The Daily Agenda for Monday, March 2

Jim Burroway

March 2nd, 2015

TODAY’S AGENDA is brought to you by:

From  (Long Beach), September 12, 1980, page 13.

From (Long Beach), September 12, 1980, page 13.

The Red Mill was one of those many bars that have come and gone with little trace of its existence. I was able to find one brief mention of it from 1975: “Thirteen drunk Long Beach police officers enter the Red Mill gay bar after midnight, creating a disturbance. Three officers are fired for conduct unbecoming an officer.” As for the bar itself, it was completely wiped by redevelopment. That portion of Locust avenue was turned into a pedestrian promenade, and a Renaissance Hotel has been built in its place.

Dr. Fritz de Quervain

Swiss Doctor Recommends Castrating Homosexuals: 1929. An article appearing in the German-language Swiss Medical Weekly by the famed Swiss surgeon Johann Friedrich (Fritz) de Quervain was reviewed a couple months later in the American Urologic and Cutaneous Review:

Results of Castration in Sexual Abnormalities. — F. de Quervain (Schweizerische Medizinische Wochenschrift, March 2, 1929) reports the resutls of observations made upon some thirty-two patient, twenty-seven men and women in whom castration had been carried out in an attempt to relieve some sexual annormality. The libido was diminished more or less in every case. Out of eight cases of perverse sexual practices, cure was secured in five cases. Psychic disturbances (depression, epileptic and schizophrenic disturbances) of transient nature were observed in nine cases; vaso motor disturbances, similar to those of the menopause, were seen in seven cases. The castrate body type developed in only seven cases. Twenty-three of the patients expressed themselves as very well satisfied with the results of the operation. The operation is indicated in cases of persistent exhibitionis, rape and homosexuality.

[Source: “Results of castration in sexual abnormalities.” Urologic and Cutaneous Review 33, no. 5 (May 1929): 351.]

John Gray: 1866-1934. A poet of the Aesthetic movement, Gray was a friend of Oscar Wilde, who some say used Gray as his inspiration for the title character in The Picture of  Dorian Gray. Like many in the Aesthetic movement (Wilde included), Gray was drawn to Roman Catholicism. He converted in 1890, lapsed, then re-embraced Catholicism in 1895 before issuing his 1896 volume Spiritual Poems: Chiefly Done Out in Several Languages. It included eleven original poems, plus twenty-nine translations of other Catholic and Protestant spiritual poets. In 1898, he went to Rome to study for the priesthood, and he was ordained in 1901. He served is a priest in Edinburgh, and was supported in his endeavors by his life partner Marc-André Raffalovich, a successful poet and early defender of homosexuality who had joined the Dominicans in 1896. The two lived near each other until Raffalovich died suddenly in 1934. Gray was devastated, and became ill and died just four months later.

Matthew Mitcham: 1988. The Queensland, Australia native and Olympic gold medalist received the highest single dive score in Olympic history in the 10m platform in 2008. His performance prevented a Chinese gold medal sweep in diving, and he became the first Australian male to win Olympic gold in diving since 1924. Australia’s post office acted very quickly on the historic win, issuing a 50 cent stamp with his image just one day after his victory. But despite his achievement, his gold medal didn’t translate into sponsorship gold. While lesser athletes snapped up lucrative deals, Mitcham struggled to find a single sponsor before finally landing a contract in 2009 with an Australian telecom. It’s widely believed that his open homosexuality played a role in holding back the rush of sponsors.

In 2011, he suffered a string of injuries which hindered his training for the 2012 games in London, where he finished 13th in the 10m platform semifinals, just one place away from qualifying for the finals. His autobiography, Twists and Turns, was published in Australia and 2012 and internationally the following year.

If you know of something that belongs on the agenda, please send it here. Don’t forget to include the basics: who, what, when, where, and URL (if available).

And feel free to consider this your open thread for the day. What’s happening in your world?


March 2nd, 2015

That bar did quite a business when the Navy was still on Treasure Island. When I was in high school, we used to cruise downtown LB in a friend’s convertible and when we saw a cute sailor we’d yell “Hey, Bill!” You’d be surprised how often that worked.

Generally downtown LB after urban renewal and the destruction of the best amusement park on the west coast, The Pike (later Nu-Pike) with its double roller coaster and its double Ferris wheel, is an urban renewal disaster.

Timothy Kincaid

March 2nd, 2015

Fine, so the Pike (which at one point had a large bathing house called The Plunge, a large number of booths and attractions, along with the roller coaster) was demolished.

But you got a lovely hotel in exchange.

And you can always use another lovely hotel. Right?

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