Monday, October 5, 2009

PBA 2009: My Blogger's Choice Award Vote goes to....

My Vote for the 2009 Bloggers' Choice Award (National)

I vote for flipflopping my way around town (
Bloggers' Choice Award
2009 Philippine Blog Awards

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Book Review: Floundering at 25: A Younglife crisis by Michelle B. Meneses

If you're looking for the ultimate Quarterlife Crisis self-helf book, then don't pick this one up. It doesn't hold all the answers to those life questions that have ben plaguing you since you entered your early twenties. And reading it probably won't help you get closer to those answers either.

But that's okay, Meneses doesn't claim to have written a book to end your crisis. Instead, she has written an honest book about her own younglife crisis. Written just a few days before she was to turn 25 herself, she tackles themes that bother many of our twenty-something lives - corporate "serf-dom", friends, family, love, finances, and even spirituality. And she does so in the tone of a friend who is ready to look at herself honestly. She owns up to her imperfections, and finds hope in the many little battles she's won along the way.

The effect is like that of a friend who leads by example. You start to think.. if she can muster up enough courage to look at her life and herself in the clarity of broad daylight, then maybe I could, too. That's not to say that I agree with all the ways she tried to resolve all her issues, nor do I agree with all the conclusions she's made for herself. But hey, you don't agree with everything your friend says, do you? So don't take everything she says as THE only truth. She's found her own truths, and you should find your own too.

By the end of the book, I started to feel better about my own life. There's something refreshing about knowing that you're not the only one going through a crisis. And there's something even more reassuring when you find that other people have had a tougher time of it than you have. (Schaudenfreude, anyone?)

I'd recommend this book to anyone who hasn't come face to face with her own quarterlife crisis yet. To those who haven't found the courage to admit and talk about it to anyone. And most especially to those who are in denial that they are in one!

As Meneses says in her introduction:

"Let's talk about life and everything else about it. No sugarcoating, no lies; only the plain hard truth. For why else would you be reading this book? You probably feel the same way as I do. You are probably in the same crisis as I am.


Misery loves company."

And once you've learned to accept the fact that you are one of us, then maybe you can start working your way out of it. Reflect, pray, get guidance from older people who've successfully survived it.. do what you can to fight it. Because you've only got license to be in a quarterlife crisis in your twenties. I hope for all of our sakes we've gotten over it by the time we hit our thirties!

Monday, July 27, 2009

My first ultrasound experience

For those of you who don't know this about me - I am afraid of kids! I always have been. Now maybe a little less than before, but to a certain extent, I still am.

But out of love I gathered enough excitement to go with the Tiongsons to get Bern's ultrasound (13 weeks) at this neat place called In My Womb in Megamall. It's this neat little ultrasound place that's cheaper than the hospital, and it's still done by a real doctor. The best thing about it is that there's a viewing room for the family with up to five chairs. There's a huge flat screen TV on the wall so you can all see the ultrasound images and surround sound speakers! And that's probably the only reason why I got to tag along with the whole family for this intimate moment. Haha, adopted daughter na talaga!

And you know what? It was amaaaazing! Seeing that little baby squirming and kicking and turning - all inside Bern's belly! I know I've seen it on TV and my parents and titas all talk about it. But it's just really different when it's someone your age, and someone you were silly college girls with.

This was Bern's first ultrasound when the baby was just a little embryo.

And this is her now at 13 weeks! So fast!

The most amazing things was when the doctor turned on the sound so we could hear the baby's heartbeat. Before that, the whole family and myself were soooo noisy inside the observation room. But when the doctor switched on the speakers and we could hear the baby's strong heartbeat in surround sound, everyone just grew quiet! Blanche and I slowly turned to each other and we both had tears welling up in our eyes. It was just so.. well somewhere halfway between scary and amazing. I mean, that's a real person!

That's the baby's heartbeat represented by the lines below the baby's picture.

