Truth behind porno letter revealed

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We’ve all seen those steamy letters published in a certain sort of “men’s magazine”—the stories that begin with “I’m a student at a small liberal arts college in the Northeast,” or, “My girlfriend Gidget is a redhead with a body so aerobicized she can crack walnuts with her butt,” and so on.

Like many of you, we, too, have often questioned the veracity of such stories.

In the Spring 2012 issue of the men’s magazine Yankyer Doodle, one such letter, titled “Jacuzzi Doozy,” appeared. It was attributed to an “A.W. from Derby Hills, Montana.”

We decided to investigate what, if any part, of the the letter was true. 

Derby Hills is a town of approximately 1,000 people, any number of whom, as it turned out, were more than happy to give us directions to A.W.’s ramshackle abode.

Though wishing to remain anonymous, Andy Winkling the author, after much coaxing and four Budweiser beers, was persuaded to reveal to us the true story behind his porn letter.

“I don’t know why I wrote the thing,” he told us. “Just bored, I guess. And I’ve always had a really good imagination. And God knows I read and look at enough porn. So I figured why not make some myself?”

Below is the first half of Mr. W’s letter, as published, broken down sentence by sentence. The first sentence of each pair (marked Letter) appeared in Yankyer Doodle. The second (marked Reality) is the truth, in Mr. W’s own words, of what really happened.

Letter: I’m a student at a small liberal arts college in the Northeast.
Reality: I live in a utility shack in the back of my grandmother’s house in Derby Hills, MT.

Letter: While I enjoy an active, healthy sex life, nothing like what I’m about to tell you has ever happened to me before.
Reality:
My idea of a really hot date is to dress up my bed pillow in red lingerie and call it “sweet thing.”

Letter: For the record, I’m six-feet, three inches tall, weigh 190 lbs., and, being on my college tennis team, have a pretty good body.
Reality:
For the record, I’m five-feet, three inches tall, weigh 180 lbs., have size 16 feet, and wouldn’t know a tennis racquet from a fly swatter.

Letter: I’ve been told I look a lot like Elvis Presley.
Reality:
I’ve been told I look like a beach ball with acne.

Letter: Anyway, last weekend me and a couple of my buddies from the tennis team were lying around in the jacuzzi at our friend Mike’s apartment complex.
Reality:
Anyway, last weekend I was lolling around with my dog in a kiddie pool in my grandma’s backyard, farting up a storm.

Letter: We were just kicking back, having a good time, when suddenly a group of stewardesses came around the corner of the building, giggling and pulling their suitcases behind them.
Reality:
I was just lying there, coming down off a beer buzz, when suddenly a group of my grandmother’s cronies came around the corner of the house, yakking and dragging their card table behind them.

Letter: My eyes popped right out of my head!
Reality:
I kept my eyes closed.

Letter: I’ve always loved stewardesses, with their blue and white uniforms, and those legs like long, smooth willows. 
Reality:
I’ve always hated my grandmother’s friends, with their blue and white hair, and those legs like short, veiny bratwursts.

Letter: These angels from heaven spotted us, and sashayed over to the side of the jacuzzi to say hello to us.
Reality:
These creatures from Jurassic Park spotted me, and plodded over to the side of the pool to crab at me.

Letter: One of them, Cheryl, who had luxurious blonde hair, moist red lips, and a body built for the bedroom, told us that she lived in the complex, and that she and her friends were only staying over one night before flying out the next morning for Rio de Janeiro.
Reality:
One of them, Agnes, whose has thin dingy gray hair, lips moist with slobber, and a body built for the bathroom, brayed at me that she and her friends where supposed to meet my grandmother there to play pinochle, but that my grandmother wasn’t home yet.

Letter: I can tell you, that kicked my imagination into high gear!
Reality:
I can tell you, that made me wonder if it was possible to croak from boredom.

Letter: Then Cheryl asked if we would mind if she and her friends joined us in the jacuzzi, because, as she put it, “There’s no fun like hot, wet fun!”
Reality:
Then Agnes announced that she and her friends were going inside the house, because, as she put it, “We’re sweating out here like hogs on a spit!”

Letter: I could barely believe my ears!
Reality:
I could barely believe my ears!

Letter: Could this really be happening to me?
Reality:
Could this really be happening to me?

Letter: “Please do!” I said enthusiastically. “Would you like us to help you change into your swimsuits?”
Reality:
“Please do!” I said sarcastically. “Would you like me to come in and shuffle your cards for you?”

Letter: “My, aren’t you a nasty little boy?” cooed Cheryl in her playful, seductive voice.
Reality:
“My, ain’t you a big fat pain in the butt?” bleated Agnes in her grating, honking baritone.

Letter: And what’s that growing in your swimsuit?” she giggled.
Reality: “Jesus, Andy! Fart much?” she cried.

Letter: The girls turned and pranced off towards the apartments.
Reality:
The old ladies turned and shuffled off towards the house.

