GT Books

Caitlin Moran

Since her book How To Be A Woman is out in paperback tomorrow...

...we thought we'd dig out our interview from last year. Was it only last year? It feels much longer. Anyway, here it is:

How on earth are you going to go about thanking every body on Twitter?

Have you not seen my Twitter feed? It’s just full of the repeated phrase ‘Oh thanks, darling. Xxxx’. I might narrow it down to just ‘xxx’ and then just ‘x’ when I start getting repetitive strain injury. I’m doing my best; I like the people who buy my stuff. Someone was asking me yesterday, as so many have been responding to it on Twitter, and a friend of mine who loves Lady Gaga as much as I do, was asking if I was going to give my fans a nickname in the style of ‘Little Monsters’. Given that so many people have responded to the masturbation chapters, I may start calling them the ‘little wankers’. [Laughs] Then I can start saying how much I love my ‘little wankers’ all the time and raising my paws.

There’s got to be a wrist movement as well.

Oh, there’s always got to be a wrist movement.

A la Gaga.

[Laughs] Did you see what happened today on Twitter? Last night I went on Newsnight with Jeremy Paxman and ended up bringing the subject of clown porn. It’s now made a news story in The Mirror. I’ve had about a thousand people sending me really distressing clown porn shots. I have never seen cream pies and squirty bowties used in such a horrible, horrible manner. It’s really upsetting.

What made you bring it up?

I tried to think of what I didn’t think would exist. So, I just said ‘clown porn’! I had no idea it was such a big thing. I mean, I know now exactly how big a thing it is. I just thought I was inventing something that never existed, but as you find out, as with anything, pornography has got there before you.

Obviously we want talk about your book How To Be A Woman. It seems kind of odd, and a lot of people may wonder, why we are covering your book in Gay Times magazine...

Well, I’ve had quite a lot of transsexuals just kind of contact me as say that when they saw ‘How To Be A Woman’ that they thought it was a guide to post-operative behaviour. But then they found that there were just loads of wanking anecdotes and filthy jokes.

Yes... and you often mention your gay friends. But for us, we think that homophobia is an extension of misogyny.

Totally. Yes.

Anyone who fights for gay rights can’t ignore womens' rights too.

Exactly. Well, it’s one and all. There’s a bit in the book where it is talking about the losers in history and how I see them. It’s like when you go to Gaga gigs and you see the gays next to fat kids, or the kid with the wonky eye, or the really shy ones, and all this kind of stuff. People are saying we’re making Gaga the leader of the raggy dolls. It’s like all those people are the ones who feel excluded from society at some point – they are all people who have to keep secrets, or try and hide things or can’t be honest about who they are. Those have always felt like my people and so, you know, that chapter in the book that talks about the alliance between women and gay men, because we’ve had to talk quietly about our sexuality. You know, it’s very hard for a woman to talk about her sexuality without being branded a slag. And, still now, it’s very difficult for a gay man outside London to talk openly about his sexuality unless he’s very sure of who he’s talking to. We know everything about the straight man’s sexuality – it’s everywhere. It’s in every aspect of our culture; their sexuality is totally catered to. So, we gathered over our cocktails over the years and formed an alliance. The alliance between straight woman and gay men will never be broken. On the other hand, it has now got to the point where it’s so expected of you, as a woman, to have a gay best friend that if you work out the maths there just aren’t enough gay men on the streets to go around for all women to have one. Gay men must have some sort of time-share situation going on, whereby they have at least three women who think that he is their gay best friend. These women must use them on some kind of rota basis, because the maths just doesn’t add up.

I don’t know how often you go out on the gay scene, but there can be a rampant misogyny at play when you get groups of gay men together...

Oh God, yes, yes. All the conversations about fish can get a bit much. I have a couple of very evil gay friends, and any conversation about vaginas is just met with absolute horror. But hey-ho, everyone has got their ‘things’ that they’re particularly unintelligent and evil about. At least the jokes are good about it. [Laughs] A gay man – screaming about how much he’d hate to ‘fall into a vagina’ - is still funnier than anything a straight man will say to you about the same thing! And, also, a gay man is never going to turn you down. He’s horrified by it, but he’s also not trying to fuck you at the same time. So, you know, it makes the whole thing slightly more comfortable.

