Tag Archives: illustrated zines

sick life happens

The plan was to blog like a demon during the initiative known as ‘dry July’ (where people abstain from drinking alcohol to raise money, as well as for personal health reasons), and I was doing it to keep my main squeeze company.

I thought it’d be great and I’d reap health benefits immediately…but after having bronchitis for all of June, most of July was getting first one ear infected, only to have it move to the other.

It’s now August, and after a week and a half of physical wellness, I now have another ear infection in the ear where it all started. You can imagine I’m pretty pissed off, and joked to my psychiatrist that at least I was miserable about being physically ill rather than due to the usual psychological ailments!

I’ve been saving a special zine specifically to match up with tea, and now that I’m home sick and trying to keep warm and drink lots of hot drinks, it seems like a good time to read and review the following.

zine: Life Happening by dangerlam (Kim Lam, 2019)

drink: organic golden latte blend by Zee Tea 

(a super-cool Patreon-only photo appears here of my three-colour cat teapot next to the zine mentioned above)

So…my turmeric latte mix technically has gone past its best before date, which is one reason I’m trying to finish up the packet. I’m also hoping the turmeric will help with some excruciating, stabbing pain I occasionally experience in my left index finger thanks to my fluting past. Recently, the fingertip has started to go numb and the part where the pain stabs happen have become…less stabby and more lingering.

Given that turmeric has anti-inflammatory properties, I’ve been remembering to try and drink more of it. The ingredients are pretty yummy. The packet says it’s:

organic turmeric powder blended with ginger, cinnamon, liquorice and coconut

and also recommends that you make it with coconut milk, mmm! I’ve just been using a mix of half a cup of hot water, the rest full cream milk. 

Being a liquorice fiend (as gorging on it after one summer trip to Portsmouth can attest…I threw up a river of liquorice after sitting bolt upright in bed just as me and my brother were retiring for the day after being told not to eat it all or eat it too quickly!), I’m pretty partial to this particular mix, it’s slightly sweet and subtly spicy, though I flavour it with honey (again: using more of for its antibacterial properties) anyway.

The comic zine is dreamy. I’m a fan of Kim’s work, ever since she left me speechless after drawing my 2018 Emerging Writers Festival panel – I really love her linework, and enjoyed her sparse usage of colour in ‘Life Happening’. 

Scroll through my favourite panels in the comic in the IG embed above, for pretty obvious, biased reasons (hint: involves cats, and tea!). One of them, minus me having a dishwasher and kitty litter is SPOT ON.

You can view this in IG as embedded above but I’m posting it because I totally let my hipster turmeric latte get cold whilst writing this blog post, classic me shiz.

The creator invites us to contemplate what makes up ‘living’ or ‘existing’ and how fulfilling or meaningful these rituals and patterns to us. I loved it because it’s a beautiful, artful, melancholy way of expressing these preoccupations; I don’t often feel my mind dwells on these topics in a healthy manner (regular readers would by now know why that is).

It does make me fall in love with the simple little rituals that do define our life. Waking up, being able to get out of bed and make myself tea and breakfast isn’t something I take for granted, and recently it’s been easier, more natural. It sounds like such a mundane thing, but I enjoy that I can do it, that at the moment it doesn’t feel like such a trial. 

Spending time with my cat (who is purring and huddled on half of my lap as I write this post) is another one of those everyday things that grounds me, makes me feel like living isn’t too bad, or that it’s okay to take time to rest. We’re both anxious sorts, and by being physically close to each other, we kind of cancel out our mutual anxiety! For real: adopt, don’t shop.

If I had to sum up why you should get a copy of Life Happening, it’d be because it’s a limited edition print run (mine is 21/100!), it’s a gorgeously plaintive reflection that considers what’s meaningful to us as individuals in a world that tries to get us all to do the same, sometimes harmful things (work, earn money, spend that money, not consider the consequences of that spending), the illustrations are lovely, and you’d be supporting a Melbourne-based creative.

Again, and as always, I pay for the zines and beverages I review, which is why I especially love and appreciate my fantastic Patreon supporters!

My tea collection did grow substantially during Dry July so I’ll try to match up more tea to zines, and throw in an occasional tinnie to clear my fridge shelf of shame!

Will do my best to post sooner rather than later. Hope the Melb winter is not battering you as hard as it has me! Stay warm and dry!

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distinctly not sunshine & lollipops atm

zine: Chips III: A Tale of Lust (creator not specified) $3 AUD from Sticky Institute

drink: Sunshine & Rainbows Tahitian Lime (3.8%, 375mL can) by Boatrocker Brewing Co. (Braeside, VIC)

music: The Prepared Piano by Hauschka (it’ll become obvious why I chose this…)

This might be the first time I’ve posted since the new year, which is BAD. I’ve deliberately set myself the goal of only doing these once a fortnight, but I got a lot of work over the 2018-9 festive season, and moved house, and seem to constantly be plagued by panic attacks…it’s been happening for the last month or so. When driving, when practising piano, when waking up, when showering. There doesn’t seem to be much behind why. I got desperate enough that not only have I been on my psych’s waiting list for a month (earliest appointment was early March), I actually called my parents to ask for their advice (which didn’t really help, sigh).

But focus on today, the now. It was the first time in a while where I cooked (had a panic attack while doing it), read heaps (forced my brain to comprehend words), tried to work on a bunch of overdue reviews (that hasn’t been happening thanks to the awful stuff in the media at the moment in which we learn that Catholicism is indeed evil, no surprise there). And yes, I’ve cheated for this and am reviewing a super-short zine.

Chips III: A Tale of Lust is most definitely not safe for work, but it is hilarious (coincidentally, at work this week, I set a writing exercise where we wrote about birds arguing over a chip in the park! It sounds like something they’d do!). Two bird-men sit on a couch and eat chips and lust after pictures of women or something (token ‘straight people are weird’ comment: here). I think if I were a bird, I’d be most likely lusting after chips? They’re pretty bloody delicious.

If you’re reading this on Patreon, then you should be viewing a photo of my beer notes in a Field Notes notebook, with a handmade beer reviewing stamp (decorated with a Pilot Frixion beer stein one!) right about now.

So…the beer, it is like drinking fizzy, wonderfully flavoured water. I picked this one to drink tonight purely on its cheer-up can graphics. The lime is really lovely; it really does smell like the kind of lime note you’d expect in a bespoke or niche fragrance – super-floral for lime or citrus, rather than zesty or tart as the can notes say.

The piano belongs to the old housemate whose room I took, and I’ve been practising on it while waiting for tea to brew or for the kettle to boil! It’s kind of hilarious when you’re playing beautiful Bach chord progressions on a horrendously out-of-tune piano, but beggars…choosers etc.

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