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Posted at 12:32 PM ET, 12/17/2010

More of Julian Assange's creepy lovesick e-mails

By Alexandra Petri


Julian Assange's alleged "creepy, lovesick emails" have been all over the Internet lately.

Who says the love letter is dead?

According to, at the age of thirty-three, Julian Assange wrote a series of e-mails, which were leaked to Gawker by a nineteen year-old from the University of Melbourne whom he courted after what was apparently a magical evening of bar conversation -- about complex equations -- followed by a goodnight kiss.

But to Assange, it was much more than that. He sent her a series of highly involved, lovesick e-mails, obtained her phone number and called her house. The e-mails fall somewhere on the line between poetic and creepy, like most of the works of Edgar Allen Poe.

"Dear REDACTED," he writes on June 4, 2004.

"It is not so hard to thaw. Or to be drawn. Our intimacy seems like the memory of a strange dream to me.... It is almost as if I had scripted it and left my fingerprints in the ink. I'm not concerned with your messy reality. I don't want to see it and I confess I could not place you in mine.... I am unconcerned with the context since time and your silence has made me philosophical; but when I first wrote the heat of your breast pressed against me was still vivid in my mind.

She pretends to be someone else when he calls her home. He responds:

...So I cheer me and my ghost world. I cheer that script which has gone to reality while still only a draft, full of duplicate characters and scenes, unclosed parentheses and abounding dramatic strangeness.


He gives her his telephone number:

Re: the hysteria

Let A=1, B=2, C=3, etc. Then the first three letters of your suny license plate form a number. Take that number and add it to REDACTED. I am the answer.


Or, finally, when he is rejected, he writes:

A man feels that which is soft, warm and yielding in his arms must also be in other circumstances...Your response to my entirely well intentioned amusement was the understanding and empathy of the committed solipsist. You pulled a tiny petal off my world just when I thought you were to add one but all around is the meadow, where I shall again dance and skip and sing till some fool girl should brush my wing.


But as with the real WikiLeaks, that can't possibly be all there is! Based on how short this interaction was and how much mileage Assange allegedly obtained, here are the e-mails I bet will be unearthed next:

Re: Instant Savings From Staples

Dear "Sale," In the moment that I received your message, your hidden lover's code became clear to me. I hope to participate in you later, and hope that your suggestion I purchase a "camera" for 50% off means what I know, in the camera obscura of my heart of hearts, that it must. I will be bringing you a gift basket.


Re: Wrong Number

Although you claim that you had called a wrong number and asked repeatedly for "Jeff, is Jeff there," I was wounded by your manner. Did you not feel the palpable connection that hummed in the air betwixt our two warm voices, mingling and commingling like a very mixed metaphor? It saddens me to have misjudged you. The easy intimacy of our connection is something I have only previously found by calling chat lines which require me to provide them with my credit card number in advance, and I had hoped that our interaction would produce a friendship that would amount to considerable cost savings in this area, if not more. Parked outside your house behind an elm awaiting your reply. I think the elm looks wistful, as do we all.


Re: Our Moment

Dear Best Buy "Elf,"

It is not so hard to thaw. Or to be drawn.

Our encounter seems like the memory of a strange dream to me. Or was it a poem, recited by the lips on the giant 42" screen that loomed behind you as we spoke, mouthing words perhaps from Tennyson -- or Yeats? It is too murky now to say. I know only that your warm manner and familiar tone ignited within me a peculiar flame that I have had serious difficulty extinguishing, as though I had scripted it and gotten my fingers stuck in the typewriter.


Dear Apple Store Employee,

I found our engagement truly moving. Your warm smile and the openness of your manner as your soft hand caressed my keyboard continues to linger in the hollow chamber of my memory-shell. I know my external hard drive has no place in your home, nor could I conceive of placing you in mine, but I have reset the security on my laptop-heart so that it will allow you to access all the internal storage. Please forgive my forwardness; your added memory is still fresh and will enhance my processing for weeks to come.


Dear 1-800 Extenze Employee,

Carla, was it?

Earlier today I spoke to a Woman of your sex, age, family composition, weight, height, employment goals, social security number, first family pet's name, and vague aroma of wistfulness and lavender. She claimed not to be you. But I know you better. We come from the same ghost world.

So bust not my ghost world. Bust not the ghosts of this ghost world; call not those whom you are gonna call for the purposes of busting said ghost world. I cheer this e-mail, which I send to reality while still only a draft, full of duplicate charractterss and scenes, unclosed parentheses (and abounding dramatic strangeness.


Dear Natalie Portman,

A man feels that which is soft, warm, and yielding in all three of the Star Wars prequels must also be in person. But like Poe's Annabel Lee, you have all the empathy and tenderness of a woman who has been deceased for some time. Until now, I have kept you alive with the fire in my memory, but I cannot long abide your solipsism. Please do not seek to entangle me in your meshes; your restraining order against me lacks grace and justice. You may have placed me under the metaphorical bus so favored in the poetry of Auden, but I am unbowed, like a reed in the marshy area where I skip in dreams, frolicking in the mud of imagination and being bitten by the mosquitoes of hope who carry the West-Nile disease of lover's folly, which can only be cured by the several-day course of antibiotics of common sense under the care of the specialized doctors of Time in the companionship of frogs, which in this metaphor are actual frogs, who, because they are not women, possess some modicum of regard for the jewel of my constancy. Good day, sir.


