Wednesday, 18 March 2015 03:31

1974-1. Rainbow Cattle Company

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overrainbowcattleI lived in a ten dollar a week room in what was essentially a hotel above the gay Rainbow Cattle Company at the corner of Duboce and Valencia. It was full of hippies, drag queens and drug addicts. 

I was putting applications in for work as a Licensed Psychiatric Technician at various hospitals around town. My hair came down to the middle of my back but when I went on job interviews, I would pin it all up on top of my head and wear a short haired wig. I don't know if it was obvious to anyone or not but I thought it looked pretty realistic. Eventually I got a job on the psychiatric unit at Saint Francis Memorial Hospital.  I don't think most people were expecting a twenty-something year old to be wearing a wig and so they didn't tend to look very close. 

The phone at the Rainbow Cattle Company was a communal pay phone down the hall and I remember being shocked when I received the call from Saint Francis that I had actually been hired. Somebody would have come to my room and I would have gone down the hall to the communal phone to discover I had been hired. I was 24 years old.

My room was probably about ten feet by ten feet. I bought an electric skillet to cook in but I mostly ate out. There was a communal kitchen in the hotel but I never used it. Each floor had a bathroom and showers that were shared by everyone on that floor. Bands would play in the bar below on Friday and Saturday nights but I never went to sleep before three in the morning anyway. I was working from about three in the afternoon until midnight and then would go to the bars or the baths.

Initially, I pinned up my hair and wore the short haired wig to work every day at Saint Francis. Nobody said anything about it initially. Finally, after working for about six months, I took it off at work and people were shocked at how long my hair really was. The manager of the psychiatric unit they called 4-East at the time was a woman named Pat. She seemed to take a liking to me and even invited me to go see The Who at the Oakland Coliseum. Here is some video that I took that day: 

 

There were several people on the unit that were into paganism and referred to themselves as witches and warlocks. For being relatively educated people, they were into a lot of superstition and other nonsense, but they were all accepting of homosexuality. The American Psychiatric Association had just decided that homosexuality was not a mental disease and San Francisco was becoming a magnet for gay men. 

4-East was a locked psychiatric unit. Some of the patients were there voluntarily but many were there involuntarily because they were a danger to themselves or others or could not provide food, clothing or shelter for themselves. Some of the patients were so depressed that the only thing that was thought to be helpful was electro-shock therapy. There were two doctors that specialized in this type of controversial therapy. Some of the patients were violent and there were three rooms called "seclusion" rooms where patients could be isolated from the other patients and locked up and restraned if necessary. It was often left up to the males to handle the violent patients. Most of the female staff wore high heels at that time. 

It was while living in this small room that my sixteen year old brother came to visit. Actually, I think at the time he was running away from the police in Washington. I think his girlfriend was with him. She left but he stayed and we got some wood and built a loft in the room. One of us could sleep above, while the other slept below. I would come home from working and find my sisteen year old brother partying with transvestite, transexuals and other various freaks that lived in the hotel. 

I was finally getting real paychecks for the first time in my life and David was going to stay in San Francisco with me and so we started looking for a bigger apartment and found a two bedroom on Larkin Street. I think that it was about the same week that we were going to move, that I was hospitalized with Hepatitis B. I had continued to be promiscuous and made regular visits to the "clinic" for antibiotics but wasn't sure what was happening when my eyes and skin turned yellow, my stools turned white and I had no energy. One of the guys in the hotel knew what it was immediately. I was hospitalized on the same day that my healthcare insurance had kicked in at my new job.

As I mentioned previously, live bands played in the Rainbow Cattle Company and so it never got quiet before the bar closed at 2am. Most of the time it didn't really matter since I got off work at around midnight. After David came to live with me, he would sometimes have a little "party" going when I got home and I had to throw out the drag queens and freaks he had invited in. 

The band that I remember hearing the most while living over the Rainbow Cattle Company was Pearl Heart. He was essentially a Janis Joplin impersonator... although I guess impersonator is not really quite accurate. He mostly sang Janis Joplin songs at various venues around San Francisco at the time. He was also in the Bette Midler film, "The Rose" in a brief scene with Sylvester. I have some video of him on a float at one of the Gay Pride parades of the seventies. After all these years, I found these videos of him on youtube from 1989 which was over ten years after I had last seen him in the seventies. Apparently he had passed away a couple of years after these videos were taken at the Full Moon Saloon. 

