Twisted by Jessica Zafra – Pumping irony since 1994

Archive for March, 2018

A very bright and massive star rejoins the cosmos: Stephen Hawking, 76.

March 14, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Science No Comments →

We mourn the loss of a man whose physical body was bound to a wheelchair, but whose mind encompassed universes. And while his death is deeply felt, we must also celebrate his sheer grit and tenacity. Stephen Hawking was not expected to live more than two years after he was diagnosed with motor neurone disease. He lived another half-century.

The cosmos is bigger and more wonderful because he told us so. He taught us that the mind need not be bound by time and space. We should name stars after him. Galaxies. Universes.

His obituary.

Stephen Hawking’s PhD thesis from 1966

Update: Our friend Nella Sarabia’s shop survived the fire at the UP Shopping Center.

March 08, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Current Events 6 Comments →

This morning I woke up to ten texts reporting a fire at Dilimall, the UP Shopping Center where my optometrist of 22 years, Nella Sarabia, has had her shop forever. As has been pointed out in the news media, this is the fourth fire on campus in the last four years.

The Shopping Center was renovated recently (and had a decent washroom for once). I was just at Dilimall last Tuesday to see Nella, and I tried to eat at Rodic’s but it was packed as usual.

Nella just replied to my texts to let me know that her optical was among the few shops spared in the blaze. Most of the stalls simply went up in smoke. Chancellor Michael Tan has announced that the stalls will be relocated around campus soon.

(Personally I feel like my history is being erased—no more CASAA where I used to have breakfast and lunch every day, no more Faculty Center where our Comp Lit classes were held because there were less than ten of us, and now no more Shopping Center where everyone had materials photocopied, printed and bound. If your thesis was among the casualties, I hope you have copies.)

Message to all women: There is no stain on your reputation that the truth can’t wash away.

March 08, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Current Events 1 Comment →

So proud of one of my best friends, Noel Orosa, who wrote the Rise, Kris, Rise ad. It’s a tribute to the strength of women and how they refuse to bow to the social strictures that tell them how they’re supposed to behave. This reminder has never been more timely or necessary.??

I remember how nervous Noel was the night before he was to present the concept to Kris Aquino. They were going to throw mud at her! It was unheard of! I told him, “Matalino siya, she will get it immediately.” True enough, she saw how vital its message is, and how she was its ideal messenger. She’s heard it all, and she rises above it over and over again.

There is no stain on your reputation that the truth cannot wash away. Never forget.

Screengrab from:

Ang Dalagita Ay ‘Sang Bagay Na Di-Buo at UP’s Guerrero Theatre is astonishing. Watch it.

March 06, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Theatre No Comments →

Dulaang UP’s Ang Dalagita Ay ‘Sang Bagay Na Di-Buo, an adaptation of Eimear McBride’s novel A Girl Is A Half-Formed Thing, is intense and electric: theatre as a form of exorcism. You go in expecting a thoughtful entertainment for the age of #MeToo, and you leave with your soul purified in a cleansing flame. It upends all notions of what it is to be female in a world where casual brutality is normal and sexual violence a given, where everything that happens to you is supposed to be your own fault.

Dalagita is directed by Jose Estrella from Rody Vera’s Filipino translation of the adaptation by Annie Ryan. The adaptation is a marvel, following the novel’s stream of consciousness to put us inside the protagonist’s mind. We feel everything she’s feeling, and it is beautiful, ugly, hilarious, and harrowing. For one hour and fifty minutes, Skyzx Labastilla charges across the stage like a raw nerve as Dalagita from fetus to young womanhood, and as everyone Dalagita meets throughout her life. She contains multitudes, and all she needs is a stage and one chair. I don’t know how she does it, but I have to see it again.

I am in awe of everyone involved in this production. More. Alternating in the role of Dalagita are Missy Maramara, Opaline Santos and Hariette Damole (understudy).

Remaining playdates: March 7, 8, 9 at 7pm and March 10 and 11 at 10am and 3pm, at the Wilfrido Ma. Guerrero Theatre, 2/F Palma Hall, UP Diliman. For inquiries call Camille Guevara at 0917 823 9531 or the Dulaang UP office, 926 1348 0r 981 8500 local 2449. Help us spread the word in your social media accounts.

Kurosawa, eat your heart out: A samurai must have a cat!

March 04, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Cats, Television No Comments →

Cats and swords, be still my heart. All the great TV series—The Wire, Breaking Bad, Buffy The Vampire Slayer—bow before your master, Neko Samurai!

Who is the genius who thought up this series? When will it be on Netflix? And what band is singing that bonkers “I’m So Great” song in the trailer?