Against the grain

Finding meaning in punk

Featured in

  • Published 20240507
  • ISBN: 978-1-922212-95-5
  • Extent: 203pp
  • Paperback, ePub, PDF, Kindle compatible

SHE CROSSED MY path one afternoon in 1995. I was sitting at a bus stop on Elizabeth Street in Meanjin/Brisbane, wearing glittery fishnet stockings, Dr Martens boots, a leopard-­print skirt, a studded spiky collar and a shirt that read ‘Pretty Vacant’. She rolled past me on her skateboard. I’d often seen her at gigs – she embodied the spirit Kathleen Hanna sang about in Bikini Kill’s ‘Rebel Girl’. She was a punk I admired.

She gave a friendly wave and U-­turned to sit down beside me. Reaching into her backpack, she produced a crumpled photocopied booklet. ‘What’s this?’ I asked, taking it from her. ‘Something I made,’ she replied, grinning. ‘A zine.’ The rumble of the arriving bus interrupted before I could ask any more questions. We exchanged goodbyes.

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About the author

Bianca Valentino

Bianca Valentino is a writer, book editor and underground magazine publisher. She got her start making punk fanzines in the ’90s and has written...

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