The Exorcist of Valparaiso

I’ve only had one shot of pisco, but I’m starting to believe the drink is hallucinogenic.

It is Sunday night in Viña del Mar, Santiago de Chile’s beachside resort town, and in an old gymnasium behind a private school the crowd is singing and clapping. On the basketball court, a band of teenagers plays electronic music. Men and women, some in their 50s and 60s, bound across the floor with their arms spread like wings, their faces ecstatic. Some have collapsed to their knees with their foreheads to the floor and their butts in the air. Others lie comatose on their backs as attendants in white blouses and Pilgrim dresses cover them with purple cloths. A sign in Spanish demands, “Silence! Talking is prohibited. These slaves are praying because they suffer. We are conversing with God. Pray without ceasing.”


About a hundred people watch from the wooden bleachers, still more from rows of plastic lawn chairs on the gym floor. I take a seat high in the bleachers, and when I lean my head back to marvel at the iron beams crisscrossing the domed ceiling, bright blue paint flecks off of the wall.

At center court, two bouquets of sunflowers flank a portable stage. Embroidered cloths declare “JESUS IS THE FRIEND THAT NEVER FAILS” and “THERE IS VICTORY IN THE BLOOD OF GOD.” After the last of the catatonic are guided back to their plastic chairs, a stocky silver-haired man in a blue suit steps to the podium. He is holding a gigantic leather-bound Bible. Sunday services have begun at the Fe Apostolica Cristiana church. To know more about this, you can checkout these recumbent bike reviews before buying one.

I came here by accident after a day in Chile’s capital city of Valparaiso — the most important port in all of South America until the early 1900s, when the Panama Canal opened. The town is still plagued by poverty and employment, although tourism increased after it was named a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO.

Wandering Valparaiso is like playing a game of Chutes and Ladders. Its ramshackle houses, many of them adorned in sheets of brightly colored corrugated steel, dot the city’s 44 mountains like apples on tree limbs. Meandering stone streets and slanted stairways and planks take the breathless walker from one level to another. Fifteen funicular cable cars, some over 120 years old, creek up inclines connecting El Plano — the flat port area of seedy sailors bars and neoclassical bank and government buildings — to the strictly residential hilltop neighborhoods, where laundry hangs and skinny strays sleep in the dust and sun. The moment you stop to wonder whether the lean-to ladder or the crumbling stone steps crammed between two houses leads to a public path or to someone’s backyard, a woman watching you from the other side of town calls out from her window, “Sigue pa’rriba,” keep going up.

As night fell, I took one of the ubiquitous colectivos — shuttle buses that jockey for customers by slowing down and honking at pedestrians, barely stopping to randomly let people on and off — to Viña, where the well-heeled of Santiago go to gamble, smoke Cuban cigars on the boardwalk, and eat overpriced Dominos pizza. A cab driver misunderstood my question about “fun bars” and dropped me off at the intersection of Ecuador and Valparaiso streets, a block from the commuter train tracks.

On one side of the intersection was a disco called the Playhole, where, after some flirting and petting, you can take one of the niñas to a room upstairs. On the other side was a 2nd floor “Sauna Relax” that is not a sauna at all. As I wandered Valparaiso Street, the last shoppers were being pushed out of the shoe and clothing stores and the shutters were coming down. The bars were empty. Chile is not like other South American countries — although the dictatorship fell in 1990, the circadian rhythms are still in curfew mode and most people are asleep by 10 o’clock.

This is when I heard an uproar of music, singing, and clapping from a dark alley. When I pressed my ear against the steel wall at its dead end I assumed the hoedown was coming from something along the lines of the underground hipster tango club in Buenos Aires that is hidden away on the 5th floor of an old factory.

But this is not a hipster club. I am at an evangelical church. In recent decades, Protestant and Pentacostal churches have become increasingly numerous in Chile, especially in poor towns suffering from high unemployment rates. Although more than 75% of Chileans are still nominally Catholic, many are converting, and evangelical Christians are more than twice as likely to go to church.

