zine, [zeen] noun. 1. abbr. of fanzine; 2. any amateurly-published periodical. Oxford Reference


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Fort Ord


via Somnambulist Zine by noreply@blogger.com (martha grover) on 8/24/09

"In the kitchen of a burnt-out suburban house, the charred groceries on the shelves had stubbornly held their shape. Towers of crackers and a large rectangle of cornflakes stood fused together, boxes burnt off and turned to black ash. Empty rooms have little to say, but once filled with beer bottles, graffiti and cast off possessions, they become puzzles." – Fort Ord – A chapbook-adventure through the ruins of the American Military-Industrial Complex by Steven Foundling and Andy Warner

I picked up "Fort Ord" at the San Francisco zinefest yesterday and finished it in one sitting. The topic was immediately interesting to me: two dudes trespassing in a huge abandoned military base in California. But what hooked me and what elevated the zine above the merely novel subject matter was the beautiful, patient and intelligent writing.
The writer (either Foundling or Warner, I'm not sure) took great pains to describe the base in specific detail as well as its history and how it informs its present condition.
I've always been fascinated with the deterioration of structures and places in the absence of the constant upkeep we take for granted. Human built environments quickly succumb to wind, rain, vegetation and erosion without our incessant watering, trimming, hammering and cleaning. It's wonderful to read how these buildings at the base are simultaneously destroyed by humans (the local fire department, vagrants and drug addicts) but also by time and nature itself. In fact the term "destruction" slowly loses its meaning as we accompany the writers through this bizarre other-worldly place.
The zine is illustrated with well-done pertinent drawings and is just the right length: not too long, not too short.
You can reach the authors at : eridisc@gmail.com and steven.foundling@gmail.com

And as always you can subscribe to my zine Somnambulist for fifteen dollars. This price gets you four issues and free issue of number nine or my hip hop booklet. Click on the "donate button" to your left or send me a check or money order at my PO Box: Martha Grover PO Box 14871 Portland Oregon 97293


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