Dear America,

By now you have probably heard that last night, Lindsay Lohan was arrested in New York City for allegedly punching a woman in the face outside of a Chelsea nightclub. Oh fucking hell. (Somehow it seems worth noting that the night club where the incident took place, Avenue, actually banned Lohan from the premises years ago, because that is how long this whole thing has been a mess, America.) This comes only a couple of weeks after she was accused of hitting someone with her car. Meanwhile, a judge in Santa Monica has chosen today of all days to charge Lindsay Lohan with three separate crimes related to a traffic accident she had last year. In the past two months alone, her publicist has quit, her father staged an emergency intervention, which caused her to seek an order of protection against him, all while it was being revealed that he had a secret love child with another woman dating back to when he was still married to Lindsay’s mother, who herself is a real piece of work. Oh, whoops, I can’t believe I failed to mention that she also secured a $100,000 loan from CHARLIE SHEEN to help pay off her taxes. THAT IS JUST IN THE PAST COUPLE OF MONTHS, GUYS! Even Liz & Dick was a bust. OOF!

We need to hold an intervention on OURSELVES. This cannot be good for us. This weird, overpowering, drooling obsession with the personal tragedy of another human being just because they remade Parent Trap one time. Lindsay Lohan is only 26 years old, and she has an entire nation of creeps stretching their claws out towards her, hoping for just the tiniest taste of that sweet, sweet flesh. Come on. I know that we aren’t better than this, or above this, but let’s pretend like we are better than this and above this. Let us fake it until we make it. “Hey, if you really want to complain about something, how about drone strikes.” Oh yeah, let’s also chill with the drone strikes!

The argument that celebrities know what they are signing on for when they go to that audition or shoot that pilot or wherever the threshold lies for when you supposedly willingly sign yourself over to an onslaught of public abuse only holds so much water. It does mean that no one gets sympathy for decrying the loss of privacy when they’re just trying to drink their kale and diamond smoothie on the patio at Spago. It does mean that if a celebrity has kids they are almost inevitably going to raise a brood of horrifying garbage monsters of pure entitlement and undiagnosed existential despair. But no one signs up to have people hang on their every difficulty, any single one of which would throw most of us into a borderline catatonic depressive state or at the very least give us chronic diarrhea, but compounded together genuinely makes you at least start to understand the underlying psychological principles of suicidal ideation. No one willingly accepts that as part of the deal, and even if they do, hey, HOW ABOUT WE LET THEM OUT OF THEIR CONTRACT?! The notion that they understood that this was one of the possible outcomes of their ambition does not therefore make this outcome JUSTIFIED and CORRECT. It is like saying that a woman who got raped was asking for it with her outfit. A highly specious argument even in the 1980s when people actually still made it, but again, even if we were to somehow agree (and we do not agree) that someone’s outfit could inherently elicit a rapist’s desire, that doesn’t MAKE THE RAPE COOL. Stay with me, America.

We can’t do this anymore. Maybe Lindsay Lohan will continue to struggle to find the help that she needs to give her life balance and meaning and to bring her to a place of safety and self-worth outside of the craziness of her family and the entertainment industry. Maybe she truly is doomed and too far gone and the years of wealth and attention of deteriorated her sense of reality to such an extent that there is no return. That is for her to work through, in private if possible. But while she’s doing that, what if we all worked on ourselves a little bit. Step one: enough with this Lindsay Lohan business. Let’s go cold turkey. There are a lot of good books out there, we could read a book. Or catch up on Downton Abbey. Let’s take a walk outside, America. Or learn how to cook. We could clean out that box of stuff in the closet we never unpacked after our last move, or try and figure out what this “fiscal cliff” actually is, or at worst just go back to bed. That sounds great! What about going back to bed?! At the very least, we could make a slight adjustment to our celebrity obsession, and choose to focus on the ways in which our celebrities represent all of our hidden desires: for love or money or physical beauty or whatever it may be, and celebrate that. In turn we could allow the aspects of our celebrities that are all too human, and which represent in the brutalist of lights our hidden fears, of death and abandonment and someone seeing us on our worst day when we really thought we could run to the store for some toilet paper and half and half without running into anyone we know, much less that person having a long lens camera and hiding on a yacht anchored 300 yards away so we didn’t even know they were there, to fall outside the scope of our attention, to be dealt with behind closed doors, as we ourselves would choose to deal with them.


Comments (35)
  1. I really just don’t want to see or hear about her anymore. I wish her the best and hope she recovers, but I’m tired of watching this train wreck – it’s time to turn away.

    • the thing is, i’ve never voluntarily bought tickets to the train wreck. it is hoisted upon us, like we are Alex DeLarge in the chair by the media – even non-garbage, “hard news” media reports this stuff. it’s impossible not to know about her latest troubles. one can only hope it doesn’t get worse. which it will.

      • I voluntarily bought tickets. It’s a stupid amount of hope to put in someone because of one role (Mean Girls)…but I really do want this mess to end up being okay (better than okay, REDEMPTION!!).

        I’m definitely in the “this isn’t even funny” crowd anymore. As a person who did incredibly stupid shit in his mid-20s…this is just tough to read.

        • I don’t know, has this ever been funny? Maybe getting banned from a nightclub is mildly humorous but nothing else she’s done strikes me as in any way amusing, it’s just sad.

        • Mean Girls is really, truly, a great movie. And it’s not like she’s just along for the ride, as her character is lovely in it! You did a good job in that film, Lindsay. Do more movies like that something something if you believe in yourself you will know how to ride a bike!

      • …but if people want to change the subject and since I’ve been missing for awhile, did anyone get the chance to make Home Alone jokes about Skyfall?!? Anyone?? I can’t be the only one who thought that!

      • Yeah, I didn’t either – we have been forced to watch this or drop out of society completely.

      • You can’t be serious. You were forced to read the Entertainment section of CNN, and go to, and visit TMZ? Jesus Christ man, get a grip and read a book, or go running, or get a hobby, or watch a good movie, or visit sites like the Atlantic, or NPR, or the New Yorker, or some fucking fetish porn site or cat-lover website or DIY LARP armor guides or a goddamn forum for ice chewers ( No one is forcing you to read about Lindsey Fucking Lohan. Get a grip on yourself.

  2. This is how I feel about the collective culture’s relationship with Lindsay Lohan at this point.

  3. What’s up with Topher Grace?

  4. Lindsay Lohan is the most HONEST depiction of “America’s Sweetheart” that has ever existed.

    • not to diminish the very troubling, serious weight of the situation, but….. we could probably weave together the timeline of Lindsay’s and America’s troubles into some sort of parallel story for these troubled times. there was some hope and promise for the future in 2008 with a long stint in rehab and some stable acting jobs, and then here we are and a slow spiral downward ever since then. She got a bailout from Charlie Sheen. Liz & Dick was about as inconsequential as the election. And now here we are facing what seems to be the beginning of the end with the fiscal cliff business – hitting us like a punch in the face.

  5. Seeing as celebrities such as Lohan will tip off paparazzi on where they are/will be be going, Lohan will never make that move to get out of the public eye (and even if she did want to do that, I think once the paparazzi gets a taste for celebrity blood, it becomes hard as hell to shake them. If their photos, videos, etc of famous people are worth money, they will not stop, no matter how boring the subject is or tries to become to shake them).

    Of course, paparazzi are always up in everybody’s business anyways, but canoodling and cooperating with them to get your celebrity face on the cover of gossip mags, i.e. maintaining relevancy, is all part of the game. Lohan notoriously utilizes this business relationship constantly (or, at least, she did, now the vultures are circling and maintaining 24 hour surveillance on her, I’m sure).

    • But does she tip them off? A friend of mine was a paparazzo for a while. He spent 10-18 hours a day outside Paris Hilton’s house, ready to follow her if she ventured into the world for any reason. He also had a lot of waiters or maitre d’s around town who’d phone in tips for cash. “I just seated Lindsey Lohan, booth in the back.” Then my friend would race over there with his camera, run inside and get as many shots as he could before they asked him to leave — or he’d just loiter outside, hoping to get her drunk at the valet stand. All in all it made a difficult life for whoever he was stalking.

      And for him. He quit the job for a few reasons (sanity, soul, self respect), but only after doing it for about a year because it was such good money. And because he’s kind of an ass.

