Updated: Nov 7
Coffee Conversations: Pride and a Distinct Absence of Prejudice
(Edit: Fuck we lost to Croatia!)
Actually, do you iced tea? It's too hot for anything else right now. I swear to god if this keeps up I'll be a puddle by the end of the week. And not a cool refreshing puddle that you see birds hop in and out of sometimes. I mean the kind of puddle that's brown and stagnant because I don't have any idea where to buy a fan from and I'm running out of t-shirts. Nothing's sexier than localised sunburn, ladies. *tips fedora*
Actually no, you know what? I'm quashing this right now. 'Nice guys' wear TRILBIES! Fedoras are cool 1940's detective hats that you wear when hiding behind a newspaper or monologuing down a smoky alleyway to meet an informant! Trilbies are what you wear when you get creepy with girls and immediately lambaste them for not being interested and thinking themselves more than your property! Fedoras are cool! Trilbies are bad! Reclaim the fedora for the detective/journalist community! Their heads are getting cold and they can't hide their faces in poor lighting! Ok? Ok. Phew. What was I talking about?
Oh yeah! I went to Pride at the weekend! It was my first time, but it was amazing! Never have I had to deal with so much glitter. It was like I had gay dandruff. This was the day after the Pink Floyd concert in Hyde Park too, so I already had a lingering glitter presence on my body. I gave up after I had a bunch dumped over my head. Although, admittedly, it was entirely voluntary as I was really getting into the spirit of things. It sucks that we can't find excuses for glitter in everyday life. Why can't there be emergency boxes full of it in case of fabulous? I'd be super down for that!
I loved the atmosphere of the parade, and it was probably one of the most positive days I’ve ever had, especially as it was a city-wide (or Westminster-wide at least) feeling. The only negative thing I had to say was a tongue-in-cheek fist shaking at the UCL bus. But it was great! There were so many groups, so many people both in the parade and around Trafalgar Square, and all the way down Parliament Street. The noise was insane. It was consistent too, as almost every group was playing music (mostly Abba, and barely any George Michael which I was pretty upset by. I'm never gonna dance again at this rate).
The strangest thing was that I felt like the minority. This day wasn’t for me, and I didn’t have a problem with that, but it's interesting to see how your own mannerisms change when you don’t assume heterosexuality. Accommodation theory I suppose. It’s almost like being in a hetero-normative society encourages a hetero-normative outlook and that when you’re placed outside of it the rigidity starts to collapse into a kaleidoscope of gender/sexuality. It was really cool to see how many different organisations were present, I think there were something like 30,000 people who took part in the parade itself? The one that stood out to me the most were the religious groups. There was a Muslim group promoting their faith alongside their sexuality, with signs that read ‘love is not haram’ (haram meaning 'forbidden by Islamic law'). Me and the rest of the crowd thought that was really cool, as our shouts and whoops attested. Also, I like rainbows. All I had to wear was a pink shirt as my wardrobe is fairly monotone (it’s all blue). So, I got my friends to doll me up a bit, put on some glitter and rainbow paint.
Even better, we won the football. So not only do you have an overwhelming wave of tolerance and good vibes, you also have the boost of England getting to the semi-finals! Is there anything better than that for a weekend?
Yes, actually. The Roger Waters concert the day before was a damn drug trip. ‘Pigs’ was entirely aimed at emasculating Trump. During ‘Eclipse’, the sky was lit up with the prism from Dark Side of the Moon. I’m not really the best person to speak to when it comes to Pink Floyd, which made it frustrating at parts of the show when I wanted to sing along with the crowd but couldn’t (but still tried). I looked like someone had put peanut butter on the roof of my mouth to make it look like I was singing. But then some twat spilt his entire pint on my sandal, so I had to deal with sweaty, beery, damp footwear for the next four hours.
On the plus side, the orchestration of the event and the messages were incredible. At times it felt like the graphics and music were rushing towards a spectacular crash, like the crescendo wold drop off completely and the whole stage would fall with it. Still, it had better have been good after waiting five hours for it. I didn’t know what time everything was happening, only that the gates opened at 2, so I guess I was dumb for thinking it wouldn’t obviously extend into the evening/night. In the meantime, there were only around twenty-five food kiosks and five bars and a parade and a carnivale and a few performances by some cool bands (CC Smugglers played really really fun Bluegrass tunes).
It was just a great weekend, really. I can't think of any negatives, aside from the piles of rubbish ion the streets at the end of the day. It was like it'd been snowing trash for the last few hours. The floor was sticky and uneven and generally not a nice place to be walking around. If you imagine a really big slug got drunk and ate a load of crisps and then exploded all over Soho, you're pretty close to how it felt. My sandals were changed after that, harrowed. They've felt things no sandal should feel. Had to clean it with a sponge. Spongey sweaty sticky beery damp sandals. Anymore than two adjectives and you know something's gone wrong.
Anyway, that's my weekend. What about you, framing device?