Thursday, May 28, 2009

Astig birthday invite....

How cool is this, huh?!

A colleague got this invitation to the birthday celebration of her friend's son. I'm trying to recall if I've ever seen an invite that's similar to this and I can't remember any. So this one really tops the list.

Astig!!! And what's more impressive about it?! It moves!!! Galing!!!

Gosh, I wonder how much an invite like this costs. And if the invite alone already costs that much, I wonder how the actual party would cost and how it would be. Whoa!!! 

Monday, May 25, 2009

Across the Universe I like...

As previously blogged, I got to watch Across the Universe yesterday at May's house and I really liked it. I don't know why I haven't heard about this movie. Hehehe!

I'm not really a huge Beatles fan (although I know some of their songs, but maybe because it's not my generation), but I really loved how the music was arranged for the musical. I found the film to be quite long though, and for awhile I thought I was going to be saddened by the ending, but thankfully it didn't. It had a really nice ending. And it was an ultimate kilig scene. Haha! One thing I love about watching cheesy movies with girls is that I don't have to worry about getting mushy because I know that my companions would also be just as mushy.

True enough as the final scene played out, we were all going oooohhhh and aaaahhhh as Jude and Lucy, well, no spoiler for those who want to watch. Although there's already a major spoiler above. Hahaha!

I just had to have a copy of the movie. So after my workout earlier, I decided to pass by Tower Records just to check if they have a copy of Across the Universe. Before I even got to where Across the Universe was, a DVD of the final Broadway performance of Rent greeted me and I just had to get it. I asked a sales associate if there were more copies of the DVD and when I was told that it was the last one, there was no way I'm returning that DVD to the shelves. Hehehe!

I'm really thankful that someone thought of filming the musical so that unfortunate ones who wouldn't be able to go see it on Broadway would at least get to see the show on their television sets or laptops. Hehe!

Eeeep! So now I'm broke by a thousand bucks, but it's okay because the two DVDs were definitely good buys. I'm such a showtunes/musical addict that I would choose to go hungry for it on any given day. Hahaha!

Sunday, May 24, 2009

May's May Birthday...

Was supposed to go to the GK Siga Olympics today, but instead asked someone else to cover for me since I promised to join the birthday celebration of dear friend/former colleague May.

So instead of spending the days with teens from GK villages, I spent it with teens at heart. Hehehe! The celebration was held at May's house in Qc, and the very privileged guests included May's colleague, Rita (who went with her two kids) and the HR triumvirate - Cathy, Lenly and Shyrel.

I didn't get to work with May because when I joined MMC, she already transferred to another unit of the company. But still we became really good friends, and it's always a joy to hang out with her because she's a great road trip buddy and she can cook really, really, really well.

Anyway, the whole afternoon was all about eating, singing, more eating and more singing. Hehehe! After having our fantastic lunch, the girls tried to set up Rita's Magic Sing. I, on the other hand, didn't bother to offer any help since I knew that cables and setting up AV systems isn't my core competency. Hahaha!

Lazy boy that I was that day, I fell asleep on May's Pinoy version of a Lazy Boy. Hehe! I want one, I swear. After an hour's sleep, that was the only time the girls got to finally get the thing to work. Great job!

After going through several songs, we decided to watch Across the Universe and when I found out that it was a musical, I knew that it was going to be interesting. And it was. I wanted my own copy. Hahaha!

We left May's house around 9PM. It was a day well spent, and I really had fun hanging out with the girls.

Happy birthday, May!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Anna Wintour on 60 Minutes


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Recently read about a feature on US Vogue editrix Anna Wintour on CBS' 60 Minutes. Thanks to YouTube, I got to watch the video. Woohooo!

Uhm, while I enjoyed the feature because it gave a glimpse of how Anna works and what her world is like, I didn't like the way CBS correspondent Morley Safer handled the segment.

I don't know if it was his way of showing that he way being objective about the whole topic, but I found it a bit off that he used a couple of strong words to describe Anna, the fashion world and certain fashion icons. Lagerfeld for the "dracula look" or saying that Galliano is "in need of a better tailor." Whoa!