Dear Robert Browning,

How do I love thee? I have counted the ways. Handily, it is your IP address, multiplied by four. This can also be rendered as the sum of your driver's license number (if A = 5, B = 10, and so on) and the square root of your social security number.


By Alexandra Petri  | December 17, 2010; 12:32 PM ET
Categories:  Only on the Internet, Petri, That's awkward  | Tags:  alcohol, parody, wikileaks  
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Next: Last-minute holiday shopping ideas for Obama


Whoa - he is really out there - all I can say is.... ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!

Posted by: LyndaLBD | December 17, 2010 3:45 PM | Report abuse

Touche', Redacted!

Posted by: Itzajob | December 17, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

You slight of Poe seems Julianish

Posted by: quattlebaum | December 17, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

This is the best leak since that bottle of urine "accidentally" spilled onto 3 dozen gay and lesbian books in the Harvard library. But this one smells even worse.

How do we know that this woman, who Gawker calls "Elizabeth (not her real name)," is even real? I bet it's Christine O'Donnell getting back at Gawker for posting those pictures of her having a ladybug one night stand.

Gawker quotes Elizabeth NotHerRealName as saying, "I don't think he's a bad person. He's just a funny bugger."

Come on, nobody talks like that. It's obvious that Christine, who is a pretty funny "ladybugger" herself, is the author.

It's so obvious even Petri knows it. "How do I count the ways?" Petri knows that Robert (not her real name) Browning didn't write that poem. It was Elizabeth (her real name) Barrett Browning.

Petri doesn't make mistakes. You have to look for the hidden meaning in her columns. Pretty clever, Alexandra!

Posted by: divtune | December 17, 2010 5:07 PM | Report abuse

I didn't get 'creepy' from that. I get geek, sensitive, vulnerable, possible Asperger's Syndrome, highly intelligent, hopeful, sweet, romantic. To anyone who has spent time with people who love math and or have Asperger's the numbers thing isn't unusual. Knowing all the numbers that were significant in her life probably made him feel closer to her. Extreme Geek + Hopeless Romantic = Algebra + Puppy Love = Julian Assange

Posted by: cynthia51 | December 17, 2010 6:18 PM | Report abuse

His emails to potential girlfriends are of no consequence.

Your article is trite and I ask what purpose does it serve?

Posted by: robertjames1 | December 17, 2010 7:02 PM | Report abuse

Gee, lady, you suckered me in with your mention of "love-sick" and I thought some chicks were writing some deranged fan mail to him or something (and was about to complain that maybe I am in the wrong gig, since all I get is chicks looking at me on some CCTV monitor, using footage thats more than week old - which is as sick as it gets), but then I find shock horror - he's the one writing stupid things. Being a guy, I naturally feel sorry for him, he seems lonely - but Melbourne University is not a very social place, empty bars (been there, nothing useful to report, just guys getting drunk like frat-boys) and empty-headed girls (I'll take American cheerleaders over them anyday). I studied at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology, which is right in next door in the city of Melbourne where the chicks are geeky, with funky colored-hair, wear unusual clothes (everything from all black goths to torn jeans wild child to suburban sun-dresses to business suits), but real friendly, really thawed me out and warmed me right up - but I'd like to think it was my British accent that they responded positively to (well it definitely wasn't my "sunny personality" - I am as icy and as formal as one can get, but somehow the girls there made it seem natural that they'd just curl up in my $1500 cashmere blend overcoat which they said smelled of Cuban Cigars, I had to spend ten minutes every morning picking their blond hairs out of the cashmere before heading off to university). lol.

Posted by: darkasnight1234 | December 17, 2010 7:36 PM | Report abuse

Sexually desperate loser, LOL

Posted by: AsperGirl | December 17, 2010 8:13 PM | Report abuse

One thing that still doesn't make sense about Assange is that he went to a b-grader techie school. You see, Melbourne is like Boston, and Melbourne University is like Harvard, which is not a good engineering or techie school, while the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology is like MIT, and is Australia's number one Architecture and Engineering and techie school (our professors at the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology used to tell us that anytime we didn't feel like giving it our hundred and ten percent we could feel free to wash-out and take the mile hike to Melbourne University because Melbourne University would take b-graders), now if you were to tell some guy who went to MIT that a geek came out of Harvard and was threatening the world with his technical prowess (and I am not talking about Bill Gates who went to Harvard Law School - so that doesn't count) he'd laugh at you, similarly I have trouble not laughing everytime people talk about Assange's techie credentials - they made politicians at Melbourne University (its a law school, a business school and a med school) not techies nor geeks nor engineers nor architects (it stank in technical fields and engineering and architecture), their students spent their time looking prissy and not sitting infront of computers (unlike the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology where the students spent their time sitting infront of computers - even in the nontechnical fine arts department). So who propped a b-grader like Assange up and why? lol.

Posted by: darkasnight1234 | December 17, 2010 11:45 PM | Report abuse

Petty...real petty.

Posted by: question-guy | December 20, 2010 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Petty...real petty.

Posted by: question-guy | December 20, 2010 7:32 PM | Report abuse

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