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Inside GRID Vol. 4

The Fringe Issue

We make it a point to go off the beaten path, figuratively and literally, so you might say that our stories are always filed from our regular beat, which is outside the norm. But for us, the fringes still lie a bit more to the side of that. OFF off the beaten path, you might say. This is where the stories lie that might be on the verges of forgetting or incredulity. This issue, we take a look at stories and destinations that exist comfortably where nobody is looking, and thrive in that mysterious space.

Cover by Fruhlein Econar

We were approaching a kind of locals-only entrance to the mystical Mt. Bandilaan. The mountain springs to life during Holy Week as an intensely foraged pilgrimage site, with stalls selling talismans and rituals being performed.
– Strange Brew

When you’ve lost the place and all the tangible objects that have shaped your identity, what could you possibly turn to, to remind you of who you are and what you can still be?
– The Art of War

Contents

SHOOT FIRST
Photography by Diane Rosario. Searching for life and death in Laguna de Bay

DETAILS
News and notes from the field, plus anything and everything on our radar

DESTINATIONS
A roundup of where we’ve been, and where you should go next

TABI-TABI, PO
Illustrations Carlos Quimpo.A list of well-worn superstitions to guide you back home.

WHAT’S IN YOUR BAG
Scouring the bag of the man behind the street art infestation,Garapata.

INSTANT GRATIFICATION
Are the new breed of instant cameras as good as the OG?

HOW TO SURVIVE AT SEA
Illustrations Sam Ganzon. Here’s our advice: Cut this page out and bring it with you on your next trip.

MYSTIC MOUNTAINS
Illustrations Bianca Otivo. Mapping the country’s supernatural peaks

30 MINS WITH AGNES AND BILLY
The creative couple on their partnership in art and life

CAMPFIRE TALES
Yvette Tan on why we all love telling ghost stories on the road

SOME LIKE IT HOT
Uncovering the case of the missing siling labuyo.

EAT YOUR HEART OUT
A four-day food trip in Bicol with Bookie PH. Don’t forget the Kremil-S.

THE WRESTLING REVOLUTION
Our resident wrestling geek, Nina Unlay, hits the ring with the characters of PWR.

STRANGE BREW
Photography Geric Cruz. Bea Misa-Crisostomo goes foraging in the “land of magic,” Siquijor.

THE ART OF WAR
Not all war stories are written in the frontlines.

MEET THE LITAS (OF MANILA)
Photography Regine David. The Litas break motorbike stereotypes and show us how they ride.

From The Editors

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Photograph by Jether Dane

There’s something seductive and mystical about things that lie just outside our field of vision. How many cultures around the world have a superstition about looking for the supernatural out of the corner of your eye? Magic isn’t something that we see by looking hard at it: It’s something that seems to happen when we’re not paying attention—or at least when we’re pretending not to.

GRID makes it a point to go off the beaten path, figuratively and literally, so you might say that our stories are always filed from our regular beat, which is outside the norm. But for us, the fringes still lie a bit more to the side of that. Off off the beaten path, you might say. This is where the stories lie that might be on the verges of forgetting or incredulity. These are the stories and destinations that exist comfortably where nobody is looking, and thrive in that mysterious space.

There are all kinds of fringes. As our cover story shows, fringes can exist right in the middle of things. It can be a community that is home to the alter-egos of people we know, right in the middle of the metropolis. Wrestling is a world that springs straight from the shared imagination (some would call it delusion) of a few—as many very powerful ideas and realities do.

Our story on Siquijor takes a look (again, out of the corners of our eyes) at the mysticism that’s always been there, and which we in the mainstream have always acknowledged—if secretly and grudgingly. The traditional healing practices there lie on the borders between science and faith, between past and present, and indeed, between harm and healing.

There’s also the fringes that are created in the midst of great national crises. The war in Marawi pushed people out of their homes and into the literal fringes of their city. More than that, they were forced into the fringes of our awareness, into the fringes of their own identities. Is there any returning
from that? Now that the war is over, and the long task of rebuilding just begun, that question is more important than ever.

That story also reminds us that the existence of fringes presuppose a belief in the center. What lies in our center; what keeps us centered? Our ideas of home, of self, of faith lie in our core and keeps us from spinning apart. The core is important. But off to the side are the fringes, and that’s where the magic begins.

Contributors

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Yvette Tan

Yvette is a Manila-based horror writer, lifestyle journalist, and food security advocate. She is the author of two books, Waking the Dead and Kaba. She has also written a ballet, a feature film, and participated in two art exhibits.

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Bea Misa-Crisostomo

When she’s not playing shopkeeper at her sustainable general store, Ritual, you might find Bea foraging for underutilized vegetation, exploring streetside culture around the country, and working with cacao and coffee farmers.

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Geric Cruz

Geric is a freelance photographer based in Manila. Recently, he was chosen to be a part of the Southeast Asian Photography Masterclass Scholarship at the Obscura Photography Festival in Penang, Malaysia. He has exhibited his work locally and abroad.

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Regine David

Regine is an international fashion and portrait photographer born and raised in Manila, Philippines. Her work has been published in local and international publications such as Dazed & Confused, Vogue Hommes, L’Officiel, New York Magazine, CNN, Esquire Philippines, Rogue Magazine, and more.

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Carlos Quimpo

An after-hours illustrator, Carlos integrates his love for the outdoors, nostalgia, and textures into his illustrations. With a subdued color palette he enjoys making dreamy compositions that always seem to be stuck at 5PM. When he isn’t wielding a stylus, he is hiking summits, or making a mess in the kitchen.