall blessing by invitation only for all suppliers on Saturday May 20 but it is not open to the public. I can't wait to experience the new IMAX Theater -- woohoo! at last may IMAX na tayo... I'm sure not a lot of people know yet that MOA is opening so I'll be there on the first day. See you and hopefully I can take some pictures...

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May 18, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Sunset Over LA :)

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Aidan's LA Adventure! - 7

I'll be on a blog leave until the end of March. I'll surely miss updating this blog regularly and I'll surely miss exploring the culinary delights of Manila. It's been fun over the last few months, specially when I receive comments and feedback from my readers. I love the conversations! This blog is very fulfilling for me in making connections with other people and in the process, I learn more secrets :) I leave you with this beautiful sunset picture of LA taken during the landing of our PAL flight. My brother was teasing me about some insider secrets of Los Angeles and I might have some posts on our LA adventures. Stay tuned...

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March 15, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Friday, February 03, 2006

Cash Flow 101 in Manila! Increase your Passive Income Now!

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I've always wanted to play the Cashflow 101 ever since I read bestseller Rich Dad Poor Dad Book by Robert Kiyosaki. There was a group of people playing this game before in AIM and finally they started to make it available to a wider group of people. Just for P800 they are willing to train people on playing Cashflow 101 -- although I think it was expensive for a 4 hours seminar. Their rationale is that the board game would actually cost you P15,000 and each time they run a workshop, it pays out the costs of one of the board games.

The workshops are organized by Laurus Enterprises, the official CASHFLOW(r) group in the Philippines, as certified by Rich Dad's Training (S.E.A) Pte, Ltd, authorized by Robert Kiyosaki and CASHFLOW technologies, Inc. (USA) with the *exclusive* rights to conduct Rich Dad activities in Southeast Asia.
The Rich Dad mission is one of education and empowerment. It is only through awareness, education and action that people everywhere can take control of their lives and make the choices that will enable them to become financially free. We invite you to this opportunity for everyone to get together to learn and grow.

It's too bad they did not allow me to take pictures, I could have gotten very good photos of each of the session and promote them even more. Anyway, so what's my take on Cashflow 101 games? read on...

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Cashflow 101 is super fun at the same time educational! It actually teaches you on how to get out of the rat race -- by increasing your passive income. You'll learn why is it important to follow the model of turning income into assets rather than the normal tendency of Filipinos which is turning income into expenses. I will not attempt to explain the concepts here because it is covered in the entire Rich Dad series and somethings you need to learn by doing. The earlier you learn the basics of Cash Flow, the better you are in moving towards your financial freedom! Key word is Passive Income!

You will see in the news lately or in e-groups that their promoting the coming of Rich Dad Asia in Manila on Feb. 24-26. On the last day, a CASHFLOW 101(r) Workshop will be conducted by Bellum Tan and lead facilitator Doreen Tan will guide participants to acquire with the mindset necessary to obtain their financial goals. This a whole day affair will set you back P7,000 (early bird 5,500 until Feb. 13). Frankly, it costs too much! Also, Robert Kiyosaki was too cocky that he does not want to go and visit the Philippines and/or Asia. What's up with that? He designated Bellum Tan as the person in-charge and authorized to teach Rich Dad concepts.

Honestly, all you need is to be armed with the entrepreneurial mindset (read the rich dad series) + learn by playing the Cashflow game + have the right mentors/ entrepreneurs network. I learned this just now when I'm now 31 years old. You can argue that I'm glad I was still able to learn it in my early 30s... Wouldn't it be great if I learn this in College or as I was starting in my job? By now, I would have been out of the rat race....



P.S. Just a word of caution: Some of the members of Laurus Enterprises are also part of the NU SKIN network marketing so don't be surprised if they give you a sales pitch on becoming a business partner to increase your passive income. Although, this is one of the best Network Marketing sales pitch I ever heard!

February 3, 2006 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy New Year! Our Awesome Planet Anniversary!!

