Twisted by Jessica Zafra – Pumping irony since 1994

Archive for the ‘Pointless Anecdotes’

Our house, 4 am

December 27, 2010 By: jessicazafra Category: Cats, Pointless Anecdotes 10 Comments →

Starring Koosi and Mat.

At last! Everyone is asleep. We have the living room to ourselves, nyahahahaaa. We, the mighty goddess Bast, may now contemplate our universe in peace and. . .

Who turned on the light?

Oh it’s you, foundling. Shouldn’t you be sucking up to the human?

I’ve been living here for six years, eight if you add the time I was roaming the neighborhood. Besides, we’re all foundlings. The human did not spawn us.

You have the temerity to address us, tabby of doubtful antecedents?! We are Koosalagoopagoop Galadriel Ivanisevic O’Brien, incarnation of the mighty goddess Bast!

- I am Matthias Eomer Octavian Federer-Urban!
- Hisssssssssss!
- Hisssssssssss!

Memories of the Vortex

December 14, 2010 By: jessicazafra Category: Places, Pointless Anecdotes 32 Comments →

Room at the Picasso Suites

My first apartment was at Blanco Center on Leviste Street in Salcedo Village, Makati. Apartment 914. I shared the place with two guys who toiled in the corporate universe. How we (and our respective egos) managed to cram into a railroad flat, I have no idea. For one thing our tastes in music diverged wildly. One liked music from before 1800, one liked showtunes and Madonna, I liked grunge. Yet we managed to coexist in relative peace.

A friend noted that our apartment looked like the one in David Lynch’s Eraserhead. (This is called foreshadowing.) There was even the occasional crackling lightbulb on the fritz in the hallway. I thought the architecture was very Soviet asylum. I imagined axe murderers lying in wait behind the heavy wooden doors. Of course I felt right at home.

Years after moved out, I started hanging out with people who had also lived in Blanco Center. We were next-door neighbors, except that we were there at different times. Literally Everyone has had a Blanco period. The other day Noel and I ran into his friend who had lived in my old apartment, 914. Blanco was truly the Vortex of the Universe.

Blanco Center is now the Picasso Suites serviced apartments. It has been thoroughly redone and is much, much grander than my old building; art exhibits are held on the ground floor and there is a good restaurant. When Patrice of the Volcanoes was in Manila he stayed at the Picasso and I had a peek. The rooms still have the railroad flat shape, but they don’t look like my old apartment at all.

In my last year at Blanco I was hit with a staggering rent increase. At first I thought all the tenants had gotten the same increase, then I found out that only I was paying more. Turns out that the landlord had read a magazine article I’d written in which I described the building’s Eraserhead ambience and Soviet asylum architecture.

I tried to explain that the description was meant fondly, and that I never mentioned the name of the building. He gave me the “Oh you young people when you get older you will learn that you can’t go around saying whatever you think” speech.

“But I like this building,” I pointed out. “I don’t think it’s ugly. You want ugly, look at that building across the street.”

“I own that building too,” the landlord said.

End of discussion.

Finally: A hat that fits my head! Next: the Loch Ness monster will speak!

November 21, 2010 By: jessicazafra Category: Clothing, Pointless Anecdotes, Shopping 5 Comments →

For too long I have bored you with the continuing saga of my quest for a hat that fits my head, specifically a bowler (see A Clockwork Orange). I have an extraordinarily large head. It is so big that when I was born, the doctor thought my mother had given birth to a head.

It is so large that it requires its own constitution and armed forces. I should be cast as the Navigator in Dune (or Shai Hulud). It’s not the hair, though that is massive, too. According to the tape measure, the circumference of my head (at the eyebrows) is 24 inches. Two feet. No wonder I had trouble finding a hat, my head needs pants.

This year a friend gave me a wide-brimmed hat that proved extremely useful in the summer, and in June I found a sun hat that kept me from combusting at Wimbledon. But my search for a bowler had turned up nothing. I tried on around 200 hats in Melbourne and another 200 in London, but as a shop manager solemnly informed me, I am an XX in men’s sizes and they would have to order one for me.

Then this turned up.

What is this obsession with men’s hats? I don’t know, I just want one. This hat is a fedora not a bowler, which means my quest continues. But with a new hope, since something actually fit.

Some humanity is more embraceable than others.

November 11, 2010 By: jessicazafra Category: Current Events, Famous People, Pointless Anecdotes 31 Comments →

Former US President Bill Clinton’s talk at the Manila Hotel was entitled “Embracing Our Common Humanity.”

Granted, some humanity is more embraceable than others. (I am channeling Noel. And how.) One of the Winklevii Ayala Corp president Fernando Zobel arrived carrying a large umbrella—because he drove himself. No bodyguards (unless they were a crack ninja team), no retinue. That’s cool.

