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Ivana Alawi Denies Scandalous Video

"Hindi ako yung nasa video na yun" Ivana Alawi said as she deny the scandalous video that has been circulating on the internet.

The Filipino actress, model and YouTube star made the statement on her youtube video uploaded on May 14, 2020.

"Inedit nila yun, actually nakakatakot yung mga nagagawa nila sa internet eh" - the youtube celebrity added.

Jump to the 6:05 timeline of the video to watch how Ivana Alawi answer the question which was apparently asked by one of her followers.

"Ivana, may kumakalat na video po na scandal n'yo, kayo po ba talaga 'yon?" the fan asked.

The question was answered on her youtube channel while she and her younger sister, Mona, are having a hotpot mukbang with chopsticks on hand.

"You know, alam kong mukha akong wild, 'yung walang pakialam, liberated. Proud ako dito — you will never, ever see any scandal of mine on the internet," - the acctress further stated.

Alawi recalled that her mother, Fatima, initially had reservations about her taking on a sexy image on the internet. Her mother eventually learned to accept her sexy image as an actress and model.

The actress also revealed that though her past boyfriends asked her to send "dirty pictures" of her to them but she stressed that she never agreed to their requests.

"And sa mga taong nakakakilala talaga sa akin, alam nilang hindi ako 'yun" - Alawi added.

Watch Ivana Alawi youtube video post from her channel below as she answer the question.

As of posting, the said youtube post hast 4.6 million views while her youtuber has 6.7 million subscribers.

Coronavirus - COVID-19 Vaccine Updates

Coronavirus diseases had already infected millions of people around the world according to the present data, as of this writing it had reached out to more than 4.6 million cases worldwide.

Deaths has been alarming as the United States of America recently reported to have a death of 5,000 people within 24 hours and is now totaled to more than 90,000 cases. According to statistics expert, America will breach 100,000 mark in no time.
Photo: businessinsider.com

Considering the asymptomatic factor of this disease, the world leaders' have raised their guard shutting down their borders to prevent the spread of the pandemic.

With this, international pharmaceutical companies have been working in a neck breaking pace in addressing this new virus that has been crippling the entire humanity.

Below are some of the notable pharmaceutical companies that has been racing to produce a drug and vaccine to battle this disease.


Roche

The Swiss pharma giant Roche with their researchers and scientists announced that they have developed a game changer against the coronavirus after their data shows of a 100 percent accurate antibody trials.

"it is a highly specific assay with specificity of 100 percent" the national coordinator of the UK Coronavirus Testing Programme, Professor John Newton said on an interview.



Moderna

The Massachusetts biotechnology company, Moderna, had announced a promising early results for their human test for the vaccine. Though the data has not yet published in a scientific journal, but early data shows that the result for human responses show that the vaccine is safe and most especially - effective.



Sinovac Biotech

Sinovac Biotech is a privately held Beijing-based company that had also joined the raise in developing a vaccine against the virus that first occured on their country. The researchers from the Sinovac Biotech has been testing animals, specifically rhesus macaques - an species of monkeys, and told to a report that their vaccine was able to protect the healty animals when exposed to the coronavirus.

The pharmaceutical company stated that the vaccine consist of chemically inactivated version of the virus was injected to the monkeys. The ginea pigs where then observed within seven days and the researchers said that they could not detect the coronavirus in the pharynx or lungs of any of the subjects.

Due to the promising results, Chinese President Xi Jinping had announced on Monday, May 18, 2020, during the 73rd session of the World Health Assembly that they will make the vaccine available globally for the public good as soon at it became available. The president previously reported that China will provide $2 billion for COVID-19 assistance with economic and social development in affected countries, most especially developing one.



Pfizer

Pfizer, the US-based drugmaker had joined the race in hunt to develop a vaccine to beat the coronavirus.

The American multinational pharmaceutical corporation which has a base in New York City had already have their first stage of testing involving 200 volunteers on the age of 18-55. 

The vaccine trials are currently going on in USA. The effort of the American pharmaceutical was made in collaboration with BNTECH, a german company, that is why human trials were also made in parts of Germany.

