Nov 05

Playground: Day 1

It has been a fun day here at Day 1 of Playground. Backtracking a bit, I thoroughly enjoyed last night’s opening reception and the performance by Hibou. They definitely rocket up near the top of my favourite Toronto bands. I look forward to getting their music, listening and hopefully seeing them live again sometime soon. Great stuff!
On to today. I’ve been up on the second floor, selling the Choose Your Own Sex Adventure books and pervy pins and it has been cool connecting with other vendors. Please come out and visit tomorrow! We vendors like some love and visits.
The panel this morning, Sex & the Media was a blast. I was up there with Cynthia Loyst, Lux Alptraum and Paddy Jane. The discussion was brisk and stimulating. I got kind of excited and blathery at times, but I think it was informative and smart. Love talking about this stuff! Got to chat about Sex City a lot, and my other work some too.

Looking forward to more Playground tomorrow!

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Nov 03

BIG NEWS from Sex City!

As of Tuesday December 6, Sex City can now be heard every TUESDAY at 11PM!
This is a very exciting move for us that we are looking forward to. Join us every Tuesday night at 11pm for great sex news, views and reviews. Louise, Bryen and Jon will continue to bring you fascinating people and events that open the doors of discussion on sex and sexuality.
You can catch the show by tuning in to 89.5FM in the Toronto area or streaming online at ciut.fm.
If you miss a show, catch up with us here or at our archive site www.sexcityradio.webs.com.

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Nov 03

Review: A Wicked & Wanton All Hallows’ Eve

Nothing gets sexy senses tingling like Halloween. Beyond the costumes and sugar rush, this fun-filled day is always a high point in my year. And to have a collection of hot erotic stories to read on the day? Even better!
Recently released by Naughty Nights Press, A Wicked & Wanton All Hallows’ Eve pulls together classic elements of horror, ghosts, aliens, sci-fi, pop culture with nasty, naughty fun. Challenging you to “open your mind, free your inhibitions and get ready” there is definitely much to consider with a wide range of sex and expression represented. Whether it be the fright factor or the smut, this collection is not for the faint of heart.
The standout tales of terror are those centred around significant psychological play and manipulation. Sarah Bella’s “Triage” is a sensual exploration of a mistaken trip into a BDSM club by a newbie. Bella captures in stunning clarity Charlotte’s nervous excitement and fear as she is overcome with desire for her new Master. You can feel the intensity of the moment in Bella’s writing, with Charlotte’s breathing heavy through the page.
Kim Faulks explores emotion and personal journey in a much different but equally effective manner in the most rich and strong ‘story’ of the collection, “Inamorata.” While it certainly involves and details some hot sex, it is more the tale of a man and his deceased wife’s sister who fall on hard times in the late 1700s. He is despondent over the loss of his wife and the sister has been tasked with taking care of him. To do so, she will do anything he asks, including falling in love with him and becoming a prostitute. The plot is realized with such elegance and ability that the sex is almost a throwaway to the story. 
Halloween is most definitely a time to let all of your wild thoughts out and some of the writers in this collection do just that. But remember, with all things wild in writing, a little bit of restraint is needed to ensure the words aren’t out of control. “Haunted Party” by Abby Hayes and “I Dream of Dalian” by BL Morticia are strong in their sexuality and the plot is there, but the writing goes over-the-top and just needs to be pulled back and tightened up.
All told, A Wicked & Wanton All Hallow’s Eve is a fun collection of stories to spook and sexy up an evening. You know, a dark and scary night when the full moon is high in the sky…

A Wicked & Wanton All Hallows’ Eve – A Naughty Nights Press Anthology
ISBN: 978-0-9876894-6-7
Naughty Nights Press (NNP)
http://naughtynightspress.com/
Buy it here

