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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 Hardcover – May 13, 2008
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From 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 Times magazine 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 Hustler and 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.
“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
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Top Customer Reviews
Mike Edison aka Lord Zeppelin (one of his anonymous pen names) took me on a wild ride going from punk band drummer to solo blues slide guitarist, smut mag to stoner mag, European tour to Asian wedding adventure, all without any apparent purpose other than to find some interesting things to write about in his autobiography one day, and that he did. There is no shortage of hilarious and interesting material here, and while I have to question his journalistic integrity from time to time, he is usually the first one to confess his own shortcomings in his relationships and in the workplace, so his tall tales carry much more credibility than that of say, I don't know, James Frey (A Million Little Pieces).
Make no mistake about it; Edison has no plans to sober up. This is not a coming-of-age tale, nor a rock-bottom to riches account. The amount of drugs he unabashedly consumes throughout the memoir is mind boggling, not due to the fact that he made it out alive, but because he was able to meet as many deadlines and complete as many writing and publishing assignments as he did. The type of magazines he worked for are not necessarily world class publications, but the author brought a level of professionalism to the offices of such noteworthy publications as "Screw", "Soft Drinks & Beer" and "High Times" that does not jibe with his otherwise anarchistic music career. His work ethic was inspired by the idea of "bringing something better to the bottle every day."
The most dramatic portion of the book recounts his stint at "High Times", commonly referred to as "that dope rag", in which Edison attempts to transform the office from a lazy stoner hangout into a high-octane, high circulation publishing empire. The staffers are heavily resistant to his mandate to cease smoking in the office during business hours, and he goes from being Editor and Publisher in Chief to "Head Fascist" in less than a year. Eventually, he is credited as being a producer for the High Times Potluck movie, featuring Jay of Jay and Silent Bob, which apparently went straight to DVD and is currently nowhere to be found for sale on the Net. You can however, purchase his most recent musical project, Edison Rocket Train Yes! Yes!! Yes!!!, however, I would highly recommend staying away from this noise and instead picking up a Jon Spencer Blues Explosion disc. Oh yeah, if you happen to love the Beatles, you might also want to stay away from this book, as he spends a fair amount of time rationalizing his distaste for the Sgt. Pepper album and Beatle-mania in general.
In the end, the pure entertainment value of this book and Edison's stories of a low brow lifestyle are through the roof, and his literary style and voice are much more advanced and coherent than I would have expected, but if you are looking for a story with any kind of redeeming social value, you will not find it here. Mike Edison has cemented his place in the literary canon as the hardest working screw up in show business.
Kristian Strom (Find More Book and Music Reviews at Kristian Strom Dot Com)
It ain't what you eat. It's the way you chew it.
This author Mike Edison tells of his adventures writing and the publishing industry of the most infamous of all the smut of the counterculture. I suppose he has contributed to the Degeneracy of western culture. Some of his culture references are very funny for example he and an associate of his compares the publishing industry he is in to out "Post Darwinian Theory of Publishing Evolution Based on Planet of the Apes." The ruling class if the ape publishing world are like Dr Zayes. I think I have often said stuff like that but this guy has said it with great skill and lucidity. All the greatest or most disgusting aspects of our cultural are discussed. It is a very fast read....good with 3 shots of espresso. I give it 4 stars only because this filth has destroyed the western world. In a certain sense the author admits this. The book is a great conversation with the author. The paranoid history of High times and Tom Forcade was perhaps the most fascinating part.
Sure, it's a little over the top. It's also a bit self-indulgent (but what memoir isn't?). So what? It's still a rip-roaring yarn. And it's NEVER boring.
This is the most fun I've had with a memoir in a long time. For sheer reading pleasure, I rank it up there with Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Danny Sugarman's Wonderland Avenue, and Miles Davis' autobiography. Good stuff here. So fill your cup and drink deeply. You won't be disappointed.
A shameless Ivy League dropout, Edison writes with a sharp and refreshing wit, willing to risk it all by telling it all. He's been a producer for a horrible B movie; a band-aid on tours with the likes of The Ramones and the Jon Spencer Blues Explosion; a spy at a religious cult meeting; a smoking buddy of Ozzy's; and, of course, a writer.
This is the perfect book for someone wanting to live on the edge but afraid of doing so. It's a seesaw ride in which one can't decide if she's more jealous of not having lived this life or thankful she hasn't.
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