Mar 022013

I wouldn’t quite say that I have Obsessive-Compulsive Planning Disorder but it’s close. I got it from my mother, who also passed on her compulsive over-packing syndrome. Toss in a case of Chronic List Making, and you would think that I have a complete inability to be spontaneous. That’s not exactly true; if I know that *something* is going to be happening, then yes I need to have an exact plan for it. If you text me and say “OMG let’s go to ____ right now!!” if it’s within my doing, I shall be doing.

Let’s take last year’s MomentumCon. I took the train down, then had to catch a subway, then locate the hotel. But I’d never been to the train station here, and of course I was worried about locating the subway and navigating it. So I did research. I drove to the train station two days before my trip as a dry run, to ensure that I didn’t miss the turn and end up getting lost and missing my train. I used Google Maps street view and satellite to figure out how to get from the train station to the subway. I printed out subway time tables. Yet still I was a nervous wreck at all junctures. It’s just how I am.  This year I’ve decided to drive down, since it will (hopefully) mean 3 less hours of travel time, but now I’m all anxious over being able to find the turn-in for hotel parking on the first try, and anxious about the whole parking situation. If I leave for dinner, does that negate the daily parking rate?

Packing? Oy with the lists already. But in my defense…when I don’t make these lists days/weeks in advance? I forget lots of shit. Just this past week I visited my mom and I didn’t make a list. I forgot my back-up sleep medication, miscalculated what to wear by an entire day’s outfit, and forgot at least 4 other things. My brain just doesn’t work very well on these things. So I make my lists days and, for more important trips where forgetting something could be monumental, even weeks in advance. I leave them up on my computer and every so often I will think of something else.

Last year’s trip was made a little bit easier because I was rooming with Crista and knew that I likely wouldn’t have to worry about say, being alone for dinner. Yes, that bothers me. But this year things are still up in the air for things to do and the whole gluten thing makes it even more complicated. Last year we spent a lot of time eating in the hotel restaurant. I will speak to the manager when I get there, but I just don’t have much confidence in their ability to prepare me a safe-from-cross-contaminations meal. I’ve scoped out other places to go eat, but I sure as hell don’t want to go alone. And I don’t want to go off-site for lunch and risk having to miss an after-lunch session, or go hungry. Despite trying very hard to work out the whole “what to wear” issue, here we are 2 weeks away and I’m up in the air on at least 2 of 3 outfits. To say that it’s upping my anxiety overall is an understatement. And now topping things off is the worry that I will need to seriously conserve my spending from here on out and while I’m at Catalyst. Blah. Let’s top things off with the fact that I just trimmed my overgrown bangs, realizing only after that I don’t like how I look with bangs, plus they’re a pain in the fuckin ass to “do”. Can’t just wash and go with my hair.

Let’s add in the fact that, since I’m driving myself, I feel the freedom now to essentially over-pack. The thought of packing my Ninja cooker actually did come into my head, as a way to avoid the restaurants and have safe food…but I like the social aspect and want to spend time with people as much as possible. I’m bringing items for people (note: if you’re on Toyswap and are interested in anything I have, and you’re going to Catalyst, let me know and I can bring the item with me) and for my own comfort. I have an overabundance of makeup samples and trials from Sephora, and am bringing those for my friends to paw through. I’m bringing my Devine Playchest for Crista to have. I may pack my Fucking Sculptures dildos for people to fondle. I’ll definitely be bringing gluten-free foods so that I’m not in danger of going without (or worse: having my bacon cheeseburger on a piece of lettuce).

It occurred to me too late about business cards. I still have some mini-moo cards from last year, although they’re a bit outdated now. But I don’t have it in me to design new ones, nor do I have the funds. It’ll have to do I suppose for the 3.5 people who may ask for one.

I think I’ll go pack a few things tonight. Nail down an outfit. Wonder what I’m forgetting.

 Posted by at 9:37 pm
Apr 032012

I mean “aftermath” in the best possible way, but yet my brain is a freaking mess. “Overstimulated” is the best way to describe my current state. I go from leading a fairly boring life to a jam-packed weekend full of sex geek fun, feminist conversations, sex-positive atmospheres and 50-some hours with “my people”. It’s funny to me how different Mcon 2012 was from Mcon 2011 – a lot of the same people were present (but yet a lot of new faces) and a lot of similar sessions/discussions but my experience was very different. This year I co-presented a session on Blogging (the only session not to focus on anything sex-related, I think), I found slightly fewer sessions that interested me and/or applied to me personally, I hung out with different people.  Last year I think I really only spoke with 1 of the vendors but this year many hours of conversation was had whether it was in the vendors rooms or over drinks in the hotel bar. It was enlightening, empowering and validating. I think I have a better idea of what road I’m going to be taking now that my time in the sex bloggosphere has hit a multi-path fork in the road.

