Page 1

1


“I suppose in the end, the whole of life becomes an act of letting go, but what always hurts the most is not taking a moment to say goodbye.” –Pi Patel, Life of Pi

2


3


No. 20

STACHE a magazine for and by the creative youth


MAINE MANALANSAN F OU NDE R

JARED CARL MILLAN E DITOR IN C H IE F

CINDY HERNANDEZ ASS OC IAT E E DITOR

NINA PINEDA ASS ISTANT E DITOR

NESSA SANTOS T RAV E L E DITOR

ECKS ABITONA FAS H ION E DITOR

ELLIE CENTENO MU S IC E DITOR

COCO MACEREN MARK E T ING ASS OC IAT E

M A R Y S I LV E S T R E WE B DE V E LOP E R

I L L U S T R AT O R S

Mica Agregado, Mika Bacani, James Bernabe, Alyssa de Asis, Tzaddi Esguerra, Ches Gatpayat, Daniela Go, Trisha Katipunan, Patricia Mapili, Vince Puerto WRITERS

Marty Arnaldo, Bea Astudillo, Alfonso Bassig, Regine Cabato, Belle Mapa, Tonie Moreno, Pia Posadas, Paolo Sumayao, Vernise Tantuco, Mayee Gonzales PHOTOGRAPHERS

Christienne Berona, Ian Guevarra, Jash Manuel


ISSUE 20

CONTRIBUTORS A P R I L 2 0 1 4 - M AY 2 0 1 4

Elbert Or (www.elbertor.com) is a comic book creator whose works include Bakemono High, Manosaur, and, with wife and fellow artist Lorra Elena Or, the weekly webcomic Homeycomb: A Married Life. He is the co-founder of Pushpin Visuals, which specializes in hand-drawn visual notes and graphic recordings.

Michelle Cervantes draws comics. Also eats a lot of pizza.

Danielle Riña has a thing for comics, documentaries, autobiographies and printmaking. she self-published her first mini-comic, ‘dirty laundry and other stories’ last november and its sequel got released 4 months later.

Josel Nicolas has been making comics in the indie komiks scene since 2005. He is mostly known for Windmills, an autobiographical strip wherein he draws himself as a bear.

Julienne Dadivas is a 22 year old graphic artist. She likes people, places and things. She occasionally posts doodles, comics and stuff at http://hulyen.tumblr.com.

Trizha Ko is a 21 y.o. person. She has a frail health and get tired easily, allergic to both nature and the city (pollen & dust mites) which partly explains why she spends most of her time in a vacuum sealed home. breathing in recycled air.

6


Abner Dormiendo graduated with a degree in Philosophy from Ateneo de Manila University. Many of his works have been published in Heights. He currently lives in Antipolo City.

Kenneth Beltran is 22 year old photographer from Manila who loves to shoot portraits and peanut butter cups.

Christian Benitez hails from Rizal. Currently finishing his undergraduate degree in Ateneo de Manila University, he writes just because.

Renee Cuisia is a 17-year old human being with cat characteristics. If she’s not sleeping or scratching her litter box, she likes to read, write and watch a bunch of films.

Liam Andrew Cura aspires to be a graphic designer, illustrator, outdoorsman, rock climber, master barbecue griller, traveler, and adventure seeker. He has an acute interest in vikings, barbarians, wolves, winter forests and the like.

Samantha Pacardo is a Filipina currently based in Morocco. She has a soft spot for Martha Stewart, British period dramas and fictional sociopaths with good hair and too much money to spend.

AND EVERYONE WHO SHARED THEIR T I M E A N D S K I L L W I T H S TA C H E Karen dela Fuente, Elisa Aquino, Gen Fernandez, Pat Nabong, Mare Collantes, Merphi Panaguiton, Maan Bermudez, Christine Luang, Camille Luang, Rosette Adele, Milinette Uy, Esme Palaganas, Janine Salvatierra, Erin Emocling, Tatie Aquino, Leanne Sagun, Mikee Lim, Abbey Sy, Ino Lopez, Afianne Cope, Belle Cano, Drei Santizo, Elliza Jean Francisco, Jackie Francisco, Moira Parton, Patricia Salonga, Patricia Santos, Cloud Kinot, Kitkat Pecson, Coco Navarro, Dylan Dylanco, Jodit Santander, Mai Evangelista, Banawe Corvera, Danica Condez, Mao Alducente, Karla Bernardo, Kathryn Hilario, Leely Bries, Vincent Galang, Jen Masilungan, Andrew Florentino, Avery Wong, What Is Andromeda, Jelito de Leon, Jason Espiritu, Jennifer Aquino, Kaye Clarete, Rae Cabardilla, Grace de Luna, Micah Lima, Kat Eusebio, Kristel Silang, Mikee Lim, Chelsea Olaya, Marella Ricketts, Regina Reyes, Therese Reyes, Angel Castillo, Saibh Egan, Gwilen Grace, Koji Arboleda, Rae Cabardilla, Christine Exevea, Forest Candelaria, George Downing, The Copes, Matt Aesthetic Angela Florendo, Aidx Paredes, Hannah Magsayo, Kit Singson, Maura Isabel Rodriguez, Aaron Articulo, Edrick Bruel, Adrian Gonzales, Jennifer Avello, Tintin Lontoc, Shutter Panda Photography, Chi Solis, Quisha Baterna, Thea De Rivera, Arianne Tolentino, Teo Gaspar, Iris M., Nellie Cuevas, Gabriel Mangilaya, Jeremy Marcelo, Bjorn Bedayo, Samie Betia, Vince Ong, Bea Manzano, Jeca Martinez, Patrick Guillermo, Ysabel Bondoc, Joanna Empit, Jessica Murphy, Carlos Quimpo, Mariel Gonzales, Aminah Deloria, Moira Parton, Caileigh Kyle, Lauren Hahn, Cru Camara, Noreen Legaspi, Philip Lapinid IV, Ryan Melgar, Koty2, Irvin Rivera, Arianne Tolentino, Reomin Deocareza, Neille Cuevas, Mikee Sanchez, Ron Mangobo, Jasmin Ado, Dominic Sy, Kit Singson, Vincent Dioquinio, Alfred Marasigan, Marielle Misula, Jansen Musico, Lambert Cruz, James Grr, Gab Bustos, Nile Villa, Mel Kasingsing, Gerd Perez, Alvin Greg Molina, Chiara Garcia, Elise Montinola, John Balaguer, Miles Malferrari, Mae Pascual, Laurice Sta. Maria, Pum Briones, Daniel Placido, Domenico Petrallia, Neil Craver, Bea Fernandez, Alfonnso Bassig, Joanna Santillan, Jessan Miramon, Elora Picson, Christienne Berona, Ciara-Angela Engelhardt, Dorota Szafranska, Krzystof Kowalski, Maikz Tomas, Chiara Salmorin, Janz Barrios, Macy Reyes, Maxine Velasco, Bernard Gatus, Alyssa De Asis, Cristoph Sagemuller, Ally Dalloway, Jericho Ramos, Mika Bacani, Ginoe Ojoy, Albiz Verceles, Inky Callora, Anna Tea, Gabrielle Pyjas, Joanna Glowacka, Kath Elefante, Pawel Grabowski, Tzaddi Esguerra, Heiko Laschitzki, Jc Santiago, Alyssa De Asis Andie Ochoa, Bianca Marjalino, Anika Molina, Janel Gatdula, Janelle Almosara, Richard Falk, Omi Saki, Jeevika Verma, Romeo Moran, Evan Reinhardt, Marco Carboni, Kristiina Lahde, Angelica Tapia, Amielyn Joanne Li, Vinnie Placeb, Patricia Mapili, Matt Esteves Hemmermich, Isa Rodrigo, Regine Cabato, Arianne Serafico, Elvina dela Cruz, Kornelia Debosz, Daryl Feril, Sunny Gu, Kristina Petrosiute, Lisa Smit, Rob Cham, Mikki Castro, Helene Ryden, Johan Tuvesson, Kalle Jonsson, Bea Austudillo, Gian Bernardino Jessica Santiago, Ian Guevarra, Monica Forss, Kevin Bautista, Hannah Gordon, Cindy Hernandez, Belle Mapa, Ryan Palermo-Greene, Wina Puangco, , Ieva Jasinskaite, Olive Lestoqouit, Marlee Banta, Kuna Zero, BreatWhing, Ken Grand-Pierre, Kevin, Nick Corke, Natasha Ringor, Jethro Dogg, Isa Grassi, Wina Puanco, Alekxandra Toyhacao, Rebecca Lader, Marty Arnaldo, Polly Labitro, Bea Astudillo, Angelo Polangcos, Eilyn Yatco, Pia Posadas, Al Estrella, Jericho Moral, Vernise Tantuco Tippy Go, Anthony Go, Jorge Wieneke and all our readers. 7


8


INTRO

CUE V ITA MIN C Letters from members of Stache Magazine April 2014-May 2014

J

ust like everybody else on the team, I have been avoiding this letter. Not because I don’t have anything to say, but because I was afraid that I won’t be able to find the right words to say to you. But first, I think an apology is in order. I’m sorry for making this impulsive decision but this is the best decision for Stache right now. I know a couple of you (and a few of us in Stache) have dreams of gettting published. Maybe our time isn’t right now. Maybe someday soon, once we’re all better with our craft. But first, we all have to go through this pain and change to be better. From the wise words of Ariana Grande (HA!), almost is never enough. And it never is. It never will. That’s why this isn’t the last of us. We’ll see each other soon. I don’t know when and in what form but we will and that future meeting will drive all of us to strive even harder. But before we part ways, let me just say thank you for all the support and love for the past three years. We really couldn’t have done it without you. I hope you discovered a little something about yourself while going through this journey with us. I hope you realized how amazing you are as a person, as an artist, and as a free-thinker who challenges the ideals of the society. We made Stache because of people like you and your passion to do something with your lives at such an early age. So here’s to all of our hopes and aspirations; may we all get what we all deserve. Until next time,

MAINE MANALANSAN FOUNDER

9


INTRO

I

can still remember the first time I applied for Stache. It was after my first ever “photo shoot” with my cousin. I had new photos and I saw that Stache was hiring. I never really knew what Stache was before I saw the poster calling out for new people to join their team. I applied and got an e-mail that I was accepted to be part of their team. I was very very flattered that they let me join their small but very talented team. I didn’t know what I got myself into at first but I was so happy that I did. I didn’t know that Stache would mean so much to me. Stache not only helped me discover my true passion for photography but also aided me in honing my skills in photography. I’m so glad that I was able to share to the people what I do through Stache. One thing that I’ve always told Maine every time we talk about Stache is I would never be where I am right now if it wasn’t for Stache.

JELITO DE LEON PHOTOGR APHER

10


INTRO

E

veryone in Stache is creative. This is a fact that needs no validation once you read an issue. There are no words to express just how much I love working and being with everyone on this team and it saddens me to think that this is the final issue. But I like to think of Stache as something permanent, something that stays with everyone. It isn’t a copy of a digital magazine, nor is it a website. Stache is love. Stache has taught me so much and has constantly pushed me to greater heights and I am eternally grateful. I will miss sitting on my butt for 5 hours on the commute just for a meeting. I will miss Christmas parties, ate Mary’s potato salad and venting my feelings. I will miss everyone. Stache Magazine is a magazine that began and ended abiding by its ideal to be a platform for and by the creative youth. I can’t be more proud of everyone in this team. I love you, Stache. I love you forever.

TONIE MORENO WRITER

11


INTRO

D

ear Stache, We may not have been together for very long, but what we had was sweet. Thank you for showing me the beauty of art and the joy of sharing it. I met so many awesome people who are so passionate about what they do because of you, and I myself have been driven to work harder in my craft because of that kind of wonderful company. You have made me better. Thank you for the past few three years, I will never forget you.

