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Drinking, Smoking and Screwing: Great Writers on Good Times
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Drinking, Smoking and Screwing: Great Writers on Good Times

3.75 of 5 stars 3.75  ·  rating details  ·  570 ratings  ·  78 reviews
Before the notion of "political correctness" encroached on the ways people spoke, wrote, and conducted themselves in public and private, some of America's best writers embraced unsafe sex, excessive alcohol, and a good cigar. From the classically libidinous Henry Miller to the hilariously contemporary Fran Lebowitz, Drinking, Smoking and Screwing includes novel excerpts, e ...more
Paperback, 224 pages
Published August 1st 1994 by Chronicle Books
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,028)
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Bukowski sounds like a drunken, gassy Jabba-the-Hut that somehow finds all these 17 year olds to lift up the layers of his gut and hoover the cum out of his unwashed cock.

I accidentally left this in plain sight on my desk at work, then started reading it at my spouse's grandmother's house. Oops. Apparently, nobody noticed. I enjoyed the book, especially the Dorothy Parker story. Poor Spaulding Gray was so neurotic.
Garrett Zecker
A great little collection that reflects on the fine pleasures in life... The vices that we cannot live without. What is interesting about this little volume is its complete and utter disregard for what they chose to include - Twain, Nabokov, Gray, Parker - the authors that you might not even consider to be together in the same room, et alone a volume on vice. Regardless, this book was a wonderful little gift from my friend Aaron. It not only showcases that which we love in this world, but the ef ...more
Cat Grimalkin Niedzwiecki
This book and I had some good times. Eccentric takes on "things that make you go HMMMM," as well as things that make you go, "WHOA_WHA??!X!&$@#"... Velvety tales, scrawny scrub bits, prickly tales for Mescal liking folk, chin-waggish anecdotes, stories for the forthright (Thanks, Sam Shepard), and ruttish lines that may just run you over if you are not on guard. Take caution, but enjoy the ride, and remember that "great writers" are talking about "Good Times," and not "GREAT TIMES."
La Petite Américaine
Jun 19, 2008 La Petite Américaine rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Nicole F. / Kick Ass People
Shelves: kicked_ass
The most KICK-ASS anthology ever! Charles Bukowski, Vladimir Nabokov, and Dorothy Parker all in one book?! Writing about debauchery?!

The coolness of it ... it's been bringing me to a near seizure since I fist bought this book when I was 15.

Sigh ... :)
Add to the long list of inappropriate things I read when I was 14. Actually, it's really not very scandalous at all. Good writing, but PG-13 at most. It's got Dorothy Parker's You Were Perfectly Fine, which makes me happy.
Jan 04, 2015 Jim rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: drinkers, smokers, and fornicators and those who love them
I read this collection shortly after it was published. A fun collection that delivers what the title says and worth a perusal if you like decadence - and who doesn't??!
Spalding Gray's personal essay was worth the price of this book (at the time). Oh the debauchery!
Dec 09, 2011 J rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: reviewed
I bought this book, because, well, just look at that cover. Three of my favorite things together at last and some of my favorite authors are in here as well. I started this book a thousand years ago and never finished it. Then I ran out of things on my “to be read” pile, so I started from the beginning again. Now I know why I never finished it. The problem with this book is that it’s all shorts. That’s fine, if the original stories are shorts, but for the most part, they’re not. The editor just ...more
This was a great note to end the year on, an anthology by last century's great writers about some of my favorite vices! Mark Twain on cigars, Dorothy Parker on drinking, Henry Miller on - you guessed it - sex, Bukowski on drinking and sex...there were only a few stories that kind of freaked me out (always felt bad I never read Lolita until this book's excerpt, for example), but overall, really enjoyable. Fran Leibowitz's piece was hysterical ("When Smoke Gets in Your Eyes ... Shut Them"):

I wanted to like this book so much more than I did; a compilation with three favored vices with the sub-title of "Great Writers on Good Times". Sounds good, right?

For me, it seemed trite and juvenile, like a bunch of fully grown adults writing about whimsies which evidently left many of them bitter and deranged and therefore might have been best left in their youth. Perhaps, as I finish the last sip of my beer and suck on my last cigarette of the day, I am suffering disenchantment: y'all are bo
Charlane Brady
Overall a good read containing essays, poetry and fiction all celebrating the virtues of vice. All are written by "great" writers.

I liked learning about new (old) writers and reading some again. There were a few stories I found disturbing (not such a bad thing) and some that just made me laugh. I liked the ones that made me laugh the best - there were three. (1) The Drinking School by Art Hoppe, 1967, 2 pages (2) Some Heady Phrases of Wine by Art Buchwald, 1954, 2.5 pages and (3) Concerning Tob
Doesn't the title say it all?

Highlights, briefly:

'How to cut down on drinking and smoking quite so much' - L. Rust Hills
"Life is (I have been known to say) a Three-Legged Stool, supported by Booze, Coffee, and Smokes, which interdepend essentially. Kick away any leg of the stool and the whole old corpus comes crashing to the kitchen floor."

