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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Upcoming Events


Now that the lazy summer season is ending, there are large numbers of events designed to bring the community back into the non-virtual world again.  That's why I'm specifically asking everybody to come out to the Eagle in a week and a half (on September 9th) and gather in a BIG crowd for maximum brotherhood. Back about a year ago, I came up with Rule Number One For All FMSD Events,  and it's time to refresh everybody's expectations. I go to a lot of events out of town, and I see a lot of people, but they are not as connected and unified in the way that we are in San Diego.  It's time to celebrate our unity by being relaxed, joyful, and glad to be part of a brotherly Tribe!

After last month's experiment with shifting the Cigars & Boots event to a different day and location, we're back at the Redwing this Sunday. Please ignore my earlier posts on this topic.

Lots of events coming up, and I've added a few that are regularly-scheduled events.  If you want to figure out which ones they are, you're going to have to read everything!  :->

Adam's Cutting seminar this Friday seems to be a big hit already.  I've never been around that particular kink, but it's generating quite a bit of early interest, as I've been seeing on this end of things. This should be a full house event!

-=-=-=-=- UPCOMING EVENTS

Wednesday, August 31, 2011, 7-11PM: TNG social event at Bamboo Lounge. TNG stands for "The Next Generation", which is a kinky social group for younger men and women from 18 to 35 years old.

Thursday, September 1, 9-11PM: Yellow Hankie Beverage Bust at the Eagle. First and Third Thursday of each month.

Friday, September 2, 7-9PM; SDLOG educational event: This month's topic is Cutting. First Friday of each month. at the Joyce Beers Community Centerbetween the Terra and Aladdin restaurants by Ralph's supermarket on University.

Saturday, September 3, 9PM-2AM; BearNight Dance at Numbers. $5 cover. First Saturday of each month. Lots of leathermen attend this event, and it comes highly recommended… Here are some reviews.

Sunday, September 4, 3PM, CIGARS & BOOTS on the patio at Redwing Bar & Grill, hosted by California LeatherSir 2010 Miles B. First Sunday of each month. If you like a low-pressure, comfortable event with men that you can relate to, this one is for you.

Wednesday, September 7, 9PM: PUPPY NIGHT at the Eagle, hosted by Pup DragZ and San Diego Puppy Play (SDPP). First Wednesday of each month.

Friday, September 9, 9PM-1AM: DRESS IT UP/STRIP IT DOWN at the Eagle; 2nd Friday of each month. This has become the biggest fetishmen's event in San Diego every month!  It's the nicest, friendliest crowd you'll see at a leather bar.  Here are a few reviews, if you haven't been to one yet. This month's theme is "AS KINKY AS THE LAW ALLOWS", where I'm urging everybody to attend a reunion party in full gear if you've got it, or as much skin as you can bare without getting busted.  Here are some pictures from OctoberFebruaryMarchApril and June. Notice how HAPPY everybody is. You deserve to be that happy too.

Thursday, September 15, 9-11PM; Yellow Hankie Beverage Bust at the Eagle. Third Thursday of each month.

Friday, September 16, 8:30PM-1AM: FRIDAY NIGHT BEAT AND GREET, downtown, hosted by Bryan Teague - American Leatherboy 2010, tiger - Ms San Diego Leather 2010, caryl - San Diego's premier Sea Monkey Trainer, and Mike Underwood - San Diego's very own Curmudgeonly teddy bear. Third Friday of each month. This is a GREAT educational event if you want some hands-on training in a safe environment.

Wednesday, September 21, 7-9PM: MEN'S MONTHLY DISCUSSIONShosted by FetishMenSanDiego and San Diego League of Gentlemen. Moderated by Papa Tony. The topic of Relationships is expected to spread out over several months. If you want to get a head-start, I suggest the following reading-material.

September 16 & 17: Las Vegas Pride

Saturday, September 24, 10pm: Underwear Party and Contest at the Eagle. Hosted by Mr. SD Eagle 2011 Kane. Fourth Saturday of each month.

Sunday, September 25: Folsom Street Fair.

Friday, September 30, 8:30PM-1AM: MEN-ONLY FRIDAY NIGHT BEAT AND GREET, downtown, hosted by Bryan Teague - American Leatherboy and Mike Underwood - San Diego's very own Curmudgeonly teddy bear. The Men-Only version is on the FIFTH Friday of each month, such as September 30, and (possibly) December 30th for 2011. There will be hands-on training for folks who want to learn from experts in a very safe environment.

Saturday, October 15th, 9PM-3AM: ANVIL CLUB up in the San Fernando Valley. I give it a rave review here.

November 5 & 6: Palm Springs Pride

November 12 & 13: Palm Springs Leather Pride

Saturday, December 17th, 9PM-3AM: ANVIL CLUB up in the San Fernando Valley. I give it a rave review here.

Anvil Club in the San Fernando Valley

This is a regularly-scheduled event (details below), and it's worth a trip from San Diego to check it out for yourself. Here is my own impression of how it goes:

I arrived early to the industrial park where the building is located, and said howdy to the large team of volunteers as they scurried around. As the evening progressed, more and more men showed up, largely from the Los Angeles area, but I met several men from other countries and cities. By the time that the event hit its peak, around 200 men had shown up.

And what men they were! If you like hot, handsome men of all ages in impeccable gear - Rubber, leather, uniform, sports and others, then you'll have plenty of visual pleasure. If you're new to the crowd and feeling shy as I was (yes, even Papa Tony has his moments), then just go right up and chat with anybody. I found that 100% of the men that I approached were friendly and warm.

