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Monday, June 26, 2006

Much to Say About Pride

Posted by on June 26 at 8:44 AM

On the theory that a lot of people with strong opinions about Pride were either passed out or otherwise occupied yesterday, I’m going to do another opinion-soliciting post. Let it out, homos and homo-watchers…

Pride3.JPG

Was the move downtown a good or bad thing? Was the Seattle Center beer garden better than the gay ghetto beer gardens? Was Sunday a “BLOWOUT success,” as one of our commenters put it yesterday? And were you too feeling “SHAMED and HORRIFIED” that Mark “Mom” Finley provided the color commentary on UPN? Were there enough drag queens? Also: Did you see that hot dyke cop dancing in the fountain in full uniform?


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Loved it.

Every year I hear from my apartment building the echoes of the bands set up on Capitol Hill for the pride parade. My god, the music this year sucked. Perhaps next year the organizers will find better live bands so that those of us who must endure the sounds of this revolting "music" will be somewhat more amenable to the day instead of having to escape the city with hands over our ears.

I think next year the evening activities for Friday and Saturday should be held up on the hill, with the parade being downtown.

It was sad that nobody showed up for Chris Cox on Saturday night which was free at the Seattle Center

Seattle Centre rocked. I noticed the crowd was far more diverse - not just white gay boys & girls per the usual cap hill crowd.

It felt big. It felt important. Most importantly - It felt like a real celebration. People looked happy, engaged, involved... The DJ at the international fountain with all the kids dancing in the water was awesome.

Dare I say it, I was actually - for the first time ever in Seattle - proud of Pride.

I'll echo what Paul said - for the first time in my 12 years in Seattle I actually felt like the parade and rally was worth a damn. My big complaint? Next year let
s see some real floats people! There was one this year that approached what a "float" is supposed to look like - but NOTHING else. And we're the creative types? C'MON!

But even I, cynical bastard that I am, *loved* seeing people grinding in the giant wet jock dance contest that the fountain became.

next year: preparties on the Hill on Sat, and the parade downtown again, please!

And oh, go, was Mark Finley drunk?!?! S/he couldn't say two sentences without mangling it....oy vey!

The split in Pride was great for the 'gay consumer,' if you will. There was just more to do. The parade on Saturday was great...it felt a lot more festive and fun, and it was short and sweet...not an endless, boring parade of uncreative floats and beer trucks.

Having said that...I got my fill after Saturday and skipped Sunday. I understand Pride makes sense to a lot of people...but not me. It's too Gay...it should be more queer.

The Sunday parade was pretty much the same, with all the ups and downs: big crowd, lots of stickers on my shirt, long gaps, too corporate. The Saturday parade was a refreshing compliment: rather queer, more political (not politician-al), over quickly. The festival finally had room to grow and spread out. And indeed, the sloppy wet impromptu circuit party in the International Fountain was free-spirited, fun, and gay gay gay. (The temp being 90 helped that. Don't expect a repeat next year if it's 65 and drizzly.) Some changes to programming and other fixes could help, but either Saturday/Sunday could have bombed, and didn't.


Oy, now where's my glass of water...

mark "mom" finley is monster.

my favorite thing about the parade was the small group of godsquad protesters that offered this (random and bizarre) gem through a megaphone:

"GOD DOESN'T BELIEVE IN ATHEISM!!!"

genius!

I agree that having the pre-Pride stuff on the Hill makes sense. To be honest, I had no idea that there were events at Seattle Center all weekend long.

I was disappointed that the Dyke March was appropriated into the Broadway Pride March - but I get that the folks who were pissed about the move wanted to make a point, and the businesses on Broadway wanted to participate (and make lots o' dough).

Several of my friends (both M and F) were "SHAMED and HORRIFIED" that so many men donning cheek-baring garments couldn't be bothered to shave or wax their butts.

Everyone I know on the Hill loved it, because it let people on the Hill have a cool parade without all the corporate gaga, and the downtown parade served the Outreach to the Suburbs purpose you wanted.