This church started two years ago in a much smaller space, the preacher tells us. God answered their prayers by giving them the gymnasium on Sundays and various apartments on weekdays. Now they even have missions in Argentina, where they have saved so many that they need a bigger space. They will get this space, the preacher bellows, because “GOD IS THE OWNER AND THE KING OF MONEY!”

(With the fall of the peso, evangelism has become big in Argentina also — the “Waves of Love and Peace” ministry claims an attendance of 13,000 daily, and during a recent Easter Sunday it packed 35,000 into the biggest auditorium in Buenos Aires, baptizing 3,200 in portable pools in an attempt to set a world record.)

The crowd applauds wildly.  They are mostly working-class couples and families dressed in casual, discount-store clothes. Several mothers are cradling babies.

“The other churches around here think we’re strange. They say, ‘Don’t go to that church, they’re crazy. They sing and dance and fall on the floor.’ They wonder what goes on in here. But they hear the singing, and they come in here to see what’s going on, and that’s when we have them!”

After the applause dies again, we are told to raise our right arms and make fists, and to imagine in our fists our offerings to the church.

“GOD IS RICH!” the preacher screams over and over again, and we say: “Amen. Amen. Amen.”

Finally an attendant in a blue suit passes out envelopes for “SEEDS OF LOVE” which depict the hand of Jesus shedding blood over Chile. Men rush from the top rows of the bleachers to retrieve them and borrow pens from their neighbors so they can write prayer requests on the backs. They fill them with money and drop them in the plastic Tupperware buckets that have suddenly appeared on a table on the other side of the gymnasium.

This week’s sermon is about hechiseria: witchcraft. Fortune telling, tarot, black magic… these are big in Chile. As in Brazil, many Christians in Chile like their religion with a side of superstition. In Santiago you can have your aura cleaned for $60. You can visit a past life or contact a spirit for $50. A man named Henry Tarot will de-Poltergeist your house if you find a crucified monkey under your bed, or you can hire a Brazilian voodoo witch to sacrifice chickens for you while she smokes a spliff. And then there is urine drinking, fire walking, and sitting in a pyramid-shaped cage while you have your aura photographed with a Kirlian camera.

These are tools of the devil, says the preacher. Satan has used them to destroy towns, cities, and nations.

“If you ever consulted a witch,” the preacher screams, “You were actually talking to the devil. If a gypsy ever read your palm, she wasn’t consulting your palm but rather the demons inside her.” After pausing to let this sink in he screams, “You are fornicating with the devil! You are committing spiritual adultery!”

He goes on for half an hour until finally it is time to free the demons.

“OUT!” He screams, and we say “Amen.” The band strikes up a dark, brooding chord straight out of a Pink Floyd dirge.

We are told to lift our hands and ask for forgiveness. “Raise your hands if you believe in God, and believe in Christ, and believe you are totally free from evil.”

After reading from Apocalypse he tells us, “If you have desires to vomit, or to run to the bathroom, it may be God liberating you from the devils.” A man actually gets up to go to the bathroom, but a good piss is the only thing he seems intent on liberating.

“OUT!” The preacher screams again.

“If a man shouts in the voice of a woman, it is the demons escaping!”

He tells us to hold our hands up again. Close our eyes. Open our mouths so the demons can leave us.


Suddenly a man in the front row starts shaking spastically.

“Everyone who has ever practiced witchcraft, come up front!” Within minutes, half the room has lined up before the pulpit as if to receive diplomas. He tells them all to lean forward and open their mouths so the demons can leave.

A man collapses. The preacher screams “OUT! GET OUT!” so loud that the loudspeaker distorts. The band shifts into Zeppelinesque minor-key arpeggios.

A man bent forward at the waist — his mouth open, his arms dangling — walks around in a circle like a car with a jammed steering wheel. After several minutes he runs out of gas and collapses on the floor. A woman falls to the floor screaming and begins flailing her arms and shaking her head like a baby in a crib.

