The Austin Chronicle

https://www.austinchronicle.com/screens/2004-04-02/205090/

In Space

Passing notes at FoundMagazine.com

By Margaret Chapman, April 2, 2004, Screens

Every week, some lucky little piece of ephemera from modern life makes its way from a schoolyard, park bench, or car windshield to www.foundmagazine.com, where it becomes a Find of the Week. As the online outlet of the sporadically published, cult-hit magazine Found, FoundMagazine.com acts as an archive of some of the best of Found's collection of lost and found notes, pictures, and audio, each submitted and titled by its discoverer. Initiated shortly after September 11, as submissions increased and heart-wrenching finds were literally raining from the sky, the Find of the Week has since showcased more of what have become the magazine's trademark: the note.

These little missives, hastily written and forgotten, are gems – tiny glimpses of consuming anger, annoyance, or joy. Found by Todd Chisholm of Ontario, Feb. 15's note, titled "Last Warning," reads, "DRYING IS FINISHED WHEN CLOTHES ARE DRIED TO MY SATISFACTION, NOT YOURS. YOU ARE REALLY TRYING MY PATIENCE YOU PUSHY TWIT. LAST WARNING." Which makes you wonder – how long will note-writing last? Will people soon be IMing the neighbors about their irresponsible laundry use? Will school kids simply start text-messaging in class instead of passing notes?

FoundMagazine.com doesn't pretend to answer these questions; it just presents the evidence that, for the time being, people take pictures and write notes and lose them. A third issue of the magazine just hit the stands, and editor, mastermind, and chief finder Davy Rothbart is about to embark on a yearlong, 50-state tour, and his passion is infectious. If you didn't get to see him read from some of the best of the Found collection at the Alamo Drafthouse Downtown with Neal Pollack last September as part of All Good Stuff, he'll be through again. And whether you see him in person, pick up the magazine, or just visit the site, you'll have a hard time ignoring the next piece of paper that blows by.

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