Tuesday, May 29, 2007

No more skin in the South End

Just two days after learning that I can’t get cannolis in Davis Square, I discovered today that skin flicks are no longer welcome in the South End. Bay Windows reports that the Movie Place is closing after two decades, leaving Tremont Street virtually bereft of queer commerce. According to the article by Linda Rodriguez, videostore owner Mark Adams feels that the neighborhood has become too straight and too family-oriented to stay. (“Though [Adams] says he never heard complaints directly about his business, which sometimes featured gay-themed pornographic magazines in the window, he did say that through the neighborhood grapevine, he understood that some neighbors were not pleased with the business.”) The last purchase I made at the Movie Place was a couple of years ago, for a catalogue of porn videos. (I find that the plot descriptions provide hours of amusement on a cold winter nights, without bothering roommates or neighbors.) Adams made a valiant effort to keep the rainbow flag hanging in the South End for years after the area’s only gay bookstore, We Think the World of You, closed. But it didn’t help that the Marquis de Sade — let’s just call it a purveyor of bedroom sundries — also abandoned the South End, moving to the Leather District. Of course, this is one less advertiser for the local gay press, but Bay Windows may get by without it. I counted four ads in the current issue from businesses touting their South End locations: a massage therapist and three psychotherapists. Maybe they specialize in the feeling that your neighbors are out to get you.

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