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THEY'RE OVER THE 'EDGE'

BOOK MAKERS

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Jim Becker and Andy Mayer are a real-life version of thirtysomething’s Michael and Elliot. They’re young, they have small children, and they work together in a room full of toys. But instead of coming up with ads, these guys create inspired books. This year alone they have nine works out, including a parody of the Sharper Image catalog called The Cutting Edge, a stay-at-home game of links, Armchair Golf, a book of Supreme Court Justices cutouts, and a line of indestructible kids’ books that come with wheels attached. The glitziest of the bunch, the 65-page ultra-yuppie Cutting Edge offers items like the $99,995.95 Reality Adjuster eyeglasses that alter ”bad” images from your world. ”Is $100,000 too much for a pair of sunglasses? We don’t think so,” the copy purrs. Pocket Lawyer, a transistorlike item, argues cases in the style of Alan Dershowitz, F. Lee Bailey, Clarence Thomas, or L.A. Law. And for the hygienically insecure, a $149.95 evergreen-shaped Body Odor Alert System, to be worn like a necklace, vibrates when the wearer exudes malodorous fumes. Mayer, 38, thinks their ideas ”probably come from having sick and demented minds.” Both admit to a fondness for hanging out in bookstores watching people shop. Becker, 37, says he once stood in line behind a woman who pointed to one of their works and said, ”Isn’t it incredible what people do for a buck these days?”