I got out my flogger and had no trouble starting a conga-line of eager and willing playmates. There was a large social area and smaller, fully-equipped play-areas, an open bar, snacks and a check-in area for clothes, so that you could change into fetish-gear once you've arrived.

I found it to be a very satisfying event on many levels. I admire the folks who have formed such an effective team, and I will gladly go again and again.

Here is the text of the publicity:

Anvil Club is an extreme dress code club.  Think of it like a retool of our hot leather bars where everyone is in gear, the cruising is intense and you've got a convenient backrom if you're feeling adventurous.


The huge main room of Anvil Club is all about cruising and socializing in your gear.  Step through the heavy black drape at the rear of the club and take your cruising to the next level with some major darkroom action. Anvil Club is not a sex party. It's a full-on gear dress code club in a private space that features a fully equipped dungeon and a huge darkroom.


Anvil Club is men 21+ only and the dress code will be enforced. The Anvil dress code includes full leather, uniform, rubber, sports kit, skin gear, super hero, and jock strap with boots. Boots are required for everything except sports gear. Anything that screams masculine gear to the doorman is on and his word is final. A changing room and secure clothes check is available so you can get as wild as you want with your gear.


No cologne, tennis shoes (except with sport), flip flops, shorts or cell phones. Jeans, other than bleachers, are only allowed with tall boots and leather on top like a jacket, shirt or harness, or with chaps.


Tix are $30 and are only available in advance - no door sales. Tickets are available online here, or at our local LA retailers 665 Leather, Rough Trade and Syren/Stockroom.  Doors open at 9 PM and the club goes until 3 AM.  Full open bar and complimentary bootblack are included in your admission.


Stop pissing on yourself that nobody ever gears up to go out, and get your ass to Anvil Club

Cigars & Boots at the Redwing

First Sunday of Each Month
time: 05:00 PM to 08:00 PM
where: Redwing Bar and Grill---Back Patio
address: 4012 30th Street San Diego, California
cost: Free
dress code: Whatever you want. Some will wear jeans and boots other may wear leather.

Description

This is a monthly cigar social here in San Diego. Anyone is welcome. Lots of great people just hanging out and enjoying the day.

Come out and finish off the holiday weekend with some ice cold beer. Draft specials until 6pm. Burger and Beer special till 6pm.

Get there a little early and enjoy the sun and drinks.
The Cigar social is a monthly event, very casual just a lot of fun and relaxing with friendly down to earth people It's an outdoor event so plenty of fresh air for the non-smokers

Visitors to the city are welcome to come by and meet some locals. I will have cigars at the event for a $5.00 donation.
Very nice Punch Maduros.

TNG social event

 Wednesday, August 31, 2011, 7-11PM: TNG social event at Bamboo Lounge. TNG stands for "The Next Generation", which is a kinky social group for younger men and women from 18 to 35 years old:


Here's the details - we are in the back patio. most of the time we have the whole back patio to ourselves, other times we share it with regular patrons and have used that as an opportunity to 'reach out'. Hope to see you there!

General info

date:Wednesday, August 31, 2011
time:07:00 PM to 11:00 PM
where:Bamboo Lounge
address:1475 University Ave San Diego CA  map
cost:Support the venue and buy a beverage
dress code:street legal - bonus points for leather & latex

Description

Join the TNG crew at the Bamboo Lounge for an evening of socializing with your fellow pervs. Hang out, chat and have a good time.
This is an 18 and up event
We'll be found on the back patio.
Plenty of street parking across university by the DMV.

SDLOG Demo - Erotic Cutting

September 2, 2011 - 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Joyce Beers Center
1230 Cleveland St
San Diego,CA

Please note:  This is a men's only meeting.

Blood and Blades, Sharp and Pointy, Do these turn you on?  Scare the hell out of you?  Maybe both…

Erotic Cutting

As a SM scene, erotic cutting is enjoyed by pain bottoms who want an endorphin high.  For some bottoms it is terrifying and scary, for others it is a path of wonderful pleasures.  Because cutting transgresses our normal boundary of skin-to-air some experience this scene as a head trip as much as a physical trip. Tops get their own mysterious sadistic kicks out of it. The connection between the two players can be truly elemental.  This introductory workshop will focus on safety, technique, headspace, and having fun.

Presenter Bio: 

Adam, a native Southern Californian, first discovered the joys of being a kinky bastard by accident at the tender age of six – when his older sister got pissed off at him and chained him to a door.  His formative high school years at New Mexico Military Institute only furthered his interests in kink, BDSM, and uniforms, not to mention helped solidify his developing reputation as a sadistic SOB.  It took years since that first incident with the chains before he discovered that there was an entire world full of wonderful pervs to play with, and he plunged into the Leather community with both boots on and never looked back.  

Adam now serves the Leather community as President of San Diego Leather Pride Inc.  In May, 2011 he had the great honor to be a judge for IML 33.   Adam was also Mr. San Diego Leather 2004, representing his community for a full and successful year, culminating in becoming one of the finalists at IML 27 in 2005.  His ongoing efforts in the community have been recognized by the San Diego City Council who named a day in his honor, along with being acknowledged by the San Diego Leather Awards as Man of the Year in 2005 & 2007, and Kinkster of the Year 2007. He produces, judges and emcees at many events, and enjoys presenting leather and kink education throughout the country, including co-facilitating Pain Guild.  

