What a great night!!
The Big Heart Party was a well-attended affair with good food, lots of red wine, a few technical glitches (sorry about the overheating on the receiver!), laughter at Faust videos, and most importantly: the big heart was fed full of cash and checks!
The grand total take on the evening was $2,010. The upcoming "Queer As Faust" festival in June drew the largest deposit in the heart, followed closely by "Fairness for All Families" (aka Equality Florida). The monies for Fairness will help stop the onward march of marital bigotry in the Sunshine State. The donations to "Queer As Faust" are greatly appreciated as we try to minimize our outlay of cash at a time of transition in Faust. It was amazing how close those two came in the final tally. In fact, the dollar amounts were almost even. Adding it up, it was kind of like the Hillary vs. Obama delegate count!
The final two causes, PFLAG and This Way Out, also received abundant support from the attendees at the party, and folks took literature home to learn more about the Straight for Equality campaign and a radio magazine show that keeps going and spreading news of interest to the gay and lesbian community despite financial hardship. My heart is full knowing that my friends would donate to two lesser-known entities: PFLAG has had a sporadic presence in Tallahassee, and This Way Out has never graced the airwaves of any station within ear shot of Florida's capital city.
A few special thank yous: to Matt and Diana for supplying the chocolate fondue, and for your immeasurable help prepping and painting our living room and dining room. To Beatrice for prepping, painting, tiling, cleaning and otherwise making things nicer in our house. To Isabelle for allowing change to occur and getting into the spirit of it. To Terry for wanting to make more changes...and being thwarted.
And to Dana, the creator of my big pride heart. What an amazing job at making a four-chambered collection center, and crafting it in a way that captured the money into their pre-destined slots.
My love and appreciation to all of you who came to the party and gave of yourselves to my special causes. It really was what I wanted as I start my next decade of who-knows-what.
Answers to poll questions: Ah, yes! I asked five questions of my guests on my Evite, and it gave me a very interesting profile of the attendees. As many as 55 people answered the survey, but not everyone chose to give their thoughts on each of the questions (chickens!)
Question 1: Infamous homophobe Jerry Falwell passed away last year. Where is Jerry now?
Answers: 41 believed Rev. Falwell is now Caught up in a Perpetual Pride Parade; 7 didn't know where he was....and 6 believe he has gone straight to hell. No one thinks he's in heaven.
Question 2: What popular song makes for the best Gay Pride anthem?
Answers: 21 said "We Are Family"; 4 said "Ain't No Stoppin' Us Now"; 4 "I Will Survive"; 4 "Sisters Are Doin' It for Themselves"....and 17 hate all those songs.
Question 3: What was Dade County Commissioner Ruth Shack's connection to Anita Bryant?
Answers: Four people got it. I accepted Tim and Darwin's responses that Ruth Shack sponsored the ordinance amendment in 1977 that Anita Bryant repealed with her "Save Our Children" homophobic campaign. But Phil and Randal actually knew that Dick Shack, Ruth Shack's husband, was Anita Bryant's booking agent!!
Question 4: What is your favorite genre of music?
Answers: 27 of y'all are rockers, 7 prefer folk/country, 7 like jazz, 4 are into funk, 1 person wanted reggae....and one person thought I would actually play opera/classical at my party!
Question 5: Complete the phrase: Life in your 40s is...
Answers: 39 said "Fabulous"; 8 said "Fattening"; 7 said "I don't trust anyone over 39" and one person says the 40s are frustrating!
Many have said that this event is an inspiration for them as they contemplate their own future birthday parties. Cool! Invite me, and I will contribute my cash to your cause!