Putting your best foot forward? Wear nice shoes.

(This article was published in Republic Magazine – South Central Mindanao under the “You Got Rained” column)

In the dating game, you might want to make sure the impression lasts.

When poet Ralph Waldo Emerson said “Beauty without grace is the hook without the bait”, he could have been up to something that we, in the modern times, have to carefully consider: the personality package. Because more often than not, it’s the substance that follows that keeps the attraction going. Here are some points to keep in mind when going out on a date, especially if it’s the first time:

Whoever comes first at the table should always stand up to greet the other one.


If the date is set at daytime, wear light-colored clothing. Save the darker colors for when the date is set at night.


Dress up and make it special – like something you wouldn’t look like on a normal day. But don’t overdress. Dress appropriately.


Don’t be too romantic on a first date, especially if you’re meeting for the first time. The same thing goes for being too interrogative. Try to keep it casual and let the romance flow without too much effort.


The conversation should always be two-way. There are only two players in this game, and both should participate.


Always bring breathmints. At some point, your breath might feel stale. If a breathmint is not available, sip on soda. Do not slip into the restroom for mouthwash. Nothing screams “I’m too conscious about my breath” than the smell of mouthwash.


Always bring extra cash. Typically, the gentlemen pay for the date. But things don’t come as planned sometimes.


Always load up on mobile phone credits if you do not have a post-paid line. “Can’t text. No load.” is always a turn-off.


Do not take anything from your date’s plate unless you are offered to.


In any setting, a lady should not let her date carry her bag or purse unless circumstances deem it necessary. Though often regarded as a sign of gallantry, this act is found improper in some societies.


Leave your mp3 players, laptops and iPads at home. Bringing them along says either of the two: “I might get bored of you” or “I’m a showoff. Live with it.” And besides, having too much to mind and carry never makes one look sexy.


A text after a successful date is sweet. A call is always sweeter. However, try not to be too clingy.


Be confident. Nothing ruins a date as embarrassingly as cold sweat, mumbling words and inappropriate gestures.


Always have a light meal before heading off to a date. Neither eating like a lumberjack nor looking starved like a dog made anyone look good.


A small gift for your date says a lot about your character. It also aids in making the date more intimate and engaging.


Always aim for 0% negativity in your conversations. A date should be fun and engaging, not depressing.


Try not to be too serious the entire time. Mixing in a little shallow (but clean) humor helps both parties ease up and be open to each other some more. And they did say “someone might be falling in love with your smile.”


Should you take your date on a motorbike, make sure to have two helmets.


To put it technically, conversations should be 50% common interest, 25% about him and 25% about her.


Talk about yourselves, not other people. NEVER talk about previous relationships unless brought up. Should the topic arise, slowly redirect to a different topic.. Talking about the past can easily push your wagon downhill.


Do not overdo anything about your looks: too much make-up, too much perfume, too much accessories. Being too overdone might make it too uncomfortable for the both of you.


Try not to be too casual and plain. The essence of going on a date is to show the other party that you are better and above the rest.


Unless both you and your date are already comfortable with each other, try not to be too touchy. But also try not to be too distant. Body language plays a very important role in dating.


Don’t drink too much if alcohol is served. You should know why.


Be responsible for your date. Make sure your date has arrived home safely. Even if you’re the lady.


Plan a date that’s out of the box.
While nice restaurants, flowers and chocolates always come into mind when the word “date” is mentioned, many think of these as too mainstream. Here are some more ideas on how to make your date more interesting. Try going to your favorite restaurant and order your food “to go” and head off to the beach. Or give your date a gift certificate for two at a spa and take him / her there.


Dating is very much like shopping. We look at something good, check out how it can be of value to us and basically decide whether to take it or not. As with shopping, the presentation of an item is just as important as the item itself.

Remember, there are only two sides to fall into in the tightrope game of dating – magic or disaster – the result of which relies on its main player, the main item: you.

Just a thought today…

Sometimes, we spend too much time looking for similarities between ourselves and our match. Often, we think of differences as a hindrance for growth in the relationship. A reason to break bonds.

