Friday, March 28, 2008

Country Music Coolness: Dime Box CD

Dime Box - Five and Dime Waltz CDAutumn: We have a shiny new toy here.
Cindy: It's called Dime Box.
A: It's not really a box.
C: But it came in a box.
A: A special box. All the way from Los Angeles.
C: That's so far!
A: A mystical place.
C: My sister lives there.
A: Rather than tell you how cool Dime Box is...
C: We think you should go here...

CD Review: Dime Box - Five and Dime Waltz

A: From Wednesday Week to this.
C: Johnny Cash would be proud.
A: Johnny Cash is proud.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Cat - the Sugarcubes

Sugarcubes Life's Too Good CD featuring CatCindy Jacobson, Leather Trio Productions: There's a really cool song on the Sugarcubes' Life's Too Good CD called "Cat." The song scratches and jumps just like a mischievous kitten. Although it's sung in Icelandic I know what it's about cause I read an interview once where Björk, the Sugarcubes' singer, tells the story of the song. I'm not going to give it away though, cause I want it to be like a secret. I've always been strangely curious about cats, but I've never owned one. There's this really cool cat that lives somewhere in the Haight near where I work. He's black with yellow eyes, but his eyes and fur seem to change color in different shades of light.

In the Sugarcubes song the girl has what I would call a cat fetish. But she channels it in a rather unusual way. This is what I'm not giving away. Pretty sly of me, huh? I always thought that cats have a people fetish. Autumn says cats do whatever they like. But they attach themselves to people in very odd relationships. The black cat in the Haight always greets me when I get off work. He just stares at me and gives me a sweet meow and then I ride off on my motorcycle. I don't even know his name or where he lives, but we've become friends. Even on nights when I work late he's there waiting. Like he knows.

There are some days when I take the bus and after work I'll walk up the street to the bus stop and the cat will be there waiting around the corner, watching for me. So strange. I love cats. They move like the fog. They think they know you. They know they're cooler than you. I don't think I'll ever get one of my own, although in a way I sort of have one. And I don't think I'm going to tell you what the Sugarcubes song is about cause it's so very strange and such a sly secret. And if you really like cats you probably wouldn't want to know anyway.

originally published in:
Album Network, June 24, 1988
The Blind Armadillo (Oklahoma City fanzine), issue 11, Spring 1989

Friday, March 21, 2008


Cindy Jacobson/Autumn Meredith, Leather Trio Productions.

Cindy: We found out if you say f**k in the Album Network they'll put cute little stars after the "f." Album Network is PG-13.
Autumn: We thought it was R. We're sorry. Now we've been trying to think up all sorts of badness we can sneak in here and get past the star placer.
C: Like my boyfriend Billy has this one fetish where he'll...
A: Gross, Cindy! Don't tell them stuff like that.
C: Really girls, give me a call. I squirm in ecstasy.
A: This Crusade is supposed to be about the Ramones. If all you're gonna talk about is your pervert boyfriend, I'm leaving.
C: They're going to edit this anyway.
A: Me and Cindy met in the 9th grade. One of the first things we did together was go see the Ramones.
C: Everyone danced and sweated like mad all night. Except Autumn who stood up by the stage and watched them.
A: Johnny Ramone kept throwing guitar picks at me.
C: Like she had been chosen as his special groupie or something.
A: I was only 15. I didn't care about his stupid guitar picks. I just let them bounce off me and fall to the floor. All these kids were scrambling around for them. It was so cute.
C: The Ramones played so fast and loud I couldn't even tell the songs apart. And if Dee Dee hadn't yelled...
A: One, two, three, four!
C: ...between each one, I wouldn't have been able to tell where one song ended and the next began. We had so much fun.
A: Now you can have the same kind of fun with Ramones Mania, a frolicking two record set packed with all the hits.
C: On Sire!
A: So everyone call Howie Klein.
C: Or dash on down to your favorite record store. Have your Visa card ready.
A: You yuppies can use your American Express.
C: I think we're in trouble now.
A: Pretty typical for us. At least we didn't say f*ck.
C: Or there would've been stars all over this Crusade.
A: Play the Ramones!
C: Loud.
A: Fast.
C: And young.

