Thursday, January 25, 2007

Me and J. Danforth

Oh cool!

I just googled myself, and up came this Blast From The Past. It's the account from the New York Times of my disrupting a speech made by then-Vice President Dan Quayle during the 1992 Campaign.


Good times, good times...

Vice President Quayle was speaking to members of the New York Conservative Party, and you've never seen such a room full of Neanderthals. They were blood-thirsty. George and Andrea went first, and this Conservative Party member came charging through the banquet room and tackled George into the press table at the back. (George was unhurt, and it made for some thrilling "You Are There" coverage on the news that night.) The Secret Service escorted George and Andrea out. After that reaction, I and my partner Suzanne (one of the most beautiful women I've ever known, resembling a young Princess Stephanie of Monaco), sort of looked at each other, like "Uh. Oh." But when I decided that I couldn't take another minute of Dan Quayle's bloviating, I rose to my feet.

What I said was, "When are you gonna talk about AIDS, Dan? You can't dodge AIDS!" (Quayle had just referred to Bill Clinton as being a "draft dodger.") The Secret Service was on us pretty quick, as they approached me and Suzanne, one guy said, "We're gonna get you guys out of here before this crowd tears you apart." And that sounded good to me!

As they lead us out--no handcuffs, alas--I was maniacly bellowing "AIDS Dodger! AIDS Dodger! AIDS Dodger!"

We weren't arrested or anything! They just deposited us outside the hotel, after permitting us to reclaim our coats from the coat check. So, ebullient, we jumped in a cab and headed up to the West Village. Since it was a Monday night, the ACT UP (that would be "AIDS Coalition To Unleash Power, a diverse, non-partisan group of individuals united in our anger and committed to non-violent direct action to end the AIDS Crisis.") meeting was still going on, so we got to go in and get a heroes welcome. When that article appeared in the Times the next day, it essentially made everyone I worked with at the General Counsel's Office of Ernst & Young, the largest professional services firm in the world, aware that I was 1.) a homo, and 2.) uppity about that.

Made for an interesting day at work.

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