GAG-O: In Which We Say ‘Take LIFE and its crazy turns with a bag o’ salt!’


GAG-O

What is GAG-O?

GAG-O! is an online gag show created by Emperor Eric Cabahug just for fun. And to spread peace and goodwill to all men. And to aliens too. Some content may be inspired by real life but everything should be taken with a bag of salt. Enjoy!

GAG-O debuted last 3 April with the wacky Willie Revillame and Sen. Ping Lacson spoof causing fun riot in youtube-dom. The video, which got good reviews from the GrupongRainbow’s army of 500 fans and viewers (the number is steadily escalating, that much we can assure you!), can be viewed here.

Encouraged by teary pleas of fans and believers from all over the world, GrupongRainbow promptly released the follow-up episode titled Sun of a Beach which, according to very reliable sources, is causing temperature to go past boiling point in some parts of the world. I wonder why.

GAG-O Who?

GAG-O boasts of a powerhouse cast of talented personalities deemed as experts in their respective fields. Let’s get to know them one by one starting with:

ERIC CABAHUG is a scriptwriter, songwriter, director, record producer, copywriter, journalist, and photographer. His works include the award-winning ‘DAYO’, the first all-digital feature-length Filipino animated film, a song recorded by multi-platinum recording artist Nina, a photo published in a Lonely Planet travel book, and a string of well-received television commercials featuring some of the most popular celebrities in the Philippines. He is an undercover demi-god.

ALDZ GALANG — A Communication Arts major from De La Salle University. A multi-awarded TV & Radio Commercial Producer. Aldz bagged his 1st TV AD of the YEar award in 1994 for AYALA CENTER WATERS OF MARCH followed by TIDE BABOY in 1999. He won several international recognitions under the creative direction of top creative OMPONG REMIGIO. Currently, Aldz services agencies like Campaigns & Grey, Publicis Manila, Ace/Saatchi & Saatchi and Leo Burnett handling Clients like Nestle, P&G, Wyeth, Rockwell Land et al. He worked as Post Production producer at The Post Bangkok. A Megastar calibre performer, singer and actor by heart. Hardcore fashion addict.

VICKY RAS — A woman of insatiable thirst for adventure and an incurable lust for life. She’s got the chronic case of elsewheres but her feet remains planted firmly on the ground. A corporate peon she most certainly is – clocking in an average of 60 hours a week, sometimes more if it includes holidays and weekends – but she keeps her creative side lubricated by writing for Men’s Health and Total Fitness magazines on various topics of interest including but not limited to sex, relationships, fitness, diet, health, and did I mention sex already? Oh yes gummy bears, the all-powerful S word. But try to look past the deadly curves, 23-inch waistline, and well-defined/toned midsection — this woman packs a wallop in the brains department.

BUDDY CARAMAT — Insurance Advisor by day, sought-after multi-talented Stage, TV, and Film Actor by afternoon, night, midnight, and all the way until the wee hours of the morning. Plays Badminton. Yoga Enthusiast.  Swims. One very proud Bikolano. A Student of Life — for life. Recently spotted playing Joni in the highly-acclaimed PETA production CARE DIVAS.

 

To follow:  CRIS BERNARDO

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Finally Found My Rhett Butler


Life's little treats.

I have loved once and lost. And a few times after that, deluded myself into thinking I have loved again and, if you ask me, I am glad I took those chances. The men that I dined and coffee-d with while I was looking out for that perfect love and perfect relationship made my existence meaningful, if not adventuresome, even though I couldn’t really give a label beyond the very passé ‘friendship’. But for sure, they will turn up once or twice in the anecdotes to tell and moments to re-live through my grandchildren. (Or grandchild. Philippine Government might suddenly adopt the one-child policy considering the Pinoys’ propensity to mass produce.)

I also know I have not been fair to someone. Maybe two or three of them even. Another time, another place, I’d have loved to care for them, the way caring is meant to be. When everything is so perfect, you tend to seek imperfection and pain. I have become quite adept that it has become sort of my thing.

In retrospect, I am thankful to the guy who turned out to be a lecherous pig and claimed that he is very selfish and an asshole and gave me a list of reasons not to trust him. I am thankful to him for proving his own words. I wouldn’t have known so much of  truth, happiness, love, gratitude, and freedom that I now bask in, if it weren’t for him.

