Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Zara March 2012 lookbook

Spanish clothing brand Zara has just released photos from its March 2012 lookbook. A couple of stuff that I like:

I'm totally digging the preppy look here. I love how the outfit's put together: gingham shirt, bow tie, patterned jacket -- perfect!

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There are also some nice jackets, like this blue parka below; lots of pockets yet it still looks trim enough. The khaki one's another option if you want something with less pockets and in a more neutral shade. I also love the cropped cut.

Monday, February 27, 2012

[Lookbook 02.27.2012] In full bloom

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By the looks of it, summer's gonna arrive early this year. It's really been warm and humid these past days, so I thought of wearing something summery today -- a floral-printed shirt. And it's not just the print that makes this shirt scream summer; the sheer fabric is equally responsible for it.

I know a lot of guys still shy away from floral prints. I say, lighten up. Floral prints can both brighten up your mood and elicit the same feeling from others. But if you still can't call yourself to wear one, start with subtle patterns, then slowly build on it until you're comfortable with bolder prints. As for the shirt I'm wearing, I consider it somewhere in between. I guess it's the neutralizing effect the pattern of white circles has on the floral print.

[Ramblings] Noynoy still unable to rally people ala-EDSA

And so the country has just celebrated the 26th anniversary of the EDSA People Power Revolution. And so President Noynoy Aquino has babbled about his daang matuwin (straight path) for the gazillionth time. And so he has urged Filipinos to take action against the judiciary yet again.

Don't you just tire of him? No matter what he says, how much he says, and how often he says them, Noynoy is still unable to really rally people behind him.

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The President desperately wants people to believe in the evils of the judiciary, repeatedly painting negative images of the Supreme Court and especially of Chief Justice Renato Corona, who is now the subject of a dragging impeachment trial. That he clearly has no regard for the rule of law is one; his disrespect for the impeachment process is another. "I cannot be gagged," he so obnoxiously declared. Noynoy is evidently going for trial by publicity even when the case is already being tried by the Senate.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Starter Kitchen: Callum Hann's first ever cookbook out soon

The guy's been very busy since MasterChef Season 2 wrapped up. After working in a couple of top restaurants down under, including MasterChef judge George Calombaris's The Press Club, Callum Hann has kept himself busy with various cooking demonstrations and events, and then later his Sprout interactive cooking classes.

And now his first ever cookbook,  The Starter Kitchen, will finally hit bookstores in March 2012.

callum hann_the starter kitchen

True to what Hann espouses, the cookbook is not the fancy type. Instead, it is reportedly aimed at helping the inexperienced cook get started on their cooking journey.

Hann said, "There is often a lot of assumed knowledge, which can be quite daunting for people new to cooking."

Exactly! More often than not, people trying to learn how to cook find themselves alienated by terms and jargons. So props for Mr Hann on this effort!

callum hann

With 192 pages, The Starter Kitchen contains over 60 cheap and super-quick recipes, along with a handful of menu ideas for different occasions.

For more Callum Hann, check out the following:
Callum Hann official website
Sprout official website
Callum Hann on Facebook
Callum Hann on Twitter

Marni for H&M: Campaign and lookbook samples

I don't know if it's just me but it seems that there's much less noise about H&M's latest designer collaboration with Marni than its last one with Versace. It's gonna be out in select H&M stores starting on March 8. So what do they look like? Here's a sampling of their campaign and a couple more from their lookbook.

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I love the shirts, even if the two above are plain. There's just something about the colors that I like here. Unfortunately the men's pieces are more restrained than the ladies's. There's much less prints here, which I was expecting a lot of given that it's Marni. Now here are a few from their lookbook:

Thursday, February 23, 2012

[Lookbook 02.10-12.2012] Resort cool with yellow sunnies

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What a sight: my lovely Bibe taking my photo and a gorgeous pool in view! Yes, vacations are always great no matter how short they are. I realized I haven't been posting a lot of looks this month so here's a couple of photos of what I wore throughout our weekend getaway at Sheridan Beach Resort & Spa in Sabang, Palawan (check out my review here) about two weeks ago.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The SHINE Project: Shining bright for a better future in healthcare

Being in the Third World, there clearly is a lot to be said about the healthcare state in the Philippines, much more when one extends his view outside the city and into the rural areas. There, hospitals are limited and far apart, and  many can hardly be even considered hospitals at all given the limited facilities and shortage of healthcare professionals.

