Sunday, September 30, 2007

On Be Bench: The last men standing

Missing the guys of Be Bench: The Model Search? The newspaper Manila Standard/Today reported that all six finalists of Be Bench “have all been signed up to be part of the ever growing list of talents that make Star Magic the biggest talent management company in local entertainment.” The newspaper also reported that all finalists “are also commissioned to join the platoon of Bench endorsers.” Good news to the four losers. It turned out that they won the top prizes, too.

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Saturday, September 29, 2007

Excessive Exposure


I was on my way to Intramuros one sober morning and since I was coming from the extreme end of Mindanao Avenue, I had to take one SUV ride from my point of origin to SM City North EDSA first, before riding another one going to Kalaw. (That SM mall is one of the world’s ten biggest!) I’m one person who reads everything I could see – the newspapers, magazines, labels, signs, billboards, and even faces – so there’s no way I would miss that gigantic billboard just atop that footbridge in front of that mall.

This time, the first thing I noticed wasn’t the letters encrypted therein but the three gynormous billboards arranged from top to bottom. Call it a threesome. I forgot seeing a single word at all but I can certainly guarantee they’re another Bench schemes. Those three generous models (Jake Cuenca, Francine Prieto and Bruce Quebral, if I got ‘em correctly) bared too much skin to have their fans (me included) and bulge-hungry faggots human beings celebrate life. Looking at them was like praising the gods of naked bodies particularly when the background illustrations were blue skies and ice crystals.

While we may celebrate or pant over those hard-ons and tits, I wonder (I love to wonder!) how they would appeal to the young minds. I may sound like a total KJ right now, but I still think that this new series of Bench ads are excessively unsuitable for public exhibition. Spreading those through magazines like FHM or Icon is perhaps more appropriate. Is Bench running out of ideas to sell more but through sex-inducing images? (That’s something to ponder over this weekend.)

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The Bonbon Series: Derek Ramsay

My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard, and they’re like, it’s better than yours. Damn right, it’s better than yours. And there goes Kelis again, tearing down the silence of the room with her biggest single in history. The song was just great while I was groping up and down Derek’s washboard abs. “My manshake brings all the gays to the couch, and they’re like, it’s juicy and hot. Damn right, it’s hotter than yours.” Okay, he’s not a manshake, he’s our hunky bonbon. Derek Ramsay (often mistakenly spelled as Ramsey), Ysabella’s sexiest chef on TV, is a model, host and actor. He appeared on the movies Matakot Ka sa Karma and Kasal, Kasali, Kasalo, and on the TV series Super Inggo and Panday. His biggest break on television is probably his role in Ysabella, as one of Judy Ann Santos’ leading men, playing the most adored chef on television who fell in love to his real-life girlfriend Angelica Panganiban. WTF?!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

On Pinoy Hotties 2007: Start voting now!

On October 23, PH turns 1. Yes, it is the Pinoy Hotties Yahoo! Group’s first anniversary. We are more than gratified to have you (the members) on board and make this simple network a success. In less than a year, we’re able to gather more than 2,000 people who not only admired the splendid Filipino physical attributes but also shared the same passion of promoting the distinctiveness of Filipinos from the rest of the world. We are truly fabulous and together, we could conquer the world.

In time to PH’s anniversary, we are declaring our very own World’s 69 Most Desirable Pinoy Hotties of 2007. This is the successor to last year’s The 15 Most Desirable Pinoy Hotties of 2006 which was also participated by the early members of PH. This is just a little experiment, one that we hope all of you will play on and support.

Last year, it was Rafael Rosell who prevailed to be the most desired and Jake Cuenca came close to second. (Click here to see the complete list.) Will Rafael still cling to the crown this year? It’s all in your hand so be sure to cast your votes today and check back on October 23, when we will unveil 2007’s No. 1 Most Desirable Filipino Hottie in the whole world. Not only that, by voting, you’ll also get a chance to win a date with the winning celebrity or a brand new iPhone. No, we’re totally kidding. *LOL*

There are two ways to vote for your favorites: (1) by participating in the series of polls created or (2) by simply replying to this message with the list of your most desired Filipino celebrities, actors, models, musicians, sportsmen, among others. You can also check out the Photos section to see a list of hot Filipinos waiting for your vote. We prefer you voting for, at most, 23 hot Filipino men – a tierce of the actual list to be displayed on October 23.

So take your time. Enjoy.

NOTE: This post is copied from Pinoy Hotties and posting a comment with your list of nominees here will not be honored. You can visit Pinoy Hotties and join if you may to vote for your favorites.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Do you have an inferiority complex?

I’ve grown up repeatedly hearing about “colonial mentality” but there was no greater emphasis on the subject in my 14 years of experience as student. Or maybe I was just, as the popular Filipino joke goes, absent when it was taught by the professor. Due to the ubiquitous-ness of the term, it would usually just come in from one ear and out through the other. I didn’t bother to look for its real significance, causes and possible consequences. I just knew it ain’t a good thing.

