Daily Distraction: Don't step on Noah Van Sciver's JNCO jeans

Joel Oliphint
Noah Van Sciver's new book, pictured below other collections that inspired its design.

It's hard to remember now, but a very long time ago (a little over a year), Columbus Alive came out every Thursday in print form, known in common parlance as an "alt-weekly." In this so-called "newspaper," Alive featured various local comics over the years, perhaps most notably more than 100 strips titled "The Introvert's Club" by former Columbus resident and nationally renowned cartoonist Noah Van Sciver.

It's been said that, for a time, some people only picked up Alive because of Van Sciver's comics. While that's likely true, it's also almost certainly true, and when the paper was forced to convert to a digital-only publication, losing Van Sciver's self-effacing, nostalgic, poignant and often-hilarious strip was, as the kids say, a total bummer.

But, good news! Van Sciver compiled all of those comic strips for a new Fantagraphics collection, Please Don't Step on My JNCO Jeans, out Nov. 2 and available for preorder now. According to the artist, the concept for the book was to "match the style of humor books and old comic strip paperback collections you’d find in secondhand bookstores and thrift shops. Even the title was my attempt at the kind of goofy names they’d give those collections." (See Van Sciver's photo above, with his collection highlighted among others that provided inspiration.)

Preorder your copy for a piece of Columbus history. If nothing else, you can point and laugh at Van Sciver's depiction of Alive editor Andy Downing as a cigar-smoking newspaper tyrant, which is entirely accurate.