MARE COLLANTES FORMER LIFESTY LE EDITOR

12


INTRO

I

’ve written about 15 opening sentences for this exit letter but I’ve not quite found the perfect one. Maybe because there’s no perfect way to say goodbye and just writing plainly and truthfully is what’s needed. I’m not going to lie, I doubted Stache Magazine during its first few months out of jealousy. I didn’t see its potential, I was just stupid enough to let jealousy cloud my mind. I was jealous of what they were doing and their friendship because these were things I wanted for myself (back then.) Little did I know, I would actually be part of their team. It happened since because I was good friends with one of their staffers and she tagged me in one of the meetings for the magazine, I sat there, I listened, I pitched in a bit and by the end of the meeting I was hired. She asked me, “do you want to be my marketing assistant?” and all I could say was “uh, okay, yeah!” then she quickly called her boss, aka the Editor-In-Chief, said I was the new member and I was in. I couldn’t believe it. Why would a girl like me be hired? A doubter and quite honestly, an awkward girl just pitching in some random thoughts be hired? It was only after my first meeting with the whole team did I know why I was included. It’s because my friend trusted me and its because she saw the potential that was in me. She could see it in my wanting eyes that I was just waiting for an opportunity to come for me to get in and that she took a leap of faith and granted it. That’s what Stache does. They trust each other to bring in good people and most importantly trusts you (as a staffer) to start trusting yourself to bring out your potential. This is not only what they do for their staff, but also for their readers. Stache brings out a good magazine, a great read for anyone interested and acts as a platform for those who are too afraid to let the world see their potential. They feature people who are capable of inspiring others that used to be just like them (afraid) and they fill the magazine with staffers who can see the potential of these people. Stache makes you (the reader) feel like you can trust such a magazine to release something you have made and show it to the world, it shows you that you have the potential and have the capabilities to do such things, it shows you that you’re not alone and that there are people out there who are willing to see what you can do, that YOU actually matter. It has been doing this for more than 3 years now and it will continue to do it despite this final issue. This isn’t goodbye, it’s more of a “we-have-done-our-part-it-is-time-you-do-yours” kind of exit. Stache has been there for you and time has come for you to be there for yourself as well. See that you have the potential to achieve all the things you want for yourself and upon seeing that and upon trusting yourself to do that, you’ll slowly act on it. I wouldn’t be saying that if I didn’t know it to be true. That’s how Stache started and that’s how I started. I doubted them, I doubted myself and yet the still let me in. Eventually I saw everything clearer and I was brought to doing what I wanted to do. The magazine was made because Maine (the mag’s founder) wanted to be her own boss and she did. Stache isn’t just a magazine for you to read, it is a friend that will support you no matter what. This whole magazine will just cease to release issues and will be “gone” online, however, we are still here. For sure, you will still have people wanting to see what you are capable of doing so don’t be afraid and just go. We hope to have inspired you and now it is time you start inspiring yourself to inspire many others as well. Cheers,

COCO M ACER EN MARKETING ASSOCIATE

13


INTRO

I

’ve been working on this exit letter thing for hours now and everything’s so heavy and I couldn’t phrase everything properly so rather than rambling—although I just did—I’ll just keep this as brief as possible. I’ve been in the team for a year and a half, and I can say that I have never been part of anything else that could equate to the intellectually nourishing environment of Stache. I’ve seen people leave the team to pursue other endeavours, but I never saw myself doing so—that’s probably why this final issue thing can’t sink in. I just never wanted it to happen. But knowing that a lot of people love the magazine as much as we do has been the greatest part of this whole ride, so thank you, everyone who saw the beauty in this little world we’ve been working hard on keeping alive. We all know how the universe works; all beautiful things must come to an end, and it’s time for Stache to be at peace. This is our swan song, and I hope you enjoyed every note of the whole concerto. This is one of the most heartbreaking farewells I’ve ever had to do, but I do believe someday there will come a Stache renaissance of sorts so I’m closing the curtains with some hopeful Murakami: “The song is over. But the melody lingers on.” ALFONSO BASSIG WRITER

14


INTRO

F

or the past few weeks, I found an exceptional comfort in silence. To find the tranquil amidst all the noise and sting you try to steer clear from can be the most potent discovery making it hard to release one’s hold on. Everything is a process, they say, and my intention of arriving at getting a better grip of things must take a temporary halt. In my 21 years of existence, I have but still just a few things in my life I’m really proud of and without a shadow of doubt, Stache is one of them. I am taking a break from my stillness not to make sense of all things but because right now, this is the only right thing to do—to write. Looking back at where I was in my life when I got asked to be part of Stache, I was a 17-year old girl taking a beating from the gloom of the studies of my past course. It took six spirited young individuals who showed me how to embrace courage and fight for the direction that I really believed in. It was in December 2010 when Stache helped to find the strength in me to always fight for what I want. That was the beginning of our little journey of imparting, of believing and of learning. Sooner than we expected, our little gathering became a company of more than 30 people. From short meetings to long talks, these passionate souls who will always continue to intrigue me weren’t just people I work with nor just friends but they became my family who I know I will hold close for a really long time. They taught me with all their spiritedness to believe, to give and to hope. And I have nothing but love for all of them. I’d like to think that we all experience different types of growth in our lives—to grow out of our fears, to grow with another person, to grow through pain and to grow in a different place. For the 3 years and few months I have been with Stache, I will always cherish the growth I have gone through. I don’t consider our last to be an ending but rather another kind of growth that we have to undertake—moving forward. Everything is a learning process and I have been acquiring knowledge since the first day. Whenever I get confused or disheartened, the world’s craftsmanship and the never-ending possibilities will keep me going. When despair and exhaustion take over, I think it’s always best to remember that we are all in the process of positive changes. I’d like to believe that everything is happening exactly as it should be and all will unfold in time. To have made 20 wonderful issues with the most talented people I know is one of the greatest gifts I could ever receive. And as we share to all of you our last, may it never close any of your doors. We hope that in the short time we shared all of our fervor, energy, skills and beliefs, may all of these words or graphics meld your hopes and wishes to always continue whatever happens. Thank you for being with us through and through and thank you for keeping us going. Stache will always be one of my biggest inspirations and we hope in some way, we have inspired all of you to never belittle your craft. For all our readers, there will be days when you’re going to feel so full of fire and so full of strange energy and so many emotions and heavy all over. We wish for you to never let this energy stay restricted and dim inside you. Never let it kill your days. Let this wild energy flow through you and let it make you unstoppable. May you never fail to have confidence in yourself and we hope all of you will live your way to all your answers. I can never be so brief about Stache’s beauty and what these beings mean to me but to encapsulate, Stache will always be my light. Thank you for letting me bloom in so many ways. You will always be one of my significant treasures and I am very grateful. To a new chapter full of love, warmth and experiences. To becoming! Stache, forever.

ECKS ABITONA FA SHION EDITOR

15


INTRO

16


INTRO

T

his feels exponentially worse than a heartbreak. If I’m being honest, I haven’t even let this whole thing sink in. My head is all over the place and my heart is heavy – trying to make sense of all this. This is by far, the hardest letter I’ve ever had to write. I could write about how Stache changed my life, but that is an attempt that will prove to be futile at best, with what little words I have. I could also write about how it all started, about how I became part of this wonderful thing but maybe that story is for another time, another letter. And maybe if I ever see you around, we can have tea and I can tell you all about the funniest situations and the surreal moments I somehow found myself in because of Stache. Stache has been the most beautiful thing that’s ever happened to me, at a time in my life wherein I needed beautiful things. It has been the primary cause of/and witness to my growth as a person the past years. I wouldn’t have even dared to dream about getting to where I am now if it weren’t for Stache. I never had a concrete dream to begin with, but Stache made me realize what I wanted to do with my life. Stache became what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. Stache has shaped me into becoming my own person. At this point, I’m only speaking for myself and how instrumental Stache has been to me. I can only imagine what it has done for other people. And to think that people actually paid attention to what we were doing is overwhelming. To think that at some point in time, we became a part of your life, to have that luxury, and possibly have been a source of inspiration, is the most wonderful thing. We couldn’t have asked for more. I’d like to take this chance to say thanks. Thank you to everyone who believed in us for making us keep going. Thank you to everyone who belittled us for making us prove you wrong. Ultimately, thank you for letting us be a part of your life. I love you. Over time, Stache became our home, our refuge. It was there when nothing else was. It was the only thing that was constant in all our crazy, little lives. It served as a timeline for all the joys, the pains, and the in-betweens of all of us. Stache is our baby. We took care of it, gave it our everything, and watched it grow into this wonderful thing. And grow it did, by miles and miles, and it got to the point that it was growing at a pace we never expected. It was exciting and scary to watch where it was taking us. I’ve never been prouder of anything in my life than this. And now that our baby’s come of age, it’s time to let it go – at least for now. I’d like to think we started something here. Whether or not it made an impact is beyond us, but the fact that we tried to make something out of absolute nothing is something I can be proud of. This has been an amazing ride. I hope you enjoyed reading Stache as much as we enjoyed making every single issue happen. It was all worth it. So, so worth it. Soon enough, all the stars will align and spur new beginnings for all of us. This isn’t going to be the last you hear of Stache. I promise. Stay gravy, baby.

ELLIE CENTENO MUSIC EDITOR

17


OPINIONS

ISSUE 20

OPINIONS EDITED BY JARED CARL MILLAN

E X PLOR I NG GR E Y A R E A S In a country with 80% of its inhabitants clinging onto Roman Catholicism, divorce is an issue with a stark contrast of views. BY TONIE MORENO

19


OPINIONS

EX PLOR ING GR EY A R E AS

With issues that causes a conflict between imposed morality and common welfare, the Philippine government treads a rickety tightrope while mapping these gray areas. STORY BY TONIE MOR ENO, ILLUSTR ATION BY JA MES BER NA BE

P

olitics becomes crucially entangled in the interpretation of the law when the public opinion is divided along political and religious lines. May it be same-sex marriage, divorce, cybercrime or the much debated RH Law, the Philippine government treads a rickety tightrope when it comes to mapping these grey areas. While the media may cast these issues in stark and sometimes simplistic terms, the views of those affected are not so easily boxed. And as our government becomes more politically invested, more people are affected by it. The main source of disagreement when it comes to the decision-making of lawmakers is the conflict of interest and imposed morality. In a country with 80% of its inhabitants clinging onto Roman Catholicism, divorce is an issue with a stark contrast of views. Politicians, religious activists and the population in its entirety have a wide array of opinions regarding this matter and thus, the government’s decision is blocked. The Philippines’s National Statistics Office (NSO), through the 2008 National Demographic and Health Survey (NDHS) says that one in seven married women experienced physical, emotional and economic violence from their husbands. Abuse seems not to be enough reason for the government to cast a decision. Aside from the Vatican, the Philippines is the only country in the world that does not allow divorce, and the heads of the church intend to keep it that way. Various debates and talks have been done but the government’s verdict seems to be swayed by the church’s insistence on preserving the “sanctity of marriage”. The church has been fighting a long-waged war with the government, and one of the battles is same-sex marriage. Same-sex marriage has been debated and pondered upon for years. Initially shunned by majority as immoral and taboo, it has now gained widespread acceptance primarily in the youth. Most of young, theologically conservative people, at the very least,

20


OPINIONS

21


OPINIONS

22


OPINIONS

tolerate homosexuality. Its newfound approval caused ripples of controversy in the religious world, reinvigorating the debate over the relationship between faith, politics and same-sex marriage. This sparked the Philippine government to take its first shaky steps towards equality by filing an anti-discrimination bill that prohibits “impairing or nullifying the recognition, enjoyment or exercise” of human rights. However noble the bill might seem, the LGBT community is mostly unsatisfied since the bill entails what should be common sense and does not really address their pressing concerns, which is marriage. The only possibility for Filipino same-sex couples to be wed is if they move to a country that allows it, a luxury most cannot afford. The church does not oppose of the LGBT community, but they condemn the act. Hate the sinner, not the sin, as one may say. This is not to say that the entire church community condemns it. In 2011, the Metropolitan Community Church of Metro Baguio (MCCMB) hosted a mass same-sex wedding has prepared out pre-wedding counseling before the event in various areas in the country. This was not the first time they did it and it has the same reception as the first. The church, although quiet, were obviously angry and went so far as to call it an anomaly. Unlike a Catholic’s holy matrimony, this “holy union” required no paperwork since they only seek divine blessing. In the end, the church’s, the government’s and the others’ views are varying, achieved through unique formulas including conscience, morality, empathy and personal experience. More often than not, we only hear the ardent voices of the fiercest opponents, overpowering the other voices which are just as numerous. There are many factors that come into the equation of laws, resulting in not an either-this-or-that battle, but rather many varying shades of gray. The Philippine government has its decisions conflicted by what is for the common good and what others believe to be moral. In cases such as that of abortion and whatnot, the Philippine government constantly finds itself tip-toeing the line between what they and what others believe is good. These cases do not have a definite answer and they cause an internal battle for a country whose beliefs have been hammered and etched for a very long time. It’s going to be impossible for the government to make a decision that will appease both sides of the coin but it is a responsibility they carry. Which weighs heavier, the common good or the morally good? With each tentative step, the Philippine government is making its choice by overcoming these grey areas, one shade at a time.

