By Hillel Aron
By Joseph Tsidulko
By Patrick Range McDonald
By David Futch
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By Dennis Romero
By Jill Stewart
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The publisher of New Rave started the magazine mostly because he needed a place to run ads for his extensive phone-sex operation. He had very little interest in the editorial end of New Rave, and he liked Hickey’s style. Thus, when Hickey took over the reins at New Rave, he had the freedom to do pretty much whatever he wanted. His first move as editor: hiring East Village auteur Richard Kern to shoot Type O Negative’s Peter Steele cavorting with two porn stars. His second: commissioning a treatise on vaginal odor from angry white malcontent Jim Goad.
To publicize New Rave, Hickey shipped thousands of complimentary copies to U.S. Army troops stationed in Bosnia. Closer to home, he sent free subscriptions to hundreds of churches across the country. Hickey loved his new life as grandstanding crotch Barnum. He had his own spacious office in New Rave’s Wilshire Boulevard headquarters. He was getting a regular salary for penning cover stories like “Wonder Drug GHB: Ejaculate of the Gods?” He was road-testing strippers and hookers on New Rave’s dime. He was still hanging out with rock stars, but instead of just schlepping their equipment around or scoring them drugs, he was pairing them with porn stars and persuading them to appear in his magazine. “Marilyn Manson was totally down for it,” Hickey remembers. “He wore fishnet stockings and duct tape, and posed for one picture with a silver vibrator sticking out of his ass.”
A few months into his new gig, Hickey even started dating a celebrity of sorts, Sandra Margot, former cast member of Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling, America’s first all-female wrestling TV series, and, under the name Tyffany Million, star of Jailhouse Cock, Beaverly Hillbillies, Splatman, and more than a hundred other hardcore porn videos. A sharp, ambitious blond, Margot was known for her voracious sexuality and her hard, tan body. Thousands of hours at the gym plus some extensive scalpel work had given her the figure of a bionic Barbie.
She and Hickey fell for each other at a party he’d invited her to at a Hollywood bikini bar. “He asked me if I wanted a drink, and I said ‘Sure,’” she recalls. “Then, out of nowhere, he puts his hand up my dress and, not even knowing me, sticks his finger in my asshole. I didn’t even flinch, though, because I knew he was just trying to get a reaction out of me. And right there he said he knew I was his girl.”
For Margot, however, it took more convincing. That happened later that evening, when she, Hickey and Colin Malone retreated to a back room so the latter two could snort some cocaine. When Margot sat on Malone’s lap and started kissing him, Hickey responded as if he were watching a scene from one of her videos. “He just whipped out his dick and started jerking off,” says Margot. For an exhibitionistic porn star, it was more romantic than a bouquet of long-stemmed vibrators.
Together, the duo made Pam and Tommy seem as staid as a pair of plastic wedding-cake toppers. Shortly after their initial greeting they moved in together. For several months, they lived in tidy sin. “Jef liked to get really high on blow and then clean my house,” says Margot.
In 1996, they decided to go to Las Vegas and get married. The ceremony took place at the Graceland Wedding Chapel, with an obese Elvis impersonator on hand to bless their union. “Normally, he sings songs, but we just gave him a bunch of fried chicken and Pepsi and asked him to eat really loudly,” says Hickey. After exchanging vows, Margot tore off her top and the happy couple posed for their wedding photos.
Like many newlyweds, Hickey and Margot argued over money. Hickey says that his new bride no longer wanted to dance or do movies. She says that he’s the one who wanted her to stop. Whichever was the case, she didn’t think his salary was enough for both of them to live on. “That’s when I started taking kickbacks at New Rave,” says Hickey. “It cost between $6,000 to $10,000 to put a full-page ad in the magazine. I’d tell a video company to give me two grand in cash instead, and then I’d tell my boss that we needed to give them the first ad free in order to get more.”
But along with more money to spend on Margot, Hickey also had more money to spend on his other great loves — pills and cocaine. “He would mix all kinds of stuff and go up and down chemically,” says Margot. “And then he started constantly checking up on me, calling me 20 times a day from work. I’d be at the grocery store, or out having coffee somewhere, and he’d pop up out of nowhere and ask me what I was doing. If any other guys tried to talk with me, he’d get all bent out of shape, and that really started to irritate me.”
Margot struck back by telling New Rave’s publisher about Hickey’s ad-sales tricks, effectively ending his tenure there. “It was a terrible thing that I still regret,” says Margot. “But I was so angry with him, because he was making my life a living hell.” A few months later, on Valentine’s Day, she served him with divorce papers. While she says the timing was unintentional, Hickey considered it the ultimate slap in the face. He didn’t bother with a traditional pen-and-ink reply. “I stuffed the papers in a Ziploc bag and shit all over them,” he says. “Then, I FedExed them back to her lawyer.”