Managing Director interview 2/22/15
The CSPC is thrilled to welcome our new Managing Director
Sex positive content sponsored by the Center for Sex Positive Culture.
Managing Director interview 2/22/15
The CSPC is thrilled to welcome our new Managing Director
Member Dismembered is coming up this weekend at Gay City, the play was originally written for Seattle Erotic Art Festival. I got a chance to ask writer Vincent Kovar a few questions about this very curious show.
The show times are February 12, 13, 14 (Valentines fun) at 7:30, Sun, Feb 15th at 2pm.
Jean Franzblau and I met at Sex Geek Summer Camp last summer. (You can check out a camp pic here.) I had the pleasure of interviewing her about her vist to Seattle next weekend to perform her show and present a workshop for The Foundation for Sex Postive Culture. I hope you enjoy it and I'd love to see you at the show. ~~Celia
I know we met in a very special situation. Let me just ask this, what’s your favorite way to be introduced?...
Jean Franzblau is one of my wonderful cohorts from Sex Geek Summer camp. We'll be chatting more tomorrow and have an interview posted later this week. Check out her work and sign up for this workshop January 24th. ~~~ Celia
A guest blog by Jean Franzblau
It's perfectly normal throughout a long-term relationship to find yourself in somewhat of a sexual rut. After getting to know one another's bodies, all of your likes and dislikes, it can be easy to fall into a routine in bed. Luckily, this problem is one that's actually fun to fix. Spicing up your sex life will not only rejuvenate you and your partner's sex drive, but it will leave you feeling more sexually satisfied and allow the two of you to be closer than ever.
BusinessInsider.com says that while the need to spice things up is one of the most common problems, some partners are hesitant to do anything about it "for fear of rocking the boat in a relationship." However, chances are that if you find yourself not as excited or enthusiastic about being as intimate as you once were, it's possible your partner is feeling the same way, making them more open to new ideas.
One common way to change things up is with a new sex toy. When discussing sex toys, some couples' minds immediately go to vibrators. However, a study from Psychologytoday.com shows that over half of women own or have owned vibrators, making pretty likely that you've either already introduced one into your sex play....
#1 Top Secret for being a Sexy Success: Confidence
Koe Creation will be presenting this workshop on Saturday the 15th at 2pm in the Main Space.
Confidence is not easily learned without practice. This class is a chance to practice and grow your confidence in a safe environment; to be a fool about it before you go out to the club or on a date! Advance tickets can be purchased here: http://www.strangertickets.com/events/12783696/top-secret-1-for-being-a-sexy-success-confidence...
Stepping out of the car, the thump of the beat was palpable in the air. After the slow journey through the door door, I was mesmerized by the people lost in the music on the dance floor. My toes tingled with the movement of a joyous bottom being flogged on the rack. I was with my husband and some friends we were visiting in Olympia. My very first time to visit Seattle.
I was hooked. Still, making new friends was not easy for me until I started running the Hump. That’s a tale for another day. Sometimes beginnings are easy. Sometimes the people around are fun and we click with them. Sometimes we love the events and it’s easy to keep coming back, make fun plans and have a great time....
Watch out Seattle, I’m coming for your brains!
I’m so very excited about the two workshops I’m teaching at the Center for Sex Positive Culture on Saturday, January 18 because they encompass my two big professional and personal passions: 1. writing, and 2. the legal and social issues surrounding sex, sexuality, gender and gender identity....
I hope the season brings some fun and some joy to you. Remember, we have events this week where you can visit and play with your kinky neighbors, including a Christmas Eve movie night tonight and a New Year's Eve party on the 31st.
I'm fortunate, my family is very aware of my relationship structures and knows a bit about my kinks. While I try not to squik* my young-adult daughter, I don't have to wear a lot of masks for the holidays and I'm fortunate. If your situation is different, and you're facing the challenges of trying to be someone you're not with your family, my suggestion is considering it a matter of head~space. Going in with the “I am kinky,” or “I am Queer,” right on the surface is always your choice......and emphasizing the differences we have with our families may not lead to the most enjoyable holidays. I suggest focusing on common joys. Enjoying the sunset with Mom would certainly be more peaceful than showing her my scarifications. My spiritual-physical-kink journey is so far from her reality, that even if I did show her, it would only create worry and stress. No one can say to you how much or how little to share. Still, common ground may promote family more than in~your~face honesty. For me, it's ok that some things are private....
