Friday, March 13, 2009

From Penny Tration

I'm totally forcing Penny's hand. She posted this on her Facebook as a note, and I think this is what the Anonymous commentator on my last blog was talking about when he mentioned the drag queen. 

Which I think is completely unfair, considering how much Penny does.
There have been a lot of changes in the Cincinnati GLBT Community Center and the Pride Committee has been negatively affected….Cincinnati may have no Gay Pride Celebrations this year. It’ won’t be the first time we’ve missed out on Pride Celebrations, but it’s a bummer no less….it’s also just a big gay rumor – and it got me to thinking about Pride.

You see – most of us who are part of the active gay community are pretty much over the Pride Celebrations in Cincinnati. Its a couple too many things:

1. It’s too expensive!

After the Pride Committee pays for extra police, permits, access and sanitation it ends up costing a small fortune. Each participant ends up paying about $100 plus the cost of the float or booth and no one really puts any effort into making a float or decorating a booth (with a couple of exceptions, of course)

2. It’s too early in the morning!

If you participate in the parade you have to be there by 11am, lined up and ready to go. I don’t need to tell you what a drag queen looks like after working until 4am, getting a half hour nap and getting back up to put on more makeup (and a big pair of sunglasses) to be back in Clifton by 11am. Mind you – the parade doesn’t start until 1pm, but they make us line up early anyway. It’s miserable and HOT as hell….nothing like the Ohio Valley in June….

3. There is no Parking that makes any sense in Northside and everyone ends up pissing off the entire neighborhood by parking in “their spot” for half the day. Then after the parade, you have to walk about 65 miles to find your car (and potentially get out of drag and attempt to celebrate with your friends).

So, you see, for those of us that are “active” in the community, the Gay Pride Celebrations are our least favorite activity of the year. Many people don’t even think we need a Gay Pride Parade at all and the festival in Hofner Park is much less “festival” than it is flea market with a beer truck. What’s the purpose??

Well - The Cincinnati Gay Pride Celebration and Festival isn’t for those of us who are active or participate. The Celebration isn't for the people on the street watching us slowly make our way down Hamilton Ave or buying rainbow bead necklaces from a vendor. It’s not for the people who are inside one of the Northside bars doing their best to Stimulate the Economy!

The Cincinnati Pride Celebration is for all the people who haven’t yet had the courage to join us. It’s for all the gays who watch the newscasters uncomfortably report on the odd display of feathers, streamers and rabbis decked out in the rainbow colors making their way thru a secluded section of Cincinnati. Those people need to see the gays who feel like they need to hold out a sign and march down the street all the while saying that it’s okay to be just that; gay and celebrating openly. It is for them that we still fight for equal rights and it is for them that we pay too much, get up too early and bitch about parking. It is for them that we need this celebration – to coax them out of the seclusion that they believe is necessary to protect their lives.

Of course, having said all that, a Pride Parade is not the only way to celebrate. There are many options on the table for maintaining a visible celebration – one of them is a Big Gay Party at Sawyer Point or on Fountain Square and there are many others.

Remember, when you’re headed out to your Pride Celebrations (or maybe even a Mr/Miss Ohio Gay Pride Preliminary Pageant in a town near you) that you’re doing all this celebrating so that other gays can find the courage to celebrate for themselves one day. Your reveling in your gayness is an act of giving to those who cannot yet revel – and you should be proud of yourself (wink).

And there’s my One Penny’s Worth (smile).

Oh and I'm posting her Vlog #6 because she's so loved over here and I like to see her smiling face. :-)

And that's my Penny's worth :-). Apparently, I just like to cause problems.


Jere Keys said...

Hmmm... so even though we don't want to celebrate, we do it for those who don't yet have the courage... so that one day, they will feel obligated to celebrate on behalf of others?

No, I'm not buying it. If Pride is to survive as anything other than a decaying tradition, it MUST offer something to the long-time activists, the community veterans and the rainbow-weary. I agree that Pride serves a valuable purpose for visibility, but if that's ALL it is, there are more effective strategies than the protest-parade-rally model of the 1960s.

Anonymous said...

I agree with both Penny and Jere.

But part of the problem is that its noweher near protest-parade-rally sort of thing espcially here as it is in many other citeies.

but I agree with penny that it seems like a "parade and flea market with a beer truck"

Oh wait....we aren't allowed to have opinions because we aren't free on Tuesday nights.

Anonymous said...

Wolfie, don't equate having an opinion with an obligation on the part of the listener to heed. And do expect some blowback -- especially when your approach to these hard-working folks wo are actually doing the heavy lifting is basically "you dumbasses." How do you think this makes them feel? The idea that you should be able to cherry-pick what you want input on, submit it from afar, and expect that it be taken up and executed by those actually doing -- this is not how the world works, and better that you learn that now. In any event, you really are obsessing about all of it. Get help.

Anonymous said...

First of all we clearly know who you are Anonymous but I won't out you. In some posts you say you are't on the committe. In others you secribe what happenes in them and trash people who left the committe. Blowback on me all you want. But I, WE all have a right to our opinions. And best you hear it from us early because the more its advertised the more "bitching" you are going to hear. This was a helpful option to save the theme before it went any further. IF they want to ignore it fine. But people have said something. So if it does come back as a major embarresment then The pride Committe wil have no one ekse but themselves to blame. And after all is said and done how do you think that will make them feel?

As far as cherry picking if I wanted to I didn't even begin to. But unless the Committe learns to take critism Pride Weekend will NEVER get better. There have been many ideas given that can be used for NEXT YEAR (If there is one) THAT IS HOW THE REAL WORLD WORKS.

And as for me obsessing? LOL. Stop deflecting. At least I don't pretend NOT to be a member of the Pride Committe and then come here and post anonymously.

I am going to let it go now. Everyone has said thier peace and I think the true colors of some people involved with Pride has been shown and also exactly how dysfunctional Cincinnati pride is at the moment and the overhaul that need to be made in the future for this event to survive, evolve, and continue.

Anonymous said...

A final thought, for this is really a tempest in a teapot.

Ninety-nine percent of straights don't give a rat's ass or pay one whit of attention to what our "pride theme" is. Of that 1% that do, 90% of them will totally and instantly make the association between "squeal" and Cincinnati as "Porkopolis."

Even those who do conjure up the double entendre, virtually ALL of them will KNOW what was intended -- an perfectly innocent tie-in to a well-established local identifier. The tiny few who might (MIGHT) snicker over some "sex pig" thing, well, they never were in our corner to start with.

Taken to its extreme, this whole argument over what some bigots with dirty minds and evil hearts might think would lead us to ban drag queens from the parade. After all "THEY" are watching. No half naked muscle boys, for "THEY" are watching. No Impact Ohio signs "Masturbation Can Wait," for "THEY" are watching.

Isn't Pride all about no longer being ruled by our fear of what those who hate us think???

Full stop.

Anonymous said...

Yeah whatever.

"90% of them will totally and instantly make the association between "squeal" and Cincinnati as "Porkopolis."

And think its a shit theme as you have seen from the people here

Like talking to a brick.

Anonymous said...

Straight folks in Cincy can have pig-themed stuff but we can't. That's equality for ya -- courtesey of Woofie & Co.

Careful boys, your shame is showing.


The more attack on this continue, the stronger this pig theme is emerging as a symbol of our resistance to shame -- of our pride!