John Buffalo Mailer, the son of the late Brooklyn Heights based author Norman Mailer has published a new ebook which looks at the recovery of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina through the eyes of strippers. Music, Food, and Death – The State Of New Orleans Through The Eyes Of The Strippers is available via Smashwords a company co-founded by Mailer.
The Huffington Post’s Mark Coker interviews the younger Mailer about the story he originally wrote for Playboy Magazine:
Huffington Post: I first went to New Orleans when I was eighteen years old. It was my first road trip with a buddy and we set out from New York at midnight, drove through the night, and found ourselves in New Orleans by 10pm. It might as well have been 6:30. The streets were alive with music and drink and incredible food. The whole city seemed like a walking party to our eighteen year old sensibilities. It did not take me more than a couple of days to realize that New Orleans held for me the best of original American culture. After Katrina, as I like so many others watched the devastation and disastrous recovery efforts by the government, I felt a responsibility to do something that would bring awareness to what the city needed. As we are now seeing with Haiti, the media and the public’s attention do not stay on a tragedy for longer than will keep eyeballs glued to the screen. I have a good relationship with Playboy and appreciated the freedom they give a writer to explore a piece the way they want to. For obvious reasons, a sexual angle is always best for Playboy, but as someone who has worked in the service industry as a busboy, waiter, and bartender, I knew that those are the people who could give me the most accurate assessment of how the city is doing and what it needs to get back to where it was before the storm. In a town like New Orleans, the strippers are as much a part of the service industry as the bartenders and doormen. It is one big family on the strip and they were more than enthusiastic about telling me their story.