The preacher goes down the line of witches like a holy drill sergeant and places his hand on each forehead, scolding the demons before he pushes each person back into the arms of a bouncer. The burly man catches each of them and guides them gently to the floor, except for a giant woman who falls through his arms and hits the floor with a thud that can be heard from the bleachers. Finally the entire line of dominos has fallen and a few dozen men and women lie on their backs like war dead. A man who is still standing raises his arms and watches them tremble in a way that reminds me of Axl Rose in the “Don’t Cry” video.

Meanwhile a lot of people are just milling around, chatting with friends. The services seem to have reached their seventh inning stretch. I leave the bleachers. The bathroom floor is covered in urine. When I return to the gym floor, a Chinese-looking man with buckteeth is smiling in my face.

“Are you saved?” He asks.

I tell him that I am, hoping he doesn’t smell the pisco on my breath.

“Do you want them to pray for you?”

I tell him as long as it doesn’t cost money, and he beams as if he has found a friendly Martian. He darts off and a minute later, he returns with the preacher’s wife, a prim woman who tells me “God loves you” with a kiss on the cheek.

She puts her hand on my head and I close my eyes.

“Dear God, help this young man walk in the path of righteousness.” I don’t hear the rest, because I’m wondering how long I’m supposed to play dead after she pushes me backwards.

But she doesn’t push me backwards. She just says “Amen” and asks me where I’m from. We chat a while and I ask about the woman who is still on her back, flailing her arms like an infant. She mentions the last Psalm, something about singing and dancing in praise of the Lord.

Conversation lags, so I offer to help them start a chapter in New York City. She is troubled to hear that hechiseriais also rampant there and gives me her phone number. She insists that I give her a call when I get back.

I have lost that number, unfortunately, but I am keeping my eyes on the church’s web site. There is nothing there right now, but with the will of God and a thousand more “seeds of love,” I am sure that it will grow.

Daniel Maurer has written for McSweeney’s and Nerve, among other publications, and wanders around in strange countries far too much for his own good.


16 Simple Questions for Bruce Cameron

He gave us 8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter and Other Tips from a Beleaguered Father (Not that Any of Them Work). The handbook for handling female teenage angst from a father’s twisted perspective reached number 14 on the New York Times Bestseller List.

Now, W. Bruce Cameron gives us How to Remodel a Man: Tips and Techniques On Accomplishing Something You Know is Impossible but Want to Try Anyway, published in September of 2004 by St. Martin’s Press and now in development as a sitcom.

W. Bruce Cameron
8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter
Workman Publishing 2002
W. Bruce Cameron
How to Remodel a Man
St. Martin’s Press 2004


A_P:  You wrote nine unpublished novels prior to your success with 8 Simple Rules. When did you write the first one?

BC: That would have been fourth grade. All the other kids wanted to be astronauts and accountants, but I knew I wanted to be a writer, so I started a novel. It was called Bad Luck Bruce and it was based on a true story about two very evil sisters, just like the ones I had. I told my parents they were superfluous. They had me. Why the hell did they need more kids? They should have stopped while they were ahead. It was a book about very mean, useless sisters.

A_P: What happened to your novel?

BC:  I wrote 26 pages, then I got tired. I went out to play baseball.

A_P: With that first attempt at writing a novel under your belt, what was your next project?

BC:  At 16, the worst thing that can happen to a writer happened to me. I sold my very first story. It was to the Kansas City Star. Of course, this convinced me that this writing thing was going to be a breeze. I had written about two young men who were conscientious objectors in prison during the Vietnam War. I knew nothing about this subject area, which set the pace for all my later writing.

A_P:  And the next novels?

BC:  Yes, there were more. Nine unpublished novels I wrote over the years. I wrote one when I was single, in my twenties and in college at Westminster, known for Winston Churchill, Cheney’s Kerry-bashing speech, and the night I threw up on the Sigma Chi frat house lawn. That story was about a middle-aged man with a construction company having the typical mid-life crisis. Again, something I knew nothing about but decided to write, anyway. Are you seeing a common theme here?

A_P:  I understand you worked as a freelance writer for a while. How did that work out?

