San Nicolas and Santa Teresita: Historic and Folkloric Notes about some of its Barrios

Exploring forgotten stories about the barrios of San Nicolas and Santa Teresita.

Balandis: the Slanted Houses Along a Road in Cuenca/Alitagtag

Exploring this quaint area in Cuenca and Alitagtag where the houses are slanted away from the road.

Mataasnakahoy: Historical and Folkloric Trivia about some of Its Barrios

Revisiting obscure barrio histories of the barrios of the Municipality of Mataasnakahoy.

An Old Tourist Spot in Taal Called the Pansipit Fishery

A throwback to a by-gone era, when tourists around Luzon visited this resort in Taal and Lemery.

The Hitchhiker who Gets on at the Zigzag in Cuenca Batangas Lipa

A tall tale familiar to all who drive through this curving road in Cuenca. Is it really a tall tale, though?

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30 March 2017

The UAAP, the Philippine Azkals and Football on Local Television

Image credit:  captured from YouTube videos of ABS-CBN Sports + Action and Sports Nepal.

So yesterday, because the DLSU Green Archers were playing, I stayed through the DLSU versus National University UAAP football match on cable TV’s Sports + Action channel. If I was a neutral watching football for the first time, I probably would have immediately hopped off to another channel. Firstly, the pitch was an eyesore so desperately in need of sprinkling or an intervention from Zephyrus, the god of rain. Secondly, the hard pitch was bumpy and made good football difficult at best.

27 March 2017

Emilio Macabuag and his WWII Guerilla Group in Calatagan, Batangas

American troops and Filipino guerrillas with captured Japanese soldiers in WWII.  Image credit:

In June of 1943, roughly a year and a half into the Japanese occupation of the Philippines in World War II, a guerilla unit was formed in Calatagan in Batangas under the command of one Captain Emilio Macabuag. The unit consisted of a total of 366 men. Initially, the unit worked closely with another guerilla unit operating in Mindoro under the command of a Col. Macario Peralta Jr. The latter was likely an officer of the Philippine Army, which had been inducted into the United States Forces in the Far East (USAFFE) prior to the war.

23 March 2017

Lipa’s Tourism Council Elects New Board, Sets New Plans for Tourism Development

The newly elected officers of Lipa City Tourism Council together with Lipa City Mayor Meynard A. Sabili (front). At the back are the LCTC officers, from L to R Christine Mayor, Atty. Grreta Resurreccion, Minnie Atienza, Mary Ann Luz, Luchie Resurreccion, Fe Pena, Wendy Bautista, Jillian De Veza, Bert Mojares, Ram Mendoza and Ester Saludo.

The new set of officers of the Lipa City Tourism Council (LCTC) recently had their oath taking last 22 March 2017, Wednesday, at the office of Lipa City Mayor Meynard A. Sabili. Newly elected LCTC President, Minnie Atienza, who is also a business woman and general manager of Filipino Entrepreneurs Multi Purpose Cooperative, now aims for a better council which will not only focus on the promotion of Lipa as a tourist destination but in the development of all the factors and sectors that will make Lipa sustainably tourist-friendly. These factors are summarized in 5As: Amiability, Attractions, Accessibility, Accommodations and Activities.

20 March 2017

The Rape of Tanauan by the Japanese in World War II and Its Difficulties after the War

The Japanese Army on its way to Manila.  Image credit:  Wikipedia.

On 7 December 1951, then Philippine President Elpidio Quirino signed Executive Order Number 486 requiring the compilation of historical data about barrios, municipalities and provinces, in most likelihood to compensate for important historical records lost during World War II.1 The compilations subsequently submitted by Department of Education Division Offices throughout the country are now archived at the National Library of the Philippines and are a rich cache of historical information about Batangas.

18 March 2017

How Banaybanay Got Its Name: A Folkloric Story

The corner of the road leading to the San Vicente Church. Image credit:  Google Street View.

If you board a Batangas City bound jeepney from Lipa City and tell the driver you are bound for Banaybanay, if you do not look familiar to him, in most likelihood before he gives you your change he will ask you which Banaybanay is your destination. There are, in the present day, three barangays called Banaybanay, one in Lipa City1 and two in the Municipality of San Jose2.

16 March 2017

Balandis: the Slanted Houses Along a Road in Cuenca/Alitagtag

Back in the sixties when I was still a young boy, whenever I went with my family to Nasugbu, where my mother was from, we could not but take notice of this mysteriously slanted row of houses along a stretch of road past the Municipality of Cuenca into the next town of Alitagtag. Elsewhere, the fronts of houses built roadside, as seemed natural, faced the road. But along this stretch of road, the row of houses curiously slanted to one side so that their fronts faced away from the road.

13 March 2017

Know Batangas Province’s Oldest Towns and Cities

Bird's eye-view of Taal and Lemery.

Batangas was the first place in Luzon that the Spaniards explored in 1570 when Miguel López de Legazpi sent Martin de Goite and Juan de Salcedo to explore the island from their foothold in the Visayas. It is hardly surprising, therefore, that many of the country’s oldest colonial towns were established over territory that would eventually become the Province of Batangas.

11 March 2017

Sam Mangubat, Pauline Agupitan: How the Batangueños Fared in the 2017 It’s Showtime’s Tawag ng Tanghalan

In the end, when Noven Belleza, the farmer from Negros Occidental, was announced as the winner of the 2017 It’s Showtime Tawag ng Tanghalan, it was impossible to begrudge him the title. His medley of anthemic Air Supply songs in the second round of today’s finals at the Resorts World Hotel was a game-changer and, ultimately, a game-winner.

07 March 2017

TM Kalaw: Knowing the Batangueño of the Common Street Name

Image credit: and DirectionsonWeb.

Even in my trips to cities in the Visayas and Mindanao in the past, it was not uncommon to see a street or side street that was named TM Kalaw or just Kalaw. Lipa born and raised that I am, I have always suspected that the man after whom these streets are named must have been from Batangas. The surname is common enough in the province and even more so in the City of Lipa.