Defense of Marriage? It's like the old V-8 commercial. As though if this act didn't pass, heterosexual men all over the country would say, [smacking head] 'I could have married a guy!'
~ Barney Frank U.S. Representative
The Elegant Gathering
TODAY on TV
Everybody Loves Raymond
LOVE AND MARRIAGE, The Other Side
15 June 2004
Davis City Council member Don Saylor beamed when he went on stage to speak about the Council's unanimous vote against any constitutional amendment banning gay marriage in this country. The event was Davis' Gay Pride Day, which my friends Ellen and Shelly organize each year and which brings out all the local politicos showing their support.
It makes me proud to live in a town that is not only gay friendly, but also gay supportive.
Incoming mayor Sue Greenwald read a proclamation from the City Council in support of Gay Pride Day.
Helen Thomson (the psychiatrist's wife), Vice-Chair of the Yolo County Board of Supervisors and Mariko Yamada, Yolo County Supervisor presented a plaque from the Board of Supervisors to Ellen and Shelly, expressing the county's support of gay marriage and its recognition of the Gay Pride event.
This was the 9th annual Gay Pride celebration in Davis. The event took over Central Park and was well attended by all sorts of families, gay and straight.
The purpose of the day was just to relax, listen to good music, like J. Byrd Hosch or The Essentials, let the kids play in the "bubble garden," participate in the water balloon toss, have free ice cream and/or free bagels, or just greet friends, but the underlying message was that gay families deserve the same rights as other families--and the right to get married, if they choose.
It was an interesting juxtaposition following my cousin's daughter's wedding yesterday.
I was there to work for the day, back at my old post at the prize table (I had to miss it last year because of my accident), where I worked with another woman to give out the 175 prizes which had been donated by the merchants of Davis--everything from free coffee to a weekend getaway at Lake Tahoe. So many merchants donate to this event, that it becomes easy to support local gay-friendly establishments because they far outnumber the ones who are not supportive. (Sadly, I discovered that Quiznos, one of my favorite sandwich places, is vehemently anti-gay, so I guess I won't be going there any more.)
From where I sat, under the canope which we dubbed our "prize castle," I had a great view of the staging area and took lots of photos.
One of the perennial favorite groups at this event is Sacramento's Taiko Dan, the group of Japanese drummers which never fails to draw a big crowd and which is mesmirizing to watch.
I stayed to the bitter end and helped clean up a bit (but not much!).
When it was all over, Ellen and Shelly treated all the volunteers who had worked at least 4 hours and who were still there at the end of the afternoon to dinner. There were only 7 of us who qualified and we went to a lovely restaurant (one of the ones which has been so generous in supporting the Gay Pride event with donations) and spent a lot of time rehashing how things had gone, suggestions for improvements next year...and laughing a lot.
It was really a fun afternoon, and the very best part of it was that when I talked with the psychiatrist's wife before it all started, she informed me that he's out of town now for the next three days, so I have a little breathing room before the next onslaught of tapes arrives!