Memoirs of A Geisha

“It may seem odd, but when I realized that the shape of my own face was surprise to me, I had the sudden insight that nothing in life is ever as simple as we imagine.”

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A woman’s transformation starts when she found her purpose. A little girl name “Chiyo” who was sold, to be a servant girl but strive to become the most memorable artisan of her time. She wanted to be a Geisha, it became her life purpose.

After reading Memoirs of A Geisha, I empathize with the main character. The little girl “Chiyo” wanted to escape her present situation. Then she met a senior gentleman, whom she shared her dreams with, over snow cone conversation. After their talk Chiyo (Suzuka Ohgo) became more determine to accomplish her journey, inspired to meet the gentleman again as a well-known Giesha.

The life of Geisha looked so extravagant, but as “Chiyo” underwent training; she realized that such beauty has a fair share of sacrifices. Her days where filled with lesson and practices. She started late compared to other young trainees called “maiko” mentored by one of the most celebrated Geisha of Gion Mameha  (Michelle Yeoh). Until she gave birth to her new persona “Sayuri” (Zhang Ziyi).

Sayuri face more challenging situation, that tested her character as woman. She never gave-up on her dream to meet the Chairman again. But her mentor assigned her to be with the Chairman’s bestfriend “Nobu-San” (Koji Yakusho). As if fate was playing trick on her, she was so close to the Chairman, but a great barrier hinder them to be together. Sayuri accepted her situation, without knowing that Chairman (Ken Watabe) also cares for her.

The chairman was looking after the little girl she met in the bridge, as she transformed to the person she wants to be.

We offer our lives to fulfill the goal we set for ourselves. For a Geisha, to pacify men from their worries as their companions; through arts of dancing, singing, and good conversation; to the point that can’t help but to fall for their charms and the bad side of Geisha culture was abuse.

When I was in college our Film Professor assigned us to watch “Memoirs of A Geisha” released by Sony Pictures. I bought the book and read it, and watch the movie in SM Dasmarinas and bought Special Edition  DVD at the same mall. I treasure Sayuri and Mameha’s story.

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On-Line Piracy

A recent film was considered a box-office hit in the Philippines. People supported it, and the news about its success, spread like wildfire. Few weeks later, even its still showing in theaters, I found-out that it is already given free in torrent.

For middle-class audience, free-download cut their entertainment expense in half. They just have to pay for the electricity and internet usage to enjoy free movie.

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Camcorded from cinema, but Samsung mobile made the picture more clear.
Note: Picture was taken by Samsung Mobile Photo. TV Sony picture quality.

Other people who wants to take advantage of file sharing, sells the content through illegal distribution or illegal up-loads. Storing the content in disc, and let it be sold on-ground. This makes film industry operation more expensive, to recoup their losses in piracy.

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I have a fair share of guilt, cause I’m one of the middle-class earners who rely on file sharing; specially if the content is worth watching. This practice can justify file download; but when I experience business profit loss, because of piracy, my perception about file sharing changes.

There was a time when I was asked, by my Immediate Supervisor to lower the production cost, and lessen the fee of our Producer to save more. I find it hard to explain it to our Producer, because I knew that sales of DVD decreased. We have to adjust the budget at the expense of our employee. From then on, I invested on DVD, CD and album that are worthy to be in my collection.

Employees of media company tighten their belt, to save their production budget. They lower the people’s salary to ensure that their business operations are legal, and satisfied the qualification of government and other business sectors.

I enjoyed listening to music. I download music and later-on buy CD if I have enough money. I asked my brother to share the movies he downloaded; movies that we also watched in cinemas (not all), planned to purchase in DVD or BLU-RAY.

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To defend the consumers side, anybody who likes a certain art will definitely buy to support the artist, who are making films, music and other art forms.

But these people are responsible consumers, once I get satisfied with your content I make sure you get what you deserve. It will take time, for the public not to abuse  “FREE.”

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On the business side of things; I hope people in the art industry, will also consider their market’s capacity to pay. Charging too much, will make your clients  support piracy. Entertainment is not priority in the Philippines. It’s an escape from our reality

My advocacy, save to have your own copy.

If a friend is willing to share her love for music or film, I hope we spread the love for this art in the right way. Join forums for feed-backs, write blogs, or go to concerts, and events that will make the artist and content makers get what they deserve..

 

 

 

 

Jollibee Memories

Every children in Philippines, has there own Jollibee story. I grow-up waiting for Jollibee Pasalubong, Jollibee Honor Reward, and Happy Birthday Celebration Jollibee.

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We used to live in Cainta, and there is a Jollibee store at Sta. Lucia Mall. I have to wait for my parents, to come home around 9 to 10 PM hoping they’ll give me French fries or hamburger. It’s a Filipino sign of love; our parents have something for us, to be excited for meeting them again. It’s for children to know that their parents, was thinking about them the whole day. My mom have to save her own marienda to give it to us (My ate, me, and younger brother). The greatest part of it, we share French fries and hamburger together, as our midnight snack.

For thriving people who live in a tight budget like us, my parents opted to treat us every weekend if we have extra savings. It’s a reward for us.

Most Filipino people save, a portion of their  daily allowance, for one weekend eat-out at Jollibee.

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My parents used a different positive reinforcement, I can have a Jollibee blow-out if I have a scholastic honor. It’s annual award for studying hard, and having good grades. At the early age of eight and up; I have an idea how the world works. Jollibee is the most satisfying reward for me and children of the 80s to 90s.

