Friday, May 22, 2015

Pakitang Tao: The Civil Game

Filipinos are famous for being conscientious employees when in other countries, but when it comes to working here in the Philippines, we usually have a darker side – and it ties into a somewhat disturbing cultural trait, the pakitang tao. There are good and bad sides to this cultural habit, and it’s important to know how it can even make some social interactions smoother.

Read more at the Philippine Online Chronicles.

Photos (from
“slack,” by Tim Patterson

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Single, by choice

Snuff Buff - Geir Tonnesen

When people talk about being single, there is usually a mix of loneliness, bitterness, and a bit of despair, as many people think of being single as an unnatural situation. People, after all, are meant to pair up as couples (or more, if so inclined). Living alone seems to be an untenable thing, and single people are usually suspected of having issues and problems that prevent them from being in a relationship.

However, a person can be single by choice, and be very much happy, at peace, or both (there is a difference).

Read more at the Philippine Online Chronicles

Photo, c/o
“Snuff Buff,” Gaer Tonnesen

Monday, May 18, 2015

De-Glorifying the Dad Bod

On March 30, 2015, Mackenzie Pearson wrote “Why Girls Love The DadBod,” and it sparked a strange flame war across the online world. On one side, you had people who hailed it as the new “average” that people should aspire to, so as not to have “excellence” issues. For others, it was the nadir of self-imagery, that people would be content with just, well, a dad bod.

I personally have the equivalent of a dad bod myself, being a former Judo varsity player in college, who then went on to have utterly no regular physical fitness regimen until late last year, when my 40-year-old body decided to surprise me with Type-2 diabetes. Since then, I've removed thirty pounds from my then-200-pound 5'3” frame, and have since been more or less on a regular exercise regimen. I've gained about five to ten pounds back, but this time as healthy muscle mass.

Even with all that, 175 pounds at my height still makes me look the better part of chubby and dad-bod-ish.

So, it makes sense that I should be happy that my sort of body type is becoming sexy, right?

Well, not really.

My issue with this whole Dad Bod thing is that I am all for it being touted as natural, but I am not all for it being used as an excuse for slacking off from basic fitness. In my case, I have to be a bit more careful with my exercise routine, as my health concerns can be a problem. But for people who have the time and resources to have a better-then-average physique, then I say, go for it!

For those who know that they only have enough time to remain reasonably healthy and have a pleasant-looking Dad Bod, all I can say is: I feel you guys.

But that does not mean we should be content with the Dad Bod. If anything, it should be a reminder that while we shouldn't shame people for being out of shape, there is always the challenge of becoming better than what you are now.

If you guys are wondering, my current physical trainer, good friend, and taskmaster is Jay Lopez, and he runs RX Strength, over at the Athlete's Lab in Liberty Center, Shaw Boulevard.

"Hiking in Scotland 0," by Ed and Eddie (
* as an aside comment, the guy in the photo I used for this article is a good example of a dad bod. Holy crap, he's HIKING IN SCOTLAND.

Friday, May 15, 2015

The upside of being ‘pasaway’

Stubbornness is sometimes a place to sit and fume

For most Pinoys, being the pasaway means that you are marked as the one to watch out for, in the negative sense. You are the troublemaker, the one whom everyone expects to do the worst thing possible. And even if you do try to help, you’ll probably do it in a way that will cause people headaches. Let’s face it, if the root word of the term for you means that you are always being reprimanded, then you know that you’re not on Santa’s “nice” list for Christmas.

However, that shouldn’t get you down. There are advantages to being the pasaway.

Read more at the Philippine Online Chronicles

“Stubbornness is sometimes a place to sit and fume,” by Lars Plougmann, c/o

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Living in the City

Many people don’t think much about living in the city, let alone living in a a burgeoning metropolis like Metro Manila. Sure, we have the hokey “Anak ng Pasig” city-loyalty ballads, and you can think about all the North and South comparisons, but at the end of the day, most people don’t think about how the city has changed the way we lived. Sometimes, it’s for the better, and sometimes it’s for the worse. And it always is somehow interesting, if you think about it.

Read more at the Philippine Online Chronicles

“Untitled,” by FEDRA Studio, c/o

Friday, May 8, 2015

North and South – The Metro Manila Divide

Dawn BreakIf you grew up anywhere in Metro Manila, chances are you had the idea of how the Northern Metro area was very different from the South – and we’re not just talking about geography. Somehow, there was a basic difference in how people were between the North and South of Metro Manila.

Read more at the Philippine Online Chronicles

Photos by Richard Ramos

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Unleash your inner Ninja

ninja.jpg-tm - Andres Alvarez Iglesias
Ninjas have captured the public’s imagination, thanks to how entertainment media has portrayed them: silent, cunning, and ready with a trick or two that can make them look at the very least eerie, and at the best (or worst) magical.
So you’re probably thinking: can you be a ninja?

Read more at the Philippine Online Chronicles 

“ninja.jpg-tm,” by Andrés Álvarez Iglesias

Friday, May 1, 2015

‘Pag may time': The Pinoy art of not doing something

Time Card

I’m sure that most people reading this article has either been exasperated that someone is avoiding giving you time for something you want them to do, or have themselves avoided doing something for someone else, citing time issues. Among Filipinos, this habit can reach epic proportions, and may, in fact, be the root cause of many social issues today.

Read more at the Philippine Online Chronicles

“Time Card,” by Matti Mattila, c/o Flickr.Com