Adam is proud to be an Associate Member of the Chicago Hellfire Club, well-known for his love of all things sharp and pointy.  He works actively with the Rodeo, Bear, and Imperial Court communities, and has been honored with a number of titles.  His favorite ones are “Mama’s Toro,” in Mama Sandy Reinhardt’s Leather Family, and “Saint A-damN’ Evil of the Miracle Whip,” bestowed on him by the San Diego Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence.  Adam and his husband Timothy are legally married in the State of California, having the incredible opportunity of being one of the 18,000 same-sex couples who are still legally wed in spite of the best attempts of the advocates of Prop 8.   Adam & Tim remain forever grateful to his big sister and her chains.

Yellow Hankie Social Night


First and Third Thursday of each month, 9-PM-Midnight: Yellow Hankie Social Night at the Eagle, at 3040 North Park Way.  Hosted by our own Preston Steel.

Underwear Party and Contest at the Eagle

Fourth Sat. of each month, 10pm: Underwear Party and Contest at the Eagle, at 3040 North Park Way. Everyone is invited to strip down to those boxers, briefs or "street" legal jocks and join in the fun, you do not have to enter the contest. Although our 1st prize is $100 Cash and 2nd prize is a $25 bar tab., Clothes check opens at 10pm and the contest will be held at midnight. Your evening will be hosted by Mr. San Diego Eagle 2012, Eli

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Upcoming Events



The Men's Monthly Discussion series is off to a great start - We had exactly the right number of attendees (22): not too many, and not too few, with a nice variety of singles and couples. I was delighted to see so many long-term couples there, eager to tell their stories and share their wisdom. For the next discussion, we're going to continue focusing on Long-Term Relationships… We haven't even begun to cover the whole topic. This time around, I plan to do a lot of listening (as opposed to blathering on and on), now that the overall interpersonal dynamic has been established. We are going to continue to hold these events on the third Wednesday of each month.

It has been a long summer, with very few kinkster events to drag us out and into the world around us. As a result, I'm inviting everybody to pack our bodies into the Eagle on Friday, September the 9th. Think of it as our opportunity to get back into the Tribal state of mind.  I see a lot of men around the streets who look wistful when they see me, saying "I haven't been out and around in way too long". Well, if this is true for you, too, then you won't find a better excuse to gear up and get sociable!


-=-=-=-=- UPCOMING EVENTS

Friday, September 2, 7-9PM; SDLOG educational event: This month's topic is Cutting. First Friday of each month. at the Joyce Beers Community Centerbetween the Terra and Aladdin restaurants by Ralph's supermarket on University.



Saturday, September 3, 3PM, CIGARS & BOOTS upstairs at Bourbon Street, hosted by California LeatherSir 2010 Miles B. First Saturday of each month. If you like a low-pressure, comfortable event with men that you can relate to, this one is for you.


Saturday, September 3, 9PM-2AM; BearNight Dance at Numbers. $5 cover. First Saturday of each month. Lots of leathermen attend this event, and it comes highly recommended… Here are some reviews.


Wednesday, September 7, 9PM: PUPPY NIGHT at the Eagle, hosted by Pup DragZ and San Diego Puppy Play (SDPP). First Wednesday of each month.


Friday, September 9, 9PM-1AM: DRESS IT UP/STRIP IT DOWN at the Eagle; 2nd Friday of each month. This has become the biggest fetishmen's event in San Diego every month!  It's the nicest, friendliest crowd you'll see at a leather bar.  Here are a few reviews, if you haven't been to one yet. This month's theme is "AS KINKY AS THE LAW ALLOWS", where I'm urging everybody to attend a reunion party in full gear if you've got it, or as much skin as you can bare without getting busted.  Here are some pictures from OctoberFebruaryMarchApril and June. Notice how HAPPY everybody is. You deserve to be that happy too.


Thursday, September 15, 8-11PM; Yellow Hanky Night at the Eagle. Third Thursday of each month.

Friday, September 16, 8:30PM-1AM: FRIDAY NIGHT BEAT AND GREET, downtown, hosted by Bryan Teague - American Leatherboy 2010, tiger - Ms San Diego Leather 2010, caryl - San Diego's premier Sea Monkey Trainer, and Mike Underwood - San Diego's very own Curmudgeonly teddy bear. Third Friday of each month. This is a GREAT educational event if you want some hands-on training in a safe environment.

Wednesday, September 21, 7-9PM: MEN'S MONTHLY DISCUSSIONShosted by FetishMenSanDiego and San Diego League of Gentlemen. Moderated by Papa Tony. The topic of Relationships is expected to spread out over several months. If you want to get a head-start, I suggest the following reading-material.


September 16 & 17: Las Vegas Pride

Sunday, September 25: Folsom Street Fair.


Friday, September 30, 8:30PM-1AM: MEN-ONLY FRIDAY NIGHT BEAT AND GREET, downtown, hosted by Bryan Teague - American Leatherboy and Mike Underwood - San Diego's very own Curmudgeonly teddy bear. The Men-Only version is on the FIFTH Friday of each month, such as September 30, and (possibly) December 30th for 2011. There will be hands-on training for folks who want to learn from experts in a very safe environment.


November 5 & 6: Palm Springs Pride

November 12 & 13: Palm Springs Leather Pride

Monday, August 22, 2011

Community Cookbook Part Two: Honey Traps

(This is a re-post of an old article that got published elsewhere, but then got lost when the site changed). It is also part of my Mentoring for Tops/Sirs/Doms/Masters curriculum.



I often run into people who beseech each other for help in figuring out how to approach new people, for the purpose of inviting them to be a part of the community, without appearing to be a predator.