I will continue to remain “Lilly” and mostly anonymous. I will not be telling my family anything, unless it gets to a point where I simply have no choice. It’s not easy lying about my whereabouts but it’s been done so far. All that matters is that my husband is incredibly supportive of me and loves what I’m doing, loves that I care. That’s really all I need. He had a supremely shitty work week and was just depressed and exhausted; I felt guilty, a bit, for having fun at Mcon when I felt the pull to be a supportive partner to him but he wouldn’t let me go there. He insisted numerous times that I deserved this fun weekend and that I needed it, that he was proud of me and wanted me to soak it all up. And I did.

I was still my same socially awkward self, but less so. I started up more conversations. I put myself into conversations. Yes, I panicked when I realized that the “oh hey meet us at the bar for drinks” turned into “Oh, we’re sharing a table with Dr. Carol Queen, Dr. Joycelyn Elders, Lynn Comella and Metis Black” but hey, I didn’t speak. I let the grown-ups talk while I sat on the edges in awe with the lovely Jenna of Tantus. Crista (my amazing partner in crime for the weekend, and roommate) and I hung out with Ducky Doolittle, Jenna and Metis; had conversations and intelligent discourse on the ethics and practices of the sex toy industry. It was a dream. I got enough hugs from friends to last me weeks. I felt pretty in my big Victorian skirt. Nobessence is no longer an entity, a luxury company – I know them now to be a spectacularly amazing couple leading a fairly normal but wonderfully sex-positive life committed to making excellent sex toys. I’m trying so hard to keep all the memories and words said in all these amazing conversations fresh in my memory but my cursed brain is leaking out things. I hate that. I wish I could have just been wired all weekend, recording everything like a spy. For my own personal use, of course, nothing else!

You all know I’ve never thought much of the Big 5 companies of the sex toy industry, but I know think even less of them if possible. While I can’t repeat some of what was said, suffice to say you should just take my word for it. Support the smaller companies whenever possible, you’ll never regret it. But I also learned that I’m wrong sometimes and while I still say JimmyJane is overpriced, Jacq from Sugar in Baltimore told me things that changed my opinion a bit. I finally held a fully-charged Form 2 in my hands and noticed it only once had that wonky motor issue other reviewers had mentioned but I also noticed that it was perhaps a little more powerful than I expected and it certainly surpassed the (still hate it) Form 3.

I think I’d like to consider the possibility of hanging up my shingle as an official consultant. Now to narrow down who I can help and what I can do and how to go about making this a reality. But there are a number of smaller sex toy companies/manufacturers/adult industry people that need a better SEO presence and need more information on social media but don’t know how to get it. I think I have something to offer. I have the experience of being on both sides of the coin.

I can only hope and pray that there will be a Momentum 2013 because we all need more – more instruction, more discussion, more debates, more affirmations – and we’re not done learning. If you are reading this and read my posts about last year’s event and say “I wish I could have gone”, here is my advice to you: Do whatever you have to do to start saving up now and get yourself there next year. You have no idea how it will change you. It changes you. It’s amazing. Thank you, everyone, for making this weekend the best weekend I’ll have all year, hands down.

Mar 252012

In less than a week I’ll be at Momentum, back in my beloved bubble of My People. Of course, in exactly a week’s time from right now, the moment I’m writing this, the bubble will be slowly bursting and all of my lovely friends will be departing for home and quite likely I’ll be alone in my hotel room for awhile. Hopefully I’ll be able to do things different this time and be able to write better about sessions I attend. Last year I tried to take notes and live tweet but all of that left me missing out on key statements – let’s face it, I have the focus and attention span of a gnat. This year I’ll be getting over my high school / college era anxiety and will be parking my ass in the front rows for many sessions so that I can just take personal use audio recordings for later perusal. I’m hoping that my fear of public speaking (or performance, as was the case growing up of participating in piano recitals) will not cripple me for the morning on Saturday. The session Laura and I are presenting is nothing like anything else going on (we’re doing a geeky session on Blogging) which could work for us or against us. It fits in with Momentum but yet in a tiny way it doesn’t. The UK recently had a conference called ErotiCon and while at first it seemed to deal a lot with the erotic writing and such, there was still a lot of sessions that would have been very useful and at least one that sounded similar to the one we’ll be doing. After reading someone’s re-counting of a session they attended there I’ve realized that I’m technically not a sex blogger anymore – I fall into a better category called sex journalist. But can one be called a journalist if they’re only writing on their own blog?

