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Twisted by Jessica Zafra – Pumping irony since 1994
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Archive for February, 2018

Two weeks left before Jessica Zafra’s Writing Boot Camp at the BenCab Museum, Baguio on March 17-18. Book your places now!

February 28, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Announcements, Places, Workshops 2 Comments →

Two weeks to go before Writing Boot Camp Weekend! We have several places left for participants. You don’t have to have writing experience, but you have to want to write. Boot Camp focuses on the process of writing, which really begins with hauling your ass in front of that notebook or screen and translating your imaginings into words. We can create universes out of words, but before we can do that, we have to actually finish a paragraph. Then a page. Then pages. Then books! It can be done. Start here.

Watch our new travel show The Flip Trip online!

February 25, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Places, Television, Traveling No Comments →

Our travel show The Flip Trip premieres on TV in April, but you can already watch our short travel features on YouTube and our show’s Facebook page, and see the photos on Instagram (@thefliptripph). Follow us so you don’t miss anything.


Here’s Pepe introducing our show to adobo Magazine.

Ideas for features: Women flirt with Pepe, baklas hang out with Jessica.

My cats challenge T’Challa for the throne of Wakanda. Black Panther rules!

February 24, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Cats, Movies No Comments →


Saffy is T’Chorva. Summon the Dora Milaje!


Drogon is T’Charot. Bring me my armored rhinoceros!


Jacob is T’Chenes. Vibranium claws!

Obviously we love Black Panther and will watch it over and over again. Gripping, joyful, political. The world needs this movie.

World domination is going to be a cinch.

February 22, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Art, Projects, World Domination Update No Comments →


The first time I visited Yokohama six months ago to prepare for TPAM (The Performing Arts Meeting in Yokohama), the team had dinner at a traditional okonomiyaki place. We concluded the meal with monja, a pancake eaten directly from the grill with spatulas, and washed down with umeshu (plum wine). So it became a tradition. The day of our technical rehearsal, we had an okonomiyaki lunch: I passed on the “fertilizer made of oily vegetable dregs”.

I wasn’t worried about delivering the lecture because I’ve written several versions of the plan for world domination and can recite it in my sleep. Turns out I should have worried, because I sucked at the run-through and got angrier and angrier at myself. Our dramaturg Max found this amusing. “You should do the show while you are hungry, it has a different energy.”

The beautiful Jason Moss lent us the He-Manash sculpture from the Manananggurlash series. Tina Cuyugan got the “Laboy” Santo Niño from a store beside Quiapo Church. The Santo Niño is supposed to be a wanderer, but he’s dressed exactly like a tita on the way to the parlor to have her hair colored. Pepe Diokno told me all about Bayani’s Kitchen, the Filipino restaurant where we staged the second part of the performance. The venue was so perfect we didn’t have to think about production design.

Here is the team demonstrating the Pinoy technique of pointing at stuff without hands, a.k.a. nguso. Front row, from left: stage manager Kuro, who looks like Atom Araullo; me; and Gian, who hosted the party and is a party. Second row: Raya, our director, who gracefully navigated negotiations with the technical crew; and Barbara, who is doing research on contemporary Japanese theatre and was roped in as interpreter. At the back, not cooperating, is our producer Yoshiro, who grew thinner and thinner as opening night approached.

Yoshiro also directed a show at TPAM Fringe, so on February 14, Raya, Gian and I went to see “Presage-The Great Painting Detective, part III”. Yes, me and baklas—that’s how I always spend Valentine’s Day. Anyway the venue was full and we were standing at the back, where I couldn’t read the subtitles or figure out what was happening. I get antsy in crowds and performance art boggles me. At one point I leaned over and whispered to Raya, “What the fuck is going on?” and then my phone alarm went off in the deathly silent room, and I didn’t even set the blasted alarm. Shame! Shame!

To be continued

What should we do with the alleged cat killers of BGC? (Since it’s too late to neuter their ancestors)

February 20, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Cats, Current Events 5 Comments →


I knew there was a reason I bought this kerchief.

Dammit I leave for ten days in Japan for the World Domination Project, and the minute I return to Manila my phone is seismic with reports of an alleged cat massacre in BGC. Before I can celebrate the mass recruitment to our cause, I have to find out what the hell happened to the cats. When I get the details, when we figure out who is responsible, they’re going to wish their parents had been neutered.

Post your suggestions on how to deal with the cat killers.

Greetings from Yokohama

February 13, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Places, Traveling No Comments →


Our World Domination Project premieres at the Kanagawa Arts Theatre on Friday.


Between meetings, rehearsals, and watching the performances, I’ve been wandering around Yokohama.


Illustrated tiles suddenly appear on the sidewalks.


This friendly dog welcomes diners to a ramen restaurant.


Chinatown is lit up in preparation for the Chinese New Year. I went walking with Nicole and Krishna, whom I have enlisted as “translation assistants” for the show. Impossible not to buy something while roaming Chinatown. Sukiyaki-flavored Pringles. Moisturizing face masks that look like cats.

I miss my cats, so they will get the best presents.