I Was Pleased — Really Totally Surprised And Flattered — To Learn That Lewinsky Had Given The President Her Very Own Copy Of My Book.

“She was saying, I’m passing on my extremely personal page-turning experience to you. But the subpoena was just bad. Vox is a conversation between two people who are excited by the idea that they get to tell their private stories to each other. They get to tell stories and to be real to each other […]

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I Was Pleased — Really Totally Surprised And Flattered — To Learn That Lewinsky Had Given The President Her Very Own Copy Of My Book.

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“She was saying, I’m passing on my extremely personal page-turning experience to you. But the subpoena was just bad. Vox is a conversation between two people who are excited by the idea that they get to tell their private stories to each other. They get to tell stories and to be real to each other even while they have this artificial distance — they’re connected just by the phone. The book...

“She was saying, I’m passing on my extremely personal page-turning experience to you. But the subpoena was just bad. Vox is a conversation between two people who are excited by the idea that they get to tell their private stories to each other. They get to tell stories and to be real to each other even while they have this artificial distance — they’re connected just by the phone. The book is trying to celebrate the secret hideouts that novels offer readers. And I love that about books. That kind of privacy ought to be respected.”

Said Nicholson Baker, quoted in “The Clinton Impeachment, as Told by the People Who Lived It/Twenty years ago, Bill Clinton became the first president to be impeached since Andrew Johnson, in 1868. We offer a recounting by people who played a role” (The Atlantic). The subpoena Baker mentions was from the independent counsel Kenneth Starr to Kramerbooks, seeking a list of the books bought by Monica Lewinsky, one of which was Nicholson Baker’s Vox, which Monica Lewinsky was said to have read and then given to Bill Clinton.

The reason I’m focusing on that quote is that it’s a long article, and I chose to find my way into it by searching the page for the word “love.” I’m still interested in the question whether Monica Lewinsky loved Bill Clinton, whether he loved her, and whether they loved each other. I was watching a TV special last night about the Lewinsky affair — Monica looked beautiful (in the present) — and I still after all these years imagine real love. The only appearance of the word “love” in that Atlantic article is what you see quoted above — nothing about a human being loving another person but a novelist saying what he loves about books.

ADDED: Here’s a clip from the documentary I saw. You can judge for yourself whether Monica Lewinsky is stunningly beautiful 20 years after her 2-year affair with Bill Clinton:

I believe Bill Clinton loved her and that he watched this show and felt deep pangs of loss of her love and her company these past 20 years. I’m not saying he’s a good person. I’m just observing the fact of the sheer magnetism of Monica Lewinsky. I wish Bill Clinton had simply resigned and walked away from the presidency — given it all up for love. I think she deserved it, she whose youth he appropriated, she who really did love him.

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