New Brad Chapter: Confronting the past

“It’s only when you start to die you realize how lonely you are.” So says Brad to childhood friend Keith after moving back home from NYC. During the AIDS era, so many gay men fled back home. Some say they fostered a new age of acceptance.

Brad may have played a small role in that phenomenon.

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Author’s Notes —

Castleton is only 10 miles downriver from Albany, New York’s state capital. While Albany isn’t exactly a bustling metropolis, it feels like a real city, and offers amenities unknown in most upstate towns and villages. Lenny and I drove up on a Saturday or Sunday when we could to take Brad into Albany and get him falafel or Jewish deli, two “New York City” staples he loved but which were totally foreign to Castleton. Like Lenny, Brad never learned to drive a car.

I’m building a tag list to include people who’ve told me they want updates on this series or who have read the first chapters. If you don’t want a tag, please just let me know in a comment or email me at I’ll cheerfully remove you from the list.

— Jim

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Writer. Runner. Marine. Airman. Former LGBTQ and HIV activist. Former ActUpNY and Queer Nation. Polyglot. Middle-aged, uppity faggot.