23


OPINIONS

24


FA S H I O N

ISSUE 20

FASHION EDITED BY ECKS ABITONA

I N CI T I E S U N K NOW N Fashion can be as simple as black and white in an unfamiliar city. BY JASH MANUEL

ROOM FOR MOR E Plain clothing doesn’t always have to be boring. It leaves room for exploration and self-expression. BY JASH MANUEL

N IGHTSH A DE S On paper bouquets and fancy, floral makeup. BY SANTY CALALAY

25


FA S H I O N

NIGHTSH A DES Photography: Santy Calalay Styling: Paolo Sumayao Make-up: Gia Lalu Styling assistant: Joselino Borbe Featuring Ayumi Yoshikawa and Shayan Zolfaghari Shot at Wolves Den Studio, New Manila

26


FA S H I O N

27


FA S H I O N

28


FA S H I O N

29


FA S H I O N

30


FA S H I O N

31


FA S H I O N

IN CITIES U NK NOW N Photographed by Jash Manuel Model: Katie Alice Lowe Shot on location: Hong Kong

32


FA S H I O N

33


FA S H I O N

34


FA S H I O N

35


FA S H I O N

36


FA S H I O N

37


FA S H I O N

ROOM FOR MOR E Model: Patricia Go @ Yeoh Styled by Aldrin Ramos Photographed by Jash Manuel

38


FA S H I O N

39


FA S H I O N

40


Dress from Old Navy Jacket from Forever 21 Shoes from Topshop FA S H I O N

41


FA S H I O N

42


Dress by Renan Pacson Sandals from Topshop FA S H I O N

43


FA S H I O N

44


FA S H I O N

Jumpsuit by Eric Delos Santos Shoes from People Are People

45


FA S H I O N

46


FA S H I O N

ISSUE 20

T R AV E L EDITED BY NESSA SANTOS

CI T I E S I N BL ACK A ND W HI T E Imagining the hustle and bustle of the city in monochrome is the closest thing we have to serenity in the metro. BY NESSA SANTOS

H E L LO, LOV E LY S T R A NGE R Our travel editor shares her trip to Nepal. BY NESSA SANTOS

M A N A BOU T TOW N See Norway in the eyes of a photographer and in black and white. BY EMIL AFTRET

47


T R AV E L

CITIE S IN BL ACK A ND W HITE

Photos by Nessa Santos

48


T R AV E L

49


T R AV E L

50


T R AV E L

51


T R AV E L

52


T R AV E L

53


T R AV E L

H EL LO, LOV ELY ST R A NGER

Musings on my solitary adventure in the land of Himalayas STORY AND PHOTOGR APHY BY NESSA SANTOS

54


T R AV E L

55


T R AV E L

56


T R AV E L

57


T R AV E L

58


T R AV E L

I

have always been afraid - afraid of every single thing that might annihilate my quiet existence, unimagined or not, like fabled monsters under our beds. I was scared witless of putting myself out there, alone, lonely and raw, and the world swallowing me whole. So I let my roots grow on the same ground for what seemed like eternity, making sure I am safe in the shade. I am not sure when I crossed the fine line between being rendered immobile by fear and emancipation from my own limiting thoughts; all I know is that a whole new world opened to me as I made the jump. There was no going back. Everybody told me not to go to Nepal alone, even people who haven’t been there. They said it’s risky. They reasoned that I am a woman who will be travelling by myself, and although no insult was meant, they were only trying to say that I’m more susceptible to danger. Call it stubborn or stupid, but I didn’t listen. Not listening to those myriad of voices led me to nightly bonfires and warm coconut rums. It led to a random conversation with this old, gaunt man in Bhaktapur Square, where he always sat waiting for the sunrise. It led to a countdown on the street, with the whole town of Pokhara chanting their way to the new year. It led me to see the first sunrise of the year with a Bangladeshi girl whom I’ve met in the bus. It led me to soar through the skies one morning, a Russian guy as my pilot, asking me how cold it can be where I came from, while we both marvel at the breathtaking beauty of the Himalayan mountains. It led to random greetings from Nepali people I met on the road, from wishing me a great day, to shouting “Mahal kita!” at me across the street. It led to so many friends I have made, who went out of their way to help me when I lost my means of communication with the rest of the world, who made sure that I was not about to suffer from hypothermia, who gave me the privilege to enjoy their company even when language and cultural barriers were apparent. Have I not gone and let trepidation wash all over me, I wouldn’t have exchanged lives with so many kind-hearted strangers, even if it’s as fleeting as a glance. I wouldn’t have found refuge in the sometimes frenzied, sometimes hushed Nepali land, where I was supposed to feel frightened and apprehensive, yet felt anything but.

59


T R AV E L

60


T R AV E L

61


T R AV E L

M A N A BOUT TOW N

After months of winter hibernation, Oslo and every city folk come to life in celebration of Spring and everything attached to it; climate, holidays and all. Emil Aftret, photographer and Norweigan native, takes us on a photo walk. STORY AND PHOTOGR APHY BY EMIL AFTR ET

62


T R AV E L

63


T R AV E L

64


T R AV E L

65


T R AV E L

66


T R AV E L

67


T R AV E L

68


T R AV E L

Y

ou can’t talk about the importance of spring in Norway without mentioning the winter months. On the darkest day of the year, 21st of December, the sun rises at 9:00 am and sets at 15:00 am. Gradually through the rest of the winter the sun stays a little longer. And onwards through spring, the sun begins to feel warm. Through winter, people mostly stay inside. But when the temperature reach the magic number of 15 degrees Celsius while at the same time the sun is shining, something almost magical happens. I live in the Capitol of Norway, Oslo. You won’t ever have to walk more than 10 minutes to find a park filled with trees and maybe some benches there. And it is here, in the parks, the transition from winter to summer really comes to life. From the cold winter where you experience a complete lack of your sense of smell, the air in spring is now filled with the smell of food and fresh grass. People in all ages gather in the parks, bringing with them everything needed for a barbeque or other recreational activities. The parks turn from being desolate and ice covered empty spaces to be filled with people and all the joy that comes with them. If of course, it’s not raining. The weather in Norway is not exactly the most reliable. But the most important event of spring in Norway is probably the celebration of Easter. In Norway, people have traditionally gone to what we call “påskefjellet” or the easter mountains. It is basicly a word describing going to a cabin in the mountains in easter. It may seem contradictory to want to experience more “winter” when spring has just begun. But it is a way to get a relief from the every day life. Originally it was a way of going “back to basic” and to be with nature itself. To go cross-country skiing in the mountains. And to get back to the cabin in the evening and relax, play cards or read a book. Even though most people these days have electricity and internet connection in their cabins, the tradition of going to the cabin in the mountains is still extremely important for many Norwegians. The 17th of May date is devoted to the celebration of the constitutional day of Norway. And this year, it is its 200 years anniversary. We celebrate this day with getting dressed in either the national costumes called “bunad” or just some other formal attire. All the kids take part in a huge parade, waving the Norwegian flag. We say hi to the king, listen to the prime minister speak and watch the graduates from high school called “Russ” be hung over from last night’s party in their own little parade. Apart from the shifting weather, the not so nice temperature and the air being filled with pollen to which a quarter Norwegians are allergic, spring is probably one of the most eventful season of the year in Norway.

69


FA S H I O N

70


MUSIC

ISSUE 20

MUSIC EDITED BY ELLIE CENTENO

A BR I E F HIS TORY OF B Beyonce is arguable one of the biggest pop stars today. Just in case you have been living under a rock, here’s what you missed for the past decade and a half of her career. BY VERNISE TANTUCO

SOM E K I ND OF WA NDE R F U L We’re days away from the biggest music festival in the country. Architecture in Helsinki and Woody Pitney sits down with our music editor Ellie Centeno. BY ELLIE CENTENO

SOU ND I N SIGHT Here are ten music videos shot in black and white. BY ELLIE CENTENO

71


MUSIC

A BR IEF HISTORY OF B

A crash course on Beyoncé’s journey towards world domination for dummies who have only started to pay attention. WOR DS BY V ER NISE L. TA NTUCO, ILLUSTR ATION BY V INCE PUERTO

I

f you’re anything like me, you probably grew up listening to and loving Beyoncé without realizing it. She was that singer you liked, but didn’t like enough to bother having on your iPod. She was just another celebrity—that is, until she broke the Internet. In a brilliantly evil move that was both brilliant and evil, Beyoncé dropped a 14-track visual album without any prior promotion last December 2013. For a day or so, the world ended: Everyone, fan or otherwise, took to social media to express feelings of admiration, disgust and everything in between. As Grammyaward winning producer Teddy Riley said, “The game just changed. And Beyoncé just changed it.” The self-titled album was a peek into the singer’s life as a wife and mom, and more controversially, her views on sex and on feminism. One of the most striking creative decisions on the album was to feature writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s TEDx talk on feminism in the 11th track, “Flawless.” Bey’s influence speaks for itself: She talks about feminism and suddenly gender equality becomes an issue for everyone who didn’t think it was before. Beyoncé has inadvertently become the 21st century icon for black feminism, a movement that believes that women of color are discriminated against differently from those who are white. And even though Queen Bey hesitated to call herself a feminist in a Vogue interview last year, her actions say otherwise. If you’ve recently become a fan and all this is lost on you, not to worry. Here’s a rundown Beyoncé’s life according to the songs you’ve probably heard in passing (and some that you probably haven’t). Survivor, 2001 Bey first worked her way into pop culture’s consciousness through the 90’s girl group Destiny’s Child. “Survivor,” the first track of their 3rd album of the same name, was a far cry from Britney Spears’ “Oops I Did it Again (2001)” and the Spice Girls’ “Stop (1997).” Its aggressive rhythm coupled with lyrics about independence was fresh, speaking about coming out stronger for being left alone. The group went on a hiatus and pursued solo careers a couple of months after the release of Survivor. Beyoncé then released three albums, starred in the

72


MUSIC

movie Dreamgirls (2006), took over the management of her career from her father, then released two more albums. 13 years after its release, it appears that Beyoncé took the promise to “keep on surviving” to heart, and then some. ’03 Bonnie and Clyde, 2002 “All I need in this life of sin is me and my girlfriend,” sings Jay-Z in his song “’03 Bonnie and Clyde.” “Down to ride ‘til the happy end is me and my boyfriend,” Beyoncé responds in the song’s catchy hook. Sound familiar? That’s because “’03 Bonnie and Clyde” samples the same 1996 Tupac song as Swedish DJ duo Icona Pop’s “Girlfriend (2013).” The song was the 1st track on Jay-Z’s album The Blueprint 2: The Gift and the Curse (2002) and Beyoncé’s 1st song to make it to the top 10 in Billboard’s “Hot 100.” It was only the beginning. The couple has since collaborated on several songs, including “Crazy in Love (2003)” and “Déjà vu (2007),” and has won awards together and independently. What did you expect from hip-hop royalty? Run the World (Girls), 2011 Who run this mother—? Girls, obviously—at least according to Beyoncé. She made this crystal clear at the 2011 Billboard Awards, with her high-energy performance of “Run the World (Girls),” which involved choreography to a video flashed behind her and a horde of female dancers. She was then presented with the Billboard Millennium Award, which recognizes female singers and their contribution to the industry. “I love me some Jay-Z,” she ended her acceptance speech, making another message clear: It’s absolutely possible to be a strong, independent woman and be in a mutually loving and supportive relationship with a man. The clincher? She did all that in heels—pregnant. Heartbeat (unreleased) If you haven’t heard about Beyoncé’s autobiographical documentary or chanced upon it on HBO, figure out a way to watch it. Now. Life is But a Dream (2013) follows Bey through 2005 to 2012, giving her fans a rare glimpse of her life offstage—something she’s more private about than most other celebrities. Undoubtedly, the most intimate—and the saddest—part of the film is Beyoncé’s experience of losing her unborn child.

74


MUSIC

“You took the life right out of me, I’m longing for your heartbeat,” she sings, taking to songwriting to overcome her grief. The unreleased “Heartbeat” was a poignant representation of a crash back down to earth after all of Beyoncé’s success. Today, Beyoncé is happily raising her two-year-old, Blue Ivy Carter, whose voice is featured in a song in Beyoncé. Drunk in Love, 2013 Beyoncé is hardly free from criticism. “Drunk in Love” is arguably the most contentious song on Beyoncé’s most recent album. The song goes into her and Jay-Z’s sex life and their performance at the 2014 Grammy Awards drove home its explicit content. What makes the song so controversial however isn’t that it’s about sex. Rather, it’s the lyric “eat the cake, Anna Mae.” The line is from Tina Turner’s biopic What’s Love Got to Do With It (1993), where Turner—born Anna Mae Bullock—is told to eat a cake by her abusive husband. Suddenly, the intimacy in “Drunk in Love” becomes ugly and violent. “Partition,” from Beyoncé is also rife with criticism. A song about giving a blowjob at the back of a limousine isn’t what most people want their young daughters listening to after all. Political commentator Bill O’Reilly made his stand clear on this saying, “Teenage girls look up to Beyoncé, particularly girls of color. Why on Earth would this woman do that?” Pretty Hurts, 2013 There are probably a hundred songs about female empowerment and self-image. It’s gotten to be such a cliché that they’re hardly effective anymore. But somehow, some way, Beyoncé managed to come up with a self-image song and make it fresh. Only slightly preachy, as far as these songs go, “Pretty Hurts” is commentary on the extent to which girls struggle in order to look “perfect.” Rather than angst or anger, the song is a rundown of criticisms we hear everyday, disturbing us into attention from the 1st line: “Mama said, ‘You’re a pretty girl. What’s in your head, it doesn’t matter.’” This far down the road, we get a glimpse of Beyoncé as she was from the beginning: Unique, honest, fragile—definitely a survivor—and through her life and work, a feminist.

