You may have read or heard about this story by now:
I wasn't aware of it until my roommate showed it to me last night. Anyone who reads the story will see that this Joe Francis character is a very sick, very scary guy, what's most scary to me is that he seems to have a large crowd of admirers. In high school/college I had a fairly creepy acquaintance who made no secret of his great love for porn. My friends thought it was funny, if only because, having been born before 1985, we're probably among the last generation of Americans who remember when that sort of thing was supposed to be a private pursuit, not something to revel in and be proud of. I was also told that he was writing a screenplay about a pedophile, a sympathetic treatment, one that would blow open the minds of the filmgoing public because "You're on his side the whole time." Anyway, this guy, lost touch with my friends and I can't say I'm sorry about that, but we found his MySpace page, which basically says "Hi I'm a sexual predator." I'm certainly not saying that anyone who looks at porn is a sexual predator but I think anyone who does so without the slightest twinge of discomfort is somebody I'd keep a very close eye on.
Anyway, this guy worships Mr. Francis, talks about how he lives the ideal life, babes and booze and cash, capitalism at it's finest. Reading this article I think about Joey's ideal death. My roommate says she doesn't want to ask why the girls "go wild" anymore, she wants to ask Joey why he rapes women. It is indeed a more appropriate question.
Ms. Hoffman's a very good writer, and obviously very courageous to face this guy down. I certainly hope something comes of it that leads to him facing some sort of punishment. My favorite part of the article is the bit about the "qwerty keyboard":
"He says he loves women, is crazy about them. But sometimes it doesn't sound as though he is. The words he chooses, the stories he tells—they make a different point.
"My favorite is explaining to dumb chicks why the qwerty keyboard is called a qwerty keyboard, and why the letters aren't in order," he tells me. "They're, like, 18 years old, and they're, like, 'Wait a minute, there were typewriters?' And you got to start there."
I give him a look that says I have no idea what he's talking about. I haven't spent much time with 18-year-old girls lately, but the ones I know have usually heard of typewriters. But a qwerty keyboard? Never heard of it.
His eyes register my blank stare and he pounces, full of glee. "Hold on," he says excitedly. "You are a writer for the L.A. Times and you don't know this answer to this question?" He is shouting, turning to the back of the plane, making sure that everyone hears. "Unbelievable, she's 29 years old and she doesn't know about the qwerty keyboard!" It's a game, it seems. He's being playful. Sort of.
"She's going to slaughter me now," he shouts to the group as I keep smiling, writing in my notebook, tape recorder running. Apparently, he wants more of a reaction. He's pantomiming me typing furiously, writing an article.
"She's going to be looking at her keyboard going, 'Ah, you think you're so smart now.' Qwerty keyboard. Who's smart now?" He sounds happy. "She's going to be playing that tape back. It's going to be echoing in her head. Qwerty, qwerty, qwerty. She's going to go all psycho.""
Apparently Mr. Francis once glommed on to a bit of trivia as to why typewriter letters aren't arraigned in standard alphabetical order. This has apparently given him the idea that he is a scholar. Obviously, no evidence is necessary to demonstrate that he is also a gentleman.
Like Ms. Hoffman, I've never heard of a qwerty keyboard, although I knew there were typewriters.
I guess the entrepreneurial hero Joe Francis thinks I'm dumb. Almost as dumb as a girl.
I'm aware that a standard keyboard's letters begin with q-w-e-r-t-y but I've never actually heard the term "qwerty keyboard". Typewriters were in fact cool.
I am a girl, and I don't know what a qwerty keyboard is. But since the top row of my laptop keyboard goes tab-q-w-e-r-t-y-u-i-o-p-[-]-\-page up, I imagine it's a standard keyboard.
And when I was in second grade I asked for a typewriter for Christmas. I got one. This was in 1990.