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Happy New Year 2006!!
After one year of blogging since my first post "Life and Death in 2005"
After 236 blog posts with my best posts in Awesome Pilipinas category,
After surviving the blogger's block and all the excuses for not blogging,
Finally, my first anniversary blog post on this new year's day 2006!

I was blessed to be given the blog passion to share with you our family's adventures in 2005.
I was blessed to be recognized and featured in Annalyn's Blog-o-rama
I was blessed to be appreciated by one of my favorite bloggers Wysgal's Favorite Blogs of 2005.
I was blessed to be part of Yuga's Pinoy Tech, Pinoy Urban, and Pinoy Travel Blog Family.

Thank you for my avid readers and for sending me messages of appreciation -- this further fuels my passion.
Thank you for the 200 unique visitors/ day to my blogs, I do hope that in one way or another I was able to help.
Thank you for fellow pinoy bloggers for the friendship online and for continuing to provide honest commentaries/ reviews.
Thank you to my wife who endured my first year of blogging and for starting to appreciate my passion.

I wish that someday Philippines would be a great nation that will rise above our south east asian friends.
I wish that Pinoys appreciate our country more and love it with all their hearts.
I wish that someday, I'll be recognized as one of the best photo-bloggers in the Philippines.
I wish that we live our life in full and hopefully 2006 would be the start of living a life of health and fitness.

My family (Anton, Rache and Aidan) would like to greet you a blessed new year in 2006!

January 1, 2006 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Rain Disaster in Day 2 of World Pyro

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Anxiously Waiting @ World Pyro, originally uploaded by antondiaz.

The weather did not cooperate this time. It was raining hard, as the clock ticks 7:00pm and even harder 30 minutes later when Germany is first scheduled to fire. We were in Diosdado Macapagal and endured the traffic as we saw motorists fighting to get into blue wave with the heavy rains. At 8pm, the fireworks started but it only lasted 2 minutes (I guess). Unfortunately, that was the sad story for Germany where its starting to get a lot better than the Australia show with a fountain formation in the beginning.

By 9pm, the rain stopped already and Korea started their show. It was soo beautiful! We were stuck in CCP desperately going back to the Seaside area to get the final glimpse of the fireworks show. We were so far, that we cannot shoot quality fireworks from where we are. We were all geared up with complete video cameras, tripods, recharged batteries, and the works... The oohhs and the aahhs where replaced by aaayyy, (sayang) with a firm resolute to watch it for the last 3 days... sigh :(

Bring Rain gear if you are going: Jacket, Umbrella, protective cover for camera..

UPDATE 12/28/05 -- Apparently, at 10pm Germany was able to showcase their fireworks but most of the people went home already.

December 28, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Watching Metro Manila Film Fest @ Promenade, Greenhills

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Promenade - 1
Christmas Day in our family is a day of making our little cousins happy. It is usually spent in the malls and watching a Metro Manila Film Festival entry. We wanted to try out the new Promenade mall in Greenhills. On a usual day, this area is soo traffic specially during the Christmas season but we knew that Christmas day would be a lot better. I would say that Promenade made the usual gimmick in Greenhills more than just shopping but also eating (new restos), watching movies (added 3 new cinemas in Promenade), Fully Booked :) and finally a new karaoke place (world music room)...

Promenade - 2
It was soo difficult to decide what movie to watch in this year's Metro Manila Film Fest (MMF). Every Christmas (Dec. 25 to 1st Week of Jan), only entries to the MMF are shown in the cinemas. Each year, the choices are improving and we were torn between kids movie (Mulawin, Enteng Kabisote 2) or a horror movie (Kutob or Shake, Rattle & Roll) or comedy (Mano Po 4: Ako Legal Wife). Later we realized that the movies are randomly selected by each cinema by drawing lots. Unfortunately for us, Greenhills was not able to get Mulawin or Even Shake, Rattle & Roll so it was an easy decision to split the kids who wants to watch Enteng Kabisote and the big Kids watching a horror flick, Kutob. Interestingly, Exodus was not in our selection set and on hind sight, we should have watched Mano Po 4.

