Saturday, June 23, 2012

Gay Pride - The Tiz List

We seem to have run around the calendar and ended back up at Gay Pride Weekend, once again. There is a ton of stuff going on in the Twin Cities (and lots of other places in the country/world) to celebrate it, but I'll probably celebrate as I have most of the years since I came out - in other words, I won't be out at the parade or the festival or anywhere else where a porta-potty is in play.

Which got me to thinking about the whole "Pride" thing and so I started to make a list in my head of things that struck me as... well... Tiz-List-able. And here they are:

1) I kind of like to think of the whole "Pride" idea from a lion standpoint: We're all family, one way or another. We may not get along. We may not like each other. Or we may hit it off and take over the world. But we've got a bond that we all share. (Yes, I know... Cue "Circle of Life.") And that's kind of cool.

2) Now that I have The Lion King going through my mind, I'd like to ask why it is that every gay event seems to have to have music with a thumping dance beat playing in the background? What's up with that? And why - when I'm proudly in my 40s - do I seem to be required to like it? Tastes change. We grow. I'm okay with that. Why aren't most people who program the music in bars and restaurants?

3) I'm proud to live in a country where, for the most part, gay people are able to be out and open and not fear for their lives. And I'm in awe of the people who came before me to make it that way.

4) I'm proud that so many Minnesotans of all orientations, political parties, and ages are vocally coming out in opposition to the proposed state constitutional amendment which would further codify the already-in-place state law banning gay marriage.

5) I'm proud to have a group of friends that is both gay and straight (and sometimes in-between). And that can mix and mingle and really not care that we're gay and straight (or in-between).

6) I'm proud - and honored - to be part of both an immediate and an extended family who accept me, my life, and my relationships with no questions and no judgments. (Well, except for the judgments on things like hairstyles, clothing choices, vacation planning, dinner menus, and all the things that family are *supposed* to be judgy about.)

7) I'm proud of myself for being out in my daily life. I've found - especially since the MN marriage amendment stuff has been going on - that I'm more outspoken about who I am. I mention "my partner" in conversations when people ask about my "roommate." And I talk about "my in-laws" when people ask about Christopher's family. After all, if I don't speak out about my own life, who will?

8) At work, I've learned to joke about the offensive language in the edits I work on, while also pointing out just how offensive it can be. Let's face it, my boss can be kind of oblivious and insensitive, and I'm proud that I work with other people who will also point that out to him, not just on my behalf, but because it's the right thing to do.

9) I have to admit that I'm proud of the fact that this is the third year that I've blogged about Pride. You can see the older posts here: That Pride Feeling (2010), and Celebrating Pride (2011). (I'm not sure why I missed 2009, but I've looked through all of June of that year and there's nothing in there about Pride... I think I may have been out of town...?)

10) And if you're paying attention... Yep. That means I've been blogging for almost 4 years, now. I'm kinda proud of that, too.

So, here's to Pride in all of it's many-colored glory. May it outspokenly, humbly, disco-thumpingly, peacefully, happily wave for all of us for years to come.

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