ZISK #21: $3, 6 ¾” x 8 ½”, photocopied, 23 pgs.

Jan 15, 2013

I’m not one for fetishisms or fawning when talking about zines. I own thousands, have written hundreds, been doing it for sixteen years straight as my “day job.” I’m a utilitarian, a pragmatist, not a tourist, vulture, or holding on for “something better.” So when the “Look what I made with my own two hands!” feeling settles down after the first several issues and the novelty of self-made cultural production sags like dirty socks at the end of your feet, when it’s just you in your underpants in the middle of room full of half-formed ideas, that’s when zines show to me what they’re really made of. That’s when it becomes really interesting to me. Zisk is awesome. It’s all about baseball, but it’s put together by dorks, nerds, and misfits; not jocks, cheerleaders, and precocious tweens who’ve figured out social media and will forget about zines when a new app comes out. Baseball is the diamond-shaped prism that Zisk looks through the world. In this issue: Sick Teen’s Rev Nørb fulfills a lifelong goal and becomes the in-park announcer for a minor league baseball team for a summer. He then rates the music that accompanies batters to the plate. Regarding Justin Bieber’s “Boyfriend,” “WHAT. THE. FUCK… Seriously, dude what the fuck.” Roctober’s Jake Austen applies art theory and basic sculptural proportion to the recent proliferation of baseball statues crowding Chicago. On Harold Baines’s statue: “This very wrong right leg is so weird that the poor likeness and oddity of the sculpted beard hairs are moot.” He also makes me want to see the (baseball) Batcolumn with my own two eyes: “This is pretty great public art. Because it’s awesome and giant (over one hundred feet!), stupid and absurd (it’s a giant bat!), it makes sense…” Re-read Jake’s quote. With a couple little tweaks, he could easily be talking about Zisk and I couldn’t agree more. –Todd Taylor (PO Box 469, Patterson, NY12563, [email protected])