Friday, June 19, 2009

"hey young world, i'm the new slick rick"

I'm not sure if anyone noticed, but I didn't put out a spring issue of The Juniper this year. I've just had too much other stuff going on, and since I'll be moving across the country part way through the summer, I decided it would be best to put off doing another issue of The Juniper until this fall.

In the meantime though, I would like to make a zine recommendation:
Coco Negro from Sacramento, CA makes an awesome zine called Carrots & Condoms. It's a very well-written zine with some great illustrations accompanying the writing. She has two issues out. The first issue deals with the dichotomy of life in the city versus life in the country (something I can really relate with). It also tells of Coco's adventures working on a homestead, learning about permaculture and finding community (both urban and rural).
The second issue is much more personal and introspective. It's a much more melancholy read because it deals with her sister's mental illness and growing up with an abusive father. Coco's words are honest and brave and warrant great admiration.

Here's an excerpt from Carrots & Condoms #2:
"What do most people consider 'normal'? I looked at my surroundings. I saw the blinking lights of traffic signals, the cars zooming by, the manic expressions of infuriated drivers, the brisk hurried pace of pedestrians determinedly avoiding each others' gazes. Oh yeah, I thought, This is what is considered normal. Smartly dressed people, smartly ignoring the homeless hanging around the park. Fast food and fast lives. Going to work and going to the store and going home. A few nights a week at the bar or some other preferred peer-approved social gathering space. Therapy sessions. Church. The most that anyone that is seeking an alternative really does is dress differently and buy different things. Everything is superficial, ugly, and unimportant, and yet that was all anyone seemed to care about. The world itself is fundamentally depressed."

You can purchase Carrots and Condoms from Coco for $2 an issue or trade:
Coco Negro
PO Box 163327
Sacramento CA 95816

I promise to try my best to have a new issue of The Juniper out sometime this fall. I will be at a new address, which I will be posting here as soon as I know it, so keep an eye out for that. And have an awesome summer. Summer of Slow, part two!

Monday, June 08, 2009

"we can suture the future shut like a cut"

"...we can replicate structures which replicate us." -Milemarker

Just a couple of things:

The new Sonic Youth album is coming out tomorrow. It's called The Eternal, and it features new band member Mark Ibold (former Pavement bassist). They are no longer on a major label; the new album is coming out on Matador Records, the home of Pavement, Mogwai, Yo La Tengo and lots of other awesome bands.

I probably didn't tell you this yet, but there is a new issue of Elephant Mess out. Issue #23. The fiction issue. Due to my recent bout of optimism and positivity, I didn't really have anything to write about. In the words of Al Burian, "I stopped liking the stuff I made. It seemed pointlessly negative. I didn't like the life I was documenting. My productivity ground to a halt. ... Even the bleakest art should be somehow life-affirming, otherwise, why bother?" I'd been meaning to do a fiction issue for a while now, so I decided that now is as good a time as any. I wrote a couple of very short stories using characters that I had developed more than a decade ago and I put together the May issue of Elephant Mess. Now, what am I supposed to do about the future? I guess we'll have to wait and see. Either way, if you're interested in reading some very poorly written fiction, send a stamp or something to:
Dan Murphy
PO Box 3154
Moscow ID 83843