The blog of author Dennis Cooper

Misanthrope presents … It’s All About Me: Stuff and Things and People I’m Into

Harry Styles

Because he’s goofy as fuck.


Sinéad O’Connor

Because she’s fucking epic beautiful in maybe a million or more ways.



David Laid

Because he’s normal and nice and uncomplicated but complex.


Christopher Hitchens

Because I miss the hell out of him.


Diet Dr. Pepper Commercials

Because nothing is funnier (to me) than a little Prince-looking guy popping out of your washer.


Randy Orton “Outta Nowhere” Clips

Because I love Randy Orton and I love people who put him in other people’s videos of other people getting fucked up.


Tommy Hilfiger and Nautica Clothes

Because they fit me really well…and because I have this phobia about extraneous strings on clothes, like in the armpits, pockets, and crotches, and I never have to worry about these clothes having these feared strings (and the latter is the real reason I like them).


Staying Up Really Late

Because I can’t during the work week. So I fuck it all up by staying up almost all night on the weekends…and then complain about how tired I am all through the week…and then stay up late all over again…but it’s fun, right?



p.s. Hey. Today the upstanding and long term distinguished local of DC’s blog plus writer and just generally uniquely configured gentleman Misanthrope would like to share some things and folks he likes, really likes, and my educated guess is that he would like, really like you to take a gander and, in the indicated spots, listen to his things/folks then respond according to your own tastes and levels of interest in his outpouring via the comments. Can you do that, please? It would be awfully cool if you did, thank you. And thanks above all to you, Misanthrope. ** David Ehrenstein, Hi. That’s his real name? I did not know that. Gisele knows him, but I think he only lets her know him as Leos. What a lovely and informative story, thank you kindly. And … Everyone, Mr. Ehrenstein has wisely added to the Carax post yesterday by linking all of us up with this clip from ‘Holy Motors’ featuring international pop sensation Kylie Minogue. Check it. Oh, and also use this to read about and even purchase the new book by the fine author and expert/historian Bill Reed who also just happens to be Mr. E’s spouse. Bill’s new book is called ‘Perils of Prolificity: Sometimes When I Start Writing, I Just Can’t Stop’, and his books are always ultra-worthy treats. Awesome about Bill’s new book! I’ll get it. ** Tosh Berman, Hi, Tosh. Yes, indeed, he is indeed. And I believe the Maels are here in Paris working with him right now, as I saw a photo yesterday on Facebook of Russell standing in front of a restaurant that is but a swift 20 second trot from my front door. And some people who work with Gisele are working on the film helping design and build a puppet that is, as I understand it, the star of the film. ** Bill, Hi, Bill. Carax’s film productions are always fraught, so we’ll see how soon his new one gets made, but it is fully financed and soon to be underway, at the very least. Happy to have blasted some past at you. Ha ha, funny about your tag for them, poor things. ** Dóra Grőber, Hi! I did like it, and, after hearing it, I remembered it and that I liked it at the time too. Thank you! I almost fully believe my arm is improving now. It’s slow but steady. I hope those stores are selling your mom’s ceramics. They’re so beautiful. I’ve heard of ‘A Mother’s Reckoning’, but I can’t remember what it is. I’ll go find out. My day … oh, I looked at a couple of apartments, one of which was very eccentric in a curious way, but neither of which will work unfortunately. Zac and I have another big day of actor auditions on Thursday, so we started organizing that. I worked on blog posts, which I do every day but rarely mention because making blog posts isn’t very interesting to hear about. If you remember, I reconnected recently with my best friend from high school, and we Skype occasionally, and we had a long, great talk/visit last night. I think that was the totality of yesterday excluding eating and walking and boring stuff. What did your today involve? Have a swell one. ** New Juche, Hey. Work work work, I hear you. Huh, I might have to go back and search the archives for that filmmaker you mentioned. It rings a strong bell, but I’m not coming up with a name immediately. It’s not Kiarostami or Mohsen Makhmalbaf, right? Do you remember how long ago the post was? Was it on this new blog or on my murdered one? ** Chris dankland, Hi, Chris! ‘Holy Motors’ is very worth watching, yep. All of his feature length films are. ‘Pola X’ is really good too. Oh, man, thank you so much for devoting your time and thought to ‘Death Spiral’. I so very, very appreciate it. What I meant to say, if I didn’t, in those interviews, is that I think I might have taken the GIF novel form as far as I can. I could keep making them and refining them, but I don’t feel like I can necessarily push the form into a new, more advanced place, and it’s always been a rule for me with my fiction, written or GIF, that if I can’t do something that I personally believe is expanding what a novel can be within the strictures of my particular talent, I won’t write a novel. It’s also kind of deeply frustrating to me that the GIF novels are doing, or at least attempting to do, quite complex things with narrative and structure and content and stuff, and that so few people seem interested in engaging with them, with what they are and are doing and are about, other than to find their surfaces and the form itself fun or interesting or cool or not. So that probably plays into my ennui about continuing that work too. But as for the idea of the GIF as the language of a new literary form, I’m still very interested in that. ‘Death Spiral’ did advance what I’ve been doing, yeah. I figured out how to play looser with the images but remain tightly controlling of their sequencing/build at the same time, and the narrative in it is better/deeper overall, I think. It’s easily one of my best GIF works so far, I’m pretty sure. Hieroglyphics is a really good way to describe it, yes. I hadn’t thought of that, but, yeah, very much. Well, there are sequences in it that are ‘fucked up’ and kind of ugly in a