Showing posts with label Up The Punx. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Up The Punx. Show all posts

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

More Pizza Reviews Forthcoming. For Now Events and Press and Friends Doing Cool Stuff!

1. I am having another pizza party at ! This time, to celebrate the release of Issue 5 of Slice Harvester Quarterly! This issue covers all the pizza from 23rd to 42nd, has the top quality illustrations you've come to expect from Brooklyn's own , and features a back cover by talented Brooklyn native cum Oakland raider ! I have been neck deep in zine hell for days now and this issue promises to be THE BOMB.

Event details:
8-10pm, this Saturday, July 23rd, at the City Reliquary Museum (370 Metropolitan Ave, BK, NY)
Reading by Me!
Beers from Brooklyn Brewery!
Pizza from I don't know where, but hopefully it's and again because both of those places are awesome!
I am hoping my grandfather will be there, so bring your grandfather!
In fact, I will give a free set of every issue of Slice Harvester Quarterly that's out so far to anyone who shows up with a Grandparent. It doesn't matter if it's your grandparent. If you know someone who has grandchildren or is just generally grandparent age, bring them and I will give you free stuff!

Do me a favor and . Do it even if you aren't coming because it makes me feel good to check that thing and see a ton of people on there.

2. It seems I have been profiled in ! Read the article! It is really nice. Check out the author Jon Reiss wrote because he seems to be a pretty good writer and he is also a total sweetheart and when I met him he looked like a young George Tabb, who also wrote for the New York Press, but he hasn't looked like that again any time I've seen him since, so he's also a shapeshifter or something!

3. And finally! My good friend and Slice Harvester's #1 most frequent Pizza Adventurer, , is starting an Independent Publishing Venture called ! This is very exciting news, because Caroline is not just a talented artist, she is also an incredibly diligent worker, unflinching in the face of adversity, and if she sets her mind to something, she will make it happen.

She is currently involved in some internet fundraising, so if you've got five bucks to spare, go over to and email homegirl some money! Everyone who donates gets a present in the mail! If you can't spare five bucks, you can at least her project on Facebook and then tell everyone you know to donate and you can just pretend you are one of the anonymous donors, and no one will know and the only real tangible repercussion will be a lingering feeling of disappointment in yourself that you will carry with you your whole life for not forking over FIVE FUCKING DOLLARS for something awesome.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Why I have chosen to discontinue distributing Slice Harvester Quarterly through Microcosm Publishing.

This post may not seem especially relevant to folks who are not involved in punk or activist communities, but it does address larger-scale issues of dealing with abuse and holding abusers accountable in any community, and what role individuals play in making that accountability happen.

Some years ago, Joe Biel, a co-founder of Microcosm, was publicly called out for being emotionally abusive in his relationship with his then-partner and Microcosm's other co-founder Alex Wrekk. He has also been called out as being manipulative in collective organizing with Microcosm. This whole time, the company maintained a degree of silence about this issue that I personally found totally odious and appalling.

Some time in 2009 or '10, (you can read an accurate timeline at ), Joe began engaging in a mediation/accountability process initiated by , publisher of Doris Zine and general rad ally and friend. I had already read Alex's zine about the abuse via , and was heartened to hear that Microcosm was perhaps finally taking accountability. In January of this year, Microcosm released , which has been far more succinctly than I feel capable of right now. In February, someone from Microcosm contacted me to order new zines and I wrote them the following email:
Hey J----,

I don't think we know each other. I have had lengthy discussions with S---- in the past about some misgivings I've had about distributing through Microcosm, which she more or less helped me to quell, but those misgivings have been given new breath as of late.

Aside from doing Slice Harvester, my main project for many years has been doing perpetrator accountability work [with] Support New York ( here in NYC. Much as I appreciate the income generated by, and reliability of, turning a bulk of my mail-order over to Microcosm, my allegiance lies first and foremost with my beliefs around those who perpetuate abuse and how they should be held accountable.

