Someone (foolishly) asked me for my top ten in an interview recently. Little did they know, I LOVE LISTS. My lengthy guide to life's finer things was cut from the magazine, but I think you need to know about them, so I'm posting it here.
Liz Suburbia - Hilarity is crammed into every nook and cranny of Liz's comic 'Cyanide Milkshake'. Plenty of sex, punk, & B-movie references on every page. Goofy ads for fake products like Man Merkins and movies like the post-apocalyptic blockbuster 'Sex Beserkers' (Rated G for GWAR) are interspersed with short narratives featuring weirdo teens, zombies, and dogs. Reminiscent of classic Milk & Cheese-era Evan Dorkin. My new favorite comic. I love her.
Melodee Lounge - This is the first bar that ever made me consider becoming a late blooming barfly. Hidden in a strip mall in El Cerrito, CA, covered in flocked wallpaper and populated by the cast of Twin Peaks 2011. Sometimes old punks bartend here, sometimes it's just a dude. Dive bars in CoCo County are a unique brand of hairy, but this one is primarily friendly-hairy. There is even a stand-up comedy night where I once witnessed an underage girl lying on the floor telling queef jokes.
Internet dating - A lot of people recommend it, but it's just like when people used to talk up dumpster diving to me. They would weave tales of people finding bags of money or free beer in a dumpster but the only thing I ever found in a garbage can was garbage. However, just in case you're not feeling paranoid enough in your life, making an internet dating profile is a great way to announce to all of your coworkers, your landlord, and random creeps on the bus that you're horny.
Hell Dream - Awesome short animation filled with a cartoony version of Heavy Metal fantasy art, lots of blood, and metal guitar riffs. Animated by Jim Dirschberger, art by Skinner.
Norman Pettingill - Hillbilly postcard art at its finest. The Fantagraphics book of his collected artwork is a dream come true.
Joey Sayers - Joey Sayers makes some of the funniest gag comics in the current mini comic kingdom. Sharp, absurdist humor that is simultaneously wacky and dark. Get stabbed in the face and land in a pile of whoopie cushions.
Pleasant Gehman - Pleasant Gehman is an inspiration. O.G. LA punk rocker, current glamour girl. She wrote a book called "Escape from Houdini Mountain" and earns a living belly dancing around the world. Recently she's been in a couple of low budget movies (alongside people like Jane Weidlin, Mink Stole, Karen Black, & Daniela Sea) - as a jailhouse dyke and a suburban swinger. She's a living icon!
Sally Cruikshank - Sally Cruikshank makes(made?) hand drawn-and-colored animation in a psychedelic 80's new wave mixed with old school Fleischman Studios style. Most of her movies star a fucked-up looking duck named Quasi. In addition to short films, she made animation for Sesame Street and the opening sequence for movies like Mannequin.
Burger Records - Burger Records puts out a lot of product but the most crucial is Cassette Tapes! Tapes are cheap enough that you can take a gamble on buying one at a gig and possibly find some awesome new tunes. Furthermore, my busted car only has a tape player. Lee Noise has stellar taste and puts out lots of obscure junk, old classics, and weirdo new tunes.
Al Jaffee - The genius behind the most important invention of our time - the Mad Fold-In. His 90th birthday was this year. If after 90 years you still don't know who Al Jaffee is - kill yourself.