I understand fair fights. I understand being face to face with someone and fighting for your life but lobbing fire into neighborhoods? Fucking neighborhoods? If your god or your leader tells you that’s an okay thing then it’s fucking time to reassess your masters. I’ll never answer to someone who tells me this evil shit is okay.
Why the fuck would you shoot a plane of people out of the sky? Why would you bomb some family’s house? What the fuck are we doing?
It’s true. I’d suggest getting the print version because it feels really good in-hand but this one works too…
Available in three different formats
Order here from Pioneers Press
From Maximum Rocknroll review of the book:
I love how-to guides. And lists, aphorisms, documenting human behavior and taking note of life’s lessons. And this zine, which is all book-style text, is basically just that. I find the process of self-discovery/battling depression/writing to have a similar backbone, and the writer does too: You have to find your inner voice and trust it; you can’t let the critics get to you or soon enough there will be no (real) “you” to speak of. He also stresses the importance of carpe diem (“Life is water through wet cloth”), notes that suicide is no relief (Sidenote: a study by Kay Jamison, psychiatry professor at Johns Hopkins University, showed that writers are 10 to 20 times as likely to suffer [manic-]depressive illnesses, making it more likely to lead to suicide) and suggests we “destroy all uncandid thought.” His prose shows that he’s a lover, but his dictums reveal he’s also a fighter. Make no mistake, there is no Buddhist pulp, or anarchist thought here, and while this little zine might not teach you something new, it’ll remind you of what not to forget. “The smart outlaw is the free outlaw. The free outlaw is the only outlaw.”
Newsletter time is what’s going on here on the farm right now. Besides, y’know, listening to Rilo Kiley’s “A Better Son/Daughter” on endless repeat and sitting in the shade watching the goats and sheep graze. (It’s fucking HOT right now. So hot Hank Williams the pig is wallowing in the duck’s pool.)
The Pioneers Press monthly newsletter just came out!
Here’s a link to the web version of it!
Some pictures of the newsletter’s contents are above but we won’t spoil any surprises about it.
Big question is, in all caps, CAN ANYONE HELP US GET THE WORD OUT?
Reblogs, passenger pigeons, friend telling, any help would be amaaaaazing!
WE LOVE YOU!
1) Figure out how to balance “virtuous” with “not giving a fuck.”
2) Find the good guys and stick with them while the bad guys continue to take advantage of people and fight over money and pretend to be your friend.
3) Be honest always but never mean under the guise of being honest. Be kind but don’t be a pushover.
5) Embrace strength without oppression.
6) Be a better judge of character and see the assholes for who they are. Don’t be so naive but don’t get bitter. It’s a hard balance; a life-long process. Also: a lot of nice people will promise you things but most won’t deliver. Doesn’t mean they’re bad people. Flakiness is a huge part of the human condition. Be gentle with people.
7) Always stick up for those who can’t do so themselves. You’ll know an unfair fight when you see one. Don’t stand for it.
Built it three years ago. This summer was our first year with bats and at first we had one or two but now the sky is full of them, swooping, diving through the yellow-purple dusk. I wish you could see it. It’s like some horror movie where only good things happen.
"Be good to people. Even the shitty ones. Let the assholes be assholes. You’ll sleep better." -Adam Gnade, from The Do-It-Yourself Guide to Fighting the Big Motherfuckin’ Sad
328,802 notes?! WHAT THE HOLY FUCKING FUCK. What?
Yep, there’s this contest happening called “Get Rad Stuff for a Year” where you post a picture of yourself with a Pioneers Press book and you basically get rad stuff for a year (including all Pioneers Press books and zines released so far). Here’s the kick-ass Alex Wrekk with my Big Motherfuckin’ Sad book and Matt’s Next Stop Adventure in front of her store Portland Button Works. (Next to Copy Scams, no less. Can’t wait to hear that record!) Details are here.
Whenever I listen to ’50s rock ‘n’ roll and the old-school cholo love songs Chato and Clemente and their boys played when I was a kid I realize I was born way too late. (Rudy Ramos this one is for you.) Chuck Berry, the Crests, Del Shannon, Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers, the Diamonds, Joey Dee & and the Starlighters, the Monotones, (especially) the Platters, the Silhouttes, Bobby Freeman, the Del-Vikings, Johhny Burnette, the Skyliners, Sonny Till & the Orioles … come on now.
