Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Birthday Photos Part 1

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Here are some more photos from the birthday celebration with the kids of Young Women's Christian Association last Oct. 20. Celebration was two days early but it was okay. I'm just happy that several friends from way back were able to join the party. And I'm even happier to be with the kids once again. It's a three-peat party with them already.

Monday, October 29, 2007

And It's Over...

We were told that today would be the last day of the event. But to my surprise and to the surprise of other exhibitors, there were no more people at the venue today. I woke up a bit late, and the text message on my phone was from my coworker. She told me that our exhibit booth was the only one left standing at the venue. Everyone else had left. Went to the venue. Took some more photos. Met up with Thea. We had dinner at Sbarro's. Yum! Then we watched Rendition. Went home afterwards.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Another Long Day...

Another really, really long day. Woke up at 4AM. Was at the event venue by five. The day started with a marathon. About 100 coworkers joined the other thousand runners. Afterwards, it was just manning the booth. Weather was really humid. Fell asleep while leaning against a chair. Probably out of the exhaustion. Woke up when my neck started to ache. Attended a livelihood forum to cover the talk of one of our managers. Joined the parade of participants. Covered the concert. Covered another concert where we deployed two teen celebrities. Dead tired now. I'm just glad that it'll be over tomorrow. And I'm glad because I think it didn't turn out so bad. So despite all the fatigue and the butterflies in my stomach, I'm one happy boy.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Late Night...

On my way home from work. It's 3AM. Just finished setting up the exhibit for the event, which will open in a couple of hours. I get to take a nap for a few hours, then it's back to the drawing board. Will be releasing a major ad this weekend so that's something that needs extra attention. What a week!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Big Event this Weekend...

The big event this weekend, plus the deadline for an awards thing, are what's keeping me at the office till 12 midnight. (Well, sometimes, 3AM). On top of preparing for an exhibit, we're also preparing "something" else. And then, there's the preparation for publicity. Then there's preparing the entry for the Gold Quill awards. It's toxic, but it's all good. I'm really learning a lot. Right now, I'm just praying for the sun to come out and for the next four days to be bright and sunny. Otherwise, I'm going to get a heart attack because our exhibit and the entire expo will be an outdoor thing.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Here's One Photo...

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Here's one photo from last Saturday's activity at the Young Women's Christian Association.

Will write more and post more photos soon.

Big 28...

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Though this week is a super toxic one because of deadlines for an awards submission and preparation for a major event this weekend, my officemates were so thoughtful to surprise me and fellow October celebrant, Aimee, with a merienda. It was really nice.

My 28th big day will be written down as the most "toxic" birthday. Hehehe!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Commotion at Glorietta (again)...

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I was looking for a birthday gift at a shop when all of a sudden, I saw people outside running. First there was just two, and then the number suddenly grew. I started to feel cold. Please let this be not a repeat of what happened last Friday. To further make me nervous, one of the sales people ran towards the manager, fear seen on her face, and said, "Ma'am, there's smoke coming from one of the shops."

The next thing I did was the natural. Drop the shirt I was supposed and get the heck out of that mall. I walked towards SM and then made y way to Glorietta 4. I was really going to Starbucks 6750 to work on a deadline. As I passed by Glorietta 4, firetrucks and police were already arriving. A huge crowd of mallgoers have started to evacuate the mall.

I still don't know what's happening. From here at Starbucks, I can just see people still waiting outside Glorietta. Most of them are mall employees.

Hope it's not another like Friday.

Hello 28...

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Photos later.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

What M2M?

Here's a funny incident yesterday afternoon, while having snacks with three of my friends from work.

Coworker A: Hey Anj, guess what?! Us girls watched M2M over the weekend just for fun.

Angelo (eyes widening and letting out a major laugh): So how was it? You were that bored you had to watch M2M, eh?

Coworker B (to Coworker A) innocently asks: So what songs did they sing?

Angelo and Coworker A look at each other and laughs out loud.

Coworker A: We're talking about a different M2M here. They had a different "microphone."

Coworker B: Ohhhh! That M2M.

Coworker C (joins us at the table): What are you guys laughing about.

Angelo: Coworker A watched M2M over the weekend.

Coworker C: Oh, the Mirror, Mirror girls.

Once again, laughter all over.

Coworker A: No, no. Different M2M.

It was a funny conversation that gave a good laugh to everyone. Talk about not playing the same language game. Hehehe!

Glorietta Bombing...

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Minutes just after it happened, the explosion at Glorietta mall was already posted on GMA and Inquirer websites. Since our office is quite near Glorietta, we knew something was happening when saw several ambulances speeding along Ayala Ave. headed towards where Glorietta is.

Initially, the news reports said that the explosion could have been caused by a LPG tank that exploded from one of the restaurants in that part of the mall.

However, after seeing the photo above and hearing that 8 people were dead and about 70 were wounded, there is no way that that was just a LPG tank. That is a bomb.

Friday, October 19, 2007

Some Reading Material...

Uhm, since the next few days (actually, the next two weeks) would be crazy because of work, here's something else to read. I've been meaning to post online some of my published works for the longest time but something would always come up. Anyway last Sunday night, I found myself in bed working on fixing the files so I can post the stuff online.

Just click here.

There are some book reviews published in Icon and Manila Times, a feature article that came out in the now defunct, and some profile/interviews for Icon - Front founder Jeff Rustia, writer Noel Alumit, porn star Michael Brandon, and celebrity/model Melanie Marquez, among others. These were the most fun to write because getting to know these people was inspiring and fun.

Uhm, I also did a profile on President Arroyo's stylist, Joanne Zapanta-Andrada, but I'm not sure if I can post since I told her it would just be for school. But I really loved that interview because she was just overflowing with enthusiasm and passion.

Okay, this is it for now.

Click here for the sample work.

Hmm, I wonder if a magazine editor would stumble upon these links and give me a writing assignment. Hehe! I miss magazine work.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Bitten by Facebook Bug...

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Been bitten by the Facebook bug. Hahaha! Nick, my colleague from work, told me about and suggested I open a profile too. I think another colleague from before sent me an invitation to open a profile, but I ignored thinking, "Another one of these?!"

But after attending the SEO Conference last week, I sort of learned how to look at these sites from a new perspective. So I did create a Facebook profile, and I even created a LinkedIn profile too. Hehe!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Agenda Setters 2007...

Found something interesting on UK online publication, Agenda Setters is a poll which aims to identify "the driving forces in the tech industry." There is a Top 50 list and autobiographies of the business leaders, technologists, entrepreneurs, media people who are part of the list are available on the site.

The top 3 were Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg (who's only 23 years old!!!), Apple CEO Steve Jobs and Google CEO Eric Schmidt. Interestingly, there's no one from Microsoft who made it to the top even, or even the top 20.

Here are the 2007 top 10 most influential people in the tech industry are:

1. Mark Zuckerberg, CEO, Facebook
2. Steve Jobs, CEO, Apple
3. Eric Schmidt, CEO, Google
4. John Chambers, CEO, Cisco
5. Ashley Highfield, BBC technologist
6. Nicholas Negroponte, laptop creator
7. Niklas Zennström, former CEO, Skype
8. Diane Greene, VMware president
9. Jonathan Ive, Apple chief designer
10. Viviane Reding, European commissioner

Check out the complete list here.

For more info on this, check out Agenda Setters 2007.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Monday Madness...

Oooh, today was just oozing with energy and toxicity. Hehehe! Left the house by six a.m. Was at the office before seven to help out with the daily news digest. And then, it was meetings, writing work, powerpoint work, among others. Hahaha! Day ended past nine. I was working on a presentation for one of the boss's speech, but decided to call it a day when I wasn't making sense anymore. Hahaha! Aaaahhh! Monday madness. And I'm afraid the madness is going to last until the end of the week! Woohooo!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Told You It's a Working Weekend...