Before agreeing to distribute through Microcosm a year or so ago, I had a number of long and very involved conversations over the phone with S---- in which she assured me that Joe's process was making progress and that the collective was totally into keeping him accountable. In light of some recent updates from Cindy Crabb, I don't feel like I can continue to distribute Slice Harvester with you all in good conscience. Even though SH is totally separate and anonymous project and is absolutely distinct from my accountability work, my commitment is still to that work, and when I think about continuing any kind of relationship with Microcosm, I get a feeling in the pit of my stomach that I've learned to heed.

I wish Microcosm had been a little more transparent about acknowledging Joe's abusive behavior from the get go, and I really wish it seemed like you all were acknowledging it at all right now. I can't even find the public statement you guys made about Joe's behavior anywhere on the website. Is it available outside of, where I finally found it in google? It doesn't seem very transparent or accountable to leave something so crucial off the website.

Overall, I am really disheartened by all of this and as I said, I don't think I feel comfortable working with you guys any longer.

love, Colin
No one at Microcosm bothered to respond. Earlier this week I was shown , which was actually published on their website this time, at least. At the time I first saw this statement, there was a conversation going on in the comments section that seems to have disappeared now, but was luckily archived . If the comments had still been open on that blog post, I probably would've written to Microcosm there instead of writing this public letter, but since they seem determined to close down any actual dialogue, I feel like I have no choice but to write something here.

While I think that the new statement is far more heartening than the last, I still feel majorly let down by it's timing, it's vagueness, and the silencing of criticism Microcosm has engaged in by hiding the comments that were previously posted. At this point, Microcosm has a few copies of Slice Harvester Quarterly #2 left and when they sell out I don't think I'll be selling them any more any time soon. I would urge any other zine makers who consider themselves an ally to stop working with Microcosm until they get their shit together, and I would urge everyone else to hold off on ordering from them until they prove themselves to be willing to engage in actual accountability and dialogue.

There are standards we must set in our community. Abuse and abusive behavior happen in this sick fucking society, there is no avoiding that. We are socialized to harm one another, and men in particular are socialized to be so disconnected from our emotions that the harm we cause is oftentimes inadvertent. However, it is each person's responsibility to be open and honest with themselves and the people in their lives and foster an environment where abuse accusations can be taken seriously, and both survivor and perpetrator can be given access to the healing they need. Microcosm's actions have done the exact opposite of that. They've given an abuser a shield to hide behind and perpetuate his shitty behavior while publicly seeming accountable, and that is untenable. Microcosm needs to get their shit together ASAP. This stuff is hard to navigate but they are majorly fucking up.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Not about pizza, but about the band The John Candy's.

Here is a really bad picture of the cover of the John Candy's tape.

I have been kind of blue the past couple of days, and it has been a big bummer, but just now taking a shower, I listened to the whole John Candy's demo for the first time in ages and remembered why I love being alive. This band existed in Autumn 2006, and was mostly the result of Good Kid Paulie, who I just got done writing about eating pizza with, living in the big room on the first floor at the Fort (RIP) with the entire Mexican punk band .

The band featured Paulie playing guitar, Marina and Raymundo from PM playing accordion and drums, respectively, Carolina (from ) playing bass for the first time ever, and the famous Joe Porter, who any Slice Harvester Quarterly readers know as SHQ's premier illustrator, singing. The songs are really good. There's an urgency that comes from a bedroom punk band, but the musicians had enough collective experience to put a decent song together. For me the real icing on the cake is Joe Porter's vocals. The way the melodies he writes interact with the guitar and accordion is phenomenal, and the lyrics make me feel heartsick and wistful.

I recorded this on a 4-track in Paulie and Polka Madre's bedroom on a rainy November day. It also marks the day I learned that Chuck had moved here to stay from Chattanooga and vowed to make him my best friend. I'll tell you that story when he finally comes to eat pizza with me. The point is, any problems you have with the sound, take them up with me, take them up with the 3 or 4 Ballantine 40s I drank that day, take them up with anyone but the band. They were just trying to get their shit on tape before Marina and Raymundo had to leave for tour.