Coffee and Caveworld. Good coffee and great literature are two of the things that make me happiest.
FUCK YEAH. Here’s an entry into the Pioneers Press “Get Rad Stuff For a Year Contest” (from my favorite Zine Chronicler of the Current True-Life Punk Rock Experience, Rust Belt Jessie, staring my book Caveworld.)
Details are here.
From the Pioneers Press tumblr: "Grand prize (open to US entries only because the shipping will be HEAVY DUTY) one copy of EACH of our books and zines we’ve published AND a year-long subscription to EVERYTHING we publish under the Pioneers Press and Punch Drunk Press banners! (There will be other prizes too.) Starts NOW ends August 1st!"
DO THIS. MAKE IT HAPPEN.
This is a good way to get my books that are out now and whatever else I publish through Pioneers Press for a year. More about this tomorrow.
It’s time for our yearly blog contest! Last year it was tumblr-only but this year we’re opening the doors wide to all online sites!
Rules: post a (new) photo of you holding one of the books or zines we’ve published (only books or zines actually published under the name Pioneers Press, though Jessie Duke’s Hard Fifty Farm zine counts too).
Either tag it “Pioneers Press” if you’re on tumblr, or email the photo or a link from your blog, twitter, Facebook, website, etc, to email@example.com and you’ll be in the running. We don’t want to miss any (we’ll be posting them all here) so don’t forget to tag it or let us know by sending it. Last year we missed a few.
Winners will be chosen by numbers pulled out of AN ACTUAL HAT. Grand prize (open to US entries only because the shipping will be HEAVY DUTY) one copy of EACH of our books and zines we’ve published AND a year-long subscription to EVERYTHING we publish under the Pioneers Press and Punch Drunk Press banners! (There will be other prizes too.)
Starts NOW ends August 1st!
Here’s a list of the books and zines we publish.
Here are last year’s winners…
Wherein (unable to get started working on the new book) I listen to a 12” of bombastic pre-war German Alpine folk music until the walls of the farmhouse shake, bust, and fall in on themselves.
Friday. On my last night in Portland Ethan picks me up in Jana’s car and we drive out to the Korean place on Powell. It’s quiet on the ride there and I watch the darkened houses pass and the wipers beating back the flurries of snow. All the old familiar shops and bars on Foster, Christmas lights in the window, dark and twinkling. The discount art supply store, the post office, Devil’s Point (a girl out front with bare legs in a fur coat, holding the coat closed, smoking with the bouncer). I tell myself it’s the last time I’ll see these places. It’s not. But it’s the last time like this.
"Yeah, one last look."
"Right. Well, take one last look at Sorabol because we’re about to eat one hell of a last supper."
"Sign me up."
"I’ll tell you what," he says.
"I’ll tell you what," I say and we laugh.
Ethan’s a good guy for a bad mood. He doesn’t put up with it. He makes you push through; makes you get over it for his sake and yours. Ethan’s the kind of guy the world wants to succeed. Being around him you feel that way about yourself; that people are rooting for you; that you’re on the right team.
The hostess, an older Korean woman with lots of makeup and her hair pulled back into a ponytail, seats us at a booth in the middle of the room and we look at the menu.
“Take … time,” she smiles and nods her head as a bow and we nod back and Ethan says thank you in Korean.
"The bean paste soup?"
"Definitely. And whatever else."
"It’s on me. Your last night. We’re celebrating."
“I’ll tell you what.”
“I’ll tell you what.”
The waitress brings a bottle of soju and we take shots. We do them like Ethan taught me the first time we came here. You hold your shotglass and you make eye contact and you say “Gombay” which means “one shot,” like all in one, one gulp, down the hatch.
"Gombay!" I say happily.
"Gombay," he says, composed. Ethan spent the last few years in Korea working for a newspaper. He came back with a taste for the food, and after a week or two of talking about it we found Sorabol, a chain restaurant in a stripmall. Not the hippest place in town but what does that mean? The food is good and there’s a lot of it.