'The drinking school' - Art Hoppe
"It is not true that alcohol merely makes you dizzy. It also makes you stupid. Some improperly motivated students, feeling st
This is a good window on how previous generations viewed their vices. Some of these stories seem tame by comparison to what we'd get today. But I can imagine the how shocking the screwing stories would have been when they were written. One thing I notice the more I read stories written between the 40's and 60's is how frantic the prose was. The writers do a good job of being explicit and vauge at the same time. Some of the essays such as the one on wine and smoking are humorous.

Some of the stor
Anthology of short stories as well as excerpts from famous books revolving around author/character hedonism, especially as it applies to vices such as drinking, smoking, and sex. Some of the stories are incredible, including those by Spalding Gray, Erica Jong, Fran Lebowitz, Bukowski, and L. Rust Hills. These pieces in and of themselves are worth picking up the book, especially the Hills piece on "How to Cut Down on Drinking and Smoking Quite so Much." Possibly one of the funniest diatribes on c ...more
Spaulding Grey and Erica Jong were my two favorites in this, and there are some other great reads in here, but the quality's inconsistent.
Mar 24, 2014 Trish rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: All bad boys and girls
Recommended to Trish by: A bad boy
Shelves: guilty-pleasure
Filled with stories that are not only hilarious but are written by authors your mother always warned you about ;)
Lauren (strangled)
Honestly, disappointing. I guess I'm more of the drinking, dropping, & fucking age. So many of the excerpts were based on a limited 1950's range - which hell, is the heyday of drinking and smoking, I suppose? And hell, honey, where where the women? Aside from getting 'screwed' and objectified by so many male authors?

Though, regardless, it may be strangely telling of my habits that I somehow, within the two weeks it took me to read it, completely destroyed "drinking, smoking, and screwing" w
Good, perfect for the airplane. All the selections except maybe Donleavy were just the right length.

I may look to pick up some Tom Robbins after seeing his work in this book.
Julie Rylie
I was searching for another Bukowski cheap book and I stumbled upon this one which was indeed extremely cheap and had Bukowski on it.

This is a collection of various authors which are either writing about drinking, smoking or fucking (or all at the same time). I figured out this could be quite interesting because you could always get to know different authors and it turns out to be like that!

At the end of this, I want to read more from: Spalding Gray, Erica Jong, Corey Ford and Sam Shepard. ;)
This is a fun book to keep around for when you're bored and looking for some light, if not dirty, entertainment. I'm going to have to read Candy because the excerpt that was in this collections was hilarious.

"Your were perfectly fine" was a nice funny story too.

The Bukowski was decent, same with the Spaulding Gray.

Surprisingly enough, this book would make a good gift for any of your friends who have a sense of humor about drinking, smoking, and screwing.
Anthology dedicated to much maligned vices close to my heart. Very entertaining read that gives you a nice taste of a handful of classic authors.
"Being offended is that natural consequence of leaving one's home. I do not like after-shave lotion, adults who roller-skate, children who speak French, or anyone who is unduly tan. I do not, however go around enacting legislation and putting up signs." - Fran Lebowitz from When Smoke Gets in Your Eyes ... Shut Them.
Nov 25, 2007 Jenna rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: my fellow scoundrels
Features stories by Anne Sexton, Tom Robbins, Henry Miller, Anaïs Nin, Mark Twain, Mary McCarthy, among many others. This collection is a mellow, tasteful look at some of our small delights, and gives both the respect and knowing smirk they deserve.

From the inscription:
I asked my friend, "what are your three favorite pleasures in life?" and she replied, "A martini before and a cigarette after."
John Gilbert
Nice collection of short writings about, as the title indicates, booze, smoking, and sex. Standouts thus far include Spalding Gray, Charles Bukowski, Terry Southern (reminds me of a Flannery O'Connor story?), Art Buchwald. Several laugh-out-loud moments.

The Anne Sexton poem reminds me why she was one of the few poets I liked in college and took the trouble to own. More to follow...
Mike Mitchell
A collection of essays by different writers on, well, it's in the title. Some of the pieces I loved, some didn't speak to me. The Terry Southern chapter was very memorable and I loved the super short bit by Fran Lebowitz on what it means to suffer the indignities of leaving the safety of home and hearth. Not to be undertaken by those disgusted by debauchery.
stagger lee
another one of my youth faves - i picked this up right when it came out at kramerbooks and afterwords in d.c. (a wonderful independent shop in gay-ass dupont circle, open 24 hours on weekends, serving lovely desserts and such - which i could eat because i was only veg then). the book was funny and gritty - a favorite cathartic combo of mine.
Jan 07, 2014 Cassie rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: debaucherous beings
Recommended to Cassie by: used book store
Shelves: drug-culture
The debauchery in this novel is palatable and delicious. A must read for everyone with a bit of a lecherous side.
BT Robinson
the author selection is fantastic, and many of the short stories and selections are top notch. my only complaint is the inclusion of authors like Mark Twain, who can sure match the snark, but his musings on cigars lack the prescience of other works in the collection. Overall, a fun, breezy read.
One would expect stories exclusively about vice to be more lively, and some of them are. Henry Miller's story about a French whore, Bukowski's story about typical Bukowski topics, and a few poems are great. The rest are like an uninspired date, finished by obligation and never revisited.
What starts out as a kind of laudable idea to celebrate moderate debauchery by anthologizing some writers in the genre falls far short of its goals in execution by virtue of the flaccid (sorry) fiction selections. Alas, a waste of time save the Bukowski selection. Tame & lame.
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