The New Social Order

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The Boys of Summer


Kodachrome moments in the ‘Fire Island Pines,’ circa 1975-1983

Even if you aren’t a “boy of summer,” you might pine for more decadent times after paging through Tom Bianchi’s new “Fire Island Pines. Polaroids 1975-1983” (Damiani, 212 pgs.).

With an introduction by Edmund White, “Pines” evokes those pre-AIDS-epidemic days when the Long Island gay-and-transgender beach community did whatever they pleased–bringing Manhattan night culture to the sandy East Coast shores–sans a shroud of mortality enveloping them.

Yes, there are some racy dental-floss butt shots and group-shower scenes, but mostly the hazy-sun Polaroids included are suggestive of nostalgia more than flagrant prurience. Gay or straight, if you splay this coffee table musing on your beach house coffee table, expect it to be a popular favorite.

Memorial Day’s around the bend…