When Courtney Love met the Times’s Eric Wilson last Thursday at the Mercer Hotel, presumably with the knowledge that he was planning to write something about her, she confessed that she was “slightly drunk,” spilled a martini everywhere, and then sent him up to her room to wait for her. While he was there, he did what any self-respecting reporter would do short of helping himself to the mini-bar: he snooped.
I noticed the following things: There were two full-size rolling racks packed with designer clothes, a pile of jewelry from Hollister, a shopping bag from Lululemon, a pack of Marlboro Gold cigarettes, fashion magazines, a guitar, faxes from Grazia, three wilting bouquets of peonies and roses, a nondisclosure contract, chocolates from Vosges and a neatly stacked pile of books with titles like “Talking the Winner’s Way,” “100 Words Every Word Lover Should Know,” “Getting Even,” “How to Instantly Connect With Anyone” and “What to Say to Get Your Way.”
Let’s be honest: does this not sound exactly like where you’d want to wake up every morning? Maybe minus the Hollister jewelry, perhaps, but hey, maybe it was a gift. Anyway, after waiting for Courtney for about an hour, Wilson saw her nude.
Shortly after 8 p.m., Ms. Love burst into the room with the Marchesa dress slung on one arm and the noted German Neo-Expressionist artist Anselm Kiefer on the other. She was entirely naked and leaning on Mr. Kiefer for support. She made one lap around the room, walking in front of a photographer, an assistant, a hairstylist and me. She pulled over her head a transparent lace dress that covered up nothing, and demanded my assistance — “Not you,” she said to Mr. Kiefer, who was bent over trying to help her — to stuff her feet into a pair of black Givenchy heels that were zipped up the back and tied with delicate laces in the front. Then she applied a slash of red lipstick in the vicinity of her mouth.
But, lest you think she’s one of those girls, rest assured she does make sure to wear panties before going out.
“Just a minute,” Ms. Love said, as she pushed her feet, shoes and all, through a pair of pink knickers that she said cost $4,000.
Despite all of this, which is hugely entertaining on paper and probably was even more so in person, Wilson is also emphasizes that Love is capable of pulling her act together, as he experienced two weeks prior to the Mercer Hotel incident:
Our conversation stretched on for more than five hours, during which time Ms. Love demonstrated, as is widely acknowledged, a keen intelligence and a remarkable understanding of the fashion industry, both about its history and the way things work today. She came across as calm, funny and well read. She barely smoked, and was excited about the possibilities she sees before her as she finalizes a lease on a town house in the West Village, even expressing hope that her 18-year-old daughter, who was granted legal emancipation in 2009, will return to her.
And in the end, how could we ever judge someone who unabashedly eats “wakeup cupcakes”?
At one point, she took me upstairs to her room to show me some clothes. The bed was unmade, and there was an overflowing ashtray on the night stand next to five prescription bottles and some junk food. “These are my wakeup cupcakes, some anti-depressants and a cellphone book,” she said without embarrassment.