Kinky Salon endures and expands

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By Steven T. Jones

Polly Superstar and Barron Scott Levkoff met in 1999, shortly after Polly arrived in San Francisco from London, where she was a latex fashion designer involved in the fetish scene. They gravitated toward the same sex-positive community here, which they have tapped or morphed for the Kinky Salon parties they throw at a home they've dubbed Mission Control.

“I’ve been involved since 1990 with different costume subcultures in San Francisco,” Scott said. “Like the Costumer’s Society, like Dark Garden, doing fairy tale masquerade balls, doing the Renaissance Faire, getting involved with Burning Man early on.”

Sex has always been central to this open couple’s lifestyle, but the sex at their parties is almost secondary to the parties themselves, where costumes and other forms of creative expression dominate. As they like to say, they aren’t sex parties, but parties where sex and sexual expression happens, usually in the rooms off the dance floor.

“Me and Scott both come from a history of fetish clubs. That was our original scene. So when we started Kinky Salon, we intended it to be a fetish club, although we were fetish by default, because that was the only way we could really dress up and be sex-positive and really do all the things that we wanted to do,” Polly said.

Instead, what they were really after was facilitating a very intentional and involved community, and placing it in the safe container of this great, sprawling party space along Mission Street. And they’ve become so popular that the monthly parties they’ve thrown since 2002 have just moved to twice monthly, always with a different theme for the costumes, such as tomorrow night's "Love-In."

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“I think what started to make Kinky Salon really interesting in when things started to go wrong, basically,” Polly said.

“As event producers, we really wanted to put together something that was for the community, for whatever it was they wanted to make happen. And after about six months or so, we basically threw a public hissy fit and said, ‘OK, people, Kinky Salon is over. We’re tired of being your barkeepers if all you want to do is consume and take and be sloppy and make a mess…”

“Yeah, be sloppy, fuck shit up, destroy the toilets,” Scott added.

“Then you can go and do it someplace else. We’re not your fucking barkeepers. But if you want to really create something with us, then let’s make it happen. And we posted that kind of statement on a bulletin board. And we said, what do you think? How can we stop this from happening again. And everybody just rose up, the whole community,” Polly said.

“People really stepped up. We basically facilitated a process by which Kinky Salon came to craft a container for itself that was intentional. Standards. Methods. Hosts. People checking in at the door. We have a lot of ideas about how to do this, but we really opened it up to people,” Scott said. “Because we wanted it to be of, by, and for the community.”

Rather than the debaucherous, egotistical, exclusive atmosphere that was being created, they shifted it to something more proudly intentional – but where public sex was still happening and people were allowed to get their freaks on, in their own unique ways.

“We wanted to create something that is participatory, where people get involved and where everyone is responsible for maintaining, and create something that is really a reflection of the community itself,” Polly said.
They’ll felt the polar tugs between keeping it cool and making it inclusive, and they’ve opted to strive for the later, with the coolness factor maintained by the creativity and personalities of its regular attendees.

“People have suggested making it members only and closing the doors, but we’ve always said that is not what Kinky Salon is about,” Polly said. “Kinky Salon is about inclusivity and really our doors are open to anybody who can find us. As long as you can find us and you have someone who have vouch for you, as long as you’re looking out for each other, you can come to Kinky Salon.”

Comments

Oh, that Poly!
HOTTT! Ah-oohga-ding ding, woof!

Posted by Pandora on Feb. 27, 2009 @ 3:00 pm

awesome, love that kind of initiative!
wish the kinky saloon good luck!

fetish greetings
www.marquisamerica.com

Posted by erik von gutenberg on Feb. 28, 2009 @ 2:21 am