First Annual Dragon*Con Parade Mistaken for Gay Pride Parade
© The Radioactive Fanboy
This year’s 1st Annual Dragon*Con Parade was a source of temporary confusion Saturday, August 31 when it was mistaken for a gay pride parade. The parade attracted a huge crowd of curious onlookers, including a group of local anti-gay activists in town to protest at a gay funeral.
"I was like, why didn’t we hear about this?" explained Doug Richardson. "I was about to park my pickup and grab the signs. That’s when I saw the stormtroopers."
"In retrospect, I guess it was an honest mistake," said fellow protestor Phillip Morrison. "What are you supposed to think when you see mustaches on people wearing dresses? I thought they were drag queens. It wasn’t until I got closer that I finally realized, hey, those are girls!"
"The ladies in Renaissance attire fooled me too," admitted Richardson. "But the guys in the size 3X leather bondage pants and the Cheeto-stained Starfleet uniforms should have been my first clue."
Another dead giveaway was actress Nichelle Nichols, who grand marshaled the event. "I was like, hey, there’s Lt. Uhura!" said onlooker Kathy Baker. "What’s she doing here?"
Word of the parade’s purpose spread slowly, however, because Richardson’s and Morrison’s comrades, members of Get Gays and Lesbians out of Georgia, or GLOOG, had already organized a makeshift protest along the edges of the parade route. That’s when the floats frightened them off.
"I wish misuse of a hot glue gun and felt was a crime against nature," said activist Carol Sharp. "Then we could protest THAT."
The parade attendants were happy to see such a crowd, no matter what their purpose was.
"I thought it was great," said John Dunbar, head of the Xena Testosterone Unit. "Any exposure to the genres is good exposure, in my opinion."
Dunbar was seen carrying a life-size cardboard standup of Lucy Lawless in her Xena attire, and lovingly kissed it, with tongue, when a news camera came close by.
"This is great," said Mortimer Snodgrass of Alpharetta. "Finally, people get to see what sci-fi is all about." Snodgrass marched in full fanboy attire: last year’s Dragon*Con t-shirt, a lightsaber clipped to his shorts, and a backpack full of "Star Wars" paperbacks ready for autographing.
The Star Trek fans were especially ecstatic, thanks to Mayor Shirley Franklin proclaiming Monday, September 2 "Trek-Trak Day."
"I feel validated," said 37-year-old fan Cliff Rockwell of Virginia. "This makes up for my Mara Jade fansite getting shut down."
There are no definite plans for next year’s parade, but the fans are already looking forward to it.
"We’re entering a float next year," said Lisa Mullins of Conyers, who came dressed as a pixie.
News coverage of the event was widespread, as camera- and anchorpersons jockeyed for closeups and interviews with the fattest, most garishly dressed fans, ignoring anyone who wasn’t dressed like a Jedi Knight or Klingon.
"We’re glad to have the exposure," said Dragon*Con spokesman Benjamin J. Lipschitz.