Pizzeria Bianco: “Great pizza for a great lady.”

I wasn’t gonna write this review because it’s truly unnecessary and not super important but I’m doing it anyway so bear with me while I start explaining something you probably already know in a truly roundabout fashion.

We'll start when my dad’s mom, my grandma Sylvia, died. I was thirteen. Her and my grandpa Sam were best friends with this other couple Sidney and Bernice, and Sid died within like 6 months of Syl, so naturally, Sam and Bernice grieved together. And we all know where that leads.

They were married in their apartment on Miami Beach when I was 16 or 17, judging by my hair in the photos. It wasn’t a legal wedding but they did have a rabbi come bless them and then they threw a party where I got drunk and had the old man band play Summer Wind by Frank Sinatra while I sang.

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Anyway, time passed, they went on a lot of cruises, hung out by the side of a pool in Miami, had a very nice life together. In 2012 Sam died and shortly thereafter Bernice moved to Scottsdale, AZ to be near one of her kids. I had visited her all the time in Miami but by the time she moved to Arizona it sort of dropped off. I recorded an audiobook for her, and I called her on the phone plenty, but I just never prioritized getting out to Phoenix. I was talking to my mom about it the last time I was in New York and we decided to go. We planned a short trip, only 48 hours really, but we’d hang out with her the evening we arrived, the entire next day, and the morning before we flew out. 

Before we left I got a text from my mom—“Bernice wants to eat pizza. Figure out the best slice in Scottsdale.” So I asked twitter, and twitter told me, almost uniformly, that there’s this place called Pizzeria Bianco that’s in some strip mall in Phoenix and they make the best Neapolitan pies in America. Who would’ve guessed. I texted my mom this article and was like, "I think this is the place."

So I fly in, meet my mom at the airport, whatever whatever. I had intentionally forgotten my toothbrush because I knew that might be the only way to get me to finally buy a new one, so we're driving around having that New York Jew conversation about "I'm hungry are you hungry?"
"I'm not hungry hungry but I could eat."
"What are you in the mood for?"
"I don't care, really I have no preference."
"Burgers?"
"I don't know about burgers."
"How do you feel about chinese?"
"In Arizona? Never."
Etc.
It could've been either of us having either side of it. We paused our lunch convo to stop into a strip mall that had a Walgreens to get my damn toothbrush. I ended up driving so far afield looking for a spot big enough that I wouldn't be scared someone might scratch our rental car that when I finally pulled into one we were across the parking lot from where the Walgreens was. That's when my mom was like, "isn't that the pizza place you were talking about?"

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I didn't take a picture of it, because like I said, I wasn't planning to write this review, so you'll have to settle for this screenshot of a map. Suffice to say, this is NOT what I expected the place that serves "the best neapolitan pizza in America" to look like. But we went in anyway and ordered three pies.

From left to right that's your classic Margherita, a Sonny Boy (a red sauce pie with hot salami and kalamata olives), and the signature Biancoverde (a white pie with fresh ricotta, fresh moz, arugula, and olive oil). If you can't tell from the pictures, these pies were fucking perfect. It's a rare thing in this awful world to experience a moment of perfection, and it can be a little unsettling. Ma Harvester and I looked from pie to pie, shocked, unable to speak for a few moments after our first bites. I have never in my life tasted a pizza dough this delicate. It was crisp and firm on the bottom, though there was still that nice elastic pull that a good bread has, but it was so light. The other ingredients were top notch. The red sauce on the Margherita was incredible. Lightly spiced so that the full flavor of the delicious tomatoes they use could really shine. The mozzerella tasted fresh and had a wonderful texture. The basil leaves seemed like they could've been picked moments before they hit the pie. The Sonny Boy had the same base as the Margherita, but with hot salami and kalamatas, both fantastic as well.

But the real standout was the Biancoverde. This is probably the best ricotta I've ever had. The moz and dough are the same high quality as on the other pies, and the absence of a sauce let the olive oil's round, green apple flavor really shine. Ma Harv, a master gardener btw, was really impressed with the quality of the arugula and claimed she had never had a white pie with arugula on it before. I was unsure, but she checked me, "I've had prosciutto arugula pies, but every white pie I've ever had was made with spinach or broccoli rabe. The sharpness of the arugula really makes for a nice contrast with the full rounder flavors of the cheese and olive oil." I'm still unsure if arugula on white pies is common or not so if you wanna @ me just to tell me my mom's wrong why don't you just go fuck yourself instead, huh? The important thing is that these pies were so good we had to bring them to Bernice. We got three more of the same to go and headed over to her place.

I'm really glad we got to eat them fresh out the oven, because they certainly suffered a bit in transit. Neapolitan pies are meant to be eaten fresh, but they were still good and Bernice didn't care, and that's the most important part of all this. I'll leave you with her review. Notice her start to talk shit about all the other pizza in Phoenix and then stop herself. That's because she's a classy lady who doesn't relish every opportunity to badmouth people for cheap laughs, unlike me, a jerk. Let's all be more like Bernice and less like me in 2018.

King Dough: "Did you ever want to eat bad pizza in the home goods section of a Target?"

Listen. I end up in all different parts of America that aren't New York all the time, and sometimes I end up eating pretty bad pizza in those places because I forget where I am or I hear a place might be good or I'm with a group of people and they want to eat pizza and who am I to argue? I ate a terrible quattro formaggio in a strip mall in Houston like two years ago after going to the opening of a contemporary Latin American art show at the MFAH with Becca. When we got to the museum I was still all revved up from the drive and then Becca went to a panel and I was wandering around alone and there's a James Turrell tunnel in the basement. (And if you don't know, which probably I wouldn't if I wasn't in love with an art historian, Turrell is the artist Drake ripped off for all the sets of the Hotline Bling video.) And there was no one else in there except for the security guard. I was like, "DUDE would you please take a video of me doing Drake's Little Teapot dance in here?"
And he was all "absolutely not."
So I was all, "c'mon man, my girlfriend is gonna think it's so cute and funny."
But he was like, "if I do it for you, I gotta do it for everyone."
Then I was like, "There's no one else here! No one will know!"
And he looked at me very seriously and said "I'll know."

Anyway, after that we got pizza and it was absolutely awful, but I didn't write about it then because I don't write about all bad pizza I eat. But every so often, there is a pizza parlor that's such a perfect storm of bad food, bad service, bad aesthetics, that I feel like I gotta warn strangers to stay away. And King Dough in Bloomington, Indiana is such a place.

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I went to get lunch at King Dough with a friend who I believe wishes to remain anonymous because Bloomington is a small town and he doesn't need to be the recipient of any undue Midwest passive aggression. We were in the middle of running errands and right nearby. I didn't think pizza was a bad idea, it seemed quick at least. And I'd noticed King Dough on a handful of other visits. And besides, I've had some pretty decent pizza, or at least really fun and pleasant experiences, in pizza shops all over the place. But not so with King Dough. I didn't know what I was getting myself into when my Anonymous Compadre and I walked inside, and I certainly wasn't expecting to have my mind blown, but I didn't expect to be punished either.

The decor was a red flag right away but I'm a pretentious urban sophisticate so I just chalked that up to the quaintness of a college town. But like, if you're gonna disrespect that Dan Higgs drawing at least do it well, right? And I'm all for keeping holiday decorations in a place of business to a minimum (I've served six tours in the War on Christmas), but I was in a Target the other day buying shitty winter gloves and an ice scraper for my car because I didn't know where else to get both of those things in a city with no bodegas, and I literally saw almost that exact same display in their like, quirky tchotchke section. Maybe it's an ironic reference? Whatever it is, it's not working.

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The menu was suspect for a few reasons. This is very expensive food for Bloomington. I think "Vegan Pile" sounds fucking gross as a name for a food. I find the "Kilmister" befuddling. (1. Capicola and fucking BBQ SAUCE? Why? 2. What is it about this pizza that is supposed to evoke Lemmy?) And as Becca pointed out, what kind of awful person thinks it's okay to cutely name something after the H-Bomb? But like, whatever, I guess. While that H Bomb reference lets on that the owners might be rockabilly (god forbid!) there are worse things in the world, and I was hungry. We ordered a Margherita and a Prosciutto Arugula pie to split, as those seemed like safe and hard to fuck up options. The place wasn't that busy so we figured even if it wasn't great we could eat and get on with our errands.

Little did we know King Dough had other plans in store for us. It took 35 minutes to get our two pizzas. 35 whole entire minutes. Longer than an episode of Seinfeld, shorter than an episode of the L Word, too long for pizza. The place had a wood oven, and feel free to fact check me on this, but I think a properly used wood oven cooks an entire pizza in like two or three minutes, right? So why did it take over half an hour to get two smallish pies in a restaurant that wasn't very busy and where half the people inside were already eating? I'll tell you why, because they don't know what they're doing. 

Our pies finally arrived though, and they did not look too good. Wood fired pizza is supposed to be slightly charred. The char adds a smokiness and depth of flavor to the pie that can't be achieved in a gas oven without burning. When I get a wood or coal oven pizza, I expect it to be a pretty dark in some spots. But like most good things, char is only useful in moderation. This pizza's crust was burnt blacker than the Sharpie mustaches on Ken Nunn's phonebook ads. It was burnt blacker than the cover of Smell The Glove. This crust was burnt so black King Dough might get sued by Anish Kapoor. (Just in case you're thinking I'm smart for knowing who Anish Kapoor is, don't worry. I literally typed "black paint that only one guy is allowed to use" into webcrawler.com to find out his name.) And to add insult to injury, this disgusting crust formed the border of a pizza that wasn't even cooked through all the way in the middle!

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Look at that! You can straight up see bits of translucent, uncooked dough on the bottom of this floppy mess!

So now that we've established that this pizza takes forever to arrive and is poorly cooked, let's take a moment to talk about how much the ingredients fucking suck. The mozzarella on the Margherita pie tasted like fucking butter. The more I ate it, the worse it got. And it was drowning in a sea of runny, bland sauce. "But what about the dough?" I can hear you thinking. "The dough from which this place derives its name? Surely that part is at least palatable?" Well dear reader, I can't tell you how the dough tasted because it was either burnt to a crisp or nearly raw. I'll tell you this though, the parts of the crust that were edible tasted like they needed salt. When I asked my friend what he thought, he took a bite and chewed in silence for a moment before declaring "well, I've had worse pizza." That might be true for him, but I'm not sure I can say the same.

At the end of the day, the Prosciutto Arugula pie was at least edible. But you could put prosciutto and arugula on a turd and I'd probably like it, so that doesn't really count. It still was cooked poorly. The sauce still sucked. But the Margherita really stands out to me as one of the worst pizzas I've ever eaten in my entire life. And so, it's really an appropriate pizza to close out 2017--the year Prodigy died and Woody Allen didn't (prayer emoji that this awful old shithead finally drops in 2018), and Biff from Back to the Future II became president in real life. The pie at King Dough might not be the pizza humanity wants, but it is the pizza we deserve.

My interview from Cindy Crabb's new MASCULINITIES zine!


Friend and former Radio Harvester guest Cindy Crabb just put out this really cool zine about conceptions of masculinity and she interviewed me for it and I'm really honored to be included and also stoked that it's finally out and I can share it. I think these kinds of conversations are super important and I feel really lucky to have been given the forum to have one publicly.

I haven't read the zine yet. I literally just got it from my mailbox and texted Cindy like, "OMG YR ZINE IS BEAUTIFUL CAN I PUT MY INTERVIEW ON MY BLOG?!!?!!?," but I'm sure the other interviews are great. You should pick up a copy of it if you're interested. Cindy says she'll have it up on her distro website by Monday, so go buy it and other zines she's made and other zines she sells because she's amazing.

Anyway, here's the interview:

Cindy: What was masculinity like growing up?

Colin: I have a really contentious relationship with my masculinity, so I like the idea of this project. I wish there had been more resources like this when I was younger.
I grew up in a fairly affluent suburb of NYC, with a diverse public school. I didn't think about masculinity much when I was very young, but when I was a teenager, it got tied up with my substance abuse history in a really intense way. I started getting fucked up all the time when I was about 15, just smoking weed all day, and then when I was like 19 I started drinking all the time.
A lot of the social and societal discomforts I was medicating by being fucked up was this anxiety I felt around gender, masculinity, my masculinity, how to perform masculinity. I've been off booze for about two and a half years now. When I was 28, I quit drinking.

Cindy: What kind of messages about masculinity were you receiving?

Colin: I didn't play sports growing up, and that wasn't something that was made a priority. I remember my Dad got me a baseball mitt, and I never wanted to use it. And I remember one day telling him, "I'm never going to want to play catch with you." He was basically relieved because he didn’t want to play catch either, so being athletic wasn’t a paradigm that I had to butt up against at home, though I still do have anxiety around playing sports even now based on how unpleasant I found the mandatory, gender-segregated ballgames in school when I was a kid.
            My father drove a cab and didn't take shit, but he was in general pretty low-key.  His father was incredibly unavailable. I think about masculinity a lot in the frame of how it's been passed down through generations, and how the previous generations inform the version of masculinity today that's being put on me.
            Grunge was a huge thing when I was a little kid. I read about Kurt Corbain, read the liner notes for Incesticide where he pretty explicitly calls out bro culture and toxic masculinity in a way that, looking back, was super radical for something so mainstream. It just seems like the dominant culture in the 90’s was a little more gender ambiguous in ways it hadn't been before.  Or maybe it had been like that in the 70's with disco, I don't know.

Cindy: Yeah, it does seem to come and go. Like there was disco and then it got more traditional, and then there was Glam, and then it got more traditional, and then there was Grunge.

Colin: Yeah. Well, I grew my hair out super long when I was really young. I remember being at my Grandparents 50th anniversary or something, at this Eastern European, Jewish schlocky steak-house in the Lower East Side. I must have been 12 or 13, and my hair was down to my nipples, and I thought it was so cool. And then this old-world waiter thought I was a girl, he addressed me with a female pronoun, and I was so STOKED! I was like, "he doesn't know what gender I am, this is so cool.” I thought it was funny, and then I looked at my Dad, and he was bummed. But he wasn’t bummed that the dude had thought I was a lady, he had long hair in the 70s and him and his cousin Luke used to always get mistaken for women hitch-hiking. He seemed disappointed in me that I enjoyed being misgendered and I didn't understand why. My therapist calls this sort of thing micro-aggressions. Or like, I joined NOW when I was 13 or so, and I remember one Thanksgiving my shitty uncle Donny saw a NOW bulletin laying on the table in the hall, addressed to me, and he was like, “What’d you grow a vagina?” He actually said “vagina” because he’s this weird Christian who doesn’t curse. And like, that wasn’t a big deal, and neither was my father’s disapproval at the anniversary, but then these little tiny things end up adding up and making a clear picture for me that there are specific things I’m not supposed to do because I’m a guy.
            I was also really into dressing in drag when I was young. Just before and up until puberty. I remember wearing this slinky dress with these Jackie O glasses to see The Craft in the movie theater and I was like, 13 or so and I was scrawny so my body itself was kind of this neutral, genderless canvas and people would assume the gender based on the accessories, right? That’s why I was so into Judith Butler when I found her in college, talking about gender being a performance, because that’s how it had felt to me. And I remember at the time, the way that I thought about it wasn’t that I was doing any sort of transgressive gender play, what I liked was that I was tricking people. Like, I was undercover as a different person.
            And I stopped doing that around the same time as I started getting really fucked up, which is also the same time that all the micro-aggressions had finally crystallized into a clear picture for me of what behaviors were off limits. Probably also around this time actual violent reprisal for men failing to be masculine enough came into the picture too, though none of it was directed at me. But that was on the table. Kids started getting beat up at school for being faggots, excuse my language. It’s only now, looking back, that I can see the correlation between when I started suppressing all my instincts to be a gender freak and when I started mediating all my lived experience through substances. The other thing is that getting fucked up was like, an easy out if I acted weird. Like, I wasn’t a failure as a man, I was just stoned. I think if the culture had been different in regards to gender, I likely would have become female at some point in my adolescence. I didn't do that, though, because I didn't even see it as an option.

Cindy: Of course.

Colin: My introduction to punk was kind of crazy too. I brought home a NOFX tape a friend of mine had made me, and played it for my dad, and he gave me a copy of the first Dead Kennedys record. And both him and my mom were really into Gang of Four. So things that were rebellious for other people were not even remotely rebellious for me. But then when I was 14, someone gave me the first Bikini Kill record, and both my parents were like "What is this!?" and were freaking out, so I'm like Ok, here's something I can use to rebel. I finally have a thing that's not ok. So a lot of my politics when I was young came from a very cursory understanding of feminist issues. I remember thinking at the time that my life would have been easier if I was a girl. I had the political understanding that navigating the world as a female-bodied person was more difficult in a lot of ways. I didn't think it would be easier like that, but I had this notion that it would make more sense, my life would make more sense, if I were travelling through the world as a girl instead of a boy.
            I don't know if it's a great tragedy that I don't feel that way anymore. Because now, in this life I have, I love my body, I love being a man in the world. I'm fascinated by it, it's intriguing to me, it's interesting and it's fun. I like the clothes, I like being a dude a lot, and I'm very grateful for who I am. 

Cindy: Can you articulate more what do you find intriguing about it?

Colin: Maybe. All of this is going to be intrinsically tied to punk. Growing up punk in the 90's in New York was a pretty wild time for studying masculinity. Like I would go to see Blanks 77 on a Friday night, and see Anti-Product at ABC No Rio on Saturday, and then go see some New York Hardcore band on Sunday. And the way I would act and dress and speak, and even my posture would change, in these different places. It was something I did without thinking, but it was totally different. I felt out of place at the hardcore shows and I LOVED it. Well, I don't know if I loved it actually. Maybe I hated it, but I kept going, so there must have been something that I was into. Sometimes these days I describe my forays into the Sunday afternoon CBGBs Hardcore Matinee as being motivated by wanting to witness the spectacle of male violence, but I think that’s just me trying to seem precocious in retrospect.
Hardcore was so different from the Peace Punk and Street Punk scenes, both of which resonated with me way more because they were explicitly about either fighting injustice or partying, which were two things I liked to do. The NYHC scene was these huge dudes in camo cargo shorts, doing windmills and beating the shit out of each other. But at the same time there was this notion that - this is a thing that we share. This hyper-masculine bond of hardcore shows.
            I understand the response to the masculine aggression at hardcore shows - like "you can't do that. You have to make space for other people too." But at the same time, some people really needed those spaces and people to get that out with and be able to participate in violence with. Looking back on it, going to those shows was really a way to see into a very dark place, but it was also a hopeful place because it was clear that there was something almost therapeutic going on.
            I don't need that kind of catharsis, I never have, but I have known people who really did, and most of them came from much more violent backgrounds than me, and they needed to let it out somewhere in the world, and I think that was a really healthy, important outlet for those people to have. I don't know where the balance is.     
            I guess I'm at a place now in my 30's where I'm like -- do all places need to be inclusive to everybody? You know. I went through a pretty unfortunate folk punk phase in my early 20s and I didn't necessarily bring my hardcore friends to the neck bandana housepunk shows where I was playing a ukelele with my shirt hanging coquettishly off my shoulder. They would feel probably just as uncomfortable and awkward as I felt in their hyper-masculine spaces.

Cindy: I know what you mean. I had friends in the hardcore scene - female friends, and they hated riot-girl for trying to demasculinize it or stop the violence. They were like "these are our spaces. We need this!"

