Dec 2, 2012

Julius': Libations and Liberation

Gay patron being denied service at Julius' in 1966. Oh, it's on now!

Ya remember when I said I was falling short of living up to my big-sister duties, when it came to Princess Rei Rei?

Well, yesterday I took her to Julius'. It was important for her to be in this space and know about Julius' role in GLBT history. I also wanted to share my personal history with this space.

For ya that don't know your GLBT history, Julius' is a tavern that played a significant role in GLBT civil rights movement.

Located in the West Village of NYC, this bar was the scene for the Mattachine Society's "Sip-In" in 1966. Click on Mattachine for the details.

My Julius' story took place back in 1984. I was taken to the tavern by a handsome man named Tolson. We stopped there for what would be my first Bloody Mary. We then went to his place for what would be my first time having sex with a man!

Tolson was very sweet to me, and I was so excited about finally acting on these feelings I had for men. I remember going home feeling liberated and empowered.

Princess Rei Rei and I enjoyed our time at a table in the back sharing some fries, while I ate one of their  cheeseburgers. Julius' takes pride in their burgers.

We went on to talk about tenacity and wondered what else made us want more in life, despite the obstacles that where in our way.

We both agreed that what made a big difference in our lives was we excelled in school during our elementary years. We were able to acquire the fundamentals in the three Rs. These skills then gave us access to experiences that helped us grow, thereby, expanding our options that we could pursue regarding career and life.

I would also add that we developed a sense of pride in being ourselves, because we came of age within a fierce GLBT community that taught us to be out, loud, and proud.

And, this pride and community was slowly built by fearless men and women, that came together in places like Julius'.


Wonder Man said...

good post, Allan

Mitchell is Moving said...

Wonderful post, as usual.

Todd HellsKitchen said...

Ah, yes, I knew Julius well... Good burgers, rich history... Thanks for the memories!

Princess Rei Rei said...

It was a kiki.. let's do it again soon!