photo by flickr user lyndall musselmanYesterday was completely rejuvenating.
While my roots are firmly planted in punk rock, I've been feeling old and staid lately. This is mostly because I no longer delight in standing and head-bobbing (or even dancing) at shows that are crowded and late at night; I would almost always rather be eating cheese and talking with friends in a cozy living room, or reading, or even (gasp) sleeping. I despaired in my facebook status the other day about the fact that I think I look more conservative than I really am. My hair hasn't been a colour other than its own natural brownish shade for at least two years (which could not have been said for it between the ages of 12 and 25). I have a typical grad student uniform of jeans and t-shirts and cardigans. I have no tattoos (yet) or other distinguishing marks that can call out for me, "Hey! I'm rad! I like the same obscure awesome things you do!" Does any of this matter? No. Does it feel like it does? A little.
Yesterday I visited the Anchor Archive Zine Library. A tiny, ramshackle little space that abounds with energy and verve and personality, the kind that I've felt to be a little lacking from my everyday existence. I've been spending so much time with my computer and blogs and google and online databases and so on and so forth, that it was incredibly nice to be surrounded by paper. I spent an hour or so being trained in how to catalogue the zines, and then I set to work going through them. I love zines. I love that people can put their stories onto paper and send them out into the world and we can share them and pass them on and draw and create - and they don't have to be epic. Just stories and thoughts and drawings and ideas.
It was a reminder of that sense of community I found when I was 14 and going to shows all the time. A reminder that I should be using my hands more - and not just for typing. A reminder that the world doesn't end outside my neighbourhood - there are amazing people doing amazing things everywhere.
The fact that zine libraries even exist has just brightened my existence considerably. Plus, I now get to add "Zine Librarian" to my resume - and I so will.
So: if you're in Halifax - go check out the Anchor Archive Zine Library. If you're outside of Halifax and you have copies of your zines (you know who you are), send them in! We don't need to be famous novelists to write and share and connect. Just write something down and let someone else read it.