We watched Kutob because of my brother's insistence since it was Ryan Agoncillo's first movie (my brother's kabarkada). Unfortunately for us, it was done in bad taste and we felt like rob of our money and precious christmas time with the kids (Jose Javier Reyes give us back our money!). The new theater in promenade, is very cozy where there are only a few spacious seats where the arm rest can be raised so that you can snuggle together with your companion. It was just soo cold when we watched should have brought our sweater or maybe it was just that the movie was so bad that it is so predictable, no plot, and not even scary. Really, it was a waste of our time! I'm glad we finished the night in the World Music Room (I'll cover this in my next post).

December 27, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Friday, December 23, 2005

A Peak into Irene's Closet

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Irene's Closet - 3

To be fair to Irene, she told me that most of the items/ accessories in her closet was on display in a Tiangge so the place actually is empty except for the vintage clothes. So, this post, will just really be a teaser or just a peak into another one of unique shopping place in the tradition of I Love You store and Marni's room. Although, since I we have not seen the accessories, I would defer including this in the Unique Store series.

Irene's Closet is a tucked away closet -- a store within a home setting wherein you can find the latest hip lines -- from one of a kind Vintage Fashion, Mixed Media Accessories and other unique finds. Each piece is meticulously designed to make it savvy and one of a kind art piece. Just a tip, go here for the Mixed Media Accessories and not for the vintage clothes. Here is a peak inside the room of Irene's Closet.

Irene's Closet - 4
Vintage Clothes galore!

Irene's Closet - 6
The table and hangers are currently bare but on normal days you can see accessories galore here.

Irene's Closet - 5
More vintage clothes. Although, I have to say this, that the vintage clothes feels "pilit" and my wife did not like it very much having gone to Marni's room, I Love You Store, and Store for all Seasons.

Irene's Closet - 2

Irene N. Pineda
22 Aries St. Bel-air 3 Village Makati City, Metro Manila
Mobile# +63918 9357619
Sun# +63922-8900850


December 23, 2005 in 2. 100 Awesome Restaurants in the Philippines, Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Santa Claus Police: A Different View of Christmas

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Manila Pulis Santa Claus MPD Station Jail

Where in Manila can you find this Mr. Santa Pulis?

I was blown away with a different view of Christmas the other night. We were invited to judge the Manila Police District's Christmas Decorations in the District and Stations in Manila as part of our Manila Jaycees project. We visited all the 11 police stations in Manila from Malate to Tondo and you will be humbled with how lucky are we to celebrate Christmas with our family and in peace. I appreciate more the work of our Manila police of trying their very best to protect us from lawless elements and on guard 24x7 for any eventualities. I saw the human side of the Police who prays that nobody gets hurt when there is a rally or pray that it would rain which is a proven deterrent for violent rallies.

The eventual winner of the MPD Christmas Decorations is Police Station 6 in Sta. Ana besides the Sta. Ana Church where you would see this Mr. Santa Claus police dancing while equipped with all the necessary police equipment. He protects the children from harm and locks up lawless element to make sure that we have a happy and blessed Christmas. Inside the station, you can see the inmates in their crowded cell and it is very hard to look them straight into the eye with a prejudice look or a sympathetic glance.

It makes me appreciate that I get to celebrate Christmas with my family happily and safely.

December 15, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Healing Foods Diet - the best diet so far

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pyramidmed, originally uploaded by antondiaz.

Thanks for my brother for pointing me out to the Healing Foods Diet. We had a debate on vegetarian vs. atkins/ south beach diet and the best diet was a good compromise using University of Michigan's Healing Pyramid. My brother was a die hard atkins/ south beach diet practitioner for more than a year and I'm on my first month of vegetarian experiment. Also, Dr. Fuhrman's Eat to Live follows the same principle and will migrate to this diet in 2006 :) So far with eating 95% vegetarian, I feel good and light :) I bowel more regularly these days, although I'm able to just maintain my weight.

