Diversity is defurnitely something to celebrate. The diffurences between us are what make life more colourful and just a bit brighter. In my artickle about Pride i’ll share my mews on gender, history of the rainbow flag and Bourne Free Festival as well as a couple of pics of our cattendants at Bourne Free.
“Hi, I’m Max…
My brother Pumpkin and I are the only orange members of the twelve-strong Pause cat family, but we fit right in just like everyone else, no matter what colour our fur is, and everyone loves us just as we are! We are always purroud to be unique!
BEAUTIFURLY BLURRED BOUNDARIES
My human family actually call me Maxine a lot of the time. They say it’s because I act like and get treated like a princess. It can be quite difficult to differentiate neutered Tom cats from queens and you can’t always tell by size. Marijke, is a Maine Coon and dwarfs her best friend Liquorice. It’s easy and common to misgender cats, but does it matter? Gender roles are a human construct and not everyone fits into the “girl” or “boy” box. Bear is a loud, bold, brave and ballsy girl, the only thing that isn’t butch about Clifford is his high-pitched meow, my bro Pumpkin is soft, soppy and cuddly. I’m a princess. We are proud to have the fureedom be ourselves, unique and purrfect. I worry that it’s not always as simple fur our human counterpawts to be treated with such freedom when it comes to identifying as a gender, or not.
A PAWSITIVELY WELCOMING PLACE
We purride ourselves on difursity. Sexual orientation and gender don’t matter to cats, everyone at Pause can be who they want to be. Our staff, volunteers and visitors are all deliciously difurent and everyone is welcome. We loved the opurrtunity to use the symbol of the rainbow to show that while we celebrated Pride!
The history of the purride rainbow
The rainbow has been used as the symbol of LGBTQ+ Pride movements for many years, and across the world. But its history goes back to the seventies. In 1977, a man named Harvey Milk was the first openly gay man to be elected to public office in California. Along with some of his peers, Cleve Jones, and Artie Bressan, Milk urged San Franciscan queer artist Gilbert Baker to create a recognizable “emblem of empowerment for the queer community”.
“I thought of the American flag with its thirteen stripes and thirteen stars, the colonies breaking away from England to form the United States,” he wrote. “I thought of the vertical red, white, and blue tricolor from the French Revolution and how both flags owed their beginnings to a riot, a rebellion, or revolution. I thought a gay nation should have a flag too, to proclaim its own idea of power.”
On an evening out dancing with Cleve Jones, Baker looked around himself at the many different people he saw…
“We were all in a swirl of color and light. It was like a rainbow. A rainbow. That’s the moment when I knew exactly what kind of flag I would make.”
BOURNE FREE 2019
Bourne Free is Bournemouth’s annual LGBTQ+ Pride event. It’s been held in Bournemouth every year since 2004 (that’s older than any of us kitties at Pause! Wow!) and is committed to raising awareness and striving for universal equality for all through entertainment!
Each year they host an eventful weekend in July. On the Friday of Bourne Free, there is a free-to-attend family event, with a screening of a film for all the family (this year it was Inside Out (my favourite scene is the one inside the cat’s brain, that’s what it’s like at Pause all the time)! On Saturday is the parade, the Bandstand, and the Triangle Arena, with loads of performers and entertainment for the whole family. Our human Pause team members were stationed in Bournemouth Gardens on Saturday.
PAUSE ON TOUR
The theme for this year’s Bourne free was “Paint the World With Your Pride” and a group of Pause team members (the human ones, not the cats!) joined in the celebrations with a stall offuring rainbow face painting and colourful tutus for the cat-loving crowds. Being a Bournemouth-born-business, we have a lot of pride for the town as well. The humans came back excitedly and told me their tails of the event and showed me some pics. They loved being a pawt of the festivities and they had a purrilliant time!
ABOUT THE AU-FUR
“Hi, I’m Max…
My name is Maxine. or if you would like to use my proper title, it’s ‘Their Royal Highness Ginger Princess Maxine’ but you can call me Max for short. I am Pause’s proud LGBT representative.
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