Category Archives: Others

Live Blogging The Binibining Pilipinas 2017!

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First Set of Special Awards!

1. Best in Talent – Dane Felisse Marasigan
2. Miss Friendship – Chanel Olive Thomas
3. Miss Photogenic – Rachel Peters
4. Best National Costume – Chanel Olive Thomas
5. Bb. Manila Bulletin – Christagale Borja
6. JAG Queen – Rachel Peters.

First Cut:
TOP 25
1.18 Nelda Ibe
2. 2 Arienne Louis Calingo
3. 19 Rachel Peters
4. 27 Beatrice Valente
5. 1 Dane Felisse Marasigan
6. 31 Katarina Rodriguez
7. 28 Juliana Kapeundle
8. 17 Camille Manalo
9. 37 Sammie Anne Legazpi
10. 22 Chanel Olive Thomas
11. 39 Elizabeth Clenci
12. 6 Ma. Beijeleen Nama
13. 13 Sirene Sutton
14. 40 Kristel Guelos
15. 7 Jennyline Carla Malpaya
16. 15 Mariel De Leon
17. 32 Charmaine Elima
18. 9 Vanessa Saliba
19. 33 Kristi Rose Cequeña
20. 16 Larah Grace Lcap
21. 20 Christagale Borja
22. 26 Ruffa
23. 34 Gabriela Ortega
24. 10 Jezha Huelar
25. 38 Ana Patricia Asturias

The girls who are expected to make the cut but didnt: Angelique De Leon, Dindi Pajares and Jamaica Ambal

Pia still have not change her wardrobe. Hehe!

Next Round: Swimsuit Competition.

JR and company serenading the girls! A much faster pacing for this round which is great!

They’re called in chronological order this time.

Sirene, Rachel, Chanel and Maine are the most outstanding this round.

Evening Gown Competition

#1 was a genius for wearing that bright yellow evening gown!

Mariel was very enigmatic!

Rachel Peters is channeling MJ Lastimosa!

Chanel was charming, almost stumbling into her pink gown.

Ruffa Nava is such a revelation tonight!

Charmaine looks ethereal with her sequined white evening gown!

Second Set of Special Awards:

Best in Swimsuit – Rachel Peters

Best in Evening Gown – Mariel De Leon

Miss PAL – Katarina Rodriguez

Miss Creamsilk – Mariel De Leon

Next Round: Top 15

Top 15
1. 39 Elizabeh Clenci
2. 15 Mariel De Leon
3. 22 Chanel Olive Thomas
4. 31 Katarina Rodriguez
5. 10 Jezha Huelar
6. 13 Sirene Sutton
7. 40 Kristel Guelos
8. 18 Nelda Ibe
9. 32 Charmaine Elima
10. 20 Christagale Borja
11. 17 Maria Camile Manalo
12. 34 Gabriela Ortega
13. 16 Lara Grace Lacap
14. 19 Rachel Peters
15. People’s Choice: 28 Juliana Kapeundl

***

Q&A Sirene choked big time. Poor girl. I feel for her.

Who nailed their Q&A? Rachel Peters, Katarina Rodriguez, Charmaine Elima, Juliana Kapeundl, Chanel Olive Thomas, Mariel De Leon

Judges have been deliberating for almost an hour now…

WINNERS:

Miss Universe Philippines – #19 Rachel Peters
International – #15 Mariel De Leon
Grand International – #39 Elizabeth Clenci
Intercontinental – #31 Katarina Rodriguez
Supranational – #22 Chanel Olive Thomas
Globe – #18 Nelda Ibe
First Runner-up – #32 Charmaine Elima
2nd Runner-up – #40 Kristel Guelos

images via Binibining Pilipinas FB Page.
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My Binibining Pilipinas 2017 Third Hot Picks – Charmaine Remains!

Six days from now, we’ll finally witness the coronation of the new Binibining Pilipinas queens who will represent the Philippines in the international beauty pageant arena.  The competition is getting more intense as the day of the finals night at the Araneta Coliseum is getting closer and closer. With that being said, let me present to you my third hot picks for this year’s circle of winners!