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Nov 02

Sexual Spectrum: Lusty Day

Work is work is work. Some people sit at a desk every day, some labour and build society’s infrastructure. Some provide sexual services. Why does that always stand out? 
   Sex work remains stigmatized and marginalized for the many people who choose careers in it. Lusty Day, activist and advocate, challenges whorephobia through video projects, zines, and volunteering with sex worker organizations.
JP: How did you get into sex work?
LD: I think this is one of the most common questions that sex workers get asked because our industry seems so underground, secretive and shady. People think, ‘however did she get lured into that?’ which is a question that assumes we are naive, impressionable victims! The truth is that the sex industry is all around us, in your condo building, on your computer, in the bedside drawer. Some of it is seen as legitimate work, some of it not, and because some of it is so taboo and criminalized people do get into sex work in unexpected ways—some good, some bad.
   In my case, a good friend who saw I was struggling to pay school debts told me that she had started working selling blowjobs on Craigslist and that it was fun and easy. She thought I had the qualities to succeed in the work—I was interested in sex and sexuality, I had the capacity to separate love and sex, I was sex-positive and polyamorous—all characteristics that I think helped me first conceptualize how I wanted to have sex for money in a way that felt empowering and exciting to me.
   Of course many sex workers don’t have those characteristics, or that experience, but those ways were what brought me to the work. So while I was in university I started placing ads on Craigslist one or two nights a month and paid my bills that way. It turned out that sex work inspired me way more than the work I was doing in university, so I eventually made the shift into full-time sex work. I have been a full-time sex worker for 2.5 years now.

JP: Have you done other types of sex work?

LD: Right now I work as an independent kinky escort, so I do some BDSM work while also providing “full service” which is our industry lingo for penetrative vaginal sex. I offer other services as well. I have worked in brothels in Australia as a contract worker, which was a fantastic way to get lots of experience, meet lots of other workers, and also learn the ropes of working with clients without also having to learn and do all the administration work of running your own sex work business. The administrative work takes up a lot of my time now. I have been developing my lust and skills in BDSM activities but it remains to be seen what directions my sex work is going to take me—and I like how it takes me in unexpected directions.

JP: What are some of the things you like and dislike about work?
LD: I really like how unexpected my work is. I love knocking on a door and wondering who the man or woman is who will open it. I love the variety of people I meet and how vast the field of sexuality is. Also I love working with actual people’s bodies—touching and stroking and hitting and kissing. Working one-on-one with a lover’s body is really transformative and intimate for me. I love the intimacy of my work, but sometimes that aspect of it really burns me out. I work hard to be as open as possible with my clients, to accept them so deeply and give myself to them, and sometimes after I close the door behind them my heart has a little flare-out. I have to remind myself that it was a part-time fantasy and I have ways to return myself to myself, get my skin back so to speak. I think my compassion and open mind are what make me a great sex worker, but like any caring profession, it means you can burn out faster. The good thing about the sex work I do is that I get paid well for this intimate work, so when I need a break I can take one to rejuvenate and look after myself. That’s really important.

   What I dislike the most about sex work is the way it is so isolating. I usually work alone in quiet rooms, doing things that everyday people don’t want to talk about, and I offer my clients discretion and privacy. When you couple that reality with the whorephobia that you encounter in everyday life, you can really feel alone in remembering that your sex work is valuable, ubiquitious, and worthy of respect. This whorephobia is also what makes you more susceptible to violence. I try to counter that by participating in sex worker community, working with other sex workers in sessions, and by being very open about what I do when it feels safe to me to disclose that information.

JP: What improvements can be made to the industry as a whole?

