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LOVE IS FUCKED - COMMENTARY FROM THE AUTHOR
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Boone takes a look back at the Love IS Fucked article and sees how it aged.

Wow! I just got done putting this article into format for the website and I'm kind of surprised. It's hard to believe that article was written and published 14 years ago. We'll get to what has happened since then later on, but first let's get to the nuts and bolts so to speak.

What I find interesting since then is, looking back at the article, is how well the piece has held up. When time passes, there are times when some writing may seem dated or not ring true. Thankfully, in my opinion, Love Is Fucked still holds up rather well over the past decade and a half.

I will say that when we first published issue 8 (a/k/a: Love Is Fucked: A Tribute to Valentine's Day), we didn't know what we were going to expect. I actually thought this article was some of my weakest writing to that point and that not much would come of it. The reading public had other ideas with people seeming to cling onto that issue and the theme in a way they avoided the political articles I put out in the seven previous issues before that. This was the issue whose who were curious about the zine actually responded to, much to my amazement. A beautiful woman actually bought me a beer over it. People who I never thought read the zine told me they liked it. It seemed weird to me that when I tried to cover political issues very few seemed to give a flying fuck but when we did an issue on a topic many people would consider relatively trivial people seemed to respond to it.

However, it was also a double-edged sword. While there were people who thought it was my best issue yet, it also almost typecast me to some extent. For a couple years after that people kept asking me if I was going to keep doing articles like that. However, when I would ask people to help out they still wouldn't do it; some of the reasons were quite understandable (multiple jobs on top of school), other people just didn't want to do it. Either way, the shit crew continued to revolve as it always had.

Now I know what some of you people reading this may be thinking: "We've read your damn article. Now tell us what the aftermath was?" "Did you get the girl/boy/etc?" Well, I can say this - nothing changed for the better. Sure, that woman bought me a beer 'cause of it but she still liked someone else. Also, it did little to endear me to the neohipster wannabes that somehow managed to get some kind of fucking status in certain "alternative" curcles in Columbia at that time. In those circles, doing the zine changed me from an outcast to a pariah. An express lane to popularity in those circles is not just wanting me dead, but describing how brutal you would make my murder if you could get away with it (you didn't think I knew about that). Yeah, I know they were massive fucking assholes (some would probably say poseurs) and when push comes to shove don't fucking matter but you do wish people would actually get to know you before going out of their way to proclaim their hatred towards me. It wasn't until a few years later (around 1998, to be exact) that it occurred to me that Columbodia was known for Mizzou's journalism school and that many of the people who would've celebrated my death back in the early 90s were J school rats who didn't seem to realize the different between fanzines/zines and journalism.

So my personal life didn't improve and people still wouldn't put their neck on the block and join TTWN (many of the ones who did wrote for one issue and stopped, possibly realizing that doing so would make them less popular, but that's my conjecture about that and I could be wrong). So why did the issue resonate. It took my friend Eddie to help me find that out.

A few years back we were hanging out after bars at his place drinking beers and this question came up. He told me that, for many people – including him, the topic (or the take on it) was something they'd never seen before. He told me he'd seen anti Christmas things before but still hadn't seen any anti Valentine's Day shit until that day when I dropped off issue 8 back in 1994. These days, it's easy to find anti Valentine's Day stuff in lots of places on the Internet but in early 1994 the "information superhighway" (as the Interwebs were touted as) was far from commonplace so if it was around online back then many people wouldn't have known about it until that issue came out. I still don't know whether people really found comfort in it or laughed at it My confusion over this was furthered when LIF part two in 1995 there was only one other person writing on it. By the third part of the LIF trilogy, I was the only one putting it together. Since it was never my intention for it to be one person whining, I ended it in 1996. On occasion I'd write about personal things but TTWN would largely be music and politics - for better or worse.

So why talk about it now. Well, when it was time to put together the 15th anniversary issue late last year it occurred to me that someone would complain that they wanted the "Valentine's Day" thing covered (meaning Love Is Fucked). At the time I wasn't too impressed with that piece but knew I had to put it somewhere; so it seemed better to place it online. However, the article still holds up fairly well on how I view things (which says a lot about my luck, unfortunately) and upon typing and reformatting it to go online (some minor spelling changes and an occasional word substitution for clarification purposed) found myself surprised by the work (as I had when going over past issues to decide on things for the print version of the 15th anniversary issue). With that in mind, it's in here. If you liked it cool. If not, that's your fucking problem.

- Boone.

copyright 2008, Boone Stigall/The Trouble With Normal.