you mean this weekend?
today marked a new low in my gay-ness. it never amazes me how clueless i can be. i’m talking to this dude and he’s telling about this crazy stunt he wants to pull on sunday. i think it’s sassy and cool and we talk some more. then i start trying to remember all the plans i have for this weekend and ask what his schedule looks like so i can watch said stunt. he says “sunday is pride, dude.” and i am stunned. already? this sunday? no. really? oh. yah. i guess this is the last sunday in june. a dude who’s only lived here 4 days had to tell me it was gay pride in my own fuckin town.
now, really, that’s no surprise. anyone who’s been reading my blog for a while would know i’m not the gay pride type. oh, i make my opinions about gay rights known, in public. but i don’t think that’s what pride is about anymore. at least not here. it felt different in washington dc, which was the only other place i’ve attended pride. but here pride is this huge commercial event. it’s not so much about gay rights – we’ve got alot of those here (even if we still can’t marry in california). it’s not about the safety of numbers – there’s gays everywhere in SF, every part of town. and it’s not about the comraderie – SF homos are notoriously cliquish, you’re not going to meet anyone you don’t already know.
the only good thing about pride for me is running into the people i do know. having brunch at the tikipad with the muchachos, then running into old friends and old exes at the parade and exodus to the civic center party. and then the fun ends for me. nothing like being ignored by 100000 guys to reduce your self-worth to zero (at least temporarily). so i have learned to skip this part of the celebration. i have no interest in paying too much for barbequed meat or some awful drink while browsing blocks of gay-themed shlock for the honor of being looked down upon by my fellow gays and being looked at a sucker by booth managers with dollar signs in their eyes.
i’m not saying we should do away with gay pride, or that the commercial entity it has become in san francisco is evil. we still need this. and there are many people who come from all over to be at SF pride who want all the commercialism. those people deserve this. they far outnumber me. but me, i’d just rather go someplace and have my own private pride celebration. celebrate the fact that my friends, most of whom are straight, all know i’m gay and still love me. celebrate the fact that no matter how conservative this administration is, things are better now than they were 10 years ago. maybe they’re even better than they were a year or two ago (i really think that was a low point). celebrate the fact i personally have never been prevented from doing anything just because i like men.
but lamar thinks that we are not past our low point. that with recent high profile gay bashings in queer friendly places like new york (and amsterdam earlier in the year) that now, more than ever, we need to stand together. we need to prove that our numbers are strong and that we won’t tolerate the revocation of our rights supported by an increasing number of conservatively controlled countries. and i wish i thought he was right. but our administration does not care about the opinions of millions marching in the street. a pride march will not stop conservative efforts to make us into lepers and villians. a pride march will not stop bible thumpers from saying that we are weaker and making video games that advocate killing us. the most a pride march can do is let us stand together and give each other the courage to stop these people one by one.
and so this year, like other years, i will go celebrate with friends. i will go show my support at the parade. and then i will go do something else.
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