I'm really feeling a bit workaholic this weekend. And at the same time, I'm feeling a bit lazy. I just want to sit down at a coffee shop somewhere and spend the time reading the new issues of Preview and Town & Country, which my colleague lent me.

I did end up at a coffee shop. I did end up with the new issues of the two magazines. But before I got to reading them, I was preoccupied with finishing the powerpoint presentation that I started working on yesterday. Hehehe! After that, I took out some readings on HTML and CSS, which I downloaded from the Net. I'm really quite determined to learn more about online stuff, after attending the SEO conference last week.

I also did get to enjoy the few hours left before the weekend came to an end. Went around Shangri-la mall to check out what's new. I passed by Fino where I saw this really, really gorgeous black messenger bag. Augh! I didn't go in to see it closer because who knows what might happen once I feel the texture of the bag? Hahaha! Also, I shouldn't probably be looking at any new bags, especially since two bags are still waiting to be used. Eeeep!!!

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Working on a Saturday...

Hmm, though it's a long weekend I've been feeling a bit workaholic so here I am now at the office making a presentation for a meeting with a creative agency next week. I'm also trying to figure how to make curved lines on Photoshop. I've checked out several sites for tutorials, and they all make it look so easy. Sigh. Making curved lines is my biggest frustration in Photoshop. Hehe! That sounded kinda geeky.

Anyway, before I came here, I dropped by a restaurant for pseudo-Chinese lunch, and then to the next door Starbucks for a tall blackberry green tea frappuccino, my ultra favorite.

Later, I'll head to Greenbelt for some wandering and some wondering.

Saturday, October 13, 2007

This Week's Friday Five...

Here we go...

1. What was the last thing you baked?
Uhm, I think it was revel bars. That was so looong ago...

2. What was the last thing you tried on for size?
Shirts at Folded & Hung, which put me to shame... Hahaha!

3. What was the last thing you purchased on credit?
Something from Paul Smith... Eeeep!

4. What was the last thing you put a postage stamp on?
A birthday card waiting to be sent...

5. What was the last thing you took a photo of?
Hmmm, a video conference call for a photo release...

via Friday 5.

I'm done. Your turn.

Friday, October 12, 2007

High on Semcon 2007...

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I’m still on a high from the two-day SEMCON 2007, which started last Tuesday and which colleague Nick and I attended. The learnings I got from the two days were a lot, and I couldn’t be more happier that I got to attend the conference. Before the conference, I didn’t have the faintest inkling of what SEO is and how broad it is. After the conference, I couldn’t be more excited about all the possibilities that SEO holds. There’s just really a lot.

Okay, my favorite topics were the following (in random order). For Day 1, SEO for Megasites by Benj Arriola; Effective Web Copywriting by Jayvee Fernandez; The Best of Pay-Per-Click (PPC) by Derek Callow; Pitfalls of Pay-Per-Click (PPC)by Hans Koch. For Day 2, I really enjoyed Mission Redesign: When, What and How? by Regnard Raquedan; Innovative Landing Page Optimization by Marc Macalua; The Perfect Checkout by Andrian Lee; Using Affiliates to Grow Your Online Business by Dustin Andaya, Tracking Buzz: How to Manage Your Online Reputation by Abe Olandres; and Utilizing User-Generated Data to Drive Conversions by Jose Carlo Medina.

The two main reasons why the above were my favorite are 1.) these were the topics that I could really relate to and, 2.) I thought either the presentation or the speaker were really good. This isn’t to say that the other speakers weren’t good. They knew their stuff but the ones I mentioned above are the ones I think are really relevant to my work. Uhm, there were also one or two topics which I was really looking forward to listen to, but…

I thought the “Super Site Clinic - Give Your Site an Instant Makeover” portion was also fantastic. During this session, participants could show their website to the panelists and the latter will comment on the site. The idea is somewhat patterned to American Idol or Queer Eye or Project Runway. I thought it was a really great idea.

Okay, in general, the people behind the conference are to be congratulated for the success of the two-day conference! The whole SEO concept is just a whole new world which I guess I want to discover, and who knows, maybe even be a part of it someday.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

SEMCON and T&C...

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Attended the second half of the Search Engine Marketing Conference at the Intercon. The topics were as interesting as yesterday. Enjoyed several topics. I'm really glad I got to attend this conference. I learned about a whole new world I didn't know a thing about. And it's just amazing. Hehe!

Mentally tired from the conference, I opted not to go back to the office anymore afterwards. Instead, met up with Thea at Greenbelt where we watched December Boys. It was a good movie. Enjoyed it. Daniel Radcliffe is all grown up now. And it's good for him that he seems to have a great chance to escape the whole "Harry Potter" image.

Borrowed the second issue of Town & Country, with Bea Valdes on the cover. Can't wait for the long weekend to devour the new issue of T&C. It's certainly becoming an addiction. Eeep!

Monday, October 8, 2007

Conference Week and More...

This week will mostly be about conferences. In a few minutes, I'll be off to attend a trainor's training for one of our community projects. It should be an interesting one because it's going to be about web design, so I'm really hoping to learn something new. What I'm really excited about though is the Search Engine Marketing Conference tomorrow and on Wednesday, which I'll attend with good colleague, Nick. I already did some research on the topic lineup for the two day conference and I got to admit, I was excited by the topics. So that's really something to look forward to. Friday, on the other hand, will be a bit different. It's a holiday but I need to cover a small event in nearby province of Cavite. It's only Monday, and already, my calendar is this booked already. This should be quite an interesting week. Haha!

Sporty Day...

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Today was quite a sporty day. Not for me though. For other people. When I left the house to attend Mass, all the boys of the house were glued to the television waiting for the Pacquiao-Barrera match. While commuting, the radio station of the cab I took was tuned in to the same match. Meanwhile, when I passed by the National Sports Grill at Greenbelt 3, the place was fully packed of La Salle fans. And each time the Green Archers scored against the Red Warriors, a booming cheer filled the entire venue. In the evening, I went with some colleagues to the NBC Tent to show our support for another colleague who was joining the Fitness First Body Combat Marathon. There were teams coming from all branches of Fitness First, and the entire event was just wow! Two hours of hi-impact taebo. Whoa! Talk about endurance. Capped the evening with a fantastic dinner at Zong.

Sunday, October 7, 2007

Lazy Day...

Stayed home the entire day. Was planning to go to the office in the afternoon to prepare some stuff for an event coverage on Monday, but didn't go anymore. Started reading a new book but because the setting was in the Ireland in the 1900s, it's kinda difficult to read. Uhm, nothing spectacular today, really.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

This Week's Friday Five...

Here we go...

1. Of the people in your life, who is Most Likely to Succeed?
Uhm, my bet would go to my youngest brother, Andre. His growing up experience was quite difference from what I and my other brother had, and yet he amazes me with his perseverance and talent.

2. Of the people in your life, who has the Dreamiest Eyes?
The person with the dreamiest eyes is this accountant turned nursing student.

3. Of the people in your life, who is the Cutest Couple?
Until two years ago, it was me and... Hahaha!

4. Of the people in your life, who is Most Changed?
Dr. Doom...

5. Of the people in your life, who is the Geekiest?
Hehe! Carlo V. I love you, Carl. Hehe!

via Friday 5.

I'm done. Your turn.

Friday, October 5, 2007

To Gen. Nakar and Back... Today...

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Just got back from Gen. Nakar, Quezon for field work. Visited the fishermen/farmers-turned-driftwood sculptors of Banglos. After a four-hour trip on a literally long and winding road, we reached the nice community in Gen. Nakar. I've been wanting to go to the community for the longest time so I can see the Banglos sculptors at work so I was really happy when colleague Jo-ann told me we were to go to Nakar today. Hehe!

