In what is assuredly the Altamont of our age, chlamydic chanteuse Tila Tequila performed at Insane Clown Posse’s annual Gathering of the Juggalos over the weekend only to find herself pelted with bottles and rocks, making for a tragic story with no clear protagonist. On the one hand, Tequila is a loathsome symbol of everything that is cheap, baseless, and masturbatory about modern celebrity, and her ill-defined ambitions to be famous for, you know, whatever, are cloudier than her urine sample. On the other hand, this story involves Juggalos—proud, self-defined fans of Insane Clown Posse who willingly gather in one place to talk about their shared love of terrible music, face paint, and how fucking bullshit it is that they have to take out their septum rings when they're working the register—so it’s sort of a spider versus fly situation. It's also a story of extreme violence against a woman, albeit one in which the woman did an awful lot of provoking, which makes it difficult to laugh about—or it would if it didn't involve Tila Tequila, whose thirst for attention extends to using even the untimely death of her girlfriend as a career opportunity. So many conflicting emotions, all of them uncomfortable. It's an ethical test of a generation, perhaps the greatest we've ever faced? Safe to say that the magical '00s and its halcyon Summer of Schadenfreude may have officially died this weekend.
As you can see from the below video compiled by TMZ [since removed due to copyright claim; watch it here], Tequila—who has apparently abandoned all of her Billie Holiday-inspired “Miss Tila” pretensions, or simply didn’t get to the part of the show where she finished promising to fuck all the DJs and launched into her stilling rendition of “Strange Fruit “—took the stage to share some of the music inside of her, only to be greeted with a chorus of “Show your [reasons you became famous in the first place]!” Because of the demands of artistic integrity, Tequila complied. The crowd, frustrated by her cold, machine-like response to their confusing desires, responded with a hail of projectiles. At one point, comedian Tom Green took the stage and attempted to lighten things up by doing the dance of ironic enjoyment, perhaps to remind everyone that Tequila’s set was a form of conceptual anti-comedy, but the audience quickly answered that anti-comedy is so late-'90s by pelting him as well.
Tequila was thus forced to complete her epic, Wagnerian opera “I’m Going To Fuck The DJ, Seriously” (or whatever the title is) from behind a wall of bouncers and the world’s unluckiest security guard, who probably thought he would be able to retire on his cop’s pension but was forced to take this job on weekends and for special events once his daughter got divorced and her no-good husband skipped out on child support, so now he has to stand on stage in front of a thousand teenaged rednecks in clown makeup and get drenched in sticky off-brand soda, all so some shrieking topless harpy can collect more money than he sees in six months.
And according to Tequila, his sacrifice was for naught: By set’s end she was covered in blood and bruises, and claimed to TMZ that things were even worse than the video depicts, with allegations that her attackers also used feces lifted from the portable toilets and then pursued her to her “trailor,” where they engaged in a scene straight out of a George Romero film, only with more allegorical import about the intellectual deadening of society. Her verbatim account—reinforced by these rather unsettling pictures—is below (with [sic] implied throughout).
"I went onstage and immediately, before I even got on stage, DUDES were throwing HUGE STONE ROCKS in my face, beer bottles that slit my eye open, almost burnt my hair on fire cuz they threw fire crackers on stage, and they even took the sh*t out of the port-0-potty and threw sh*t and piss at me when I was onstage."
These people were trying to kill me. So then after the last blow to my head with the firecracker they threw at me exploded, my bodygaurd and the other security grabbed me and ran as fast as they could to the shitty trailor. Since their security SUCKS, the 2 thousand people ran after us, trying to kill me. They almost got me so they finally reach the trailor, blood all over myself, cant stop bleeding, then all of a sudden, all 2 thousand people surround the trailor and busts the windows!!! Even the guys INSIDE with me were shaking! Their hands were shaking cuz they were so scared! So 3 guys inside the trailor had to grab a table and push it over the broken windows and grabbed all the chairs they could find so hold the people from outside back. It was scary as hell!"
Tequila is now threatening to sue festival organizers, recently tweeting, “Pretty soon, the owners who run the juggalos will be bankrupt.” According to an eyewitness report on CNN—which also includes the line, “The witness asked not to be identified so that he does not anger the juggalos,” which someone over there obviously enjoyed crafting—Tequila simply “didn't understand the dynamic.” (Leave it to CNN to find the lone sociologist at the Gathering Of The Juggalos.) The Hardin County sheriff’s office currently has an open investigation, but cautions that it will be difficult to identify specific attackers.
In the meantime, our own Nathan Rabin—who never misses a Gathering Of The Juggalos, because that’s like Woodstock and Hanukkah and a big bowl of strawberry ice cream all at once for him—found himself thrust into the role of embedded reporter, beginning with his tweets that he had heard rumors that the Tequila attack was being openly planned. According to SF Gate, this corroborates several posts made on the Juggalo Holocaust blog, where several fans warned Tequila that they would “teach [her] not to come back to the Gathering” by throwing “pee-filled balloons” and “rotten hot dogs” at her. It's a conspiracy—like a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an XXL T-shirt. As we said up top, there are no clear winners in this still-developing story, except perhaps for the people who get to write about it.
UPDATE: Speaking of which, stay tuned for a blog post from Rabin about this whole sordid incident, which will capture the sights and sounds and colors and nuances in a way that only an eyewitness to history can.