10 p.m. on a Rainy Night: Best Zine or Comic 

Kitchen Sink

Okay, fine. Kitchen Sink is probably too big and too professionally printed to technically be considered a zine. And although it has comics, it is not, itself, a comic. But let's take a moment here to salute the East Bay's newest arts-and-lit quarterly, which has a zine's finely tuned mix of witty writing and wry humor as well as a comic's simultaneous angst and goofiness. It's required reading for people who, as it says on the cover, "think too much." The magazine, launched last December and now up to its third issue, is the literary outgrowth of Oakland's Neighbor Lady Community Arts Project. On the serious side, it has offered thoughtful articles about what corporate scandals reveal about American democracy, how budget cuts are effecting NASA, and the fate of the Bay Area art scene after the dot-com implosion. But it also has a stable of entertainment writers who deftly crank out more lighthearted pieces, including a profile of sweetly sad comic-book artist Dave Kochalka, porn star Nina Hartley's recipe for French toast (freedom toast is for simpletons), and an article daring to ask whether Destroyer's Daniel Bejar and the Mountain Goats' John Darnielle are actually the same person. Subscription information and names of local stores that carry the mag are available on the Web site.

Readers' Pick for Best Local Zine: Oakslander


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