Colin: Right! And I say this as someone who never needed that, and who found it alienating.
            I also remember going to see a Barbara Krueger exhibit at the MOMA with my mother, and there was a print of some dudes fighting, and it said, "You construct intricate rituals in order to touch the skin of other men." And I immediately just imagined replacing that imagine with like, a pile on sing along at a hardcore show. There’s a certain intrinsic homoeroticism to a lot of those super-hetero, hyper-masculine spaces that I find really compelling.
             I think the problem isn't really the degree of violence in those spaces, but rather the degree of censure against those who don't conform. And I think it’s because the participants know they’re participating in something that could easily be construed as homoerotic, and because masculinity is defined largely by what it’s NOT rather than what it IS, they need to violently defend their straightness at all costs. The fact that all these men are shirtless and sweating and touching each other is only okay if they’re all straight, so anyone who punctures a hole in that reality is met with violent reprisal. I think that’s very dangerous and problematic, but I don’t think the consensual, cathartic violence of a hardcore show is bad or wrong at all.
            And you know, I still act differently depending on where I am. Like I went to the junkyard the other day, and the way I talked to those guys, the way I made eye contact, it was very different than how I would be at home or at a punk show.
            I love that in this world, there are all these spaces, and you have to learn the rules and you have to learn to navigate them. I think that's so fascinating and potentially this beautiful thing, where there's all these eclectic, different ways for people to see each other. I don't know. But obviously, there's the same problem, the censure of people who don't conform, which is actually super terrifying.
            I remember in high school I was at band practice and I was like "why don't you wear earplugs," and my bandmate was like "only pussies wear earplugs."  Neither of us were “like that,” but he said it because it seemed like a tough-guy thing to say, and I laughed.
            And I don't want that. That's not positive for anyone.

Cindy: How did you make the transformation from self-medicating around issues of masculinity and gender, to the kind of acceptance and celebration of who you are today?

Colin: I think that happened largely via my sobriety, which it took me a few years to even realize was something I wanted. In 2008 a really good friend of mine died. At the funeral, I couldn’t cry. Like, I went and I looked at his body in the casket and I had written him a little note and I slipped it in his shirt pocket and I wanted to cry so bad but I couldn’t. And then someone asked me if I wanted to go get a drink at the bar across the street and I had about 8 drinks in 40 minutes and when I got back inside it was like I had found the key to access my caged up emotions, and I was able to cry and it felt so good! That’s another thing about masculinity, the idea that we can’t be outwardly emotional. There’s just this idea that we’re not emotional, we take care of shit, not having any problems, not letting the little shit get to you. You know what I mean? Some of those things are good things, but taken to these extremes, they’re not.
            People came to the funeral from all over. On trains from Seattle, from places all across the country and across the world, like this huge dirtbag convention. Everybody was shitfaced. I went to a show that night at a bar that he used to work at. They were sad too, the bartenders, so no one had to pay for a single drink. Everyone was WASTED and people were weeping and punching out windows and freaking out, and I had this moment of clarity where I was like “Ok, our friend died from overpartying.” He had struggled with addiction for as long as I had known him. And the collective, community response to that was to just blot it out I guess, but like, this did not feel good.
            People had died in my community before, but there was something about this death that really hit home for a lot of people. For me, prior to this moment, being fucked up and never having a job and not giving a shit and rejecting capitalism and rejection of the shitty fucked up world was all tied up with getting super fucked up and being like “We don’t care about tomorrow we care about right now!” and like “We’re gonna live our lives how we want it, when we want it!” After my friend died, it stopped feeling like a life-affirming thing and just felt like we were all waiting in line to be dead.
            I think at first it had been a healthy outlet, but it turned from like this beautiful thing to this totally nihilistic thing. I never correlated the two till I was reading old journals a few years later, but I took my first ever “sober week” a few days after the funeral. It was actually like 5 days, and I was eating pills the whole time. But I didn’t drink! It was a big deal. I’d toyed with sobriety, I’d stop for a few days, just smoke weed. After the sober week eventually I stopped for 3 months, and then I stopped entirely.
            It wasn’t until I stopped that I even could pinpoint my reasons for wanting to just dull myself all the time. I didn’t have an understanding that I had these deep-seated gender anxieties, and that I had dealt with them by self-medicating. Also like, whatever masculine traits I felt I was not achieving, I knew what I did have was I could get so fucked up and still more or less take care of shit, and at least that was like, a solid, masculine quality. Like, I may look like a wuss, but I WILL outdrink you.
            Towards the end of my drinking I had started this relationship with my current partner, and I just acted really shady to her and a lot of it was centered around how deep in it I was with booze. I had been doing Support New York since waaaaay before I got sober, and all of a sudden I was doing processes for people who had done things that were similar to what I was doing in my own relationship in terms of being manipulative and untrustworthy. I realized this was super problematic, but didn’t do anything about it until my partner brought things to a head in this really intense way that I kind of forced her into via my own inaction, which just compounds the unfairness of the situation. Not only was I the architect of this heinous dynamic, but I was also leaving her responsible for dismantling it.
I think my shitty behavior in that relationship was rooted deeply in my alcoholism for sure, but equally in my masculine identity and socialization. A lot of it was about intentionally not being aware of what my emotions were because I didn’t want to deal with them. Making decisions that would affect my partner without her input, because I was a man and I could figure out what was best. Seeing that behavior in myself, realizing I was capable of it, that really made me want to quit booze forever because I could see how much pain I was putting my partner through and I didn’t want to be that sort of person. And then through the ensuing clarity of my sobriety and really interrogating my own life and motivations I started to piece together this story of myself as a little boy AND a little girl that I had stopped telling at some point.
Also Nevada, have you ever read the book Nevada? By Imogen Binnie? It’s a transwoman road trip novel, more or less. The protagonist, Maria, she leaves out of New York City and goes on a road trip, and meets someone in the midst of a gender crisis in a small town. It’s a great novel, and the gender crisis aspect of it struck a really deep chord in me. When I got it, I was in the process of acknowledging that I had a narrative tension in my own life. That was the beginning of me considering that maybe I have more than a general discomfort with gender in the culture, and in fact have discomfort about my own gender.
           
Cindy: Where are you at with your gender identity now?

Colin: I’m fine with who I am right now. Maybe someday I’ll be an old lady. For now, I take care of myself better. I eat better, I take vitamins. I take a holistic antidepressant. I feel more at home in my body than I ever have. I don’t know why. I think little stuff. Like I grew my hair long again and got my ear pierced. None of that is essentially “feminine,” like I have a pretty “butch” earring, but I think I’m being a little more playful with my masculinity. I do my hair up funny and wear a headband sometimes and dress and act a little more femme when I want to and don’t really think twice about it. I curtsy a lot.
Also having a writer friendship with Imogen has been really amazing. When her book freaked me out, I wrote her a letter and was like “Your book freaked me out! I’m in this gender crisis now. Don’t feel responsible for it. Actually, thank you. And I’d love to talk some stuff out. And, I think we’re very similar and would be good friends.” And she’s just been really warm and receptive in helping me parse a lot of this stuff. This was also after Laura Jane Grace came out and transitioned, and that opened the door to me thinking “maybe it’s not too late for me.” I think realizing it was a possibility for me at any time was helpful, because prior to that when I would think about transitioning, it always seemed like something that happened to people who were younger than I was. So even in my 20s when I had trans friends and knew it was an option in the world, it still didn’t seem like an option in my life.
            It’s like this, I barely smoke anymore, I smoke like 2 or 3 cigarettes a day, and I can leave the house without them. But there was a time when if I left the house and I didn’t have cigarettes in my pocket, I would start panicking, not because I needed a cigarette right then, but because I needed to have a cigarette there in case I needed one. Just having them there gave me an out. Laura, who is older than me, transitioning in her late 30s, that was like me having a pack of cigarettes in my pocket. I don’t necessarily need one right now, but I know they’re there and that’s comforting.
            And so I’m getting to a point within myself where this is an option for me, and it’s something I can start to do tomorrow if I want to. That just opened up a box that I’d locked myself into, and so then it became a thing where I had room to be like “there’s so much about being male that I like, and that I’m grateful for.”
            I actually do like my masculinity. I don’t want to destroy it. But I like the notion that I can feel like a girl and still maintain my male identity. How do I embody all my female role models, and all the incredibly powerful and rad shit that I respect and appreciate from the women in my life?
            A lot of my anxiety definitely comes from these essentialized notions of gender that I know are problematic. I was thinking about it a few years ago after I had written a letter to you. I was having a freakout and I wrote you about it, and I was thinking about how great punk is, and all these older people I could turn to as a resource, even though you and I didn’t really know each other, and how wonderful our community was, and I was thinking about all the people I had reached out to in various ways, and I realized that when I was having a crisis I either wrote you a letter or called Kimya Dawson, and when I needed advice about creative shit, I called Aaron or wrote to Eric Lyle. And I was like “oh, this is fucked up! I have very gendered roles for who I reached out to.” That helped me start to examine why I develop certain relationships in my life.
Being sober I was thinking about the fact that even when I was wasted and suppressing a lot of my gender stuff, I did do these types of gender play. One of the things I did was I had a pearl necklace, and about once a month I would get in the bath, put the pearl necklace on and I would drink my Ballentine out of a champagne glass and fake shave my legs like an elegant lady in a shaving cream commercial. I would listen to this Brahms tape and pretend I was Imelda Marcos or Cruella Deville, some vicious rich woman. It was a thing I would only do alone. And when I would clean my house, I would dress up like what I thought of as a rockabilly housewife. And when my cats were kittens they had repeatedly tried to nurse on my nipples, so I referred to myself as their mom.
            So when I started reconsidering my own gender, I thought about “what do I consider female?” and all the things were things that were nurturing. Like caring for myself. Whereas things like standing up to jerks on the street, these things were implicitly masculine. That’s something I’m trying to critically examine now, especially considering that most of my lived examples of people standing up to jerks have been women, yet I still somehow gender it as male.
Another person who’s had a big impact on me recently is Kiese Laymon. In his book "How To Slowly Kill Yourself and Others in America," he has this one essay that's been really important to me, both in my personal life, and in the work I do. It's an essay that's a series of letters amongst a group of six black men, (the essay has six separate authors), all talking about masculinity and how it's confined and defined their lives. The first letter is from a straight identified man, Kiese is straight identified. Then the next letter is from a gay man, and then a transman, and then a man talking about being a childhood sexual abuse survivor, and a man who just got out of prison. They're all talking together about their own personal experiences and working on forming positive notions of black masculinity.
When I approached him over the internet after reading it and said, "Hey, your essay totally blew my mind. I been doing transformative justice work for a decade now, and I would really love if you would let us use this essay in our processes. I think it would be a really useful lens to look at masculinity and socialization through." He was basically like, "I have been waiting for someone to ask me that. Thank you so much."
I think what he's doing, this project of his, actively redefining what it is to be a man in this world; part of the point is that there is no universal notion of what being a man means. It's our responsibility as a community, as various communities, to create modern examples of what masculinity can be. The work he's doing in his community is really useful and beneficial to me, and to the larger community of men, in deconstructing masculinity and trying to build a version of it that will be beneficial and nurturing to the world, instead of violent and toxic. He's unapologetic about his being male, but understands the need for a recuperative effort on the part of men to basically everyone else.
            His work, coupled with the notion that I can walk away from it at any time, has a lot to do with my new-found comfort in masculinity and being male because I feel that there's positive work to do, in this body and as this person. Being male no longer feels like a prison. It’s a choice I’m actively affirming, rather than something proscriptive that I’m stuck with. And although the difference between now and before is almost purely ontological, it turns out that was all I needed.

