PRISON FOOD

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This Filipino American Life is thrilled to be a community sponsor for the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival premier of PRISON FOOD, a docu-series directed by Aditya Thayi and hosted by The Park’s Finest owner Chef Johneric Concordia. Throughout the docu-series Chef Johneric learns how inmates prepare meals for each other under the circumstances of prison.

PRISON FOOD, East West Players, May 6, 2018 2:00 pm: BUY TICKETS

Get your tickets for this screening today! Share your thoughts about the episodes with the TFAL crew. This is something that shouldn’t be missed!

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Volunteer at Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival!

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Why volunteer at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival? For perks like free movies!

You also will get this awesome free shirt!

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Volunteer Benefits Also Include:

  • Meeting film industry professionals and artists, Asian Pacific American community members, and fellow film enthusiasts
  • An official festival volunteer shirt
  • Vouchers for Festival screenings (1 voucher every shift)
  • And more!

Festivals like this rely on people power! Be one of those people. Find community with fellow Asian Pacific Islander Americans who are passionate about APIA storytelling.

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Episode 23 – Filipino Healing Traditions w/ Herbalaria

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If you grew up in a Filipino household, it’s possible that you’ve had experiences with natural medicines or remedies —  from your parents use of the aloe vera plant on a burn to the use of tawas as underarm deodorant.

For TFAL co-host Ryan, he would have never known the healing effects of ginger root had his dad not ground some up, created some paste with it, spread it on his sprained ankle, and wrapped it up with cloth as he recited a little prayer.  Although the use ginger root or other herbs and plants are very effective, it is sometimes looked upon as too simple or inadequate in the eyes of Western/modern medicine practitioners. Who knows what Western medicine’s comment would be regarding that prayer?!

In reality, Filipino traditional healing is extremely complex.  Although it can sometimes be as simple as using ginger in your tea, Filipino healing traditions encompass faith, intentionality, and connectivity to nature, which all have their own specific guidelines and processes.  We all have a connection to our parents and nature, but are we aware enough to know how to channel it or know its power?

On this episode of This Filipino American Life, we discuss Filipino healing traditions with Lyn Pacificar, an albularya or traditional folk herbalist/spiritual healer, and her partner Gilbert.  Lyn comes from a long line of Filipino healers and mystics.  Her dad, a hilot from the islands of Leyte and Samar in the Philippines, while her mom hails from the Islands of Mindanao, Panay, and Bohol–all within the Western Visayan region of the Philippines.  Lyn uses a combination of modalities including prayers, ritual, diagnostic readings, and ancestral communication to achieve a certain goal for the recipient.  Throughout our discussion Lyn explains her vocation and speaks to the power of our own pre-colonial methods of healing.

Join the TFAL crew as we explore our own experiences with natural healing we learned from our families.  We share our thoughts on Western medicine, talk about the healing effects of different natural plants and herbs, and discuss how our pre-colonial healing traditions meld with our Catholic faith.  Her inspiring life’s work sets out to re-invigorate people to unearth those hidden memories within our souls, reminding us how we truly lived in harmony with Mother Earth.  Have a listen.

Listen through the embedded player below, download directly here or subscribe to us on iTunes here!

Did you grow up or do you practice Filipino healing traditions?  Feel free to email us at thisfilipinoamericanlife@gmail.com, leave us a voicemail at (805) 394-TFAL, or write us a comment below!

Finally, check out Lyn Pacificar and her awesome products on her website!

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SEARCHING

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The 34th Annual Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival kicks off with the Sundance NEXT Audience Award winner SEARCHING from director Aneesh Chaganty and starring John Cho. The film is a suspenseful and hyper-modern thriller about a desperate father searching for his missing teenage daughter told through a screen that we all are too familiar with, a computer screen.

Get your tickets to see the film and opening night party. Say hi to the TFAL crew at the opening night party!

SEARCHING, Directors Guild of America – Theatre 1, May 3, 2018 7:00 pm

 

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Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival 2018

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The 34th Annual Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival (LAAPFF) runs May 3rd – May 12th. The festival will hosts features and short films from both North America and Internationally. This Filipino American Life is excited to partner with LAAPFF to highlight Filipino, Filipino American, and Asian Pacific Islander American stories.

You can purchase general tickets to films and programs here: LAAPFF General Festival Tickets 

Plan on checking out multiple films throughout the festival? Why not purchase a Festival 10 pack or a Festival Pass?

There are also free programs that you can check out! Tickets are required for admission into the theater and will be distributed online and at the Box Office. First come, First serve.

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Follow This Filipino American Life on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for our LAAPFF picks!

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Episode 22.5 – Filipino and Filipino American Slang

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Naks naman, pre!

Everyday, we hear a new term or phrase or acronym that we totes have to google. With the ever evolving ways of communicating, we can expect some of our words and phrases to be shortened and even more so, turn into widely-used slang.

Slang has multiple uses.  It can be used for inclusion.  People use slang to create and reinforce a people’s identity through a shared network of communication. On the other side of the coin, slang can be used for exclusion as well, essentially demarcating who’s in the know and who isn’t.  Slang can also be a way to rebel.  Many people use slang as coded or hidden words to conceal meanings from those in authority.  The use of slang among Filipinos and Filipino Americans is no different  We have used slang to include, exclude, and rebel in many forms.

On this TFAL mini episode, we discuss Filipino and Filipino American slang.  We explore Filipino “tadbalik,” the practice of inverting and reversing letters and syllables of words to give them new meanings, which is believed to have developed among Filipinos rebelling against the Spanish in the 19th century. It also gained popularity anti-martial law youth in the 1970s.  Likewise, we discuss slang among Filipino Americans.  Though fewer in number, Fil Ams have developed a unique identity through slang as well.