LD: From the community work I do at Maggie’s Toronto (I am a board member there) and in the workshops I give and the arts work I do on issues for sex workers, I would say that decriminalization of our work is a major step towards building more open community support and also towards more police accountability and reducing stigma against sex workers. I see how sex workers are very susceptible to violence and to getting ripped off, and I don’t just mean by clients but especially by police. With decriminalization we could work more openly and together, supporting each other and building independent businesses that benefit from tax and business law, not just hide from them. And while decriminalization would be a major step, it’s not a one-note solution. I think that sex workers come from all parts of life and need justice not just as sex workers, but as Indigenous people, poor people, people of colour, trans* people, women, migrant people, people with disabilities, queer people. We are fighting for justice in housing, immigration, sovereignty, access to social services, body autonomy, financial justice, reproductive rights—all of these struggles need to be understood as sex workers struggles, and other groups need to think hard on how sex workers are likewise part of their struggles and communities. It’s called community building, and only when sex workers are included in our notion of community will the decriminalization of sex work really benefit those who need it most.

JP: Are you ever fearful for your safety? What measures do you take to ensure you are safe?

LD: I feel most unsafe not in the room with a client, but in social environments where people make jokes about dead hookers. I feel unsafe when people tell me they feel sorry for me, because the next step is always that they will try to rescue me or save me in ways that completely deny my experience. I feel unsafe when people assume I have a disease that I brought upon myself and won’t offer me non-judgemental treatment options or kiss or hug me. I feel unsafe when people assume that the violence and danger in my life only comes from clients when my experiences of assault and boundary-crossing have primarily been with intimate partners.

   Mostly I feel unsafe when I can feel that people don’t respect me, when they think my work and life is less valuable than other professionals, and this feeling can come from clients, yes, but also from doctors, bank tellers, social service providers, therapists, lovers, friends and family.

   I stay safe by remembering I have a right to safety, the respect of others, and by talking openly about the challenges I face in being a sex worker. I think it’s important to note that not all workers can be out like that, and some are outed against their will. I have some risks in being out to most people in my life but the benefits have also been so amazing—so many people share their advice and stories with me. I honour and love the stories I have been given access to, and I am so careful with them. I make videos and offer workshops on sex work topics to other sex workers and to the general public and I am on the board of Maggie’s Toronto, a local sex worker organization. These are things that make me feel strong in who I am, and that help me feel safe by working with others to provide safety and a long-term vision of sex worker rights and self-determination.

JP: What do you think will happen with the Ontario government’s appeal? Will sex work become more decrimilinalized?
LD: I anticipate this legal challenge going all the way to the Supreme Court of Canada. Legal challenges are costly and long-term, and it is unfortunate that the resources of the sex work activist community are so focused on a legal challenge because the gains are so few and far between and often are symbolic more than anything. But we do need symbols and hope for the long-term future, and I am so proud of SPOC and all the sex worker groups who are working so hard on the legal challenge. It’s the fault of the Canadian federal government that we are so focused on a legal challenge as a way to make change, for they have repeatedly ignored the recommendations of their own research on how to decriminalize the sex industry to make it safer for everyone involved. Prostitution is a topic that no politician wants to touch, and their inaction is directly responsible for the deaths of many sex workers, especially Aboriginal sex workers. While this long-term legal challenge is happening, it is becoming en vogue to support a new form of legislation called the Nordic or Swedish model, which decriminalizes those working in the sex trade but continues to criminalize clients. Most sex workers I know do not support this model, which keeps the industry underground and drives away clients who are more risk-sensitive. We want clients who have our safety in mind, not ones who will risk their safety and ours. Research from Sweden by sex workers shows that this model isn’t working and yet it is being proposed as a model for Canada. Also,  people often confuse human trafficking and consensual sex work and this confusion is deliberately sowed with Harper’s new crime bills that target sex working people, especially migrant workers.

    I think the legal challenge will grind its way through the courts while legislators push for indirect new models of regulating sex work that will criminalize us, our communities, and our clients. I’m not that hopeful for positive legislative change but I am hopeful for the ingenuity of sex workers in staying safe and supporting each other no matter what is happening in the courts.

JP: What other work do you do, or hobbies do you have outside of being Lusty Day?

