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Growing up without gendered pronouns

I didn’t know I was a boy until my younger brother called me one. -- Meredith Talusan talks about her childhood growing up in the Philippines without knowing her gender. (Trans 101.)
posted by MartinWisse on Apr 27, 2014 - 29 comments

An Island within a Lake on an Island within a Lake on an Island

Vulcan Point in the Philippines is the world's largest island within a lake (Main Crater Lake) that is situated on an island (Volcano Island, aka Taal Island) located in a lake (Lake Taal) within an island (Luzon). It also happens to be one of the cones of the active Taal Volcano, so Vulcan Point is also the world’s largest volcano in a lake (Main Crater Lake) on a volcano (Taal Volcano). And Main Crater Lake also happens to be the largest lake on an island (Volcano Island) in a lake (Lake Taal) on an island (Luzon). Got that? If not, here's a series of images that provides a handy guide to the location of the nested parts of this complex volcano, which is a beautiful place, but still very much active.
posted by filthy light thief on Jan 23, 2014 - 21 comments

Super-Typhoon

Super-Typhoon Haiyan has struck the Philippines. It is the fourth strongest hurricane in recorded history and has the highest wind speed of any hurricane at landfall.
posted by dances_with_sneetches on Nov 8, 2013 - 51 comments

Croak and Dagger

Taxonomy: The spy who loved frogs. "To track the fate of threatened species, a young scientist must follow the jungle path of a herpetologist who led a secret double life." [Via]
posted by homunculus on Sep 16, 2013 - 8 comments

The True Story About Who Destroyed a Genetically Modified Rice Crop

Did you hear that a group of 400 angry farmers attacked and destroyed a field trial of genetically modified rice in the Philippines this month? That, it turns out, was a lie. The crop was actually destroyed by a small number of activists while farmers who had been bussed in to attend the event looked on in dismay.
posted by Blasdelb on Sep 3, 2013 - 76 comments

FYI, We Just Won a War in the Philippines

Did you know the U.S. was at war in the Philippines? An excerpt from David Axe's new book. Previously.
posted by destrius on Jul 1, 2013 - 15 comments

“Our food is only as brown as we want it to be.”

Filipino food writer Clinton Palanca on the least celebrated Asian culinary tradition, the glory of gloop, and the sadness of being so neglected that there aren't any "bastardized versions of adobo and sinigang" in cookbooks. "The Philippines may have never had, or will never have, a national cuisine, but it has always been an international cuisine. We’ve always looked outwards; what we’re upset about is that the outside isn’t looking back at us."
posted by spamandkimchi on May 3, 2013 - 57 comments

Exploding bombs frequently caused so much vibration of photo enlargers that prints blurred and had to be remade

The Pacific War Photographs of Pfc Glenn W. Eve — "In the summer of 1942, the U.S. Army called up a skinny California boy barely out of his teens. But at 5’9’’ and 125 pounds, Private Glenn W. Eve was deemed unfit for combat. He might have spent the duration of World War II at a desk, except that he had field skills the Army needed – he was a gifted artist, draftsman and photographer who'd spent the previous four years working for the Walt Disney Co. In July 1944, they promoted him to private first class (Pfc) and assigned him to the Signal Photo Corps, bound for the Pacific to document the war. This is his collection, never before published. All comments in quotes are Pfc Eve's, written on the back of the photo."
posted by unliteral on Oct 1, 2012 - 13 comments

Dreams are symbolic in order that they cannot be understood.

Beautiful as the chance meeting of an umbrella and a sewing machine.
Gromyko Semper is a young Filipino artist whose influences are the Surrealists - Hommage to Cornell; The game Exquiste Corpse - Dreams that LittleZyrus Play and collaboration - Orchidoplasmic union.
Together with Hindu cosmologies - The Spectres of Kali with explanation and Kabbalistic spiritual cosmology - The Shedding of the Spectres of Qlipoth.
Here are his Galleries on Deviant Art with his woodcut series and from Surrealism Now and from Saatchi..
An interview featuring more of his work. (All images are magnifyable; there are possibly some repeats; some images possibly NSFW).
posted by adamvasco on Aug 7, 2012 - 6 comments

"His fist will eat your face for lunch."

