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  • lv on July 26, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    President Rodrigo Duterte's SONA 2017 

    Never mind the profanities, I think it was a good SONA. It was a long speech – the longest SONA in history for a Philippine president . He was serious and showed his toughness but he also injected humor into the speech. He went off script many times in the long speech. It was a long speech but it was not boring.

  • lv on July 15, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    Philippine Indie films in San Francisco 

    If you live in the San Francisco Bay Area and if you would like to see Philippine indie films, Yerba Buena Gardens Center for the Arts in San Francisco is showing a few films from the Philippines through the annual New Filipino Cinema. New Filipino Cinema 2017 runs August 17 through September 3, 2017. For tickets visit: https://ybca.org/whats-on/new-filipino-cinema-2017 .

    Source: The Philippine Daily Inquirer

    SF’s New Filipino Cinema ’17 films mirror current PH realities
    INQUIRER.net US Bureau / 11:38 PM July 14, 2017

    “Mercury Is Mine” By Jason Paul Laxamana.

    SAN FRANCISCO –Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA) in August presents the sixth annual showcase of independent films from the Philippines with New Filipino Cinema 2017, co-curated by YBCA film/video curator Joel Shepard and Philbert Dy, a professional film critic based in the Philippines who has written for some of the country’s top newspapers and magazines.

    New Filipino Cinema 2017 provides a snapshot of a huge range of artistic achievement. The series features a broad spectrum of topics, including transforming Filipina domestic workers into beauty queens with Sunday Beauty Queen, an eight-hour historical fantasy mourning the current state and a defiant cry of hope for the future in Hele Sa Hiwagang Hapis (A Lullaby to the Sorrowful Mystery), and a special in-person presentation about the war on drugs with photojournalist Raffy Lerma.

    In the past year, “macho” president Rodrigo Duterte has been working to consolidate power, and reports of flagrant human rights abuses and strict social controls have skyrocketed. “Given this overwhelming reality, this sixth edition of New Filipino Cinema puts a special focus on films with social, historical, political, and human rights themes,” says co-curator Joel Shepard.

    “This was not a simple task, as there are no Filipino full-length films that deal directly with the extrajudicial killings going on now. However, many of the films this year directly or indirectly explore the social and political circumstances that led to the current state of affairs.”

    Co-curator Philbert Dy elaborates: “It can be difficult to talk about Filipino cinema nowadays. Faced with the very real horrors brought about by the current administration, it can seem irresponsible to get caught up in the comparatively abstract concerns of the state of our cinema. But our cinema has always proven to be fertile ground for dissent.”

    Dy says further: “In the time of martial law, the likes of Lino Brocka and Ishmael Bernal sowed their outrage into their melodramas. Their stories of love and loss found potent context in the looming tyrannies of the Marcos era. And as the indelible specter of dictatorship continues to cast a shadow on the nation, filmmakers continue to tell stories that bring to light, in ways both overt and subtle, the injustices that Filipinos face every day.”

    New Filipino Cinema 2017 runs August 17 through September 3, 2017, with a free opening reception on August 17 at 6:30pm in the Youth Arts Lounge at YBCA. All films are shown digitally, in their original languages with English subtitles.


    By Baby Ruth Villarama

    Thursday, August 17, 7:30pm & Sunday, August 27, 2pm Cost: Regular: $10 / Student, Senior,Teacher: $9 / YBCA Member: $8 / All Access: Free Director and producer in person! Join us at 6:30pm for a free reception in the Youth Arts Lounge on the second floor. Beneath Hong Kong’s glittering facade, nearly two hundred thousand Filipinas are domestic workers living in relative anonymity. Living with their employers, they work 24 hours a day, six days a week, with only Sunday off. In a beauty pageant like no other, five women give themselves makeovers for a day and gleefully reclaim their dignity. The film documents the lives of these hardworking Filipinas as they escape once a week from their foreign employers, and take a break from a life far away from home. (2016, 94 min). For tickets and ticket packages, visit: https://ybca.org/whats-on/sunday-beauty-queen

    To see the complete list of the films being shown for the New Filipino Cinema 2017 in San Francisco and for the rest of the article, please go The Philippine Daily Inquirer.