LD: I am a beginning video artist, last year I made a video called Every Ho I Know Says So with my friend Beef Jerky which is being used as a tool by so many people to fight whorephobia and stigma. I am really passionate about public education work, so I also offer workshops on sexual consent to community groups and I write zines about my experiences in sex work. Outside of the sex-working world, I am an outdoor freak and I love to plan multi-day treks and really push myself to my physical limits. I am also a disability activist and ally, and I am really transformed by the radical communities of care and support I am a member of that center the lives of people with disabilities.

JP: Would you consider doing cam, video or other types of sex work?
LD: I have never worked on cam, doing phone sex or porn, in dungeons, or dancing… I am very happy in my niche and it would take a lot to pull me away from it. I don’t really love having myself photographed or filmed so lots of types of sex work feel uninteresting to me for that reason. I really love the one-on-one intimacy of escorting so I am very comfortable with what I am doing right now.

JP: What are your plans for the future, in both work and your personal life?
LD: I am not much of a long-term planner, but I do have a few dreams! In terms of my sex work, I would love to build a co-operative workspace with other sex workers and have it be a model for the world of what ethical and consensual sex-working business could be that is open to so many types of sex and sexuality and that is a groundbreaking place for new kinds of intimacy and connection.
   Outside of sex work, in the future I would love to build an outdoor trekking organization that builds our survival skills as queers, people with disabilities, sex workers, community workers. I see it as a post-apocalyptic training ground that equally values different community-building skills, and it’s very much inspired by transformative science fiction by writers like Octavia Butler. I am inspired by the land and I respect those elders who have come before, especially those Indigenous peoples on whose stolen land I work and live on, and I want to make sure it is here for the generations of people yet to be born.

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Nov 01

Slinky! RETRO NIGHT This Saturday!

Slinky new event put together by DJ Triple-X and I (did you know I’m DJ Posterboy?)

Hey kids, it’s Slinky time – a night for boys and girls, who like girls and boys.

This new retro monthly will have you wearing bell bottoms, neon leg warmers, bouffant hairdo, stripes and polka dots, pointed toe shoes, peace signs, and Frankie Says Relax t-shirts.

We’ll be jammin til the break of dawn, or at least until closing time, with all the classics from the years gone by. Drop by, get down, and get back up again.

DEETS -Slinky happens the first Saturday of every month at The Flying Beaver Pubaret located at 488 Parliament Street in the heart of Cabbage Patch Town. www.pubaret.com – Look for the Slinky Entrance Door

DJ’s Triple-X and Poster Boy entertain and frighten.

Doors open at 10pm and cover is only $5.00 for a full night of reminiscing and romancing. Bring a date, a group of friends, or fly solo.

Show up early for Darcy Michael’s show and gain free entry to Slinky.

Darcy Michael is considered one of Canada’s rising stars. Coming off his wildly successful debut at the prestigious Just for Laughs festival in Montreal, where the Montreal Gazette pegged him as one of their favorites; Darcy went on to film his first national stand up special for CTV and The Comedy Network which aired in June 2010. Darcy was also featured on a pre-taped segment for The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Shortly after Darcy filmed a Gala set for the Winnipeg Comedy Festival in which he was nominated for a 2010 Canadian Comedy Award for Best Televised Performance. April 2010 saw Darcy featured as one of the final 8 in the Comedy Networks Great Canadian Laugh Off. In the fall of 2008 he recorded his first CD in conjunction with XM Radio called: “You’re Gay Now.”

Darcy Michael’s edgy but personable approach has made him a guaranteed hit. While working alongside the likes of Scott Thompson, Janeane Garafolo, Craig Robinson, Greg Proops and Matthew Perry; a few of Darcy’s past credits include appearances at the Global Comedy Festival; Halifax Comedy Festival and CBC Radio’s ‘The Debaters.’
http://www.darcymichael.com/http://www.darcymichael.com/

Tickets here – http://ca.brownpapertickets.com/

So why don’t you tell someone, and so on, and so on, and so on!

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Oct 26

We’re on BlogTO’s RADAR!

