Thomas Wictor

Lookee here! More threats.

Lookee here! More threats.

Got this message today. I’ve edited it slightly to conceal the person’s identity.

we are both very upset at what you have done, and what you are about to do.

you are playing hardball. i’m a lot better at it than you are.

there is no free ride. you get back what you put out.

Yes, yes. I know: I’m doomed! I’ve awoken a sleeping giant! You’re gonna moidalize me!

Babycakes, you’ve been watching way too many shitty movies. Let me fill you in on some things that you don’t grasp.

The year 2013 cured me of all fear. And I mean fear of everything. I’m not afraid of you or anybody or anything. The hospice room in which I stood over my dying father and relived our shared horror was a kind of forge. Mom’s suicide completed the tempering process. Nothing—pain, death, illness, exposure, embarrassment, failure, torture—scares me anymore. I’d like to live, but if I have to die, so be it.

What I did during your last episode, darling, was send twenty people your name, address, phone number, and e-mail address, as well as a package containing a manuscript and a couple of photos. If anything happens to me, not only will I not care, your entire life will be demolished. The lives of all your relatives will be demolished too. Your name will be mud forever after. So will the name of your precious you-know-who.

Bring it on, sweetheart. I have no idea how you’re going to “play hardball” with me unless you carry out a drive-by shooting or station a sniper in the rat-tree behind my house.

Rat-tree

You know that rats build their nests in those trees, right? So any mental patient you get to climb up there is going to be machine-gnawed into a skeleton before he can pot me for…what, exactly? I have no clue what set you off this time. But I’m also indifferent.

It was impossible to reach Mom and Dad. They had no rational reason to die. I now know that some people are simply unreachable, and there’s no understanding their motivations.

What do you think is going to happen to you after you “play hardball” and relieve me of all my pain? Not only will Tim come after you, Eric will literally smash down your door and unscrew your head. You think Tim’s scary? Eric is astonishing. You know why? Because we love him. His only flaw is that right now he gets homicidal impulses toward those who hurt the ones he loves. This photo isn’t a pose; this is the real man.

 Hun

Eric’s had a difficult life. We gave him sanctuary, so he’s grateful. I’m not afraid of him, but you should be. No better friend, and no worse enemy. Trust me. He’s told me stories.

Finally, if Tim, Eric, and my own means of self-defense aren’t enough to deter you, I also have a fan who’s a Deputy District Attorney of Los Angeles County. For almost a year, I was repeatedly subpoenaed to testify against a sex offender I helped arrest in 1999. The trial kept getting delayed. This Deputy DA and I spent months on the phone, getting to know each other. After the trial I sent the Deputy DA a copy of Ghosts and Ballyhoo.

“Not only did you reaffirm my faith in the notion of civic duty,” the person said, “I also got a book out of it!”

So the physical threats are a nonstarter, unless you’re on a kamikaze mission.

If you think I’m scared you’ll spill the beans on me, publish and be damned. Not a single well-balanced, empathetic, normal person will view you as anything but a scumbag, plus that’ll give me the freedom to do some publishing of my own.

So let’s call off your little war before it gets started. Let’s you and me declare a permanent ceasefire. I don’t care about you in the slightest, and it’s high time you got me out of your head. Console yourself with the facts that I’m completely deranged, housebound, incurably ill, much less wealthy than you, fatter than you, uglier than you, stupider than you, emotionally retarded, a fabulist, alone, pitiful, a liability, unsocialized, and I drive a car that someone vandalized by pulling off the rear quarter panel.

Was that you, by the way? Very nice job. It’ll cost me close to a grand to fix.

See, you’re the winner. I surrender. You know my past; you know I’m already dead. Strut around and tell the other person in your head—you wrote “we are both very upset”—that you’ve conquered hell and driven out the demons. Congrats!

Or maybe I’m wrong, and you don’t have two personalities in your skull. Maybe you’ve undergone agamogenesis and reproduced asexually, and now there are two of you. Christ, what a thought.

At any rate I’m not afraid of you or anybody or anything. I’m going to keep posting and publishing. You can come over to my house and fill me full of lead, if you want. Just remember that I’m not helpless, rubbing me out me will result in the exposure of secrets you thought would never come to light, and if you survive your little assassination, two redheads will dismember you alive with their bare hands. Think I’m kidding? Try them.

Here’s what Tim, Eric, and I have in common: Vicious predators have assaulted us over and over. What we do now is respond with completely disproportional force. A Web designer defrauded me of $6000. I put her out of business, even though she’s a single mother, and she begged me not to. I did it because she wasn’t sorry, and her crime was so egregious. She took my money and partied instead of working. I gave her three chances to reimburse me, and then I sicced VISA on her. They shut her down. She could be homeless now, for all I know. Or care.

I documented everything, the way I have with you. The investigators at VISA said they’d never seen such thorough documentation. Putting her out of business gave me nary a twinge. How many people have you actually ruined, my big-talking friend? None. I destroyed a woman’s life for defrauding me.

All I want is to be free from assaults. If you assault me in any way, I won’t stop until I’ve destroyed your life too. Do we have a deal?

My advice is to stop reading what I write. It obviously makes you insane with rage, so just cut it out. See how easy that is? What you refuse to accept is that I get to write about my experiences. Have I ever mentioned your name? I even deliberately disguised details of your life. That’s how uninterested I am in exposing you.

Don’t make any more threats. Just go away now. Bye-bye.


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