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452                                     Jack Fritscher, Ph.D.
               Within minutes of opening the Mineshaft, the liberation zeitgeist of
            the 1970s changed Wally when as a business man he observed a truth of
            the way white gay males kept company with women at that time. This
            is an excerpt from the video Jack Fritscher Interviews Mineshaft Manager
            Wally Wallace, March 28, 1990:

               Wally Wallace: The night of the opening, the word had got
                 out through my letter and that word of mouth got to people
                 who were looking for something different. The Eagle and the
                 Spike, which were the leather bars at the time. . .had become
                 rather inundated with people who were not into the leather
                 scene. People were looking for a new place to go. I promised a
                 dress code, although at the time I didn’t know what it would
               Jack Fritscher: Your dress code was like the dress code Chuck
                 Arnett enforced at the Tool Box in San Francisco in the 1960s.
                 The one difference was that Arnett nailed a pair of sneakers
                 to the ceiling with a sign saying “No sneakers.” And you. . . .”
               Wally Wallace: . . .allowed sneakers in as a fetish. [Laughs]. . .To
                 have the dress code, I had to make the Mineshaft a mem-
                 bership club. Well, the first night we opened — we were on
                 the second floor, and I was standing at the entrance greeting
                 friends at the top of the stairs. Then I noticed an attractive
                 female standing halfway up the stairs.
               Jack Fritscher: I know this story. I love this story. It’s canonical.
                 She herself told me.
               Wally Wallace: So I said to her, I’m sorry but you can’t come
                 in here. This is a men’s club, a gay men’s club. It might be
                 embarrassing for a woman. She said, Well, I go to the Spike
                 and the Eagle. She was dressed in leather and a very attractive
                 girl. I said, I’m sorry but we determined that this was to be a
                 private club for leather men. I was worried about getting into
                 trouble with women’s rights groups. We had some trouble at
                 the Ramp. . .
               Jack Fritscher: Nureyev’s favorite sex bar. . .
               Wally Wallace: . . .with women trying to get into the backroom,
                 but that was a public bar. So this great looking girl in leather
                 turned and walked down the stairs and left, and when she left
                 all these hot men standing on the stairs also left. The hot guys
                 were with her! So I said to myself, I’ve got to find out who this
                 woman is. . . .
               Jack Fritscher: When legends collide.

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