Read an Excerpt
Dirty Rocker Boys
Wait, what happened? Last week, Tommy Lee was my fiancé. This week, he’s married. To Pamela Anderson.
It was February 1995, and in the aftermath of Tommy’s shotgun wedding on the beach in Cancún, four days after our breakup, my coping strategy was twofold.
1. Get high.
I had a line on some of the dopest trucker speed in Malibu. It was a killer buzz, lasting for days—back in 1995, the meth was clean as a bean. I had been secretly using throughout my relationship with Tommy, as a way to maintain the rail-thin Barbie-doll figure that Tommy liked, and as a way to escape the growing sense that my life was fucked-up, on all levels. Very few people knew about my little problem, even though my pupils were dilated in broad daylight and I shouted at invisible dogs. I drove to the corner store for soda, came back eight hours later with gardening tools. My glitter gun became my best friend as I embarked on endlessly elaborate middle-of-the-night crafting projects, just to give my racing mind something to focus on. I was spun, a member of a long-established club known as the “Hollywood Speed Freak Society”—a long line of celebrity tweakers who, like me, were afflicted by a cursed disposition for that unsavory mistress, methamphetamine.
2. Get even.
A few years prior, a voodoo doctor in my native Louisiana had warned me about messing with revenge. Dark energy, he said, “will come back and bite you.” But after seven years of having my heart shredded by Sunset Strip cock rockers, I wanted to teach those assholes a lesson. I’m going to flip the script, treat the guys the way they treat us, I thought. I had reached my tipping point. I was ripe for revenge.
I looked in the mirror. Twenty-six years old. My peroxide mane was messy; my roots were showing. I was Courtney Love meets Malibu Barbie, with the gaunt yet chic figure of a runway model—around ninety-five pounds on a fat day. Thank you, crystal. The world knew me as Bobbie Brown, fiancée of Tommy Lee, ex-wife of Jani Lane, cutie-patootie from the “Cherry Pie” video on MTV. They’d yet to experience Bobbie Brown, wrathful, world-weary drug addict with no pride left to lose. I put on lipstick, a Wonderbra, and some assless chaps. I was ready to hit the clubs.
After a year playing Malibu Rapunzel, holed up in Tommy Lee’s beachfront fortress, I couldn’t wait to fall back into Hollywood’s welcoming arms. I had always been a club kid. I loved the darkness, the anonymity, the feeling of being underground. The velvet ropes that melted as soon as I arrived. Tommy may have tossed me aside, but in clubland, I was still queen.
In 1995, Thursday nights at Grand Ville were where it was at. The club was a hub of the ’90s neo-burlesque scene, full of corseted girls with shoe-polish-black hair, a whirl of rhinestones, glitter, and feathers. Grand Ville was the toughest door in town, but the promoter, Rick Calamaro, a dear friend of mine (may he rest in peace), always greeted me with a smile.
“Welcome back, Bobbie.”
I stepped inside, through the looking glass, and into a different reality. A pleasure dome, decadent and carnivalesque. Everywhere I turned, I saw the ghosts of my past loves. There were the Tommy Lees—wild, tattooed romantics, who turn mean when the roses wilt. The Jani Lanes—sweet, tortured artists weighed down by their demons. The Matthew Nelsons—blond angels destined to fly away. The exes in my life are no different to the exes in any girl’s life—except mine all happened to be rock stars.
Who better to confide in about my problems than a wide-eyed actor named Leonardo DiCaprio, who had about as much life experience as a Care Bear? “Thing is,” I told him as we chatted at the club, “if you’re not grown-up enough to deal with their ‘musician issues,’ then rock star lovers can send a girl down some very dark and dangerous rabbit holes. You know what I mean?”
Leo did not know what I meant. We were in the VIP lounge at Grand Ville, and he was looking at me like I was insane. I was insane, kind of. The stress of being married to one rock star (Jani Lane), engaged to another (Tommy Lee), and then jilted thanks to my professional rival (Pamela Anderson) had taken a toll. I was tired, jaded, defeated. The speed was playing tricks on my sanity, and my behavior had grown notoriously unpredictable. But how could Leo possibly understand? He was so fresh and upbeat. He looked like he should be drinking milk, not martinis.
