Photos of TAG members and TAG Weekends up to 1982
Many TAG people and TAG Weekends from the 1970's don't appear in the photos below simply because we don't have such photos. I'd love if it were otherwise.
Started in 1975 and with a life of 32-33 years, TAG was a very carefully constructed group, built to last. Within TAG in its early years we may have had long and vigorous discussions but we were always conscious of each other as individuals with histories, understood the different directions we were coming from. Through our processes we learned to make room for each other. Consequently we didn't have the heated personal battles other groups sometimes seemed to specialize in. What We Did And Why We Did It is the written description of those processes and below is what exists of the visuals.
TAG had two types of meetings. Regular meetings happened every two weeks. These were evenly divided between the business end of running TAG and discussion and role-playing of calls handled by the phoneline. TAG Weekends, on the other hand, happened twice a year and were our means of obtaining the cohesion and confidence in each other that made operating by consensus possible.
The Weekends lasted from Friday evening through Sunday afternoon, attendance was fairly obligatory, you couldn't arrive after they'd started, and you couldn't take time out in the middle of them to attend to something else. In the first few years they were held in members' homes. When TAG became too large for this facilities were rented. We prepared meals together, slept over, played and worked. We began with a sharing of stories about specific aspects of our lives, past and present. That led into the role-playing of telephone calls, the subject of which might sometimes come out of the personal discussions. Honing skills in this area, learning how to listen, was the essence of TAG. (There is probably some perverse relationship between this and my post-TAG gruffness, particularly where the phone is involved.)
A natural part of all this was discussion and adjustment of the overall direction the group was taking. During TAG's various advances and retreats the maintaining of the phoneline was paramount and protected. Other things could come and go but we wanted that to survive.
Saturday evening was specifically reserved for recreation and play. Not to say that this didn't happen at other times, we were serious about what we did but we were a relaxed group and we liked our fun. Weekends were not meant for dealing with TAG housekeeping business and discussion of that was kept to a minimum.
Most people in the following photographs were TAG members, a few were prospective members who may or may not have ended up joining the group, an occasional person was there for some other reason. A great many people passed through TAG over the years.
As in many other groups TAG people had a lot of connection with other activity in the gay community, before, after and at the same time they were in TAG. Harvey Hamburg for instance was a great instigator and through him members became involved with such things as Gay Community Appeal, Gaydays, the Gay Community Calendar etc. Bob Stout of the Gay Community Dance Committee through which many gay organizations supported themselves, was a member of TAG. Bruce Glawson, TAG member and filmmaker, cast TAG people in Michael, A Gay Son. Even Sky Gilbert of Buddies In Bad Times spent some time in TAG. David Kelley went on to become a principal figure in the start-up of The Toronto Counselling Centre For Lesbians and Gays which was eventually absorbed into the Family Services Association as David Kelley Services. And so on and so on.