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Transcript of interview with Christie Young by Dennis McBride, October 18, 1998


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I've known Christie Young for many years and was grateful she agreed to be interviewed for the Las Vegas Gay Archives Oral History Project. Not only is she frank in what she says, but her background as a researcher in sexual issues and as a straight woman involved in the gay community give her a unique perspective. Ancillary to her donation of this interview transcript to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Christie has generously donated her personal journals which detail more than a decade of her life including the years she worked with Las Vegas's gay community . Christie shares the project's concern that documentation of the gay community is ephemeral and vanishes rapidly; her determination that her contribution to that community be preserved greatly enriches our knowledge and will benefit future scholars.

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Young, Christie Interview, 1998 October 18. OH-02043. [Transcript.] Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Las Vegas, Nevada.


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I 1 I I1 This volume was bound in the UNLV Libraries Preservation/Conservation Laboratory /-I A 06~^ Ul5el I rw An Oral History Interview with Christie Young 1998 A c k n o w l e d g m e n t s I've known Christie Young for many years and was grateful she agreed to be interviewed for the Las Vegas Gay Archives Oral History Project. Not only is she frank in what she says, but her background as a researcher in sexual issues and as a straight woman involved in the gay community give her a unique perspective. Ancillary to her donation of this interview transcript to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, Christie has generously donated her personal journals which detail more than a decade of her life including the years she worked with Las Vegas's gay community . Christie shares the project's concern that documentation of the gay community is ephemeral and vanishes rapidly; her determination that her contribution to that community be preserved greatly enriches our knowledge and will benefit future scholars. * * % n• • Christie Young at Thomas Mountain, CA May 28, 1995 [photo courtesy of Christie Young] Las Vegas Gay Archives Oral History Project Interview with Christie Young conducted by Dennis McBride October 18, 1998 This is Dennis McBride unci I m sitting down with my friend of many, many centuries, Christie Young. We're in the basement of the Boulder Dam Hotel which is where I do my work for the Boulder City/Hoover Dam Museum. The historical work I'm doing today with Christie, though, has nothing at all to do with Hoover Dam and Boulder City. This has to do with my gay projects. Today is Sunday, October 18, 1998, 12:05 p.m. Briefly, I want to talk about your background. Will you tell me when you were born and where you were born? My name is Christie Alice Young. My Alice comes from being named after both my grandmothers. Both their first names were Alice. I was born in Reno, Nevada, St. Mary's Hospital, July 12, 1956, when Reno was still a very small town. You know, downtown, when you see those old pictures from the '50s where they used to park diagonally and they had the old arch over [Virginia Street]. I remember that as a kid, and the train tracks. The arch is over in Paradise Pond [now]. So, yes, I'm a native Nevadan. I was predominantly raised in Reno. Most of my schooling, when you see all my paperwork and documentation will show that I was schooled in Reno. How e\ er, my parents divorced when I was 7. It was not a traumatic thing. It was actually a good thing. I mean, my parents divorced as friends, so we never went through the problems of a divorced family. In fact, we always thought, my sister and I, my full-blooded one, that we were always lucky because we had two Chnstmases and two birthdays and two Easters and everybody else just had one! [laughs] We had more family, is what it came down to, because they never fought or anything like that. But, anyway, my mother decided to .... And this was after her stroke. She had a stroke when I was 10 years old. Describe her stroke. What happened? I was at school so I wasn't there when it actually happened. I came home and my mother wasn't there and the woman—who I can best describe as a nanny, is the only word I can use—she was a live in baby-sitter for us—she said my mother was in the hospital, they didn't know if she was gonna make it. She was given her last rites. The way the nanny—her name was Milda Gardner and she was from Finland, she was Old Country. She came to our family when I was 4 and my sister, Keri, was 1 and we were living on Bell Street up in Reno. I remember my mother was vacuuming when [Milda] first came in the door. She was a short woman, but the old European. I even once saw her letters she wrote to her sister back in Finland and all I remember about the Finnish language is they had big words! Long words. But she was bi-lingual, still had an accent. And, of course, we got to know her family here because she did have children. But anyway, Milda described to me my mother's stroke. [It] was an accidental kind, not a congenital kind. She just said that my mother slipped in the bathroom and on her way down hit everything. You know, the sink, the tub, whatever. It hit the back of her head predominantly which left her completely paralyzed on her left side. When she did come out of it ... . I mean, she didn't die but she was very, very close to death. Like I say, they did give her the last rites. When she came home—which I don't know what the time frame was. It had to have been a couple of weeks I would think. She was a vegetable. She used to be a very vibrant woman. There are photos of her singing with the Harold's Club employees' ... . Not the Glee Club. I forget what they called themselves. But my aunt Jeanette [King] was in it as well, and my mother, and her half brother, Ralph, my uncle Ralph. My mother and her brother both sang. I heard Ralph had a beautiful, beautiful voice. 