As a county commissioner on the LGBTQ Commission I had been invited to help raise the pride/progress flag at the county fair. A few dozen folks had gathered around the flag poles featuring the American flag, the California state flag, and in a few moments they would be joined by the rainbow flag with the new features making it even more inclusive of people of color, indigenous people, and trans people. Hundreds of other folks were scurrying by heading to exhibits and rides as I prepared to share a few brief remarks.
“Excuse me sir.” I heard a young voice say. A youngster sporting a rainbow mask stood near me. “Go ahead, ask him.” the person, who I would learn later was the youngster’s mother, said. “Um ... would it be OK if I made you a mask?” “Of course!” I responded, finally realizing that she was a customer from our store. A few days later the family came into the shop and gave each of us a beautiful rainbow mask. The family had been customers in our book, toy and gift shop for a few years and, given the COVID times, wanted to show their support for us. We were honored and grateful. There were plenty of other folks who showed their support, especially during the worst of the COVID times, including the person who shoved a $100 bill through the door, the family that bought a $500 gift card and used it to buy books for months, and the parent who bought $600 worth of gift cards as future gifts for her kid’s teachers.