Radio Update // Art Shit

Me and Sue hanging out with the owner of Casanova Pizzeria

RADIO UPDATE:

Radio Harvester continues to shine as a guiding light on the internet for the losers and shlubs of NYC or anywhere really to reach the path of inner acceptance. This month's broadcast has us talking to

Sue Jeiven

who is a total badass, an incredibly talented tattoo artist and one of my longstanding Older Punk Rolemodels. We talked about how she got into tattooing, the correlation between pizza and punk, what it's like dealing with terminal cancer, and much more.

You can listen here:

Sue has asked that I emphasize that this tattoo is NOT her work.

But if you wanna be a mensch will you please subscribe in iTunes and give it a 5 star review that uses at least one yiddish word?

ITUNES ITUNES ITUNES ITUNES ITUNES

thanks.

ART SHIT

My number one homegirl

Caroline Paquita

 has a show opening tomorrow night at Booklyn and it's gonna be SIIIIIICK. Seriously. Hella pubic wigs, self-cunnilingus wooden puppets, weird tits with lights on the ends of them, total freak shit. To quote the gallery, who doesn't sound like a dickhead when they talk about art:

GARDEN OF THE WOMANIMAL explores a recurring theme throughout the recent years of Caroline’s work, depicted in a wide variety of media, a cult of “womanimals” half-women/half-wild animals are illustrated in landscapes of playful sexual scenarios, mystical adventures, and explorations of nature and the body. The womanimals’ corrupt playfulness and exuberance are contrasted by the meticulously clean line work of Paquita’s drawings and paintings. Newer works are surrounded by thirteen years of imagery demonstrating the evolution towards this theme and its stylized representation.

For real, just go to this shit. I'm sure there will be some food or something that you can eat and you probably just sit around playing Street Fighter all day and could deal with having your horizons broadened by an amazing weirdo.

GARDEN OF THE WOMANIMAL

CAROLINE PAQUITA

Opening reception + Book Launch, Saturday April 12, 2014, 7 - 10pm

April 12 - June 8th, 2014

MISCELLANEOUS REPORTS ON THE PATRIARCHY DEPT

1. I been basically a sober dog for like over two years now, which is generally awesome. In that time I have developed a weird affinity for horror movies that I never had before, I think mostly because the physical sensation of being scared is kind of like getting fucked up in a super PG way. ANYWAY, I have been through the dregs of the Netflix and Hulu Plus horror sections, obviously a lot of that shit sucks and is full of superfluous violence, sexualized violence towards women, hella patriarchy buttressing, gender role reinforcement, yadda yadda yah. As Chief Keef so eloquently said, "that's that shit I don't like." But like gangsta rap, I have a really complicated relationship with horror films that is in many ways made possible by my privilege as a straight cis-dude and blah blah blah, you know what I mean, right?

POINT IS: I have watched like, two movies in the past two weeks where the killer was some unhinged man dressed like a woman and I think that shit is SO WHACK and played out. First I watched "IN DREAMS" where Robert Downey Jr plays a murderous transwoman who just wants to be masculinized by having a heterosexual nuclear family so he kidnaps a woman and child to make them let him be the dad and it's all because his dad left and so he had no male role model as a child. Puh-lease. It was directed by Neil Jordan who I realize now directed the Crying Game so obviously FUCK HIM and he is added to the list of people I'm gonna fight after I get my weight up. Current list: Tucker Max, Hoodie Allen, Neil Jordan.

Far more upsetting than that, though, was watching Insidious 2 last night and look, the first one was good until they went into the SHADOW WORLD or whatever and then the villain turned out to be some bullshit TOM WAITS character, but it was good enough that I was stoked when the second one came on netflix and there was at least only regular amounts of patriarchy reinforcement rather than like, brutal overwhelming amounts. AND THEN in the sequel you learn that the killer is some dude who puts on a black wedding dress and makeup and murders women because his dad left and he didn't have a male role model. REALLY?! Thanks Insidious Chapter 2 for ruining yourself for me by trotting out the same tired ass gender tropes. COVER SOME NEW GROUND.

Like, I would be SO STOKED to see a horror movie that had a trans character in it that wasn't totally pathologized. I don't know, whatever. Fuck everything.

MY KURT COBAIN STORY


Kurt Cobain died 20 years ago tomorrow. I think I was in 5th grade. I pretended to hang myself from the monkey bars on the playground to impress a girl that day and got in a small amount of trouble. I definitely was a tiny weirdo with long greasy hair back then, and I felt my slight, childish alienation expressed better by GRUNGE as it stood than anything else I had come across, but you know, I was a kid or whatever.

ANYWAY. When I got to Junior High School I got into PUNK in NYC which was very exciting. Punk is all about participation, rather than consumption, which I realized even that young, so I started writing a fanzine and I printed up two t-shirts to sell at shows, along with my shitty publication. One shirt had a picture of the state of New Jersey and it said "Kiss Your Girlfriend Where It Smells, Take Her To New Jersey" (I was fourteen when I made it okay?) which I think I stole from another fanzine. The other shirt just said I KILLED KURT COBAIN which I thought was a super punk sentiment, even though I still secretly liked Nirvana.

My freshman year of high school I went to a party at my friend Andrew's house. His parents were divorced and it was one of those situations where you tell your mom that you're sleeping over at the one parent's house but then actually the other parent is out of town and you have a party there. Andrew's step-sister Kristen was a cheerleader and she invited all her friends and Andrew invited our crew (me, Bruno and Diego) and we smoked bongs in the attic and like, listened to bootleg Operation Ivy tapes Diego brought back from the flea market in Mexico City, which is what we would've been doing even if Andrew's dad was home.

Eventually we wandered down to the living room and a bunch of dudes from the football team were in there getting drunk. Imagine a room full of wasted Moose Masons but listening to Biggie instead of whatever music they had in Archie Times. I was a young Freak on a Leash back then (metaphorically speaking, though the year prior I had spent much of my time wearing a LITERAL leash) so I was wearing: my brand new from 8th Street Grinders Combat boots with the neon NKOTB laces I stole from that weird biker store on St Marks Place, some big black JNCO jeans (do you remember those?), my I KILLED KURT COBAIN shirt and my hair in four pigtails (to invoke the corners).

Some of Kristen's football friends sold us Budweiser 40s for $5 a pop, which we thought was reasonable because we'd never bought beer before, and we started to drink and kinda hang out with them a little. And it was like, this weird moment where these young freaks and older jocks were getting along okay. AND THEN, this one gigantic sports dude just got all devil eyed and pointed at me and was like, "TAKE THAT SHIRT OFF!" and I laughed because I thought he must be kidding and then all of a sudden he was across the room right in my face and we were having one of those weird Man Moments where he was butting his chest into mine and talking through his teeth and he was like "I SAID TAKE THAT FUCKING SHIRT OFF!" and I was still laughing, albeit a little more nervously, because I still just thought he was fucking with me and was gonna laugh about it too any moment because why would some jock care about my I KILLED KURT COBAIN shirt?

And then he picked me up by my collar like they do in the movies and shoved me against a wall and I was scared. Kristen was like, "oh no Travis put him down leave him alone" super feebly and it was clear that she was actually so stoked on this display of raw masculine power. Very quickly and very quietly I said to him "what's your fucking problem man? You've made your point, you're bigger and tougher okay just put me down now." because everyone was watching and I hated it.

And then in that placid voice that shitty dudes get right after they Hulk out when they are gonna instill the lesson that was supposed to accompany their display of force, he was like, "My problem? My problem is with that shirt. I love Nirvana and I love Kurt you little faggot. So take that shit off."
And at that point, I busted out laughing so EARNESTLY and so intensely that he just dropped me on the floor and walked away mumbling that I was crazy. If I had any chutzpah or more of a death wish I would've leaned in and kissed him. What a perfect moment! Like three hours later he was asking me to teach him how to play "About A Girl" on Andrew's dad's acoustic guitar.

RADIO SHIT

 
YO WHAT'S UP? Listen: tomorrow night my first ever RADIO HARVESTER broadcast is happening during DISTORT JERSEY CITY on WFMU.


