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Gay San Francisco: Eyewitness Drummer                523

                       “Thank you for supporting my theater work.”

                                Eyewitness Document
                         “Letter from David Baker to Jack Fritscher”
                        Keeping the Voice of David Baker Speaking

                David Baker
                xxx-A States Street
                San Francisco 94114
                December 27, 1997

                Dear Jack,

                Greetings from your old friend, David. What a wild adventure this
                last year has been. My father died on April 15 . . . . Fortunately, I
                had a chance to spend some quality time with him in Portland . . . in
                the hospital for his final week . . . . I miss my dad tremendously [his
                biological father was gay]. During the next month, I got sick with
                a cough and was in bed for several weeks, isolating myself and
                grieving. I had this very weird condition where I would pass out if
                I started coughing vigorously. Several times, I would be standing,
                start coughing, and the next minute find myself face down on the
                floor and bruised. It was scary. I learned to get on my knees with
                my head on the floor whenever I started coughing (a position that
                I grew to call the “crash position.”) . . . . Fortunately, it wasn’t TB or
                pneumonia either. My dad left all he owned to me . . . . I let his life
                partner [man’s name] stay in the house....
                    So,  it  happened  this  year,  the  20-year-revival  of  Crimes
                Against Nature, the show that 11 of us wrote, directed, produced,
                and were in (even Off-Broadway), in the 70s. It was astutely
                directed, as you know, because you were there, by Ed Decker at
                the New Conservatory Theater.  There was a cast of 8, and we told
                8 of the original stories with very tight choreographed movement
                done by Keith Hennessy. It was a thorough joy to see the old girl
                back up on her feet again. Only this time it was much tighter and
                fuller. The biggest delight was having the 5 living of the original 11
                cast members spend time together. We even shot some film foot-
                age of us discussing the show and how we’d changed since the
                original production in 1976. Just think how much you’ve changed
                since 1976. I am so thankful to be conscious and free . . . .
                    The production also connected me with my grief over the
                loss of 6 of the original cast. I found myself crying during the show
                just to hear the voice and lives of my old compadres coming alive

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