Plus, we could have a quiet brunch on Sunday after a nice parade on Broadway.

If the city would just fix Broadway so that it looks more like upper 4th ave instead of like the temple to the god of on-street-parking, then maybe a parade up Broadway would actually be a good experience.
Having all the cross traffic interrupt and thus drag out the parade along 4th sucked, and it's probably not avoidable along that route.
There need to be more LGBT booths at the festival and fewer commercial booths. Every LGBT organization should have a booth there, and the Pride committee needs to do whatever it takes to make that happen. (E.g. identify as many of those groups as possible and invite them to set up a booth at reduced cost.)
Mainstreaming is not necessarily a good thing, not if it means becoming nearly as tedious as the mainstream.

I liked that Pride attendees felt free/comfortable to stretch out and relax beyond the oasis of the Seattle Center and into the Queen Anne neighborhood. It was pretty much preaching to the choir when it was up on the Hill. I think it's a big upgrade that Pride moved downtown.

I completely agree. We should also move the Summer Solstice parade to Seattle Center. There are already so many hippies in Fremont that celebrating the solstice in that hippie-ghetto is just preaching to the choir.

Ghetto, don't be hatin'.

So...

Will in Seattle, I am curious. You felt that taking the parade off of Broadway was a good thing. Due to the fact that you were able to have a relaxing, quiet brunch on the Hill.

Do you feel the owners of the restaurant felt the same way?

I can just here them now. "Man, remember how it used to be? Lines around the block, full staff, tons of tips for our wait staff and having to spend the whole Moday after the parade counting the cash we were making. Thank God they moved that venue off of Broadway".

Um Will, you are a fucking moron

Oh wah wah wah fucking wah for the poor waiters and restaurants owners on Broadway. That's the lamest excuse yet from the keep it on Broadway crowd. Gay and gay-friendly folks don't owe you a damn thing.

Wow, Cry me a river, what fucking tool....

Although I didn't make it over there, I'm glad to hear that the festival at the Center was successful. I, too, think it was a good idea to move it to there.

But the parade is a different matter. The production was inept. SOP did a good job getting all kinds of people, groups, and companies to participate. They did a great job getting people downtown to watch the thing. But it was SOP that dropped the ball on organizing the parade itself. That parade of blank spaces was amateurish and downright embarrassing.

give it a break Someguy, I was just trying to help out the city with revenue at Seattle Center.

oh, and when you get some charisma, maybe you can stop being so bitter and twisted.

and, since I didn't mention it, we put on the Fremont Solstice Parade for ourselves in Fremont. It's a party, you're welcome to come join us, but if you don't we'll still put it on. It's not SeaFair and it never will be.

Do your own parade on the Solstice if you want - heck, we even moved the parade date a week early so people could go to the Pride Parade(s) as well.

I can see why you're bitter someguy - your tips must really suck on an average day if you are as much of an asshole as you appear here.

Here's a newsflash for you: Gay Pride isn't a welfare program for Broadway businesses, most of whom are lame corporate clones anyway.

I have to admit I had my reservations about the parade moving downtown, but I thought overall the day was a success. Yes, I agree that the lurchiness and big voids in the parade was unbearable (we were down by the Cinerama, and there was a solid 10 or 15 minute lull at one point), and can't the committee screen out overly corporate/irrelevant marchers? What up with Tylenol PM being in the parade, fer cryin out loud? ("Gays need to sleep, too!")


But I thought the Seattle Center turned out to be surprisingly a good venue for the post-parade events. I hung out at the mural for a big, hid in the Center House for air conditioning, the finally discovered the endlessly entertaining people-watching at the International Fountain with people dancing the the DJ sets (I have NEVER seen that many people having so much fun at the Volunteer Park stages).


One thing I noticed is that the vendor booths were all but completely ignored, corporate or not (felt a bit bad for the little guys).


