Sep 26, 2013

Fall 1977: Black or Gay or Both?

I spent the fall of 1977, my senior year at Rocky High, thinking that maybe gay people weren't all that horrifying after all: meeting a cute gay waiter in Kankakee, dealing with Aaron's sudden lack of homophobia, being disgusted by the preacher's homophobia.  Then, in late October or early November, my workout buddy Tyrone invited me to the Black Student Union's Harvest Dance.  A double date -- I had to get a girl.

I asked Rhonda, one of my lunch crowd friends.

Wrong move: she stared at me as if I had invited her to a beheading.  “You’re kidding, right?” she said. “Why would I go to one of  Their dances?”

Usually at Rocky High, "they" and "them" referred only to Swishes (gays).

“ It’s not one of Their dances! Why would They even hold a dance? They hate women, so who would They be dancing with?

The rest of this post is on Tales of West Hollywood