For years Leo had been dancing up to me at the clubs, saying how he wanted to make me his girlfriend. I smiled and patted him on the head. How cute. I was seven years his senior and felt like his grandma. I’d never been someone’s G.I.L.F. before. “Do you think it’s too Harold and Maude if I do it with Leo?” I asked Sharise Neil, ex-wife of Mötley Crüe’s Vince Neil, and my sister in pleasure seeking. Sharise raised an eyebrow and shrugged. At least baby-faced Leo had a grown-up career, I thought. The Basketball Diaries, his breakthrough movie, had come out that year, and he was about to star in Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet. If I hooked up with Leo, who was younger, cuter, and about to be more famous than Tommy Lee, it would hit Tommy right in the ballsack.
This time, when Leo came dancing up to me, I played along. “Call me, I dare you.” My inner G.I.L.F. was ready to party.
I opened my front door, and there he was, wide face, cornflower-blue eyes, big smile. Leo’s hair was pulled back in barrettes and he was wearing a headband. He looked pretty, like a ballerina. I invited him in. “Can I put on some music?” he asked, waving a CD in the air.
Don’t go chasing waterfalls.
Please stick to the rivers and the lakes that you’re used to.
Leo sat on the floor, eyes closed, singing along. I recognized the song, by that R & B girl band TLC. It was all over the radio. I stood there for a while, watching Leo sing along, wondering what to do next, and what conversation there was to make. There was none. Pokémon? New Kids on the Block? College? “Let’s go to the bedroom.” I said. Leo nodded.
My bed was big and tall, and you had to climb up a small ladder to get to it. “You want to get up there with me, Leo?”
We started kissing. I pulled his T-shirt over his head, leaving the barrettes in his hair. I unbuttoned his jeans and tugged down on his boxers. What I saw made me gasp. It made no sense. The kid put Tommy Lee to shame. “Wow, Leo, I wasn’t expecting that.” Next to his slim body, his assets were startlingly huge. “Wait, let me turn the light on,” I said. “I’ve got to see this properly.” Yup, even under closer inspection, Leonardo DiCaprio’s crotch was on steroids. I couldn’t take my eyes off it. Ha, wait till Tommy “I’ve got the biggest dick in Hollywood” hears about this, I thought.
“So, Bobbie, do you have any diseases?”
The question dropped like ice water on my head. I hadn’t really thought about it. I’d come of age on the Sunset Strip, which was basically a glorified STD factory. No one in the rock scene wore condoms. No one. Had I been tested? Of course not. Nothing seemed too diseased down there, but I hadn’t thought to ask a doctor to check me out. On the Strip, when it came to bodily juices, sharing was caring.
“Also, Bobbie, what about gonorrhea? Have you been tested for that? And when you suck my dick, can you do it with a condom on?” Gah, he’s so PC, I thought.
Truth be told, I could hardly blame Leo for feeling the safe-sex vibe with me. Tommy Lee was one of the biggest man-whore stripper chasers on the Strip. But I had never sucked anyone’s wiener with a condom on it before. Oh well, first time for everything.
Leo rolled a rubber on, lay back, and closed his eyes. My cue to get started. I kissed his belly and drew him close to me. I began to lick and kiss his gargantuan penis. I tried to put it in my mouth. I could barely breathe. My jaw locked; my eyeballs bulged. So I went back to licking it. Unfortunately, the latex tasted like the inside of a balloon, bitter, reminiscent of trips to the dentist. I rode my tongue up and down, trying to ignore the acrid taste, but after a few minutes, I had to stop. The flavor, along with his spectacular girthyness, was making me gag.
“Leo, I’m sorry but this condom tastes terrible. I don’t think I can do it.” Leo pulled me down next to him and kissed me sweetly. “You’re right, that does taste kinda funny.” I pulled him on top of me. His eyes stayed open, gazing into mine. His brow furrowed a little as he eased himself into me. I inhaled sharply—he was . . . titanic.
