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Twisted by Jessica Zafra – Pumping irony since 1994
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Archive for May, 2012

Cats of Jerusalem

May 31, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Cats, Places 3 Comments →

Ricky is in Tel Aviv to watch his mother Madonna for the nth time. He sent us snapshots of the local fauna.

They look fierce.

Wait, that’s not a cat. Exactly.

Trip accounting: Taiwan

May 30, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Places, Traveling No Comments →

Wednesday, 30 May 2012

Time elapsed from leaving house in Makati to arriving at NAIA terminal 1: 40 minutes
Drama from cats: None
Verdict on Corona impeachment: 20-3, guilty
Long queues? Yes, but fast-moving
Aggravation? None
Time elapsed from lining up at airport entrance to sitting in Eva Air lounge: 20 minutes (Not reliable gauge; guest of airline)
Stress level: Low
Duration of trip: Less than 72 hours
Boarding: On time
Departure: Delayed by runway traffic for 45 minutes
Flight time: 2 hours, 10 minutes
Airline food: Airline food
Time elapsed from landing at Taiwan airport to getting out of airport: 20 minutes. Very fast and efficient, and we’d never been to Taiwan before.

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Announcements etc

Screenwriter/producer Raymond Lee is deciding on the winner of the LitWit Challenge: I lost/found it at the movies. The winner will be announced on Saturday.

If you have any unclaimed LitWit prizes from November 30, 2011 and earlier, please claim them by Wednesday, 6 June 2012. All unclaimed books will be given away again. (Posting “Give them to me!” or variations thereof guarantees you will get nothing. Posting this warning guarantees that we’ll hear from some moron.)

Our interview with Mark Millar is being transcribed by volunteers and will be posted as soon as they get back to us.

The Pawn Stars book giveaway, week 3

May 30, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Books, Contest 8 Comments →

It’s the last week of our Pawn Stars book giveaway. Three readers will win signed copies of License To Pawn: Deals, Steals, and My Life at the Gold & Silver by Rick Harrison, proprietor of the World-Famous Gold & Silver Pawn Shop at the center of the hit History Channel series, Pawn Stars. Just answer this week’s question and you could win a hardcover copy signed by Rick Harrison.

Last week’s question was: Of the scores of interesting items people have brought to the shop in Pawn Stars, which one would you like to own?

The winners are: caterpillar-girl, turmukoy and blissfulguro (Who answered the question in Week 1). Congratulations! Please post your full names in Comments (They won’t be published) and we’ll alert you when you can pick up your books.

Update: You can claim your prizes at the Customer Service counter of National Bookstore at Power Plant Rockwell, Makati. Just give them your real names.

This week’s question is: Who is your favorite character on Pawn Stars?

Post your answers in Comments. Winners will be announced in 7 days.

What we think about when we look at art

May 30, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Art, Television No Comments →

We went to the opening of Incidental Pleasure, a group show at Mospace curated by Geraldine Javier. Artists Juan Alcazaren, Mike Munoz, Eugene Jarque, Mac Valdezco, Ryan Villamael and Javier were “tasked to explore the boundaries of their styles” using fabric.

Foreground: Orange 524.558 by Mac Valdezco. On the wall: Feeder by Eugene Jarque.

Orange looks like some kind of carnivorous anemone that turns into Spider-Man’s web shooters.

Another Life of a Tree, knitted by Geraldine Javier. Very House Baratheon, don’t you think?

Has anyone noticed how Game of Thrones slowed down in the middle of Season 2? Too much time spent on non-essential chitchat. Too much exposition, not enough action. Did Talisa have to do that monologue on how she became interested in medicine? Please, jump each other and be done with it. We already know Jon Snow and Robb Stark are going to get laid (Not by each other—down, gay incest freaks) but we’re made to wait three episodes. How long is Arya going to be a serving girl at Harrenhal? Theon Greyjoy is a fascinating character but we’re close to knowing more about Theon than we need. Daenerys whining about her dragon babies—stop that. And we love to see Tyrion reading books, but not every minute please.

Fortunately the show picks up by episode 9. Hard to match the penultimate episode of the first season, but the action has been building—and stretching, and meandering—to the Battle of Blackwater. Finally we get all the action that was missing from the last three episodes, in a full-out spectacle written by GRRM himself.

Juan Alcazaren’s “Protect Me From What I Want To Eat” is composed of felt, screws, washers and G.I. sheet. Political statement? Does it say Spratlys? Let us know.

Ryan Villamael’s “Big Bang” in felt. Fabulous, though it seems more intelligent design to us. Below, his “Stellar” series.

Mospace is on the 3rd floor of Bo’s the furniture showroom on Bonifacio High Street. The gallery is open daily from 11am to 8pm; the show runs until 24 June 2012.

Meatatarian’s Delight

May 29, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Food 6 Comments →

Franco invited us to try ‘Cue, a new restaurant at Central High Street in Bonifacio Global City. “What do they serve?” we asked. “Meat,” he replied. “Say no more, we’re there.”


Bone Marrow and Steak Tacos, good for 2-3 people, Php485

The appetizers included Spicy Fried Wings, Crunchy Baby Squid, and some soups and salads, but one item on the menu reached out and touched our arteries: Bone Marrow and Steak Tacos. Bulalo and beef served with flour tortillas, corn salsa and salsa verde. Eeeveel.

