Ramen Nagi: a place where delicious ramen is granted upon a customer’s wish

I admit finding my place in this specialized butao ramen restaurant. The served ramen dishes are delicious and the restaurant provides options to customers of how they want their own ramen to taste like. They will be given a sheet of questionnaire like form as they arrive that asks for their ordered type of ramen, their desired degree of that ramen’s saltiness, spiciness and creaminess, and of the noodles thickness or thinness, whether they want to add pork into the ramen and they want extra add-ons like seaweed, soft boiled tamago (egg), green onions and cabbage. Whatever answer the customers have poured into their forms, the waiter would just take it as his or her command and serve the ramen according to it.

Green King Ramen with no pork and with added five out of ten spiciness level (10 most spicy)

Still it would have been better if the choices are more varied while the restaurant itself pursues to give its best to its specialized ramens. Also, the prices are better much lowered provided that Ramen Nagi has lots of competitors that can offer more varied types of delicious ramen at a lower price.

Ramen Nagi Manila is a franchise of Ramen Nagi Japan serving customized ramens. The Philippine franchise is founded in 2013. 

For more information about Ramen Nagi Manila

Dutdutan ’16: concerts, games, bazaars but most of all, a tattoo exhibition in one whole package

I was personally glad that my friends and I pushed ourselves to go despite the heavy rain. The festival was indeed a blast as it let me explore the world of tattoos seeing those beautifully created, colorful and soulful body art on stage (tattoos were presented by their artists through their models), and gave me further opportunities to know more tattoo parlors and artists (since I’m planning to get one :D) and to enjoy the festival’s extra perks including band performances, drum, electric guitar, and graffiti deck contests. I equally appreciated the simultaneous arrangement of the event, where the attendees were either given an option to have tattoos in booths or to watch the ongoing shows or contests on stage. In case they did not like what was currently on stage (like how we did not like Dutdutan pin-up so instead of watching, we just had a tour taking pictures beside the huge displays), there were still other things that attendees could do in the event without getting out the venue.

I might go back to the event if budget, availability, proximity of location and transport convenience will allow it. I will be more than interested if the band line ups catch my attention, and if any of my gig friends can afford to go.

And meanwhile, the pictures summarizing the colorful tattoo festival that brought lots of unforgettable experiences.

Exhibition of tattoo artists through their runway models

Another exhibition

Event shirt booth – too bad we did not get to buy as the shirts ran out of stock

Tattoo parlors booth

Shred Fest ie. electric guitar strumming contest – so far my bet among the contestants

Deck Graffiti contest

Baron Geisler rocking the stage with Mayonnaise

The beautiful tattoos

And finally…my favorite bands rocking the fest! \m/

Valley of Chrome

Wilabaliw

Butcher Babies

Pepe Smith

Greyhoundz…

featuring Ian Dayao

Dutdutan is a tattoo convention that opens the minds of the Filipinos towards tattoo culture. Founded in 2001, it seeks to promote tattoo ingenuity through tattoo parlors bazaars owned by professional artists, and runway shows featuring models with tattoos. Other perks such as band performances and contests add more color to the festival. 

For more information about the event, check its official website and its Facebook page. 

Additional reading

“Dutdutan 2016” 

Finding Dory: A life-learning tale that’s worth a wait!

Finding Dory indeed has its perks. Entertainment is one of them as it never failed to thrill the audience with comedic, adventurous scenes as well as with Dory’s hilarity, and the emotional vibes it brings can be another given how touching yet teary eyed it felt. Behind these positive lights lie the golden lessons the movie taught in terms of how differently-abled individuals are accepted and included by the individuals that matter most in their lives (despite the negative perception of society and being misunderstood by many), the familial bonds existing between Dory, her family and her friends, and her positive approach to solve the problems by not letting her own “disability” and external challenges hinder her goal to find her parents and remaining optimistic that there is always a way in every will. Likewise, environmental awareness regarding sea animal captivity is raised to show (it may be unintentional) that like humans, animals deserve their right to live freely.

Growing up “different”, I personally admit that Finding Dory is a relatable film. It is indeed one of the reasons why this film touched me and like Dory, I grew up being misunderstood for my unusual stress intolerance towards “difficult” situations most perceive to be “easy”, and difficulties in solving problems including the ones many perceive “minimal”. I equally have unusual difficulties in dealing with frustrated people and those with negative behaviors, and am having a hard time tolerating people with loud voices that make them sound frustrated even though they are just talking loud. These personal experiences of mine make me sympathetic to Dory, who, suffering from short term memory loss, is unable to trace directions unless helped and is often misunderstood by other sea creatures. My sympathies have further been extended seeing how her parents took time to understand her, taught her to make friends and find her way home with the use of shells – making them role models of parents of differently-abled children.

