Page 672 - Gay San Francisco_Eyewitness Drummer
P. 672

652                                     Jack Fritscher, Ph.D.
               Grown men reported UFO sightings of a tower of sparklers and bil-
            lowing smoke rolling through the sweaty crowd. From inside the tower,
            hands threw orange Popsicles out into the tangle of naked arms. Men
            moved, flowed, from amusement to amusement, wandering inside the
            wonderful white parachute.
               Night Flight was a full Busby Berserkly production number. Night
            Flight was not just four walls and a crowd. Night Flight was premeditated
            design. Every detail was calculated to entertain the most jaded audience in
            the world. And its magic worked, because Night Flight was for one night
            only. Nothing about it was ordinary. Nothing about it did you see last
            week or could you get around to next week. Night Flight was the Now of
            that one night: a celebration of living life-in-the-fast-lane of The Forbid-
            den City of Oz.

            IMAGES: A ROMAN ORGY
            As a ton of California grapes cascaded down the balcony walls, a second
            20-foot high scaffold rolled to the middle of the dance floor. The crowd
            parted in an acid-red sea of sweat. Atop the scaffold, a man rode to the
            center of the crowd. He commanded six projectors like the multiple eyes
            of some closely encountered great iron beast. He shot surreal images of faces
            from its six eyes to six screens hung around the hall. Men dancing in front
            of the screens in white screen-like capes, became part of the abstraction.
               In other rooms, floral displays toppled with bodies into the icepools.

            TOWARD 1980: A SNEAK PREVIEW

            For San Francisco, where failure of imagination often looks suspiciously
            like an energy outage, Night Flight was a Manhattanization much to be
            desired. Michael Maletta’s production proved a New Wave is hitting San
            Francisco, because in among the dancing, sucking, fucking, fisting, and
            variously heavy free-for-all S&M numbers, a lot of San Francisco heads
            got blown away and lost their cherries at Night Flight. How ya gonna
            keep ’em down in imagination after they’ve experienced a night like Night
               Laidback and waiting like Madame Recamier has finally passed as
            San Francisco’s favorite posture. “Laidback” won’t cut it anymore. The
            bitch-and-bull mating of New York energy with San Francisco attitude is
            already producing results. Four days after Night Flight, two “rogue” San
            Francisco cops decided to raid a gay bath: a private place for consenting
            adults. Within hours, they were the laughing stock of the straight media
            and were censured by their chief. Public statements strong as Night Flight’s

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