Note: If you don’t see your question asked and answered here, post yours in the comments field at the bottom and it will be answered shortly.
Q: Who built your website?
A: My graphic designer friend Rob Garbowski configured the template. He also created the banner on the main page. His band Sweettooth, by the way, rocks quite well.
Q: What is the “Archived Site” mentioned on the navigation bar?
A: That’s my old website. There is a lot of material over there (including some travel journals, a score of interviews, and all my old Sordid Tales of a Bartender in Heat columns) that was just going to take way too much time to repost, one article at a time, over here. Too much work, not enough time in the day. You can still visit the old site, but it’s more like a ghost town over there, which is fine. Ghost towns can be fun too. But it’s here where the action is.
Q: Do you have Instant Messaging?
A: Yes, I’m on AOL (AIM) , screen name: edecker62. Feel free to drop my line.
Q: Are you on any social networking sites?
Q: Can you write articles on spec for my newspaper or magazine?
A: Absolutely. I am a freelancer and am able and open to picking up new writing assignments.
Q: Are you available for readings and speaking engagements?
A: Yes. I routinely schedule readings and other spoken word performances in California. I also occasionally visit classrooms of all grades to talk about writing and journalism. Just email me for more info.
Q: How do I find out about upcoming readings and other events?
A: Sign up for the mailing list
Q: When can I catch you on the radio?
A: As of now, The Binge on 103.7 Free FM (in San Diego) is on hiatus. The Binge, hosted by Andy and Max, is the only show on radio that condones drinking. Or, as the hosts put it, The Binge is about the 4 food groups: Drinking, Sports, Music and Women. The show airs every Friday at 10pm and I am a recurring guest the first Friday of every month when I sit in the studio and shoot the shit with Max and Andy about bartending and boozing. I also do a recurring bit called Drunk Thoughts. Tune in and/or call the studio. (619) 570-1037. We’d love to talk to you.
Q: Is Drunk Thoughts a ripoff of Deep Thoughts by Jack Handey?
A: Yes, most definitely.
Q: Why is it that I sometimes don’t see your Sordid Tales column in CityBeat. Isn’t it a weekly column?
A: Sordid Tales is now a biweekly column. It used to be in the paper every week, but I found that being on the weekly column grind kept me from getting things done, such as revamping my website, or publishing books. From now on Sordid Tales can be found in CityBeat Magazine every other week, usually around page 7 or so.
Q: How do I get the current Sordid Tales online?
A: You can get it right here, the same day it hits the stands, every other Wednesday. Just click on CURRENT COLUMN in the Category menu on the right side of the page.
Q: Why does Sordid Tales have two names?
A: When Sordid Tales first began in 1997, it was called Sordid Tales of a Bartender in Heat. It ran in a now defunct music and culture magazine called SLAMM. Sordid Tales of a Bartender in Heat was about the comedy and the tragedy of the nightclub business as told by a veteran mixologist.
For about 6 years, that was the title, until SLAMM sold its interest to Southland Publishing and became San Diego CityBeat. The people at Southwest decided they wanted to keep my column in the mix but asked if I wouldn’t mind broadening the theme a tad since CityBeat would be distributed to a much larger, more diverse audience.
It was good timing because after 6 or so years I had become bored with the industry-only topics to which Sordid Tales of a Bartender in Heat was limited. So, with the blessing of my new editor, Dave Rolland, I shortened the title and widened the scope: Where Sordid Tales of a Bartender in Heat was about the tragedy and the comedy of the bar scene as told by a veteran bartender, Sordid Tales was about the tragedy and comedy of the universe as seen through a bartender’s eyes. This allowed me to write about anything I wanted while still keeping the bartender tone: current events, politics, religion, romance, sports, cinema, science, pop culture, and of course sex and drugs and rock and roll now all easily fall under the umbrella of Sordid Tales coverage.
Q: I hear you play chess. How can I challenge you?
A: I play on a free chess site. Just go to www.chesscolony.com and register for free. Then look me up and challenge me to a game. My user name is rooksmasher. Shoot me an email when you’re ready to challenge so I know to accept.
Q: Will there ever be a compilation of your Sordid Tales columns?
A: Yes. Stay tuned here.
Q: What is Modern Drunkard Magazine?
A: Only one of the funniest drinking periodicals ever. It’s all about booze culture. They reprint my Bartender columns but that’s not why I think it’s so great. It’s just good, funny shit. The art is pulp-noir, the writing style is unapologetic hooch humor.
Modern Drunkard Magazine is based in Denver but distributed nationally. The best part about it is, every year they have a convention. It’s usually in Las Vegas, which is the perfect place for a convention of drunkards. It’s always a blast. The Modern Drunkard Magazine convention is basically a 3-day drunkfest, with awesome live bands and performance artists, burlesque shows, contests, speakers, mixers, after hours parties and of course booze booze booze everywhere you turn.
Q: How can I get the print version of Modern Drunkard?
A: From their website.
Q: Why is it, in your writings, you always say, “second best,” such as, “Annie Hall was Woody Allen’s second best movie,” or “Stephen Hawking is the second smartest scientist”? How come you never say something is the best or the biggest or the smartest?
A: Because superlatives make me uncomfortable. I don’t think anyone can really say what is the best movie is, or who is the smartest scientist. Especially, when somebody else is saying it for you. For instance, I may think Broadway Danny Rose is Woody Allen’s best movie, but you may not, so, I say it’s the second best and let the reader decide for themselves which they think is best.