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A conversation with zine, comic, and book artist and writer Kevin Czap / by Victoria Ruiz

One of mine and Kevin’s very first interactions was a bowling alley outside of Cleveland. A band that I am in, Malportado Kids, was on tour. Midway through trip we exhaustedly pulled up to an old-school bowling alley across from a public pool; a perfect scene, a beautiful feeling of decompression for the eyes and the soul. We played in the basement of the alley to exactly four people. Two of the people helped book the show, one person was reading at it, and the fourth person was Kevin Czap. With a Priests patch on their sweatshirt, I knew it was going to be the start of a beautiful friendship. And it is one. Kevin has continuously housed my bands whenever we come through town, and each time I am impressed by the way they draw bodies and emotions and then proceed to put those bodies and emotion into storylines that really truly hit the heart.

I had the opportunity to ask Kevin a bit about their new book FÜTCHI PERF. I think it is a harmonious next step in their body of work that already includes zines, short books, and writing. FÜTCHI PERF is a truly a feminist text. Its drawings make you question all parameters of how we think about bodies, time, control, and agency, while at the same time finding total meaning in every intentional experience and thing you have tried, loved, failed at, or dreamt about. It is a giant door for musicians, artists, readers, all of us in this DIY place, to walk through, together.

Where did you grow up and where do you live now?

I grew up in Northern Virginia, across the river from Washington DC. I just relocated to Providence in the past week, but before that I was living in Cleveland, OH.

. . .

An experiment in preservation and interpretation / by Cristal Olivas & Rich Gutierrez

I am constantly telling stories, turning daily lived experiences into narratives that I can use to entertain my friends. Most of these stories I have never written, but rather keep them organized tightly in my memory. I recently decided to begin writing down some of these stories that I have told over and over, mostly from my childhood. After writing the first one, I recorded myself reading it aloud, partly to hear the flow and also to hear the difference between my oral and written renditions. When I showed Rich, he suggested us swapping stories and reading each others. We were interested in hearing the ways in which our stories could be interpreted differently when someone else read them. We wanted to hear what was important to the reader based on their inflections, pauses, their tone. I have certain ideas of how I want my stories to be presented, how I want them to be read. But once I extend my internal as a creative output, I am allowing for my stories to be open to interpretation by the reader. Oral storytelling allows for people to pass down memories and histories in their own ways, with every tongue emphasizing different words or sounds, highlighting details that feel most important to that person and where they find themselves in that time and space. It allows for people to have some kind of ownership and involvement in the preservation of that story.


When I heard Cristal’s recording it made me think about my own writing process. When I write, I am sometimes unaware of where I’m going — but the process reveals things to me. I remember things that I previously have forgotten, or thought I had forgotten. Once those pieces are all in front of me, I place them according to how they appear in memory, like falling leaves detaching from limbs, each shaded independently, each traveling a separate path. How I process the feelings and memories is only specific to me, from where I stand beneath the tree, so it has a flow and a purpose that resonates with me. That is what I assume others see. Stories are special in this way: they will always be different from where you stand beneath them. Words land atop your head, and you let some stick, and the others fall around you unnoticed.


We agreed that we both struggle with calling ourselves writers because of the internalized expectations of what a writer is. But we also believe that everyone is a writer; everyone has the potential of creating their own narratives. Oral storytelling is one of the most accessible ways of writing our histories, and is a powerful tool in teaching and learning. It is devoid of the notion that education is rarefied; it is inborn. From this we stumbled into the idea of this project, turning written histories into oral history as well. Storytelling as activism, placing our histories in the hands and mouths of our peers intentionally. . . .


Show Mom Collective
Bands playing the Boston festival this month.

December 15
Our third annual Silent Barn year-end party :)

by Rob Arcand
An interview with Baltimore DIY poet Alan Ginsberg.

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