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The Man In The leather Mask

pic Halifax was not the most up to date place in the world when it came to things like the leather scene in the seventies and early eighties. If there was any of that scene going on it was either low profile like a leather vest or chaps over blue-jeans.

Halloween nite brings out all the stops (so we thought) until this particular nite in either 1978/79; a man in a full leather mask appeared at the door, just the eyeballs and the mouth were visible. You have to realize that at this time the Gay scene in Halifax as far as hardcore was NIL (in public anyways) and the worry about police infiltrators and gay bashers in disguise was the first thing on our minds. Emmediately upon his arrival the poor guy (or lucky depending on how you look at it) was surrounded by concerned staff, ready to take matters into hand. John Marr and myself were questioning this man as to what he was doing in the bar with full mask on and that policy dictates that faces must be seen. The man in the leather mask was quite amiable about the whole ordeal after the fuss calmed down. He was from out of town "Los Angeles" (really far out of town). He left without a fuss and was allowed back, but without the mask. Not knowing what he looked like, we will never know if he ever came back or who was The Man In The leather Mask.


Tattoo U

Gary or Jerry Lemarchand was one halifax's more colorful figures. He never did hang around the bar, only infrequently appearing but he did have a name that was most recognized in the gay community of Halifax and maybe elsewhere. Gary had a tattoo shop on Gottingen Street at one time called " Tattoo U " and also dabbled in antiques ( I never knew if he had an actual antique store ), he also had a travelling tattoo trailer that I heard went to various fairs and exhibitions. I have seen some of his works and even tho tattoos are not my thing, they seemed very well done. He lived in house with his mother for most of the years that I knew, the house was in bad need of repairs.

He was a short and stout little man, always wearing a suit jacket and those rings on his fingers and I could never tell if his hair was his own or not. Gary had a Nova Scotia drawl quite unlike any I have ever heard and I guess it was due to his own kind of kamp that had become part of his character after years of speaking that way. We used to have a saying about Gary and back then it may have been said with a snicker but today when I think of it, I do it with fond memory. Because of his artistry he always seemed to have the black ink under his nails and hence we used to say : " Gary, tattoo queen....fingernails that would tarnish a thousand doorknobs ".

The people that I know had a fondness for Gary that still lasts to this day. Gary sold the old house a few years ago and moved into a brand new one. He died a while back of a heart attack I was told. Can't you see him at the gate, pointing at St. Peter's arm and saying " Tattoo u ? "


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