75


MUSIC

S OM E K I N D OF WA N DE R F U L

There’s no better way to count down the days to this year’s biggest music festival than to catch up with its two acts Architecture in Helsinki and Woody Pitney. INTERV IEW BY ELLIE CENTENO

K

arpos Multimedia’s annual music festival, Wanderland 2014, is right around the corner and we at STACHE are ecstatic! Last year had an impressive turnout and an amazing line-up and we expect this year’s music festival experience to be an unforgettable one. In this issue, we sit down and chat with two of the Wanderland 2014 performers from the Land Down Under, Woody Pitney and Architecture in Helsinki. -- WOODY PIT NEY --

Hello, Woody! Thank you for giving STACHE Magazine the opportunity to interview you. Before anything else, how are you today? My pleasure. I am great, I hope you and all the STACHE Magazine readers out there are great too! Can you tell us who Woody Pitney is, in not more than ten words? A Folk singer/songwriter from Melbourne, Australia With your EP garnering a massive spike of attention brought on by it being recognized by a music authority like Triple J, did you ever foresee this kind of success at such an early age? It was definitely an aim to gain some music industry recognition for my songs, but my expectations have definitely been exceeded. Triple J plays an important role in promoting Australian artists and i’m glad they and other popular radio stations have liked my music enough to play it. Do you have formal training or an educational background in music? Was music what you really wanted to pursue growing up? No, I’m completely self-taught. when I was younger, I wanted to be an Australian Rules Footballer or a Journalist…Maybe if the music isn’t go so well one day, I could apply for a job with STACHE?! Musically speaking, who are your main influences? How did you get into music? I first got into music by teaching myself how to play my dad’s guitar. It was a great distraction from doing my school homework! I have many different influences, but I would say that Keith Urban really inspired me to become a singer/songwriter when I was first starting out.

76


MUSIC

Would you say your songs are autobiographical? Was there anyone you had in mind when you came up with your EP? I definitely like to draw upon personal experiences in my songs. I also get inspiration from other people’s experiences and try and work them in to my songs. On the recent EP, there were different people that I had in mind for different songs. When you’re not recording or touring or playing shows, what do you do in your spare time? I enjoy watching sport and spending time with my family and friends. On your Twitter page, you say that you’re a sports fan. Are there any specific teams you support? Do you play any sport yourself? I love my sport! Being busy playing music makes it hard to be able to play for any sporting teams, but I do spend a lot of time playing sport for fun. In Australian Rules Football (AFL), I support a team called the Essendon Bombers. As a musician, do you have any pre-show or pre-recording rituals that you can disclose to our readers? What do you do to get you in the zone before recording or doing a show? I don’t have any pre-show or pre-recording rituals that are too crazy. I just like to keep myself in a positive frame of mind and try to enjoy every second of the journey! Who are you listening to at the moment? Right now, I am listening to an Australian artist called Matt Walters. I’m really enjoying his music at the moment. What’s next for Woody Pitney in the near future? I have a pretty exciting few months ahead! Lots of traveling and lots of music. It’s a dream come true so I can’t complain! You can probably tell that we at STACHE are big fans of facial hair. What do you do to maintain such a glorious beard? Oh you’re too kind! What I usually do is let my beard grow out and then use a beard trimmer to make it a little bit neater. The beard I grew for the ‘You Can Stay’ music video is the longest i’ve ever grown my facial hair. What can your fans and followers in Manila look forward to in your show here for Wanderland 2014? I am playing with my full 6-piece band and we have a lot of fun on stage. We always try and put on a really fun and energetic show that the crowd enjoys. Wanderland 2014 will be a really exciting show for us and probably our biggest show yet! Can you give us a short message addressed to your Filipino fans? We can’t wait to party with you guys at Wanderland 2014! Come along for what will be a great day. It’s our first time playing in the Philippines and we can’t wait to meet you all. See you soon!

77


MUSIC

-- ARCHITECTUR E IN HELSINKI --

Hello, Architecture in Helsinki! Thank you for giving STACHE Magazine the opportunity to interview you guys. Before anything else, how are you all today? I can only speak for myself – I am ecstatic. From what I’ve read, Jamie, Sam and Cameron are childhood friends, and that the beginnings of the Architecture in Helsinki we know now can be traced from experimenting with music in high school. Do all these factors contribute to your success as a band? Growing up in rural Australia made us who we are today. So I would say yes! Do any of you have formal training or an educational background in music? Was music what you really wanted to pursue growing up? I did not play or write any music until quite late in life. I wanted to be a photographer. I still cannot read or write music. I write with my heart not my head. Musically speaking, who are the band’s main influences? We’ve never really had obvious musical influences because we all have very different taste in music which makes it hard playing music on the tour bus. Touring for you started fronting for The Go Betweens, followed by your own tour of the east coast and an international tour supporting acts such as Yo La Tengo and múm. What was it like touring so early on in your careers and supporting big acts at that time? We were very lucky to support some of favourite childhood bands when we were starting out. It was quite surreal. But also taught us a lot about how to put on a great show. At this point, after having toured around many different countries, is there a significant difference with how the audiences from different places respond to you? Everyone city responds to music very differently. Which makes touring so addictive, because you want to keep having those new experiences as a performer. What has been your most memorable show to date? I can never answer this question! We have played hundreds and hundreds of shows now and there are so, so many great memories. To narrow it down to one is impossible. Where did the idea of releasing your remix album, We Died, They Remixed, come from? Remixing is collaboration. Collaboration is very healthy for your creative mind. How did you choose the artists to collaborate with for the album? Friends, heroes and people we thought worked well with the specific tracks.

78


MUSIC

Remixing is collaboration. Collaboration is very healthy for your creative mind.

Are there any more artists you wish to tour with or collaborate with in the future? Only Kylie Minogue. I’ve read that you guys opened a small concept store in a shopping mall in Melbourne to promote your latest album, NOW + 4EVA, that sold your merchandise. Can you tell us about that? Music retail is well and truly dead. We wanted to bring our little corner of the world back to life with a tangible, physical and memorable experience for the people that are into our music. When you guys are not recording or touring or playing shows, what do you do in your spare time? There isn’t really that much time. But I love to cook. As a band, do you guys have any pre-show or pre-recording rituals that you can disclose to our readers? What do you do to get you in the zone before recording or doing a show? Running, coconut water and yoga in that order. What can your fans and followers in Manila look forward to in your show here for Wanderland 2014? FUN. Mountains of fun. Can you give us a short message addressed to your Filipino fans? We really cannot wait to meet you all!! XXOO

79


MUSIC

SOUND IN SIGHT

Ten monochromatic music videos you should be watching. LIST BY ELLIE CENTENO

Over the past decades, music videos have been instrumental as a visual platform for an artist to convey what their song represents. With websites such as YouTube and Vimeo, the reach a music video can have now is huge as opposed to what it was like then when you had to wait for its premiere in music channels. Not only does this give a sense of convenience for the artist, it also comes with great pressure to come up with something that will live up to the expectations of its targeted audience. In this issue, I listed down (in no particular order, mind you) ten music videos in black and white you should be checking out to prove that color isn’t solely what makes a music video great. 1. Kanye West – Blkkk Skkkn Head Director: Nick Knight / Year: 2013 Love him or hate him, Kanye West is on the constant pursuit of exploring his creative side. In this video, he teams up with director Nick Knight and uses interactive 3D technology where you can adjust the video’s motion speed and corresponding sound.

2. Tom Vek – Aroused Director: Saam Farahmand / Year: 2011 Director Saam Farahman is the master of people’s profile, as highlighted in his previous work, as seen in the These New Puritans music video for ‘Elvis’. In Aroused, he takes this mastery in romanticizing smoking and Tom Vek’s idea for his song as a representation of feelings of being overwhelmed and all its extremeties.

80


MUSIC

3. Imelda – Selfish Woman Director: Apa Agbayani / Year: 2014 In Selfish Woman, director Apa Agbayani incorporates the concept of a destructive, toxic relationship that the song tries to convey with his idea of mixing contemporary dance with rock ‘n’ roll. This results in one hell of an adrenaline rush. 4. Beyoncé – Single Ladies Director: Jake Nava / Year: 2008 I honestly don’t think I need to justify why this is here. 5. Slim Twig – Gate Hearing! Director: Exploding Motor Car / Year: 2007 Gate Hearing! successfully encapsulates Slim Twig’s heavily Lynch-influenced, socalled “post-modern pop” artistry in this music video.

6. Radiohead – Lotus Flower Director: Garth Jennings / Year: 2011 The music video for Lotus Flower shows a spastic Thom Yorke dancing to the song, with movements that are bizarre, but also in a way, hypnotic. The whole video is compelling.

81


MUSIC

82


MUSIC

7. Die Antwoord – I Fink U Freeky Director: Roger Ballen & NINJA / Year: 2012 Masks, snakes, rats, dancing children, insects and a dead lion. 8. Archipelago – MRI Director: King Palisoc & Maui Mauricio / Year: 2009 The strange transitions in between frames in reminiscent of the film based on Philip K. Dick’s “A Scanner Darkly”. Other than that, the video has a clean, minimal look, which makes the audience listen to what Archipelago wants to say.

9. King Krule – A Lizard State Director: Jamie-James Medina / Year: 2014 Heavily inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s “Dial M for Murder”, this British wunderkind’s music video is gravity-defying. Actual lizard included. 10. The Raveonettes – Black/White Director: Chris Do / Year: 2008 This song was composed as part of clothing line GAP’s Sound of Color campaign. A play on the senses always prove to be very interesting, as with the case of this music video wherein The Raveonettes’ stripped down rock ‘n’ roll sound is incorporated with director Chris Do’s dark yet romantic aesthetic.

83


MUSIC

84


C U LT U R E

ISSUE 20

C U LT U R E EDITED BY CINDY HERNANDEZ

L IGHT A ND SH A DE: T H E N E W WAV E OF BL ACK A ND W HI T E CI N E M A This month, we explore post-1950s black and white film. BY MARTY ARNALDO

LITTLE TR A MP Charlie Chaplin’s iconic ‘stache can be seen everywhere, but how much do we really know about this pop culture icon? BY CINDY HER NA NDEZ

A LT RU IS T IC GHOS TS “Gaiman takes us through a phantasmal journey with the typical main character who needs to learn from his mistakes to finally become the hero we all admire and root for.” BY CINDY HER NA NDEZ

85


C U LT U R E

L I G H T A N D S H A D E : T H E N E W WAV E O F BL ACK A ND W HITE CINEM A

Monochromatic films don’t always have to be old. WORDS BY MARTY ARNALDO

W

atching films is truly a sensory experience, taking in all the details as the story unfolds on screen. With the introduction of 3-D films and CGI, most modern films tend to overstuff their films visually, often leaving you for better or for worse, with a near epileptic shock-inducing sight. We all need a visual palate cleanser from time to time, and it is in the stripped down, less is more quality of the black and white film that we have found salvation. Ever since the birth of Technicolor in Cinema it always seemed that monochromatic photography was working on borrowed time — that it too will be phased out much like silent films and would only be remembered fondly only as a byproduct of a bygone era. Decades later it seems that black and white films have not completely gone out of fashion or been rendered obsolete just yet. Black and white films have carved a niche for itself in cinema, its ability to churn out dark moody pieces that give off an air of mystery and uncertainty. With more modern neo-noir films such as the Coen brother’s The Man Who Wasn’t There and Christopher Nolan’s The Following. The Influence of Orson Wells and Alfred Hitchcock’s celluloid classics is still very much felt. Over the past three years has seen a boom in these types of films. Last year alone has brought about a number of critically acclaimed monochrome marvels such as Noah Bachman’s whimsical, decidedly New York tale Frances Ha, Alexander Payne’s the bittersweet family road dramedy Nebraska, and Ben Wheatley’s English civil war drama, A Field in England. All can seem as homage of sorts to films of the past or the past in general, giving off a nostalgic quality to it that makes it a much stronger film in the process. Frances Ha, which was greatly influenced by Woody Allen’s Manhattan and French

86


C U LT U R E

New Wave Cinema has an anachronistic quality to the way the stripped down visuals of the film evokes a sense of nostalgia, which plays well to the innocent charm the Greta Gerwig’s Frances exudes. While Frances Ha used black and white to give off a romantic wistfulness to it, Nebraska goes for the opposite approach. Its lack of color shot adds a certain edge to the film, a harshness that enhances its bitter sentimentality. A Field of England also seems to benefit greatly from its black and white treatment. It turns this historical thriller into a more gritty and uncomfortable making for a much more disturbing, intense, and haunting film. The introduction of a different visual palette, as opposed to the sensory overload most film go for now a days, is a welcome sight in world cinema. In this day of age of over the top visual spectacles this could be the decade that black and white renaissance could be what the film industry needs.

87


C U LT U R E

TEN BL ACK A ND W HITE F I L M S T O WAT C H

Is summer vacation too bright for you? Kick back and watc these shows fo ryour fill on greyscale films. LIST BY RENEE CUISIA

I

n this high definition, Technicolor day and age of ours, wherein every visual medium boasts of its realism and pinpoint exactitude of the colors that we see, it’s almost rare to see an artwork, namely a film, donning a simple black and white coloring. Obviously, this is because of more practical reasons. Since the dawn of coloring companies like Technicolor and Kodak Eastman Color, the existence of black and white films has always been threatened until finally by mid-1960s, it had all but vanished. However, even after the ‘60s, many filmmakers decided to create their art in only these two colors simply because, what with its “death”, it now represented something much more than just shades or tones. To this day, black and white films are created, sometimes to invoke a sense of the past or nostalgia, sometimes as a theme of simplicity, or sometimes as homage to either romance, noir or both. So as a tribute to this everlasting art, here is a list of ten black and white films, ranging from classic noir to neurotic romance, that I think are worth watching. Personally, I love BW films and if you do too, well, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship. 1. Frances Ha (2012) Played by Greta Gerwig (who co-wrote the film with director Noah Baumbach), Frances Halladay is an intelligent, free spirited, funny, loving, sometimes happy, sometimes sad woman. She’s a complicated character, minus the existential angst and artsy behavior, and the film, which is a following of Frances and how she lives her life through moving, is a pleasure to watch. If you’re a struggling artist like Frances, you’ll find yourself mentally hugging her while muttering “I feel ya, girl” as she strives to balance her art, her work, her money, and her relationship with her bestfriend Sophie. This movie is for anyone who feels strongly for art despite it’s inevitable difficulties, for anyone with complicated relationships with friends, and for anyone who’s trying to figure out they’re place in the world—and I’m talking to you unhappy twentysomething year-olds.

88


C U LT U R E

2. Casablanca (1942) It’s World War II and you’re in Europe—you might as well say you’re in hell. Unless of course you find a sanctuary of a city, with a nightclub that secretly doubles as an underground office for tickets to a safe America. Enter Rick’s Café Americain at Casablanca, owned by the respectable but mysterious American, Rick Blaine (played by Humphrey Bogart). Despite the presence of Hitler’s guards, all is quite peaceful until one day his café is visited by Victor Laszlow, the famous leader and fugitive of the Czech Resistance, and his wife, the beautiful Ilsa Laszlow (played by Ingrid Bergman), who coincidentally, used to be Rick’s lover and the reason for his brooding shut-down-the-world attitude. What follows is a dangerous adventure to fly Victor and Ilsa secretly away from Casablanca, where the Nazi guards are increasingly getting on them. Question is, does Rick have it in him to help the woman who broke his heart? Rich with quotable quotes and intense romantic noir, this film has retained its legendary place in pop culture consciousness for a reason. Whether it’s We’ll always have Paris or Louie, I think this is the beginning of a beautiful friendship, or even just tough guy Humphrey Bogart himself—I think everyone’s familiar with the legacy of Casablanca whether they know it or not. In either case, you wouldn’t want to miss this classic.

89


C U LT U R E

3. Pleasantville (1998) David and Jennifer are brother and sister but they couldn’t be any more different. He’s shy and introverted while Jennifer is hip and very social. On the same time that David’s favorite ‘50s sitcom, Pleasantville, is having a marathon, Jennifer wants to watch MTV and the two fight severely until they break the remote control. The mysterious TV repairman hands them a new remote, and the moment that they use it they find themselves inside the fictional world of Pleasantville as the children in the show, Bud and Mary Sue Parker. In this black and white, ultraconservative world, everything is wholesome and good. In here, sex does not exist, the basketball team always wins, and the temperature is always a constant 72 degrees. David finds that he finally fits in but Jennifer’s modern attitude isn’t having any of it. Slowly, the town is painted “in living color” when there is a burst of emotion or an unbalance in the blandness of the town. It’s wonderful and invigorating, but not everyone is for this change, especially not the town fathers. It may not be shot entirely in black and white, but Pleasantville is just too witty and fun to miss. Rotten Tomatoes puts it best with its brief review. “Filled with lighthearted humor, timely social commentary, and dazzling visuals, Pleasantville is an artful blend of subversive satire and well-executed Hollywood formula.” 4. Manhattan (1979) “He adored New York City. He idolized it all out of proportion. Ah no. Make that he romanticized it, all out of proportion. Yeah. To him, no matter what the season was, this was still a town that existed in black and white and pulsated to the great tunes of George Gershwin.” And so begins Manhattan. Cue jazz songs and neurotic monologues! One of Woody Allen’s best works (which is saying something, since most of his works are his best works), Manhattan is the entangled story of love and relationships, of how they grow and flourish, and of how they decay and die. This is all through Allen’s character Isaac’s point of view, and through his relationships with women, from his lesbian ex-wife to his current 17 year-old girlfriend. Not to mention that he’s also in love with his friend’s extra-marital lover. It’s complicated and hilarious, in that classic Woody Allen way, with lines such as “Look, you have to have a little faith in people” and dialogues such as “You’re so self-righteous, you know? I mean, we’re just people, we’re just human beings! You think you’re God!” “Well, I gotta model myself after someone.” I find that it’s hard to explain certain things which are close to the heart, and this is certainly the case for Manhattan, so let the movie lines above speak for themselves and capture your fancy.

90


C U LT U R E

5. Wild Strawberries (Smultronstället) (1957) If you’re in a more serious and soul-searching mood, then you might want to put Wild Strawberries on, an Ingmar Bergman staple that symbolically studies the frailness of life and the eeriness and grief of death through the thoughts and memories of Isak Borg. On his way to receive an honorary degree at his old university, Isak brings along with him his daughter-in-law and other hitch-hikers along the way, one of them resembling his once sweetheart Sara. They are entwined in Isak’s constant and hazy flashbacks as he continues to self-assess himself. According to Rotten Tomatoes’ Hal Erickson, Wild Strawberries’ “Intense focus on one man’s thoughts, regrets, and memories set the tone for innumerable psychological character studies in its wake.” Trust me, it’s a compelling film, but maybe you could watch it alone and not, you know, during a lively night out with friends (unless you’re into those kinds of stuff, you party pooper).

91


C U LT U R E

6. Much Ado About Nothing (2012) Here’s the gist: Benedick and Beatrice hate each other. They’re both sharp-tongued, fierce, and witty but they can’t stand the arrogance of one another. Meanwhile their friends Claudio and Hero are sweet and in love with each other. They also want Benedick and Beatrice to be in love and together, but the only way to do that, they figured, was to trick the both of them into thinking that the other is in love with him/her. Behind their backs, Don John, who is Claudio’s evil brother, wants to ruin their marriage and so he does by making Claudio think that Hero slept with Claudio’s close friend Don Pedro. Whew! Sounds familiar though? This is like, the basis of every other romantic comedy out there! And like all other romcoms, the characters find themselves in a complicated, unnecessary bustle, with much ado about nothing. Among many modern interpretations of Shakespeare, Joss Whedon’s Much Ado stands out the most for its faithful adaptation of the text and its superb actors. And despite everything being shot at only one main location, Whedon’s house, the movie still managed to be cinematically beautiful with ingenious shots of mid-air contortionists, a mournful party uniformly going down a hill, and my favorite, that of Claudio in the middle of a lake, in stupid snorkeling goggles with a tequila glass in his hand. 7. Sabrina (1954) In Sabrina, Audrey Hepburn plays a modern day Cinderella whose father works as a chauffeur for the Larrabees, an elite family of considerable wealth. She has an immense crush on David Larrabee, who can only see her as a child living in their quarters and nothing more. Heartbroken, she tries and fails (amusingly) to kill herself. Linus Larrabee, David’s brother, saves her from her childish act. After this incident, Sabrina steadfastly flies to Paris where she learns how to cook and a thing or two more. A few years later, she comes back to her father in the Larrabee estate as a grown and sophisticated woman, capturing the hearts of both David and Linus. It’s a delightful romantic comedy that’s worth watching, even for just the sight of an adorable Audrey Hepburn peeping through the trees to get a glimpse of the dance or of David Larabee sitting on his bum with champagne bottles tucked in his back pockets. Ouch, but also, haha!

92


C U LT U R E

8. Sunset Boulevard (1950) Joe Gillis, “a movie writer with a couple of B pictures to his credit”, is broke. So much so in fact, that his car is now being demanded by a company he owes payment to. He then pleads to his boss at Paramount Pictures for a project, any project, that will pay enough for his debts. When nothing goes his way and the finance men catch him escaping with the car he owes, a chase ensues until his car finally breaks down somewhere at Sunset Boulevard. He is forced to hide it at a nearby mansion, which looks old and haunted to say the least. The mansion is Norma Desmond’s, a glorified star back in the silent film days of the 1920s, but old and forgotten now, although she refuses to believe this. Joe selfishly tricks her into paying for his help with her script, not knowing that he is in for a ride that is much, much more than what he bargained for. From Gloria Swanson’s horrifyingly beautiful performance as the old and forgotten movie star Norma Desmond, to William Holden’s cocky yet solemn narration, Sunset Boulevard is a classic story of ambition, vanity, and trickery.

93


C U LT U R E

9. Breathless (À bout de soufflé) (1960) Ah, Breathless. A movie that pioneered French New Wave cinema and set the name Jean-Luc Godard in film history stone; a movie that stars young and handsome actors playing Michael, a runaway killer, and Patricia, an American journalist, in Paris. Breathless is iconoclastic and fantastic, with its jump-cuts, antiheroes, and focus on the people rather than the plot. Michael is unapologetic yet scared, while Patricia is confident but ambivalent. Ty Burr of The Boston Globe said of it, “This movie liberated the cinema — the stories you could tell and the ways you could tell them — as clearly and cleanly as Picasso freed painting and the Sex Pistols rebooted rock.”

94


C U LT U R E

10. The Artist (2011) The mother of all homage, The Artist is a satisfying tribute to the first feature film, the silent movie of the 1920s. George Valentin is a beloved movie star, and no one’s ever been as high as he’s been. During one of his movie premiers, he literally bumps into Peppy Miller, a young fan who’s also ready to take Hollywood by storm, one small role at a time. They slowly fall in love, but this, along with George’s success and fame, fades into almost nothing as he refuses to accept that movies can have sounds now, and that actors can certainly talk. His denial of “talkies” makes him old and unwanted while Peppy quickly rises to the top, hit after talkie hit. The movie, which is almost entirely shot with no spoken dialogue and external sound, evokes a pleasant nostalgia. While its plot may be a bit formulaic, it’s humor, creativity, and sensitivity is enough to endear anyone to its silent, black and white screen.

95


C U LT U R E

LITTLE TRAMP

Charlie Chaplin is probably one of the most iconic pop culture icons today. Here’s what you need to know on the classic comedian. WOR DS BY CINDY HER NA NDEZ

T

his month sees the quasquicentennial anniversary of Charlie Chaplin’s birth; he was born in England during the Victorian era. By 1914, after years of traveling as a comedian and stage actor, Chaplin starred in his first film, Making a Living. By the time he had passed away in 1977, Chaplin had been filmed in over 80 films. Before he directed his first film, The Kid, in 1921, Chaplin created the Little Tramp character he is still known for. If you’ve never experienced a Chaplin film, you should start looking for one, any one, it doesn’t matter if you take in his first exploits or his later work. During Chaplin’s time, in the 1920s, films were devoid of sound—technology didn’t allow for recorded synchronized sound, thus the descriptor silent-era films. Once Chaplin began making his own films, he worked on every aspect of the process. He would write, produce, edit, direct, act in, and score (music was played by live orchestras during each screening of every film) his films. Today, it seems it would be difficult to follow the storylines of a film without dialogue, and although dialogue couldn’t make an appearance to the likes of which we are accustomed to, silent-era films are not completely devoid of it. Writers would insert intertitles to the films, which are cards that narrated story points, presented dialogue or helped further the plot. Actors in those days relied on mime and gestures; sometimes a look can reveal something words can’t even begin to describe. Chaplin’s The Kid is a short film coming in at over an hour, which sees the Tramp in turmoil when he finds a baby abandoned on the streets. After some resistance, the Tramp takes in the boy and lives the next five years relatively problem free, teaching the boy to survive in the throes of homelessness. One day, the boy gets sick and the Tramp seeks assistance from a doctor. Eventually, the doctor realizes the Tramp’s not the boy’s father, and sends the boy to an orphanage. The rest of the film shows how the boy’s mother comes back into the picture and how the Tramp suffers from losing the boy. On the surface, The Kid is a drama—readers are unable to capture the slapstick genius Chaplin evokes in his acting—but if you watch it, it holds everything a spectator could want: comedy, drama and social commentary. Once the late ‘20s came, technology no longer limited filmmakers, and they were now able to record sound on film, which created the talkies (talking pictures). Dialogue could now be incorporated easily to any movie. By this time, Chaplin had mastered his craft and rather than embrace the ever-evolving process of filmmaking, he stuck to what he knew. During the 1930s, Chaplin worked on

96


C U LT U R E

multiple projects, all were silent films that still embraced his old friend, the Tramp, who struggles to survive and is always fighting misfortune. It wasn’t till later in his career that Chaplin shed the Tramp character. Although Chaplin didn’t embrace the talkies when they were first introduced, it didn’t take him long to branch out a bit from his habits. In 1940, The Great Dictator, was released. It was Chaplin’s first sound film, a political satire condemning Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, anti-Semitism and the Nazis. It took him two years to write the story and to film it—he began shooting it a week after World War II began. His later films were comedies, also laced with satire, but now made entirely in Europe, due to his fall from grace. In the ‘40s, Chaplin’s popularity declined in the U.S., due to his sympathies to certain Soviet Union groups, and to the belief that he was a communist—eventually his ability to enter the U.S. was revoked, and he moved to Europe. His later films no longer saw the Tramp, they were widely released through Europe, but the U.S. wasn’t too fond of giving them a chance. The last film Chaplin directed, wrote, produced and scored was A Countess from Hong Kong, which was released in 1967. Chaplin made a final appearance in the film, but did not star in it—this was Marlon Brando and Sophia Loren’s film. As with The Great Dictator, this 1967 release was a talkie, and also Chaplin’s first color film. It is quite easy to dismiss a director who hasn’t produced any films in almost fifty years, and although that is the case with Charlie Chaplin, this dismissal shouldn’t be a trend. Any film enthusiast should at least watch one of Hollywood’s most prominent writer/producer/editor/director/actor/ and music composer.