I've been extremely successful in this endeavor. The group in San Diego that I started fourteen months ago has almost 1200 followers, and nearly ALL of them have been added ONE AT A TIME. I can't stress that enough - Simply printing cards or flyers, or mass-emailing, or posting it online is nothing, compared to the personal approach. We are all fed up with impersonal invitations. We've been burned too many times with spam, viruses, and every other kind of crap coming at us from every direction. These people have raised our threshold for bullshit so high that any sane person would assume that nobody could ever break through the average person's cynicism. 

However, all that it takes is a touch.

Let's assume that I'm going to approach you at a bar event that I've created.  I'm HUGE (six foot five, even taller in my big boots, 280 pounds, gray-bearded and hairy, and usually in uniform or leather).  To the average person, I look nine feet tall and six foot wide. Despite all of this, when I come up to strangers to let them know about my group, I have a consistently high success-rate. Out of 100 strangers, approximately 90 of them will gladly give me their email address.  Out of those people, after I have added them to my weekly email list, ONE will unsubscribe. Everybody else sticks around, and likes what they receive from me.

People think that the most important currency is money. In 2011, it's not. It's CREDIBILITY.  No amount of money will buy credibility.  It has to be earned the hard way. I have the confidence to approach strangers and enroll them in a sweet, joyful common dream, because I have kept my word for decades. The average stranger doesn't know that for a fact yet, but they are intrigued enough by my affectionate, respectful and confident demeanor to give me a chance.

So, let's say that I'm at a public event (usually one that I created for this purpose), looking for new people to sign up for FMSD (FetishMenSanDiego.org). I call these events "Honey Traps", which is a term that I am using as a metaphor - They are events that are attractive enough to drag individuals away from their damn computers. The average person sits in front of FaceBook, Fetlife, Recon or some other endless distraction, but has a firm conviction that everybody else is having more fun in the real world than they are. EVERYBODY has that idea in their heads, and doesn't understand how few people are having fun in the non-virtual world. We're all lonely, disconnected and losing our ability to feel like we're part of something real, and bigger than our concerns, insecurities and considerations.

I look around me at these events, looking for someone who is clearly wearing their favorite "suit of armor". They are broadcasting "I'm shy", or "I'm not interested" or "I'm just passing through". Those are the folks that I make a beeline for.  Other people might call them "Attitude Queens".  I don't - I understand that "Attitude with a Capital A" is just shyness. I can handle that, and here's how… This is my standard script for approaching strangers:

I approach the stranger, stand quite close (about two feet away), where they can clearly see me and can't pretend that I'm part of the furniture. I pointedly look them right in the eye, and say "Excuse me, have I spoken with you before?", while wearing a pleasant, (but not excessively pleasant) smile, and slightly upraised eyebrows. My demeanor is clearly communicating polite and courteous interest. They usually have a slightly startled reaction to this, saying "No, I don't think so". I'll then ask "are you a San Diegan?" If they say no, then I tell them a bit about our group, and show them a few pictures from previous events, and then move onward to the next guy.  If they say yes, then I continue with the script.

Remember, many of these events are NOISY - Loud music, chattering people all around.  This gives me cover for moving in closer and making actual, physical contact with them. I touch their solar plexus with the back of my hand, while introducing myself, and asking who they are, and a few other polite questions to break the ice. This is 100% effective in initiating physical contact, because no matter how shy or cynical that person is, they have been programmed their entire lives to shake hands to show that they are nice, well-raised people who don't have any weapons. I'll say "I'm Papa Tony, and I host many of the leathermen's events here in town." I'll release their hand, and whip out my iPhone. I''ll show them group pictures (see the website for examples) that clearly show happy, satisfied crowds of people who obviously share traits with my guest of the moment. These events are diverse, full of big smiles and don't follow any common rules of the "I'm Hot and You're NOT" philosophy.

I'm now paging through photos for the enjoyment of the person in front of me, and drawing QUITE close - Close enough to rest my hand on his shoulder while I'm flipping through pictures one-handed. That way, I can talk in a normal, comfortable, just-between-nice-guys voice, because I'm so close - My mouth is maybe ten inches away from his ear, and I'm using my Indoor Voice. Closeness COUNTS. In our current culture, we have learned that somebody who stands at a distance from us is not a trustworthy person. Spammers like to hide. Abusers like to hide. Nice people are close by, and have no fear about other nice people in a polite society.

Example: Let's say that you see a stranger shoving his way through a crowd, and when he gets to you, he says "Get the fuck out of my way, ASSHOLE!"  Chances are pretty good that he's going to get a big dose of ASSHOLE in response.  That's not a side of us that we prefer, but our internal, hard-wired  Fight or Flight response demands that we do SOMETHING in a stressful situation.  Now, delete that example, and imagine somebody coming up to you and treating you as a thoroughly respectable, intelligent, pleasant and enjoyable person, right from the very first instant. You're being approached, not for the sake of money, or power, sex, or any other other onvious, predictable reason, but because somebody wants YOU, of all people, to be a part of an actual, visually-appealing, thriving community of nice people, who get together often in public.

By this time, my target of interest (and possible new brother) is intrigued, despite multiple layers of well-earned cynicism. I continue to destroy his defenses: I'll say "We want all ages, all colors, all body-styles and all levels of experience. The only kind of people that we actively and aggressively discriminate against… Is GRUMPY PEOPLE!". This is usually good for a laugh, but they always look at my face and see that I'm being quite authentic in this statement.

