Thursday, March 31, 2011


Super fresh Shakes are da bomb!

I first tried it at Cafe Verde at Robinson's Galleria since it came with their veggie burgers. And after that first sip, I was hooked.

Their watermelon shake is the best I've ever tasted. And now, I'm trying out their other fruit shakes, and they're just as good.

What makes it even better is the tapioca that they mix in the shake. It adds a nice texture to the drink.

I think I've found my new favorite drink.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Philo facts

I was browsing through this month's InStyle magazine and noticed that the trend for Resort 2011 is veering towards austerity and minimalism.

Maybe it's in tune with current events - with the economy still trying to recover and so many tragedies happening around the world. While fashion is seen by many to be frivolous and out of touch, this season's offerings show that they're not totally detached from reality.

And when it comes to minimalism, no one does it as well as Phoebe Philo. I've liked her work since she was with Stella McCartney in Chloe. In fact, I remember buying this baby doll dress by See by Chloe in Macau a few years back.

Now that she's with Celine, she continues with her take on chic minimalism. But to keep it from being too drab, she adds colors and details to - as Anna Wintour would say - lift it.

Not surprisingly, Zara has a lot of minimalist pieces in store right now. And again, some of them are inspired by this collection by Philo.

Looks like it's going to be a clean and austere summer this 2011.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

A Pinoy on Top

While browsing through the episode summaries of ANTM Cycle 16, I read that there will be a Pinoy designer this cycle. In episode 8, the models will be wearing creations by Filipino designer Michael Cinco.

Once again, a Pinoy proves that our talent is really world class. And if Tyra noticed his talent, that also means that his talent is FIERCE! Harhar.

(I wonder if Michael Cinco is the same guy as Maxi Cinco. He's a Filipino designer who we used to work with in ads.)

A marry year...

Grace got married last January, and Rona is set to tie the knot in May. Now, I just found out that another dear friend is going to walk down the aisle in April. And like the 2 above mentioned weddings, I need to play a part in this one, too.

Merry marry indeed.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Ageless Creativity

I've finally watched the Anna Wintour and Vogue documentary entitled "The September Issue."

Like most people I know who've already seen it, the documentary reaffirms the genius and magic touch of Anna Wintour. Even though she gets a bad rap for being an "ice queen," the interviewees all agree that no one has a better third eye into the fashion world than Anna.

But what I also felt after watching the documentary was a newfound admiration and respect for Vogue's Creative Director, Grace Coddington.

Like some of the best Creative Directors I know, Grace Coddington is more comfortable behind the curtains. Though not as visible as Anna, Grace is also a fashion force to reckon with. She's an artist, visionary, and stylist, in one elegant package. The way she envisions and executes the editorial shoots of Vogue is pure genius. She's very hands on and pays attention to every minute detail, and it shows.

It takes a genius to creatively direct shots like these:

I was reading this month's Vogue issue, and Anna Wintour dedicated the Letter for the Editor to Grace Coddington in honor of her 70th birthday this April. She said even at 70, Grace is still a creative force to reckon with, and that she looks forward to more collaborations with her in Vogue for many years ahead.

And I can't wait to see those future collaborations.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

They're growing up...

There are certain "emotional signs" of aging.

This was the conversation we had in school yesterday while grading papers and finishing reports. Among these signs are: reliving the "good old days," (like how Coke was just 0.75 cents back then), getting nostalgic over 80s songs, (like "Farewell to you my friend" - the quintessential Graduation song in the 80s & 90s) and starting to experience what our parents experienced a few decades back.

And yes, we were all experiencing these.


But aside from those signs, an additional sign that I experience is seeing my nephews and nieces growing up before my very eyes.

Like Kurt, who just graduated today and is entering high school next school year. It feels like just yesterday when I was still carrying him around and calling him "Pa-turt."

