Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Upgrade that backpack with some leather

Yes, it's hard to let go of a backpack. It's functional, it keeps your hands free, and it's just plain easy to carry around. But sometimes the backpack can look a bit out of place if you're in an office attire, let alone a suit. It could even ruin an otherwise stylishly casual outfit. You can't be in jeans or shorts and sneakers all the time, can you? But still, you just don't want to trade that backpack with a briefcase or something.

Fortunately designers of late have found ways to give that trusty backpack an upgrade that it won't look out of place in a business suit. The use of leather, of course, comes as no surprise. Here are some gorgeous leather backpacks that you can consider for those days when you just can't be too casual.

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J.W. Hulme Co. Continental Backpack
A gorgeous rucksack design in a fantastic color, this backpack has 3 pockets and a padded tablet sleeve inside.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Philpop 2014 Top 12: A belated discovery

While everything else was drowned out by The Voice Kids Philippines finals last Saturday night, the 3rd Philippine Popular Music Festival (Philpop) was happening elsewhere at the Meralco Theater where 12 finalists competed for the Php 1million top plum.

SpinnrPhilPop 2

I watched neither of the two shows but my online meandering led me to an article citing that the winning song "Salbabida" (by composer Jungee Marcelo) was interpreted by Kyla, who's making a comeback of sorts in the local music scene. It got me interested because I kinda like Kyla's voice, so I watched the video, which led to many other clicks until I was done with all 12 songs.

While Salbabida (a life buoy or floatation device) to me deserved the win, there were a couple other nice songs in the list, and it was particularly refreshing to see a lot of fast-paced entries in the mix. I don't know what Philpop's criteria were but here are a few of my personal picks (in no particular order):

Qrush On You
Composers: Knowa Lazarus and Flava Matikz of of Q-York
Interpreters: Jay-R, Elmo Magalona and Q-York
My favorite of the bunch not because it has some profound meaning or anything but because it's downright catchy. I love the song's feel-good melody and vibe and I'm reminded here that Jay-R is a really good singer.


Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Crunch time: Additional 25% off on sale items at East Dane

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Menswear online shopping site East Dane is holding a 2-day special sale until Wednesday, July 23 at 11:59 PM PST. Already in full swing as of this writing, the sale entitles customers to an additional 25% off on items that are already on sale to begin with! Just enter the promo code "25EXTRA" upon checkout. The offer discount will be allocated proportionally among all promotional items in your order. Check out this page for more details.

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Care for some Scotch & Soda?

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Cliché as it may sound, white and blue works for that bit of nautical feel in your outfit.

It's been around since the 80s but since its rebirth in 2001, Amsterdam-based Scotch & Soda has seen an explosion of style that's high on quality, detail, and affordability. The brand usually takes inspiration from classic and vintage styles of yore infused with modern inspirations from around the globe.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

In and around the church at Samboan, Cebu

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The little angel is bored, waiting for the Flores de Mayo service to start.

Last May, after enjoying the lure of eco-tourism in Aloguinsan, checking out the heritage richness of Boljoon, and then making a quick stop at the town of Oslob, My Bibe and company also dropped by the church at Samboan.

Samboan is a fifth class municipality with its own share of history and is home to a couple of waterfalls and a marine sanctuary. My Bibe wasn't really able to check any of these out, just the church. Nevertheless I had a peek into this town's simple yet arguably charming life through her Instagram photos.

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Oslob: Beyond Sumilon and the whale shark frenzy

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Remnants of the Baluarte at the town of Oslob.

I haven't been to Oslob, a fourth class municipality in the southern part of Cebu province. But I probably know Oslob because of Sumilon Island and regrettably, the whale shark feeding in Tan-awan, of which I'm totally against. Little did I know that the town also has a few historical places of interest, thanks to My Bibe's Instagram photos from her Southern Cebu trip some 2 months ago. And might I say they made me want to check this town out myself.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

The "watching hour" at East Dane

I just realized I have a bunch of wristwatches that have been lying unused inside a drawer because their batteries needed replacement. I know all it's supposed to take is a trip to the watch repair guy but you just can't have enough watches, can you? I mean, especially when you see a classic beauty like this Daniel Wellington Cardiff watch here that I spotted on menswear shopping site East Dane:

01 watches
Daniel Wellington Cardiff 40mm Watch in rose gold, with brown leather strap.

If there's one excuse I can make for wanting this, it's the fact that I don't have any watch with a brown leather strap. I'm also digging the rose gold color, something I also don't have, and that it's thin and classic in its design, which would go perfectly with any business attire.

But then East Dane has loads of other beauties.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

[Throwback Thursday 07.03.2014] Our cringeworthy induction climb to Mt Manalmon

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Texting atop Mt Manalmon. Trivia: this photo was used for an article that came out in The Philippine Star.

This should have been my Throwback Thursday post last week because it was exactly 10 years ago on June 26 when the founding members of the Smart Mountaineering Club--otherwise known as Core or Batch 0--scaled the ridiculously short Mt Manalmon in San Miguel, Bulacan. I never wanted to, nor do I now, call it an induction climb because it makes me cringe. I mean, it's an extremely minor climb and this mountain--if it ever deserves to be called one--rises a mere 160 MASL.

In mountaineering parlance, an induction climb is the final climb where mountaineering trainees are inducted into a club following their completion of a basic mountaineering course (BMC). Depending on the club, the course could run anywhere from days to months. As such, induction climbs are often the hardest ones or if not, they involve the tallest mountains, preferably those that require more than 2 days to complete.

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

A treasure trove of history at Boljoon, Cebu

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Angels standing guard over the entrance to the church grounds at Boljoon.

Poring over My Bibe's Instagram photos of her little trip to the southern part of Cebu province last May, I'm filled with this yearning to really go visit these places she's been to. After Aloguinsan, where she enjoyed a simple yet lovely cruise along the Bojo River, I'm now sharing with you some of her smartphone shots of Boljoon (pronounced bol-ho-ON, or bull-hu-ON in true-blue Cebuano accent).

A fifth class municipality, Boljoon may be as simple as it gets but it does offer some nice views. It's a coastal town bordered by limestone cliffs and hills and has a lush mountain backdrop, making it a really picturesque place. Moreover, the people here are really nice and warm, to which My Bibe can attest.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Fun and meaningful time at #BoomPH, the 3rd Social Media Day celebration in the Philippines

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The Philippine National Anthem playing at the start of #BoomPH's main event. Cool lights, huh?

Yesterday, June 28, hundreds of netizens trooped to the Samsung Hall at SM Aura Premier for the 3rd Social Media Day in the Philippines. Social Media Day (#SMDay) is an annual global event launched by Mashable in 2010 "as a way to recognize the digital revolution happening right before our eyes," where people and communities are encouraged to organize local meetups in their respective cities.

In the Philippines, in Metro Manila in particular, the first such event was organized in 2012 by Tweetup Manila (@TweetupMNL), an online community of people who I can say are genuinely into social good, be it about disasters, rescues, and many more. It's their passion, one that's good and one that brings even more good.

Anyway, yesterday was the third, which was dubbed #BoomPH, short for "The Best of Online Media in the Philippines." Since 2012, #SMDay has gradually made its way into the Filipino consciousness and this year, more and more communities have joined in and staged their own celebrations in cities like Baguio, Cebu, Davao, and General Santos. And I'm sure there were more. The official worldwide #SMDay may be June 30 but hey, it's best celebrated on a weekend, right?
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