One of my heroes scolded me last night. His current self I find annoying, sex negative and pretty anti-intellectual (as most radicals tend to be), but I still have so much respect for the brave and fearless work he did in starting ACT-UP and GMHC. But yes, last night, Larry Kramer in a talk he was giving at the Strand with Michael Specter of The New Yorker, being filmed for C-SPAN with an audience full of cute homos interrupted his interviewer to point me out and ask me why I was laughing. And I wasn't even guffawing. I was just chuckling to myself because Larry Kramer was making pretty absurd statements and Specter even thought they were absurd and kept on rolling his eyes while Kramer talked, and so I chuckled to myself, big deal. So I told Kramer that I was laughing because of Specter's facial expressions. I totally felt like I was in middle school and getting reprimanded for giggling, and pointing the finger at someone else.
But yeah, the interview was not too thrilling because Kramer is old and seemed exhausted and just made uncited pretty debatable historical claims, like when he said that blacks and gays are kidnapped sometimes and just dropped in the middle of the woods to die - and it was this statement that I was giggling (softly) about. Specter wasn't too good an interviewer, but I don't know if you could be one if Kramer is the subject who rants a lot and goes off on tangents. I had been planning on leaving early to catch The O.C. but after I got scolded by Larry Kramer (awesome!), I thought I had to stay for the whole talk so it wouldn't look like I was being rude - and thus ended up missing everything but the last fifteen minutes of the show.
Kramer also complained about gay art last night and lamented how everything was about sex and relationships, how he wanted to see a book about a gay president of a company. I rolled my eyes because that's not art, what he wants, that "straight" novels, the good ones, are also about sex or not getting it and desire and relationships. That what I think about often is sex and male bodies and so much of my day out in the world is walking past someone on the street and almost crumpling to the ground with unrealized desire. Today, on Park Avenue, this man had on a messenger bag and was walking in my direction. He had a mess of brown hair on top of his head and a tight t-shirt on that lead my mind down those dirty paths that Kramer would deem tragic and his bag had the effect of pulling up his shirt just a little, so that an inch or so of skin was showing on his right side right above his pants and there was that clear muscle definition of a V that comes to a point at that spot I wanted access to, it's an arrow pointing out where to go, which trail to take, and I made eye contact with him as he passed me and I wanted to lie down on that sidewalk and stop all those pedestrians and roll around with my hands to my chest as if I was clutching a saftey blanket, eyes closed like when you are so comfortable in your warm bed with that blanket because the moment is so nice and that there is such beauty in the world, so much of it all the time is too much for my easily overstimulated mind to handle sometimes and I walked on to pay some bill or other and was so glad that there are human beings in this world to interrupt us from the humdrum stuff we have created for ourselves to do and take us back to that place, home, where I want to be like Mr. Byrne sings, is singing right now on my stereo, the less we say about it, the better, mm-hm.