I always find myself surrounded by Filipinos complaining over this country’s flaws, and this country’s people’s flaws. But what gets me annoyed is when these people view these imperfections as grounds to eventually hate their own and look up to the rest of the world. I criticize things not just for the hell of it (though in some cases, yes). I criticize things because I know something better could have been made to it. Have I become so demanding? Perhaps I only wanted the best. But I never looked down to this country despite the blemishes.

This Rizalish attitude of mine challenges millions of Filipinos who, throughout the years, lost their faith already. Few years ago, a popular news program confronted the viewers with one striking question: Is there hope for the Philippines? Some had high expectations but a handful divulged suspicion. If a country’s success is measured by its people’s satisfaction, the Philippines will apparently rank at the bottom. I understand that. But mocking our own won’t make us any better.

It appears that Filipinos suffer from what the scholars refer to as cultural cringe – an internalized inferiority complex causing people in a country to dismiss their own culture as inferior to the cultures of other countries. If that is indeed true, I believe that our schools and other academic institutions should give emphasis on Filipino culture, further highlighting on colonial mentality. (Parang beauty queen lang noh?)

But is cultural cringe an overstatement or plain reality?

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Philippines: The music capital of Asia?

Filipino talents winning international recognition and other talents reaching beyond the shores of the archipelago? I can’t help but wonder of how much the music industry has evolved. Walk around Metro Manila at night, for instance, even in unlikely places, you’ll find yourself wedged in the middle of beautiful sound, be it RnB, pop, electronic or punk from numerous bars scattered around the city.

We have plainly traversed all kinds of music with the alternative rock perhaps leading the pack. Kjwan, a Filipino rock band introduced in 2003, won the first ever Ikon ASEAN in Malaysia, while fellow Filipino musician Vina Morales brought home the bacon for the solo category. Not to mention other Filipinos or musicians of Filipino descent who have persuaded the world through their irresistible flair such as Nicole Scherzinger, apl.de.ap of the Black Eyed Peas, Mutya Buena, Lea Salonga, Enrique Iglesias, Jasmine Trias, Camile Velasco, Jocelyn Enriquez, among others.

In the past few months, Manila was visited by several international acts either to stage a major concert or just share their music through TV, mall tours, etc. Fall Out Boy just staged two major concerts last September 21 and 22 at the Araneta Coliseum, and so has Switchfoot last September 10 at the Cuneta Astrodome. And while I was writing this article, American Idol 5’s Elliot Yamin is busy promoting his first album at the Market! Market! mall in the Manila suburb of Taguig. Not too long ago, Christina Aguilera staged her first ever concert in the country. Babyface, and many others I could not remember, has a scheduled major performance at the Big Dome in the next few weeks.

Have we become Asia’s music capital? Our neighbors may argue, but there’s one thing that’s certain, Filipino talents are an inescapable fact of life. A Canadian customer from my call center experience asked before ending the call, “You’re Filipino? You must be a good singer.”

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Let's all meet the sexy Brent Javier

Ronald Brent Javier, born 20 February 1980, is a famous model in the Philippines. He has done several modeling stints and TV commercials in neighboring countries as well, including Thailand and Singapore. Since winning the Mossimo Bikini Summit in 2002, Brent had me secretly drooling over him. Thanks largely to his boy-next-door look and “smile that seems to brighten up a room” as one writer puts it. (You see, I was only 16 five years ago and not yet as verbal as today when it comes to boys.)

Brent, since winning that prestigious event, became a prominent figure in the modeling world. This triggered the Cosmopolitan magazine to feature him as one of its most eligible bachelors, and several other magazines featured him almost regularly. He has done commercials for Smart’s Addict Mobile, Century Tuna, McDonald’s, and others. Most recently, Brent joined the MTV VJ Hunt but did not win.

Rumor has it that Brent is gay but he denied the allegation. He is “confident with his sexuality and has realized that it’s all part and parcel of the business.” (Click here to read more on Brent.)

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Monday, September 17, 2007

Worlds Apart 3: The Effem Way

Weng excused himself from the group (a rendezvous of effeminate gays and straight-acting gays or SAGs) when one straight guy came. He guided the hottie to Mama Wanda’s sanctuary – a small, studio-type parlor/dormitory. From where I was sitting, I could see that the dorm’s lights were turned off and neither an open window nor an open ceiling could permit a spark of light inside Mama Wanda’s pad. I assumed that nothing but pure darkness ruled the entire place. The guy, they said, was there to render his services.

The conversation over the differences of “a SAG life” and “the effem way” was vaguely sliced to endure the disturbance. Not long later, the interesting topic recommenced. But a lot of things were running inside my head that time. I simply can’t concentrate. I was trying to suck up yet one life’s marvel:

How to score a straight, young guy in Malabon?
Give him 100 pesos.