The Center for Sex Positive Culture exists because we have members who give their time and energy to produce our events. Volunteering is the cornerstone of our community culture and the reason why this organization continues to thrive. We are fortunate to have a place like this available to us and it needs people like you to help support its success.
You can help ensure that this resource continues to be available for everyone. By volunteering at the CSPC, you can make a difference at the Center and in the Sex Positive community at large.
As a CSPC Volunteer, you can:...
This is a guest blog by Mandy Traut. She will be presenting soon. Come check it out!!
It is that time of the month where we reflect on how awesome our volunteers are and take on the challenging task of who to formally recognize out of all the amazing people who help this center run. As usual we have three categories for volunteers: Event, Non-Event, and Behind-the-scenes. All these roles are essential to keep the center going and help it thrive. As usual a big thanks to EVERYONE who helped out this month, your efforts are truly appreciated. Here are some highlights that deserve some extra special recognition this month.
Event Volunteer of the Month: MissMac
MissMac is a gifted Ambassador and Cashier who can often be found helping at Asylum, Ascension and wherever else she is needed. She also does New Member Orientations and stepped up on several occasions in July and August to help out with those. This is especially helpful since these orientations are often the first interaction between our organization and potential new members....
This is something that's been coming up in a number of my relationships. I hope some of you find it helpful. And here's my "Beat the Heat" suggestion: enjoy some lemonade with rosemary!! ~~ Celia
By Mandy Traut, MA, LMHC
My friend and role-model, Allena Gabosch, Director of Center for Sex Positive Culture in Seattle WA, looked squarely over the dinner table and eloquently stated, "You are part of a sexual renaissance here in Seattle." She acknowledged my sex-positive credo and work as a licensed mental health counselor in the community. She recognized my own passion in guiding others to their own sexual freedom and personal truths and acknowledged my own personal and professional journey. I felt welcomed and regarded and was truly grateful for that moment. Per an article written in the “The Examiner” as of January 7, the CSPC is a
10,000 square foot space with enough room to both socialize and live out your
fantasies. Having grown immensely since its inception in 1999, CSPC now boasts
over 11,500 members. “ (Retrieved from http://www.examiner.com/article/sexpositive-seattle, on May 17, 2013)
I remember the first time I attended a CSPC orientation. I had just come back from
a vacation that literally changed my life. I had discovered swinging and a level of
human openness I never thought existed. To my husband and I, CSPC looked like a
warehouse (from the outside) - a hole in the wall - that was undetectable unless you
knew where to look. I must admit, I was still very "vanilla," and the place and the orientation
freaked me out. My husband and I left without signing our membership. We literally
analyzed the pros and cons of becoming members for the next 7 days. It was a big
decision - a turning point in our lives as a couple. Suffice to say, we became CSPC members. We spent the next month attending their Monday Madness event and networking with members on their social network site, Center Space. We were overwhelmed by the way people welcomed us in and seemed to take such a liking to us. Prior to this phase in our lives, we stayed very much to ourselves. We were either isolated or with immediate family. This was a whole new world for us.
As we soon found out, it was only the beginning of an amazing journey. Skip to present day: It has been two major cycles of growth later. We realize that we are swingers and evolving kinksters. My husband has tapped into aspects of himself he did not know was there. We are both very empowered in our own unique ways. Two years ago, we initiated couple’s counseling for the first time. We hoped to work through the major life transition we encountered. We did. We are better communicators, listeners, and friends. For me, it is not just personal. I had already had my license in mental health counseling coming into this world. With this new found life, I discovered a fire in me that burned brighter and longer than the North Star! I wanted to serve others in my community. We are unique in that we appreciate and explore all communities. In that way, we have become a bridge
for all communities in the alternative lifestyles arena. In my professional life, I carry this unique perspective with me. Like Allena, I advocate for sexual freedom and freedom of choice – as long as there is mutual consent. I fancy myself a social advocate – as well as a therapist.
