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Quiet Saturday

I’ve not felt very well for a couple of days, a stomach thing that was minor but didn’t feel minor, but I’m feeling closer to myself now, though still not 100%.

I’ve had a quiet couple of days, not doing much, not going anywhere, other than slave drew and I going out today to the mall.  He wanted to look for something  and I went along.  I found a couple of things at good after-Christmas prices, so it was worthwhile.

We made a quick grocery run, too, and now we’re home until we head to see slave drew’s brother, his wife, and their two children tomorrow evening.  Then we have one more gathering

Other than that, I’ve spent the day at home, and I have no complaints about that, either.

It snowed last night, so I got up to a very pretty world, the kind with a couple of inches of very wet snow stuck to every horizontal surface, and some that aren’t so horizontal, either.

The dogs were delighted.  Snow must do something to the scents out there, because the dogs love little as much as fresh snow.  It’s not so cold as to be overly unpleasant, but cold enough that the snow’s not melted, so it’s still pretty.

It was funny to watch people out and about today.  I wore a turtleneck, a long-sleeve t-shirt and a zippered sweater over it, but no coat.

I hate coats.

I hate being cold, too, but I most of the time hate coats more, so I will nearly always just deal with being cold between car and building rather than have to wear a coat.  There’s one in the car if I break down, but I rarely do.

There were people out today in mukluks and parkas, hats and earmuffs.  It was about 34 degrees.

Mukluks.

Earmuffs.

Thirty-four degrees.

I went to college in upstate New York, and lived there for six years all told.

I used to walk regularly to jobs, to classes, from one bus stop to another and back again.

If you breathed through your mouth, your jaw ached because your fillings got so cold.

You didn’t go anywhere without coat and hat and gloves and boots and that includes to take out the garbage.

I remember sitting around in our apartment with friends.  The radiator in the living room worked so little that we kept our television on it.

What we routinely wore, in each other’s houses in winter, was long underwear, tops and bottoms, jeans, socks, shoes or slippers, a flannel shirt, a wool sweater and a down vest.

To see people in 34 degree temperatures dressed us as if they are delivering the serum to Nome always amuses me.

Really, sir, I swear, you don’t need earmuffs in your car.  Honest.

And if someone would like to explain the concept of sequined mukluks to me, I will listen and try and maintain a straight face, but seriously.  Sequined mukluks?  I think not.

We’ve spent our evening watching Project Runway and various British murder mysteries.  Our Christmas gift for us this year was a new television – nothing wild, I think it’s 32″, and it was a very good price – a $500 TV for $200.

The sound, however, was less than stunning, so when I noticed a sound bar that was regularly about $180 for $40, so we added that to the system, and I spent a few minutes last night setting it up, so we’ve been enjoying sound we can hear again.

I started writing a presentation for South Plains on the concept of transparency, specifically in M/s relationships.  It will require a lot more work, but it’s at least started, which makes me feel good.

I got the rest of the dividers I needed for my presentation binder, too, and set them up.  That makes me feel much more organized.

Eventually I’d like to move them all to Power Point presentations, too, but I haven’t gotten that far.  I’ve also spent a bit of time trying to go through my files on my computer and organizing them.  They’re not a terrible mess, but it’s hard to have 15 – really – years worth of files that have been on four or five computers, and have them all as tidy as one might like.

Over the spring, I’d like to get that done, get my files sorted, get the programs migrated to Power Point as well as the notes I already have.

I suppose that while I rarely make resolutions, I do like to have plans, and those are probably the same thing.  I’ll set up some other goals for myself over the next few weeks.

For the moment, my goal is an early bedtime.

If some of your goals are less than lofty, you have a better chance of meeting them.

Winding Down

The year 2012 is winding down.

There are three days left and then this year will be over.  I can’t say I will be unhappy to see it in the rear-view mirror.

It hasn’t been a bad year, in many ways.

