Pride Parade

Maybe it's just me. No doubt it's just me. But when did Seattle's annual Pride Parade change from a energizing, empowering assertion of individuality in the face of a hostile world to a comfy ritual? Look around—it's all moms, dads, strollers, and dogs, as cozy and samey as a Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving, as a box of Nilla Wafers, as the 50th bedtime reading of Lilly's Purple Plastic Purse. In one sense, of course, this sort of reassuring unremarkableness is just what gays have been fighting for for decades—the right not to be unusual—but on the other hand this is a parade, and year after year we dutifully spend two hours watching it without being surprised by a single thing. Yes, there will always be new arrivals from Twisp, Sequim, and Yelm who thrill to it, and the subsequent Seattle Center festival, as that dazzling wonderland of homofabulousness they only dared dream of. But for those who think "I wish every day could be like this!"—careful what you wish for. Because, at least for one Sunday each June, every day is like this. (Route begins at from Fourth Ave. & Union St. to Denny Way. Parade ends at Seattle Center, where free festivities follow from noon-8 p.m.) GAVIN BORCHERT

Sun., June 26, 11 a.m., 2011

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