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How Jeremy Nguyen Went From Bushwick Satirist to New Yorker Cartoonist

Photo by Tony Wolf

Last time we spoke with Jeremy Nguyen, he had created a custom crayon for his newly released book of cartoons, Stranger Than Bushwick. The crayon’s color– Gentrify White— spoke to the wry satire found in his comics for Bushwick Daily. Volume three of Stranger Than Bushwick will debut this weekend at the MoCCA Arts Festival. It’s longer than the others, but will be “the last issue I publish for a long time while I move on to other projects,” according to the 27-year-old. That’s sure to disappoint his many local fans, but it’s hard to blame Jeremy for moving on. In January he started submitting cartoons to the New Yorker, a process that is notoriously selective. Incredibly, he sold his first one three weeks later, after pitching just 30 pieces. Since then, he has sold two more.

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Funny Pages: Tribeca Docs Plumb the Humor of the New Yorker and National Lampoon

Nation Lampoon magazine cover, Jan '73 (Credit: National Lampoon)

Nation Lampoon magazine cover, Jan ’73 (Credit: National Lampoon)

I know I’m not the only one whose pre-adolescent mind was warped by National Lampoon and the cartoons of the New Yorker, so it’s a real treat to have seen documentaries about both at the Tribeca Film Festival.

On Sunday, Calvin Trillin kicked off a post-screening panel discussion about Leah Wolchok’s doc, Very Semi-Serious, by confessing that he had a “100 percent turndown record for cartoon ideas at the New Yorker.” Back in the day, aspiring doodlers would submit for 25 years before they were finally accepted, but the documentary makes clear that entry is no longer quite as forbidding.

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Talks and Readings: Sex, Shift Scheduling, and Student Debt

This week: everything you generally avoid talking about gets talked about.


Monday, Sept. 15
Hot, Wet and Shaking: Talking About Sex with Kaleigh Trace
Kaleigh Trace is a disabled, queer, feminist sex educator with a mission: to promote “safe, shame-free and consensual sex people of all abilities, ethnicities, races, orientations, and gender identities.” Among other things, she co-wrote and appeared in the above music video in response to Robin Thicke’s “Blurred Lines.” Keep Reading »