Monday, September 24, 2007

Him Bwana. Me not.

Coffee: Mexico FTO Chiapas (Special Lot). Home-roasted from green beans. Very nice stuff. It has a deep, velvety texture and taste. Full City Roast.

Mug: A school-bus yellow Waechtersbach mug that has been customized with a Dymo Labelmaker label featuring the single word "Bwana". If you don't know the pure delight of a German-made Waechstersbach coffee mug, I feel sorry for you.

The reference is to a Swahili word/form of address, and to Hollywood movies like "Tarzan", "Call me Bwana", and "Bwana Dik" (which was also a Frank Zappa song, and a 1960-70s "tropics themed" nightclub catering to servicemen in San Antonio).

It was also the name of an "art" magazine I published in the early 1980s. "Bwana Art" was a half-sheet tabloid that was distributed free of charge in bars, bookstores and laundromats. It featured no advertising or editorial content, and almost no oversite. Good taste was never a criteria, only lawsuits. The contributing artists paid $50 to buy a page. They were then free to show whatever they wanted, with the only provision being that it couldn't be material copyrighted by others, or material that land the publisher (me) in court or jail. It ranged from the brilliant to the obscene.

The inaugural issue featured an old line-cut of a charging Zulu warrior below the masthead "BWANA ART", with the identifying caption below the image saying "Suburban Attitudes".

My favorite issue was the individually numbered "all blank pages" issue.

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