Monday, February 25, 2008


Friendly's Guesthouse, downtown Manila's friendliest (and coolest) hostel for groovy backpackers is looking for a full-time GENERAL OPERATIONS MANAGER. If you are an organized soul and you like meeting new and interesting international people, then this could be the job for you. Call Benjie at (917) 3331418 or email your resume and letter of intent to: A background in tourism may be helpful but not necessary. No age limit either. Log onto: for learn more about the place. It's a real fun place to be, truth be told. Must be even more fun to work for them.


Is this a ghost "orb"? I took this photo last week when I was in the morgue of the Fort Mills Hospital ruins on the island of Corregidor. Just wondering if anyone out there has the "third eye" and can confirm this for me? Or is it just the reflection of a moth or something?

Saturday, February 23, 2008



The 2008 Philippine Jazzfest runs from February 29 to March 16.
Tons of great acts in tons of great venues. I can't even begin to tell you how cool this will be.
Log onto their site since there is no way that I can write all the information on this post.

Friday, February 22, 2008


I had a health scare last year. From high cholesterol to high uric acid to acid reflux. Due to the taxing nature of my work (yapping in full volume as I run around the rougher parts of this city in full throttle and costume almost six times a week), by December 2007, my body sent me signals and began turning itself inside out. So after an executive check-up and spending a night in ultra creepy Makati Medical Center (above), I have learned that I'm still a salvageable creature and am now determined more than ever to lose some weight and get back in shape. Not only just to recover the waifish figure I left behind (below at the age of 17 wearing a medium sized Island Spice shirt with friend Mawi) but also to avoid ever spending another night in Makati Medical Center again.

And thanks to the folks at Mad Crowd Media, Gold's Gym and Rogin-E, I have been given a two month gym subscription and all the Rogin-E Multivitamins that I can wolf down to see how fast I can get into the shape that I want. Actually, I already work out at The Manila Peninsula but I don't have assistance from a personal trainer. For the last couple of years, I have just been making up my own workout program simply because I hate taking instructions from anyone. Now I am finally ready to allow some guy at Gold's gym named Jopet to tell me what to do. And let's see what happens. Wow. Look at that side view below taken last June. That has GOT to go...

This is all part of the Rogin-E's Bloggers Showdown to see how fast Paul, Anton, and I lose weight and get into shape. So may the best man win. Bring it on. This are the "before" pictures below. The "after" will be posted in two months. Sorry if the following pictures offend anyone out there. Truth be told, they kinda offended me too.

Thanks Juan For the reaaaallly scarily clinical pictures of yours truly above. Whoof... Ow.

I also heard myself referred to as "the fat guy who tours people" by some stranger last week.

Well, let's just see about that, shall we?


Just got back from the island of Corregidor. It was a very mellow weekend. Only five people signed up (What the hell everyone? Am I made of chopped liver?). But no big deal. I don't feel forgotten simply because the entire hotel was booked by Makati Mayor Jejomar Binay and his UP college classmates for their alumni weekend (Boy, can those folks karaoke till the cows come home) and there was no room for my guests. Nevertheless, I still spent the weekend bonding with family and friends and facilitating their love for photography. The five people were my brother Miguel, cousin David and his son, Powee, and my highschool classmate Nena, her friend Angela, and Angela's stuffed toy, Baluba (yes, Baluba). Loved this weekend, since I knew everyone really well, I felt no need to "put on a show" so to speak and was just as relaxed as everyone else. Sometimes, leading thirty people through jungle and World War II ruins with a costume and props can be really exhausting. Hallelujah for the sunset cocktails at the end of the day. Here are some of my favorite shots of the weekend by Nena. Check more out here...

Sunset cocktails.

Spanish Lighthouse

The Pacific War Memorial Eternal Flame (Which needs a facelift. FAST!)

The MacArthur statue. He returned. Boy, did he return in a big way.

The tail of Corregidor Island.

Philippine Flag through the ruins of Corregidor Theater.

Milling about the Former Fort Mills.

