Tuesday, June 12, 2012

From Cali and back...


 Daly City is the largest city in San Mateo County, California, United States, with a 2010 population of 101,123. Located immediately south of San Francisco, it is named in honor of businessman and landowner John Daly. (Wikipedia)

Daly City, known as the  Gateway to the Peninsula and 15 minutes away from Downtown San Francisco  is a "small and quite lovely city" with a predominantly Asian population. 

Driving direction Daly City, California (CA) and San Francisco, California (CA)

According to Google Maps data distance between Daly City, California (CA) and San Francisco, California (CA) 10 Miles / 15 Km this take 12 mins You view road map and best route between Daly City, CA and San Francisco, CA. The route which you can take, the distance and estimated time is placed on the right depending on the status of the road. (Google Directions)

Daly City prides itself of the "highest concentration of Filipino/FilipinoAmerican of any midsized city in North America" and touted as "Pinoy Capital" in Benito M. Vergara, Jr.'s ethnography, "Pinoy Capital: The Filipino Nation in Daly City".  I am surprised that Daly City has a sister city and it is Quezon City, Philippines.  

It was into this small and lovely, close to the better-known San Francisco,  Daly City that now "It Guy" of Philippine Showbusiness Alexander Xian Lim-Uy was born, July 12, 1989.

The City of Tacloban (WaraySyudad han TaclobanTagalog or FilipinoLungsod ng Tacloban) is a city approximately 360 miles southeast of Manila. It is the first in Eastern Visayas to be classified as a Highly Urbanized City. It is the capital of the Philippine province of Leyte and is the largest city in terms of population[3] in Eastern Visayas. It is also considered as the regional center of the Region VIII. Tacloban was briefly the seat of the Philippine Commonwealth Government, from October 20, 1944 to February 27, 1945.
In an extensive survey conducted by the Asian Institute of Management Policy Center and released in July 2010, Tacloban City was ranked among the top ten most competitive cities in the Philippines. Tacloban ranked fifth overall, and second in the emerging cities category. (Wikipedia)

                                          CTO   - Tacloban City, Leyte    

In this city which is rich in history and culture; capital of the Philippine  province of  Leyte, "award-winning young actress, fashion muse and icon of many Filipinas",  Kimberly Sue Yap Chiu was born, April 19, 1990. 
               Kim                      Xian 

How these two good-looking  young kids, Kim and Xian, growing up shy, timid, chubby, bullied, suffering the figurative loss of one parent in their younger years, jumping from one place to the other before settling down in the cities of their choice, to Kim, Cebu City in 2006 and to Xian, Greater Manila Area, in 2008 came to be elite members  of Philippine Showbiz Royalty today?  Well, let us go back in time.


Chasing the dream.
Kim and Xian at 16 and 18, respectively,  had this dream of wanting to better their lives; to Xian, get out of a 9-5 desk job; the artistic, piano and other musical instrument and basketball playing Xian chose to leave the relative comforts of middle-class American life to continue schooling in his father's alma mater, the University of the East and play varsity  basketball.  His efforts landed him in Team B prompting a change in plans. 
                  CTO “2008 with Xian Lim @ UE Recto”
                             Alexander Xian Lim Uy at 18 

Xian's basketball path made a side turn to modelling then acting when Ton Lao, a Fashion Photographer saw the makings of a model/actor in the athlete. 

Kim's  path to success was  less rocky than Xian's.  She passed her audition into PBB breezily with her charm and skills.  She bested thousands in the Cebu audition and bested 15 housemates to win the Grand Prize after spending 42 days in the Big Brother house without having been nominated for eviction.  Her fellow housemates saw in the second to the youngest in their group as not only charming but also accomplished in her tasks, she even beat some of the boys in them.

                                                     CTO -Kim Chiu - 2006 PBB Audition
                                                  Kimberly Sue Yap Chiu at 16  
                                                                       PBB Teen Edition I Grand Winner

Xian's circuitous route from basketball to  modelling then acting brought her into Kim's orbit.  They had Bench and Skin White commercials together and Xian's early (his first included) shows were with Kim in the lead role.   

The Strong Resolve + Strong Work Ethic.
As with the horses they ride in Subic in their off-work hours, Kim and Xian decisively took the reins of their lives, set their direction  forward, leaning  heavily on their innate talent in the arts; seriously honing their craft with song, acting, dance workshops, Conversational English for Kim; more Tagalog for Xian.  

                    Xian has also taken up the sport and accompanies Kim in Subic.

The Change.
Modelling, acting became a vehicle for change that Kim and Xian rode but unlike Kim's skyrocketing career boosted by 42 days on CCTV beamed nationwide and some areas outside U.S in the reality show Pinoy Big Brother, Xian's career path was on a snail pace that when he was chosen to play the role of Andy Wu in My Binondo Girl, he was still considered a newbie against Kim's superstar status.

The Support.
Xian has his Mom and Lola; Kim has her family and Lola. They also had each other's support.  Kim is also known as a nurturing co-star. She does not steal scenes and allows her co-stars to shine. 

Kim and Xian  also have the valuable support of the fans who were first captivated then enamored by their innate goodness and their  admittedly unexplainable X factor. 