way I hadn’t dared try before. Another big, overall thing in ‘DS’ that is more developed and ingrained than before is the way actual language works within it. I’ve started working more carefully with GIFs in which the person/face is speaking, and where, if you pay the kind of attention to the work that it asks, you can read the lips of speakers and understand/hear what they’re saying. What they’re saying both in the specific sequences and when added together into a kind of overall narrative ‘conversation’, advances the work’s narrative or trajectory almost the way dialogue does in written fiction, but in a more haunted way than is possible in text-based fiction. A specfic example in ‘DS’ that I’m very proud of world be the Bowie/ouija board/boy sequence, where, if you study the pieces — Bowie’s face and movement, what the ouija board is spelling out, the boy’s face/movement and what he’s mouthing, and the combined  rhythm/movement/sources/etc. — you find this kind of very sad yet comical ‘scene’ that I think is beautiful in and of itself as well as servicing the whole work’s intentions both emotionally and in terms of ‘story’. Gosh, sorry to go on like that. That’s what I guess I’m saying: I take the literary GIF work very seriously. I know that what it and I are asking is very demanding, but I myself love demanding things, so shoot me, ha ha. Anyway, I so appreciate you thinking about that work and asking me about it. Everything you wrote about it makes total sense to me, and relates to what I hope/intend, and, yeah, it’s a joy to know that the piece is working for you in the detail that I’m trying very hard to make happen. Your response is very meaningful, thank you, Chris. Yes, me too, and probably everyone re: trying to negotiate the contant stress and scariness of the news and find what’s mine enough to work with, and how the effect of all of that can be useful or generative or something. Man, it’s insane out there, no? Wow, that quote. That’s not me. I never said or wrote that. I have no idea how that ended up being attributed to me. Not that it’s not an excellent quote, and not that I don’t agree with it, but that just isn’t my voice or language at all. How strange. You have a great morning too, my friend. ** Jamie, Very good day to you, sir! I’m not tired, no, and I’m sorry you were. Although you were perfectly cogent for a sleepy guy. As far as I know, no TV news, but I’m talking with Gisele today, so I’ll see what I can find out. I did enjoy ‘I Apologize’. It did seem early-on to me, like its seams showed, and it felt more like we were playing with the blocks of what we would later figure out how to represent in a much better way, but it does maintain this kind of punky, in-your-face thing that I think is appealing, and it got a great response, so I guess I’m good with it. I hope you have arrived safely back in Glasgow, and feel perky as hell. What happened? Love, me. ** Kier, Hi! Thanks about the gig, pal. No news on the TV thing as far as I know, but I haven’t had an actual conversation with Gisele in about a week, and we’re blabbing today, so maybe there’s some news I don’t know yet. John Tuite interviewed me for VICE about the GIF fiction and ‘Cattle’ a while back. Then he was in Paris recently for Fashion Week and asked if I wanted to hang out, and we did, and I liked him a lot, and we got along really well, and we became instant good friends. It’s cool when that happens. You want another trigger? Hm, what, what … I have to think. Oh, gosh, I’m blanking. Can I think about it today and give you a trigger tomorrow? Is that okay? I promise it’ll be a trigger-y one. Yeah, the auditions are in French. Zac does most of the talking, and I listen and chime in sometimes. I can understand the very, very basics, and it’s useful because can study the way they look and move and seem and so on without the ‘distraction’ of knowing exactly what they’re saying, and, given the way we work with performers, that’s actually very useful. So it works out fine. Nice that you get to go home for a bit. Cool, I’ll go look at the squeaky cat. I’m definitely intrigued by your description. Oh, the farm! Wow, the farm, I remember when you at the farm so much. That takes me back. Yes, weird, about the London phone call event. I forgot all about that. It was put on by Horse Hospital, and they made a phone booth, and anyone could go in the phone booth and call me in LA, and I would talk to them. It was weird, kind of obnoxious, but kind of nice. The only thing I really remember is these two guys who made me listen them having sex, or maybe pretending to have sex, who knows. Ha ha, weird to recall that. I’ll try to have a good Tuesday, and you too, okay? ** _Black_Acrylic, Hi, Ben. Yep, the Sparks/Carax is happening. ** Jeff J, Hi. I think the burning posters is from ‘Les Amants du Pont-Neuf’. No, I haven’t seen ‘Mr. X’. I forgot about it. I want to. I will. Thanks for the reminder. Team Dresch! That’s another band that were excluded only because of my having spaced out. Good call. I’ve only heard The Raymond Brake from that trio you listed. I’ll check the others. Thanks, buddy. ** Misanthrope, The man of the 24 hours! Hello there! Thank you mightily again for today’s enlightening entertainment. I hope that cold’s visit is very short. Like Bible salesman at the front door short. Uh, I have no idea about whether a Latin background improves one’s elocution. Let me … Everyone, While you’re exploring Misanthrope today, also see if you can answer this burning question he has posed. Here he is: ‘I’ve noticed in the reading I’ve done and the interviews I’ve watched and all that, that English speakers, writers, intellectuals, et al, with a good background in Latin seem to have a better command of English and its usage. What do you think?’ ** Steevee, I’ve heard that story about the reason why LES AMANTS DU PONT-NEUF had a weird US release too, and I think it’s true. Wow, that was a fast turn over on the Kristi Jacobson interview. Everyone, Steevee has interviewed director Kristi Jacobson about her film ‘Solitary’, which is showing on HBO tonight in the United States if you have HBO and are in the United States. In any case, here’s the interview. Thanks. Steve. ** Right. Be with and somewhat inside Misanthrope. See you tomorrow.


  1. Hi!

    I’m glad you liked the song and I’m even gladder your arm is improving, slowly but steadily!
    Thank you! Most of them are!
    A Mother’s Reckoning is the book of Sue Klebold, Dylan Klebold’s mother. I just started reading it so I don’t have a final opinion just yet but I’m really curious. However it turns out, it must’ve taken a LOT to write such a book.
    Damn, I’m sorry none of the apartments were good enough, for one reason or another. I hope you find something soon!
    It’s so great that you reconnected with your old high school friend like this!
    Today, I have plans with a friend but it’s raining so we might end up being lazy and postponing it. We’ll see, haha. Otherwise I’m just reading and writing. No interview for today.
    How was today on your end? Is everything going well with the preparations for the Thursday audition?

    And Misanthrope: thank you for this little collection! It was a pleasure seeing Harry Styles up there!

  2. Merci Dennis.
    Nice list Mis, though I don’t share your admiration for Hitchens. I always found his Clinton-hatred WAY over the top. A straightforward denunciation of his word and deeds would have sufficed. Hitchens antics in trying to get into Iraq at the start of the U.S. invasion were Beyond Embarrassing.

    I miss Gore Vidal, something; awful.

    • DavidE, I hear you on Hitch. I don’t agree with everything he says, but I always liked that he stood up for the shit he did believe in and never backed down. And his persona…something about it just appealed to me. Gore Vidal, I’m right with you on him. Love him too and miss him very much.

  3. Holy shit! Helmut Berger just contacted me on Twitter after reading my “Cracked Actors” essay. His English is garbled, but I got the feeling he didn’t like it, which is fair enough. What I wrote about him there was deeply unflattering.

    I second David Ehrenstein’s distaste for Hitchens, although I’ll give him some credit for championing atheism so publicly (but even there he really seemed to have it in for Islam over other religions.)

    • I think a lot of Hitch’s feelings about radical Islam had to do with his close friendship with Rushdie. He saw that fatwa firsthand, hiding Rushdie in his apartment for a long time. He also traveled extensively all over the Middle East and was very sympathetic to the Muslims there who were oppressed by fanatic regimes. But if you look at his speeches and stuff, he didn’t give Christianity or any other religion any quarter either.

  4. “Haunted” by Sinead and Shane is a classic. I also like the reggae album she did with a stacked Studio One session band. Not to mention the mesmerizing version of Foggy Dew that she performs with the Chieftains. Warms my Irish-American, Republican sympathizer heart.

    I have a pair of black Nautica jeans that I LOVE.

    DENNIS – Not dead, just busy with school. As I settle into the groove this semester I won’t be such a stranger around here. I haven’t forgotten about MY guest post. I’ll give you a heads up once I get to it in the coming weeks. Much love!

    • liquoredgoat, Thanks for that! Now I’ll be spending my late nights looking for those Sinead reggae clips. This is one of the reasons I did this day.

  5. Misa, you’re slipping: how could you not include the great Harry Styles/Ian McKellen cuddle:


    No complaints about the David Laid segment though!

    1:00 AM. Fucking lightweight, I’m usually still up at 3:30 Am. 😉 I have the luxury of sleeping late into the morning, however.

    • Dude, I get up at 5:30 every morning, fucking sucks. I almost put that clip in there, but I went with what my original idea was. Thanks for linking it, though.

  6. Hey Dennis!
    I just wanted to stop by as Thomas Moore’s and my conversation went up today at The Fanzine. I’ve been dropping in occasionally, but haven’t commented or touched base as this first bit of the year has been pretty overwhelming. Really glad this interview is up though. Thomas’s work is hugely important to me and I thought his In Their Arms was, basically, a masterpiece of contemporary writing engaging the internet and the like. Reminded me of The Sluts frequently, and he is just an endlessly inspiring human being.
    Other stuff, hmm. Tough these days to keep at it, sometimes renewed devotion, sometimes just hopelessness. GAG, a novella that is sort of a sister book to the manual, is coming out on Inside the Castle, so that’s good. Marcel is going to be reissued by Dostoyevsky Wannabe, which is great news. The manual should be coming out at some point in the next few months. Otherwise, just dadding and working and trying to keep my head on.
    I hope that this finds you well, my friend. I will make a point of stopping by more often. I have few friends in the current city so spaces like this are fantastic.

    Here’s the link: http://thefanzine.com/the-immediate-coldness-and-failures-of-language-a-conversation-between-thomas-moore-and-grant-maierhofer-about-in-their-arms-and-px138-3100-2686-users-manual/

    All best,


  7. Helmut Berger, steevee? WOW! I met him once — at the legendary disastrous opening night of The Cockettes at the Yiddish Anderson theater in new York. I found myself sitting between him and Robert Rauschenberg.
    Helmut was quite good in the second Yves Saint-Laurent biopic as the older Yves. After you’ve been discovered, glamorized and made a huge international star by a boyfriend whose familial lineage goes right back to Charlemagne, it’s hard to pick up the pieces of the rest of your life.

  8. Misanthrope! I l love this post. Feels like I just got to know you a bit & it’s a pleasure. Sinead O’s 1st album is sooo good, I think. That boy bulking up his body needs to take it easy. Thanks for a lovely post.

    Denzealous Guy! I’m still tired. Too much travel, not enough sleep. Thanks for saying I was cogent tho. I hope all’s well & those TV folks get in touch asap. Whatever happened to my three questions?
    Lots of love to you and hope you have the nicest Wednsday.

