Prop 8…Judge Walker’s ruling…and my ruminations…..

August 6, 2010

First of all I want to apologize for the offensive title of last week’s blog…..it was the psychology…the mind set…the desires of those 120 men I worked with on the Great Northern Railroad all those years ago…that became the title….

Chief Justice Judge Walker’s decision …was so finely tuned and Brilliant….

the “Daily Beast” …caught the essence of it for me…the way I feel…

“…and this isn’t just a victory for gays and lesbians. Walker’s ruling is made on explicitly feminist grounds. The restriction of marriage to heterosexual couples, he finds ‘exists as an artifact of a time when the genders were seen as having distinct roles in society and in marriage. That time has passed’ ”

it made me SOO think of how much life has progressed so much since I was dating in college….a warmly beautiful girl…named Cherie Frame…(this was WAY before I knew I was gay…in 1965)…I could not tell my grandmother that she was Catholic…as my grand was a strong Christian Scientist….which I thought was an all inclusive religion…but she disliked Catholics, Jews, and people of any color but white….

(little did she know WHAT I did in the back of her Caddie…with Cherie …down near the river ……

to Frank Sinatra’s “Somewhere in the Night”…..

a song that I will always remember with a smile on my lips…….that one night I borrowed it to drive down to Carleton College from St Paul…..and then to arrive back to my grandparents house in SP at 4 in the AM…..they had been up ALL night….(and this is …thank God…before cell phones)…I said I had tired and had to pull off the road for a bit to sleep…and there were no pay phones in sight….my grandfather went to bed and slammed his door behind him (they did NOT sleep in the same bedroom…since I think my Mom was conceived)..my grandmother just clucked a lot and tried to hug me ..which ALWAYS turned me off..so I fled up the stairs to my mother’s old room …saying “Nite…I need some sleep before Church tomorrow…”

I TOTALLY agree with Judge Walker…so …soo much has changed in my life…..I wonder how much faster things will change with all of you that have young kids….I mean …Life can only reach a certain rapidity before it slows down…

I mean I have known everything from….

the “party line” in telephones where you all shared the same line and could pick up and listen to your neighbor’s conversation …

to our summer house on Lake Namekagon that had no electricity..everything was kerosene lamps…

a frig where you had to put ice blocks that were cut out of the lake the winter before …

always remember the ice man coming in the middle of the summer to put ice blocks in our “ice house”…a building that was all sawdust with the ice blocks under it…sawdust is a great insulator ….

our water came from an underground well that was pumped into a wooden tank on stilts ….. that when empty one had to go out and physically pump with your foot…a gasoline powered Briggs and Straton one spark plug machine that would draw the water up from the well to the tank….and either dad or mom (cussing which meant “gosh darn” ) would pump it …in the evening after the sun had set…and any of the 5 of us kids were allowed to go turn the Briggs and Stratton machine off…simply by pushing a metal plate down on the one and only spark plug….as the water cascaded out of the top…..

to the vegetable man driving his horse drawn cart down the alley behind my grands house in St Paul..

to AC..father did not invest in it…in either our house in DC or the car…like he did not invest in back up lights on the car ..which were optional…and poor mother backed up into many a ditch…nor did he pay the optional for a side view mirror…and this of course was YEARS before seat belts…child seats etc…..there were ashtrays in the back seat door arms….so your friends could smoke…..(and back then EVERYONE smoked on planes…well there was a NO smoking section in the back of the planes…and of course even before I smoked I preferred to sit with the smokers as they had stories to tell, as they drank their scotches …… and there were no screaming babies)

I Remember Stonewall…

the First Gay Parade in the town of Sherman before it was West Hollywood…where the sheriffs were so nervous that they had a huge police presence out there with 3 helicopters circling …like we were going to burn the town down…I was on top of the Rexall Drugstore (which is now a bank) at the NW…corner of San Vicente and Santa Monica Blvd….nervously watching and loving and feeling so PROUD!!!

and I remember hearing of Judy Garland’s death June 22, 1969 …with my first lover Paul Millard in Palm Springs at the Whispering Waters Resort….(owned by two wonderful lesbians )…he was watching the Johnny Carson show..which had been taped…(I was outside smoking)…….she said “Goodbye Johnny I Love You!!”….and the next thing I knew was that a friend of Paul’s …John Carlyle called from Sherman and said “Judy is Dead”….seems that her husband Mickey Deans (in London where they were) had laid out a line of her sleeping pills in their bathroom while he went out and partied with his mates…(Judy seemed to marry a lot of Gay guys) and she took too many …as she felt…alone and just wanted to SLEEP……………….

Paul was totally ripped up…as several years before when Judy was staying with him at his place on Norma Place

(the old silent screen star’s dressing rooms of Norma and Constance Talmadge in Sherman …with the dining room in between…it was turned into 3 flats)…..

she wanted HIM to marry her..and when he refused…she smashed all the mirrors in the house……

and of course I have come from the day of B n W TV with 4 channels..like “Leave It To Beaver” to “Ozzie and Harriet” to “Amos and Andy”

to now cells, smart phones….implants, botox, and Reality TV

I just wonder what is going to happen in the next 40 years….which I will be here for..like what will Jacob, Nora, Teo, Finn, Gizmo, and Cinco…….who are all under 3 years old….experience….one can only say that it will BE THE BEST…as they did not experience or know “our best”…

the human animal loves CHANGE…..but I think once we get a chip implanted in out hand so we do not need a physical device to call anyone…well a lot of people will go back to the “Old Days”…..where they want to go into a forest that has no surveillance cameras to read an actual physical book…..

or make love in a classic Caddie ……as the old radio plays …….

“Somewhere In The Night”

One Response to “Prop 8…Judge Walker’s ruling…and my ruminations…..”

  1. daidie said

    R – this is so very evocative! Such memories. At Forest Lodge we should try to make a list of those “extinct” experiences. I love that you write this all down! And I love YOU. xx your sis

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