November 30, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

Monday, November 21, 2005

Christmas is in the air!

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Christmas Parols

Aside from the chrismas parols that you started to see on the streets and the christmas carols you hear on the radio, have you noticed that it's getting cooler already? We live in a 10th floor condo and the breeze are cooler now and you could feel that Christmas is in the air ! Got to buy my christmas gifts and avoid that christmas rush :)

November 21, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

One of the Best Consumer Product Companies in the World

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pg-gillete day 1 poster

Miguel Paul Riano had a post on "A look into Procter & Gamble" and I would reserve my comments since some of the information in his post is already out dated. Just for instance, P&G now has 21 billion dollar brands with the addition of Gillette billion dollar brands with over $50+ Billion in Sales in 160 countries. It is one of the Top 10 Global Companies by Market Capitalization among which Gillette is #1, Exxon #2, Microsoft #3, with P&G alternates in #7-9 with J&J and Walmart on any given day. His sister's MBA paper is right on and we have significant advancement already on e-Commerce. I'll shut up now before I get into conflict with our blogging policies :)

November 21, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Friday, November 18, 2005

Next Stop: El Nido, Palawan

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El nido
We have been planning to go to El Nido Palawan ever since and we are scheduled to go their with Maong/Di and the gang in January. Then came this offer from Ann (one of my blog readers) of a special El Nido Gift Certificate for 3 days/ 2 nights for P14,000/person good for two person already (a lot cheaper than the P17,500). I hesitantly passed on it since we are already set to go in January. The only caveat is that it is only good until Dec. 17, 2005. Let me know if some of you might be interested specially for balikbayans out there who wants to go and explore Palawan before dec. 17.

November 18, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Caught in the shopping act!

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The Big Garment Sale

Gotcha! After 2 hours of shopping, we've got 4 plastic bag of clothes, out-of-budget credit card charges, 2 adobo rice toppings lunch packs, and a smiling happy face wife -- priceless :) The great garment sale still on going until tomorrow in Meycauyan, Bulacan.

November 18, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Ang Bagong Pinoy first EB!

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fb87 Ang Bagong Pinoy Ang Bagong Pinoy Ang Bagong Pinoy

I missed this first EB of the Ang Bagong Pinoy. Hopefully, I'll be able to meet Alex Lacson in person in the future but for now, here are some of the pics during the last EB courtesy of Boogie Boydon.

November 17, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Monday, November 14, 2005

My Winning Badminton Strategies

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Hataw Busko 2005!

Finally after years of joining competitions, I won a championship during the recently concluded Hataw Busko 2005. We are the Sophomores B1 Level champions! (Sophomores is an age bracket for early 30s, and B1 is the 2nd to the highest level in the bracket with level A as the highest) For badminton addicts out there, I'm sharing my winning badminton strategies in this post.

The Hataw Busko 2005, is the 2nd badminton tournament for Bosconians and the format is one set of straight to 21 points. This is becoming common in most tournament to save time and be able to have more matches over the weekend. I played in the age 30+ bracket (sophomores) and we are in the second level B1 (the levels are A, B1 B2, C, D). There are certain strategies that worked very well for us and hopefully could help badminton addicts out there:

1. Take the side of the court facing the wall with the audience at your back. This would give you an advantage to concentrate more on your opponents and would help with your nervousness.

2. A set of straight to 21pts, is a game of speed. Whoever reaches 10 points first has a higher chance to win the set. So the first few points is very crucial.

3. Tension and nervousness could affect your game, use tension releasing techniques like shouting when hit a great shot, talk to your partner constantly by affirming great shots or giving feedback on how to improve.

4. For the first few points, play for sure shots like sure short serves, smashes on the middle rather than on the sides, and if you're drop is not working, use clear shots instead.