1 never did hear him sing. My mother's voice I can't remember because, of course, she has not spoken since [her stroke]. She does have a gutteral kind of a speech because her left side being paralyzed also paralv zed her tongue, so that's why she cannot talk. And that's why she drools, you know, constantly. Even to this day. She has gained some mobility in her leg in that she wcaalkn, you know, on her own, but she does get tired and it'll drag. But at first, when she first came home, it did nothing but drag and she had to go to ph> sical therapv to ev en get her foot to be flat. Because we pick it up, if there's nothing there, it'll just hang, [gestures a hanging foot] So they had to correct that. And her left arm would just droop. We moved from middle class White Suburbia, literally, to the Projects. Projects? Government housing on the other side of town. I was like 10 years old, fifth grade. I managed to finish the fifth grade up in White Suburbia. That was in Mamie Towles Elementary School [then] I moved over to Glen Duncan [for sixth grade] where I ran into people of other colors. Literally. I mean, before, in White Suburbia, the only Black person I ever saw was the janitor, you know. Then you move over to gov ernment housing—the government housing was predominantly White, but the neighborhood we were in and the schools we had to go to had all the Blacks, all the Hispanics, all the Native Americans. 'Course, we didn't call 'em that back then. We had names .... I'm using the politically correct terms. What did you call them then? What were the politically incorrect terms? Blacks were known as Blacks, though my father was kind of prejudiced and would call 'em niggers which I found offensive when I did go to live with him when I was 14. Because I found prejudice was just that, because I could see the opposite. I mean, I was going to school with these people. Whether they were niggers or spies or whatever kind of terminology they wanted to use 1 knew them as friends. It was very socially expanding in that way. So I lived with my mother up until I was 14 and we were in the government housing. It was not easy for me to cope with my mother's stroke. I was the oldest. I had a sister, Keri, and my mother had a son with another husband—my brother's name is Blaine Dennis from a man named Don Dennis who was a ski instructor at Mt. Rose, but she met him at the Harold's Club. But, no, I don't ski. Coming from Reno, that's a big shocker. Everybody here asks me, "You must ski." And I say, "No, I don t. [laughs] And, yes, I have done it because my stepfather was an instructor at Mt. Rose. I ve been there, I don't like to ski, I don't like to freeze. But I do like to swim and I've always been known as a water baby. Den to this day my aunt Jeanette remembers times when they took us kids out to Lahontan [Reservoir], [Lake] Tahoe, the Bowers Mansion. They weren't afraid of me drowning because of m> fat. I was born the biggest kid at 8 pounds. There were eventually six siblings in m\ family. I m the oldest and I'm 15 years older than the youngest. Your economic level fell when you moved to the government housing. Oh, absolutely. What kind of life did you lead, then, in the Projects? It was difficult. Part of it was the difficulty in dealing with my mother. And a lot of times, I think people whose parents die actually have it better. Because my mother didn't die but she was a vegetable. And because I was the oldest child, even at 10, I had to grow up. Because I understood her [speech] the most. She had to do a lot of writing. But a lot of times verbally I could understand her gutterals. But I became her mouthpiece to the adult world so I had to live in the adult world by the time I was 11. Whether that was bill collectors. One of her biggest lies—and I really resented having to lie because I grew up partially Catholic, you know, "Thou shalt not lie." And I understood why, too—because it would come back on you. But, you know, here I was a child and she was forcing me to lie to people, you know, saying she was deaf, for instance, and that was why she couldn't talk. Was it because she was embarrassed? Yes. And the drooling and everything else. She's the adult, I'm a kid—why do they have to deal with this kid? They were having to go through me in order to understand her. I was literally a translator. And if you've ever been with deaf people or people with different languages, going through a translator's kind of difficult because you don't even know who to pay attention to. Do you pay attention to the translator or do you pay attention to your subject? A lot of people don t know how to handle that. So it was difficult in that way and for me personally because I was exposed to the adult world very early and literally had to grow up in six months. Hon did it affect you socially? As a child, what did you miss out on? An adolescence. I mean, I did not have an adolescent period whatsoever. For instance, I