Ben Chan headlines Esquire Philippines’ Wealth Issue

Esquire Philippines’ August issue delves into the non-conformists of men’s fashion, the 25th anniversary of BENCH, the screening of The Bourne Legacy which was shot in the country, and more.
BENCH founder Ben Chan graces the cover of the Wealth Issue as his business reaches 25 years of cultivating a lifestyle brand for Filipinos.
His success comes from providing a wide range of affordable, basic clothing, and also extends to fragrance, watches, accessories, snacks, and even a Bench MasterCard.
Ben says, “Anything that I do has the Filipino in mind. Anything that I do is always Filipino.”

Ben Chan in Esquire

Also featured is CEO Felipe Gozon as he talks about the TV5-GMA merger that shook the nation.
Mr. Gozon says, “You should not be surprised bakit gustong bilhin ang Channel 7. Parang tinatanong mo bakit ba nililigawan yung pagkaganda-gandang dalagang yun?”

Esquire Philippines August issue is now available at newsstands and bookstores nationwide for Php 195.
To know more, go to

Serious coño problems

Dude, I missed the screening of this, pare. (Sorry, I’m kidding.)
Seriously, I feel really bad I wasn’t able to watch the screening of Give Up Tomorrow last July 27 and 29 at Cinemalaya.

Give Up Tomorrow poster

July 27th, I had already planned that trip to Tagaytay, and July 29th, a Sunday, was my rest day.
Give Up Tomorrow is a multi-awarded documentary by producer Marty Syjuco and director Michael Collins, who chronicle the story of Paco Larrañaga, a 19-year-old student who was accused (along with six others) of kidnapping, raping and murdering sisters Marijoy and Jacqueline Chiong in Cebu on July 16, 1997.


Even as 40 witnesses (including Larrañaga’s teachers and classmates at the Center for Culinary Arts in Quezon City) testified under oath that he was hundreds of miles from the crime scene, Paco and his co-accused were sentenced to death by lethal injection in February 2004.


On June 24, 2006, capital punishment was abolished in the Philippines, and in October 2009, Paco, a Spanish citizen, was transferred to the Madrid Central Penitentiary in Soto del Real, Spain, where he is due to serve his life sentence until 2038. By then he will be 61.


Then and now: Paco in a Manila jail (above) and recently in Spain (below) where he was allowed to watch the screening of the movie with his family.


Give Up Tomorrow hopes to prove the innocence of Paco Larrañaga, while exposing “a Kafkaesque extravaganza populated by flamboyantly corrupt public officials, cops on the take, and a frenzied legal and media circus. It is also an intimate family drama focused on the near mythic struggle of two angry and sorrowful mothers who have dedicated more than a decade to executing or saving one young man.” (Source)


I’m really hoping they will screen this again in Manila as two screenings at the CCP are really not enough.
If there’s anyone who knows of any future screenings in Metro Manila, please let us know.

To know more about the documentary, go to

Please vote for Ben and Markus!

If I didn’t get pregnant (and homebound) with Ben in 2000, and my dad hadn’t discouraged me from working outside, I probably wouldn’t have discovered blogging 12 years ago.
Twelve years later, my sons—ages 10 and 9—have found out that their mom is a blogger with a following.
Like many kids their age, they have their gadgets and cannot imagine life without Internet.
Not too long ago they joined Instagram before I did and a couple of days ago they joined some contest which needs “likes” in order to win a membership to some cool Instagram pool.
While they’re in school I thought about surprising them by augmenting their “likes” on these entries.
This is Ben’s


And this is Marky’s


I don’t really know what the theme is. But if you’re on Instagram, please help me put the biggest smiles on my sons’ faces when they get home. It would really make my day and theirs if you could like these photos.
To vote, just log in your Instagram account on the upper right corner of the page.
Thank you very much!!

Soulcard readings by Sandy

I don’t know Sandy. I have never met her and am deathly afraid of card readings and all that.
But this email popped out on my screen and I thought that some of you might want to read about Soulcard Readings from Sandy herself:


I have a deck of cards called Soulcards,
which I use to look into people brave enough to sit in front of me and be told off.
I tell them what I see of them, who they are at the moment,
who they may have been before,
what they have now in terms of personal problems & agendas that could be of help,
and what may happen later in the foggy future.