Prison Dancer is a new 12-episode web musical inspired by the famous dancing prisoner videos of the Philippines.
posted by xowie on Mar 7, 2012 - 1 comment

Phibers from the Philippines

Manila folders (the common paper good, not the Filipino contortionists) are made from the fiber of the abacá plant. Sometimes called "Manila hemp" due to its origin in the Philippines, it is not a true hemp because the fibers come from the leaf petiole, not the bast fibers (sourced from the phloem or inner bark) of the plant. The petiole layers, called "tuxies", are stripped off using a tuxying knife and separated either by hand or mechanically. Abacá (Musa textilis) is a relative of bananas and plaintains (both also Musa species). Other than its utility for making the aforementioned common cream-colored office product (also available in non-folder form as "oak tag" or "tag board"), abacá is resistant to salt water and therefore valued for cordage (especially hawsers) and nets. It is also used to make a fabric called Sinamay (often used to make hats) and other common products like rugs and twine (with the coarser outer fibers) and tea bags, filter paper, vacuum cleaner bags, and other papers (with the finer inner fibers.)
posted by nekton on Oct 21, 2011 - 26 comments

Spine Shattering - Bone Blasting! She'll put you in traction! She's A One Mama Massacre Squad!

Machete Maidens Unleashed! is a documentary about Filipino exploitation films of the 70s and 80s. It features interviews with Roger Corman, Joe Dante, John Landis, Sid Haig, Eddie Romero and is directed by Mark Hartley, who also directed the Ozploitation documentary Not Quite Hollywood. The film was started by Andrew Leavold and grew out of his as-yet-unfinished 'Search For Weng Weng', about the midget James Bond of the Philippines who starred in For Your Height Only and Impossible Kid (and inspired the Weng Weng Rap). You can follow Andrew's adventures through the world of Filipino filmmaking on his blog, Bamboo Gods and Bionic Boys. Several Filipino genre films are available online, including TNT Jackson (NSFW).
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn on May 12, 2011 - 11 comments

The Revolution That Gave the World "People Power"

The EDSA People Power Revolution began in the Philippines 25 years ago on this day. On February 22, 1986, tiring of a thieving, murderous dictator, Filipinos flocked to a Manila highway to willingly serve as human shields to two high-level defectors from the government. Faced with wavering loyalist troops and crowds numbering in the hundreds of thousands, President Ferdinand Marcos fled the Philippines for Hawaii on February 25, where he died three years later. Was it happily ever after for the Philippines? Not a chance. [more inside]
posted by micketymoc on Feb 21, 2011 - 11 comments

Two Americans, doing odd jobs in the Philippines.

When Tory and Jason lost their jobs in the U.S., they found new ones in the Philippines, where they’ve spent the past year driving a taxi through the boondocks. In their latest video, they’ve decided to sell taho on the streets. The two are posting updates on their “job experiment” on Twitter - followers have been tweeting them suggestions for their next odd job.
posted by micketymoc on Sep 6, 2010 - 9 comments

A preventable tragedy?

25 Hong Kong tourists were held hostage in Manila in a 12-hour bus siege that ended with ten dead and six injured. [more inside]
posted by monocot on Aug 24, 2010 - 30 comments

got mny in yr pkt? kthxbai

M-Pesa, the mobile platform based money transfer system launched by Safaricom in Kenya, is changing the landscape of money in Africa, and around the world. Competition is heating up even while the service expands internationally allowing transactions to occur between Africa, UK and Asia. Bankers, regulators, startups and operators all want a piece of the pie as even the phone manufacturers themselves get into this potentially lucrative business.
posted by infini on Jun 12, 2010 - 12 comments

One trick pony?

In the unusual talent department, a recent episode of Pilipinas Got Talent featured a not-to-be-missed performance of Banal Na Aso Santong Kabayo by Big Mouth. [more inside]
posted by madamjujujive on Mar 30, 2010 - 40 comments

Why don't you love me?

Featuring Nellie McKay, Cyndi Lauper, Tori Amos, Martha Wainwright, Steve Earle, Annie Clark (St. Vincent), Kate Pierson (of the B-52s) and many others, Here Lies Love is the result of a recent collaboration between David Byrne and Fatboy Slim. 22-tracks long, it tells the story of the Iron Butterfly, aka Imelda Marcos, first lady of the Philippines, and her relationship with her childhood servant Estrella Cumpas. Its official release is April 6th, but until then you can listen to the whole thing on NPR Music. The double-disc set will also feature a 120 page booklet and a DVD of historical footage. [more inside]
posted by Lutoslawski on Mar 30, 2010 - 15 comments

A new low.

