I recently found this article in an old copy of Cosmopolitan magazine from November 1973. It involves “tree love”, kissing cousins, cherry cola trade-offs and witchcraft and just had to be shared:
Aside from writing Hero Culte, hero worshipping and collecting “stuff”, I sometimes have other projects on the side. I have another blog Tinynoggin which I started recently because I’d just completed my first small press book.
Merde in France is my “learn French the pop culture way” book:
It all started years ago when I realised that the French phrase J’en ai marre was actually nothing to do with the guitarist from The Smiths. Although, to be fair, he probably was a bit fed up from time to time…
Anyway, I taught myself French by listening to French music (anyone who regularly reads Hero Culte will know it’s my thing) and singing along with it and I still conjugate verbs and remember vocab by going through song lyrics in my head. But not everyone would want to learn French that way. So, if you prefer, you can learn French the Tinynoggin way and do it with word association. What I’ve done with Merde in France is to draw some pop culture icons who remind me of French words for one reason or another. So if you want to say “I’m fed up”, you just think of the guitarist from The Smiths and say his name with a French accent: “J’en ai marre!” There you go, you’ve just learnt your first French phrase. Easy peasy.
There are 28 illustrations (or should I say drawings? I’m not what you’d call an illustrator by any stretch of the imagination!) and here are some examples below to give you an idea of what kind of thing you can expect from Merde in France:
I have to say I’ve been a bit slow on the uptake sorting out the marketing / selling of things but it’s gradually coming together – so if you think you’d like to learn French the pop culture way you can find it here:
Tinynoggin Etsy Store (it’s £5 plus p&p from Etsy)
Orbital Comics in London (a great comic store, you should go there if you’ve never been before – if you have been before, go again anyway!)
Rough Trade website (prestigious or what?)
And if you want to buy it in person you can find me in the First Publications Corner at this year’s Takeover event, run by Alternative Press and The London Radical Bookfair, which is on 9 May at 47/49 Tanner Street, London, SE1 3PL. For more details see their website where you can also find a list of all the exhibitors.
They will be running workshops and holding talks, so there is plenty to do from midday to 7pm. Being a newbie I will be in the First Publications Corner, not surprisingly with my first publication Merde in France, but I am also hoping to have at least one other item ready by then – maybe the Morrissey comic, here’s a taster image from that:
Anyway, buy Merde in France if you like – no pressure. That’s my little advert over.