The Seattle Pride Parade and Festival took place this last Sunday, and it was quite amazing. I didn’t really know what to expect (other than a lot of rainbow-coloured items and, well, lots of LGBT folks) but it turned out to be a pretty great experience.
When we arrived at the Seattle Center there were a few hundred people milling about. We thought we had missed the parade, so we spent some time hanging out around the International Fountain…
…and checking out the various booths. Keep in mind the amount of people in the fountain now for comparison later on.
There were some pretty great outfits to check out, as well as some *lack* of outfits to *check out* if you know what I mean (wink wink)!
This guy was pretty spectacular. He arrived amidst gasps and flashes of light.
His entire body, from his head to his shoes, was covered in mirrors! At first I wasn’t sure whether his suit was some attempt at stealth-walking or flash-photography-repellent, but it turned out he was just selling some magnets. Of course, that makes complete sense, right? I mean, whenever I go to work to sell baby clothes I always wear an ensemble composed only of coconut husks. It’s just common sense.
As we meandered around in the stifling heat (70-something is stifling to me now, I’ve gone soft), we heard some music coming from one of the 4 stages. We wandered over to check it out, and what did we find?
Ethel Merman of course! This lady (man?) was great! Not only did Ethel perform classic ballads, she went on to give us some legit renditions of “Highway to Hell” and Nirvana’s “Smells Like Teen Spirit”. Also, she played air-guitar with her teeth. That takes real
talent, you know!
As Ethel’s show was winding down, we decided to explore the festival some more. Right when we thought we had seen it all, we turned a corner and came face-to-face with the parade. After believing we had missed it, finding the parade was a great treat. We walked along the route and found ourselves a great place to watch the action. I’m sorry if there are more photos than writings in this post, but I have to say most of the things we saw are really difficult to describe. It was a feast for the eyes, but a bit harder to explain with the words. So here we go again, some photos of the wonderful parade!
There were cowboys:
And the animals they brought with them:
The back of their shirts read ‘What rifles were really made for’. I loved that!
There were ‘queens’:
This guy must practice a lot! I don’t think I could walk a parade in those heels!
There was a group for LGBT people of colour:
and (slightly scarily) there were Furries:
Supporters showed up who were both young:
It was really great to see everyone being so supportive and wonderful. I probably saw the strangest outfits and people that I ever have that day. There were people running naked, half-naked, dressed to the nines, and in bathing suits and yet NO ONE was being judgmental. I saw 300 pound ladies and 90 pound boys in their underwear, obviously feeling comfortable in front of thousands of people. There were gays, lesbians, bisexual people, straight people, transvestites and transsexuals. Everyone was having a great time and openly friendly. What a beautiful community.
Alright, on with the parade! (We’re almost done with this part!)
Next up, we saw the Rat City Roller Girls!
They had some neat roller-tricks!
I honestly don’t remember what this next group was promoting, but I thought they were great! I loved the old Thunderbird they were riding.
I loved the colour in this group, but again, I don’t remember what it was for!
I thought it was pretty neat that the Seattle Metro bus service got in on the parade as well:
Alright, so after everyone else passed, we looked down the street and saw a giant pride flag carried by probably 50 people coming towards us.
It was the end of the parade and so we followed behind it, up the street to the festival. It started to fall in the middle so a bunch of people went under to help support it. I was lucky enough to be one of those people. Everything looked so beautiful under that rainbow flag!
As you can see, we walked the flag down the main path of the festival, over the hordes of people. Everyone was willing to lend a hand!
Well, maybe not this guy, he might have been scared though.
That was the end of the parade! I would have liked to see more of it, like Cupcake Royale and Dikes on Bikes, but I felt lucky that we caught even the end of it.
Alright, remember when I told you to remember the people in the fountain? No? Come on, it was only 850 words ago. Anyways, here is a shot of how many people had showed up while we were watching the parade:
Big difference, huh? Also, keep in mind that probably an eighth of those people are naked and at least one half are almost there. It was pretty crazy, but awesome!
I loved these guys’ outfits:
I want to hang out with them every day.
Honestly, going in, I had NO idea what to expect. This festival has immensely exceeded my wildest expectations. By the end, I was flying that rainbow flag myself.
Alright. So this is the part of the post where I’m going to get all preachy, so skip down if you don’t want to hear it.
I think the LGBT rights movement is bullshit. I think the Civil Rights movement for the black people of America was bullshit. I think the Women’s rights movement was bullshit. Don’t get me wrong. The organizations and people who support these movements are wonderful and work very hard. My point is that their immense effort shouldn’t be necessary. We are all just people. Equality shouldn’t have to be fought for. We are already equal. If you strip away all of the gender, orientation, skin colour, we are all just humans. We have hearts, bowels, fingernails, toes and noses. I will never understand what would make someone honestly believe that they are superior to anyone else based on these feeble excuses for reasons.
In the words of Tim Minchin (whom I met and hugged this weekend, hehe):
“I will judge you for no reason, but your deeds”.
And in the words of the Beatles:
“Love is all you need”
Thank you for reading. I leave you with this last photo: