Friday, February 15, 2013

Spit and Passion: Cristy C. Road Takes You Back to Middle School (And You Love It)

I remember the first time I cam across Cristy C. Road's postcards. One of them had a picture of two punk kids making out while one of them stood in a dumpster. It said Croadcore on it.

I stared at it for a long time. I bought it from my friend who had set up a table for his fledgling distro at the show I was at and I remember staring at it many times before actually mailing it to someone. The picture was as compelling as a story or a song might be. Every line was invested with a visible emotion. It was the kind of picture that seemed to have a life of its own. I could look at it a relive the moment in the drawing over and over again.

Now, god help us, this same artist is bringing her gifts to bear on autobiographical comics. I just finished Spit and Passion, her recent graphic novel about how her love of Green Day helped her come to terms with her queer identity as a Cubana middle schooler in South Florida. It's so doggedly honest in word and image that it completely took me back (kicking and screaming) to the weird, liminal frame of mind that I occupied between the ages of 11 and 13. I found it so intense I could only read it a few pages at a time in my most relaxed state. So worth it, though.

It's a memoir, but it's also one of the best things I've read about music in a long time. She's so unrestrainedly goofy, specific and insightful in exhuming this story about discovery and survival that it made me want to go back and listen to Dookie or even American Idiot.

Right now, I'm pretty into her tarot card series too.

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