Joe is in a new band right now called . They have a 7" out, but I don't know how you're supposed to get one without Joe Porter just handing it to you outside BBC's 31st birthday party.

Anyway, here is a link to download that John Candy's tape:

If anyone in the band has problems with me posting that, tough cookies, I recorded it.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Slice Harvester Quarterly Zine Release and Reading! Thursday, June 3rd @ Book Thug Nation

Pretend that is really cool neon yellow paper and you will have some idea of what the zine will actually look like.

So, Slice Harvester Quarterly #2 will be out less than a week, and I'm doing a release party/reading at , my favorite used bookstore in America (as opposed to my favorite in America, the Love Shack on S Conduit in the Boogie Down). BTN is located at 100 N 3rd St, right off the corner of Berry, in less and less beautiful everyday Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The event will go from 7-9:30 or so, I'll read a couple times, there'll be some zines for sale, it'll be a pretty cool time. And you'd know about it already if you were , or were part of the . In fact, speaking of facebook, if you want to over there, I'll know how much wine to buy. jk. I'm gonna buy the same amount of wine no matter how many people show up.

What a boring post! I am having some clerical problems with the rest of this week's slice data, but I should have those remedied soon enough and then I'll be back to my usual semi-consistency.

Oh! After the zine reading, there will be an after party, because as the old adage goes, "after the show there's the after party," and it will be held at the Second Chance Saloon, which is at 659 Grand Street, also in Williamsburg. Me and my best friend Marcia will be playing records for our monthly DJ night, F(A)CEPLANT PARMIGIAN, and it's usually a good time, so if you can't make the reading, I'll be selling zines from the DJ booth. And since the adage continues, "and after the party, there's the hotel lobby," perhaps when Second Chance closes down, we can all go out and .

Tuesday, April 13, 2010


Well, at the behest of many well intentioned critics, I've decided to institute a rating system. All slices will be judged on a scale of 1-8 slices, (well, 0-8 actually), 1 slice being the worst, 8 slices being the best, and 0 slices being totally not applicable. I think. This is all subject to change according to my whims.

A sample rating:

Ratings will be given for all future reviews and I'll slowly try and go through the backstock and add ratings to those ones, for easy categorization.


In other news, my buddy Garritt, who was around for the genesis of Slice Harvester, as those of you who have read the first zine (available for $3ppd, well concealed cash to Slice Harvester / 442D Lorimer St #230 / Brooklyn, NY 11206, or $4ppd through paypal to will know, has a broken collarbone and since We Are The Punks, there is a benefit show for him. Mostly what happened is that I am doing one of his jobs for him while he is laid up and I felt really horrible that his misfortune was my windfall, so I put this show together for this coming Friday, it should be GREAT. It's at 9pm sharp on April 16th. Tommy's Tavern, which is at 1041 Manhattan Ave in pastoral Greenpoint, Brooklyn. It costs $5-$10 suggested donation. Below is a scan of the beautiful flier that made and there will be copies of it on sale for a measly buck at the show and that money will go to Garritt as well. Think about it! Affordable art for your house, supporting a rad dude on the homefront. What could be better?

Remember: Fuck Lynyrd Skynyrd. Fuck your negative attitude. We are the punks.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Finest Pizza Deli: "I think the person who named this place might be a liar."

Initially I thought the name of this place must be a misnomer. Perhaps I'm mistaken, though. may not have the finest pizza, but it may actually be the finest Pizza Deli. I don't think I've ever been to another "pizza deli" before, (and a cursory search of the blog affirms that I've not visited one in an official capacity yet). But now I'm think that perhaps I don't know for certain what constitutes a "fine" slice of pizza.

