Sunday, January 12, 2014

Danny Nicoletta, Harvey Milk Protege & Gay Icon, is Leaving San Francisco

"You can't blog about what I'm going to tell you." What a way to start a conversation with me at Cafe Flore, instantly whetting my blogging desires, but that is what my friend Danny Nicoletta said to me late on Friday afternoon as I sat down at his table.

Danny is leaving San Francisco at the end of January and moving up to Grant's Pass, Oregon, to be with his longterm partner, and he thankfully is not one of the too many LGBT and straight folks who are forced to leave the City because of the eviction epidemic.

I can't pinpoint the first time I met this homo hero and fell in love with his sissy strong outlook on life and activism. It feels like I've known Danny from the height of the AIDS plague in the 1980s. He's always been a beacon to me of so many excellent things: optimism and hope and a smile brighter than a ray of sunshine.

One fabulous thing I've long admired about Danny is how humble he's been about having been a protege of Harvey Milk's in the 1970s, working in his camera shop on Castro Street and on his political campaigns, and that he is practically allergic to the glare of glorification of Harvey. Danny has always graciously shared his tales and images of his mentor to all who asked.

Check out his Wiki entry and his personal site.

He's just a truly decent and giving gay man, and the reason why he was at Cafe Flore when I saw him was to meet up with two young queer film fans who work at the Roxie Theater. Danny was giving them a copy of underground film he worked on in the 1970s and recently restored titled "Broken Dishes". You can see it on YouTube.

Now that he's moving away under the best of circumstances really, and I know what joys and happiness await him with his boyfriend in Oregon, I don't feel I'm losing a friend at all because his spirit will always be with me regardless of geography and he's gaining a new chapter in his incredible life.

There is something I'm sorry about and that is Danny resisted my offer to assist in organizing an appreciation party for him before he departs town on January 31. It was difficult enough to change his mind about allowing me share this news of his and the video I shot of him explaining his move, and a few thoughts about his life in San Francisco. He says he simply does not have the time to see all his friends for cawfee tawk and the party is out of the question. It is our loss we can't celebrate this sissy strong dude before the end of the month!

Danny, I love you and cherish all the times we saw each other and times chatting on the phone as sisters!

1 comment:

isak said...

This is the sweetest tribute to the sweetest man. Thanks, Michael. Danny you are a big part of the best part of San Francisco. Those of us who have been fortunate to know you, will always think of you with love and admiration. Here's wishing you all the good things you've dreamed of which have not happened yet while you were here in Oz. Happy Trails!