I think he’s the one holding the giant silver thing in this picture:
So another pride parade has come and gone, and I remain as ambivalent about the festivities as ever. But not for the usual reasons.
Despite a lot of people’s worries that the so-called freak-show aspect of the parade just feeds into negative gay stereotypes, I’m actually thrilled that the parade gives drag queens and leather queens and muscle queens and duct-tape-on-their-boobs queens a day to say To hell with what you think—this is who I am and I’m not going to apologize for it.
I’m not a fan of the sheer relentlessness of it all. The noise. The crowds. The mess. The drunks. The drunks who manage to spill their drinks all over me. And the fact that anyone who forks over whatever the entrance fee is seems to get a place in the parade … never mind that the damn thing goes on for four-plus hours. Or that a bunch of people walking in mismatched T-shirts—no matter how noble their organization or how fabulous their cause—does not really make visually interesting parade fodder.
I feel compelled to go every year. Even though I find it to be only about 50% fun. And I have no idea why I keep going. Maybe because I might miss seeing some hot guy on a float. Because in this day and age it’s impossible to find pictures of hot guys on the Internet. Or maybe because if some remote friend doesn’t see me there it might not occur to him to invite me to his pride party the next year and I’ll feel like a loser.
Despite my determination to not let myself have any fun, though, I did have a lovely weekend. I went to a few parties, I finished the Proud to Run 10K in a respectable time, I spent all day Saturday with a bunch of fabulous friends, I got a parade-watching sunburn, I got tons of compliments on my tattoos, I fell off the no-diet-soda wagon, I got back on, I fell off the almost-no-alcohol wagon, I got back on (after five drinks in one day, which is more than I usually drink in five months), and I spent the post-parade hours singing show tunes at Sidetrack with the domestic partner and a steady parade of friends who bounced in and out of our evening.
Plus I went to what was perhaps the only pre-pride brunch in the city that had three straight pregnant women on the guest list. Unfortunately, only one picture has been uploaded to Facebook so far and nobody in it is pregnant. At least not to my knowledge:
But I did take two artistic portraits at the brunch with my iPhone that will undoubtedly sell for thousands of dollars at my photography retrospective auction in the years following my untimely artists’ death. I have titled them for your convenience so you can place your bids more easily from the catalogue: