I seem to be reminiscing about events, so I’ll keep on.
I’ve talked about Black Rose and SMARTFest and Vicious Valentine – we went to one Malicious Masquerade, run by the same folks as VV, but it just never worked as well for our schedule. Anything for Love is another event for which I will always have fond memories, too.
AFL was in Covington, just over the border from Cincinnati, at some hotel that just loved us. After a while you stay in so many hotels that you don’t remember which hotel is which, so I don’t remember if it’s a Ramada or a Clarion or Marriott, whatever.
AFL was one of the earliest events I know of that was held regularly. I think they ran about ten years all told and I was at most of them. I presented for them often over the years, although it was Vicious Valentine where I presented for the first time.
I presented a few times at Kinky Kollege in Chicago, too, and for COPE once or twice. I’ve presented for PEER and SELF and COPE and probably a half dozen other acronyms that I have forgotten.
drew and I went out to Denver once, for Thunder in the Mountains. It was a lot of fun, I remember, some of my strongest and funniest memories are of Thunder. In one instance drew and I each did a security shift and they gave us each a walkie-talkie.
I am well known at GLLA for the fact that I set down my radio within five minutes of getting it and never pick it back up again. The way it worked this year was that boy brent turned it off for me in my class on Friday morning, and I never turned it back on again. It’s always like that one way or another, to the point that there’s always the threat that they’re going to just buy me a plastic one that says Mattel on the back, because it would be as useful to me.
In any case, in that instance, it was not I who did something with the radio, drew had decided to play with it, and ended up on different channels to the point that they had to send someone to his position, which was way the fuck out on the edges of a large hotel, the security shift equivalent of right field in baseball.
To be fair, it was the same location I’d drawn the day before.
Anyway, they had to send someone out to fix his radio and I was doing a shift elsewhere, listening to the goings on on the radio *I* had not fucked up and rolling my eyes, having a pretty clear picture of what had happened.
When drew finally DID come back online to apologize it was in that odd speaking style he has, which may well be an affectation, but is so much a part of him now that he uses it without thinking, something like, “Cheers, lads, many apologies for being a bit off the radio there, but all is well here on the streets, Adam 12 over and out…”
The other memory was the fact that Mark Frazier was doing a CBT class there, with Randall Kinnear as his demo bottom. drew watched part of it and always liked Randall saying, “It’s ok to scream…” Followed by screaming.
I think it was Thunder, too, where drew and I went to dinner with a half dozen or so other presenters, including the lovely Midori. Midori was wearing a flesh colored semi-transparent latex dress with strategically-placed flowers painted on it to make it technically street legal. She referred to it as her condom dress, and it fit about as tightly as a condom, making underwear not an option. She was also wearing hooker heels, which she walked in perfectly.
We had intended, I think, to go somewhere that was more adult or more kink friendly, but either got lost or it was gone or not open or something and we ended up with the only thing open we could find being a locally owned version of something like Bob Evans. I remember Midori walking past a table of cops, and their jaws nearly hitting the table.
It was, however, street legal.
I was at some somewhere when about 25 or 30 of us headed out one night to a Pappadeaux’s. We had no reservation and the restaurant was really popular, but Midori and Tristan Taoramino and, I think, Lolita Wolff, went up and told the hosts that we were a group of sex educators, and they seated us almost immediately.
My actual funniest memory of drew at an event was at Black Rose one year. We’d driven there and met peter, the Indian gentleman who was my submissive at one time. We had driven there and gotten lost on the Beltway, traffic had been horrific, it was a long trip and we were both tired, though we’d not bickered at all, either.
We got to the hotel, drew and peter got the car unloaded, and we got to the room. slave drew, being both male and in a car all day, immediately took a newspaper and went to the bathroom.
I chatted with peter for a bit, then thought, oh, I’d like one of those sodas we brought… Oh, wait, the cooler is in the bathroom.
peter and I chatted a bit more, then I realized I wanted something from my toiletries… Oh, wait, those are in the bathroom.
I do not wait well, I confess. I asked, in less than dulcet tones, “Did you fall in?”
I still remember exactly where I was at the moment I heard his response from the bathroom. I was bending over to get something out of my suitcase, and peter was standing near the bathroom door, doing something.
What I heard from the bathroom was,” Grumble grumble grumble *bitching* grumble grumble grumble.”
I remember freezing as I looked at the door of the bathroom. I remember peter freezing, too, with a look in his face akin to having heard the seven year old who just accidentally said “fuck” in front of his mother.
“What did you say?”
I give drew credit for his answer, which was complete silence.
