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Uncle Mike's Guide to the Real Oregon Coast Paperback – July 1, 1997

5.0 out of 5 stars 12 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"...an endearing memento and a wonderful gift." -- Ursula LeGuin, Author, The Oregonian, Portland, Oregon

"Michael Burgess is excellent." -- Dave Barry, Author/Columnist

"The Erma Bombeck of travel writers." -- Maggie White, Editor of Our Town, Portland, Oregon

About the Author

Burgess is a fourth generation Oregonian, a reformed journalist and a Cannon Beach dweller. He is also a founder of Tolovana Arts Colony.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 87 pages
  • Publisher: Saddle Mountain Press; 2nd edition (July 1, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0965763811
  • ISBN-13: 978-0965763813
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.5 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #243,273 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
I originally bought this book based on its front cover. Once inside, I discovered a comedic gem. I read this as we were driving and we almost ran off the road because we were laughing so hard. I grew up 50 miles from the Oregon coast and know of what the author speaks. The illustrations are some of the most disturbing I have ever seen and just add to the tone of the book. Anyone living at or traveling to the Oregon coast or just interested in a downright funny book should read this.
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Format: Paperback
I've lived in Oregon for over 20 years, and this is the first book that tells the frightening truth about the Oregon coast. Forget those posters and coffee table books showing beautiful coastlines and majestic cliffs bathed in sunshine--as Uncle Mike explains, these pictures were actually taken "during a break between storm fronts that occurs once or twice a decade and can last as long as a week." As for the inhabitants, "the culture that endures today, while of morbid interest to anthropologists, isn't for the squeamish."

The wildlife is not much better. Uncle Mike points out that there are many sharks on the Oregon coast--and that there are no happy sharks, only hungry ones. A giant octopus can "snatch you and your toy poodle from the rocks with the lightning ease of a frog catching flies." An elk is "basically a deer on steroids," and a sasquatch is a "nearly nonexistent" monster that "hunts down humans for sport." You get the idea: from tsunamis to seagulls to ceaseless rain, the Oregon Coast is a scary place to be.

Of course, it may be that Uncle Mike is only joking. It may be that the Oregon Coast is really a bright, beautiful place with cheerful inhabitants and friendly critters. On the other hand, it might be true that Oregon coast crabs "move quickly, are quiet as ghosts, and work well in groups." You do the math.

If you enjoy Uncle Mike's sardonic sense of humor, consider getting "Uncle Mike's Guide to Sex and Drinking" (hard to find) and the two volumes of "Letters to Uncle Mike." Come what may, the Oregon Coast will never be the same.
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Format: Paperback
I bought this book because it's by one of my favorite authors, and was not disappointed. Uncle Mike is a talented author. I grew up in Oregon, and all my "beach" experience revolved around the Pacific Ocean--on or near Cannon Beach. My friend grew up in both California and Oregon, and defines Oregon as a coast, which you "look at it from the warm car while you drive by to a real beach (in California)." As I can't stand California beaches, and think cold and gray is a perfect way to see the ocean, we frequently debate the points of our favorite locales. Based on my background, I wholeheartedly support Uncle Mike's portrayal of the sea monster, sea gulls, and other fine folk of the coast. I enjoy reading it to my friend, who morosely insists that it's funny because it's TRUE. (Apparently she's one of those that should have read the book before venturing out barefoot onto the sand as a child.)
The artwood is phenomenal, and Uncle Mike's commentary is first hilarious. If you've never experienced the Oregon Coast, read this book and be warned!
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Format: Paperback
If you have never lived on the Oregon Coast, but are planning a visit, you need this book immediately. If, like me, you spent many childhood years on the Oregon coast, freezing and miserable, and you wish that someone would finally reveal that it is a perfect place to stock with polar bears and penguins, and that the beaches of Oregon are ideal for hardcore fanatic beach-lovers who enjoy sandblaster wind in the face and water so cold that it invites damnation, you must get multiple copies of this book and start handing it out to anyone who thinks Oregon beaches are the northern version of California beaches.
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Format: Paperback
i may live in the high desert now, but i still hold on tight to my waterproof floating flashlight. it's useful wherever i go. still, i miss the sneaker waves and the boulders in the surf. whenever i pick up & use this flashlight, i think of Uncle Mike and his gothic, yet realistic, vision of life along the Oregon coast.

Apocrypha could understand Uncle Mike's horror at the sandcastle event.

Uncle Mike, if you're still reading from wherever you're standing, you always made me LMAO (although this informative guide is sufficiently funny, i had to buy industrial-strength Velcro to stick MA back on repeatedly). and i am not easily or cheaply amused.

i've read this book seven times. i rarely re-read books. i've re-read some of Ursula LeGuin's , Bukowski's, PK Dick's, Crowley's, Nin's, Twain's, Tenzin Wangyal Rinpoche's.. Henry Miller;s.. Terry Pratchett's.. Paul Stamets'.. Lot49..

Let me put it to you as nicely as possible: this is a book that practically reads itself and it made me do a quick triple-take and four re-visits, yet never fails to make me laugh myself nearly unsilly. i believe that's how Uncle Mike would have wanted it. Can't BELIEVE i didn't review this precious treasure years ago, but there you are...just a hundred miles or so from a guy you'd have loved to have a drink with, buy a drink for and just listened to what he had to say for awhile. then leave the man alone to think his thoughts.

Folks, Uncle Mike DID have the decency to warn you while he could. If you enjoy books with humor so dark and yet so poignantly true you might just wet your pants and the carpet beneath your ergonomic chair, you owe it to yourself and your loved ones to buy, beg, borrow but definitely not steal, your own copy of this book.
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