09. Aug 2010 - 11:00Einar Ragnar Jónsson
Tens of thousands of people came together in downtown Reykjavík last weekend to celebrate the 12th annual Gay Pride Parade. Jón Gnarr Kristinsson, the mayor of Reykjavík, was at the front of the parade that went down Laugavegur: the twist is that he was dressed in drag in celebration of the ‘Different Days’ (Hinsegin Dagarnir, in Icelandic), which was held by Reykjavík Gay Pride.
The mayor had opened the festival two nights before – in the same housewife attire consisting of a colorful floral dress, blonde wig, a small yellow handbag, pink cashmere sweater, and stark rose-red lipstick – at Háskólabío Cinema to the surprise of its attendees.
Never one to miss the opportunity for a little comedy, the mayor said, “As you have obviously noticed, the mayor did not show up,” as the crowd could barely hold in its laughter. “The mayor had to do something else,” scoffed the femme impersonator: “He is busy apparently: What could the mayor be so busy doing?”
Before formally opening the parade, the mayor lamented, “This is what we get for electing a clown for mayor,” and thanked the crowd by waving to them in manner of Queen Elizabeth as the audience bellowed with laughter, thus clapping for the mayor’s empowering one-man act.
At the end of the parade was Páll Óskar Hjálmtýsson, famous Icelandic musician and DJ, praising through his music the joy of ‘being as one is,’ in a red, soaring chimney tower of a makeshift train.
The huge mass of people – gays, lesbians, bisexuals, transgenders, friends, family members, and numerous supportive residents – attended and rejoiced for ever-increasing LQBT tolerance and equal rights. The parade had a multitude of floats from dancers, singers, and DJs, to a float supporting the recent legalization of gay marriage by dressing appropriately for the parish, family members and friends of LQBT individuals holding a sign saying “We support our gay friends: Do you?” and several affiliate LGBT grassroots organizational campaigners walking down the packed street.
Below are a few select pictures of yet another grand festival, alongside a fast-forwarded video of the parade.