BC:  Let’s see. I remember working for about six months, living with my parents and making $45 a month. I realized in short order that in that scenario, I would never have sex again. I got a job with the fire department driving an ambulance at breakneck speed and watched a lot of TV, skills that still serve me well today but still didn’t do much for my sex life.

A_P:  So what finally broke loose for you that got you where you are today with two critically acclaimed books and sitcom gigs?

BC:  In 1995, after two decades of writing, I decided to use this technology Al Gore invented called the Internet and published a column online. My online subscriptions peaked before the advent of Viagra spam.  I went to the newspaper with 40,000 subscribers and by April of 1998, I had a column with the Rocky Mountain News. Now the column is syndicated by Creators Syndicate.

A_P: And then came 8 Simple Rules.

BC:  I wrote the column, “8 Simple Rules for Dating My Teenage Daughter,” and the readers went wild. They loved it. I decided to give it a shot as a book and sent the proposal to Workman. They published it in 2002.

A_P:  Do you think the column provided a good vehicle for promoting the book?

BC:  Not really. I think there is interest at first with those readers, but then it’s more like “Now I’ve got to read a whole book by this guy? I’ve been trying to unsubscribe from that column of his for two years!” No, I think the book just appealed on its own.

A_P:  There was a movie deal in the works for 8 Simple Rules.  What happened?

BC:  That all happened very fast. A producer for Disney picked up the book in an airport after his flight was delayed. He contacted me about a movie deal and we finalized things. I wrote the screenplay. But after John Ritter died, we decided it was best not to continue. (*Actor John Ritter played the central character for the ABC sitcom based on Cameron’s book. Ritter died from an aortic dissection Sept. 12, 2003.) 

A_P:  Now we have How to Remodel a Man. The back cover offers a fairly exhaustive and very funny list of how to change male behavior. Have you changed your ways?

BC:  I am a changed man. I was guilty of everything on the list. One of the problems was, I didn’t realize these were problems. I thought many of them were some of my most redeeming qualities. Then I got divorced and eventually was looking for a girlfriend and not having the kind of luck I would have liked. I asked my sisters what I could do about that. They not so subtly suggested that I might have some faults.

A_P:  How did that work out?

BC:  We each made up a list of what I needed to change. I had four, they had 178. Actually, they still call with more. I tell them, “The book is out. I don’t need anymore. Thank you.”

A_P:  What will men think of your book?

BC:  I hope they use it to their advantage. I understand it’s kind of agonizing to find out that we are not as adorable as we think we are. And we resist change. I’ve always said that advice on how one should improve oneself is the reason we have the word “ignore.”

A_P:  Did your metamorphosis work in attracting women?

BC:  Yes, I am in a serious relationship with the woman who was the prime motivation for that metamorphosis. It’s in the book how our relationship started.

A_P:  Does she mind the attention you get? Does the book promotion get in the way?

BC:  Cathryn (Michon) has her own book, “The Grrl Genius Guide to Sex (with Other People). Which is always preferable, of course.”

A_P:  How will “How to Remodel a Man” appeal to fans of 8 Simple Rules?

BC:  The first book was about something impossible to do, which is living with teenage daughters.  This book is about something equally undoable, changing men.  “How to Remodel a Man” will offer them the same degree of comfort, and hopefully, humor.

A_P:  Any chance Dr. Phil will be calling for pointers on your self-help approach?

BC:  This book is definitely self-help in nature. It will help men find out what they do that irritates the hell out of women and what they are doing wrong. I am sure Dr. Phil will want to go into some kind of partnership. I’ll be waiting for his call.
Kristen Twedt is a writer living in Mississippi. This is probably like a professional gambler living in Amish country.


Marty Beckerman is a Bitchy Slut

Since he started writing a column for the Anchorage Daily Press in 1998 — when he was just a teenager — humorist, journalist and self-appointed spokesman for his doomed generation, Marty Beckerman, has managed to do what few writers accomplish.


