Samples from Anodyne - "Such a nice twang..."



  1. 1.

    a strong ringing sound such as that made by the plucked string of a musical instrument or a released bowstring.


make or cause

Tape Extracts:

Garrett Tiedemann: As iterated previously, there's always more to say. Which is not a unique realization or particularly brilliant one, but a constant that I've finally given up trying to ignore and in doing so have returned to the most familiar conduit for contemplating minutia, filing grievances, attempting to make some sense of things while salvaging a few laughs, even if I am alone in laughing, that I've known ever. 

I figure now is the link between then and eventually. I prefer to ride into the horizon. Forget the bridge altogether, let alone the toll for safe passage; especially if I am alone in laughing. 

Recording for Anodyne. Something lives only as long as the last person who remembers it. Be careful they don't see the statues in the house. 

Julie Shapiro: I've been wondering myself about was what to call it because I didn't know whether to call it Anodyne again. So I settled on redux, which is of course just like speaks to the new version of it and I decided I didn't want to make a whole book with a lot of writing and images of clip art so I didn't want to call it the same thing. But it's certainly inspired by that so I'm trying to tie the two ideas together, but that felt like a hard decision actually. 

Garrett (on phone): Well that seems to be something you've really carried with you through up till now is like the important conversation of a community of making stuff and so like the participation in making things is in part to facilitate people coming together around stuff. 

Julie: Yeah

Garrett (on phone): For lack of a better phrasing. 

Julie: Yeah. No I think you are. I think you're right on. With all the crazy connect the dots that have gotten me from making the zine to doing what I do know with like a big podcast network that is a through line for sure; that sense of togetherness and community and finding common interests, common values, common missions with other people.

Garrett: You are my old friend. A distant flashlight in the icy cold of space. Wandering inspired ramblings, picking their way through.

[Intro Break]

Garrett: Samples from Anodyne Redux.

Paul de Jong: Sometimes old rage, truths that should have been told.  

Garrett: It's a transcribed sound sample, from a self-help cassette. Deep letting go. Out of my vast sample library of sound and spoken word. When Julie sent me the Redux request in the mail I was working on editing the transcribed text into poetry.  

Angeline Gragásin: So yeah. So I picked one up and then I ended up going to. She gave a presentation. And I ended up going to it. And you know making the connection because she announced it at the end of her presentation by the way you might you know pick up a copy of my zine and yada yada. And that's that's how I found it. 

Julie: I have been advertising Anodyne by mostly through Twitter, right? And it got, I've had no lack of entries but I did go to one sort of conference in New York a couple of months ago and just put a pile of them out to see if anyone would take them and do anything with it. And I only got one back so far, but it's so good. It's like one of my favorite signs ever. And the excitement of knowing like this stranger, I don't know who it is, picked it up off the table it just said for you - it was like the sign and it just said for you, exclamation point - just to see if anyone would bite. Which is a little bit how it used to be where I would leave piles of these signs and invitations for people to take. And so she might be the only person that plays along. But it was such a great sign to get back in it. You know it was it was excellent, just arrived yesterday in fact.

Miyuki Jokiranta: So stop and listen is actually a little project that I did a while ago where I would draw footprints on the pavement where I found a particular beautiful spot for listening that I you know I'd be walking down the street and I'd be arrested physically, sonically, by a space and I would carry chalk with me and I would draw footprints on the ground and then I would write stop and listen. And that would be a little indicator to someone that was walking down that same pathway to do the same. And they might have an experience similar to the one that I did.

Garrett: Starting it now, it's obviously in reflection of the last 20 years. So like, how is it different thinking about it now and how also is it different when you're bringing in something like tumbler and like the sort of digital interface and recognizing a desire to have it there while not losing the physical. 

Julie: Yeah, I know. I really struggled with does it need any digital presence. And then I thought, well that will help me because I'm not trading zines, I'm not listed in other zines so people can find out about mine, like how am I going to keep...Besides my initial Facebook post and tweet that's now pinned to my Twitter whatever feed you know how else can I get the word out so, I don't mind having them all in one place digitally. But, the prize is that everyone who contributes will actually get a paper version.

Simone Roche: I wonder if there is a little bit of this that works because it's non-digital because otherwise it's like it's Twitter right? It's just a list of things people write, you know, you may as we'll just have a 140 character limit on a on a long tumbler scroll. So I think putting a little brick in like this is like a tapestry idea you know and it's those blankets or whatever. So I think being part of a digital unit is in many ways it's not worth a curse. It's just like, if she asked me to write this digitally it wouldn't have meant the same, I wouldn't have thought about it the same way. 

And while I do, you know I had to send an email to a friend who's putting a book together for a friend's 40th birthday and I thought about it and I wrote the email and she's going to print that in the book and that's nice and I thought about it, but I thought about this, this was a different thing you know like you commit something to pen and paper and you send it off in the post. It's a little bit less immediate and it's more purposeful and I think you...I don't know. I love these collections. I mean it's still just a collection of individual's thoughts. I don't know if it's necessarily more than the sum of its parts, they're all...not that they're tied together, but maybe it is when you see the thread that's going through people. I don't know it's hard to tell, but I certainly think the analog idea of it. Brings a different approach out of people and maybe that helps the thing have more resonance. 

Julie: Incorporating all of them back. And anyone who reads the tumblr will never have, will never hold those in their hands. So I still feel like I'm rewarding the people who participate and care enough to. You know I haven't decided if I'll make extra copies for people who aren't contributing, but I kind of like the idea of the tumblr just being the signs too. And I've also decided I don't think I'm not going to fill up the rest of the zine with other ramblings. I don't actually have the time to do that. So I'm going to try to do more of a broadsheet that has like all of, more of a poster sized thing that has all the signs that get contributed back with a little bit of text to kind of explain what it is. But this one's is way more about what people send me. It's not as much about like what you know my internal musings, angst ridden rants and things. 

Garrett (on phone): Yeah, so you're a little more of a curator of other people's musings. 

Julie: Yeah. Which I guess is very consistent with what I've been doing for the last 15 years. 

Garrett (on phone): Yeah well and it's interesting because when you do, there was something about when you write it down on paper that forces you to at least in my mind you think about the words you're writing down more as if it's more permanent than what you put digitally whereas digitally it's like oh I'll go back and edit my grammar errors if I want to... 

Julie: ...or I'll just update. You know you can't. This is a one. Like, what's the one status update for this project. You can't you can't update your update.

Garrett (on phone): Right. So are you thinking you'll keep sending requests to all the same people or is the idea to try and keep going to people who haven't responded as you build it?

Julie: Yeah it's totally, I wouldn't repeat anyone. So it's just like, I think I'm going to wait and see what kind of a lay out I start working with when I get more back but I think I'll go for something symmetrical like 30 or 40 of them  per issue and always have different ones. And then hopefully you know once the first ones out and people see it there is more interest in participating. I just get it's just like it can just like live on its own, it's out there now. I have mostly sent to people who have seen my invitation and responded. But there are a handful of people I've just decided I'd love to reignite a correspondence with so I've sent them signs. Theirs will be surprises in the mail. But they know I did the old one so it won't be completely out of context and what's interesting is when I posted the Facebook thing, kind of impulsively I didn't give it a whole lot of forethought. I mean I had a vague plan in my head, but the people from that time in my life who responded you know is really...some people have pictures of old issues. My sister put up a picture of a T-shirt. You know I was like so cheap that for Hanukkah every year I'd be like here's my zine! Or, here's a T-shirt I thrifted and then went to my friends screen printing studio and made T-shirts for all my cousins you know who were like What is this. But you know some people still have that stuff. People keep stuff, so it's kind of great. 

Allyson McCabe: We sort of collectively decide what has value or what should be kept. You know, that sort of thing. I'm sure there are many many zines out there that we don't know about that will become known to us at some point, but just because somebody decided that they were important. And one of the cool things about a zine is that the gatekeeper is us you know it's not some person from on high you know hundreds of years into the future making a decision that they were significant because of X Y or Z specifically. 

You know we collectively are the judge of what's of value. So I think I think that's you know and they all represent different little micro communities and sometimes these zinees have lasted longer than the things they were attached to. You know so for example several bands had zines that were a huge part of what they were doing. Sometimes the bands aren't together anymore, but the zines still are. 

Simon:  The more stoic, mostly repressed place you know going back 50 years maybe not even that far or maybe 40 years and a lot of people you know, burying emotions and all that kind of stuff. And while in one way of course that can be really even more traumatic and really bad. But there's some kind of stoicism and just kind of parking stuff, going on with it, and you know if it rears its head again then so be it. I mean you can fix a set of shelves that fall down, but you can't necessarily fix all these things and I think the idea that you would get over things and people saying get over it. I mean I know they flippantly say that usually about something you know spilled milk but I kind of thought learning to park, learning to parallel park these issues may be a bit more benefit than the idea of getting over things.

Julie: You know, I mean it's hard to say like what impact Anodyne had in that zine world, but because I kept it up for quite a while. I mean 13 or 14 issues is a lot for that time because a lot of people started zines and moved on, just like podcasts, just like blogs, right? So you know I think like it did it kind of was like out there because it's very active. So for a little while it was one of the ones you'd hear about, was you know, I think it was listed in lists of zines you know it was in a few, it was highlighted in a few higher profile places for zines which doesn't mean much. I mean they did work, they were co-opted they became very mainstream after a while, but when they were truly more underground you know it was like a small pond. I was like a medium sized fish in a small pond so people remembered it pretty well and associated, still associate me with like doing all that. So it was fun just to kind of. I mean I think a lot of the pull back is a real, not like a midlife it's not a crisis it's like a midlife revisiting of my earlier self a little bit, which makes me feel very old to say, but I've noticed in a few ways this is happening and that is like reconnecting with people from that time.

