When I first moved to West Hollywod, I expected to see (and meet, and date) celebrities all the time. But during my first two months, I saw only four., and only met (and sort of dated) one.
So when my friend Marcus invited me to a Labor Day pool party hosted by his film-producer housemate, visions of celebrity beefcake filled my head.
Sylvester Stallone and Lou Ferrigno sunbathe nude.
Harrison Ford in a speedo dives into the pool and splashes Steve Gutenberg.
Mel Gibson struts about in his bulgeworthy Mad Max leather chaps.
Besides I heard about West Hollywood parties, where the games involve penis size contests and the evening ends in the bedroom, with couples bringing in a third to "share." Maybe me and Harrison Ford and Steve Guttenberg!
Marcus' house was in the Hollywood Hills, only a few miles from my apartment in West Hollywood, but through a maze of narrow, curvy roads named after Greek gods: Hercules, Zeus, Venus, Achilles.
On the way up Laurel Canyon Boulevard, the car behind me decided that I was going too slow, and zoomed around. As it passed, I got a glimpse of the swishy queen in the passenger seat sneering at me.
It was Robin Williams (1951-2014), soon to become a comedy legend with starring roles in movies like Mrs. Doubtfire, The Fisher King, Hook, Aladdin, and Good Will Hunting.
In 1985 I knew him mostly as the effervescent fish-out-of-water Mork, an alien observer who misunderstood Earth customs and recited treacly morals on the tv show Mork and Mindy (1978-1982), but I had also seen him in Popeye (1980) and The World According to Garp (1982).
He was 34 years old, with rather homely face, but a thick, almost muscular frame and a fabulously fur-covered chest and belly.
I followed the car as it turned right onto Mount Olympus Drive, then Electra, then Achilles.
We were going to the same party! Robin was gay!
We pulled up to the valet parking station at the same time.
My jaw dropped: Robin's date was gorgeous! Mid-20s,tanned, Mediterranean features, v-shaped torso, massive shoulders, thick biceps.
"Hi, I'm Boomer!" I exclaimed.
"Pete," the date said with a friendly smile, shaking my hand vigorously. Robin ignored me and touched Pete's shoulder. "Could we go inside now?"
He shrugged. They disappeared inside the house.
Unfortunately, it turned out to be not a West Hollywood party after all. A lot of men and women standing around in the living room, drinking cocktails and wine spritzers.
A few minor celebrities: C. Thomas Howell (Red Dawn), Tom Hulce (Amadeus), Dean Paul Martin (Misfits of Science). With women.
I found Marcus out by the pool, where there was a more pleasant male-female ratio, plus hunks in swimsuits. "Hey, I thought this was a West Hollywood party! All groping and three-ways!"
He grinned. "It might get a little steamy later on, after the heteros leave."
"Great! There's still a chance I can make it with Robin Williams and his super-hot boy toy."
"Robin Williams brought a date? I knew he was gay, but I always figured he was too closeted to be seen with guys in public."
"Well, maybe he's coming out. And you should see the hunk he's snared!"
At that moment, Pete emerged onto the patio -- alone. Seeing my chance, I brought Marcus as an excuse to talk to him.
"We're in town for a week," he told us, "While Robin is appearing at the Comedy Store." So this wasn't their first date -- they were boyfriends. "I miss San Francisco, and my home gym. I can't wait to get back."
"I go to the Hollywood Spa. It's a nice facility...." I began.
"Sorry, it's noisy out here," Pete said, leaning close. I put my arm around his waist. Marcus found someone else he needed to say hello to, and vanished. "How's the free weight situation?"
Pete was cruising me while his boyfriend was in the other room? He must want to "share. "Excellent. I can get you a day pass, if you'd like to work out with me -- say tomorrow afternoon? Robin, too -- a lot of celebrities work out there."
"Sounds great. I'll have to check with the Boss, but I think we're free."
I laughed at his joke -- calling his partner The Boss!"
We had barely finished exchanging telephone numbers when Robin flounced onto the patio like a 1930s movie diva. "I'm all done here," he said curtly. "Let's go."
"I invited Pete to work out with me tomorrow," I said. "You're invited too, of course. And afterwards maybe we could have dinner...."
Followed by sharing!
Robin glared at me, no doubt upset at someone cruising his date. "Sorry, but I'm very busy. I'm working on some new material for my show tomorrow night." He pulled at Pete's arm. "Come on, we're done here."
Pete shot me a pained look and allowed himself to be led out.
We didn't work out together, but the next night Pete called and asked if I wanted to go cruising. We went to the Gold Coast, where we looked at the hot guys, talked about San Francisco -- surprisingly, he didn't say much about Robin, except that they had been together for less than a year. We drank orange juice, kissed, and groped.
Then I followed Pete to a house on Crestview Street where all of the out-of-town performers at the Comedy Store stay.
We sat on the couch, and Pete pushed my hand down onto the bulge in his jeans. He was already aroused.
Shouldn't we wait for Robin to get here? "What about Robin...." I murmured.
"Oh, he doesn't mind," Pete said, unzipping. His Kielbasa+, uncut, sprang to life. I wrapped my hand around the shaft.
I started going down on him. He leaned back and spread his legs and mussed my hair. "That's good -- great."
I worked feverishly, expecting the door to open at any moment and an irate boyfriend to come bursting in. Soon Pete spurted down my throat with a very loud "Yeah!", then moved me to the floor to go down on me. But I wasn't able to stay aroused. Eventually he switched to using his hand while we kissed.
When I finished, I tried to lead Pete into the bedroom, but he said "Robin will be back soon, so you'd better go."
What about sharing? "Go? Wait -- I thought..."
"But it's been great! We're heading back to San Francisco tomorrow, but keep in touch. Maybe you can come up and visit sometime."
"That would be fun." I walked out of the house feeling guilty, unclean. This was not sharing. Closeted celebrity or not, I had helped Pete cheat on his boyfriend.
I didn't call Pete in San Francisco, and I didn't make up a "sharing" experience to tell at West Hollywood parties. I didn't want anything more to do with the sordid affair.
Was Robin Williams Gay?
In September 1985, Robin Williams was married to Valerie Valardi, with a two year old son, Zachary. He would marry twice more during his life.
One would expect that, with that gay-positive background, Robin would be open about being bisexual, but he always insisted that he was 100% into the ladies. He never even considered having a same-sex experience.
So, if Pete wasn't a boyfriend, who was he?
Maybe a personal assistant or a bodyguard? He never claimed that they were boyfriends, and he did call Robin "the boss."
By the way, in case you want to see it, here's Robin's penis, from The World's Greatest Dad (2009). There may have been some shrinkage.
See also: Michael J. Fox Beneath the Belt; and The World According to Mork