Beckerman has published two books in the last four years: Death to All Cheerleaders: One Adolescent Journalist’s Cheerful Diatribe Against Teenage Plasticity, and his most recent work, Generation S.L.U.T.: A Brutal Feel-Up Session with Today’s Sex-Crazed Adolescent Populace. S.L.U.T. was recently released by MTV/Pocket Books and is being produced as a feature-length motion picture by HBO Films. He’s also hard at work on Nation of Retards: America’s Sexxxiest Young Journalist Exposes the Bastardly Forces Keeping You Stupid, which is to be released by Simon & Schuster in 2006. More details on leg press machine here.

S.L.U.T. follows the lives of four fictional teenagers and explores the dangers of a generation obsessed with sexual gratification without emotional attachment and presents disturbing reports, statistics and confessions from real teenagers across the nation. It also includes six of Beckerman’s essays including “My Make-Out Session with Watermelon Tits” and “My Unforgettable (Almost) Prom Date with a Dirty, Rotten Whore.” For more details, you can visit the fitness blog now.

He spoke to Arriviste Press about his work, the dangerous effects of the hook-up culture, the future of his career, Jesus freaks, stupid feminists, and his mom who still cries herself to sleep at night.

Marty Beckerman
Generation S.L.U.T.
A_P: First of all, are you a slut?

MB: Am I a slut? Well, I’ve had sex with a few girls since high school, but right now I’m only having sex with one girl.

A_P: Just one?

MB: Yeah, I’ve got a girlfriend; we’ve been going out for a year and a couple months. I’m not anti-sex; I’ll have sex almost everyday.

A_P: Lucky bastard. So how did the book start? I read in an interview with Bob Sassone, of Professor Barnhardt’s Journal, that you had been compiling notes and observations since high school for this.

MB: I wrote it between the time I was 18 and 20. I certainly didn’t see everything that was described in the book; some of it’s fictionalized. But definitely, I was going through some emotional crisis from the time I left high school, went to college, and came back.

I guess the book’s message more than anything is what I saw in high school and college. More and more in talking to these junior high kids is, there’s a generation in America right now that doesn’t believe in any kind of emotional attachment. They actually view love as a negative thing. It’s a generation terrified of getting hurt emotionally. So in shutting themselves off to any kind of emotional pain, this generation isn’t having any of the benefits. They’re shutting themselves off from having any kind of happiness.

The suicide rate is higher than it’s ever been. More teens are mutilating themselves than ever before, you know, wrist cutting. According to the Journal of Pediatrics, 40% of nine year olds are trying to lose weight, so you see this trickling down younger and younger, even to pre-pubescent ages. And while I’m not anti-sex, I think this trend is denying them any kind of emotional experiences, which is really screwing up a lot of kids.

A_P: So how did they get like this? They know [emotional] pain is a part of life, but why are they going out of their way to avoid it so much? What’s going on in their heads?

MB: The thing that’s going on in most people’s heads is they see it as kind of a liberation. If I don’t care about anybody else and have a bunch of sex with a lot of people, it’ll be fun and I won’t be exposed to any risk emotionally. But they don’t realize that’s what is actually making them so depressed in the first place and why they’re searching for some kind of attachment to people. I just don’t think human beings can function when the person you had sex with last night at some party is screwing somebody else at this one. When that happens again and again, I think these people start to lose touch with humanity.

I’ve had one night stands, and the metaphor I make in the book is it’s like going to McDonald’s. If you have a meal at McDonald’s every now and then, it’s a fine, delicious treat — but if you’re doing it every time you have a meal, you’re a disgusting piece of shit. It’s kind of a dangerous middle ground because there’s so many forces in the culture where they say, “You have to take a side. You’re either with the Jesus people or you’re with the feminists.” And I’m not with the Jesus people or the feminists.

A_P: I noticed you talked a lot in the book about people who sign chastity pledges.

MB: Yeah, if someone wants to be an abstinent, good for them, I don’t really care. That’s not my mission. I don’t necessarily believe in a place called Hell. I don’t think you’re going to Hell if you have sex before marriage.