was 10 years old. My menarche was when I was 11. Menarche? Mv first period. It s an anthropological term, used universally. Menarche is usually the dividing line in any culture for a woman between childhood and adulthood. Which is why in many cultures there are male initiation rites. Females usually don't have initiation rites because their initiation is their menarche. Now they're able to bear children. Yours came at 11? Yes. Was there was a biological reason it was early or was there an emotional reason as well? I don't know. I think I'm the earliest of the females in my family to begin. I actually remember the day of my menarche because it was my stepmother's birthday. It was April 6. Technically speaking I was 10-and-a-half. I didn't turn 11 until that July. I was playing hopscotch and it felt like I had to go to the bathroom and there was blood. So I told my mother and she just went and got a pad and that was it. Because we had that kind of education in fourth grade, you know, I knew what it was. There was no big trauma as far as that was concerned. Where the difficulty came in [was] in having to deal with the adult world and my mother's stroke and I wasn't willing to accept the fact that I was growing up. I would go to school without wearing the pads and I would come home with bloody dresses and everything else. It was just very difficult to deal with your illusions about your parents being shattered. Because a lot of people put their parents on pedestals. Now, I was growing up, the body and everything else. And now I was a White woman in a school of Black boys. So I not only understood at that age being a female having males look at me, but Black males looked at you because of your skin color. And that bothered me a lot. Because it's like, OK, I'm a female, I understand that attraction. But don't look at me because of my skin color. Because the Black boys would try to get White girls before they would Black girls. Why? Because White women were on a higher pedestal. Even in our social culture White women are the epitome of beauty and attainment. Black women aren't. Even in the Black culture Spike Lee did a movie about this—paler Blacks, especially females, are on a higher strata than the very, very Black females with the big wide noses and the big rears and everything else. They're on the bottom of the desirability and acceptability scale. Is it still that way today, do you think, to the same ? Because it's being expressed I think there's more of an awareness of it but I don't think there's been an alteration, unfortunately. I mean, yes, we now have, say, for instance, Black playmates in Playboy. But they're not the same number as blond females. Blond White females. Blond White females, yeah. And that's being exported around the world. American culture. American culture. And American culture is the blue-eyed, blond female. Did it embarrass you that these Black boys in school were staring at you because you were White? Did you understand on that level that that was why they were staring? Yeah. How did you react? I didn't date any. Why? Well, the first place, I wasn't attracted to 'em. I've always had a thing for Caucasian males, not males of other races. I did at one point actually kiss a Black boy. I don't know how old he was. Slightly older than me. And I found it was different but not my thing. I won't say distasteful per se. It was just ... . Didn't do anything for me. The feel of their skin's a little bit different... . How did the boys deal with your stand-offishness? I've been shy, always, through school. In fact, I was shyest in my high school senior class. I'm in the yearbook as such, too. And because also at that time, too— I'm a red head. I was a red head with freckles, buck teeth, the whole thing. I had even strangers literally come up to me and say, "What a dog!" to my face. So part of it was the shyness, you know. [But] I actually thought people who called me a dog were even uglier than me! [laughs] I think I understood the hormonal aspect of it. The social aspect of it ... . "Yeah, this is the social aspect but I don't even want to deal with it. Because why? Why bother?" Of course, I was attracted and had my crushes on males and that kind of thing. It was after my menarche I became more aware of it. It happened when I was near 10 that I started thinking of men together. And, of course, this was before I even knew there was such a thing as homosexuals, but that's where it began. Right around this whole period—my mother's stroke, the change in our social status, the change in schools, even the racial thing, and now the sexual budding and everything else. This all happened within this two-,three-, four-year period. Hang on to that thought about guys together because that's a specific question I want to ask later. But it sounds like on several different levels you were already an outsider by the time you were 12 years old. Oh, absolutely. And even by the time I was 12 1 would have lots of people come up and say I'm very mature for my age. And that was a term that stuck to me until I was in my early 20s. But, yes. Friends of my mother's, friends of my parents' ... . Even my parents. I was with my mother from when I was born and living predominantly with her until I was 14. And that's when my mother decided to move down here to Las Vegas. And she also wanted to separate my sister and I. Part of my coping with all of this was I would escape into school and into the radio. Rock music. Would kind of help me through. I didn't escape into drugs, alcohol, or anything else. My