My passenger is a very attractive young woman working for Basic Rights Oregon. For a fevered few weeks a few years ago, she and I had many passionate discussions about gay marriage. She'd asked me if I would start asking "very straight" married passengers just how their own marriages would be jeopardized by allowing gays to fight over china patterns. When I later wrote a column mourning the weddings I performed that day, now rendered null and void, she realized who I was, and now she's riding with me again.
"You never told me that you were going to go down there and marry people at the courthouse! I pegged you as just an interested bystander." "Nope, got ordained that very day," I say.
She was disappointed that I hadn't been more public about it in these pages, but I demurred. "This column shouldn't really be a serious soapbox."
She laughs. "Yeah, this topic does tend to bring out the clench-butt conservatism that sometimes lurks under even the messiest hipster haircut."
"True. But the folks literally manning the barricades that day looked to be a...normal cross-section of Portland folks, which was all the better."
I asked what her favorite part of that day was. "That group of folks that sang 'Chapel of Love' to drown out the protesters." That was a highlight for me, too, though having a picture of my boyfriend in the middle, wildly conducting, leaves me kinda biased.