From the Department of Things I Should Have Read 24 Months Ago

So I’m two years behind the times on this one, but for those of you who have never read “Pat Dollard’s War on Hollywood,” do so now, please. I am currently reading The Best American Magazine Writing 2008, and “Pat Dollard” is a standout. The writing is utilitarian and clear, but it’s a compelling portrait of a scary human being. It’s very long, and very worth it. To entice you to read, I present the following titillating tidbits:

Hours of tape Dollard has shown me but not yet made public reveal an embedded reporter running out of control. In one sequence, filmed at a checkpoint where Marines are stopping civilian cars, Dollard himself cuts in front of the Marines to accost the driver. He leans in the window and shouts, “You got any bombs, dickface? Any booms? Any women?”

Dollard backs away, laughing, then shouts to nearby Marines. “Will you fucking kill something while I am here?”

Dollard enters the frame, totally nude, a decrepit satyr. A montage ensues of him performing various sex acts with her, intercut with close-ups of the girl smoking a glass pipe. There is unintended comedy: while Dollard is having sex with her on the couch, it catches fire, and the two fail to notice until flames engulf their feet. There is intended comedy: Dollard performs anal sex with her while simultaneously talking on the phone with an agent at William Morris.

The next day I visit. He greets me at the door drinking root beer and ice cream from an enormous bowl.

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