To Allena, thank you for recognizing my place in the community. Lastly, you are right, us sex-positive advocates, practitioners, and therapists ARE part of a sexual Renaissance. Just like the Renaissance of the Romantic Period, I aim to make waves and push people’s boundaries – if only a little bit at a time. And to think – I may not even be writing this if it weren’t for the “little hole in the wall” – CSPC - and the community that turned out to be our first stop along the yellow-brick road along our sexual and Self journeys.
On Saturday, April 13th,I was honored to give the afternoon keynote speech at the Kink LINCS Conference in Seattle, WA. This 3-day leadership conference for kink, leather, and other alternative sexual communities covered a range of topics, all of whom boiled down to LINCS: Lead – Inspire – Network – Connect – Succeed. Though writing the keynote was a challenge, getting on stage before the audience was even harder. I was speaking to people who had been leaders within these populations for years long before I ever walked into my first party 15+ years ago. But I steadied my nerves, breathed deep, and was grateful for the experience.
I delivered this speech on April 12, 2013 as the opening keynote address at Kink LINCS, a leadership and community-building symposium held in Seattle, Washington for those who are part of the leather, BDSM, kink, fetish, poly, swing and other sex-positive communities.
Good evening. Welcome to the beautiful city of Seattle, and to the great weekend the Kink LINCS folks have in store for us.
I would like to thank all of the organizers of Kink LINCS for asking me to be here this weekend…all of the volunteers who have offered their time and effort to make this event happen…all of the sponsors who have underwritten some of this event’s costs…and most importantly, thanks to everyone in attendance, all of you, for believing that our kink and relationship alternatives scene needs inspired, informed and skilled people to help keep us all moving forward in positive ways.
~~intro by Celia Waddell (Lee Harrington's blog follows.)
Do we HAVE to? No, we don't have to, but when we choose not knowing and sharing our limits, unpleasant results are common. Consenting matters, and there are many ways to consent. I'll talk a bit about negotiation basics and then share a wonderful blog from Lee Harrington about Jazz Negotiation. Don't worry that there is a “right” way to do negotiate or you might be doing it “wrong.” Instead, get out there, share your passions, limits and desires and see what happens.
You must be willing to disappoint me. No, I'm not kidding. I choose to play like kids:
I get over a hundred messages each month from people I have not met. Many of these have to do with House Wildfire, http://thecspc.org or Myself! Often, the party inquiries are quite simple and I enjoy reassuring people about CSPC events. I also have profiles on various sites and occasionally place a personal ad for potential mischief.
Sometimes it happens. You see something. Your inner voice is yelling at you,
“This is SO WRONG!!"
These instincts that tell you to call the police when someone's backpack or phone gets snatched on the train can be a challenge in BDSM play space. (We'll talk about Bondage/Discipline, Dominance/Submission and Sadomasochism another day.) You're enjoying a play party, dancing and watching a couple start to play. Then suddenly the top hits the bottom and you know it HURT. You've heard the advice:...
As 2012 draws to a close, I'm taking a look back. One of my greatest joys of 2012 is being Lady Wildfire. I have the great privilege of being able to create and host my fantasy at the Center. A year ago I was finishing my 4th, and final year as co-team lead of the Hump with TeeeBone. I greatly enjoyed working with the team and creating an event that merged the visions of many wonderful people. I miss them. With House Wildfire, the vision is all mine and I'm excited that those who came enjoyed my fantasy. One comment said, “Loved, loved, loved House Wildfire!” I am a very lucky woman.
Thanks Allena for reminding us the differences we make just by being who we are and following our hearts to do the wild, deep, silly, kinky things that we do. ~~Celia...
“Be who you is
'cause if you be who you ain't...
Getting communication right is tough. Here are Sar Surmick's suggestions on doing it better. We're very excited to have him presenting for us next Thursday and Saturday. ~~Celia
Communication is one of the hallmarks of both the Polyamory and Kink Communities. You
can’t swing a cat-o-nine tails without hitting some conversation about what makes up good
communication. And that’s a good thing. The more people learn to talk with one another, to
negotiate effectively, and to listen, the more our communities benefit.
