31 December 2006

Meet me tonight in Atlantic City - Saturday, 30 December 2006

The weather's moderate for late December.

The waves break and foam on the Jersey shore.

Broken shells wash ashore and pock the otherwise immaculate smoothness.

A relic from a day and age when Atlantic City was a proud seaside summer resort.

French-speaking children ran barefoot down the beach.

Their feet sank into the sand only enough
to leave these brief impressions
on time and space
their existence only proven
with photographic evidence.

The history of this footprint...

...Will vanish in the lapping of solitary wave
breaking onto the shore
soon carrying away all
but memory of what
once was.

In the end there will be only the ocean and the shore.

08 November 2006

Houston Comix and Zine Fest/Westheimer Block Party - A Culture Review


The black highways lay before me in darkness seeking to lull me to sleep. I’d not rested properly in the previous days. A trip like this requires much preparation, mental and physical. I’d spent the week’s nights awake hours past midnight playing around online. Emails had to be answered, papers had to get done early or on time (but mostly did not), girls needed to talk with and met for lunch. Priorities. What do we do without them?

Chasing sunrise at 80 MPH.

Taken in or around vile Vega County, Texas, on I-40.


The Houston Comix and Zine Fest
in conjunction with the
Westheimer Block Party

The pitiful crew of ArmzRace Comics.

Our tables; our comics.

I had decided upon the chocolate, which was given away fabulously. Nobody wanted to suck on Cej's old hard candy.

Our advertising budget was amazing. Cej wanted neon, but I said, "No, a piece of sheetrock from next to the dumpster will serve us just fine. Besides, we need to save money to go to Treasures."

The sign rests in my trunk for the next time I drove to Houston. Seriously.
(Note: When moving back to New York for the summer of 2007 I had to dump the "sign.")
Cej and John hard at work. Now Mark! will realize why he didn't get any money from this show.

Fellow comics creators making last minute preparations.
Far right, Meghann Rosales, creator of the excellent Jug Wine Comix .

Hoola Girl kept the crowds (at some point there were crowds) entertained.She could go at it for almost hours on end with all parts of her body.

Kid Poison (myspace) of the Western Nightmares comic.

Mark and Robert Bienvenu of Red City Comics hard at work on sketches.
For a mere fiver, Robert offered to sketch people as their favorite superhero. I choose Green Arrow (Ollie). This is the best five dollars I've ever spent.

Ismael Cavazos carves little wise men from peanuts and then carries them around on his homemade backpack, made cleverly from a minifridge door.

Call me Ismael.

The Westheimer Block Party was much smaller than expected and I wasn't sure how big the Houston Comix and Zine Fest was gonna be, but it was kind of small and could have used a lot more traffic, but Shane (myspace) Houston Comics (Houston Comics) did what he could to organize it and make it into a worthwhile event within the greater? Block Party. Sadly, it seems the rich, white folk who are gentrifying the area don't care for freaks, geeks, fags, hags, liberals, artists, musicians and other such ilk. The potential is there for greatness that I hear once existed, but times change and not always in good ways. Apparently if you ask a native about Montrose, they’ll tell you it’s the “gay” area. Which is not entirely untrue, but that’s such a generalization. There are also drug dealers and hookers that I saw prowling the street corners. I think I even saw one of the obese, transvestite hookers at the Block Party, standing by the bus stop. To each his or her own, and everything in-between or on the outside.

Cej is awesome and a great host. I think we learned a lot about what to do next time. This was the first show for both of us, and next time it will be better. And Mark! will be there, doing his carnival barking. He was missed. I also met the missing Beatle, John, who will get his comics done one day. Best to you, John!

The Armzrace didn't take in too much money, and we began to sell books at a dollar as opposed to our cover prices of $2.00 to $2.50. We tried to be the best salesmen we could be and that only worked so well.

We met a lot of awesome people from the area and some folks who came down from Austin, which is the more college town, artsy place. There were people like the wonderful Meghann (myspace) , who came from that capitol city, and some folks from Louisiana, like Robert (who I had sketch me as Green Arrow (Ollie Queen outfit) for a mere fiver) and former New Orleans rez, Brian, now living in the area. There was also Ismael, who carves faces and little men out of peanuts as well as employing himself in other artistic endeavors, such as flip books and comix. There was also Mark Nasso (myspace) who has created some cool monsters for his warrior looking comic, Land Rats, that is at the top of my read pile. There were other people indeed, but I am limited on time. Some folks showed up late and some left early, so we didn’t get to share much or trade. It’s a real shame. I would have liked to buy more, but I figured people would stay later. Cej, John and I would get busy and next time we looked across the lot, someone would be gone. We’d love to trade so get in touch!

Here is a picture of most of the comics I bought.

What we have here is:

Not shown:

Children of the Owl and the Pussy-cat by Lear and Campos ( I think I bought this here)

Complete Works of Nemo by Arturo Gonzales
It’s Da Homiez # 23
Secret of the Sages by Ismael Cavasos
I didn't hear anyone say 'Git her done' or 'Twahyce,' this weekend, except for me, while I was driving on no sleep.

In regard to the overall experience: I ate good food and um...well, what happens in Treasures....stays…in...Treasures, if not in your pants.

Downtown Houston

Me, and my gracious hosts: Cej, JoAnn and evil looking, yet sweet, kitty.

The Road to Congress...
Rushing back to Arizona to vote.

Without stops, it's a 19-hour drive back home. I am taking I-10 all the way to Phoenix and then I-17 back to Flag. It is supposed to take an extra hour this way, but I think it will take me out of Texas sooner, where speeders are punished under pain of death. That is a ‘nother story. I figure I can add an extra 8 miles per hour through New Mexico and Arizona, as I generally do. Texas cops are harsh fuckers. Even Texans say so. I figure it will take me about 24 hours to complete the journey. Piss ‘n’ gas stops and naps.

I drove through the darkness on the edge of town, hot heeling it back home. Eighteen hours sans stops and other delays.

Hours outside of Houston, before San Anto or much of anything else are heavy woods on both sides of I-10. At night in November, they made be mist enshrouded. I sped down the highway worrying after hoardes of Orcs that may pop out of the woodwork, assaulting my car with their axes and vile sneers.

Hours late, on the phone with Andi, to keep me awake, I passed over Woman Hollering Creek and howled like the devil himself was after me.

La frontera.

Truth or Consequences be damned!

Driving I-40 west out of Albuquerque at sunset is one of the worst things you can do. Three pairs of sun glasses did not help me see clearly as the sun seem to lay directly on the road, only a few miles off.


It was a great weekend. I got to meet tons of new people, finally put a real face to Cej, and meet his awesome wife and numerous friendly friends.

I didn't make it back in time to vote. The polls close really early here, seven at night.