The Village in New York had always attracted a kaleidoscope of radical, deviant, and perverse characters considered abhorrent by mainstream America. The Reds of the 40s gave way to the beatniks of the 50s, who in turn evolved into the hippies of the 60s before surrendering the shattered counterculture ghetto to the junkies, artists, punks and sexual revolutionaries of the 1970s.
In 1977 I lived on East 10th Street with Alice, my hillbilly girlfriend, and my faux-sister Pip rented an apartment off Bleecker Street. She called me Pud. We had met at CBGBs, which was our Lincoln Center. The owner couldn’t figure out how we got so drunk on one drink. It wasn’t magic. Pip and I smuggled bottles of vodka past Merv at the door.
One spring evening the Ghosts opened for the Dictators. My girlfriend didn’t like either band, so I went alone. Pip was seated at a table near the stage. Our chairs leaned against the wall. Pip filled our glasses with vodka and coke. We had no ice.
The Ghosts played a blistering set and closed out the show with RICHARD IS A FORKHEAD. There was no encore and the band's juvenile guitarist came over before heading to the dressing room.
“You mind.” Xcessive pointed to Pip’s glass. He had spotted our trick.
“Not at all.” My ‘sister’ was sweet on young punk rockers.
Xcessive drained the glass and coughed a little before wiping his mouth.
The young guitarist thread through his admirers by the stage and I said to Pip, “Isn’t he a little young for you?”
“He’s just a friend. Same as you.”
The cheery NYU coed had a crush on most of the men on the scene and many of the girls at CBGBs suffered the same affliction. This was the 70s and not the 50s. None of us were going steady and I struggled to be faithful to Alice.
“Besides I have my eye on my new neighbor. He’s really cute. His name’s Marc Stevens,” cooed Pip.
“You know him?”
“I don’t know him personally, but he’s known as Mr. 10 1/2.” The well-hung actor was John Holmes’ rival in the XXX film industry.
“Mr. 10 ½?”
“Yes, 10 ½ inches.” I had seen him dancing naked covered in silver body paint at Studio 54. His penis had looked a normal size that evening.
“Oh, that's big.”
“He was the star of THE DEVIL AND MRS. JONES.”
“I don’t know that film.” Pip was studying literature at NYU. Her professors expected their students to read MADAME BOVARY and Camus’ THE PLAGUE, not stroke books.
“And I wouldn’t expect anything else.” The francophiles intellectuals had no use for pornography other than THE STORY OF O and I gave Pip a 10-minute course in XXX films from DEEP THROAT to BEHIND THE GREEN DOOR. Her eyes shined with joy. She loved celebrities.
“He’s living with this girl, Jill Monro.”
“Jill’s no girl. She had an operation to change her penis into a vagina. She’s the first tranny movie star."
“No, I can’t believe I know a transvestite.”
“Transsexual.” They were two different creatures.
She kissed my cheek for explaining the birds and bees of a hidden sect.
“I love you, Pud.”
Not everyone held porno actors in esteem, but I haunted the Times Squares peepshows in search of arcane films. My hillbilly girlfriend had no idea about my research. It was a secret I kept close to my heart.
That May Pip decided to throw a party for several Geminis. An underground designer of nightclubs decorated her apartment. She invited a hundred people. Over 200 crammed into the duplex. I knew many of them, since I was one of the birthday boys.
"I hear Mr. 10 ½ is coming," Klaus whispered in my ear. The German opera singer was a fiend for size and he shivered saying, "10 ½. Divine."
Klaus and I discussed gay porno films, as if we were voting for the Oscars.
My hillbilly girlfriend wandered off to CBGBs to see the Mumps. Alice didn't like drinking and liked me drunk less.
A minute later a curly-haired man came up to me and said, “I thought she would never leave. My name is Mark.”
“Pip talked about you.” I looked through the crowd. His better half wasn’t in the room.
“She talked about you too.” Marc wore a white jumpsuit. He was the thinnest person in the room. His hand touched my ass. “You want to do some blow?”
I was as used to gay guys hitting on me as they were accustomed to seducing straight guys.
“Not here. There are too many vultures.” His soft brown eyes darted over the crowd, as if he were looking for someone special. “Let’s go to my place.”
Two men leaving a party together was no scandal, although Pip leaned over to Klaus and pointed out my departure. The singer gave me the green light with a wink and shouted out,“Gluck.”
“I don’t need good luck.” I was straight or at least that’s what I told myself, but everyone in the Village was a little bent in one way or another.
"Your friend is cute in a strange way."
"He likes you."
"All size queens like Mr. 10 ½."
"I bet they do."
Marc lived down the hall.
“I don’t want any of the neighbors seeing me. My wife is very jealous.” He opened the door and pushed me inside.
"My girlfriend is the same way."
"Everyone is so hung up about sex. Sex is just sex. Nothing more."