    • Jamie, Thank you. That’s was the primary reason I did the post. The bulking boy is really interesting. He’s an avid photographer/videographer and admittedly manipulates lighting and angles when he takes pics of himself to make himself look bigger. When you watch a workout video, you can see that he’s not that bulky, just very lean and muscular but not overly so.

  9. Dennis! Sorry for being a stranger – work related as always. Had some particularly grim and time consuming cases to sort out – abuse and some awful neglect. Ugh.
    I’m always reading the blog though – I loved Death Spiral – so fucking good. And the indie rock day had a load of my favourites in. Such a rich and interesting time for music.

    Cool to see the insight into the one and only Misanthrope today. Cheers, George!

    And cool that Grant has linked to our conversation at Fanzine today. Thanks for inviting me to do that Grant.

    Love to all

    Thomas xoxo

  10. @thomas moronic, hey, good to “see” “you”!!

    @misa, thank you for this glimpse into your ever-fascinating mind!

    hey dendigo, no problem about the trigger of course! i didn’t end up going to school today actually, been a couch potato all day, just really low on energy for some reason. i have a course all day tomorrow, and then i’m flying home in the evening so i won’t be writing before thursday/friday if you need more time too! how was your day? what did you do? that’s so nice you’ve reconnected with your hs bff, how’d that happen? i’ll update you on the farm life when i’m home. good night

    • kier, Thanks. I mean, I saw your work in NYC before, so why wouldn’t you humor my silly obsessions for a few minutes? 😀

  11. @ Misanthrope, I used to wonder what went on inside your mind and now I know, so thanks for that you sick bastard. Although I agree, Sinéad’s a beautiful person and whatever his views at any given time, Christopher Hitchens would always carry them off with a degree of style.

    • Thanks, Ben. I take that as a compliment. No, I really do. Ditto on Hitch, which is what I was trying to say earlier to Mr. E.

  12. @Misanthrope – Thanks for putting this together. Really enjoyed it and getting more insight into your personality. That Sinead clip of “Black Boys on Mopeds” has haunted me for most of the day. And I kept wondering how Hitchens would react to the shitshow unfolding daily in global politics. Those Diet Dr. Pepper commercials were new to me and wonderfully surreal and absurdist.

    • Thanks, Jeff. I know that Hitch was anti-Alt Right before it was cool. There are interviews with him from years ago talking about it. I would definitely love his take on everything. I do know that he said back in the day that there’s no difference between Palin and Trump, that they’re essentially the same people. That was interesting.

  13. Hey Dennis –
    Thinking about your GIF works and the frustration you expressed yesterday. I wonder if part of them not being taken as seriously is the lack of immediately available language to discuss their complexities? Of course, it should be the job of critics to forge that language and discourse but most seem pretty lazy about even complex print novels, much less something so new like these GIF works. Have you ever thought about writing about them? Thinking about how Robbe-Grillet felt critics were missing his work entirely and ‘Towards a New Novel’ righted that. And didn’t Mike Kelley start writing about his own work b/c he felt critics were so far off the mark and/or ignoring it altogether? Anyhow, those things jumped to mind. Hope it’s not presumptuous to toss them out there.

    I know when I encounter one of your new GIF pieces here, I tend to watch it on a more surface level that day and then come back a few times over the next week and re-watch it to get more attuned to it. The surface pleasures are so immediate and consuming that it takes me a little time and time away from the work to better digest it. For whatever that’s worth.

    Anyhow, I’m getting ready to head off to the AWP conference and will vanish here for a little while. Hoping it’ll be a good time.

    Hope the auditions go well and you’re soon fully cast.

  14. @misanthrope !! i enjoyed this, made me smile. i feel like u would be a really fun person to hang out with, i’ve always really liked yr personality & sense of humor & how friendly u are. hopefully someday we’ll get a chance to meet. i agree totally about sinead o’connor being gorgeous & very charismatic. she always seemed to me like joan of arc or some saint or something, the way she looks. i do the same thing with staying up late, i do that pretty much every chance i get.