What does any of that mean?

RADIO HARVESTER is a new audio collabo between myself and Reed Dunlea (of Dipers, NY's Alright Fest, Greatest City In The World cassette zine). Reed is super cool and sometimes he looks like he's in Warzone. He takes a lot of pictures of himself flexing in front of stuff. He also does a million rad projects and is very productive and inspiring to be around. One of those projects is DISTORT JERSEY CITY, which is the punkest radio show on WFMU which is the punkest radio station.

RADIO HARVESTER is an interview based audio zine that is about ME interviewing OTHER PUNX at PIZZA PARLORS while we EAT PIZZA. That's right! You can hear a lot of chewing and GROSS MOUTH NOISES and that's the way we like it. The DEBUT ISSUE is being BROADCAST for the first time TOMORROW on Reed's radio show, which airs from 7-8pm on all Tuesday nights. The RADIO HARVESTER segments will be airing monthly. For now.

This Month's Guest is BENJAMIN "BEN TROGDON" TROGDON who makes NUTS! Fanzine and is also super cool and inspiring and fun to be around. He never looks like he's in the band CANDYFLIP, but sometimes when I'm sad I watch that video and pretend that guy is him and it cheers me up.

IN SHORT: at some point between 7-8pm on WFMU tomorrow night you will hear ME interviewing BEN TROGDON of NUTS! Fanzine at ROSA'S PIZZA in QUEENS. Listen on a real radio or stream it on the internet WE DON"T CARE.

Doing a reading next week + the last thing I wrote for NUTS.

SO I'm doing a reading a week from tomorrow at KGB Bar on E 4th St at 7pm. I am super stoked because the last time I was there it was to see Sam Delany read so it's the same kind of corny "same stage as my heroes" moment as playing my first show at CBGBs was in high school except this time I'm not embarrassed to mention that I'm excited because I'm not a teenager.

Also, as usual, I just finished my submission for the new NUTS magazine, so I'm posting my submission from last issue of NUTS. I wrote this in August. Hope you enjoy.

MUSIC I HAVE LISTENED TO FOR HOURS STRAIGHT ON REPEAT WHILE WRITING MY BOOK by COLIN ATROPHY

Sinead O’Connor – Black Boys on Mopeds

Someone made a thread on a message board I look at with the goal of collectively determining the saddest song ever written. I don’t know what the outcome was and I didn’t listen to 99% of the songs posted, but this song was a contender and for whatever reason I looked it up on youtube and ended up listening to it over and over again for like, maybe three weeks. I don’t know if it’s the saddest song ever, but I do know that at the beginning of the first week it would make me just straight up like, WEEP for the first two or three repetitions. I think I liked crying while I was writing so that’s okay. I also cry really easily. Olympia, WA by Rancid made me cry for years. True story: the other day I was driving in a car listening to Hot 97 and “Stan” by Eminem came on and during the last verse, when Slim Shady is finally responding to Stan’s letter, there’s that part where he implores Stan to stop harming himself and maybe seek counseling and I had to pull over because I was so touched by it and couldn’t see the road through all my tears. 

Pagans – (Us and) All Of Our Friends Are So Messed Up

What a title—excellent use of parentheses, and who doesn’t feel this way?!? I was determined to like this song before I even heard it, when I saw it posted on my friend Nathan’s facebook feed. That’s right. I’m writing a book and I don’t interact with humans and I find out about everything from the internet. I’m not punk anymore, get over it. ANYWAY, this song is so good. I didn’t realize the Pagans had even kept existing into the 90s, and I am totally pleasantly surprised that they released this, possibly their best song, during the band’s twilight. The part where Mike Hudson sings, “Yeah, I saw an old friend yesterday / It wasn’t easy, we stood and searched for things to say,” was maybe a little too real. And the song is totally a bummer, but there’s also a sense of triumph or celebration in still being a bunch of awkward freaks even now that we’re grownups! I love that! ALSO there are a couple of horror movie vampire laughs, which I shouldn’t have to tell you is AWESOME.

Bossy – Who Loves You Most -> Who Loves You More

This weird thing happened at the beginning of August where I got this totally impossible to control urge to listen to the Bossy record, and I found myself just listening to these two songs back and forth over and over. They are the last and first songs on The Best of Bossy and they are definitely cutesy poo little twee love jammers. It’s clear that Who Loves You Most is a home recording and Who Loves You More was the studio result. Listening to them back to back feels pretty seamless for this reason, because the chord progression is the same but the first one is way lower-fi, has slightly different lyrics, and is sung by Jamie, whereas the Who Loves You More has full instrumentation and Cassie is singing. This record came out right after Jamie died and I think the inclusion of Who Loves You Most was a sentimental nod to what a sweet dude he could be at times. A few days into my week of listening to these two songs over and over Kevin Morby reminded me that it was Jamie’s birthday and I remembered that every year at this time I get this totally overwhelming compulsion to listen to some songs of his. Last year it was Elizabethan Collar and Alabam from the Young Men tape Barker put out. It all comes back, I think, to the fact that I had been listening to Stray Dog Town over and over again for the first time in AGES the week that Jamie died and every night I meant to call him and tell him that I loved him and see how he was doing and every night I just went to the bar and got drunk and didn’t call. This year has been especially difficult, though. Listen: what are you gonna do? I am still so sad that my friend is gone, but I am also very grateful for his incredible body of work that I can remember him by and also grateful for the friends I still have.

Amps For Christ –Circuits / Sister Irene O’Connor – Fire of Gods Love

The cover of the other Amps For Christ album I have (Thorny Path, I think) actually looks way more like this record sounds than the cover of this record looks. This record has a picture of bugs standing on a scrabble board or something (I can’t even remember), whereas the cover of Thorny Path reminds me of playing Ultima V: Warriors of Destiny on the computer in my parents’ basement. The music on Circuits sounds like I am at some weird psychedelic Renn Faire. The Sister Irene O’Connor record is something I heard about from Francesca at MRR. It is this weird private pressing Catholic missionary record by this nun that is apparently impossible to find because record collectors know it rules. It sounds like Vashti Bunyan singing about teen abstinence over Castlevania music. Pairs well with Circuits, maybe because Amps for Christ is actually Christian music and the name isn’t a joke? At least that’s what Naters told me at the record store one day, but I can’t say for certain he wasn’t just yankin my crank. At one point I didn’t leave my house for like three or four straight days and just listened to these two records back and forth the whole time. I felt like I had to “get weird” or something because that’s what writers do, so I put on bizarre outfits and got super stoned and paced my apartment. None of the writing I did for those few days was any good, but it pushed me out of a nasty bit of writer’s block and I recorded an art film of just my mouth saying “Master P says, ‘Masterpieces!’” over and over again for like 15 or 20 minutes.

Albe Back feat Fabulous – Mira Mira Ven Aqui

I heard this song coming out of a car when I was sitting on my fire escape brooding one night and then I listened to it eighty million times. I incorrectly predicted that it would be the big summer jam of 2013, but I was wrong because this song actually sucks, and I can admit that and still love it. Albe Back is a terrible rapper, but he is really young and he is Big Pun’s nephew and his rap name is a PUN and a reference to Terminator so that’s cool. Also at this one part he says “BYE BYE” in a high pitched voice and sounds so vulnerable and adorable and it’s so cute and he says he is “older than a beeper,” but that would make him like, maybe 17? Also a secret about me is that I LOVE Fabolous but I can never remember how he spells his name and every time I write it down I have to do the “FA-BO-LO-US” he says in Holla Back in my head to remind myself. This song has a totally hypnotic, super corny synth loop that has been stuck in my head since before I heard it. It maybe seems like something Trick Daddy and Trina would have rapped on before they had any money to buy real beats. Whatever, I love this song and no one else does but fuck y’all.

SLICE HARVESTER HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE

I would like to take an opportunity to highlight some cool stuff my friends made and I am doing it under the auspices of a "Holiday Gift Guide" even though writing those words makes me want to puke and half this stuff probably won't even get to you or your loved ones by Christmas. Whatever, get over it and give people their presents in January. Who fucking cares?

2014 Paquita Calendar ($12)
This is one of my favorite things that happens every year! Caroline is my best friend and a wonderful artist and she prints these calendars on her RISO machine each year and they are absolutely stunning. This year's calendar is no exception. If you like rad drawings of ambiguously gendered nature freaks riding motorcycles and swimming in the ocean and doing eachother's tarot and shit, this is the calendar for you. Seriously this shit is so beautiful and Caroline's commitment to creating affordable fine art for regular lowlives like us is super admirable. ALSO: buy the other stuff on the Pegacorn Press Webstore because ALL OF IT IS GREAT.


Nevada by Imogen Binnie ($17.95)
I bought Nevada because Imogen is an MRR columnist and also a friend of many of my friends and I was feeling like supporting a "fellow punk author." I didn't know what to expect and then it just ripped my head right open. Imogen has this ability to mix totally casual/vernacular language with intensely heavy subject matter in a way that feels like you're being talked to by the coolest person you'll ever meet. She is one of like, maybe five writers that I would hand over Slice Harvester to if she asked because I think we are on the same ~wavelength~. Look for our posthumous "Collected Emails of Colin Atrophy Hagendorf and Imogen Binnie" in like 200 years when we're both dead.

All Our Pretty Songs by Sarah McCarry ($9.99)
This book knocked me on my ass too! I don't remember why I bought it, but afterwards I realized that Sarah was the same person that had released my friend/mentor (frientor?) Mimi Nguyen's last zine PUNK (which she wrote collaboratively with this awesome lady Golnar who I don't actually know but who is in a sick hardcore band and we are friends with all the same people). All Our Pretty Songs is about a lot of my favorite stuff: mystical teens, drugs, punk. HEAVILY reminded me of Oranges Are the Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson, which is one of my top five books EVER, probably. Look out for an interview with Sarah about pizza, being punk, etc. to appear here on Slice Harvester some time in the next 500 years.