Such shortage is augmented by establishing local health centers, ideally in every barangay, the country's smallest administrative unit (a cluster of barangays make up a municipality or city). Even here, visits by medical professionals are scheduled and limited to say, once a week. Patient records management is left to the said local health unit, which is very, very manual. These limitations only make it more difficult for local healthcare workers to monitor patients's observance of follow-up consultations and the like, especially since Filipinos seemingly have an inherent lack of regard for regular healthcare.

The video below sums it all up, and how a little project called SHINE is starting to reshape things for the better in Iloilo City in central Philippines.


Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Sheridan Beach Resort & Spa: Still has a lot to learn

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True to what I've gathered from several reviews, this five-star resort along Sabang Beach in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan needs to send back its staff to training. Not everything is bad, however, with my experience at Sheridan Beach Resort & Spa the weekend before Valentine's. So let's do this in segments.

Reservation and booking
It wasn't really difficult to call their Manila office but it took them a couple of days to respond to my email and confirm my booking. The day before I also re-confirmed my booking (just to be sure) but right up to writing this post I got absolutely no reply.

Airport transfers
I was already forewarned on this. The resort follows a schedule for trips, with the first one at 10am, the second at 2pm, and the last one at 6:30pm (subject to change depending on the last flight arrival). So even if you arrive early in the morning, don't expect to be whisked away to the resort pronto. In all fairness, however, resort staff will shuttle you to their Puerto Princesa office where you can while away time more comfortably.

This setup is understandable due to the considerable distance involved. The trip is about an hour and a half, which can be a little expensive for them. However, the resort should also provide an option for guests who are not willing to wait but are willing to pay a premium. Otherwise, just time your flights accordingly.

"Traveluxe living" with Regatta's Summer 2012 collection

Regatta has just recently offered us a peak at their Summer 2012 collection, which is inspired by "traveluxe living." The items are pretty much straightforward; no fancy designs, just solid bright colors in varying shades of yellow and blue. The resulting look is actually quite refreshing to me.

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The polo shirts, I noticed, are form-fitting. The guys's shorts are also a bit tapered, which I like.

[Ramblings] No more bad guy roles, please?

I thought I heard it wrong at first but I didn’t. Last night in the news a solon filed a House Resolution against typecasting congressmen as villains or crooks in movies and on TV. It’s an appeal to the local entertainment industry for such portrayals to be minimized, prevented, or stopped altogether so as not to create stereotypes or negative public perception against members of the House of Representatives.

Seriously?

The congressman argues that such negative typecasting influences public perception of them, that got me thinking. Does this mean that the general impression we have of say, policemen or the military, are influenced by movies and television? Wow! Who would have thought?


Former Congressman Romeo Jalosjos, convicted of child rape in 1997. Amazingly, he won two reelection bids in 1998 and 2001 while behind bars. Life imitating art or art imitating life?

Following this line of thinking, should we now expect the Senate, the governors and the mayors, the police and the armed forces, and just about every other branch of government to file similar resolutions soon? I cannot imagine how drab storylines would be, if ever. People would no longer watch movies and telenovelas, effectively spelling the local entertainment industry’s demise; and that’s just sad.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

[Lookbook 02.17.2012] A dressier polo shirt

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Last night Kwittiegirl and I went out for dinner with a couple of friends -- a rarity! We don't really enjoy going out on Friday nights anymore because of heavy traffic, difficulties in finding a parking spot, and the like (translation: we're getting old). So it was a welcome break for both of us.