Miyuki: How long did it take you to write yours? 

So once I'd settled on that trope, stop and listen, seconds. I've written it 100 times. But yeah there was a there was a large amount of deliberation as to whether I wanted to continue to be that person. And turns out I did. 

Garrett: Suspect a partnership between nearsighted and farsighted has obscured vision so severely though I'm not sure it has everything to do with my eyes. Somehow from this faraway planet it seems more valid than world, as distant stretches out snaps back into place. Such a nice twang. 

Julie: I don't feel the need to say the kinds of things I said back then and it's kind of a time thing. I think I'm less interested in my own ideas in that way. I'm actually just more interested in other people's ideas. I certainly have ideas and I believe in them etc. but I find other ways to express them. And. You know I guess I have all these other outlets. That's the other thing.  I feel very strategic about the way I use social media so that becomes an editorial outlet not just an update about my life or if it's an update about my life, it is disguised its editorial disguised as an update about my life and I think a lot about the kind of public. I mean I would say as most people do, but I think a lot of people don't think about what they're putting out. So I feel like I've got a kind of curated, careful approach to that and maybe that's enough and that doing this side project would just become a burden more than anything, but maybe who knows I say that and now maybe one side will be the zines and the other side will just be like you know nine point font of like crazy rantings from midnight you know writing sessions, I don't know. We'll see.

Tania Ketenjian: Everything that you post says something about you. But some things say more about you than others. And I think I was playing it very very safe. I am what might be called a stalker on social media. I don't post very much but I love looking at what other people are doing. And I'm very careful about what I post. I really want to. Today I read, I read a quote by Walter Mosley or I read an interview with the author Walter Mosley in the spring issue of The Paris Review. And I immediately thought you know I want to I want to post this on this on Facebook I think this is great. People should know this about like, you know, he's being irreverent about the choices we make as a creative person and realizing the fragility of those choices I guess. And I was like, I want to post this thing and then I kind of thought oh maybe I shouldn't and then it starts then it goes through this whole questioning and then, but then then the whole thing that you're posting then becomes far too analyzed in this way of like what does it reflect on me rather than just its inherent beauty. So that's why I try not to post too much because I don't want to be too character driven. And so in essence, the quick answer is No I did not think about what this was going to say about me or if I did I knew I was playing it so safe I knew that I wasn't taking a risk. And I like that because so much can be misinterpreted online and through text and through printed matter and so I'd rather just play it safe. 

Garrett (on phone): Alright, so we've got a few minutes left. So, with deciding to do this again, and I know we've talked about this some so I know this is kind of retreading, but I think you know speaking too about leaving this stuff out and someone did respond. I mean I think it's very much as a reception feels like a gift and that like the looking over the old ones you did like I can imagine that like getting one of them was like a gift from wherever.

Julie: Always. Totally. Exactly.

Garret (on phone): Yeah. And I think it's sort of, much the same like in the last couple years people have returned to appreciating vinyl because it feels like a physical thing. Is that partly feeding as well as your own creative need to do it, like why you want to still make a physical thing when you know it's still a lot of work even to put them up online? 

Does it make sense what I asked? 

Julie: Yeah, I felt kind of like two questions in one, but I will say that like everyone that I receive now is totally exciting. You know there's always that sort of sense before you open the envelope of what's inside. And then there's actually, I don't remember how I handled this back then. If I actually curated entries or just put everything in. I think I was pretty open to whatever came back. I'm actually a little bit more picky now and there are a few that have come back that I don't want to include. I just don't think they're very thoughtful. I think people just like dashed something off and sent it back. Now if they happen to dash something that I find appealing it might still get into the magazine, but there's sort of a line that if people...I guess the easiest way to say it is like there's been a few entries in this new batch that I'm not that excited about. And then I feel like that is where my own aesthetic taste is going to guide the actual outcome which feels as much, as much my offering as all of the people who've contributed. Maybe it's just you know 15 years of being a curator first and foremost I just can't let go of that quality control a bit. 

Garrett (on phone): At least I know, sort of in my brain, like part of your sort of artistic moment then becomes assembling them together in a certain pattern, which is very different than the metadata of an upload. 

Julie: Yeah definitely, definitely. And I should say like even though I said that earlier about feeling a little weird about most of the signs coming in pre-election, there's also an upside to that which is I actually wouldn't want the issue to be burdened by one common response to you know a new reality. And while it could be a document of a time which would also be very important, and I regret missing that opportunity a little bit, Anodyne has never been a political thing. Maybe in the broadest cultural political sense you could say it was because it was DIY and managed to make it for free and sort of stayed out of the major publishing industry. But for the most part it is meant to just be something a little bit less circumscribed by a particular tone. So at the end of the day it's probably fine that we'll have signs from before the election and after the election.

Allyson: Say for any kind of thing that you make. You know, I make the zine. There, you know you might say any zine you look at it and somebody who knows nothing about zines and is completely outside of it might be like why would anybody waste their time, these photographs they're all like photo copy that looks terrible and there's a typo here and haven't they proofread it. And oh my god who cares about this obscure band that nobody heard of you know that person is not going to get it and it can't be explained to, but for the people who it is intended, like if it finds its audience, it's done its job it served its purpose. The zine, all the zine does or the podcast or whatever the thing you're making does is all it does is it's a vehicle for delivering that idea. 

Tania: If there is an opportunity to connect, to be part of something, to say that...say someone I meet that contributed to this zine, I don't know them in any other way except for that we both contributed, then we, we're connected. We're connected in that way and I don't think there's anything more important in life than feeling connected.

Julie: You know it's hard to sort of recede for me in terms of the new issue has, it's taking longer than I thought I would just because I cannot find the time and energy to work on it when I want to. And, I think part of it is just being a parent now, having a child being a parent, as opposed to the other form of apparent, as one word. And you know that extra energy that I have really goes into raising my kid with my husband. So yeah I guess there's a little bit of guilt that's come in. I don't think people are waiting for it. They've probably forgotten if they even have sent in zines. But, I'm keeping track of how long it's taking. And so I've set aside some time, in my mind, over the holidays to actually mock up the first issue and figure out what I'm going to do on the other side of it. You know how much writing there will or will not be. And so, I'm looking forward to that. I mean that feels like a really compelling project ahead that I think I'll find some time for in the downtime of the holidays. But, yeah, it's much harder to fit around my current lifestyle both personally and professionally. I mean if I think of the hours that most of those Anodynes were made during, both written and assembled, it was like between midnight and 3:00 a.m. and you know I just I don't have that, I can't burn the candle like that anymore. 

I'm getting a lot out of this, I hope that when I send the signs back to people they get something out of it. I hope that participating, they get something out of.  l hope they like getting a piece of mail that isn't a bill. You know, this is a small, little enhancement to a day kind of thing. 

Tania: I don't know how you're going to put this all together, but I will just say that you know Julie I've said this to you many times before when I've seen you in a conference with hundreds of people around, but you really have this extraordinary ability to make someone feel very special and make someone feel like their contribution is special. And you do that in so many different ways whether it be bringing people together in a conference or inviting people into a radio project or creating a zine. And it's such a wonderful gift and you know your warmth is something that I really value in my life even if I may see it every couple of years. 

End credits:

I'm Allyson McCabe. I'm an independent reporter for NPR's arts and culture desk. I'm also the creator slash producer slash host of Vanishing Ink.

My name is Angeline Gragásin. I'm a writer and filmmaker. 

I'm Simon Roche. I'm a graphic designer. I have a side project called The Radio Post. 

My name is Whitney Henry-Lester. I'm a podcast editor and producer.

Hi, my name is Tania Ketenjian. I'm a journalist.

I'm Miyuki Jokiranta and I make radio documentaries. And occasionally head off on strange sonic excursions. 

Simon: I contributed. 

Angeline: And I contributed.

Tania: I contributed

Allyson: I contributed

Whitney: I contributed to Anodyne Redux. Is that how you say it? 

Miyuki: I contributed to Anodyne Redux.

Julie: All right. Talk to you soon. All right. Take care.

Garrett (on phone): You too.

Julie: Bye.

Garrett (on phone): Bye. 

Garrett: It's so important to support the people who insist on living their lives by their own terms, creating their own work by their own rules. Check out independent record and bookstores and comic book stores. Find things you like and let their creators know. Share them with the people you love or at least the people who would appreciate them, even if they don't know it yet. All of this, meant as vague as it sounds, depends on communication and support. Enjoy the centerfold, enjoy the tape, enjoy the fact that you have great taste in music. 

So, if you'd like to play the kids with sign game. Or already have and would like to play again. Or know someone who you think might like to play. Or need some advice. Or want a Connie Francis tape. Or just feel like ranting about the general chaos that seems imminent. Or perhaps you'd like to rave about it. Please send your comments along with a brief statement to Anodyne.

Atomic shake well publications.

William S. Burroughs (archive tape): Silence to say goodbye. 

Garrett: Thanks to all who contributed to Anodyne and this production. It could not have been done without you. Additional music and sound elements were provided by John Barner and Leon van Bokhorst

This has been The White Whale. Samples from Anodyne. 