escape, like I say, was books and music. And I was an A student. My sister was not. She was more B, which is excellent, really. This is Kerf? Yeah, this is Keri. But [my mother] wanted to separate my sister and I also because she didn't want Keri to have to follow in my footsteps. So when she decided to move down here to Las Vegas she and my father decided that I could stay up in Reno and finish my schooling up there because I was already in Trainer Junior High School and then I would move on up to [Proctor] Hug High School. So I went to go live with my father. And my father did in the meantime re-marry to Joan Oxendine, was her maiden name. Joni. She was the older of a fraternal twin. Her sister was Jeanie. And, in fact, her father was a great builder. He did pan of the building for the Stein Ranch. In fact, when I was a kid and I actually toured the Stein Ranch I said, "You know, my stepmother's father helped build, like, this spiral staircase." I didn't know him by name to even tell them what his name was. But anyway at 14 I went to go live with my father and the neighborhood he was in was predominantly White, out of the Projects. But while I was up in Reno I also came down here [to Las Vegas] during any kind of vacation from school. Summer vacation, Christmas vacation I would be on the Greyhound bus, that long trek, all the stops in between and everything else at least twice a year. To come down here and stay with my mother. So I've seen Vegas grow since 1969 when they moved down here. So sou ewn erent tirely unfamiliar with Vegas by the time you moved here yourself. Oh, no. I was familiar with Vegas. I remember when we would go to friends' houses and they had swamp coolers. I mean, air conditioners, that was a fancy house when you had an air conditioner. It was quite a contrast down here, too, [from Reno] with the summers. I really liked the summer nights [in Las Vegas] because it was so warm. I've always had a tendency to freeze. In retrospect it seems kind of strange to spend your winters in Reno and your summers in Vegas. Kind of schizo. You moved in with your father and his wife when you were 14, went on through high school, graduated up there and went to university? Yes. I went to the University of Nevada, Reno. I graduated high school in 1974. B\ that time my father had already divorced Joni, his second wife. And they had two children, by the way. And being quite a bit older than four of my siblings, I was a built-in baby-sitter. Being first-born is good for something. The detriment to that, of course, is my siblings would talk back at me saying, "Well, I don't have to do what you tell me to do because you're not my parent." But, yes, I have lived with all of my siblings, even though I have [only] one full-blood sibling and the rest are all halves, I do consider them my siblings. In fact, I have changed their diapers, I have helped raise them. I have been through the childhood thing, or I should say the motherhood thing, before I was 18. Are these actual half-brothers and sisters? Not adopted? No. Blood. I'm first and then Keri was born in '59. Same mother and father. Mother had Blaine in '64 with Don Dennis. My father had Gerald Joseph. Now, [my father and Gerald] have the same name but my father does not have a middle name. He's legally just Gerald Young. He used his baptismal name as a middle name if it was necessary, so that's why there's no junior, senior, or II, with my brother because his name is Gerald Joseph Young. And he was born in '65. Then came Jeannie also with my father and Joni. She was born in '67. And then my mother, years later, actually was not married to Eddie's father. But my youngest brother, Edward Vodopich, was born in 1971 down here in Vegas. He was the sibling that a couple of years ago married a Black woman. He was the only one born here in Vegas. All the rest of us were born in Reno. In fact, all at St. Mary's Hospital. So I have lived with all of my siblings and been through the different stages [with them] from infancy to almost teenage years. Teenage years with my sister because she came to live with my father when 1 was going to UNR. What was your field of study at UNK? I have to go back a little bit. I had to give up music. When I was in the sixth grade 1 wanted to do music. I really loved it. I wanted to play drums. But they didn't allow women to play drums back then. They? The school. Women just didn't play 'em. So I got stuck on the clarinet. But this was also the time when I got braces to correct my overbite. It looked like I had buck teeth but I had to have the rope cut out. Rope? The piece of skin that holds your upper lip to your gum. Why do you have to have that cut out1 Because it split my two front teeth so they had to cut it out so my teeth would go together. Everybody has one but some people have it more predominantly. But because I had the overbite I couldn't play the clarinet, so they put me on alto saxfophone]. Well, I stuck out with the alto sax for three quarters of the school year even though I didn't like it. It was just not me. And so when I went to junior high school I was faced with the decision. You know, I really was getting into the sciences. I started that back in the fifth grade, in Mamie Towles, when I was still in the predominantly White neighborhood. Our fifth grade teacher was the librarian and I got interested in books and reading. I got into all the natural things—the dinosaurs and biology books and all that kind of stuff—so I was already starting to get my interest in the sciences. But I recognized, too, going into