I will then set the hook - I'll be showing him the pictures, and I'll say "You would fit right in". And, clearly, he would. Everyone is tired of being judged by externals.  Even the world's prettiest/most-perfect men and women are sick of the social "A-List" game of perfect teeth/hair/muscles/tits/whatever providing us with varying levels of social status. It's an empty philosophy, but we never know when it's time to let go of it and just be happy like a bunch of uninhibited three-year-olds. By looking at the pictures (and grabbing the phone from me and zooming in closer to see everybody better, my new brother is losing his defenses fast.

I'll say "The nicer you are, the more friends you deserve - This is normal human behavior, but it fell apart somehow for gay men. We've fixed that". I tend to get rueful agreement from my new buddy.

I'll go further, and demolish his preconceptions like my life depends on it.  I'll say "Listen to the people around you".  He'll stop, and listen seriously and intently.  I'll say "Everybody sounds really happy, don't they? You can't fake that kind of happy." He'll have to admit that yes, everybody else sounds like they're having a rocking good time.  I'll tell him "You deserve to have just as good a time as anybody here. I'm the host of this event, and you have my word of honor that no one here will ever treat you shabbily.  If anybody DOES, you bring it to ME, and I will take care of it right away.  I take full responsibility for the safety, success and well-being of everybody at this event, and you can count on me. Just go up to people and chat, and they'll all be nice to you. I know most of the folks here, and they aren't meanies, or tweaking, or spiteful."

I'll mention that I have nothing to sell him, and never will. I don't make a penny off of this, and neither does anybody else. In today's society, this is unheard-of… It seems mythological and theoretical. EVERYBODY wants a piece of somebody else, wants to treat us like walking wallets, and they have cunningly learned to hide it until they have tricked you somehow. And yet, here's this big galoot who is saying that he wants your actual, non-virtual and physical presence at a series of upcoming events. Nothing more, as long as you're a pleasant, well-socialized grownup.

Then, I say that I have an email-list that tells people what events are coming up, so that they know about them BEFORE each event, instead of hearing about it after everybody else had a great time. I'll ask "Would you like to be on the mailing-list?" This is Decision Time. I'm being the very epitome of a forthright, pleasant, respectful and clearly idealistic human being, and now, I need them to step up and deliver their half of the social contract. Just listening, or tolerating, or being a disinterested observer isn't enough - They have to make a commitment and be responsible about it. Like I said earlier, it's nearly always a slam-dunk… People can't get on the mailing-list fast enough.

I have created a web-page that is perfectly designed to be used on a Droid or iPhone's web-browser, using a free utility that allows me to sign people up for the mailing-list ON THE SPOT, without delay. I hit a bookmark icon on my phone's main page that brings me directly to that page, tap the field that asks for the email, and hand the phone right over for their data-entry. While doing so, I say "You have my word of honor that you will never receive any spam as a result, and if you don't like the mailing-list, just click on the link at the bottom and you'll be unsubscribed immediately". When they are done, they hand it back to me - I always have a pair of reading-glasses with me, in case somebody needs a pair for accuracy. I insist that they check the address one final time, and then tap the "Submit" button.

Nowadays, my success-rate is so high, I can sign up a total stranger within three minutes, and I will do it over and over and over, all during the event. I do not sit with my Good Buddies, chewing the fat. To me, that is exactly the wrong thing to do. I have a task to perform, and nothing will distract me from it. If I am going to be committed to creating real, honest and solid community, then I have to extend the hand of friendship to every new face that shows up.  The moment that any affinity-group stops welcoming new people IN A CONSCIOUS WAY, then that group is dead. D-E-A-D. Our newest members are our group's future, and if we force them to bounce off of our indifference, then we may as well close up shop. The group will get older, and less relevant, and wither away.

So, what about the folks who DO NOT sign up? What if their cynicism is too awesomely impervious? No problem. "Invitations can be accepted, denied or renegotiated". I never attach my ego to trying to enroll 100% of the people that I approach. It is impossible. I wish them well, I mention our Web site (while pointing to it on our club banner, hanging in obvious display) and step over to the next person. I have seen those same people come to our events over and over, because they wanted to see whether my fancy talk had any actual credibility.
.
So, one more time, let's talk about Credibility with a Capital C. LEADERS PROVIDE. We keep creating these "Honey Trap" events, and take group pictures periodically.  Why? Because no amount of words can convey the awesomeness of a successful, joyful and satisfying event as well as group pictures can. No amount of money, or trickery, or bossiness or manipulation can make a big, diverse and deliriously happy crowd look like a bunch of Labrador Retrievers with a tennis ball. You want to document your successes, even if they start out small. That's still better than the big, echoing emptiness that is usually the default when somebody is looking for heartfelt community in the real world.

My next article in the series will be based on feedback that I've gotten so far, so please let me know what you think. If anybody has questions or feedback, I can be reached at FetishMenSanDiego@gmail.com.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Social Column


-=-=-=-=-=- SATURDAY IN WEST HOLLYWOOD

I forgot to include this in my Upcoming Events posting - I will be out of town this weekend, attending an annual family reunion pool party at my sister's house in the San Fernando Valley. AFTER that party, I plan to attend Terry Leftgoff's MuscleBears & Beefcake benefit for Being Alive. Terry was one of our eight house guests during San Diego Pride 2011, and we bonded very closely as friends.  That's him on the far left in this picture, showing the marchers in the Leather Contingent during the San Diego Pride Parade.

So, if you're in the area, join Terry and me. You won't have to choose between musclebears OR beefcake - You can have BOTH!

