Friday, December 2, 2011

30 Years of AIDS

I know I'm a day late for "World AIDS Day," but this really struck me. We've been living with AIDS (early on, known as GRID, or "Gay Related Immune Disorder") for thirty freakin' years. The first buzz I remember from it was about 1982 or 1983. It started like a smoldering fire, and bloomed into an inferno. By 1985, we knew that Rock Hudson had it. Soon after, Liberace. An Early Frost was TV's answer. AIDS freaked my shit out. The timing was perfect. In 1984, I was of legal consenting age, but, I was terrified of both AIDS and others' discovery of my sexuality. So, that combination of factors led me to a protracted period of celibacy.  The AIDS crisis claimed a hell of a lot of lives in the 1980s and 90s. But it also scared a bunch of us enough to throw us clear of the epidemic.

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