In spending this past weekend on a personal vacation, the rather enjoyable silence was struck out by a glut of incoming hyper text-messaging, asking me if i was ‘in the park’ and ‘wearing red.’
God, I hate support groups…
Ah, the yearly lure of GayDays at Disneyworld in Orlando: A time when 40,000 gay men (and the occasional confused lesbian) come together to frighten families from the mid-west, leaving emotional scarring for years to come and many parents to answer that age old question: ‘Mommy, what were those two men doing during Mister Toad’s Wild Ride?’.
A time when the park glistens and sparkles just a bit more… No, not from the hard work of the ever-ready janitorial staff, but thanks to the thin coating of Wet Platinum that adorns every seat in the men’s room.
I suppose there was a time when getting together over 40k gay people in one spot was considered powerful, even radical perhaps. What once started off as something very anti-Disney and a sharp poke to the ribs of cooperate & evangelical America has now turned into an overly-sponsored sinkhole, not totally unlike any standard Jeffery Sanker-cum-drug-riddled-dance event. A ‘sense of community’ my ass.
Disney’s no dummy: They’re riding this over-stuffed swine all the way to the bank, giving the gay community yet another dopey dance party and a false sense of acceptance by society while ultimately segregating us even further. I’ve experienced GayDays in the past for myself and to say some of the theatrics from our community towards straight families was tacky is putting it lightly. It, at times, was a deliberate assualt against people who wanted nothing more than to enjoy the park with their children.
I really don’t think that Disney ever meant ‘The Jungle Cruise’ to be taken that literally. I still have nightmares recalling my day at EPCOT, or Every Person Comes Out Tweaking. One group there kept asking rather loudly if ‘The World’ had a Castro section.
If only Disney would let me take my cattle prod into the park…
This isn’t to say that all gay people are tactless, obnoxious people, but in life it does happen that the few bad apples tend to ruin the bunch (in the public’s eye).
Gay Day for me is every day of every hour of every minute of each second. Not just when Disney, Budweiser and a lube company tell me it’s okay. Not when an already gluttonous theme park finds it can make even more money from an oft-ignored community. It’s sure as hell not when a gaggle of screaming drag queens and aging porn stars ‘host’ a worthless circuit party, spending most of their time looking for their next coke fix and listening to the always-mundane sounds of a DJ & vocalist who haven’t been popular since Bush Sr. was in office. I don’t need pack mentality and I sure-as-shit don’t need their approval.
Readers, keep all of this in mind as June approaches and Gay Pride invades your particular city: Only YOU matter when it comes to acceptance, love and self-support.
You won’t find true acceptance in starving yourself just to fit into that speedo for ‘Beach Ball’ at Disney. It’s not what you wear or who your friends are. You can pay for that all-inclusive VIP-First Class-Front of Line ticket, but it means absolutely nothing in the longrun. It all begins and ends with YOU. In figuring out who were are as a singular and collective whole, only then will we have a shot at being true equals.
For a community that preaches absolute acceptance and longs to be part of society as a whole on a common ground, it’s ironic that we implement such a hypocritical tier-system within our own. Sad, actually.
The real pride is in yourself. Nowhere else.