This slice was certainly pale and delicate like a porcelain doll. It wasn't exceptionally good, but it was warm decent enough on a rainy day. The cheese was decent, the sauce was a little too sweet, and the crust was undercooked (as is obvious from a quick glance at that crust-color). Ultimately it was nothing special, but nor was it horrible. Totally middle of the road. They did, however, have a number of charming misspellings on one of their signs:

Depending on what the pharmaceutical additions, I might be in the mood for that "Pilly Cheesesteak" as a little nightcap right now.

Finest Pizzeria & Deli
151 E 103rd St
New York, NY 10029


Tonight I am in DC on the first night of Forgetters tour. It's off to a great start, they really packed St. Stephen's Church tonight. Tonight was a benefit for , a pretty rad sounding organization. And I got to meet tonight! Old punks still doing rad shit are always an inspiration. I didn't get up the chutzpah to really talk to him about how amazing he is because I didn't think I could do it without coming off as some fawning teen, but yeah, that shit was pretty cool.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Caliente Pizzeria: "Chupa mi pizza."

So, I totally sighed aloud when my mother and I walked up to . Generally restaurants that combine being a pizzeria with something else, and Spanish food is a pretty common one, don't have very good pizza. Mama Harvester looked at me, her face full of concerns, and said, "we have to go in there don't we?" I just nodded solemnly. We walked in and the pizza did not look appetizing.

"I don't envy you your task," my mother said, gazing at the slice. I could see in her eyes that she had finally reached at least a tacit understanding of the gravity of my Sisyphean undertaking. We both looked at the slice sitting before us and sighed like Bret Michaels at the beginning of .

But then I took that first tentative bite and my mood shifted a bit. This slice didn't suck! In fact, it was almost good. There was way too much sauce, and the sauce tasted like shit, total can jam. These two facts make this slice ineligible for even getting anywhere NEAR in the running for Awesome Slice Award 2k10. However, sauce and sogginess aside, the cheese on this slice was good, just oily enough, totally tasty. The dough was perfectly salty and not at all sweet, a problem I find recurring at Spanish pizzerias. The bread was cooked perfectly, to an excellent crispness, and Mama Harvester, who was voted Miss Queens Teen Crust Lover 1968, said the crust was to die for. Ultimately this slice is not great, but it's better than Luigi's.

Caliente Pizzeria - $2.50
862 10th Ave
New York, NY 10019


Since I've been posting about friend Anandi a shit ton lately, I should mention that tomorrow night, there is a benefit show for her at in Greenpoint. It costs $3-5 sliding scale, though we'll take more if you wanna donate, and it's all rad local bands. Here's the rundown, not in any particular order:

(old drunks in love. if you don't know this band yet you live under a rock.)
(total buds, heavy rock, loudest band i know.)
(sound just like Killdozer. shit is intense!)
(Scott Youth says "man, we sound like Region Rock, but like, psychedelic Region Rock." i haven't heard them.)
(Michelle from 's new band, haven't heard them yet either.)

At Tommy's Tavern, 1041 Manhattan Ave (corner of Freeman), Brooklyn, NY, 9pm. You can take the G train to Greenpoint Ave, the 7 to Vernon Jackson and then walk across the Pulaski Bridge, the B43 or bus to get there. But you should probably just ride your bike unless you're a total poseur.

Blah blah blah, the community, blah blah, togetherness, blah blah, solidarity in the face of shittiness, etc.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Columbus Gourmet Food: "Oh boy."

UPDATE: I no longer want to be associated with the person who I ate pizza with in this portion of Slice Harvesting so I've replaced his name on this and all other reviews he appears in with a loaf of white bread. 🍞

Where to begin? is not a pizzeria. It is like, one of those weird, mini-food court sort of places where you can get all kinds of shit, the website contains one of the most comprehensive menus I've ever seen anywhere. When I walked in I noticed that the counter was a semi-circle and there were like, 40 places I could order food from, depending on what I was getting. It is less like a food court and more like a cafeteria, okay? However, regardless of whether or not CGF is a pizzeria, it is listed in the phone book when you look up "pizza," so I walked over there. And when I looked inside, they had a real pizza oven and their slices looked like real pizza. Anyway, dotted along the top of the counter were display plates of food. For instance:

The cheese and the peppers on that thing looked obviously fake from afar, and more so when one gets up close. The french fries, however, were perplexing. They were either real, or the most realistic looking fake fries I had ever seen. Since I am a man of boundless curiosity, there was no way I could go handle the anxiety of speculation. So I tentatively ate a fry... and it was real food! Since our pizzaman was nowhere in sight, I asked 🍞 to pass me an onion ring off the hotwings display plate. Right as I was getting up the nerve to try one of the chicken tenders, the pizza guy walked over and was all, "are you eating my displays?!"
"Uh... yeah, man. Did you know those things are made of real food?"

I forgot to photograph this slice right away. It didn't deserve it, though.

Anyway, I ordered up my "one regular slice," didn't pay, though I'll tell you that it would've been $2.50, and sat down with 🍞 to eat it. And I will say definitively that this was the worst slice of pizza I have ever eaten within the boundaries of New York City save for some gnarly dumpstered slices I've choked down in moments of supreme hunger. This slice tasted like total crap. Cheap cheese, the sauce tasted like ketchup, the crust totally blew chunks. Worst shit. 🍞 said it tasted like these $1 party pizzas he used to buy frozen at the supermarket when he lived in Bloomington. This weird yuppie couple eating next to us were sharing some kind of turkey and avocado wrap that looked awesome, though. And I bet the salad bar is kickass. Also, duh, if you're really starving, just come here and eat the displays, it is your right. That shit is wasteful, dog.


Columbus Gourmet Food
261 Columbus Ave
New York, NY 10023


As you may recall from my post, my fond friend Greg Harvester's partner Anandi was recently diagnosed with breast cancer. There is currently an auction going on to raise money for all the billions of tiny expenses that accrue when a major illness enters someone's life. So if you were thinking about donating to Slice Harvester today, point your browser over to instead and donate to me some other time. There is all kinds of rad shit available, from to to .

You would have to be intentionally ignorant not to notice my constant jabs at capitalism and the alienation inherent in our culture. Most of it is in jest, but that's because I assume that most of my readers are in on the joke, which is to say, at least a little dissatisfied with The Way Things Are. A lot of the focus of much revolutionary theory and literature is about tearing things down, and a lot of the language we use is about that too. I talk about "smashing capitalism" or "dismantling patriarchy," for instance. It's easy to get bogged down thinking about how much awful crap there is that we have to get rid of before we can build .

But I'd like to take yet another opportunity to point out that this is yet another instance where people are Creating Something Beautiful in the face of The Horrible Unpleasantness of Living. Changing the world is not just about destroying what we hate, but also about building what we love and they don't have to happen in that order. We don't have to mush society flat before we can rebuild something beautiful. We can have eachother's backs and be strong as communities despite all the current awfulness.

And I guess I'd like to dedicate this post to my father's best friend Anthony Graziano, whose relationship with my dad had a huge effect on my life, whether either of them knew it, and who passed away last week. I hope he's finally found some peace.

Sorry for all the bummer news lately.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

You lost yours early, but you put up a good fight.

We'll get back to pizza tomorrow. Today is the one year anniversary of my friend Jamie's death and I wanna talk about it so fuck you anyway. I don't want to say "it feels like it was only yesterday," because it doesn't, but it doesn't feel like a year. I think my friend Kevin Morby wrote about this really beautifully last year and I'd like to link . At the time, and the months following Jamie's death, I tried really hard to write about it and I always threw everything out because I couldn't get it right. Kevin did a great job in that post of getting it right.

I feel like Jamie was oftentimes one step ahead of me in terms of doing the coolest shit. The last time we spoke, I ran into him at a show and he was wearing this brand new pea coat and some shiny leather shoes. I slapped him on the back too hard and said, "what'd you join the navy or something?" He told me something along the lines of, "Colin, I'm 25 now. No one gets to tell me what to do ever again. If I want a new pea coat, I'll get a new pea coat." Either way, a year later, I looked at myself in the mirror today and I was wearing a pair of classy shoes and a pea coat.