Samples from Anodyne - "I trust in the lapse of time solidifies..."




properties of transmission and deflection.

  1. 2.

    the way in which an event or course of action is perceived by the public.

    "the issue itself is secondary"

Tape Extracts:

Garrett Tiedemann: The last Avid Consultant came a year ago. I trust in the lapse of time solidifies. This one is her reliance. The last traces of recumbent hesitance. The directions in this issue of Avid Consultant have been gathering in my car, in my mind, for an unknown amount of time.

Garrett (on phone): The sensations influence aesthetic choices and creativity. They all, at least for me, they all elicit an idea. Whether it be audio or visual that starts to frame your understanding of the moment that is much more nostalgic and poetic than maybe it actually was. But, it doesn't negate what it actually was. It's just that it's there's so many things constructed into the recollection. 

Tania Ketenjian: To why did I want to be part of it was because I thought OK. I mean, I've told Julie this story several times. One day I was actually for Weekend America, way back when like 12 years ago, I was gathering vox in front of this cafe here in San Francisco. And I I start talking to someone and they were like oh do you know do you know do you know Julie, she's in radio? And I was like, yeah I do. He said, YOU KNOW HERE? OH MY GOD SHE'S AMAZING. I LOVE HERE. And he was just crazy about her. 

And I remember, and he's this guy named Chicken John and he wanted to be a mayor of San Francisco, he's a real character. And it made me realize wow, I mean like the circle that Julie runs in like the various circles that she runs and are fascinating. And I want to be part of that. And I think you know I think that sometimes we, you know we do all these different things to befriend or even deepen a friendship or even any sort of connection that's there. And you know, Julie I may not talk at all unless we see each other at a conference. We may not know about each other's lives necessarily, but we are connected in a way and I value that connection and an opportunity to deepen that, even if it's just by sending in a Shel Silverstein poem is exciting to me. 

Garrett: The dictionary at my elbow, a different sort of weapon consulted regularly, confirms the suspicion regarding a slow leak in spelling skills, which has led to a fascination with words misspelled versus words miss typed versus words misbolded.

Biding time.

Is atrophy audible? 

Let's try that again. 

Miyuki Jokiranta: I'm apparently in a soundproof booth Garrett, but there are people outside and I fear you might get some bleed so. I'm sorry if that's the case. OK.

Julie Shapiro: I think I would sit down and kind of you know start very very in the moment and spiral out from there when I was writing so I can imagine things like well it's 2:00 a.m. in the morning I'm trying to finish this up and so this you know excuse this intro for whatever reasons. And that might just have been an anchor anchoring me into a mindset for writing more about things. I mean a lot of those early issues are also, that's all handwritten. So, it might have just been stream of conscious in the moment you know not really pre-written and edited and reshaped and reformatted just a total brain dump in the moment and that's probably when I would be most susceptible to describing what I was doing and where I was and why. Why the circumstances,if I was on the road like the New Zealand. Now switching to Avid Consultant, the New Zealand issue was really circumstantial. It was, to a play on words would be, it was it was quite the Anodyne to my situation, which was I had developed a stress fracture while backpacking around New Zealand and needed a project to keep me occupied and so I did an issue of Avid Consultant. You know that sort of got it started while I was laid up on somebody's couch in Dunedin and then you know sort of brought that process as closely as I could to my New Zealand experience, which involved being in the Wellington public library. I remember that the kind of trope for that whole issue was washing, putting clothes out on a clothes line and  washing things because I found a kind of funny manual on that that visually was you know kind of stimulated some ideas about, to play with I guess. But yes, that was very circumstantial and I think you get a lot of that like what was going on and the mechanics of how that one came together actually in the text.

Garrett (on phone): Yeah, I'm holding that edition. 

Garrett: Two pieces of advice. Never make any big life decisions in your 20s that concern another person. You can't hold the baby too much.

Garrett (on phone): Is there a gap between Anodyne and Avid Consultant or did you just kind of change gears? 

Julie: They overlap and I think I just, you know after 10 or 11 issues I was ready for something a little different. 

[Intro Break]

Garrett: Samples from Avid Consultant. Do you know how to find your way? 

Six. So the search continues. Direction is always sought even as we stand still, content. How to get there, the destination itself is barely relevant. A travel partner must want to play travel games and like to hear women singing the blues and Sonic Youth.

Angeline Gragásin: I mean I think what. What was engaging was the fact that it's a game and I have you know I haven't played a game like this since I was a kid. I haven't done a chain letter or I mean I barely send things through the mail anymore. Well, actually I think I started sending postcards again maybe around the time that I...I think that's true. I think that may be true. 

Garrett (on phone): That's interesting.

Angeline: Yeah, because I was like oh that's pretty easy. That was pretty easy I could just buy a whole box of postcards. Yeah, I actually I think, you know what, I think that might have been what inspired me to start doing that. Yeah. 

Garrett (on phone): And then are you keeping them strictly like, what's done of the postcard gets mailed and you're not taking an image to remember it or post it anywhere? Is it really sort of kept to the material thing?

Angeline: Yeah. I'm not documenting it and I'm not, there's no project dimension. It's not a project it's actually just thank you letters to friends.

Allyson McCabe: But, I think that's probably a generational perspective to some extent to feel that anything that's physical feels a little bit more real a little less ephemeral. 

Julie: And I felt like that Avid Consultant was going to be more of a writing project and I wanted to simplify actually. I remember thinking like this one will be simpler, it won't rely on other people's input because you know I'd always have to wait for these signs to come back. Which wasn't a bad thing, it just created its own rhythm, that I was dependent on other people to finish an issue and get it out with Anodyne. And Avid Consultant was just just my stuff. Possibly to a problematic extent, but who knows.

In reading back through I sort of had this horrifying conclusion like oh my god I was kind of writing poetry and it's really...horrifying is the wrong word. But I never thought of it as like, you know, a poetry project at all, but I could see that I was grasping to have some formality and metaphor and rhythm in a way that wasn't just like you know a journal spill. It was like a very distilled sense of what the journal spill would have been in a much more, presented in a much more sort of fake, casual, formal sense to some degree. 

Allyson: But, you know, zines in general they were meant to be ephemeral. Now we have zine libraries, there's many different archives for zines. Some are online but some of them are physical, attached to libraries like for example Washington D.C. has a whole the whole punk archive to itself as part of the Washington DC library. Others are attached to universities like Barnard has one. I believe University of Maryland has one. I'm sure there are many many others, but they weren't intended to be kept forever. They ended up being kept forever because people started to see the value in them. I think more than maybe some of the makers did at the time when they were first distributed. 

Unknown Woman (archive tape): Those of us interested in innovated forms of zine archiving must find a way around the limited to digitize or not to digitize argument that to me seems to dominate many conversations of digital zine preservation. We need interactive ways to display interface with zines that offer new engagements with their multiple materialities and contested histories. Fortunately sub-cultural archival practices already exist that can tell us what zinesters want for and from their archives. Practices that in theory can also benefit the zine researchers and librarians who are interested in the thriving social worlds that cluster around these vibrant, queer little booklets and this notion of a perverse materiality that was brought up is really interesting there. So to take advantage of such culturally saturated technologies., however, we need to are fully reckon with why zines matter and the particular ways that they do. 

Garrett: Agitate. Briar patch.

While slipping into a nap the other day it occurred to me that this experience has wandered into a prickly layer of grammatical metaphor. Just at dusk. Can't shake the notion now and I'm suffering from constant realizations confirming the theory. The initial diagnosis was an army of commas, forcing an inescapable pause in travel, announcing contingency from every angle commencing the duel between patients and restlessness. 

Julie: And that also reminds me about sticker packs; for a while I was making these sticker packs and sending those around. I think just the packaging, I was thinking of like I bought this like huge bulk you know package of clear envelopes that you could stick things into and would make a really cheap crappy stickers at Kinko's on sticker paper and they were like totally ironic and one was like Terry Bradshaw, is that his name? They were so not stickers you'd want to put anywhere. And that was kind of the point I guess. But that felt really important. And then I made like the sticker, I had a sticker and went on a rampage around Portland putting stickers that said too many stickers on all the cars that were covered with political, you know feel good...that was even Boulder too actually when this all started in Boulder. You know when there's so much PC, that pageantry of like how many bumper stickers can you get on your car. So I thought it was really clever to put on a sticker that said too many stickers on those cars.

It was vandalism actually although they were so crappy I'm sure they wiped off with like the first drizzle. So, I hope. Yeah that was my activism back in the day, stickering cars with too many stickers. 

Miyuki: I didn't have any hesitation at the time in contributing; when I knew of the project, when I was invited to participate. It was kind of a no brainer. But I had a lot of hesitation around what I would actually write in that blank square, in that blank rectangle, held up by those two people, very earnest, very committed people holding this sign, ready to kind of present your words. And so what I ended up writing was stop and listen. 

And then listen deeper. 

And why did I write that? Because I tried writing a bunch of other things about the state of politics, about personal revelations, about you know grand poetry. And I just came back to a trope of mine which is to keep your ears open and to navigate the world through your ears. And to wake the ears as much as you do any other sense. 

Julie: I had this amazing sociology teacher in seventh grade Mr. Rasashi and his mantra was be observant. It was like above the door you know. Now I think about that a lot. I think all of zine making is being observant and inviting other people to be observant. And not only be observant, but you know kind of share your observations or express them in some ways. So I didn't kind of act on making Anodyne into anything. But a lot of the stories I've happened to have the opportunity and great fortune to make could easily have been Anodyne articles I guess you could say you know competitive model horse collecting or a love letter to a racehorse or you know a soundscape from Africa. Like the audio pieces I've really love or that piece I shared with you about memory and watching the day after, like that felt like an audio version of Anodyne to me.

