Mike Brown: Zines and Shit

So I write a zine and shit. Zack Hammers, an imaginary skateboarder I made up, wanted to interview me about my zine, The Leviathan. So I kindly obliged, even though Zack Hammers is a total asshole. I respect him because he’s not afraid to ask the tough questions.

Zach Hammers
: You make a zine and shit, does that mean you think you’re better than me?
Mike Brown: What? No, remember when you switch 50/50-ed the Delta Center double kink, and kick flipped out of the motherfucker cleaner than a freshly washed virgin butt hole? I could never be better than you. Are you saying that because you don’t know how to read, Zach?

: Fuck you Mike Brown!
Brown: You wish, homo. Are you going to ask me questions about my zine or what?

Hammers: Ok, fine. Since this interview is going in SLUG, we might as well start with the boring interview question protocol. You know, where I just ask you stupid shit, like what are your inspirations and when did you start your zine? How does that sound fuckface?
Brown: Sounds great. I started The Leviathan when I was 18. I had some punk rock buddies that were doing a zine called Maybrick’s Diary and I was contributing to it, but felt that Maybrick’s Diary was a piece of shit not fit to wipe your butt hole with. Plus I was working at a drug rehab at the time and had unlimited access to a big fucking copy machine there that no one but me used. Thus, Leviathan issue No. 1 was born.

Hammers: I bet issue No. 1 sucked harder than your mom. What was in it and what did people think about it?
Brown: Whatever the fuck I wanted was in it. I had a poem about masturbating, an interview with a girl I worked with who was into the devil and the very first Fuck You List—shit like that. People seemed to like it, but people were much stupider back then. The zine landscape was a lot different because no one blogged, texted, e-mailed or participated in what I like to call the Digital Emotional Apocalypse.

Hammers: What the fuck is the Digital Emotional Apocalypse?
Brown: Good question. It’s the death of intimacy. It’s Facebook. It’s Twitter. It’s the generation that has learned to communicate electronically, that is forgetting what a hug is. Unplugging themselves long enough to fuck after receiving a booty text and then returning to their status updates. It’s 40 people in a coffee shop not talking to each other because they are too busy writing a blog no one will read.
The Digital Emotional Apocalypse is also one of my main motivations for making zines these days.

Hammers: Back up a bit, I’m not quite following your ass, are you high or something?
Brown: Well yeah, but that’s not the point. Back when I started The Leviathan, people were using zines to connect with each other, and there was something real cool about it. I would send a stack of zines with random punk bands touring through town and before I knew it, I would get letters with dollars hidden in them asking for a copy. And these letters would come from all over. It was one of the funnest parts of punk rock to me. But that shit doesn’t really happen anymore. Once people started texting and blogging, it died a little bit. There is a resurgence of sorts going on right now. And I hate to sound like the fat washed-up scene queen that’s always bitching about how much better it used to be, because I hate that bitch. So I won’t say things are worse, just different. But that’s kind of why whenever anyone says I should start a blog, I want to punch them in the kidneys.

Hammers: Dude, you should start a blog.
Brown: Fuck you.

Hammers: So tell me about this resurgence.
Brown: The true warriors against the Digital Emotional Apocalypse! Basically, you just have to ask yourself: when was the last time you received a handwritten letter from a friend in the mail? There is something more tangible and sincere about that than a fucking Facebook message or e-mail. Or when someone makes you a gift instead of buying you one, it will always mean more—something you can hold, that someone took the time to make for you to enjoy—like my fucking zine! I think people are realizing it’s missing a bit and some are stepping it up. Mad props to Lil’ G for always sending me postcards! The Sofa King kids got it right, too.

: Ok, this interview is getting about as exciting as my grandma’s funeral. Now for some tough questions. You said your zine has ended up in some random places. Where is the strangest place your zine has ended up?
Brown: Definitely in the hands of world famous prop comic, Carrot Top.

Hammers: Has The Leviathan Fuck You List ever had any repercussions?
Brown: Yeah, but that’s kind of the point. Erik Lopez, who is a Fuck You List regular, confronted me in person about why he keeps making it. I was way pumped though, because I got to tell him in person to go fuck himself.

Hammers: Has making a zine ever gotten you laid? Do you think it could help me?
Brown: Definitely. I started a zine that is a spin off of The Leviathan, called Women, Duh just for that purpose. By spinoff I mean Leviathan is Cheers and Women, Duh is Frasier. It’s everything I know about girls and yeah, it got me laid like 15 times.