By now, Robert had built up a resistance to the germs of the industry, the way one can by “drinking Mexican tap water.” So he moved on “to the supreme challenge of my pornographic career.”
He took the editor’s chair at D-Cup, also run by Marvelous Martin’s go-getter son, Chip.
Rivaling Dylan Thomas and his Adventures in the Skin Trade , Paradise became D-Cup’s poet laureate. He wrote of “bodacious bazooms,”“magnificent milkers,”“succulent saggers,” and “wobbling wazoobies.”
Sixteen years in the trenches, Robert Rosen witnessed the rise and fall of the industry: from its phone sex Golden Age, to the Traci Lord’s scandal (“the pornographic equivalent of a Chernobyl-size toxic spill”), to Reagan’s anti-Obscenity crusade, to the free internet porn which put the final stake through the heart of the men’s mag biz.
By 1999, “I was totally burnt out on smut … but I was trapped … my career options were limited,” he confesses.
But then his prayers seemed to be answered: his Lennon biography, Nowhere Man, was at last accepted for publication. He used this ticket to ride back to reality. Flying faster than a speeding bullet, leaping buildings with a single bound, he abandoned the man of steel fantasy world, sanity miraculously intact.
In Beaver Street, the defrocked Mr. Paradise leaves us with a new kind of X-File which creates its own genre: a confessional for-adults-only romantic comedy with a rare, thoughtful twist.
In explaining his reason for writing this riveting title, Rosen says, “I wanted to understand the cumulative psychic effect of having spent 192 months immersed in XXX and wondering if I’d ever get out alive. I wanted to understand what I’d witnessed, what I’d done, what I’d become.”
Beaver Street: A History of Modern Pornography (Headpress, 2012)