What was the objective of the feature anyway? Was it to inspire? Was it to show that the fashion industry is not all glamour? Was it to show how, and I dare say this, the most powerful woman in fashion works and makes decisions resulting in Vogue keeping its position as the style bible? I don't know.

And then there's the reference again to The Devil Wears Prada. It's just so tired and passe already. Barbara Walters already used the reference to the movie when she interviewed Anna a couple of years back (?), so surely the CBS feature could have done something different.

I thought CNN's feature on Carine Roitfeld was much, much, much better. I wonder how the feature would have come out if they did a similar format for Anna.

But like I said earlier, I enjoyed the feature because this is one of the few times that I get to see all the work that goes into producing Vogue. I'm really glad that such icons like Wintour and Roitfeld are slowly opening their doors to the overly criticizing public.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Ready for Mizuno Run

Woohooo! Registered this noontime for the Mizuno Infinity Run on June 7. I was initially thinking of checking the box for 10K, but decided to stick with 5K. Haha! I'm quite excited already because the PA running gang would be there.

Will be prepping for Mizuno by (hopefully) running more in the next few weeks. Haha! I really hope I get to finish the 5K at 40 mins (or maybe lower). We'll see. We'll see.

Uhm, partly related, I'm thinking of getting another pair of running shoes. Adidas is having this really fantastic promo where you can get as much as P1,000 off a pair of shoes by simply turning in your old (but still wearable) pair of rubber shoes. The great thing about it is that they're going to donate all the collected shoes to the
Pamulaan Center for Indigenous Peoples’ Education. Really great, I think. What's even greater is that the promo is extended to May 31.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Reminded of the Pahinungod days...

With the kids of YWCA, preparing props for a presentation

On top of the world in Benguet with Ate Pia

On the way to Sagada with Pahinungod gang

My first cheilo surgery... hehehe

Enjoying the beach of Patikul in Sulu

This is partly an offshoot on the post on the Gawad Kalinga event yesterday.

If I were to be asked what the best years of my career life are, in a heartbeat, I would say that it is the three years of working in Pahinungod - the volunteer program of the University of the Philippines.

It wasn't just "work." It became my life for that short period of time. A lot of my beliefs on volunteerism, social responsibility, and advocacy for volunteer work were formed thanks to the people I've met, the places I've been to, the experiences I had during my Pahinungod days.

How I became part of that wonderful family was sort of serendipitous. I've been familiar with the group even before college because we did a lot of catering services for them. But it was only when I started working with Pahinungod that I fully appreciated it.

I was running an errand for my Mom, when I saw the job posting. I passed my resume, and the rest as they say was history. It was very different from what I thought my first job would be.

Because I had a fantastic practicum with the Corporate Affairs department of Ayala Corporation, I had my sights set for the group. I found out that things don't always work out the way you want them to. Sometimes, the Big Guy up there has other plans for you.

That's how I my Pahinungod stint came about. And for it I would always be grateful.

Though I only stayed with Pahinungod for a couple of years, I have memories and friendships enough to last me a lifetime. There's just too much, too much to share. I've been to places that are so beautiful, I wonder why they're not tourist destinations. I got to assist in a couple of surgeries. That was where I saw how fantastic seeing a child born into the world is. That was where I saw how doctors worked frantically to save a gunshot victim.

It was in Pahinungod that I learned that there are seven Mangyan tribes, and that each tribe has its own unique dialect. The Hanunuos wouldn't understand the Gubatnons. The Gubatnons wouldn't understand the Ratagnons, and so on. It was in Pahinungod that I had an encounter with the military. A bunch of military men found it difficult to understand that students would spend their summer vacation in some far-flung place. “Pakikipamuhay” is not their favorite word, I guess. The fact that I came from UP didn't help. They thought we were recruiting the locals for a leftist movement. I've never been that scared in my life. We were in the middle of nowhere, and anything could happen. But that was also where I saw how the community that adopted us was ready to defend us from any harm.

