Thursday, April 23, 2009

It's a beautiful day. I woke up this to birds singing and Piper Sue deciding that it was time for breakfast. At 6:30. I tried to convince her that it wasn't time to wake up yet. Hell, the baby hadn't started crying yet. It was time to embrace this delicious opportunity to sleep! Piper sighed. And flopped her self across my legs. With as much weight as possible. Because I'm stubborn, I slept for a few more minutes. Then the baby started crying. I turned to my right to see if their other mother wanted to do breakfast duty. And found an adorably solidly sleeping woman.

So, it was my turn. Which meant that I had to find clothes.

Ten minutes later, Piper's belly was full, Bella had a full Buster cube and was gleefully flinging it about her kennel and Piper and I were happily curled up together and on our way back to dream land.

A while later, Piper and I got up (Bella and Shelley had been up for hours - i have no idea what Shelley does in those utterly avoidable morning hours) and I set off for work. Which today, was code for getting my hair done. This hair takes a while. It involves bleaching, washing, dyeing and cutting. I'm not entirely sure what all Leah does, but I know it's magic. When I skip back down the stairs to the store my hair is glowing literally. I think somehow she infuses it with actual light.

Now, the day is still beautiful and I'm looking forward to spending part of the evening at Jack's birthday party. Hampden is a pretty solid community. One of the pillars of the community is a lovely many named Jack. He has lived in Hampden for more than 30 years. Today is his 75th birthday. Last year there was a city wide proclamation honoring his birthday. This year, he has a special crown and a party and a big ole banner on the street. Years ago, Jack created a job for himself. He walks the neighborhood every day, checks in with the merchants and spreads the word about new businesses, old businesses moving or closing, upcoming events all kinds of good stuff. If you want any info distributed around the neighborhood, you just pass it on to Jack and the job is done. He calls himself the nosiest man in Hampden. One of the local merchants, Alta, is a fabulous, fun artist. She (with the help of the folks from Red Tree) has made him an assortment of pins with 3D noses. Today, he's wearing a baseball cap with a gold crown attached. The crown is bedecked with a nose at every point and sparkly jewels. The cap itself is decorated with pink flamingos and rhinestones. It's pretty fucking fabulous.

Jack has made himself an indispensable part of this community. Last year I was required to dress up and sing him happy birthday. Luckily, they learned their lesson and there is no repeat performance....

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Red and Black Ball

I'm seriously getting excited about this event. On May 2nd, Sugar, with S.H.E. Productions will host the Red and Black Ball to celebrate our second anniversary. a

I am so grateful that you, the Baltimore community, have supported us throughout these two years and look forward to serving you for many more. So, please come out and celebrate with us.

The lovely ladies from S.H.E Produtions have put together an absolutely astonishing list of performers for you that include some of the best drag queens, drag kings, burlesque, gogo dancers and DJs in the Baltimore/DC area. This is going to be a night you won't forget!

I'm still putting my outfit together - see you there!

Saturday, May 2nd
Bourbon Street
316 Guilford
Baltimore, MD
9pm - 2 am

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Happy birthday Piper Sue!

Today is Piper's birthday. Well, it's the day we picked as her birthday, since her actual birthday is unknown.

Here's what i do know about her early life. Sometime after she was born, she was taken to Defenders of Animals. She was then adopted by an older couple who shortly there after returned her. Then, a friend of min adopted her.

My friend, Dana, is a wonderful person. But not so good at the long term dog mom thing. So, when I heard that she had adopted a dog, I was pretty sure that eventually, I would end up with the dog.

About a week later, I got a phone call from Dana's boyfriend (my ex-husband). The new dog, a year old pit bull, was creating havoc in the house. Would I be able to take her for a few weeks until he got an apartment where he could live with the dog?

Of course I said yes. Then I didn't hear anything more. They worked it out. She chewed through some power cords. She chased the toddler. She chewed on peoples toes while the slept. But everything was ok.

A while later, Dana and the ex-husband broke up. And a while after that, the ex-husband and I got back together and moved to NYC. About six months later, I got an email.

I responded, "I'll be down to get her tomorrow."

I had met her once. But, she was my dog.

The next day I was in Dana's living room. Piper introduced herself by climbing on my head. We hopped in the car and drove home.

That was eight years ago. Since then, I've gotten divorced, relationships have come and gone and come back. I've moved more times than I can count. Friends have moved. And moved back. My job has changed. But one thing has stayed the same. Every day I come home, and Piper is there. Independent and stubborn has hell. With a deep need to lick my face from cheek to cheek and show me her jolly ball.

And every day, she makes my life just a little bit brighter.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Amazon idiocy

so, it seems that Amazon has lost their collective minds and are discriminating against books about sex, erotica, GLBTQ issues, YA titles and some other things. They are stripping certain books of their ranking, making them impossible to find in a search.

For more info, see here:

a google bomb has been started. What's a google bomb? It's an effort to create multiple links to a page that has information about the censorship, causing the link to come up higher on google. This enables the spread of information about the censorship. For more infor, click here:

If you want to include the link in your blog or webpage, here is the link:

Saturday, April 4, 2009

picket fences, swing sets and swingers - oh my!