Cee Lo Green's equally stoned cat

Whatever people have to say about Cee Lo Green's flirty attitude towards gorgeous contestants on The Voice, My Bibe and I are very much entertained by his antics. Every time he speaks, he just seems like this slouching, stoned guy who speaks slowly and in a cool, low register. And it's always a pleasure to see him in clips stroking his furry little friend, a Persian cat he named Purrfect, like both of them are stoned. Cats are awesome!

cee lo and purrfect 2

Cee Lo describes Purrfect as his secret weapon. Although I'm obviously charmed, we'll have to wait and see till the finale if this season's winner will indeed come from his camp.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Underwater monsters

They're not really monsters. I mean, how could they be when they're man's adorable and furry best friend? But underwater, they look like savage beasts.

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The other day I came across these wonderful photos by Los Angeles and Chicago-based photographer Seth Casteel. I thought the photos were pure genius. Shooting dogs with a high-speed camera as they dive into the pool and fetch balls can apparently create an illusion of sorts. The loose skin around the dog's mouth reacts fluidly with the water, baring lots of fangs.

Casteel maintains a website, http://littlefriendsphoto.com/, where samples of his work are on display. Prints are also available for purchase. The photographer specializes in lifestyle pet photography, in which he shoots dogs and cats alike at their most relaxed and natural state, resulting in spontaneous and priceless moments. How I'd love to fly him over and photograph our two cats! At the moment it's still wishful thinking, though.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

[Lookbook 02.15.2012] Masking a lazy outfit

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I feel like I've been stuck in a rut since late last week. I've been quite lazy with my outfit choices, basically donning whatever's the easiest to prepare. This week it's been all about henleys and pullovers. Despite the lack of inspiration, I decided on doing a Lookbook post. However, I had to "mask" such laziness.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Blackie loses to Uggie at Golden Collar Awards

So the cute one trumps the doberman at the inaugural Golden Collar Awards, which honors canine actors in film and television. Uggie, the Jack Russell terrier of "The Artist" fame, claimed the trophy for Best Dog in a Theatrical Film last Monday (Feb. 13), edging out last-minute nominee and fierce rival Blackie, the doberman from "Hugo."

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Uggie at the Golden Collar Awards (Photo source)

Just last month Martin Scorsese, Blackie's director in Hugo, successfully campaigned for the doberman's nomination (see related post here). Since then, Blackie and Uggie were constantly pitted against each other as frontrunners for the award, with their "rivalry" heating up as the ceremonies drew close. Scorsese even had to defend Blackie from rumors that the doberman's performance was a product of CGI. Very Hollywood! But all in good fun, I suppose.

Although Blackie skipped the ceremony, fans were in full support where at least two Blackie lookalikes were in attendance.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Revisiting the Underground River after nearly 10 years

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Yes, it's been almost ten years since I've first been to Palawan's famed Underground River. Now it's officially been named one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature, so I thought it was high time to revisit the place. Besides, My Bibe has never been there before.

The Underground River is part of the 22,202-hectare Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (PPSRNP). It also is a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1999.

Once in Puerto Princesa City, it's an approximately two-hour drive to the village of Sabang, the jump-off to the river. Though 50km away from the city proper, Sabang is still part of Puerto Princesa. Thankfully the zigzagging road is now mostly concrete with just a few rough patches.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

[Lookbook 02.07.2012] Shoot me in pink

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I know I look silly in that photo but it's nice to have a "behind the scenes" shot anyway. In case you're wondering, they're shooting us for our new company ID. It will no longer bear the usual 2x2 photo where you're facing the camera head on. Instead, it's gonna be a half-body shot in some supposedly fun and casual pose. I know more and more companies are going this route and ours has decided to join the bandwagon.

