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Thursday, July 31, 2014

Art Talk: Noli Principe Manalang Presents An Apple to Remember












Every time I travel, visiting art galleries is almost always on top of my list so I was very happy last night when Ate Mimi invited Mama and I to view the current one-man exhibition of amazing watercolour paintings by prize-winning artist Noli Principe Manalang.

Noli is very self-effacing and modest and it took a fellow watercolourist, Margie Lim, to trumpet all his achievements in the local art world - and it does show in his current batch of work, his third one-man show in a span of 12 years!

Actually it's easy to understand why it takes time for him to finish each painting. They're done very meticulously, and since watercolour is such a difficult medium, his mastery of putting just the right shade and tone to every figure in his paintings shows his mastery over the medium. His mastery also of the human anatomy kind of reminds you of Renaissance artist, Michelangelo!

The guys in his paintings are oozing with sexual appeal and their sinewy figures are a delight to watch, especially for me - alam na kung bakit!!

The funny thing is, I forgot to take a picture of my most favorite painting in this set of his, where you see Superman, Astroboy and an equally hot hunk sharing space!

However, budget wise, I should just content myself with the first picture in this group, which shows a good looking hunk, which I think is Icarus, being prepped up, by some sort of guardian angel.

It's still not within the price range I wanted but hopefully, it's still available till the exhibition ends on the 13th of August and let's see if I can make an offer for it.

Noli told us though that he has practically sold all his artwork, around 600 paintings all in all!! So I wouldn't be surprised if some intrepid rich collector snaps up some of these paintings.

Well, if you're in the BGC area and have time to spare, Noli Principe Manalang's exhibition of watercolour paintings, An Apple to Remember is at the Art Galilea gallery which is just across Fitness First The Fort, on the second floor of the Fort Pointe building.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Our New Favorite Tambayan: Belleville Cafe in Scout Rallos Quezon City


There's a cute and cozy cafe that we discovered this week called Belleville Cafe.  It's located in Scout Rallos in Quezon City, just walking distance from Cocoon Hotel.  We went there tonight and we had the whole place to ourselves.  So we took many pictures of us there including the one you can see on top.

I ordered mocha frappuccino and the price was 140 pesos.  The mocha tasted good and had enough ice on it.  I will definitely go back to this place.  It's cozy, quiet and is a perfect place to be writing!

2014 Women's Wimbledon Final: My Most Favorite TV Show for the Week Ending July 25, 2014


I wasn't able to see the 2014 women's final in Wimbledon because I had dinner set for that night.  Fortunately, I was able to finally catch it this week thanks to Star Sports!  The scoreline does not do Eugenie Bouchard any justice.  At 63 60, I really thought Eugenie just played erratically.

I was wrong!

She really tried her best but Petra Kvitova was just playing at such a high level, Genie was no match to her that day.

Anyway, here are my ten favorite TV shows for the week ending July 25, 2014 -

#1 Star Sports - Wimbledon Women's Final - Kvitova vs. Bouchard

#2 HBO - The Great Gatsby

#3 History - The Nazi Gospels

#4 CI - The Long Island Serial Killer

#5 HBO - TalHotBlond

#6 HBO - True Blood - saving Arlene

#7 TV5Monde - Village Prefer Du Francais

#8 CI - Lost Boy -Mobsters

#9 Jack - Grimm - Negro and girl

#10 Jack - Arrow - nasugatan

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Aljur Abrenica: Dude, Actors Can Do the Sexy Route and Still Have Careers!



I read with amusement Aljur Abrenica's complaints against what his handlers is asking him to do. A lot of local actors stripped to their skivvies during their prime - Mark Gil (Batch 81), Philip Salvador (Bona), Richard Gomez and lately, Coco Martin  (frontal nudity pa nga e!) - and it didn't hurt their careers!  

I watched Aljur's show kasi at the Music Museum last year and paid 2k++ for the ticket and he didn't even take off his shirt!  Harang!  Waste of money! Did he think people would watch his show for his singing talent?  Winner ba siya ng The Voice Philippines?

So now he's wondering why he has no more projects.  Dude, Markki Stroem and Sam Concepcion gamely went shirtless in their Music Museum shows and not only for one minute, matagal sila nagshirtless dude, enough for connoisseurs like me to have a baul of pictures!  So we love them for being game enough!

Anyway, as they say, if you have it, flaunt it!

Para bang nanuod ka ng FHM show tapos si Marian Rivera naka-Victorian gown! Ano yun?  

