The longest three years of my life. I think back and can’t believe how much I did, and how many people I came to know, and what grief sits around the edges of that time. So many people I knew died, and here I am, still alive.
I was a member of the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence: Sister Viola Tricolor (the scientific name of the wild pansy). I signed our incorporation papers as a California nonprofit. We published Play Fair!, the first safer-sex pamphlet. I was in a couple of fundraiser shows: an Easter/Passover show and the Red Party, where I was a backup singer in Sr. Mary Media and the Cassettes.
I was the thinnest I had ever been, or ever have been. I owned a pair of leather chaps and looked pretty good in them. We wore our Levi’s high and very, very tight. I ahem took drugs.
I had my first emotionally significant relationship, with Thomas Oliver, whom I met at UC Santa Cruz when the Sisters went there to speak to a gay studies class.
I was a member of Westwind International Folk Ensemble. I learned to two-step from Jordan Hill Smith, who was taller than I was. I discovered how nice it is to kiss someone taller, and I also discovered why Baptists don’t want people to dance.
I worked in the accounting department of Dean Witter Reynolds, and then in a marketing department of Pacific Telesis, one of Ma Bell’s children. At Pacific Telesis I learned about something called “hypertext.”
- Eurythmics (outdoors at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley)
- Bette Midler (on Christmas Eve. She came out and sat on the edge of the stage after the program and sang Christmas carols with the audience)
- Eartha Kitt (at a small club in the Russian River)
- Two Tons of Fun