Charmaine Elima is reigning supreme as my unbeatable Miss Universe Philippines pick for the third time in a row! Maine has everything going on for her and she knows it. I don’t think I have to say more about it – the Miss Universe Philippines title is hers to lose.

Mariel De Leon will definitely get a crown come Sunday night. The only question is, which crown is it? Methinks, the Miss International pageant will be a better fit for her. After sending Kylie last year and charming the Japanese to give her the crown, Mariel’s brand of beauty may just be refreshing enough for them to consider a back-to-back win for the country.

Katarina Rodriguez is no doubt the face of the competition. After finally seeing her person – vibrant and oh-so beautiful, I figured that she’s do really well in Miss Grand International! This Thai-owned pageant is looking for someone to carry the brand all across the spectrum and Katarina may just be the girl for the job!

Sirene Sutton is a match for Miss Supranational because of her height and elegance. I’m still not sold on her beauty but she’s definitely a candidate worthy of a crown come Sunday night.

Jamaica Ambal is a new entry on my winning circle. She’s just so beautiful in person and so charming! I loved her exotic sex appeal! She’s so mesmerizing and methinks Miss Intercontinental will eat her up!

Juliana Kapeundl is the second newbie on my list. This girl was not even on my radar until I had the chance to see her in person and focused more on her videos and images. I must admit, Miss Globe is just about perfect for her beauty and personality!

‘Hope you like my Hot Picks! If you don’t, lemme know who you think should be in it! ❤

All photos courtesy of Binibining Pilipinas Facebook Page.

Recap: Cycle 2 of Philippines’ Next Top Model – Hight Street Episode 3 (2017) – Makeovers!

I was not able to do a recap of the second episode but let it be known that I was highly disappointed by the result because another one of my early favorites got the boot! Ouch! Shekie got the early ousted for not delivering an OPPO-worthy commercial! I felt that Shekie was forced to be as commercial as possible during the second episode when the reality is that there’s nothing commercial about her! Her look screams high fashion and that’s about it! But what can we do? Oppo after all is one of the show’s sponsors…

Moving on to last week’s episode. It is the most awaited for any top model franchise – the makeovers! It was a bit anticlimactic though. There was no big ceremony about it, Maggie and the the Loreal hairstylist just discussed what “hair” makeover they want to give the girls and while that is being discussed, the whole makeover is happening. There’s not much drama save for Jan who doesn’t want to sport a bangs telling us she’d tried it before and it just didn’t work. Ookay, Miss Expert Hairstylist Model Wannabe….

Aivie reminds me so much of Sheena (The Malaysian winner of Asia’s Next Top Model.) I thought this grayish (metallic?) hair suits her well.

Ann’s look didn’t change much. I mean, the girl is beautiful already so she doesn’t need a drastic change to transform her. They just cut a bit of her hair. It didn’t do much for her look tho.

Ina is basically Tina Turner 2.0. Personally, I thought her before-makeover hair was way better. Yes, it’s more vibrant now but the styling just look dated in my opinion.

Janny just converted me with her new look! She looks edgy with the shaved hair on the sides and she’s honestly bringing spark into this competition. I initially thought that she’s the token LGBT contestant of the season the way Kayla and Isis were during their ANTM run but Jani is proving to be a really good contestant!

Angela – guurrr… I honestly still don’t remember her. She’s got this gray roots with a very shiny brown-ish (?) hair which I thought really made her edgy so I guess, that’s a win for her.

Blaise got this pixie cut hair which I absolutely adore!!! The short haired girls are totally killing it!!!

Kim is starting to look like an impersonator of Naomi Campbell. I’m not even sure if this is a good thing or a disadvantage for her. She should also stop saying that she looks like Naomi Campbell!

I am not entirely sure that cutting Adela’s hair and coloring it hot pink is the most brilliant idea ever because this just boxed her even more into a one-dimensional model in my honest non-expert opinion. Based on the proceeding of each photoshoot so far, you can tell that she knows how to work her face. She’s a commercial model but she can also be fierce. She can totally do high fashion shoot and be commercial at the same time. Really, i don’t think this pink hair would work for her in the long run at least, competition-wise.

