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I Have Fun Everywhere I Go: Savage Tales of Pot, Porn, Punk Rock, Pro Wrestling, Talking Apes, Evil Bosses, Dirty Blues, American Heroes, and the Most Notorious Magazines in the World
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I Have Fun Everywhere I Go: Savage Tales of Pot, Porn, Punk Rock, Pro Wrestling, Talking Apes, Evil Bosses, Dirty Blues, American Heroes, and the Most Notorious Magazines in the World

by Mike Edison
 

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"If your book's subtitle is Savage Tales of Pot, Porn, Punk Rock, Pro Wrestling, Talking Apes, Evil Bosses, Dirty Blues, American Heroes, and the Most Notorious Magazines in the World, you have a lot to live up to—and somehow Mike Edison does . . . Edison seems to have nine lives and enjoys every moment of each of them to the fullest . . . His journey

Overview

"If your book's subtitle is Savage Tales of Pot, Porn, Punk Rock, Pro Wrestling, Talking Apes, Evil Bosses, Dirty Blues, American Heroes, and the Most Notorious Magazines in the World, you have a lot to live up to—and somehow Mike Edison does . . . Edison seems to have nine lives and enjoys every moment of each of them to the fullest . . . His journey takes him around the world, but he always returns to magazine writing, and his insider scoop on these bizarre workplaces is what, finally, makes this memoir truly memorable." —Penthouse

"Cooler than Toby Young and more credible than James Frey."—Bookforum

"Will have you alternately envying Edison and being glad you've avoided such encounters." —New York Daily News

"Gloriously told . . . Surprisingly intelligent." —SF Weekly

"[Edison's] an engaging, sardonic guide to some of magazinedom's more disreputable territories." —Entertainment Weekly

"Brash, irreverent, funny as hell and beautifully written."—PopMatters

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

I Have Fun Everywhere I Go is a heart-pounding, jealousy-inducing, kick in the teeth of a read. Edison has done it all and lived to write about. The perfect book for the armchair journalist--who wants to know what life is like on the seamy edge, but doesn't want to put his or her ass on the line to experience it in the flesh. Buy this book--you'll read it till your eyes bleed.” —Jerry Stahl, author of Permanent Midnight

“This book is beyond blurbs, so let's just get to the jack. If you have any interest in pot, pornography, punk rock, or professional wrestling, just buy this f*cking thing. Much more important than food for the table or the starving children of wherever.” —Nick Tosches

“A laugh-a-minute joyride through the back alleys of pre-internet sleaze culture.” —Daniel Clowes

“Half the time I spent reading this laugh-out-loud saga of depravity and mayhem, I found myself wishing I'd lived this life; the other half, I was thanking sweet heaven I didn't. In a world where many would-be rebels (myself included) would like to consider themselves or their work ‘anti-establishment' or 'punk rock,' Mike Edison hasn't just talked the talk, he's walked the walk. May God have mercy on his soul.” —Todd Hanson, writer and editor, The Onion

“Half-intellectual, half-media whore, (and all-man), Mike Edison takes you on the last roller coaster ride through the American counter-culture. Buckle up for a fabulous read.” —Josh Alan Friedman, author of Tales of Times Square

“Edison's book is so funny and smart and delightfully filthy that I wish I had written it myself.” —Al Goldstein, Screw founder

“Cooler than Toby Young and more credible than James Frey.” —Andrew Hultkrans, Book Forum

“Will have you alternately envying Edison and being glad you've avoided such encounters.” —Patrick Huguenin, Daily News

“The perfect summer reading companion for anyone who would rather lace their weed with the Ramones than with the Byrds.” —J.A. del Rosario, The Rake

“Fucking awesome.” —Joanna Muñoz, URB Magazine

“Over the past twentysomething years, Edison has written for and edited magazines of varying degrees of ridiculousness and decorum: Wrestling's Main Event, Screw, Cheri, Hustler, Penthouse, and High Times. What better journalistic outlets for a guy with a refined sense of the absurd and the overblown? . . . Edison's writing style is a gonzo-type rush, filled with hilariously inventive descriptions . . . [He] might never wind up on the masthead of a sunny Condé Nast publication--but why would he ever want to?” —Amy Finch, The Boston Phoenix