Letter: In no time at all they were back, looking, in their thong bikinis and bare feet, like nymphs from an island paradise!
Reality:
In no time at all they were back, looking, in their giant mu-mus and flip-flops, like something a volcano god had barfed up.

Letter: It sure hadn’t taken them long to change!
Reality:
It sure hadn’t taken them long to figure out the house was locked!

Letter: “Move your muscular bodies over, boys!” said Cheryl happily, stepping into the jacuzzi with one long leg.
Reality:
“Get your scrawny ass out of that thing, ya bum!” bellowed Agnes, kicking the pool with one ham-like foot.

Letter: “And let the party begin!”
Reality:
“And let us into goddamned house!”

Letter: I knew right then that I was about to have the time of my life.
Reality:
I knew right then that I was going to have to move out of my grandmother’s house.

The letter continues on from there, of course. But that’s enough.

Trust us. It is.

So remember: pornography isn’t always—in fact, we would warrant to say, is never—what it seems to be.

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About John Shore

Increasingly I want to communicate with my readers through my free email newsletter, which is just a simple, direct and personal email from me that I'll soon be sending out every three weeks or so. If you would like to receive this email in your inbox, subscribe to it on my website, or by using the subscription box about halfway down the column on the right. I wouldn't think of using your email address for anything but my e-newsletter (to which you can always unsubscribe with the click of a button). Thanks, and looking forward to communicating with you in this more intimate way.

  • Diana

    "But I am (apparently: it’s a long story) now done writing books for Bethany House Publishers and/or Steve Arterburn,…"

    So, will you be doing a post on this eventually or would that cause more problems than it's worth?

  • erika

    john i am a new reader,

    that was funner than s**t..

    i almost peed.

    just soz ya know

  • Linda Chimienti

    I'm guessing this article is circa 1980 or so because that's the last time I can recall "stewardesses" being willowy, young, flirtatious, or even female. These days it takes a real man to pass out peanuts and check for tray tables in the upright and locked position.

  • http://www.facebook.com/narnar Natalie

    I KNEW IT!!!! I knew all those stories HAD to be false.

    I'd be curious to know if the stories coming from women are just as false though…

  • gooseberrybush

    If the Christian publishers don't want you writing for them, then they don't have any taste. Have you ever thought of appealing to Anne Lamott's publishers. She writes on faith based issues, and she isn't sanctimonious or stuffy or preachy or…theologically or politically conservative. (Horrors!) If there's a market for her, then there's a market for you, probably a larger one than these people are smart enough to understand.

  • Colleen

    Very funny! Enjoyed the back & forth between reality and imagination. I think the story shows its kinda dated w/ references to stewardesses instead of flight attendants and a jacuzzi….isn't 'hot tub' what modern day folk use for foolin' around? ….er… or is 'foolin' around' also dated?! Fortunately today we have internet, so lonely pathetic people can instantly submit their fantasy in real time while sitting in their tee shirts & sweats, eating cheezy doodle snacks.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Thanks for … saying it's funny! (You might have missed the part in the intro where I said the piece was quite old.)

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Well, it's not so much that they don't want me writing for them, as it is that when you ARE writing for them, you have to be more careful than you might be otherwise not to … offend them. Which is fair: they don't want your name on the front of their books if you're going to be out in the world acting like someone whose name they wouldn't want on the front of one of their books. I dunno. That whole industry is insane, basically. And yes, as you say, the Way of Lamott would be a good way for me. Except I've basically had it with writing about God or Christianity or whatever. It makes people too crazy. None of MY readers, of course—who are the greatest, sanest readers anywhere, from what I can tell–but … too many other people, basically. But you've been very kind! (And who knows? If, out in the real world, I find myself unable to make a living writing—like, say, if my novel fails [which it won't because it's awesome]—then maybe I'll be back in the world of Xtian publishing, sniffing around for anyone to throw me a nut.)

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    God, I hope not.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    No, it wasn't that long ago. I'd say I wrote it … gosh, 12, 13 years ago? But you're right: it was those now pretty old-school type letters I had in mind when I wrote this. Those kind that in the 80's DID seem to be quite the rage amongst the degenerate literate set.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    It was funnier than "spot"? What's "spot"?

    Oh, well. The important thing is I almost caused you to suffer from a urinary dysfunction. Cool!

    And thanks.

  • Allen

    John, with a change (or, "new chapter" as you literary people like to say) in your writing content, I'm looking forward to seeing "Jacuzzi" "Stewardesses" "blue hair" begin to appear in the constellation of words on the right side of your site, in between "Jesus" "Great Commission" "Christians and non-believers" etc.

    "Squirrels" was getting lonely, I think.

    This was funny, btw.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    I'll bet you are. Perv.

  • erika

    Nah, the ones for woman are true…the question we should ask is…are the letter from woman REALLY letters from women….

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Hi, Diana. I really, really, really want to shut up about the whole thing. And I KNOW I should.

    So I probably won’t.