5. Get supporters to cheer for you to demotivate or dishearten your opponents. Hecklers could help.

6. Always prepare a backup racket. In my case, in the finals I noticed my shots were awkward during the middle of the game. I noticed after a few errors, that my racket string was broken. Good thing I already prepared the backup racket and I was not rattled.

7. Use time outs to break the momentum of the other team. Use this wisely and this is surely effective specially during very close fights.

8. Pray before the game to Mama Mary :) This helps specially to calm your nerves.

Of course, this assumes that your skills are leveled correctly in your group and you have been practicing and stretching accordingly.

Please share also if you have proven winning badminton strategies. Hope this helps!

November 14, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Awesome Planet Message

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Awesome Planet Message

Dear awesome planet readers,

I've been thinking about how to improve my blog lately and how to differentiate it from my other group blogging activities. I've been encouraged by your appreciation and it motivates me to innovate and make my blog exciting. I'll be transforming my blog as an artistic expression of my passions. You'll see more photos, comic strips, and other various visual "art" (hopefully). I'll still write about my passion, adventures and other wild ideas.

I know that it would be bandwidth intensive because of the big photos but based on my blog statistics, most of my readers would have a DSL or reading the blog in their office. Also, there are also a few people in the US which I would assume would have better connection. I know that it is not SEO (Search Engine Optimization) friendly, but I'll try to accompany the photos with text descriptions.

Hope you would like it. Let me know.


(anton.blogs.com)

also blogging at:
www.pinoytechblog.com
www.pinoytravelblog.com
litratista.org

November 12, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Ang Bagong Pinoy Grand EB

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Ang Bagong pinoy

One of the interesting group I started to get involve in is the Ang Bagong Pinoy founded by Ernesto "Boogie" Boydon inspired by the "12 Little Things every Filipino can do for their Country" by Alex Lacson.

Ang Bagong Pinoy is an online community of Filipinos all over the world seeking to build a better Philippines by starting with themselves, one Filipino at a time. It aims to recover, nurture and advance the Filipino identity, promote good citizenship, and inspire in the Filipino the love, pride, and appreciation of his Filipino identity. Ang Bagong Pinoy will dedicate the Filipino identity for the spiritual, cultural, social, and economic advancement of the Filipino nation. If you share the same ideal please join ang_bagong_pinoy@yahoogroups.com.

This is the right time to join and be part of the first Grand EB on Nov. 11. See more info @ http://www.angbagongpinoy.org/

November 3, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (10) | TrackBack

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Most Awaited Sale of the Year.

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The Factory Sale is TENTATIVELY scheduled on Nov. 17, 18, and 19 as they wait for the arrival of their stocks. Thursday 8am anyone?

November 2, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Monday, August 22, 2005

Ordinary Food @ Zoovenir :(

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Image006_1

Still disappointing despite the change in name from Endangered Species :(

This should be a lesson for me not to always follow the recommendation of Amanda from the "F" show in Studio 23. Last Sunday, she featured this restaurant in M.H. del Pilar named Zoovenir. The street is one-way so best to start from Pedro Gil or in the Manila Diamond Hotel area. For those of you who have been in this area, the place was originally named Endangered Species. It retained its animal themed interiors and the ordinary tasting salads, pasta, and meals.

What's good about this place is the Baked Salmon and Cheese Dip (P290) with really crunchy garlic toasted french bread. Also, the dessert was nice -- we tried the crunchy vanilla. It was simply vanilla ice cream with merengue but it costs P220 -- way too expensive. Please stay away from the Spaghetti alla Vongole (P230). The Salads which was raved about by "F" is nothing but ordinary and we tasted both Tuna Turner (P140) and Chinese Duck Salad (P160).

After the meal, we felt that we were robbed by P400/each!  This is the reason that I want to blog about places, and restos in manila so that we don't get all marketing gimmicks and information from TV Shows and Magazines... Aaarghh!

