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Gay San Francisco: Eyewitness Drummer                593





                          Astrologic Aquarius
                          The Dawning of the Age, 1978


                 Written October 1977, this feature column was published
                 in Drummer 20, January 1978.
                 I.  Author’s Eyewitness Historical-Context Introduction
                    written December 21, 1998
                 II.  The feature article as published in Drummer 20,
                    January 1978
                 III. Eyewitness Illustrations


             I.  Author’s Eyewitness Historical-Context Introduction written
                December 21, 1998

             For introductory history to the “Astrologic” columns, confer “Astrologic:
             Capricorn” in Drummer 19.
                I often coded playful and personal messages into each “Astrologic”
             to entertain the mob of us doing Drummer — some of us living together
             and others of us fucking together. In the way that venerable author Sam
             Steward saluted our friends, the leather priest Jim Kane and his partner,
             the pro-football player Ike Barnes, in “Babysitter” in Drummer 5 (March
             1976), I often wrote “internal signatures” into the text and subtext of my
             Drummer articles and stories to acknowledge my pals.
                “Bent, sick, and twisted” was a catch phrase on Castro Street in the
             1970s. “Jaded Degenerate Man” referred to New Yorker Don Levine who
             was one of the first truly original Titanic 70s “characters” to emerge in
             the Castro and South of Market. He was a nightclub singer and friend
             of the cabaret pianist John Trowbridge whom David Sparrow and I pho-
             tographed for the cover of Drummer 21 (March 1978). Levine was like
             Godot. Always in rehearsal for his show that never happened, the dramatic
             Don Levine, who never saw a Broadway musical he didn’t like, sold pot,
             and designed T-shirts emblazoned with his characterization of each and
             all of us: “Jaded Degenerate Man.” Although he was swept away with the
             1980s and seemingly lost from history, Don Levine was the wag who first
             dubbed Harvey Milk “The Mayor of Castro Street.”
                In the early 1970s, the Castro Café was the tidal pool of a group of
             us bohemian leather artists and writers on whom Don Levine pinned the


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