the sciences, I had a choice: sciences or music. And to me, if music meant playing the saxophone I just couldn't do it. So I gave up music and devoted [myself] completely to the sciences. So from seventh grade through my first year at UNR my major was biology. So I took biology, chemistry, physics, mathematics and I still excelled. I was still an A student. I would have to say that my predominant interest was biology. And then when I got to UNR it was my first declared major. Again, I was taking all the prerequisites, the biology and lab, the chemistry and lab. Mathematics was the other regret I had. The only mathematics I had was up to high school trig[onometry]. When I got to university my schedule was just so crowded I could not fit in calculus. It just literally wouldn't fit in. Because at the time I was going to UNR I was putting myself through school. I had to work. And my first job was [at] McDonald's. That lasted three years and to this day it's the most exhausting job I've ever had. I mean, you are so dead tired you could be starving to death but you would rather sleep. You'd go to bed literally hungry because you're just too exhausted. I didn't realize university was different from high school. I had a full schedule. I was taking seventeen, eighteen credits my first semester and working full time. And I was pregnant. The guy was a year younger than me. He was a junior in high school and he became very possessive so I broke up with him. It was after I broke up with him that I found out that I was pregnant. So I had all this going on! [laughs] Some things had to go. I did have an abortion. This was a year after Roe vs Wade, in '74, so I could get a legal abortion. Where did you go for it? Washoe [Medical Center]. My father was dating and he was dating a German woman at the time and she was very, very helpful. Because I first broke the news to her and she said, "I will be there when you have to tell your father." Because, you know, my father's extremely conservative. And big! And big. Six foot, two hundred [pounds], can bench press 320. "Daddy, I'm pregnanti" Yeah, exactly. Because I was going to UNR I was the first in generations of my family to even go to university. To me, at the time, that was the most important because I knew I didn't have looks, having people tell me I'm ugly. A couple of times there were people in high school said I was kind of cute when I tried out for, like, the dance team or something. And I didn't make it. But I knew I wanted to go on. I really enjoyed learning. I really enjoyed schooling. I also had to realize that being pregnant... . My biggest thing was it wouldn't be fair to the child. I mean, I was just in no position financially, emotionally, situationally, to raise a child on my own. Going back with the child's father would be out of the question. I mean, he was extremely immature, very possessive. Of course, I did have to go back and tell him. But with Irene, my father's girlfriend at the time and having to sit down at the table and tell my father ... . And actually flaughs]—you know how we build up these big walls about how such a situation would be, it was a whole lot easier than I imagined. But [Irene] did say, "You will have to tell him." Which was very good. She was from Germany and she understood how to handle these situations. And I did and he just basically said, "What have you decided to do?" And I said, "I would like to get an abortion." He said, "Well, then that's it. That's the end of the subject. So I guess in a sense he supported that answer. And with Irene, because she was also working at the casinos, many adult women had gone through this for years and years and years. So she knew the System and what to do and how to go around it. So I did end up having the System pay for the abortion—which at that time was only $300—so that I wouldn't have to pay anything out of pocket. Because, again, I was only making $2 an hour at McDonald's so I couldn't pay for it myself and still pay for my schooling. And so on. You had no emotional or moral or ethical problems with having an abortion1 Did you even go through that kind of interior Slightly, of course. I think every woman does. I didn't feel pregnant, per se. It wasn't like I was showing. The changes in my body didn't happen until just before the abortion, as a matter of fact, other than that I didn't have my period. And, of course, I had an argument with the doctor. I was going to Planned Parenthood, or went to Planned Parenthood to get the confirmation [of my pregnancy]. And my normal [menstrual] cycle was every twenty-one days, not every twenty-eight. In other words, the normal cycle is that you have three weeks, twenty-one days of normal, of non-period, and then you slough off the material for seven days and thej call it a twenty-eight day cycle. Well, mine was two weeks, period, two weeks, period, so, I mean, there were times when I had a period twice a month. And this had been happening since I started my periods. I mean, even my grandmother was amazed that I wasn't anemic. I was actually never tested for it, technically, speaking. I wasn't tested for my thyroid, either. When I was growing up I could literally eat everybody under the table except for my father. I mean, I could eat huge quantities of food and not gain weight. I was just burning it for some reason. Well, when I got pregnant, to me, you know, I missed my period so this would have been under the twenty-eight day cycle and the doctor said, "You can't be pregnant yet. You have to come back." And I said, "Wait a minute. Yes, I