“Wow, Leo, that’s nice, really nice.” Waves of satisfaction rippled through my body. I pulled Leo deeper into me, as deep as he could go. Revenge was sweeter than I could have imagined. If only Tommy Lee could see me now.
“Wait. Wait a second. Don’t move, Bobbie,” whispered Leo.
“We need to slow down.”
We were about one minute into the lovemaking. I waited a few beats. I pulled him close again and he squeaked.
“No, no, not yet.”
I looked at Leo’s perfect face as he grimaced, hoping to make it past the two-minute mark. He was a unicorn. Rare, innocent, and horny. Me, on the other hand, I’d been engaged, married, and had given birth. I needed a man, not a man-child.
Ah what’s the point?
“I’m going to get a drink,” I said, pushing him off me, climbing down out of the bed, throwing on a T-shirt. I was mad at him, mad at the whole world. The speed was making me antsy, bitchy, and annoyed with the handsome young golden boy for making me feel like a pedophile. Heading down the stairs, I yelled over my shoulder. “Maybe you should take your socks off next time.” Leo seemed confused. “Okay . . . can you make me a drink too?”
“How about a glass of milk?”
I went downstairs and hung out by myself, watching TV. I just wanted him gone. “Bobbie? Are you coming back?” I heard him call from my bedroom.
Leo, at his tender age, had yet to learn how to recognize damaged goods. How was he to know he was just one in a series of revenge fucks? A little confused by my behavior, Leo got up, got dressed, and left.
A few months later, I did an interview on the radio in which I mentioned Leo’s extraordinary penis. Leo, apparently, didn’t see the funny side. He sent his best friend Kevin Connolly, who you might have seen on Entourage and in the movie He’s Just Not That Into You, over to talk to me. Kevin was a mutual friend of ours who I talked to on the phone occasionally, and who had also asked me out a few times. Today, though, he was visiting on “official business.”
“Yeah, so Leo heard about that interview you did,” said Kevin. “He’s really pissed off that you would talk about something personal on-air.”
“I’m sorry,” I said, stifling my laughter. I couldn’t imagine Tommy ever getting mad about the world knowing what a huge penis he has. But then, Leo wasn’t a cock-rock musician. For all his playfulness, he was a serious kid. I never heard from him again. Which was fine by me.
A few weeks later, the actor Stephen Dorff sidled up to me on the dance floor at Grand Ville, with an entourage of about six dudes. Wow, he really thinks he’s the shit. I towered over him in my heels and had to bend down to hear what he was saying.
“So, you wanna go back to my house and fuck?” said Stephen, in my ear. No hello, no “how are you?” Just straight to business.
He leaned in a little closer, and I could feel his spit on my cheek.
“Do you want to go back to my place?”
You picked the wrong ice queen, motherfucker, I thought. I hit him with the most withering up-and-down stare I could muster and proceeded to tear him a new one.
“Well, first of all, you’re short. Second of all, you’re fat. And third of all, you have a fucking unibrow.” I made a unibrow above my nose with two fingers, to illustrate. “Oh, and you’re spitting on me. Can you back the fuck up? Yeah, get out of here, chubby.”
Damn. After all these years of being fun, goofy Bobbie Brown, unleashing my inner asshole felt good. Damn the consequences—these guys had it coming. Thanks to the heart-numbing properties of the speed I was on, I had no mercy. Stephen turned to his entourage, stunned. “Come on, guys, let’s go.” Sharise, who had seen the whole encounter, was about to die of laughter. “What a dork!” she giggled. Fresh off her divorce from Vince, she was as disillusioned with men as I was. “Let’s show those assholes,” I said.
Next stop, Kevin Costner’s house. I looked around the party—five guys and about a hundred girls. I wandered through the house and peered into a bedroom. Kevin was sitting on the bed, encircled by females. Oh, please, I thought.
“Come on in,” he said, smiling.
I sat down on the bed. The girl sitting next to me put her legs around her neck. One leg, and then the other.
“This one’s a sure thing,” I said, rolling my eyes. Kevin seemed amused. “You’re funny,” he said. He asked me for my number, and as I jotted down my digits on a napkin, I giggled privately. Mwa-ha-ha-ha. If only Kevin knew what he was about to get himself into. He called me the next night. “Hey, Bobbie, are you in front of your TV? Check out channel five.” I put it on. Dances with Wolves. “Well, hi . . . there you are.” My eyes rolled deep into the back of my head.
