A Weekend in Atlanta
Tomorrow afternoon, four of us are setting off to the LeatherBash in Atlanta.
Ms Tammy and her slave, troy, are heading there with me and slave drew. slave thomas was going to go with me but wasn’t able to take the time right now, which is a disappointment, but it will be fun to have drew, too. He lived in Atlanta for about a year, so he at least knows his way more or less around.
She and I are doing our Humor in the Lifestyle presentation, which we’ve not done for a while. We’ll leave about 3-ish, which will put us into Atlanta, with a stop or two, around 9-ish.
Ms Kendra and her slave, garrett, will also be there, so we’ll have some time to catch up, too, after GLLA.
I’ve gone to South East Leather Fest in Atlanta a few times. I can’t remember if I’ve been there for other events, but possibly. I hate the traffic in Atlanta, but it’s always fun to visit.
This will be the weekend of the Mr. & Ms Georgia Leather and the International Transgender Leather Contests, so this should be an interesting weekend.
I’m beginning to work on my own contest, Bluegrass Leather Pride, which will be March 1-3, 2013. I have some of my judges lined up – Sir Jim Ellison and Ms Kendra and Lady Elsa so far. I have a couple of other people lined up for various positions, and enough others that I know I can put in this position or that one that I’m not concerned. Boy Kris has agreed to be my Keynote speaker; he and Lady Elsa hold the title of the International Power Exchange Couple, so I’m pleased to have them.
The size of my contest is a little hard, because it’s big enough to have a fair amount going on, but small enough that it doesn’t require a lot more people, so I do most of it myself beyond the actual event.
I line up judges, presenters if I have them, deal with venue issues. There are also other staff beyond the judges.
There’s the Judge’s boy or girl, almost always a slave or submissive, and is the person who waits on the judges, gets their drinks for them, takes messages to and from, and generally does whatever the judges need.
There’s a Den Daddy or Mother, sometimes called the Contestant Wrangler, whose job it is to make sure contestants are where they are supposed to be, that they are ready and dressed and at the right entrance. It’s a combination cheerleader and nagging mother position.
There’s the Tally Master and/or Tally slave. Their job is to calculate the results and who won the contest, or didn’t. That might not sound like all that much, but bear in mind that each contestant means that every category on which he or she is judged gets one sheet of paper from each category.
In other words, if you have five judges and it’s a contest with five categories, that means that every contestant generates 25 pieces of paper, and 25 numbers. It’s also usually an Olympic scoring system, too, so you’re not only adding numbers, first you’re looking at them and throwing out high and low.
Judges sometimes have handwriting that is worse than doctors. Sometimes their sevens look like their nines.
Contests do not default to the lone contestant who enters, regardless. Any winner, regardless of how many of them there are, MUST earn at least 70% of the possible points for any given contest, or there will not be a titleholder.
Sometimes if a single contestant earns a score that is a few points shy of the required minimum percentage, a producer might choose to go ahead and award the title. It’s not common and it’s usually in cases where it seems one or two judges are being unreasonably hard on a contestant, or when the contestant had a really unfair disadvantage, an accident on the way to the event, an ill or dying family member.
For that matter, the producer owns the title, and really can name a titleholder without even having a contest or a judging panel. I don’t imagine I’d ever do that personally, I’d at least pull together a few people to do some interviews, but that’s my choice, not a requirement.
Anyway, there’s possibly some technical crew, depending on what all I’m doing. I usually at least need someone to pick up and return the mic, and set it up, and maybe someone to run sound.
I rarely need lights people because I’ve rarely been in a venue that called for or allowed special lighting, but I have, too.
Sometimes there is stage crew needed, particularly if you have fantasies. Someone’s got to move the podium out of the way, put the cross on the stage, etc.
And then clean up after the fantasy.
There are emcees and entertainers or speakers if you have them.
If it’s big enough, you usually have an ASL interpreter.
Before the contest, there’s lining up all those people, plus contestants.
There are press releases and reminders and setting pricing and collecting tickets and managing registration.
Right before the event is busy. There are schedules to set and venues to secure and an entire contest schedule to write. Mine goes in three to five minute increments, from the time the contest begins until the winners are announced, usually between an hour and a half and two hours.
When I start putting it together I literally use index cards.
Each card has some portion of the contest on it, and a time estimate for it.
For instance, there is an opening and a closing. There is announcing the winner. That’s three cards.
There is publicity for the rest of the event, thanks for the venue. That’s two more cards.
There are step down speeches for the outgoing titleholders. If you have two or three titleholders, then that’s two or three more cards.
There is a biography for each judge, and the primary staff. Say five judges, one handler, one boy/girl, two tally, three emcees and perhaps an entertainer or speaker. That’s 12 or 13 more cards that go into the mix.
There are introductions of contestants. so that’s another two or three.
There are speeches by each of them, and pop questions. That’s four or six more.
In some contests, there are also fantasies, or presentations. Multiply that in next.
Each contestant or couple brings a basket to auction off. I might also have a few other things to raffle off – the GLLA registration that Ms Kendra so generously gives me to raffle, or the toys that someone else willingly donates. Add another six or eight cards all told.
Entertainment or speakers get their allotted time and card.
I’m up to nearly 45 cards now.
Maybe I should design a kinky Leather Contest deck of cards.
The producer, of course, would be number one, the Ace. In the end, it is all about us, but we are also the ones who take the risks of dealing with hotels and venues, of putting our name out there, calling in favors, etc., to actually put the contest on.
Don’t forget, sometimes the Ace is high card, but that’s a lot of pressure on fairly slender shoulders, too.
The King, Queen and Jack – who I think would have to become the Master/slave – would be the titleholders. Royalty, but sometimes a little bossy or dramatic.
The other cards would all be the other people who help put on a Leather contest.
Sounds sort of like the House that Jack Built, huh?