Maybe the world of our youth in San Francisco was just as hideous as this brawl in Brooklyn, we just didn't see it that way then. There were no social media, nobody tracking and to be gay was still a coming out experience that could be as exciting as it was sometimes a necessity to stay in a closet.
So many things I didn't know, didn't want to know when I could not see anything pass the age of 25 as we met in places like the Pendulum, Midnight Sun, The Stud, El Rio and, because of the skinheads, avoided the Haight (except for dancing at the I-Beam was a necessity) and stayed out of The Tenderloin because I was told not to go there at all or risk being robbed or murdered...but we went anyway.
After hours we ventured to safe havens like Zims, Sparkys, Church Street Café or that donut shop at 18th & Castro where pale and skinny boys hustled for cash or donuts. A block away Collinwood Street got steeper past 19th Street but was flat at Eureka Playground where shady men waited in cars to meet anxious boys lined up against a stone wall the men took home or to the 21st Street Baths to show off. For dangerous cruising, Buena Vista Park rose in the trees on a hill above 17th Street at Ashbury and provided kinkier pleasure for those into that.
When there was no fog and no cold wind, you could see the stars and Big Dipper up the steps at the top of the park while listening to crickets in the grass their chirping echo in unison with swooshing cars circling the hill and men whispering senseless things in the bushes after the other.