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The FishbowlDC Interview With Daily Caller’s Mike Riggs

Say hello to The Daily Caller’s Mike Riggs.  The scribe who writes those bold morning e-mail roundups has been a staple on FishbowlDC ever since he admitted to a recent evening of psychedelic mushrooms. He continues to grab our attention with remarks about naked jumping jacks and smoking weed on election night — and he’s got tattoos, one that spans his chest shoulder blade to shoulder blade that reads, “Stand Up and Raise Hell.” We like him, in part, because he doesn’t resemble typical Washington whatsoever. He has no air of self-importance and says and tweets things that make your eyeballs bulge. Why he hasn’t gotten scolded for his reports of his recreational drug use surprises some around town. Management is not a “nanny state,” they insist. What he does in off hours is his business (well, and sometimes ours since he’s so public about it).

Daily Caller Editor-in-Chief Tucker Carlson explains what prompted him to hire Riggs away from the Washington City Paper. “During the interview I explained that our offer entailed hard work, low pay and a cult-like atmosphere,” Carlson recalled. “I have never seen anyone respond the way he did. His legs literally started shaking. He said — and I think I’m quoting verbatim — ‘I must have this job.’”

If you were a carbonated beverage which would you be? I’d have to be a drink that causes you to live dangerously on Friday night and hate yourself on Saturday morning. So, Andre’s pink champagne.

How often do you Google yourself? I stopped Googling myself when I heard about Google alerts. Now I simply receive an email every time someone publishes the phrases “Mike Riggs” or “finished construction on a new playground.”

What’s the worst thing you’ve ever said to an editor (or vice versa)? Well, I suffered a brief bout of Irritable Bowel Syndrome a few years ago. A self-help book I read in the men’s room at Barnes and Noble said that for cases in which IBS is psychosomatic, to come up with a code word I could recite under my breath until my bowels stopped quivering. I made the mistake of sharing that code word with my editor, Jule, who chanted it whenever she saw me stressing out. Also, I once called Erik Wemple a “motherfucker,” because I was pretty sure he was out of earshot. He was not.

Who is your favorite working journalist? The team behind Politico CLICK.

Do you have a favorite word? Vulva

Who would you rather have dinner with – First Lady Michelle Obama or Bestselling Author and former V.P. candidate Sarah Palin? I’d rather develop an eating disorder.

What’s the name of your cell phone ring? “Geronimo Joe medley”

When did you last cry and why? Just now. I ran over a dog while responding to this questionnaire on my BlackBerry.

Find out where Riggs last got angry after the jump (Hint: Flush). You don’t want to miss this…

What word do you routinely misspell? “Vasectomy,” even though I Google it several times a day.

What swear word do you use most often? “Fuck.”

What word or phrase do you overuse? “Please have sex with me.”

What TV show do you have to watch? “Simon and Simon,” except I don’t think they renewed it for another season.

Where do you shop most often for your clothes? Craigslist.

Whom do you prefer for daytime talk, Dr. Phil, Ellen, Oprah, Tyra or the women of The View? Do you even have to ask? “The View.”

Pick one: Leno, Letterman or Conan? “The View” again.

If you were trapped on a deserted island, which public official would you want to be trapped with and why? Vice President Joe Biden. If I am going to die in the middle of nowhere, I want to die laughing.

Who is your mentor? My mentor has requested that my name not appear alongside his in print.

What’s the best advice you ever received in the course of your career? Be yourself.

What and where was your first job in journalism? Student government beat reporter for my undergraduate’s student-run weekly.

What’s your most embarrassing career moment? Probably the IBS thing again.

Which one interview of your career did you enjoy most? Interviewing John Waters about Sheila Dixon and head-butting one’s lover during coitus.

Which one interview of your career did you enjoy least? The lead singer of a screamo band, who I interviewed on the occasion of him getting sober enough to release a solo album inspired by the works of Michael Jackson. He and his music were more interesting when he was strung out.

What’s the biggest scoop you’ve ever had? In 2008, I broke the story that the Minnesota State Society Presidential Inauguration Party would actually be serving coffee into the early evening, and not just until 2 p.m., as I had originally assumed.

When and why did you last laugh so hard you had tears in your eyes? The last time I went to the bathroom.

When and why did you last lose your temper? The last time I went to the bathroom.

Who would you want to play you in a movie? Will Smith

Name some jobs you’ve had outside of journalism. (Can start as young as teenage years): Person at Dominos who doesn’t wash his hands before topping your pizza; person at CVS who makes doubles of your spring break pictures and keeps a set for himself; person who stares into the backseat of your car while holding a double-sided “SLOW” and “STOP” sign; pipe-layer.

Finally, please come up for a question for our next FishbowlDC interviewee. Make it good. Fuck/Marry/Kill three Washington journalists

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