We order three soups and a rice dish and something that looks like a crepe and we dig in. Our entrees come with a dozen sides, little white dishes full of pickled things, fermented vegetables in chili sauce, sweet mucky indefinable pastes, and each one is spicy and strange and adds something good to the meal. For a while we eat in silence. The restaurant is quiet, nothing but the sound of our chopsticks scraping the plate and a low murmur from the kitchen. Sometimes the bell at the front door dings and someone comes in for a takeout order. Mostly it’s quiet. We’re the only ones here.
“Man, this is rejuvenating,” I tell Ethan. “I know I say this all the time but if you ate this way all winter you’d never get sick.”
“I could get used to this.” The food is full of things that take the edge off winter—garlic, spicy broth, chili, green onions, rings of jalapeño floating up from the soup. It burns you in a good, healthy way. And so does the booze. “I think if I lived in Korea I’d become a soju drunk.”
"Those are the worst."
"You think you’ll go back?"
I nod. “Huh huh.” I stab my fork into a pile of kimchi and take a mouthful. “Wow,” I say through the food.
"Maybe,” he says. “Maybe I’d move back if Jana would come.” He pours another shot of soju for me, then one for himself. “You and I talk about this all the time: Portland’s not a place to live. It’s fun. There’s a lot to do, but is it living? Maybe if there were jobs. At the brewery I make, what, a third of what I made in Korea. You know I applied everywhere. You can’t work here and when you don’t have money the quality of things you can do decreases. What’s the sense of living somewhere with a lot of things to do when you can’t do them?"
"I’ve never had less money than here."
"You get stuck. Work to pay rent. Pay rent and you’re broke.”
“The only person I know that makes money is Charlie and that’s just because he’s had the same job since high school.”
“I don’t remember how much he makes but it’s substantial. He’s a breadwinner for sure. It’s gotta be nice.”
“No one’s a breadwinner at the brewery. That’s depressing to see. Everybody talking about how they can’t do this and don’t have the money for that and how they’re going to find a second job. I mean, getting part of your paycheck in beer—”
“It’s great and the beer’s good but it’s not a way to live. Yeah, I’d leave if Jana wasn’t so happy here. I’d … I’d like to get out of here, go somewhere new. You’re going. I mean look at you. You’re doing the thing you said you would back when we first met. I think that was one of the first things we talked about when we met at the … the bar by the pizza place and Sombrero’s … the Whistlestop, and you and Frankie were doing the magazine and I came and said, ‘I’m going to write for you. Here’s an idea for a story I’m going to write for you.’”
I laugh. “Seems like a million years ago.”
"It wasn’t but it does. I was like, ‘Who is this guy disturbing my’ … like, ‘my rare free time’ … I mean you know how much we were working."
"Right. I know."
"But you were like, ‘I grew up on a farm in Nebraska near Omaha’ and mentioned all these bands from out there that I loved and I was like, ‘James, this is someone you need to know.’"
“Then we talked about leaving the city to live in the country. We talked about farms.”
“We did. Yeah.”
"And now you’re doing it. You’re moving out there and you’re going to live in the country. That deserves another drink."
"I’m up for it."
"To … to making a plan and following through." He nods with a serious kind of smile, clear-eyed, focused on the thought.
"To following through. Gombay."
On the drive home I’m drunk and talkative and I say a lot of brash, impulsive things. I make claims and tell my secret goals, the life plans, the places I want to be. Ethan listens and nods and says some of his own but he has restraint about it, patience. I’m sloppy but Ethan can hold his liquor.
The snow falls.
The wipers knock back and forth.
We put on Byron’s new record and skip to the last track. It’s a tough and swaggery song and I talk like I did when I was 20 and that makes me feel young and strong and brave. In the rearview I catch my face and I’m not that kid anymore. The person looking back at me has lived since then and the face is harder, darker. “So as soon as we’re all settled you need to come visit.”
"Of course." He looks forward, eyes on the road, one hand on the wheel, the other on his knee, tapping along with the record, the street dark and lit by yellow streetlamps, the snow falling harder.
"You should come and stay a while. Shoot some guns. Ride some horses. Drink some whiskey. I dunno."
“It’s a plan.”
“I’ll tell you what.”
"I’ll tell you what," he says with a smile, staring forward.
"I’ll tell you what," I say under my breath, looking out my window at the dark blue and the white falling and the darkness.
Excerpt from The Growling Mouth, special hand-drawn edition, $5 from Pioneers Press