Garrett: Consider what you need. It's a ward. Rains a gonna fall.

Whitney Henry-Lester: I feel like. Like I have no capacity to put a pin in my own curiosity and my own curiosity for information so the Internet is actually really bad for me and I know this is true for a lot of people but this is how I feel it for me. I can just be on the Internet trying to find information for a long time and then forget I'm doing it hours later. And so. And that's true with story telling like I'm obsessed with storytelling so I'm constantly listening or looking or reading or on Transom or trying to find out what people are saying about it or just looking and listening to other people's work. I love doing that. But at some point you have to stop doing that. And I have to be intentional about stopping doing that. So I have to sort of give myself parameters like, this week I'm going to make rather than listen or...Just sort of setting like specific timeframes for doing specific things and making time for making work rather than listening or being a part of the conversation because you can be a part of that all the time but for me it's less about balance and more about like; or less about constant 24 hour balance, but more about like day to day I need to break it up that way. If that makes sense.

Unknown Male (archive tape): By means of printing the fund of knowledge accumulated through the ages is available to everyone great and poor alike. 

Julie: I don't have access; Kinko's is different, I don't know people at Kinkos. I think it would actually be hard to put the magazine together or the zine together without putting a lot more time into it. 

Garrett (on phone): Well yeah, because so many, I mean Kinkos don't even really exist anymore do they? 

Julie: No, it's like FedEx Kinko's and you have to pre-pay everything so you can't get anything for free. God damn it. And like people they just don't seem as nice. I mean this whole culture of like punks working at Kinko's, I just don't think it happens anymore. For whatever reason. 

Garrett (on phone): Well that's interesting because then it becomes a lot more people kind of working alone in the room right.

Julie: Yeah yeah.

Garrett (on phone): Which, part of this whole was the community building even if it was just the community building with the person helping you print it. 

Julie: Yeah, totally. Yeah that kind of late night/early morning feel to the air you know that whole thing of being out in the world at that time and under fluorescent lights for too long and taking a break in the parking lot and definitely having snacks or beers or whatever. It was a thing, it was a whole process. Again it was process, you know, it was like how it got made.

Garrett: Line drying. Made in New Zealand. Avid Consultant the circumstantial issue has taken shape 18 hours ahead of most of you under the influence of mediocre painkillers and some realizations maybe better left unrealized. 

Hanging out is easier if clothes basket is at waist level.

Footnote. The unexpected interruption in my trip, didn't even hear the bone crack, renders the crystal ball hanging from my backpack more useless than usual. As cloudy as the skies hanging over Dunedin these past few weeks. 

[Audio Interruption]

Siri: Hello. Still enjoying. One thought. You may want to re-track; the proper pronunciation of the city's name is dun-EE-din.

Garrett: Sound. The sound is important because it influences everything. Jingly jangly guitar playing, minimal bass lines, loose strumming, and keyboards. This is a place. The sound of a place that traveled far beyond the confines of its borders to pull people in and influence out. 

I'm told it might be six weeks before mending is complete. Regardless of my newly introduced lightning quick recovery program. A stubborn foot remains reluctant to cooperate. Meanwhile I've taken up residence on a very purple couch at the top of a long stairway. My exponentially generous friend lives above a camera shop downtown. When shops close up around 6:00 the rushing around out there relocates quickly.

As if it's a race. The street asserts a determined quiet; placing the day's letters of constant retail drone. My ears cling to the emptiness. Still. Dunedin is a fortunate place to be grounded. All Staples are within hobbling distance and access to books music and caffeine is plentiful. The days pass by hook or crook. Been watching old movies, taking pictures of letter slots, sewing envelopes close and sending them to the other side of the world, spilling guts, concocting, excavating. 

Garrett (on phone): So much of this seems to speak to grasping at the ideas in your head with the world as it is, but necessitating new things to become available. So, like, you know in reading something, finding a rhythm and finding a pacing like it starts to speak to the idea of this being more than words on a page for someone else to read, but being something that needs to be presented in a certain way which necessitates a certain recording musicality presentation of it which sort of then sets you on a path of what becomes podcasting where you're able to present the words the way you want them to be presented.

Julie: I think too, Avid moved into a physical space as well, like that issue that you have, one of them has rings, oh it doesn't have rings because I couldn't send them, but it was held together by like little claspy metal rings. So it came off the paper. And there was another issue that really stands on my mind. The theme was bullfighting which seemed very profound at the time and I had some great graphics and you know. But it was, I just remember it being like such a nightmare to package because I decided to put each page on a different shape of construction paper and then I would glue on the words on like a white piece of paper. But some were going horizontally and some were going vertically so it was actually...Avid was also more expensive to make, which makes no sense at all, like you try to get better and more efficient at things. But,  because there were always pieces parts to it and then figuring out how to send it, but I didn't send around as many either so it probably all evened out in the wash. 

Garrett (on phone): Something that seems so important to the consumption of these as well as to the making, very much seems the tactility of it. So, like, even though it was a pain to start with, how Avid Consultant went, like you still did it. Do you see that? And, like, can you articulate why you think tactility was a focus as part of it?

Julie: I do remember the process and still I think we've talked a little bit about what's brought me back to doing Anodyne again is the processes is like 75 percent of the joy and the reward. And back with Avid it was like the process times 100 because, I wish I could remember how many I would make of each, but it was like kind of a factory assembly line basically you know and I just I loved that process. I mean now I would just be listening to podcasts the whole time, but then it was just like a total music bliss out experience of being productive, feeling like I was getting things done, being very satisfied. I mean I've never been a visual artist in the kind of drawing, painting realm. S,o I think for me feeling like I was succeeding in at least putting something together that I was proud of and ended up the way I wanted it to be was like by figuring out these small constructions and then putting them together and then you know that's the beauty of like having the actual thing in your hand to read. Another thing I miss terribly which is again what's pulling me back to doing it again, but definitely definitely that the object in your hands mattering and sitting out. 

Garrett: To always avoid risk is to often miss the point. Codification need not be strictly functional or as formal as we're taught or as innocent. Invention should continue, this molding of language, we are after all somewhat bound by it. So certainly deserves some say in the matter.

By the end of this, I'm running out of clothes pins and have weighed enough decisions and striving for sensibility to bust the scales. But there are times when a bothersome foot injury seems less relevant than other circumstances hovering. Like Plan B. Or that a dog will remember me in a country about to escape war. 

Garrett: So, if you'd like to play the kids with sign game. Or already have and would like to play again. Or know someone who you think might like to play. Or need some advice. Or want a Connie Francis tape. Or just feel like ranting about the general chaos that seems imminent. Or perhaps you'd like to rave about it. Please send your comments along with a brief statement to Anodyne.

Samples from Anodyne - "High explosive bombs."





  1. an additional remark at the end of a letter, after the signature and introduced by “P.S.”.

    “Leaving tomorrow.”


Tape Extracts:

Garrett Tiedemann: The kid with sign thing. High explosive bombs. So where did this whole thing start? I don't really remember. Suddenly though in the middle of my busiest and evilest school semester ever I found myself wanting to do this project. Never thought of a name for it beside the obvious kids with sign game.

I must apologize for the shrinkage and lack of color in the reproductions of all the replies. Also a warning I decided to print all addresses of those who responded and I encourage you to communicate with anyone if you are particularly angered, delighted, offended, intrigued, turned on, or otherwise stimulated by any specific entry.

I have been asked why too much.

Honestly I launched this whole project for the sake of doing it. It's really the only reason. At one point I realized that it was pretty interesting to see where everyone was at in their own heads, but from the beginning it was spontaneous. If anything, my insomnia coupled with the proximity of Kinko's to my house contributed the most to the creation of the entire thing. It's a little sad how many didn't understand the absence of a motive. Anyway, I hope the kids with sign game is as entertaining and confusing for you as it has been for me. If not, well, I'm sorry you're missing out. And of course thank you to all replied because see, it would have been impossible without you. 

Simon Roche: So this was another thing to do and I wanted it. No, I want to make some time for that and have a think about it and I didn't, so when it eventually came, Look I better just send this back, I'm just going to write something, no one is going to see it anyway. I just wrote that down and I kind of wrote it going. I've written Julie a couple of letters, and I've never met her, so we have a nice little rapport in letters that is kind of nearly a little, it's almost confessional, certainly for me anyway, and I just found it really nice that you could just write to somebody you haven't met but you feel like you know them in letters and it's a bit easier than saying it to them. So, I think it just poured out of me and I went yeah, yeah great. And Julie reads it and maybe she puts it on a web site, but like 10 people might see it and they're not going to read mine. So, you know, in a way it was nice to not worry about it that much but now it's out there I guess. 

Garrett: I like to imagine it redone as the pool table. 

Contents. Watch yourself. The invitation should be worded.

Unidentified Child: Wouldn't it be silly if we lived in a light bulb? It would be as hot as a desert. 

Angeline Gragásin: You know, I realize that what I had sent in was a statement. And I meant it earnestly, but and then seeing the images I realize that I could have taken a more playful approach. If in my head the to do item was draw a picture, I would have taken a completely different approach to composing an image than I would have to writing a statement.

