Sound-Bites Magazine Release Party Featuring Live Music from Sensitive Men!

I found DIY photocopied comic books appearing around campus. When I tracked down the artist and asked how he made his little books, he replied, “Just experiment. The library has free printing.”

Fast forward three years. I’ve graduated, served an AmeriCorps term, and returned to my hometown. I make magazines.

There was a moment before the first Sound-Bites Release party this March when I thought no one would show up. Something in my gut told me to put up the decorations anyways, to lay out my magazines on the table in front of the T.V.

So many people came to my party. I was in love.

Fast forward three months. Submissions sent in from around New Hampshire and the Midwest. I have a box of Sound-Bites magazines on my kitchen table. This is the 9th edition, and each one is 24 pages and full color.

Sound-Bites is my passion project. It’s an independent magazine featuring the work of artists, photographers, and writers. It focuses on the practice of listening and taking time to process the noisy world around us through making art.

Now published on a quarterly basis, Sound-Bites is a community-focused project. Anyone can submit their creations, and submissions come in all sizes and shapes. They center around a theme each quarter. Past themes have included Sounds of Love, Sounds of the Road, and Sounds of Red.

Thursday, June 29th, the 9th edition of the magazine will be released at the Wayfarer Coffee Roasters on Main Street in downtown Laconia. The release party will feature live music from the Sensitive Men of Concord. They are three guys who talk about their feelings and play music. Also featured: magazine contributors presenting their work, magazines for sale, and wine!

Attendees are encouraged to come wearing their finest vintage ensembles. Why? The theme of this issue is Sounds of the Past. All submissions to the magazine were created with a wholesome helping of nostalgia and an electric look back at each artist’s personal history.

Sound-Bites invites all of us (even those who claim their art sucks) to pay close attention to our environment. Making things is a way to pay homage, to be present, and to make connections to the other people who share in our everyday experience. If you’re up for an after-work art adventure in the Lakes Region, come to the Sound-Bites release party! Everyone’s welcome to attend.

 

***See the original version of this blog post at Stay Work Play NH.

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Trimming Hooves

The farrier comes and he talks about North Korea, nuclear bombs,

and a possible war with China that’s blowing around on the news.

He’s holding the hooves of the horses,

the big black draft leans his weight onto him.

We’re talking at least 150lbs of horse haunch

that the farrier supports with his two tattooed arms

while he trims a quarter inch of dead material from the base of the hoof.

The farrier complains he’s getting old but I see he can still hold his own here,

even with these massive animals, even in the middle of what we fear may be

World War Three.

It does not seem like an illusion anymore, this war.

It is something real and far on the horizon,

like an approaching jeep on a desert highway.

Heat waves rising up from pavement, blend with engine exhaust,

but the sound of acceleration cannot be mistaken.

Behind the barn, I can hear the dog

gnawing on the cast-off shards of hoof walls.

 

 

***Creds for the art included go to a wonderful library patron who collaged with me last Friday, age 8! Words in the collage are by Rumi.

Sound-Bites Release Party Highlights

Hi everyone,

The first ever Sound-Bites Release party was pretty flippin’ magical!

Highlights included: Lincoln Logs, bug stamps, origami cranes, caprese skewers, raspberry tarts, twinkle lights, random questions, cherry candles, red sweaters, anti-trump hats, corduroy, ukuleles, guitars, ginger ale…oh and did I mention the wine??

We succeeded in making this night in March a warm one despite near zero temps outside. I’m so grateful to have all you creative, smart, goofy, and joyful people in my life.

Today’s work is mailing the zines to my contributors far afield, posting the submissions call for Sound-Bites 9, and attempting to run nine miles.

Oh, and for anyone who wants to hear more of the band that played in the living room, here are the links to the Sensitive Men Soundcloud and Facebook.

 

 

 

Philandro Castille and the Door

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Check out Unicorn Riot for livestream of Philandro Castile protests in the Twin Cities

Living with anarchists, I feel a lot of pressure to go out to protest, to do something in the wake of Philandro Castille’s murder. This Friday night though I choose to be at home alone, to paint in my front yard.

I witness two young men beating each other on the front steps across the street. The mother screams at them to stop. I keep painting.

A woman walks by and says hello to me. I ask her for suggestions on how to fill the blank space. The women gets out two pieces of paper and a pen. “I love art,” she says. “People think I’m crazy, but when I get an apartment, it’s my dream to paint a door like this.”

The woman leaves me standing on the tiny green square of green as dark comes, her careful sketches left behind to guide my brushstrokes. They are blue, green, yellow, and red, so simple. I am so sure of the brush in my hand, the imperfect form of each line.

“You’re not crazy.”

I Will Always Answer

***For my sister who’s driving home to New Hampshire tonight.

 

I will always answer

a late night phone call

from you because your words

are dripping with nothing,

love and even when I’m whispering

into the phone with my eyes closed

sitting on the carpet

back leaning into the bed frame,

the wind’s blowing through my window,

quiet, low brushing my hair at my bare shoulders

and you say that talking

on the phone makes you sad

because it means we’re

running long distance with words;

these are marathons of hope and

symphonies of voices

we imagine are attached to a real body

at the other end of the line.

Distance is blue flecked with copper glitter,

breath-taking, really

but it will never be

simple as together:

heads nested on pillows

hair rippled, mixing strands,

mouths singing about nothing.

sister

Tumbleweed Tiny House Workshop

This weekend I’m attending the Tumbleweed Tiny House workshop in Minneapolis. It’s a 2-day deal and there are about fifty small living enthusiasts. Meg is our facilitator, an architect who works for Tumbleweed and who’s in the process of building her tiny house. Most people are Minnesotans with a few from outlier states like South Dakota, Wisconsin, and Iowa. The workshop encompasses training on planning, logistics, and lifestyle tips for people who want to build tiny homes. It’s also a marketing pitch for Tumbleweed products (houses, wall panels, and, best of all, the plans).

A lot of information to process from the day but here’s quick run down of what stood out to me so far. Of course, the things I noticed are coming from my current vocation as an AmeriCorps for Habitat for Humanity and as a single white lady without college debt, and about $5,000 in savings. Lots of questions about affordability!

And, zine update: ‘Sounds of the Road‘ is coming soon!! It will go to print this Monday.

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Seriously, the loft is the best place in the house.
  1. Tumbleweed is a company trying to sell houses. They are expanding rapidly (went from 5 to 80 employees in the past three years). Growing demand for tiny houses is real.
  2. Right now Tumbleweed is not concerned with the affordable housing crisis. They are very good at deflecting questions about this.
  3. The average person attending the conference is white and middle aged.
  4. Tiny houses are a lot about making what could functionally be an “ugly” (*something aesthetically stigmatized as ugly) RV type structure look pretty and homey. It’s about the cultural conditioning and our feelings of home!
  5. You can have a toilet and a shower in a tiny house 🙂 I’m still confused where the washer/dryer goes.
  6. They cost between $20,000 and $30,000 to build. Play the long game.
  7. Walking inside a tiny house is awesome! Talk about a glorified shed!
  8. Houses heat up and cool down fast. Insulation doesn’t seem to be an issue, even in Minnesota temps.
  9. Building from the ground up means the builder (you) have the power to make your house look beautiful with whatever design features you know you love.
  10. There is a show you can watch about tiny houses called “Tiny House Nation.”
  11. The Kasl family (two parents, two kids) live in a tiny house in Minnesota with pets! Check out Kim Kasl’s website to learn more about their build and their life on the river.
  12. There’s a certain type of storytelling that goes with the tiny house movement. It’s about finding financial freedom, breaking the debt cycle, mobility, a desire to spend less time “at work” and more time doing “the things we love.”
  13. How is a tiny home different from an RV or a trailer? Is it different?
  14. Are there options for turning tiny houses into tiny communities (communal living situations?
  15. The guy next to me summed up a common opinion when I mentioned I might buy an old and really small cabin instead of building a new tiny house. “Yeah, but that’s a lot of work and tiny houses are cool!” I can’t say I disagree.