“Spectacularly gripping . . . While the subject matter might be lowbrow at best (covering pro wrestling) and downright sleazy at worst (reminiscing at length about penning 28 pornographic novels), "I Have Fun" is a rollicking joyride peppered with rip-roaring anecdotes that will end up eliciting unseemly guffaws.” —Lisa J. Curtis, Go Brooklyn

“If your book's subtitle is Savage tales of pot, porn, punk rock, pro wrestling, talking apes, evil bosses, dirty blues, American heroes, and the most notorious magazines in the world, you have a lot to live up to--and somehow Mike Edison does . . . Edison seems to have nine lives and enjoys every moment of each of them to the fullest . . . His journey takes him around the world, but he always returns to magazine writing, and his insider scoop on these bizarre workplaces is what, finally, makes this memoir truly memorable.” —Penthouse

“They don't make guys like this anymore . . . high-spirited sleaze, overeducated yokelry, and intensely American egalitarian humor . . . gloriously told . . . surprisingly intelligent.” —Hiya Swanhuyser, SF Weekly

“[Edison's] an engaging sardonic guide to some of magazinedom's more disreputable territories.” —Clark Collis, Entertainment Weekly

“Edison doesn't disappoint . . . From page one, the book threatens to burst at the seams with larger-than-life characters and dirty deeds that might've made the late, great Hunter S. Thompson squeamish in their potency and the best part is that, unlike Thompson's work, nothing is embellished . . . The portrait of existence that Edison paints as he remembers the strange turns that his career has taken is terrifying, funny and elating all at once.” —Bill Adams, Ground Countrol

“Readers in search of a fun ride through recent American cultural and media history will do well to consider Mike Edison's stunning memoir . . . Edison is a renaissance man among drug abusers and porn peddlers . . . [He] glides along the edges of society with an intense dose of wit and a startling eye for the insane.” —Jason E. Sumerau, Metro Spirit (Augusta)

“[Edison is the] Somerset Maugham of filth . . . the Horatio Alger of trash, and if he doesn't actually have fun everywhere he goes, he does always learn something, and he reveals it in lively, vivid detail.” —Rodney Welch, Free Times

“Definitely a fun read.” —Lori J. Kennedy, Remix

“One couldn't hope for a funnier guide to the doped-up, rollicking good cheer of 20 years in outlaw culture.” —Amy Benfer, B&N Spoltlight Review

“Edison's juicy screed of a memoir is like a kick in the solar plexus: It may hurt like nobody's business, but at least it wakes you up . . . a beer-sozzled, speed-cranked nail bomb of a book--what everybody's Saturday night should be like.” —Kirkus, starred review

“This hilarious insider look at fringes of journalism and magazine publishing is written with a gleeful burning-his-bridges-behind-him vibe.” —Publishers Weekly