97


C U LT U R E

THE PL A NET W ITHIN OUR R E ACH

Or how worlds can meet through constant parallelism STORY BY MAY EE GONZALES, PHOTOS BY ERIN EMOCLING ILLUSTR ATIONS BY LELIO STARR

O

ne may never know what lies beyond our current existence. What is undiscovered and what is obscure from our senses is a universe that could remain unknown until the orbits stop rotating or the sun take halt from bursting light. Not to question, coexistence lies even if it is only deep in our imaginations – like an alter-ego that lives as we breathe or a heart that beats as we subsist. Counterparts & Coexistence of Worlds in Between – that is Parallel Planets’ philosophy. Founded by Erin Emocling in the last quarter of 2013, Parallel Planets is an independent webzine that opens one’s mind and visual to a higher dimension possible. Laid with all-original content that continuously fulfills and challenges its audience, Parallel Planets is Emocling’s firstborn in picturesque black and white. A visit to Parallel Planets is a confetti of stunning monochromatic hues. It doesn’t follow the usual webzine format where banners and colors are the usual icing on the cake. Parallel Planets is a result of Emocling’s mindset on what she thinks is original not only from her hometown Philippines, or her current location in Japan, but what can be found in an international scale – “A virtual manifesto that teleports an artist and his passion to another world,” – like a point where two odd yet attuned lines meet, creating a substantial experience meant to unravel what is outside our discoveries. Stache Magazine took time to interview Emocling and ask her about her idea that boomed from a once creative itch. Know more about Parallel Planets and how fathomed universes can be upon our reach. HOW DI D PA R A L L E L PL A N E T S S TA RT ?

Parallel Planets happened because I have always wanted to make a magazine of my own. My previous and present jobs have always been related to publishing. Since freelance writing offers me a lot of free time to do my own projects, I was able to contemplate very well. It has been a long while since my last “big” project (Whilst We Wait) so I was really yearning for a creative output. I brainstormed almost every night, wrote down my ideas, and I finally came around to making Parallel Planets happen. At first, I wanted it to be a DIY zine but I didn’t have the resources to do it on my own so I resorted to online publication. I also want to earn readership around the world first before trying out the printed version.

98


C U LT U R E

99


C U LT U R E

W H Y PA R A L L E L PL A N E T S?

While conceptualizing Parallel Planets, I somehow became fascinated with the concepts of alternate egos, parallel synchronized randomness (a term I got from Michel Gondry’s La Science des rêves), and existence in other universes. It’s like everything in our planet has a counterpart somewhere else and that everyone have someone in synchronicity—if only we see things at a similar point of view. Somehow, that’s what I want Parallel Planets to communicate. I also considered the name “In Other Worlds” but to really incorporate parallelism, I came up with “Parallel Planets” so its initials (P||P) would also be parallel. What a dork, right?

100


C U LT U R E

W HEN A ND HOW DID YOUR LOV E FOR FILM PHOTOGR APHY START?

My love affair with film started mid-2008 with a teal blue micro Holga that uses 110 films. After a couple of rolls, I switched to a Vivitar Ultra Wide & Slim and became monogamous with 35mm since then. I tried analogue photography out of curiosity. I was drawn into the nostalgic colors, muted and vivid alike. Plus, I never had my father’s good genes for drawing so I use photographs to visualize my emotions instead. W HY DID YOU DECIDE TO FOCUS ON FILM PHOTOGR APHY W ITH THIS SITE?

Parallel Planets features both film and digital photography. As much as possible, we would like to minimize the fine line between the two since both can coexist in the present world. However, we have a strong inclination to analogue photographers—we have already featured a number of outstanding film lovers from all over the world: Mira Heo from South Korea, Penny Felts & Tracy V. Moore from the USA, Khanh Hmoong from Vietnam, and Bahag de Guzman & Sean Lotman, who are both currently living in Japan. Parallel Planets has also collaborated with Whattaroll, an online magazine that focuses on film photography, so we definitely have a lot of upcoming analogue snappers coming soon. A N Y INSPIR ATION(S) BEHIND THIS PROJECT?

I am inspired by the creative creatures that surround me. Everybody is doing their own thing and I am thrilled at how they are good at it. Other people’s passion triggered me to focus on something I’m really interested in—writing about artists and their works, expressing how their talents influence me through words, and sharing their stories with the rest of the world. In order to make Parallel Planets work, I have to remain inspired to inspire others. HOW ABOUT ASPIR ATIONS?

In the long run, my dream for Parallel Planets is to have its printed version. And maybe curate its own collective exhibits in the future. Can you share to us your fondest childhood memory? I come from a broken family so everything that my family shared when my mom and dad are still together is my fondest childhood memory. I also feel happy whenever I remember how I used to pick random animals from our encyclopedia and ask my dad to draw them for me. His drawings were majestic even though he only used ballpoint pens and old newspapers as his canvas. W H AT SHOU L D W E WATC H OU T FOR W I T H PP?

Aside from our various editorial series and ongoing collaboration with Whattaroll, Parallel Planets will also be partnering with Airplay Junkie, a Los Angeles-based radio promotion company. We will be interviewing a bunch of bands, some of which are quite big so you should definitely stay tuned for those, and we will also be featuring a few DJs from time to time as well. If things work out well for Parallel Planets, we might also have our own online shop, too!

101


C U LT U R E

A LT RU IS T IC GHOS T S

He is finally free to travel a world he has already been too eager to rejoin. WOR DS BY CINDY HER NA NDEZ

C

oming in at 300 pages long, The Graveyard Book, by Neil Gaiman is possibly the longest children’s story I’ve ever read. Shelved in the “scary stories” section of the library, on account of its title more than its content—for us old folks there’s nothing scary about a graveyard—the book follows the life of Nobody Owens. In 2009, Gaiman won both the Newberry and Carnegie medals for this ghostly story. From the beginning, The Graveyard Book takes its readers through a gruesome story of death, ghosts, and the changes a boy endures to reach adulthood. We first find the man Jack—one of the countless evils Nobody (Bod for short) has to survive—with a bloody knife walking through a house, after having killed Bod’s family, searching for him. By mere coincidence, the one-year-old Bod’s adventurous tendencies extract him from the house and lead him to an old cemetery. There, he finds sanctuary with the graveyard’s inhabitants. In every new chapter of the book, Gaiman introduces an older Bod who faces a new conflict that takes him on a new adventure. After years living among the ghosts, a four-year-old Bod befriends a little girl whose parents take her to the cemetery to play. Bod soon learns the heartbreak of losing his first friend—she eventually moves away, but not before they take a detour to an underground tomb with treasure that is protected by a guardian from an ancient civilization. Gaiman takes us through a phantasmal journey with the typical main character who needs to learn from his mistakes to finally become the hero we all admire and root for. We see Bod live his life without questioning his circumstances, merely asking his ghost parents (the Owens) and his guardian (Silas) to allow him to experience quotidian rituals like going to school or being able to hang out in places other than the cemetery. Anyone can relate to Bod’s need for some normality in his life, for the need to socialize with the expected, and for the need to have space to figure out who he is supposed to be.

102


C U LT U R E

In this book, Gaiman introduces his readers for the first time, perhaps, to a façade of death that doesn’t necessarily have to be gruesome or scary. After all, Bod is saved from being murdered by ghosts; his adoptive parents are ghosts; and his guardian, the entity that feeds him and describes the “normal” world to him, protects him from perils no regular boy could possibly survive without help. Gaiman does a great job demystifying death and the afterlife through depictions of altruistic beings, which just happen to be ghosts. By the end of the story, we find a fifteen-year-old Bod reaching adulthood, and finally learning why his family was murdered. The last pages of The Graveyard Book are bittersweet, in that we see Bod leaving his home, in part because the evil forces out to get him no longer exist, but also because he’s losing his ability to interact with ghosts. He is finally free to travel a world he has already been too eager to rejoin.

103


C U LT U R E

BRIDGING THE GAP

In an era defined by a near-obsessive hunt for certainty, the age-old conflict between science and faith has never been more apparent. WOR DS BY PI A POSA DA S, A RT BY V INCE PUERTO

U

pon entering Barcelona’s renowned Basilica de la Sagrada Familia for the first time, I am struck by an acute sense of smallness. It isn’t just because of the radiant stained glass windows or the immense tree-like columns that engulf my field of vision. As my gaze rests upon the unfinished spires towering above me, I am left in awe of the brilliance of Antoni Gaudí’s mind. When the cathedral is finally completed, it will be one of the most magnificent architectural structures in the world. But much like the rest of the churches in Western Europe, will beauty be reason enough to draw believers back into its hallowed halls? In this day and age, it appears we are experiencing a crisis of faith. Perhaps this may have something to do with our tendency to use the existence of God as an answer to the riddles of the universe, an argument known as the God of the Gaps. Take for instance a woman who is diagnosed with cancer yet wakes up one morning to find that she is miraculously cured. Given the lack of tangible scientific evidence, she arrives at a simple conclusion: it was God who saved her. This is problematic, however, because if she assumes God to be a supreme being, one who is beyond her logic, she cannot simply plug him into an otherwise logical equation; sooner or later, a more appropriate physiological explanation will come along. This fallacy is exposed for what it is as the realm of human knowledge expands, consequently diminishing the role of God in the modern age. As astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson puts it, God becomes “an ever-receding pocket of scientific ignorance that’s getting smaller and smaller and smaller as time moves on.” For the theist, the God of the Gaps paints an inaccurate picture of faith. In giving credit to God for natural phenomena, he isn’t blindly rejecting centuries of scientific progress. In fact, he sees scientific evidence as a valuable sign post pointing towards a greater reality—he cannot believe in something he does not understand. To him, natural phenomena are the sovereign acts of a Creator of an

104


C U LT U R E

intelligible universe. Surprisingly, the God of the Gaps is also unfavorable to the scientist—it undermines everything that his chosen field stands for. To him, it is the verbal equivalent of shrugging his shoulders and calling it a day. His innate sense of curiosity and passion for discovery dissipates, leaving behind a backward society in his wake. The true scientist must view the gap not as an obstacle, but as a challenge to widen the horizon of knowledge. Ultimately, the God of the Gaps is a fallacy because it presents us with an unnecessary choice between science and faith. Taken independently of one another, we find that neither actually have the answers for everything. It is the stark contrast between the two, their unique ways of approaching the truth, that brings us to a fuller understanding of reality: while science teaches us about the molecules in the air that we breathe, faith leads us to the purpose driving every breath that we take. It is but natural for us to feel insignificant in the face of this momentous search of the truth. However, much like Gaudí’s masterpiece, perhaps this is precisely where the beauty of the journey lies: in its unfinishedness, in its capacity to be shaped as we see fit.

105


C U LT U R E

M A N H A T T A N : T H E S P R AW L

This month, we review one of the most celebrated films of Woody Allen. WORDS BY MARIAH R EODICA

M

anhattan is a crash course on romance. It begins with one of the most glorious opening sequences committed to film: Scenes of Manhattan from seemingly every angle, vantage point, and distance, set to the tune of Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue. The sights are distinctly New York: The Empire State building, the skyline, and the neon lights. The film begins with a monologue by a man named Isaac Davis, played by Woody Allen, where he odes to, laments, and muses about New York as he tries to figure out the opening paragraph of his next great novel. The various drafts he reads aloud, discards, and writes anew are just as different as the characters that inhabit his version of New York. Many tributes have already been paid to this film, which is among the best in Allen’s oeuvre, but to those of us who have never been to New York, such as me, the film means so much more. The city of new York is in itself a prominent character in Allen’s films, such as Annie Hall. Nearly every Allen film feels like New York, even if the film itself isn’t set in New York. It’s his trademark, and by watching films, a viewer who has never been set foot in New York forms their own myth of it, where people walk talk about love earned and lost, and the profound and earnest in the seemingly mundane. And most of them more or less have a sense of wit as sharp as a newlyhoned knife, thanks to Woody Allen’s scriptwriting. This imagined New York is in stark contrast to people like me who have lived in Manila all of my life. My myth of Manila is of packed commutes, the constant dread and eventual submission to rush hour traffic, the blare of horns in EDSA when it turns into a parking lot. Instead of black, white, and neon lights, Manila is in shades of brown, concrete grey, and yellow under the merciless heat of the tropical sun, as filtered through smog. I hear Bon Jovi and Aegish blared out of jeepney speakers. Manila is also a city that never sleeps. But maybe, just maybe, for many of us, as frustrating, infuriating, and ultimately exhausting living in Manila is, despite all its faults and shortcomings, it’s a city we love all the same.

106


C U LT U R E

You could say the same for lovers. In Manhattan, people are too early, too late, too young, or too old. Some are too afraid to commit, or too afraid to break a commitment. A person who seems heartless may just have their heart somewhere else. It’s messy, but how can anything end cleanly in a messy, sprawling metropolis? The beauty of this film is that it shows how despite different situations, ages, and locations, there’s the earnest urge to love in humanity, and how people search for it and what they leave for each other in return, despite all the what if ’s and but’s. There you have it, that’s Manhattan.