      • You know what? I MAY be thinking about Kim Kardashian being notorious for calling the paparazzi and basically giving them her schedule. As intrusive as the paparazzi is, it is a known thing that celebs will call the paparazzi for WHATEVER reason (they haven’t had a front page story in a while, or maybe they’re trying to control the press akin to the scene in ‘Liz and Dick’ [from what I've heard]).

        But yeah, the paparazzi need no encouragement.

      • How do you get into that business? Genuinely curious.

  6. Six straight years of constant drama and turmoil is enough to justify ending any normal human relationship, whether it’s a friendship or a marriage or a parent/child relationship. Eventually most people would simply say “Enough!” and hop on the Runaway Train. But the tabloid/celebrity relationship thrives on drama and turmoil and instead of just letting every normal person who is sick and tired of it hop on the Runaway Train, they have instead hijacked the RT and wrecked it into the nation’s backyards. Like everyone up above is saying, it’s almost impossible to escape LiLo news.

    Even when I swapped reading TMZ and, humiliatingly, Perez Hilton for Videogum 4 or so years ago, I still managed to always know what is going on with her. I don’t want to know that much about her! I don’t even know as much about most of my friends and probably even my husband as I know about Lindsay Fucking Lohan, and that is just simply wrong.

    This comment doesn’t even have a thesis and now I’m just tired and depressed.

  7. I want to make some kind of lame joke about celebrity stupidity, but I just can’t. Lindsey has a long road ahead, stuck as she was with being reared by two wackos. Growing up with no role models and no rules or consequences for her behavior is coming to haunt her now. What was once funny is now just a sad story of a child who may never really grow up.

  8. Thanks for reminding me about the boxes of stuff still in my closet from the last move, jerk.

  9. I wasn’t even finished reading this post when I suddenly heard someone say “Lindsay Lohan” from my TV. Evidently her latest fiascos were a topic VIP segment of the German 15 min news brief that was playing. After that they said something about Demi Moore’s new boy toy. I don’t know what exactly since my German language skills are still laughable after a year here. What I do know is that this VIP news segment is a new thing, whereas before I was always quite impressed with the more real news topics that were shown on this very trashy channel that primarily features pseudo reality shows (no need to understand the language to watch them).

    Ramble over, I was just amazed by the timing!

  10. can we talk about other people, truly talented people, who were destroyed by demons and how much we wish they had survived to continue to make art, music, or writing? people whose voices we miss dearly and desperately? i’ll start. david foster wallace. i just finished the pale king and my god, i wish that book had come to full fruition.

    • I’m reading Infinite Jest now and it’s extraordinary. Anyway, my contribution to this list has to be the one and only Damon Wayans.

    • Read the biography (it ruined my life)

      ((David Foster Wallace abused his girlfriends physically and emotionally and was pretty DSM-IV diagnosably a literal narcissist and I am so mad that I fell for him))

    • I also think The Pale King had the potential to be better than Infinite Jest and I do wish it had come to fruition. Still so angry and disgusted at this guy though

  11. Gabe, does this mean that you will no longer write about Lindsay Lohan?

  12. She should have transformed into Tara Reid years ago, but the residual affect of Ryan Seacrest-produced reality tv combined with the cultural impact of lobotomized Malibu Stacys like Jessica Simpson and Paris Hilton that basically shat over any progress made in how women are viewed in mainstream culture over the past decade allowed her to remain “relevant” for far too long. She should just stop and marry rich. Its a win-win for all of us

  13. Love you forever, Gabe

  14. Hamster pork!

  15. It’s hard to take your sentiment seriously when you pair it with a very unflattering picture of her. I mean, there are literally thousands you could have gone with, but I presume you went with the one you did because she doesn’t look very good in it, because she looks kinda funny/ugly/etc. Let’s try and not make the fact that you’re playing both sides of this argument too obvious, yeah?

  16. “A highly specious argument even in the 1980s when people actually still made it,” I just want to point out that people still make this argument all the time, I think (if the argument is slutty clothes = consent).

  17. I agree with everything Gabe wrote…but it seems to me like there’s an awful lot of Lindsay Lohan content on Videogum week in and week out. Maybe the We-Just-Cannot-With-the-Lindsay-Lohan-Anymore-ing needs to start at home?

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