Memoir of Bad Boy Tucker Max's Outlandish Exploits

This is a partial transcript of "The Big Story With John Gibson," May 10, 2006, that has been edited for clarity.

JOHN GIBSON, HOST: Lock up the children. He's a partier with all the stories. The first to admit he's not a nice guy. Maybe you know someone like this. Maybe you don't want to. Either way, a lot of people want to read about him.

Tucker Max may have tapped into a whole new genre here, one that dares to challenge the "chick lit" genre, women's literature. Jane Skinner is here with the story of Tucker Max.

JANE SKINNER, FNC CORRESPONDENT: Well, John, the book is called "I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell." And frankly, there is not much in it that can be repeated on a nice family show like yours. It's by a guy who was a total unknown in the literary world. He could barely get the thing published, and suddenly it ended up for a time on the best-seller list.

It is supposedly the life and times of Tucker Max, and he joins us now.

Tucker, this chronicles kind of these wild nights with women, drinking, etc. My first thought reading it was James Frey and "A Million Little Pieces." There's no way that anybody has a life this crazy. Is it true? Is all of it true?

TUCKER MAX, AUTHOR, "I HOPE THEY SERVE BEER IN HELL": I mean, it's all very true. I'm not even the coolest one of my friends. I'm just the guy who sat down and wrote everything down. Like I know plenty of people who do crazier stuff than I do.

SKINNER: Really? Now tell me how this all started, too. You just started kind of spilling these tales on a Web site as kind of a blog, and suddenly someone wanted to publish it?

MAX: It actually started much more organically. My buddies and I, we all went to law school together, and once we started working in different cities, we all did crazy stuff, and we'd write e-mails to each other about the stuff we would do. And my friends thought my e-mails were really funny and they said, "Dude, why don't you put this up on a Web site. You know people would love to read this."

So I just threw up my stories and next thing I knew I had lots of fans, which turns into more fans, which you know, turned into a book and now here I am.

SKINNER: Well, Tucker, I have to ask you, too. Your resume is pretty impressive: University of Chicago, Duke University. You said you have a law degree.

MAX: Right.

SKINNER: How are your parents feeling about what you've chosen for your career path?

MAX: Well, my mom just cries a lot asks, "Why can't you be a nice person?" My dad at first didn't get it. He thought, you know, when you went to law school, you have a J.D. Why don't you be a lawyer? Then I explained to him I hated being a lawyer and I wanted to like myself and like my job. And so once I started making money, once he had reporters calling him, asking him about me, then he figured out maybe there was something to this.

SKINNER: All right. A lot of people would ask why can't you be a nice person. You're not a nice guy in this book.

MAX: Well, I'm a nice — to my friends and people I care about, I'm a really nice guy. I mean, no one wants to read a story where I saw a cute puppy on the street and I petted it. I mean, that's not funny. I only write about the funny stuff. The book is only a very small, like, selected, small slice of my life, you know, the funny stuff.

SKINNER: So you're not so bad? Is that what you're telling me? Do I believe that? I'm not so sure.

MAX: It depends. If I like you, I'm nice to you. If I don't, then I might not be the most pleasant person to be around.

SKINNER: I'll keep that in mind. John referenced this is part of the new genre of this bad boy literature, some are calling it, kind of a companion to women's chick literature. How do you feel about that?

MAX: Well, I mean, I guess I could be compared to worse. I think that there's a lot of guys out there that want to read the equivalent of chick lit, but really there's not being much written for them.

I think, really, that's probably the best explanation for my success and the success of people like Maddox and, you know, Robert Hamburg (ph) and other Internet writers, is that we're tapping a genre or a niche out there that needs to be filled and isn't, you know.

SKINNER: Do you worry about being sued? You were once, and she ended up dropping the suit.

MAX: I know. There's actually someone suing me right now, too. It doesn't bother me.

SKINNER: Who's suing you, a woman?

MAX: No. A guy.


MAX: Because I made fun of him in my Web site, and so he got all upset. But it doesn't bother me because I tell the truth, and truth is the ultimate defense against libel. And I'm not worried at all.

SKINNER: Tucker Max, we're going to have to leave it there.

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