 

August 22, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (6) | TrackBack

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

My first Wedding Photoshoot Engagement

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e first dance wedding sponsors christ in the center of marriage2
I got carried away with excitement with my first wedding photoshoot assignment. My friend, ask me to be a backup photographer during her brother's wedding (Jay & Portia) last Sunday. Alot of things went wrong at the start. I was late by 15 minutes in the church and by about 90 minutes in the reception so it was a bad first job for me. Also, I'm having problems with my flash unit. Initially, most of the shots are dark and underexposed, or with an unflattering flash burst. I was able to handle it during the church ceremony but I had a hard time with the exposure during dinner time. I need to practice some more and buy the diffuser for the flash.

I was happy with the shots I got and I tried out a couple of effects I learned from Flickr's Technique group. Here are a couple of effects that I used in the wedding photos:
1). Explosive Photo Effect
2). Comic Art Effect
3). Ipod Ad Effect
4). Lomo Effect
5). Color / B&W Effect

a child's wedding wish Portia. Sorry, taken by Jay our first ride

I'm really having fun with photography and digital art these days. I'm thinking of taking photographs on a weekend basis ala Fol Rana.  Let me know if you have some questions on the different photoshop effects above.

August 2, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Dayrit's delicious Roast Beef

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dayrits dayrits-1

Don't go back for more :(

Finally I was able to eat in Dayrit's which for the longest time I'm just seeing it along Buendia. Now, they moved in Magallenes already where they have spacious parking and a canteen like ambiance. I don't have alot to say about Dayrit's because so far, only the Roastbeef is great. All the rest, burger and non-beef food like sizzling fish is a big disappointment. So, if you are a meat lover and you happen to be in the Magallanes area, this is something to try out for a change.

July 30, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (14) | TrackBack

Thursday, June 09, 2005

We love Flickr -- Pinoy Style! (The 1st Flickr Philippines meet!)

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  We love Flickr! -- FlickrPH 
  Originally uploaded by antondiaz.

This is the first eyeball or meet that I've attended of any online group here in the Philippines. I must say that for some reason I feel at ease with meeting total strangers for the first time. Even though I'm recuperating from my sickness I had to go, anyway, I have to get the PMBok from the office for the PMP certification. The meeting was organized by Jolengs/ Stitch and  I was glad to host them in Makati @ CPK :) Although, they later on found out my interior motive that CPK, Glorietta is walking distance from our office :) (but still I came in late at 7pm) The Flickr meeting went beyond my expectation. The flickr folks are very down to earth, friendly, and we share a common interest --- love for photos and love for flickr!

There were 12 of us, which is a good number, so that you make sure that you are able to interact with all of them. Seeing there photo streams in flickr and chatting with them is something else. The eyes of pinoy flickrs are like windows to their world and you can peep into them via the flickr portal. Meeting and interacting with these windows in person is an enriching experience. Here are some of the revelations that I had during the EB meet:

-- All of us are photo enthusiasts! No professional photographer in the group. ( We think that Estan would be an exemption to this)
-- Ayeona is her last name and the pictures of the rice terraces are not from Banaue but from Berlig or eastern part of mountain province.
-- Subic is building a mansion in Subic! (Venue for the next Philippines Flickr meet!)
-- Jolengs/Ayeona are currently unemployed and having fun with their camera/ flickr.
-- Jolengs has the cellphone contact of most pinoy flickrs. Hows that for a P.R.O.?
-- There is no Lilo! (period) Although, we are still teasing Stitch to find one :)
-- General Associations: Gani and 'Enzo are officemates in Holy Cow. 'Enzo and Stitch are lomo enthusiast while BingBing has a Lomo gathering dust at home.
-- Koolitz and Gani bought there weapon of choice (canon rebel xt and canon eos 66, respectively) -- Canon Enthuliast like me :)
-- Luisgaskob is a nude art photographer! You should see his works :) You need to attend one of these meets first so that he can tag you as a friend...
-- Lolay has charmed the flickr team and gave her 3 months pro account trial. 

Glad to meet all of you! Know my flickr viewing gets more exciting :)

>> Flickr Photoset on the 1st Philippine Flickr meet!
>> Tag: Pinoy Flick Meet

June 9, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (7) | TrackBack

Monday, June 06, 2005

Jessica's prediction came true! I'm seriously sick...

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  unwinding 
  Originally uploaded by antondiaz.

Last May 14, I had a tarot card reading session with Psychic Jessica (girl 2nd from right) during my 1st intramuros tour with Carlos Celdran (I'll discuss this on a separate blog post). I don't actually believe in these predictions or "hula" in Filipino but I find them amusing and entertaining. However, this particular session was very explicit, she only mentioned one thing that I will get sick -- soo sick because of stress and work. I did not pay attention too much to the reading and continued with my way of life as if I'm healthy and can handle all work, and life throws at me. Fast forward to today (June 6), after three days of cough and colds, the doctor diagnosed me with Pneumonitis which is already close to a relapse of pneumonia which I already had when I was in High School. Due to this diagnosis, I needed to stay at home for a week and drink about 5 medicines which included cough syrup, antibiotic,vitamins, phelgm expectorant. For three days now, I cannot play with my son, Aidan because of he might get infected with cough and colds as well...

So what's my learning in all of these? It's a cliche really, that there are more important things in life than just work. My own health is very important and you should not abuse your body. Think of your family and their need to have a healthy dad all the time. As for the psychic Jessica, I'm waiting for her prediction to Mike Best to come true that Mike and his wife will have a baby boy before I truly believe :). (Mike insists that they don't plan to have another child aside from their two daughters)

June 6, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (4) | TrackBack

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Maong's Happy Birthday Bash!

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  Happy Birthday Maong with the girls 
  Originally uploaded by antondiaz.

We always have fun hanging out with my wife's barkada from ICA and Maong's birthday celebration was no exception.We enjoyed the spring deer Peking Duck! This is a signature meal served on Maong's birthday if the party is done at home.Rache particularly like the Kani Salad, and Tuna Tomato Pasta. There were alot of fun kwentos, authentic korean poses, and yummy desserts (Carmine's Sansrival)

I've taken a few snapshots of the wonderful dinner --> Maong's Birthday Bash!

Happy Happy Birthday Maong!

Antonsig_10





 

April 3, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Key Learnings from the 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families

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Awesome!

Last Nov.20, 2004, Rache and I had the chance to attend Dr. Stephen R. Covey's on "Family!" seminar in Henry Lee Irwin, S.J. Theather in Ateneo de Manila University @ P1,000/ticket! It was an awesome experience seeing one of the most respected inspiring personalities that I admire ever since I was in college 10 years ago. It was also a very insightful seminar and complimented with the audiobook on 7 habits of Highly Effective Families (which I just finished listening this week), it gave me a new sense of direction on where we want our family to be. This is to share with you my key insights and I hope you learn something from them too:  

1. Personal Management vs Time Management. You should manage your life based on what is important to you and aligned with your personal/family mission statement rather than managing appointments and activities. Your calendar should start with the personal and family events, 1on1 with people, relationship building activities rather than meetings, activities, and appointments. One of my favorite songs from the broadway musical, Rent, was able to capture this in the song Seasons of Love -- "Measure your life in Love" (not in terms of seconds).

2. Eliminate the C's and focus on the B's.  We should eliminate the emotional cancers of the family or relationships --> Complaining, Criticizing,  Comparing, Competing.   Rather, the focus should be on something you can Be --- Be more patient, Be more forgiving, Be an example. Rache would always reminds me that we should not compare ourselves or whoever to another person. I realized that this applies to all relationship with direct reports @ work, family and colleagues. Also, in the past, my motivation is based on an endless competition to be the best among the rest. One of my key insight is really to focus on improving yourself and seek to be your Best self.