Mother's News Subscription ($25)
I don't really know how to talk about Mother's News because it doesn't really make much sense and so I won't try to explain it too hard. Mother's News is a newspaper. It comes out every month and is mainly the work of this super tall weirdo Jacob Berendes but also involves a lot of collaborators. It is the only place I have ever paid to advertise Slice Harvester and that advertisement resulted in some dude sending me his low budget Christian horror film. I think if I had to make a list of reasons why I am not ashamed to be a human it wouldn't be a very long list and Mother's News would be somewhere at the top. Seriously if you get someone you love a gift subscription to MN it will make their life tangibly better.

Maximum Rocknroll Int'l Punk Comp + Subsciption ($59)
Look MRR was really important for me to get into punk and then to realize that punk is super fallible and totally susceptible to the pitfalls of the square world. It was kind of a shitty bro-zone for a while, though "luckily" for me I was a fifteen year old boy when I got into it so I didn't really notice. Anyway, at some point a series of super rad women took the reigns of the magazine and now it is so fucking cool again! There is an active attempt to focus on punk being made by queers, women, people of color, those residing in "The Global South," etc. You can just get the subscription for $45, but if you throw down an extra $14 you get this 2xLP comp of 32 bands from 14 countries! What?! I am so stoked. Only band I've heard on here is Nuclear Spring, who are totally sweet anarcho punk from Brooklyn. Get into it.


My friend Jes Skolnik helped put out this comp tape with Sean who runs Accidental Guest. You can stream the whole thing on Rookie, but just drop the $6 for the tape and help support Rachael's Women's Center. If you don't have a tape deck, you can pay-as-you-will download from the Accidental Guest bandcamp page. Standout tracks (for me) from Good Throb, Stillsuit, Split Feet, Perfect Pussy, Household. But everything on here is fucking great. Jes is super cool and a huge inspiration for me in terms of "staying rad" because they always seem to be working on the most awesome shit. Keep up the good work, comrade!

Conopio Family Relief Fund ($??)
Now that I'm a grownup and I basically buy everything I want for myself, I usually ask my family to give money to other folks in lieu of getting me a gift. Last year I had them all donate to the Ali Forney Center because they got totally wrecked in the hurricane. This year I'll be asking them to give a couple bucks to my friend Robert's mom so she can help rebuild her village in the Philippines that was just destroyed in the Typhoon. I am so wary of foreign aid organizations, but this is a rare opportunity to give money right to my friend's mom, who is there using the money directly to give aid to actual people instead of lining the pockets of some international nonprofit bureaucracy.  Anyway, you know I always talk about being punk means having eachother's backs so maybe just give Robert's family a couple bucks to rebuild their houses okay?

OKAY THAT'S IT FOR THE GIFT GUIDE, ASSHOLES. You can also always buy yourself or a loved one a full set of Slice Harvester Fanzines, but that will definitely not get to you by Christmas because I'm TERRIBLE at keeping up with my mailorder.

CONCERT REVIEWS.

In celebration of finishing my contribution for the upcoming issue of BENJAMIN TROGDON PRESENTS: NUTS! FANZINE, and because I haven't written anything else besides stuff for my book this month, here is a thing I wrote for NUTS a few issues back. Ben asked me to write show reviews for him but I couldn't do that since I'm a hermit, so I wrote reviews from memory of shows I went to in High School. Some names have been changed, others have not. Sort it out yourself.

My teenage band playing a show in our high school cafeteria circa 1998.
SHOW REVIEWS by COLIN ATROPHY

Ramones Final Tour - Capital Theater, Port Chester, NY, 1996
My friend Jason invited me to come with him to this show for his Bar Mitzvah. He was my best friend for a while. I liked going to his house because we always watched R Rated movies. One time he showed me his older brother's condoms. We used to sit in his room and listen to the Geto Boys and play with his pet Salamander. I don't remember why we stopped being friends but we did. I think it might have been as simple as him moving away, but I have a vague memory of being really mean to him one time in like, a kid experimenting with cruelty kind of way. I don't know. He just friend requested me on Facebook. I am going to accept his friend request but I will not email him and he will not email me and I will probably "unsubscribe" from his "news feed" before the month is out. Whatever. At one point during this Ramones show I’m supposed to be talking about some dude started smoking weed and Jason said “it smells like my dad’s office in here.” Also this was the first time I moshed.


The Toasters, Spring Heeled Jack, Jiker - 7 Willow St, Port Chester, NY, 1997
This was the first night time show I ever went to besides the Ramones Final Tour. My dad and my Uncle Kevin came because they hadn't seen a ska band since seeing the Specials open up for the Clash in the 80s. I was scared they were gonna try and hang out with me but they just sat at the bar the whole time. I liked the Toasters a lot and they played my favorite song "Mona" which I had daydreams of learning how to play on guitar and then playing at the 8th Grade Talent Show because then my neighbor who I had a crush on would obviously finally fall in love with me. I had never heard Spring Heeled Jack but I bought their t shirt because I liked that they used the rebel alliance logo because I was in the middle of a really tough campaign in the Star Wars table top role playing game that my friend Tony was DMing. He didn't come to the show because he didn't like music and soon after this I stopped hanging out with him because I got into doing drugs and being punk and Tony just wanted to play Final Fantasy games and shit like that which I thought wasn't cool anymore. I think he is a doctor now. Jiker were from Connecticut and pretended to be from Canada.


The Specials - The Globe Theater, Stamford, CT, 1997
I won two tickets to see the Specials from Tunnel One the ska radio show on WNYU, which was on right before Crucial Chaos, the punk radio show on WNYU. Or maybe it was on right after because ska was more "adult" than punk? Either way, I listened to both religiously every Thursday night and there is probably still a box of cassette tapes I dubbed of both shows sitting in my parent's basement. I asked my dad if he wanted the other ticket because he was the only person I knew who liked the Specials and knew how to drive. We got to the venue SO EARLY to claim our prize and this fucking like, nineteen year old intern at the door wouldn't let me in because I wasn't eighteen. My dad was like, "I'm his dad," but the dude would not budge. I cried in the car and my dad took me to an Indian buffet as a small consolation and then I think we went to see Face/Off.


H2O Matinee - 7 Willow St, Port Chester, NY 1997
I remember imagining what H2O sounded like a lot and then being really surprised that they sounded just like the Bouncing Souls to me, because they were a hardcore band and I figured they were gonna sound like Hatebreed. During the afternoon before this show I smoked an entire pack of Kamel Red Lights because I was trying to become a smoker but didn't know how to do it yet and so I just smoked them all in a row. At one point I was standing around the show talking to my friends Adam and Trevor and I felt like I was going to have a puke burp. I am a long-winded storyteller and so I put my index finger up to my mouth to gesture "one second" so they wouldn't stop paying attention to me while I burped up some puke and then swallowed it and then kept talking. But instead of having a puke burp I had a whole crazy puke! It was fucking so much puke, too. And it came out at this really high velocity and filled my cheeks and then burst out of my mouth. My finger split the stream and so it hit both Adam and Trevor in the chest. I have a really clear memory of finishing puking into a urinal. And some whack straight edge dude telling me I was lucky I looked so pathetic right now with my mohawk all crumpled up in the urinal water, because it was the only thing that saved me from him kicking my ass.


Less Than Jake, Plow United, Howitzer, approximately 1 million other bands - 7 Willow St, Port Chester NY 1997
It was some time around Thanksgiving. I fought like hell with my dad to get him to drop me off around the corner from this show, because I knew there would be a line outside the club and I didn’t want other kids to see that I had parents. I think I was wearing my new Toy Dolls t-shirt I got on St Marks Pl that I used to wear all the time. I didn’t bring a jacket because I knew it would be hot in there, and this was before smoking bans in NY so there was literally no good reason to go outside once the show had started. Also this was before I got a leather Ramones jacket which I would have warn regardless of the temperature. As we pulled around the corner in front of the club, my father and I both noticed a huge line outside. I was chagrined at the notion of all of these people seeing me get out of his car, he was bothered by something else. He was like, “why don’t you let me wait in line and get your ticket for you? It’s cold.” And I was like, “you don’t know anything, there’s not a ticket they just stamp your hand.” And he was like, “well then borrow my jacket,” which was one of those weird smooth leather jackets like Ross from Friends and I was all, “ewww no I hate you leave me alone.” And got out of the car. Like fifteen minutes later I was halfway through the line, which was like the one at the movie theater where it snakes back and forth, cordoned off with velvet ropes, so like, a million people can get crammed into a dense yet organized square, and I noticed this jostling towards the back of it, but didn’t pay any mind. The commotion seemed to be moving towards me but I didn’t really care and then all of a sudden there was my dad, standing in front of me, holding out a sweater he had taken from the trunk of his car. “Here just take this, I don’t care if you lose it. It’s so cold out here this is ridiculous.” I pretended I didn’t know him, spoke through gritted teeth. “UGH! I hate you. I don’t need a sweater. Go AWAY!” And then he looked at me, and said, “alright, see ya later, champ,” and he gave me one of those little playful slo-mo punches in the chin like a coach gives a basketball player. And I was fucking livid. That was the only time in recorded history that he ever called me “champ” and the only time he ever did one of those stupid chin punches. The whole show was ruined because between all the bands, when all the different groups of kids would stand around in circles and hang out and smoke cigarettes and joke around, any time any of those little circular cells of my peers would erupt into laughter, I’d just imagine all the kids giving mock chin punches and sarcastically calling each other “champ” and pointing back at me and laughing.


