You’re probably asking, “Who?” Kelly Tripplehorn was an intern for Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, and got his fifteen minutes of internet fame by sending a very nasty email (from his firstname.lastname@example.org email addy, natch) to a fellow intern with whom he had a brief relationship.
“Michele, I am sorry, I don’t care how big of a sadistic fucked up crush you have on me but people like me simply don’t date people like you.” Is a typical line from the infamous email that got Tripplehorn dismissed from his internship.
In the years since, Tripplehorn founded a ministry, and, we can hope and assume, outgrew his uppity asshole stage. But given the air of self-importance he once had, it’s a bit surprising to me that Mr. Tripplehorn took his own life over the weekend. (I stumbled upon this while surfing the internet this morning–I can’t recall now where)
Two things strike me here…first: that many of the funny stories, pictures, etc. that we all pass from inbox to inbox often have REAL people behind them. And second, it’s remarkable how one instance or act in a person’s life can define, haunt, or follow them.
Thanks to a commenter, we have Tripplehorn’s response to the media hype around the email: “I regret that I sent the email, and I did send an apology less than a week after my hate letter. However, since it was from one of the highest-ranking Senator’s office in Washington, and it was during the summer doldrums, the letter ended up taking a life of its own. So much so that I found my name and picture in the media including such outlets as CNN, The Washington Post, and even various publications overseas.
This seminal event humbled me in ways that I did not think were possible. Christ needed to break me down before he was able to build me up again, and he certainly did a glorious job of reducing me to nothing. Here, I learned the lesson of the destructive power of pride and I will never forget it as long as I live.
The second great lesson Christ gave me was that if the media could use me to spread my message of hate throughout the world, then there is no reason why I could not use same media to spread a message of Christ’s love throughout the world.”