June means many things in San Francisco—winter, asparagus-overload, summer street festivals—but most of all it means Pride. Leading up to 2011's Pride Weekend (June 25–26), we asked some of San Francisco's most beloved drag ambassadors to write on the question: "What does Pride mean to you?" Heklina, MC and producer of Trannyshack, wrote last week's essay, and this week, the scribe is Cookie Dough, host of The Monster Show, the longest running drag show in the Castro. We'll be publishing one essay a week until Pride weekend.
I Am Pride. As a third-generation San Francisco native, I have found that even as the city has changed for good and for bad, I am a proud San Franciscan through and through. Of course when people say “oh, yeah, I’m a native too," my question is "cool, what neighborhood did you grow up in?" Usually this is met with a “well, I’ve been here about 20 years." I want to pat them on the head, and say “that’s sweet." They want to claim this city as their own. And that makes me proud.