Left Manila this morning at 7AM. Reached Nakar around 11AM. Took photos of the sculptors at work. Interviewed some members for a story I'll work on. Had a good lunch. Left for Manila at 4PM. Back at the office by 8PM.

It was a tiring day but I really, really enjoyed the whole trip. Though it was a quick one, the change of scenery was more than welcome. Plus, of course, I just love, love, love the countryside. Had we gone on a Saturday, I would have chosen to do an overnight stay at the community. Oh well, maybe next time.

Hmm, if you're wondering where the photos of the sculptors are, I don't think I can post them (yet), since I'll be using them for the story. But here's a photo of the colorful houses at the community, our sculptor friends and a sample of one of their wonderful creations.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Fairies at Prada...

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When I first saw the collection that Mrs. Prada sent out this season, like many, I felt a bit uncomfortable and a little questioning. But then I realized that Mrs. Prada's Spring 2008 collection needed more than just a quick look to be appreciated. Like a quirky painting in a museum, the dresses that came out on the runway required a second and a third look. But it actually works to the advantage of the clothes because one gets to see how amazing the mind of Mrs. Prada is. When you least expect it, Mrs. Prada puts wood-nymphs on her delicate clothes. It's a bit far from the designs she sent out the previous seasons, but that's just Mrs. Prada. When every designer is going with this particular feel for the season, Mrs. Prada does exactly the opposite. And this sense of subversiveness is one reason why this designer is definitely an icon of this lifetime, and why I super, super, super love her.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

28 Is Just Around the Corner...

Eeeep, twenty more days before this boy turns 28. Hahaha! What to do, what to do for the big day? Hmm... Should I post a birthday wish list? Hahaha!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Time Fall 2007 Style & Design Now Out...

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Yesterday, while walking around Gateway Mall, I stopped by the magazine stand which I usually visit whenever I'm there. And even from afar, I could already see that one of the magazines I love so much, but is so hard to find, is on sale. The Fall 2007 Time Style & Design is now out. So I did get a copy, and waited til lunch time today to open and go through the issue.

I'm kind of disappointed though because there are some features on the website that aren't featured on the print edition, particularly the 10 Questions with Valentino and the fashion editorial of Hilary Rhoda. I'm not sure if Time Asia's Style & Design is different from the US edition, but whatever the case, I don't understand why there has to be a difference. In general, I have always been a fan of Time Style & Design. The people behind the supplement just have a different way of presenting fashion. So I love, love, love every issue of it. Each issue that I got is well-treasured, I have to tell you.

The other thing I'm a bit disappointed about is I'm starting to get this idea that when our friends from the Western side of the world say "Asian," what they're really referring to are the Chinese or the Japanese. How many times have I seen in magazines or books the headline "Asia this or Asia that" but when I read the article or the story, the only ones mentioned are the Chinese or the Japanese. Sure, the Japanese purchase about 40% of the world's luxury goods, but other countries with growing markets and consumers with increasing purchasing power could also have a share in the pie, right? For the feature on "Global Luxury Survey," I wish the story also looked into the fashion scene in the Philippines and the other countries in Southeast Asia. Here in the Philippines, the fashion industry has really grown and many young designers are getting more opportunities because women (and to a certain extent, men) are starting to be more conscious of the clothes they wear.

Want more evidence? In the past few years, Gucci, YSL, Narciso Rodriguez, to name a few, have opened stores in the country. Michael Kors and Marc Jacobs stores are soon to open. Prada, Burberry, Louis Vuitton, Ferragamo, Charriol, Hugo Boss all have stores in the country. Josie Natori, Monique Lhuillier, Bea Valdez, Tina Maristela Ocampo and their works have all been featured in Vogue. The local fashion magazines are at par with the world's best, too, I daresay. Take a look at the September issue of Preview. The cover just blew me away. So I'd like to think that's quite an achievement for a small archipelago in the East?

