Episode 9.5 – Hilaw Pa 2.0…or Siri Is Too Serious


Is there a use for Filipino American holiday?  Is there a way to accommodate bigger and bigger family parties?  Is there a better way to transport stuff to loved ones in the Philippines?  Why, yes, of course!!!

The TFAL crew answers all these questions and more in their second installment of Hilaw Pa where we talk about zany half-baked ideas that Filipinos and Filipino Americans can relate to!  Of course, none of us will ever pursue these projects – that’s for you all to take on!  Our job is just to put it out there in the world.   As green mangoes with bagoong have taught us, raw things are just as good as ripe ones!

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

Do you have a half-baked idea you’d like to share with us?  Email it to us at  Or better yet, leave a voice message on the TFAL hotline (805) 394-TFAL and maybe, just maybe we’ll play it on our next podcast episode!

Episode 9 – Love Life of An Asian Guy


On this episode of This Filipino American Life, the TFAL crew talks about their experiences with blogging. Blogspot, Xanga, Livejournal and countless other internet sites were the home to our early 00s thoughts and terrible spoken word poetry.  In this new era of blogging, Facebook has become the home of writing down these thoughts. One blogger in particular, Ranier Maningding of The Love Life of an Asian Guy, uses his platform that originally was a place to blog about his experience dating as an Asian American to commentary on race, politics, and pop culture. Listen to how he transitioned from dating to his commentary while growing his audience to close to 200,000 folks!

Ranier is also venturing into podcasting! Here is the teaser for “The Love Life of an Asian Guy” podcast.  You can check it out HERE.

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

Are you on tumblr or wordpress? What are you writing about? Is Instagram your thing? What are you taking pictures of? Let us know what your experience blogging was like! Tweet at us (@TFALpodcast), comment on Facebook (This Filipino American Life), leave a comment on this post, or leave us a message on our voicemail! 805-394-TFAL. That’s 805-394-8325.

Episode 8.5 – Slow Jamz

Play another slow jam, this time make it sweet…a slow jam.

Many Filipino Americans love slow jamz, that sweet, loving, largely African American-composed music that dominated late nights on urban radio stations during the 1980s and 1990s.  They made slow jam mix tapes and gave it to girls, they sang them on karaoke, there were even some who started singing groups. For many of us the ritual of listening to radio and recording songs on a blank cassette tape was a skill we honed with fine precision. The task of finding the sweet spot where you got the song and not the dj talking  or the dj fading into the next song became a muscle memory.

Passing around mixtapes turned into burning CDs and then sending mp3 files to each other. One particular mix that made the rounds was by DJ Opus, a Filipino American DJ from California. The slow jamz came at you fast and furious on this mix. Back in the day, it could be heard at debuts, formals, and lowered cars with crews of Filipino Americans singing along.

There’s even a 90s Slow Jam Bracket, made by a Fil Am dude! All the songs on this bracket would make an excellent mixtape. 1780229_10152224095592125_126281615_o

In this episode, we discuss the impact slow jamz had on us and other Filipino Americans.  From traditional kundiman to “My Way” to Kai to even Manny Pacquiao, Filipinos can’t get enough of that slow, soulful, baby-making music.

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

As a bonus, the TFAL crew has put together our own slow jamz playlist.  Enjoy and sing along to these handpicked songs.

What would your #1 slow jam song be on your bracket? What songs would be on your playlist?  Hit us up on Twitter (@TFALpodcast), Facebook (This Filipino American Life), leave a comment on this post, or leave us a message on our new voicemail! Yes voicemail! TFAL has a phone number folks! 805-394-TFAL. That’s 805-394-8325.

Episode 8 – Did you eat yet?: A Conversation with Filipino Kitchen


Nakakaon ka na ba?  Kumain na kayo?  Nangan kan?  Did you eat yet?

Ah yes…the question your parents/grandparents/family members ask you as you walk in the door.  Among Filipinos, it’s a more common way to say hello.

Food is perhaps the most innate thing that makes us human.  It keeps us alive.  It comforts us.  It identifies us.  It connects us.  And at times, it can even divide us.  Food is a window to our historical and contemporary lives like no other.

Filipino food is no exception. A large part of the Filipino American experience is the food we cook, serve, and eat.  Filipino food like kinilaw, chicken afritada, and Jollibee’s peach mango pie can tell us about our history – colonial or otherwise.  Our food also conveys the community’s struggles with health, cultural invisibility, and even mainstream desirability.

In this TFAL episode, we talk to Sarahlynn Pablo of Filipino Kitchen, a media based company which aims to support and promote the awareness of Filipino food here in the United States and throughout the diaspora.  We discuss a myriad of food-related topics: which Filipino dishes comfort us, which dishes we learned later in life, how Filipinos connect with their food heritage, what politics arise when advocates try to mainstream Filipino cuisine, and much more.