But how do we communicate in small groups? What happens when there are five of us that need to make a decision together? Where do we learn those skills? Unfortunately, most of us learned to talk in small groups from our parents, our teachers, and our bosses. The thing all of these have in common is a power differential; the person speaking has power over the people listening, sometimes a lot of power.
How many times have you had a group discussion that devolves into nothing more than a
shouting match, or cold silence? Have you sat in a group, patiently waiting your turn to bring
something up, only to find the end of the meeting comes first? How about bringing up a good point, only to have someone else say, “Yes, but…” These outcomes, and many others, happen around the belief that the person speaking holds the power. But it doesn’t have to be that way.
There are ways for people to sit down together to have authentic communication that builds
connection instead of setting up competition. The first comes from understanding that small
groups are different, in part because they are made up of all the people involved. Any group that comes together, becomes more than the sum of its parts.
When communicating in small groups, here are some important things to remember:
Impact in groups is non-linear. What you say to one person can, and often will, impact
others in the group, sometimes in ways never considered, much less intended. The
same is true for non-verbal signals. And though it takes time, making space for those
unintended impacts can open amazing opportunities for learning and understanding.
Groups react as a system influencing the course of the conversation, who speaks and
who doesn’t, and how people feel about the interaction. The whole of the group is more
than the sum of the individuals involved, and sometimes it will react in ways that no one
intended. To put it another way, if there is blame, then the group as a whole takes that
blame; if there is joy, then the group as a whole shares that joy.
Most of the time, when we get caught in a group, we just ride out the wave until we either make it back to shore or get dunked. But I think there is another way. If nothing else, remember that working in groups is a skill all its own, one not taught in most schools. It takes practice, trial, and occasionally error to learn and get better at it.
If you want to learn more about authentic small group communication, there are two workshops coming up:
An Introduction to Small Group Communication - Thursday Nov. 8th – 7:00-9:00pm
An All Day Workshop in Effective Small Group Communication - Saturday Nov. 10th –
- Sar is a Marriage and Family Therapist in Redmond WA. He specializes in working with
Polyamorous Folk, LGBTQ Youth, Kinky Folk, and identity issues. Outside of the therapy room, Sar presents discussions on sex, sexuality, small group communication, and identity. He can be reached at: www.significantconnections.com
Today’s blog is by Bendyogagirl and is about submission. Whether you are new to submission or you submit (or receive submission) every day of your life, I suggest you take a look at Bendy’s Suggestions for Submission~~
Myself, the CSPC’s masturbation friendly sex party, has been my favorite event for a couple of years now. Self-pleasure tends to be frowned on at BDSM Kink and Sex parties. Allowing only partner sex is one of the ways organizers create a sense of safety. Myself brings masturbation “out of the closet.” The men who attend are pleased with a wide variety of attention and interactions. The vibe is extremely polite....and often very hot. This party does encourage partner sex play and sexy D/s play as well as masturbation.
I ran Hump for four years and I’ve just enjoyed my first House Wildfire. While these events, and several others, find special places in my heart, Myself continues to be my favorite party of all. So many people are taking a first step at Myself. Perhaps this is the first time she’s been naked with a bunch of men around. Perhaps he hasn’t talked about the shape of his cock. Perhaps we haven’t heard a series of orgasms like that, ever. Maybe they have always wanted an appreciative audience for their sex play. Maybe he can’t even express the fear and joy in his heart when he sees that whip. We’re opening up a bit of ourselves, to be watched, to watch, to come together with our own desires. Perhaps we never touch each other, or even speak, and yet we are having a very unique experience together.
What’s your favorite event? Do you have a story that you’d like us to share? Send it to: firstname.lastname@example.org We’ll contact you if we’d like to share it.
to unique pleasures,
Hereʼs a question for you:
I ask this question because almost no one answers exclusively “A big, hard erection!”and yet so much emphasis is put on erections in male sexuality. It seems that we have set up a system that assumes erections are vital to having good sex when in fact they are usually a secondary factor for most people.
