During my last few weeks living in San Francisco in September, 2002, I worked briefly at a now-defunct adult newsweekly called The Spectator. Despite what anyone tells you, working with porn gets as boring as any other job really quickly. Mainly I was working reception. I took phone calls, did Excel spreadsheets, sent packages, and took ad payments from the Oakland pimps and call girls who advertised in the paper.
One of the other people who worked at Spectator at the same time as me was Selina Raven, a local domina who was making a little pin money doing similar admin tasks as myself. As soon as I met her, I knew two things: first, that she was seven different kinds of hot, and second, that she was really fucking smart. The two things are not unrelated.
There’s several galleries of Selina at her web page, but to get a tour of her brain, I recommend listening to the two-part interview conducted by Nova and Atticus on the Fetish Flame podcast. I especially recommend this interview to people who are just getting interested in kink and fetish play. Selina talks about how she got into kink, back in the days before there was an Internets; the three parts of the term “BDSM” (Bondage and Discipline, Dominance and Submission, and Sadism and Masochism) and how they differ from each other; and the two main competing philosophies of kink, SSC (Safe, Sane, and Consensual) and RACK (Risk Aware Consensual Kink). I think the interview is especially notable for the latter point, because if you get into the kink community, you’re gonna hear a lot about these two. Just about every major mailing list or organization periodically explode into very long and very polarized debates about the distinctions between the two, and which is more appropriate for the community to promote. Usually these debates get very tiring very fast and produce a lot more heat than light. Selina explains the two in a very neutral, intelligent way that’s very rare considering the volatility of the topic. My own reaction to the RACK side of the controversy is somewhat like my reaction to pro-gun people from the NRA: I’d be a lot more sympathetic to their arguments if so many of them didn’t give the impression that they shouldn’t be trusted with anything sharper than a rubber ball.
In contrast, I’m glad to have smart and ethical people like Selina in the community, and even gladder that I’ve gotten to know so many of them. Listen to the podcast and see what I’m talking about.