The NCSF (the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom) is a fabulous organization that works to protect all of us folks who have sex lives that someone somewhere may think are outside of the norm.  Although, the one thing that I know, is that there is no "norm".  Each year, the biggest fundraiser for the NCSF is at a swingers club called Tabu.  In Catonsville.

Catonsville is  a suburb of Baltimore.  A normal suburb with strip malls.  And culdesacs.  And a swingers club.

Here's where we should maybe do a quick and dirty definition of swinging.  Swinging, often referred to as "the Lifestyle" is a kind of nonmonogamy.  Most swingers are part of an opposite sex couple and have a significant commitment to both to each other and to their relationship.  Many swingers are married.  They choose, as a couple, to engage in sexual activity with other people, often other couples.  Most commonly, people will choose to stay within the swinger community for their partners.  Like any relationship, everyone has different rules about what types of sexual activities and connections are ok.  The one commonality is a base assumption that the primary emotional connection is between the couple.  The sexual connection with other people is based in friendship or "just sex".  Single men are often not welcome at swingers clubs, but single women are.*

Like many folks in the alt sex community, swingers are really nice people.  Some of the longest lasting marriages I've encountered are marriages in which the couples are swingers.  There is a sense of play present in the swinger community that is delightful.  And fun.  And amongst many couples, you can sense a deep an beautiful commitment to each other.   Of course there are disastrous relationships.  Because swingers are people.  And people can be cruel.  And fuck up.  

So, last night was the fundraiser.  Alex, Stephanie and I set off for Tabu.  Sugar was in charge of the blow job and pussy eating contest.  Catonsville is across the city, into the county, past the malls, the diners, the - well, it took like FOREVER.  And driving a stick shift in six inch platform heels is a little dicey.  

But we made it.  

Tabu is a private club.  Usually, in order to get in you need to purchase a membership.  But, for the fundraiser, anyone could buy a ticket.  Even unaccompanied men.  The place is BYOB, but it has a bar.  You check your booze at the bar.  They supply the mixers and the bartenders.  It's kind of brilliant.  On the right when we walked in was a table promoting the Chesapeake Polyamory Network (with Hershey's kisses).  On the left was the NCSF table.  Girls from the Charm City Roller Girls were skating around selling raffle tickets.  The next room had tables, comfy chairs, big screens with porn, a DJ booth, and a stage with stripper poles and go-go dancing cages.  Up by the stripper pole, Baltimore's TNG was doling out spankings and electrical shocks.  Dancers from Scores were doing lap dances with the money going to NCSF.  A woman was walking around covered in balloons that people could pop for a donation.  We had just missed the lube wrestling (pout).  The place was so packed we could barely move.  I made an announcement about the upcoming contest and the three of us set off to brow beat folks into participating.

Not too long after we got there, Sacred Mark's Sanctuary, did a hook suspension performance piece.  The whole piece took place behind a scrim.  A woman was bound with rope, then placed on a stretcher.  Hooks were inserted in her partner's back, thighs and calves, then he crawled on top of her and they started to 69 while they were tied together, attached to a suspension rig and flown thru the air.  It was pretty intense.  

After giving the hook suspension participants some time to recover, we took over the stage and started the contest.  Originally, we had been asked to do a blow job contest.  Because I'm an equal opportunity girl, I insisted that we do both a blow job and pussy eating contest. But, I failed in actually getting an equal opportunity contest.  Everyone who signed up for both was female.  At the last minute, a brave man asked to participate in pussy eating.  So he partnered with another contestant.  And the pussy eating began.  Don't get too excited.  We were using peaches.  Two women from Scores ended up on the stage one of them gobbling the peach from the other woman's cunt.  It was fun.  We had to choose a winner.  It was tough.  There were some impressive folks on that stage!

The blow job contest went by quickly because the pussy eating took a little longer than I had anticipated.  One woman started eating her cucumber.  I think next time we'll use dildos.  The cucumbers were a little too hard.  And varied a little too much in size.

Or something else entirely.  That is, if they ask us back.  Which i hope they do, because it was an amazing event.

After our part was done, it was midnight, the three of us were tired.  So we headed out.  We never saw the silent auction.  Or the the round bed and mirrors that they supposedly have in the basement.  

 A few hours standing around in fluevog pony boots is a good look.  But by the time we left, my feet were numb.  I spent about five minutes unlacing the delightful, delicious, somewhat tortuous boots, that i lusted after for years and had as my screen saver before I finally got them as a wedding present from the very smart woman that I married, pried them off my feet and drove home in my stocking feet.  Much easier to depress the clutch without the pony heel.

*For many years, there has been an assumption of bisexuality for women in swinger communities, and an assumption of heterosexuality for men.  As Generation X and Y have come into the swinger community, some communities are becoming more welcoming of bisexual men.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

in which i fall into a wormhole of awesome

Monday morning I took care of the leaving-an-event stuff. The packing. The checking under the bed to make sure all of the shoes ended up back in the bag. Sending the unsold merchandise back the store. All in all, kinda boring.

