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DANGEROUS PAGLIASONS: MY OBSESSION WITH CAMILLE PAGLIA

By Anonymous

October 12, 1991

Dear Camille Paglia:

I have never written a fan letter before, but I just had to tell you how much I loved Sexual Personae. Someone had abandoned a copy on the bus, and I just picked it up and started reading. I can't get it out of my mind. Although I didn't understand a lot of what you were saying, I think I got the basic ideas down. If you are ever in Chicago, would you like to go out for coffee or something? I guess I have a sort of crush on you, even though you are about as old as my mom. A little about me: I am an art student, I am in a band. Girls have told me I look like a less psychotic Jim Morrison. But they are just girls. You are a WOMAN. Please write.

December 10, 1992

Dear Camille,

Hi again. Remember me? You couldn't have forgotten. I must admit I have never sent anyone a picture of me in the nude before, but I was inspired by your new Sex, Art, and American Culture book. As you probably noticed, I'm not slouch in the endowment department and I don't mean the NEA (Ha ha!). Maybe now that you have some carnal knowledge of me, you'll find the time to write me back. PLEASE write!!! (Or better yet, come visit me!)

July 27, 1993

Dearest Camille,

I am very happy that you are becoming more and more famous but two things are beginning to disturb me: 1) after I have sent you more than two dozen letters, a picture of me naked, and some pretty expensive Victoria's Secret lingerie, YOU STILL HAVE NOT ACKNOWLEDGED ME! and 2) just who the hell is this "gal pal" you are supposedly seeing? I mean, you're not really a total lesbian, right? If it isn't already painfully obvious, I am in love with you. By the way, here is another nude picture of me, taken outside of the Art Institute here in Chicago. You wouldn't believe how much trouble I got in. I almost got expelled, but naked students aren't all that an unusual sight around there.

November 16, 1994

To Ms. Camille Paglia,

Well, I hope you are happy. You have destroyed me. After I longed and lusted for you, imagine how I felt when I heard you were finally coming here to speak at the University of Chicago. And on my birthday, no less. I dragged along friends who said you reminded them of that horrible woman from The Nanny. When you came out on stage in that hot outfit I thought I would black out. I hung on your every word. People applauded but I know I clapped the loudest. When it came time for you to autograph Vamps & Tramps, I waited in line, just like everybody else. And when I finally got close enough to look into your eyes, what did you do? You screamed for the campus police! I have never known such betrayal. I loved and trusted you! I gave things up for you! I bought and listened to shitty Keith Richards albums for you! I know you would categorize me as just a male heroine with a latent Oedipal attraction to a Mercurius androgyne, fatally mistaking the chthonian for the Apollonian, but I won't be ignored, Camille! Why? Why? WHY?!!!

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