Stylish in denim with Replay Jeans

I was suddenly in the mood for some rugged, denim-dominated outfits, so I surfed aimlessly and came across the Official Replay Jeans site. I like the looks that I saw and felt I should be more creative in dressing myself up in denim, like this one below.

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Then it occurred to me that we did have a Replay store in Glorietta a while back. But ever since that section of the mall gave way to an ongoing renovation, I haven't heard of any news of them reopening someplace else. [UPDATE: I just saw a Replay store a few days ago in Greenbelt 5. So they're back after all.)

So I searched but wasn't able to find anyone nearby. They're everywhere but here. Online, there's this Replay Jeans (UK Shop) that I liked. I saw some cool items like this plaid shirt in burgundy (and burgundy was quite a familiar color in runways recently), and these dark blue denim jeans that's slim but not too skinny. Right now I think that I should move away from really skinny jeans because I grew a bit horizontally over the past year and they don't look that good anymore on me. At the same time, though, I'd like to keep it trim so I guess these jeans are perfect. I'm also partial to henleys, so I also like one.

Replay Jeans has got some history already. And another thing that tickled my fancy was that they have "organic jeans." Hmn... Anyway, you can check out these links for more info:
http://fashiongear.fibre2fashion.com/brand-story/replay/history.asp
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C01etGmdn4U

Note to self: find some relatives abroad who I can have items delivered to, find more items to fill a balikbayan box, and then have them all shipped to me here. But it would be much more convenient if they'd just reopen another store here.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Acting awards for dogs heats up

Yes, acclaimed director Martin Scorsese's campaign worked! I'm not talking about the 11 Oscar nods his film Hugo received but the late inclusion of his canine star Blackie the Doberman in the list of nominees for Best Dog in a Theatrical Film in the inaugural Golden Collar Awards. Yes, there's an acting awards derby now for dogs, and rightfully so.

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Blackie, essaying the role of Maximilian in Scorsese's Hugo.

It was in an LA Times op-ed that Scorsese lamented the snub and rallied for the canine's recognition. He pointed at all the fuss over Uggie, that Jack Russell terrier who stole the show at the recent Golden Globes, and who received two nominations, one for the Oscar contender The Artist and another for Water for Elephants starring Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Daniel Radcliffe looking good in latest film

I've already seen some clips and stills last year of Daniel Radcliffe's new film The Woman in Black and my first impression was that he looks really good here. Ditching his Hogwarts robe for a period three-piece suit made him look much, much better. Now the film is showing and goes head-to-head with Chronicle, another flick I'm excited to see (although Woman in Black isn't showing yet in the Philippines - bummer!).

Woman in Black

The Woman in Black tells the story of a widowed lawyer, played by Radcliffe, who is sent to a remote village to sort out the affairs of a recently deceased eccentric, as the website puts it. It's a period ghost story where the house to be haunted by a woman who's bent on finding something and someone she lost. And the villagers try to keep this a secret from the lawyer.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Adam Lambert's "Better Than I Know Myself" video premiere

The talented Adam Lambert has just released the music video of his newest single Better Than I Know Myself, which is off his latest album Tresspassing, out March 20.

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Video still of Adam Lambert's Better Than I Know Myself music video on justjared.com

The video is about the light and dark sides of people. Although I have always loved the glammed-up Lambert, showcased in "the dark side," I think I prefer the "light side" Adam. I don't know, he just looks fresh in the latter with much less makeup. The song, on the other hand, isn't instantly catchy but I think it'll grow on me and I hope people will like it and therefore score Lambert another hit. Anyway, here goes...



Thoughts?

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

[Lookbook 02.01.2012] Flapping my way

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After dressing it all up yesterday, I sort of did a 180 today with a more casual outfit. The shirt and vest may pass for something more dressed up but it's the pants that did it. The pockets have some flaps on them that, well, flap in the wind as I saunter down the halls. They sure inject some fun into this getup.

I wanna watch Chronicle!

I just saw this video this morning (then read the accompanying article):


And now I wanna go see this:
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