Although we barely scratch the surface of Filipino food in this episode, we hope you enjoy this scrumptious discussion.  Make sure to eat while listening or plan to eat afterwards because this episode will make you hungry!  Where’s my fork and spoon?  Fuck it…I’ll just use my hands!

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

Finally, check out our friends’ websites here:

Filipino Kitchen –

Sarahlynn Pablo’s WordPress –

And check out this YouTube web series, Market to Master, to get a glimpse of different kinds of foods from all over the Philippines:



Thank you to everyone who has got us to 1000 likes on our Facebook page! We appreciate you so much! Maraming Salamats for being a part of our TFAL podcast journey.

Episode 7.5 – Happy Pilipinx New Year!


Happy 2017 TFAL pans!

For some of us, 2016 left bad tastes in our collective mouths and 2017 couldn’t come any sooner.  Though the world is a bit more uncertain than ever, we can hope that the new year will bring more good than bad, more prosperity than scarcity, and more laughter than tears.

Along with a new year, comes new resolutions, new beginnings, and at times, new identities.  Among these is a new way of describing ourselves.  The term “Pilipinx” has emerged over the last few years as a new nomenclature for Filipino.  We’re not sure of its exact origins, but can we assume it came from progressive college students.

Recalling the old P/Filipino debates of yesteryear, we discuss “Pilipinx” in this episode – its intention, its promise, and its utility.  And of course, we discuss our unique Filipino American New Year’s traditions.  Start off the new year right and fill your ears with TFAL!

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

Bonus Episode – Celebrating Filipino American History Month at FPAC & the LA Greek Theater

Before we say goodbye to 2016, we’ve got one more episode of TFAL to share with all of you!  This past October the TFAL crew talked to some of the artists that were featured at the 25th Annual Festival of Philippine Arts & Culture (FPAC) and at the Filipino American History Month FAHM Celebration at the LA Greek Theater.  Many thanks to everyone we got to interview who shared their thoughts about FPAC, the FAHM showcase, and about Filipino American History Month overall. And a big shout out to the folks who came up to us and told us they were fans of the show, we were truly honored meet all of you!  Happy New Year, and look forward to even more TFAL in 2017!

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




From FAHM Celebration

Episode 7 – Xmas Special…Ang Pasko Ay Sumapit!


TFAL Co-Host Joe in his New Jack Swing gear receiving an Xmas gift from his late uncle, Archimedes Domingo (Tito Meddy), circa 1988.

Christmas is coming! (Ang Pasko Ay Sumapit!)  What are your unique Filipino American Christmas traditions?  Do you go to Simbang Gabi…at 7pm?  Do you make parols?  Do you visit the Philippines every Christmas?  Do you send your loved ones balikbayan boxes?  Do you eat Queso de Bola after midnight mass?  Do you watch NBA basketball all day with your family while eating lechon and candied ham?

Join the TFAL crew as they reminisce about old Christmas traditions they grew up with.  Find out how Elaine discovered the real truth about Santa Claus.  Find out which is Producer Mike’s favorite Xmas movie.  Find out what Shrek character Ryan dressed up as.  And find out what the heck is going on in the picture above.

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

Episode 6.5 – Gambling

TFAL Co-Host Elaine at Harrah’s in New Orleans.

May the odds be forever in your favor!

Maybe you find a slot machine’s bright colors and sounds entertaining, or perhaps you cherish the time you spend with friends on your way to a casino in a free air conditioned bus, or maybe even more simply, it could be the thrill of the possibility of having more money than you started with. However you cut it, a lot of Filipino Americans like to gamble in casinos, at home, or in an underground cockfighting ring.  For many Filipinos throughout the U.S., gambling is easily accessible. Over 60 Indian casinos are available to people who have itchy palms for those in California like us. And if that’s not enough, Nevada is just a few hours away.

Is it really in the Filipino culture to gamble?  Is gambling a form of entertainment?  Is there more to gambling than trying to get rich? Are Filipinos just trying to cash in their good karma?

Listen to our stories about mahjong marathon sessions; find out which TFAL member is the Pusoy Dos Champion; or  listen as we vocalize a slot machine’s sound of fake coins dropping into a bucket (yeah, we did that). Take a chance and download our podcast. If you listen, you might just win something!

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

Episode 6 – Post-Election Special


November 8th was arguably one of the most bizarre, most talked about, most Twittered, Facebooked, criticized, fact checked, US presidential elections in history. The results of the election continues to be questioned as Democrats and perhaps some Republicans alike try to make sense of what happened. President-elect Donald Trump’s win (I just threw up a little bit in my mouth just typing that), has elicited fear and confusion; and, some have argued, this election has provided an avenue for hatred, misogyny, sexism, racism, and lack of experience, to somehow be okay.

Is this a huge wake-up call? What happens now?

This week, This Filipino American Life talks about their thoughts about the presidential election, why it’s important to vote, what we think about the Filipino American voting trends, and what we’re doing to move forward from the election.


Here we go.

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