Oct 19, 2016

Barry's Hookup with the Star of "Beverly Hills 90210"

Sayville, Long Island, November 1999

Yuri and I are in Sayville, visiting my friend Barry, the Colonial Williamsburg boy who escaped from his conservative, homophobic roots through drinking, drugs, and anonymous hookups, but has now been transformed into a health-conscious gym rat who practices Zen Buddhism and goes to gay Catholic Masses.

We're watching Beverly Hills 90210, about the angst-ridden lives of Southern California glitz kids.  I've never seen it -- why should I watch a program about the glitz and glamour of a mythical Beverly Hills, when I lived a mile away from the real one?

But tonight, one of the four subplots is about gay bashing: Dylan (Luke Perry) and his friend Andrew (Rob Derringer) are assaulted outside a gay community center in West Hollywood. Andrew doesn't want to report the incident, because if he is outed, he will lose his job.

"I moved to West Hollywood in 1995," Barry says, "Just as you were leaving.  It was cold and hard.  Everybody wanted to use you.  I didn't know anybody, for real.  I did a lot of drugs, mostly coke and crystal.  I danced all night, and hooked up a lot, and hustled."

"That is very exciting," Yuri says.  "Do you meet any famous people?"

"A couple.  Him, for instance."  He points to Dylan Walsh, played by Luke Perry.

The full story, with nude photos and sexual situations, is on Tales of West Hollywood.