Toronto Erotica Writers and Readers Meetup garner’s some pixel’s in advance of tonight’s event!
http://www.blogto.com/radar/2011/10/radar_androidto_toronto_erotica_writers_and_readers_meetup_hidden_gems_sharkwater_music_of_a_silenced_nation/

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Oct 19

Canzine: This Sunday!

I’ll be at Canzine in Toronto this weekend. This is one of my favourite events of the year. I’ve been selling zines, pins t-shirts and other random stuff there for more than a decade.

This year I’ll be selling my Choose Your Own Sex Adventure books, including the just completed University Orientation as well as sexy and funny pins.

Come on out for a great fun day!

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Oct 17

Quiet on Sex in Words…

I’m head down trying to finish up the next Choose Your Own Sex Adventure book for next weekend’s Canzine, as well as another bittersweet little zine. And more pins! I do love making the pins, I just don’t know how many new ones I’ll be able to get done.
Plus, this weekend is Sex City’s contribution to CIUT’s fall fundraising campaign!
Busy, busy, but loving this creative flow.

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Oct 14

Sex City helps CIUT 89.5FM’s Fall Fundraising!

From The Roots Up! CIUT 89.5 FM‘s Fall Membership Drive!
From October 17-23, fans will be pulling together to support an important and vital resource: Community Radio!

The Sex City crew will be doing our part with a very special show on SATURDAY OCTOBER 22 between 5-6pm. We’ll be welcoming back some of our favourite recent guests, including Teresa Fulker of Stonewall TO, Michael Erickson and The Madame from The Keyhole Sessions.

Call in your pledge to support for a chance to win great prizes, including:
-a copy of @Vulva 101 by Hylton Coxwell
-passes to The Keyhole Sessions
-passes to Fuck U Fridays
-passes to The Everything to do with Sex Show
and more!

You can call us at 416-946-7800 or visit us online at http://www.ciut.fm/index.php/about/membership/ Advance pledges are wholeheartedly encouraged and if you check the site, you can see that there are chances to win prizes with advance donations. Be sure to tell them Sex City sent you!

Tune in the the 22nd as we celebrate sex and community radio!

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Oct 12

Vulva 101: Hard(cover) and Glorious

I was delighted to find a copy of the gorgeous new book Vulva 101 in my mailbox last week. What a beautiful creation Hylton Coxwell has put together. I’d seen the work before in digital form when Dorianne wrote a great piece on the book for Sexlife Canada (Hylton was also kind enough to request a quote about it from me after I interviewed him on Sex City), but that format did not do it justice. The large, coffee table book that came out of the envelope was so much more realized and spectacular. Wonderful print job and paper (ahhh, my roots in publishing) pulled me in and I re-read the whole thing.
A triumph Hylton!

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Oct 11

Untitled

It’s our favourite time of the year. A time when others all try to be as freakish as us – Halloween!!!

This year Buddies is gonna have the best fuckin party going to start your scary weekend of fun – Fuck U Fridays- $10.25 Pitchers and selected $2.75 shooters before 1130, with midnight performances by Jenna Syde and ZsaZsa La Bitche. After last months performances and packed class, you don’t want to be late for this one!!!

Calling all Beastie Boys and Backstreet Boys, Vivian Girls and Spice Girls – Whether you like Black Box or Black Lips, White Lines or White Weddings

DJ Triple-X throws down some retro tunes from the 60’s. 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s…along with some 21st century grooves tossed into the mix.
Special guest DJ Poster Boy will rock your socks off!

