Wednesday, November 30, 2005


For us mere mortals who do not have cars to bring and fetch us to and from the airport, it can be an experience that can elicit dismay and confusion.

Here are tips on how to survive our airports.

Posting soon.


Work on the Grand Old Dame of Philippine Theatres, the Met, has finally started. Located across Plaza Arocerros (which is now nowehere to be found because of the flyovers), it was built in 1926 using the design of Juan Arellano (later National Artist) and recognised as a significant historical and architectural building, the structure being a unique blend of American Art Deco and Philippine design which included floral motifs and stucco patination

The President issued a directive in 2002 paving the way to the revival of the Metropolitan Theater to give the masses access to cultural activities. This is in line with her plans of making art "folksy". Hmmm...i certainly have heard that before.

Philippine Night at The Met, September 12, 1934 (From the collection of the USS Henderson, US Navy) . Notice the distinct art deco details of the walls and the chandelier

Thursday, November 24, 2005


Pasig River, circa 1899. Do you know that Pasig River's floating market antedated Bangkok's version by several decades? Because even if Bangkok's canals were dug in 1866 on the orders of the King, the floating markets started only in 1967.

Pasig River today. Don't be blinded by the lovely sunset.

Photos from Archives


"We do not have the same Dior, darling. Mine is Dior. Yours is eBay." - Bryanboy

Manila's denizens are quite an interesting lot, but once in a while someone really entertaining (or hateful, depending on your persuasions) comes along to liven up what could be a boring metropolis.

And God created (wo)man. And the (wo)man's name is Bryan: Le Superstar Fabuleux.

With a blog that claims to chronicle the "Adventures of the new-moneyed classess (sic) bitch from hell. Vulgarity is the new discreet. Trash is the new exclusivity. Third world has never been this *burp* chic. You just have to scroll down as in down!", has risen to stellar status via this famous pose copied the world over.

Indeed, if anything, we can always look forward to a good laugh once in a while. And this I say in an unapologetic and irreverent manner worthy of Manila characters like Bryanboy.

(I have this weird feeling I'm going to be stoned to death by doing this post...)


It has come to this. Reality TV has invaded the streets, a sure sign of its popularity. This is located along Tandang Sora, Q.C. according to Stepping on Poop.

Photo courtesy of The Mcvie Show Live!

Friday, November 18, 2005


We are a country obsessed with beauty and what better way to show this obsession than the holding of annual - and several - beauty pageants! While recent pageants already include men, the pageants for women still capture the imagination of oh-so-many female wannabes all over the islands. Of course many still couldn't get over the Philippines' recent win in the Miss International pageant. After all, we waited for this for 26 years!

But before we had Bb. Pilipinas, Miss Earth and what have you, there only was one beauty pageant held in the Philippines way back decades ago - the search for the the one and only Manila Carnival Queen!

Here are the photos of the winners during the 1952 Manila Carnival.

Her Majesty, The 1952 Manila Carnival Queen (What's with the Thai-inspired outfit?)

Ms. Roalinda Lim, Miss Luzon

Miss Visayas

Ms. V. Lopez, Miss Mindanao

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

OLONGAPO, c. 1971

For us who have the faintest memory of the Marcos years, the closest thing to say would be that it's just like going back to Cory's time when the Americans were still here. With the spectre of a US-RP crisis looming on the horizon that will definitely come along with the trial of 5 or 6 (depending on the source of info) US Marines for the rape of a young girl from Zamboanga, one cannot just sit back and ignore it all.

By the way, I came across this photo during my search of something relevant to my topic today. This is a scene in Olongapo City. You can click on it to enlarge. This was taken in 1971. Heck, I wasn't even born yet!

Saturday, November 12, 2005


A new specie of Rafflesia has been discovered in Compostela Valley in Mindanao. Aside from the excitement this flower is creating among botanists, it also (in a way) speaks well of the status of our remaining forests.

If confirmed, it will be named Rafflesia magnifica owing to its large diameter, perhaps the largest among the many species known to exist today.

More of the story here.

Here are some of the photos of Rafflesia species mentioned in the article. Special thanks to Dan Nickrent of the Department of Plant Biology, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale.

R. manillana

R. speciosa

Sorry, no photos of R. schadenbergiana as it may already be extinct.

The lifecyle of a Rafflesia. Diagram courtesy of

Thursday, November 10, 2005


Located on El Fraile island off the shore of Manila Bay, it was more known to Americans and Filipino soldiers as the Island Battleship. Ít was part of the War Plan Orange, where 4 islands were to be fortified to defend Manila. Corregidor was the largest of these islands, and El Fraile was the smallest and the most unique. It took 11 years to complete, from 1909 to 1919.

It surrendered in 1942 to the Japanese army but remains to this day as the only unsinkable battleship in the world.

Question: What is its official name?

Tuesday, November 08, 2005


Okay, so my blog isn't named GUTS. GRIT. GUMPTION. for nothing. Here's a challenge for Manila denizens:

Let me know how you'd spend a day in Manila with only Php 500 (this would entail a entire day of gimmick with friends). I'd be doing my own with photos and cost breakdown to boot.

Contributors (Your own experience!) to this challenge are welcome.

Monday, November 07, 2005


You've all heard and read about it. Do you recall the significance of this particular alcohol cooking stove?

Sunday, November 06, 2005


Originally built by the Rocha family in 1802, it was purchased by the Spanish government to house the Governor General after the offical residence was leveled by an earthquake in 1869.

This photo was taken two years before William Howard Taft, who became the first American Civil Governor of the Philippines, became a resident of this building in 1900.

Saturday, November 05, 2005


This church, whose construction started in 1587 and was completed in 1604, has been described as a permanent miracle in stone since it withstood the strong earth tremors that shook Manila after it was built. Manila was hit by strong earthquakes in 1645, 1863 and 1880 and this was among the only ones left standing.

This church follows the severe baroque style, but incorporates Herrera and Vignolesque influences which reached the archipelago from the Viceroyalty of Mexico. It was the only building left intact in Intramuros during the Liberation of Manila in 1945.

It was included in the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1993.

Friday, November 04, 2005




This photo was taken while it was being constructed in 1897. When it was over, it brought fame to the Philippines as being the first and only all-steel structure in all of Asia, and second in the world. Not only the main structure of this building, but also its walls and even the intersecting vaulting, were of metal construction. This was the fruit of neogothic tendencies and the Industrial Revolution then ongoing in Europe. The steel was shipped to Manila from Belgium - truly a pioneer in prefabricated construction.

Located in Quiapo, the construction was done under the supervision of Engineer Genaro Palacios y Guerra, who also did the design.

Thursday, November 03, 2005


Photo taken in the 1900s. The church, however, still stands BUT it hardly looks like this today. Destroyed several times by earthquakes, fire and finally war, it is said that this cathedral is the only one in the world to have been rebuilt 7 times.

Where is this located, and what is it popularly known as?

Wednesday, November 02, 2005


This photo was taken in the year 1900. The monument, however, still stands. Click to enlarge photo.

1.) What does it commemorate?
2.) Where is it located?