It’s ten a.m. on the first day of a new year. The Miami sun’s
blazing—and the boys are lined up along Washington Avenue: to head
Genesis IV. “Should we go in? Is it gonna
be good?” two guys ask us. Better than good—and definitely one of
the few reasons to leave such a beautiful day outside.
pounding all through the red-swathed lobby. We slip into the Main
Room just as “And I’m Telling You (I’m Not Going)” is working the
crowd. “You’re gonna love me”—indeed. Not to worry,
Tracy—we do, we already do.
Ciggy in hand,
Tracy’s at the room’s far end, high above
the crowded floor like St. Peter at the gate. Flanked by two
massive illuminated golden frames, she’s pumping her arms, working
that smile. Girl loves her boyz right back.
Mansion is a roomful of history, starting
from its days as an Art Deco movie palace. And then those legendary
years with Abel at the helm when the club was known the world over
as Paragon, before its incarnation as GlamSlam when Prince took it
over, and then the years as Level, and also as Club 1235—and now
Mansion with its immense pink Swarovski
chandeliers and the oversized silver urns, overflowing with white
roses. White roses by the score and giltwood frames and crystal
sconces. This is Hugh Hefner’s South Beach Playboy Mansion.
Ivy-covered palazzo archways in white stone and gas lanterns and
candlelight. Burgundy settees and leather couches. And all around
us there’s the sense of romance of being at a party that, day or
night, never ends.
and not only on the floor. The mezzanines and landings are packed
and nearly impassable. It’s “World, Hold On.” We’re partying to
show the world it’s so much better like this. Better to love and
have fun, better to tolerate and accept. Three hotties in dark
shades and black tees ask the bartender to take their photo. Smile
and look pretty. We was here. We was partying. We was partying at
Andre. Fresh out of college, he’s only been on the sandbar for
eight months. And this, this party— “It’s my first morning party,”
he says excitedly. “I worked all night so I could come to
today.” He has the fresh-voiced joy of someone still learning the
scene. Twenty-two years young, he’s ever-enthusiastic. Bottle it
now, sweet boy, and hold it close forever.
Tracy’s doing “Can We Get Together?”
Uh,huh. Fine by us. We’re watching two boys on a box lick each
other all over. Delicious, delovely. Such smooth skin, such
camera-savvy attitude. And then
Tracy’s mixing in “Ladies with an
attitude, let’s get to it,” a sentiment which takes on newer meaning
in a room filled with circuit boyz.
We’re a roomful
of nonviolent offenders. “We Dance for Freedom”—which
Tracy mixes in for us with a bouncing
bobbing bass. It’s perfect for marching into the new year, 2007.
We watch a fan
dancer on a box—which reminds us of New Year’s Day parties at
Amnesia, and the long South Beach tradition of New Year’s Day
parties. Daylong affairs, they used to be thrown by Craig and the
Boys at the beautiful indoor/outdoor space known as Amnesia—and now,
Mike Mazer has taken the baton, upholding
the tradition with his daylong
Genesis parties. It’s a lot of work and
he tells us he’ll be happy when it’s tomorrow, but for now, he
needn’t worry: this party is happening and the roomful of hot and
sexy people could hardly be happier.
Tracy leads us into Christina’s “Hurt.”
The perfect end-of-Act-One number. The song the boyz want to hear.
A little lesbian circuit boy drama, with the lyrics’ implicit
promises to be better: less slutty in the new year. Ha, not
hardly—but it sends us all into intermission with a big optimistic
Which, for us, means
it’s time for a quick cab ride home—to get rid of the cameras. At
last. And how nice to be at a party with in-and-out privileges.
You can leave with your hottie boy and “do your bidness.” Put your
junk in a box—and unwrap it, or head to the ocean for a quick ride
over the waves, or a powder of the nose, a change of outfit, a
smoothie—and then, snap, just like that, you’re back for Act Two.
Back into the
flashing darkness, where
Tracy’s working “Be Without You” and “That
Sound” and “Second to None.” Songs which drive us to the floor and
keep us there. She punctuates them with lesbian interludes. Those
moments of romance when you cat stretch your body. Send your arms
upward to work out the kinks. And then we’re off again. Getting
ready for the performance. “There’s a performer? Who is it?”
someone asks us. “Clueless,” Robert answers. “Clueless? Who’s
that?” Never mind.
Her name is
Amuka. She sings “I Want More” and
“Appreciate Me”—which she might’ve sung to us a cappella if
she’d just heard that little exchange. Girl is looking good in a
boat-sized feathered hat and Vivienne Westwood plaid mini, with
boots. And she’s got stage presence. She knows her job. And right
before she sings her biggest hit, she says, with what feels like
complete sincerity, “You guys— I just want you to have the BEST
year ever. This is your year. 2007 is YOUR year.”
It’s just what
we want—and need to hear. And girl, we do appreciate you. And
listening to her sing, we remember the time
Manny played that song at the old
Salvation, back when it was first popular (about a lifetime ago),
and when a spotlight shone on his booth, a whole room started
applauding him—and he pretended to protest, a big old smile on his
We head back into the
living room/lounge where circuit boys are scattered around on the
sofas and banquettes. These South Beach circuit boyz with their
shades and their perfect pecs, their long lean torsos, their tight
bubble butts—they’re the Playboy Bunnies of our time. They’re
littered around the lounge, lying in various states of repose, while
above them, on the walls are reproductions of Old Masters in
giltwood frames. Their antecedents from the halls of Versailles and
the days of the Sun King when pleasure was paramount. These boyz are
stretched long and luscious while
Tracy plays “Cradle Me.” You
know, “eight letters, three words, rarely ever heard.” Not in this
crowd, they aren’t: I love you, I love you, I love you—and you, and
you, and you. We do, we do, we really do.
Oh, let the straights have their Bowl
games on New Year’s Day. We’ll take our parties. Our New Year’s
Day parties on the Beach, and in New York, and out in LA. Circuit
parties with a purpose: to get the new year started right and to
show the world how it’s done. “Let the Music Lift You Up,” and let
love rule. Our mantra for the new year. Here’s to a year which
finds more of the world dancing to a good beat.