Showing posts from July, 2014

ms charlize meets men of manila

mahatma gandah has always admired the prose of the doyenne of philippine fashion journalism -- ms. charlize. she has a way with words. she strings together, short, simple and easy to comprehend words and sentences flawlessly like a master seamstress and the result is simply divine -- an understated elegance much like a chanel or a valentino. nothing flamboyant, nothing excessive, only fabulousness.

when she brought up the idea of doing a foto shoot with the new boy band of manille -- the men of manila -- mahatma gandah agreed right away. who would not take the chance to work with ms. charlize and be featured in her widely read column on the business mirror (the country's top business paper) that has become the bible of those who matter in the fashion industry both here and abroad? surely, not mahatma gandah.

so one smoldering sunday morning, ms. charlize was surrounded by the eager boys of men of manila not only to sit in front of her and be interviewed, but also to get to know h…

ryan, glorious ryan wants to shine

there's a new boy in the band. young, fresh, fabulously gorgeous and the current title holder of mr. olive-c, a sort of nationwide and campus-wide search for the young man and woman that will represent the product. nice, well-mannered, gentle, always smiling, ryan paul artienda has a very bright future in the entertainment industry if he plays his cards right.

ryan recently joined men of manila -- the newest boy band to rock the country -- to replace one member who decided it was not in his destiny to be a total entertainer. his loss, ryan's gain. what can we say? luck indeed smiles to those who are humble, and ryan, even at first meeting, emanates the humility that is so lacking in today's generation, especially those who think, rightfully or wrongly, that they're blessed with good looks. ugh!

but seventeen year-old ryan, born september twenty seven nineteen ninety six, is still ambivalent about fame. while he says he wants to be in the entertainment business, he is …

hk diary three - if the bed fits

i never realized how expensive it was to rent a flat in hong kong and how small the apartments were (and how precious space was, something that we simply neglected at home) until i started looking for one. on my second week, my friend and former office mate (the one who fetched me at the ifc mall when i arrived from manila) reminded me to start looking for a place to live because in two weeks' time, i would have to move out of the apartment building that was provided for me by my company.

he gave me the number of his broker who helped him find a flat when he moved to the former british colony a few years ago. he said the broker was very efficient, could understand and speak english, and did not charge much. so i called her up and she said we could start looking for an apartment on the same day, right after i got off from work.

she was very business like. on the phone, she asked me how much was my budget (i told her six thousand hong kong dollars a month and she told me that was t…

hk diary two - how do you say comfort room in english?

there was a bit of rain, shy, unassuming, irregular, visible from the glass walls of ifc mall, when i made my way up through a slow moving escalator to meet a friend at the third floor. it was chilly too. the mall must have turned up the air conditioner because it was summer. good thing i was still wearing the jacket that i wore in the plane, so i felt warm.

but my friend, a former office mate in my just resigned company in manila, must have been acclimatized because he was wearing a flimsy cotton shirt and city shorts, and his favourite nike running shoes. an umbrella, obviously a giveaway from his (and my former) company because  i could still read the big, bold logo printed on it even if it was folded, on hand.

"you're finally here!" my friend said, smiling cheerfully. we have not seen each other since he moved to hong kong a few years ago. he was still working for the same company. he reached out for my bigger luggage, but i was embarrassed to let him carry it becau…

hk diary one -- the fire within

the city was covered in a summer mist and the pavements were wet when i arrived in hong kong one uneventful saturday afternoon in august. the plane ride was smooth that i felt as though i was just inside the living room or a hotel lobby, seated comfortably on a sofa, leafing through magazines and waiting for something or somebody to arrive. i was grateful for that given my fear of flying.

the airport, modern, sleek, clean as a newly washed baby, the floors shiny and bright but not slippery, was not as crowded as it used to be. after spending more than half an hour queuing at the immigration, then waiting for my two pieces of luggage to arrive at the carousel, and finally exchanging some us dollars into the local currency, i stepped out of the airport, a bit overwhelmed, into the waiting train that would bring me to central. specifically, at the ifc mall.

this was not my first time in the former british colony. i have been here before several times. but those were mostly short trips. …

a posh ccp complex? why not?!

every time i pass by the ccp (cultural center of the philippines) complex along roxas boulevard, i couldn't help but feel sad. sad that apart from staging film festivals, plays, ballets and other performances, hosting art exhibits, the complex has not been fully utilized to its utmost potentials.

sure, some health enthusiasts run, walk, exercise around it, particularly near the gorgeous fountain, and a few people use the grassy area in front of it as a picnic ground especially during the scorching summer. but that's not what i am talking about.

what i mean is, the ccp could house a coffee shop or two (no more starbucks please. we're talking about a filipino owned coffee shop that serves philippine brewed coffee. what about a theme coffee shop featuring philippine plays or films?), a restaurant, a bar, a book store, an museum, an art gallery, among other establishments to lure the crowds not just during theatre season. but all year round -- from january to december. if pos…