Friday, February 04, 2011

Provincetown, Mass 1979 Flashback

Me standing on some deck in Provincetown, Mass July 1979
Back for more flashbacks.  I just got off a three day marathon working at the hotel.  I worked last night and then in again this morning at 7 am.  Blare, the regular day front desk clerk asked me to work for her today because she has to stay home with her sick daughter.  I agreed because that's just the kind of guy I am.....nice.  
Me and the Boyfriend dejour - Brad - July 1979
I work two days a week, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 to 11 pm.  I'm usually pretty worn down after two consecutive days at work.  So when I work three days in a row and one of those days is in early after I got off late the night before.........well, I'm pretty well knocked out.  

I remember when I used to work my ass off 48 or 49 weeks a year, eagerly looking forward to a few weeks off in the summer to spend with my friends in Provincetown, Massachusetts.  I discovered Provincetown, the Gay Disneyland of the East Coast back in the early 70's.  I tried to fly up to "the tip" at least once each summer.  Sometimes time got away two or three times in the season.  

The pictures posted on this blog are from my trip in July of 1979.  It's is hard for me to believe that it will be thirty-two years this summer since these pictures were taken.  Where or where has the time gone?
To the left, my boyfriend Brad, Gino (in the middle) and his boyfriend Bob
Pictured are Brad, my boyfriend at the time (my partner and I have always had an open relationship - no lectures please).  Also pictured are my best friend Bob and his friend Gino.  Sad to say Gino has since passed away from AIDS.  Brad is still alive but HIV-Positive.  My good friend Bob is no suffering from the effects of Parkinson's Disease which not only affects his bodily movements but his cognitive abilities and his memory.  I was just talking to him tonight on the phone.  He doesn't even know where his bank account is.  I'll have to stop over at his place next week and give him some help.  

Gino, Bob and Me (Chicken Legs - Bill likes them)

At the Friday Night Dine Out dinner tonight some of my fellow dinners found out for the first time I have over 44,000 pictures on my computer.  One of them ask "What do you do with all those photos?" Well here is the answer, I look at them to bring back fond memories of a happier earlier time and I can share them with my friends today.  My only regret is that I haven't taken more pictures.  Maybe in a way it's good I didn't have a digital camera thirty-two years ago.  Can you imagine how many pictures I would have loaded on my computer?  I do wish I had a digital camera when I first started taking pictures in 1954.  That was back in the old black and white days.  I took some pictures but not near enough.  So many missed opportunities.
Gino, Bob and Me - Skinny Minnie
Well, enjoy my 1979 Provincetown, Mass. flashback photo essay.  I always do.


  1. Love the pictures! Thanks for sharing.

  2. You're welcome Harry. I love going back through my thousands of pictures and pulling up all these good old memories. I just wish I had taken more of people instead of scenery. Time goes by so fast they we lose the people and the uniqueness of that time.

  3. My impression was you looked like Tarzan LOL
    I was 2 years old by the time.

  4. Hi Ron, I've found this "what to do when a friend has memory loss" -

  5. Oh how fun to see P'town (and you!) back in 1979. I was too young but might have been ogling whilst my parent's dragged me to the Cape each summer.

    Funny, I've been looking at 1979 VW Beetles. '79 was a good year.

  6. Love it!
    Ron, I love the music from the 70s. Disco will always stay alive in me. My Mom would make me practice dance moves with her so that she could look good when she went out with her friends. Who better to dance with than your gay son, right? I'm sure that I would have had a blast being of age in the 70s. Although I probably wouldn't have survived it...

    Great Post. m.

  7. Tai,

    I WAS TARZAN! You were only 2 years old at that time? Wow, I really feel like an old Tarzan now. :)

  8. Rick,

    The Seventies were the best time for a gay guy (and me) in Provincetown. I was right before the onset of AIDS. I had a ball (or two) in Provincetown. All of my fantasies were realized. It just didn't get any better than Provincetown. It was fun being a Rock Star, if only for a little while. :)

  9. Mark,

    The Seventies were the best time of my life. The first time I visited Provincetown was the first time I felt totally free in my life. You could walk down the main street holding hands with your boyfriend and no one gave you "that look." I had the best time with my friends and I met some really hot guys. I had a GOOD TIME. It was ironic that when I lost my job and could no longer afford to visit Provincetown, was at the beginning of the AIDS crises. Again, my guardian angel was looking out for me. I went back once again in the early Nineties, but it wasn't the same. AIDS had taken its toll and the lesbians took over. There were no guys around.

  10. I love 'old photos' like you post. Our family has a lot of them; it is always fun to look back on our clothes and hair cuts and think 'what were we thinking?"
    On the positive, these old shots bring up fine memories, or so I hope.

  11. Spo,

    It makes me feel good to post my old photos. It's better than storing them away only to have them tossed after I die, which is probably what will happen to them. I don't know anyone in my family who would be interested in saving their gay "Uncle Ronnie" photos. :) This way I can share them with others who might be interested in "the way we were." And yes, what were we thinking? I can' t believe I wore shorts that short with my long, skinny legs.

  12. Terrific, fun flashback Ron.

  13. Kyle,

    Probably the most fun time of my life, my carefree, warm days of summer in Provincetown, Mass. before the onslaught of AIDS.

  14. You weren't shy about showing off that hot, hairy chest! I wish I had taken a trip to P-town in the summer of '79. I was (barely) legal.

  15. Sam,

    I wish you had taken a trip to P-town in the summer of '79. I would have made you legal. :)

  16. Thank you so much for posting these. Periodically I search for archival photos of Provincetown circa 1979--they seem extremely scarce. I went on vacation with my parents to Cape Cod in 1979 when I was 14 (aware of my gayness but assuming I would keep it under wraps). We took a day trip to Provincetown--none of us aware of what we would find. Needless to say, what we encountered was slightly shocking. I was scared, embarrassed, curious . . . I carry around mental snapshots from that day, but I have no physical ones of the street scenes and individuals that still reside somewhere within me. Over the years, I've developed such an affection for that uncomfortable afternoon. I would LOVE to see more of these.

  17. John,

    I have loads more pictures of Provincetown when I used to vacation there every summer in the Seventies. Now that you have given me encouragement I will post them all! I have to scan them first. Of course I have to find them but you have given me a Mission that I will be glad to fulfill. Those Days of Summer in Provincetown in the Seventies were the best times of my life. I'm glad you're interested in seeing the photos that I have.

  18. Thanks, Ron! I really appreciate the effort. I can't wait! (Though I will wait patiently.)

  19. John,
    I look forward to posting my Provincetown pictures form the Seventies. I'm glad someone is Out There to appreciate them!


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