So is there a kind of good and bad misogyny?

Well, if you’re being funny I can forgive anything – it was the family I was brought up in. I mean, when I had two children I had a couple of evil gay friends that would say the most revolting things about the whole idea of reproduction, vaginas and stuff. To be honest, I did bring a lot of things on my self, like when we went to a party once and everyone was doing their party tricks, I did my party trick, which was to squirt my breast milk across the beautifully converted warehouse we were in at the time. The gays didn’t like that, particularly when I accidentally hit one of them in the face with milk; he was really quite unhappy about that. So, I’ve brought a lot of it on my self. I can see why they were horrified. When you decide you’re gay you want to be opting out of the whole lactation thing, I suspect. Engorged breast isn’t really your thing. I get why they were angry about that. I’m really sorry about that. And then, another friend was watching me breastfeed and said ‘Oh God, your breast is the shape of an ox-bow lake!’ and I was like ‘Wow! You remember loads of your geography lessons!’ That was the only comment he could make about my breasts. He wasn��t into tits – all he could say was that it looked like an ox-box lake! That was the extent of his interest.

One thing that younger readers can get from this book is the general feeling of teenage angst, growing up in a small town and being unable to express yourself. It almost feels like an It Gets Better video. It comes from that place that seems to offer hope.

Yes, so much! I re-read my diaries before I started writing and I literally just appeared in front of myself and could see myself saying ‘it gets better’. I think again, it’s that thing of growing up and not knowing what you’re going to be. It’s easier for straight men to grow up as they’re surrounded by millions of role models, men don’t even realise how easily and so casually that they can pick a role model off the shelf that suits their aspirations. But for gay men and for women, you’re kind of looking around like ‘Oh my God!’ I know at the time, as a teenage girl, there weren’t that many women around that I could identify with. There was, like, Marmalade Atkins…it was a fairly pitiful line up of role models. All these strong female role models either die tragically or kill themselves! I was like ‘all the women I like die! Am I gonna be dead by the time I hit 30?’

So, we [were, at the time] doing a sex issue at GT…I don’t know if you’d ever have any sex tips for gay men?

I mean I’ve leant most of my sex tips from gay men, so it would seem weird to send them back home. Okay, be really careful if you do decide to give someone a Champagne blow job with fizzy mineral water. It’s always fun, but if you’ve had quite a lot of sex beforehand he will be quite raw and he will scream when the bubbles make contact with his skin. Check the rawness of the skin on the penis before giving a Champagne, fizzy water, or alka-seltzer blowjob. ‘I’ve got Tizer, let’s go’. Do with some fucking Lilt – that hurts. Ooo, what else? Filthy emails is always good. Talking filth is always good. That whole thing of guessing what someone is into if you’re just texting and emailing someone can be quite fun and save a lot of time. Often when you’re having sex, it’s quite difficult to have a 20 minute conversation about someone’s sexual fantasies and what they’re into. If you’ve prearranged it beforehand it’s a lot easier. That way, you have the chance to buy outfits. I mean it can take up to three weeks to get a policeman’s uniform delivered. It’s always good to be thinking ahead.

When I was reading your book I read it on the tube quite a few times and just burst out laughing, on my own. What was the last thing that made you laugh out loud?

I’m a massive fan of lol-cats. Anything funny happening to animals will just make me cry. I know it’s the most pathetic thing but Animals Do The Funniest Things. A cat that’s fallen off the radiator trying to look cool will reduce me to tears. Other than that, people that I love taking the piss out of me really savagely and viciously. Not people I hate – that’s a different point entirely. That’s some kind of psychological perversion from a difficult childhood. But people you love taking the piss out of all your weaknesses is one of the most glorious things in the world! Other than that, Chris Rock makes me laugh.

When are you next hanging out with Gaga?

