So, the event that left me dazzled and dazed for, well, days during and after Shibaricon was getting to participate in Graydancer’s RopenSpace unconference event on Friday.
And not just getting to participate by attending but getting to participate by facilitating something AWESOME!!!
I’d heard of unconferences before, mostly due to maymay writing about the KinkForAll events he started. And I’d seen Graydancer tweet about his GRUEs from time to time.
But I still didn’t really get it.
Until I was there.
It was morning, we had no idea what was gonna happen. Maybe if I’d read some of the links above, I might have, but no, I hadn’t been quite that motivated beforehand. So we’re there, blurry eyed and dragging tail. I’m wearing my pink “Fuck you, ya fucking fuck” shirt cuz that’s the mood I’m in.
Graydancer explains the basic principles:
- Whoever shows up are the right people.
- Whenever a class starts is the right time.
- When its over, its over.
- Whatever happens is the only thing that could have.
…and the Law of Two Feet, which says if you ain’t into it, find something that you are instead. No harm, no foul.
The volunteers tape up a whiteboard to make a time slot grid and Gray encourages us to come up to the mic with a slip of paper cut to either half/hour/1.5 hour lengths (to fit the grid) with our class topic and our name.
Three lines form on the stage around the mics. Gray says to talk about something we’re passionate about and want to share. Encourages people to share topics and even co-present. I’m thinking. Thinking. Thinking. Trying to think if there’s anything I know enough about to share with all these awesome rope people.
Then somebody gets up on the mic and suggests a non rope class, something more sexual. Graydancer says “It doesn’t have to be about rope!” And then it clicked. I got up, knees wobbly, and wrote down my name and class on the slip:
Waited my turn in line then announced in a low voice “I’m Sunshine and I’d like to lead a discussion on Squirting, or How to Achieve Female Ejaculation.” Shaking, I got off the stage and went to give my topic slip to the volunteers to place on the board. Told ‘em I didn’t care when so they gave me a 4:30 pm slot for half an hour. No worries, that gives me six hours to stress.
Which I didn’t, really. I was excited. Squirting IS something I’m passionate about, and something I’ve always wanted to bring up in a big group of people to hear about their varied experiences. I’ve taught at least one friend how to squirt just by talking about my own experiences and I’m practically a novice myself so I was Quite Excited to be able to tap other people’s brains as well.
When I rolled into the class, I was surprised and slightly dismayed to see Lqqkout and some other volunteers taping a large tarp to the floor. Now, I’ve been fascinated with squirting for years, and occasionally talk about some of my successes with it on my blog, but in no way was I prepared to get up in front of a class and squirt on cue.
Not because of shyness, but because it takes me too bloody long to get there on my own. And I need a Hitachi, which I didn’t bring. Or someone with proficient fingers, which I also didn’t seem to have handy. Also, I really, really, really wanted to lead a DISCUSSION, which would be hard for me to do while trying to make myself come.
So I said that. “Um, I’d intended this to be a discussion, not a demo.” General reaction of disappointment. Ah, crap. Well, nothing for it. “Well, I guess we could always call for volunteers – is anybody here a good squirter?” The room was already half full, and unbeknownst to me, the call went out into the hallway for squirting demos.
Fuck me running, but I ended up with not one, not two, but three live demo models to literally lay their asses down on the mat and get wet for education. THREE. I’m still sitting here shaking my head in wonder thinking “Did that really just happen to me?!” Yes, Virginia, it really did, and there really is a ShibariClause.
I briefly talked with all three of them to make sure they had whatever they needed to make the magic happen. One ran up to her room to grab a Hitachi, while another made a dildo out of a hank of hemp rope and a condom. Yes, you read that right. Shibaricon attendees are awesomesauce.
So we started off with me telling my own story about how I learned to squirt, which was part accident, part education, and a huge part practice. Then I invited everyone else to share their stories, starting with my brave demo models standing to my right, patiently waiting with toys in hand.
We talked about specific toys and methods. The Njoy came up a lot, as did the Hitachi Magic Wand. We talked about the come hither hooking and pulling fingering method and anecdotes were shared about squirting from SM and pulling out like in porn.
Both men and women were encouraged to share their stories and experiences. My only regret is that I used an awful lot of cis/hetcentric language that definitely excluded women who play with women and most likely other non binary folks. This was partially (and very politely) offset by my middle demo model explaining how she liked to make other women squirt, and I owe her a debt of thanks for balancing my unconsciously biased language out.
After we’d talked about the basics for awhile it felt like time to start the demo. So I asked the three volunteers to get comfortable as best they could on the cold plastic tarp. The first in line had warned me that she went off really fast, and that turned out to be no lie. In less than a minute or two she was sprinkling all over the place.
Found myself reassuring the others that it wasn’t a race, and to take their time. Meanwhile, our first volunteer was still going, while bravely attempting to answer questions at the same time. It was quite impressive. She pretty much ended up covered in her own juice by the end of the demo. The other two also squirted in their own time, and there was great applause when the third volunteer finally got hers.
I was torn between trying to continue the conversation or just stare in muted respect and silence at the heroic efforts of our three determined volunteers. Ended up doing a little bit of both, trying to keep the flow of shared knowledge going as well as decreasing the pressure from our masturbators being the absolute center of quiet and focused attention.
Overall, the effect was outstanding. I felt like I was part of something profound and amazing – a coming together and sharing of information, experience, and intimacy. I finally got why this whole unconference thing is such a radical, revolutionary idea, and I look forward to seeing it expand into all venues of education. I don’t think this “class” would have worked in any other venue or format, but this, well, this was a once in a lifetime perfect opportunity.
Mad thanks to Diana, Graydancer, and all the other staff, volunteers, and participants who made this magic happen. It made not just my day, but a significant portion of this part of my life. I’m so happy and thankful that this awesomeness was allowed to happen, and that it happened through my instigation. Awesome life is awesome.
Edit: Here are the notes from the rest of the RopenSpace classes:
Questions? Ask me on Ingenio:
Listen to one of my early squirting experiments on NiteFlirt: