A couple of years ago a Swedish cartoonist/rapper named Simon Gärdenfors posted a notice on his blog about a stunt he was planning. He was going to take a four-month couch-surfing trip around Sweden, never staying more than two nights in the same place, and never setting foot in his own home during the trip. He asked his fans: who would like to feed me and let me crash at their place?
About 70 people signed up. The 28-year-old Gärdenfors was pleased to see that a lot of them were women, because he was hoping to have sex with as many of them as possible. In fact, he had sex with the first female he stayed with, a high school student who took him to a kindergarten were she worked (it was at night and the place was closed). They fell asleep in the classroom and they had to hurry out in the morning before the kids and teachers came in.
Gärdenfors adventures grew increasingly weird and cringe-inducing as he traveled up and down the country. His drawing style is appealingly cute and simple, which contrasts with his sleazy exploits: they include
having sex engaging in sexual activity with a junior high school girl, not using a condom because he doesn't like they way they feel, and recounting events that people asked him not to include (he even put in the parts where people said "Don't put this in your comic").
The back cover of The 120 Days of Simon lists some of the highlights from the 416-page graphic novel. He "visited an ostrich farm, ate a psychedelic cactus, practiced free love, received death threats, was beaten up by teenagers, got adopted by a motorcycle gang, drank obscene amounts of alcohol, and sacrificed his underpants to the Nordic god Brage... When this graphic novel was released in Sweden, it created a bit of a scandal. Some readers wanted to punch Simon in the face, while others hailed him as a hero."
I wouldn't call him a hero, but I found Gärdenfors' couch-surfing, mooching, drugged, unapologetically-selfish (and self-aware) odyssey to be incredibly entertaining. You don't have to like the guy to be interested in his story, but the fact that there is something a little likable about the jerk makes his story all the more compelling.
The 120 Days Of Simon (The book is out of stock on Amazon, but you can order a copy directly from Top Shelf.)
It’s been a bumper year for documentary evidence of the lost, weird history of MAD Magazine: first there was the gorgeous hardcover that uncovered the two-issue, unlimited-budget Trump Magazine (created by MAD’s founding editor Harvey Kurtzman after a falling out with publisher William Gaines, Jr, operating with a bankroll provided by Hugh “Playboy” Hefner); now there’s Behaving Madly, which assembles a timeline of the short-lived, incredibly proliferated MAD rip-offs that popped up as Kurtzman and his successor proved that there was big bucks to be found in satire.
Ralph Steadman, 81, is best known as the genius social and political cartoonist who famously illustrated Hunter S. Thompson’s depraved adventures in Las Vegas, on the campaign trail in 1972, and at the Kentucky Derby. Juxtapoz’s Gabe Scott interviewed the “crucial comic” about the insanity of today, his friendship with Hunter, and “let(ting) the paper […]
I love Michael Sweater’s collection of 60 darlingly ironic and awful comics. It feels like each comic perfectly captures the frustration and fultility of today. Please Destroy My Enemies by Michael Sweater via Amazon
The Pry.Me Bottle Opener holds tens of thousands of times its own weight, and you can pick one up now from the Boing Boing Store.This remarkable keychain is considerably smaller than any of your keys, but don’t let that fool you: it can easily open any bottle, and could even tow a trailer full of […]
Guaranteeing your privacy online goes way beyond checking the “Do Not Track” option in your browser’s settings. To ensure that your internet activity is totally hidden from Internet Service Providers, advertisers, and other prying eyes, take a look at Windscribe’s VPN protection. It usually costs $7.50 per month, but you can get a 3-year subscription […]
This project management bundle will help you get organized and learn how to lead a team to success. You can pay what you want for these five courses when you pick them up from the Boing Boing Store.To help you become an invaluable asset for your company, this bundle includes a curated collection of professional […]