The Castro is closed off, and the more raucous, but Lori and I didn’t drink much, so generally we’d meander in costume up and then down Polk, to see and be seen. She sported a fairy-godmother costume in purple with a tall, conical hat and scarf, and I used my standard demon costume — long black wig with two horns, face-paint, red military jacket with epaulets and sword, blue pants with red stripe, boots, and a long tail.
We fit right in. But this particular evening was before I met Lori.
I’d been out on my motorcycle, in my demon costume, first to a dance event at Fort Mason, led by someone named Starhawk or Moondove or Planetbird, which was a kind of costumed conga-line to really loud music.
I got caught up with some lesbians who were going to a place South of Market, which turned out to be a very frustrating experience, and later I’d parked my moto on Van Ness near Geary, to grab a late burger at this all-night place built from a cable-car between two buildings.
I was walking back to my chained motorcycle on the sidewalk on Van Ness, and I stopped at the corner for a red light. To my immediate left, a convertable pulled up, waiting to turn, and so it was that, sitting in the seat next to where I stood, I discovered Dracula.
Dracula, in his red-lined cape, slicked-back dark hair, and yellow fangs, looked up from his seat at me.
I, in my wig and horns, sword, and military clobber, stood at the curb, looking down at Dracula. I held out my arms toward Dracula, and burst into song:
“Lovely to look at, delightful to hold …” I sang. And Dracula joined in, with harmony:
“… and Heaven to Bite!”
The song ended. The light changed. Dracula and I nodded to each other. His driver turned the corner, and they disappeared up Geary Boulevard into the night.