Eeeveel and goood. Felt like mopping our tongue with the tortilla to get out the sebo. What, we don’t eat it everyday.

The drinks are served in jars with screw-tops (garapon), which remind us of Mags Bennett’s apple pie moonshine in Justified. Dammit Mags, why’d you have to go and do that. Justified is set in hillbilly country so we expected toothless incestuous banjo-playing mutants from Deliverance and got Timothy Olyphant.


Beef Belly, good for 2-3 people, Php695.

Our main course: 250 grams of Beef Belly braised in dark ale then slightly charred and mustard-crusted with roasted onions. Mmmm Timothy Olyphant. With a side of Chili Monggo.


Chicken Pot Pie, Php325.

And a flavorful Chicken Chipotle Chorizo Pot Pie. Good dessert, too, but we were too focused on the protein.

The restaurant is cozy, the seats comfortable, the service efficient. The acoustics need work—we had to yell across the table—but that can be fixed. Satisfying food, prices not too bad—we’ll be back.

Trip to the Millar-verse: We talk to the author of Kick-Ass, Wanted and The Ultimates

May 28, 2012 By: jessicazafra Category: Books 10 Comments →


Mark Millar and his collaborators Leinil Yu, Gerry Alanguilan and Sunny Gho met the readers at The Milla In Manila yesterday, Sunday, at the Glorietta 5 atrium.

Thanks to jet lag, a re-sked and a good Shiraz, our 20-minute interview with Mark Millar last Saturday turned into a 2-hour talk covering comics, film adaptations, Nicolas Cage, the number of men in Manila walking around with much younger women, and the least pervy way to ask the hotel concierge to schedule a massage (Get someone from National Bookstore to do it. Not the massage, the asking).

We’re posting the complete transcript of our conversation with Mark Millar in installments throughout the week. The Scottish accent is not a problem (Thank you, Trainspotting) but it was a long talk.

This interview was made possible by Miguel Ramos and Chad Dee of National Bookstore. Our friend Raymond joined us. We wanted to see how Millar would react to a guy in women’s clothing (Not us, Raymond). He didn’t even blink.


Here’s the view from the stage. The signing was supposed to last 3 hours. We dropped by 6 hours later and the crowd was still there.

Jessica Zafra: You flew over from where?

Mark Millar: Scotland. The time difference is seven hours and I haven’t quite caught up yet. I’ve only been here two days so far.

JZ: No sleep?

MM: It’s like Guantanamo Bay, where they keep you awake…

JZ: And then blast Air Supply over the speakers.

MM: I go back Monday, so I’ll be on Filipino time by the time I get home.

JZ: You’ve lived in Scotland all your life. You haven’t been tempted to move to London or New York where your books are published?

MM: That would’ve been before the Internet. With the Internet you can be in touch with everyone anyway. Then I speak to (his collaborator, the artist) Leinil Yu every single day, to my lawyers and agents and everything. That would’ve been impossible 15 years ago but now it’s great.

JZ: Miguel says National Bookstore won you in a contest.

MM: I know that makes me sound like a prostitute, ye.

Listen to him tell the story.

Millar_(mp3cut.net)

MM: We do this fun thing whenever we have a new book coming out or need to promote something. And I said, “Whichever comic book store in the world orders the most copies of my new first issue, I will travel there on my own dime, stay at a hotel on my own dime, and do a signing for the store.” I kinda expected…there’s three stores—one in London, one in New York, L.A. as well. I was fairly sure it would be New York because of the order traffic, something like 3 percent of all Marvel comics come from this one store. I was quite sure it would be that. I’m in New York and L.A. regularly anyway, and I wasn’t expecting the Philippines, I go, what?

JZ: And Miguel says it was a blind bid. So what was your reaction when you saw it was the Philippines?

MM: Totally unexpected, I mean, Are you kidding? But it got me to thinking there must be a large readership, you’ve got Gerry (Alanguilan) and Leinil (Yu).

JZ: It makes perfect sense since you work with so many Filipinos.

MM: Ye, and it was brilliant. A. I get to come to the Philippines and B. I get to hang out with Leinil. He’s one of my pals. I only see him once a year anyway. Instead of another trip to New York I get to come here, which is great.

And then I haven’t seen sunshine in about a year and a half, in Scotland it’s so cold…

JZ: Here we wish the sunshine would go away for a while.

MM: Oh man, I dream of the sunshine. What’s funny is, I actually saw posters up saying “for a new, whiter, healthier you”…

JZ: Yes, people trying to be white. They shoot you with glutathione.

MM: In Scotland where there’s no sunshine everybody wants a tan…

JZ: And they have tanning salons.

MM: Everybody wants what they don’t have. I’m probably the blackest guy in Scotland.


Mark Millar signing our books. He’s all right, just very sensitive to sun. He says he wishes one of his grandmothers had had an affair with an African man so he would have had more protective pigmentation.

TO BE CONTINUED (Volunteer transcribers, please leave your email address in Comments.)

Meanwhile here is the trailer for Super Crooks by Mark Millar and Nacho Vigalondo. Super Crooks is the new series by Millar and Yu.

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Stay tuned to our Mark Millar interview for a chance to win copies of Super Crooks Issue # 1.