Momentum is probably one of the few sexuality events that is attended by all sorts of people who are horny perverts in their own ways yet there is no “play” party or plans of sexy orgies. At least not for me. I just want to soak up the company of People Similar To Me while it’s available before returning to my currently-boring life. Perhaps inspiration will strike me when I’m down there, who knows. If it will happen any place, it will happen there. The sessions blow my mind. The abundance of influential people is awesome and scary.

Overall I’ve been very excited for this weekend for the last few months. Some things have happened in the last week or two – seemingly minor things to other people but things that nonetheless speak volumes to me – which have set in motion a terrific depression and a heartache of epic proportions. So if you are at MomentumCon and catch me in a moment where I think nobody is looking (or I lose my self-control for a moment and my mask slips) and you wonder why I look so miserable….just give me a hug. Or a cigarette. Or both. I’ve not smoked in months but damn I need one lately. I have no fucking idea yet what I’ll be wearing because my entire wardrobe has been the butt of some huge cosmic joke or karma for who knows what. No big deal to some people but (confession time here) I’m one of Those Women who somehow think that a killer outfit will make up for the fact that my personality is not always sparkling and vivacious, that my social skills are lacking and that I’m not conventionally beautiful. Will a really great outfit (or at least ass-kicking boots) be enough to shut off the little voices in my head? You know, the destructive ones. I don’t know. I guess I can try. If I could suddenly heal this heartache the weekend would look much brighter but I can only hope that I’ll find a way out of the grey cloud long enough to enjoy the friends I so rarely get to see. Hopefully I can get it through my head that they won’t love me more if my nails are properly manicured or if I were 80 pounds lighter and just relax.

Dec 292011

I think I have enough sex toys.

I’ll probably change my mind in a few weeks. But I can’t find anything that I’m just dying to try. I have a bunch of things lined up to review, though. A Leaf vibe, and new super-pretty glass dildo from MyPleasure are the top ones. I bought a Lelo Ella since it’s one of the things I always harbored an interest in but never tried, I might review that or I might just keep it for a giveaway item someday if I can ever get this sex toy education workshop going. I also bought an Extase Zenith vibe with some reservations, reservations which proved me right. It sounds like a fuckin weed whacker. I wrote to the company but they never responded. I don’t think it’s supposed to be quite that loud. They like to claim all their vibes are “whisper quiet”. That’s almost never true, it’s just weasel words.

Problem is, I have this great one-time only coupon code for EF (25% off) that needs to be used up by January 8th and I truly have nothing I REALLY want. One lucky reader can use it but only if they agree to purchase through my affiliate links at EF. I’m trying to make sure that my trip to Momentum, where I’m presenting, is fully funded so I’m really trying hard to get as many affiliate commissions at EF as possible this month (because the commissions made in December won’t get paid out til February which means I’ll be better able to save that money and not use it, lol). I’d thought that I had enough in commissions but I don’t yet. Close! Of course they currently have tons of sales, too, so good deals are to be had with or without that coupon code.

Speaking of Momentum, their early bird registration ends January 2nd!! If you think you’d like to go, buy tickets NOW or the price will go up by $25 after Jan 2nd. If something comes up you can always transfer your tickets to someone else (by March 1st) so take advantage of this now. I personally think that the sessions and presenters look to be even more awesome than last year – which means you really don’t want to miss this.

I lamented not too long ago about all the idiotic emails I get where it’s quite fuckin clear they didn’t actually read my blog or my Advertising page or whatever. So I finally found a WordPress contact form plugin that allows me to create error messages based on what someone does wrong in the form, and more importantly allows me to say that a choice you can make is wrong! Go ahead, go try it. If you’re a reader and not totally lacking in intelligence you’ll know which choices are THE WRONG CHOICES and will get to see my awesome fail message. It could be more awesome of course but the creator of this plugin didn’t likely account for someone like me >:)

Oh and a rant to look forward to on the horizon: Reviews that talk about a crappy/weak toy being great for beginners. I was guilty of that once, too, but it’s sugar-coating AND weasel words and I have things to say about it.

e[lust] and the new schedule arrive in just a few short days, January 1st! Get your submission figured out!

