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Wednesday, June 25, 2008

The Tears of Jubilation

posted by on June 25 at 13:45 PM

Slog commenter Jubilation T. Cornball, currently attending a gay wedding in San Francisco, waxes emotional in an email he just sent me:

Thought you might be interested in a real time description of the weddings in San Francisco…I am at the City Hall rotunda now. There is a band playing love songs. Small and smaller gaggles of folks are in various spots under the rotunda dome, all of which have, at their center, two guys or two women and an officiating, um, official.

And hey—there are straight people getting married here, too! They don’t seem to act like their marriages are under threat.

This experience is, simply put, one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen in my life. I am certainly going to cry for happiness when my friends get married (or if Turkey beat Germany, which I have been following on my blackberry—my damn friends had to get married during a Euro semifinal), but now I find myself tearing up watching strangers.

One walks through the front door of City Hall to the rotunda, under four large panels of the AIDS quilt, reminding us that the struggles our community have undergone in our lifetimes are huge. But we somehow get through them, and move on to better days and places…including a room filled with marrying couples who might wonder who that strange guy is crying a little by the stairs.

I think this is what pride is all about.

RSS icon Comments


Aw, now I'm crying!

Posted by arduous | June 25, 2008 1:57 PM

Civil ceremonies in San Francisco are in a more beautiful building than almost any religious wedding. Let the churches rot in their middle-ages ideals, City Hall is cooler anyway.

Congrats to the newly weds.

Posted by Dougsf | June 25, 2008 2:01 PM

I'm glad I'm not there. I'm the last person people would expect to cry at weddings, but for whatever reason I usually at least get a little misty eyed. Couple that with significant social and cultural change and sappy music and I would be a goner.

Do you have pictures of the scene?

Posted by Julie | June 25, 2008 2:10 PM

That's ridiculously sweet. (My cousin got married during the World Cup and I had to miss lots of games. Sigh.)

Posted by Abby | June 25, 2008 2:11 PM

oh sweet jesus that made me cry...

Posted by Stephanie | June 25, 2008 2:17 PM

Oh, Jub. It's hard to picture you crying.

Posted by Rufio (From Hook) | June 25, 2008 2:17 PM

Turkey lost but they played their hearts out, you can be very proud.

Posted by hillpagan | June 25, 2008 2:25 PM

He should come up and say hi! I'm working on the fourth floor of city hall right now. Congratulations on your friends getting married. Who knows, my boss may be officiating their wedding right now (she is performing marriages this afternoon).

Posted by Cook | June 25, 2008 2:44 PM

Having marched for marriage now for at least ten years, it make me weep to know there are those of us who have finally achieved the dream. Don't blow it with messy public divorces the way straight people do!

Posted by Vince | June 25, 2008 2:51 PM

Cheebus--Jubilation's got all corny on us!!

I think I prefer the snarky JTC who stalks men on the #26 bus to the dewy-eyed flower girl visiting SF...

Then again, I started watching the HBO John Adams mini-series last night and got all teary eyed when they read the Declaration of Independence so who am I to throw stones at glass cornpones?

Posted by michael strangeways | June 25, 2008 2:56 PM

nice post

Posted by gwrak | June 25, 2008 4:22 PM

yes it was a beautiful post. i hate to say it, tho, but i'm waiting for the other shoe to drop on this one, too. i just can't believe the homophobes aren't gonna find some way to invalidate these marriages, too. they'll find some way, some little stick-up-the-ass thing that throws icewater on it. god, i hope i'm wrong.

Posted by ellarosa | June 25, 2008 5:27 PM

Hey gang, thanks for the reactions...I'm pleased to say that my dear friends are now married! The ceremony was brief but wonderful, and, extra special cool, we all stood next to the newly unveiled bust of Harvey Milk.

The death of Harvey Milk -- hell, any thought at all of Harvey Milk, for me, always results in a sense of rage. I know this is the antithesis of his message, but sue me -- a more unfair end, for more ridiculous reasons, is hard to fathom. Harvey died the hard way, and took his incredibly promising life with him.

But today, as my frieds held one another's hands and cried and we all cried too, there was Harvey Milk, three feet away, smiling at all of the guys and gals in suits, in jeans, in Gap khakis, in dresses...the new couples in our midst would do well to thank Harvey and, just for the hell of it, smile back.

Posted by Jubilation T. Cornball | June 25, 2008 6:25 PM

How lovely. I so hope these marriages stick, unlike the ones authorized by the city a few years back. It's almost enough to make me reregister to vote in CA, (live here, but still have property there, so I think it would be legal) to vote against that loathsome proposition.

My husband and I got married at SF city hall 3 years ago, and it's a wonderful place for a wedding. I'm so happy to see all kinds of couples enjoying it.

Posted by Jaye | June 25, 2008 10:05 PM

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