Doreen Yu noted the red string around his wrist and asked if he was into Kabbalah. He said no, it was just something his daughter gave him after they’d finished a run.

Are there other countries besides the Philippines where people will overthrow a regime one day and then line up for photos with the deposed strongman’s wife the next? On the other hand you can’t fight charisma.

Here’s one of the Jessicii, Soho, with Tim Yap who is totally ripping off my look. Odd juxtaposition, no? But they’re at the same network.

I hitched a ride back to Makati with Melo Esguerra, who told me an amazing story. Recently he took a taxi very late at night, and he didn’t have change so he asked the driver to stop at a convenience store. The driver seemed trustworthy, so Melo left his gadgetry in the cab—iPad, laptop, cellphone—and dashed into the store to get change. This took two minutes. When he came out of the store the taxi was gone. Vanished. Split. Melo thought his stuff was lost forever; he was just hoping to get his IDs back. Three days later the taxi driver called his brother, who was listed on Melo’s ID as the “in case of emergency” contact. The driver apologized profusely and returned all of Melo’s stuff.

Here’s the giant head with designer Frederick Peralta, whom you may have seen on the hit telenovela, Magkaribal. “Everyone was crying at the wrap party. I think there’s going to be a second series.”

I owe Frederick a tuxedo. This is what happened. Years ago, Abe Florendo my editor at Today assigned me to interview Robin Padilla. We were going to take photos, so I suggested we make him wear a tux. So Abe borrowed a tuxedo from Frederick. The interview and shoot went very well. The tux fit perfectly. Then Robin Padilla said, “Can I keep the tux?” and I was so mesmerized by his tattoo of a hand clutching a heart wrapped in barbed wire I said, “Sure!” When we got back to the office Abe said, “How did it go?” I said, “Great.” He said, “Where’s the tux?” “Uhhh…I gave it to Robin.” Abe sighed, rolled his eyeballs, and called Frederick. I love Abe, no one is better at managing nuts.

Where are the pictures of President Clinton? I’ll post the video later.

Antisocial register

September 17, 2010 By: jessicazafra Category: Cats, Pointless Anecdotes 5 Comments →

Koosi is even more antisocial than her human. (Why don’t people ever believe you when you say you don’t want your picture taken? Do they think you’re being coy? It’s not a nothing issue. If your hideous photo gets on the web it will stay there forever, reminding you never to leave the house without a bag on your head. There is no mystery here: I just don’t like having my picture taken. I’m like those African tribesmen.) If you call her, she will give you a look of “You dare summon me?” If you stare at her too long, she will smack you with a paw. When she wants attention she will let you know. Sometimes she does this. Most times she just bites your toes.

On the other hand I will sleep soundly tonight.

September 12, 2010 By: jessicazafra Category: Pointless Anecdotes, Tennis, Traveling 7 Comments →

Ooh, there’s an Illy cafe at the big cavernous NAIA terminal 3!

Naah, skip it. The coffee is by Illy, but the pastries are fossilized. And expensive. And I ordered a double espresso that was served in a large cardboard cup. I said, Please put it in a china cup. They said, We’re out of the little cups. This in a near-empty cafe. I said, Then put it in the big cup.

Two tables away a white guy in board shorts was talking loudly on his cellphone. Then he handed it to his girlfriend, a tiny Filipina girl with long, straight hair. She continued the telephone conversation in labored but correct English, then said goodbye and handed the phone back to the white guy. He said, Why did you hang up?!

He said goodbye, the girlfriend pointed out.

Why did you hang up?!?

We were finished talking.


I wanted to say, Hoy afam, huwag mong sisigawan si Inday. Kung ayaw mong magkamali siya, di ikaw ang kumausap.

Instead I tried to eat the calcified cheese danish for which I was charged P95.

Emotional people are following me around.

* * * * *

Blast, there’s no US Open tennis telecast on cable TV at Avenue Plaza Hotel in Naga. There was basketball, baseball, golf, and rugby, but no tennis, and I’d been looking forward to watching the semis in my very nice hotel room. I ended up channel surfing for hours, hoping the tennis coverage would start, and even when I decided to go to sleep I kept bolting upright every 30 minutes shrieking, Has it started? Has it started?

The life of a tennis fan is full of self-inflicted jet lag. So now I’m exhausted, so exhausted that when I heard the score on CNN I couldn’t even say What! I thought, Oh well, the Fed is slowing down, and good for Djokovic to be in another final.

Maturity is not fun. On the other hand I will sleep soundly tonight instead of agonizing over every point in the final and deluding myself that I can telekinetically help the ball over the net 12 time zones away.