And of course Bern had tears welling in her eyes too when the doctor said she was gonna have a baby girl :-) But the doctor also said to wait a few more weeks for her next ultrasound to know for sure what the gender is, coz it's kinda too soon to know for sure. So 'til then, we'll probably hold off on all the shopping for pink baby stuff.

Can't wait 'til December!
I'm designated proxy while Blanche is gonna be out for ship duty again around that time. Hope she comes before Christmas break so I can go.

PS - one last thing.. Don't go for the 4D imaging until your super close to giving birth na. Bern was on her third trimester and the doctor showed us the 4D image, it was still kinda scary! I could hear her say "Doc, go back to 2D nalang!" Heheh, so I guess it'll be a few more months before they go fr the 4D again.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Our new baby

Mom flew into Manila a week after my brithday for her seminar, and to drop off my birthday gift....


She's a 2-month old Mini-Doxie. All my life we've always just had toy-dogs, it was our first time to have a hunting dog and we were in for a surprise! Instead of the usual pa-cute, malambing and relatively mahinhin dogs, this one was super active, always scheming and always trying new ways to get into trouble! It's gonna take some adjusting to have a dog like this. I wonder if she'll start killing birds when she gets older... Well, for now she's still really cute.

Photos by Paolo Dy :-)

Monday, May 4, 2009

Movie Review: One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975)

I’ve seen this film 3 times. And each time I would think – either I really don’t like it or I just didn’t get it. But I’d eventually watch it again because, hey, it’s a classic and Best Picture. So maybe I’ll have better luck the fourth time around and finally see the light. We’ll see next year ☺

I do find the character of McMurphy very interesting - a sneaky trouble-maker con leading his merry band of misfits at the state mental hospital. It’s bound to be amusing with Jack Nocholson, Danny Devito and Christopher Lloyd among many others in the cast.

But somehow, it just doesn’t engage me long enough. Halfway through and I’m spacing out. I find I have to force myself through the last quarter of the movie because of “hey, I’ve come this far, I might as well finish it” guilt.

But that is not to say that it’s a bad movie. It’s an interesting plot with a brilliant cast. I guess it just doesn’t speak to me, that’s all.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Film Review: Casablanca (1943)

I have a confession to make. This is actually the first time I’ve ever seen Casablanca. (I know, a lot of you want to shoot me now!) Well, at least the first time I’ve watched it all the way through. And I cannot believe I waited this long to do so!

You’re instantly drawn in the moment they bring you back to Moroccan Casablanca, and captivated by the character of Rick Blaine. A man’s man – smooth, tough, and doesn’t waste his time with anyone else’s bull. The man who sticks his neck out for no one, and falls for no one. The epitome of cool.

Of course, that is until Ilsa Laszlo walks into his cafĂ©, and turns his world around. Imagine coming face to face with the one who got away, and finding out that she’s married to the legendary Victor Lazlo – probably the only man you admire.

So what’s the moral of this story? Every man’s downfall is a woman! And if he seems to be immune to women, it’s because somewhere in his past, he’s already fallen and learned his lesson!

Heheh jk! It’s probably something about Rick sacrificing his personal happiness for the good of the Resistance and the people whose lives depend on it. But what I will always remember is thinking this – what girl doesn’t want to be the one who breaks down a tough guy? Especially a Rick Blaine.

After all, hasn’t it been proven time and again that what brute strength and manly threats cannot do, womanly wiles can?! ☺

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Book Review: Chasing Harry Winston (Lauren Weisberger)

Yet another good one from the woman that gave us The Devil Wears Prada. Although I must admit that we didn’t get off to a good start.

I read a few chapters and found it rather flat, so I left it sleeping on my bookshelf for about 5 months, with no real intention of finishing it. But then I had an impromptu business trip, and as it was the easiest one to grab, I ended up passing the idle hours at the airport forcing myself to continue the book.

Emmy was your typical post-break-up dumpee whose expectations of wedding bells and babies have been shattered by the man she thought was the love of her life.

Adrianna was the Paris Hilton-ish modern day princess, except she’s Latina-hot.

And Leigh, the “Everything’s-perfect-so-why-am-I-not-happy?” type.

