Someone asked me how my blog and newspaper column came to be titled "Bleachers Brew". It's like this, it's an amalgam of sorts of two things: The bleachers area in the stadium/arena where I used to sit when I would watch baseball, football, and basketball games and Miles Davis' great jazz album Bitches Brew. That's how it got culled together. I originally planned on calling it "The View from the Big Chair" that is a nod to Tears For Fear's second album, Songs from the Big Chair. So there.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

New vibes with Perlas’ Amanda Villanueva

New look, new vibes with Perlas’ Amanda Villanueva
by rick olivares

The second act of Amanda Villanueva’s life is underway, and the former Adamson volleybelle is making the most out of opportunities.

The pretty Fil-American took some time off her gracing the Freego Hyper Night even at Brick and Mortar at the Fort Strip at BGC to talk about the whirlwind changes in her life.

“The time away (working in an insurance company in Dubai for a year) taught me many things,” she revealed. “You learn things about yourself especially in a different playing field outside sports. You deal with others differently, and of course, life in another country is always different and challenging. I think the time away helped shape a different philosophy about myself and life.”

And it shows. Not only is she slimmer and looking more fit than ever, but there’s a different aura about her. A radiant and positive one.

“Playing in the UAAP with Adamson, we took some tough losses. Sometimes you can’t let go of the defeats. I think that working abroad in a wholly different environment puts things into a new perspective – you have to get up and go because no one will wait for you. It’s a 180 degree turn,” she explained. “I think with my mentality in life changed – I wanted to be more positive. That mindset allows you to move on and move ahead; to take on the challenges life has to offer.”

The result is a new joy to her playing volleyball with the Perlas Spikers in the Premier Volleyball League. “A home that I thought that I wouldn’t find,” she described of her new club. “Except for Ella (De Jesus) who was my teammate at St. James Academy in high school, all the others were former opponents (in Ateneo, the University of the East, and University of the Philippines to name a few). But being alongside them is inspiring. And of course, fun even if we didn’t make it to the next stage of the tournament. Now it’s looking forward to the next.”

In the current PVL tourney, Amanda is 39th in scoring among all players.

Villanueva’s modeling career is also taking off. She is not only a brand ambassador for Freego and Mizuno but she is also the new cover subject of FHM magazine. “It was an easy decision to make,” she said of her decision to be on the cover of a men’s magazine. If you look at Rachel Daquis’ FHM shoot, it’s very nice too. Nothing bastos. As long as it isn’t malicious, I am fine. It’s an expression too of women empowerment and taking good care of one’s body.”

Aside from that, Amanda is also now working as an assistant team manager for the Adamson Lady Falcons under Akari Sports. More to that, she is also the new coach Adamson’s beach volleyball team. And she does volleyball clinics.

“It feels great to be back in school in a different capacity and with a different mindset,” she said. “It’s not only giving back but also helping others.”

Think that she is done?

“I actually also teach and advocate financial literacy with AXA.”

She laughs. The workload sounds crazy – “it is,” she admitted followed by another laugh. “But it’s also about time management and that positive attitude. I am maximizing the opportunities available.”

“I guess I am just very energized in life.”

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