3. "Etos, Patos, Logos." -- The global philoshophy of influence. Often our influencing models is based on the fairness principle  of give and take or based on position power. Power comes through honor & integrity and influencing through patience and gentle persuasion:
a). Being an example of Kindness and Trustworthiness -- Always say Please, Thank you, Loved to served, I love You, How may I help?  The absence of it, would surely be noticed and I've learned this from experience (i.e. when you ask a contact number from another person via text, sometimes we forgot to say thank you and this means alot to the other person; or in badminton, if somebody goes down because of losing his balance, the mere gesture of offering a helping hand means alot)
b). Seeking first to understand then be understood -- Always understand first the person your talking to in their own frame of reference. Easier said than done, but it is truly rewarding if your able to do so. One of the ways to do this is to make sure that you truly listen to the person talking until she finishes communicating her point of view. Sometimes, we ended up thinking of a rebuttal already, respond immediately after a few sentences.
c). Changing people by changing their scripts -- Each of us is a product of the scripting by our family upbringing -- good or bad.  The Holy Scriptures is a source of true scripts that we should follow to change any negative scripting we recieved in the past.

4). Emotional Bank Account Deposits -- I've already been in a situation where I experience over withdrawing my emotional bank account with another person at work and it ended up with a word war III. It was a direct result of always withdrawing from the EBA by not delivering promises, not following through on agreements, and basically not understanding the person. At home, I also sometimes do this with my wife by being selfish, not being considerate, and not seeking first to understand. I learned to continously deposit through:
a). Listen twice as much as you speak - understanding the person from their own frame of reference. The example of the talking stick really helps alot to illustrate the power of this concept. We also need to understand that a deposit is different from one another and it is critical that we understand what is a good deposit for that person.
b). Sincerely apologize and acknowledge if you have apologized before for the same mistake. Initiate the apologies even if you are the one that have been offended by another person.
c). Don't hold grudges by readily forgiving and forgeting. Simple but powerful concept if you truly honestly forgive and only remember the learning from the experience.
d). Appropriately Give and Receive Timely Feedback.  It is important to give a timely feedback given with love to the person. Often times, specially Filipinos, we were not trained to give upfront feedback and this hurts our relationship.
e). Make and Keep promises. I find this specially important in marriage where you would think that you already have a huge emotional bank account that you can withdraw sometimes by breaking your promises. No wonder, there are marriages lasting 27 years but still ends up in separation.
f). Express Kindness and Courtesies by all means. Specially in this day and age of technology, expressing thank you and extending courtesies through text and email is extremely important when you don't see the person just the message.
g). Spend Quality time with the family.  I often neglect this specially if I'm engrossed on reading blogs or desperately needing a badminton fix. I forget that being at home is not the same as spending quality time.

5). The Essence of the Family --- is to communicate people's worth & potential so that they can also see it by themselves. Parents are still the most influential people to the young. The family should be brought up with the following scripting/ mental models:
a). Focus on intrinsic worth vs. a comparison based identity (never compare!)
b). Focus on self vs. on image (which is socially defined)
c). Peace of conscience (integrity) vs. peace of mind (external peacefulness)
d). Discipline is upfront agreement on natural consequences. To discipline without love is a form of punishment/ rejection.
e). Keep affirming them. " I love you and I believe in you! "
f). Be a model, mentor, teacher, and organizer to achieve a beautiful family culture.
g). Develop a family mission statement to achieve the significance stage of family life.
h). Develop Family Traditions! -- on birthdays, going on vacation, family rituals.

 

March 19, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Clauds' Sunday Birthday Lunch Netomat

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border border
border border

This is my first netomat created. This is sooo cool!  Please feel free to go through the 3 pages and edit them with your comments. You can also opt to include fun stuff, pictures, etc. on the netomat by using the editing tools. The only downside is that this might take some time to load if you are using dial-up.  I've checked the RSS feed in bloglines and it is still able to receive the netomat. Here is the complete  Photo gallery --> Clauds Birthday Lunch Photos. Enjoy!

January 18, 2005 in Arts and Culture in the Philippines | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack