I normally don’t like gossip columnists or “journalists” as they sometimes like to refer themselves to – to be honest, I find the catty dish about some celebrity’s private life to be a) not all that interesting and b) embarrassing to hear. Nothing makes my eyes roll harder than watching Ted Casablanca, ooze insincerity as he gleefully divulges some intimate trivia about someone.
But I’m really into Michael Musto’s work – his column for The Village Voice, “La Dolce Musto” is one of the wittiest entertainment columns published today. Though he’s branded a “gossip columnist” (this is where Musto would drop in a great pun about branding) he’s more of a pop culture critic. I’m reading For on the Left, Knife in the Back, a collection of his essays in which he writes about running into celebrities at various party. He also includes interesting cultural analysis of celebrity obsession and celebrity culture. But it’s fun – not at all dry.
For example, I love his interview with porn peddler/political whatever/right wing idiot, Michael Lucas. Lucas as some of you will know is this weirdly conservative gay man who likes to pretend he’s relevant and writes op-ed pieces for The Advocate‘s Website, usually trashing Muslims, Palestine and liberals – the dude almost shot a wad over Ann Coulter, this is the kind of guy he is. Well Musto’s exchange with Lucas shows just how empty-headed and dumb the latter is.
Also interesting was Musto’s interview with Paris Hilton. As Lucas came off as deliriously dense, Hilton actually comes off alright – with a decent amount of self-awareness.
Musto’s writing is often pretty harsh, thought it’s not gratuitously mean (it’s still pretty mean, though).
I’m kind of going in and out, reading the columns out of order.