• Good stuff! One of the themes here and in Paris Is Burning (and it’s something you’ve talked about) is how essential rituals, especially competitive rituals, are to communities. Communities rarely have formal rules or charters, so competitions are ways that boundaries and identities within communities get defined. There’s a great, Lipstick Traces-type history waiting to be written about the drag circuit as the secret history of 20th century America.

    • pico79

      Thank you! Minor technical question: are the gifs working for you? They’re frozen thumbnails on my end, which is a shame, because the gif of Crystal LaBeija illustrates what I’m trying to say re: performativity, but it’s frozen instead.

      • The header .gif is working, the rest work if you click on them and open them in a separate tab. This site is kinda temperamental that way. (The Slow Learner conversation was supposed to have a working .gif for the header.)

        • pico79

          A-ha. Well… I encourage people to click on the gifs, then. That’s too bad. Thanks!

          • Suggestion: go back and add that line to the top of the article. They really are cool in motion. (I was so happy to get the Pepper LaBeija .gif for my article.)

          • pico79

            Good point – thanks I added a note after the first gif.

  • Son of Griff

    Fantastic write-up. it sounds as though Simon got at the ground floor of History before the building went up.

    • pico79

      Thank you – and yes, I think he was in the right place at the right time. Just a few months before filming was the Compton’s Cafeteria Riot (a pre-Stonewall queer uprising); while they were editing the film, Shirley Clarke screened her (vastly superior) Portrait of Jason, and Warner Bros. released John Huston’s Reflections in a Golden Eye. The film world was pushing against the margins of acceptability, and Stonewall was right around the corner.

  • BurgundySuit

    Want to be as cool as Pico? Then join us for Year of the Month (from an idea by Elizabeth Lerner)! Here’s just a few of the things you can write about:

    https://letterboxd.com/films/popular/year/1968/size/large/
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1968_in_music
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1968_in_literature

    And here’s who’s gonna be writing!

    September 13th: BurgundySuit: Chartbusting!
    September 14th: The Ploughman: High School
    September 15th: Belated Comebacker: Rosemary’s Baby
    September 18th: Drunk Napoleon: Yellow Submarine
    September 19th: John Bruni: Faces
    September 21st: Wallflower: Bullit
    September 22nd: Gillianren: The Horse in the Gray Flannel Suit
    September 25th: Bhammer100: Prescription: Murder
    September 26th: Miller: Hell in the Pacific
    NO DATE: Son of Griff: Once Upon a Time in the West
    NO DATE: Julius Kassendorf: Vixen
    NO DATE: Silverwheel: Anthem of the Sun

  • BurgundySuit

    Does Steve Guttenburg’s memoir contain the answer to the mystery of who made him a star?

    • pico79

      Heh. I found that passage really insightful, though! Guttenberg’s a better writer than I would have expected. I’d put this on my reading list if I had any interest in his career, outside of his (really, really great) episode of Party Down.