Podcasts

Bonus Episode – TFAL talks Crazy Rich Asians

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On this bonus episode the TFAL crew talks about the recent phenomenon that is Crazy Rich Asians. The popular novel by Kevin Kwan debuted in 2013. The film premieres this month with high expectations. Constance Wu, Henry Golding, Michelle Yeoh, and director Jon M. Chu grace the cover of Hollywood Reporter with the cover story The Stakes Are High for ‘Crazy Rich Asians’ — And That’s the Point.

Constance Wu shared why this film is a monumental moment for Asian Americans. Crazy Rich Asians is the first blockbuster film with a predominantly Asian American cast in twenty years. Nico Santos is a part of the cast and Kris Aquino makes an appearance, but does this film have a larger impact on Filipino Americans? Is the story reflective of our own stories? Does it have to be?  We discuss these issues and more on this bonus episode.

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

What are your thoughts on Crazy Rich Asians? Let us know by emailing us at thisfilipinoamericanlife@gmail.com or call our voicemail, (805) 394-TFAL (8325)!

Episode 26.5 – Filipino American Weddings

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(Photo Credit: In The Clouds Events)

The union of two people is a very momentous occasion and the catalyst for much celebration throughout human history.  Weddings signify many things from the love of two people, the alliance of two families, and the coming together of a community.

Weddings also signify exclusion.  Marriages were and still are elusive to many people.  In decades past, people of color (including Filipino Americans) were forbidden from marrying Whites in many states of this country.  The LGBTQ community was not able to partake in marriages legally until recently (and even its legality is on shaky ground at this day and age).  Weddings (at least extravagant ones anyway) can exclude those without the means.

And yet, weddings continue to be prevalent in our communities.  They provide an opportunity to experience some cultural traditions.  Jumping the broom.  Riding a white horse.  Wearing something blue.  Many of these traditions are ways the married couple can share a part of themselves with people they love.

In this TFAL mini-episode, the crew discusses Filipino and Filipino American wedding traditions.  A mixture of Filipino, Spanish, and American traditions, many Filipino American weddings have a certain formula to them.  We talk about some of them and more!

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

Which Filipino or Filipino American wedding traditions do you know of?  Let us know by emailing us at thisfilipinoamericanlife@gmail.com or call our voicemail, (805) 394-TFAL (8325)!

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Episode 26 – TFAL Meats Kris Wolf

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Growing up in the 1980s there was WWF and WCW on the airwaves. Depending on where you grew up, you idolized wrestlers from either show. Guest contributor Berto Ponce wrote about his love of wrestling for TFAL and how it lead to the creation of #BalutClub in the article Balut Club is Too Sweet.  It’s through Berto that we learned about Kris Wolf, a Filipino American wrestler who got her start STARDOM a promotion based out of Japan.  In the video below you can see what Kris Wolf and fellow Filipino American wrestler Shotzi Blackheart bring to the ring. You might also spot a few familiar TFAL faces in the audience!

 

On this episode of TFAL the crew talks about who they used to watch growing up, how they followed wrestling as kids, and who would drop in and out of the scene throughout high school and college. The Park’s Finest hosted us for this interview as Elaine, Producer Mike, and Berto talked with Kris about her path and passion for wrestling, while dining on delicious bbq.

You can catch Kris wrestle at Bar Wrestling on Wednesday, July 25th in Los Angeles! Get tickets here: Bar Wrestling: Don’t Hassle Me I’m Local.  Can’t make it to Bar Wrestling? Follow Kris on Facebook (@wolfinjapan), Twitter (@wolfinjapan), Instagram (@wolfinjapan) for future wrestling dates! You should also subscribe to her Youtube Channel where she’s known to smash boxes!

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

Who were your favorite wrestlers growing up? Would you be a heel or a face? Drop us a line on our voicemail, (805) 394-TFAL (8325)!

Want to hear more about wrestling from Elaine and the Mantaur Berto? Check out both of them on Episode 58 of Geek Offensive with Producer Justin.

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Episode 25.5 – The Bakit List 2.0

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Why do Filipinos put raisins in everything?  Why are there so many Fil Am Justins?  Why is every current Philippine movie released in the U.S. about some drug lord?  Bakit?  Bakit?  Bakit????  In this TFAL mini-episode, we goofballs tackle these life-changing questions and more!  We don’t have all of the answers (or any logical ones at that), but at least we raise the questions!

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

 

Have any answers to these questions?  Got any questions of your own?? Drop us a line on our voicemail, (805) 394-TFAL (8325)!

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Episode 25 – Filipino Americans and Panethnic Identity

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As a Filipino, do you identify as an Asian American?  Do you feel more affinity towards Mexican Americans and other Latinos?  Do you believe Filipinos are Pacific Islanders?  Do Filipino Americans belong to a specific “race”?

