If we may wade into stereotypes for a second, the organization of Saturday's Gay Pride parade in Mexico City was typically gay—that is to say, rather chaotic—and its punctuality typically Mexican—it started a couple of hours late. Next to the big-city Gay Pride parades in the U.S. that over the years have acquired glitz and production values approaching Mardi Gras, Mexico City's version was huge yet small-time. That is precisely what made it so memorable for Stew and me.
|Most of the noise came from people, not bands.|
|A hefty Frieda looking for her Diego|
No mayors, governors or other prominent politicians were seen, as we would expect in big-city pride parades in the U.S. Although Mexico City approved marriage equality years ago along with legislation protecting the rights of gay residents, I suspect that to actually show up at the parade and lock arms with a line-up of high-kicking drag queens would be a step too far for any Mexican politician.
|This marcher seemed mesmerized by the rainbow flag|
Despite its enormous size the parade ultimately looked more like a wild block party that had caught fire and engulfed the center of the city and along with it tens of thousands of people of all ages and sexual persuasions.
|Brokeback Mountain, Mexican style.|
|Fingers with flashy jewelry and manicured nails|
wrestled with a restless wig.
|Get ready Las Vegas, here I come!|
|Grass-roots marchers vastly outnumbered the glamour types.|
There were few screaming drag queens carrying on the stereotype of Gay Pride parades that newspapers pick up every year, and even fewer gym bunnies, those young men who cloister themselves in health clubs in preparation for the one day a year on which they get to tear off their shirts and walk across town to a chorus of oohs and ahhs.
From where Stew, our friend Ron and I stood for two or three hours before hunger and fatigue set in, there seem to be little organizational backbone to the parade: No Association of Gay CPAs or Presbyterians United Against Homophobia or some such with professionally printed banners, though some Socialist groups showed up with their tired signs with tiresome slogans.
Instead, most of the folks were individuals or couples who may have stayed up late the night before hand-painting signs or cooking up some special costume, or who joined the march on impulse.
|This little queen came with her father who was on the |
sidewalk a few feet away, wrestling an Aztec bird costume
with a plumed headdress about four feet high.
|The Individual Initiative Prize went to Carlos, |
who cooked up this Liberacian outfit, complete
with a scabbard-like contraption to hold a
rainbow flag that was almost bigger than him.
|A troop of Girl and Boy Scouts gathered |
on the plaza in front of the Palacio of Bellas Artes,
oblivious to the roar of the parade a block away.