NELSON HALL

MICHAEL EASTMAN

JOEL RIVERS

Iwas born on a farm in the rural wilds of New York, The Catskills. Almost immediately everyone involved realized that a horrible miscalculation in location had been made. I spent my childhood plotting escape and nobody seriously attempted to stand in my way. I summed it up best, years later, when asked what I liked about San Francisco, "Where else could you go for a walk in the park, view the glories of nature, gaze at the majisty of a redwood, and never leave a sidewalk!? This is civilization!"

As a foundation of study I attended one year at Western Pensylvannia Bible Institute in Butler, PA (defunct through no fault of my own) and completed the superstructure of learning by attending four years of parties at Allegeny College in Meadville, PA; interspersed with hitch-hiking tours of the country, summers spent in Inverness, CA and autums in Woodstock, NY. Eventually no one would let me crash at their house anymore and I had to get a job. Since the bong factory in Woodstock had been taken over in a hostile buy-out and all the work shipped to Mexico, I decided to move to San Francisco.

In the early 80's I wrote and performed on public radio with a group who produced "San Francisco Surreal Journal", a weekly half-hour show heard by hundreds. Later, as Nick Hornsfelt, for six years I wrote a monthly column for the North Mission News. Originally meant to be political commentary, I ended up being sent to cover such events as The Miss Universe drag show at Este Noche and interviewing the owner of McSushi's who was being sued by McDonalds for name infringement. The guy had a contest, a patron came up with the name WeBe Sushi and they now have three thriving locations! Ha!

During this time I was honeing both my drinking and pinball skills which brought me in contact with Michael Eastman. We soon recognized a cymbiotic connection in our WASPish backgrounds and have delighted in denegrating each other ever since. Unfortunately, when pinball machines went from twenty-five cents to fifty, the cheap bastard wouldn't pay anymore and we had to find something else to do besides just drinking! Here's BHIB! Enjoy!

Son of a sailor, I grew up as a military brat in many ports of call. My mother was a nightclub singer--notably at the Tick-Tock Club in Washington, DC, the city of my birth--which is the coolest thing about my family life.

Illustrated high school newspaper during senior year in Honolulu.

Left paradise and studied journalism and political science at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, where I contributed articles to the school newspaper focusing on politics and international relations.

Attended UC-Berkeley and somehow managed to complete a thesis and accidentally earn a Master's Degree, while also pursuing the higher forms of malingering in San Francisco.

Continuing to enjoy life in the City while keeping a day job.

Currently single.

Nelson and I began our collaboration in the competitive arena of pinball.Yes! And it was at another watering hole, The DeLuxe. Many hard-fought battles were played with the mighty little balls...but, you know what, neither one of us ever beat Pinball Patty. But that's another story...

Email: MichaelBriningEastman@gmail.com

A native San Franciscan, my family moved a lot after I was born (my parents hailed from parts East before that, Oklahoma, Kentucky). So, I've lived all over the City: Potrero Hill, the Mission, Glen Park, the Avenues. I drew at an early age, long before I could write or read. My first original comic strip was titled "Ant Wars" sometime around age 4.

I attended public school in San Francisco for all but two years, and let me tell you that is not for the squeemish. I became pretty introverted, and drew as an escape. I created elaborate fantasy worlds. Later with my brother and our best friend I played role-playing games (big surprise!) We even made our own Sci-Fi answer to Dungeons & Dragons.

My college years were spent behind the "redwood curtain" in far Northern California studing art and protesting EVERYTHING along with my pinko, granola-eating buddies. I was often the odd man out, though, my hair was short and people would think I was a "nark" or a reporter at half the rallies I attended.

Back in San Francisco, I eeked out a living at coffee-shops. one day, while visiting the San Francsico Comic Book Company (my local shop) I picked up a copy of "the League of Extrodinary Gentleman" by Alan Moore and Kevin O'Neill and thought, "Oh, yeah.... comics. I like those."

So, I've been re-learning my craft since then. It has several different disciplines in one, so it's no wonder that a lot of the comic artists who I admire, like Carl Barks, didn't perfect their style 'til they were my age. It gives me hope that I'll be able to draw a halfway decent page before too long.

Today, my especially supportive and patient wife, Sachi, and I live in the wilds of New England. When we're not freezing our asses off, we talk about the solar-powered house we'll build in Arizona some day.

-JZR

Email Joel