Last weekend, my friend Bryan and I ventured to Ft. Lauderdale PrideFest. With so many different pride events in the south Florida area, each experience is different from the next. But if there’s one thing I’ve noticed after a few years of attending various events, it’s that while each pride event is different, there are always very similar groups of people in attendance.
If you’ve been to a pride event before, you’re familiar with the many faces and personalities of attendees. And for those of you who haven’t, here’s your humorous “Guide to Pride.” (And hey, it rhymes.)
The Obsessive Newly Weds: Like, gay people are even more excited about tying the knot because they can’t even get married legally in most places. So it’s a big freaking deal. These pride attendees most likely got hitched in some random state, and are possibly celebrating their honey moon during pride. How to spot: Overly affectionate, looking nauseatingly in love, or simply just wearing shirts saying so. Examples including, but not limited to: matching “I love my husband”, “Mrs. and Mrs.” and other obnoxiously corny T-shirts of that nature.
Gay Shirtless Latinos: They are such tools, have insane abs, and are probably standing by a booth trying to sell calendars or porn that, of course, they’re featured in. Gay Shirtless Latinos may not be the best English speakers either. How to spot: um, they’re Latin and shirtless. And are flaming homosexuals. I made a joke to a Gay Shirtless Latino standing by a calendar catalog booth last week, and told him that I couldn’t speak Spanish, so I probably wasn’t a worthy customer. He spent a few minutes telling me that I didn’t have to be Spanish to buy his calender, because it was in English, thinking that I was completely serious. So yes, either not so proficient in English or just unfamiliar with basic sarcasm.
Too Butch To Function: This, folks, is your stereotypical lesbian, and it would be crazy for this to not make the list. How to spot: short hair, unisex tank, and probably wearing boxers. I really don’t need to spell this out for you.
Confused Scene Middle Schools: They probably had their parents drop them off at a local movie theater and found their way to the pride festival across the street, looking to become more “in tune” with themselves. How to spot: obscure band T-shirt, dyed hair, possible piercings, and a face that reads “I suffer from teenage angst.” Most (NOT all) of these kids don’t even end up actually being gay, they just make out with people who have equally angry emotions at random scene concerts. Or just really freaking want to feel accepted somewhere?
Supa Fabulous Drag Queens: Honey, they’re the life of the party and are walking in heels way better than any classy bitch I know. Not to mention they always look better than you, and are dressed to impress. How to spot: probably on stage competing in some really tacky drag show, lip syncing, dancing, and making really hilarious jokes. If you ask me, a pride event is not complete without drag queens.
Homosexual Manthers: It’s like, the male version of a cougar. Or rather, the gay male version of a cougar. (Urban dictionary says the term “manther” is a thing?) They are always reminiscing on the pride parades back in the old days. You can hear them continually marvel over how far the LGBT community has come. How to spot: Seriously, just look for someone who looks like your grandpa; probably waving a rainbow flag while sitting on a lawn chair. Homosexual Manthers are often seen chatting away with young people about how awesome this pride is, or trying to pick up a twenty year old gay guy. And to be honest, probably the second option.
Adorable Allies: How could we forget these guys? And for us gay people, we can spot allies as easily as a black person can spot a white person at a NAACP (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) event. How to spot: They are wearing a “Straight Against Hate” shirt, because god forbid they get hit on, or doing dumb things like calling someone wrong gender pronouns. Jokes. Where would we be without you, allies? We love you. You’re sooo adorable.
Flamboyant Theater Flamers: These gay guys can belt any Broadway song beautifully, and booty-pop better than Beyonce. Here you have it- your stereotypical gays. How to spot: Passing out flyers for their latest community theater performance, while rocking a tight, pink v-neck and humming along to pop songs or musical numbers.
Nudists For A Day: Let me preface this by saying that usually I’m all for the “if you’ve got it, flaunt it” motto. But most of these people REALLY don’t “got it.” How to spot: This needs no explanation. Like, I think they seriously forgot to wear clothes. This isn’t a nudist gathering, it’s a gay gathering. Nudists For A Day are (not) wearing, most likely, but not limited to: (men) really tight speedos and (women) mesh net shirts with no bras underneath and (other genders and such, come on, we’re all about equality here) just seriously no freaking clothes. Seriously, i get the whole “We’re here! We’re queer! Look at us being bold!” era but really no one wants to see that. So, shout out to the really fat bald guy in the speedo who was twerking on the dance floor at Ft. Lauderdale Pride last weekend.
Fear the Femmes: Honestly, how could I not put this in? They’re the least “gay looking” individuals, according to stereotypes, but just as prideful. For real. How to spot: We’re just pretty.
Supportive Parents: The story goes as follows: their kid just came out to them, and when he/she/other pronoun explained that he/she/other pronoun really wanted to go pride for the first time, they felt bad saying no. This was totally my family when I came out at like, 15 or something, and dragged them to pride. Never again. How to spot: They are awkwardly walking around, avoiding booths that are giving away free condoms, and their jaws that drop to the floor whenever a “Nudist for a Day” or “Supa Fabulous Drag Queen” walks by.
Lesbian Feminist Hippies: They love the happy energy of pride, and somehow convinced themselves that everyone in the LGBTQ community automatically cares about feminism. How to spot: Their hair may or may not be dreaded, but you can bet your bottom dollar they are sporting baggy bohemian pants, or even head bands. You can probably spot a Lesbian Feminist Hippie sitting under a tree, maybe (definitely) stoned. I’m all for feminism, but I’m here to advocate for my rights as a gay person, not as a woman. Another time and another weekend, my friends, but hey, I like your Grateful Dead backpack.
Really Confused Toddlers: These nuggets are usually under the age of eight and were brought to pride by their gay parents. How to spot: For starters, they’re shorter than most pride attendees, and are probably going HAM (hard as a mofo) at the cryo bank booth, just because they are giving away free candy. Little do they know that’s probably where they came from? Annnnnd that’s how babies are made, kiddo.
"In Your Face" Booth Workers: Basically, they wave petitions in your face as you walk by. "Excuse me, but do you have a minute to hear about LGBT discrimination in the workplace?" Well, considering I’m at a pride event, I would kind of be a jerk to say no. Even though I totally care about this issue, I was actually on my way to the grilled panini booth. But yes! Go ahead. How to spot: They are wearing a shirt with a logo of some respected organization (including, but not limited to: Human Rights Campaign), smiling so hard that it is not even natural, and carrying a professional-looking clipboard. All encounters with "In Your Face" Booth Workers will end in you signing some petition and feeling good about yourself and like you’ve done something beneficial. These are, by far, some of the nicest people at pride. And don’t worry, you can chat and become educated, while still having time to grab that panini later.
And there are so many others personalities of pride. I wish I had pictures to go along with descriptions. (Hey, it would kind of be like People of the Planes, only People of the Prides?) Jokes.
Hopefully this gave you a taste of what to expect if you ever attend a pride event. And who you’ll meet. And who you should befriend. (Tip: It’s not the Homosexual Manther.)
Just for laughs here’s a photo of Bryan and I posing next to ponies. Did you know that there’s a Gay Rodeo Association of South Florida? (Or something along those lines.) Well, neither did I, but it made for a great photo opt. Do you think the horses are gay too?