June 17, 1988, Album Network

RIP: Joey Ramone (1951-2001); Dee Dee Ramone (1951-2002); Johnny Ramone (1948-2004); only the drummers remain...

Thursday, March 20, 2008

OU812 - Van Halen

Autumn Meredith, Leather Trio Productions. This is my first "solo" Crusade, so don't laugh if it comes out stupid, ok? Cindy's always giving me shit cause I was sort of a tomboy when I was growing up. So unlike most girls, I know something about boy stuff. Lately my boyfriend Cliff has been telling me that the new Van Halen album is the greatest thing to happen to rock music since Metallica did a Killing Joke cover. I was only ten when the first Van Halen album came out so I sorta missed all that fuss. But there was this boy across the street who I grew up with. We used to throw the football around when we were kids. When I was in high school we saw Van Halen on their 1984 tour. I thought David Lee Roth was a penis brain, but Eddie Van Halen, now he was pretty cool. And it was so cute seeing all those boys in denim jackets stand on their seats and chant, "Eddie! Eddie!"

So I borrowed Cliff's copy of OU812. There's some really good songs on this album like "Mine All Mine" and "Finish What Ya Started," which are both totally pop. These guys even get real mushy on "When It's Love." And of course there's Eddie's guitar making love to Valerie Bertinelli all over the place. OU812 is no Jesus and Mary Chain album, but it gets the Autumn stamp of approval. Just don't tell Cindy, ok?

June 10, 1988, Album Network

Rice Burners in LA

"...One last thing: check out the live version of 'Taste of Cindy' from the B-Side of the new Jesus and Mary Chain single. They wrote the song about Cindy Jacobson of Leather Trio Productions." -David "Ikky Bop" Sadof, KLOL (Album Network, May 13, 1988)

Cindy Jacobson Leather Trio Productions.
Besides my sister I don't know too many people who live in Los Angeles. But the last time I went there I met Colleen, who some of you may know cause she works at that Image Consultants place. She says stuff like, "could you just die?" whenever she gets excited about something. She has the exact same problems with boys that I do. She rides a Honda Rebel and I ride a Honda Shadow, so we've become known as "those two girls on rice burners" whenever I'm in town. Colleen is also the coat check girl at Cathouse which means she knows the inside of the local scene. She keeps me updated about the L.A. underground.

A little while ago we were talking on the phone and I just happened to mention how much I like "Time Forgot You" by Legal Weapon from that Dudes soundtrack. And she said, have you heard their album, Interior Hearts? I didn't even know they had an album, so she sent me a copy. It's totally cool. Then just a few weeks later MCA put out a new Legal Weapon album, Life Sentence to Love (their fourth!) and it's even better. As Autumn would say, "it just crunches." Legal Weapon's lead singer Kat Arthur wears black clothes and has blonde hair, you know, kinda like me. And she sings like she's been there, like she's seen shit. My favorite songs on the album are the slyly seductive single "Hurt" and "SKB (Skateboard)," which is a real poppy song. Colleen likes "Interior Hearts" best. It's the title song of their last album which they re-recorded here. Totally cool. Totally crunching guitars. And the voice of Kat. Could you just die?

Personal to Ikky Bop at KLOL: "...talkin' Cindy to everyone, till she's had her fun." Yeah, they wrote it about me.