These are some questions Filipino Americans grapple with all the time.  Living in the United States, “Asian,” “Pacific Islander,” or even “Latino” is thrust upon Filipinos.   Filipino Americans, in numerous ways, do not fit these arbitrary racial and/or panethnic categories, yet many of us have the arduous task of choosing which one we belong to.

In this TFAL episode, we explore the ways in which these arbitrary panethnic categorizations are unfair to Filipinos, how they fail to encapsulate our lived experiences, and how they elide so much of our political realities in the United States.  We speak with Dr. Anthony Ocampo, Associate Professor of Sociology at Cal Poly Pomona and author of the renowned book The Latinos of Asia: How Filipino Americans Break the Rules of Race.

Listen as Anthony talks about Filipino Americans ambiguous belonging to Asian America and what Filipinos need to do to advance from our marginalized position under the Asian American category and in the United States at large.  Later, we have a great conversation about his future book project on the experiences of LGTBQ persons of color.  Also, we find out what race Ryan really is!

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

How do you identify?  Do you believe Filipino American are Asian or any other category?  Drop us a line on our voicemail, (805) 394-TFAL (8325)!

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Episode 24.5 – TFAL Goes to Las Vegas: Michael and Lynn Arage; Carl Araneta

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Although Las Vegas is more than just America’s playground, we could not do a Vegas show without talking about the gaming industry and the combat sport industry. Las Vegas is arguably the most popular gambling city in the world and the fight capital of the United States.  As kids, we may have gone to play games at Circus Circus to win a big stuffed animal, but as adults we try to win big money by playing slot machines or cards.  Likewise, we go to Vegas to watch the best boxing fights and MMA events.

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On this final Vegas episode, we talk to Poker pro Michael Arage and Lynn Arage who works in marketing for a slot machine company to talk about living in Las Vegas and working in the gaming industry.  Find out who really loves poker, who loves slot machines, and who loves to do impressions of bad Russian accents.

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In the second half of the episode, we speak to Carl Araneta of Cobra Kai Jiu Jitsu of Las Vegas and founder of Ten Braves Apparel, a clothing company geared for the ninja and jiu jitsu lifestyle.  Find out how he got into MMA, his fight record, and what he does to train his child.

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

As always, feel free to email us at thisfilipinoamericanlife@gmail.com, leave us a voicemail at (805) 394-TFAL, or write us a comment below if you have any opinions about the episode!

P.S. It’s World Series of Poker month in Las Vegas. Wishing Michael a good series and all the luck to get a bracelet!!!

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Episode 24 – TFAL Goes to Las Vegas: Gloria Caoile and Rozita Lee; Tessa Winkelmann

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Think Vegas is only about gambling, partying, and buffets?  Think again.  Las Vegas is also home to a fierce bunch of activists trying to make a difference in the Filipino American community.

In this episode, the TFAL crew talks to long time political advocates, Gloria Caoile and Rozita Lee.  These fiery ladies have been organizing the Filipino American community in Las Vegas for decades.  Listen as they discuss the importance of political empowerment of Filipinos in the United States, their tactics on how to engage the community, and their passions that keep them going.

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In the second half of the episode, we sit down with Tessa Winkelmann, Assistant Professor of History at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV).  How does she teach ethnic and gender studies to a bunch of students who want to go to nursing?  How does she illuminate the shadows of American imperialism and its lasting impact on hospitality majors?  Listen and find out!

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

 

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Episode 23.5 – TFAL Goes to Las Vegas: Intro and FNGR Podcast

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Viva Las Vegas!!

On a weekend in April, the TFAL crew ventured to Sin City for a bit of R&R.  Well, not really.  TFAL went to Las Vegas to get a slice of Filipino American Life in the desert.  Perhaps the most hyper-capitalist, hyper-sexualized city in the United States, Las Vegas is also home to the fastest growing Filipino American community.

On the next few episodes, you’ll get to hear from a few Vegas Pinoys shaking up the city.  In this first installment, listen as we recap our perceptions of Las Vegas, then speak to Mike and Producer Paul, half of the crew of the FNGR (For No Good Reason) Podcast.  Much thanks to the good folks at FNGR for hosting us for the weekend.

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

Check out the FNGR Podcast here!

 

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Bonus Episode – TFAL meets ULAM

 

 

On this bonus episode of TFAL podcast we talk to Filipino American filmmaker Alexandra Cuerdo and producer Rey Cuerdo about their film ULAM: Main Dish, which will be screening at the Los Angeles Asian Pacific Film Festival on Sunday, May 6th, 2018 at 4pm. How hungry did they get while making the documentary? How hungry will you get while watching ULAM? Take a listen as the TFAL crew learn about Alexandra and Rey’s journey in making this film.

 

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

Are you in Los Angeles? Do you want to watch this film with us? Get your tickets for ULAM today! Let’s watch the film and then rehash our favorite moments together!

ULAM: MAIN DISH, Aratani Theatre, May 6, 2018 4:00 pm: BUY TICKETS 

 

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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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