I’ve recently been reading The White Album by Joan Didion and today I heard that Vincent Bugliosi passed away. I thought this would be an appropriate passage about that strange, dark time.
There were rumors. There were stories. Everything was unmentionable but nothing was unimaginable. This mystical flirtation with the idea of “sin” – this sense that it was possible to go “to far”, and that many people were doing it – was very much with us in Los Angeles in 1968 and 1969. A demented and seductive vortical tension was building in the community. The jitters were setting in. I recall a time when the dogs barked every night and the moon was
always full. On August 9, 1969, I was sitting in the shallow end of my
sister in law’s swimming pool in Beverly Hills when she received a
telephone call from a friend who had just heard about the murders at
Sharon Tate Polanski’s house on Cielo Drive. The phone rang many times
during the next hour. These early reports were garbled and
contradictory. One caller would say hoods, the next would say chains.
There were twenty dead, no, twelve, ten, eighteen. Black masses were
imagined, and bad trips blamed. I remember all of the day’s
misinformation very clearly, and I also remember this, and wish I did
not: I remember that no one was surprised”