Last November 23rd, upwards of 64 people (including at least 34 journalists) were killed in the Philippines. It has become known as the Maguindanao Massacre. [more inside]
posted by stinkycheese on Mar 15, 2010 - 21 comments

The Biggest Little Man in the World

"I used to say that Ali was the best I'd ever seen," says Arum, an industry legend who co-promoted the Ali-Frazier "Thrilla in Manila" in 1975. "I had never said that about another man. I don't use those words cheaply. But here it is: Manny Pacquiao is the best I have ever seen, including Ali.
posted by AceRock on Mar 14, 2010 - 59 comments

Phillipine-American War in Photographs

A photographic history of the Philippine-American War.
posted by Atreides on Feb 11, 2010 - 20 comments

Karaoke Rage

"After a day of barbering, Rodolfo Gregorio went to his neighborhood karaoke bar still smelling of talcum powder. Putting aside his glass of Red Horse Extra Strong beer, he grasped a microphone with a habitué’s self-assuredness and [...] belted out crowd-pleasers by Tom Jones and Engelbert Humperdinck. But Mr. Gregorio, 63, a witness to countless fistfights and occasional stabbings erupting from disputes over karaoke singing, did not dare choose one beloved classic: Frank Sinatra’s version of “My Way.” “I used to like ‘My Way,’ but after all the trouble, I stopped singing it,” he said. “You can get killed." [more inside]
posted by applemeat on Feb 7, 2010 - 55 comments

John Sayles' Baryo

John Sayles, writer and director of critically acclaimed and socially conscious films like Passion Fish and Lone Star, writer of trashier fare including Piranha and Battle Beyond the Stars, director of a couple music videos you might remember, and award-winning short-story writer and novelist, is working on a new project about the beginnings of the Philippine-American War. His long-time partner and producer Maggie Renzie and other crew are blogging the project as it is in progress.
posted by serazin on Jan 19, 2010 - 27 comments

Typhoon Ondoy / Tropical Storm Ketsana leaves Northern Philippines in a state of Calamity

410mm of rain fell over Northern Luzon, Philippines on September 25, 2009, leaving much of the country's capital and the surrounding regions submerged in water, reaching up to nine feet in some areas. As of latest coverage, over 100 were killed and 340,000 affected by the Typhoon. This amount has been the highest recorded amount of rainfall since the country's weather Bureau started recording rainfall levels in 1967, and exceeds the rainfall level of Hurrican Katrina (380mm). Two more tropical depressions could be under way in the midst of Ondoy's wake. As of now, there are still families stranded on the rooftops of their homes without food and potable water. Most relief aid is coming from volunteers. As for the country's president? She used the Php800M(USD16.8M) emergency fund for foreign trips. See the damage. International News Coverage: NYT Reuters CNN BBC [more inside]
posted by drea on Sep 27, 2009 - 23 comments

Giant 'meat-eating' plant produces traps big enough to catch rodents

A giant carnivorous plant found only in Mount Victoria, Palawan in the Philippines, has been named Nepenthes attenboroughii, after renowned British naturalist and broadcaster Sir David Attenborough.
posted by Lush on Aug 12, 2009 - 33 comments

The Great Book Blockade of 2009

University of Iowa Creative Writing professor Robin Hemley on Guggenheim Fellowship in the Philippines first broke the news through a McSweeney's dispatch that the Bureau of Customs in the Philippines has begun to tax imported books, in direct violation of the Florence agreement. Concerned netizens rally against the government by spreading the news, causing #bookblockade to get trended on twitter. Neil Gaiman's tweet. More and more updates. An update from Robin Hemley. [more inside]
posted by drea on May 15, 2009 - 22 comments

Masarap!

Anthony Bourdain finally goes to the Philippines. Filipino blogger MarketMan was one of Bourdain's guides and made sure he had the celebrated lechon, which Bourdain now claims is the best whole roast pig he's ever had. Here is: MarketMan behind the scenes on the show. MM's top 30 Filipino dishes. Top 20 Filipino Desserts.
posted by AceRock on Feb 17, 2009 - 34 comments

Grapes we can believe in

The first female White House chef, a naturalized Philippina named Cristeta Comerford, was appointed by George W. Bush - who told Philippine President Gloria Arroyo, "I am reminded of the great talent of our Philippine Americans when I eat dinner at the White House." Despite the urging of American food icon Alice Waters, President Obama has left Comerford in charge of the White House kitchens - though he's keeping quiet about it. But on the basis of the wines served at Obama's Inauguration Day lunch, oenophiles are still hoping for change. (more First Food posts here and here )
posted by Joe Beese on Feb 7, 2009 - 56 comments

The Water Cure

During the Philippine-American War at the turn of the 20th century, American soldiers used a torture method called "the water cure" to extract information from Filipino fighters. [via brijit]
posted by AceRock on Feb 21, 2008 - 26 comments

Future Patron Saint of Abu Ghraib

On October 28, the Pope will beatify (certify as Blessed) several martyrs of the Spanish Civil War, among them Gabino Olaso Zabala. Only thing is, Zabala is known to have participated in the torture of a fellow priest. Disturbingly, some Catholics are rallying behind a man who never publicly regretted his abusive past.
posted by micketymoc on Oct 17, 2007 - 62 comments

A million who leave

It's been covered elsewhere in the media (and on MetaFilter) before, but Jason DeParle's feature in the NY Times Magazine this weekend is a well-researched, clearly written, and evocative piece on the phenomenon of the Filipino overseas contract worker. Just don't get him confused with a balikbayan (who has a cultural spot all his own, with boxes named in his honor).
posted by sappidus on Apr 22, 2007 - 6 comments

Echoes of the past.

Democratic presidential candidate rails against US imperialism. "The platform . . . condemns the experiment in imperialism as an inexcusable blunder, which has involved us in enormous expense, brought us weakness instead of strength, and laid our nation open to the charge of abandoning the fundamental principles of a republic."
A prominent American author who initially supported the conflict, changed his mind, calling it "a mess, a quagmire from which each fresh step renders the difficulty of extrication immensely greater.” The US is “the kind of World Power . . . that a prairie-dog village is . . . it is the duty of our Government to stand sentinel, with solemn mien, and lifted nose, and curved paws, on top of our little World-Power mound.”
posted by insomnia_lj on Mar 20, 2006 - 25 comments

All about balisong knives

Welcome to the subculture of the Balisong.

With it's origins in 1700's France and later moving to the Philippines, this knife has now become very popular with a thriving community of seriously bent, obsessive, not to mention masochistic, collectors and tricksters.

Video evidence of their mad crazy knife flipping skills can be found here, here and (do NOT miss this one) here. (I find this girls knife skills utterly hawt, is that wrong?)

And if you insist on learning yourself, buy a bushel of band-aids and start here.
posted by Parannoyed on Aug 22, 2005 - 36 comments

Revolutionary Lifestyles

Wedded by the revolution...
"Dare to struggle, dare to win ... as married gays. After raiding a few Army camps, two communist guerrillas hid in a forest gorge and fell in love. Deeply. That was three years ago. On Friday, under a romantic drizzle in a muddy clearing in Compostela Valley province in Mindanao, Ka Andres and Ka Jose exchanged vows in a heavily guarded ceremony before local villagers, friends from the city and their comrades in arms.
They are considered the first homosexual couple in the New People's Army (NPA) who were wed by the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP)."
Some reactions. A wedding picture.
posted by talos on Feb 22, 2005 - 30 comments

Asia: Full of Grace

Asia Grace
posted by euphorb on Jul 21, 2004 - 6 comments

Netgotiation

Six million dollars and a hostage is free. Now others are asking the Philippines for similar arrangements.
posted by four panels on Jul 20, 2004 - 63 comments

A new Philippines?

In 1898, the United States made a major move in the direction of colonial imperialism with the acquisition of the Philippine Islands from Spain. President Bush, in a recent speech in the Philippines, pointed to that country's story as a model for rebuilding Iraq. Perhaps a history lesson about the American and Filipino experience in this occupation is in order for both us and our President. The atrocities committed during the Filipinos' struggle for independence (including the use of concentration camps), the high death toll (between 250,000 and 1,000,000, according to this article), and the American occupation which spanned six decades lead me to question whether Bush is just ignorant of the associations made in this comparison, or if it's a subtle way for the administration to set the stage for what possessing Iraq is actually going to entail. (Most links courtesy of the outstanding BoondocksNet, a collection of primary and secondary sources related to American imperialism.)
posted by UKnowForKids on Oct 22, 2003 - 25 comments

Ollie ollie oxen free!

The last World War Two Japanese soldier surrendered in the Philippines in 1980, ending a stream of holdouts. This is their story.
posted by ewagoner on Aug 5, 2003 - 10 comments

Don't hide your pride

Gay Pride events are taking place worldwide this month, and PlanetOut has got a number of interesting features to mark them: most fascinating to me are a series of coming out stories from other, mostly third world, countries. The first a tale of someone growing up gay in Bosnia, and today from someone in the Phillipines, with more to follow each day this week. There's also an article commemorating the 25th anniversary of the rainbow flag (which is getting back in the pink). Good, if not terribly in-depth, stuff. Be careful when following the links, you might run into some gay/lesbian/non-vanilla NSFW stuff.
posted by WolfDaddy on Jun 3, 2003 - 10 comments

Antics of the dogs of war.

