06 Feb

Eighty-Nine Days at The Rouge

February 6, 2014

by Phill Pappas | illustration by Chad Higgenbotham
During the summer of 2004, I had an eighty-nine day contract with Ford Motor Corp. My commute from Ann Arbor to The Rouge in Dearborn, Michigan began at 5:30 am. The effects of whatever I had been drinking and smoking the night before lingered as lightly as the Russian occupation of Berlin. I would speed down I-94 to the Schaffer road exit in my red, two-door Ford Escort off of two hours of sleep. My only thoughts during the drive were to stay awake and, at all costs, get to my station on the line by 6:00 am.

05 Feb

Remembering Tejano East Austin:

Can the Tejano Trails project save the community’s place in history?

February 5, 2014

by Feliks Garcia
You may have heard that Austin is booming. The city ranks just fifth in the United States for number of tech start-ups, and second in the nation for jobs in those start-ups. The crime rate’s low, houses are cheap—just fifteen percent below the national average— property values are on the rise (so buy now!), and just about 160 people are moving here daily.  And therein lies the problem: As capital pours into the city through the new residents and new companies and new developers, many of Austin’s neighborhoods—especially historically African-American and Latino neighborhoods— face the risk of cultural and historical erasure. And right now, everyone has their sights set on East Austin.

04 Feb

3 poems

February 4, 2014

03 Feb

VHS v. Beta

February 3, 2014

by Tatiana Ryckman | illustration by Emmanuelle Ly
30 years ago, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Sony’s Betamax, deciding that it was legal to record television programs from the comfort of one’s living room couch.
But let’s fast-forward to a mere 25 years ago: An episode of Gilligan’s Island—the episode where the Professor builds a radio, or maybe the one where the island natives are lurking behind palm trees—is playing in the basement. The episodes are interrupted by the ongoing updates of fund drive success for the local Cleveland PBS station and commercials for stuffed animals, whose noses would fill with whirling plastic beads when depressed, or those plush dogs that littered puppies on demand. All you had to do was pull the pups from the mother’s gut and stuff them back in (just like real life) when you wanted to settle down to recreate scenes from The Miracle of Life—another film my family owned on Beta.

02 Feb


February 2, 2014

by Conor O’Rourke | photo by Sean David Bradley

I had planted the cilantro on a whim a few weeks before and been surprised at how quickly it had grown. Barely three weeks had passed since I had pressed the seeds into the damp earth of the pot on my windowsill; for me, a new haircut, for this plant, a whole lifetime. Harvesting it was harder than I thought it would be. You have to be careful when you touch the silky green leaves, so tiny and impossibly soft, for fear of marring their perfectly mint-colored surfaces with dark, blackish bruises. I have never been so gentle with a plant before.

01 Feb

From the Editor: Nostalgia

February 1, 2014

If you’re looking for an escape, you’ve come to the right place. Let yourself be whisked away to the whimsical 1990s, where times were simpler. The United States wasn’t involved in (many) (overt) wars, and most of us weren’t old enough to pay rent yet. I have faith that most of us pay rent now. Life felt hard, but was manageable for the lucky among our readers.

20 Oct

Issue 04 Contributors

October 20, 2013

Read more about this issue’s contributors!

19 Oct

Self Portrait as My Dachshund Max

October 19, 2013

Sometimes I try to make eye contact with my dog
and fail.

17 Oct


October 17, 2013

words by Feliks Garcia | illustration by Stav Sela

Everybody handles loss differently. Some take up hobbies, some drink, some cry, and some bottle the pain to the point that it becomes prolonged denial.

16 Oct

City of Coins

October 16, 2013

This year, Edwin, while bending down to feed his turtles, would collapse into his bathtub, Grandpa discovering him early the next morning, water still running, turtles clustered on the opposite side of the porcelain tub.

15 Oct


October 15, 2013

Manny had stared with cold indifference as he slowly but deliberately forced the wide blade into Sir Reggie’s chest, stopping only when the jewel-encrusted hilt reached bone.

14 Oct


October 14, 2013

The alchemists, curious characters, who combined aspects of proto-scientist, psychologist, student of the mysteries, and downright charlatan. Their goal was to transform the body and mind into something incorruptible and magnificent.

13 Oct

Alaska Wild

October 13, 2013

Behold! The majesty of Alaskan wildlife!

12 Oct

The Peyote Gospel

October 12, 2013

Elephants get shitfaced, goats get tweaked out on caffeine, dolphins can use LSD to overcome PTSD, and cats go HAM over catnip.

10 Oct

Savages in Concert

October 10, 2013

We are all Savages.

08 Oct

Werewolf Joe

October 8, 2013

In the communal bathroom
on the fourth floor you can sometimes

hear Werewolf Joe whistling off-key
melodies by Warren Zevon…

07 Oct

When Handimals Attack

October 7, 2013

The hands in these photographs are unexpected, cunning, and full of mischief and bloodlust.

06 Oct

An Afternoon at Gus Fruh Pool

October 6, 2013

Michael Tamlin skipped a rock across muddy water and thought, What a beautiful day to be me! A warm breeze ruffled his close cropped curls, streaked with gel and shimmering with the joy of lazy Saturday well spent.