Overall, I liked the roominess despited the massive numbers of people, and ended up feeling like the move was a good one (which kind of surprised me). Heck, I don't live on Capitol Hill, and most of my gay friends haven't either. It is not the center of the world. Plus Broadway is dying, you have to admit.


(and BTW, I thought Mark "Mom" Finley's commentary on the UPN coverage was hilarious...)

I watched a bit of the parade on TV and my overriding impression is that now they know the truth...there are a lot boring gay people. Usually the suburbs only see the one or two photo's in the paper which make us look like hot sexy leather daddies in chaps, bare breasted pierced tattooed hair dyed little dykes and fabulous drag queens.

Allowing all the straight curious people to see this on TV allowed them to actually find out that the parade is really thousands and thousands of very boring gay people walking with their employer, church, or club. Dyke’s pushing strollers, walking with their gay kids, etc. Sure, we've still got more fun and fancifulness than most of subcultures but we have a lot of so-called 'normal' boring dykes and fags in this world. The jig is up people – we’ve been outed.

Big gaps in the parade are nothing new. I was in it for years, and it was always a drag to be behind a group that was dawdling.

The last year I was in it, my buddy and I were carrying the banner for a now defunct AIDS fundraising group. We were behind a group whos mission seemed to have something to do with wearing very little clothing and being against gay domestic abuse. (They kept stopping to chant "GAY DOMESTIC ABUSE! IT HAPPENS TO US TOO!") A noble and valid mission, to be sure, but boy were they dawdlers.

My buddy, an impatient sort if there ever was one, was jonesing for a cig, so we started plowing into them everytime they stopped to chant (They didn't seem to think it was possible to chant and march at the same time)

The fur very nearly flew, but we did our part to keep the parade moving. :-)

Given the choice between supporting gay businesses on Broadway (which we can do the other 364 days of the year) and the abundant shade trees on Fourth, I'll pick the latter from now on.

The Hill is a Ghetto? More like your baby is all grown up and is moving out.

re: Someguy's waaambulance over restaurant's lost business... a friend of mine joked, "Oh, wah, restaurant owners can't go buy a new car the weekend after Pride."

They'll be fine, especially with all the weekend festivities pre-parade going on on the Hill as before. Broadway was the usual Pride-weekend madhouse on Saturday night.

re: the parade @ Seattle Center... the vast consensus is that it was a GREAT move and it made the event much more fun. Haters may just be averse to change.

Was it true that some of the businesses on Broadway threatened Budwiser (or Miller?) into not sponsering the downtown parade? I heard that the bars were going to boycott the beer company (which ever one it was) so their sponsership was withdrawn and given to the Broadway parade instead.

Does anyone know if this is true?

I hate all you folks.

Reading through what everyone said, it seems like BOTH Prides were great.

Which I knew would happen all along. I would have only gone to the one on Saturday (had I gone and not sold stuff at my parents in outlaw's yardsale) and allowed myself to be dragged to the one on Sunday.

The moral of this story is that Seattlites are plagued by thoughts of superiority when WE SHOULD JUST BE HAPPY WE CAN HAVE TWO PRIDES THAT ARE AWESOME, ATTENDED AND ENJOYED!

And don't forget about the Seattle Black Pride July 21-23rd!

We hate you too Quentin!!!

it's true that K&L distributing (Budweiser) was pressured by Broadway bars not to sponsor the Pride Festival at Seattle Center. But thanks to PBR - the beer still flowed.

With the success of the downtown parade, I'm sure K&L and many, many others will scramble to be on-board for next year, and I think the two parade 'factions' will mutually benefit from a co-ordinated 2007 Pride.

Paylo,

It is true that several of the bar owners/managers - threatened to pull the plug on Budweiser (K+L Distributor)
if they gave any support to Seattle Pride.
Luckily Pabst Blue Ribbon (Alaska Distributor) was not
fearfull of the boycott and stepped up to show their support of Pride.