Little do we know that for most, it’s those differences that create the magic – just like how lemon juice and water make lemonade.

Ang Pag-ibig, Para Lang Negosyo Yan.

Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

Pinag-aaralan. Pinapakiramdaman. Pikit-matang sinusunggaban.

Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

You identify your market, you identify your niche, you find your spot, you invest, you let it grow, and you have to be passionate about it.

Find the right partner to build it with.

Opportunities for a good one come. But if you refuse to invest on it, it’s gonna be a loss on your part. Sayang. But don’t worry. Sometimes, opportunities come back. Better be prepared.

Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

Once you strike it right, there will be a lot of room to grow. There will be plenty of opportunities to expand.

The key is to build on that business – making it unique, strong, and stable. You work hard for it.
If it drops, shakes or flips, you don’t just abandon it. You work harder to bring it back to glory.
The only time to step away from it is when losses are greater than investments. And that’s gonna be painful.

Make it your strongest fallback in case life goes crazy on you… as it always does.

Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

There are rules. And like any, bide by them. They are there to guide and protect the business.
You don’t trick and cheat on your partners. You don’t outdo each other. Instead, you work together to outdo other businesses. That’s when the real fun starts.

Follow ethics. Follow principles. Follow values.

Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

Maraming maninira, maraming kukuwestyon, maraming makikisawsaw. In this case, the saying “too many chefs in the kitchen ruin the soup” heavily applies.

There will be opportunities to build multiple businesses, maraming mag-aalok – and all will require equal attention. If you’re really good at handling it, good for you. If not, you’re doomed.
Later you will realize that your first and strongest business has weakened. God forbid, beyond repair.

Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

How you handle it becomes part of your portfolio. If all of your previous businesses failed, it reflects on you. If you haven’t had any, it reflects on you. If it succeeds, you’ll be identified with it, and people will admire you for your savvy.

Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

If you don’t get into it, life stagnates. You stop earning beyond your worth.
Personal growth stops. Everything flatlines and comes to a deadend.

Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

There will always be a perfect partner for each specific venture.
Never compare partners, past and present. They will never match up.


Ang partner sa pag-ibig, para lang partner sa negosyo yan.

Lahat ng arrangements, napag-uusapan. For the benefit of both parties, of course. Both should have the same goal – no matter how small that goal is at first… and you let it grow.
Ang pag-ibig, para lang negosyo yan.

Let it bring out the best in you.

You Got Rained.

Text Messaging (SMS) Etiquette

My mom and I were talking about this the other evening.

  • Do not text someone in the middle of the night, unless you know them well.  Be conscientious of other’s schedules.  Others may not be awake like you, or not busy.

  • Never send chain texts.  Just like in emails, chain letters and texts are annoying.

  • Keep your phone on silent and vibrate modes in quiet public places like church, movie theater, meeting, or workplace.

  • Keep text messaging to a minimum at work or at school.  Your boss or teacher does not appreciate when you have other duties to fulfill.

  • Keep your texts short and sweet.  If you need to send an in-depth message, use email instead.  Be aware of your tone.  It might cause discomfort or irreparable harm.

  • Be courteous by sending a text, “Can I call you at your spare time?”  It is best than calling their phone directly.  They might be at work or in a meeting.

  • If you are a “textaholic,” others are not.  Avoid pestering others.

  • Composing a text while you are in a face-to-face conversation with someone is rude.

  • SMS is informal.  It should not be used for formal invitations or to dump your girlfriend or boyfriend.

  • Do not get upset when you don’t get a reply.  There’s probably a good reason why.

  • Leave the slang and hip lingo to the kids.  Your work colleagues will not appreciate.  Don’t try to be “in” with the kids by trying to be cool either.

  • Do not pass phone numbers to others.  Most people want to be very private. When necessary, seek permission first.  Likewise, keep received texts sent to you.  Do not announce to the world.

Guilty on some points! hehehe

Macho Mucho brings you The BOSS CARD.

