“To the list of great Field & Stream essayists—Robert Ruark, Gene Hill, Cory Ford, and Ed Zern—add the name Bill Heavey. His writing is funny, poignant, acerbic and, best of all, always alert to the absurdities of life. This is a book that will be read and re-read for years and probably for generations.” —Patrick F. McManus, New York Times best-selling author of The Bear in the Attic and A Fine and Pleasant Misery
If You Didn't Bring Jerky, What Did I Just Eat? Misadventures in Hunting, Fishing, and the Wilds of Suburbia
By Bill Heavey
978-0-8021-4395-2 • $14.00 • Paperback • Oct. 2008
An uproarious collection of nonfiction from beloved Field & Stream columnist Bill Heavey—the funniest and most popular writer in the country on the great outdoors—that reads like a cross between Dave Barry, Jeff Foxworthy, and Rick Reilly
For nearly a decade, Bill Heavey, an outdoorsman marooned in suburbia, has written the “Sportsman’s Life” column on the back page of Field & Stream, where he does for hunting and fishing what David Feherty does for golf and Lewis Grizzard did for the South. His work is adored by readers—one proclaims him “the greatest sportswriter who has ever walked the planet,” and another recently wrote in to nominate him for president of the United States in 2008—and his peers have recognized his work with two prestigious National Magazine Award nominations.
If You Didn’t Bring Jerky, What Did I Just Eat? is the first collection of Heavey’s sidesplitting observations on life as a hardcore (but often hapless) outdoorsman. Whether he’s hunting cougars in the southwest desert, scheming to make his five-year-old daughter fall in love with fishing, or chronicling his father’s slow decline through the lens of the numerous dogs he’s owned over seventy-five years, Heavey is a master at blending humor and pathos—and wide-ranging outdoor enthusiasms that run the gamut from elite to ordinary—into a poignant and potent cocktail. His advice for men on how to survive a midlife crisis? Skip your birthday party to go fishing with a friend. Child care woes? Don’t hire a sitter when your daughter can enjoy the fresh air and improve your hunt by learning to drive deer past your stand. Worried that Disney cartoons are giving kids a sugar-coated view of the natural world? Pop in a hunting DVD (Whitetail Madness 5 works like a charm).
Funny, warmhearted, and supremely entertaining, this book is an irresistible addition to the literature of the outdoors.
Writing for magazines and newspapers for more than twenty years, including two decades at Field & Stream, Bill Heavey has become famous as America’s everyman outdoorsman, unafraid to draw attention to his many and varied failures—from sporting French lavender deodorant to scaring a UPS man half to death while bowhunting in his front yard.
Heavey’s 2007 collection If You Didn’t Bring Jerky What Did I Just Eat?, co-published with Field & Stream, the leading American outdoors magazine, was a resounding success that went into multiple hardcover printings. This new book, again co-published with Field & Stream, collects more of Heavey’s top pieces from the magazine, as well as the best of his writing from the Washington Post and elsewhere. In this far-ranging read, Heavey’s adventures include nearly freezing to death in Eastern Alaska, hunting ants in the urban jungles of the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, and reconnecting to cherished memories of his grandfather through an inherited gun collection.
With Heavey’s trademark witty candor, You're Not Lost if You Can Still See the Truck traces a life lived outdoors through the good, the bad, and the downright hilarious.