I’m a generous woman, it had been a long day, I thought, I will let this go now, and we’ll discuss it at a time when I have his FULL attention.
So the three of us went to dinner. peter is a lovely man, one of the most intelligent men I know, and truly a gentle man, in every sense of the word. He and drew have always liked each other enormously, and they are both so bright that they have much in common in their interests and knowledge.
We had a wonderful time, came back, went to the dungeon. I waited until drew was naked and chained to a post to bring up those overheard mutterings from earlier.
Now, to be clear, it was rude, but it had been a long day, I could have been more pleasant, we were both tired, I wasn’t really particularly upset at any point over it, but it was both required to address it, and it was fun to do it, too.
drew is known for his ability to think fast, and as he dodged swats from a crop, one of his least favorite toys, laughing, as was I, he determined that what he had actually said, in totality, was this:
“Thank you, Mistress, for bitching at me, I was sorely in need of it.”
What could I do? It was too fucking funny.
I’ve been to Northwest Leather Conference in San Jose two or three times, a smallish event run by Ms Margaret and her slave, Erich. I like both of them enormously, and the event has a great feel to it. It’s not huge, but that’s one of the things that is nice about it. Plus, it’s in San Francisco in May. This is not a bad thing,
I’ve only been to Southwest Leather Conference once. I went out and stayed with Ms Kendra, while drew went hiking. We drove to Tombstone after. SWLC is the woo woo event, they do drum circles and the dance of the soul and a lot of other sort of new-age things, and I don’t mean that dismissively at all. I don’t really know the terminology they prefer, but they focus very strongly on spiritual aspects.
I’d go more often, actually, but Phoenix is a long ways off, but I think it’s a great event.
I’ve gone to three Leather Leadership Conferences, one years back in Chicago, one in Detroit in 2010, for which I was part of the Local Organizing Committee, and this past year, in Nashville. I presented for one for the first time this past year. I was in charge of the schedule for 2010, which I enjoyed a great deal.
I went to a Great Lakes Olympus Leather contest in Pittsburgh a few years back. I went to a Leather bar there, too, that was in one of those great locations, as we often are. It was down by the river, under the overpass, about two blocks from the prison.
I’ve been to Mid States and Tri States Leather contests, both. I’ve been to Indiana and Kentucky Leather contests, too.
I’ve been to IML, International Mr Leather, once, and it was fun. IML is something a lot of gay guys do every year, if they do nothing else, and I don’t know that I’d get enough out of it to ever feel that way about it, but it’s an amazing event. It’s huge, and well-run, and the contest is pretty amazing. But it’s not an event I’d take enough away from, I think, to be willing to regularly spend the money it costs to go. Chicago is an expensive town and it’s an expensive contest.
I’ve been to International Leather Sir/boy and Community Bootblack, twice. ILSb is a fun event, smaller than IML, and I would probably go to that one regularly if it were not so far away. It’s been in San Francisco, and while it’s a great place, it’s a long way from Kentucky. It’s moving back to Dallas, though, and while Dallas is a haul, it’s a doable haul.
I’ve also produced events, two Derby City Fetish Balls, two Bluegrass Leather Pride. DCFB was done with a couple of other people, and would have continued, but we lost our venue the last year we had it planned, which would have been our third year and third venue and we were all tired of it. It was fun while it lasted, though.
Bluegrass has been challenging in terms of venues, the same kind of challenges we all have. I’ll make it work, though, I always do.
There are a couple of events I’ve never been to that I’d like to make sometime. I’ve never been to IMsL, and that would be fun sometime, but it’s also usually a good distance away.
Oklahoma’s Tribal Fire always sounded like a lot of fun, and I liked the producers a lot.
The only one of the Master and slave feeder events I’ve not been to is the M/s Conference out of DC. It’s Labor Day weekend, which is close enough to GLLA that I just have never been able to work up the energy to make it to. One of these days.
Black Beat sounded fun, but I never made it and don’t even know if it’s still happening or not.
You could say I go to a lot of events, huh?
I’ve gone to between six and a dozen events a year, every year, for nearly 15 now. Some years it was less, but there were local events, too, or groups I presented for, things like that, so I still attended a lot.
So six events a year for 15 years would be 90 events.
Even four events a year would be 60 events.
If you figure eight a year, then it’s 120. I’d guess it’s somewhere between there and 100.
It’s amazing how many cities I’ve been to because of events, how many people I’ve met through them.
I probably don’t want to know how many miles I’ve traveled to get to them.
I know I don’t want to know how much money I’ve spent.