As you know, I'm all about sharing. I normally use the first column of the new year to print some of the e-mail I've received over the last 12 months. Looking through them, however, I noticed that they are actually the same message with slight variations. I tended to get the most response from four topics: my eye-rolling over the flaming subtext to The Lord of the Rings films; my genuine disgust at the timidity with which Oliver Stone approached the romantic relationship between Alexander the Great and Hephaistion in Alexander; my dismay over the decision to make Cole Porter's faggotry a secondary concern in the woeful musical biopic De-Lovely; and my casual derision of American Idol girlyman Clay Aiken. So, in order to save space and time, I've created a multiple-choice form letter to give readers an idea of a typical day in the "Small World" mailbox:
Before I begin, let me say that I read the Weekly on a regular basis and have a great sense of humor. I'm liberal in my politics and never usually have any quarrel whatsoever with someone expressing an opinion that differs from mine. So please know where I'm coming from when I tell you that you are obviously: (a) an asshole, (b) a sad human being, (c) a desperate homo, or (d) destined to burn in hell. There is no excuse for the smug, irresponsible manner with which you discussed: (a) The Return of the King, (b) Alexander,(c) De-Lovely, or (d) Clay Aiken. Just because: (a) four overjoyed hobbits, (b) a bewigged Colin Farrell and mascara'd Jared Leto, (c) an effete Kevin Kline who ignores wife Ashley Judd, or (d) a 26-year-old virgin who loves his mother and is a spokesperson for disabled children . . . may happen to: (a) bounce ecstatically in slow motion on a bed together, (b) look deep into each other's watery eyes before conquering Asia, (c) compose witty show tunes and pony the male lead of his Broadway musical, or (d) host his own Christmas special surrounded by Barry Manilow, a Will & Grace star, and children in holiday sweaters . . . doesn't in any way suggest the homosexuality with which you are so clearly obsessed.
You don't know anything about history. You see, according to the normal societal practices of: (a) Middle-earth, (b) 336 B.C., (c) the 1930s, or (d) Orange County, the Midwest, and most of the South . . . it's perfectly natural for: (a) four overjoyed hobbits, (b) a bewigged Colin Farrell and mascara'd Jared Leto, (c) an effete Kevin Kline who ignores wife Ashley Judd, or (d) a 26-year-old virgin who loves his mother and is a spokesperson for disabled children . . . to indulge in the kind of behavior you describe. You are unfairly intent on imposing your "hip" modern view of homosexuality on people for whom the word "gay" holds no meaning. I have no problem whatsoever with homosexuality, but I must insist that you stop: (a) calling the hobbits gay, (b) calling Alexander and Hephaistion gay (c) calling Cole Porter gay, or (d) referring to Clay as "Miss Aiken" . . . or you will only: (a) degrade the intentions of J.R.R. Tolkien, (b) misrepresent Macedonian history, (c) alter forever the connotations of "You're the Top," or (d) upset Clay's mother. I sincerely hope you find the happiness in life that you evidently lack. Have a nice day."
Please use the above form for all future correspondence, and have the happiest of New Years.