I would never forget hearing the stories of Dr. Leddy Cariño, Dr. Mario de Villa, Dr. Menchit Padilla, to name a few. I would always be forever grateful for the conversations with Dr. Anthony Cordero, Ate Peging Sur. These people taught me lessons not even my favorite professors in the university could have taught me. And then the volunteers. The volunteers. They are the life and blood of the organization, and I'm thankful to have been infected with their intense passion and huge amount of compassion for others.

Once upon a time, I wanted to be a Gurong Pahinungod. I was ready (I still am ready) to spend a year in the countryside to serve as a volunteer teacher. And then after that, I thought of becoming a VSO volunteer, but responsibilities towards certain things kept me from doing it. My last chance is the JVP volunteer program. Former colleague Pat told me that the age limit is 35yo. We'll see. I still have five years to go.

But if that doesn't materialize, I know that I will always have the heart of a volunteer. I just need to be constantly reminded, especially since I am now part of a world where it's easy to lose oneself if one does not know himself that well.

We have a saying, "Once a Pahinungod, always a Pahinungod." Very true. Very true.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Saturday with the GK Sagip kids...

I spent the entire Saturday morning at the Marikina Sports Center.

It was the Gawad Kalinga Sagip Olympics, and I went there partly for work and partly to volunteer. It was my first time to see the inner part of Marikina, and I must say that I was wowed. We passed by the public market and it was really clean and well-organized. The streets appeared to be really clean as well. And then there's the sports center which looks like it was well-maintained.

When we got there, there were a lot of people doing their own Saturday morning workout. Some were running around the track oval. There were groups playing tennis. Two others group were having dance/aerobic classes. And then you have the usual boys playing basketball. It was hard not to get into the whole "fit and healthy" lifestyle.

Had I brought my running attire/shoes, I would have done some rounds before the day started. Haha!

Anyway, the event started around 9AM. Hundreds (maybe thousands) of kid from Gawad Kalinga villages all over Manila and from Cavite arrived at the stadium. They were a very nice sight to behold because each sector carried its own color.

Kids being kids, as soon as they saw how huge the area was, several of them began running around. I just stood on the sidelines and watched them enjoy their really big playground.

Among the athletic events for the day were swimming, badminton, track and field, basketball, soccer, volleyball, table tennis, and cheer dance. There were also some Pinoy games played, which the kids really enjoyed.

A bunch of employees volunteered as marshalls/referees in the different sports, and it was just really great seeing them spend their Saturday doing volunteer work.

I can't help but be reminded of my Pahinungod days. We didn't care if our weekends were spent in some rural barangay or a depressed area in the city, we were all so "high" from all the volunteer work - talking to the locals, helping out with the day's activities, doing something for others.

I kind of miss that. So it was really great to just be surrounded by people teeming with passion and compassion, even if it were just for a couple of hours. It's nice to be reminded, and it certainly helped bring back things into a particular perspective.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Monday night with ni tomodachis...

Had a really good start of the week thanks to a meet up with two of the nicest people I've ever met - Alster and Whaxter. I've been hanging out with Whaxter for quite some time now, and though we rarely see each other, the guy is a really good friend. Meanwhile, it was my first time to officially meet Alster, but it sure felt like we've known each other for the longest time already.

This is one of the reasons why I love, love, love the online world. You get to meet people who could turn out to be a really good friend (or if the heavens are smiling you, a really good lover. Haha! Kidding!). So I guess it's true that "there are no strangers in this world, only friends we have yet to meet." Yes?

The two started hanging out at Starbucks Rockwell around 4PM, and I just followed (three hours later... augh!) since I was stuck with work. Again, another big "Augh!" Haha!

From Starbucks, we moved to Via Mare for dinner then we headed to Lulu Belle to grab some dessert. I got the green tea yogurt, which tasted a bit weird. Yoh-gurt Froz still ranks #1 in my heart and in my taste buds. MWehehe!

The whole time it was just really good exchange of stories and several bursts of boisterous laughter thanks to sometimes senseless topics. Harhar! I got some really helpful info from Alster-san about Japan. Arigato gozaimasu. But please don't consider a career with the Hiroshima Public Information office. Hehehe! Just kidding. Just kidding. Thanks, too, for the keychain. Hope you can get me some of that "literature" when you go back. *wink wink* I'll just wire the money or something. And then it's good to see Whaxter again. It's always nice to see the guy because we can talk about anything, but what made last night really good was that he wasn't too sungit. Haha! Kidding. (I say these with much love, Alster and Whaxter.)

