Page 229 - Gay Pioneers: How Drummer Shaped Gay Popular Culture 1965-1999
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Jack Fritscher              Chapter 8                        211


             young cops swooned and his buddies carried him to the lobby to revive him,
             but when he came to, he was still in the Slot and Tony was holding a wet
             cloth to his face, and he fainted again to much laughter.
                For eleven years (1970-1981), Tony and I were friends and sex play-
             mates. I adored Tony’s allure. At a swarthy 5-5, 130 pounds, uncut, he was
             a bearded Sicilian Pan without limits. His natural sensuality was rooted in
             his infancy thanks to his mother who soothed his sweet temperament by
             rubbing olive oil circles slowly between his cock and his beautiful Italian
             foreskin. Living in a scrupulously clean apartment with a wild playroom at
             288 Central Avenue at Oak Street, he was a bottom specializing in “topping
             tops to renew them” as long as they at least tried to top his redoubtable rear
             in return: fist for fist. That bar-culture cover story “saved face” for his tricks
             and made him the most popular bartender in town. His tip jars overflowed.
             Apace with Gertrude Stein, his apartment was filled with drawings, paint-
             ings, and photographs from the salon of his creative friends, and from his
             erotic fans. Lou Rudolph, who was famous for sketching men in Folsom
             bars, often inked Tony on his large archival watercolor pads.
                Tony was a sweet, romantic man, unspoiled by American education. At
             our first meeting in 1970, he frightened me, the teacher, because he was six
             years older and was far more pagan, street smart, and sexually sophisticated.
             I was ashamed that I noticed he was from the underclass and I was middle-
             class. It took nearly six months of watching him as a bartender beloved in
             public spaces for me to get over my class consciousness and surrender to his
             Dionysian style of primal sex. Savvy bartenders always know what’s new and
             what’s next, and Tony tutored generations of bar workers during his thirty
             years of active service. His imprint may still be felt.
                After four years of playing together and learning each other’s transcen-
             dental turn-ons, he wrote me a love note which he hand delivered. In all its
             longing sincerity, the note reads as if he were channeling Chaucer, with his
             choice spellings and initial capitalizations, from a wilder “medieval” past.
             Why not toy with some over-thinking of the reincarnation Tony believed
             in? From 1967 onwards, bar jukeboxes played Procul Harum quoting the
             “Miller’s Tale” in “A Whiter Shade of Pale.” And wasn’t Harry Bailey, the
             host in  The Canterbury Tales, a bartender? No wonder that Edward III
             rewarded Chaucer “with a gallon of wine daily for the rest of his life.”

                                 Somthing To Think about;
                            I would like to have you see me in pain!
                          Having you see me, and hereing me in Pain.
                           To see the sweet balls Pop all over me, and


               ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 03-14-2017
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