Laughing in the Dark

My latest piece has gone up at

It begins: Fortunately, laughing out loud – even talking loudly to yourself – is not frowned upon in Berkeley cafes. (Indeed, frowning upon someone, no matter how offensive and high-decibel his ravings, is so eschewed, you would think it would have frowners hauled before some Human Rights commission.) So I was free to snort my way through “Turkish Trilogy,” by Wostok and Friends, unrestrained.

Adventures in Marketing: Week 39

No sales.

The closest I even came to a nibble was a UC English major who engaged me in conversation at the café and said next time, maybe, he’d bring cash.

Rewards came in other fashion. For one, the estimable Jon B. Cooke asked to reprint Adele and my 1992 essay “I Don’t Fuck My Dog: The Life and Art of Dori Seda” in his “The Book of’Weirdo,'” forthcoming from Last Gasp. I’ve been looking forward to this book since first hearing about it some years ago, and it will be an honor to be included.

Then I made my Skype debut, a partial one anyway, sound of me but no video, being interviewed by the film maker/cartoonist Wostok for a documentary about his book “Robusto,” which I reviewed a couple months ago. This was one of those unanticapatable-ripples-cast-by-unlikely-stone moments that art (and life) magically set in motion. Here was this middle-aged Serbian artist, who had basically given up on cartooning, having work he had done a decade a ago discovered by a young woman, Dragana Drobjnak, a punk musician/artist in Buffalo, New York, Who decided to collect these stories and publish them in book form, which she then brought to the attention of a well-into-senior citizenship writer in Berkeley (You Guessed It), whose book from 2008 she credited with inspiring her own creative vision, and hoped he would write about hers.

So three generations are spanned here and 6500 miles. It is hard not to smile at the wonder of connection.