Monday, January 31, 2011

MUSIC MONDAY: MIKA - Big Girl (You Are Beautiful)

Photo lifted from Wikipedia.

♪♪ No need to fantasize ♪♫♫

♫♫ Since the words are my praises ♪♫

♪♫♫ A watering hole with the girls around ♪♪

♫♪♪ And curves in all the right places ♪♫♪

What else would be more heartwarming than having one's son write an inspiring song for his mother and the prejudice she's faced for being plus size? Mika, you rock!

P.S. This video made me want to don a puta red corset and show up as one of his back-up dancers! Have you seen this music video?

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Livin' It Large in Reel Life

Aaaah, lazy Sundays. The best time to feed our peepers with our DVD backlogs! For today, I'd like to share a blast-from-the-past clip about my 15 milliseconds of fame way back in September 2008.

With some help from my Studio 23 friends, I found myself casted for the Us Girls' Fashion segment. I was thrilled to hear that I'd get assistance from the bronzed host Angel Aquino and stylist Mike to find the most flattering pieces for plus size women.

The other segments will feature food in epic proportions, big and bold accessories and a certain celebrity with big bucks, big walk-in closet and potentially big heart. Hence, they called that episode, "Livin' Large".

Almost ready to go on cam! Beige dress, black top (underneath), black obi belt, black jacket from Nur. Tortoise pumps, silver hoops and wrist watch were mine.


Trying on clothes was fun until my twins demanded attention. Even if the beige dress is of perfect fit, we needed pins to keep my cleavage covered. Good thing Angel Aquino found a black top for me to wear underneath. But this relief was short-lived. The top button broke free from the dress, as if my twins were protesting from being clad. Mike reacted, "Ngayon lang ako nahirapan sa boobs!"

To say I loved this beige dress is an understatement. I even wanted to take it home! The dress, according to Mike, gave me this Ecomoda aura. I believed Jon (segment producer) and Glenn (researcher) agreed as they urged me not to smile and to do more chest out during my rampa.

It was also a delight to wear the gray top (not documented in photos). It gave me a "dignified" look, according to Angel Aquino. For me, its magic lies on its simplicity yet apparent demonstration of effort. It can work as casual and formal piece alike.

Photo opportunity with Angel Aquino and Mike.

Is this on?

The samples behind me. Wearing my From A To Tee™ shirt and denim miniskirt.

After the shoot in Nur's boutique in Tomas Morato extension, off we went to Milly Clothes' office in Pasig City. Their stuff is available in SM Stores. I'm not really impressed with their designs but they were super nice to make me choose my take-home among their samples.

Trying on the peasant blouse and light brown capri pants from Milly's

Psychedelic (at least for me) dress from Milly's. Silver shoes were mine.

Guess what I chose between these options? I opted for the former, much to Angel Aquino's shock. My girlfriends Carl and Sherry (they both joined me during the shoot to provide oral support) agreed, saying it is what typical unfashionable moms would wear.

Well, it's no secret I am drawn to anything with orange-and-brown color combination and my closet is home to a lot of peasant tops and capris. Although I'm pretty obsessed with dresses that time, I had to give the other up. The design is kinda...old. The Carl-and-Sherry tandem and I must have contradicting tastes in clothes!

Mike offered I should go for the most expensive piece among my options. I didn't take heed. But I was truly glad to hear him say that the pang-nanay (Carl's words) combo is better: the dress sample is quite damaged (unfortunately, it's the last one) and the peasant top-and-capri suits my character more.

Besides, I was attracted to the potential freedom to mix and match. Until today, I wear the blouse to job interviews and whenever I'm in the mood to look smart-casual. I know I've done a last-minute pictorial in Intramuros wearing this. The pants? I donated that pair to my mother when I realized it's quite loose.

How about my take-home stuff from Nur, you ask? I assumed they'd give me that beige ensemble. After all, I've tried it on AND even caused damage on its top button. Guess what's inside my thank-you bag?

Putting on my take-home dress from Nur. Forgot to put on a smile, though

I am still yet to find the confidence to wear this dress outside my bedroom. Friends who've seen this piece air their disapproval, saying it'd make me look like a nun or milk maid. Would you agree? If so, please remind me to look for this again for the next Halloween party I'm attending.

