Last nightI gave a reading at the Princeton Club. The event was held in an intimate loungeand about 25 people were in attendance. It was mostly a handsome older crowd,with a few younger Princeton alumni thrown in. After I read the opening twopages of my most recent novel, which, naturally, featured a scene with sexualcontent, I apologized for having uttered the word erection in such a hallowedestablishment, and in return I received polite laughter from the well-manneredaudience. I then continued reading for another 20 minutes or so, and when Iwas done I opened things up for questions. An elegantly dressed silver-hairedgentleman in the back of the room immediately and eagerly raised his hand. Icalled on him and his voice boomed out with great joy: "I don't reallyhave a question. I just want to say that you're a milestone! You're the firstopenly gay writer ever to give a reading at the Princeton Club. There shouldbe some kind of plaque. I'm honored to be here when you're here. I applaud you!"
"Howdo you know he's gay?" asked a dignified, Brahminesque matron, who wassitting in the row in front of him, and who felt, and rightly so, that the manwas somewhat out of line.