Listen through the embedded player below, download directly here or subscribe to us on iTunes here!

We only shared a few slang words, but do you know others??  If you want to share some Filipino or Filipino American slang that was hella popular where you grew up, feel free to email us or leave a comment below!

EDITOR’S NOTE: CON-ASS is Constituent Assembly, not Congressional Assembly. =)

 

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Episode 22: If The Virgin Mary Could Do It. A conversation with WASI (We Are She Is).

What happens when you are in high school physics class and a classmate says “Do you play an instrument” and your answer is yes?  Well for Merilou Salazar and Jesse Meehan, our guests on this episode of TFAL, they formed a three power chord knowing garage band called The Midol Poppers. After several iterations and learning more chords, they are now the Riot Pop band WASI. Influenced by The Clash, Matt and Kim, and MIA, WASI (We Are She Is) create an atmosphere of sunny melodies and dance beats with a subversive attitude.

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Photo by Shelly Simon

Want to check WASI out live? You are in luck! They are on tour right now with their latest EP Stranger California. Check out their site for dates and ticket info. WASI ON TOUR 

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Listen to WASI on Spotify, Itunes, Soundcloud, Google Play, and wherever you find your music. Want more info on Women Fuck Shit Up Fest? Check them out here: Women Fuck Shit Up Fest

Listen through the embedded player below, download directly here or subscribe to us on iTunes here!

Any thoughts on this episode?  Email us at thisfilipinoamericanlife@gmail.com, leave a voice message, or even text us your thoughts at (805) 394-TFAL.

Also here is a bonus playlist that we’ve created for folks to check out a few of the artists that were mentioned in this episode!

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The Geek Show 2: BindleCon

Hi Friends!  If you happen to be in the Bay Area in April, check out THE GEEK SHOW 2: BINDLECON, at Bindelstiff Studios in San Francisco. Filipino American geeks unite!!

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Conceived by producers Thomas Paras and Marc Abrigo, “The Geek Show” is both a love letter and a critique on contemporary geek culture. From comedy sketches to dramatic pieces, the multi-genre theatre production brings together the passionate, the ostracized, and the awkward together in celebration of everything under the umbrella of geekdom.

This upcoming iteration of “The Geek Show” will be a little different, for all the stories presented will be set entirely within a convention. The roof is ripped off of a convention center, as interconnected stories emerge from this one day at the geek fest that is BindleCon. From the story of a first-time con-goer, to the showdown of seasoned geek parents, and the exciting life as a rover a la “Law and Order,” expect for ground of a different kind to be covered, all the while staying true to exploring the life and journey of geeks everywhere.

“The Geek Show 2: BindleCon” will be having its nine-performance run at Bindlestiff Studio from April 12th-28th. Tickets are $15-$25 and can be purchased here. For more information, visit geekshowsf.com.

Shout to TFAL super fan, Lauren Lola, for the heads up on this event!

 

Episode 21.5: Filipinos and Black Panther

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A recently article circulated social media after the release of the movie, Black Panther, detailing the connection between some of the costumes worn by the “Dora Milaje” — the all-female personal guard of the ruler of the fictional African country of Wakanda.  Anthony Francisco, a Pinoy member of the film’s design team, apparently based the costumes on indigenous clothing from non-Christianized tribes of the Philippines.

As many Filipino Americans do, we shared the article with our friends.  Living in the current American ethos of liberal multiculturalism, visibility, for better or for worse, becomes an aspiration for many marginalized communities.  Subjected to a long history of erasure, Filipino Americans beamed with pride as this fact about Black Panther costumes hit the internet.  Yet, when does this yearning for visibility go too far?

In this mini-episode, the TFAL crew discusses the recently discovered connection between Filipinos and Black Panther.  Listen as they debate the merits of this factoid about the movie’s costumes.  Are Filipinos over-reaching?  Is recognition from mainstream society necessary?  Are the arguments valid?  Or is Joe (surprise, surprise) just drinking haterade?

Listen through the embedded player below, download directly here or subscribe to us on iTunes here!

Any thoughts on this episode?  Email us at thisfilipinoamericanlife@gmail.com, leave a voice message, or even text us your thoughts at (805) 394-TFAL.

Episode 21: Filipino Caregivers

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Tens of thousands of Filipinos work as caregivers in the United States, and more are recruited to Western nations to feed, bathe, and serve the elderly.  It is a thankless, yet vital job that many Filipinos hold.  Yet, in this line of work, many caregivers are abused, with some working 24 hours around the clock and getting paid less than minimum wage.  It is also work that some of our undocumented members of the community hold, making worker exploitation more commonplace.

In the coming years, many baby boomers will enter retirement age, making elderly care a crucial industry in the United States and in other Western nations.  The demand of Filipino immigrant labor to fulfill this need is looking inevitable.  However, exploitation of these workers cannot continue and it is up to all of us to make sure caregivers are treated with respect and dignity.

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In this TFAL episode, we speak with Aquilina Soriano-Versoza, Executive Director of the Pilipino Workers Center, who is fighting for their respect and dignity.  Listen as she discusses her experiences in organizing Filipino caregivers, some of the struggles some of them have faced, and the victories their organization has won as a result of their grassroots advocacy.

Listen through the embedded player below, download directly here or subscribe to us on iTunes here!

Any thoughts on this episode?  Email us at thisfilipinoamericanlife@gmail.com, leave a voice message, or even text us your thoughts at (805) 394-TFAL.