Anyway, really had a terrific time hanging out with the ni otoko last night. Alster, dozo yoroshiku. Whaxter, good luck!

Ja mata ne. (*_*)\\

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

"Dude pare, check out the buckle...Ferragamo iyan..."

Here's an amusing work situation that happened recently.

Whenever I would get called to my boss' cubicle, it's because I would get instructions on what revisions to do with an article or to get comments on a communication plan draft. On other occasions, it would be for a meeting or a con call with my VisMin counterparts.

But this afternoon, I was a bit surprised because when I got a different question when I walked into her cubicle.

She held up her bag and said, "Angelo, guess what bag this is."

Another colleague was also there in the cubicle, and apparently, they were talking about bags. So there we were, two bag ladies and one guy who can't leave the house without any sack playing some guessing game. Just like with any other work situation, I took the question seriously. Hehe!

To be honest, I didn't know what the bag was. It's my first time to see the style and unless the bag either has a screaming logo or is really one of those legendary bags, I wouldn't know what the bag is.

After pausing for a minute or two and checking the bag from a distance, I was about to give up when I noticed the two buckles and that's when I said,


My boss smiled, which meant my answer was correct. Hehe! When my other colleague asked me how I knew it was Ferragamo (my colleague's guess was Balenciaga), I said, "It's the buckle. That is Ferragamo's Gancini logo."

I found myself smiling when I went back to my cubicle. Hehe! But at the same time, I was amused and bothered that I knew the answer. Yaiks!

"Dude pare, pasensya na, but that's my OGT."

Monday, May 4, 2009

Weekend report...

Unfortunately, I haven't been able to write as much as I want to lately.

Not that much has been going on with my personal life, except with work. And that's primarily the main reason why I haven't been able to update this blog. Some more work has been added to my plate because of the recent thing with the H1N1 virus outbreak. I'm just really praying that it won't hit the country. Otherwise, I really wish that I could clone myself just so I can already finish the other things I need to do concerning Gawad Kalinga, the environment program, admin stuff and so on.

Anyway, the long weekend was a very much welcomed break. Although the original plans didn't push through, I was able to sleep in a little bit longer and spend some time with good friend Carlo and myself. Haha!

Friday evening, Carlo and I met up at Gateway and watched Wolverine. Afterwards, we headed to CBTL for our usual chats which lasts for hours. It's always a joy seeing the guy, because we can talk just about anything. Haha! Gawd, we went overboard with our sugar intake that night. Augh! Dairy Queen, CBTL cheesecakse, Krispy Kreme donuts. Ack! Recipe for a sugar coma. Haha!

Saturday, on the other hand, was also uneventful except for the run. Had a really good run time and finally, figured out how to last a little bit longer. How? Ignore the pain and keep on going. Hahaha!

Checked out the newly opened Fully Booked at Greenbelt 5, too. There was still one copy of the Tom Ford book, which I've been wanting for the longest time. It's 20% off, but even with the discount, the damn book still costs P6,000. Augh!!! Hay!

Had my bimonthly visit to Julius at Piandre. After Abel left Piandre not too long ago, I was afraid of what would happen. Yeah, it sounds shallow but seriously, I've gotten so used to the guy and how he does my hair. Heck, my relationship with him even longer than my "other" relationship. Haha! So far, things have been great with Julius. The guy's really nice, and he listens to what kind of haircut I like, and that's all that really matters to me. Hehe!

Before finally going home, I had to pass by Hobbes for my dose of Yoh-gurt Froz. Argh! It's my latest addiction. But it is a bit expensive even if it's really good. Hay! Why do addictions have to be pricey? Haha! This is all Monet's fault.

And for Sunday, I just stayed home. While the rest of the country was waiting for the Pacquiao-Hatton fight, I was re-reading favorite parts from one of Michael Thomas Ford's novels, and then watching Kingdom of Heaven for the nth time. Harhar!