Tag Archives: pride

Comparative PRIDE #MondayBlogs

Last weekend, a Scottish friend and I drove from New York City to Toronto – to see the city, yes, as she’d never been to Ontario before, but also, once I spoke to some friends, to attend the city’s Pride parade.

I’ve attended a couple of New York city’s Pride parades, and my friend from Scotland has been involved for years in helping out at Edinburgh Pride – so seeing a third country’s Pride event made for an interesting study in cultural differences.

992881_10151780313715649_1826441470_nTwo years ago, after marriage equality was passed in New York State, I went to the Pride parade and was overwhelmed by the obvious joy that crackled on the streets. Inspired, I went home and wrote Millennial Ex. Given how lively the streets outside The Stonewall Inn were after the SCOTUS decisions on Prop 8 and DOMA, I was interested to see how the landscape might differ in Toronto.

Granted, I’ve only seen parts of the NYC pride parade, but like much of what goes on in this city, it’s about spectacle. (I’m not saying this is a bad thing, necessarily, just noting that it’s present.) I found this to be less the case in Toronto – while a few of the floats had pumping music, dancers and costumed drag queens, the overwhelming majority of the marching groups were exactly that: people supporting Pride and the spirit of joy and solidarity that makes it an accessible and inclusive celebration.

Relating the names of organizations who’d marched by to a friend after the fact, I listed police precints, local radio stations, fire departments, educators, political parties (including the Premiere of Ontario and her supporters), PFLAG groups (that, along with an explanation of what PFLAG is…) and more. When I had finished, my friend commented, “it sounds so mainstream!”

She was right. It wasn’t something I gave much thought to until after our discussion, but I’ve been thinking about the “fringe-ness” of some of the LGBTQ events I’ve been to in the past and thinking about how the Toronto Pride Parade felt more like the parades I grew up watching for any other holiday – sure, there was one group of naked men advocating foreskin pride (separated, I noticed with a sense of irony, from a Jewish faith-based group), but other than that the event could have been a longer version of any municipal holiday parades I’ve seen over the years; compared to the overwhelming nature of the NYC floats or the simplicity of the Edinburgh parade (as related by my another friend, “All the gay people pretty much get in a group and walk down the street together!”).

2013-06-26 20.46.05I don’t know what conclusions to draw from the atmosphere at Toronto Pride and how it compares to Pride in other cities, particularly American ones. I know that Canada has had marriage equality since 2005, thanks to Wikipedia, but I never went to a Pride parade there before this was the case, so I have nothing to compare it to.

That said, now that DOMA isn’t going to exclude same sex couples from the federal benefits side of marriage, and more states are treating same-sex couples equally under the law, I wonder how much longer people like my friend will be acting under the misapprehension that LGBTQ and allies are a societal fringe, rather than part of everyday, mainstream life.

What does it mean for a movement to move from the fringe to the center in the public eye? In some ways, it reminds me of Vaginagate and being contacted by women who wanted to take part but weren’t in environments that would allow them to stand up and speak – for example, one woman who got in touch to say she loved the idea but would probably be institutionalized if she stood up in public in her town to take part. It’s easy for me, as a straight woman, to sit in New York City, one of the most liberal cities in America, and opine on the state of the gay rights movement – but how long will it take for changes in the legal system to trickle through to social behaviors in other parts of the country?

Not long, I hope. Toronto Pride was inclusive, celebratory and spread across multiple strata of Canadian society, and to this outsider, it demonstrated that a support network exists for LGBTQ individuals in Canada, in almost any social or work-related organization they might be a part of.

The only downside to attending was that I missed the post-DOMA-decision festivities here in NYC. Given that people were popping bottles of champagne in the street outside The Stonewall Inn the Wednesday before the parade, I’m sure the Pride parade here was an intense, intense celebration.

Happy Pride, everyone.


Stuff That’s Worth Your Time

Invisible Nursing Woman
Shoshana Rachel (great middle name!) talks about breast-feeding, cleavage and invisible women over at GirlBodyPride.

