Zine Review: let your fingers do the walking

let your fingers do the walking
Johnnie B. Baker

let your fingers do the walking is a black and white 1/2 fold perzine about drugs, eating disorders, and disastrous results from trying to fit in.

This zine is one that pulls no punches. There are no pauses for dramatic effect or time for coddling. Johnnie pulls you into the story on page one and doesn’t let up until the story is done. There is no gentle lead up to the horrific (in nature, not gruesome description or otherwise) events that happened because of Johnnie’s eating disorder.

Johnnie writes about being a fat kid and how that led to drugs and drinking in an effort to fit in. From drugs and alcohol, he moved on to more severe behaviours that ended up leading to more than one health incident that could have easily ended Johnnie’s life.

I wrote my notes for this zine as the wind was howling and the rain was pelting down outside, and I couldn’t help compare it to fast, hard-hitting storm. I felt shocked and concerned, but I couldn’t stop reading. While there are a few pictures in amongst the text, the words were what kept me turning from page to page.

Without a doubt this would be confronting and perhaps even triggering for some people, but I found myself feeling grateful that Johnnie wrote this zine. That he shared the stark, awful reality of what can happen if you abuse your body with eating disorder behaviour. That it is a male story of something that is more often thought of as a female problem could help other male and male-identifying people to share their stories and get hope.

This may be a faster read than zines I’ve been reading lately, but it has certainly stuck in my mind quite vividly. If you are curious, feel confident that you can handle the content, and/or, like me, could use that all-too-real reminder that it’s not worth it, then this is a zine to read.

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