Marc shut the door. The one-bedroom apartment was decorated with dark brown furniture favored by gays for hiding stains from intercourse.
The XXX actor went into the kitchen to fetch a Pond’s cream jar from the cabinet.
It was crammed with a white powder with a pinkish glow.
"What is that?"
“Bolivian flake from one of my admirers.”
We sat on the soft sofa. The cushion sank around me like a Venus Fly Trap. The music from Pip’s party thumped the wall. I recognized the song as UP BONDAGE UP YOURS.
“You like that music?” Marc spilled out a mound of blow. The lines were thick as rope.
“I’m a punk.” I had been since seeing the Ramones play CALIFORNIA SUN. Their speedy version of the Rivieras’ hit opened my eyes to a new world and CBGBs became my second home.
“I like leather, but not that music. I’m more into disco.”
He unzipped his jumpsuit to his bellybutton and handed me a straw.
I hit the first rail with an athletic gusto. This was not street gear and the coke burst into my nasal capillaries with the intensity of an Incan sunrise, then scorched my veins with a rush of euphoria. I fell back into the sofa with my bones sizzling on a Peruvian hot plate.
“Good, huh,” Marc whispered in my ear. His lips were tender on my neck. He spooned a small pile into my other nostril. “Breathe.”
I obeyed his order.
The coca renewed its assault on my senses and the universe shimmered out of focus.
I was in no condition to resist Marc’s advances. He was a veteran of porno movies. Millions of men and women fantasized about lying in bed with him. I gripped his thick member with the tenderness of a butcher preparing to cut a steak. Millions of XXX viewers had seen him in MICHAEL, ANGELO, AND DAVID. The photographer Robert Mapplethorpe had immortalized this penis in a black-and-white shit titled MARK STEVENS MR. 10½, 1976.
I gave it a squeeze.
“It’s not hard.”
“Rough trade gets me erect.” Marc’s admission was not a confession.
He pinched his nipple and his cock stiffened with a throb.
"I like being the queen," murmured Marc. "You wanna be king?"
Before I could answer, keys turned the lock of the front door.
The actor sat up straight and zipped his jumpsuit.
“It’s my wife. Do some more blow.”
I snapped out of my trance and turned my head.
The statuesque brunette entering the apartment had a couple inches on us in her stiletto heels. She regarded the coke and then the two of us.
Her smile was marred by the awkward unease of seeing her man with another man.
"Marc introduced us.
“Please to meet you.” His wife held out her hand with a tilted wrist.
I offered mine, expecting a limp handshake.
Jill crunched my knuckles in a vise.
Marc was her man.
I winced with a pained grin and ripped my fingers loose.
"I met him at the party next door. It was fun."
"I can see that." Jill sat down with the surrender of accepting Marc for what he was.
“Nice meeting you too. Time for me to rejoin the party.”
“Leaving so soon?” Marc was in no position to pursue his desire.
“It’s getting late.”
“Thanks for coming.” Jill smirked with the pleasure of re-establishing her dominance over my host.
“Sure, just one more thing.”
“What?” Jill straightened her posture, as if she was ready for a fight.
“A good-bye gift. Thanks." I bent over and snorted the other two lines within two seconds.
Marc laughed and Jill joined him.
“Sure you want to leave?” She spread her legs to invite a touch.
“I already have a lover.”
“Lucky girl.” Jill kissed Marc on the cheek. "Same as me."
He spilled out more blow. She did the first line. They looked like such a nice couple.
I returned to the party.
Pip grabbed me and asked, “What happened?”
“His wife came home.”
I poured myself a vodka.
“And what were you doing?”
“Talking that’s all. I have a girlfriend.” Pip was a spy for my hillbilly girlfriend. They were good friends. “And I’m not gay.”
“And you’re not straight either.” Pip shrugged with disappointment. She had been all ears for some good dirt, but left me to flirt with the Ghosts young guitarist. I stayed for another hour. The coke ran its course. Klaus lived in the East Village. We shared a taxi to St. Mark’s Place.
“So how big was it?” The German was all ears.
“Have you seen his movies?” I could tell Klaus anything. He loved secrets.
“Yes.” His eyes widened with delight.
“It was that big and thick." I didn't mentioned the softness of his penis.
"He said you were cute."
"Maybe you'll get lucky one night."
"I can only wished and hope."
"Klaus dropped me on St. Mark's. I walked to 10th Street.
My hillbilly girlfriend was asleep in our bed. I took off my clothes and slid next to her.
"How was it?"
"Big and thick."
"Too big for me?"
"I was strictly there for a look-see. I came, I saw, I went."
"You're a good boy." Alice cuddled up to me with a childish tenderness.
I was surprised she believed me, but I didn't mentioned the temptation.
She was strictly GP-13 and I fell into a wired maze of dreams. None of them were XXX and that was probably better for Alice.
Better for me too, because 10½ inches was as a big penis in dreams as it was in real life.
Klaus and me at the party.