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Michael Aylett

Michael Aylett

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Published by Scratch Hunter

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Categories:Types, Research, History
Published by: Scratch Hunter on Nov 29, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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So if you could begin, introduce yourself, then I suppose begin wherever you feelthe beginning of the sorry is; if you want to start with the leatherman group...
when i was three -(laugh)All right. My name is Michael Aylett. I've been around for 64 years. I graduated fromhigh school in 1963. 1963, I heard, well from my birth to 1963, I heard the wordmarijuana once. And I heard the word gay, never. So those sorts of things just weren'ttalked about. I came out when i was about 20. I came out to me, when I was 20. Tooka few more years to come out to others. And when I decided that I was gay, I thoughtthat I had found my niche, because I never fit anyplace. Well, the more I was in the gayworld, the more I knew that something was missing, and so I had to out myself again,when I found leather. There was no leather here, so I made it. Most people in this townthought leather was dead cow, and that was it. Or, it was a fashion statement. So, Ihad, what you see mostly is what I created in the BDSM world here. If I didn't create it, Itrained those who did. Ok? Almost without exception. I can think of 2 exceptions. I didit for selfish reasons. Wanted somebody to beat on, so I had to create it. First timewalked into a gay bar, it was the Radio City Lounge. You two have been to the RadioCity? No? Go go down there, it's a sleaze hole. But in my day it was gold lamécurtains, piano bar, it was typical 1968 faggot bar. You know? Ladies everywhere, andnot a tit in sight. We were raided regularly by the police. Very rarely were we hauled offto jail, but they went around and asked for everybody's names, which made everybodynervous. We were rolled regularly, attacked regularly, and oh, about 6 months afterStonewall we stopped that. The story is that two men were being attacked in the parkinglot, which is behind the Radio City. You guys haven't been to the Radio City? It's theoldest gay bar west of the Mississippi, where the hell have you been? You ought to go inand just look at what it's become. But they were attacked back there, the attack wasobserved somebody walked in and announced what was going on. and the bar emptiedout the back door. They broke their beer bottles on the way out, and there was quite amess in the parking lot. Ambulances came, and took the attackers away. It was newsto hear that a group of drag queens in Stonewall had held the police off for 3 days or 5days or however long it was. This was news. As far as the women were concernedthere was one bar, and the name of that bar was Perky’s. And that has a story too.One day, 2 rednecks walked into Perky's and sat down at the bar. Perky, who was avery short lady, went over and asked if they knew where the hell they were, and theysaid yes, we're here to fuck a dyke. And the pool cues come off the wall, and those twoguys had a problem or too, and the ambulance was called for them. Had to come forthem. It is a foolish thing to mess with dykes, even back then, but they did, you know.So, can't remember when that was. Perky's was after 1975, but not much after. theRadio City was, oh, 70, 71, i would think. Somewhere in there. When was Stonewall?
Alright, it wasn't very long after that that the business at the Radio City happened. It wasan interesting time to live because people were coming out of the closet all over theplace then. But, gay life was the Radio City if you had balls enough to go to a gay bar,and private parties. Private parties served 2 purposes; it gave everyone a chance tofuck their friends, and it gave everyone who was afraid to go to a gay bar for manyreasons a place to go. There was always activity in the parks. I guess there still is. Ifyou wanted a social life in the gay world, and you were a Mormon bishop, you had to goto private parties. Everything else was too risky. So that's what happened in thosedays. Maybe it still happens now, I don't know. I do know that the best parties were athomes with swimming pools. So if you wanted to be invited to the best parties, youshould befriend somebody with a swimming pool. That's just the way it was.
what does that mean, best parties?
Oh, where you could have the most action, sexual action. And a couple of those peopleare still alive, and you should interview them.
We'll have to get their names from you.
