Twisted by Jessica Zafra – Pumping irony since 1994

Archive for December, 2007

How it crumbles, cookie-wise

December 31, 2007 By: jessicazafra Category: Movies 2 Comments →

Last night I went to a lovely birthday party where the swag included Sudoku books and the works of Richard Dawkins (I got The Selfish Gene!). When I got home I watched Billy Wilder’s The Apartment (1960), one of the most cynical of romantic comedies, i.e. the best kind. If you don’t want to read any spoilers, stop right here.

C.C. Baxter (Jack Lemmon), an employee of a big insurance company in Manhattan, gets ahead at work by providing a special service to his bosses. He allows them to use his apartment as a fuckpad (they’re too cheap to get a hotel room and too old for drive-in movies). Baxter has a crush on an elevator operator named Fran Kubelik (Shirley Maclaine as the very definition of cute), and just when he thinks he’s getting somewhere, he finds that she’s been in his apartment.

Fran is having an affair with Baxter’s boss Mr Sheldrake (Fred MacMurray), who always meets her at this Chinese restaurant; every time they come in, the resident pianist plays the movie theme. I think the pianist was the Filipino jazz musician Bobby Enriquez, who worked in Manhattan clubs in the 60s. Unfortunately my copy doesn’t have end credits, and the imdb page for The Apartment doesn’t mention the piano player. Can anyone confirm or rebut?

If you don’t feel like weeping at It’s A Wonderful Life again tonight, consider The Apartment, which also ends on New Year’s Eve, with fewer or no tears.


The pianist playing “Jealous Lover” (theme song of The Apartment) in the Chinese restaurant, was, in my opinion, almost certainly NOT Bobby. At the time that movie was made, Bobby would have been 16 or 17 years old, and while he did start performing as a teenager, this was in the Philippines, Hong Kong, and later in Hawaii. He only arrived in mainland USA in 1967—at the invitation of actor William Conrad (“Cannon”; “Jake and the Fatman”, and many others). He first stayed for several years on the West Coast (playing, in particular with bop alto saxophonist Richie Cole’s group), and I don’t believe he played in New York clubs (like the Village Vanguard) until much later (70’s and 80’s). Hope this helps. Cheers, Patrick de K.

80 bucks

December 30, 2007 By: jessicazafra Category: Books 2 Comments →

I’ve long suspected that books cost more at Fully Booked than in Powerbooks, and today I got empirical evidence.

The Loser by Thomas Bernhard:  P549 at Fully Booked
Same edition of Bernhard book:   P469 at Powerbooks

The Book of Other People, edited by Zadie Smith: P599 at Fully Booked
Same edition of The Book of Other People: P519 at Powerbooks

Price difference: 80 pesos. (With bookstore discount cards, 72 pesos.)

The big El Bulli book that costs P15,000 at Fully Booked costs P11,000 at A Different Bookstore.

I like hanging out at Fully Booked, but best to do comparison-shopping.

Happy Birthday, Ricky!

December 30, 2007 By: jessicazafra Category: twisted by jessica zafra 3 Comments →

Twisted8, originally uploaded by 160507.


May you see the year through pastel-colored macarons.


The Lemniscate

December 30, 2007 By: jessicazafra Category: twisted by jessica zafra 3 Comments →

Twisted8, originally uploaded by 160507.

I visited the bookstores in Ayala Center today to see if Twisted 8 is on the shelves.

National Bookstore Glorietta has run out of Twisted 8 copies. There are 6 copies available at Powerbooks in Greenbelt 4 (Philippine Publications, 2nd floor as you step off the escalator), 2 at Powerbooks in Glorietta 3 (bottom right of the Philippine Publications shelf), and 3 at National Bookstore in Greenbelt 1 (New Titles table facing the door).

Twisted 8 retails at P250. Discounts offered on orders of 10 copies or more; email (Sorry, the address is not working. Please email If your school organization or book club or group would like to organize a Twisted 8 reading and book signing, email me at to schedule an event.

Metro filmfest sidelights

December 28, 2007 By: jessicazafra Category: Current Events 10 Comments →

This was forwarded by Ilonggo friends. “Let me share with you this message from Senator Aquilino Pimentel, Jr: (edited from mobile telephone text language): “Sakal, Sakali, Saklolo film should rectify anti Visayan message. Lola to yaya: ‘Bakit pinapalaki ninyong Bisaya ang apo ko?’ Mom to yaya: Speak to kid in Tagalog ‘para Pinoy’. Visayans are not Filipinos?”

“Yes, in this movie the character of Juday says that it is necessary to speak Tagalog and not Bisaya “para maging Pinoy”. This is racist and discriminatory. Not fair to non-native speakers of Tagalog. The movie implies that the Bisaya are not Filipinos and Binisaya is not a language spoken by Filipinos.”

“The scrptwriter, director, producer and Juday should be disabused of their anti-Bisaya sentiments. The Bisaya – Cebuanos, Waray, Ilonggos, constitute a very large segment of the Filipino population and cannot be dismissed as not Pinoy.” From Decentralize Imperial Manila

Meanwhile, Budjette alerted us to Carlo J. Caparas’ wiki entry, uploaded 19 December. “He is the Great behind many Filipino superheroes and comic characters in comic books such as Panday, Bakekang,Totoy Bato. . .”

The Great behind?


December 28, 2007 By: jessicazafra Category: Current Events 8 Comments →

Everywhere I look I see the Anya Hindmarch “I am not a plastic bag” bag. In the bookstore. In restaurants. In the queue at the supermarket. On the sidewalk, waiting for a taxi. In stalls at the tiangge. I’ve seen more Not A Plastic Bags than were actually produced by the Anya Hindmarch people. It’s so popular, so ubiquitious, any minute now the backlash will start. I already have a slogan for a bag: “I AM a plastic bag. Reduce your carbon footprint. DIE.”