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Some thoughts on Pride Month

2024-06-15 04:17:12.122996+02 by Dan Lyke 2 comments

I think I was in third grade. I remember being curled up, my hands over my head, as the relentless kicks continued to land. I remember the feet, and the faces, and the toes of the shoes. My attackers were a large proportion of the male students in the grade a year before. I don't remember if I passed out, I certainly was mentally disconnected from my physical sensations when they were finally pulled off of me.

(continued in the comments...)

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#Comment Re: Some thoughts on Pride Month made: 2024-06-15 04:17:28.002744+02 by: Dan Lyke [edit history]

It hasn't been the last time where I've felt that calm of knowing that death is a real possibility and that nothing I can do will change the outcome: I've felt it since, tumbled in a hydraulic in whitewater, my attempts to grab the downflow having worn me out; on a fast descent on a bicycle, when the shimmy started in a turn; when I lost grip on the rock and the rope didn't catch where I thought it would; but it certainly ranks up there, and the combination of duration and injury may make it the top one.

And that was certainly not the only incident in my childhood. Something about me has long made me a target for bullying. I was so grateful and relieved when my family moved out of that community at the end of 7th grade, and the situation was better, but it still happened. Thankfully less.

More than a few years ago, I did some silly online purity test and posted that I was kinda disappointed that I wasn't as dirty as I thought, and a friend (who happened to be a pro domme) observed that I was "a lover, not a kinkster". I once observed to a therapist that I'd given enough blowjobs to know that I was straight (which was basically one), and who knows, if I hadn't been fighting trauma about human relationships maybe I'd identifty as more bi or pan, but there's also something about certain genital configurations that turns me on, and others which just doesn't do much for me.

And it takes me a while to trust.

So, yeah. Vanilla. Het. Cisgender. Mostly monogamous, despite my skepticism about the practice.

It's Pride month. You may have noticed because of all of the rainbow merchandise (though not at Target unless you already live in an area where that sort of thing is socially acceptable. Yay capitalism).

And June is also my birthday month, which always leads to introspection.

Charlene and I have been watching the TV show We're Here[Wiki], and though I'm blessed to live in a place that's... more accepting of differences than some of the places I've lived... it's bringing up a lot of feelings for me.

About a year ago, a church up in Windsor or somesuch decided to come down and spread their hate in Petaluma over a drag queen story hour type of event, and Charlene and I went over to the library to support the counter-protest, and the shouting and megaphones started, and I stepped around the corner to where I was visible to traffic driving by, but out of the anger. And I kinda feel guilty about that, and I'm examining that. I've got a lot of privilege, and if I can burn some of it to help others feel less attacked, especially those who are even *further* from "normal" than i am, who are even more prone to the bullying and attacks, then that feels like a step towards justice.

The show, We're Here[Wiki], follows a couple of drag queens who drop into a podunk town, make-over 3 people, and put on a drag show. The participants have their own reasons, usually it's two people who identify as something other than "straight", and one person who's straight but an ally. After a bunch of episodes, both of us started thinking "So, if I were gonna write an audition letter to the producers..."

Which... I have a damned lot of privilege, and freedom to work on myself, so it quickly becomes a "what should I prioritize and how should I work on it?"

I could sure use some more fierce. I've gotten pretty good at hiding behind a microphone, but I'm working really hard on that confidence of engaging the audience, of interacting and being the show rather than detaching and putting on the show.

I've worn a dress and heels. I can definitely work on my swagger and runway walk. Square dancing has helped a hell of a lot with my dancing, but there's a *ton* of work to be done there, from fashion to movement.

And I'm trying to be a model for what's possible. Trying to be someone out there in the community who helps normalize whatever it is that got me beat up so much, so that teachers don't turn the other way when it's happening, so that adults notice when the small stuff is going on and step in before it escalates. Trying to take steps to improve equity and inclusion in our society, and to do so publicly and loudly. But I do think there's a lot more I can learn on this front.

But I know that in my community there's a shitload of work to do. In my county there's an even bigger lift. And in my country? Yeah. Holy shit. Some people have been asking if the rise of the MAGA means we're destined for another civil war, and I look around at the violence and think "my dudes, have you been paying attention? It's just a question of scale."

Which probably means I need to be saying that, louder, rather than just thinking it.

Because allies do need to be there, in the line of fire, and not just shouting attaboys from the rear.

#Comment Re: Some thoughts on Pride Month made: 2024-06-15 14:38:34.185423+02 by: Definitely Not a Bot [edit history]



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