I’ve got a few copies of COMETBUS 55.5…..

cometbus lyls

Ride the Wohl Whip Cometbus aka COMETBUS is a long-running zine. I’d call it punk but that seems too restrictive. It is punk. It is so punk but not in the way most people think of punk or assume that it is.

Simply, it contains some beautiful, elemental, complex and evocative writing and I’ve been reading it and loving it for over twenty-five years.

This issue (#55 1/2) is a very limited edition of my short book, LOVE YOU LIKE SUICIDE, which previously was only available as an ebook. It still is. If you prefer digital you can go to www.fierceinkpress.com and download one.

If however you like the smell of toner and the feel of paper, I am giving away 5 copies.

US and Canada only. The contest ends Monday September 30th at midnight.

Just tell me about a defining moment/relationship/sandwich/whatever you had when you were a teenager.

I’m looking for heartfelt, life-changing stuff here, folks, so make it a very special sandwich if that’s the direction you decide to go in.

I’ll pick 5 winners and announce them here in the comments section.



10 thoughts on “I’ve got a few copies of COMETBUS 55.5…..

  1. As a child, I was mocked for my voice, height, and hobbies. This continued into my teens, and I began high school at the age of 13 without friends. I was either bullied or ignored by everyone at school, and that was fine with me because I didn’t WANT to be friends with people who would make fun of me. Until one day, I did. I decided one day in the tenth grade I wanted friends, and I couldn’t expect people to be friendly to me if I never talked. I picked out two girls in my gym class who had never talked to me, but had never been mean either. I joined them while doing our pre-walk stretches, and we took a smoke break while on our laps around the parking lot (my school was very poor) and I was invited to a sleepover that night at one of the girls houses. I had a lot of anxiety about going, because what if the girls were making fun of me, and it was all a plot to tease me? Against my better judgement, I went, and I’m so glad that I did. We stayed up all night telling stories and talking and laughing. We stayed friends until the end of that year, and eventually I moved on an made new friends, but I’m still greatful for the easy friendship they offered me.

  2. It must have been very hard to start high school (already a scary thing) without friends. You must be a really strong person, Elizabeth.
    Sometimes I think the people who had it hardest as teens and pre-teens end up having the most fulfilling lives later on. We’ve been through the ‘war’ and survived it, and although it’s tough maybe by the end of it, we have a better understanding of ourselves and our limits and our strengths.
    Thanks so much for sharing!

  3. Can you know a moment is defining while it is happening? Or does it only gain definition after time has passed and you can place nice bookends on parts of your life, separating your cool phase, your punk phase, your whatever phase. If there was a coffee shop phase in my life it certainly did not occur until well beyond my teenage years. And yet a coffee shop, or more acurately a “coffee house” put on by my high school, ended up as a nice, hefty weight pushing against the collected volumes of friendship and music.

    Growing up in a small town in central Pennsylvania I had what I assume most kids in my situation had: one best friend and a bunch of other kids you hang out with. Were we friends because we liked the same things, or did we like the same things because we were friends? Either way you experience a lot together over the course of 11 years. Not necessarily huge, life-changing experiences, but a daily life spent together, exploring the same things, listening to the same music, walking the same routes around town.

    We were already in a band together when we went to our first punk show. While a defining moment in and of itself, that show is not the focus of this story. Ears pounding and hearts beating, we both left that show with a new idea of why our band existed and what it meant to us, what music meant to us. We spent the next two years going to shows, writing songs, and trimming our band down to a three piece. I am pretty sure if we could have figured out how to play guitar, bass, and drums simultaneously with only the two of us we would have lost the drummer as well. Music was life and life was music.

    Or so I liked to think. If I was honest with myself I had other things occupying my mind: how do I get girls to like me? should I be thinking less about music and more about college? should I lift weights? With the exception of the first, I am confident I was alone in these thoughts. I should also mention that for me, our friendship had evolved into a convenience relationship. When it was convenient for me, we were friends and hung out. When it was inconvenient for me, Scott was placed on hold, to be picked up again when I was done with whatever it was that was more important. This dynamic existed in our friendship for a long time. I cringe to think that it was established nearly from the beginning. It is an element of my personality I still struggle with.

    While I was busy with more important things, Scott had wasted time on the trivial pursuits of living and forging meaningful relationships. All the while we were still playing music and our band was growing better at being able to express that one common bond we still shared, our love of music. When we played together, our values and purpose aligned as we tried so hard to reflect back the energy that was so passionately projected at us at so many shows.

    When we signed up to play at our high school’s coffee house I did not think anything of it. We had played there before and were still trying to find shows outside of our area code. In short it was no big deal. And it also did not seem like a big deal when Scott approached me right before our set to see if I wanted to tell folks it was our last show, but secretly we would keep playing and writing new songs. It would be a time to regroup and come back better than ever. Ha! While I was up topping off my coffee, ignoring my friend’s empty mug, the tables had turned. I sat back down and kept on drinking and talking, buzzing on the caffeine and chattering about SATs and biceps well into the night before I realized that the seat next to me was empty.

    We played a great show that night and people who I never spoke to came up to tell me how much fun they had, how disappointed they were that we were not going to play together any more. I smiled inwardly, pitying them for not knowing what was really going on. Scott and I hung out outside and he casually told me about a new band he was starting with some mutual friends. The conversation moved on to other topics, but some sort of warning bell was going off in my mind. It was some kind of weird deja vu. What just happened?

    I spent the next six years trying to answer that question. In fact I never did come up with an answer, I just stopped trying. I was not the only one trying to answer questions, and eventually giving up. It just happened that I did not start trying to answer until the questions had lost all relevance. That show marked not only the end of a band, but of a significant part of my life.

  4. You are one fine storyteller, Matt. Thanks so much for sharing a piece of your life.
    I think that sometimes you do realize afterwards (often a long time afterwards) what impact or effect an event or person has on your life, but sometimes you come to that realization while it is ongoing. I knew that the friendship I had was unique and special, a once in a lifetime thing. I just knew. And she knew it too.

  5. Paul and I bonded over painter pants. He liked that i straightened mine and that they were white — not very peace punk.

    I hope he’s happy, even.


  6. Greetings Jo. Might you have a copy for purchase? Please email me at the address I posted with the comment.

    Kind regards,
    Abbey Fox

    1. Hey Abbey,
      right now I’m giving away a free copy to the first ten people to write and tell me something interesting or entertaining….

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