Maxim - - CONTENTS - Edi­tor in Chief KATE LAN­PHEAR

FRESH OUT OF COL­LEGE, I moved to Lon­don to em­bark on my ca­reer, of­fer­ing to work for free as a fash­ion as­sis­tant just to get my foot in the door. Strapped for cash, I traded nightly house­keep­ing du­ties at a hos­tel near Vic­to­ria for a bot­tom bunk in a room with seven Aus­tralian and South African guys. In the hos­tel’s lobby was a pool ta­ble, and with some coach­ing from my new room­mates, my skills be­came fairly de­cent. My hus­tle was bet­ter. Good enough on most nights to re­lieve the Amer­i­can trav­el­ers who hap­pened by of 10 to 20 quid—money for food and a tube ticket each day.

Be­fore long I landed my first pay­ing job in the fash­ion world. The way I see it, I’ve been hus­tling in one way or an­other ever since. And I’m not the only one. Amer­i­cans are a na­tion of hus­tlers. Al­ways have been.

In Lon­don, where I honed my game, the Euro­pean aris­toc­racy was still very much a thing. Peo­ple were born into the up­per class, or they weren’t. Amer­ica may not be quite the mer­i­toc­racy we like to think it is, but it’s long been a hustler’s par­adise—even more so since the In­ter­net hummed to life, turn­ing seem­ingly any­one with a smart­phone, a so­cial me­dia ac­count, and a healthy dose of bravado into an overnight mil­lion­aire and a small-screen su­per­star.

Even in this golden era of hus­tle, there are no guar­an­tees. But there is a chance. You fig­ure out what you’ve got, and you ex­ploit it to the hilt. You take your shot. Then you take an­other. You hit ev­ery an­gle. And some­times you are a lit­tle shame­less. You want it bad.

This is­sue of Maxim is ded­i­cated to that lofty pur­suit—the hus­tle—in its many forms. We en­list the bril­liant Guggen­heim-fel­low­ship-win­ning nov­el­ist Philipp Meyer, au­thor of The Son— an ex­tra­or­di­nary multigenerational chron­i­cle of a fam­ily of Texas strivers—to of­fer his own hustler’s credo (page 16). We catch up with Pa­tri­ots wide re­ceiver Ju­lian Edel­man (page 34) as he sets about turn­ing his Su­per Bowl win into a would-be ca­reer as a pitch­man. We in­tro­duce you to Ali­cia Vikan­der (page 24), the bril­liant Swedish actress who’s about to take Hol­ly­wood by storm. We look at how the At­lanta Hawks, mag­nif­i­cently shot by artist Pelle Cass, are re­defin­ing bas­ket­ball, turn­ing hus­tle into a team ef­fort (page 20). We delve into the body­build­ing un­der­ground, where some fool­hardy gym devo­tees are risk­ing their health to gain an easy ad­van­tage from a danger­ous new class of mus­cle drugs (page 54). And we help you per­fect your own hus­tle with this month’s In­former (page 90), a com­pre­hen­sive user’s guide to op­ti­miz­ing your on­line dat­ing strat­egy.

Mean­while, we meet the new wave of gor­geous Instagram in­genues who live for a fol­low (page 42). They hate be­ing called “In­sta-girls,” and fair enough. So would I. But I sure do ad­mire their hus­tle. Like­wise David Beckham (page 18), who had plenty of hus­tle on the field and two years into re­tire­ment still can’t seem to slow down. And tech en­tre­pre­neur Ste­wart But­ter­field (page 76), who cre­ated Flickr and scored an even big­ger win with his new bil­lion-dollar app, the work­place com­mu­ni­ca­tion tool and hustler’s friend Slack. And Tina Kan­de­laki, the Rus­sian so­cialite and mar­ket­ing wiz tasked with rein­vent­ing the sto­ried Ak-47—an icon of com­bat and fear—as a weapon of peace (page 84).

“Hus­tle is what sep­a­rates the good from the great,” my cre­ative direc­tor aptly pointed out when we dis­cussed ideas for the is­sue. It’s work­ing harder, faster, and smarter, or some­times just hav­ing more swag­ger than the next guy.

What­ever strat­egy you land on, the key is to work it. From one hustler to an­other: re­spect.

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