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Archive for October, 2011

How Jesse Eisenberg’s (onstage) brother brought home a Filipino wife

October 28, 2011 By: jessicazafra Category: Philippine Reference Alert 2 Comments →


Jesse Eisenberg, Camille Mana, Remy Auberjonois and Justin Bartha. Photo by Sandra Coudert in Playbill.com.

Jesse Eisenberg (The Social Network, The Squid and the Whale) has written a play about “a college kid consumed by white guilt, his multiculturalism-obsessed pothead mentor and roommate”, and how “their relationship is complicated by the sudden arrival of Edgar’s new sister-in-law of Filipino descent”. Asuncion opened the other day at the Cherry Lane Theatre Off-Broadway. Of course Jesse plays the kid consumed by guilt.

Read the interview in Vulture.

Auntie Janey’s Old-Fashioned Agony Column # 34: What’ll I do he’s out of my league and I’ll never see him again

October 28, 2011 By: jessicazafra Category: Re-lay-shun-ships 13 Comments →

Dear Auntie Janey,

I met this guy at an office meeting a week ago. He’s from a service provider working on a consultation basis and I was tasked to provide him background information on the project he needs to work on. I was terribly late for the meeting which was scheduled way before my usual shift. Had I known that I would meet an interesting person that day, I would have taken time to shave and dress for the meeting.

I was a complete mess that day but he doesn’t seem to mind. As a matter of fact he was indifferent. It was like a scene from one of those romcoms where the lead falls in love with someone who oblivious to his existence. Except that in this case the lead is a 33-year-old gay guy far less attractive than Hugh Grant.

I did some research (aka stalking) and confirmed that he is gay. However, the more I found out about him in cyberspace, the more that I’ve realized that he’s out of my league. The idea of dating someone out of my league is alien to me because I have a healthy sense of self-esteem and I do not classify people into “inferiors” or “superiors”. But here I am today. Smitten and totally feeling inferior.

My mind tells me to heed Robert Greene’s 36th law and save myself a few weeks of heartache. But my heart tells me that he could be the one and I should give it a shot. To complicate matters, it seems that our first meeting will be our last as he will be working on the project independently. It would seem very inappropriate to reach out to him on a personal level.

Unless of course I am Hugh Grant because he can get away with doing silly things just by being charming. I’d probably just wait for the deus ex machina. I won’t hold my breath for it but hopefully it happens before the credits roll.

I don’t know what help I’m asking for. I suppose I just need to hear from someone who would understand.

Thanks,
Queer Guy in Need of a Straight Eye

Dear Queer Guy in Need of a Straight Eye,

This I say unto you: ASK HIM OUT.

Gays are still guys, you know, despite disputable claims that some of them are women trapped in men’s bodies. Heterosexual guys can become fast friends by just talking about sports even though they have nothing much in common. If they like each other, they are instant friends. The same principle applies to gays. After one good conversation or good sex, the two parties can decide that they are a couple.

If he accepts your sudden and unprovoked invitation to coffee or wherever you are planning to take him, it means that he is interested. If he declines, you are not his type. If he declines but asks for your number, he is interested. There is really no sleuthing around when it comes to gay relationships. If the guy says he likes you, he likes you. If he says otherwise, move on to the next guy. There is no need to look for subtext here. Take everything at face value. After all, it’s between guys and most guys are direct and blunt about these things.

The “league” factor is a big deal I must say. Guys are also innately competitive and there’s definitely the tendency to make the other feel inferior. The “I’m bigger” attitude is there. But you’ll never know unless you ask him out. It’s the to know if you have a chance.

I think the indicator of a good homosexual relationship is that there is a give-and-take cycle going on—a symbiotic relationship (bayotic, get it?). Both guys are deriving satisfactory benefits from one another. However, if one is doing all the work while the other just lies there, something is wrong. Somebody is taking advantage of the other. It’s already a parasitic relationship.

Yours truly,
Auntie Janey

Would you like Auntie Janey to meddle in your life? Email agoniesforauntiejaney@gmail.com.

Note: References to The Lord of the Rings and Dune have been redacted as cheap and convenient. If there is anything we wish our readers to take away, it is this: Avoid the cheap and convenient.

Elect Marat Safin

October 28, 2011 By: jessicazafra Category: Places, Tennis 1 Comment →


Photos from tumblr

CHENGDU, China (AP)—Famed for his outbursts on court, Marat Safin said Thursday he wants to put his oratory to use in the Russian parliament.

He is up for election to the State Duma on Dec. 4 and could join other Russian sports stars, including gold medalist Svetlana Khorkina in the lower house of parliament.

“I am an intelligent guy and I have a lot to bring and a lot of ideas about things and what to do,” Safin said. “I am very committed to it.”

The 31-year-old Safin retired in 2009 after winning two Grand Slam titles and reaching the No. 1 ranking in 2000. He earned a reputation as a gifted but unpredictable player, breaking countless rackets during his frequent bouts of rage.

Since he quit the main tour after a series of injuries, Safin has been working for the Russian tennis federation and has become a member of the Russian Olympic committee.

He has also started playing on the ATP Champions Tour for former stars, and it was at the Chengdu Open in China that Safin revealed his political ambitions.

Safin participated in the primaries in the Nyzhny Novgorod region, and now awaits the Dec. 4 vote to take one of the 450 seats in the Duma.

“I could be the best looking guy in the Duma,” Safin said. “But that’s only because all the other guys are over 60.”

Thanks to Kuyakoy for the alert.

Why vote for Marat?
1. He’s brilliant. Watch his post-match interviews.
2. He has a horrific temper but always plays fair.
3. Look at him.
4. Imagine the news coverage.
5. As a bonus, his first name is Marat. (Darling, don’t write in the bathtub.)

Jonathan Ive’s eulogy for Steve Jobs

October 27, 2011 By: jessicazafra Category: Design, Technology No Comments →

Mr. Ive is Apple’s design chief. Since taking charge of the company’s design team in 1996, Mr. Ive and his group have been responsible for coming up with the physical look and feel of products that have helped set Apple apart from competitors. Read the WSJ article.

Thanks to Kermit for the alert.

We confess that we are retro.

October 27, 2011 By: jessicazafra Category: Books 9 Comments →


Crane stationery display at National Bookstore.

We read printed books.
We listen to albums.
We spell out all the words in our text messages and use punctuation.


Spectacle card assortment from Crane & Co. Studio, 8 cards/8 envelopes, Pho 510.

We actually know all our friends.
We watch movies at the cinema.
If we hate you we will require more than 160 characters to express it, unless we have opportunity to punch you in the face.


Notes hand engraved with gold initial, 20 notes/20 lined envelopes, Php 890.

We suppose we are “retro”.
We know it is less “efficient”.
We use quotation marks to indicate awareness that the words enclosed are not being employed in their usual sense.
Acquiring the physical book and music album, spelling out all the words correctly, sharing meals with friends, going to the cinema, finding the appropriate words and tone with which to convey contempt, and being clear about what we mean take up much more time than downloading, txting, facebooking and tweeting.


A quote from Dorothy Parker. (We should have used a pen with a thicker point.)

That is why we’re not as bored and listless as you are.
And if we really like you, we send you notes handwritten on good paper. We travel far and wide in search of the right stationery. Fortunately we don’t have to go very far.

Reading in Bed with James Franco

October 27, 2011 By: jessicazafra Category: Books No Comments →

Reading in Bed with James Franco from The Paris Review on Vimeo.