They all make a pact one night to each do something drastic in their lives (SPOILER ALERT) – Emmy to go on her “tour-de-whore”, Adrianna to trade in her own tour-de-whore with a quest to bag an eligible man who will put a Harry Winston on her finger, and Leigh to…well, I can’t remember! I think she was just keeping tabs on both girls.

An interesting enough plot, but for some reason I just felt that it dragged on for a couple more paragraphs. Thankfully, halfway through, things started to pick up, and I found myself no longer forced to reach the end of each page. The lives of Emmy, Leigh and Adrianna just started to get interesting. (No, no more spoilers coming, you’ll have to read it for yourselves!)

All in all, I think it was a pretty good read. Maybe Weisberger took a bit long to set up the situation and the characters, but once things started getting interesting, you get hooked all the way ‘til the end. Definitely worth adding to your chick lit collection ☺

Monday, March 9, 2009

High Pressure Spelling Bee + Kids with Issues + Celebrity Guests = All Night Laughtrip!

It's here! It's finally here! Atlantis Productions will be running
The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee in Manila!! :-) It will run from March 20 to April 4 at the Carlos P. Romulo Auditorium of the RCBC Building in Makati City.

(Click on the image to make it bigger. Feel free to download
and pass along to friends or repost on your own blogs!)

While doing my internship at the international headquarters of the World Youth Alliance in Manhattan, New York, I practically saved my intern stipend month after month to fund my Broadway fever. (And I could not be happier to give up food for front and center show tickets! Hehehe, no TKTS booth for me!)

Spelling Bee was one of those that I was fortunate enough to catch. It's a story of a bunch of kids with issues, and the high pressure of the Spelling Bee finals causes them to pop one by one. You have the typical Asian-American perfect kid in Marcy Park, the go! go! go! feminist in Logainne Schwartzandgrubenerre, the struggling-with-puberty Chip Tolentino to mention just a few of my favorites. It's a hilarious cast of characters with the most absurd personality disorders.. halfway through the play you wanna just tell them "Dude, chill, it's just a spelling bee!" But hey, when we were in gradeschool, didn't we all think that our problems were the biggest problems in the world??

As if it wasn't funny enough already, the Broadway version had "guest spellers" in every show. And by "guest spellers" I mean people they plucked out from among the crowd in the theatre lobby before the show started. So imagine some kid, or a sweet old lolo brought onstage along with all those actors, being twirled around and trying to dance to the beat of the musical and also having their turn to spell at the spelling bee! It was totally hilarious.

Now of the Philippine version, Atlantis decided to throw in a special treat -- on top of the guest spellers chosen from the crowd, they're also inviting celebrity guest spellers! They're not revealing the list of celebrities per night, so it's kind of like a lottery game. You'll never know, the guest celebrity speller at your show just might be your crush :-) *wink*

You guys definitely have to catch this! I'm already planning to watch at least 2 shows.

For tickets, I hope you will choose to buy from the World Youth Alliance because tickets bought through them automatically entitles them to a donation per ticket sold. Ticket details below:

Order your tickets for the following dates from WYA:
March 20, 8PM (Friday)
March 21, 8PM (Saturday)
March 22, 3PM (Sunday)
March 22, 8PM (Sunday)
March 27, 8PM (Friday)
March 28, 2PM (Saturday)
March 29, 3PM (Sunday)
April 3, 8PM (Friday)
April 4, 8PM (Saturday)

Tickets come in the following denominations:
Orchestra Php 1,300
Orchestra Side Php 1,100
Lodge Php 900
Lodge Side Php 700
Balcony Php 500

For tickets, call or text 0917-5457225 or email

- - -

Click here to see the Broadway cast performing a song from the musical at the 59th Tony Awards.

The Manila run of SPELLING BEE is directed by Bobby Garcia, Choreography by Chari Arespacochaga, Set Design by Tuxqs Rutaquio, Lighting Design by Johnsy Reyes, Costume Design by Twinkle Zamora and Musical Direction by Jojo Malferari.

Meet the cast: