Things Are Meaningless

Things Are Meaningless

by Al Burian

Microcosm

Looks like we have both existentialism AND minimalism right here in our hands. Al Burian began publishing those odd little things generally known as ‘zines when a friend in a print shop decided to steal as much of the boss’s blank paper as possible. This ‘zine has no particular ax to grind, but simply documents a quirky, internal monolog about the dullness of life. It’s not a complaint, exactly, and not a celebration, either, but just a matter-of-fact documentation of a young man living life in a sort of hovering fuzzball of nothingness. Most of us go through this phase, and either end up with typical middle class lives or dead in a ditch from general unpremeditated stupidity.

There are maybe a dozen short stories in this little book, each primarily supporting a series of crisply-drawn B&W panels of ink on paper. The events are mundane — getting coffee, watching power plant lights flash, visiting New York, being mistaken for a blind date. The effect is strangely attractive — no sense of foreboding or hostility enters into the read, you just groove along with Al’s life as basically nothing happens. When you get to the end, you flip back and look at a few images, and remember what they illustrated, and even that begins to disassociate in your mind. Not bad. I think a cup of coffee would taste good now. Starbucks, or Dunkin’ Donut? Yeah, fine. Let’s go.

Microcosm: http://www.microcosm.com/

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply

Recently on Ink 19...

  • Shithouse
    Shithouse

    A darling love story with engaging characters and one of the worst titles ever.

  • Too Much and Never Enough
    Too Much and Never Enough

    One families indifference and abandonment gave America its greatest failure. Mary Trump explains how.

  • Summerland
    Summerland

    In rural England, a cranky woman bonds with and evacuee boy and uncovers a strange connection to her past.

  • Laurel & Hardy: The Definitive Restorations
    Laurel & Hardy: The Definitive Restorations

    These geniuses of early comedy finally get the presentation they are due in this Blu-ray edition.

  • Four-Letter Words
    Four-Letter Words

    No need to worry about offending delicate sensibilities with this playlist. We’re not talking about profanity, so just take the title at face value.

  • A Genesis In My Bed
    A Genesis In My Bed

    Former Genesis guitarist, Steve Hackett shares his life story in his story in an engaging and honest memoir. Reading his story feels like hanging out with a friend who’s interested in sharing how he felt living these experiences.

  • The Jayhawks
    The Jayhawks

    XOXO (Sham/Thirty Tigers). Review by Jeremy Glazier.

  • 18 to Party
    18 to Party

    When you’re in 8th grade, sneaking into a bar is way cooler than it is when you’re 40.

  • Adam
    Adam

    A pregnant woman finds a home in Casablanca.

  • 2020 on Fire
    2020 on Fire

    Sound Salvation takes on current events with a playlist addressing the current fight for racial and social justice in America and the battles playing out in the streets in the aftermath of the death of George Floyd.

From the Archives