I did enjoy the cover story, which focused on Women in Luxury, women who lead the global luxury business, such as Jimmy Choo's Tamara Mellon and YSL's Valerie Hermann. Filipino designer Josie Natori is also in a photo with Vera Wang on the Editor's Note, so that's something to be proud of.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Pinoy Trivia...

Some trivia about Filipinos...

Filipinos were introduced to the English language in 1762 by British invaders, not Americans.

What is the world's 3rd largest English-speaking nation, next to the USA and UK? The Philippines.

Los Angeles, California was co-founded in 1781 by a Filipino named Antonio Miranda Rodriguez, along with 43 Latinos from Mexico sent by the Spanish government.

What antibiotic did Filipino doctor Abelardo Aguilar co-discover? Hint: Brand is Ilosone, named after Iloilo. Erythromycin.

The one-chip video camera was first made by Marc Loinaz, a Filipino inventor from New Jersey.

The first ever international Grandmaster from Asia was Eugenio Torre who won at the Chess Olympiad in Nice, France in 1974.

This son of two Filipino physicians scored over 700 on the verbal Portion of the Standardized Achievement Test (SAT) before age 13 - Kiwi Danao Camara of Punahou School, Hawaii... Edward Sanchez, a Mensa member, bagged the Grand prize in the first Philippine Search for Product Excellence in Information Technology.

Who was the Filipino-American dancer who scored a perfect 1600 on the SAT? Joyce Monteverde of California.

Who invented the fluorescent lamp? Thomas Edison discovered the electric light and the fluorescent Lighting was thought up by Nikola Tesla. But the fluorescent lamp we use today was invented by Agapito Flores (a Cebu man named Benigno Flores of Bantayan Island, according to the Philippine Daily Inquirer), a Filipino scientist. Americans helped then-Philippine leader Ramon Magsaysay to develop it for worldwide commerce. (Yes! Many foreigners have noted that the
Filipino population has Asia's highest rates of inventors and international beauty queens.)

Two Filipina beauties, Gloria Diaz and Margie Moran, were chosen as Miss Universe in 1969 and 1973, respectively.

Pure- or part-Filipino celebrities in American showbiz include Von Flores, Tia Carrere, Paolo Montalban, Lea Salonga, Ernie Reyes Jr., Nia Peeples, Enrique Iglesias, Lou Diamond Phillips, Phoebe Cates, Rob Schneider, of Black Eyed Peas, Prince, Cheryl Burke.

Latina-American pop star Christina Aguilera lost to Filipina vocalist Josephine Roberto aka Banig during the International Star Search years ago. In a mid-1999 MTV chat, she said that competing against someone of Banig's age was "not fair."

Besides gracing fashion magazine covers, this international supermodel from Manila had walked the runways since the 1970s for all the major designers, like Calvin Klein, Chanel, Christian Dior, Christian Lacroix, Donna Karan, Gianni Versace and Yves Saint Laurent - Anna Bayle.

Who is the personal physician of United States Pres. Bill Clinton? Dr. Eleanor "Connie" Concepcion Mariano, a Filipina doctor who was the youngest captain in the US Navy.

The first Filipino-American in US Congress was Virginia Rep. Robert Cortez-Scott, a Harvard alumnus.

The first Filipino-American state governor was Benjamin Cayetano who was elected as Governor of Hawaii for two consecutive terms. He is the son of migrant Filipino farm workers.

Founded in 1595 by Spaniards, the University of San Carlos in Cebu City, Philippines is older than Harvard and is the oldest university in Asia. University of Santo Tomas in Manila, established in 1611, is Asia's second oldest.

The first female president of the Philippines sworn into office in 1986 was Corazon Cojuangco Aquino.

Who was the first Asian and/or Filipino to snatch America's Pulitzer Prize? Philippines Herald war journalist Carlos P. Romulo in 1941. (He was also the first Asian to become President of the UN General Assembly.)

Filipino national hero/writer Jose Rizal could read and write at age 2, and grew up to speak more than 20 languages, including Latin, Greek, German, French and Chinese. What were his last words? "Consummatum est!" ("It is done!")