Pfizer researchers said that the next phase will invlove 160 new candidates from a higher risk categories which will be then tested and evaluated.

Pfizer uses mRNA vaccines which was also the same strategy used by another pharma giant, Moderna.



Sanofi

Sanofi S.A., the French multinational pharmaceutical company headquartered in Paris, France had just announced that the candidate vaccine is expected to enter clinical trials in the second half of 2020 and to be available by the second half of 2021.

On the side news, Sanofi drew criticism among world leaders after they announced to the public that they will prioritize US before the rest of the world on the vaccine once it got fully developped. This is due to the money the US government invested to manufacture the potential vaccine.

Being a French company, the French government had made pressure to Pfizer over the scandalous prioritization remark.

Sanofi on the other hand retracted their previous statement after their CEO Paul Hudson made an interview with the international daily newspaper, Financial Times.

"The vaccine against COVID-19 should be a global public good and its access need to be equitable and universal," - the France official said.



Altimmune 

Altimmune, a clinical stage biopharmaceutical company based in Gaithersburg, Maryland, United States announced that they have commenced testing on COVID-19 vaccine candidates on their laboratory.

"In collaboration with the University of Alabama at Birmingham, we have commenced preclinical testing of candidates for our Covid-19 vaccine, AdCovid," - the company said.

Altimmune named their candidate vaccine as AdCovid and will be administered intranasally.

"AdCovid is being developed as a single dose, intranasal vaccine that is designed to activate multiple arms of the immune system including humoral (antibodies), cellular (T-cell) and mucosal immunity," - Altimmune said.

Watch Doris Bigornia Cats Video


Watch as radio anchor Doris Bigornia's cats show off at "SRO" during their live telecast on May 15, 2020.

SRO: Suhestyon, Reaksyon at Opinyon is a radio talk show under the DZMM that broadcasts every night in the Philippines and is currently hosted by Alvin Elchico and Doris Bigornia.

During the opening of the show, the Filipina news presenter showed of one of her cat named "Nala" and jokingly told the viewers that the cat was attending foreign inquiries as she showed feline having a phone in hand.

Then, before the closing of that episode of the radio talk show, the Filipina journalist was joined by three cats which Bigornia introduced to be Edward, Nala and Simba - to say their farewell to the viewers.

The news anchor cats played right on Bigornia's back for everyone to see. The cats appeared to be fighting on their play which put smiles on every televiewers.

The said video clip then became viral on social media and was a hit for both cat and non-cat lovers.

How To Make Facebook Avatar - Philippines?

It seems the hype of facebook avatar has been spreading across the globe after Mark Zuckerberg himself posted his own cartoonized version of himself on his official facebook account.

This feature will enable you to make a caricature version of your own self by selecting different features of your facial features (example: hair, face, skin tone, etc.)
Photo credit: Mark Zuckerbeg facebook account

Facebook avatar is the social media's own avatar making feature after they noticed that Bitmoji from Snapchat is becoming popular among online users.

This cartoonized version of yourself then can be used on the comment section.

So how to use facebook avatar on desktop browser, android and apple ios?

As of this posting, this feature was not yet available in most countries and that includes the Philippines.

It seems like this feature is being rolled-out to each countries in a series of launches.

We have seen that the feature was made available on first on Australia and then to America.

It can be recalled that reaction icons (like, love, care, haha, wow, sad and angry) wasn't also rolled-out at once globally.

Bagyong Ambo - PAGASA Update - May 16, 2020

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) announced on their weather bulletin that the Bagyong Ambo was estimated based on all available data including those from Mt. Sto. Tomas (Benguet) Doppler Radar over the coastal waters of Santa Cruz, Ilocos Sur (17.0°N, 120.3°E).

Available data including those from Mt. Sto. Tomas (Benguet) Doppler Radar over the coastal waters of Santa Cruz, Ilocos Sur (17.0°N, 120.3°E). The weather bureau released the data as of 8:00 AM today, May 16, 2020.



Direction

Tropical storm Ambo was determined to be moving North Northwestward at 20 kilometers per hour.



Speed

Bagyong Ambo is currently seen moving North Northwestward at 20 kilometers per hour.