I’ve always wanted a Rhett Butler, the only kind of a guy who would be able to contain the Scarlett O’Hara in me. And just when I was nearly convinced that his kind only exists in a novel, I found him. And now he lives in me, just as I live in him – happily and gloriously content.

Funnily enough, when I look back at the black comedy series that was my past relationships, I don’t really think I have been unjustifiably mean. I hardly even remember that I have ever been hurt.

SOLACE: An Open Photoshoot for Breast Cancer Awareness


Be ENGAGED.

Get INVOLVED.

Spread the LOVE.

SOLACE

This project is for the benefit of our friend, Abie, who’s battling breast cancer. Read her story here.  If you wish you donate, please send me an email at vickyras@yahoo.com.

 

Weekend Chronicles Part II


Right. So where was I? A lot of things are happening in Vickyville, dahlinks. And I mean A LOT. As shared with you yesterday, I took home a medal and bag of weird assemblage of home cleaning stuff, body pain liniment, Circulan, and some gift checks from SM when I landed top spot at the BDO Race for Life held last Saturday at the Mall of Asia.

The following day, Sunday, I joined another race – the AACE’s The G.O.O.D Run, organised by the indefatigable Rio Dela Cruz, known to many as Coach Rio. Now this particular race was extra special for me not only because I finished 6th out of 741 runners *wooot* but because I managed to convince a very dear friend of mine, Noel, to run 3k. As most of you know, Noel has been trying on and off to kick his nicotine habit to the curb but so far, he’s been unsuccessful. He would often ask me how I pulled-off going cold turkey on (both) smoking and alcohol binging and I’d tell him running has helped greatly. More than that, running has also opened up for me a whole new dimension of health and hardcore fitness.

I remember the time he accompanied me to my very first race event, the 2009 SLIMMERUN, held at The Fort. He was there to lend moral support, as well as, take photos. And while everyone was running around, he would take long drags from the stick of Marlboro lights lodged between his lips.  It never occurred to him that very early morning in April that he will one day be joining the army of runners and find the experience quite to his liking.

And so it came to be that on the 3rd of April, Noel completed his first 3k run in a little over 21 minutes. I say, not a bad start for someone who’s been smoking for many years. And it seems he got infected by what people call runner’s high because he told me he spent the whole day being uppity-up, happy, and decidedly in anticipation of his next race event. I’m one very proud hot mama because of this!

 

Go Atche!

As for me, I couldn’t ask for a better way to spend last weekend than doing (a) back-to-back short-distance run and getting great results from it! Placing 6th out of 741 runners is pretty gratifying. Breaking down the results some more, I was first in the age category I belong to – F30 to 39. I mean I’d love to say I’m in my late 20’s but I’m not. This girl is turning 32 in a few months. Yes, I know, I age gracefully. *ROTFL*

See more of the race results here.

For photos, see below.

 

The G.O.O.D runners

I'm a fangirl like that.

REEBOK here, there, and everywhere!

Running with Bruno my Zig Nano

Let's take it down to the floor, shall we?

With my favorite runner friend Dennis the Running Pinoy

Vicky and Noel

Some like it hard, spiny, and always down on all fours.

Yes, the obligatory jump shot.

More running

Thank you REEBOK and Bruno for a great back-to-back running weekend! I am soooooo back, beeechusss!

Weekend Chronicles Part I


This weekend saw me finally crawling out of the boulder I hid under after my disastrous BDM 52k Test Run in January, and bravely returning to the race track  – armed to the teeth with nearly everything Reebok and a great deal of spunk. I was duly rewarded with a top spot finish at the BDO Race For Life 6k run female division last Saturday; and a 6th place finish in the 5k female division of the AACE The G.O.O.D Run yesterday morning.

Caveat: This is going to be a long post so if you’re at work, I suggest you wait until you reach home to read my blog as I wouldn’t want you getting a memo for slacking-off while at work!