Dress the part – nerd, scholar, goth, slut, preppie, freak, teacher, stoner, misfit, reject, queer, hoser, rocker, glam, punk, disco, femme, butch, skater, hip hop, new wave, master, servant

Artists you might hear are – AC/DC, Run DMC, Cracker, Madonna, Kylie, Rough Trade, NKOTB, Supremes, Elvis, Def Leppard, NIN, Dolly Parton, Twisted Sister, Sylvester, Chic, Deelite, REO Speedwagon. Journey, Loverboy, Johnny Cash, Japan, Shondelles, Big Freedia, The Adverts, Subhumans, NSYNC, Nina Hagen, Timex Social Club, Luba, Two Unlinmited, Robyn S, Dream Warriors, Afrika Bambatta, Sade, Ministry, Tone Loc, Dead or Alive, U2, Ultravox, Duran Duran, Turtles, Hollies, Grand Master Flash, Vibrators, Joan Jett, Heart, Le Tigre, Divine, Rolling Stones, Adam and the Ants, Janis Joplin, Stiff Little Fingers, Blur, Oasis, That Petrol Emotion, David Bowie, Tina Turner, Led Zeppelin, Devo, Buddy Holly, Bryan Adams, Lords of Acid, Loverboy, 2 Live Crew, Slits, Janet Jackson, Richie Valens, Bill Haley. Bryan Ferry, Doors, Clash, Nivana, Public Enemy, Stranglers, INXS, Snap, Ricky Martin, Echo and the Bunnymen, The Ronnettes, Ministry, Petula Clark, Flying Lizards, Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, Still Little Fingers, Aerosmith, Patti Labelle, Beatles, Donne Summer, Placebo, Motley Crew, Culture Club, Gary Numan, Cher, Phil Collins, Right Said Fred, Sisters of Mercy, Ace of Bass. MC Hammer, Vanilla Ice, Dr and the Medics, BB Gabor, Marilyn Manson, Archies, Headpins, Manzone, Cramps, Cabaret Voltaire

Special midnight performances not to be missed

Jenna Syde – Toronto’s ONLY punk rock drag queen!

I’ve been doing drag/performance for more than 3 years now, getting my start at the infamous GAZA STRIP night @ BUDDIES IN BAD TIMES THEATRE. with ANDREW HARWOOD, I have done various club events with BUDDIES, PROM NIGHT, RETRO ELECTRO, RENDEZ VOUS, etc, As well as worked with Miss Margot and performed @ The Beaver for the opening launch of their GOTH DRAG night, Emerging multi-media, performance art, and of course drag is my main goal, My influences are interpretations of Nina Hagen, Jayne County, Siouxsie Sioux, Wendy O Williams, Diamanda Galas, Pete Burns, Grace Jones, Klaus Nomi, and more. I have a strong link and adoration for the punk/goth/new wave/avant garde movements, and I’m trying to incorporate surreal-socio political performance art as a drag medium

https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000652881109

ZsaZsa La Bitche – a rock’n’roll strip show involving knife penetration and blood (truth or dare?)

My name is ZsaZsa LaBitché. Pronounced ZsaZsa La Bitch(e) I am a model, preformer and full time Dork…with a capital D! I enjoy using a lot of different concepts and themes when being photographed and when coming up with new performance ideas. I am the sweet faced girl, the sultry vixen & the bad girl that we know and love all rolled into one… sometimes the bad girl a bit too much(it can be kind of a curse at times),but what you see is what you get-no bullshit just full impact, with a side of ass grab. DEAL WITH IT or don’t…

xXx♥ FB Image Gallery♥ xXx
http://www.facebook.com/pages/ZsaZsa-LaBitche/83135860511?ref=ts

We dare you to keep YOUR clothes on!!!

Don’t be late or you may end up in the Detention Room

Come early and check out Larry Kramer’s “The Normal Heart” in the Mainspace – http://www.buddiesinbadtimes.com/show.cfm?id=772

Or….

The Comedy Collective in the Chamber
https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=229828440407117

Friday Oct 28 – Buddies in Bad Times Theatre – 12 Alexander St – Toronto – 1030pm to 230am – Free B4 11, $5.00 After
$10.25 beer pitchers and selected $2.75 shooters before 1130

Requests always encouraged by posting below, or email info@themarsbar.com. CYA on the dance floor!

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