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The Bootblack Daddy

LeslieBootblackingI am a leather woman. I am a bootblack. I refuse to put the word ”and” in front anymore. I believe in calling people in vs. calling people out… That leather brings us together, it does not divide us.

I’ve seen a lot of hurtful things said in the leather and bootblack circles on social media in the days after IML38. It not only saddened me, but I was left confused. So I privately messaged a person who has experience in front and behind the scenes of the IML and IMBB contest to ask for time to answer questions that weighed on my mind. I am so grateful I did that and that my request for information was received well. We met and it was no easy conversation. There was frustration, there were voices raised at times, even occasional tears on both side, but there was also a genuine desire to understand the other. There was good communication.

I was left thinking, am I doing enough for this our leather community… Am I being a big enough part of calling people in… And how am I creating the change I want to see… Am I doing the work or just paying it lip service… I think about Actions and Deeds.

I don’t want to be part of the problem. I want to be part of working for the solutions and to do that in a way that calls people in, not calls people out.

In the long list of unkind comments made in recent days I saw a note that there were very few bootblacks speaking out for Leslie J. Anderson, The Bootblack Daddy. If people want to unfriend me it’s okay, but as a leather woman, as a bootblack, I stand beside The Bootblack Daddy.  She calls people in and if you do not see that, or know that, then maybe talk to people with experience at IML and IMBB to understand how it is run and why things are as we see them. Then you might do as I did and ask yourself how you are helping create the change you want to see.

Leslie J. Anderson I want you to know I SEE YOU. And you know it’s funny to me, because even though we have not spoken in months, I know you see me too.

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Pride Isn’t What Comes Before The Fall

This has some good points to consider and I agree with 99% of it. I read it all the way through and then got a big smile at the end. There is this picture of a “Share Your Success” leaderboard image and one of the successes made me think, “How wonderful that she felt she could write that openly…” Congratulations Liliya, Washington State Ms Leather 2015!

Just Alyssa

@Celia.Huddart, doing what she does, working hard and having fun. @Celia.Huddart, doing what she does, working hard and having fun.

My daughter and I were driving to one of many appointments that surround her blossoming weightlifting career. We have an early A.R.T. appointment, then a massage, then she has to go work out. Her pursuit of a spot on Team USA is a job. For both of us. It never occurred to me that I might be raising a future Olympian. I never would have even tried for that. It came to us – which, I now know, is how it happens. They find you, not the other way around. They’re like a sporting spy agency, and they have secret agents everywhere. But, that’s not the point.

We do all this because we truly believe that she’s good enough to have a shot. She, more than me even, believes that she can and will make “The Team.”

We were talking…

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WILL 2015: “A Happy Coincidence”

WILL banner

I recently ran for a Women’s Leather Contest and title and I want to record my experiences and thoughts. I want everyone to think about that simple sentence. How many of you are recording your experiences? It is upon each of us to do our due diligence and preserve our personal histories. I hope you will think about embarking on saving your mementos, images, and stories that have been part of your leather journey.

My running for this title was all a happy coincidence… I smile when I say that as I reflect on Ms. Diana telling me as I interviewed her,

“How I got involved in BDSM was all a happy coincidence.”

Sometimes, because I have held a title and now because I have run for second title, people ask me about what titles and contests are all about and how do they work? There are many ways to answer that. Each title has its own purpose and reason. Continue reading

Busy as a Bee

the_bee_and_the_flower_204010I’ve been busy and I’m happy to say it has not been all work. I’ve been busy in a good way going to a lot of fun places and events with new and old friends. I’ve been reconnecting with people. Or maybe it’s that I am finally connecting in a deeper and more sincere way to people who I was only able to be acquaintances with or friendly with in the past. I am filled up in the present and the past becomes more and more of just that – the past. It’s still an open wound, but each day it becomes more of a place through which light enters. My present is filled with a lot of goodness. For all this I am grateful. Continue reading