Whew! I’m back from Eroticon, and I have to say, con-drop is real. I thought I could avoid it by going right to Lisbon on Monday, but I was dead wrong. If anything, I had both con- and vacation-drop. I’ll be taking my own advice and trying to practice good self-care.
Anyway, let’s talk about Eroticon. Hopefully I was able to whet your appetites for Eroticon news on Twitter and Instagram. I tried to live-tweet as many sessions as I could, but the entire weekend was just jam-packed with good stuff. Too much good stuff to share it all in 140 characters. Instead, I’ve finally put fingers to keyboard and made a modest attempt to capture the wonderfulness of the weekend.
Eroticon is big enough to be exciting and full of new faces, but small enough that it still felt intimate.
Let’s address the elephant in the room: I adored Woodhull — especially seeing some folks I hadn’t seen in years, like the good people of SheVibe! — but Eroticon was a different animal altogether. It was smaller, more niche, and obviously, on another continent. So while it’s impossible not to make some comparisons, I don’t believe one is better than the other. They’re different, and they’re both great.
To start with, Eroticon was much smaller, and I loved that about it. All of the speakers that I saw drew a totally respectable crowd, and some even ended up standing-room-only. At the same time, I saw a lot of faces that soon became familiar at talk after talk. People seemed to feel pretty comfortable asking questions and posing challenges to the materials and to each other, which is a good thing, in my opinion. I also had the chance to get to know some new people outside of my normal bloggy social sphere that I think I might not have had if it had been a much bigger conference.
I learned that impact play can be great for my anxiety.
I get travel anxiety, and sometimes I get social and crowd anxiety. Since I was experiencing all of those, shit got real. I was taking some time to myself in a less-crowded room when I heard Molly, Michael, and Gryphon (& a few folks whose names I didn’t catch) talking about cupping.
I’ve been curious about it for a while, but I’m a little afraid of fire and I really didn’t know where to go to try it in a safe environment. Michael
domly kindly demonstrated how his set of suction-y, vacuum-seal-y cups work — no fire needed. He put a cup on my shoulder blade and pumped the vacuum-y mechanism a few times, and I felt a very distinct tightening1, then heat. He released the cup shortly after. A sizable welt and bruise started to form almost immediately, because I bruise like a peach, and it was awesome.
After this, someone else asked about the infamous Misery Stick, and I had to know what that was about. It’s a small, thin, very flexible carbon-fiber rod with a handle. Seems like a really simple piece of equipment, but it really stings. (It can even break skin, so be careful and do your due diligence.) To be perfectly honest, after the first thwap, I felt a little spacey and giddy. After the second, I felt high. And most of all, I felt so much better.
I got to meet the people behind some fantastic brands and got an early peek at Doxy’s new mini wand2.
While I’d already met Ruby at Woodhull, this was my first time meeting William — Doxy‘s co-owner and chief Tweeter — as well as Adam and Monica from Godemiche, and the lovely gents behind Fuck.com. (Now there’s a web address that’s easy to remember.)
William was super nice and it was just really clear to me that he’s the kind of person, running the kind of company, that I can be proud to work with. And oh my… the Baby Doxy. The mini wand. The SMOL WAND. It’s awesome! If you haven’t gotten a peek yet, Sarah posted this great photo of us with the precious. I cannot wait to get my hands on it!
Adam from Godemiche was exactly how you’d imagine — like a Jack Russel that got into someone’s pre-workout supplements. We had some lively discussions, and I felt like his sheer enthusiasm for the whole weekend was a great boost every morning when I rolled in, under-caffeinated and groggily stumbling about. Monica and I exchanged meaningful looks of longing, as two people who no longer have access to pierogi at the drop of a hat. I would highly recommend that you check out SheVibe for some of Godemiche’s beautiful silicone dildos. The Ambit is my personal favorite (as pictured above in a stunning gold glitter marble) which was a generous gift from the makers themselves.
And finally, I was blown away when I got a chance to talk to the people from Fuck.com. I have to admit that even as a sex blogger, I saw their name and just assumed that whatever they were doing did not apply to me. In a way, it doesn’t — I’m monogamous, and they’re a dating site. But I really like that their mission is to build a sex-positive dating site that caters to folks in the know (and those who want to be). They’re trying to foster a safe, respectful, and fun community, which can be really challenging. I’m excited to see what happens there.
No one does what you do quite like you.
These wise words come from none other than Girl on the Net, about whom I really cannot say enough good things. (No, but really. Really.) This was one of the most emotional take-aways of the weekend for me: No one does what you do quite like you.
In her talk about how to pitch, GOTN admitted that she, too, struggles with the feelings that many of us know as “imposter syndrome”, or “but ____ is so much better [than I am].” Hearing that kind of cracked my brain open a little. If even someone like GOTN — who is a badass and a goddamn dirty genius — has those feelings, then I’m not alone in both the challenge to carve out a niche and the struggle to own my success.
There’s also something about GOTN saying it that makes me want to believe her, as opposed to, say, a random motivational speaker. Further, what she really hammered home was that this is true for all of us. There’s something that you do — yes, you! — that you do differently from everyone else. You’ve got some kind of angle, some interest, some technique… There is no carbon copy of you, so your perspective is automatically a bit different from others that are already on the scene. And that’s valuable. You’re valuable!
Many, many thanks to SheVibe for sponsoring my Eroticon ticket! To support them and this blog, this post contains SheVibe.com affiliate links. As always, opinions and words are strictly my own.