By Jeff Walsh
When I was first trying to come out, the images of ACT-UP scared the hell out of me. Angry gay men in New York City were not the warm embrace I needed to bring me out of the closet. Once I was out, though, I wanted to learn everything about what had happened, so I turned to other journalists. My heroes as I exited the closet were Larry Kramer and Michelangelo Signorile, who both wrote for The Advocate at the time. I spoke with Signorile several times on the phone when I first came out, usually dreaming up some dumb journalistic reason to justify the call (since I was a newspaper reporter at the time). And the first specifically gay play I saw was when Larry Kramer's "The Destiny of Me" opened in the Village, and I dragged my straight friend, John, to see it. It was the sequel to Kramer's "The Normal Heart," which was about the early days of the AIDS Epidemic in the gay community.