When I did a simple search for the 20th anniversary of Joey Stefano's death I didn't come up with much. In fact, I had to search with other words to get anything. But I'm posting about it anyway because he was such a big part of gay culture in the 1990's. Also, a part of gay culture you don't hear discussed much in this new world of assimilation and gay cultural appropriation. This year marks the 20th anniversary of his death back in November of 1994.
I've posted about Stefano several times, but this is the post I did that talks all about him. And I didn't link to anyone. It's just me this time.
One thing I remember most about him was that he was all man, which at the time to me was an inspiration. I only knew what I'd seen and heard on TV and in the movies, and most of it had to do with effeminate gay men. If you didn't know Joey was gay you never would have thought he was. I think that's why we got along so well. We "got" each other without having to work too hard at it.
I remember hearing about his death on the radio in 1994. I was already together with Tony for two years by then and it had been about three years since I'd last seen Joey anywhere in the Philadelphia area. But the news hit me hard. I'd always hoped he would figure things out. After his death it was disclosed that he was HIV+. I never knew this for fact when I knew him because in those days it wasn't discussed openly. And we were never lovers. But knowing Joey, and knowing there were no serious HIV drug regimens in those days for people with AIDS, I'm sure that contributed to his drug use. I knew a few gay men back then who took on a very carefree attitude because they didn't think there would ever be a way to stop AIDS. And they lived very fast lives. If Joey had lived, he would have been forty-four now.
And now I'd like to link to this blog authored by David Bret, a biographer who is writing a book about Joey Stefano.
A man like Joey comes along only once in a lifetime. This is the most painful book I've ever had to write, yet I felt that it needed to be done. It's not going to come out for the twentieth anniversary of Joey's death--this day is for him alone, for us to remember. Much has been written about Joey, about he spent his entire adult life with his finger pressed on the self-destruct button. No, he did not. He was a normal, healthy, and very funny young man who chose a different career to most of us, and who was inordinately good at it. He was not a junkie. Yes, he took drugs--most of us have at some time or other, and in this respect he was no different than any contemporary pop or rock star. He was just unlucky at the end.
There have been other things written about Joey I don't want to link to because I think they exploit him now even more than when he was alive. There's a play out somewhere that really bothers me to the point of outrage...posthumous exploitation to get attention. But if you notice, my description of Joey isn't that far off from what David Bret remembers...and I have never met Bret once. I didn't even know about him until recently. I'd never even read his blog before, but I'm amazed at how we both wrote basically the same memories at completely different times.
You can read more here at Bret's blog. And I'll post more about the book, which sounds interesting. I think it's the first thing about Joey I've seen that doesn't exploit him and turn him into something he wasn't. And that's not simple to do because history will almost always be rewritten.
Ten Sexy Men With HIV
Yesterday was World AIDS Day, and I've been seeing HIV get more exposure in different ways recently. One of which is that people are trying to break a lot of the stereotypes...and stigma...that goes with being HIV poz. It's about time.
Here's a piece where they mention 10 of the sexiest men living with HIV...most of whom I didn't know were living with HIV. I know people say it shouldn't matter. But sometimes I think it should matter if only to bring HIV out into the open to remove so much of the stigma. I still know gay people who will only whisper about HIV, and several who won't even discuss it at all.
Jack Mackenroth has been shedding his clothes in the service of HIV awareness for a decade. And thank God for that. The physique model and former Project Runway contestant just raised $50,000 for the Braking AIDS Ride in New York (he posted pictures of his body scrawled with the names of major donors), and his latest project just went viral: the shower selfie #weareALLclean social media campaign that asks us to strip in the shower to demonstrate that we are all, positive and negative, “clean” and should live free of stigma. There’s something about the sly, winking attitude of Jack’s (often naked) efforts that makes him feel like the friendly, playful jock next door. And a sense of humor about ourselves is always a sexy attribute.
Of the nine others, Larry Kramer is listed, too. I didn't know about him either. I'm not sure I'd call Larry Kramer sexy, but maybe someone else in an alternate universe might disagree with me.
The rest are here.
Hot Tub 3-Way Fail
Here's an amusing story about three guys in Spartanburg, South Carolina who hooked up at a bar, went back to a house where one of them was house sitting for a 3-way hot tub session, and wound up fighting over which of them got paid more as male hookers. If anything, this is a great example of why I NEVER let anyone house sit or take care of my dogs. Idiots can't be trusted.
In any event, the gay fur flew:
But around 1:30 in the morning, Adams and Tench got into a dispute over who was the highest paid escort. As the old saying goes, three things you should never talk about on a first date are politics, religion and how much you get paid to have sex with strangers.
The argument turned physical, and Adams lost control and started hitting Tench with his hands and feet while still in the hot tub.
Tench fled the scene and called a friend, who then called the cops.
Well, Adams wound up getting arrested and I'm not sure if the home owner ever found out his hot tub was being used for 3-way hooker sex. I'm also unsure about which hooker makes the most money.
The rest is here. Some of the comments are too good to miss.
Chase of a Christmas Dream