Remember that the next time you ask for beer. Heck remember that the next time you choose a Bar. If they were flying Budweiser banners - tell them you want a "PBR" Pabst Blue Ribbon.
If they tell you they don't carry it - tell them to order it.

BAD choice choosing mark Finley to host your Gay Pride event!

Just a few nights before he was kicked out of a bar called "The Bus Stop" for attacking a handicapped person in a drunken rage- he also ripped posters down from the walls and verbally attacked patrons. Why would they waste important airtime on this nasty monster?

Did he blackmail someone?

How can a person with AIDS drink and take medication AND stay out all night? Answer: he is a CON-ARTIST, a consummate liar and manipulator. KSTW and the Seattle gay community has been duped again!

I have much to say about one of your articles in the Pride issue, "Life Sentence." You make the argument that because of social and political shifts there is no excuse to remain in the closet until midlife ("McGreevey had ignored huge cultural changes when he apparently concluded that he could not be out and a successful politician"). You then quote your ex-girlfriend and paraphrase the quote later: "Your punishment is your life."

Not only is that a vicious and mean-spirited phrase, but it is even more inappropriate in a Pride issue. How dare you smear someone because you think social and political conditions are ripe for coming out and leave no excuse for remaining in the closet? Each of us has our own personal challenges in coming out. If it takes someone until they're 80 years old, it is not your place to judge them for waiting so long. It's not your life and it's not encouraging for someone in the closet to hear you claiming that 40 or 50 or 60 is too late to do anything.

You're right, when closeted politicans make decisions that reinforce a heterosexual-only lifestyle at the expense of gay-inclusive ones, it is both hypocritical and wrong. However, some compassion for the challenges all gays face in the coming out process is much needed.

I came out late in life and in many ways came of age late in life, and I think you should seriously consider the incidence of gay bashing and homosexual hatred that continues in urban areas, including Seattle. People are still condemned for being gay, abused for being gay, and killed for being gay. Can you blame someone for not wanting to go through a wrenching emotional process? Granted, they're not doing themselves any favors, but you're not welcoming them to the gay community with arms any more open than the rest of the world.

Show some compassion and don't say vicious things like "Your punishment is your life." No one deserves such hatred.

--Sailor

rowdyboy sounds like a cowardly, jealous, 'I'm telling' because I'm a nasty ho who wants Mark Finleys job. I dare you to say it to Marks face, but you won't because you have no guts and you'd be outed for the horrible person that you are. When your luck runs out and bad things happen to you, remember it's karma coming to pay you back for hitting below the belt, you underhanded snot-and I hope that Mark is there to see your disgrace, and you know what he'd not put the boot in because he's better than you.

Facts are facts Steve. I saw the whole thing happen @ the Bus Stop- and that is a pretty accurate account. As for someone wanting marks job LOL!!! LMAO!!!! A tired two bit job @ R-Place is nothing to be coveting. And if you are then you have bigger problems than being jealous of MF.

Strange how Mark Finley always plays the victim when in fact The city of Seattle has been his victim for years... Argh! SUCCUBUS!!!

A very nice website !! Very well Done !!! nokia6630

True Prideboy facts are facts, but in here they're all heresay as far as I'm concerned. You should re-read my previous entry and then let me know where I stated that I want MF's job?
Since you have it all wrong let me spell it out for you. I object to anyone who has a gripe about someone else and turn it into a personal attack about their income, housing and health issues... it's not relevent to the subject. All I see are bitter grapes from someone who has nothing kind inside of him for him to go that far. But I'm certain that MF will consider it a tiny blip on the radar and not waste as much energy as I am on something so low.

Mark Finley is the Al Sharpton of the gay community! They both have questionable if not outright FRAUDULENT credentials, they are always thrusting themselves UNINVITED into the spotlight (to get attention and publicity), they always try to play the victim, and they are always an embarrassment to the communities they belong to...

Here's another good analogy!
MF is like a tired sorry old clown that shows up at a kids party- only the immature are impressed- the rest either feel sorry for him or are terrified out of their wits...

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