Bumps in the Road Less Travelled…

Woman with curly dark hair is sitting at her laptop, fists clenched, a scowl on her face in frustration.
Don’t punch the screen, this laptop is expensive!

Sorry (not sorry), no matter how you spin it, jobseeking SUCKS. Full stop. Like millions whose career crashed and burned due the pandemic, every morning, over too many cups of coffee, I scroll through the job boards and scower my emails, searching for signs of life. But enough is enough. It’s time to pull my head out of own ass and look at the silver lining…

Lockdown (and unemployment) has afforded me time to reflect on my life and passions, in hopes of clearing a path towards my next adventure. In honor of my road less travelled, I present I knew you when…, a compendium of the incredible places I’ve been and the amazing souls who have graced my presence…

Ep. 1: Ed Marzewski

Gallery owner, publisher, media mogul, brew master. Raconteur of the people, for the people, and by the people…

Ed Mar, I knew you when you were a scruffy little bohemian artist like me, trying to find our way in the big city. You may not remember, but in met you in 1992 at a house party in Wicker Park, Chicago when you asked me to write the horoscopes for “The Lumpen Times”, your underground media zine that gave voice “to underserved, undersupported people, and questioned the authority of everyone else, whether through satire, investigative journalism, or crass humor”. Literally cut and pasted together, it landed in every coffeehouse, indy bookstore, record store, Salvation Army & Goodwill charity shop, head shop (pre legal weed), punk rock club, and dive bar in Chicago. Insecure about my writing abilities, I declined. What the hell do I know about astrology? In hindsight, I should have just made some shit up and gone for it…

Cover of Issue #001 of The Lumpen Times, 1991

You’ve been a busy boy over the years. I’ve watched and applauded your ingenuity whilst transforming your mother’s working man’s pub into an experimental cultural center…

Early 20th century neighbourhood pub is transformed into a spacious, white walled art gallery space with beautiful wooden floors, high ceilings, and huge front windows facing a busy urban street.
Early 20th century neighbourhood pub is transformed into a spacious, white walled art gallery space with beautiful wooden floors, high ceilings, and huge front windows facing a busy urban street.
Co-Prosperity, is an experimental cultural center located in the neighborhood of Bridgeport. “Co-Pro” hosts exhibitions, screenings, presentations, installations, festivals, meetings, and performance programs in its 5,000+ square foot gallery. The space hosts between 35–60 events and exhibitions a year serving over 20,000 individuals. Each year, Co-Prosperity Sphere is home to 80–100 events and exhibitions and serves over 25,000 attendees.

… and marvelled at your hutzpah for equiping it with an FM radio station…

Royal blue background with bold white font, radio waves, and an energy bolt print advertisement for Lumpen Radio.
Royal blue background with bold white font, radio waves, and an energy bolt print advertisement for Lumpen Radio.
Lumpen Radio is a non-profit, community radio station located in the Bridgeport neighborhood of Chicago. You can hear our radio signal throughout Chicago at 105.5FM and tune-in anywhere from our website. WLPN-LP is operated by a community of volunteers: we are DJs, curators, producers, writers and organizers who work to connect you with the music and ideas we think you will love.

Your brewery, Marz Community Brewing Co. has the street cred that those hyper-confident brewery bros wish they had.

Stacked rows of colorfully designed cans of Marz Brewery craft beer
Founded on the premise that the art, culture, food, and liquid they were drinking and enjoying would also be enjoyed by others, Ed created Marz as a platform for ongoing experimental collaboration — in the beers they were brewing and with the culture of the city as well. Thus, Marz Community Brewing Co. was born.

Your wife is amazing, your mom is a badass, and your kid is adorable. Ramble on, brutha…

Swoon as Ed Mar croons you into the weekend with his karaoke version of “It’s My Life” by Talk Talk. Trust me, it’s worth the effort…

Check out links to Ed Mar’s ventures:
Co-prosperity Sphere (https://coprosperity.org/)
Lumpen Times (https://lnkd.in/diWmuNYW)
Lumpen Radio (https://lumpenradio.com/)
Marz Community Brewing Company (https://marz.beer/)

I knew you when…… Ep. 2: Paris drops soon. Stay tuned…

Writer/filmmaker who came of age during the D.I.Y. art/film/media renaissance of the 90s seeking to create content of lasting value… or whatever…