Strength

The tropical depression has a maximum sustained winds of up to 75 kilometers per hour near the center and gustiness of up to 125 kilometers per hour. 



Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal Number 1 

Areas that will experience a 30-60 kilometers per hour winds prevailing or expected in 36 hours.

  • Batanes
  • the rest of Cagayan
  • Isabela
  • Quirino
  • Aurora
  • the rest of Nueva Ecija
  • Tarlac
  • the northern portion of Zambales (Santa Cruz, Candelaria, Masinloc, Palauig, and Iba)
  • the rest of Pangasinan


Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal Number 2

Areas that will experience a 61-120 kilometers per hour winds prevailing or expected in 24 hours.

  • Ilocos Norte
  • Ilocos Sur
  • La Union
  • the eastern portion of Pangasinan (Lingayen, San Carlos City, Basista, Malasiqui, Alcala, Sto. Tomas, Rosales, Balungao, Umingan, Binmaley, Calasiao, Sta. Barbara, Urdaneta City, Villasis, Sta. Maria, San Quintin, Dagupan City, Mangaldan, Mapandan, Manaoag, Laoac, Binalonan, Asingan, Tayug, Natividad, San Jacinto, Pozzorubio, San Fabian, Sison, San Manuel, San Nicolas)
  • Apayao
  • Abra
  • Kalinga
  • Mountain Province
  • Ifugao
  • Benguet
  • Babuyan Islands,
  • the northwestern portion of mainland Cagayan (Santa Praxedes, Claveria, Sanchez Mira, Pamplona, Abulug), Nueva Vizcaya, and the northern portion of Nueva Ecija (Carranglan, Lupao, San Jose City, Pantabangan)


Furthermore, PAGASA released the following forecast positions

•24 Hour (Tomorrow morning): 105 km West Southwest of Basco, Batanes (20.0°N, 121.1°E)
•48 Hour (Monday morning):360 km Northeast of Basco, Batanes (23.1°N, 124.0°E)
•72 Hour (Tuesday morning): 1,465 km Northeast of Extreme Northern Luzon (OUTSIDE PAR) (30.0°N, 132.0°E) 


Bagyong Ambo has an international name VongFong.

Bagyong Ambo - PAGASA Update

The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) announced on their weather bulletin that the Bagyong Ambo was located based on all available data to be at 315 kilometers East of Borongan City, Eastern Samar. The weather bureau released the data as of 4 p.m. today, May 13, 2020.
bagyong ambo Philippines


Location

Bagyong Ambo is moving west northwest even approaching the Philippine islands. It is forecasted to make landfall tomorrow afternoon or evening.



Speed

The tropical storm is moving at the speed of 10 kilometers per hour.



Strength

The tropical depression has a maximum sustained winds of 95 kilometers per hour and gustiness of up to 115 kilometers per hour.



Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal Number 1

The weather bureau had released the areas in Luzon and Visayas that are currently placed under storm signal number 1.

Luzon:

  1. Sorsogon
  2. Ticao Island
  3. Catanduanes
  4. Southern portion of Albay (Oas,Tabaco,Ligao City,Pio Duran,Guinobatan,Malilipot,Jovellar,Camalig,Santo Domingo,Bacacay,Rapu-rapu,Daraga,Legazpi,Manito)

Visayas:

  1. Northern Samar
  2. Northern portion of Samar (Calbayog,Sta. Margarita,Gandara,Matuguinao,Pagsanghan,San Jorge,San Jose De Buan,Tarangnan,Catbalogan City,Jiabong,Motiong,San Sebastian,Paranas,Hinabangan)
  3. Northern portion of Eastern Samar (Jipapad,Arteche,Maslog,Oras,San Policarpio,Dolores,Can-avid,Taft,Sulat,San Julian,Borongan City)


Furthermore, PAGASA released the following forecast positions

  • 24 Hour(Tomorrow afternoon): 160 km East of Catarman, Northern Samar(12.7°N, 126.1°E)
  • 48 Hour(Friday afternoon):20 km North Northwest of Daet, Camarines Norte(14.3°N, 122.9°E)
  • 72 Hour(Saturday afternoon): In the vicinity of Conner, Apayao(17.8°N, 121.3°E)
  • 96 Hour(Sunday afternoon):265 km Northeast of Basco, Batanes(21.9°N, 124.0°E)
  • 120 Hour(Monday afternoon):1,280 km Northeast of Basco, Batanes (OUTSIDE PAR)(26.6°N, 132.6°E)


Bagyong Ambo has an international name VongFong.

