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About Ellison
Character isn't only who you are in the dark. It's also who you are up on a stage, in front of thousands of people.

Is he senile or merely poorly house-broken?

He grabbed Connie Willis's breast while up on stage during the Hugo ceremony.

... just do something new recently, or was this just a generalized musing?

Re: Did Mr. Ellison...

See item 3 in PNH's blog on LACon

Re: Did Mr. Ellison... (Anonymous) Expand
My current theory is the latter.

He's not senile - don't let him abdicate responsibility for his actions.

Beats me.

I saw him at Readercon, on two successive nights, give a very moving and eloquent presentation about getting older and life and love, contrasted with one of the more ugly displays of public vitriol I've ever witnessed. He's got such weird highs and lows.

Yeah. When H.E.'s good, he's really, really good. When he's bad, he makes you think that it's a pity corporal punishment went out of style.

-- Steve'll point out he's no fan of stocks or the cat o' nine tails, but Ellison at his worst can be so infuriating...

(no subject) (Anonymous) Expand
Re-enacting a moment between Jamie Lee Curtis and Jon Lovitz?

Back at college I took a class in Science Fiction as Literature, and one day the professor said the worst insult he had ever received was when someone once told him that he reminded them of Harlan Ellison.


I am taken back to a fond con memory (thus, a distant one), with Robert Asprin getting in my grill because I said Harlan Ellison is often tough on fans. (Controversial, huh?)

I will add to my knowledge that he is tough on nearby female writers, too.

Asimov did that, and worse, when he got to Ellison's age.

I vote for senility.

.... Asimov cultivated the rep of a Dirty Old Man quite deliberately, and it was part of his public behavior portfolio for a LONG time.

He also was not, as far as I can ascertain, nearly as acerbic and confrontational as Ellison. I.e., both of them exhibited the same reprehensible behavior towards women, but that seemed to be Asimov's major vice, while it seems to be only one of several Ellison negative traits.

I vote for poorly housebroken, since "senility" would imply that this was something new.

I met him in 1983 in Sydney, my first-ever con. He came out of the hotel as I was staggering in with a huge suitcase (I'm female, just under 5ft tall and then was 24 years old.) He carried the suitcase to reception for me while I flapped around because I'd heard he had a bad back. The case was heavy because I'd been going mad in bookshops for a week. He then basically ignored me for the rest of the con, not least, I suspect, because I went into glazed-brain fangirl mode every time I saw him. Dunno what this adds to the discussion. Maybe that he acts on the spur of the moment?

He was nice to me at some event back at Dangerous Visions bookstore in L.A.(-ish) in the late 80's/early 90's...I don't know how tall Connie Willis is, but I've been told that he's nicer to *short* women. (I'm 5'2".)

It's things like this that make me dearly wish the "little fuck" story were true.

I've heard that story from at least three people, about three different authors.

Okay, so obviously he's trying to put the enfant back into enfant terrible.

Isn't he about 50 years too late for that party by now?

Nancy Lebovitz likes to say that Harlan Ellison used up her patience for public tantrums.

I wonder if Usenet, that worldwide stage for cranky behavior, has used up my patience for public flaming.

When I reread Ellison's mighty rants and dramatic lettercol battles, all I see anymore is alt.flame. But at one time this stuff seemed admirably outspoken and feisty.

In the edition of THE ESSENTIAL ELLISON my shadowy masters had me read, some jolly soul had put "Driving in the Spikes" about two or three chapters ahead of "Xenogenesis".

Nothing in the rules says he can't be both.


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