Sunday, August 28, 2011

Zine Review: The Juniper #14

I'm finally sitting down to review this slender and friendly zine written by Dan Murphy. The Juniper 14 starts out with Dan saying "Cooperation is a pretty good mechanism for survival." If only most of western culture felt the same! Dan gives words to thoughts and topics I have pondered most of my adult life. We live in an era where the choices we make will affect the very viability of our species. To support endless war or to wage peace? To continue to allow countless millions to starve to death or learn how to feed ourselves safely and sanely? To care for the ecosystem like it is the last precious thing on earth ... or have the earth spin into the future with thousands of species (including humans) extinct.

The change that needs to be embraced is not one huge change, but billions of small changes in our lives. Unplugging and being present in the here and now.

The Juniper is a step toward positive change. A newsletter for gentle souls who seek harmony with the earth. Oh, and also for people who want to learn how to build a portable stove, make buckwheat stuffing, and edamame hummus.

There's a link to Dan's blog over in the "cool places to visit" section.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Zine Review: Operations Manual vol. VIII

The world is full of information that I wasn't aware of, and wasn't aware that I needed to know. After reading Operations Manual VIII: Die Auferstehungs-Ausgabe I am now able to levitate, make an Illuminati pyramid hat for my cats, create a secret society, plan my next Deer Island vacation and win the "ten people who claimed to be Jesus" quiz on Family Feud. 

Seriously (?) I have to ask myself: how cool is this zine? And how cool is it that Marc sent me four issues?

If the old cliche variety is the spice of life is true, then Operations Manual is the spice of zines. Graphs, charts, comics, sarcasm, a fuck-it list (I'll do it in the next lifetime) ... there's a lot of creative content packed into issue VIII. Not sold on this zine yet? It's free. Check out the link in the sidebar. 

More reviews of Operations Manual to come. Piece Out. 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Zine Review: The CIA Makes Science Fiction Unexciting #3

Gena Mason is the author of this well produced and well researched zine that brings you information about the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the USA PATRIOT Act, data mining, wiretapping, eugenics, and numerous incidents in which our rights to privacy have been raped by the government. Is any of this really news? No. It's all in the public domain. At times this zine goes way out there - talking about chips implanted in human subjects that transmit data about our dreams - but I'm guessing that 75% of this zine is based in reality.
I get paranoid just writing a review about it, wondering what lists it'll land me on.

This zine is available from Microcosm.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Zine Review: Crescent City Stories

Nicki Sabalu created the Crescent City Stories zine in August 2007, almost two years after Hurricane Katrina slammed into New Orleans and the Gulf Coast and created historical proportions of devastation. Since 2005, a patchwork mosaic has emerged slowly of the death of dreams and the restoration efforts embodied through Katrina survivors. For authentic journalism on the subject of Hurricane Katrina's effects on New Orleans I suggest watching Spike Lee's documentary When the Levees Broke.

Crescent City Stories is a small, handwritten zine that captures snapshot moments and feelings from the time Nicki spent helping New Orleans residents in the aftermath of the storm. It was way too brief a zine for its subject matter, and while I realize this is essentially a "perzine" is it cries out for more stories and other voices. Copies are available from Ms. Valerie Park, my distro of choice.