Out and about (February 2008)

The pace has slowed around here, but I’m getting back up to speed. Memo to self: never volunteer again to work on a film festival; I’ll forget this advice by the time next year rolls around. (But please come.) Also, the black dog bit me again—it was a brief chew, and I managed to wriggle away without too much loss of blood, but it was enough to derail me from posting more than once a week.

With that being said, I think this wordless comic about depression is a good place to start this month’s edition. Wonderful and oddly uplifting.

When you’re spending a lot of time alone, the home video game system can be both a savior and a curse. Todd Levin writes thoughtfully on his experiences with the Nintendo Entertainment System and Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out, which mirror my own joyful memories of gaming. (Incidentally, here are a few independent games for the computer that are worth checking out: Mr. Robot, Aquaria, and Cave Story.)

Branching outward, Bookslut conducts a thorough interview with Mississippi poet Natasha Trethewey. (Did you know she was head cheerleader while attending University of Georgia? Apparently true.) Her most recent book, Native Guard, is worth seeking out. A taste of the interview:

Down here I drive around all the time with this sense of exile because everything is named for Confederate heroes; you’d think the South won the war. During the flag controversy [a movement in Georgia and elsewhere to ban the Confederate flag from government buildings], there was a letter to the editor saying all true Southerners love that flag. It was his way of saying all true Southerners are white Southerners. It was important for me to say: This is my South; I love it and I hate it, too, but it’s mine.

In the Department of Much More Interesting than You’d Assume, Wired offers a grounded, terrific capsule history of East Germany’s Secret Police. As you can imagine, there’s lots of cogent thoughts on security, surveillance, and political issues worth considering, even here.

Careful QB readers know of my undying love for the comics of Gilbert and Jaime Hernandez. Fantagraphics Books, publisher of their Love & Rockets, unearths a loooooooong 1988 interview with the brothers as a celebration of the company’s redesigned site. How long? 116 freakin’ pages long. Get the PDF here, and find a quiet afternoon to read it in full.

That is all.

About Walter Biggins

Walter Biggins is a writer based in Atlanta, GA. He is the co-author (with Daniel Couch) of Bob Mould's Workbook (Bloomsbury, 2017). His work has been published in The Quarterly Conversation, RogerEbert.com, Bookslut (RIP), The Comics Journal, The Baseball Chronicle, and other periodicals. Twitter: @walter_biggins.
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4 Responses to Out and about (February 2008)

  1. Susan T. says:

    Thanks for the link to the Natasha Trethewey interview, QB; I’m going to read it now. Did you see an AP interview that ran in the Clarion Ledger recently, too?

  2. Walter says:

    I haven’t seen the Clarion-Ledger interview, and will seek it out now. Thanks for letting me know; I hope all’s well up north.

  3. Ah, thanks for the Los Bros heads-up; I’m just now getting around to reading L&R systematically — plowing my way through the new phone-book reprints. Wishing I’d done this years ago.

  4. Hmm..I saw the words volunteering and film festival. Whatcha doin next Feb 5-9? :>

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