I didn’t get into politics very much with this book, I did a little bit. But I’m working on my next book now, it’s called Nation of Retards; it’s set to be released in 2006. [It] goes after both sides, and the whole book is about Jesus freaks versus hippies. I’m seeing more and more that the hook-up culture is kind of designed. People were planning this out for a very long time, more than 100 years. If you go back to some of these writings back in the 1950s and even in the 1920s, you have people in academia talking about how do you get all the kids to have sex with each other without any emotional attachment.

I feel the biggest thing ushering that in is the divorce rate, which is now 53% in America… God I sound like — what’s that fucker’s name? — I sound like William Bennet. But still, half the kids in America are seeing these long-term relationships not work out, so they learn long-term relationships don’t work. So I feel there’s a total link between the divorce culture and the hook-up culture. I think that’s what’s really, really queer, but I’m not sure people really have the analytical skills to realize that they’re acting on it.

A_P: Do you think we blame the media for teenage promiscuity?

MB: I blame the feminist left for the divorce rate, but you can also blame the corporate right for Britney and Paris Hilton and all these false idols. A generation ago, my parent’s generation had real heroes like JFK, Martin Luther King, the Beatles and John Glenn. And we have these media whores that we worship, like Paris and Britney and on and on. They’re like fucking prostitutes.

A_P: But your parents still had Marilyn Monroe, Jayne Mansfield. Those things have been around, but have they not been that prevalent?

MB: I think at this point most 9 year-olds want to be 19 and most 50 year-olds want to be 19. I think the concept of age is disappearing in America. Planned Parenthood is trying to get statutory rape laws overturned.

We’re kind of seeing in academia and intellectual circles the emergence of the attitude of age as a social construct. They’ve already done it with gender, but now age is the social construct. I feel that this is coming from the left and the right. I’ve got all this stuff in the book about how [Abercrombie & Fitch] makes hundreds of millions of dollars selling thongs to 3 year-olds and 13 year-olds. I feel that there’s forces conspiring in the culture to sexualize pre-pubescent children. Girls are entering puberty way earlier than they ever have.

A_P: So what’s the solution?

MB: The solution is to read “Generation S.L.U.T.” $11.95 at your local bookstore.

A_P: Speaking of which, I found your book in a bookstore in Shreveport, LA, under the Teen and Personal Growth section.

MB: It winds up in weird sections. I’ve seen it end up in half fiction and half non-fiction. I’ve seen it in fiction sections. I’ve seen it in sex sections, in inspiration. I don’t how it got there, it’s a depressing fucking book. It’s kind of hard to classify. The publisher didn’t even know what to do with it. Personally, I wanted it to be called non-fiction because I thought it would be better for sales. But since it was a novella and some of the stuff based on it was stuff that actually happened, we have to say it was fiction or else I’d get sued.

A_P: I remember you said earlier your high school friends had gone through a metamorphosis. Were they based on any of the characters?

MB: All of the characters were to a certain extent based on parts of my own personality, but some of the characters were composites of people that I knew. It’s weird because the story in some ways is 99% true, and in other ways, it’s totally fictionalized. But there’s no character that, I’d say, is directly based on one person.

A_P: I also noticed you put yourself in the book.

MB: Yeah, that was my moment of self-indulgent glory.

A_P: Is that going to be in the movie?

MB: I don’t know, I’d like to have a cameo in the movie. I haven’t suggested this to HBO yet because I know they’re going to turn it down, but my idea is to have one of the party scene characters looking around trying to find a bathroom or something, and they open a door to a bedroom and I’m having sex with a horse.

A_P: HBO might swing with that.

MB: Maybe, the movie’s coming along. We already have a director from Six Feet Under (Miguel Arteta who also directed The Good Girl), and the screenwriters are finishing up the script. They’ve told me that if any actors are under 18, everybody involved in the movie would go to jail for 25 years.

A_P: In the book you split up the novella with stats and your essays…

MB: We’re doing that for the movie. There won’t be the non-fiction parts. Those parts of me won’t be in there. “Watermelon Tits” won’t be part of it. There will be the narrative fiction broken up by the statistics and documentary footage, so it’ll follow that same fiction/non-fiction theme, which I think works for the book because of what I was trying to accomplish while I was writing it.