Oh God, I saw her just before Christmas and we got absolutely wankered. She played me the whole of the new album. So I heard Born This Way for the first time and it was just her in a bra and knickers, jumping up and down screaming it in my face. By the time she got to the end of the album I was a) not only convinced that she had written Hair about me, because she kept pointing at my hair and I was thinking ‘last time you met me my hair was so inspirational that you’ve written a fucking song about my hair', which is amazing, but I was also so drunk that I’d started to think that she fancied me and that maybe something would happen. Next time I’m with her I need to not drink quite so much whiskey, I think? But yeah, we’re working on something now.

Obviously, that would be the ultimate night out – just you two.

Well, I mean the dream is as an interviewer that you dream that someone will, 20 minutes in, just go ‘Hey, you’re really cool. You get me like no one else! Let’s go to a sex club and get wankered!’ And it actually happened. I was with the most famous woman on earth, who I adore above and beyond anyone else. I’m still trying to get over that day. I’m still trying to process it. It was amazing.

Do you have a favourite gay bar?

Well, the last time I went to Molly Moggs [in Soho] I lost a shoe. I don’t even remember, I was so wankered. I love everything about gay bars, apart from the fact that it’s very loud in there usually. I’m very much a person who likes a chair and a sit down and a chat now. If anyone knows of a quiet gay bar I would very much like to go there. The good thing about being in London is that every bar’s a gay bar, isn’t it? It’s one of the gayest cities in the world. Very few aggressively straight places you go to these days.

How are you going to celebrate the success of your book?

I’ve had my carpets cleaned. I hadn’t had them cleaned for five years. We’ve got this thing, the cat started pissing all over the house, we’ve bought this terrifying thing called the ‘urine finder’, which is like a UV light you wave over the carpet and it will tell you if the cat has pissed there or if any biological matter has landed there. We found this stain on the rug. We thought the shape and size of the stain seemed very familiar. This is the stain of someone who has ejaculated on this rug. My friend stayed in my house whilst I was at Glasto and had a party, invited this MILF in from the street, a random MILF, and this MILF wanked off my gay friend on the sofa and he ejaculated on the carpet. This is what I find when I use my new ‘urine finder’. I found spunky carpets. So, I’m celebrating by finally having my carpet steam cleaned.

I’m so glad I don’t have carpets in my flat.

Honestly it’s so scary. You’d be going round thinking ‘Well, this whole place is contaminated.’

Is there anyone left that you want to interview?

I would so love to interview Angelina Jolie – she only ever gets asked the same questions. How do you and Brad find time to have sex? How do you cope with your seven children? How do you manage to fit in your career? The answer to them all is loads of fucking nannies. I want ask her some proper questions, because she’s this freaking mental goth woman, who, like, cuts her self up and keeps viles of blood around her neck and goes about adopting kids from all over the world, and just looking super-sexy like some incredible insect! I just don’t want any more questions being asked to her that could be answered with the word ‘nannies’. And, I think that me and Kate Winslet would get on like a house on fire! And I love Helena Bonham Carter until the day I die.

Have you ever just, like, lost it in front of someone?

I’ve said some fucking terrible things! When someone introduced me to Morrissey, I realised I had nothing to say to Morrissey. I sat on a chair and was holding onto it with my hands saying to my friend ‘I’ve just got nothing to say to Morrissey’. When I interviewed Billy Corgan from the Smashing Pumpkins, I had interviewed Courtney Love a couple of months before and she said he was really good in bed. And so I said to him ‘are you really good in bed Billy Corgan?’. And he just looked at me and said ‘if Courtney says I am, I must be’. And he looked at me, and at that moment, and I’d never fancied him before, I knew that he was probably the most incredible fuck you’d ever meet. He just had that look in his eye. I got so flustered at suddenly realising that Billy Corgan was an amazing lay I went bright red, didn’t say anything for about 45 seconds, which, when you’re listening back to it on tape, is a fucking long time and then blurted out ‘Do you know who you look like? Mooncat! It’s a character from a 1970s tv show!’ He’s there staring at me like ‘what the fuck’s this bitch on about?’. I literally had to wrap up the interview and leave. I was totally thrown. Most of the time though I’m pretty chatty.

Get a copy of How To Be A Woman. It is still brilliant.

Words: Bob Henderson

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