May 27, 1988, Album Network

Monday, March 17, 2008

Sidewalking - the Jesus and Mary Chain

Cindy Jacobson and Autumn Meredith. Leather Trio Productions/San Francisco.
Autumn: There's a new Jesus and Mary Chain single out. It's called "Sidewalking." It just crunches.
Cindy: On the B-side there's a live version of "Taste of Cindy," the song they wrote about me.
A: The A-side has loud guitars from William Reid. The kind of crunchy guitars that radio wimps are so afraid of. So cool.
C: Sure "Sidewalking" is great, but the B-side--
A: Cindy, I don't think anyone cares about the B-side. It's an old song. And they didn't write it about you. They've never even met you.
C: They did too write it about me. You're just jealous cause it's not called "Taste of Autumn."
A: I'm not listening to this. "Sidewalking" has sly lyrics, cool mysterious vocals from Jim Reid and a great thumping bass from Douglas Hart. This is their best single ever.
C: With their best B-side ever.
A: Before we go we just have to say one more thing...
C: That Sinead O'Connor sure has cool boots.
A: Doc Martens. Yeah.

Album Network, May 6, 1988
"Sidewalking" is available on 21 Singles by the Jesus and Mary Chain

Sunday, March 16, 2008

A Distant Shore - Tracey Thorn

Cindy Jacobson. Leather Trio Productions/San Francisco.
I guess I'm one of those dreamy, beach walking types. Sometimes I'll ride my motorcycle to the Golden Gate Bridge, then go down Lincoln Avenue along the Pacific coast. I'll stop at Baker Beach or that little China Beach, which is always pretty quiet. Whenever I ride down to Carmel, where they have a beautiful beach with white sand, I always stop at this place called Pelican Point. It's near Half Moon Bay. It's not a really incredible beach or anything, but there's hardly ever anyone there. You can stand on a bluff that overlooks the ocean. Ever since I was a little girl I've always liked the sea and fog. Whenever I hear a foghorn out on San Francisco bay I just get all warm and dreamy. It makes me feel, I don't know, my friend Autumn says, "safe." I like that word.

One of my favorite albums is Tracey Thorn's A Distant Shore, which came out in 1982. She expresses so much about the way I feel about being in a relationship. My favorite song is "Seascape" which is the dreamy, long walks on the beach song. I just love the line, "thought I knew the sea and all its secrets too." After A Distant Shore Tracey formed a band called Everything But The Girl with her boyfriend Ben Watt. They have four albums out now. I haven't liked everything they've done, just a few scattered songs here and there. But their new album, Idlewild, is their best so far. On "These Early Days" Tracey sings about the difference between being a small child when you unknowingly live in a world that seems safe (there's that word again) and being an adult when you know better. I know "These Early Days" is sentimental and mushy, but to me it's like hearing a foghorn at night when I'm all alone. It makes me feel safe. Like a child feels with his mother. I like living in a world where we have things like beaches and foghorns and people like Ben and Tracey who can express my feelings in music.

Album Network, April 15, 1988
Tracey Thorn released a great solo album, Out of the Woods, in 2007.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Frustrations and Dark Dreams

by Cindy J, February 1988

Punk Rock Graffiti drawing of CindyThe first time I saw the Jesus and Mary Chain I was nineteen. It was the spring of 1986. I rode my motorcycle--I have a Honda Shadow--all the way to Los Angeles. But I stopped at a lot of different places on the way. I stopped in Carmel where it was Clint Eastwood mania everywhere. I think it was two or three days before the election. I got a "Clint for Mayor" button and put it on my leather jacket. I went into this one gallery and saw some photographs taken by Ruth Bernhard, who lives in San Francisco. She's eighty-two years old. She's kinda feisty like my friend Autumn. Her photos are mostly of women and she defines them with such grace and soul. She says she's interested in forms and shapes, but there's so much feeling expressed. At first her photography kind of scared me cause I could feel so much of the way she depicts a woman's vulnerabilty. It's hard to explain really. You just have to look at the pictures. After awhile I decided that what Ruth was doing was capturing a paradox. The woman's real mysteries remained hidden. Hidden within those beautiful shapes.

