Richard Grayson

Richard Grayson, a retired lawyer and college professor, is the author of With Hitler in New York (1979), I Brake for ...

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Last night I went over to Park Slope to visit Avis. She and I sat in the kitchen, sharing an omelet and Perrier water, and talked for hours, just as we did in the old days. Justin, her roommate, joined us later; he’s a very sweet guy. We told each other about our homosexual feelings.

I joked with him as he worked on me and this other guy. The two of us, shirtless, were strapped to machines which worked us over, and I told Dr. Robbins it seemed like something out of a West Street backroom bar. “You mean like The Ramrod?” he said. “Nah, my S&M stuff is better than theirs.”

Avis mentioned that she had spent the night at Josh’s, so I assume they slept together. In a way I brought them together. I’m glad because both Josh and Avis are kind of lost now and unsure of their futures; maybe they can give each other sustenance.

Josh and I went to Kenny’s Castaways, and by chance they seated us near the tables where Wes, Marla and their friends were sitting. Marla brought out a copy of my book and I autographed it for Jack, that guy I met last fall that Saturday when Wes and I were editing the stories.

When I called Wes to chat, he asked if I’d seen the Rolling Stone review of my book. It was only a mention in Greil Marcus’s “Undercover” column: “Where avant-garde fiction goes when it turns into stand-up comedy.” He meant it as a put-down, of course, but to me and Wes it sounded like a great blurb.

We saw Wes and Marla in front of Eric’s Bar – he looked a little nervous and she was stunning in a slinky black low-cut dress – and went into the back room, where Scott Sommer told me he’s found an apartment in Manhattan, “and if they don’t sell the paperback rights pretty soon I’m not going to be there very long.”

My lunch with Stacy went well although it got off to an uncomfortable start because Stacy wanted to talk about our both being gay and use that to sort of justify everything that happened in our relationship. She’s still very intelligent and very sexy.

“I’m not a nice person,” I said, finally glad that after ten years, after a lifetime, I can now say that and mean it. “Nice” people – like the neurotic, clingy, hungry-for-love Milquetoast that I used to be – are usually unhappy.

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