-=-=-=-=- AUTHORS IN SAN DIEGO

Thanks to social media, folks who have a lot to say are getting their chance to let their opinions be heard. California Leather Sir 2010 Miles B. has been writing about Leather Boys,   Daddy Dan and Mister Mike have been writing about Leather Titles, and I've been writing about Flagging (wearing items on your left or right to show your desired sexual partner what you want).  If anyone else has been doing any authoring of articles, please let me know, so that I can promote your work here.

-=-=-=-=- ARTISTRY IN SAN DIEGO

The erotic artist Dennis Wymbs is being featured. I've bought from Dennis in the past, and his work is of the highest quality. There is a huge collection in many forms of media (including leather scluptures,  acrylic paintings, and his newest works, engravings on copper foil), and it's well worth a look, through the end of August.  He's a proud, kinky, vividly-out and wonderful man who strongly believes in the power of art.  So do I.

There are local artists who aren't getting enough visibility, and if you know of any other artist who could use some promotion, please let me know. Let's support local craftsmen in our community!

-=-=-=-=-=-=- PUPPIES AND RUBBERMEN

I ran across a wonderful posting on Leatherati.com that provides Puppy resources, for the rising numbers of men who are into Puppy Play. I was pleased to see RubberDawg.com listed, because it's run by our own local star Scotty, shown here, blending in with the crowd at 2011's Up Your Alley (formerly Dore Alley) Street Fair (millions of pictures here). Yes, he made every speck of that gear that he is wearing. 

Scotty and his husband Doren continue to be the hosts of many wonderful, successful parties for leathermen for the last twenty or so years. Scotty created Rubber Knights, a loose affiliation of San Diego-area rubbermen, but his business has taken off, so there is less time to dedicate for anything but work. I'm hoping that some new, energized local rubberman will want to take up the slack and organize some great events!

-=-=-=-=- HILLCREST CITYFEST FOLLOW-UP

I received some great feedback from my article about Hillcrest Cityfest. I had forgotten to mention that, in 1984, San Diego's gay community was convulsing in agony. AIDS was a guaranteed death-sentence back then, there were multiple funerals every week, and we needed some kind of rallying-point. Our new, pink-neon Hillcrest Sign was a visible signal that we were still a community.

I saw the new, LED-lit Hillcrest sign this weekend, and I was pleasantly surprised. I expected it to be a zillion little specks of bright LED's. Instead, it looks EXACTLY like a neon sign, but with a solid, pure-white light… No flickering, like neon. I still think that they could have spent a bit more and kept it PINK!

From: Dak


Dear Tony
I wanted to espouse on your memory of the Hillcrest Street Fair ( not renamed Cityfest until the year after the sign actually went up). The first three years were co-chaired by myself, Chris Shaw, Chrissy Kehoe, and Tony (who was the manager of a local restaurant on 5th Ave and has since past away). Chrissy was the newly appointed head of the Hillcrest Business Association (who themselves as an organization, were only a few years in existence ) and I was a banker from what was California 1st Bank ( now Union Bank) on the corner of Fifth and University, and Chris Shaw was owner of WCPC and quickly becoming a quiet mover and shaker in the gay community.
The city insisted we raise $45,000.00 to start the project, then another $27,000.00 to match grant funds to actually put the sign up. The first Hillcrest Street Fair was on 4th Ave between University and Robinson.  Because the owner of Stefanos Restaurant on University between 5th and 6th, objected to what he termed " a Castro Street Zoo" outside his restaurant". This same individual is the reason why, in compromise, three years later, the name was changed to Cityfest from Hillcrest Street Fair. He objected to anything that aligned or identified to the name Hillcrest as it was quickly becoming San Diego's gay mecca.
The year of the actual lighting we did indeed paint the streets. And once again due to that one businessman, it was blacktopped overnite to cover. We didn't let that dampen our community spirit though. He's gone now; thank you very much, and we are still a major, although no longer dominant, force in that community. We have much to be proud of in that and other neighborhoods we have "raised" and embraced.
Did you also know that the Old Globe will be producing "Rocky Horror" in Sept and they will be sponsoring a flash mob at the street fair on Sunday at 5th and University, in or out of Rocky Horror costume. Should be fun to watch.
On an after thought, Hedgehog was a massive dissappointment in too many ways, especially following Her Honor O'Conner. 
Anyway, peace to you.
Later........
Dak

-=-=-=-=-

From: Rich

I was there and remember 1984 and the kinder Roger Hedgecock well! At some point he was presented an award by the gay San Diego Democratic Club by myself and I think Michael LLoyd (?) Brad Truax was there...
Long live the Hillcrest sign - a gathering point for gay San Diego!

Upcoming Events


Wednesday, August 17, 7-9PM: MEN'S MONTHLY DISCUSSIONS, hosted by FetishMenSanDiego and San Diego League of Gentlemen. Moderated by Papa Tony. The topic of Relationships is expected to spread out over several months. If you want to get a head-start, I suggest the following reading-material.
 
Thursday, August 18, 8-11PM; Yellow Hanky Night at the Eagle. Third Thursday of each month.

Friday, August 19, 8:30PM-1AM: FRIDAY NIGHT BEAT AND GREET, downtown, hosted by Bryan Teague - American Leatherboy 2010, tiger - Ms San Diego Leather 2010, caryl - San Diego's premier Sea Monkey Trainer, and Mike Underwood - San Diego's very own Curmudgeonly teddy bear. Third Friday of each month. This is a GREAT educational event if you want some hands-on training in a safe environment.

