Perez Hilton Picks a Fight

Haters and lawsuits threaten Miami's infamous celebrity gossip export.

When he's not busy battling photogs and celebs, Lavandeira is mixing it up with other gossip blogs. On March 17, 2006, Gawker unearthed Lavandeira's profile on gay website Adam4Adam.com, which featured his picture and proclaimed his fondness for group sex, various fetishes, and combining drug use with sex. Lavandeira had posted the profile while he was at NYU.

Gawker posted an image of the ad and the following screed: "We hate to do this — we really, really do — but given his public profile these days, it was only inevitable. We were pointed to a certain webpage today, and it turns out that when Perez Hilton isn't blogging on his eponymous site, he's on the hunt for 'wild times with nasty, sane, cool guys.' Oh, and 'group sex' and 'misc fetishes' work well, too. He's HIV-, you'll be thrilled to hear, although his 7.5 inches may leave some men wanting more."

Within 15 minutes, Lavandeira had posted his reply in Gawker's comments section, taking a swipe at the site's then-editors, Jesse Oxfeld and Jessica Coen: "Thanks for putting up my college profile. I wish I was as skinny as I was back then, as fake blond and getting as much sex. Alas, I'm not. But if anyone is interested, my e-mail is Perez@PerezHilton.com. Hot guys only. Jesse Oxfeld need not apply. But Jessica Coen should. We hear she has a really big dick!"

Perez Hilton (right) scares the Halloween crowd during his pool party at Harrah's Atlantic City in 2007.
Zuma/Newscom
Perez Hilton (right) scares the Halloween crowd during his pool party at Harrah's Atlantic City in 2007.
Perez Hilton gets served with a lawsuit at his old blogging HQ, the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf on Sunset Boulevard in L.A.
Splash/INF/Bauer-Griffin/London Entertainment/Flynet
Perez Hilton gets served with a lawsuit at his old blogging HQ, the Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf on Sunset Boulevard in L.A.

Lavandeira declined to comment about the Gawker episode, but he told Radar during a 2006 interview that he was not ashamed of things he might have done in the past. "I really don't care if some people hate Perez," Lavandeira said. "Perez has made my life better."

Coincidentally, Gawker's founding editor, Elizabeth Spiers, sublet a room in Lavandeira's apartment when he lived in New York. Via e-mail, she says she has always liked him. "He's always been incredibly sweet to me," Spiers notes. "Really considerate and really nice."

It's March 6, 2008. Perez Hilton is looking haggard and sporting heavy stubble as he films himself in his living room. Later he will post the video on his site for a segment called Perez TV, a series of clips featuring him simply being Perez, whether just cooing and kissing his dog Teddy or laughing, screaming, and crying hysterically as he watches a gross-out online video of four naked girls defecating on each other and playing with the turds in their mouths.

But for this take, Perez is in a somber mood. He has just learned actor Patrick Swayze has terminal cancer. With the camera lens focused on his round, pasty face, he informs his fans about a fixation. "I think about death way too much," he says. "That is because I have had a lot of it in my life and it is not a pretty thing."

He reveals he thinks about growing old alone. His eyes fill with tears. "If you are watching this and you are not healthy right now, I just, um, want to give you a big hug," he continues. And for a moment, the person talking to the camera is no longer Perez Hilton, but Mario Lavandeira Jr. "A week after my grandfather died, my dad died very unexpectedly," he tells viewers. "To say that sucked is putting it mildly. I am kind-of reminded of that every single day, and it really affected me."

He concludes by telling his audience to go out and have a blast: "Life is too short," he says. "Make it fun."

The following day, during another self-shoot, Perez is back to his usual fun, cool self. He has just arrived in Sin City, where he is attending the grand-opening fete for a hair salon inside the famous Las Vegas Mirage Hotel.

"The weekend is here," he says. "It's time to party."

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