Sunday, June 25, 2006

Everybody Loves a Parade

As it turned out, Porkchop went to the park later this morning, but not late enough to see the parade, which is just now winding down. Instead, we walked to St. Louis Bread (aka Panera), ate a bagel, and watched people staking out their parade-watching spots. After we spied a guy wearing nothing but hot pants, Porkchop didn't want to leave for work. (But, Porkchop, I saw the same guy from the front, and it wasn't so pretty.)

Alas, Porkchop had to go. After reading the newspaper, I went to the end of the block to watch the parade spectacle, which was much better than the festival.

My favorites were:
1) The gay marching band, along with the 50-year-old guy baton twirler.
2) A group that must be a local roller derby team.
3) The MCC float, which was the most festive.
4) The three-person contingent representing an HIV/STD prevention project.
5) The Gateway Gay Rodeo Assocation float. Because who doesn't love gay cowboys?

The things I didn't like were:
1) The largest parade contingent, Citigroup. Need I write more?
2) The Wells-Fargo contingent. See previous comment.
3) Parade watchers dropping F-bombs everywhere. Wow, I'm so glad we know how to handle ourselves when there are kids all around.
4) People with dogs. It might as well have been a dog pride parade. I don't know why people think it's a good idea to bring their massive dogs to big public events, especially when it's hot out.
5) Standing next to smokers. Even more difficult for me to understand is why so many gay people smoke! Big Tobacco doesn't give a damn about queers - after all, consumers are renewable resources. Why support such evil multi-national companies?? And don't tell me that you're trying to help gay tobacco farmers in Kentucky.

What really made my day today was getting a free lemonade. On our way back from St. Louis Bread, I noted that one of the kids on our block had set up a little lemonade and cookie stand. So, on my way back to the parade, I stopped to purchase some of his goods. To my surprise, he told me that I could have one for free - he motioned to someone who must have been a friend of his mom and said that she had paid for one. I tried to give him fifty cents, but he refused.

I remember when I was around 5 or 6 and a friend and I set up our own lemonade stand. Only one person stopped (granted, we were in a residential area), which made me so sad. So, anyway, I always try to stop at stands that little kids set up. Obviously, the kid down the block wasn't suffering from a lack of customers, especially when he was undercutting Mokabe's price by $2.50 (and Mokabe's doesn't hand squeeze their lemonade or anything, it comes out of a Prairie Farms jug).


Porkchop said...

I don't care what that guy in hot pants looked like from the front... It's still no fair that I had to go to work and miss the gay cowboys and free lemonade. Of course, I probably would've had to *pay* for mine.

Anonymous said...

The high incidence of cigarette smoking in gay culture is historically linked to the bars that were once our only refuge. Wanting to feel a sense of belonging, us homos have long embraced bad, bad habits (and fashion) in an attempt to identify with our gay brethren. Now, cigarettes and alcohol are aggressively marketed to us. Subculture urban marketing or SCUM as it was called by RJ Reynolds.
As you know, smart folks we know and love have fallen into this stupid death trap.
On a bright note, this year's COMO pride was pretty lacking in excitement but did have several educational workshops throughout the day.

Carrie said...

Yeah, we have to resist the SCUM.

And I'm not saying "shame, shame" for smoking. As you know, I used to smoke quite a bit socially, and I used the same tired excuses that others do. We must take ownership of our actions and say, "RJ Reynolds and others can go smoke this."

It's not the death trap that bothers me so much, it's the idea of supporting an industry that takes advantage of so many (including farmers and workers).

Smoking isn't cool, kids, it's keeping afloat battalions of questionable characters who profit from your tarred lungs and teeth and the scarred land of tobacco farms.