Charles Bukowski (archive tape): Do I know you?

Tania Ketenjian: If you look at something, a contribution within the context of other contributions, it's inevitable that you're going to be like, hmm maybe I should have put in something else or. I mean how often do you say oh my god that was the perfect i did such a great job, that was the perfect contribution. 

Allyson McCabe: So when you're thinking about the difference between how you construct a persona on social media versus how you construct a zine persona, they're really different. In a number of respects. But, one of the aspects in which they're different is the idea that in a social media situation you're looking to sanitize your image, present a kind of constructed self that's always happy, successful, smiling, or has just posted something important, you know whatever that may be. Whereas in the zine there's much more of an emphasis on the idea that you're you're creating kind of aesthetic, a kind of sub-community or cultural community statement, you kind of recede a little bit behind that. And I think that's a space that a lot of people feel more comfortable in. I would say a lot of radio producers feel more comfortable in.

[Intro Break]

Garrett: Samples from Anodyn. Anything that's not a mystery is just guess work.

Julie: I think my entree into the radio world had a lot to do with my zine because I had, you know, it was all I had really. I didn't have a portfolio of any clips or radio stories that I'd ever produced because I had no media training. But when I applied for an internship, when I started applying for internships, and got an interview at WUNC, the News Director asked me, in a very kind of dramatic way he pulled my zine out from under the desk and was like how do we turn this into radio. And in that moment I was like, oh god I have no idea but I'm interested. So it was something that he identified as like well this was kind of becoming, radio was becoming a more creative playground for narrative storytelling. And he saw a connection there that I wasn't necessarily making at the time, I was just like well this something I made my own stick it in there so people think I have initiative. But, I think about that a lot because I think a lot of what I've been drawn to and the culture that we've created through Third Coast and now what Radiotopia is all about, and even like the spirit of PRX; everything I've been involved with has, makes sense that there's some DNA from the zine, that zine kind of, the drive to make that has driven me to do everything else I've done since then.

Miyuki Jokiranta: I didn't really know what I would write and I didn't really know what other people were writing. I hadn't really seen anything posted yet. And I loved this idea that if I didn't peak, then potentially I would be revealed amongst a whole bunch of ideas and thoughts and images at the same time. And that that revelation could potentially say something, suggest something, present something. 

Allyson: I was excited about it, you know. As soon as I saw the posting she asked people to send their physical addresses if they wanted to get the prompt and then they would get the zine. So that was step one. Being excited about that. And then step two was when it actually came and I saw what the prompt was, there's that moment of excitement, and again I think probably because I'm older, but there was this sort of moment where I was like oh what you know what can I come up with as opposed to just maybe, earlier in life I would just put in any little snarky statement and see if it would fly. I think also your name is on it. You know that's something that's really different.

Garrett: Before. I left there and somehow ended up here. There were no directions back then, there was no intention beyond investigation. We followed signs and arrows and indicators lazily which led us into different directions, ultimately. After. Solo then, but not solo. The original not from concentrate. Shake well then mitigate.

Julie: So then the counter's, you know, like you could just whack your counter a few times and it would go back to zero. You wouldn't have to pay anything. So, anyway there are all these tricks of the trade. And that, the process for me has always been a huge part of it.

I just remember this garish, very bright white lighting. Not that conducive to intimate, poetic, expressive. I mean I wouldn't write there. I guess that's where the assembly took place. 

Unknown Male (archive tape): Printing is essential to all education. All the other arts rely on it. Religious Movements depend on it. Business could not function without it. Nor could government. Because of the need for printed matter in practically all of man's activities, printing now ranks fourth among the nation's great industries. 

Julie: I don't even remember the writing of it all that well, I mean I would have,, I think some of the first episode, episodes there I go again. Some of the first issues were typed out on like a word processor. Before I even had a PC and I can remember. Yeah I remember I had this amazing word processor that I always kept calling a food processor, that was like a weird semantic glitch for me. And it had five fonts. I remember it was so cool to switch between these five font choices on the word processor and I did a lot of writing on that. I remember it being kind of trusty friend in those times. 

Garrett (on phone): OK. Did the ability to do that and that sort of fun-ness inform some of the design layout and everything because you incorporate a whole lot of different sort of textural things with the fonts and layouts and stuff written, or not really? 

Julie: Yeah, I remember I always wanted, I always incorporated a lot of handwriting alongside these kind of barely formatted chunks of text with borders and there were so much cut and paste, it was really collagey, montagey, chaotic layout often and that was a way to also include recurring theme throughout each issue. I do remember I would have a sort of a visual theme per issue and so being able to just cut and paste little bits of that theme and variations on that theme throughout the issue till it was kind of very full so every page has a lot of you know sort of major content and then a lot of decoration and some minor commentary along the visual lines and a lot of just random stuff that appealed to me for this reason or that

Garrett (on phone): Yeah, I mean, Anodyne feels very much like, in the sort of most beautiful way of it, someone figuring out the world. Like someone sort of connecting with other people and using that as a conduit to sort of seeing how the world can take shape for you. And actually manifesting instead of just sitting in your head. 

Julie: Yeah, it was definitely part angsty journal writing writ large for other people and you know just my own little observations piling up and accumulating. I mean I think about it now with the social media parallel like how many times a day I just something happens and I just go oh I found a web site that advertises charms for stethoscopes, I'm going to tell the world about that. That would have been an Anodyne thing back in the day. You know, so it's the same exact, the prompts are the same. They haven't changed, the kinds of prompts that seem important enough to me to point out to other people. That was a way to figure out how to convey some of that and translate some of my own observations about what was going on around me to other people. 

Building a community too, so it was satisfying in all these ways. And it was expression, so very self-indulgent in a lot of ways. There was just something about building a system and developing that system and figuring out the best way to be efficient, but not to the extent that you would cannibalize your creative efforts by being efficient. You know that kind of happy medium ground where you're doing it best, but in the way you want to do it. I think that's a huge part of it is the actual process.

In fact, in some of the little notes I'm writing to people with this one I'm saying I've noted that I'm just much happier when there's all this paper handling. And organizing and dropping off a stack of 10 envelopes at the mailbox. Now I have the mailbox on my way into work, I get off my bike, put it in, I have a system, it's like a ritual, every couple of times a morning round ride to the mailbox and put them in and I'm sounding a little like a crazy person I realize, but there's something. It's very soothing you know. It's order, it's control, I mean you could probably, any psychologist would be like right you have control, you're creating, you're making your own rules, you're sticking to them. There's something very logical and soothing, anodynic, about it. 

Instead of just writing what I thought about things and sending it out to people I got involved with involving other people and the element of surprise and you know sort of being curious about what other people were thinking about.

Garrett (on phone): Yeah, I know when I just responded, like yeah. I mean there's something, I think there's always something enticing about being a part of something no matter what it is, like just that community building. Oh, this is something untethered to a lot of the normalcies of modern life. I wonder if that was for a lot of other people, like oh hey. Sure. I don't know what this is but I'll do it. 

Julie: Yeah. And I feel like I just hit upon this magical image that is so non-threatening and so open and kind of silly like it's just like a very, I find it a very charming image that somehow is the perfect space for people like oh I could do that even if they've never sent a piece of mail in their life, or in the last decade, you know they still hopefully will not think too hard as we were talking about and just kind of come up with something. So yeah it remains to be seen and the hope is not never to invite like the most profound, most important thing, from anyone, but just really like what's on your mind? 

You know, help these kids spread a worthwhile message, whatever that means to you. 

Garrett (on phone): Well that's interesting because we're sort of caught up in this idea of like everything's important but you're always looking for the thing that's going to be really important. Or to say something that's really important. But, the image sort of elicits this sort of editorial. But, then at the same point you are saying that the sort of mundane is important. 

Julie: Totally.

I was curious to know like how. Because you really hadn't. You had no idea what the old zine was and you saw an image that like invited people to get involved. So what, how did you respond to getting the sign? Was that anything like what you were expecting. I mean you had seen the image already, but did you expect the project to be about the image. And like what was your thought process. 

Garrett (on phone): It was so simple, yet so complex in its delivery. So like even putting, I thought there was a message even in putting the pink over the return label like. So it was this sort of, like those are the things that when I think about creation and when I think about any one whose work I follow who I find value in, it's the sort of simple cohesion of an idea that because it seems so simple you immediately infer that there is way more to it which ultimately becomes you inferring that.

Julie: Yeah. Absolutely.

Garrett (on phone): So for me it was just, it was so simply packaged that there became all this sort of weight to everything, and then it actually elicited a sentence that to me sort of coalesced with everything I was going through, like especially this summer, and so then I just made sure to write it down and I was like OK I'll just think about this tomorrow to see if it's the right thing... 

Julie: ...if it still rings, right. 

Garrett (on phone): Yeah.

Julie: Well I have to say with the covering up of the address, I had hoped to get blank stickers and I just walked up to the drugstore with my son and they didn't have, you know you get like a label of stickers you would print on to. And I thought I would just cover things up. And so I just was like, well Phineas, should we get the blue or the pink sparkly tape. And he picked the pink so we went the pink. So it was really just. And then I realized that like are people going to look under or are they going to read into this and I loved that just being completely up to, you know, open again open for interpretation. And then the field notes stamp is just like something I've always loved and I had this two second moment where I was like oh should I call the whole thing field notes because that is really what it is, you know, it's like observations out in the world, but then there's those other little books that people refer to as field notes a lot so I thought that would get confusing. And, again like, it was just was like a perfect little "P.S". 

Garrett: So, if you'd like to play the kids with sign game. Or already have and would like to play again. Or know someone who you think might like to play. Or need some advice. Or want a Connie Francis tape. Or just feel like ranting about the general chaos that seems imminent. Or perhaps you'd like to rave about it. Please send your comments along with a brief statement to Anodyne.

Samples from Anodyne - "Was like a soundtrack for me..."



  1. 1.a feeling. archaic


"he looked through her belongings"

  1.  on, want; More

Tape Extracts:

Julie Shapiro: Anodyne was like a soundtrack for me as well. I was always listening to music that was a lot about something to do while I listened to music.  

Simon Roche: I'll read it, it says: we don't have to get over everything traumatic we can live with ghosts. 

Allyson McCabe: I do think that as somebody who is old enough to have been around sort of in the 90s wave of zines, and even before that, you know most people my age you know they have kids now. And so that's something that kind of comes up is the idea of I think I had said something like, 'I'm telling mom' why does it still work despite generations of evidence to the contrary and just sort of struck me as a sort of truism that would make sense as a zine statement, but also a statement for people who have kids and know exactly what I'm talking about. 

Julie: I think it's funny when you're watching bad TV and something profound comes out of a character's mouth that speaks directly to your life situation and you're like no, this can't be happening that the answer is coming from this terrible TV show, NO.

Garrett Tiedemann: I urge you to take advantage of the following offer. If you send me a blank cassette, and some money for shipping and handling, I'll gladly tape for you Connie Francis Sings Jewish Favorites. 

Julie: I mean you have to couple this with being in college, being up at all hours, having friends working at Kinko's, that was a huge part of the equation for all zine makers back in the day who would just make your copies for free. I had my friend John who had the overnight shift. You know, my theory was like every Kinko's in America had an overnight shifter wearing Converse high tops. And you would find the person wearing Converse high tops, you would make friends with them, and they would help you make your zine for free. So I could do color copies.

Kinko's had this temporary thing you could do everything in a mono color so you could have green, just like instead of black and white it would be green and white or red and white or blue and white. 

Miyuki Jokiranta: And she then promised I think, I think she'd already had the idea that she'd started up again. So I did know that she'd done this in the past, but I think when I first saw the Anodyne, the first image of it online, it didn't calibrate with the picture that I had had in my mind. So, I was pretty curious to see in the flesh. 

[Intro Break]

Garrett: Samples from Anodyne. Smile, obey rules, good manners pay.

When a massive star dies leaves behind the small, dense, remnant core. 

Allyson: Back in the day, when I would read people's physical zines, papers zines; you know you read it a few times, you get a sense of what the aesthetic is, you know maybe sometimes if it's political what the politics are, musical taste, etc. and you're able to figure out OK you know do I make sense in the context of what I know about this publication. In this case, I wasn't familiar with the paper iteration that existed before so I had only the idea of the prompt. 

Tania Ketenjian: It's very empowering I think, in many ways, it's like you don't have to go with the establishment or the established ways of getting something published, you can just do it this way. 

Julie: It was really open, total experimentation. I did one, one essay on glow in the dark, things that glow in the dark. And then I had like glow in the dark, I found like glow in the dark stick...make your own stickers. So, like put some of those into all of them. I was very into process I was very into like inserting something into every one. And I loved the folding, I loved the packaging, and the kind of making the stack of things to address, stamps to put on, you know kind of compulsively so that way. 

Miyuki: I decided to participate, one because she invited me and that's a very generous gesture. And you can't really turn that down, but two because blank space to me is absolutely terrifying. I just find it just totally paralyzing. And have. For years and will for years to come. And so, of course I had to say yes because there's no other way to deal with paralyzing blank space than staring at it.

Tania: Yeah, I mean I grew up in San Francisco and I I went to a college called Bard and I think that although...and I actually even, I mean, I kind of made a zine when I was in high school. It was called, what was it called, Perusa. which means inquiry I think in like Sanskrit or something. But, then also it was a play on words with perusal like you could just peruse it. So, yeah I was familiar with zines and I actually love sort of the punk nature of zines and the political nature of zines and all that they represent and the countercultureness of it. It's kind of like Pirate Radio

Garrett: White space, two lines, each like a train track. Travel through space. The opposite of what is familiar. Negative descending, the positive, an arrow on which familiarity travels without limits. Familiarity and human likeness.

Julie: For a sort of literary styles. I mean I was really highly influenced by just the general mail art culture for sure. And that was like the Wild West of design and creativity and innovation. And I had a real love for the Fluxus movement. I know like a lot of that, those two kind of artful historical entities really were on my mind a lot during these years and they were communities that I tapped into, other fans of those things and the Fluxus and the mail art were very heavily connected as well so that was kind of a logical bridge.

Interviewer (archive tape): Well George, let's skip back a little bit. How did Fluxus get its start? 

George Maciunas (archive tape):  First plan was to publish a magazine Fluxus. And that's how the name came about. And we just, like the dictionary meaning, kind of several meanings, which anybody can look up. It was influenced directly by the school of John Cage that he had in the New School where people like George Brecht, Dick Higgins, Jackson Mac Low were taking in 1958 to 59 I think. They were taking a class and all those people later were associated with, well the magazine never came out in time, it  came like five or four years after. We started to plan it and we just found it was too costly to do. The concepts was easy to do. 

Like Ben Vautier, who has a lot of theater shock pieces as he calls. There would be, for instance, a play going on and on announced all people would come for that play, but the door is locked. Meanwhile the play starts and goes on. And they just, you know, they hear all the noises, but they cannot get in. 

There's another audience piece like that, similar, where at the end of the concept we would tell that well the last piece has to be performed in a secret place and we have to take one row at a time to that place.So the usher will take the first row of people, they would follow him and he will just take them down the back exit into the street. Meanwhile the rest, you know, they all sort of drinking in anticipation, what's that next piece? And they'll never know except when they actually go through it. 

Julie: There were a few others, zinesters, zine makers at the time that I definitely was close with and some of the formats, you know, shared certain aesthetic qualities. The cut up, the black and white Kinkos, you know, like sort of Kinko's style. But, of course the content was pretty different one to the next.

Charles Bukowski (archive tape): Style. Style is the answer to everything. A fresh way to approach a dull or dangerous thing. To do a dull thing with style is preferable to doing a dangerous thing without it.

Garrett: My performance of childhood; a kind of dark traffic. Men in uniform were posted all along its length. Some had cameras, some had guns. To slip down it's invisible curtains like sheets.

Garrett (on phone): Well, that seems to be something you've really carried with it through, up til now is, like, the important conversation of a community of making stuff. And so the participation in making things is in part to facilitate people coming together.

Garrett: Curtains like sheets tied together and hung out hotel window. Toward itself.

Garrett (on phone): You were saying that the way of mapping this out was sort of a collage effect. So, would that be mostly gluing things down or taping them, I know eventually they reach the copy machine.

Julie: Glue sticks, it was always glue sticks. 

The, with the format of Anodyne being the, you know, every other page or every few pages for signs, that to me provides kind of the backbone of each issue. And then  a kind of mess of montage and collage could spiral out from that center through line. And so there was some order, but also with a sense of almost improvisation and experimentation around that very direct and consistent part of putting the signs in each issue.

Garrett: Tattoos and teeth. Several cases presented on morning hospital rounds led to the observation that there might be a relationship between the number of teeth and the number of tattoos a person possesses. We tallied data and plotted the number of natural teeth both intact and broken against the number of tattoos both professional and amateur. Examined  all patients who were seen by the anesthesiologist service who had at least one tattoo. We set no lower limit for the number teeth. Results? The quantities of teeth and tattoos are inversely related, if a patient has tattoos he or she is likely to be missing teeth. For adults more tattoos equal fewer teeth. The teeth tattoo relationship is linear. See figure. We are continuing to collect and refine our data.

Whitney Henry-Lester: I think probably right around that time. So, I mean, I have this. I was trying to think, OK what what is something important enough to me that I would put it down on paper and encourage other people to take a moment, even if it's just a second to look at it and it was just, you know. I can think too hard about that. And so, I didn't want to think too hard about that. The first thing that came to mind was something that I'd been doing and had been working on, it being really important to me, was just taking Sundays away from the internet and I'd been like, it's a lot easier to do if you name it. So I named it, no internet Sundays, it was this thing that I was doing.

Allyson: Submitting anything to anybody else is really different stakes than doing your own thing. I think I was thinking a lot more about you know not should I submit, but could I submit something that would be good enough. You know you sort of have an idea for your own show or your own project, what that level is. But, when I submitted to Julie's zine I really didn't know what any of the other entries were. 

Angeline Gragásin: Actually, you know, I think I didn't know what other people had written. I think I didn't have the URL for the blog, if I remember correctly, it was not written on the form. Because I remember being surprised after seeing mine go up, what other people had written. I remember being surprised that people had thought to even draw pictures and I remember thinking, ah man I should have done that. But, I think at the time I wanted to be as, like, what was the most concise, succinct statement that I could make and stand behind. It was the thing is going to be published you know. And that, that was it. 

