Zine, Harley Rex, issue 22, email@example.com, $3
It’s not easy being twee. For indie-pop record label owner and show promoter Harley Rex, love, music and cats are the central themes of his life, or at least his zine, Yard Sale!
Primarily comprised of letters that may or may not be sent to the addressees, issue #22 details a trip Rex takes to Vancouver in order to hang out with a band he enjoys (Katie and the Lichen), and perhaps find a new place to live. At the time of the zine’s writing, Rex was living in his parents’ house in Oshawa and romanticizing previous trips to Portland and San Diego, where he spent time with a woman he is still hung up on. Rex shows no shame in his longing for a woman named Beth with whom he’s had a long-distance, hot-and-cold relationship for a number of years. As well, his uncertainty about his future and his uncertainty over employment will ring true to many readers. But the inclusion of multiple letters outlining the same complaints about Vancouver’s weather and record stores is the definite downside to the format. While it’s likely that these are the things a person would genuinely
include in a letter, they don’t stand up to repeat readings. Judging by the image he draws of himself, Harley Rex seems like an energetic guy who is trying to keep indie-pop alive
and well in a city that isn’t known for its cuteness, while also trying to create a contented life. Just like a real yard sale, this zine has a lot to take in, and you might find some treasure if you take the time to dig. (Joanne Huffa)