I thought about this a lot when I rode to L.A. I stayed with my sister, who lives in Sherman Oaks. The Mary Chain played on Easter Sunday in Santa Monica. I left late cause I wanted to stay at my sister's place and listen to Rodney interview them on KROQ. I like the way Jim Reid talks with that Scottish accent. When the interview was over I rode to the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium for the show. I usually don't go to shows by myself. My sister didn't want to come and Autumn and my boyfriend Billy couldn't make it. Besides, the band was going to be playing in San Francisco anyway. I told my boss I was going to go to L.A. for a few days to see the Jesus and Mary Chain and he said, ok Cindy, sure, take some time off. He lets me get away with practically anything. Billy thinks he has a crush on me. Autumn does too. But it was cool really, coming to the concert by myself--I actually wanted to take the whole trip by myself too. I just needed to think about some things, about Billy, about me.

The show was really dark, really strange and riveting. William Reid just crouched on the floor with his back to the audience, making cool waves of guitar noise. Jim's voice was so amazing, really biting. The drummer looked like Maureen Tucker, but he was a guy. Dark glasses. Primitive beats. Real Velvet Underground. Douglas, the bass player barely even moved. Everyone said they just made a lot of feedback noise to be snotty brats, which wasn't the way it was at all. The noise was twisted and bent and very personal. It created then relieved tension. William knew exactly what he was doing. His guitar sounds were his way of communicating his frustrations, his dark dreams. And Jim put that into words. The show was really short--maybe a half hour, but it was ragged and intense. I liked them a lot. Of course now with Darklands they've moved the sound into a whole new area and people still don't get it.

Afterwards I rode to Hollywood and saw some bikers on Hollywood Boulevard. They all had tattoos and Harleys and stuff. They laughed at my Honda Shadow, calling it a "rice burner," but they were nice really. One of them said I was a cool blonde on a toy bike, which made everyone laugh. I rode up and down Hollywood Boulevard with them for awhile, but I didn't tell Billy when I got back. He would've been pissed. When I left, two of them rode up along side me and said I could come ride with them anytime.

Later I rode on Mulholland Drive and got lost. I was up by this place that overlooked the city where lovers make out. I stopped my motorcycle, took off my helmet and just sat there for awhile, looking at the lights, thinking about stuff, thinking about me. I thought about my dark dreams, my frustrations, my own vulnerability. It's hard sometimes being with Billy--he wants so much. I felt pretty much the same way then as I do now. I have to fight for my independence, but I like being with him. I think maybe I just get scared of losing too much of myself, giving too much of myself away. One of the bikers said, "You're pretty tough for such a little thing." I don't know if I'm tough, but I have a very strong impression of myself and I don't ever want that to go away. I have to hide some things like the women in Ruth's photographs, but like them I can be feminine without being self-conscious about it. And I know I can deal with Billy, but sometimes I wonder how he deals with me. He must think I'm a terror. I put my helmet back on and started my "rice burner." Then I rode off to the Valley, to my sister's place, feeling like a cool blonde on a hot bike. Those Harleys are too mean and macho anyway.

February 1988, unpublished
The Jesus and Mary Chain's drummer in 1986 was Bobby Gillespie, who now fronts Primal Scream. Ruth Bernhard died in San Francisco in 2006 at the age of 101.

The Moberlys

Cindy Jacobson and Autumn Meredith. Leather Trio Productions/San Francisco.
Cindy: We're doing this crusade about the Moberlys.
Autumn: Cause they're bitchen.
C: I knew she was going to start in with the Val yak. Happens every time.
A: We really really promise not to make stuff up this time.
C: The Moberlys are on CD tune-up #11.
A: Which Joe lent to us so we could check them out.
C: We think the Moberlys should come to San Francisco and play.
A: But not at Nightbreak.
C: We were at Nightbreak the other day. We only went there cause Impulse F were playing.
A: Impulse F are totally rad.
C: Val yak. Val yak.
A: And who should show up but Danny.
C: What a jerk.
A: So Danny actually comes up to me....
C: Don't tell! You're giving too much away.
A: Oh right. You'll have to wait for the novel.
C: Or the movie.
A: Getting back to the Moberlys.
C: They should be signed!
A: And played on the radio.
C: Then they could come to San Francisco.
A: And not play at Nightbreak.
C: They could play at the Hideout instead.
A: Or on Alcatraz.
C: Where they're opening a new punk club with Clint Eastwood as MC.
A: Oops! We said we wouldn't make stuff up.
C: Oh sorry. But play the Moberlys.
A: Totally pop.
C: Totally guitars.
A: Totally.

