Top Ten Reasons I’m Looking Forward to TES FEST

 

  1. They Aren’t Afraid to Try New Things: Last year TES approached me and asked if I could do an “Open Space” event there. My first response was the same as always: “Are you sure?” Open Spaces are strange critters when combined with “regular” conventions, and even when they go really well (such as the Ropenspaces at Shibaricon) they aren’t always the staff’s cuppa imagetea. But even with some weather-created registration problems the TES Open Space not only happened, it is back by popular demand this year!
  2. Meeting New Kinksters From Around the World: One of the attendees I’m most looking forward to meeting: Eternal Angel. My slave Naiia and I have had a crush on her from afar for ages. And she’s going to be there. This is the sound of one dom squeeing…
  3. Meeting Old Friends: Some of the best and deepest friendships I’ve ever had were started at TES. Whether those individuals are there or not, the event itself reminds me of my kinky family and all the ways they’ve helped me on my journey.
  4. Being Part of History: I teach a class on the history of Leather. In it, there’s a part where I talk about 1971, and the start of The Eulenspiegel Society as one of the first pan-sexual organizations supporting What It Is We Do. I’m at an event that is just a little younger than I am. How cool is that?
  5. Did I Mention New Things? When I found out they were crazy enou- er, I mean, willing to do the Open Space, I decided to push for another dream: an Ignite-Style event where presenters had five minutes and twenty slides (advancing whether they were ready or not) to make some kind of point. It was standing-room-only, it was electrifying, and it was a rush. Oh, and guess what? We’re doing it again!
  6. Toys: One of the great things about doing a rope podcast is you get to know cool vendors. Bastard Ropes. DeGiotto Ropes. Pendragon Chainmail. Joe the Shoe Guy, who years ago supplied my slave with the most comfortable four-inch stilettoes I ever fucked her in. And those are just my favorites.
  7. Coming Home to New Jersey: Yeah, this may only apply to me, but the fact is I was raised in Englewood, N.J. While I love my home here in the Rope Bondage Capital of the world, I will always be a city boy at heart, and going to the nearby diner is a visceral trip down memory lane.
  8. Pansexuality: A lot of events get grief for not being diverse enough or just paying lip service to the idea of welcoming multiple genders and orientations and understanding the fucking difference. No event is perfect, because they’re run by humans – but TES makes a genuine effort, and that’s a refreshing oasis from the judgmental hypocrisy of mainstream media.
  9. The. Best. Furniture. Around. It’s hard to write that, because I’m the happy owner of one of Barak’s AIS frames, and it’s amazing. But until you’ve tried suspending from one of these frames you don’t know what real stability and solid construction can be. Seriously.
  10. Informed Consent is Sexy: Speaking of the dungeon, it’s true, you can’t fuck there. Sorry. But since the organization has been around for longer than most of you have been alive, they have their shit together when it comes to running a play space. In fact, TES was where I had the most beautiful interaction with a DM that I ever experienced. Ask me about it some other time (preferably over beer at the hotel bar) but the fact is: it’s a space I and my partners feel safe in, because they know what they’re doing.

Yeah. I’m stoked. How ’bout you?

 

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