Publishers Weekly

This hilarious insider look at fringes of journalism and magazine publishing is written with a gleeful burning-his-bridges-behind-him vibe. Edison is a child of the '70s who came across High Timesmagazine and immediately recognized that it "was a miracle of lifestyle journalism." A daily high school pothead, he delivers an amazingly detailed remembrance of life in New York City after his surprising acceptance into New York University and then, after dropping out, Columbia University, which leads to jobs working first for the World Wrestling Federation, then writing porn novels, before moving on to men's magazines like Cheri. He shamelessly admits that "putting out inconsequential slap rags was a lot of fun." After a dalliance with the Raunch Hands punk group, Edison is back writing for Hustlerand Penthouse, until he finally gets an editing job at High Times. This stint-the bulk of the book-provides a riotous look at that magazine's stoned style, where the staff couldn't arrive on time to planned meetings unless Edison could "fold the fabric of the universe onto itself and led the staff through some sort of cosmic wormhole." (May)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
Edison's juicy screed of a memoir is like a kick in the solar plexus: It may hurt like nobody's business, but at least it wakes you up. The prototypical nice Jewish boy from the Jersey suburbs with perennially disappointed parents, teenaged Mike loved nothing more than smoking pot and drinking booze, preferably while pursuing other loves like pro wrestling (he wrote and edited a zine called Main Event in the mid-'80s) and punk rock (he worshipped at its altar with his almighty drum set). A short stint at NYU film school didn't pan out-the Jean Renoir-worshipping snobs sniffed at his downmarket tastes-so Edison spent a few years rocking across New York and Europe with his band, Sharky's Machine. At home, the freakishly evolved, high-functioning substance abuser paid the bills by doing everything from cranking out a porn novel a week (the money was good, the page lengths set, and dialogue took up a lot of space) to editing and writing at top speed for porn, wrestling and trade magazines. Things slowed down a bit when, after a particularly debauched period touring and drinking his way around Spain, Edison started taking real jobs, realizing to his surprise that "somehow I had turned a three-year coke jag into a marketable skill." What should have been a dream gig at High Times magazine turned into a nightmare as the hippie-hating punk butted heads with the lazy hippies on staff. While an excellent introduction to the ins-and-outs of magazine publishing, this part of the book loses momentum as Edison devotes too many pages to settling scores with old enemies. Fortunately, it wasn't long before he was back out in the world, living for the moment. A beer-sozzled, speed-cranked nail bomb of abook-what everybody's Saturday night should be like.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780865479036
Publisher:
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication date:
05/12/2009
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
352
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.70(h) x 1.10(d)

Read an Excerpt

Excerpt

The next person who suggests putting Bob Marley on the cover is going to be looking for a new job.

I would get in a lot of trouble for saying things like that, but seriously, Bob Fucking Marley? That’s the best you’ve got?

If you have ever imagined a creative meeting at a magazine to be a bubbling cauldron of energy and hot ideas, with ambitious editors pitching stories and competing to get plum assignments, well, this wasn’t it. My exhortations were greeted by grunts.

After years of pumping out seedy sex books and down-market filth, promoting the careers of devil-worshipping wrestlers and Bourbon Street strippers, I had finally scored my dream job—publisher of High Times magazine. What my grandma used to call “that dope rag.”

Strangely, not everyone wants to work for a marijuana magazine, no matter how famous it is. But after years of cut-rate pornography, drugs were a definite step up.

There was talent in the room, but most of it had been stifled by years of stoner ennui, the unfortunate side effect of working for a pop culture perennial where free weed was a perk. One editor, whose eyes looked like hemorrhoids from years of staring down the length of a water pipe, thumbed through an old issue dispassionately. Another amused himself with a chocolate-chip cookie. The others had about as much interest in my pep rally as a monkey might have in a chess match. I should have brought them a bright red rubber ball to play with. Or a coconut. These guys knew how to make a totally excellent bong out of a coconut.

But the magazine was in trouble. Circulation was flagging. It seemed like they had run out of ideas. Bob Marley? He had already been the cover story. Three times. There wasn’t a whole lot more to report.

When I came on board, the most recent celebrity to have been featured on the cover was Pancho Villa.

Pancho Villa?

Presumably this is why I had been hired—to lead High Times out of the grove of hackneyed pothead icons and dead Mexican folk heroes.

I looked around the room and measured my team. The fellow who had been eating the cookie was covered in crumbs. Everyone looked as if they were just waiting for the bell to ring so they could go to recess.

This was not going to be easy.

Excerpted from I Have Fun Everywhere I Go by Mike Edison. Copyright © 2008 by Mike Edison. Published in May 2008 by Faber and Faber, Inc., an affiliate of Farrar, Straus and Giroux. All rights reserved.

Meet the Author

Mike Edison is a writer, editor, and musician. He lives in New York City.

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