This week’s “Rolling Stone” magazine features “JT Leroy: The Famous Writer Who Wowed Bono and Courtney Love – But Didn’t Exist.” Oddly enough, it really is more portrait of JT Leroy than interview with Laura Albert, JT's flesh-and-blood creator who recently lost a lawsuit brought against her by Antidote Films. Check it out then write the editor a letter of your own. Here’s my take:
Great reporting, though I wish Guy Lawson hadn’t overlooked the real issue beneath all the surreal drama. The “story” is not Laura Albert so much as the visceral, personal overreaction her “hoax” evoked in those who should know better. Between MySpace “friends” and Britney blogs we’re given the false sense that we truly know – own – our objects of adoration. Sadly, I guess it’s inevitable that dysfunctional celebrities also would buy into this myth, believe an otherwise obvious dream sprung forth from a mentally ill woman desperate not to disappoint. (After all, if the emperor wears Abercrombie & Fitch, he must exist.) The glitterati didn’t “know” JT Leroy any more than I know Courtney Love. They were simply fans – behaving like spurned lovers when the fantasy they collectively helped to create turned out to be just that.