 

 

Read 8418 times Last modified on Thursday, 22 October 2015 20:26

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1970's Promiscuity- Click for story.
Gay Disco 70's- Click for story
1964- Luv Please- Click for story.
1974- On Larkin Street- Click for story.
4th Grade- Click for story.
1982-1993 Waller Street- Click to read story.
2015- 2nd Gay Cruise- Click to read story.
Photos of Dad & His Family- Click for story.
Me in 3rd grade- Click for story.
1974- First Trip to Europe- Click to read story.
2001 Trip to Cancun- Click to read story.
Grandview- Click for story
My Dad's Family- Click for story.
Earthquake! Click to read story.
The Psychedelic Experience- Click to read story.
1973 "You have to be hurt..." Click to read the story.
Summer of Love- Click to read story.
2005 Darlene Visit for Gay Pride- Click for story.
My Mother- Click for more photos.
1973- Psych Tech Program- Click for story.
1967- Summer of Love- Click to read story.
Second Gay Cruise- Click for story.
1958-1959- 3rd Grade- Click to read story.
Black Men in Oils- Click to read story
Where I was born- Click for story.
Women in Oils- Click for story
2001 Trip to Cancun- Click to read story.
Beatle haircut- Click for story.
Amber- Click to read story.
Cockettes & Angels of Light- Click for story
Click to read "Introduction."
5th Grade in Abilene Tx- Click for story
2015- 2nd Gay Cruise- Click for story.
Escondido 1960's- Click for story
Palouse- Click for story
Me in my 20's in 1970's- Click for story.
1957-1958 1st Grade- Click to read story.
Forbidden Dreams of Love- Click for story.
2005- Darlene Visits for Gay Pride- Click to read story.
2014- Road trip to San Diego- Click for story.
Darlene Marries Chuck- Click for story.
Me in first grade- Click for story.

Article

01. Introduction

03- Dads Family

03- Photos of my Father and his family

04- My Mother's Family

04- Photos of my Mom

04- Video of my Mom

04- Walling Family Reunions

04-Audio Files of My Mom

04. Billie

04. Ole

04.1. Forbidden Dreams of Love

04.2. Flames of Forbidden Love

04.3 Mom Writing Her Life Story

05- Jim Tarbert

05. Roger

1950's Grandview to Toppenish

1957-1958 1st Grade

1958-1959- Third Grade

1959- Palouse

1961- 4th Grade- Last time I wore a dress

1962- Abilene

1963- Escondido- Early 60's

1964- Darlene Marries Chuck

1964- My Beatle Haircut

1964-The Luv Please

1965 or 1966- Steve Castle

1965- In Foster Care

1966 Living with Darlene & Chuck in Seattle

1967- Juvenile Hall

1976- I Praise Thee (poem to Stanley)

1976- My Second Lover, Stanley Dunne

1976- Paul McCartney and Wings

1976-1330 Bush Street #9J

1977- 1667 Haight Street

1977- Trip to San Diego with Mary Jo

1977-1980- Tumultuous Relationship with John Perry

1978- 525 Haight Street

1979- September- Dad is Murdered

1980's- AIDS- Death and Dying

1980- Winter- First Trip to New York

1980- Word, Sound and Power

1981- Milton- Falling in Love

1982-1993 465 Waller Street

1982-1994 Computers to MacNursing

1984- 33rd Birthday

1985- Graduation from Nursing School

1985- Trip to Hawaii (Oahu)

1988- MIdnight Caller

1989- Earthquake!

1991- Aug 10th- Mom Passes Away

1991- Black Males in Oils

1991- Crack of My Life

1993- Move to Vallejo & Our First Home

1995-1. Road Trip to Washington

1995-2. Surprise Trip to Vegas

1995-3. Grandmother Rogers & Aunts Visit Darlene's

1995-4. Amber

1998- Camping at Russian River

2000 -Thoughts about Progressive Christians

2000- Resignation from John George

2001- April- Trip to Cancun

2001- Peace and Justice

2001- September 11th

2002- April-Puerto Vallarta & Blue Bay Getaway

2002- Nov 12th- My Stepfather, George McHenry Passes Away

2003- Trip to D.C. and N.Y.

