Yeah, I know I talk about Pride Fest a lot, but it’s coming up soon, and if you can’t tell, I’m kind of jazzed about it. Now that we are on the same page, in case you were unsure of this before, let’s talk about the strange phenomena of people coming out to protest thousands of people celebrating together in the joyous harmony of self empowerment. Seriously, what’s up with that?
Last year as we stood around waiting for the parade to begin, my friend’s spouse came up to me and suggested we take a short walk and check out the other floats. After a little bit, she stopped me and said, “Michelle, there is something I need to warn you about…” Just great. I have probably been walking around all morning with the hem of my skirt tucked into my pantyhose. No, phew, that wasn’t it. “During the parade there are probably going to some groups of people shouting some really mean things, so I wanted to warn you so you aren’t surprised and have hurt feelings.” Can you believe how sweet that was? Really, I wanted to hug her on the spot it was so nice when she barely knew me and was already looking out for me. I assured her I would be just fine.
Sure enough, my side of the float passed by two small groups of people, with cardboard signs and nasty writing, plus megaphones for shouting out biblical verses and whatnot. Funny enough, they all looked like people one would naturally assume are in the hand painted sign and amplified ranting business. I was really tempted to jump off the float and dump some change in the hat I assumed they had in front of them. If anyone looked like they really needed a beer, it was these guys. Unfortunately, I was wearing the exact wrong shoes for vaulting off a moving vehicle, so reconciled myself to waving at them cheerfully and enthusiastically. Mooning would have also been fun, but that one guy who had been following the float from the get go and looked way, way too excited to see us was still there. He still had film left, even though I saw him reload his old timey camera like six times already.
I tried to get into the heads of these protesters and failed miserably. Clearly this wasn’t some kind of impromptu thing. They must have had the date and time marked on their calendars. They stayed up late the night before with their little pots of paint and repurposed sides of appliance boxes, using their open King James to make sure they got the wording and spelling just right-ish. That morning they woke up, loaded their cars up with the signs, hopefully dry by now, put fresh batteries in the megaphones, made sure they had some good zingers of quotes memorized right, found parking a mile away from the parade route, and set up early enough on a clear patch of sidewalk. Lots of time, energy, and even some cash just to… what? Shout helplessly into the din of Gaga on every speaker? Hoping to get on the news? Receive a hand signed note of approval from that jackass Phelps? The reasoning is beyond my comprehension.
We can guess that this is something they feel Jesus wanted them to do, even though he didn’t have a big rep for razzing people from the sidelines. Even if this had a heavenly driver, I’d have to wonder what the big guy was thinking in the first place. I mean Pride Fest? I don’t think I saw many people there who looked even a smidge unsure of themselves. The tee shirts printed with ‘I Dunno, Can I Hear Both Some Gay and Super Duper Ultra Conservative Options Please?’ were pretty cold sellers. Buffalo isn’t exactly backwoods, so I imagine everyone in attendance was well aware already of the really crabby god these hucksters were flinging about willy nilly. I’m also guessing this wasn’t a onetime deal for them either, so I would think expectations could not have been good. You don’t have to be Einstein to know that the definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting different results. And there you have it. Insane in the membrane. Case closed!
This year I think I’ll print up my own pamphlet to hand out to them. ‘You And Your Crabby God: 11 Ways To Please Him At Home (Not Here)’ I think they’ll like it.