Sister Edith Myflesh
28 October 2001
An Audience of One Million People
The morning after Pink Saturday was the Pride Parade. For this event, I had sent an email to Sister Lolita Me Not Into Temptation, asking to volunteer. She had responded, informing me that they needed wheel monitors and had I been trained for that? I responded that I had not, but was still willing to help. Not surprisingly, I didn't hear back from Sister Lola.

So, I went to the Pride Parade site and found out what this training involved. It turned out that there was a training session the next night. I took my eager to help out self down to the training session and got myself trained to be a wheel monitor and a safety monitor, just in case.

As you can imagine, Sister Lola was a lot more eager to chat with me after I informed her of this. Before I started working on all of these volunteer projects, I suffered under this misconception that to volunteer, all you had to do was turn up. While that is partly true, it also helps a lot if you actually have something to offer when you do volunteer.

Tired and groggy from the night before, I showed up on one of the side streets downtown at an obscene hour of the morning. It was really cool watching all of the groups assemble their floats and pull their people together. Eventually, all of us were sorted and placed and lined up. I was assigned to the left rear wheel of the Sisters' lead car; a jeep that had a giant papier-mâché Sister head — complete with wimple and veil — attached to it.

The hardest part was waiting. We stood on that side street as the crowds gathered and then the lead floats started. The sun rose higher and higher and still more groups went by. I think we were around entry number 120, but it was still several hours before the barricades in front of us were removed and we moved out on to Market Street.

Suddenly, I was on stage. And not only that, but I was on stage with an estimated audience of a million people. I don't think I can even try to explain the waves of energy coming from the masses on the sides of the street. Or what it felt like to be at the very front of the Sisters' contingent. Granted, the woman who was walking in front of me was nude save for a couple of marijuana leaves, but it was still an amazing experience. I had been worried that I was going to forget to smile and wave. But the grin on my face was ear-to-ear and was definitely not coming off.
recorded in the Book of Stories :: testify, Sister!

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