“You girls should come to a party in Malibu this weekend. There will be music and dancing. You’ll love it.” I wasn’t sure I could be bothered. Kevin’s over-earnest egotism was turning me off, but Sharise wanted to go. Ah, fuck it. Ready for a good time, we made the hour’s drive to Malibu from her house in the Valley, singing Sheryl Crow songs all the way.
Malibu’s twenty-seven-mile stretch of sun-drenched coastline is home to Mel Gibson, Steven Spielberg, Courteney Cox, and dotted with glassy million-dollar homes that stare out at the surf. But behind the elegant façades lies the same hedonistic, morally bankrupt scene you’ll find in Hollywood—guys in Ferraris, strung-out Bel Air wives, rockers in cowboy boots, dust clouds of cocaine in their wake. Idiots, I thought, taking a quick key bump of speed in the car. I hated coke. Coke was for losers.
Sharise and I walked into the party and headed straight for the dance floor. The DJ was spinning some rad hip-hop, and thanks to the speed, I had plenty of energy. I tuned into the rhythm, oblivious to the curious gazes of the other partygoers as Sharise and I busted out our raddest ’90s dance moves, pop-locking, voguing, and doing the Running Man like it was going out of style (which it was). Then I felt something behind me; it was Kevin, dancing up to me, awkward mating ritual in full effect. Imagine someone being led by his penis in a pelvic thrust, off the beat, headed in your direction. Instinctively, I shoved him with both arms across the dance floor.
“Whoa,” said Kevin, stumbling. Undeterred, he came back at me with that pelvis.
“Why don’t you go dance somewhere else?” I sniped.
Sharise told me to stop being a bitch. I’ll admit, I was kind of an asshole back in those days. I was not impressed by anybody or anything, no matter how many Oscars or Grammys they might have. Which always seemed to make them come on stronger. Sharise begged me to please just be nice to Kevin—she was always a tad more compassionate and polite than I—so when he invited us over to his house to watch a movie the following night, I gave it one more shot.
Kevin opened the door, wearing a country-western-type outfit: blue jeans and a plaid shirt. He had a beautiful Spanish-style home in the Hollywood Hills that he had bought from Richard Dreyfuss.
Within moments of arriving I managed to smash my glass of vodka tonic on the tile floor. I was notoriously clumsy, always tripping, crashing, breaking things, possessed by inexplicable involuntary spasms. I was embarrassed, so I grabbed Sharise’s glass and threw it on the floor too.
“It’s a Greek restaurant! O-pa!”
“No, it’s not a Greek restaurant, Bobbie,” said Kevin, dryly. Ugh, what a bore, I thought.
I was more off-kilter than usual, having been up all night partying with the guys from Coal Chamber. Pierced nü-metal goth kids in black eyeliner, they were my kind of people, with my kind of taste in vices. Normally, I found it easy to hop between the rock scene and glitzy Hollywood shit, but the night I showed up at Kevin’s tastefully appointed home, my brain was clearly still in heavy metal parking lot mode.
Turning a blind eye to the shards of Waterford crystal on the floor tile, Kevin suggested we retire to the film-viewing room, where he had a movie cued up for us to watch. I stepped into the viewing room, looking back over my shoulder to say something to Sharise, failing to notice the rather large step in front of me. I went flying, landing face-first on the ground. Man, why was this always happening to me?
“Face-plant!” I yelled, chewing on a mouthful of freshly shampooed carpet.
For Kevin, the horror of my dangerous one-woman freak show was starting to sink in. He looked nervous. “What the fuck is wrong with you?” hissed Sharise.
We sat down on the wraparound banquette in his screening room and Kevin put on the movie. EDtv. I tried to relax and act like a normal human being, but something about the way Woody Harrelson delivered his lines was really pissing me off. He kept stuttering and blinking his eyes. “Fuck!” I exclaimed at the top of my voice, in full Tourette’s mode, not realizing I was thinking out loud.