First Place, 6k Female Division

BDO Race for Life (MOA Grounds, 2 April 2011)

Because I missed Globe Run For Home two weekends ago (too busy falling in love again and again and being adored mightily!), I had decided to sign up for BDO’s Race for Life for two reasons: (a) I wanted to give Basia (my pink Zig Tech) some running time in a legitimate competitive race and she how fast she can carry my legs in 6kms. Alex, fellow Team Reebok member, signed me up for the race and we agreed to meet up at Fitness First MOA on the race day, (b.) I wasn’t able to join my Reebok team members at the inaugural soft-launch of the group and therefore, I have some catching up to do. I woke up around 4:30 and geared up quickly. That early morning had a bit of Silent Hill feel to it as there were nearly zero cabs out. It took me half an hour to find one and it was manned by a cabbie who spoke nearly impeccable English. I was impressed and thoroughly entertained as we spoke about current events, running and a few other things in between. Boy can he talk up a storm!

Alex and I walked over to the starting line, left our bags at the check-in counter, and joined the throng of runners waiting for gun start. It got chaotic just minutes before the race started because bulk of the runners were gathered beyond the Start Line and those of us who positioned ourselves just behind the line were being asked to move back to make way for the confused runners. We stood our ground and the rest, well, they had to walk over and gather behind us.

There were only 3 race categories that day – 3k, 6k, and 9k – and hardly any elite runners except Michelle Estuar and some Kenyans. All runners took off at the same time at gun start and the only mechanics we were told to remember was that the 3k means doing only one loop; 6k, double loop; and finally, 9k would be 3 loops.

That morning I had very serious hydration problems. My throat would get so dry – and I mean literally dry it hampered even my breathing that I had to stop at every water station to get a drink. I know I was losing precious seconds by doing so, but I didn’t want to compromise safety so I made it a point to hydrate every chance I get. Thirty four minutes and two loops after, I crossed the finish line feeling quite confident that I landed a spot in the top 10 because I did pass a few runners along the way and nearly all of them, male.

Alex, however, told me that he didn’t see any female 6k runners ahead of me so I might be first! I was excited and hopeful, of course. Who wouldn’t want a podium finish, right? And so we decided to wait for the announcement and voila, I did place first!

Just when I thought I have lost my running mojo because of injuries and prolonged hiatus, I manage to ace the top spot. I’m inclined to think Basia had a lot to do with it as well. Though she stuck out like sore thumb that morning in a sea of Nike, Adidas, and Mizuno – which made me feel a bit sad because Basia looks seriously cute in pink – she powered through a lot of them and together, we got the results we were aiming for.

Still not quite satisfied with the cardio workout I got from my 6k run, I decide to finish off my Saturday workout with INSANITY Core Cardio and Balance.

Looking fly in my Reeboks.

At the podium.

Bemedalled.:)

Reebok-ing.

***

Happy Birthday, Manong!

The 2nd of April also happens to be my brother Francis’ birthday. That night, we had dinner with our nieces – all of whom won’t stop getting prettier each time! We had a great time catching up and I was quite disappointed when I had to leave them so I won’t be late for the 8:00pm showing of CARE DIVAS where Buddy, our extremely talented PETA actor friend, acted as Joni.

Siblings and nieces.

***

CARE DIVAS (Caregivers by day, Divas by night)

Care Divas

Last weekend’s theater run was actually a re-staging in response to the resounding demand from audience – and after watching the show, I totally got what the clamor was all about! I missed the first run, much to Buddy’s displeasure – especially after he learned I watched ZsaZsa Zaturnnah a few weeks after). So I promised him I will show up at the re-run, initially with Noel but he had prior engagement and Dinzobear was likewise unavailable, so I ended up watching alone. But I didn’t mind because the play was perfectly entertaining. No, let me correct myself. The play was multi-dimensional in the sense that it took me though varying range of emotions, so much so, that I found myself bawling my eyes out one minute; laughing the next; feeling tickled at some point – and in the end, feeling a bit of discomfort on both wrists as I was also clapping my hands exuberantly most of the time.  CARE DIVAS was only the second play I saw Buddy act in. The first one was ROMULUS in 2007, back when Celia the Mommycat was still in the Philippines. But in CARE DIVAS, I saw an entirely different Buddy. He’s been my friend for years now but I didn’t realize he was extremely talented that way!  In my defence, I don’t get to spend time with friends because of work and travel. Take my soul sister Abi, for example. We’ve been planning dinner and coffee for ages and we were only able to meet up last Friday. Oh how we’ve missed each other’s company and stories!  Dinzobear is also another favorite friend I haven’t seen in months! He’s busy with Top Gear stuff just as I’ve been busy with so many things of my own. Anyway, he and I will meet up just before I go to Shanghai in a few days. Back to my amiga, Buddy. He sang, danced, acted, and showed off his flexibility with a leg split in one of the many knockout performances by the cast! I’m sooo proud of you, Buddy! I promise never to miss any of your theatre performances from here on in – at least when I’m in town and not stationed somewhere else. Buhay OFW nga naman.

Flanked by 'Joni' and 'Thalia'

The incredible cast of CARE DIVAS and their celebrity guests.

Next post: AACE The G.O.O.D Run. Otherwise known as Noel Abelardo’s debut in the running world And the underworld premiere of GAG-O – the gag show to end all gag shows! – on youtube!

Men’s Health: Take Her To Paradise


Men's Health March 2011

For high-action adventure-seekers, there are hundreds of reasons to love about the great outdoors. The thrill of riding that 4-foot Hawaiian wave or the excitement of defying gravity as you take those final steps to the summit of Mt. Everest – sure, these things sound thrilling and oh-so-dangerous, the thought alone is enough to keep your adrenalin a-pumpin’.  But there is one more reason to love about the outdoors without resorting to extreme sports and with guaranteed same level of, if not higher, endorphin boost and it’s called (Outdoor) Sex.

Having sex in public is an all-too common fantasy shared by both men and women,  and living in today’s brave new world of exhibitionism made up of blogs, online journals, and YouTube, is certainly making curious partners more daring in turning this giddy fantasy into an orgasmic reality.

Let’s face it, the bedroom – however comfortable that king-sized bed and however fancy the thread count of that Egyptian cotton sheets are – can get a little restricting (read: BORING), especially for partners with above average sexual appetite. In her book, Superhotsex, iVillage sex expert Tracey Cox shares some of the top places to take heart-pumping bedroom action to the great outdoors. To corroborate Ms. Cox’s sexy suggestions, I have asked some women to share their daring outdoor experiences and here’s what I got:

  1. Nature trip.My boyfriend and I were on a motorbike coming back to our hotel from the beach in Phuket when we both got frisky. (I was backriding and…) he was maneuvering the bike with his right hand while his left hand was doing some nasty business down (my) south. The public foreplay was just too much for both of us, so we decided to look for somewhere slightly private to finish our business. We wound up in some offroad track tourists go to for some 4×4 adventure, parked the bike on the side of the track and walked a few feet to the woods so we’re partly concealed but still close enough to see our bike remains safe. He asked me to bend over and it was the best 5-minute rear entry we’ve ever experienced,” shares *Bianca, a Graphics Artist in her late ‘20s.  Being out in the woods (or out in the middle of nowhere) gives our libido an extra boost. Fresh air makes us feel energized and healthy and the child in us associates being outdoors with freedom. As youngsters, we went outside to play “doctors and nurses,” as teens to sneak our first smoke or cop a feel behind the school building. Our subconscious remembers all of this for us and taps us on the shoulder (or on another part) to remind us and to suggest we do wicked things.

For more of these super hot tips, grab a copy of Men’s Health magazine March 2011 issue.

Because I'm a little hardcore like that...

In My Cocoon There Is Refuge.


And so, while the despicably ugly face of malicious lies can give you nightmares even during the day, there is still an obscene sense of satisfaction to be had in thinking you know nearly everything there is to know about, well, anything. Or someone. Same thing applies to imaginary ghosts to be chased away. That when after having chased them – the ghastly, the ugly, the truth we refuse to be confronted with – distress magically eclipses.

But what about the perverse sense of complacency at not making an effort at all to (a) know ‘everything’ the society dictates to be of grave importance, and (b) to chase away the ghouls in your head?

Life has so many twists and turns it all seems so futile sometimes. Have you ever felt the gnawing desire to just remain enveloped in your cocoon for as long as there is refuge to be sought there?

I have.

Sometimes I find myself longing for the secure and uncomplicated. I long to be as far away from eyes that seek, perceive, pry, question…and especially away from eyes that are brimming with painful nostalgia. I make attempts to push it all away by seeking solitude and repose…but even that gets lonely somewhere, sometime, somehow.

And then in those rare moments of vulnerability, I realize what a complete mess I have made of myself and those who cared about me…once and some, a few times. Don’t ask me why. Maybe they are just as fascinated with self-imposed hurt as I am. It’s a horrible sinking feeling. Chasing illusion has got me destroying reality in the process. It’s a price I once chose to pay but I live to regret simply because it turned out to be absolutely NOT worth it.

***

Pretty deep, huh? I know.  I got quite a bit carried away back there. It seems Britney Spears’ Femme Fatale album is making me contemplative and prolific! Thank you Eric for giving me a cd copy of the album! Now I know what you mean about  getting hooked — I can’t stop playing it! So now let’s talk shallow and fun. After all, it’s Friday and no, I’m not about to go Rebecca Black on you. Although I have a let’s catch-up dinner with a dear friend of mine later, it’s nothing of the irresponsible frivolity kind. I think I have forgotten how that works in this time and age. The drums and bass are best left to the kids, that’s what I think.  These days, I’m all about reading a good book, going a little overboard with my workout, meeting friends occasionally — if I’m not buried up to my elbows with work, that is.

Hey, have I mentioned in my previous post that we’re coming out with a gag show on youtube? Another brainchild of Emperor Eric, (Did you click on the link? He’s the guy doing the intro in one of our Beijing videos) our brilliantly creative friend who was also the one who wrote the song Paglaya. The music video of which is already being played on Pinoy MYX. I haven’t seen the video on tv myself as I often come to work early and leave quite late and on those rare occasions that I do watch tv, I’m only tuned in to BBC, CNN, BTV, FOX, or TLC.

So anyway, we shot the first two episodes last week and it was fun! Buddy, being a seasoned PETA actor himself, was pretty intimidating to act with! ‘To act with’ naman daw talaga! Akala mo naman artista ako kung magsalita, ROTLF! We did 3 scenes for the Summer episode but we lacked two more, so we  taped again last night. And this time with our barkada‘s resident hubadera and it’s not me. I only come in (very) distant second to Cris Bato, as we fondly call him. One only has to look at his perfectly sculpted body to know where the moniker bato came from.  Yes, he’s rock-hard, pretty much everywhere but very soft where it matters – the heart. You don’t believe me? Check out this camera photo taken by JayEm while Bato and I were being directed by Eric and producer extraordinaire Aldrin in one of the Summer episodes.

 

'Summer' episode

Here are some more outtakes of last night’s taping. The show, by the way, will debut on youtube on Monday. We have a few more episodes lined up and though in some of those that we’ve already taped, the bloopers were a lot goofier than the actual show! So I suggest you cancel all our plans on Monday and wait for the pilot to air on youtube. And after watching it, you wouldn’t want to be anywhere else but in front of your laptop or tablet, for the iPad users out there, yoohoo!) on Mondays! Now, if we fail to make you laugh, I’m pretty sure, there would be at least five out there who will be in stitches – so kebs naman, di ba?

Anyway, more outtakes as promised. *wink*

 

Golden brown, hard, and irresistible...I am Cris Bato.:)

Aldrin and Bato acting out one of the Summer episode scenes.

Bani, behind the camera.

***

 

TOTAL FITNESS March 2011

Shameless plug: Have picked up your March copy of TOTAL FITNESS yet? Well, what are you waiting for? Head down to your favorite newsstand today! I have some fitness-related articles in there you might wanna check out. Here’s one of them:

POWER YOGA. (Excerpts) To the untrained eye, the synchronizing of the yoga poses with one’s breathing patterns may seem soft and free-flowing, similar to a trance-like dance. But for the Power Yogi, pushing and contorting of every limb while maintaining a strong sense of inner peace and concentration is in itself, already a vigorous exercise. Which is why, warm-ups are done before a Power Yoga session in order to properly relax and condition the muscle for the successsion of rigorous poses to be executed.

Given the physical and mental demands of power yoga, it is truly amazing how some people are drawn to the practice and remain loyal to it. Here’s why:

  • It improves one’s ability to focus.
  • It’s a great way to release tension and anxiety.
  • It helps a person maintain proper posture.
  • It tones your body well.
  • It’s a good way to remove bodily toxins through sweat.
  • It serves as a great training for athletes.
  • It helps improve a person’s performance in certain sports
  • It bolsters stamina, strength, and flexibility