This past weekend I made my way down to f Los Angeles to attend Catalyst Con West, a conference dedicated to the wonderful world of sexuality. I’ve wanted to check a Catalyst event for awhile now and being that L.A. is a short flight from away, this seemed like the perfect opportunity to check it out.
How was it? Phenomenal!
Being at CatCon was like attending awesome summer camp but with hotel rooms instead of cabins and the buzz of vibrators instead of mosquitoes. I played games, made new friends and by the time it was over and by the time I left, I had grown at bit. I learned so much, enough to fill several blog posts. Those are coming but for now I’ll review some of my CatCon highlights. Believe me there were many!
GAGS AND SWAG
Next time I go to CatCon, I’ll bring a bigger bag. I was not prepared for the generosity of the conference sponsors. I came away with two beautiful new vibrators, including the much lauded We-Vibe Thrill. Another fave is was Nature Lab’s maple-scented lube. This Canadian gal is here to tell you that they nailed the aroma. Now I’ll have nice reminder of the True North during frisky times!
I had the opportunity to meet so many of sexuality heroes. Charlie Glickman, whose thoughts on sex-positivity have shaped my own. Tristan Taormino, one of my favourite porn performers, producers and authors. Carol Queen, one of the most influential sex-positive feminists of all time. And Nina Hartley, who starred in many of the first feminist porn films I ever saw.
I also met Sinnamon Love. I wasn’t familiar with her work in the adult entertainment industry but after meeting her and hearing her speak, I did some Googling and girlfriend is an adult-film superstar! She is also one of the most intelligent, articulate women I have ever heard speak on the subject of sex work. After making her acquaintance this weekend, you best believe I’m a big Sinnamon Love fangal now!
TALKING THE TALK
The talks I attended at CatCon were full to brimming with ideas and information that I can use to become a better educator, business person and sex-positive advocate. By the end of each day, my fingers were cramped up good from furious note-taking. But it was worth it. I’ve got a Google doc crammed full of great stuff! I didn’t get to every session I wanted to attend (Note for next year: look into cloning options), but such is life.
I’ve now got a bug in my brain about giving my own at a future CatCon. Given what I heard, I’ll have to bring my A+ game.
Chatting with the sexuality big-wigs is a thrill and a honour. But there’s nothing that fills the soul like forming new friendships – especially warm, funny, accepting, amazing friends. These are just a few of the folks I met. I highly encourage you to check out the wicked work they’re doing. And if you have a chance to make their acquaintance, do it- you’ll be very happy you did!
I also got to build my very own vibrator! For reals! It’s a nifty little number from Crave, with a special design that maximizes genital sensation, while minimizing that pesky hand numbness. It’s also waterproof. I should know. I tested it myself.
So, that was my weekend. A great time and the perfect prelude for this weekend, when I begin classes for my PhD. Wish me luck? It’s been a looooooong time since this gal’s done the school thing.