Yesterday, I went to New York's annual Pride Parade. I've never been to this particular event because, contrary to all the exceptions chronicled on this blog, I really don't like parades. Particularly popular, well-attended ones that require you to get there hours in advance to stand and be squished against police barriers by strangers. I've been to some of the more crowded New York marches (the Mermaid Parade in Coney Island and the Village Halloween Parade when not marching in it) but only on fairly rainy days when I thought the crowds would be somewhat abated. (Sadly, this approach really only leads you to being squished against police barricades by true parade diehards). However, yesterday was sunny and gorgeous, and I was totally ready to make an exception.
Like most New Yorkers, I was relieved and heartened to hear about the vote late Friday night legalizing gay marriage in the state. I seldom talk about politics here, mostly because talking about politics usually frustrates me greatly, but it's nice whenever there is an occasional ray of hope that our country is heading in a direction of equality instead of quailing from it. I knew that the parade would be extra crowded in light of this, but, like the inauguration in 2008, it seemed like a crowd worth putting up with. In the end, apparently 500,000 people were out celebrating at the parade. There were people proudly showing off brand new engagement rings, marching bands playing "Here Comes the Bride," and generally an air of happiness and incredible energy.
I'm telling the rest of the story in picture of the event. If you put on Lady Gaga's "Born This Way" as you scroll through them, then it's pretty much like you were there.
This was my photographer's favorite photo from the parade. I agree that the composition is lovely and that it really captures the spirit of the event.
Sadly, you can't read her sign, but it says "Proud Mom."
I admire this man's confidence.
While he let Mike Bloomberg and parade rock-star Andrew Cuomo strut by undocumented, my photographer captured countless photos of Senator Chuck Schumer. Look at the man. You can see why.
Savage Love columnist Dan Savage and his partner, Terry. I admire them for starting the "It Gets Better" Project, but I'll admit this picture was taken mostly as a fan of the podcast.
This pretty much speaks for itself.
Never question the presence of the Wells Fargo Wagon.
Sometimes I totally forget you can be a member of a flag corps as an adult. It's nice to know that I live in a city that has countless outlets for gay and lesbian color guard enthusiasts.
I bought pretty much the exact same vacuum this weekend. The amount of cat hair I took off two rugs was enough to piece together a whole new cat. But perhaps that's an over share, and it certainly doesn't reflect kindly on my housekeeping skills.
Remember him? This man's star shines too brightly to limit himself to just the International Dance Parade. Now, I'm wondering how many other sightings I miss out on by not regularly attending New York parades.
That about sums up the 2011 Pride Parade experience. Congratulations to those New Yorkers who in less than 30 days can now choose to marry the ones they love!