Sarah got this really short hair. I’m still deciding until now whether I like it or not but at least it made her look taller because of that gorgeous neck!

Film Review: Sakaling Hindi Makarating (2017)

sakaling-di-makarating-posterAfter watching Ice Idanan’s Sakaling Di Makarating last weekend, I was on the fence about it being a rip-off of “That Thing Called Tadhana” or perhaps just ‘a way better storytelling’ ala-Before Sunrise trilogy which ‘Tadhana” obviously tried to emulate. What I didn’t consider is the message within the film. Sakaling Di Makarating in comparison to the profanity-laden “Tadhana” has a much deeper message and obviously is more aesthetically pleasing.

What initially enticed me to watch the film is that it features the diverse beauty of the Philippines. Its beautiful landscapes being one of the focal points of the story should be a fantastic watch for a traveler like myself yeah? Then I found out that Alessandra de Rossi will star in it and I was absolutely sold! I knew I have to see this on the big screen.

A series of mysterious hand-illustrated postcards take a young woman on a journey throughout the Philippines in search of its anonymous writer.

The film didn’t disappoint with its aesthetic value. It felt like you’re traveling with Cielo (de Rossi) here – discovering the beauty of this tropical country whilst accompanying Cielo on her search for M.

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Cielo’s journey is a way for her to alleviate her pain and to find the answers to the many whys of her failed relationship. Cielo for all her strength is only human though. She’s in the process of grieving and trying to decipher what her next move would be. Her journey to finding the postcard sender, M, is her journey to finding herself again. Some of us call it soul searching but more than anything else, I’d like to think that it’s finding a reason to live again. The places she’s been to, I’d like to think, made her realize that there’s so much more to life.

The storyline, however, felt a bit disjointed for me. It’s like I’m watching a movie within a movie, rather it felt like watching two films altogether. The connection between the first and the latter part of the film was startlingly obvious but it felt forced. Good thing, the kid who played Sol (Teri Malvar) is an absolute joy to watch! When the spotlight was focused on her, ‘girl just kick some ass like no other.

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I have to be honest though. I actually enjoyed the latter part of the film more. The beginning which I find a bit mechanical was too reminiscent of ‘That Thing Called Tadhana.’ The dialogue were a bit off and Paul’s character was unnecessary in my opinion. The short affair involving Manuel (JC Santos) was a rather welcome distraction from the bleak narrative of the first half of the film. The parallelism of their scenes in connection to M at the latter part was just too clever! I just loved how so apt it was. I’m not sure if it’s just me who thought of it but if you think about it, there’s a rather eerie similarity.

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Overall, this film was able to deliver a solid ending. The story may or may not work with many but there’s a chance for it to have a sequel. I’d love for it to have a sequel! I want a storyline with more of Paul in it. Maybe, I’m just not giving him a chance. The story could be everybody’s story who struggle not only with their love life but simply every day and are looking for an escape. The film won’t fix your problems but it will inspire you to go out there. Have the courage to search for what you’re looking for and as corny as it may sound, you have to remember that you only live once…

Director: Ice Idanan
Cast: Alessandra de Rossi, Teri Malvar, JC Santos, Pepe Herrera

Rating: 7 out of 10 stars

The Story of this Campaign | Hillary Clinton | #ImWithHer

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Happy 7th!

7thApparently, it’s my site’s 7th anniversary today according to WordPress! Yay!

I think the last time I celebrated my blogging anniversary here was in 2012 when I was still with my then boyfriend Dom. Teehee.

From a fashion blog to a travel blog to movies and books review blog – I think I pretty much covered every aspect of my life that I’ve an interest with.

So there ya go, in case you’re wondering – this blogsite turns 7 today!

Thank you readers!!!!!!!