1 in 10 men over the age of 21 have erection difﬁculties (web MD) and by age 45 most men have experienced some form of erection issues (medicinenet.com). This means the majority of male bodied people will experience erection issues at some point (or several points or a sustained period of time) in their lives. So why arenʼt we talking about this and why donʼt we hear more about how to navigate sex without relying on erections?
Here is a very helpful article on calming things down. I hope you enjoy it! ~ Celia
By TK, Continuing Education Team CSPC
Jack just touched Jill’s toy bag and she doesn’t know him. She rushes over and angrily confronts him.
He responds already pissed that he had to move it because she put her stuff on top of his. Your response
determines whether a difficult situation is averted or moves on to become volatile or hostile. The only
way is to have practiced skills ingrained to de-escalate the incident.
Over time, training, and research, I have developed a few pointers that have saved the day. I am not
an aggressive person generally. In fact, I am submissive and have to overcome my basic nature to be
assertive. Conflict and confrontation sends me looking for the nearest exit. However, even the most
passive person can learn to diffuse a crisis.
I love orders. Orders are a good way to make the submissive playmate take action. This afternoon I received some very sideways orders. My dominant playmate said, “I believe you will wash my rope and bring it back to me.” I wasn't convinced. They had just tied a piece of rope against my labia and around my hips. I was a bit pre-occupied. Was this an order? It was.
I do intend to mostly obey orders from this particular playmate, choosing in each moment to obey or not. The language of this 'order' made me confused. My mind leapt to asking myself if I believe it or not. I didn't believe it. Perhaps I would wash the rope and tie it into a rope cock. Perhaps I would tie it to my bed and make them come and get it. Perhaps.......and my mind was off to a thousand silly possibilities.
I have often thought of the Center as an umbrella that gives us a place to participate in a vast variety of fun, friendship and support. I've been thinking that an umbrella seems too connected and too uniform to be a good descriptor. Here are some thoughts about the people of the Center as a tapestry.
What does my strand look like? I arrived in Seattle six years ago. I had heard of the Center during my straight veggie oil RV travels with my husband and our children. I was very excited when a friend brought me the first time. I became a watcher. This was back in the days of Grind on Thursday and Pan parties on Saturday. I came, I danced, I grew a few roots. The following year I met a new playmate and started having sex at events (yes, that really took me an entire year!). My thread grew stronger and connected to a few more people.
This is Allena's keynote speech from NW Leather~~
I had a terrible time figuring out what to say. I’ve already done my “It’s About Sex” speech. Then I thought I could talk about 50 Shades of Gray since it’s all the rage right now, but that didn’t work either. I’ve spoken at conferences, on TV, radio, in documentaries and I usually am not at a loss for words (those of you out there who know me, know how true that is). However, I’m not a part of the Master/slave community and while I know that Northwest Leather Celebrations is more than about the Master/slave community it is the primary focus. So, what can I bring to this? I’m a simple bi/poly/switch who knows a lot of people in the M/s community but doesn’t partake of it.
So, I got to thinking, what about this conference stands out and how does it compare to my life, the Center for Sex Positive Culture in Seattle and the greater leather community and its leaders. I initially found two common threads. Perseverance and Personality. The clubs, conferences, organizations that have survived long term have survived because of Perseverance and Personality and then I realized that there was one more P word. Principles. It’s kind of like a three legged stool. All three are important...
It happens that too often we learn of the death of a member of the kink community because they took a very big risk. Sometimes, as in this case, they knew everything about what they were doing. Unfortunately, that is little comfort to those left behind. Please heed Archean's warning: --Celia
(This is a reposting of Archean's FetLife Journal Entry, shared with permission.)
Archean and the staff at Kink Engineering are sad to report that Mad_Scientist (Matt) passed away on May 23rd, 2012, at the age of 35. His death was accidental. He was a great friend, a brilliant mind, and an exceptional lover.
Hello! I am proud to announce the Center's new blog. This blog will feature articles about the wide variety of Center communities, members and educators and relevant information from around the world. Thanks for listening.
We are happy to recieve comments and submissions.