La Grande Bellezza: A Sumptuous Visual Feast with Philosophical and Political Overtones







If you're not doing anything important this weekend and you love art films, I strongly suggest you catch the screening (it's free!!) of La Grande Bellezza (The Great Beauty), the Italian movie that won this year's Oscar for Best Foreign Language FIlm, at the Italian Film Festival at the Shangri-la Mall!

I daresay it's the most beautifully photographed movie I've seen in years - Rome is just stunning - nganga talaga me in many scenes - especially that the movie brings out the best that Italy could offer the world in terms of history, artworks, fashion and natural beauty.

And that this movie has philosophical and political overtones makes it even more compelling, not that I understood all its philosophical musings or how the movie stands as a critic of the Berlusconi political era.  I was content to  just sit there and enjoy the delicious visual feast that this movie is!  

I also love the haunting music that director used - the first scene which featured an operatic aria sets you in the mood and the last scene where you feel like you're the one in the boat making its way along the Tiber river while a melancholy piano piece plays in the background made me want to stay in the movie theatre just a few minutes more.

The movie also has an acerbic sense of humor which sent the audience I was with last night laughing at the sarcasm and the absurdity of many of the scenes.  I especially enjoyed the scene where the half-naked actor finds the nun called "The Saint" sleeping on the floor of his bedroom!!

Plus, there are so many interesting characters in it!  There's a dwarf, an aging stripper, penniless aristocrats, dirty old men (ooopppsss), lots of beautiful women (and lots of breast exposure too!), pretentious performance artists, and lots of priests and nuns (this is Rome after all, where the Vatican is)!  Never a dull moment talaga.

The Filipino movie that most reminds me of this movie is the classic Richard Gomez - Dawn Zulueta movie Hihintayin Kita Sa Langit where the director used the stunning natural beauty of our country as the backdrop of his story. That's basically what Paolo Sorrentino (the film's director) does here in this movie - using Rome as the canvas of his story.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Are You An Aspiring Model?


Modeling Workshop 
August 2, Saturday, 2pm - 6pm
FABE Photo Studio.
To join, just text 0916.654.5707

I'm also inviting you to watch the
FABE Concert Series and Fashion Show
August 9, 2014, SATURDAY
SM City North Edsa Skydome
FREE ENTRANCE
Featuring performances by:
Moira Lacambra
Chiessa Ong
The 5th Drive
Jason Recla
Jimcen Young
Aiko Ella Mae
Jerome Robielos
and other fantastic performers.

If you are an aspiring singer or a model, have a great exposure.
Text to join 0916.654.5707 today.
A series of great performances.
A group of aspiring models from children, teens and young adults who will showcase their ramp walk.
FREE ENTRANCE TO ALL YOUR FAMILY AND GUESTS.

It's going to be a great SATURDAY!

Friday, July 18, 2014

A Shocking Development in True Blood Keeps It As My Favorite TV Show For the Week


In a shocking development in the story of True Blood, Alcide, played by the very yummy Joe Manganiello, dies in the episode I saw this week!  I'm shocked!  There's also a homoerotic twist employed by the show's producers and writers, which I love!  This show continues to surprise me!

Here are my favorite TV shows for the week ending July 18, 2014 - 

#1 HBO - True Blood - Alcide dies

#2 CI - Mafia killers - assassin - Sullivan Kids

#3 beTV - Everybody Loves Raymond - marry girl turned down

#4 HBO - The Leftovers - interview 2 old people

#5 Animal Planet - Killer Bears

#6 Diva - Law and Order SVU - Podcast - kind woman killed

#7 ABS-CBN - Umagang Kay Ganda - brownouts

#8 CI - Igna ghost

#9 Cinema One - Dear Mama - Rey PJ Abellana

Hunk Du Jour: Step Up All In's Ryan Guzman






My current hunk du jour is Ryan Guzman of Step Up All In.  Not only is he eye candy, he can also act and dance well!  We really enjoyed watching the movie because of him!  My friend, Budz, couldn't help gush all over him everytime he appears onscreen!

A True Blood Season 7 Episode: My Most Favorite TV Show For the Week


My most favorite TV show for the past decade, True Blood, returns with its seventh and sadly, last season.  I think I missed some of the earlier episodes since there are things missing in the puzzle of the first episode I saw this week.  

In this episode I saw, the town of Bon Temps is being invaded by this group of rogue vampires who kidnapped some of the main characters of the show!  Even if there were some missing pieces in the story, I still enjoyed the episode and the show is still as entertaining and intriguing as the first time I saw it.