February 5, 1988, Album Network
This was our first Album Network Crusade.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Dark Alleys and Black Cats - Wednesday Week

(This originally appeared in Wednesday Week's fan club newsletter in 1987.)

C: Hi, I'm Cindy. They asked me and my friend Autumn to help out on the newsletter.
A: We live in San Francisco. We've seen Wednesday Week four times now. They're cool!
C: We should probably start by revealing the big secret.
A: Heidi quit the band.
C: So now Wednesday Week have a new temporary bass player.
A: And they're out on the road with the mysterious new bass player right now.
C: When Kristi is on tour her cat, Sweden, comes up to San Francisco and visits us.
A: He's a really cool cat.
C: He's been adopted as the official Leather Trio mascot.
A: He hangs out in alleys in Chinatown.
C: An alley Valley cat.
A: A hip cat.
C: A ship's cat.
A: He's our pal. He's going to be in the Punk Rock Graffiti movie and novel. There's this whole scene where....
C: Don't tell. Leave them wondering....
A: Good idea.
C: Let's tell them about the first time we saw Wednesday Week.
A: Oh cool.
C: My sister moved to L.A. so me and Autumn went down there and stayed with her.
A: This was in 1985. Right before the Fourth of July.
C: Billy, who's now my boyfriend, had given me a copy of Betsy's House. I didn't know Billy very well then. He worked at this used record store in North Beach. Sometimes he'd give me cool records to play.
A: He was trying to impress her. He was too chicken to ask her out.
C: He'd give me records to try out.
A: So there we were in L.A. and we found out Wednesday Week were playing.
C: We were so excited.
A: They played in a record store.
C: Be Bop Records in Reseda.
A: That's in the Valley.
C: Where Valley cats hang out.
A: There were two other bands on the bill, Waves of Grain and Pop Art. Wednesday Week went on in the middle.
C: The place is really small and it was packed with people. It's an art gallery too. There was weird Picasso-like art hanging on the walls.
A: Wednesday Week played only one song from Betsy's House, "I Don't Know." They had all these other songs.
C: Really cool songs.
A: They played "The Thing" and "Keep Talking," which is my favorite Heidi song.
C: It's kind of sad, you know. There won't be any more Heidi songs.
A: Yeah.
C: They also did "You Wanted Me To Hang Around" and "That Train," which is one of my favorite Kristi songs.
A: I think this was the first show David played with Wednesday Week after he joined the band.
C: Which is really cool.
A: And everyone except Kelly was wearing dark clothes.
C: And you know how we feel about dark clothes.
A: And black cats.
C: And the night.
A: God, this is starting to sound like a Michelob commercial.
C: The night belongs to Cindy and Autumn.
A: You know we should probably tell Kristi that when she's on tour and Sweden comes to San Francisco we take good care of him.
C: Because we like Swedish cats.
A: And calico cats too.

July 12, 1987; printed in the Fall '87 Wednesday Week newsletter
Photographs from Wednesday Week's 1985 Reseda Show

Skateboard Speedbump City - Jonny III

A: Oh--one of the coolest songs of all time.
C: Never released!
A: So cool.
C: The story behind this is there was this great all female band here in San Francisco called the Varve.
A: We only saw them a couple of times.
C: We were really young.
A: It was harder to sneak in clubs then.
C: So the lead singer, Jo Ann, who is originally from Denver, gave me a tape of this band from Colorado, the Jonny III.
A: And this song was on there.
C: And we went crazy.
A: Probably the coolest song of all time.
C: Yeah.