Book Review: Playing To Win (Glasgow Lads, #2) – Avery Cockburn

Playing To WinDate of Publication: June 17, 2015
Genre and Themes: LGBTQ, Romance, Politics
Format: 361 pages, ebook
Publisher: Self-Published
ASIN: B0116LBLKE
Cover Art: Damonza
Characters: Colin MacDuff, Andrew Sunderland

So how do I go about with this second book of my favourite series this year? It’s Colin and Andrew’s story so that ought to excite fans who loved them in the first book because sexy, crass Colin is back and the too-cool for school Lord Andrew is ready to go all-out in wooing the very political and youngest player of Woodstoun Warriors. Yes, I did say political because their story was set in the midst of Scottish-Independence struggle and as much as I’d love to tell you much about that from what I’ve learned from the book itself – I don’t think there’ll be much I can accurately say about it. Truthfully, I wasn’t even aware of it when it happened so I ain’t touching that one baby.

The story though is nothing short of special as a follow-up to that super-awesome Playing For Keeps starring Fergus and John. Colin and Andrew are so very different from said couple and I loved how they set their difference aside in order to meet halfway to try to make their relationship work.

Both are young so I loved that Ms. Cockburn was able to flesh out their personality in such a way that shows where they are in terms of maturity. Colin for me is the idealist one whilst Andrew is the realist in the relationship. ‘not saying the other one has more maturity but again, they have differences when it comes to not only their social standings but also their point of views which is why they hit it off to begin with. Andrew needs someone who will keep him grounded while Colin needs someone equally stronger emotionally keeping him from his bouts of histrionics when it comes to his political views. I said that I won’t touch the “political” side of things but I keep on bringing it up. I hope I am not offending anyone with my views towards Colin’s character. It’s just how I view his views ‘politically.’ So if I were to compare myself from either Colin or Andrew, I’d say I’m more of an Andrew person.

I obviously enjoyed it although the first couple from previous book is still my favourite, I thought this one sends a very strong political message (I know, sorry) and the characterization of both MCs is a strong depiction of them young people at the moment. Millenials they call them?

This review may sound way subdued from the first book but I think a lot of people will enjoy how very different this one is and readers (like my friend Riina who recommended this series) will fall for Colin onset of the story!

I absolutely recommend this book and this series!

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

BUY LINK
AMAZON

About The Author
Hiya, I’m Avery Cockburn (rhymes with Savory Slow Churn). In a previous incarnation I wrote over a dozen novels for major publishers. Some of these books even won awards, which was pure awesome. But last year I decided to “go indie” so I could write exactly what I wanted, how I wanted, and publish as fast as readers wanted. Now my days are filled with beautiful men who play the Beautiful Game in the most beautiful place in the world—and who happen to love other beautiful men. It’s pretty much the best job ever.

I currently live in the United States with one infinitely patient man and two infinitely impatient cats. Readers make my day, so email me at avery@averycockburn.com, or sign up for my mailing list at http://www.averycockburn.com/signup to get loads of exclusive Glasgow Lads bonus material. Cheers!

Book Review: Cold Fusion – Harper Fox

Cold FusionKier Mallory is a tree-hugging poet who made a fatal decision on one of their anti-whaling missions that took the lives of his two crewmembers. Disgraced and with everybody turning him away, he found himself heading to Spindrift. The place that is once a lair for artists and such is now deserted and dilapidated save for its lone inhabitant.

Vivian Calder is the son of a local laird. With Asperger’s syndrome, it leaves the young scientist emotionally and socially awkward. His lonesome existence however led him to perfecting cold fusion – a clean, free, and limitless source of power.

With this groundbreaking discovery and their unlikely friendship blossoming into something unexpected, uncertain instances clouded above them that may threaten it and their lives.

At first, Mallory’s character was highly unlikable. I thought he was a real douchebag snapping on Viv all the time. It’s obvious that he’s got some anger management issue or perhaps it’s everything that has happened to him prior to meeting Viv but it doesn’t excuse his behavior towards Viv whose detachment over emotional things made him a clear target for such attitude – I didn’t like it at all. Then when things started to unravel between them, post-Allan’s betrayal – everything seemed perfect and they just easily complimented each other. I liked that despite the insta-love (10 days of knowing each other and love is in the air) in the story, the romance does not feel forced at all.

