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Who is or was

The Libertine,

Harold Balls?

Blurry image rumored

to be Harold Balls

     It all started when I was helping a friend move some things at the Manhattan Mini Storage in Soho. Now it is axiomatic that the hotter the day, the more glacial the pace of a move becomes. I was waiting by the loading dock when two workers emerged and unceremoniously dropped eight boxes of papers and manuscripts by the already full dumpster. 

     Bored and curious, I approached the boxes, expecting humdrum stuff such as business and legal ephemera and instead––

     A bold headline announced, “DEAR TRICIA NIXON, PLEASE MAIL US YOUR UNDERPANTS!” A ridiculous appeal from the obviously fake “Urban Environmental League” followed. I dug deeper into the box and found a paperback entitled “The Flesh Pope” (“Shocking! The vicar of Christ who shattered his vows…with women???”)  Other pages were Petronius-like fragments that outlined an American Satyricon.

     I wasn’t exactly sure what I had, but I knew that I had to save this incendiary material from the incinerators of New Jersey. I carried the boxes and stacked them in the U-Haul.

     I had entered the world of The Libertine, Harold Balls, an enigmatic writer of adult fiction, pop music reviews, and meta-pornography. Now, after painstaking OCR scanning, you can too.

     Please be advised: This collection has been made available due to its historical and research importance. It contains explicit language and images that reflect attitudes of the era in which the material was originally published, and that some viewers may find confronting.

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