Aside from such cool freebies, I am still grateful for this opportunity to make my secret dream to be a model come into fruition. It may be a gruelling experience to squeeze this shoot after and before my graveyard shift, but I felt over pouring joy knowing that I passed on an example that we, big girls, too, can shed those inhibitions and make a runway out of any ground we step our pedicured feet on.

So there goes my official debut on national TV. Next? I'm thrilled to know.

Looking very large next to Angel Aquino?

More photos here and check out the plug here.

Monday, January 17, 2011


I must be sick. In my head, there's this pretty chubby woman in the mirror. In the real world, she's a hideous 180-pound top-heavy waste of space. And I just might be the last to know.

Taken during summer 2010 in Potipot Island, Zambales. Photo by Fristine.

Taken during November 2010 in Boracay. Photo by Carl.

Am I making you sick already? You can exit this page. NOW!

In the previous months, I have noticed how strangers felt licensed to talk about my weight. The cab driver who refused to shut up, the pool maintenance guy who shared his pessimistic view about my weight loss with his colleague even if I wasn't out of earshot yet, the barker who addressed me as "tabachoy", the ladies in the gym who provided me with unsolicited advice and so on.

So maybe it's high time for me to talk about it, too, huh?

I've always been big as far as I could remember. I was this instant standout among my skinny, prim & proper classmates and playmates as a kid. Everybody had this compulsion to pinch my cheeks and arms then give me a bear hug. In any order.

But, when one reaches puberty, it's not cute anymore. My body weight dwindled as often as MTV's launches for boy bands. I blame it on my inconsistent workout plan (read: short-lived cheerleading career) and relationship with food (read: emotional eating). Put that together and you'd really be in a bad shape.

Age 14. Possibly at my thinnest. How I hated my arms then!

This went on until college. Eventually, I found myself getting addicted to aerobics as response to the unpleasant turnout of a romantic relationship. I put all my angst, bitterness, sexual frustration and other negative energies to my daily one-hour workout. Back then, I've become this voluptuous chick. But the world does not agree at all. Fools!

As a yuppie, I initially juggled my full-time work in graveyard shift and freelance writing for magazines. My appetite grew insatiable in adaption to this new lifestyle. When I got too many "What happened to your waist?!" from colleagues and college friends, I started attending yoga classes, [then dropped it] and signed up for gym membership. That was my priority for months until the mind-blowing, self-esteem shrinking demands of graduate school in UP-Diliman caught up with me. I had to choose. Workout or bedtime during my rare free time? I opted for the latter.

L-R: Julie, Chiqui and I. Christmas 2006.

L-R: Me and my flabs, Jhen and Ayi. March 2007.

It's been 2 years since I realized graduate school robbed me of my neglected priorities. Yet, I remain the same big girl when I enrolled in the university. Last year witnessed my attempt to be a serious swimmer and, before the year ended, my enrollment in a gym near my place. Why am I doing this? What am I trying to achieve?

As a result of my tragic kneecap dislocation and meniscus tear for dancing drunk last year, my therapists strictly advised me to work on my weight loss. My knee can't take my excess fats anymore. Aside from this, I have polycystic ovaries which explains the hair fall, cystic acne, uneven skin tone & irregular menstrual period. The threat of infertility does not make me worry at this time. But its correlation to diabetes does. I tend to overindulge in sweets even in my dreams and, worse, we have family history of such. Case in point: my mother.

In spite of this pressure, I wish to retain my curves. I don't ask for toned biceps to replace my arms. Neither am I saving up for liposuction. I refuse to comply to mass media's depiction of sexiness! In my own opinion, I am beautiful and extra sexy for taking pride in my curves, morena skin, big curls and rambunctious laughter. Unlike most plus size women in this country, I have this strong relationship with off-shoulder tops, miniskirts and shorts. If I have to spend more to alter men's t-shirts so I would look better and feel more comfortable, I would. And I am crossing my fingers everybody else would be inspired to feel better about themselves.

However, I must confess I'm no poster kid 24/7. I have recurring moments of self-doubt and loathing. I can get intimidated by skinnier women. In fun pictorials with friends, I tend to be protective of my wings, double chin, belly rolls and other bulges. They're not meant for public consumption, I would remind them.

See, this journey to body acceptance can be looong and bumpy. I invite kindred spirits to make yourselves known, speak up and let's be one another's soul sister. We could use all the motivation and support that we can get.

And, for starters, pleeeease stop saying you're fat. You're extra sexy! Give yourself a big hug!

Hippie-ness! Photo by Chad Barreyro.