Furious George, The Artless, Boris The Sprinkler - Coney Island High, NY, NY 1997
This show was advertised as being an MRR columnist-themed show. I don't remember the bands much. I liked Furious George a lot and I still think some of their songs are really brilliant in terms of mindless bubblegum punk. Mykel Board asked me how much heroin it would take to get me in bed and I told him none and he said “great let's bone” and I was like, "naw, I don't do heroin and also I don't want to sleep with you because you are old." He was wearing a really big Michael Jackson Bad Tour t shirt and black jeans. I’m pretty sure I was taller than him. The conversation was weird but I never felt pressured and it never felt creepy, if that makes sense. George Tabb was cool to me because I was a young zine guy and also because he had a crush on my Aunt, I think, or his bass player Evan did. I didn't talk to Rev Norb but shortly after this show I learned that one of the b-sides to one of the Boris the Sprinkler 7"s was creepily written about sexually assaulting someone I was penpals with and I started to critically re-examine his body of work, which had previously appealed to me because he talks about being a dork and that resonated with me, and I realized that he was a scary insidious creep who hated women.


25 Ta Life Matinee - Coney Island High, NY, NY 1998
I know this show happened in the summer of 1998 because I went to Kim's and bought the Black Star record right before the show because it had just come out that day or that week and I was so fucking excited. Rick Ta Life had his whole face bandaged up and looked really scary. I think during one of the opening bands I jumped in the pit and earnestly tried doing some kung fu moves even though I was a little scrawndog. All the other dudes there looked like the Bushwackers from WWF. While 25 Ta Life was playing, me and my friend Sandy started smoking a joint at the back of the club and the bouncer freaked and threw us out. He said we were lucky we were just getting booted from the club and not getting our asses kicked by the throngs of terrifying edge dudes bro-moshing like one hundred feet away from us in an unventilated room. I think we went and got a 40 and drank it in Tompkins Square Park after that.


The Casualties, The Krays, LES Stitches - Tramps, NY, NY 1998
I took some codeine pills and drank a 22 of Ballentine and then slept under a table through this entire show.


LES Stitches, Blanks 77 - The Continental, NY, NY 1998
This show was on the first night of Channukah. I gave Mike Blanks a Poison's Greatest Hits tape I stole from Sam Goody that afternoon as a Channukah present. He thanked me and told me I should come to Jersey in the spring when he has a pool party in his mom's backyard, but then I never heard from him again. Me and Joaquin snuck in whiskey and drank in the bathroom. We also shoulder tapped grown ups to buy us beer from the bar, which everyone was willing to do. All the members from Blanks 77 and LES Stitches got in like, a rockette line arm in arm and sang the 12 Days of Christmas a cappella but changed the words to be about booze and drugs. I just remember all of them saying "...and a vodkaaaaa craaanberryyyyyy" alot. I thought it was really really cool at the time, but in retrospect it seems so corny.


US Bombs, other bands - The Continental, NY, NY 1999
This show was during my week of seeing MTV celebrities everywhere. First me and Joaquin pushed over Jesse Camp on St Marks place for being a poser. It was probably one of the shittiest and meanest things I've ever done and I think about it sometimes and feel bad, but we were fifteen. Then I was on the subway with my friend Milo and I was like, "dude, that's John Norris" and he went over and karate chopped him and came back and was like, "doesn't seem so tough to me," and I was like, "no, JOHN Norris, the MTV News guy. The karate guy is CHUCK Norris." Then at this US Bombs show the singer from Smashmouth and Carson Daly were there. All the punks kept trying to elbow Carson Daly in the face whenever he would get anywhere near the pit. I don't know how I feel about that, but whatever, it happened. My friend Andrew said he pantsed the guy from Smashmouth, but I didn't see it happen because I was outside with my friend Trevor and these two kids we met standing in the foyer of St Mark's Books smoking a blunt and freestyle rapping, which is something I did a lot back then.


Turbo ACs - The Continental - NY, NY 2000
Even though this show was 21+ me and Joaquin and Tom went anyway because Damien the bass player from the Stitches usually worked the door at the Continental and he would let us in even though we were underage as long as we promised not to drink. But Mick from the Stitches was the bartender at the Continental and he would often let us drink anyway. For whatever reason, this night Damien wasn't working the door, Trigger, the owner was. He is this total shithead with a big scar on his face and a hat like Raiden from Mortal Kombat. A few years later my then-girlfriend told me that her best friend Krista's dad had given Trigger that scar in a bar fight at Max's Kansas City in the 70s and that her and Krista had been banned for life from the Continental when Krista's dad came to pick them up from a show when they were really young and Trigger figured out who he was and the two men had some kind of Shitty Man Confrontation right there in the street. ANYWAY, Trigger obviously didn't let us in and we got real mad and were sitting on 7th Street drinking beers when this dude who looked like a Dennis Leary character from an Irish Mafia movie came up to me and pulled a badge out of his shirt and was like, "alright, what's in your hand?" I was all "...um, it's a 40 oz of Olde English, officer." And then he was like, "no, your other hand." And I was like, "uh... a cigarette," because I was smoking a cigarette. He didn't believe me because it was a rollie and so I showed him my package of Drum and he still didn't believe me and so he took it from my hand and he held it under his nose and made a face like he was thinking real hard, then he gave it back to me and walked away. He never even talked to Joaquin or Tom and he never mentioned that we were drinking open containers and he never even asked for ID or anything.


Tons of Shows at ABC No Rio - Just about every Saturday from 1997-2000
I didn't watch any bands at all. Me and Joaquin bought 40s across the street and drank them in the backyard. I thought I looked like such a grown up but looking back at pictures of myself I can't believe those bodega guys ever let me buy any Hurricane. I probably played dice with Win the Skin for cigarettes. Maybe I stole a bottle of liquor from the box of ancient bottles of liquor hidden in my parent's basement that had previously been in my grandparent's basement for many years from when my Grandfather's bar in Brooklyn closed in the late-60s. One time we smoked a dusted blunt and Joaquin had a hallucination about Ike Turner. One time I puked cheese doodles down the sleeve of my leather jacket. One time I came home after drinking almost an entire fifth of vodka and my dad asked me if I was drunk and I slurred “no” and he asked why my breath smelled and I said, "uhhhh, I just ate a buncha New Yawk City hot dogs, pops." As a young adult I made lots of friends who I learned were also at these shows when they were teenagers but we couldn't remember if we had ever really talked to each other partly because we were all so fucked up and mostly because we all just remembered being totally shy and terrified of everyone else except our one or two friends we were there with. I stopped going to No Rio when I was like 18 because I had "grown up" which meant I stopped caring about stuff and started listening to Social Distortion all the time and combing vaseline into my hair and hanging out at the pool hall thinking I was so mature. That was a pretty dark time in my life and I can't really appreciate Social D at all anymore because I blame Mike Ness for almost turning me into a Rockabilly. Ultimately it's okay because I started going again when I was 20. Recently I found a video online of an old band of mine covering the Ramones at No Rio on Joey Ramone Day in 2006. My mom and dad were at that show and I was really disappointed they weren't in the video at all. It was the first time I ever invited them to see a band of mine play.


The Banned - CBGB’s, 2000
I don’t actually remember anything about this show at all but I asked some of my friends from back then about details from the time Joaquin smashed the toilet at CB’s with a sledgehammer. I remembered it as some kind form of justice for some wrong that had happened to me, but apparently he just smashed it because he found a sledgehammer and that toilet was just begging to be smashed. I think I am confusing it with the time I almost got arrested at SUNY Purchase College and Joaquin got mad and smashed the windshield of an unattended cop car with a pickaxe and then kicked over an entire row of police motorcycles, but that was like, in 2002 or 2003. ANYWAY, CBGB’s. The men’s bathroom at CB’s had a row of about five or six urinals along the righthand wall, and then at the back, there was a toilet, with no stall around it, on a small raised platform, probably about six inches high, like a stage. The only time I ever remember seeing anyone shit in it was when APR Steve dropped one at some show and there was a crowd of spectators who erupted into applause when he got up because no one had ever seen that toilet used for anything besides getting pissed or puked into. The show where Joaquin smashed the toilet had been put together by some friends of ours in the band The Banned and they were hella bummed that the toilet got smashed on a night where they felt more or less responsible for the well-being of the club. Apparently they knew Joaquin had did it and while they were playing, Brian, their bassist, who was older than all of us, like probably 24 or 25 when we were 17, got on the microphone and was like, “so, I just wanted to say that some ASSHOLE smashed the toilet in the club for NO GOOD REASON. Shitty behavior like that makes places like this that are willing to let us have shows think twice about booking our bands again and it is a DICKHEAD MOVE.” Then he paused for a few seconds and said, “Joaquin, why don’t you get up here and sing this next one with us?” I think he was trying to do some Ian McKaye “ice cream eating motherfucker” older punk Uncle thing but Joaquin was so drunk he was just pumped to go sing a song and had probably forgotten about smashing anything by then anyway. I don’t remember any of this, though it was recently recounted to me. What I do remember vividly is walking down the stairs and seeing Joaquin, alone, standing on that riser, raising a sledgehammer over his head like Thor the Great God of Thunder and then just slamming it down on the toilet and the whole thing shattering and water going everywhere, which was pretty cool and definitely worth a semi-stern talking to from some older guy. And also, whatever fuck CBGBs, right?


Social Distortion or maybe Mike Ness solo? - Irving Plaza, 2001
This show was right after 9/11. It was sold out but my Uncle Scott was friends with the sound guy and got me on the list. I was really excited but when I got there the show was cancelled because Mike Ness had a sore throat. I had spent a while gussying myself up to look cool. I was wearing Chuck Taylors and my crisp dark blue Levis and this awesome plaid shirt I lost many years later at a weird New Age birthday party in Providence and my leather jacket and my hair was looking just right. I was standing around outside smoking and thinking about how cool I looked and all of a sudden looked around and realized that everyone else standing around looking cool and feeling disappointed that the show was cancelled looked JUST LIKE ME. Except they were all like, 40 and their pompadour hairstyles were augmented by receding hairlines. I felt an acute sense of embarrassment that I had spent so much time cultivating my rough and tumble rebel aesthetic only to look like a Rocker Dad and that was one of the final straws in me deciding to be really punk again.

