A long, long time:

Dear Dan,

I'm an up-til-now straight-identified girl enjoying her first real liaison with a lesbian. It's pretty awesome, thanks for asking! I introduced her to "Savage Love," and naturally she's enamored. This is what she has had to say so far (you can almost see the obsession building).

After just a few articles: "This Savage guy is funny… I have no idea why people openly submit their personal traumas for public ridicule (even under the cloak of anonymity), but I’m glad they do."

One hour later: "Done nothing but read 'Savage Love' since I last emailed you (I LOVE IT!!) but I’m now of the belief that I haven’t LIVED! There are people on here who keep their boyfriends in cages for whole weekends and women who ejaculate so much they ruin mattresses. It’s an education. I’m hooked."

Three hours later, after she's decided to "do it right" and start from the beginning: "'Savage Love' has now become an incredibly fascinating insight into the earliest days of the digital age. I’m well into 1999 now—people write in who don’t have access to the Internet or even a home computer (!), and one guy is given advice about how to avoid the pitfalls of getting naked pictures of his wife processed by investing in one of these new-fangled digital camera things that have just come out. Amazing."

So there you go, Dan, "Savage Love" is not just amazing sex advice, but also a time capsule of the advent of the digital age. We who are obsessed salute you!

Blast From The Past

The "Savage Love" archives are here. The archives only go back to 1999—but I started writing "Savage Love" in 1991 when I was, gee, a sophomore in high school. Back then the letters came in these things called envelopes with these things called stamps on them. It was helpful, at times, to see people's actual handwriting; it made it a bit easier to spot the fakes.

If someone claimed to be a 15-year-old girl but the letter was written in cursive, with a fountain pen, on paper torn from a legal pad, and the envelope had been franked, that letter didn't make the column. But there were definite downsides to mail-the-old-fashioned way. Every once in a while I would open a letter—by running my index finger along the flap—only to discover that this particular letter was from a poo-lovin', shit-eatin', dookie-o-phile and I only learned this after running my finger along the part of the envelope that the this person licked with their poo-lovin', shit-eatin' tongue.

And this was back before Purell. I spent a lot of time in the bathroom back in the day scrubbing my hands and wondering what I'd gotten myself into.