In the autobiographical comic story “Weekends Abroad”–which was just reprinted in The Best American Comics 2011 —Orner takes us inside his new life. He came to Israel for a job, but he doesn’t speak Hebrew, and he’s not sympathetic to either side in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Intimidated by being a gay man in a foreign country, and knowing very few people, he winds up taking long walks alone. He’s enchanted and mystified by a recurring trail of graffiti, written in English, that he finds all over Tel Aviv.
One night, Orner flees a busy dance club and gets lost downtown. He finds fresh graffiti and chases it around town, finally discovering its creator. Though he doesn’t find the relationship he’s been seeking, he discovers a new, unexpected friend…and an equally unexpected side of Israel.
November 18, 2011