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Volume 35
Issue 07
 
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Seattle Gay History: The beautiful people
Seattle Gay History: The beautiful people
In the 1950s and 1960s, the Seattle Gay community was so small that any beautiful person stood out like someone out of a romantic Gay novel where everything was perfect and everlasting. Jack Grandall, superstar, was in the stratosphere of Tad Hunter and Troy Donahue. Andy Warhol would have loved him. When he walked into a room, all eyes were upon him. He had the kind of stunning looks that either turned you off or made you want to put a halo over his head. Jack had a gorgeous, model's face, beautiful smile, perfect teeth, a full head of hair, and jade green eyes.

He was always immaculately dressed in a conservative GQ manner over a golden surfer's tan and a well-kept body to match, even into his 60s. Like a zen garden, not a leaf or a rock out of place. He loved Black guys.

Issac Monroe, who was another of the beautiful people, once tricked with Jack. "His condo was straight out of Interiors magazine. Everything glistened; you could eat off the floor! His towels were carefully folded and his clothes and shoes lined up and stored in military precision. When it came time for sex, I could not perform because everything was just too perfect," he said

Legendary Pike Street Tavern owner, the infamous 1960s party giver Bill Parkin who still remembers everyone on the planet, it seams, said about Grandall: "When someone spent the night with Jack, he'd be out of bed before his trick woke up so he could look just the way his trick saw him the night before. Jack was a giggle, a lot of fun. He was smart and had a good sense of humor. He didn't patronize the Pike Street tavern very much, he schmoozed with the older elite crowd and hung out at the piss elegant places like the Marine Room, Mocambo and the Captain's Room. Jack was their beautiful blond god. He was an early jet setter, flying with his rich friends to Palm Springs, Hawaii and Mexico. Jack knew of course that he had killer looks and people do treat very attractive people like royalty. They do what anyone else would do by responding to his good looks, but Jack was not a snob. He was a nice guy but he had a sharp edge if someone got out of line. He could put anyone in their place by a look or a tone of voice. I never saw him lose it. The only cutting remark about him was, 'Here comes that Mantan queen,' referring to his use of the 1960s liquid tanning agent."

Jack had a pretty normal upbringing, though he was raised by relatives when his mother (unbelievably named) Blanche Dubois died when he was young. That must have taken its toll but it also gave Jack a strong sense of autonomy. Jack had a successful midlevel management position at Boeing Aircraft Company. He was "well loved in his life," according to Greg Kucera, who was his boyfriend in the 1970s. Jack was very Dorian Gray about his looks and destroyed all his early photographs because he felt he 'didn't look that way anymore.' Still he was handsome, fit and well groomed even into his later life. And, in certain circles, he's still talked about -- even nearly a decade since his death.

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