  • http://ricbooth.wordpress.com ric booth

    Hysterical John. I think I remember that story, too. or one exactly like it with with suds or oil or an airplane restroom… Its all a blur…

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Awesome. This is great. Thanks, Dave.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    Oh, yeah! I remember that story, too: "Mr. Bubble Gets In Trouble." I liked that one.

  • http://soiledwings.com Sherry Meneley

    Ha-larry-us! "creatures from Jurassic Park…honking baritone…volcano god barf" I think I love Agnes. I have little affinity for Cheryl, that fricken plastic bombshell.

    And on a side note…which means it's really what I wanted to say… I feel ya on the Christian Publisher deal. I'm pretty sure I've gotta go the Lamott way – but she's so damn famous and awesome I will never hold a candle blah blah idoem. Maybe a Rob Bell editor will love me… crap it's hopeless.

  • http://soiledwings.com Sherry Meneley

    dude – that's the famous Booty God Booty – works for Zondervan

  • dave

    Great post. Thank you for bringing back memories of a friend who I lost touch with over twenty years ago.

    When i was a student at a university in the United Kingdom, my mate Billy would post a letter every week about his sexual escapades at college to a ‘soft porn’ newspaper called the Sunday Sport.

    He would use a different pseudonym each time. Every single one of his letters was printed. Every single one of his letters was a work of fiction.

    The lads in the halls of residence would have a great time getting hold of a copy of this newspaper and turning to the letters page, seeing his contribution and cheering him each weekend.

  • Nora

    I used to live across the floor from an editor for Penthouse magazine — boring as helll, middle aged, balding guy who had an equally dull and plain wife and three truly obnoxious teenaged kids.

    Yeah, the letters are total BS.

    However, this guy actually got his older son a Penthouse, er, "model" for his senior prom date, so I guess, in that case, it was reality emulating fiction.

  • http://skerrib.blogspot.com skerrib

    Love it.

  • Jeannie

    Okay great, here I am innocently playing on my lap top due to yet another insomnic night AND you have me laughing so hard I woke my kids up! "What's so funny, mommy"? Never mind, go back to sleep sweetie.

    HE HE HE HE HE HE

  • http://allegro63.blogspot.com/ Sylvie Galloway

    I am now officially a fan. Funny stuff.

  • Melissa

    Remember, everyone, that these stories are only as hip and current as their authors are. Your fantasy can't match actual reality if you don't know any better. I would believe this type of guy would make up this kind of story YESTERDAY.

    Hilarious.

  • http://fairtilizer.com/users/Voicedude Voicedude

    John -

    God bless you for being 'real'! This was funny and edgy, yet tasteful and respectful – qualities you don't often see together! Thank you for exhibiting more 'walk' than 'talk' (although your talk is very witty).

    We need more like you – 'we' being both the church body and the example set for non-believers….

    - Voicedude

  • http://fairtilizer.com/users/Voicedude Voicedude

    I think Jim Wallis over at sojourners has nuts….

  • bee

    " I’m a student at a small liberal arts college in the Northeast." Is this a shout out to "The Sure Thing"? Classic Cusack movie.

  • http://blueberrypancakesfordinner.wordpress.com blueberrypancakesfor

    wait..you had to PAY to have your letter published?

  • http://www.BuzzDixon.com buzz

    I used to work for the company that made these sort of letters famous. I told one of the editors they could have saved themselves a lot of time and effort by just creating a randomizing generator to crank ‘em out. He said that would deprive him of a source of income.

  • http://www.johnshore.wordpress.com John Shore

    (Yeah, I didn’t get that either.)

  • http://blueberrypancakesfordinner.wordpress.com blueberrypancakesfordinner

    jeez, even readers digest will give you 25 bucks for a lame joke.

  • Robert Meek

    Oy! This reminds me of the 15 years I spend with ex-number-one-of-four. He used to say, "I'm a chameleon! I'm all things to all people!" with great pride. One of his rare moments of truth he said "pathological liar" and "just like his entire family," etc.

    It was true.

    Sadly, it wasn't so cute. Example, I'm dashing out the door to work, mid 1980s, pre-Internet life. Pile of bills ready to go out to the mail, checks written, envelopes stamped & sealed. "Will you take these out and mail them when you go to work today?" "Yes," he said.

    As I was due faster, further, longer, and running late…

    I got home, "Did you mail the mail today?" "Yes," he said. Pause. "No," he said.

    "Why did you lie?" I asked. "Why did you lie!? There was no reason for you to lie! I'm not angry. I'm not upset. The bills aren't late. It's not like as if sending them out tomorrow instead is a problem. Why did you lie!?!?!"

    "I don't know," with bewilderment on his face.

    One of many "red flags" I stupidly ignored.

  • http://www.BuzzDixon.com buzz

    No, the editor got to pocket the freelancer fee by cranking 'em out hizzownsef. If they set up a radomizing generator, they would have cut the freelance budget for the letters column.


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