Tania: You know if I had maybe given it deeper thought in the sense of I don't know how can I. A lot, a lot of people know Hug O' War, you know, a lot of people are familiar with that poem and Shel Silverstein and I have a five year old and we had just gotten those poetry books so they were kind of in the ether around my house. But, I mean, I think that in my sort of maybe playful, quick thinking way I was like oh this will be a great way to sort of say all right well we're in this political moment that's sort of devastating. Why don't we soften it up a bit and put something playful and remind people that you know above all else love and and care and affection and respect for others is what matters. And I think there are lots of ways to say that you know. I mean there are lots of, you could say it through a kid's poem like I chose to do or you could say it through you know some political writing or you could you know something by Naomi Klein or maybe something by Noam Chomsky or something that you know something that really questions. And if I had really wanted to get into that and sort of think through the concept of what's a zine and what does this really mean and how can you sort of uncover something through that medium or maybe share something in a way that you wouldn't be able to share otherwise, I probably would have shared something different. But, you know, everyone loves Hug O' War. And it's sweet. 

Whitney: Or trying to do. It's a practice, it's an ongoing thing. But, that seems like worthy to put down and I'd also actually been, you know I do a lot of sort of like weird paper stuff, collage, or this like printmaking but very, very, very amateur level. 

So I have this desk that's like set up for writing letters and I just went to the desk and said OK what do I have around here I've got this typewriter, I've got this stamp I actually had because I had carved this heart stamped for my wedding invitations. So it was just right like right there at the moment and I just played around with what I had on my writing desk. And this is what came out. 

Julie: I feel like in choosing to bring the zine back, that's exactly what happened. I wasn't. It wasn't like a conscious decision. Oh it's been 22 years I'm going to do this again. It was going through stuff and finding the signs, finding a folder of the blank signs, that somehow was with me and always thinking. A couple times over the years I felt like oh maybe it's time to do this again and revisit, but I really had the strong sense that I had the space in my life for it. And I was really excited to kind of turn away from all digital all the time. And think about you know extending, inviting people to like go so far as to find a stamp and an envelope to send this back to me you know and some people wont. That's the thing, that's a barrier for a lot. But, now it's so novel. People are like, you're gonna send me something in the mail?

And hand writing, you know, that I'm like like addressing. I mean, I did print out a letter because I didn't want to write that 80 times, but you know a little bit of a note to everyone who participates, and actually writing out the actresses and most people hand write them back because it's a little hard to finagle you know, you could type onto it, some people type with a typewriter, but yeah it's like that just humanness about sending something to someone and getting it back.

And in Portland there were some local kind of I would say zine superstars that I knew and kind of ran into a bunch; sometimes at Kinkos making our zines. So yeah, I would say there was a very strong kind of shared community, creative energy between everyone making them and a real generosity too. You would definitely trade yours with someone else's. And I think I sold them for like a buck or two to cover postage. Never. I mean it was never ever a profit making venture and is not this time around either. I'm just paying for stamps and you know beg borrowing and stealing. I took a stack of envelopes from my father's neurology practice. He retired and had this stack of envelopes and I was like I'll take these for my zine, perfect. You know. So that's why there's a pink tape over the envelope that you got because. Yeah. Because that was what you would do, you just, you know, used as few resources as possible. You have to pay for postage. 

Simon: It's kind of like the bullet that lodged in your gut and, you know, your skin grows around it and you just live with it and you know eventually it just becomes part of ya. So, I guess that's what a little, if it doesn't kill you. It might make you stronger, but it mightn't kill you again. You know, it's just, it's done all the damage it's going to do and now it's just a part of you. 

Garrett (on phone): Did you have an overarching theme for each one that distinguished the musings on daily life or was it really governed just like, it was, the overarching was Anodyne and it was just built up with what you had at the time. 

Julie: Yeah, more the latter because I would constantly be collecting you know books to cut things out of and ideas for interviews. I did some some some print interviews. A lot were just kind of like stream of conscious writings, quasi poetry ranting. You know. It's funny because certain phrases and clusters of words still ring true for me, but they're always surrounded by a lot of guff. But yeah, it was a little bit of a mind dump, and a heart dump, and a brain dump each time. 

Garrett: So, if you'd like to play the kids with sign game. Or already have and would like to play again. Or know someone who you think might like to play. Or need some advice. Or want a Connie Francis tape. Or just feel like ranting about the general chaos that seems imminent. Or perhaps you'd like to rave about it. Please send your comments along with a brief statement to Anodyne.

Samples from Anodyne - "The thing with beginnings..."





  1. 1.

    the point or place where something begins, arises, or is derived.

Text Extracts:

Garrett Tiedemann: The thing with beginnings is that once you've started, it sometimes becomes clear that you're already in the middle. That you started a million and a half times already and you're actually drawing conclusions that you must be in the proximity of some other ending. 

Garrett (on phone): Were there any sort of huge influences on how you approached the method? Either within zine [mispronounced] writers or outside in literature, audio, that sort of thing. 

Julie Shapiro: I have to say I find it so interesting that you call them zines and not zines [like magazine]. Is this like a...maybe it's a divide of like who did it when?

Garrett: Well, so, I did not learn of these things until sort of after the fact. So things like the pronunciations are not part of my cultural upbringing. 

Julie: It doesn't look like zine, it looks like zine. Sure. 

Garrett:  So, this is partly also like, in a selfish way, this is me learning through you a particular version of this development in the late 90s. Things like that. 

Julie: Yeah. Well think of, I mean it was zine because they were like kind of like magazines. I mean that's how I always thought of it. 

Allyson McCabe: You know there's a way in which your personal experience has a broader public point. You know that's why people, that's why there can be sites where people digitize these mix tapes and share them and even if I don't know either party, the party who made it or the party who it was made for, I can still relate to the emotions. And I feel that that carries over to the idea of a zine. You know a zine could have one, it could have an audience of one. It could have an audience of many more than one. But, the sweet spot I think is the idea where it feels a little bit exclusive, a little bit underground, a little bit like not everybody knows about this thing and that's what makes it kind of fun. 

Julie: I mean I always have done this, well to state the obvious not by myself because it's completely about other people, but I've never collaborated with someone in making it, beyond the signs you know, so it's funny because I was thinking, you know I had decided not to go into audio with it at all like firmly, I'm not interested in that for this. I wanted something outside of that part of my life through this. But that ,I was actually really intrigued by the idea of someone else doing it. So, it was really interesting when you reached out with this idea of could you, you know, could you sonifi some of these ideas and some of the signs that come back beyond just reading them and you know what's the sonic interpretation of the message people are sending. Messages people are sending. 

[Intro Break]

Garrett: Samples from Anodyne. Don't let the fascists tell you what to do.

Julie: Anodyne had a lot. It had like, was like...

Allyson: There's this great quote from Virginia Woolf and she says partially in writing a letter to someone you're trying to give back a reflection of them. I mean that's kind of a paraphrase, but... In writing a letter you want to give a reflection back to that person of who they are. I mean, I think that's an amazing thing.

Julie: The centerfold was always like a woman hero. One was like Harriet the Spy in the cover of that book. One was Connie Francis because I kept finding Connie Francis records at the thrift store. One was like this amazing postcard. It was like a chainsaw advertisement and had this like 50s woman sitting on a like bright red chainsaw with like a beautiful display of colorful chainsaws behind her, sort of menacing, but except it was actually just an advertisement. Strong, strong woman wielding wielding a chainsaw. But, yeah, I think I'm just trying to remember like as the riot grrrl stuff came and my sense of feminism was growing as well. You know how that was expressed through a more cultural lens and a sort of fun and sometimes ironic lens as well.

People are drawn to a community vibe and then feel more welcome and then become part and then pull others in. 

Garrett: When nothing is done, nothing is left undone. Last night I dreamed I was in hell and now I'm having trouble making a list of things to blow up. I didn't realize I was in hell until I got out of bed, Julie the sixties glasses wanted to be hear about it. Instead I gave her another piece of metal I found inside a dumpster in an alley.

Orson Welles (archive tape): It's true. It's a good story though.

Miyuki Jokiranta: Ah, how did you first become aware of Julie's zine?

Tania Ketenjian: I didn't know that she had done the zine in the past and so...You know it doesn't surprise me that she has. But, yeah, I didn't know and I thought Gosh how does she find the time to do it. 

Allyson: Really only vaguely. I think it was described in a social media post as a redux of the zine. You know, so I kind of worked my way back and then I found out more about what she was doing before and making those connections. 

Simon Roche: She sent me a letter, I guess some time a year ago maybe, and in it was one of these little cards with the little kids on it, holding up their blank card, and I was like OK and she just said will you fill this in I've got a collection of them that I keep online.

Whitney Henry-Lester: Probably. I think she had a pin pinned tweet on Twitter that said something, I'm resurrecting my zine and I didn't know about the original zine, but it sounded like something that Julie would do.

Angeline Gragásin: I encountered her zine at an event at Kickstarter last October. I saw the zine before I knew who Julie was. She had already distributed several copies. They were kind of strewn about the space like amongst the snacks.

Julie: Is actually the origin story, so I came upon this image of these two kids holding up the sign in like a 1950s health book and so I whited out what was in their sign, it was like tips for good health, and I just, it was blank, and I thought like well here's a blank canvas to just invite people to you know speak up about what they're thinking about. So, it was very like of the time, of the DIY, of the like give people a voice you know kind of, I think of it a little bit like pre-status updates. You know it was kind of the analogue version of just speaking your mind and sharing it with the public. 

Allyson: You want to make it as organic as possible. It's not like you're taking your brand new pair of jeans and deciding to you know drive over it 100 times in your driveways so they look distressed. You actually want it to be distressed. I think that there is a kind of sincerity even in that construction when you're putting these things together.