Despite being pretty much the coolest and on to all the awesomest shit, Jamie didn't have a big ego and was actually pretty insecure. It's something that took me a while to grasp as we were becoming friends, but was ultimately really endearing. The week leading up to his death, I started listening to his old band Bent Outta Shape's LP again for the first time in a while. I would listen to it every night while I closed the diner I worked at and think about giving him a call just to tell him how much I loved that shit. Because I knew he would be glad to hear it and it would make him happy. But I always got distracted by the act of closing or who I was meeting up with afterwards, and that call never happened. I think the sentiment I'm awkwardly and ineffectually grasping at was best expressed in the Jack Palance Band song How Can I, "it's just like my buddy Mike Pack says, he says, 'always tell your friends you love them, 'cause you never know when goodbye is gonna be goodbye.'"

Bent Outta Shape was one of my favorite bands, and I'm really lucky I got to see them so much. And I will say, pretty definitely, here at the end of 2009, that Stray Dog Town was easily one of the best punk records to come out in the first 10 years of this millennium. Hands down. Everything about it was so genuine and guileless. There was no real posturing or bullshit, none of the pitfalls of trying too hard to be cool. It was and is, a totally earnest expression of confusion, frustration and hope and despite the fact that my eyes still moisten a little every time I hear those songs, in general, this record makes me feel so good. I uploaded that record, and the Bent side of their split with Snuggle, which I'm pretty sure is the last 7" they put out and is definitely some of my favorite of Jamie's songwriting, and you can download them .

If you like these records, the LP is available from and the 7" is available from . Please think about buying them and keeping rad labels who manage to not be beholden to big business and the complex workings of capitalism afloat in our sick fucking society. Because regardless of the fact that all kinds of gross shit happens in the world on a constant basis, all types of people, not just my scummy punk friends and me, are intentionally coming together in the face of all the ugliness and brutality to share beautiful, transcendent moments together. Going to shows and seeing friends actualize hours and days worth of energy into something cohesive and real is a beautiful thing. The fact that a bunch of people can get together and organize something great, simply because everyone needs it to happen, and without profit as a tangible motive keeps me going when I think it's not even worth it to struggle anymore because the bad guys are always gonna win. And that's why I won't stop coming around.

Jamie Ewing 1983-2008
I miss you every day, you fucking jerk.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Etymology of Slice Harvester: "For those who were wondering."

I wanted to provide some insight into where the name of this blog came from. My friend Greg Harvester, who is a totally rad and awesome guy and once told me I can borrow anything of his ever while he was drunk and I immediately asked if he'd give me his pants right then and he wouldn't do it so obviously he's actually not that cool and he's a total liar, was in a band called Rice Harvester a million years ago and currently does a zine of the same name. I'm not sure how to get the zine besides directly from Greg, and I'm not gonna post his contact on the blog, but there is a link to on the blog. Greg's bands and zines have always been among the coolest around and I'm super glad that I know him because he's a total peach and I'm really lucky that we're friends.

Greg's partner Anandi was recently diagnosed with breast cancer, and it's really tough for the two of them. My mother just beat breast cancer last year, so I know pretty intimately how strenuous and taxing that kind of struggle can be. Like my mother, Anandi is lucky enough to have a rad community of tough, rad folks to support her, but if any internet strangers want to donate a couple bucks to help her and Greg foot the bill for all these treatments, you can paypal money to or check the facebook group .

Sorry if this bummed anyone out, but first of all, life is not all pepperonis and sausage. Sometimes the Great Pizzaiola throws some anchovies at us, you know? And second of all, people get sick, bad shit happens all the time, but this is about communities coming together and people having each other's backs in tangible ways. So if anything, while these are certainly stressful times, this should ultimately be totally triumphant. If nothing else, just think good thoughts and dedicate your next slice to Anandi's health.
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