    no problem about anything, i like hearing u talk about the gif work. it really is so extremely rare that u come across something new in literature, it’s exciting for me to see u exploring those unexplored waters. i’m not a gertrude stein expert by any means but in my mind the gifs have a connection to her work as well, in the sense that she was really into deconstructing sentences & paragraphs into discrete vehicles of meaning. i probably sound like an asshole talking about this, haha. but…like…how she was really good at breaking down sentences to focus on abstract concepts like subject, object, action, conjunction…exploring how communication works. & also her emphasis on refrain, rhythm, punctuation…in my mind, i see similar issues being explored in the gif stories.

    i’m very interested in learning more about how a “gif sentence” works, how meaning gets assembled & communicated that way.

    that david bowie “sentence” was really cool, i hadn’t noticed that! i typed out the ouiji board letters & figured out what the boy was saying, that works really well.

    i started plugging some of the gifs into google image search & getting some of the surrounding meta-data & context for the gifs, which was also illuminating and drew more connections in my mind (although maybe that’s cheating a bit). some of my favorite “sentences” were the tinkerbell one, the exploding stomach one, and the talking mask that says “remember me?” those all hit me in an emotional way.

    but anyway yeah i really enjoy the gif works, they’re very interesting to think about.

    thanks for clearing up my quote question, i deleted it from the tumblr.

    peace !! talk to u later, i hope u have a good one

    • Thanks, Chris. I’m humbled. The feelings are very mutual. I like your sense of humor too. You’re one funny dude. Though we gots to gets the smoke off your head and get proper look at ya. 😀

  15. Big D! The pleasure is all mine. This was fun for me. It’s part of a larger plan to get back into doing creative things. This is a first step. So…thank YOU!

    And not to be long-winded or anything, but here was the genesis of this post: I got to talking to a friend at work and something came up and I said, “It’s ALL about ME!” And he said, “NO! It’s ALL about ME!” And we got to talking about self-centeredness and whether that it was automatically selfishness or if it could be selfless. And here’s the result. Something that is indeed all about me but something that I’m sharing with my friends here…a little look at and into me, as well as a way for them to get to know me better and vice versa. Maybe we’ll all discover new things as a result.

    It’s just something I’ve been thinking about lately.

    The cold is at bay with the Zicam. This shit really works.

  16. Hey,

    I’ve no fucking clue who some of these people are, but, I can say I definitely fuckin agree about the great Sinéad O’Connor. Now THAT’s a fucking hero and a legend and a true badass. I bow down to the one and only Sinéad O’Connor. I still celebrate and enjoy and applaud her EPIC, extremely beautiful, gorgeous, courageous, legendary, historic statement of 1992 in SNL. Every time I watch it I get shivers down my spine and tears appear. That’s how much it moves me. One of the most humanist actions ever seen on live television. And, of course, such a motherfucking amazing person had to be Irish. Irish people are the fucking best.

    I also completely agree, even more so, with the Christopher Hitchens choice. I too still miss the shit out of him. We need him now more than ever. What a truly Great, Great Man. I’ll never forget you, Hitch; my hero.

    Anyway, how you’re doing, man? Good, I hope. I missed you.

    I want to apologize. I’m so so so so motherfucking stupid and forgot your birthday. I feel so fucking shitty. I’m so sorry. Happy Belated Birthday… :(… Hope you had a great one. Did you do anything?

    How are Michael, little adorable Milo and B.? If you talk to them, could you please tell them I say hi and send them my very best wishes and tell Michael I miss him a lot?

    When does the shooting of your new film begin???!!! So, I’m going to ask you a couple of questions and I apologize in advance if you don’t want to discuss that subject or if you’ve talked about it before. How did you get the film financed? What’s the budget approximately?

    I’ve joined a few groups that are determined to peacefully stop piece of shit orange shitler. I really don’t think much, if anything, can or will be achieved, but, I don’t know, I just can’t help a least *try* to do something, anything… *Sigh*… Oh well…

    I really, really want to contribute with a post for the blog, if it’s OK with you. I’ve had a few potential themes in mind for years now, but I don’t know, I get so insecure. I’m so afraid people will not like them at all, or pay any attention, or think I’ve defiled your blog… I just get so anxious.

    Anyway, I’m shutting the fuck up now.

    Good day; good luck,

    Lots of love and hugs,

    Your friend,


  17. hi,
    do you have the original source of the first picture of Harry? cause I wanna make a life-size print for my friend and I need it to be in really good quality lol

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