Bagyong Ambo - PAGASA Weather Update

The first tropical storm appeared inside the Philippine Area of responsibility (PAR) according to the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA).

As of 2 p.m. today, May 5, 2020, the previously identified Low Pressure Area (LPA) east of Mindanao has developed into Tropical Depression according to the weather bureau.

Being the first tropical storm was named AmboPH, carrying the first letter of the alphabet being the first storm of the year.

The breaking news was first heard on their twitter account as their website wasn't still updated as of this writing, PAGASA website still indicates that it is still an LPA.

This news would somehow break the hot temperature the whole country is currently experiencing, most especially on Mindanao.

Stay safe everyone!

Philippines Boasts Samurai Sword Armaments

Are you a sword enthusiast and looking for a katana or samurai sword for sale but you are living here in the Philippines?

Good news, I found a store, actually - the only legit online sword shop that offers the finest quality of katanas you can find in the country.

Introducing the Geisha’s Blade 芸者の刃 Philippines Samurai Sword Shop.

Geisha's Blade is the Philippines' pioneer in Japanese style swords (samurai sword) and yoroi (samurai armor) which introduced katanas to the Filipinos way back 2005.

They have been on the market for so long that their products were made available on the discontinued multiply.com and the then sulit.com.ph (now OLX.ph), that is aside from popular ecommerce site ebay.ph.

Handling swords for more than 15 years now, through their continued dedication, katana lovers can rely that this store caters the finest sword in the country.



The Persons Behind Geisha's Blade

In order to have an assurance on the quality of every product, it is very crucial to know the men and women behind the wheels.

Geisha’s Blade 芸者の刃 was formed by Jaimee L. and Aldwin P. who both have a passion for the Japanese tradition, culture and arts.

Jaimee L. studied Japanese linguistics and is a graduate of Interior Design in UP Diliman. Aside from her passion on Japanese swords, she also collects vintage kimonos and getas from Japan.


Aldwin P. was an Education Specialist and Philippines Community Assistant at eBay. Aside from being a passionate Japanese swords collector, he is also a Japanese Martial Arts practioner and is a certified black belter. 

Aldwin now focuses on Japanese Swordsmanship at Sugawara Budo Philippines, a Philippine dojo established in 1998. Currently, he is studying tsukamaki - the Japanese art of handling both functional and aesthetic aspect of the sword.


How Swords Are Made At Geisha’s Blade?

Geisha's main product line, shinkens, which was made specifically for tameshigiri (Japanese art of target test cutting) are forged in the traditional Japanese manner: hand forged, heat treated, water/oil quenched, and then polished by hand. 

Below are some of the behind-the-scene photos to give you an idea how the Japanese traditional way shapes the Geisha’s Blade swords. Photos courtesy of Geisha's Blade facebook page.



After these laborous forging, below is a youtube video from Geisha's Blade's official youtube channel as they demonstrate tameshigiri or the Japanese art of target test cutting. We advised to jump off to Sir Aldwin's demonstration (wink).

The samurai store said that their swords have an average of 1kg regardless on what kind of steel-type the blade was made. This means that proper technique are needed to cut those targets as everyone will probably swinging the same weighted steel.

These samurai swords of course came from different material of the fittings, length, width, and thickness. This would mean that you need to familiarize yourself to your own sword/s, and of course you might be needing lots of those fresh green bamboo or banana stem to master tameshigiri and give your samurai a justice.
Image shows the weight in kilograms of some of Geisha's Blade swords


Geisha’s Blade Store Popularity

You can only trust the products if people acknowledges the store too. This is where Geisha’s Blade credibility as the country's number one katana store eclipses the sword-supplier-wannabe in the country.

Continue reading and be amazed on the invites Geisha's Blade had received from the past years.