Oh, and a great big shout out to photographer Emily Nathan and Magda who were in town last month to do a feature on the Philippines for Travel + Leisure SEAsia (Such a hip magazine and so glad that they are giving our islands some attention)... Thank you so much for sending me the link to these great pictures of my Chinatown tour. Amazing. You made San Nicolas and Binondo look ethereal. Here are some of the lovely shots and check out her site here:

A picture of a jeepney on Madrid Street.

The El Hogar Filipino Building.

Magda, the uber-photo assistant.
Lucky Pineapples.

A big thanks also to Peejo Pilar for the uber great feature Maxim magazine. Run out everyone and buy a copy. It's still on the stands.

And finally, C'mon, everyone. My next overnight trip to amazing Corregidor is on March 29-30. Call now and make a booking. There is still lots of room.

Thursday, February 21, 2008


Come one. Come all!
Don't miss the opening reception of my friends Romina A. Diaz and Ann Wizer's "Living on Loring" (Art for Social Change) exhibit on Saturday, March 8, 2008 from 3 P.M. onwards at Galleria Duemila. The exhibit is the result of a collaborative photography workshop held by Romina and Anne for 12 young girls from a distressed neighborhood on Loring Street in Pasay City. Very cool stuff and I'm sure the snacks will be nice. They are classy like that.

Visit the official Living on Loring website for more details. Or text 0917-5296133.

More about Galleria Duemila here and directions to get there here:

Also, feel free post this on your blog, website, and social networking sites, and forward this to your friends and contacts.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Oh my god. Can I just tell you? I don't care about ZTE and the Jun Lozada brouhaha. I don't care about it at all. I haven't even kept the TV on a local channel long enough to even pretend to care about Jun Lozada and Atienza and NBN and The First Gentleman et al. When I see anything about this ZTE issue on television, I just go "Eeek. Next channel!" and switch stations like my hand was going to burst into flames if I didn't. Not that I am diminishing the issue at all. Corruption is a big issue in a developing country like ours. But in this particular instance, it's just the hypocrisy and grandstanding of those who are doing the condemnation that just turns me off. And poor little Jun Lozada gets himself thrown in the middle. Poor shmuck.

I mean, yes, the First Gentleman is a little piglet. No doubt about that. But please don't tell me that all the politicians pursuing this issue aren't little piglets either (below). Getting little greasy slices of pork from projects like the NBN is modus operandi in ANY administration - it's no secret to us and it's no secret to the senators doing the grilling. It's been the modus operandi for decades! Where else would ANY administration get money to do things like, oh, give to senators and congressmen for their election campaigns? Senators and Congressmen don't come for free, ya know. Tip: instead of looking at the noisy ones, let's try and count who are the quiet ones in Senate and Congress. Perhaps they are quiet because they already were given their pieces of the pork. And it's only the squealing ones that are upset because they didn't get theirs. Hence, if it's all just piggies fighting piggies over pieces of pork that they just pass on to other piggies, then it's just politics in the end. Period. Philippine politics and governance is sick, that is as obvious as obvious can be. But will this Jun Lozada scandal be the catalyst for the great changes that need to be made? Ha! Great changes will be done in this society through small ways and on a person to person basis. Paradigm shifts don't happen through Senate hearings. Trust me, this "moral revolution" WILL NOT be televised.

Do I think corruption should be addressed? Yes. Do I think getting rid of Gloria will solve this issue? No. Do I agree with JDV that a moral revolution in government should be pursued? Yes. But will that revolution come from Senate and from Congress or from JDV himself. Hell no. Parehong baboy silang lahat. So that's why I'm ignoring the politics and protests. And judging by their sad rally last week (Please. Makati Business Club, Black and White Movement, Cory Aquino et al. More people attended the Beyonce concert than your rally), I think others are too.

Idea to float by the Senate: Start the moral revolution by commiting mass hara kiri. Zest-o juice drink with a dash of cyanide would be my cocktail of choice for you all.

Anyone from ABS CBN out there who can tell me if the Lozada scandal is bringing up ratings? Thanks Krookroo for the pic of Lozada, ANSAV for the spoof on the senators above, and to my brother Miguel for helping me figure out why I just don't care.

And omigosh. John Marzan has the claws out for Bong Austero and me! Jeez. Why are all these anti Gloria people so hormonal? Peace, guys. Really.