I got myself this BOSS CARD from Macho Mucho last night:

Getting this card afforded me one free haircut on the spot (by my favorite stylist, Sally, of course) and will soon let me enjoy one free foot spa on my next visit (which is gonna be this week).

The Boss Card also gives more reasons for you to love it:

1.) Haircuts are down by 30% less the usual price . . . throw in a good shave when you’re at it.

2.) Spend P200 or more in a visit and you get free coffee (Joe Black. Brewed. Good.)

3.) Go for a footspa and your nails will thank you for the free pedicure that comes with having this card. A free manicure also comes with the Parrafin Wax service.

4.) Visit Macho Mucho on your birthday and you get a free haircut or a footspa (oh, happy days!)

5.) Take note of 10. A good 10% discount on all hair treatments and facial services, MachoMucho events and purchases from The Porch will be given.

Now, don’t we just love these great value stuff?

The MachoMucho “The Boss” Privilege Card costs PhP350, and is available at Macho Mucho, Sun City Suites, General Santos City. (if you think about it, the freebies upon purchase are worth the card’s price! – – so you get more out of this piece of plastic.)


Why not give them out as gifts for your gentlemen friends? Or get their great value gift certificates to give out as presents.



A little over a month ago, my friend Edz handed me a set of skin care products from E-Derm Centers based on Mandelic Acid formulation. Of all my years of exploring skin perfecting products, this sounded new to me, but I knew I had to try it.

The aim was to improve skin texture, reduce wrinkles and target acne. The results are stated below.


Mandelic Acid is a substance that is both an antibiotic and an exfoliating (skin peeling) agent. Dermatologists now suggest mandelic acid for a wide variety of skin concerns, from acne to wrinkles; it is especially good in the treatment of adult acne as it addresses both of these concerns (Wikipedia hehe!).

This substance also reduces inflammation – swollen pimples, scratches, post-laser treatments, etc.



E-Derm’s Mandelic Acid formulations include the following products:


A very light and effective cleaning agent in place of common soaps. Those who want a rich lather might not enjoy this as much as it has almost zero bubbles (but it doesn’t mean it’s not working). I found out that it feels good applying this with a facial brush. It’s easy to wash off.


This product comes as a fluid gel, so it is best applied with fingers. I don’t think it works like the common toners that are meant to wipe off dirt. This works more as a preparation for the use of the next two products. The cooling sensation it gives the skin is just amazing!


This is probably the most powerful product in the set. Instructions were to use it at night, after the cleanser and the toner. What I love about this is that tightening feel it gives the skin. In the morning, you’ll still feel tight and oil-free.


This one is meant to be used during the daytime after the cleanser and the toner. It feels light and smells good (a hint of pinipig). It indeed reduces oil on your face. Downside to this is that it doesn’t have SPF, so if you’re going out in the sun, make sure to use sunscreen a few minutes after application of this product.


Now, after weeks of using the product line, I’ve taken note of the following observations:

1.)    SUBSTANTIAL PEELING – but not too much.

And fast too! I noticed gentle peeling after 3 days of use, and it felt good… not painful at all!

My skin felt lighter and fresher. I just had to use sunscreen like crazy since my work requires me to go out into the sun from time to time.


I still had one or two popping out, but significantly lesser than before. This is probably due to the products’ antibiotic properties.


I’m not sure if it’s the peeling or the toner working on this, but they’re relatively smalle in appearance.


Those stubborn marks on the tip of my cheekbones, below my ears and my temples have gradually faded as peeling continued.


I’d like to leave the explanation to the experts, but I sure noticed that I wasn’t growing cystic acne (those deep, hard painful pimples that never come out) as often as before, especially on my chin.


Just as the shine Control moisturizer has promised.


I’ve always had these stubborn patches of dry, rough skin under my lower lip. They were the first to go.


The products I’ve mentioned above are available at E-derm Centers (http://www.edermcenters.com/ or facebook – http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001361674080&ref=ts).

You might want to consult your skin professional before using Mandelic Acid products.