Friday, September 2, 7-9PM; SDLOG educational event: This month's topic is Cutting. First Friday of each month. at the Joyce Beers Community Centerbetween the Terra and Aladdin restaurants by Ralph's supermarket on University.

Saturday, September 3, 3PM, CIGARS & BOOTS upstairs at Bourbon Street, hosted by California LeatherSir 2010 Miles B. First Saturday of each month. If you like a low-pressure, comfortable event with men that you can relate to, this one is for you.

Saturday, September 3, 9PM-2AM; BearNight Dance at Numbers. $5 cover. First Saturday of each month. Lots of leathermen attend this event, and it comes highly recommended… Here are some reviews.

Wednesday, September 7, 9PM: PUPPY NIGHT at the Eagle, hosted by Pup DragZ and San Diego Puppy Play (SDPP). First Wednesday of each month.

Friday, September 9, 9PM-1AM: DRESS IT UP/STRIP IT DOWN at the Eagle; 2nd Friday of each month. This has become the biggest fetishmen's event in San Diego every month!  It's the nicest, friendliest crowd you'll see at a leather bar.  Here are a few reviews, if you haven't been to one yet. This month's theme is "AS KINKY AS THE LAW ALLOWS", where I'm urging everybody to attend a reunion party in full gear if you've got it, or as much skin as you can bare without getting busted.  Here are some pictures from OctoberFebruaryMarchApril and June. Notice how HAPPY everybody is. You deserve to be that happy too.

Wednesday, September 21, 7-9PM: MEN'S MONTHLY DISCUSSIONS, hosted by FetishMenSanDiego and San Diego League of Gentlemen. Moderated by Papa Tony. The topic of Relationships is expected to spread out over several months.
 
Friday, September 30, 8:30PM-1AM: MEN-ONLY FRIDAY NIGHT BEAT AND GREET, downtown, hosted by Bryan Teague - American Leatherboy and Mike Underwood - San Diego's very own Curmudgeonly teddy bear. The Men-Only version is on the FIFTH Friday of each month, such as September 30, and (possibly) December 30th for 2011. There will be hands-on training for folks who want to learn from experts in a very safe environment.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Men's Discussion: Expectations for Wednesday Night

As I've mentioned before, I will be hosting the Men's Discussion Night on the third Wednesday of each month, from 7 to 9PM.

So far, so good.

Now, I want to give a preview of what you can expect from these events:

Like all events that I host, each discussion will be a Guaranteed Safe Space.  You can relax, feel welcome, open up and be yourself, and get lots of approval for being fully self-expressed. Nobody will be treating you shabbily, ignoring your efforts to connect on a friendship level, or disrupting the flow. I personally guarantee it. I have decades of experience doing this sort of thing (I'm a natural-born Julie the Cruise Director), and I know how to put everybody at ease, and how to change gears immediately if the need arises.

These events are being held outside of a noisy, distracting bar environment, in order to particularly welcome the 18-and-up crowd, those in recovery, and those who can't really bond well with others over the sounds of a packed bar. Please use this as an opportunity to develop new friendships with men of like interests. Step away from your computer screen and spend some comfortable time with your brothers in real life.  We want you with us.

I will do everything that I can to facilitate "Male Intimacy". This is the term that I use for what our society discourages every day - the ability of men to be relaxed, affectionate and huggy without having to feel obligated to make it turn into a promise for anything else.

So, show up, take the pressure off, be yourself, share freely, and expect a few hugs as time goes by.  The more that you share of yourself, the more approval you'll get.  Try not to use this as yet another opportunity to hide in plain sight.  If you drop the shields, I promise that others around you will be glad to drop theirs, and we can all learn from each others' questions, answers, wisdom, experience and insights.

I'll see you this Wednesday.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

27th Annual Hillcrest CityFest, This Sunday (New Sign)


I hadn't been paying close enough attention, otherwise I would have mentioned it earlier.  This Sunday is the annual CityFest street fair in San Diego.  They will be lighting up the NEW, LED-equipped Hillcrest sign. There's going to be a good-sized crowd. Wear sunscreen, and drink lots of water!  There will be a lot of vendors selling sandals, candles and sandalwood candles. I plan to feast on plenty of Chicken on a Stick, and people-watch. I seem to have a keen eye for shirtless men holding hands together.

I remember the first CityFest quite vividly:

Roger Hedgecock was mayor then, and had shown no sign of the nasty, hateful radio talk-show host he would become.  The original event was a party celebrating the re-lighting of the newly-rebuilt Hillcrest sign. The old, worn-out sign had been taken down, refurbished and put back up. Hedgecock threw the switch, the sign lit up, and the crowd of primarily gay folks exulted. 

Somebody had brought brightly-colored paints and brushes, and everybody started painting the street asphalt on Fifth between Robinson and University with fantastic designs and idealistic phrases. It was glorious. It was a psychedelic explosion of raw creativity. Everybody went home and slept, and in the morning, all of the colorful designs were gone - A work-crew had blackened the entire street overnight.

Hedgecock promised that this would become an annual event, to celebrate Hillcrest culture, which at the time was quite solidly gay.  In those days, Hillcrest used to be known as the "Gay Nineties", because if you were living there, you were either gay, or ninety. A lot of the original landowners were dying out, and gay folks were buying up the houses in the area. This attracted a lot of new boutiques, shopettes and bars, which just encouraged the LGBT community to seek homes there.

