A new video documentary by the UNFCCC Adaptation Committee aims at raising awareness on climate change adaptation. The 20 minute documentary “Adapting to a changing climate” introduces viewers to the topic of climate change adaptation, weaving in inspiring stories of adaptation action and interviews with experts.

Christina Chan, Co-Chair, Adaptation Committee
Juan Hoffmaister, Co-Chair, Adaptation Committee
Christiana Figueres, Executive Secretary, UNFCCC
HE Lucille Sering, Secretary of the Climate Change Commission of the Philippines
Ms Mary Robinson, UN Special Envoy for Climate Change
Professor Lord Nicholas Stern, academic and author of the “Stern Review”
Ms Bianca Jagger, Chair of the Human Rights Foundation.


16 August 2015

We were supposed to hear a 12 nn mass at Sto. Domingo church today, and then go to BGC and have lunch for my nephew’s post birthday celebration. But guess what! We ended up in… NUVALI.

Yes you read it right!! From Manila we went to Sta. Rosa Laguna!! And even if Sta. Rosa was too far from Manila, we didn’t had too much discussion because why not?? Family time will always be better if you’ll do it farther. Hahahaha!

We arrived at Nuvali at around 2pm and then we had lunch at Conti’s. And it was so cute because when my nephew Iggy, the original celebrant, blew his candles, the youngest, Joaquin, also wanted to blew candles. And while singing “Happy Birthday” for Iggy, you can really see a glint of envy in his eyes because he also wanted to blow the candles. So we were on the rescue: I transferred the candle from the original celebrant’s cake, and placed it on his Mango Bravo cake. And then, his mom asked the waiter to light it up again. And then we sang for him. And he was so happy!!!! Oh little kids. Look at how fast they become happy ☺️

After we had lunch, we went outside and paid tickets for the boat ride. While waiting, we went to the side, where there were token-operated toy cars for kids. And had the kids play with it. And as a very caring and loving Auntie, 😂 I helped them and I kept on taking pictures of them as they play. Hahaha. #AuntieGoals

After a little while, it was already our turn to ride the boat. And as much at feels like we are just wasting our money because it’s just in a short distance and most of us are not first timers anymore. We still did because why not??? There shouldn’t be any “kill joy” on Family Time!!! But thank God it was so fun! When the boat turned around and there were waves, it felt like I was on a shooting of Life of Pi. Hahaha. It was so fun, I thought I’ll use the life vests or at least feel some splash of water on my thighs. Or anywhere. But thank God it didn’t. Hahahahaha. Even though how much fun that thing is, I still don’t like getting myself wet when I don’t even have something to change into. Lol

After the boat ride we decided to leave and go to Robinson’s Manila to buy our gift for the birthday celebrant. Can you now picture how wanderlust my family is?? 😂😂😂

When we arrived at Robinson’s Manila, we went directly to Toys R Us. And thinking about the celebrant as the only person to be given the toy was such a ridiculous idea! Of course, the youngest will not let that happen! But srsly, I also wanted to buy the Xbox/Kinect… But I’m too shy to ask for it. Hahahaha. I think I’m too old for it, and I don’t think it’s a necessity. So I just decided to abandon that idea, and just play the Kinect there and enjoy it! (While it lasts… Lol)

After that we had snack at Mary Grace, while I and Kuya bought milk tea at Gong Cha.

Oh my God what a very fatty Sunday!!


“Stagecoach Mary” has Joined the Cast of ‘Hell on Wheels’

The series is currently in its 5th season (its last), which kicked off mid-July, with some new faces added. Of note is Amber Chardae Robinson in her first television role, in what the TV press describe as “a major new addition to the story.” Robinson plays Stagecoach Mary, obviously inspired by the real Stagecoach Mary - aka Mary Fields, also sometimes called “Black Mary,” the first black woman to work as a mail carrier in the USA, known to have been one of the toughest women ever, earning the respect and devotion of most of the residents of the pioneer community in which she worked in Montana, before she died in 1914. She started life as a slave in 1832, gaining her freedom after the Civil War. Later, as Stagecoach Mary, she was admired throughout the Cascade, Montana region for holding her own and living her own way in a world where the odds were stacked against her. In a time when black people and women of any race enjoyed little freedom anywhere in the world, Mary Fields enjoyed more freedom than most white men. She often dressed like men of her time, and wore a revolver strapped around her waist. Said to have weighed around 200 pounds, she was a match for any man in Montana Territory, with a standing bet that she could knock a man out with one punch, never losing a dime to anyone foolish enough to take her up on that bet. By order of the mayor, she was the only woman in Cascade, Montana allowed to drink in the local bar, often spotted smoking cigars in public, and arguing politics with others. [source]

New Children’s Book Release:

Release Date: September 29, 2015

Rhythm Ride: A Road Trip Through the Motown Sound - Andrea Davis Pinkney

Berry Gordy began Motown in 1959 with an $800 loan from his family. He converted the garage of a residential house into a studio and recruited teenagers from the neighborhood-like Smokey Robinson, Mary Wells, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, and Diana Ross-to sing for his new label. Meanwhile, the country was on the brink of a cultural revolution, and one of the most powerful agents of change in the following decade would be this group of young black performers from urban Detroit.

From Berry Gordy and his remarkable vision to the Civil Rights movement, from the behind-the-scenes musicians, choreographers, and song writers to the most famous recording artists of the century, Andrea Davis Pinkney takes readers on a Rhythm Ride through the story of Motown.

Prostitute Cooties

For many years, prostitution and the English theater went together like peanut butter and jelly. Actresses and whores were considered to be one and the same, and prostitutes would line up in the theaters like our modern day mollies line the boulevards. However, when celebrity skank Mary “Perdita” Robinson decided to get her own box seat at the theater, it ruffled the feathers of a certain gentleman, who decided to attack her publicly and anonymously through the Morning Post. What an un-gentleman-like manner.

I know no rank of prostitution that can either lessen the crime or disgrace it; and, however profligate the age may be, I believe that the greatest libertine of our sex would revolt at the idea of handing a wife, sister, or daughter, in to a box where they were certain of being surrounded by public prostitutes. 

The managers owe it to the public, they owe it to themselves, to preserve the side-boxes for the modest and reputable part of the other sex; or at least, it is their duty to refuse them to actresses, swindlers, wantons in high keeping, who have the presumption to ask for them

Based on what we know of the London residents who patronized the theater and box seats, I have a feeling if the managers enacted this request, the playhouses would be quite empty!


Days of Future Past

Good old-fashioned science fiction–is that an oxymoron? Maybe, maybe not. SF is supposed to be as forward-thinking as possible, but it has a considerable past. It’s existed as a recognizable genre for almost one hundred years, since Hugo Gernsback popularized the term “scientifiction” to describe the contents of his magazine Amazing Stories, and its origins go back at least another century, through H.G. Wells and Jules Verne to Mary Shelley. More than a few literary historians claim that it goes all the way back to the clay tablets on which Gilgamesh was written, but you don’t have to agree with them to acknowledge that SF can qualify as old.

It’s changed a lot as it’s developed, outgrowing the pupal form it took in the pulp publications of the early 20th Century. Back then the genre mostly consisted of tales of interstellar exploration and derring-do, the kind of thing that can seem almost musty now that we’re living in the future those early pioneers imagined. Not an hour goes by these days that we don’t use one high-tech device or another that would have seemed fantastically far-fetched to Gernsback, which is why SF has been able to extend its tentacles into pretty much every section of the bookstore. It’s almost hard to find a piece of contemporary fiction that doesn’t address the ways technology affects us. That said, there are still a number of authors who are galvanizing the traditional space epic.

One of the best of these is Kim Stanley Robinson, who offers his take on the generation starship tale in his latest novel, Aurora.  For those who aren’t familiar with this trope, leading SF critic Adam Roberts explains it well:

Forget the cartoon impossibilities of “faster than light” SF spaceships. In reality, the scale of interstellar distance and the constraints of physics mean any craft we build will take centuries to reach even the nearest stars. Any such ship would need to be self-sufficient: generations would be born, grow old and die within its confines. It’s a situation with oodles of dramatic potential for a writer.

Roberts also points out that oodles of ink have been spilled on such stories, and wonders if the conceit can be reinvented at this late date. Aurora gives him an answer. “[It] is, simply, the best generation starship novel I have ever read.” Robinson, as always, is adroit and accurate when handling technological trappings such as terraforming and artificial intelligence (large parts of the narrative are told in the voice of the ship itself), but what separates him from the pack is his understanding of the social repercussions of his extrapolations. There’s plenty of hardware, sure, but also humanity, and we learn from Aurora  as much about how we live now as we do about how we might live in the future.

Newcomer Ann Leckie has a similar talent for full-bodied storytelling. Her debut novel Ancillary Justice was a rare double-dip winner of both the Hugo and Nebula Awards, and she followed it up with the equally acclaimed Ancillary Sword. These novels dispense with pesky physical realities to depict a galactic-scale space opera of empire, treachery, and clashing civilizations. The saga will more than fulfill any old-school fan’s hopes for action and adventure, but Leckie adds a contemporary sensibility that makes it even more worthwhile. Gender issues, for example, are neatly considered throughout. The alien Radchaai who rule the Ancillary universe do not distinguish between male and female and so employ a single pronoun. This causes occasional, intentional confusion that reminds us of the sometimes excessive importance we attach to gender, and the inappropriate assumptions we often make because of it. It’s an essential component of the narrative, but a subtle one. Leckie’s series concludes next month with the release of a final volume, Ancillary Mercy.

Another rejuvenating voice beginning to be heard on the SF scene comes all the way from Finland, but it speaks in English. Hannu Rajaniemi is the mastermind of the Jean le Flambeur trilogy, which comprises The Quantum ThiefThe Fractal Prince, and The Causal Angel, all of which demonstrate the author’s dizzying imagination. The series is set post-singularity, when almost anything seems possible–nanotechnology and alternate realities are just the beginning–but its mood is hardly utopic. Nor is it depressing, really, just exciting. It balances dire, universe-threatening trauma with the charming roguishness of the gentleman criminal at the heart of the story. Those not ready to embark on a three-novel journey can sample Rajaniemi’s range in his Collected Fiction, one of the most impressive SF short-story volumes of recent years. Each piece gives a glimpse at the many skills he brings to bear in his longer work, and many also display a commendable willingness to embrace compositional innovation. He includes a tribute to the legendary Italian fantasist Italo Calvino, a mini-fiction made entirely of Tweets, and most remarkably, a story created with the help of the hive mind and neurotechnology. In his original project, readers were connected to an EEG machine and saw their brain responses influence the unfolding narrative; the version printed in the book follows the path collectively (and unconsciously) chosen by the initial group of readers.

So what’s the upshot of all of this? That it’s never too late for Laika to learn some new tricks.