At the Wallow of the Military Order of the Carabao, our nation's military leaders smoke Cuban cigars, sing racist songs about Filipinos, and suck up to the defense industry.
posted by xowie on Jan 29, 2003 - 13 comments

One Nation, Overseas

One Nation, Overseas Wired Magazine on the Philippines as one of the world's leading labor exporters. Hearing the words "flexible, industrious, and frequently skilled" applied to Filipinos is certainly encouraging to us, but... (more inside)
posted by brownpau on May 29, 2002 - 8 comments

Climb a mountain, fall under a curse?

Climb a mountain, fall under a curse? The ethnic spirituality of the Ibaloi tribe meets Philippine environmental politics as President Macapagal makes plans to take a mountain-climbing trip to Luzon's highest peak. While I understand the environmental concerns involved, especially with her entourage of suckups local gov't officials, there's definitely something amusing about the line, "cursed by Pulag’s pantheon of Ibaloi gods." Nice pictures from Mt. Pulag here. I've been there once; it's worth the climb.
posted by brownpau on May 22, 2002 - 3 comments

Sneaky! Grr . . .

Sneaky! Grr . . . A few months ago, while surfing for wreck diving info, I stumbled upon this page as a main link entitled Nightlife in the Philippines. Because it promotes outright trafficking of women, I made a ruckus and sent an email complaining about it to the site admin and our government's Department of Tourism. (Prostitution, BTW, is illegal in the Philippines.) Shortly afterwards, the site admin removed the main link. So how come it's still on the site via this page? I know Southeast Asia (the Philippines second only to Thailand, I think) has a rep for cheap beer and women, but I HATE the fact that many foreigners (like the owners of this shop,) feel that they can buy anything they want while on vacation in third world countries, and that it's alright to perpetuate the trafficking of Filipino women under the guise of tourism. Bah.
posted by lillitot on Apr 13, 2002 - 31 comments

Be careful how you sing "My Way"

Be careful how you sing "My Way" After being ridiculed for an off-key version of My Way, the irate singer kills one heckler and wounds another. Philippine karaoke bars have begun to remove the song from their playlists as this was the climax of several violent incidents when this song was played.
posted by Lanternjmk on Feb 19, 2002 - 8 comments

One of the most amusing Javascript special effects

One of the most amusing Javascript special effects I've seen in a long time; brought to you by Nestea Phillipines. What other Javascript tricks brought a smile to your face?
posted by SilentSalamander on Nov 21, 2001 - 28 comments

"A plan to hijack US commercial planes and slam these into targets like the headquarters of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) in Langley, Virginia, was first uncovered in Manila in 1995 after police arrested four suspects in a plot to assassinate Pope John Paul II." So perhaps what happened yesterday shouldn't have been an entirely unforeseeable event.
posted by lia on Sep 12, 2001 - 5 comments

Erap to be arrested today.

Erap to be arrested today. Filipinos might be interested to know that a warrant of arrest has been issued to deposed Philippine president Joseph Estrada for the non-bailable offense of economic plunder. A few thousand of his supporters have gathered around his residence in the affluent subdivision of North Greenhills, and there have already been untoward incidents. My family lives there; Mom says anti-riot police are roaming the streets.
posted by brownpau on Apr 24, 2001 - 23 comments

If only United States law were this comprehensive.

If only United States law were this comprehensive. I got it! Ahhh. . .that's why the US media would even cover stories like this, and as high rated newsreader headlines. . .duh. Reverse propaganda I sez it is.
posted by crasspastor on Apr 16, 2001 - 7 comments

When Headlines Go (Nearly) Right

When Headlines Go (Nearly) Right The world's most unfortunately named cleric makes a cameo appearance in a row over sex scenes in a film. Can someone persuade me that the Pope didn't make Bishop Sin a cardinal just for these moments?
posted by holgate on Mar 27, 2001 - 7 comments

the wit and wisom of Imelda Marcos

the wit and wisom of Imelda Marcos Often regarded as merely a woman with enough wealth to own a huge collection of shoes, Imelda, it seems, has the wit of a Gore Vidal, the incisevness of a Paglia, and the ability to refer to essentials that can be found in Pascal. Click on her nose to find the path to her brain...a trip worth the taking.
posted by Postroad on Mar 25, 2001 - 1 comment

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