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Gay San Francisco: Eyewitness Drummer                387
             mas every night of the year. You entered expectant that something lurid,
             raunchy, wild, even slightly dangerous might happen. And it did. But,
             generally, except for the reborn Jesus-freak who tied a guy up in his room
             and browbeat him for two hours with a Bible until his screams brought
             rescue, Barracks behavior was all within the realm of sensual mutuality.
                Barracks guys suffered no failure of imagination. Fistfuckers inched
             their knuckles into rings Ripley would not believe. Men created trips of
             leather and sweat. Hides spread on the bed. Three layers of Crisco-ed
             leather wrapping a man’s hot body. Bodybuilders poised to be touched,
             worshiped, fucked. S&M types with guys hanging upside down in the
             doorways to rooms. Spontaneous gangfucks. Wrestling in one room. Box-
             ing next door. Big pecs. Big dicks. Smooth buns. Long hair. Crewcuts.
             Shaved heads. Oink of Crisco and chocolate. Piss and denim. Jockstraps.
             Uniforms. Armpits. Tongues. Asshole. Dim red light. Loud acid rock.
             Bodies laid back on asphalt-tile stairs. Uncut cock flipped up on a tight
             belly inviting a sucking. Easy access man to man. Dance: 10. Looks: 10.
             And the vibes, good.
                But now, this holiday season, I flash: “Think tonight I’ll hit the
             Barracks.” Then comes the pang I can’t. No one can. Except the local
             filmmaker who wants to shoot a porno, rumor has it, in the Barracks’
             charred halls. Love, I guess, among the ruins.
                The Barracks’ burning broke up that bunch of boys. No more hot
             new Year’s Eve’s like 1973 with the muscleman standing on a sink, strok-
             ing his meat, rubbing his oiled chest, while thirty men knelt on the tile
             floor, worshiping him, jerking off, reaching toward his golden calves
             straight out of some C. B. DeBiblical movie [Cecil B. DeMille: The Ten
             Commandments]. Gone are the days. San Francisco this Christmas has no
             pansexual High Place. [The Barracks was remodeled and reopened and
             burned down one last time in the great Folsom Street fire in July 1981.]
                The best bodies currently check into the Technicolor Club Baths
             at 8th and Howard. [I used the word “Technicolor” because gay men
             enjoyed the fact that the previous tenant of the building had been the
             Technicolor Processing Lab, South of Market.] The best bent, sick, and
             twisted trips slide into the Slot on Folsom. The fistfuckers descend to the
             Catacombs, a private handballing palace, so elbow-decadent that if you
             want to leave your heart in San Francisco, you can probably store it there
             in a footlocker. The jerkoff/oral fans now hang ten, or less, or if you’re
             lucky, more, through the gloryholes in the maze at the South of Mar-
             ket Club on 6th Street and Mission where Wino Country raunch reigns
             supreme. [“Wino Country” acknowledged that getting to the gloryholes
             required stepping over the skid-row drunks on the sidewalk.]



           ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 05-05-2017
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