FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. — Writer and self-publisher Moses Friedman stunned the independent literature community late last night by announcing he would release one “very” limited edition of his Phlegm Fatale zine, which comes stapled to his hand.
“Any hack can do sticker inserts for their special editions,” Friedman said, finalizing preparations in his kitchen. “I’m giving you a piece of myself with this one.”
Supporters of and visitors to Friedman’s one-bedroom distro were allegedly astonished by his dedication to his craft. “Dang, homie. Those staples are really in there deep,” said Catheters in Christ publisher Rikki Lee, staring at the highly collectible single edition.
“I’m selling this as a once-in-a-lifetime thank you to my zine family,” said the profusely bleeding Friedman. “If you kick in $500 to my GoFundMe, I’ll give it to you right now,” he added, referring to the crowdsourcing campaign he launched 30 minutes prior to pay for his medical expenses.
Jacki Pickney, a medical intern at Sedona Medical Center, studied Friedman’s packaging up-close when he arrived. “Visually, it’s a real eye-sore, but the quality of writing is top-notch,” Pickney said. “I mean, it’s not Cometbus or anything, but if you ignore the bloodstains, the interview with Damian Abraham is pretty tight.”
Photographer Lucille Kay witnessed the creation of the exclusive zine. “Moses had eight tallboys and started pounding that Swingline with his fist like it was the hammer of Thor,” said Kay. “Suddenly, dude starts screaming. I tried to dig it out with a butter knife, but he passed out like a total scrub.”
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“This zine is in me the same way I write it: straight to the bone,” a woozy and faint Friedman said from his hospital bed.
Dr. Troy Mitting, Friedman’s supervising surgeon, expressed cautious optimism. “It’s touch-and-go right now,” said Dr. Mitting. “Removing it without causing any additional tearing or rips is going to be very difficult. But we’re working around the clock to do everything we can to save the hand.”
Dr. Mitting then bent down to reassure the bloodstained zine. “I swear to Hippocrates, we will get you out of there so you can be forgotten under a bed like every other zine,” he said gently.
Photo by Dan Luberto @TheDanLuberto.