am, because my normal cycle is da-da-da-da-da." So he added two weeks onto the term of my pregnane} than what really should have been. So on the certificate or whatever I think he said the abortion happened at ten weeks or twelve weeks or something like that. In actuality it wasn't as long as that. The only physical reaction was that before the abortion I lost fifteen pounds in five days. And when I went to have . They have to insert the dilators in your cervix to open you up—I had the vacuum-type abortion. [Ihe doctor] said I would have had problems giving birth because I have a narrow pelvis. I was not built for having kids. And I was always on the fence, at best, about having kids. I didn't really know if I wanted 'em or not. I just didn't know. So at the time, you know, having the abortion was basically the only option. And, like I say, it wasn't gonna be fair to the kid. I also had to look at it physically: I didn't know if I was even going to make it through the pregnancy to even give [the child] up for adoption. It could have killed me, quite literally. When I went in for the abortion on a Saturday I was under anesthesia so when 1 came back home I literally didn't get out of bed for three days because I was just so groggy. When I finally got up on Tuesday and weighed myself my weight was all gained back. And I went back to the doctor the following Friday for the follow-up and he said, "Your weight's got to quit going up and down like a yo-yo." And I just sat there and thought, 'What do you think happened here?" I wanted to hit 'im up side of the head. It was the pregnancy. I mean, obviously. The fetus wasn't doing great things for my body. It manyo t have been a viable fetus. Yeah. I very easily could have had a miscarriage. Like I say, I don't even know if I could have carried to term. It either could have killed me or... . I don't even think it would have gone to a still-born. Probably a miscarriage before it went five months. So getting rid of the fetus I also cut back at work to working just the weekends. M\ first semester I did carry out the full schedule and 1 only ended up with Cs. Going irom an A student to a C student, that was quite a shock. Ibe following semester 1 ended up taking fifteen credits, but thereafter it was only twelve. I was just spreading myself too thin. So m\ first \ear |at UNR) I was a biology major, ibe second year, because of the Cs and everything, it just didn't seem comfortable, so I went undeclared. But also my second year at UNR 1 took my very first anthro|pology] class. And I said, "This is it." So my third year I did declare anthro. Anthropology. And that's why 1 e\entuall\ did get my bachelor's degree in anthropology, predominantly cultural anthropology although at a bachelor's level they really don't distinguish that. Because at the bachelor's level you have to take all four divisions of anthropology. You have to take cultural, physical, linguistics, and archeology. Yes, I did a whole lot better. I eventually ended up with a B average overall, GPA, when 1 graduated. Three-something-or-other I had as a GPA. And 1 really enjoyed the learning experience and everything. It really broadened my mind. For somebody being raised in Nevada we don't realize how different a culture we're raised in. Until, say, for instance, we'd go see my mother's parents, her foster parents, in San Francisco. I remember walking into a grocery store and I say, "Yeah, there's the food, there's the cash register, but where's the slot machines? Phis isn't a grocery store. There's no slot machines." [laughs] Or like in college when you start reading about other cultures and the way other people in the United States think and how prostitution is this big, ugly thing and we're, like, "Heuvhi?l" I'm raised a fifteen-minute cab ride from the Mustang |Ranch|, the world's most famous brothel. 'Gause even like when Jeanette became a minister and people asked her, "Weren't you afraid of the prostitutes?" "No! My daughter was safe to walk the streets of Reno." Literally. Because we didn't have that problem [i. e., street prostitution! in downtown Reno. It was a problem here in Vegas because the nearest brothel was about an hour drive away. And that was a political problem. Yes. Social problem—even growing up 1 never understood why the guys would pay for sex. I still don't in a sense. But it was just there. I didn't even think of it as an evil. I grew up with gambling. A lot of people think that's an evil. My parents wouldn't have met if it wasn't for gambling because that's where they worked. Like I say, it wasn't until I hit college and became exposed to other societies and other cultures, especially through anthropology, how differently I was raised. At the time I just thought it [gambling and prostitution] was normal. I thought it was normal that we were up for twenty-four hours. And if you wanted to go out and go to the grocery store [in the middle of the night] it was no big deal. When I went to go visit people in California and, like, bars closed, I thought it was freaky. I'm like, "What are you doing?"We're closing the bar." "What?" And that was my first time I heard [about] blue laws, was in college. And I said, "Blue laws? What in the world's a blue law?" "Oh, you can only get liquor at certain establishments on certain days." And I'm like, "You have to be [ ] Anthropology, like I say, expanded my mind. It really was a first opening to just a whole bunch of things. Your interest in human sexuality—did that come as part of your training in anthropology at UNR or was that more of a