Lastly, the number one place to have fun and play with your friends; is in Jollibee playground. Running after Jollibee mascots, and playing games with them during your BIRTHDAY CELEBRATION!  I wish to do this in the future.

After 20 years, I see Jollibee fast-food every where; and it reminds me how many unforgettable memories, I spent with Jollibee. So every day I see Jollibee smiles, he entices me to have a good meal with him, to remember how happy I am in his place.

So I started collecting Jollibee DATE challenge. Recreating Jollibee memories everywhere. But I always wanted to know who Jollibee is, do you know Jollibee?

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*Pasalubong is a Filipino practice, bring home food for your love ones.

I’m thankful for my Mommy Virgie Bardullas Tumangday for the Jollibee pasalubong memories. I grew-up waiting for her pasalubong, she saved her pamasahe or marienda just to give me and  my ate a Jollibee pasalubong. This her way to make us feel that she is thinking about us all day long, she want us to know how much she misses us and love us. Yung kakain ng Mommy Virgie Bardullas Tumangday sa amin binibigay pag-uwi niya. She endured her hunger for hours and walk in the sun, just to make us happy knowing she remember us through-out a bad-tough day of being away from each other. I love Mommy Virgie Bardullas Tumangday and Jollibee!

Piracy from Disc to On-line

My Sassy Girl made a hit in the Philippines through illegal distribution, around 2004 (not sure). The movie was pirated, and sold in the streets. People had a cheaper alternative to entertainment, and introduce a wide variety of content.

I was one of the pirated DVD consumers, during those time. The entertainment and happiness I get, from film didn’t cost much; because I didn’t have enough allowance to buy all the movies I wanted to watch.

But I know on-line video streaming was already available, I was watching music videos and uploaded shows in youtube.com. On-ground piracy and On-line videos streaming were available in Philippines; but the mass public had more access to On-ground piracy.

Downloading back then, was more convenient to music rip, conversion, and file sharing. I think movie files, require more storage capacity, faster connection to for web share.

Now that on-line connection, or the web was made accessible to the public (everyone in Philippines loves wife areas); on-ground piracy loss its patrons. Illegal disc selling eventually decreases.

I had a conversation with my younger brother, when I started this investigation;

I asked my younger brother to stop downloading, and getting free files the net.

I told him it’s stealing. My intelligent brother replied:

Younger Brother: “Paano mo nanakawin ang isang bagay na libre?”

Translation: “How can steal something that was given for free?

He didn’t understand; the business side of the entertainment, and distribution industry. Properly documented selling of content, makes the business operation running for the benefit of it’s employees. The profit is use to develop new strategy, to improve the organization, and widen the scope of business enterprise.

I remember, one question I asked myself (2010); during the time I was working for a film production company; “Kung hindi ninyo titigilan ang piracy or on-line downloading; papatayin ninyo ang industriyang pag-tratrabahunan ninyo sa kinabukasan”

Translation: “If you don’t stop illegal downloading, you’ll kill the industry you want to belong with in the future.”

It’s difficult to make people understand the concept of fair pricing; if they are battling for their right of information.

Hope the Optical Media Board can facilitate seminars to educate younger audience to be responsible viewers.

 

Training Parents

Amaziah Baptist Church is a small community church, that helps Biclatan residents to know faith in Christ. Members of this organization, aims to positively influence people. Church workers and volunteers held out-reach programs, prayer meetings, bible study, Sunday masses and fun activities.

 

One of the main goal of the active small group, is to help families. The church Pastor, Mr. Biboy Ramirez leads a parenting seminar. Teaching locals, how to handle family issues, time management, child development, and spiritual growth.

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Last February 21, 2016, congregation invited speaker Mike Menez. He talked about his experience, how he disciplined his own children. He gave guiding manuals, to assist the attendees understand different behaviors. He explained, the necessity of spiritual growth for children.

The ministry who helped to make this event happen, were happy. Attending Mothers like the seminars. They gave-out food, drinks, coordinated with the school (the venue), and hoping they will join the Women’s group soon.

In this small act of kindness, people living in Biclatan community; help-out one another. They strengthen the “Bayanihan Spirit” with the intention, of spreading God’s word to govern our lives.

 

 

POG

Today I saw children playing a familiar game, that was so popular in the 1990s. POG game in the Philippines was distributed through Coke Coca-Cola Philippines. Once you drink 1 litro bottle of soda, we get a chance to win three pieces of POGs.

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We have to check under the crown (we call it “Tanzan”),to see if the drinker won, or have to try again.

The picture in POG Philippines, looks like a caveman eating corn while watching TV. He has different funny antics, while drinking Coca-Cola.

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There was an urban legend about POG that spread, when I was in Manila. POG was a person trapped for some years, and when he went out; the world was different from the time he was captured.

He adjusted to the new society. I want to believe that drinking Coca-Cola made him feel refresh and happy. He belongs to the society if he drinks Coke Coca-Cola.

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Today children plays the same thing, but with different characters. I hope Coke Coca-cola Philippines will re-print POG Philippine edition. I have a slammer when I was young, and I think their was American version of POG. Every children carry it around and play it like text (card game).

It’s glad to know that this game is internationally well-known and it’s alive until now.

POGs Coke-Cola Philippines, EDSA Holiday!

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