Slingshot is an independent radical newspaper that has been published in Berkeley since 1988.
This issue got off to a promising start. At the article deadline, there were already a reasonable number of coherent articles. We didn’t get into any nasty arguments and had fun sitting together editing. At the end of an unusually short and efficient production meeting late Friday night, we heard a ruckus outside and saw a large group of people standing outside our office doing something with rope. We burst outside to witness a gaggle of birthday partygoers smashing (and burning!) a Donald Trump piñata and singing in Spanish, a joyous whirl of hugging and laughing and smiling. It was a wonderful reminder that enjoying our lives with the people we love and fighting the forces of oppression and misery are part of the same process, a process that is as ubiquitous and inescapable as it is diverse.
The next morning we were ready for a great weekend making this issue. We pushed the button to turn on our office computer and… POPPPFWOOM! A loud crack rang out and the toxic smell of burning circuitry filled the room. Apparently after being used to type numerous neo-luddite Slingshot articles, our computer had joined the struggle by committing suicide! But nonetheless, here’s a new issue. We did it!
Slingshot is an all-volunteer collective — we only work on this thing because it’s a good time. This means different things to each of us – whether it’s a chance to be creative, toss around ideas, meet people, or feel engaged with the world around us.
At one point, someone wanted to make the front page look like an old-timey newspaper from 1890 and was trying to come up with a slogan for the paper like old papers used to have. At first we came up with “All the shit that’s fit to sling,” and then more self-mocking ones like “information, inspiration, or whatever else shows up,” “Too dumb for your cool sister, too cool for your mom,” “We hardly proofread it!,” and “Well, at least we tried.”
What was clear out of the brainstorm is that this project wouldn’t be fun – and therefore wouldn’t be possible – if our main priority was perfection or the purely outward focus of creating a “serious political journal.” We know Slingshot could be a lot better. A do-it-yourself world is rough around the edges. It’s like real life, plenty of false starts but also laughter, friendship, music, and a feeling of meaning and satisfaction at the end. This issue was put together by an especially small crew but engaged a lot of people from society’s fringes who are usually totally invisible to the mainstream.
As we send this issue out into the world, we want to mourn the disappearance of Nabolom Bakery – the unofficial Slingshot café. It was a 70s collective that outlasted most others and maintained its funky public living room feeling to the end. A former Nabolom collective member who also volunteers for Slingshot realized that her Slingshot office key also fit the Nabolom door lock and vice versa – a fitting coincidence.
Slingshot is always looking for new writers, artists, editors, photographers, translators, distributors, etc. to make this paper. If you send an article, please be open to editing.
Editorial decisions are made by the Slingshot Collective, but not all the articles reflect the opinions of all collective members. We welcome debate and constructive criticism.
Thanks to the people who made this: A. Iwasa, Cedar, Eggplant, Finn, Gretchen, Holiday, Isabel, Izzy, Jesse, Joey, Korvin, Timothy, Xander and all the authors and artists!
Slingshot New Volunteer Meeting
Volunteers interested in getting involved with Slingshot can come to the new volunteer meeting on Dec. 13 2015 at 4 pm at the Long Haul in Berkeley (see below.)
Article Deadline & Next Issue Date
Submit your articles for issue 120 on January 16, 2015 at 3 pm.
Volume 1, Number 119, Circulation 20,000
Printed September 25, 2015
A publication of Long Haul
Office: 3124 Shattuck Avenue Berkeley CA 94705
Mailing: PO Box 3051, Berkeley, CA 94703
Phone (510) 540-0751 • email@example.com slingshot.tao.ca • twitter @slingshotnews
Slingshot free stuff
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Subscriptions to Slignshot are free to prisoners, low income, or anyone in the USA with a Slingshot Organizer, or $1 per issue. International $3 per issue. Outside the Bay Area we’ll mail you a free stock of copies if you give them out for free. Say how many copies and how long you’ll be at your address. In the Bay Area pick up copies at Long Haul and Bound Together books, SF.