Page 350 - Gay Pioneers: How Drummer Shaped Gay Popular Culture 1965-1999
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332      Gay Pioneers: How Drummer Shaped Gay Popular Culture 1965-1999

               April 13, 1979 (Friday): After I pleaded with my pal Al Schaaf at San
            Francisco Municipal Railway, he gave the perpetually unemployed David
            Sparrow a job as an analyst so he could finally move out of my 25  Street
            home. If David had not had a college degree, Al said he could not have
            hired him. I was flat out pleased that after I had motivated David in 1969
            by telling him that education was essential if we were to have a middle-class
            life together, and, after I paid his four years of tuition at Western Michigan
            University, he actually graduated so he could take care of himself.

               April 17, 1979 (Tuesday, 7:30 PM): As a journalist for Drummer, I inter-
            viewed poet Camille O’Grady with Robert Opel at Fey-Way Studio begin-
            ning at 7:30 PM. My audiotape was Opel’s last interview, and the photos,
            shot by David Sparrow and me, were among the last of Opel and O’Grady
            pictured together before Opel’s assassination, July 7, 1979.

               April 20, 1979 (Friday): Jim Enger and I drove his Corvette to Salinas. We
            took a room at a Quality Inn where I shaved the upholstery of his hairy blond
            chest, torso, arms, and legs for the Mr. Western California physique contest.

               April 21, 1979 (Saturday): Jim Enger and I drove into Carmel for the
            9 AM check-in for Mr. Western California. The senior division morning
            pre-judging alone took nearly three hours. At the evening contest, Enger
            won “First Place” as “Mr. Western California” as well as three more trophies
            for “Best Abs,” “Best Legs,” and “Most Muscular.” The four trophies were
            so many and so tall that they hardly fit into the Corvette. Documenting
            Enger live on stage performing for the audience, I shot three roles of 35mm
            transparencies and black-and-white stills, one of which Enger later chose
            as his favorite photograph: full face in a side “double-arm shot,” both arms
            extended to his right, his eagle-eye piercing straight into my camera over
            the blond brush of his moustache. The photograph is extremely intimate
            considering that I shot it from forty feet away with a telephoto lens. It would
            have made a wonderful Drummer cover or centerfold. Later, in May, 1980,
            I had fun with that vigorous Enger photo when I made bold to enter it with
            its hot, burning, masculine appeal into a very staid “employee photo show”
            exhibited in the lobby of the very Republican Kaiser Engineers. The punch
            line to my joke? It won “Best in Show”!

               April 28, 1979 (Saturday): Jim Enger and I drove to Oceanside where
            Enger won first place in the Mr. Physique USA contest. After sleeping
            all night at a Marine-friendly motel in Oceanside, on Sunday we walked

              ©Jack Fritscher, Ph.D., All Rights Reserved—posted 03-16-2017
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