 Posted by at 11:00 pm
Oct 212011

If you thought I was intimidated freaked out excited by the list of presenters, you should have seen me when I viewed the list of sessions. The one that caught my eye and I Will. Not. Miss1. is just….oye I’m so verklempt. Read this.

The Dirty Business of Sex Toys
Metis Black, Greg DeLong, Rachel Venning, Dr. Carol Queen. Moderated by Lynn Comella

Sex toys, or “novelties,” are a billion dollar business. It’s an industry that thrives on creative (and not so creative) minds and ethical (and not so ethical) business practices. Get an insider’s look at a few company’s core values, and talk about material safety, creative rip offs, labor relations, financing and politics. Hear some stories on the challenges that have arisen and how very important you, the sex educators, bloggers and the consumers, are in moving and shaping up the industries ethics.


I’ll probably have to be bound and muzzled so that the panelists and other people can actually have a nice session. I mean, you all know I have opinions on this stuff. Oh….opinions. I has them. I’ll be sure to pack a panty liner in case I piddle a little. Seriously now. The Founder of Tantus (yay silicone!), the Founder of njoy (yay Pure Wand!), a co-owner/co-founder of Babeland and Dr. Carol Queen. It’s like a goddamn sex toy reviewer’s wet dream.

Other sessions that I am really looking forward to:

So yeah…I’m seeing all this serious but awesome stuff and thinking “Gosh these are some intelligent people” and yes. I’m intimidated.

Our session is a lot different; Blogging 202: Take Your Site to the Next Level is definitely more “teach” than “discuss” although there will be a lot of discussion and questions. The geek in me will likely overprepare and have way more info than we can squeeze into our 40? minutes. A little less than 40. We want to let brave souls share their site link and get our un-sugar-coated 30 second opinion on it *grins*

(I might need a bodyguard)

I’m really excited to work with AAG on our presentation and see what we can teach people.

Now accepting volunteers to sit in the front row in their undies to help break the ice and my fear of public speaking!

  1. I am not above bribing the ladies who make the schedule with rich chocolate cakes to ensure my session isn’t going on at the same time
Oct 202011

After our session proposal was accepted I had this big feeling of “oh FUCK why did I do that???” Because I have the worst stage fright / inability to do public speaking / inability to behave normally in social situations.

And then today… they released the names of the rest of the presenters. You go take a look through that and then come back here, eventually.

Back now?


Do you see those people??? They’re famous. Or they have letters after their name. Or both. I don’t even know yet what the sessions are going to be, much less the session schedule to know what we’re up against in our time slot, but about halfway through the list three things went through my mind:

  1. I hope I can get somebody else to video record the sessions I wanted to see that will be going on at the same time as ours, so that I don’t miss anything good
  2. The audience for our session will likely be small
  3. Thank god for #2. Any more than 15 people and I’ll likely ask a few to strip to their underwear because I wouldn’t be able to imagine them in their underwear and do a presentation at the same time, my ADD doesn’t allow for such multitasking.

The session AAG and I are doing isn’t intellectual or provocative in the way that most of the others will be. Our session is going to be very slideshow-heavy and I’ll probably make up a something or other to hand out digital session guides with links to all the helpful places we’ll talk about. Our session is “Blogging 202: Take Your Site to the Next Level”. I’ll talk more about it when they officially release all the sessions.

If you think you want to go, you should start saving up now. I remember reading the tweets last year of all the people who regretted not going and I think that it’s going to be an even more impressive and wonderful event this year. Last year they limited the attendees to 250 people….this year it’s 400 people. Wow that’s a lot of people. This year their early bird ticket price will end on January 2nd and I have a feeling that most of the tickets will sell by then. It’s not cheap, but it’s very much worth it – so save up. Buy a few less sex toys or something, lol. REGISTER HERE.

My next step is figuring out how to get there. Can my body handle a nearly 350-mile drive? On major highways that are sure to be subject to traffic delays? Fly…..ehhhh, not so crazy about that idea. Not at all. I could take Amtrak….

Drive – cost of gas, toll on my body at 7 hours of driving, $12/day parking – but I don’t have to worry about lugging around heavy suitcases, which would require to be checked @ airport or lifted higher than I can manage on trains and rails
Plane – not going to find a ticket for less than $300, plus requires a layover in Philly, and then get to the hotel. And deal with TSA. And flying fat.
Train – will take less time than driving, at 5 hours, is affordable at $50 each way. It’ll land me at Union Station which will require 2 MTA rails to get to the hotel. Can I do that without getting lost? Must get a ride to the train station at home both days.