Tucker Max visits the U of M today
Tucker Max is a polarizing guy.
To some, he is a god amongst frat-bros. A guy whose stories of getting insanely drunk, having sex with tons of different women, and being a self-described "asshole" have spawned an entire literary genre (known as "fratire"), and made him a hero to college-aged dudes across the globe.
To others, he is essentially the anti-Christ. A misogynistic, womanizing drunk, who either made up half of his stories to sound cool, or just has zero regard for social decency.
I think both sides have a point.
Tonight the man himself rolls into the University of Minnesota Bookstore, where he will be signing copies of his newest book, Assholes Finish First (Gallery). The follow up to the smash success I Hope They Serve Beer In Hell, the book is full of the same stories of sexual recklessness and drunken debauchery that made him famous. But upon diving into his latest literary venture, readers may be shocked by one of the book's main underlying themes: Tucker Max is growing up.
Don't get me wrong, he still has tons of stories about his sexual to-do list (you will never read a book with more midget-sex stories--guaranteed), drunken escapades (including a clown-themed bar crawl), and an epic road trip story about his first brush with celebrity (hint: It involves Tucker traveling cross-country to judge a bikini contest at a semi-pro wrestling event).
The more I describe this book, the more it sounds like he's a carny.
But the most interesting part has to be the book's second-half, called "The Post-Fame Sex Stories." These stories focus on Max's life after he became "Tucker Max: Big Deal," and also begin to shine a little light on his feelings about his lifestyle now that he's older.
Full disclosure: I've always thought the Tucker Max stories were funny. Still, I've listened to plenty of jealous guys who claim their tales are far superior to Max's. In response, Tucker sums it up best in his book when he essentially says, "You might have done it better, but I did it when it counted."
Sure, everyone has those crazy stories about getting drunk or hooking up, but he was the first one to put them on paper (or blog, as the kids are calling it these days) and share them with the world.
Nonetheless, before I picked up Assholes I wasn't sure if I would find it as funny as the first book. Not that I expected the content to be any different, but when I read his first book I was 24. Now that I'm creeping up on 30, married, and not doing a lot of the same stuff I was when I was that age, I figured I might not be able to identify with Max's adventures like I used to. Surprisingly, it turns out I'm not the only one who feels that way.
In between stories about getting an x-ray BJ, bed-wetters, and a midget threesome (seriously, I cannot stress enough the amount of midget sex in this book), he sprinkles in details about his own hang-ups and insecurities, the irony of being used by women simply looking for a good story to tell their friends, and even--dare I say?--his desire to someday get married and have a family.
While I wouldn't go so far as to say this is a coming-of-age story, Assholes Finish First feels a lot like a conversation with your best friend from college, 10 years after you've graduated. The stories are still funny and outrageous, but you both walk away saying "we're getting too old for that shit."
Bottom line; if you hated Tucker Max after his first book, you're going to hate him even more after this one. But if you were a Tucker Max fan before picking up this book, you're going to walk away feeling like he's a friend you might actually have more in common with then you originally realized.
Oh, and if you're a fan of midget sex you'll love the shit out of this book. Trust me.
IF YOU GO:
Tucker Max Book Signing
Oct. 11, 5:00 PM
University of Minnesota Bookstore
Get the Arts & Culture Newsletter
Find out about arts and culture events in Minneapolis & St. Paul and offers you won't hear about anywhere else.