Chris Jones of Esquire Gives Mike Mooney Some Love

Chris Jones was asked to pick his best stories of 2012 by Longreads. He led off with this bit about Mike Mooney, despite Mike’s noted wrongheadedness about his ability to take down a giraffe with his bare hands:

Favorite new writer discovery of 2012

I’m always scared of making lists like this, because a year is a long time, and I read a lot, and invariably I’ll forget writers and pieces that I liked very much. But this category is easy for me: Michael J. Mooney. He wrote back-to-back stories for D Magazine this summer that are so different but the same in that they both knocked me on my ass. First he wrote about a brutal rape in “When Lois Pearson Started Fighting Back.” (It is a difficult read, but the ending is more than worth it.) And then he wrote the most amazing bowling story ever in “The Most Amazing Bowling Story Ever.” Plus, he’s a straight-up good dude. Love this guy so much.


  • Tim Rogers

    First, Chris Jones is a fool — and a Canadian fool at that. He has no idea what he’s talking about. Second, Mike Mooney is an insufferable beast. He’s vain, ill-tempered, and often incoherently drunk. His copy is always late, and it requires a raft of highly trained editors to get it in shape for publication. The only reason he has a job at D Magazine is because I lost a bet.

    (Come on, Zac. Get with the program. If we’re going to keep Mike around, we’ve got to make him look less attractive to the editors of national magazines.)

  • mynameisbill

    Chris and Mike should do a bromance comedy together. Chris after picking Mike as one of his favorite new writers, does an interview with him(Mike). While in the midst of the “q & a” session, Mike, informs Chris that his childhood hamster had just passed away and it’s gotten him(Mike) to thinking about life “and what does it all mean?”. So, as the interview goes on Mike tells Chris about the time when his hamster, Twinkle Toes, told him that when he passes this life he’d like to be buried out at sea. Chris then decides that that is what Mike needs to do, so the two of ’em pick up the hamster’s corpse and head off to the Pacific Ocean. On the way they learn all kinds of deep spiritual stuff about themselves and the growing pains of life. When they decide to stop in Las Vegas, because Twinkle Toes always fancied going and seeing “the Strip” they exhaust all their expenses on hookers, cheap well drinks, and underground giraffe bloodsport type matches. So, because of this sudden loss of funds, Mike, says a few kind words to his old pal Twinkle Toes and tosses him down a Vegas storm drain. The End….Roll credits.

  • Michael J. Mooney

    I wouldn’t say “often incoherently drunk.” Not because it isn’t true. It is. But I try not to use a lot of adverbs.

  • Michael J. Mooney

    This isn’t too far from what actually happened when I met Chris. Except I had gerbils as a kid, not hamsters.