I think I’ve finally recovered from OutFest. If you don’t know, OutFest is the national Coming Out Day block party in Philadelphia. Tens of thousands of people attend every year.
This year, I paid for a table to promote Leaving Normal: Adventures in Gender. I sold books, handed out business cards, talked with anyone who stopped by and raffled off some sweet bowties to people who signed up to follow The Flannel Files. A big shout out to all of my new followers!
I pretty much broke even after adding up all of my expenses. But still, it was a beautiful gay day. And me and W’s anniversary day to boot.
So, here are my top 10 highlights from OutFest:
10. Everyone who stopped by and talked Fun Home the Musical and “Ring of Keys” with me. You really know how to make a butch’s day.
9. Those people who gave me fist bumps and high fives and said “I respect that” after I gave them the elevator pitch to my book.
8. The woman who wanted her picture taken with me because I had written a book.
7. The mother who wanted to buy her fresh-out-of-the-closet teen daughter the book, but the daughter wanted nothing to do with the book or me. “Buy it for yourself,” I told the mom. And she did. God bless you, mom and good luck.
6. All of the butches in all of their ball cap and cargo shorts and spiky hair glory. You are my tribe. (Silent head nod.)
5. The guy who told me that he liked the cover to my book. “We should all wear capes,” he said. Amen, brother.
4. All the bois who read the back of my book, nodding their heads and saying “yep” to growing up tomboy, being called “sir,” etc.
3. Drag queens.
2. Me and W wearing matching “I Love My Wife” buttons and having everyone congratulate us when they learned it was our anniversary. I felt that people were truly happy for us and understood how big a deal it is that we were able to marry. Marriage is something our community doesn’t take for granted.
1. Dinner out at a Cuban restaurant with family and friends after. Our friend who married us last Oct. 11 — the “Right Reverend” — toasted us. And everything came full circle. And all was right in the world.