Life Choices: 5 things to check out this week

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

Here are your weekly recommendations from the CNN Philippines Life editors. Illustration by JL JAVIER

Manila (CNN Philippines Life) — From a life simulation video game to a live online concert, here are some things that might be worth your while this week.

Southern Voices Printing Press online book sale

The quarantine period is the perfect time to catch up on your reading backlog, so if you happen to be one of the rare who have finally reached the end of their to-read list, I have good news for you: independent publisher Southern Voices Printing Press is having an online book sale (Disclaimer, though: they only ship within Metro Manila). The press positions itself as a venue for “voicing out of struggles of the people from the South, the less empowered and the voiceless,” and offers progressive reads for children (under Saranggola Books) and adults alike. Because it appears that the quarantine period is also the perfect time to be a bit more politically informed — take it from Britney Spears.

Refer the SVPP’s Facebook announcement for instructions on how to order. — ELIZABETH RUTH DEYRO

"Animal Crossing: New Horizons"

It’s been six days since “Animal Crossing: New Horizons” has been launched and it’s pretty safe to say everyone who’s played it since has not slept well. The newest game from the very popular Animal Crossing series by Nintendo had the fortunate and unfortunate timing of coming out during the COVID-19 pandemic — more unfortunate to Manila video game fans who have already pre-ordered their copies of the game in mall shops, which have all closed by the release date on March 20. So what is "Animal Crossing: New Horizons"? It’s essentially a ‘deserted island game’ where you are given a free rein to design the island to your liking. It’s a life simulation game, alright as the days in the game are real time (unless you reset the clock on your Nintendo Switch — which they call ‘time travel’) so you have to wait for flowers to bloom, trees to grow, neighbors to move in, and money to flow, flow, flow. Vulture has called the game an “anti-anxiety oasis” and “vital quarantine art” as it somehow puts you in charge of a community where you're just “doing right by the locals.” It’s a game of kindness and community living wrapped in a shiny veneer of capitalism (you really have to hustle to earn money in the game). Purchase the game on the Nintendo Store. — DON JAUCIAN

Puhon: A Ben&Ben FB Live Event for the COVID-19 Efforts

Filipino indie folk pop band Ben&Ben’s upcoming online concert for a cause is not one to be missed. In partnership with the TeaM Energy Foundation, the nine-piece band will be holding a one-hour livestream show via Facebook on Mar. 27 as a fundraising event and a launchpad of, a website created in response to the novel coronavirus pandemic. Aside from bringing a free show to viewers who are keeping safe at home during the quarantine period, the concert also seeks to raise enough funds to provide Personal Protective Equipment and nutrition support for frontline healthcare workers, finance COVID-19 testing kits, and disseminate relief goods for daily wage workers. Catch the free concert by checking out its Facebook event page, and learn how you can donate through The Spark Project. — ERD

Childish Gambino’s "3.15.20"

Let it be known: I’m not the biggest Childish Gambino fan. I haven’t been there since the “beginning” (for some reason I still separate the part of my life when I first discovered Donald Glover, the actor-comedian, from the part when I was first introduced to Childish Gambino, the stage persona, which was a lot later), nor have I religiously gone through every track he’s ever released, so when music critics call “3.15.20” the culmination of every phase of his music career, I’m not so sure if my understanding gives it justice. But it is indeed a masterpiece — that I fully understand and agree with. Glover yet again blurs the lines between genres through a blend of rap, R&B, pop, funk, and soul, and with most of the songs titled only with their respective timestamps (an unsubtle hint that the album ought to be consumed in its exact sequence), “3.15.20” is a lot like a journey with twists that feel familiar but still unexpected. The album features collaborations with artists such as Ariana Grande, 21 Savage, and Kadhja Bonet but his very best comes from where he works his magic independently. I’m not the biggest Childish Gambino fan, but I’d say that this album is, by far, his most authentic. Some people refer to it as “Donald Glover Presents” because of its initial release, after all, and it makes perfect sense. “3.15.20” is now available on all digital platforms. — ERD

The Flip Trip

I remember when I interviewed Pepe Diokno and Jessica Zafra for their first travel show “Trippies” in 2017, they're worried that that they’ll look more like a mother and son rather than proper hosts. But watching them go through from one country to another in “Trippies,” and more recently in “The Flip Trip” (2018), have eased those worries. Both T.V. shows aired first on CNN Philippines. What makes Diokno and Zafra such a good onscreen travel duo is their thirst for the culture of whatever country they find themselves in. In light of the COVID-19 outbreak, “The Flip Trip” is now free to view on YouTube. The earnings and donations to the show will go to our front liners battling the pandemic. Watch the first season of “The Flip Trip,” which is focused on a journey to the Czech Republic where they drink beer, soak up lots and lots of art and culture, and encounter icons such as Kafka, the Sto. Nino, and our very own Jose Rizal. And like any good travel show, it is very well shot. Watch it here. — DJ