The Rocky Horror Picture Show on Waverly Place, a few blocks from Stonewall. Boys Night at Twylo. Provincetown in summer. The AIDS Walk. Gay and lesbian couples in my familial orbit.
These were all staples of my very straight, very cis-gendered childhood in New York City. So I'm certainly no stranger to drag. And all I can say is Juneau fucking BRINGS it when it comes to drag and Pride.
It was only by the grace of a friend whose husband was performing as one of the queens that I scored a seat to what I didn't realize (but will certainly note for future reference) was the hottest ticket in town. (P.S. to note to self: DO NOT WEAR JEANS, WOOL SOCKS, AND CLOGS, K?). I couldn't stop laughing and smiling watching all the drag queens and kings just fucking kill it up there.
And I honestly teared up looking at all the people who had come to see this flagship Pride week event. Because it's one thing to celebrate Pride and the LGBTQ community in NYC, where tolerance abounds, and it's quite another to do it with so much love and so much enthusiasm in the capital of Alaska.
Everyone has a different story. I'm not LGBTQ myself, and I don't pretend to know what a lot of the people in that room and on that stage have been through.
I was reminded of it, though, when the emcee who was down from Anchorage mentioned that there were protests planned against Anchorage Pride, and called on the audience to just love one another.
I have to confess it's hard for me not to be repulsed by (much less love) people who would take time out of their day just to show up and rain negativity on fellow human beings who have nothing to do with them, and are just trying to celebrate their own humanity.
Then I decided that if I couldn't dig up any love, I could at least find sympathy. Because really, you have to feel sorry for people who are that sheltered, damaged, and afraid. You just have to feel compassion for someone who can't find it for others. For people with that kind of misguided, clueless hate in their hearts. It must suck so hard to be them, and hopefully love and Pride will drown out their sad, tiny, shitty little voices.
To end on a lighter (grosser?) note, I had an insight tonight about "test-farting" and gender-neutral bathrooms.
Test-farting is what I do when I have to fart and I'm not sure what the fart situation is. Like is it a mild one-off? Or is it about to be like the kind of thing where I just need to go home?
That's when I realized what the bathroom wars were really all about. I AM afraid of gender-neutral bathrooms! Why? Because I spent my entire younger life trying not to be the girl who accidentally gave up the biggest secret of her entire gender.
One of the drag kings was wearing a tank top that said "GENDER IS OVER," which is all well and good. But that doesn't change the fact that in a post-gender society with gender-neutral bathrooms, a hot guy might hear me fart.
Now THAT'S something to protest, motherfuckers!