I Review Tear The Curtain
Earlier this month, I had the chance to interview one of the creators of a supposedly-groundbreaking new Canadian theatre piece. Schedules allowed me to chat with co-creator Kevin Kerr, and this weekend just gone, I was able to see the production in one of its final performances. My review is available through The British Theatre Guide, where I’ve been a contributor since 2003ish.

A Fan Letter To Certain Conservative Politicians
From @scalzi on Twitter. A letter to anti-choice politicians from a satirical rapist. Triggering, yet scathing on the order of Jonathan Swift’s  A Modest Proposal. A skilled piece of writing, whether or not you agree with his political views.

Climate Change
I’ve been following the campaigns, and one thing I’ve noticed is that the major candidates have refrained from significant discussion on the topic of climate change. Earlier this year, I did a project called Hot Mess: speculative fiction about climate change and I’d like to take this opportunity to suggest that sometimes, fiction can be an effective way of starting conversations on a grassroots level. Short stories include work by Sare Liz Gordy, RJ Astruc, Miranda Doerfler and Eric Sipple.

Trailer – Celeste Bright
I’ve mentioned a web series project in previous posts, and have to thank @thepowerobject for pointing me to this trailer. Gorgeously shot, the editing and music take you along for the ride – I’m going to pop in the first episode and see what I think of the product. This is part of my research on form and webseries; while I’m still trying to make it through Aidan 5’s full season, learning the language of a quality webseries is coming to the front in my ever-revolving priorities binder.

Ack. I just said binder, didn’t I.

We’re about ten days away from Election Day and voters in key swing states are already heading to the polls. If you spend time on “Twittah“, you already know my views, so I won’t bore you. Politics are, however, relevant, because of my new writing project.


Back in June, I had the idea for a novella that would look at the mechanics of a modern-day election, in scifi-punk terms. Having read a lot of cyberpunk in my teens, and growing out from the ongoing progress of my AI Anthology, Electalytics was meant to give me a chance to express some anxieties about the current election cycle, as well as the framing of political action/content within what I felt (and still feel) to be outdated models – all within a technopunk framework.

Electalytics started off as a challenge – could I write 30K words in a month? By July, I was still shy 2.5K, but I had the solid basis of a piece – and since then, I’ve been editing and refining the story. It’s lost mass and gained focus, and I’m excited to be offering a free look at the first chapter to the first 50 people who sign up on my mailing list. We’re about halfway to our subscription goal, so sign up for the free promo.

Also, come November 6th? Vote.

Call for Submissions: ANY OBJECTIONS? Glasgay 2012. DEADLINE EXTENDED (Now 9/17/2012)






Seeking 10-Minute plays from around the world

for reading & discussion at Glasgay 2012


Theme: acts of union, marriage equality, LGBT civil rights


From full, equal, legal status to the total denial of the presence of homosexuality within their borders, LGBT Marriage Equality means different things in different countries.


What does it mean in yours?


Snapshot the LGBT  experience in your native country and submit your 10-minute play to AnyObjectionsSubmissions@rlbrody.com

Winning entries will be performed during Glasgay 2012,

 the UK’s biggest LGBT arts festival, as part of a rotating program

presented between 23-28 October, 2012 in Glasgow, Scotland.

Writers may also be awarded a small honorarium for their work.

Requests for anonymity will be respected.





Extended Deadline is September 17, 2012

No submission fee.

Glasgay! t/a GALA Scotland Ltd, 27-29 TRONGATE Glasgow, Scotland G1 5EZ

Tel:  0141 552 7575  |  Fax:  0141 548 5157  |  Web  www.glasgay.com  |

A Company Limited by Guarantee  |  Registered in Scotland No. 157153 |  Registered Charity SCO 23620    |  VAT Registration 797 3863 59

Celebrity Meltdowns – On Opposite Day

Celebrity Meltdowns – On Opposite Day.

Recently, Pakistani actress Veena Malik was taken to task by a conservative cleric in her country for her perceived “shameful” representation of herself and of Pakistan on the Indian version of “Big Brother,” “Big Boss.”

Please consider reading my thoughts, linked above at the show blog, on Ms. Malik and her incredible stand for women around the world, and donating to “Celebrity: The Meltdown Monologues” at Kickstarter if you find the commentary engaging, interesting, or insightful.