Baby Dory Quote from Finding Dory

Similarly, witnessing the help from her fellow differently-abled friends (Hank the septopus, Destiny the blind whale, Nemo, the clownfish whose fin is smaller than the other fishes of his kind..) gives me hope that it is possible for a differently abled individual to be included in a certain group of friends he or she consider true friends (thus, the inclusion). Friendship and familial bonds are further emphasized through Dory’s close relationships, highlighting expected values in both family relationships and friendships that include love, care, empathy and time for one another.

Finding Dory Quotes - Entire LIST of the BEST movie lines in the movie!

So what would Dory do in times of difficult situations? She would just keep swimming! Herein lies other life lessons that Finding Dory seeks to deliver, most particularly remaining positive in difficult situations. Dory is taught by her own parents that there is always a way to overcome difficulties (hence Charlie’s quote) and while it may be difficult for her to confront challenges that include her lack of sense of direction, it is seen that she still remains hopeful that she will still find her way back to her family despite the encountered obstacles. She did everything she could instead of giving up and relied on her friends for help instead of holding herself back to ask for it. Her approach to problems inspires and teaches us that despite having our own weaknesses and threats coming our way, there will always be ways in surviving our own storms as long as we hold our heads high and we are determined to solve our problems. As an individual who have difficulties solving her own problems, the film itself gives me more optimism to handle them on my own.

Finding Dory Quotes - Entire LIST of the BEST movie lines in the movie! "When something is too hard there is always another way."

And finally, it looks like Finding Dory is increasing awareness on sea animal captivity and human greed to capture the animals for the sake of entertainment. These creatures are placed in grand aquariums for the public to see and children to play with and the sad looks on the creatures’ faces gives us a message that like humans, they deserve their own freedom. This message is further emphasized by their bigger smiles after they are saved from the captivity and were finally brought to the ocean. I am really hoping that this film will also serve as a lesson on how we are supposed to treat our environment, as much as it entertains and touches our souls.

The mentioned life lessons and environmental awareness made this film more worth than entertaining. I find its story line more elaborated with more twists than Finding Nemo, its own prequel – which I find more simple and straightforward. Thirteen years is indeed worth a wait especially for an unpredictable, beautiful, and vivid masterpiece like Finding Dory. Not forgetting to mention that the art and animation is as clear and vivid and I can personally imagine seeing it in 3D which gives more underwater feels.

Definitely recommended to both children and grown ups. More kudos to Disney Pixar for producing such masterpieces!

Finding Dory.jpg

Country USA

Release Date June 17, 2016 (USA)

Directed By Andrew Stanton and Angus Maclane

Starring Ellen DeGeneres, Albert Brooks, Ed O’Neill, Kaitlin Olson, Hayden Rolence, Ty Burrell

Genre Animation, Adventure, Comedy, Family

Length 97 min long

Plot

After losing her parents due to short term memory loss in finding her way back home, Dory struggles to search for them yet is filled with hope that she will soon reunite with them.

Overall Rating 5/5 stars (10/10)

Sources

Finding Dory IMDb

Finding Dory Wikipedia

Further Readings

“Finding Dory Quotes – Entire LIST of the BEST movie lines in the movie!”, Enza’s Bargains

“What ‘Finding Dory’ Can Teach Us About Acceptance and Inclusion,” The Mighty

Lights, Camera, Action: Film Workshops are indeed a wrap!

Joining the workshops brought me back to pursuing my childhood dream to work in the film industry. I was glad to be given the opportunity to learn more from the professionals through the workshops (and thanks to my mentor for inviting me knowing that film making is part of my interest) and I had been looking forward to know the basic steps of film making that included writing the screen play, creating the production design, directing, shooting the film, editing and the final showing. I was even surprised to discover that I was picked as the actress of the main character. The workshop facilitators saw my potential in acting and therefore had thought of inviting me when there would be a casting call for actresses playing the character my age. Although I admit that my acting needed improvement, I could still say that I enjoyed it well. I just needed to work more on my facial expressions, acting the script spontaneously using adlibs (meaning to say without the need of saying the exact words on the script yet still able to act it out), and pouring emotions onto my speaking voice.

Meanwhile, here are the snapshots in the workshops held twice a week.

Film Workshop Day 1 with the coaches

Mood board created by me, myself, and I during production design.

During Shooting Day, where I starred as the main role. So far my favorite. 

The final showing. It felt odd seeing my face on the screen. 

..which all lead me to…

Certificate of participation

And the name of our film…

Taking Chances

Title says it all :) 

Looking forward to next year’s Film Workshops (if there will be one hopefully). Kudos to the facilitators, participants and to CLH team for making the film experience more worth!

Disclaimer. Candent Learning Haus, an educational center for individuals with special needs, offers a variety of summer programs with Film Workshops as one of them. For more information, please visit their websiteFacebook and Instagram pages.  

