So Little Time: Essays on Gay Life

Mike Hippler, Author, Randy Shilts, Illustrator Celestial Arts $11.95 (239p) ISBN 978-0-89087-609-1
Hippler's 50 lucid, engrossing essays on predominantly gay themes (most reprinted from his column in San Francisco's Bay Area Reporter ) are by turns hilarious, insightful, poignant--and, occasionally, just plain cheeky. Drawing on incidents from ``my own singular life,'' Hippler ( Matlovich: The Good Soldier ) discusses subjects as diverse as drug dealers, civil disobedience, coming out as gay, obscene phone calls and middle age. He describes the International Mr. Leather Contest and offers a brief tour of ``prefab minimal-gab wedding chapels.'' Here, too, are the sobering topics, like his account of being thrown through a plate glass window by three teenagers because he was a ``faggot.'' AIDS's impact is reflected in an interview with two hospitalized AIDS patients, comments on the danger of confusing health issues with morality, Hippler's apprehension when scanning the obituaries: ``Please, don't let me read the names of old friends today.'' Ultimately what emerges from these varied articles, giving the collection its coherence and mainstream appeal, is a glimpse of a complex individual preserving his identity and self-esteem in a challenging and sometimes hostile world. (Nov.)
Reviewed on: 10/01/1990
Release date: 10/01/1990
Genre: Nonfiction
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