Here are my nine favorite TV shows for the week ending July 11, 2014 -

#1 - HBO - True Blood

#2 - HBO - The Leftovers

The Leftovers is another interesting HBO show I watched this week.  It's about a community where a group of people just disappeared after a calamity.  Essentially, the characters in this show are the ones leftover after that catastrophic event.  

The first episode I saw featured the town fighting with this group of people who don't speak!  Very intriguing!

#3 - HBO - The Village

This is the M. Night Shyamalan movie which I enjoyed but has a very funny premise.

#4 - Diva - What Not to Wear

#5 - CI - Deadly Wives - gun in grandma's house

#6 - CI - Deadly Wives - Kristy / Jerry

#7 - Fox Sports - Federer vs. Djokovic - Wimbledon men's championship match

#8 - CI - Phillips - Forensic Investigation

#9 - HBO - The Notebook

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Movie Review: Ryan Guzman Sizzles in Step Up All In




There are actually so many things to like in the latest Step Up movie series, Step Up All In.  I don't know how many they have come up yet, but I started watching this dance movie franchise way back in 2006, when Channing Tatum was still this relatively unknown hot guy has been the springboard of a new host of hot looking guys who can be both models and dancers at the same time!
And that is exactly what Ryan Guzman does in this movie.  It's not difficult to love those puppy eyes and those 6-pack abs and that the guy can dance too is just icing on the cake! And that he can also act just tells you that there are so many goodlooking men like him in Hollywood just wanting to be the next big star.  Channing Tatum eventualy became an A-list actor.  If Ryan Guzman plays his cards right, he could follow Tatum's footsteps as well.

As for the movie, just lay back and relax and just enjoy all the dancing that almost 50-60% of this movie offers!  I love each one of the dance sequences and now that I've actually danced in a big venue, I already know the hard work that each dancer puts in just to do that 3 minute video!  It's definitely hard work guys and I appreciate a lot what the dancers in the movie put in here.  Not only do they have to dance well, they also have to act, at least in a believable manner!

Izabella Miko as Alexxa is our next favorite character in the movie and I believe that if enough gay men watch this movie, Alexxa would be top the next drag queen contest.  She's just so camp and they way she talks and moves her hands and the clothes she wear - truly a drag queen's fantasy!

Well, now that the movies today cost 200-250 pesos per ticket, this would be better seen on a big screen rather than on your tablets or your TVs! All the dance sequences are well-thought off and the cast, the director and the choreographers really did a good job in making everything glossy and flashy and joyful to watch!  Definitely worth the ticket price!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Piandre is Pampering Deluxe!


I haven't gone to a salon for years now ever since I got back from Hong Kong.  When I was younger, I'd usually prefer salons to barber shops since the former were always doing more hip work with my hair, and since I was younger, I was also more adventurous.

Unfortunately, I got older, and came back to Manila, and here, any guy who colors his hair is immediately branded as 'gay' so I decided to not color my hair anymore and just stick to black, otherwise, I'd have no sex at all!! See how weird the motivation is?  Anyway, gay men also don't like guys with long hair, the less hair you have, the more they like it - translation - the more you got laid!  

So back to the barber I shop I went for the past few years - with their no-nonsense quick service with matching shoulder massage.  Problem is, I always ended up with a barber's cut and there are days that I felt bored with my look!

Anyway, on a whim, I decided to try the Piandre Salon in Timog, since I just wanted to pamper myself, remembering that the last time I went to a salon was more than 5 years ago - and I did miss the pampering and the nice work the hairstylists usually do.  

My brother mentioned about the good service in Piandre so off I went there.  I was dressed pambahay, nakatsinelas lang, and I just wanted to observe if they treat people who are underdressed like me, as opposed to those who are well-dressed.

Well, wala naman palang diperensya!  They treated me courteously and politely even if I was underdressed, and I really felt underdressed because the place looked spacious and serene, smelled good, even the bathroom - and everything looked clean and surprisingly, the prices were affordable!!  Akala ko I'd end up spending 5K like what I used to do in a competing salon, but my bill was pretty ok, considering the deluxe service I got!

Unfortunately, I did not take photos, mainly because I do not want people taking photos of me in a salon, as well.  It's my private time and the last thing I need is someone clicking away here and there, disturbing the peace!  Buti na lang walang selfie maniacs today!

So the photo you see above I took from the net.  But that's exactly what you will see soon as you enter their salon.

Michael did my hair and George did the washing.  The service was fast and non-intrusive, and they were clear about the details, since I would always ask for the price first before I indulged in a service they were suggesting.  The place kasi looked pricey, hahaha, so I just wanted to make sure I won't have a heart attack upon seeing the bill when I left it.

