Mike Loew

Tough Call

By Mike Loew
October 5, 2000 7:14PM (UTC)
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Mike Loew's advice to young reporters? "Don't just be yourself. It's not enough. If you aspire to write truly unbiased news, you must trick and deceive your sources with an elaborate range of disguises." A contributing editor to The Onion and one of the authors of the New York Times bestseller Our Dumb Century, Mike adopted a number of personas in order to ask the really tough questions--and get the really tough answers.

For the contents of his new book, Tough Call, Mike masked himself as a number of interesting people, such as a horny teenager, exposing the sexual incentives used by U.S. Navy recruiters and as heavy metal rocker trying to break into the music industry. He made daring prank calls with shocking results and then transcribed them for your reading pleasure. His hard-hitting reporting has angered more than a few powerful people such as the Drug Enforcement Agency, the Serbian Government, and the Sony Robot Death Squad. To those who take offense to his unusual tactics Mike says, "Just remember--I wrote this book for our children." And also the ladies, to whom the book is dedicated.


Listen to a hilarious call in which Mike claims to be a Serbo-American who is trying to find out if there will be any Albanians at this year's Serb Fest. Also hear how he tries to find "Abortion Alternatives" and take a listen to "Vacation Time" in which Mike attempts to stow away his imaginary children in a dog kennel. Exclusive Salon audio!

Mike Loew


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