Seriously, a hundred pesos ($1.90) could help you get a guy to bed. For gays in Malabon (and probably around similar places, too), that’s something to celebrate. Mama Wanda is perhaps one of those who are more than gratified to take advantage of the situation. The hair salon keeps him occupied each day and it’s his only source of income. But regardless, paying guys for sex has always been part of his budget plan. One sexual feat a night usually concludes his everyday affairs. He doesn’t dream much in life. Hopelessness, I say, is possibly more like it.

I feel sorry about how poverty could turn some of us into one person we never wanted to be. This guy, for example, who Mama Wanda just had sex with, was only forced against his will to have sex with gays to earn money. If you were in his shoes, will you feel all the miseries in life? Or is life harsher when you’re in Mama Wanda’s position?

Not too long later, when the rendezvous nears its end and the crowd shrunk in number, I had a great chance to interview Mama Wanda. A lot of inquiries troubled my head but only one flooded out. “What happened in the dark?” Mama Wanda knew too well what’s in my head that he persisted to tell me everything he could.

While he was at the peak of his story, some words he said reverberated inside my head. I thought I lost my sense of hearing in a split second. I verified, used different words and verified again. It was, it was … beyond my belief. The guy, he said, performed fellatio on him. What I had in my green mind turned out to be extremely incorrect. A straight guy performs fellatio to a gay guy?

How to make one straight guy in Malabon gay?
Give him 100 pesos.

Wrong. It was so wrong. It took me a while to believe Mama Wanda’s account. Why he would lie to me, anyway? The others, who were also listening to us, confirmed it to me. They were even surprised to witness my reaction. Seriously, am I the only one here? Can I see hands?

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Oooops, Bench did it again!

Bench, the country’s top retailer, celebrated its 20th anniversary with what else, a glitzy, daunting, mind-blowing display of celebrity bulges last September 11. Are they trying to compete with Cosmopolitan’s Bachelor Bash? Let’s see how Vince Lopez captured all the fuss.

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On Be Bench: Meet the winners

Carlo Guevarra and Regine Angeles won the much-anticipated Be Bench: The Model Search in the show’s conclusion last Tuesday at the Araneta Coliseum. Catch the telecast on Sunday at ABS-CBN, 10pm. (Thank you Vince Lopez for some of the pictures.)

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Monday, September 10, 2007

On Be Bench: The finalists' billboard, among others

It is probably something they never thought they’ll have in their lifetime. But yesterday, Bench Body’s Rica Peralejo unveiled what Ron Morales referred to as a dream come true: an oversized billboard of him and 5 other finalists in their half-naked magnificence. Be Bench: The Model Search will come to its end on 9/11 – in time to the Twin Tower bombing’s 6th anniversary. The finals night will not only feature the six finalists (the crowd favorite Carlo Guevarra, the ABS-CBN management favorite Haroun Morales, new Reyville’s favorite John Uy, the stunning Regine Angeles, the bubbly Michelle Carbonell and the snobbish-looking Kristine Nieto) but also the other Bench celebrity endorsers. From the sound of it, the night is going to be one hell of an event.

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Saturday, September 8, 2007

Cosmopolitan's Bachelor Bash 2007

I assumed that like me, most of you were unable to see these bachelors’ half-naked bodies last Thursday. So to fill your hunger for these guys, I am reposting Vince Lopez’s shots here. To see more pictures of this year’s 69 bachelors and 8 centerfolds (Alfred Vargas and Jake Cuenca were not present to grace the event) on the ramp, you can always visit the site of Vince Lopez. Have a great day, everybody. Ciao.

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Wednesday, September 5, 2007

The Bonbon Series: Paul Guesande

Paul Guesande is a renowned ‘macho dancer’ (a popular Filipino term for male stripper) in Manila, pioneering the ingenious steps not known to Philippine exotic dance stereotypes. (You can download a sample video in Miong21’s blog.) Most gay male strip clubs in the country usually cater to both gay men and female. But too bad he’s no longer visible these days though. He’s Simply Manila’s newest bonbon.

Click to see more Paul Guesande pictures.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Hottie of the Month: Alfred Vargas (Part 1)

Our Hottie of the Month for September is Alfred Vargas – the promdi (a Filipino slang for province-raised) macho dancer of the movie Bridal Shower who left us drooling over his technically good physique. The acting may not be extraordinary but watching him dance in a skimpy red bikini could probably tell us that this guy has enough ability to surprise. This 25-year-old hottie once again flaunted his assets by doing sexy pictorials for the magazine X-Ray and on several print ads for Walker Underwear. Alfred Vargas was born on 24 October 1981 in the City of San Juan – one of the two newly-proclaimed cities in Metro Manila (the other is Navotas). He is a graduate of AB Management, with a major in Economics, at the Ateneo de Manila University.

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