107


C U LT U R E

THE NE W AGE BA R D

Director Joss Whedon accepts the challenge of bringing famed play Much Ado About Nothing on the big screen. WORDS BY MARTY ARNALDO

A

fter the exhaustingly fun and epic The Avengers, Joss Whedon decided to take on a decidedly more low-key film for his next directorial effort. A passion project for the creators of plenty of fanboy pleasing franchises such as Buffy the Vampire Slayer and Firefly his modern retelling of this Shakespearean classic is filled with the brim with wit and confidence. Taking a different approach compared to Baz Luhrmann’s epic Romeo and Juliet, Whedon goes for a more simple approach. Shot across 12 days at his Santa Monica abode and beautifully shot in black and white sees many familiar faces from the whedonverse. Amy Acker and Alexis Denisof simply sizzle onscreen playing up the chemistry they showed with each other on the set of Angel, and Nathan Fillion takes a different turn from his usual confident, and cocksure protagonists to play the bumbling constable Dogberry. Whedon’s propensity and skill in portraying strong female characters while retaining their femininity works wonders in one of the bards famous comedies handling the romance of Beatrice and Benedick subtly and with enough charm to leave you grinning at the situations and misunderstandings that two get themselves into. Whedon has always had excellent comic timing which he puts to good use in this film. Whether it be Dogberry’s assured incompetence or Benedick’s hilariously inept attempts at disguise he plays it all for laughs that will surely get a few guffaws from the audience. He plays up the contemporary setting masterfully too as he contrasts the original English text contrasts and the intrigues of the Italian war with IPhones and indoor pools. The boldest and intriguing transformation besides the gender switches and expanded roles must go with the very first scene. Simply a masterstroke by Joss

108


C U LT U R E

Whedon, by framing the whole conflict of the two leads due to a one-night stand they shared in the past it sets up the bitterness and underlying tension that main couple have throughout the film. The Secondary story of the sweet young couple Claudio and Hero seems to have taken a back seat to the more entertaining coupling of Benedick and Beatrice. Seemingly being there in order to move the plot along and to show off the dastardly and manipulative nature of Don Jon, who’s played by the talented, and another Whedon regular, Sean Maher. Whedon has proven again that he can produce magic without a big budget— well not saying he can’t produce magic with a big budget, The Avenger’s is a testament to that. He has produced a wryly funny and amusing little film that I daresay even Shakespeare would be proud of.

109


C U LT U R E

GA ME OF QUEENS

While playing the game of thrones comes down to either winning or dying, defining good and evil in the Seven Kingdoms is far from simple. WOR DS BY S A M A N T H A PAC A R DO

I

t turns out that writing about morality in Game of Thrones is an even gr¬eater challenge than cramming seasons one to three in less than 48 hours (all you really need is a bed, a tube of Pringles and five packs of popcorn). How can you make clear-cut distinctions between good and evil when even the most honorable man in Westeros had no qualms about shedding other people’s blood for the sake of duty, and sat by as a man hit his wife? The answer is, you can’t. It is impossible to classify characters whose actions are not determined by a moral code, but rather what they think is necessary to survive and climb their way up the proverbial social ladder; as the storylines progress and overlap, we witness the characters respond to the changing circumstances and move from one end of the moral spectrum to the other. The women of the show are particularly interesting to study because for many of them, their battles are not on the fields; we see them fight for survival— face enemies, forge alliances, win and lose—in more domestic settings. The first name to come to mind is Cersei Lannister, the Queen Regent, who most people easily label as one of the “the bad guys”; then again, it is easier to oversimplify her of than to take apart the layers and to understand her actions. Yes, she is guilty of a number of things like engaging in an incestuous relationship with her twin brother and bringing about the downfall of men, but it is a mistake to dismiss her as an antagonist in the story. While I have no intentions of justifying her actions, it is important to remember that she was raised as Lannister and continues to live beneath the long shadow of her father, Tywin. Family is her main motivation and priority, her code of conduct, and she takes it upon herself to do what she must to ensure that her house remains above everyone else—or the enemies, as she sees them. Cersei acts out of love especially when it comes to her children, and viewers who pay close attention will remember that she is very aware of this when she gave Sansa Stark advice about motherhood: You’ll do things for them that you know you shouldn’t do. You’ll act the fool to make them happy, to keep them safe. Joffrey, the sadistic King of the Seven Kingdoms, is a product of his

110


C U LT U R E

mother’s love to an extent. He is Cersei’s darling boy, once the only thing that stopped her from jumping from a tower in the midst of a loveless marriage with Robert Baratheon, and spoiled from his first day out of the womb until he turned rotten to the core. Although Joffrey pulls away from Cersei and continuously proves that he knows nothing about being a king, she defends his actions and twists the truth as she sees fit (no, the Stark girl and the butcher’s boy attacked Joffrey in King’s Road and threw his sword in the water— it his right as King to order the beheading of Ned Stark—yes, it was necessary to order the murder of all of Robert’s bastards). She is aware of her actions and their consequences, but in her eyes, these are necessary to ensure the protection of the few she holds dear. It is interesting to compare Cersei to the ambitious and much younger Margaery Tyrell, who becomes a threat when she replaces Sansa Stark as Joffrey’s future queen. While they are both fiercely loyal to their houses and aware of what it takes to survive in the snake pit that is King’s Landing, there is a glaring difference in their approaches. As I mentioned earlier, Cersei was raised as a Lannister and following her father’s example, she wields her power through intimidation; she chooses to keep herself behind the walls of the palace, relies on spies and guards for the most part, and fosters fear among others to keep them in line. On the other hand, Margaery brings from Highgarden a concept that is foreign to the Lannisters: public relations. It is easy to draw comparisons between her character and modern politicians in the way we saw her dirty her gown to sit down with the children in the slums, distribute wooden soldiers much like campaign paraphernalia, and then become the patron of an orphanage. Though I don’t doubt that there is sincerity in Margaery’s actions, she is also aware that power can come from winning the love of the masses. It is with same gentle touch that Margaery to gain Joffrey’s favour in a way Sansa was unable to. With the knowledge of her fiancé’s monstrous nature and the guidance of Lady Olenna, she pretends to share the same thrill over death and assures him of his rights as king (something which he is obviously insecure about given the number of times he yells it to everyone’s faces). The other Lannisters are aware of her manipulation, but Tywin encourages it since it is clear that Cersei’s hold over her son is tenuous at best. It is obvious from the interactions between the two women that Cersei is put offkilter by the inconspicuous way Margaery is “sinking her claws” into King’s Landing and her son. The differences in their strategies are also echoed in the way the two women dress. Cersei prefers heavy layers of embroidered gowns that are occasionally accented with pieces of armory as if to show everyone that the Red Keep is her battleground. Margaery, with her open heart, looks quite the opposite in her airy dresses in calming shades of blue that the Tyrells prefer; it is notable that unlike Sansa, Margaery does not even try to adapt the fashions or hairstyles of the other highborn women in King’s Landing. These pendulous shifts in the moral spectrum apply are not exclusive to the Margaery, Cersei and the women of the show; this is characteristic most, if not all, those we encounter from the courts of the bannered families, the bowels of the cities, across the Narrow Sea and beyond the great northern Wall. While viewers continue to struggle to determine who are the protagonists versus the antagonists (or perhaps, if there are any), the internal conflicts of the characters are very human and three dimensional, which gives the show a greater sense authenticity when it comes to the people who reside in a fantastical world where dragons and Whitewalkers roam.

111


C U LT U R E

112


ART

ISSUE 20

ART EDITED BY MAINE MANALANSAN

T H E N E W BL ACK : MONOCHROM E PHOTOGR A PH Y The idea of taking photos and developing it in black and white is daunting. Here are a few tips to get you started. BY MARIAH R EODICA

E F T E R K L A NG A series on remembrance. BY TRISHA K ATIPUNAN

T HI NGS W E’ V E SA ID On our last issue, we remember some of the greatest behind-the-scenes moment of Stache. This our love letter to you. BY MAINE MANALANSAN

113


ART

THE NE W BL ACK: MONOCHROM E PHOTOGR A PH Y

A brief guide on black and white photography. WOR DS BY M A R I A H R E ODIC A , I L LUS T R AT ION BY C H E S G AT PAYAT

M

onochrome isn’t the new black. It was black before black even realized it was black, and the humble beginnings of photography as we know it today. Photography may be easier now that cameras and other forms of equipment are more accessible and affordable, and a hundred rolls’ worth of pictures could now fit on a small memory card, but there are still reasons why people stick to film. Perhaps one of the ways to appreciate the art of photography better is to go back to its roots on film. Photography in black-and-white and color have their advantages, and it’s up to a photographer to figure out which is more apt for a subject. With black-andwhite photography, emphasis is given to tonality, the interplay of light and dark. The approach to monochrome photography is different as well, since the photographer has to imagine what a photo will look like in black-and-white. A field of flowers may look like a mess of grey in black-and-white, but subjects such as people and structures may look better in black-and-white. Monochrome photography is also making a return to the mainstream. There was the Oscar-winning film, The Artist, in 2011. Paperman, the sweet short film that played before Pixar’s Wreck it Ralph in theaters, was also in black-andwhite. Greta Gerwig, the star of Frances Ha, and the soon-to-be mother of a How I Met Your Mother spin-off, pointed out in an interview that nowadays, people pay more attention to the aesthetics of a photo. There are those Instagram filters that allow people to go black-and-white. The Instagram photos in question may not hold up against more professional photography, the point is that people know that there are decisions behind going black-and-white. There are so many potential photographers out there who just need a push in the right direction. THE PROCESS Once you’ve shot a roll of film, the negatives have to be developed. In total darkness, the film is taken out of the canister, rolled into a film reel, and placed in a developing tank, where it goes through a process of chemicals. The whole process must be extremely lightproof to prevent the photos from being overexposed. Chemicals are poured into the tank in the following order: Developer, a stop bath, the fixer, another stop bath, a hypo-clearing agent, and photogloss. Each have their own duration of time.

114


ART

After the roll of film is developed, the negatives are cut and placed onto a contact sheet. The contact sheets can show which photos can be enlarged and printed. The selected negative is then taken into a darkroom and placed in an enlarger which exposes the photo onto light-sensitive paper, which is then again placed in the series of chemicals above. One of the best parts is submerging the exposed photo into developer and watching the image emerge right before your very eys. HOW TO BEGIN The equipment can be purchased at special photography shops along Quiapo, which also sell a lot of secondhand film cameras. The process may have slightly steep learning curve, but it isn’t as hard as it seems given further research online and perhaps a couple of workshops. Some photography enthusiasts have even made their own darkrooms in the comfort of their bathrooms. If there’s a will, there’s a way. The beauty of black-and-white photography is something that you have to do yourself to fully appreciate. People who have gotten the knack of it may have amusing anecdotes on how the chemicals smell funny, accidents in the darkroom, and the pains of going through so much work for a single print, but there really is nothing quite like hanging a print up on the line, knowing that you’ve done a hard day’s work. TO GET YOU STARTED: •Film: Kodak Tri-X 400 •Photo paper: Lucky B&W Photo paper (Glossy/Matte) •Where to shop: Hidalgo Street, Quiapo/Cubao

115


ART

EFTERKLANG

In Danish, “efterklang” has a double meaning “reverberation” and “remembrance.” This series is an exploration of sound and stasis. With only a fraction of a second allowing to make out a visual imprint of a sound and the after-sound, imagery becomes a response and is encapsulated into color, texture and form. ART AND WORDS BY TRISHA K ATIPUNAN

116


ART

117


ART

118


ART

119


ART

120


ART

121


ART

LOR D OF THE FLIES Illustration by Liam Andrew Cura

122


ART

123


ART

124


ART

125


ART

126


ART

ODE TO THE A NTIHEROS Illustration by Mika Bacani

127


ART

REMNANTS Portraits by Kenneth Beltran

128


ART

129


ART

130


ART

131


ART

THINGS W E’V E SAID

A collection of behind-the-scenes photos from previous cover shoots for Stache Magazine, our love letter to the world. PHOTOS BY MAINE MANALANSAN

132


ART

133


ART

134


ART

135


ART

136


ART

137


ART

H A N D ST U DY

by Abner Dormiendo

1. Let us take into consideration the history of love. In the beginning there was nothing. I mean in the beginning there was something, and it was my hands. In the beginning I do not know what to do with my hands, so it seemed like I’d rather have nothing. I’m not off to a good start, am I? But I’m getting there, I’m trying. I tried making a world out of my hands, a sky out of my fingers, mountains with my arms, but it keeps on falling into itself. I want to show you something but I cannot create anything, not even a world, not even beginnings. 2. Let us take into consideration the history of love. In the beginning was a body. That body belonged to my lover. That lover is named Emily, and she left me, took everything there is to take from me. But see, there is nothing to take away. I have nothing to give but my hands. And Emily, forgive me, I cannot give you my hands, I told her. She raised a flag, declared a war against my property, raised fences, dug trenches—Well, Emily, if you’re looking for a war, I’ll give you a war. But see, Emily, I have nothing to give. Not even a war. Not even violence. Not even my hands. 3. On the twenty-third day was a river. It was dawn, and I was by the river washing my hands. There was grass licking my knees. There was dew thick as spit and I was washing my hands. Back then washing was all I can do with them. I can be clean, but what comes next? I’ll figure it out, darling, I swear. But there you were, on the other side of the bank, a silhouette crouched like I was mirrored across the river. Your hands deep in the water. Hands treading the water. What are you washing your hands for? It must mean something, I’m sure. I thought this must mean something but already I am drowning.