This caused the property-values to skyrocket, so folks started shopping further and further outward from Hillcrest. From highway 5 to Lakeside heading east, and from Clairemont down to Golden Hill heading south, it's one BIG, highly-integrated "gay neighborhood". Here in Normal Heights, there are a minimum of 2 or 3 LGBT households per block, and sometimes quite a bit more.  How do I know?  I've hosted massive, 250-household neighborhood gay & lesbian parties, where attendees would arrive and place rainbow-flag push-pins on a big map of Normal Heights, showing where they lived. I've spoken with party organizers in University Heights, Kensington and Burlingame, and they have assured me that their neighborhoods are the same. Simple observation fills in the rest of the details.

There is no more need for a "Gay Ghetto" any more, because the world has shifted our way. We don't have to hide out in "Boy's Town" because of the hatred and persecution everywhere else. Hillcrest still has the "Gay Neighborhood" reputation, but it's just the original, well-known area. What has changed in the last thirty years has been the level of easy-going, affectionate support we've found in the "straight" community, allowing us to safely (and peacefully) live further afield.  

Roger Hedgecock may have gone rabidly hostile since 1984, but he's the only one left from that first CityFest who went that way.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Upcoming Events


The summer is zooming past, and it's already time to start thinking about future events, and making plans. Folsom Street Fair and Palm Springs Leather Pride are always good, solid reasons to scrape together the finances enough to do some traveling.  If you're too broke to travel, we'll be enjoying San Diego Leather Pride in March.  I'm planning up a nice Parking-Lot Party for that weekend that should attract a hell of a lot of out-of-towners, acting very single!

There are people who complain a lot about Folsom Street Fair, because of the small number of young straight couples pushing strollers through the crowd of wild kinksters, and it puts them off their game somehow.  Personally, I find it to be refreshing, and a symptom of how our world is slowly getting better within our lifetimes. Those non-kinksters are showing open-mindedness, acceptance and honest curiosity, and their children are learning from their example.  

When I attended the Up Your Alley Street Fair in San Francisco a couple of weeks ago, I saw only peaceful affirmation, and believe me, there were plenty of folks pushing the limits of what you could ever imagine happening in public view. Yet, nobody was harmed, nobody harshed on anybody else, and it was a relaxing job for the cops patrolling the area. Given the growing number of World Naked Bike Rides worldwide, I think that the trend away from culturally-enforced shame is accelerating.  That's why the fundies are screaming louder and louder these days - They see their influence slipping away.

-=-=-=-=- UPCOMING EVENTS

Thursday, August 11, 7:30-9:30PM: Club X Workshop: Flogging Beyond 101 at the Joyce Beers Community Centerbetween the Terra and Aladdin restaurants by Ralph's supermarket on University.

Friday, August 12, 9PM-1AM: DRESS IT UP/STRIP IT DOWN at the Eagle; 2nd Friday of each month. This has become the biggest fetishmen's event in San Diego every month!  It's the nicest, friendliest crowd you'll see at a leather bar.  Here are a few reviews, if you haven't been to one yet. This month's theme is "SHORTS, TANK TOPS AND BOOTS", since it's going to be HOT for August!.  Here are some pictures from OctoberFebruaryMarchApril and June. Notice how HAPPY everybody is. You deserve to be that happy too.

Wednesday, August 17, 7-9PM: MEN'S MONTHLY DISCUSSIONS, hosted by FetishMenSanDiego and San Diego League of Gentlemen. Moderated by Papa Tony. The topic of Relationships is expected to spread out over several months. If you want to get a head-start, I suggest the following reading-material.
 
Thursday, August 18, 8-11PM; Yellow Hanky Night at the Eagle. Third Thursday of each month.

Friday, August 19, 8:30PM-1AM: FRIDAY NIGHT BEAT AND GREET, downtown, hosted by Bryan Teague - American Leatherboy 2010, tiger - Ms San Diego Leather 2010, caryl - San Diego's premier Sea Monkey Trainer, and Mike Underwood - San Diego's very own Curmudgeonly teddy bear. Third Friday of each month. This is a GREAT educational event if you want some hands-on training in a safe environment.

Friday, September 2, 7-9PM; SDLOG educational event: This month's topic is Cutting. First Friday of each month. at the Joyce Beers Community Centerbetween the Terra and Aladdin restaurants by Ralph's supermarket on University.

Saturday, September 3, 3PM, CIGARS & BOOTS upstairs at Bourbon Street, hosted by California LeatherSir 2010 Miles B. First Saturday of each month. If you like a low-pressure, comfortable event with men that you can relate to, this one is for you.

Saturday, September 3, 9PM-2AM; BearNight Dance at Numbers. $5 cover. First Saturday of each month. Lots of leathermen attend this event, and it comes highly recommended… Here are some reviews.

Wednesday, September 7, 9PM: PUPPY NIGHT at the Eagle, hosted by Pup DragZ and San Diego Puppy Play (SDPP). First Wednesday of each month.

Friday, September 30, 8:30PM-1AM: MEN-ONLY FRIDAY NIGHT BEAT AND GREET, downtown, hosted by Bryan Teague - American Leatherboy and Mike Underwood - San Diego's very own Curmudgeonly teddy bear. The Men-Only version is on the FIFTH Friday of each month, such as September 30, and (possibly) December 30th for 2011. There will be hands-on training for folks who want to learn from experts in a very safe environment.

September 16 & 17: Las Vegas Pride

Sunday, September 25: Folsom Street Fair.

November 5 & 6: Palm Springs Pride

November 12 & 13: Palm Springs Leather Pride