“The fuck? He did it again. This is ridiculous.”
“What’s the matter?” said Kevin, pausing the film.
“I-I-I don’t know, K-K-Kevin.” I imitated Woody, stuttering and blinking my eyes. Kevin looked at me blankly.
“Woody Harrelson keeps stuttering every time he delivers. It’s pissing me off.”
“Can’t you maybe ignore it?”
“Please just shut up, Bobbie,” said Sharise. Kevin put the movie back on. In the very next scene, Woody Harrelson stuttered and blinked. Again.
“Oh. You’re right,” said Kevin, sounding irritated. “I can’t watch the movie now. Perhaps we should just turn it off.” Sharise, ever the peacemaker, convinced him it would be okay to carry on watching, so long as we tried not to focus too much on Woody’s tics. I couldn’t be bothered and drifted into a deep, twitchy sleep, for the first time in days. The speed was starting to wear off.
“Wake up, Bobbie! The movie’s over,” said Sharise. I was hanging off the couch sideways, a little drool dangling from my lips.
“Let’s all go upstairs for a nightcap, shall we?” said Kevin, in one last desperate bid to rescue the evening. “There’s a magnificent view of the city from my bedroom.” Kudos to Kevin for not kicking me out. Seriously. Hats off. I guess he must have really wanted to get laid. He led the way up to his bedroom, which, as promised, had an enormous deck overlooking the whole of Hollywood. I stepped out on to it, inhaling the heady scent of eucalyptus and orange blossom, mesmerized by the snaking glow of the freeways in the distance. The balcony railing was only crotch-high, and as I leaned over, I half stumbled and gasped, holding on tight to make sure I didn’t flip over and tumble down the hillside below.
“Whoa, kind of dangerous over here!” I yelled at Kevin and Sharise, who were ignoring me. Since Tommy had left me, I’d been on a string of dates, most of them calamitous, or hilarious. Something inside me had become resistant to all that was sane and decent in this world. I was a chaos magnet, a bad-luck charm, a catastrophe in kitten heels. Sharise, too, had suffered her fair share of rock-wife damage, but, unlike me, she could keep it together in public.
“Maybe you should go inside—you’re making me nervous,” called over Kevin.
“Okay, but I want a cigarette,” I said, strolling into the bedroom. I lit up my Marlboro and looked around. The room was huge, shaped like an octagon, with a giant fireplace illuminating one of the walls.
“No smoking inside,” I heard Kevin call from the balcony.
“Bob, he said no smoking,” Sharise hollered.
“All right, all right,” I said, taking one last pull on my cigarette. Where do I put the fucker out? I thought, eyes searching for an ashtray.
I flipped the cigarette toward the crackling fire—fliiiiick—and walked back toward the balcony, trying to join in the conversation. Moments later, Kevin’s expression shifted. He pointed behind me, shaking his head, panic in his eyes.
“My bedroom’s on fire.”
I turned around, and indeed, flames were crawling up the wall from the mantel above the fireplace, where my cigarette had landed.
“Holy shit!” I ran into the bedroom, took off my jacket, and slapped it against the wall, trying to put out the flames. Sparks exploded like it was the Fourth of July.
“Dude, stop fanning the flames! You’re making it worse!” Sharise hissed.
“I am so sorry, Kevin!” I said, determined to put out the blaze. I took off my scarf and slapped at the wall. Even after the fire went out, I carried on slapping and thrashing, grunting like a tennis player as I gave the wall a good beating. Kevin’s face was stricken.
“Will you fucking calm down,” yelled Sharise. I turned to my friend, annoyed at her constant chiding, and tried to whip-slap her in the face with the tail end of my burnt-up scarf. Except I missed and ended up slapping Kevin in the eyeball instead. On the snapback, it ricocheted into my face.
“Fuck! Sorry, Kevin!”
I was squinting. Kevin’s face was sooty, and he was cupping one eye. His fancy mantelpiece was charred and ashy. Sharise’s jaw, as it so often was when we hung out, was on the ground.
“Bobbie, where on God’s Earth did you come from?” said Kevin, shaking his head.