They prefer that the customers book for an appointment so that's what I'm going to do next time.  However, you can always walk-in if it's your first time.  I like their Timog branch na.  It's near the house lang, no need to pay parking kasi they have sidewalk parking.

Michael did my hair very short and colored it a bit so I think it would be around 2 months before I go back.  Looking forward to my next visit, and possibly another change of look!







Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Like Father, Like Son: MUST WATCH MOVIE in the ongoing Japanese Film Festival at Shangri-la Mall!



Comedy ako kanina! I was queueing for one of the movies in the ongoing Japanese Film Festival in Shangri-la Mall expecting to see a certain movie, and when the movie started, iba pala ang showing!  The organizers changed the movie schedules without me knowing it!!

Kaya pala I was wondering why the pila was so mahaba!!! 

Anyway, no complaints because the movie I saw, Like Father, Like Son, was a Jury Prize winner in Cannes (translation: it would bore to death almost everyone else I know!) since Cannes winners normally do not endear themselves to the masses.

The movie is one of those quiet dramas that I love!  Para syang Secrets and Lies or In the Bedroom because the focus is on a dilemma that a family is facing.  Well, in this movie, two families are forced to react to a mistake made by a hospital - a shocking discovery about their sons!

I read that Steven Spielberg is going to produce an American version of it.  Parang nakikita ko na si Joaquin Phoenix as the main Dad and maybe Mark Ruffalo as the other Dad.  Tapos the wives could be Amy Adams and Marisa Tomei.  O di ba, may casting na agad!

Actually, the kids have to be casted well, kasi the kids here are soooooooooooooooo adorable!! I think they were the main reason many of the ladies in my row were sniffling and crying. I think those who have kids felt the pain more than those who don't have kids yet.  Iba kasi talaga ang feeling pag kukunin ang anak mo, para kang maloloka na di mo maintindihan!

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Wimbledon Match Between Maria Sharapova and Angelique Kerber: My Most Favorite TV Show of the Week


Wimbledon matches still dominated by TV ratings this week as several thriller matches transpired this second week of Wimbledon.  On top of the list is the quarterfinal match between Maria Sharapova and Angelique Kerber.  Kerber just played the match of her life and edged the Russian.

Here are my ten favorite TV shows for the week ending July 4, 2014 -

#1 Fox Sports - Maria Sharapova vs. Angelique Kerber

#2 Fox Sports - Rafael Nadal vs. Nick Kyrgios

#3 TCM - Adam's Rib - Katharine Hepburn movie

#4 Fox Sports - Alize Cornet vs. Eugenie Bouchard

#5 Fox Sports - Petra Kvitova vs. Lucie Safarova

#6 Fox Sports - Petra Kvitova vs. Barbora Zahlavova Strycova

#7 Fox Sports - Grigor Dimitrov vs. Andy Murray

#8 Fox Sports - Roger Federer vs. Stan Wawrinka

#9 Fox Sports - Andrea Petkovic vs. Eugenie Bouchard

#10 Fox Sports - Simona Halep vs. Zarina Diyas

Loved the Food and Ambiance of Relish!












Relish, the restaurant beside Cerchio has been there for sometime now, but my friends and I have always preferred to eat at Cerchio.  So when we had our monthly get-together again, I thought of trying it out.  And I was very happy with my experience. The service is topnotch and the food is delicious!  When my nephew spilled his glass of water and caused a mess on our table, the staff cleaned it up immediately without much fuss.

Zach, the waiter who attended to us was also very patient with our picture-taking! Imagine, having to handle five different gadgets just to get pictures!  And we had to ask him to take it from one side to another!  He was just very gracious and attentive to our needs as well!

The ambiance is cozy and the lighting is bright enough.  Also, even if all the guests were talking, you didn't have to necessarily hear about what the other table is talking about!

Well, if you glean from our pictures, we surely had a great time there!  The resto really achieved its motto of "Hello, Happiness".  It really gave out that vibe!

I am definitely coming back!  This time with my own date!  

By the way, the restaurant can be found in Scout Limbaga.  That street intersects Morato Avenue.  It's also beside Cerchio.  As for parking, there's a valet, or there are 'parking boys' nearby who can give you parking space.  The fee ranges from 30-50 pesos.

White Party Manila Pictures: So Much Hunk Eye Candy











Well, I couldn't stop clicking last night!  There was just so much eye candy to deal with!  I actually love the arrangement that the organizers did.  That they allowed everyone to be that close to the stage was genius!