Or Princess, who was our first niece, and the first female apo of the Regalado-Morales clan. Thus the nickname Princess. A few years ago, she was this round, little baby who liked to snicker a lot. And now, our round, little baby is a tall, lithe young lady. (She's the one at the rightmost part of the photo, wearing white.)

Looking at these photos, then looking at photos from 3 or 4 years back, really makes me feel like time is passing by too fast. A little bit too fast for my liking.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Taylor made

When I was a wee little boy, I remember watching TV and catching this movie about Cleopatra - the ruler of Egypt who was as beautiful as she was cunning and ruthless. At that time (and even up until now), I've been fascinated by all things Egyptian, and the story of Cleopatra was definitely one of them.

Apart from the story, the other element that drew me into the film was the actress playing the part - Elizabeth Taylor. She was perfect for the role: beautiful, innocent, wily, manipulative, but still keeping her fragility all throughout.

I've watched the movie countless times since the first time, and Elizabeth Taylor just keeps on shining in this role.

Tonight, that shining star faded out. Dame Elizabeth Taylor passed away due to a lingering illness.

They don't make stars like they used to, and because of this, I'm sure Elizabeth Taylor will be sorely missed.

Sunday, March 20, 2011


Saw this photo from the next episode of ANTM Cycle 16. And I must say, it's gorgeous!

Looks like Alexandria and the little leopard are having a catfight. Literally!

How's that for fierce? (She deserves this week's top photo!)

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Slightly off-kilter

The first time I came across the Costello Tagliapietra brand was more than a year ago. They had this Designer Collaboration with Uniqlo and I was able to buy a few pieces.

What's nice about the brand's aesthetic is that it's dramatic without being over the top. All they do is add an off-kilter detail to create something interesting from something that's otherwise plain.

Take for instance this piece. The boat neckline is quite high and there's subtle draping in the chest area. If you look at it closely, it doesn't look like much.

But if you see the dress in its entirety, these details add volumes to how the dress falls and looks. Ate Bullet tried this dress on and it looks stunning.

Speaking of slightly off-kilter, the designers of the brand are the perfect epitome of that. You'd think Jeffrey Costello and Robert Tagliapietra are slim, well-chiseled and well-mannered designers in the mold of other designing duos like Proenza Schouler, Dolce & Gabbana, and Badgley Mishka.

But no. Just look at Costello and Tagliapietra.

How's that for unexpected?

Friday, March 18, 2011

Methodical Friday

Since it's Friday, it's time to relive the 80s! Just like Magic 89.9's ever famous "Friday Magic Madness."

And the song that's been playing in my mind the past few days is a classic from Hall and Oates. It's the method of modern love.

The 80s rock!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Awkward exit

So I guess the awkward girl WON'T be America's Next Top Model.

After a lackluster performance in her "Fierce Roast Coffee" commercial (what a name), Sara was eliminated.

Now that she's gone, the "characters" left in the ANTM house are Ms. Mean, Ms. Naive, Ms. Unassuming, and a host of other Ms. Blahs.

"Who will be eliminated next?" As Tyra would say.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

This is the wafer

While we were in Bangkok a few weeks back, I had to do a 7-11 run to get water. While browsing the snack section, I chanced upon this vanilla wafer covered in chocolate. I bought two packs, and instantly got hooked.

Since the name was in Thai, finding it in the supermarket was a bit difficult. It wasn't at the Gourmet Markets in Emporium and Paragon. And since we were in a hurry on our last day, I failed to drop by 7-11 and grab a haul of these yummy wafers.

Thankfully, Mona went to Bangkok and got me some! Thanks Mona!

Yup, they're Jack and Jill, so they're from URC. Ergo, it's a Filipino product. Which, unfortunately, isn't available in the Philippines.

I've got to consume these things sparingly. They're so good, I've got to make them last.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Sensationalization of information

While having lunch with my co-professors, we were lamenting how media tends to blow up and sensationalize everything. They do it with so much fervor, that people actually end up believing them and start running around like Chicken Little crying "the sky is falling."

