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Twisted by Jessica Zafra – Pumping irony since 1994
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Archive for the ‘Current Events’

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 2 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.

“We still believe in free speech, the world just needs a new theory of it.”

January 19, 2018 By: jessicazafra Category: Current Events, Language, Technology No Comments →

The most effective forms of censorship today involve meddling with trust and attention, not muzzling speech itself. As a result, they don’t look much like the old forms of censorship at all. They look like viral or coordinated harassment campaigns, which harness the dynamics of viral outrage to impose an unbearable and disproportionate cost on the act of speaking out. They look like epidemics of disinformation, meant to undercut the credibility of valid information sources. They look like bot-fueled campaigns of trolling and distraction, or piecemeal leaks of hacked materials, meant to swamp the attention of traditional media.

Read It’s the (Democracy-Poisoning) Golden Age of Free Speech by Zeynep Tufekci in Wired. Then read the entire issue: Free Speech, Tech Turmoil, and the New Censorship.

When an artist you admire is revealed to be a creep or worse

November 13, 2017 By: jessicazafra Category: Art, Current Events, Sex 2 Comments →

2017: the year all remaining illusions took a hit.

I wonder when Filipinos will have their #MeToo moment. Here, where we are told that the right response to sexual harassment is “Thank you” (As in, “Pasalamat ka na na-harass ka, hindi ka naman maganda”). Or “Pay up.” Wonder if (sociological) climate change will bring about a cold day in hell.

Aggretsuko and Gudetama: Adorable and anti-capitalist

July 23, 2017 By: jessicazafra Category: Current Events, Shopping No Comments →

If Hello Kitty represents happy-go-lucky submission to globalization, Sanrio’s newer characters respond to the market with soul-crushing resignation or seething rage. Aggretsuko “is a symbol and expression of the pent-up stress and irritation that is rife in the world today,” her designer, Yeti, wrote in an email. And Gudetama, Amy wrote, parallels “the people in modern society who despair amid economic hard times.”

How Sanrio Makes Anti-Capitalism Adorable and Profitable

Albert Einstein on our mightiest weapon

June 19, 2017 By: jessicazafra Category: Current Events, History, Science No Comments →

In a long life I have devoted all my faculties to reach a somewhat deeper insight into the structure of physical reality. Never have I made any systematic effort to ameliorate the lot of men, to fight injustice and suppression, and to improve the traditional forms of human relations. The only thing I did was this: in long intervals I have expressed an opinion on public issues whenever they appeared to me so bad and unfortunate that silence would have made me feel guilty of complicity.

Read about Einstein and the duties of the individual in Brain Pickings.

Reasons David Sedaris has been depressed lately (We know exactly how he feels)

June 12, 2017 By: jessicazafra Category: Books, Current Events 1 Comment →

Chus and I went to David Sedaris’s reading at Powerbooks Greenbelt some years ago. He was hilarious and shockingly nice. He got to the venue early and went around asking people if they wanted their books signed. We chatted about Chickenjoy. He did an impression of his sister Amy going shopping (“Buy it!”).*

David, I hope you’re feeling more cheerful. We know exactly how you feel. And you live in England now. You could go back to France…Would you like us to Fedex you some Chickenjoy?

One. It’s early September of 2015 and I’m on the island of Santorini for a literary festival. After the short reading, which takes place outdoors on a patio, the Greek audience asks questions, the first of which is, “What do you think of Donald Trump?”
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