April 4, 1987 (from the Autumn and Cindy songs booklet - June 1987)

Love You More - Buzzcocks

A: Now Cindy gets to tell how she met Billy.
C: It was cause of the Buzzcocks.
A: Billy used to work at this used record store in North Beach. Just north of Chinatown. We used to go there and find cool used records--I found the first Velvet Underground album there when I was 16. My mom threw it out cause of the song "Heroin"--
C: I'll bet she was real thrilled over "Venus in Furs" too.
A: Oh yeah--oh, that one was her favorite. But then I fished the album out of the trash and hid it behind a stack of Vogues.
C: So I went into the store once and there's this guy behind the counter playing the second Buzzcocks album, Love Bites.
A: Ouch.
C: And I'm thinking this guy is really cool cause I loved the Buzzcocks. Their first album was the first album I ever bought--I was 12 and all the other kids liked the Eagles and Pink Floyd. They thought I was really weird. So here's this guy playing Buzzcocks and I fell in love with him instantly.
A: Cause he had a really cool leather jacket.
C: As I was walking around the store Billy kept looking at me. So finally I bought a record and I blurted out something really stupid like--
A: You have a really cool jacket.
C: He said, "oh thanks." That's all he said. And then I left. I kept going back into the store--it took him forever to ask me out.
A: And he still has that jacket.
C: He won't give it to me. But he lets me wear it sometimes.

April 4, 1987 (from the Autumn and Cindy songs booklet - June 1987)

Blonde Hair Like Mine

by Cindy, February 1989

I live in a neighborhood of San Francisco called Sunset. It's called that because it overlooks the west side of the city and the Pacific coast. And when it's not foggy you can watch the sun fade into the sea. Sometimes I'll climb up this high, steep hill near my apartment where you can see all over the city, from downtown to Golden Gate Park to the Pacific ocean. I'll sit up there, peering into the fog or looking over the great expanse of San Francisco, and think about things. Lately I've been thinking about my family a lot. When I was growing up my family was so splintered that sometimes I wonder if I really had a family at all.

My parents got divorced when I was seven and my sister Jean was nine. My father moved to Redwood City right away and then to Chicago where he remarried. I have two half brothers there. At first I was angry with my father for abandoning me and Jean like that, but as time went by we slowly grew to understand each other somehow. Now he's sort of a long distance friend, who watches over me, who cares about me. He's the only person who calls me "Cin." It's like his pet name for me. Everyone else calls me Cindy. I can talk to him about things that are important to me, about my boyfriend Billy even. Sometimes he'll fly me out to Chicago. My half brothers are great little guys. We get along pretty well. My dad's wife seems real nice. Maybe I'm a little afraid of getting close to her, but I think we're a bit alike. We both know how to keep a distance when it's needed.

Jean and I lived with our mom after the divorce. It was really hard. I blamed mom for chasing dad away, for messing things up. She didn't remarry until I was seventeen and then right after I graduated from high school her new husband was transferred to Connecticut. There was no way I was going there with them, so along with Jean I stayed in San Francisco. Our grandmother--dad's side--owns a small house that she had converted into two apartments. Jean moved into the large one bedroom apartment upstairs and I got the smaller studio on the first floor. At first my grandmother didn't charge me rent, but once I got settled and found a job, I started paying. But I know she only charges me half what she could get from someone else.

When I was nineteen Jean got a great job offer in Los Angeles and moved there. I was pretty upset, losing my sister. We had developed a strong bond after the divorce. It was like us against them. We stuck together without really thinking about it or knowing why. We just needed each other so bad. When our mom left we were forced into self-reliance. It was the right challenge for me. I discovered a part of myself, an independent nature, that I didn't really know was there before. When Jean left I was a little scared, but I learned to adapt by fighting harder for myself. And Los Angeles isn't that far away. We visit each other a lot.

