I think this was about 6 months ago. Internet time is so weird -- it feels like 4 years.
I like to tell you the whole story. But I don't like to tell other people's stories (like, I did not ever tell that reporter -- or say on my radio show -- that I had sex with Drew Barrymore. For Example). So in these cases where my stories and someone else's stories overlap, I end up keeping more to myself than seems fair to you with the very open and honest relationship we have established.
I know some of you disagree, but I maintain that Cat is a brilliant writer and one of a kind.
I know there has been some radio silence on my end with regard to the whole issue ever since she got back from her time off. I wrote a draft for you of what happened in the last week at xoJane and it was roundly and rightfully trashed here internally.
It had heavy paragraphs in it like this:
Right now, Cat is tweeting from Soho House and I am feeling the sadness of everyone I've ever known whose use of drugs/food/sex/whatever habit limited their abilities (or desires) to fulfill their potential. From my dad, who was left on the side of the road to die and left my step-mom to clear out the s and m equipment (should s & m always have an ampersand? seems so) from under his bed and the box of wine from the shelf in the artists' colony room where he was staying, to so many others I've believed and believed in.
Oy, said my publicist.
It had stuff about my history with addicts and how that's affected me:
I can be a bit oblivious about drug use, eating disorders, addictive behaviors. Once an editor of mine lost about a third of her body weight, was staying up all night, had a drawer full of pills and fainted in the office to be carried out to an ambulance to the hospital and I STILL thought she was just stressed from work (she was probably that too, of course). Kurt and Courtney were nodding out and I thought they were just tired. I believe what people tell me.
Maybe this is partly from growing up with an addict dad. My sense of sober is off.
This is from yesterday. God, she makes me laugh.
It had stuff about my own history with drugs and how, though I would love for her to take care of that brilliant brain of hers, I've always had a Libertarian view of drugs and suicide, that people can do whatever they want with their own bodies.
It had my reactions to your reactions to my potential reactions to her behavior:
I read your comments about how I was enabling Cat. I thought about whether still providing her with a paycheck was akin to the moms on "Intervention" giving their kids money for drugs.
I thought about how her behavior was affecting others on staff. I didn't really think about how or whether it was affecting me.
I had told her in the months leading up to this that I didn't want her to be sitting in my office telling me she was sorry anymore.
I reiterated that I think Cat is a brilliant writer, one of the best, and one of a kind.
In the end: We both agreed she wasn't doing her job. Though she plans to write more here in the future, she isn't on staff.
On her last day in the office, Cat Slimed me with some smelly lotion and ran off. Yep, I adore her.