In light of Madonna gracing our March cover and her spectacular Super Bowl performance, the editors at The Advocate decided to share our personal stories with the star, either encountering her from afar or up close and personal. We all seemed to have a "Madonna moment" if you will, where she was either six degrees removed or one. Share your personal Madge moments in the comments.
Winston Gieseke, managing editor: In 1988 after seeing Madonna in Speed-the-Plow, I wrote her the sort of gushing fan letter you’d expect from a 17-year-old and mailed it to the house in Malibu where she lived with Sean (address courtesy of a star map I’d bought on a trip to Los Angeles). I enclosed a self-addressed stamped enveloped and asked her to please return it with an autograph. I never heard from her. By 1990 I myself was living in L.A., and out of the blue I received a much-forwarded envelope from Italy. Inside was a letter from a fellow fan who told me that two years earlier he had journeyed to the U.S. and made his way out to Malibu in the hopes of catching a glimpse of our favorite star in the flesh. But all he was able to see was her gate and some trash cans, which he proceeded to dig through. It was here that he came across my fan letter, which I had completely forgotten about. Now 19 and much more practical, I sat down and composed another letter to Madonna, this one more bitchy than gushing (“The last time I wrote you a letter, you threw it in the trash. I’m enclosing another self-addressed stamped envelope and I expect a response!”) and dropped it in the mail to her new house in the Hollywood Hills. A week and one day later I received a postcard. It said “For Winston, love Madonna.” It’s been in a frame on my wall ever since. And the Italian? He became a dear friend, one I’m still close with nearly 22 years later. And whenever people ask how I know him, I say we met through Madonna’s trash can.