  • lv on July 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply  

    San Fernando City Baywalk, Poro Point, La Union 

    San Fernando Baywalk

    I went driving around Poro Point and I stumble on this place called Baywalk in San Fernando City. It is in the same area where the Thunderbird Resort and Casinos is located. I think this area has a lot of potential to become a major tourist attraction. Just like the entire Poro Point, they need to develop it more so people would go here in my opinion. My first impression about this place was it felt like it is off limit to the public because of the security guards that you see all over Poro Point and not to mention the check point that you pass through upon entering Poro Point. I hope that they will maintain the place though so people can have a place to spend their recreational time. It is not only the people of San Fernando City who would benefit if this place gets developed and improved but also the people from the other towns near and around San Fernando including the town of Tagudin.

    • Atty. Romeo J. Somera, Esq.,CPA on July 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      It is very attractive but from your pictures, I have not seen some homo sapiens enjoying nature’s at its best. There must be a strict filtering in admission, and it is good that you were allowed in to show this “paradise”. I hope the “Ortegas” would be more accommodating and loosen up in the entrance of the public. They could discipline and instill cleanliness by admonishing the public on littering, public disorder, and drunkenness through posted signs of fines and penalties by wayward revelers. Thanks for showing us. I rather go closer to my hometown instead of going Boracay or PPUR. Vigan, ascent to Mt. Province-Baguio via Tagudin-Bitalag, beaches of Pagudpud are closer that could be visited that are as good as those I mentioned earlier.

      • lv on July 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        Sayang ngarud atty. daytoy a lugar ta awan met nakitak nga agpapagna. Siguro napudot. Ammo tayo met nga allergic dagiti pinoy iti pudot. Saan da kayat iti ngumisit. Mabalin nga adda met siguro agjojogging dita iti bigat. Maybe what they need there are restaurants, coffee shops, and even street vendors just to attract people.

    • lv on July 12, 2017 Permalink | Reply

      I think in general, San Fernando could be a much better place especially in the area of commerce and tourism if there is a good infrastructure such as rail, highways and airports leading to San Fernando. There is actually an airport at Poro Point but it is not being utilized. I am not sure what happened to the plan of making the airport an international airport? There is a new expressway (TPLEX or Tarlac-Pangasinan-La Union Expressway) going to Ilocos but it ends in Rosario. Why not at least have it extended to San Fernando or Bacnotan since Rosario is not that far away. The train which used to run from Tutuban in Manila to San Fernando has been out of commission for the longest time or for good. I think it would be great if it is revived. People would take the train for sure if that happens. Everybody misses it. I was lucky that I was able to ride the San Fernando-Manila train a few times when was a little kid travelling with my parents to Manila before it ceased operation. It was convenient, fun, and there was definitely more leg room in the train than in the buses we used to take. There is a plan by the Duterte Administration to revive the train system in Northern Luzon. However, it does not go all the way to La Union. It will end in Clark. The system will be a part of a commuter rail being planned for Manila and its suburbs which will end in Clark, Pampanga in the north and Los Banos, Laguna in the south. The southern section is actually being extended all the way to Sorsogon in Bicol. This line was part of the old PNR system that used to go between San Fernando, La Union and Bicol. The folks in Southern Luzon are lucky that they will have their train back soon. Construction of the line is due to start soon. This is not fair. What about the San Fernando, La Union line? Paging the congressmen, governors, and mayors of Region 1 particularly the provinces of Pangasinan, La Union, and Ilocos Sur. Please do something. We do need all these infrastructures in order that investors will come and also so we can uplift the lives of the people in our region (Region 1 – Pangasinan, La Union, Ilocos Sur, Ilocos Norte). We are being left behind by the other regions particularly the other regions in Central and Southern Luzon. Thank you apo.

      • Atty. Romeo J. Somera, Esq.,CPA on July 12, 2017 Permalink | Reply

        I wholeheartedly agree with your views and observations.The late Pres. Marcos had embarked on road, bridges, and infrastructures building all over the country, and we Ilocanos greatly benefited as everybody else. But unfortunately, Apo Marcos forgot about restoring the railroad to its old grandeur particularly, as you said, the Tutuban to SFDO, LU line. I too, experienced riding the train. It was a very exciting experience every time I get into it. Because, we are from Tagudin, we always had a bus waiting, the ever reliable BAL (Benguet Auto Lines). Unlike riding the bus (Zambrano, Binalonan, Pantranco, and Sta Lucia, to name a few), saan mo mga masapul ti agbalon ti liningta nga icklog for lunch. On the train, all kinds of vendors are always selling their wares, and when approaching Pampanga, Bulacan, there are vendors selling and yelling ‘TUBIG, TUBIG”. And remember what the american replied who happens to be doing his thing?

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