The ABS-CBN management who Kim says only gives her the best roles and this time the best co-actors. Both Kim and Xian were in transition and their pairing, I really believe, is made in heaven.  Professionally, they jibe; personally, more so.  God is so good!

                                      CTO   - Maranatha Singers
                           O Let the Son of God enfold you.

The Hand of God.
In early 2011, Xian was chosen one of three leading men for Kim in My Binondo Girl along with Matteo Guidicelli and Jolo Revilla.  

Pre-My Binondo Girl, Xian Lim was a relative unknown; he had shows that were nipped in the bud; he had guestings and indie roles and endorsements but still he lagged in the psyche of the teleserye- watching public.

Xian's Andy Wu ,in the original story, was supposed to be the last to end up with Kim of the three leading men.  By some twist of fate (Matteo had some  glitch and Jolo had his migraine) Xian's character got more airtime.

Xian and Kim registered such explosive chemistry onscreen, the MBG viewing public perked up and took notice. Andy Wu and Jade Dimaguiba   became a hot item  and Andy ended with Jade.   

The Hand of God which put Xian in the right place at the right time  with him being also ready from all the workshops he took awaiting just this break propelled Xian's career to phenomenal heights.

His presence in a crowd generates hysteria.  From a relative unknown he became a face that everyone, young and old  recognizes in the street and his life as he knew it has ended. He now enjoys the popularity reserved for heartthrobs and superstars.  

He has performed in the area where he was born and raised.  Xian left with a dream and came back a success in an industry no one among his friends would have guessed he would join. He and Kim have come a long way!  Alex is now officially Xian!  Kimberly Sue is now Kim!
 This is how Xian walks towards his performances now...flanked by Security and Program personnel.  His mallshows, endorsement, etc. appearances are packed to the rafters.  

The Harvest.
In less than 6 months after the unexpected pairing in My Binondo Girl,  a light drama show which had top ratings and an ad overload, there are two spin-off stars blazing the horizon - there is Papa Chen who is currently in the show Walang Hanggan and will lead his own teleserye with no less than heavy drama actress Jodi Santamaria as her co-star; the other one of course is multi-media star, new "It Guy" of Philippine Showbiz, Xian Lim!

Xian's cup of grace is overflowing.  He has Kim for his best friend, has multiple endorsements, shows galore, a fast-selling recording album, a new teleserye with Kim, a soon-to-be shown movie in The Reunion, another movie with Kim, etc.  

The 18- year old who left California to chase a dream has found a pot of gold at the end of his proverbial rainbow in the Philippines, the land of his ancestors. God is good; thanks be to God!

                          CTO - Xian as Alex...
                        Balitang America - Henni Espinosa

The Happy Couple...   CTO  




Saturday, April 21, 2012

Teachers Can Never Tell...

Today I learned that a young man I taught about ten years ago is the current reigning heart throb on a Philippine television show titled "My Bonondo Girl"  This exciting news tidbit came to my attention when a news crew from a local Bay Area Filipino television station showed up to film at Ben Franklin Intermediate, our little Daly City, California middle school.

When I was his 7th grade teacher, I knew him as Alex Lim.   My memory could be faulty (after all, I've taught 10 more years since Alex was in my class!) but I think of him as being rather artistic.  He was a sweet boy with a good sense of humor. Nowadays he goes by the name of Xian Lim, and he is quite the good looking young man!  Check out the photos on his website to see how dreamy he is now.  No wonder he's a heart throb.

All this just goes to show that teachers can never tell where their students will end up.  We spend our days together for nine months in a very intense relationship which ends abruptly when they fly away in June. Sometimes my students stay in touch with me, but more often than not, I never hear from them again.  What a pleasure to find about a former student who has made a success of his life.  Of course, I'd like to take some credit for that success; after all, teaching him English must have had some effect on his ability to act!

"During an interview on Kris TV last July 8, Kim shared with host Kris Aquino that it was her long time dream to build a home that her family can call their own. Tearful, the 21-year old actress said she still could not believe that she is finally living in her dream house.
She is also grateful for her career especially her supporters because if not for them, she would not be having all the blessings she has right now.
It was also through show business that the young actress was able to graduate from high school and send her other siblings to school. Eyeing a course in business in college on 2012, Kim was happy to say in a report from Push.com.ph posted April 13, 2011, that her dreams are slowly beginning to come true." --Asian Journal -8-26-11

Two and only 22...winners on all counts!

First the dream, then the resolve, then acceptance, hard work, prayer...now there are two of them, joining forces, "happy being together"..."finally, finally someone understands...finally, finally happiness and excitement just at the thought of her being there." 

What a beautiful God we serve!   He answers the cries of His people!  God be praised always!

                                      CTO -The Prayer

                                     Andrea Bocelli and Celine Dion

May the angels of the Lord guide and protect Kim , Xian  and their families always and may they continue to flourish in God's will and grace!



  1. Hello Gutsy...sobrang ganda ng blog mo. Very touching at ang ganda ng content. Please keep on writing. I'm sure if Xian and Kim read this, masisiyahan din sila.


  2. Salamat Mgps...sana nga mabasa nila...something good came out of Pex maintenance...hahaha...pinagdiskitahan ko ang blog...keep well and thanks again. Inspired din ako kina Kim and Xian.