pride…a complicated relationship

pride

we have had our moments

my first pride parade was an accident, actually

i was on the university photojournalism crew. we were on our way to cover members of a popular hair metal band play in a fundraising softball game. we stoped to get some food and there it was, my first pride parade…houston texas. one of my instructors sitting in a lawn chair right across the street from me. we waved. we may or may not have had a special encounter one day as i was leaving the racquetball courts….

as time went on, and i came out more and more about more and more, i got involved in pride events from organizing to activism to arguments to disillusionment. the corportization and the capitalization of pride….

but tonight

tonight i went to a pride party in flagstaff. it was a bunch of drag queens, mostly from RuPaul’s drag show and vegas (a mear 3 hour away) and chris cox was the d.j.

drag queens are not my favorite entertainers. i just never really got it, still don’t to be honest.

but

they have always and forever been at the forefront of the queer liberation movement. they have raised more money for so fucking many causes. whenever anyone in the community needs money, it is the drag queens that get it done. and they are also the ones that get the shit for everything…assimilated gays and lesbians afraid of what the mainstream community will thing of them if they lead the parades or are visible anywhere but the bars. what if kids are there, people will get the wrong idea of “our” community…blah blah blah. fuck that. p.s. there were kids at this party, and they had a blast. they were even welcomed on stage to dance

do i wish that the music was not the same tired songs? yes, yes i do. do i i love to see people jump up and down and sing along? yes, yes i do.

also, most of the one’s i’ve watched are people of color, so there is that added to the mix of community dismissing. tonight, being the first Juneteenth celebrated as a national holiday, we had even more to celebrate and brought intersectionality to the pride table.

tonight i was finally able to dance like i haven’t danced in a very long time. i walked back to where i was staying drenched, my body wrung out. sweat dripping down my neck, off my hair and onto my face. i breathed deep. i smiled

tonight i remembered what it felt like to step into a queer bar where i didn’t (as much) have to figure out the normy social norms.

tonight i ignored the straight couples clinging to one another for dear life (it always seems to be the men with arms wrapped around the woman and i thought it was because they are afraid of them getting away, but maybe it is because they are actually afraid of their own temptation with so many good looking men around? but tonight i ignored them)

tonight my body remembered how to move

i bounced and twisted as my knee rose to my chest and my heal spun me around just as the other caught me to push me back the other direction. my arms my elbows pushed and pulled me. it was like a type of prayer feeling the rhythm and tension of the music. i have missed this. i have craved this

being in my body in a way that celabrates and is joyous in its movement.

tonight i am happy

tonight i am

One thought on “pride…a complicated relationship

  1. When you express yourself as you just did, it just makes me so proud to be your father.
    Love you, Dad

    Like

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