Some New York Moments.

Hey y'all. Sorry I been MIA from the blog, but I didn't really have anything substantial to say, so I figured why say anything? I am still pretty active on my facebook and twitter if you can't get enough of me in your life, but really, who needs overkill?

Part of why I've been so absent is that I'm writing a book! I don't know why I never announced that publicly. Maybe I did and I just can't remember because I haven't updated in so long. Regardless, I'd like to keep this blog alive, so I think I'm gonna try and write at least one decent update a month! Not necessarily about pizza, but hopefully a little about pizza. This month will be the former.

Part of why I'm posting is that I was in the Wall Street Journal yesterday! I always like being in that paper because my dad hates it. Even though I pretty much agree with all of his criticisms, it will always be cool to piss off your dad. Take that old man! (jk dude ily).

They called me for an article about "the disappearance of the pizzeria" or something. The thesis of the article is that the traditional pizza place is being supplanted by dollar slice joints. I told the really nice reporter who called me for a quote that this phenomenon was only happening in the shittier parts of Manhattan that are already basically barren cultural wastelands and that actual neighborhoods still have neighborhood pizzerias! Big up Pizza Palace, big up Carmine's Original, big up New Park Pizza.

Speaking of Manhattan turning into total garbage, I was coming over the Williamsburg Bridge onto Delancey the other night and noticed that new 7-11 lit up on the corner of Stanton, with the AT&T store lit up right next to it, and I for real almost started crying because Delancey Street was never the coolest place on Earth or anything, but it didn't have weird mall stores on it and New York in general wasn't so willing to cater to corporate presence. Like, that 7-11 used to be a bodega that was basically the same as a 7-11, except it was unique and not a replica of a million places identical places all over the world. It was a generic bodega, but it was our generic bodega. I'm sure the AT&T store used to be one of those sketchy cellphone/beeper places too, and it is like, possibly more useful as an AT&T store but FUCK THAT anyway. RIP my youth. He was so young.

And now I'm just gonna post an edited version of an email I wrote a friend in LA. He doesn't look at the internet anyway, so there's no reason to worry about him finding out I was workshopping material for my blog in my letter to him! This is one of the many incidental plus sides to old punks hating the internet.
Aaron-

I have two (maybe it's actually two and a half) wonderful New York moments for you:

Tina's lease is about to be up, but she's been working like 500 hours a day at ______ and doesn't have time to look at apartments. Yesterday, I took a tiny bit of time out of my day to see a couple of places for her that were walking distance from my house. The first was on _____ and _____ in this wonderful-looking old tenement building. I was supposed to meet the broker at 1:15, but walked over a little early to just check out the block and feel the ~vibes~ or whatever. When I got to the building there were two tattooed white women (not punx) outside smoking and I was like, "hey do you guys live here?"
And the one of them was like, "We're trying to."
"You're waiting for the broker to see the apartment, too? The $1800 two bedroom?"
"Yep."

Okay so these people were now potential enemy combatants or whatever, but I was cordial. They were complaining to each other a bunch very vocally about the broker being a few minutes late, which didn't seem like such a big deal to me. They seemed like generally sour people.

The broker finally showed up and unlocked the door to the building. Right after he walked in, this older abuela was coming out of the building with a rickety laundry cart full of clothes and detergent bottles. One of the wheels was wobbly and she was having a really hard time getting it out the door and down the stoop. The two women who were at the apartment when I got there pushed past her to follow the broker. I slowed down all "esta bien?" and helped her get the cart down the damn stairs and then walked a little faster to catch up to the broker and the two ladies. The one lady turned to me as we were heading up the stairs and was like, "you're not from New York are you?" and I was like, "No, YOU'RE not from New York."
In all previous tellings of this story I've just let it end at my snappy comeback, because it makes for good narrative, but here's the truth: she was from Long Island, which is about as "from New York" as I am! I sure felt stupid. I think even if it had "worked" and she had been from like, Delaware or something, I would've felt like a jerk for making her feel bad, even if she was a clearly not a nice person. But then again, I overthink and overanalyze everything. Why'd I have to go and make things so complicated?

The apartment was a bust, by the way. Too small.

Fast forward a few hours, I have spent some time writing, made some food, had a coffee with Caroline in a park, etc. I had an 8pm appointment to see another possible place, this one on _____ and _____. I biked over there and met the Chassidic broker, who walked me over to a dilapidated building where there were a bunch of older Boricua dudes building a basketball hoop, laughing and joking with each other really loud. We navigated through this fun, boisterous assemblage and into the building, where he showed me an apartment that I think may have had punks living in it. I saw an H2O record and a Latterman poster. May have spotted a back patch. As we were leaving the Chassid dude sniffed in the hallway and turned to me, "is this drugs I smell?"
I hadn't noticed it, but it smelled like weed. I didn't wanna blow up anyone's spot, so I just shrugged my shoulders, looked confused and said, "maybe it's a cigar?"

I headed home, thought about leaving my bike outside, but it was cloudy so I decided to take it upstairs. I leaned it up against the laundromat and sat on the stoop to smoke and call Tina to tell her about the apartment. As I was talking to her, my friend Ronda walked up with her granddaughter Noonie. I got off the phone with Tina and went to the bodega with Ronda, bought Noonie an ice cream sandwich, and walked them home. I walked back to my apartment, went upstairs, wrote some more, fucked around on the internet, ate a brownie, pet my cats. At like, 1am I was sitting at my table smoking a cigarette and watching youtube videos of this guy Eddie Pepitone doing standup (he is very funny, by the way), when I thought to myself, "where is my bi... OH SHIT." And I knew it was gone, and I ran downstairs to just see that it was gone and hate myself for being an idiot.

I put my shoes on and ran down my steps and sure enough, there was no bike there for me. I stood for a minute in the foyer processing my grief, wondering if I could ask Cory to give me back the bike I had given him two years ago because I now didn't have a bike, when my neighbor's kid came in walking his dad's pitbull. He is like, 18 or 19 and one of those super cute fixed gear emo teens. He has like, big cursive words tattoos all over his forearms and a lip ring and rides a track bike that really matches itself and his sneakers and the plugs in his ears. I gave him our regular nod, asked how he was doing.
"I just came from the hospital. My girl had a baby today! I have a daughter!"
I told him mazel tov, or whatever, the usual platitudes, though they were genuine! I am psyched for this kid. 
We were walking up the stairs and he was like, "oh yeah, do you still have that same pink bike?" I shook my head yes. "Cuz before I went to the hospital I saw a couple of crack heads looking at it so I brought it upstairs. You should probably lock it up next time. Can you come get it out of my living room?"

Anyway, things are good here. Hope they're good there!

love, Colin
That's that! The moral is twofold. First, don't bother trying to "put people in their place." It's stupid and you'll probably end up feeling like a dick. Second, be friendly to your neighbors! It feels really good, and also they will be friendly back to you. Unless Phil Chapman is your neighbor, then you should trip him on the stairs.

Slice Harvester in the ART WORLD?! + New Fanzine next week!


WAAAADDUUUUUUP?!

Hey guys. There are some Slice Harvester related events coming up starting next week and running well into September that all New Yorkers should check out or be doomed to an Eternity of Poserdom.

First and foremost, BABYHARVESTER! This is my long-in-the-works collaboration with the Baby Castles dudes, finally coming to fruition. Basically, we are installing a pizzeria, which I think is called DUKE REUBEN'S PIZZA KINGDOM, into on of the exhibition spaces at Clocktower Gallery and it is gonna be BANANAS. There will be pizza (kindly provided by Pizza Suprema), video games, art by Yusuke Okada, a bunch of total weirdos, and I will be debuting the new (and FINAL?!) issue of Slice Harvester Quarterly!!!!



We will be having a soft opening on November 28th, a REAL OPENING on December 4th, and another event on December 11th. If you want to go to any of these, emaievents@artonair.org to RSVP as space is limited since the gallery is housed in a federal building. We have pretty much infinite capacity on the 28th, gotta cap it at 120 people on the 4th which is basically infinite, and then the 11th we can probably only invite the first 30 or 40 people to RSVP. What that means is twofold: 1. RSVP ASAP! 2. If the night you wanna go to gets full (I doubt it will), you can always go a different night.

These particular nights are the times when the pizzeria will OPEN and serving pizza and also the times when zines will be for sale in the space. Otherwise, you can just go look at how weird it is any weekday from 12-5pm when Clocktower is open. We just won't be there to weird you out.

It behooves me to mention that this installation would not have been possible without the generous support of the Warhol Foundation and Build It Green NYC. Seriously, thanks guys!

In other news, visual artist Maggie Lee, an old acquaintance of mine from the zine fests of yesteryear, has decided to include issue #1 of SHQ in her installation at the New Museum for She's Crafty. She also included an embarrassing old zine that I made almost 10 years ago. I won't say what it's called but I'm sure if you go you can find it if you look hard enough! It's only up this Friday-Sunday, so make sure you get there and learn about my shameful past.

And finally in ART NEWS, favorite friend to Slice Harvester CAROLINE PAQUITA has a new calendar out from her printhouse PEGACORN PRESS. It is really beautiful and each one is handmade and everyone should have one or else. Buy them for everyone you know and they will like you better than they did before you gave them an awesome gift.

Did I mention my zine? I guess only in passing. Well, Slice Harvester Quarterly #7 is off the presses, riddled with typos as usual. Most notably, the masthead on the first page says it's issue #6. OOPS! Anyway, they will be available for sale on the 28th and the 4th at Clocktower, and then in the usual places after that. It'll probably take me a month before I update the merch page to include them, but ce la vie!

OKAY BYE SEE YOU NEXT WEDNESDAY.