When you’re writing a book trying to define a generation, you’re a pretentious piece of shit already. (laughs) You can either write Less Than Zero or a fictional novel that tries to make an emotional case about a generation’s tales like The Great Gatsby or whatever. You can get six characters and say these are composites of people who represent the kind of people you’ll find in this age group in America. And you can also write a non-fiction book where you’re journalistically saying these are my interviews. I tried to combine that so you’ve got the emotional case with the non-fiction that I hope readers can relate to.

A_P: How have the reviews been?

MB: People seem to like the mix. The feedback I’ve gotten from anyone under 20, the feedback’s been really, really positive. Jesus freaks have criticized the book. Stupid feminists have criticized the book. But I didn’t write it for Jesus freaks or stupid feminists, I wrote it for kids still in high school, and maybe college, who are still going through this stuff and having to make a lot of these choices and face some of the consequences. The best part of this whole thing is getting feedback from those kids who say things like, “I’ve felt this way for years but I didn’t know how to put it into words, and this book was everything I wish I could’ve said about it.”

[The] message of the book is essentially conservative. The Jesus freaks don’t want to face reality, they live in a fucking fantasy world. The stupid feminists, some have wanted it both ways. They’ve campaigned for decades to legalize abortion and all that. Then once they become totally sexual and have got this anonymous sex scene where girls are more victimized more than they were before sexual liberation, then they just got on how all boys exploit girls, and all men are rapists and blah, blah, fucking blah. So I don’t even take the criticisms from feminists seriously because they’re just so fucking stupid. They’re spoiled children, and I want them all dead.


The Virtual Wingman!

We don’t believe in much here at Arriviste Press, but two notions we do subscribe to are the power of third-party promotion and old-fashion American laziness. We also figure the world is better off if everyone is getting a little action on a regular basis. So allow us to introduce to you the latest in a line of Arriviste services designed to improve your life:


The Virtual Wingman!

Sure, you can hunt & peck your way through a clumsy introductory e-mail to that hottie you met last weekend… Or you can have one of our eloquent, award-winning writers do it for you. Let’s face it, it sounds kind of pretentious for you to tell her about the time you scored three goals in the final three minutes of your college lacrosse team’s championship game, but if we tell her — with that misty-eyed aura of admiration we pull of so well — you’ll be IM’ing to find out whether she’d prefer drinks and the theater or Braveheart on DVD at your apartment in no time. We’re like your real-life buddy at the bar, except that we won’t bring up that whole hazing incident from sophomore year.

Maybe you already know the intended recipient of your affections pretty closely, but like a knucklehead you’ve gone and screwed it up. Well, like a good wingman should, we’ll try our best to fix it. Oh, and did we mention this service is FREE?

Here’s how the Virtual Wingman works:

1. You enter your name, e-mail address, and some general information about yourself in the form on the next page.

2. You enter the name and e-mail address for the object of your affection.

(Girls, you can play too! It’s not just a guy thing. Oh, and if you enter a bogus e-mail address or use the same e-mail address for you AND your recipient, we obviously can’t craft your message…)

3. We send you a confirmation letter to the e-mail address you supply (to ensure you’re really you, and not Gary from accounting punking yer ass).

4. One of the Arriviste writing team crafts a witty, engaging message designed to sweep the recipient off his or her feet.

5. We deliver said message to your intended recipient (with a blind copy to you for your amusement) and give him or her the option to reply to you directly or reply to us to send to you later (it’s your choice).

Here’s how the Virtual Wingman does not work:

1. We are a virtual wingman, not a virtual stalker. You only get to send one message to each recipient. (However, you can use the service at separate times for different recipients.)

2. This is not an automated mail management tool. A real (funny) writer will write your message. Hence it may take 24-48 hours to see a response.

3. We will not create messages for people who have entered hateful, discriminating, or generally foul remarks into the form. We reserve the right to not create a message for anyone, at any time, for any reason (including our own laziness).

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