138


ART

4. Eventually I learned how to use my hands. Mother taught me to chop with my hands. Father, to fight with my hands. My teacher, to write with them. Our pastor, to pray with them. My friends, to make love with them. And by God I made good love with these hands, Emily, but it was not just love I learned to do. There are a thousand ways to use our hands, do you know that? I’m sorry I never got to show them to you. But you left before I can even show you. Whose loss is it? I cannot tell anymore. 5. In the beginning was the history and it ended before I can even call it history. Who saw it coming anyway? It was my birthday and it was snowing. It was snowing and Emily, you came into my house with a box, happy birthday love I have a present for you. You gave me a pair of hands, flesh and bone, knitted tight, beating pulse, can you feel it—change, love, nothing wrong with change, you said. Let’s change hands, you said. Let’s unhinge wrists, disassemble fingers. I want to say no but I looked at my hands and already they are falling apart. 6. On the forty-fourth day was the river, and you were there on the other side of the river. Or what I thought was you on the other side. It might be a deer stopping for a drink, a shadow of a tree. Or anything to help me cope with cowardice—enough with the river, I’m taking you with me. I’ll make you a kingdom of moss and pebbles with my hands. I’ll make a plane out of twigs and this light-blue dawn, we’ll fly to the mountains and crash it there. We’ll crash our bodies to the cheek of some hill and they’ll never find our bodies. Do you want that? Don’t worry, I’ll learn how to build. I’ll learn how to fly a plane. I’ll wear out my hands for you. 7. Eventually I learned what not to do with my hands. Mother taught me not to hit anyone with my hands. Father, not to beg with my hands. My teacher, not to steal with them. My pastor, not to place them in dark places that now I let strangers touch. My friends, not to give them away. But they never said anything about love. They never taught me anything about hunger, and my hands, darling, they wanted to be yours. What to do with them, they’re cold, they’re hungry? You can have them if you want them. You can have my hands, take them from me. I have no use for them anymore. 8. Somewhere near the end of history, Emily was giving me hands. But Emily, I told you I don’t want these hands, take them away from me. I want lips, I want a tongue. I lost my mouth down the river and now I want a mouth, but how can I tell you what I want, Emily? When I combed my fingers through your hair I meant to say I don’t need your hands. When I dug my nails into your flesh I meant to say I don’t need your hands. When I tucked my hands in the crossroads of your limbs, slid them across the tombstone of your back—that was not love, Emily. That was not even sex. When I held you with my hands, I only meant to say I don’t need your hands.

139


ART

9. Somewhere in the beginning of history, way before history itself is the river. Only this time, I wasn’t in the river, and neither were you. But even before the both of us, it was the river where hundreds of lovers lost their limbs from loving too much. They tried to cross the river and drowned, caught in the web of primal hungers. Who could blame them? They were called by the heart. Somewhere in the beginning of history, way before history itself is a man. He was kneedeep in the water, knife in hand, trying to gather past failures in the form of missing limbs, trying to fashion a lesson out of what he can get his hands on. In the process, he loses himself, drowns in the river, gets tangled in giant roots. This is what love does to you: it draws you in and drives you away. 10. In the beginning was the river. It is dusk and I am looking for my lips by the river, looking for a gleam like a dime in the darkness of the sewers. But all that glistened were droplets of dew, beetle wings, beetle blood, the river and its diamonds floating on the surface—I don’t want them, darling, I want words. I want words to tell you your hair is beautiful in the dark because I cannot say it with my hands. I want words to tell you your mouth is beautiful in the dark because I cannot say it with my hands. I’ll trade my hands for words. You can have them. Give me enough time and you can have them. 11. I decided to stop counting. The sun was shining that morning and I decided to just stop counting. How long have I endured? I still have my fingers but I lost Emily. What to do with them now but count the days until she comes back. So I took my hands by the river and buried them in dirt, waited for decay, waited for Emily to come back in the river, take me home, wash my hands, make me love again—forget that, it was an excuse. I only wanted to see you, darling. I made alibis and I’m sorry. Not that it matters now. Let’s move on. There is only so much that can be forgotten. 12. Let us take into consideration the history of love. Only most of them I only invented. Will you forgive me, darling? Will you let me in now? It’s raining here and the roof of your porch has holes. The tin cans beneath them are overflowing now, darling, let me in. Let me warm my hands over the fire. Let me take off my clothes and hang them to dry. Make a soup good for us both and I will wash the dishes, then I will teach you later what I learned with my hands. Do you want that, darling? My hands are freezing. Emily is gone. I need company. The river doesn’t help. 13. I found my lips one glorious morning, resting on a stone down the bend, tangled in a mess of seaweed and gravel. I was not surprised. I always had a thing for messes, isn’t it obvious? I am knee-deep in love; don’t make a meaning out of this. I was crying in the water; don’t make a meaning out of this. In the water, the heat felt like a thousand

140


ART

hands holding me back. A thousand hands pushing me forward. A thousand hands that cannot decide what to do with my body. They felt like my past loves trying to feel alive again. What to do with my body? What to do with prior loves? They’re long dead now, darling, let’s not talk about them. 14. I met Emily one glorious morning. She was picking tulips by the riverside. They never grew there so she planted them. She always had a thing for misplacing objects. I remember because we kissed that morning. That was also the morning I lost my lips. A few minutes into the kiss and then I lost my lips. She wrapped her mouth around mine, river meeting the sea. Guess which one is mine, which one is hers. Now keep the answer to yourself. I don’t want to hear her name on your lips anymore. Hold still, just forget about it. Forget about it. I will if you will. 15. Already knee-deep into this and we were making promises. We were making profanities out of the names of past lovers. Nothing we can do about it now. So give me your promise, give me your silence. Give me your tongue and I’ll give you what I can get in this forest. I’ll go down to the river, let’s see what I can get. I dug my hands in the soil and got this handful of worms. Have them. I stuck my hands on a hole in a tree and I got egg shells, you can have them too. I dipped my hands to the trembling river but all I got were stones. I dipped my hands to the well of my mouth but all I got were teeth. 16. Already on the xth day. By now we could have given ourselves to the river, but we were still on the opposite sides of the bank, separate shores. I was washing my hands. You were crouched and your hands were dirty. What are you washing your hands for? I’ll tell you now, darling, Emily is long gone. I only know my hands now. I only know of that afternoon now, digging graves of our past loves, soil clinging beneath our nails and we were happy. How the worms danced when we took them out of their sleep, don’t feel guilt. They never rested anyway. They were busy breaking down dead things: damp soil, lost limbs, a bed of tulips. 17. In the beginning, it was you and I in the same bank of the river. In the beginning, it was Emily and I in the same bank of the river. In the beginning, it was I alone in the river, washing my hands. In the beginning, it was the hundreds of lovers in the same bank of the river, losing their limbs. In the beginning, it was a man on one side of the river—I cannot say which, take a pick—looking for the limbs of these lovers. He had a knife in his hands, gutted a fish with it, carved a tree with it, whetted it on stone. Where is the knife now? I am telling you, everything in the forest is wounded. 18. Let us reconsider the history of love thus far. Maybe we can find something we can rewrite, erase, tear out and fold into paper boats, set upon the rushing stream and

141


ART

watch them dissolve. Fold into paper planes and let them fly, and when they crash somewhere—darling, let’s not find them. Are you thinking about the knife? It’s in my heart, it’s glistening, it’s bleeding me out, but I’m fine, darling, just take my hand, don’t pull it out, I deserved this, it’s okay. We have our hands. We are happy. All we have are our hands but we can be happy. 19. In another river, we were the lovers. In another river, we were so in love with each other, neck-deep in our desires we can only be consumed by the river. In another river, we lost our limbs but we were happy. We were happy and in love and the river was just envious. We laughed until we lost our voice to the gurgling of a brook. In another river, you were the man with a knife in his hands. In another river, I was the fish you gutted, the tree you carved, the stone you whetted the knife with. In another river, you found limbs, took them away, built a precautionary tale of how love destroys us all. In another river, I was the river, and I devoured you, I was the tree and I cradled you. You were drowning, what else can I do? 20. I have been teaching myself how to be happy without counting. No one teaches you about happiness. No one teaches you about death either—Emily, forgive me, my hands do not know grief. Darling, meet Emily. Emily, if you are here right now, here are the hands you tried replacing. Look, they are working just fine. I am okay, thank you for not asking. But I want to forget, so allow me to forget. Darling, let me forget. Give me the river and I would forget. After this, no more history, I promise. 21. Darling, I want your hands in mine. I want your shoulders in mine, your head in mine. Let’s put our heads so close we share the same dream. Look at me. I was dreaming of Emily, but she is gone. Don’t worry about it. I was dreaming of drowning, you and I and vanishing bubbles. Don’t worry about it. I dreamed of us losing limbs, dissolving beneath the current. I dreamed we were so in love, darling; we were so in love I was choking on a song I have no melody for. I dreamed we were floating away, our bodies folded like a paper boat, solemnly being buried by the weight of its fragility. We were in love, I couldn’t give a damn. 22. Darling, I was dreaming of things that I wish would have been. I dreamed my hands were as big as your hands, and that when we put them together palms up side by side, they form the map leading to where the river lies. I dreamed about the river. I dreamed of being the water in your palms in that morning I found you, crouched by the bank like a lotus, dreamed of being the sweater you were wearing that morning—remember that blue sweater? I dreamed I was that sweater. I dreamed I was a loose thread and you were unraveling me. Pull it fast, there’s something I need to show you.

142


ART

ON E WA Y T HOROUG H FA R E

by Christian Benitez There is a hollow torso walking around the city, you should know. You see his limbs, his hands, and all they spell is empty. You see him roaming like a lost boy. No, correct the simile: he is a lost boy. Imagine: the labyrinth. The city, for him, is this. You want to carry him home but you cannot carry your own body, skeletons inside a closet. * You spend your way walking home letting the bark of trees at the sidewalk carve hemselves on your knuckles. They are now broken, they meaning the surfaces of the trees. Else: your knuckles, your clenched hands: else already are since the day you squeezed yourself in hiding. * There was a hollow torso walking around the city, you should know. You saw him roaming like a lost boy. It only meant save him. You meant to follow him, but you cannot, you must not. * Because truth be told. Because when he placed his palms across your lap. Because you should have taken them. Ownership. Because he surrenders he says. Because you should have listened to what was not being said. Because you never asked him stay. Despite fear. However, fear. * He is now trying to change. He is now trying to heed the architecture of the world: meaning comform. That the pavement should be paved forward, straight ahead, and right. Look at you however, crooked man. In the city, after intersecting with someone, look back to no one. * Passion is a one-way thoroughfare. Passion should be a one-way thoroughfare. However: Why are you asking to come back. Why is he hearing you saying it to him. Why doeshe ask myself these things, Where you should go, The same cobblestone should not be stepped on twice, right. He secretly wants to turn around. * We are both wayward sons, and our fathers would be so proud of us breaking the rules for the second time. Where are we going this time, sidewalks never end: Tell me we can get it right.

143


EVENTS

ISSUE 20

EVENTS EDITED BY NINA PINEDA

CHEF L AUDICO’S ANNIVERSARY BY JASH MANUEL

WA S H E D O U T L I V E I N M A N I L A BY MAYEE GONZALES

145


EVENTS

CHEF L AUDICO’S A N N I V ER SA RY

Photographs by Jash Manuel

146


EVENTS

147


EVENTS

148


EVENTS

149


EVENTS

150


EVENTS

151


EVENTS

WA S H E D OU T L I V E I N M A N I L A

Photographs by Mayee Gonzales

152


EVENTS

153


EVENTS

154


EVENTS

155


EVENTS

156


EVENTS

157


EVENTS

© 2014 Stache Magazine No part of this magazine or any of its contents may be reproduced, copied, modified, or adapted, in any form or any means, without the prior written consent of the editor-in-chief. All of the works that appear in this issue (artworks, photographs, words, etc.) belong to their respective owners, unless stated otherwise. For copyright complaints, send us an email with the subject “Urgent: Infringement Notification,” at the addresses provided below. jared@stachemagazineonline.com info@stachemagazine.com Published in Manila, Philippines

158


EVENTS

159


EVENTS

FOR THE LAST TIME

From the deepest pits of our hearts, thank you for supporting Stache for the past three years. We couldn’t have done any of this without you. It’s time to move on to bigger and better things. Here’s to the future of our little magazine.

W W W. S TAC H E M AG A Z I N E . C O M

160

Stache April 2014  

We have always believed that we take photos of the people we love the most in black and white. The duality of the photograph's tones puts em...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you