I was over catching up on my PopCandy reading and came upon an entry from Miss Whitney that made me spew tea with laughter (especially the Skippy Handleman part).
I didn't have any superstar pen pals but I still have a dear friend that I've exchange letters with (no email allowed) for the last 15 years. I feel bad because her handwriting is amazing retro gothic style while most of my letters must take hours to be deciphered (and exclamation points used liberally to note the audience laugh track).
I agree with Fred Armisen, John Waters would be a killer pen pal… but I'd choose Will from Okkervil River. He'd have all kindsa wise words and crazy antidotes to share. I'm sure my vocab would improve ten-fold.
Who would you choose?
Fred Armisen tells an awesome story on the blog PaperThinWalls about how he has had a 25-year pen-pal relationship with director John Waters. It started when Armisen was in high school and read Waters' Shock Value:
"He was called 'the Prince Of Puke,' so in (my letter) I said, 'Dear John, I want to take over your puke-dom, I want to be the next Prince Of Puke and I want to shock people," Armisen says. "One day I'm watching the David Letterman show. John Waters was the guest. David Letterman said, 'You must get some strange mail.' And then John Waters told this story about a kid named Fred that wrote to him. I was so freaked out, I just screamed!"
I wrote to some celebrities when I was a kid, though I didn't get a lot of personal responses. (I can understand being ignored by River Phoenix, but was Skippy Handleman really that busy during the '80s?).