Before my family arrived to San Jose from Endicott, I ignored my Christian convictions and hung out several times by myself. I began frequenting the Latin salsa clubs and managed to remain fairly sober; since the cost of drinks limited my consumption to sociable drinking. Furthermore, I just listened and enjoyed the music. This was before I began frequenting the dance floors.
The now late master congero Carlos “Patato” Valdes would often sit in at one of the Latin clubs. He was such a runt, that he could barely be seen when sitting behind his king-sized conga drums. Nevertheless, he made those drums talk.
The following is a video clip titled: BATACUMBELE CON PATATO VALDEZ. “MI GUAGUANCO” , loaded by Hugo Caicedo on Jan 6, 2011, (6:04) minutes, edited to start at 2:30:
Once I hung out in a night club not knowing what I was getting myself into. The men were overly friendly to me and seemed to take special interest in me. In turn, I also took interest in some cross dressing dude that I thought was a super fine chick. With my naive self, I didn’t catch on to what was happening until I saw one guy giving another guy a high-five, while simultaneously telling him to “Stay gay.” They were he-shes. Years later, while searching on the Internet, I stumbled across the following statement: “According to the 2005 American Community Survey, San Francisco has the highest percentage of gay and lesbian individuals of any of the 50 largest U.S. Cities . . .” In any case, it’s just not my style.
Hippie Remnants and Drugs
Besides the throngs of business professionals, there were folks who looked like hippie remnants from the 1969 summer of love. Moreover, some of those youngsters looked like wanna bees attempting to resurrect the Hippie Generation movement that occurred during those years in the Haight Ashbury district. The LSD explosion occurred in the Haight, which resulted in barefoot hippies of the baby boomer generation falling under the curse of bad trips. Evidently, the influence of the counter culture movement of that era had scarred the city with drugs, as is documented in the following report from USA Today, 8 January 2007, “S.F. Area is No. 1 for regular drug use, study says,”:
The San Francisco metropolitan area has a higher percentage of people who are regular drug users than any other major metropolitan area in the USA, a study from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration found.
Nearly 13% of San Francisco residents reported using some type of illicit drug, such as marijuana, cocaine or heroin, in the previous month, according to data from the National Surveys on Drug Use and Health 2002-05