But they were lame explanations, and I think he knew it was indefensible. As for Pinochet and Hitler and Mussolini, he told me that names in the newspaper were just that for him. These were not real people, he said, just characters you arrange and play with to get a reaction out of people. If "Pinochet" stirred some people's pots, so much the better. He meant nothing to Woodard except utility.
We talked for almost three hours. I don't know what I expected. A wink. A grin.
I got nothing.
If he was acting, then he never broke character. As evening came and the dream machines cast longer and longer shadows, I decided I had gotten all I was going to get, and the more I got to know David Woodard, the more I realized I couldn't trust anything he said, the more I liked him.
That's where we left it when we went to dinner. We pulled into a local restaurant and ate, and he told me that he was going to tell me something he had never told any other reporter. He said that he had been so affected by Cobain's suicide because his girlfriend had committed suicide when he was just 18 and that her parents had blamed him for the death.
He left it there. I did too. I had listened, and I had looked concerned. Whether it was true or not, I had no way of knowing. I thought about calling his mother and asking her to confirm the story but then thought, what was the point? I already knew the point.