Before she moved away Jean gave me an old black and white photograph of our mother that was taken when she was fourteen. Sometimes I'll take the picture out and stare at it. Mom has blonde hair like mine, but I don't think I resemble her any more than that. Dad and Jean say I look just like her. I saw dad last fall right after I turned twenty and he said, "Cin, you look just like your mother when I met her." In the picture mom is wearing a knee length skirt and a white sweater. She has a bow in her hair. She looks real pretty. She doesn't look awkward or anything like I know I felt at that age. Sometimes it scares me when I stare at the picture and see my features on my mother's face. Maybe I don't want to admit that I really do look like her cause I'm so confused about her.

Jean told me once she doesn't really miss mom. I do a little. Jean had it rougher I think because she's the oldest. She was always there for me, but who was there for her? When mom got remarried and moved away, I think that was the best thing for her, the best thing for all of us. Things relaxed. Tensions ceased. I can talk to her a little bit--not like dad, but at least there's something. She seems pretty content with her new husband, her new life. I know there's a bond between mom and me, between mom and Jean even. Some sort of fragile, tiny bond. I stare at the picture. I see blonde hair like mine. I fight so hard not to be like my mom.

When I was in high school I didn't have much patience with my female classmates so I didn't have many girlfriends. I had lots of boyfriends though. I'm told I was the class flirt. Most of the girls didn't like me much, but there was this one girl, Autumn, who became my best friend. Autumn was sort of strange in high school. I liked her right off. She had a couple of boyfriends, but she didn't go on dates with them or anything like that. In ninth grade she'd play football with the boys after school. She was always the quarterback. And she's tiny! I remember once she took a football out of her locker and showed it to me. What a strange foreign object. It was all scuffed and dirty. I don't know how Autumn could even throw the thing with her small hands.

As time went by the boys started getting serious about things like sports and Autumn was excluded from their after school activities. She became a little withdrawn for awhile, but our friendship continued. Autumn and I couldn't have been more different. I was the blonde, boy-crazy coquette and she was the awkward, dark haired tomboy. But we stuck together because we were the outcasts. We dressed different than the other girls, we listened to different music. Autumn and I decided early on that we weren't the odd ones like the other kids thought. We knew we were ok. It was everyone else who was weird.

It wasn't until after high school that Autumn developed a romantic interest in boys. She was such a late bloomer that at first she didn't seem to understand why boys started looking at her differently or wanted to kiss her. Stuff like that. She didn't get it. "It's cause you've become real sexy, Tomboy," I said to her once. "You have that feminine guile that makes boys drool, whether you know it or not." She was still puzzled, but when she started going out with boys she found out they're interested in a whole lot more than football. Now Autumn is learning how to deal with boys in a different way than when she was in high school. She's pretty tough. I think she unconsciously uses her tomboyish past to her advantage. She understands some things about boys--their rough and dirty ways--that I don't get at all. She can actually talk to a boy about boy stuff and understand what he's saying.

I guess I stopped being such a flirt when I first started going out with Billy. I was nineteen when we met. He was twenty-two. He worked at a record store in North Beach and every time I went in there he was playing an album I liked. He didn't say much at first, but I could tell that he liked me. It took him forever to ask me out. I'm pretty hooked on him now, even though he's a threat to my independence. But in the last few months I've slowly come to understand that I need him as much as I need myself.

Autumn was so lucky to have both parents when she grew up. And she's so close to her mom. They're like sisters. Like me and Jean in a way. We talk about it sometimes. Autumn feels bad for me, but she knows not to worry. I made it ok. After all I've got her and Billy and Jean looking out for me. It's like I've finally found my own family.

February 1989, unpublished

Hello! Squeak Squeak

Autumn: We're just getting moved in here, still opening boxes, changing things around. Oh look, there goes a mouse!

Cindy: Release the cats!

A: So we're gonna put our writings from the 1980s in this blog thing. Yeah I know the 21st Century is here, but we're still in the eighties.

C: I'm not sure I like this pink. Let's go all black.

A: It's not pink, it's rose, but I'm all for fading it to black... or grey...

C: So welcome to the Punk Rock Graffiti journal, everybody.

A: Colleen Combs, phone home.

C: Or at least email us.

punkrockgraffiti at yahoo dot com