Julie: So, I was actually, I was in college in Colorado in Boulder and I actually started getting into mail art, like postal mail art, M-A-I-L, and this was right also around the time I was working in a record store and I was really getting into the kind of riot grrrl music movement. 

[brief riot grrrl interlude] 

Julie: Just a lot of DIY energy around. And I started morphing my kind of mail art, which was basically just make stuff and send it out to people who would make stuff and send it back.

Garrett: Join us, we're donating our bodies to automobile crash tests.

Stop the slogan. X-ray-o-matic. 

Allyson: You know that feel real. You know that the flaws are what make them human. I think there's something about listening to some podcasts you know and some looking at some zines; any kind of homemade media that people realize that there is a person behind this and their trace is part of what's happening and that's kind of what makes it appealing. I don't have to necessarily look at zine and go oh you know who's is this or be able to tell you know that looks like a so and so. But, what I can get out of is the idea that some human person or group of people made this and they took the time to put this all together and it feels to me a lot more satisfying than a glossy magazine that maybe you know has recycled the same stories over and over again or is just chasing what's happening right now. 

Julie: There was a really thriving underground of mail art; international actually. So, there were probably five or six dozen people who I would occasionally trade mail art with, but then because it was happening at a time where a lot of young girls were kind of speaking up and supporting each other. That became something I wanted to do more of and have more of an editorial kind of narrative input on I think although I'm sure I wasn't thinking of it in those terms so I'm putting that back on it now. I also was really into like a lot of kitsch and I was a thrifter and I collected things and that kind of old school clip art.

Garrett: Anodyne 1. Failure to read may result in injuries or death. 

Anodyne came to English via Latin from Greek and it has been used as both an adjective and a noun since the 16th century. It has sometimes been used of things that dull or lull the senses and render painful experiences less so. Now, in addition to describing things that dull pain, Anodyne can also refer to that which doesn't cause discomfort in the first place. 

Julie: So, that's how it started, and I called it Anodyne because I loved what that meant. It wasn't a word that was on a record album cover yet or... It also became the name of a publication in the northwest but, I think Wilco put out a record called Anodyne. But, before that I decided to call the zine Anodyne and then I had copped this little warning from a instruction manual. So the cover was just like the sign with the kids and it would say Anodyne. And then the bottom would say failure to read may result in injury or death. 

So, that was like the basic template for it. And then, so there was some similarity from issue to issue. And then, yeah inside was kind of anybody's guess. 

Miyuki: I think I first became aware of Julie's zine when we were doing this fantastic project in New Zealand. We were road tripping across New Zealand and looking for tiny libraries. Libraries that were the size of your bathroom or your closet or potentially your living room. And we were rolling over the hills, this kind of incredible New Zealand landscape, and Julie was kind of just telling me about her past and she told me about a zine that she used to run, she used to distribute, when she worked in a record shop when she was living that indie life. And that was the first I heard of it. 

Julie: I mean, one problem with doing a zine in that time in my life was I moved around so much so I was constantly getting contributions mailed forwarded to me like sometimes two addresses behind etc or having friends pick up mail and you know a lot of a lot of my memory of putting that thing together actually happened in the fluorescent lit Kinko's in the middle of the night. I think that's where I actually did a lot of the work. So, the mail would come to my house or come to a P.O. Box but I would actually take it all into Kinko's because, I think I said earlier, I had friends working there or I would make friends with people there and then just set up camp and spread out you know commandeer the counters and just go to town for several hours.

Garrett: How you act in public is important because people will form an opinion as to the kind of person you are by observing your manners.

Julie: What was I saying? So, yeah, I think it was this blend of already being in the habit of going to the post office a lot, making things, being delighted by things coming back. And then the zine, zines were just coming up and so I felt like I was plugged into that scene already and it was a very logical, natural thing to do.

Garrett: Sharing. A folktale by Jeff Grimes.

A young couple are holding hands on a walk which follows a dry creek bed. Under a large cottonwood tree they find the dead bodies of a man and woman. The bodies lie lazily next to a clump of tree roots. There are knife cuts on their clothes and skin. Leaves stick to the dead woman's throat. After a long day of talking with police, reporters, friends, and family the young couple go to the man's apartment. He convinces the woman he had been holding hands with to perform oral sex on him. He thinks these words perform oral sex on me. Although he doesn't say them and uses his hands and body movements to do the persuading. The woman's name is Lilia. She shares a distaste for eating with her mother. As a result, their bodies look very much alike. For instance, there is no difference between the size of a mother's lower arm and upper one. The same is true for her daughter. Now Lilia has a man's penis in her mouth. She thinks she hears a teakettle whistling in the distance. The man's name is Jerry. Without opening his eyes he looks outside the room. In the dark there are two children, a boy and a girl. They are holding a sign and smiling.

Unknown Male (archive tape): This abstraction, called Caprolan Number One is not a painting and it's not on campus. It's printed on Caprolan nylon and can be worn. 

Julie: Yeah, so giving a platform to other people. And I was really interested in the contrast, like how people would approach this idea of here's a very small like parameters right like it's just a couple inches by a couple inches and what can you do in that space. So, I would leave them for people to find and mail back to me and then they would get a copy of the zine. I would give them to other zine makers and we would trade zines. I would give them to like musicians coming through town at the record store. So, for me it was kind of a way to just connect with interesting people and a place for me to pour out some of my own angsty thoughts at that time. Originally the zine had a lot more writing, and a lot more overwriting. Oh my gosh I've been reading through some old issues and the editor, the now me you know a couple of decades working in editing other people's writing is so kind of charmed and horrified by that stuff. But, you know, I had feelings, I had a lot of feelings back then I guess. And there is you know an element of humor and there were reviews, there were some record reviews. I did things like interview toll booth operators about what they loved about their jobs and gas station attendants and in Portland where I was then moved and lived most of the gas stations were run by attendants so. I had this like, I thought it was brilliant. I'd ask every gas station attendant, What's your favorite kind of sandwich? 

And then a friend made like a comic of it. I mean you know it was like, pretty random, quirky, nonessential, all wrapped up and that would all surround the zines that people would send me back. 

Simon: And I'd say I probably left it for like six months or whatever. I left it for a long time and then she kind of reminded me somehow. Usually analogue like, we don't have, I don't have that many mails or texts or anything, but she reminded me going could just get me the thing I really need to post it

So I was like OK. So I kind of wrote something that was on my mind right then and I sent it off and I I knew nothing more about it. I don't know, somehow I do remember her telling me it was online and I must of looked at it online, but it's all a blur.  So, I'm not quite sure.

So, I don't really know much about Julie's Tumblr at all, except for the fact that you're now ringing me about it. 

Garrett: So, if you'd like to play the kids with sign game. Or already have and would like to play again. Or know someone who you think might like to play. Or need some advice. Or want a Connie Francis tape. Or just feel like ranting about the general chaos that seems imminent. Or perhaps you'd like to rave about it. Please send your comments along with a brief statement to Anodyne.

Samples from Anodyne - "Building a community..."


"Blank slate" redirects here.

For other uses, (disambiguation).

Part of a series

Tabula rasa (/ˈtæbjələ ˈrɑːsə, -zə, ˈreɪ-/

In Locke's philosophy, tabula rasa was the theory that at birth the (human) mind is a "blank slate" without rules for processing data, and that data is added and rules for processing are formed solely by one's sensory experiences. 

Tape Extracts:

Julie Shapiro: It's funny how it was like a part of my life then, but really was like a foundation for everything that's come since. Building of a community of readers, by involving people as participants, was part of the plan a little bit. 

Angeline Gragásin: I'm happy to support Julie and her work in any way I can. 

Tania Ketenjian: Whatever Julie is involved with, immediately my ears perk up.

Allyson McCabe: I know that she has a sort of zine name, which was Julie Atomic, and I was always sort of curious where it came from.

Whitney Henry-Lester: Pretty much anything  that Julie does I am happy to participate in.

Simon Roche: Someone said, I know this girl you should send her one of those. And, I did and then she was like Oh, my god, I love the printed word.

Garrett Tiedemann: Samples from Anodyne.


Samples from Anodyne - "I didn't really know..."

Anodyne Redux.jpg




past tense: revealed; past participle: revealed

  1. make (previously unknown

    • cause or allow (something)  

seen. literaryuncloak


Tape Extracts:

Miyuki Jokiranta: I didn't really know what I would write and I didn't really know what other people were writing. I hadn't really seen anything posted yet. And I loved this idea that if I didn't peak, then potentially I would be revealed amongst a whole bunch of ideas and thoughts and images at the same time. And that that revelation could potentially say something, suggest something, present something. 

The Yokai Trilogy - Let's Talk About Bees


This episode is Funayūrei 3. Longest of the series at almost ten minutes. The film had a few stages of completion as it worked to become an extensive excavation of the life of bees and coordinates the narrative carried from the second through the third.

The Yokai Trilogy - Last Nine Seconds/In America


This episode covers Funayūrei 2. Continuing the painterly approaches to image combination, this film also devolves into some of the most abstraction of the entire series with an ending that reframes the whole. 

The Yokai Trilogy - Harry Partch and Tom Waits Walk Into a Bar

www.2013.ruhrtriennale (2).jpg

This episode of The White Whale returns looks at how one develops an openness with creativity and thinking outside the box of art. Where do we get our ideas? How do we accept our voice and interpretation if the surrounding thoughts counter it as correct? Why does it matter that you find your own road?