Viv is a real riot at times. His awkwardness is way too adorable and I loved his forgiving nature. I also loved how he felt comfortable with Mal disregarding all his inhibitions. Love is the ‘cure’ after all. *wink*

“Do you get erections?”

“Yes, at awkward times. Over some things you’d find strange.”

“Let me tell you something I never thought I’d share with anyone. When the discovery of the Higgs boson was confirmed in the LHC at CERN, I went upstairs, lock myself in my room, and I came so hard I thought my eardrums would burst. Does that answer you question?”

The science aspect of the story didn’t bother me at all. There was ample amount of explanation that didn’t go beyond info-dump-zone and I loved that the author eventually veered off from it at the latter part of the story.

I thought Alan deserves more than a bruiser. I don’t care if he’s the one who got in contact with Viv’s sister – he’s still a criminal. And a douchebag. Period.

The semi-twist that was conveniently laid out at the second half of the story was a bit surprising to me. I mean, the guy has Asperger’s syndrome (nothing wrong with this but he’s been alone all his life) and then he’s got to suffer that. Poor guy, really.

As usual, the story ended with a very solid conclusion. Harper Fox is one of those authors that does not know how not to write beautifully. Cold Fusion is another wonderful piece of literature! Highly recommended.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Kindle Edition, 297 pages
Published January 5th 2016 by Samhain Publishing, Ltd.

AMAZON BUY LINK

About The Author
Harper Fox is an M/M author with a mission. She’s produced six critically acclaimed novels in a year and is trying to dispel rumours that she has a clone/twin sister locked away in a study in her basement. In fact she simply continues working on what she loves best– creating worlds and stories for the huge cast of lovely gay men queuing up inside her head. She lives in rural Northumberland in northern England and does most of her writing at a pensioned-off kitchen table in her back garden, often with blanket and hot water bottle.

She lives with her SO Jane, who has somehow put up with her for a quarter of a century now, and three enigmatic cats, chief among whom is Lucy, who knows the secret of the universe but isn’t letting on. When not writing, she either despairs or makes bread, specialities foccacia and her amazing seven-strand challah. If she has any other skills, she’s yet to discover them.

Book Review: It’s A Wonderful Death – Sarah J. Schmitt

It's A Wonderful DeathDo you believe in the afterlife? Do you believe in Heaven? In Hell? What about Angels? Well, this book surely has it all when it comes to these things. I’m still in deep when it comes to discussing such stuff seriously but these are the things I’ve grown up with hearing from my friends, family and just about everywhere. I thought the blurb was interesting and it sounds real fun.

When seventeen-year-old mean girl RJ found herself in the afterlife by being accidentally collected by a distracted Grim Reaper, all “hell and heaven” breaks loose.  She found herself being tried on whether she deserves a second chance to live or not.  But she’s got to pass different tests in order to do so.

I honestly can’t find it in myself all throughout the book to like RJ as a character. She’s mean, selfish and just care about being popular. Very typical high school mean girl. Of course, she gets to redeem herself at the end but I’m still not a fan even after that. I think what made me keep reading this are the secondary characters.  As for RJ and her fate – Uhm, no. I feel like I just didn’t care at the end.

On a more positive note, I thought the story’s very fast paced and most of the characters are pretty vibrant. I initially thought that there will be a bigger plot point in the story involving the ring but the story got pretty much about on how RJ could go back on earth. I was rather disappointed that the story didn’t go much deeper.

There was nothing extremely unique about the story. It’s funny and fun enough but it lacks charm that I thought should be coming from the main character. Perhaps, I’m too old for the book so this may be enjoyed by its target audience. Overall, the writing and the story was decent. I’d still recommend it if you’re up for a quick read.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Expected publication: October 6th 2015 by Sky Pony Press

About The Author
Sarah J. Schmitt is a K-8 school librarian and Youth Service Professional for Teens at a public library who, in addition to planning a variety of events, enjoys opening up the world of books to reluctant readers. She runs a teen writing program that combines Skype visits from well-known authors and screenwriters and critique group style feedback.

Prior to immersing herself in the world of the written word, Sarah earned her Masters of Science in Higher Education Administration and Student Affairs from Indiana University where she worked with first year college students as they acclimated to college life. Sarah lives outside of Indianapolis with her husband, two kidlets and a cat who might actually be a secret agent. She is an active member of SCBWI, ALA and the Indiana Library Federation and is a regular participant at the Midwest Writer’s Workshop. Her debut novel, IT’S A WONDERFUL DEATH, comes out Fall, 2014 from Strange Chemistry.

An ARC of this book was provided by the publisher in exchange of an honest and fair review.

Book Review: The Understatement Of The Year (The Ivy Years, #3) – Sarina Bowen

The Undertatement Of The YearI bought this title because I was so impressed with “Him” co-authored by Miss Bowen with Elle Kennedy and how wrong I was in thinking that this book will be at par with Him because it totally failed in everything that the latter managed to accomplish.

The story is about two twenty-one year old boys who fell in love as teens and because of a hate crime, each took their separate ways until their reunion at college where they end up playing at the same hockey team. Only this time, one of them is out and the other one is so deep in the closet he has already developed pussy.

I’m not a big fan of sports-themed stories but when the storytelling is really good, I don’t mind hearing all about the sports involved in it as long as it’s accompanied by great plot lines and characters. The thing is, I never liked both MCs that much. First, Graham (the one in the closet) was irritating as hell and his paranoia doesn’t even make sense. I’m like, sorry what’s the timeline of this story? The 9o’s? Gawd, I was rolling my eyes all over Graham’s bitchin’ towards being caught.

“Not to be dramatic, but I kept thinking about Peter’s denial of Jesus. Except I was worse than Peter. Instead of denying Rikker three times, I denied him every fricking day.”

He was so paranoid on getting caught with Rikker and being called fag, sick or whatever “gay, hateful” things in his face but he was the first one to pounce on Rikker and even gave him a blowjob and that was like his first blowjob. And then, he asked Rikker to top him – Rikker then asked if he’d ever done it before and Graham answered, “Only with toys?” – huh? Where the hell did you get those toys and where are you keeping them Graham? You’re even trying to make your appearance and your stuff inconspicuous in order to not look gay and this revelation surprised the hell out of me. *Rolls Eyes*

Secondly, we have Rikker the martyr.

“When it comes to Graham, I could never keep my head on straight.”

Rikker is stupid for love. Man’ why’d you have to be like that?

“What Am I going to do with you, G?”

My answer: Dump his sorry ass.

Don’t even get me started with Bella. She’s an annoying slut. Period.

And Big-D. The coach and Hartley just let those remarks against Rikker slide so easily like nothing’s happened? Not even a reprimand for his behavior? Those are not fucking jokes. Those are fucking insults disparaging a teammate, attacking him on a personal level. Fucking A.

The book should’ve been edited down by 100 pages to avoid the repetitive ignore, talk, sorry, sex, ignore, talk, sorry, sex theme and it would’ve been much better. The grandma angle was good but not enough to save this story. No can do baby.

I’m sorry (not sorry) but the conclusion didn’t even do it for me. The title should’ve been “the pussy of the year” but that would be awkward I guess. *rolling my eyes again* *smh*

Rating: 2 out of 5 stars (I’m adding another star because of Skippy and the cover)

Published October 15th 2014 by Rennie Road Books (first published September 29th 2014)

Buy now:
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About The Authors
Sarina Bowen writes steamy, angsty Contemporary Romance and New Adult fiction from the wilds of Vermont.

She is the author of The Ivy Years, an award-winning series set amid the hockey team at an elite Connecticut college.

Sarina enjoys skiing, espresso drinks and the occasional margarita. She lives with her family, eight chickens and more ski gear and hockey equipment than seems necessary.

To be kept abreast of new releases, please feel free to sign up for the mailing list at http://www.sarinabowen.com/contact. Or visit the her Facebook page, or tweet her @sarinabowen.