Geisha’s Blade at the 1st Philippine National Kendo Tournament 

Geisha’s Blade was invited to have an exhibit by the United Kendo Federation of the Philippines for their first ever Philippine National Kendo Tournament.





Geisha’s Blade had made an impression to the Philippine kendoka as they were also invited to the following Kendo Tournaments.




EIGASAI Japanese Film Festival 2019

Geisha's Blade was also invited by the Shangri-La Plaza to exhibit their katanas at the 22nd EIGASAI Japanese Film Festival.

Wide range of Japanese swords and armours adored the Shangri-La Plaza Red Carpet. Aside from the product display, the school of classical Japanese Swordsmanship Sugawara Sogo Budo Philippines graces the festival. Sir Aldwin as a student of that school, also performed during the duration of the event.




Being one of the attractions of the festival, Geisha's Blade was featured by the country's leading papers "The Philippine Star" and "BusinessMirror".


Geisha’s Blade at History Con

History Con Philippines organized by the international television network "History" were also pumped-up as Geisha's Blade featured their arsenals in display.

The now renowned Japanese sword shop was invited by the American broadcasting company several times on their History Con in the country proving their authority in the local swordsmanship arena.





Geisha’s Blade at Animax Carnival

Animax Philippines invited Geisha's Blade at the Animax Carnival Philippines event held at the SMX Convention Center, Pasay City. During the event, aside from the displayed samurai swords and samurai armors, spectators were also given the privileges to have a photo ops while wearing the full suit armor at the booth.



Geisha’s Blade Samurai Armor at KFC Commercial

What else would the best publicity be other than your products appearing on the national television?

This is exactly what happened to the Geisha's Blade armaments as they appeared on KFC commercial before millions of local television with the Filipino actor-comedian Leo Martinez.



Geisha’s Blade In "Nilalang"

If you're really getting good at it, you would probably want something bigger. Sure enough, this Japanese sword shop proved to be unsatisfied in the 14 seconds commercial as they invaded the big screen when their swords and armors were used in the 2015 movie titled "Nilalang".

Nilalang is a Filipino-Japanese action horror film starred by Cesar Montano and Maria Ozawa and became an official entry to the Metro Manila Film Festival during that year. 





Geisha’s Blade at Curteanah Cosplay Events

Geisha's Blade was invited by the "Curteanah Cosplay Events" - an organization that's celebrating a Japanese Tanabata Festival held in Baguio City. Various high quality Japanese style samurai swords, katanas and samurai armors were displayed on the event.


These citations and participations indeed added laurels on Geisha's Blade portfolio as the country's leading samurai swords provider in the Philippines.



So How To Buy At Geisha's Blade?

Though they are located at the Mandaluyong, Metro Manila, Philippines, they do not have a physical store - at least not yet.

You can check the complete details on how can you order at the "How to Order & Payment Questions" section on their FAQ page.

We can tell that they allotted a great amount of time on their FAQ page as it answers most/all possible questions in regards to owning a sword from them. The FAQ page is also too honest that they even tackled the question "I see similar armors on auction sites selling for less money, why?" which would be considered taboo on other store.

Imagine making your possible customers being aware that there are similar swords available online at a much cheaper price? Good thing that they have discussed it properly for the customer's sake.



The Website 

You can really tell that this samurai store definitely means business as their website looks very professional. I am a full-stack web developer for 13 years now and I can really tell that the websites layout and navigation was nicely laid out, to put it in simple words - their website is very user friendly.

One more important thing that I also wanted to mention about their site is that all transactions (simple browsing, registering account, adding order to your cart, etc) done within geishasblade.com are totally secured as I have noticed that they protected their site with "Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure" which means that all transactions submitted from and to the geishasblade.com website are encrypted.

For those who are not familiar with this, this feature is fully optional and website owners are not required to have this on their site and in order to achieve this level of security, Geisha's Blade needs to pay an additional expenses on their website's hosting plan to protect their patrons.

Two thumbs up for this Geisha's Blade!



The Swords

You can check all of their products through their website's "SHOP" link. They are offering a wide range of Japanese swords, they even have replicas from famous movies like LOTR, The Last Samurai, Blind Swordsman - to name a few. Replicas from anime and video games are also available including Sasuke Uchiha's sword from the anime Naruto, Kenshin Himura's katana from anime Samurai X - again, just to name a few.