One name is Jerry, but I'll have to check and make sure it's ok. And he's older than Iam, he's damn near 70. Oh, but don't tell him that I said that. He would have to bedamn near 70. In fact he was dually a member of the Larry Nelson broken heart club.But Redburn was around during those days, and he would be a good source, becausehe… he wasn't always sniffing things up his nose, so he knows, he knows a lot. And,gosh I guess he's about 70 also. But he has a lot of information. He opened The Sun,oh, Lord I can't remember when, but that was the 2nd gay bar in Salt Lake, and JoeRedburn did that. Other places opened, one was called The Rail, God I can't rememberthe others. But I got bored. I got bored with the gay world. It wasn't really for me.What's the date on that picture Tarsus? I can't remember
Tarsus: ‘ 
Ok, in 1984 a group of us who were into motorcycles or into, most of it was fisting, gottogether and formed the Wasatch Leathermen. I'm a charter member, and so is LarryNelson. The very first Master of the Wasatch Leather men's name is Les Emit. He diedrecently. The second Master's name was Greg, and I don't have his permission to giveyou any more, and the third master was myself. Most of that was a fisting deal. WhenAIDS came along, many of them died. The picture I showed you, there are four or fiveof them left. Most of them died. There were times when Nelson and I went to 3 funeralsin one week. It was a rough time. The Wasatch Leathermen was a fun organization, wehad a good time. We were very selective. There wasn't a drag queen in the group.
There' s 2 or 3 that should have been. But there wasn't a drag queen in the group. AndI don't know about the rest of them, but I wasn't confused. I was there for the rough sex.But many of the others were there because they wanted to be around "real men", that'sin quotes, and so they wore drag too, it was just different. It was leather. K? Theydidn't know what it meant. But I spent a lot of time learning. Do you know whatDrummer Magazine is? Ok, Drummer was a national BDSM gay male magazine, andyou could advertise in it. Now this is in the mid 70s, you didn't dare do it until the postoffice changed their regulation. There was a time when you could not solicit anythinglike that through the mail, and so it was a very difficult thing, but that's before my time.Larry Nelson and I ran ads in Drummer, and we brought people in from all over thecountry. I have all 450 responses to that add. still have them. And I learned almostexclusively one boy at a time, on how to be a Leatherman, because there was nothinghere to teach me. I went to runs, I always sought out the guy who knew, and I watched,and I asked questions. That's how I learned. Now of course there's all kinds of things,all kinds of places you can learn, off the net. For whatever that's worth. And it's notworth much.You get on the net, you run across the adds; I am Master Dragon Breath, you willfall down and worship me. That's what a delete key on a computer is for. Cause theydon't know. There are a few people on the net who do know. I can give you theirnames, and they're all over the place. Joseph W. Bean, Guy Baldwin; Bean's in Hawaii,Guy Baldwin's in Los Angeles, Slave Master, his name is Michael Dodd, he's in Vegas,Sybil Holiday, San Francisco, Midori, San Francisco, those people I know personally, infact Midori gave me that big red plate up there. She snooped around and found out wecollect ruby glass, and so she bought that. But those are people that I know. I don'tknow Joseph W Bean very well, but I will know him after January, I'm going to Hawaii.These are people who really know.They've done a fairly good job of teaching, but they don't teach like I teach. Iused to teach, I guess I'd better say that I've retired more or less from that. But therewas a thing called the Journeymen 3 Academy, and it’s 18 months long. And the peoplewho have graduate from that, they know their shit. And that's all I could do. Was teach.So I did. And I brought those people in. Guy Baldwin, Joseph, Sybil Holiday, Midori,Slave Master, you know, I brought them in, I brought them here. And you can find outon the net. Slave Master has stuff on there about his trip here, and he's been here 3 or4 times, but his very first one, it's on there. Sybil Holiday, Carol Queen has stuff on thenet from when she came. You don't know Carol Queen? She wrote,
The Leather Daddy and the Femme 
, amongst other books. And that is a book by Midori?
She wrote in her last book about her experience here. Since then, it has spreadto San Francisco, and we now teach those 18 months in San Francisco too. But thePath is different. The Path is techno-weeny stuff. You know what I mean by techno-weenie? Hit here, not here. iI's not safe to hit here. Techno-weenie. Journeymen 3,they've changed the name to leather quest. the leather quest teaches the magic ofBDSM. And I almost saw a smile on your face, because that's… I've been in it a long

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