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John Waters, Patti Smith, Dave Eggers, Ian Frazier, and more at Miami Book Fair International
exhausting and awesome, waiting for next year

liz tracy john waters book fair miami

Obviously, we at THL love the Miami Book Fair International in a way this is sort of creepy and borderline obsessive. We held a week in honor of John Waters, Dirty Boy!, and to which a bunch of friends contributed their visions of the great man.

Sure, Waters said some things I’d heard him say before, but he also said things I’d never heard and gave advice to burgeoning filmmakers, like use your friends’ music, otherwise you’ll end up paying for the rights to use other songs. He spoke quite a bit about Divine (his parents owned a nursery and made him dress as Santa for Christmas), how he and Divine were asked to leave the beach in Kew West, because they just looked like perverts, one skinny, one large. How reading Tennessee Williams’ short stories as a kid saved his life. I also felt like there was hope for me when I read Tennessee Williams’ short stories and plays as a kid, with all of their oddities and strangenesses, and I’m a straight girl. A strange one, but whatever.

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Dirty Boy! John Waters as Batman

john waters as batman


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Dirty Boy! John Waters in action

jp john waters

By JP Lemus

Check out his site Iluvthedick, which you’ll be reading more about next week.

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Dirty Boy! A perfect pair: Divine and John Waters

eddie divine small
by Eddie Lorie
venessa monokian small
Venessa Monokian
Check them out nice and big after the jump!

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Dirty Boy! Rendering of John Waters

This image was submitted by Softball, a Jacksonville Florida native who attended the Lakeland Florida Conservatory for the Arts. He had no comment on the reason why his name is Softball. After some internet research, we found that he once played for a ladies minor softball league under the name Roseanne.

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Dirty Boy! Universal interconnectivity: I rode in an elevator with John Waters
What Does it All Mean?


Back in 2004, I interned at a women in entertainment organization in NYC, located in an anonymous low-rent building in midtown. One afternoon as I was awaiting closure of the elevator doors, running late, the “doorman” for the building thrust his arm through and held the elevator for an arriving passenger. This annoyed me severely. He then winked at me knowingly and five seconds later John Waters stepped in. My jaw likely dropped and my eyes widened in shocked recognition. I said nothing. The trip was over before I could process it, but I vividly remember clearing my throat and Mr. Waters braced himself, moving as far as possible to the opposite side of the box. Perhaps he thought I was going to ask him to sign my tampon and/or colostomy bag?

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Dirty Boy! artwork inspired by John Waters: Rush

mike balbone john waters

Check out Mike’s Tumblr, Enoblab

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Dirty Boy! John Waters does The Simpsons

A year before Will and Grace debuted in 1998, The Simpsons ran an episode guest-starring John Waters called “Homer’s Phobia.” In retrospect, it’s amazing to think an episode about Bart becoming fruity was controversial or edgy in the late ‘90’s, but it was. Though over the last fifteen years we have witnessed a near-complete entertainment coup by our gay friends, this episode was pioneering enough to win an Emmy and an award from the folks at GLAAD.

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Dirty Boy! Make books cool!

john waters quote lolo

“We need to make books cool again. If you go home with someone and they don’t have books, don’t fuck them!”

Lolo owns and runs Sweat Records. Go there and buy something.

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Dirty Boy! O, the things I've learned from John Waters
THL celebrates John Waters' visit to Miami

john waters thl

“What’s the matter, Cry-Baby?”
“Everything’s the matter.”
“It’s just a thunderstorm. Heat lightning, it’s sexy.”

I love Cry-Baby. I mean, maybe I just love looking at Johnny Depp (Floridian), but I also just love the awkward absurdity of the characters and dialogue, high schooler Pepper’s five-year old looking kids, Cry-Baby’s single sticky looking tear. I also love that I found a line in the movie where Allison says that heat lightning is sexy.

I was introduced to John Waters at a very young age, but my mom will tell you the history of that by the end of this week. Hairspray is one of those movies where, even if it’s like 2 a.m. and I have to be at work at 7 a.m. and I see it’s on TV, I am completely, physically unable to drag my eyes away from the screen. I will, and have, stayed up all night watching Tracy Turnblad turn it out.

When I was living in New York, I saw that John Waters was introducing a Marguerite Duras movie, Le camion at Lincoln Center and I knew in my soul that I had to be there. John Waters introducing the author of The Lover?! If there’s anyone filthier than Waters, no, wait, there is definitely someone way filthier than Waters, it’s Marguerite Duras. She’s the literary world’s filthiest slut, after Anais Nin. I thought, “this makes sense!” Oh, and it was so exciting to hear the director speak, I can’t remember anything he said, but I was nervous and trying to take pictures in the darkness without a flash. The movie outdid itself. It was like being heavily bludgeoned by a pillow of boredom. Duras was old bag, blabbing with Gerard Depardieu and there were endless scenes of trucks driving through the rain in nowheresville France. Where was teenage experimentation? Where were the handsome Indochines? It was memorable in the way a pap smear is memorable.

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Dirty Boy! John Waters' mustache

john waters thl

I’m not a particularly huge fan of Waters’ movies, but like so many directors, he’s fascinating to listen to in interviews. On the occasion of the publication of his book Role Models (same reason he’s coming to the book fair), Terry Gross interviewed him on Fresh Air, and the conversation is predictably fun and “outré” or whatever.

They talk about death and psychoanalysis and role models, but my favorite bit was when Terry starts asking him about his mustache:

GROSS: Since you write about your mustache in the book, I feel like I should ask you about it. You know, we’ve talked many times over the years but I don’t think we’ve really talked about your mustache technique.

Mr. WATERS: Well, I reveal every possible moment of my mustache life in this book, even panic when I don’t have it on right. But it’s very simple. It’s just, it’s there. It’s there for real. I shave it with a Bic razor or whatever kind of razor from the top every day. Use cuticle, nail cuticles to cut it on the bottom. And then if it’s a little gray or you miss a place you just sketch it in with Maybelline Velvet Black, which is my favorite. And I tried the expensive kind, the smear-proof kind, the waterproof kind, but they just don’t do it like Maybelline. And it has to be sharpened every time. And those little sharpeners break all the time, but I keep buying them and I have them in every place I live, in my car. […] This is spinach for Popeye. It gives me power to have my mustache on right and I’m clicked in mentally.

It’s the same thing as the security blanket for a child, or a dirty plaid shirt for a 90s alt rocker. I read something where Madeleine Albright was saying the same thing about lipstick. Of course this was in the 90s, and the internet doesn’t know anything about what was said or happened back then. But it was to the effect of “you can feel like complete crap, and you put on fresh lipstick and you’re ready to face the world.” SOMEthing like that. It’s like we have a vulnerable mode, and putting on that mask, even if it’s just with a makeup pencil, is like putting on warpaint.


Dirty Boy! Bienvenido a Miami, John Waters

john waters thl

A haiku:
Divine eats fresh poop
John Waters, raunchy icon


Super comprehensive guide to the Miami Book Fair International

MBFI 2010

The Miami Book Fair International, now in it’s 27th year, begins this Sunday with its inaugural afternoon. MBFI is a week long event culminating with a two-day street festival, featuring over 300 authors (including THL favorite, John Waters!!!!!) and 200 vendors and exhibitors. Over the years, it has become one of the largest literary gatherings in the country. There’s a lot to take in and the Fairgoer’s Guide holds 27 pages of information, schedules, and tips. Here’s an insiders’ guide to help you sort through it all and make the most of Miami’s biggest book party.

How To Get There:
The book fair is hosted at the Miami-Dade College Wolfson Campus, Downtown. Yes, parking will be a bitch. There are plenty of garages, but I recommend parking offsite and making use of the MetroMover. This year, thanks to the Green Mobility Network, there will be a bike valet at the Yellow Entrance on 3rd street on Saturday, 11/19 and Sunday 11/20 from 10a.m.-6p.m. Bikers will receive $3 off their admission to the street fair.

An Evening With…
MBFI kicks off with the An Evening With… series. Each event in the series requires a $10 ticket that you must purchase on the book fair website

This year the confirmed authors are…

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Here’s a little quote of the day.

Is there anyone you would actually kill if you knew you could get away with it?
I find it repellent when people do yoga exercises at the gate in airports. I want to kill them.

-John Waters in an interview with The New York Times Magazine

by , posted 3214 days ago

All the cry babies

Destiny Barbie

What is going on with Beyonce?

I’m not entirely buying into this gorgeous, Cry Baby Traci Lords image she’s been settling into lately. I miss the hokey, old Bee. I liked it when her music and look jived. Now, when I watch her, I feel confused, like an adolescent boy watching a busty, femmy, Asian (just because) transvestite. It’s like I’m all out of wack.

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