In February, my own Bluegrass Leather Pride contest went well, despite having lost two venues in the last month or so before.  We ended up doing it in a private home and the upstairs of a local restaurant, and while it wasn’t ideal, it worked.  My contestants didn’t end up competing at GLLA, but that happens sometimes.

I was also in Indianapolis in February for Beat My Valentine, an event sponsored by IMAS, Indiana Masters and Slaves.

In March I drove out to Dallas, to South Plains Leatherfest, to watch Charles and jacki compete for International Master and slave.

In April, we went to Fort Lauderdale for Beyond Leather, for the International Power Exchange contest.  I presented there, including a brand new presentation on crops and canes.  slave thomas also came and met us there, which was particularly nice.  We spent a bit of time in Sarasota, and in Sanibel Island, one of my favorite places on the planet.

In August, we had another very successful Great Lakes Leather Alliance, despite some curves thrown at the last minute.  One of my scheduled cocktail parties didn’t work out, but I had anticipated the possibility and made arrangements for an alternate plan.

I also presented there, one class that I always do, a class for newcomers to the event, and events in general, and another new class, So You Want to Be a Titleholder.  I also played more at that event – three times – than I ever have before all put together.

In September, I was in Atlanta to present at the International Transgender Leather contest.  I did a humor class there with Ms Tammy.

In October, slave drew and I went to Chicago for Kinky Kollege, and had a very good time there.  Chicago has never been my favorite city, but we had a better time there than I had before.  We really enjoyed it.

I worked to found the first Masters And slaves Together chapter in Kentucky, MAsT: Derby City.  It is running successfully now and I’m proud of that.

We started creating Fringe Elements, a 501C3 Queer Community Center.  We’re close to finding a physical venue, which has always been our goal.  I took the Executive Director position, and I’m comfortable there.  I’m good at running things, I like all sides of it.

I started this blog.  I wasn’t sure I’d keep up with it, but I have. I posted for the first time on May 26, which was 216 days ago.  This post is the 210th, meaning I’ve missed a total of six.

I’ve only really forgotten to post once, I know once was a power outtage issue, and I didn’t post for several days while I was at GLLA, but I think missing  less than 3% is a pretty good percentage.  I’ve seen the number of people who read, and comment, rise, too, and that’s been really gratifying.

It was the 15th anniversary this year of the Louisville Munch, an impressive run for any group.  I added three new people to my formal Leather family by presenting Earned Leather to Gabriel, to Cerrin, and to Shane.

We all lived through an apocalypse, or should I say, another apocalypse.  It reminds me of a line from my favorite episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, a musical episode called, “Once More with Feeling.”

“What can’t we do if we get in it?
We’ll work it through if there’s a minute.
We have to try. We’ll pay the price.
It’s do or die. Hey, I’ve died twice!”

How many apocalypses have there been and, so far, we’ve lived through them all.

There have been the usual problems and challenges.  Issues with people, the usual things one encounters when one is involved in groups, the usual struggles there.

I’ve been profoundly disappointed in a few people this year, which is also part of living, I think.  People disappoint us.  Other people have stepped up, risen to challenges.

I’ve gotten closer to a few people, and that’s been nice.  I’ve met other bloggers, both face to face and virtually, and that’s been an experience as well.

I lost at least two awards this year, and was “presented” one on a stage in front of a couple hundred people that turned out to be for someone else, though I wasn’t made aware of it until the award handed to me had another person’s name on it.

I know, I know, you should be flattered to be nominated, and I was – one was a Pantheon Lifetime Achievement award, which is a very significant award in the Leather community.  The final result, however, was that I lost.

I turned 55 this year, and I have not liked that at all.  I know, I know, I’m aware of all the things that are good – experience, wisdom, a level of acceptance, my health is good, and it’s far better than any alternative, but I don’t like it.  I doubt I ever will.  It is, however, what it is.

So, three more days and it’s all just one more memory.  I suspect that our New Year’s Eve celebration will end up being a quiet one at home, us and the pups, probably one of those years in which we don’t even stay up late enough to greet 2013 officially until the morning.

And I’m ok with that.