A number of people have come and gone since my last issue, but each has made some contribution to my life, and by extension, to the zine you’re now cherishing like a sweet little puppy. All the nasty parts of my personality are either innate or the result of my being fucked over by someone who had momentary power over me. Usually when I get fucked over, not only do I remember it and exact subtle revenge, I also change myself in such a way that no one could fuck me over the same way again. That’s why I try not to complain about the way my life has turned out—it’s my fault and I’m doing something about it.
In order of their appearance in my life, here’s a list of people who’ve done something to make me the guy you’re about to read about, for better or worse.
Lewis, my father, for being the funniest man I’ve ever met, for raising me to be polite, for allowing me to be myself and for whatever genetic contribution he has given me.
Marta, Bryan and Harley, my mother, step-father and their adorable dog, for helping me grow up and for encouraging me to be a prick with their insane generosity. Without them, this issue might never have seen the light of day, so I want each and every one of you who are about to enjoy this to quietly thank them for their support of me and this zine. Thanks so much, folks!
Benjamin, my brother, for being someone that I could easily rebel against and for looking out for me, even when I didn’t deserve it. I’d also like to thank him for being my first subscriber and most especially for Mack.
Jennifer, my sister, for showing me that nice people don’t always finish last and for always being a good person.
Natalie, my ex-step-monster, for making me into an adult way too soon, for trying to steal everything I was entitled to and some day I’d like to thank you for dying slowly and painfully, unloved and alone. That’s what you deserve, you rancid cunt.
Lurky, my delightfully evil henchman and most loyal friend, for being Lurky, you goddamn little freak.
Bill Hicks and Robyn Hitchcock, my heroes, for making me laugh and cry and live and die for as long as I can remember.
Ron, my former friend, for helping me escape a bad scene and for getting out of my life before he could do too much damage.
My wonderful wife, for saving me from a path of destruction and for ensuring that the rest of my life will be better than I ever thought possible. Also, for being funny, sweet, hot, supportive and for tolerating me when I’m a total fucking asshole.
You, my audience, for spending your money for my words. This issue would never have been possible if not for people just like you who sometimes take a chance in life. So, I’d like to offer you my most sincere thanks, even if it sounds gay.
I also have to thank a few people who have been cool to me. My fear in doing this is that they’ll immediately disappoint me—or decide that I suck—and then disappear like so many others, but even if they bail, I need to thank them anyway: Natasha “Shnish” Vlahovic, Evelyn Shanser, Peter C. Lopez, Scott Crow, Michelle Chen, Regina Lau, Dave at Stranger Than Fiction, Mike’s NYC pot delivery service (and Apple), Bryan Pon and especially to my advertisers—your support means more than you could ever know.
Finally, this issued was made under the direct influence of the following things, listed here so that you may find something new and interesting to enjoy: my grape iMac DV, Brak, eBay, The Simpsons, Bloodhound Gang - Hooray for Boobies, Benjamin Hoff - The Tao of Pooh, the City of New York, Time Out NY, THC, Bill Hicks - Rant in E Minor, The Kids in the Hall, The Boo Radleys - Kingsize, Robyn Hitchcock - Jewels for Sophia, The Daily Show, Underworld - Beaucoup Fish, South Park: Bigger, Long and Uncut, The Big Tease, Dan Savage - The Kid, Marilyn Manson - The Long Hard Road Out of Hell, Harvey Danger - Where Have All the Merrymakers Gone?, Loveline and of course, all of your lovely and supportive e-mail.
Jøsh, what the fuck do you mean by Negative Capability? The expression, coined in 1812 by English poet John Keats, is best explained by this quote from a Ph.D. paper on the subject: “The modus operandi should begin by instilling in the student the positive quality of negative capability. This demands the student to hold contradictory ideas in equilibrium until he can intelligently sort and categorize them. It will teach the individual to reach beyond his preconceived prejudices and to discover that opinions are not all facts of life.” I hope you understand. Now enjoy the zine!