2004- Feb- Road Trip to Baha Mexico

2004- Walling Family Reunion in Spokane

2005- Christmas Poem

2005- Darlene Visit for Pride Celebration

2005- Trip to Orlando

2005-1. Europe- London

2005-2. Europe- Paris

2005-3. Europe- Venice

2005-4. Europe- Florence

2005-5. Europe- Rome

2005-6. Europe- Athens

2005-7. Knee Surgery & Tongue Biopsy

2006 Christmas Poem

2006- February 23- Times Herald

2006- Palm Springs White Party

2006- Trip to Seattle

2006-July 8th Solano Peace and Justice Coalition BBQ

2007- Feb- Carnival Destiny- Our First Cruise

2007- Tre and Casey Visit

2008- Aug 15-18 Spokane Visit

2008- Psycho Song

2009- Honored by Vallejo Gay Network

2009- Women in Oils

2010 Christmas Poem

2010- Feb. R.C. Mariner of the Seas Mexican Riviera Cruise

2010- June 24- Badlands

2010- Trip to Seattle

2010-1. Europe- Amsterdam

2010-2. Europe- Paris

2010-3. Europe- Barcelona & Sitges

2010-4. Europe- Madrid

2011-1. Feb. My Fabulous 60th Birthday Weekend

2011-2. April- L.A., Palm Springs & "The White Party"

2011-3. Poem- Girl From Medical Lake

2011-4. Old Man Dancing

2011-5. May- Misty and Alex Visit

2011-6. August- Darlene and Sean's Visit

2011-7. Alex 16-18 & Pics

2012- March- Carnival Splendor Mexican Riviera with Family

2013- Wedding

2014- Christmas Poem

2014- First Gay Cruise

2014- September Road Trip to San Diego

2015- Seasonal Affective Blues

2015- Second Gay Cruise

2015- War on Christmas poem

2015-"Badlands" and Gay Bar Etiquette

2015-September 8. Political History

2016 Do Not Speak for Gay Males

2016- April- Palm Springs RV Adventure

4/4/2016- Not Going Along to Get Along

9/4/15- Liberals vs Conservatives

Beatle haircut- Click for story.
Forbidden Dreams of Love- Click for story.
Where I was born- Click for story.
The Psychedelic Experience- Click to read story.
1982-1993 Waller Street- Click to read story.
1974- On Larkin Street- Click for story.
Photos of Dad & His Family- Click for story.
1970's Promiscuity- Click for story.
Me in my 20's in 1970's- Click for story.
2015- 2nd Gay Cruise- Click to read story.
Me in 3rd grade- Click for story.
2015- 2nd Gay Cruise- Click for story.
Women in Oils- Click for story
2005 Darlene Visit for Gay Pride- Click for story.
2014- Road trip to San Diego- Click for story.
Second Gay Cruise- Click for story.
5th Grade in Abilene Tx- Click for story
1964- Luv Please- Click for story.
2005- Darlene Visits for Gay Pride- Click to read story.
2001 Trip to Cancun- Click to read story.
My Mother- Click for more photos.
2001 Trip to Cancun- Click to read story.
Cockettes & Angels of Light- Click for story
4th Grade- Click for story.
1973 "You have to be hurt..." Click to read the story.
1973- Psych Tech Program- Click for story.
Gay Disco 70's- Click for story
My Dad's Family- Click for story.
Earthquake! Click to read story.
1957-1958 1st Grade- Click to read story.
Me in first grade- Click for story.
1958-1959- 3rd Grade- Click to read story.
Click to read "Introduction."
Palouse- Click for story
Escondido 1960's- Click for story
Black Men in Oils- Click to read story
Amber- Click to read story.
1967- Summer of Love- Click to read story.
1974- First Trip to Europe- Click to read story.
Grandview- Click for story
Summer of Love- Click to read story.
Darlene Marries Chuck- Click for story.