Their merchandises were groupped into several categories which include:

  • Japanese
    • Katana
    • Wakizashi
    • Tanto
    • Laito
    • Shirasaya
    • Ninja Sword
    • Wooden Weapons
      • Bokken
      • Shinai
    • Accessories
      • Sword Bag / Shinai Bag
      • Maintenance Kit
      • Stand / Rack
      • Tsuba
      • Sageo
      • Uniforms
      • Keikogi
      • Hakama
    • Japanese Armor
      • Classic Series
      • Bugyo Series
      • Daimyo Series
      • Hatamoto Series
      • Kabuto
      • Menpo
    • Japanese Polearms
    • Kapanese Masks/Dolls
  • Movie
  • Anime / Video Game
  • Chinese
  • European
  • Miscellaneous
  • Scratch & Dent
  • Steel Type
    • Steel type: 1045
    • Steel type: 1050
    • Steel type: 1060
    • Steel type: 1095
    • Steel type: T10
    • Hand Forged
    • Machine Made

Aside from their website, Geisha's Blade also have a youtube channel named GeishasBlade which boasts 1.97K subscribers as of this posting. They also have a very active facebook page Geisha's Blade 芸者の刃 (46K+ followers) where you can get most of the updates from them.



Note: This article is not a paid advertisement by Geisha's Blade.

COVID-19 Cases In The Philippines Breaches 10K Mark

This is indeed an unfortunate news for the entire humanity especially to the Filipino people as the Philippines had reached 10,004 confirmed cases on the COVID-19 infection.

The statistics breached the 5 digits mark because the confirmed cases within the past 24 hours period is 320, way higher than the previous days which only averaging to a little above 200 daily cases.

The terrifying news came while the majority of the areas in the country were placed under the General Community Quarantine (GCQ) which is laxer than their previous status which is the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ).

It can be recalled that many cities and provinces switched from ECQ to GCQ from May 1, 2020, which allowed more businesses to open - consequently allowing more citizens' movements.

Below are the official COVID-19 data as of this posting.

Total Cases: 10,004

Active Cases: 7,840 inclusive of 320 new cases

Recovered: 1,506 inclusive of 98 new recoveries

Died: 658 inclusive of 21 new deaths

For the updated statistics, please check the graph below courtesy of news.abs-cbn.com.

Philippine Seeks Billion of Loans For COVID-19 Pandemic

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic on the country, the Philippine government had just recently been awarded a $100 million loan to enable the country's capacity in response to the coronavirus disease that has been crippling its citizens amidst the lockdown.

The five billion pesos loan was awarded by the World Bank and was announced by the international financial institution themselves.

The announcement said that the loan will support the Department of Health's COVID-19 Emergency Response Project, which aims to improve the delivery of critical medical services and supplies to combat the pandemic.
Photo: pymnts.com
If you think this amount is huge, the World Bank had already awarded a $500 million loan to the country, which also had the coronavirus as the sole reason for the approval. The 25.2 billion pesos loan will be paid by the Philippine government in 29 years and has a grace period of 10.5 years as stated on its official website.

But wait there's more...

The Asian Development Bank (ADB) also approved a $200-million loan to support the Philippine government's efforts to provide cash subsidies to the poorest of the poor that has been the most affected on the crisis.

Prior to this, the Philippines and the Asian Development Bank signed a loan agreement that would enable the government to access $1.5 billion for the coronavirus related measures.

On the other note, the Philippine government has applied for a $750-million loan from China’s Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) to help fund the coronavirus pandemic 2019 (COVID-19) containment effort. AIIB said that the loan application is expected to be acted on by May 2020. The government allots the loan for the COVID-19 Active Response and Expenditure Support (CARES) Program.

Philippine president Rodrigo Duterte signed into law the Republic Act No. 11469 or the "Bayanihan to Heal as One Act", authorizing the government to implement a COVID-19 emergency subsidy program that provides cash payments of P5,000 to P8,000 per month for two months to 18 million low-income families nationwide.