Case # 1:
Last Saturday, my students were telling me how Philvocs said that the Philippines was "hinog na hinog" for a big earthquake. The language was so graphic that I'm not surprised at how my students were worried about it.

Case # 2:
In a span of 1 hour, 4 people sent me the text about radiation hitting the Philippines and how we should all stay indoors and put betadine on our throats. I checked the veracity on-line and there was no such thing. Becky, Wowie and I found out that we did the same thing when we received those texts - we deleted them.

The situation in Japan is bad enough as it is. We don't need media sowing fear and panic in an already afraid and panicking world.

Days like these, I realize why I chose advertising over my original career path that was journalism.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Friends of long standing

Yesterday, we attended a party for one of Mom's long time friends.

Tita Mira was celebrating her 65th birthday, and her daughters - Anna, Sheila and Nelly - thought that a big event like this calls for a special celebration. So, they did the same thing we did for Dad last December, they threw a surprise birthday party.

The moment we shouted "surprise", Tita Mira had tears in her eyes. She was expecting a trip to Tagaytay, instead, she got a room full of her classmates and friends, all wishing her a happy birthday.

Hey, hey, the gangs all here! - Anna, Ate Lissa - rocking the horse print skirt that I searched for last December, Mom, Tita Mira, Sheila and Nelly.

We've known Tita Mira and the Aves family for more than 20 years already. We were neighbors in Scout Gandia, and our houses were just in front of each other. Since the ages of the Morales and Aves kids were quite close, we became instant friends. I still recall how we'd watch horror movies in their music room/den. The easter egg hunts we'd play in their garden. (I think this is where we got the "Hello, man, Hello" line.) And at night, we'd send messages via flashlights since our rooms were just across each other.

They eventually moved out, and a few decades after, we also left Morato. But despite the distance and the time, Mom and Tita Mira still kept in touch and kept the friendship that's about 3 decades long. The party marked another milestone in their already rich and colorful friendship. And I'm sure that there will be decades more of friendship ahead, for Mom and Tita Mira, as well as for us and for the Aves kids. Because despite the distance and years apart, true friendships last.

And that's no surprise.

Sunday, March 13, 2011


It's been a while since I've visited my usual shopping "haunts." This weekend, I decided to check it out, and my visit yielded this nice piece of work.

One of my trusted suppliers showed me this Ann Taylor shift dress with a bateau neckline and a watercolor print. So chic!

And, it's all intact, too. Label and all.

I proceeded to the Ann Taylor site to check out if this is the real deal, and indeed it was. The dress is called "Silk Silent Clusters" and is among their new arrivals.

This baby cost $158 on this website, but less than $20 at the haunt.

The joys of haunt-ing...

Saturday, March 12, 2011

The Limited

Yesterday, they finally launched the new capsule collection for Plains and Prints. (Good thing I was able to attend the preview sale.) I swung by Shangri-la Plaza to see if there was a frenzy or a line for the clothes. Thankfully, there was none. (Lanvin x H&M this ain't.)

It looks like they're staying true to their press release that this will indeed be a limited collection. On my way home, I've checked the 2 Plains and Prints branches in Cubao. One branch only has around 20 pieces from the collection, while the other is still waiting if they can be "accommodated" in carrying these items. Joanne, the manager there, said that not all stores were "blessed" to carry it.

Limited edition, indeed.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Running is the new Zagu

Everywhere I turn, it looks like there's a running event happening.

Everyone's running for everything. For the trees. For the river. For dolphins. I even saw a R.A.T. race, which is Run Against Trafficking. Aside from the Hong Kong noodles and Scramble, it looks like this is this season's fad.

I wonder when will people start getting exhausted from this running fad.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Brownie points

My flight back from Bangkok a few weeks ago introduced me to Max's Cream Cheese brownies. (It was the dessert during the inflight meal.) And ever since then, I was hooked. Now I find myself craving for it every so often.

They didn't have it at the Glorietta 4 branch tonight. Good thing they had it at SM Makati. I really had a sudden craving for it tonight.

