Every year it’s the same. Winter is awful. Spring is awful and wet and cold but everyone is really surprised, despite it being like that EVERY YEAR. Summer eventually rolls around and after weeks of white skies and middling temperatures, it finally starts to pick up a few days of warmth. Everyone heads to Topman for luridly coloured hot pants, drinks cider in Soho Square and next thing you know, it’s Pride again.

Now Pride is, of course, a hugely important event for visibility, awareness, fostering a feeling of community and showing the world that London is a safe place for LGBTQ people.

HOWEVER. Pride is also a MINEFIELD of people you thought you’d never have to see again in your life. Every maggot you’ve ever met will be crawling out of the woodwork today and there’s not a thing you can do to stop it. Here are some examples of the characters you may have the misfortune to meet and how to avoid such situations.



Everyone’s got one. Like the guy who’s sink you blocked whilst trying to douche in the downstairs loo. You bolted from the house, ignored his texts and now he’s standing directly opposite from you in a pair of white chinos and espadrilles, sipping a cherry VK and laughing to his mates. Probably about the boy who left chunks of faeces on his facial cleanser.

PRIDE PRO-TIP: Don’t douche in sinks. They are not equipped for heavier waste and are also not very accommodating.



Another person you will almost undoubtedly run into at a Pride event is that girl from work. That girl from work is alright when you’re both stuck folding down merino wool jumpers at closedown. She’s alright on the staff night out when she says she watches Bad Girls Club too. She is not alright when she bowls up to you amid the crushed cups of Old Compton street and declares you to be her gay best friend, introduces you to her fifteen other girlfriends all wearing a selection of shutter shades and whistles, then follows you around like a lost gosling for the rest of the night, getting you turned away from three after parties in the process.

PRIDE PRO-TIP: Go on the dole to avoid awkward interactions with future co-workers. The dole is actually really great. It’s like being on a self-catering holiday to Bognor. Forever.



Then there are the exes. Because of course the best thing that could happen while you’re drunkenly swaying around like an ear of corn in the wind to ‘Born This Way’, is to run into the person who told you they’d love you forever and then proceeded to fingerbang twinks at every chillout within the city limits. How wonderful it is to politely say hello, then start “reminiscing”, then start picking open old scabs, before furiously hurling your beaker of party punch right into their SMUG VENEER-FILLED FACE YOU CHEATING SCUM.

PRIDE PRO-TIP: Six gay men a year break a finger during unsupervised fingerbang sessions. Always tell a friend what you are doing and have them accompany you to the fingerbang.



Of course, Pride wouldn’t be complete without a cameo from the current object of your affection. This will always coincide with the desperately inebriated moment in which you realise you haven’t fully pulled your penis free of your jeans and have somehow managed to sluice a thick, wet, steaming streak of urine down your leg at the Soho Square Port-a-Potties. This will, in turn, lead you to douse yourself with the remainder of your nice, warm can of Carling and then claim to your potential beau that you were pushed by a vicious Muscle Mary. Sadly, the unmistakeable odour of hot ammonia rising from your crotch belies the truth. Looks like there’s not going to be a post-Pride cheeky Nandos for two. For you at least.

PRIDE PRO-TIP: Nandos serve chicken. But they also sell soft drinks.


• Accept it, understand it, acknowledge it: one, some or all of these things can and will happen to you at Pride this year. Prepare yourself accordingly and perhaps you’ll manage to avoid some of the crushing embarrassment. Best of luck.



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