Tuesday, June 18, 2013
Am I A Bad Queer?
In recent years, I've attended Toronto Pride more to buck the powers-that-be than to celebrate my queerness. The day our homophobic (and now notorious) mayor Rob Ford was elected, I felt like I was living in a different city. Who voted for this guy? I thought this was such a queer-friendly place to live.
That year (two years ago, I think?), the unflushable Mayor Tweedledum upset us queers by refusing to attend Pride. He didn't even go to the goddamn rainbow flag-raising ceremony at City Hall. Doood, it's right outside your fucking office! Are you kidding me?
So I made sure to attend the Pride Parade that year, as a show of solidarity. I hadn't gone in probably ten years, but I wanted to stand up and be counted. Political action. I'm here, I'm queer, I hate Rob Ford. That sort of thing.
Last week I tweeted about how I sometimes feel like I'm NOT QUEER ENOUGH. Like I'm a BAD QUEER. And a big part of that feeling comes from not being a party person. I don't drink or do drugs. I don't go to bars or clubs. There are so many aspects of (what's generally understood to be) queer culture I'm just not a part of. Hell, I'm not even a big fan of parades! If I don't get my shit together, I'm gonna be kicked out of the club.
But I yams what I yams: a quiet queer.
This Pride, maybe I'll just go to the street festival. I like the supporting queer vendors. I like being around other queer people. Everyone's so cheerful all weekend. Total strangers wish you Happy Pride just for walking by. It's nice.
So, am I a bad queer if I don't go to the Parade? I feel like I am. But the route gets packed and I'm so short I usually can't see much anyway. Last year I slathered on SPF 85 and still got sunburnt.
On the other hand, I love the parade's inclusiveness and diversity--the very qualities our mayor would probably like to wipe from the face of our city.
Families come to Pride. All kinds of people do. Last year, I stood next to two middle-aged men in turbans and an elderly Asian woman. Man oh man, you should have seen that lady jump for joy when the Trojan guys started tossing out condoms!
Damn... I think I just talked myself back into going.