What it takes to be a Filipino

 

“I am a Filipino. And when all else fails, I am not and will never be ashamed of what I am.”

Being a Filipino is just no joke. I was born and raised in the Philippines as a child and went back to my home country as I reached adulthood. In between these times, I lived in a foreign country yet would still be raised under Filipino values – showing love, care and compassion towards others, being family oriented, respecting the elders, strong dedication to tasks and responsibilities given to me as well as my passion and dreams, and having strong moral courage. Not forgetting to mention that I spoke Tagalog at home with my family, ate Filipino dishes, watched Filipino shows online, listened to Filipino songs, and had Filipino family friends back during my days overseas.

I have tan skin. My hair is naturally black (I love to dye my hair as part of my style so it changes colors for your information) and my eyes are dark brown. My parents are pure Filipino and I have no trace of foreign ethnicity. I am not as tall as Western women my age. I speak Tagalog, know certain aspects of Filipino culture like its national anthem Lupang Hinirang, and have been to certain places in the Philippines other than Metro Manila. I am a full pledged Filipino in terms of nationality, and I am a registered voter in the Philippines. But what truly makes me a Filipino?

Being a Filipino is more than just an identity. It is more than being born and raised in the Philippines, as well as being familiar with every Filipino cultural aspect. It is more than acquiring the citizenship, the values, and the physical attributes of a typical Filipino, and knowing the language. It is more than being raised in a Filipino family as well as appreciating the food, the places, the music, the movies, the shows and other positive aspects found in the Philippines. Being a Filipino will always remain in my heart, mind and spirit. No matter where I go, I will always be proud of being a Filipino. Mabuhay ang Pilipinas (Long live the Philippines)! HAPPY INDEPENDENCE DAY!

Slapshock XIX Anniversary Tour: Such a blast for my summer weekend

Watching them in small live shows was far different from seeing them in huge concerts. Each audience was given more chance to take pictures with the band and having their calendar giveaways signed, and some could even take their opportunity to request for Slapshock members video dedication that would either be for lifetime keeps or for their loved ones who were equally aficionados of the band (while in huge concerts, only those with meet and greet passes have a chance to take pictures and interact with the band and the ones with VIP get to see the performance near the stage). Their performance filled my night with energy just as it would always do. The guest bands – Valley of Chrome, Mr. Bones and the Boneyard Circus, and Manila Under Fire – equally nailed it.

Kudos to Slapshock, the guest bands and the team that worked with them. Looking forward to their next gig!

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Opening Act 

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Mr Bones and the Boneyard Circus

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Manila Under Fire

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Valley of Chrome

And finally…

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Slapshock, the main act!!

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Jamir Garcia (frontman) signing my Slapshock calendar giveaway

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Bringing home the bacon with signed autographs

SLAPSHOCK IS…

Jamir Garcia – Vocals
Lee Nadela – Bass
Lean Ansing – Guitar
Chi Evora – Drums
Jerry Basco – Guitar

Founded in 1997, Slapshock has been a pioneer of energetic and upbeat rap and heavy metal culture in the local music scene. The band has won milestones in life that included platinum and critically acclaimed albums (4th degree burn, Headtrip, Project 11-41, Novena, Silence, Carino Brutal), greatest hits (Recollection), foreign acts with big names in metal (e.g Deftones, Sepultura, PROJECT E.A.R.), local tours, awards and recognitions (e.g. MTV Asia Awards in Singapore 2003).

TO KNOW THEM FURTHER..

– Slapshock’s official website and pages

Related articles..

– Rakrakan Festival ’14: The journey to local music realm

– Killswitch Engage Live in Manila: July 31, 2013

Few more weeks to catch up with the outstanding Les Miserables

The musical is still worth an appreciation even though the movie has much more impact. There are lots of aspects to consider in this masterpiece ranging from picturesque scenes (stage is well-decorated and the costumes and props are properly arranged) to outstanding talents (I personally find the singing and the acting excellent) and the lives of each main character are descriptive and well-understood. It equally manages to gain more audience impact as it reaches its second half, although the first half makes me feel like I am watching a play just to pass my time. It is indeed worth an exhilarating soiree with family and friends. Kudos to the cast and the whole production team! and to Gavroche (my favorite character) for his childlike, innocent features and his liveliness.

So far, I adore Gavroche for his childlike, innocent features and his liveliness, and Cosette. I equally admire Eponine as I find her relatable.

Watching Les Miserables

When and where to watch the play The Theatre at Solaire, Manila. Everyday except Mondays.

Based on Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables

Produced by Cameron Mackintosh

Starring Simon Gleeson, Earl Carpenter, Rachelle Ann Go, Kerrie Anne Greenland, Emily Langridge, Paul Wilkins

Overall Rating 4.5/5 stars (9/10)

For more information about Les Miserables

Musical Play extended until May 1!