When you think about the Times of London, what comes to mind? Perhaps you think of the U.K.’s most trusted news source, the folks responsible for the relentlessly highbrow Times Literary Supplement. We tend to associate the paper with exactly the sort of balance and restraint that Britain’s celebrity tabloids eschew. And yet, yesterday we stumbled upon a downright epic Lady Gaga interview.
You should absolutely read the whole thing right now, but here’s what you need to know about it first: The writer, Caitlin Moran, is basically Gaga’s #1 fan. They have a wild night out together. Gaga says things she’s never said to a journalist before. In fact, Gaga says things we can’t imagine a human being saying! Of course, when we say that the Times published “fan fiction,” we don’t mean the piece is literally fabricated. We just can’t imagine fan fiction doing any better of a job covering all the bases of a My Crazy Night with Gaga story than Moran did. Read our 10 favorite juicy and/or fawning excerpts after the jump.
1. “[S]he really isn’t dressed casually. In a breast-length, silver-grey wig, she has a black lace veil wound around her face, and sits, framed, in an immense, custom-made, one-off Alexander McQueen cloak. The effect is one of having been ushered into the presence of a very powerful fairytale queen: possibly one who has recently killed Aslan, on the Stone Table.”
2. “Later on in the interview, Gaga takes off the McQueen cloak – perhaps pointedly, for the nosey journalist – and reveals that, underneath, she’s only wearing fishnets, knickers and a bra. To someone who is seeing her practically naked, from two feet away, her body seems non-scarred, healthy: sturdy. She is wiry, but not remotely bony. It’s a dancer’s body – not a victim’s.”
3. “What’s the nearest you’ve ever come to death?” I ask her. “Do you have any recurring illnesses?”
She goes oddly still for a moment, and then says, “I have heart palpitations and… things.”
“Yes, but it’s OK. It’s just from fatigue and other things,” she shrugs, before saying, with great care, “I’m very connected to my aunt, Joanne, who died of lupus. It’s a very personal thing. I don’t want my fans to be worried about me.”
Her eyes are very wide.
“Lupus. That’s genetic, isn’t it?” I ask.
“And have you been tested?”
Again, the eyes are very wide and steady. “Yes.” Pause. “But I don’t want anyone to be worried.”
“When was the last time you called the emergency services?” I ask.
“The other day,” Gaga says, still talking very carefully. “In Tokyo. I was having trouble breathing. I had a little oxygen, then I went on stage. I was OK. But like I say, I don’t want anyone to worry.”
4. “Gaga is certainly very affected by her aunt’s demise: the date of her death, in 1976, is woven into her Rilke tattoo on her arm. When I ask her if she ever ‘dresses down’, she says the only thing remotely ‘dress down-y’ she has is a pair of pink, cotton shorts, embroidered with flowers, that once belonged to her aunt.” [Reminder: Gaga is 24 years old, at least according to official record…]
5. “[Y]ou know what I spend most of my money on? Disappearing. I hate the paparazzi. Because the truth is – no matter what people tell you – you can control it. If you put as much money into your security as you put into your cars or your diamonds or your jewellery, you can just… disappear. People who say they can’t get away are lying. They must just like the… big flashes.”
6. Gaga: “You should come out with us tonight… Actually, I’ve never had a journalist come out with me, so you’d be the first. It’s going to be fun. It’s like an old sex club, in Berlin. Come party with Gaga!” [Really? “Come party with Gaga!”?]
7. “It’s a small entourage – Gaga, me, Adrian, her make-up artist, her security guy, and maybe two others. We walk on to the small dancefloor, in a club filled with drag queens, lesbians dressed as sailors, boys in tight T-shirts, girls in black leather. The music is pounding. There is a gigantic harness hanging over the bar. ‘For f***ing,’ the same German says again, helpfully.”
8. This is Gaga off-duty. Although the booth becomes by way of a shrine to her – between now and 4am, fully two-thirds of the club come over to pay obeisance to her: drag queens and tom girls and superfreaks, all acknowledging the current definitive pop-cultural salon keeper – Gaga alternates between being wholly gracious and welcoming to them, and getting absolutely off her cake. With the thrill of like recognising like, I realise she’s a total lightweight – giggly after two Scotches, dancing in the booth after three, and wholly on the prowl after four.
9. 3am. I am pretty wasted. I am kneeling on the banquette, with Gaga lying by my knees.
I have just come up with the theory that, if you have one of your heroes lying tipsily next to you, you should tell them all the pretentious pop-culture theories you have come up with about them. So I slurringly tell her that the difference between her and, say, Madonna, is that you don’t penetrate Gaga. Her songs and videos are – while sexual – about dysfunction and neuroses and alienation and self-discovery. They’re not, in any sense, a come-on. Despite having worn very little clothing for most of her career, Gaga is not a prick tease.
“Yeah! It’s not what straight men masturbate over when they’re at home watching pornography,” she confirms. “It’s not for them. It’s for… us.” And she gestures around the club.
10. “You’re wearing a jumpsuit,” Gaga says, with feminine solidarity. “You can’t get out of one of those in the normal toilets.”
As I start to arduously unzip, Gaga sits on the toilet with a cheerful, “I’m just going to pee through my fishnets!”, and offloads some of those whiskies.
For the first year of her career, massive internet rumours claimed that Gaga was, in fact, a man – a rumour so strong that Oprah had to question her about it, when Gaga appeared on her show.
Perhaps uniquely among all the journalists in the world, I can now factually confirm that Lady Gaga does not have a penis. That rumour can, conclusively, die.