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

A class of its own

The grades have been submitted, so it's now official. My 4th year Advertising students are off to the real world!

(photo swiped from my student's facebook account.)

They're so ready to take it to the next level. And I'm sure they'll get there in no time.

Congratulations, 4MC Advertising. I'm extremely, unequivocally and superlatively proud of you.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Number cruncher

It's that time of the year again.

Our seniors are graduating in a few weeks, so we're all in a hurry to compute and submit their grades. And since I have 2 classes, that means 2 sets of computations. And since I'm not a Math genius like Mark, that's 2 times the headache. Harhar.

As we'd always say in college: "Kaya nga kami nag-Mass Comm, para walang Math..."

Monday, March 07, 2011

Bag of tricks

Here's something I've seen as early as December, but only able to photograph today.

It's a simple tarpaulin that announces the bazaar at Farmer's Plaza.

One of the shots is that of a bag. A seemingly regular, harmless bag.

But when you look at it closely...


The person who did this layout has a very nice sense of humor.

Sunday, March 06, 2011

A lot like Lanvin

This weekend, there was a preview of the new capsule collection from Plains and Prints. Needless to say, I had to check it out. And when I did, it confirmed my initial observation that this collection was very much "inspired" by the Lanvin & H&M collaboration last September.


A stash from the Lanvin x H&M collection last September. (Not mine, just from the net.)

A stash from the Plains and Prints capsule collection. (My sister's stash.)

Lanvin x H&M had free tote bags...

So do they.

Free hangers for every item bought...

Free hanger with every item bought.

(Too bad they couldn't give away garment bags, too.)

But even if the peripherals brought about a feeling of deja vu, the capsule collection of Rajo Laurel is definitely fresh and unique. The fabrics felt so expensive, especially the washed silk that the dresses were made of. And some of the designs were very innovative. My favorites include the dress with the beaded shoulder detail, a jersey draped dress, and the top with a draped collar that could be worn in a multitude of ways.

I must say, his 2nd collection for Plains and Prints was a notch or two higher than his first.

And that's original.

Saturday, March 05, 2011

Funny as Devlin!

We had a choice between "I am Number Four" and "Just Go With It," and we eventually just went with it. And I'm glad we did! This movie is just so funny! It was one of those laugh-a-minute-guffaw-guffaw flicks. All throughout the movie, the entire audience was just laughing their lungs out.

Jennifer Aniston is really made for movies like this.

Friday, March 04, 2011

Little Miss Awkward

This cycle of ANTM has all the usual suspects.

There's the resident bee-yotch - Alexandria.
There's the resident naive girl - Jacklyn.
There's the resident pretty girl - Ondrei.
And of course, there's the resident awkward girl - Sara.

Just like the other awkward girls before her: Lauren, Heather, Esther, Naduah - among others, I really like Sara. Her awkwardness is very endearing, and she's charming as she's awkward. And that's what will help her stand out in this derby.

An awkward girl has never won ANTM. Maybe this cycle is it.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Rug... rats!

Just as we expected, the rug was pulled under us.

Time to look for another rug then.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

This Swan's for you

Just as everyone expected, Natalie Portman took home the Oscar for "Black Swan." She looks like she was in it to win it from the get-go. Imagine, a breakthrough performance + a baby bump. How can you lose with that combination? (Although part of me wanted to see an Annette Benning spoiler. I mean, she's been nominated 4 times and hasn't won yet.)

After watching Natalie's speech, it highlighted the fact that she was a gracious winner. It seems like she thanked everyone - as in, EVERYONE - in the production team. And she remembers everyone's - as in, EVERYONE'S - names.

(video from youtube)

Yup, she was indeed in it to win it.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Suddenly Summer

And March just came marching in.

Aside from the summer month's arrival, the summer season looks like it made an entrance, too. The afternoons are starting to become scorching hot - just like May and June last year.

Time to bring out those fans and extra shirts.