On Sunday I took a walk from my home in the Inner Sunset to one of several favorite comic book stores in San Francisco: Comix Experience, located at Divisadero and Page. While there to pick up the latest Book of the Month Club selection, I spotted this:
Of course I had to buy it. I’m glad I did. It’s a great sketchbook of life on Muni by local artist Emma Munger. If you go to her site, you can see more of her artwork, and links to her on Instagram, Twitter, etc. When I bought the comic, I didn’t know that she has also been responsible for many of the window displays at Comix Experience, including the current display for Dan Clowes’ book coming out soon, Patience.
Now! A non-compensated plug for Comix Experience and their Book of the Month Club: Comix Experience has managed to survive and thrive in San Francisco for over 20 years, and is more than just some place to buy Batman comics. When the City decided to raise the minimum wage, it was clear their aim was squarely at corporate employers, such as “McDonalds” and not at locally owned small business. Many book retailers were in a bit of a pinch, since they can’t raise prices the way a restaurant might to accommodate the increase.
Comix Experience (like Borderlands) did something unique – they created a Book of the Month Club where you can join and each month you get a new book. Their selection is really good, and you’re getting a good deal. Even better, all proceeds go DIRECTLY to the wages of their employees. That’s right! Sure, you could send your money to some guy who makes speeches, but here’s a chance to get great comics, and support local workers living in San Francisco RIGHT NOW. What more could you want?
Well, you get more than a book each month. You usually get a SIGNED copy of said book, and an opportunity to meet the creators of each book either in person, or sometimes via online video (as they did in the case of some creators from Brazil). It’s a great concept and I want this to succeed, since hoping City Hall will mitigate a local minimum wage for truly local businesses is, like waiting for anything good to come out of there, kind of a lost cause.
*PS: We in San Francisco are lucky that we have so many great comic book stores, all locally owned and each unique in just how great they are. I make a lot of my purchases at Amazing Fantasy on Irving (hey, they’re my neighbors!) and Isotope Comics in Hayes Valley is another great store, and the owner, James Sime, is always a pleasure to talk to and is very knowledgeable as well.