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The Embargo Issue


Dear Vice, Just writing to commend you on your excellent contribution to the modern magazine world. Haha. Just kidding. I don’t read your magazine, but the cartoons in the back make me laugh.
VICE Staff
Κείμενο VICE Staff

Dear Vice, I’ve really been enjoying Sam McPheeters’s contributions to the magazine. A few years ago he wrote a column in Punk Planet about taking the postal exam and blowing it. I’m glad that didn’t pan out for him. He’s doing good work these days and I feel like his mailman duties would have been a distraction. Also—thanks for the Vollmann excerpt, it was much more digestible than his last one in Vice. My girlfriend is writing her thesis on Willy V. so he is a constant third wheel around my place. Last winter when she was reading (and talking a lot about) Europe Central, “Nibelungenlied” was like Pee-wee’s secret word of the day for me. It’s a really surprising word to hear said aloud, especially when you hear it more than once a day. Did you hear about Prahlad Jani? He’s the 82-year-old Indian holy man who claims he hasn’t had anything to eat or drink in 76 years. The Indian military just did a two-week study on him where he was kept in confinement and was only allowed water to rinse his mouth out and bathe in; they measured the water afterward to make sure he wasn’t cheating. He made it the whole two weeks without taking anything in or putting anything out. He claims his tongue was touched by a goddess when he was a child and since then he hasn’t needed food or water. India hopes to figure out a scientific explanation for his abilities and then make magic supersoldiers. See you soon, HENRY
via email What a pleasing letter. This should be the template for all future letters: compliment, funny and relevant anecdote, interesting random fact. It’s like the five-paragraph formula they teach you in middle school, but for letters. MUSINGS
Dear Vice, Just writing to commend you on your excellent contribution to the modern magazine world. Haha. Just kidding. I don’t read your magazine, but the cartoons in the back make me laugh. Keep up with that, please. Anyway, I just wanted to write and say thank you. My sister bought a subscription before she moved out and it still arrives on my doorstep, so I’m renting out your magazine to the kids in my posh South London neighborhood. I usually just charge about £3 for a night to the kids I deal weed to. I’m sorry that I’m pimping your creation out, but it goes down very popular with the kids who have porn blocked on their computers. Also, if you could put more female nudity in I could probably make a better profit. If this is illegal, I used a fake name. Thank you, LULU HOOKE, 14
South London, UK Vice’s managing editor replies: Wow. When I was your age, the only porn I had access to was a single page that my friend Karen ripped out of her older brother’s Playboy and brought to synagogue to show the girls. It was a photo of a nude brunette squatting with her legs spread on a beach, and I remember vividly the long tendrils of wet pubic hair that hung down from between her thighs. The caption that went along with it was about her first experience at a nude beach. It contained this exact sentence: “I couldn’t believe the size of his… his… DONG!” I didn’t know what a dong was, but I would soon find out. Karen let me keep the magazine page. I folded it up into a tiny square and slid it under my mattress. It stayed there for about a year, forgotten, until one day it popped into my head and I pulled it out from under my mattress, tore it up into a hundred pieces, and flushed it down the toilet, full of shame. There is no way my mom didn’t find it while changing my sheets at some point, but she never said anything to me about it. FEELINGS
Hello Molly Young, [Re: “Bless This Mess,” V17N4] This is easily one of the best articles I have seen on this topic. You made it real, tangible, and somehow personal. Yours is a remarkable talent and I anticipate seeing your work in other publications. No kidding. You are very good at what you do. The pictures in this article are superb and the selections you made show a certain whimsy in the midst of a genuine human tragedy (I especially liked the one with Ron and Melissa complete with “mask-lines” creasing Melissa’s face). I was also taken with the tiny insights you used to garnish the article—Melissa’s trembling hand, Ron’s indestructible beer belly, the 500 sit-ups of the caballero. Nicely done, Molly. I hope Vice serves as a showcase for your abilities and a launching platform for a long and fruitful career. STEVEN LaVELLE
via Sounds like someone has a crush on a pretty girl. ATTITUDES
Dear Vice,  I read your magazine, believe it or not, for the articles, not the photo spreads of topless and possibly underage girls you insist on publishing every issue. I read your article (in the April Issue) on the Japanese pervert cult and the English racists thoughtfully, glad to find out there were horrible, fucked-up people outside of Arizona. Then I turn the page and what do I see? PAGE AFTER PAGE OF ANIMALS DRESSED LIKE PEOPLE! Did you have something else planned that fell through, so you said, “Fuck it, let’s just put a kangaroo in a shirt and take a picture?” Seriously, animals wearing people clothes? I bet the glue-huffing portion of your readership (which, no doubt, is substantial) enjoyed the picture of the goat, but the rest of us really, really didn’t find it interesting. More cultists, less animals please. BILL
via email You’re upset with us for dressing animals in clothes, and not even in a PETA type of way? We hope you get mauled by a bear in a bow tie. REFLECTIONS
Dear Vice, I really like your magazine and all, but I poop… a lot. So I was wondering, what’s the best way to not poop? I mean, some of my teachers in school don’t let me go to the bathroom. I have one teacher in particular who, after one kid goes, yells, “NOBODY ELSE CAN GO! IT’S A HERD OF CHILDREN!” And one time, heh heh, I pooped my pants in there. It wasn’t my fault. Now, you’re probably going to reply with some quirky thing about lotion or headphones or glasses or even flannels, but all I ask is for some guidance. PS: I don’t have small boobs. Love, GENEVIEVE
London, UK If you only eat bananas, grapefruit, yogurt, and brown rice, you will never fart again. I know you asked about not pooping, but the best we can do is not farting. Not pooping is impossible.