I’ve been called a fortune teller (my most abhorred of titles),
diviner, soul soother, soul reader,
but I am NOT any of those things.
I just look at a person, and start reading them.
That’s what I do, Mondays to Fridays, til I’m done with my last client.
The past few months have proven difficult
for walk-in prospective clients to be accommodated,
simply because a lot of people ask for readings in advance.

I love what I do.
I’ve met the most illuminating, intelligent, uplifting people through what I do.
I have a definite way with words, thanks to my voracious reading habits,
and I make great use of my vocabulary.
I need to be facile with the language in order to put across in the most apt words
what I see of the person I’m reading, in order for them to understand.
I’ve succeeded on the most part, and with those I sweat blood over in the trying,
I still feel a sense of vindication in knowing I tried,
in the most desperate of measures sometimes,
to tell them what I meant.

It’s a tough process, always.

The most beautiful aspect of what I do
is the opportunity for introduction
to a multitude of characters that this allows me.
I would never have been able to have in my circle of friends
those I list as such had it not been for my readings.

Another reason why I can never leave this
is because of my curious nature.
Every person in this world has his own singular story to tell,
and most of the time it’s a fascinating, eye-popping, breath-catching tale.
I get a chance to go front seat each time, and then,
at the most crucial part in his present life,
I’m invited to jump in & steer the boat, so to speak.
There was a time when I was verily hesitant to take the tiller,
but the invitation was honestly given,
with some of them acts of ultimate desperation—
and again, who am I to say no?

So I learn the story,
the tale alive before my eyes,
and at one point I am part of it.

Exhilirating, exhausting, emotionally draining, empowering,
and ultimately educational.
This happens Every Single Time, and it’s a journey incomparable.

Reading Room photo from Road to Sunshine

Schedule now open for bookings in 2012:
CUBAO: Monday July 30 to Sunday August 5
BAGUIO: Tuesday August 7 to Wednesday August 15
CUBAO: Monday August 20 to Wednesday August 29
BAGUIO: Wednesday September 5 to Thursday September 13
CUBAO: Saturday, September 15 to Friday September 22
BAGUIO: Monday September 24 to Tuesday October 2
CUBAO: Thursday October 4 to Thursday October 17
BAGUIO: Monday October 22 to Wednesday November 7
CUBAO: Friday November 9 to Sunday November 18
BAGUIO: Tuesday November 20 to Saturday December 1
CUBAO: Sunday December 2 to Sunday December 23
BAGUIO: Wednesday December 26 to Saturday December 29

Baguio: 10am, 11am, 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4:30pm, 5:30pm, 6:30pm, 7:30pm
Cubao: 1pm, 2pm, 3pm, 4:30pm, 5:30pm, 7pm, 8pm, 9pm, 10pm

To book a session, text (0917) 535-5974 or (0922) 835-5974
For fees, location and more information, go to or

Louis Ghost Armchair on A-Deals

For most Filipinos, the Monobloc chair is part of daily life. As for me, Monobloc chairs are the enemy!
I do have a few Monobloc chairs in the dirty kitchen because they are durable and stackable, and that’s about it.
Enter the rich man’s Monobloc. In 2002, Philippe Starck created the Louis Ghost Armchair for Kartell.

Philippe Starck Ghost chair

Using high-end plastic crafted in a single mould, his reinvention of the classic Louis XV armchair has become a classic, iconic, and often copied symbol of modern design.
Stackable, durable, temperature- and impact-resistant, the visually striking translucent chairs are suitable for indoor and outdoor use in residential and commercial settings.

Philippe Starck Ghost chair
Philippe Starck Ghost chair
Philippe Starck Ghost chair

For a very limited time, Ayala Malls’ A-Deals offers original Philippe Starck Ghost Chairs at 20% off its original price. From Php 16,000, you can avail of the chair online now at Php 12,800—a good deal for the real thing.
To know more about this deal, click here.

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