Matt and I got back last night from another trip to Scotland. We took the opportunity (on top of a conference) to hit up some of Edinburgh’s International Fringe festival, scoring tickets to previews of four shows, including two one-woman shows and a weird improv band.
The best show we saw was Jim Henson’s adult puppet theater troupe, Puppet Up! The show and the performers were very funny, slightly raunchy, with some good clean family fun thrown in, despite the over-18 age limit (they performed the old classic “Java“, but most of the skits were improv with input from the audience).
Our last show was the decidedly raunchy Shirley Gnome, a Vancouver, B.C., native with a beautiful voice who sang *very* X-rated songs about sex — all kinds of sex! I wonder if she would have fit in well, this week in Stockholm? Probably. We got home to hot weather and the end of the Stockholm Pride Festival.
I caught the end of the parade, Saturday afternoon, with glimpses of some fabulous cross-dressers and trannies, as well as the contingents walking under flags for Israel, the Swedish Pirate Party (Piraterna?), and Mexico (I didn’t see the US Democrats Abroad, though I know they planned to march). One sign I saw badmouthed Putin — what a funny juxtaposition: A loud and proud queer party that has taken over a Scandinavian city (with 7Eleven arranging gay weddings in the park!), and a kerfuffle over Russia’s anti-gay legislation in advance of the Winter Olympics, all in the same week.
The timing sends me spinning off in all directions: What makes culture? Why do cultures go in such different directions?
Toward the end of July, a friend from San Francisco was visiting — we were talking about how we were loathe to visit countries where women’s rights or public displays of affection were illegal (read about this case of the woman from Norway arrested in Dubai for sex outside marriage, after reporting to the police that she had been raped). And now it’s legal to marry your partner of any gender in the US and Sweden … while a gay athlete might be arrested for wearing a rainbow pin or kissing a partner at the Olympics? How do these things happen?
I digress. All I really want is tickets to see Prince tomorrow night here in town at the Stockholm Music Festival… talk about transgressive! PRINCE!!!!!!