By noon, all of the crap was taken care of, and I had a whole day to spend in San Francisco before my 10 PM flight home.

Alex (who worked Michigan with me last year) and I walked down the street to Mel's diner for cheeseburgers and fries. Yum. Alex and I caught up on what's happened since Michigan. She is writing her dissertation on the history of leather dyke culture. I can't wait to read it. Because I'm geeky. And seriously, doesn't that sound interesting?

Marcia joined us a bit later. Marcia Baczynski is an amazing relationship educator (check out her upcoming classes on the sugar event page) and a good friend. I don't get to see her enough, so hanging out with her was a real treat. After Alex went back to the hotel to finish some stuff up, Marcia and I set off for the Mission.

It had turned into one of those days when I felt like I could touch the sunlight and everything was prettier. Magical. Glowing. The breeze was perfect. People were laughing on the street. Everyone seemed just a little bit nicer. We wandered thru Good Vibes. Confirmed that the njoy 11 is bigger than I thought. Seriously. It’s big. And I’m a size queen.

We kept wandering. Marcia decided that we should go to the pirate store next. A pirate store! Really? What could be better than that?! Marcia is brilliant. The store was fabulous. It was started to support 826 Valencia, a nonprofit that is “dedicated to helping students, ages 6-18, with expository and creative writing”. The story goes that they found the space and wanted to open the workshop for the kids. But it’s a retail space. And they had to have a retail operation in order to rent the space. So, the pirate store was created. Because, San Francisco didn’t have a pirate store. Clearly they needed one.

The store was like being inside a live version of the lighthearted parts of a David Egger’s novel (surprising, since he founded the non-profit and the store). The front of the store was full of pirate paraphernalia. Like leeches (in case of infection). Snuff. Scurvy Be Gone. Compasses. Onesies for baby pirates. A box of mops that the store staff drops on your head at opportune times. You know. Things every pirate needs.

Kids were in the back of the store (the big part of the store) writing and giggling. Occasionally, they would come up to the front of the store and harangue the customers, encouraging them to “buy stuff and support the program”.

And there was a big round flat thing. That tilted. And spun. It was some kind of art thingy. That had the whole world on it in satellite images. With copies of the children’s stories on the locations of said stories. You could zoom in. Or zoom out. Marcia found her parent’s house on the east coast. We were practically in their living room. I find these things deeply intriguing. And creepy in equal part.

After getting dizzy from all the spinning and tilting I dragged Marcia over the aquarium theatre. A little patch of delightful secretive kid-like funness. Two old theatre chairs were set in front of an aquarium. The entire area was draped off in velvet. Like the coolest fort EVER!! We decided that the only thing that could make this better was ice cream. Luckily, ice cream was only a few blocks away. It was around this time that Marcia declared that we had fallen into a wormhole of awesome. I agreed. There simply was no other explanation.

Marcia took me to an ice cream shop near Dolores Park, where the ice cream came from happy organic cows and was full of exotic flavors. Which I appreciate. The honey lavender/orange cardamom cone that Marcia had was delicious. My mouth was in paroxysms of glee with my cookies and cream (made from organic happy oreos?). Sometimes simple is better. We took our cones over and lolled about in the sun on a hill in the park. We watched a bloodhound get his belly rubbed. We were offered Magic Cookies (which I was surprised to find out are not just extra special good cookies, but cookies with marijuana in them. Which I suspect makes you feel extra special good, but perhaps tastes like un-washed ass. With grassy streaks on it.). The light made everyone look pretty and the grass shone an extra-sunglasses-needed-green.

Marcia finally had to go back to work and I went across the street to meet up with another friend. Alix owns a fabulous online boutique, The Inverted Eye, which sells “subtly kinky items and discreet fetish antiques to discerning clientele”. We were hanging out, caffeinating, having a lovely time when the phone rang. Two of Alix’s friends were in a random bar in North Beach and they wanted company. A few minutes later we were in the car setting off across the city. At rush hour. Surprisingly, traffic didn’t suck and we found a parking space near the bar (see aforementioned worm hole of awesome).

I’ve been in San Francisco about three times in life. Enough times for me to know that I really like this city. But not enough to know my way around. The first time I was in the city by the bay was for my first honeymoon in 1996. I’ve always said that everyone (including me) should have gotten a clue from the fact that I showed up to the rehearsal dinner in combat boots and wanted to go to the gayest city in the world for the honey moon, but it took seven more years for me to figure out that I was a dyke who shouldn’t be married to a bio boy. Anyway, while James and I were on our honeymoon, we (of course) paid a visit to City Lights Bookstore and ended up drinking in the bar next door. Which I suddenly realized was where I was, once again, headed. Odd. And what a difference 13 years makes.

The friends had made friends with a pot farmer. He was nice. We had a few drinks, they waved down a cab for me, said good-bye and then I set off for the hotel to go to the airport. To catch the red eye home.

What a good day. Deep in the wormhole of awesome. I didn’t want it to end. But I did miss my bed. And the dogs. And the girl. And the store. So, the red eye it was.

But I’m plotting a return trip. I need more ice cream from happy cows.