Sex SF

The bad kind of pain: Kitty Stryker talks sexual abuse in the BDSM community

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In a culture where pain equates to pleasure and sexual power is deliberately manipulated for ecstatic highs, how far is too far? Kitty Stryker and Maggie Mayhem are two local activists who are confronting rape and abuse within the BDSM community. The two are gearing up to take a workshop they've prepared on the subject called "Safe/Ward" on the road. You can support their educational tour at a Center for Sex and Culture fundraising event on Tue/24. Read more »

"In the big butt category, there's four awards": What's it like to vote in the AVN Awards?

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Guardian culture editor Caitlin Donohue will be live Tweeting the AVNs this year. For the latest in Lycra and non-judgemental observations, follow her @caitlindonohue

Once a year, the porn industry gathers to honor its own. Cash is dropped on sparkly stripper gowns, breasts are wedged into places that are too small for them, too-little or too-much time is spent on crafting acceptance speeches and: Viagra. Sometimes Flo Rida is there (this year Coolio will captain the official after-party) – but like an enthusiastic blow job, the Adult Video News Awards are always a triumphant good time. This weekend the ceremony and attendant fan expo are at the Hard Rock Hotel in Vegas. The Guardian's going to be there on the red carpet, obviously – but we thought we'd get you all hot-and-bothered with some sage words from two industry insiders – who happen to be members of the academy to boot.

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"Toto, I don't think we're in Kansas anymore": Good Vibrations' company leaders on getting big

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What will be the San Francisco-in-the-aughtteens equivalent of the creation of Good Vibrations in the Mission District in 1977? Let's hope some fresh new sexuality invention is fomenting that will be rocking our beds in three decades with the robustness that Good Vibes has shown. From that initial single location, the well-lit place for women to shop for vibrators has expanded to encompass not only six brick-and-mortar shops (five in the Bay Area, one in Massachusetts) -- but also a robust online business that has taken the original founders' dreams of teaching America how to have safer, better sex and made it a reality. In 2007, the one-time worker-owned co-op turned corporation was sold to GVA-TWN, a Cleveland, Ohio sex toy company. 

But the engineers behind the Good Vibes brand say it hasn't stopped growing. Last week, on the occasion of the brand's new branch opening (on Lakeshore Avenue in Oakland Jan. 28, details below) the Guardian conducted email interviews with the company's chief operating officer Jackie Strano and staff sexologist Carol Queen. The woman waxed pleasurably -- dammit, now everything is sounding dirty -- on the company's possible digital education programs of the future, Carol Queen shared her views on a future with a Good Vibes location in every American city, plus we reveal what the hell a SESA is, and how it can help improve your orgasms. Read more »

Review: Keep it couch-side for Courtney Trouble's latest Live Sex Show

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The phrase “live sex show” invokes a history of glitzy spectacle designed for the viewer eager to escape the intimate, nuanced relationships of home. But a recently released film from director Courtney Trouble turns that idea on its head. Filmed at the Center for Sex and Culture’s annual Masturbate-A-Thon, every scene from Trouble's Live Sex Show (Trouble Films) takes places on and around a grand green couch – and the live sex that takes place is as intimate and nuanced as it gets.

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Hot sexy events: January 4-11

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I had to share this link, because I think it just might be the first time I've heard of a reality TV series improving the lives of the subjects it covers. And the fact that those subjects are six UK transsexuals makes it all the more a. inspiring b. heartwarming and c. affirmative that perhaps the 1990s most salient contribution to popular culture can indeed be used for good.

The show, aired on England's Channel Four, was called My Transexual Summer, and it followed its protagonists through their transition process. Although Ralph Fox, the author of the Original Plumbing blog post I linked to above, sounds a little disappointed in the binary way in which gender was dealt with on the show, he did mention that “The thing I most love is how it’s been a minimum effort, maximum result situation.” People in his life that he probably wouldn't have had the talk with were able to learn about his world in a positive way. Read more »

High whore holy day: A San Francisco tradition turns nine

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It was Saturday, December 17. A jazz funeral was being held for victims of violence against sex workers at the Center for Sex and Culture. Post-event, its message was still resonating in its attendees. “The holiday was beautiful," sex activist and post-porn star Annie Sprinkle told the Guardian about the ninth year of the International Day to End Violence Against Sex Workers that she helped to found. 

The tradition goes back to 2003, when hundreds of sex workers and their allies came together on the steps of San Francisco’s City Hall. Gary Ridgeway, Seattle’s “Green River Killer,” had just been convicted, having confessed to murdering 90 women over 20 years before he was caught. Prostitutes, he said, "were easy to pick up without being noticed...I thought I could kill as many of them as I wanted without getting caught.” Read more »

Hot sexy events: December 21-27

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It's been a minute since we've assembled the week's sex events in this column. That's our bad – we've been busy (mind yer business). But we're back this week! And thank goodness because the week of Christmas and the beginning of Channukah has to be the least-happening week for sex events of the year. Which is why we're including the following list of DIY sex events. 

1.Sperm donation. It is very, very chic now to give away for free what you once you were paid lots of money for. Just ask this guy. It's very 99 percent. Read more »

Revolutionary bedfellows: What Occupy has in common with the sex-positive movement

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Guardian reporter Yael Chanoff embedded at the Occupy SF and Occupy Oakland encampments during the months-long protest. Here, she reflects on the non-monogamy movement and what it could mean for the 99 percent

Temperatures were running high at Occupy San Francisco. After a day of hard work, the protesters were decompressing. Talented musicians shared their instruments with friends and strangers in impromptu jam sessions. 

The evening in question took place during Occupy SF's early stages, back when police would swarm at the first sign of a tent being propped up, and all of the 200 or so people who camped out that night mingled and slept in the open air. I sat with two young women and three young men who were all topless, leaning on each other and using laps as pillows. 

Another occupier, who said he had arrived that day, wandered by. “So,” he asked, “Is this thing about free love?”

“I don’t know” the guy next to me replied. He shrugged at the newcomer. “But we’re definitely doing that.” Read more »

Erotic string art. (And just like that, your holiday gift list is taken care of)

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Pop quiz, secular Jews: when does Hannukah start? If the question is inspiring sweaty palms and twitchy elf ears, the message is clear: it's time to get started on that shopping list. For the pervs on your list, the answer is clear. Kevin L. Muth's X-rated, blacklight-ready DIY string art kits. Read more »

Just gimme the nudes: Art Basel's pervy side

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I dare you to lay your fingers on a city that's sexier than Miami. The whole urban area is one big infinity pool -- Cuban dancing, too-much-is-not-enough cleavage, shiny shirts, flirting in traffic jams. Add Art Basel weekend, when the population of nubile arty types skyrockets and you have yourself an I-saved-my-money-up-to-blow-it-here powder keg. Small wonder that the Miami Convention Center was packed with nudes and nakeds last weekend. Art's a great excuse to be pervy.

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