This past weekend Georgia and I attended our first ever GrUE, held in the city that spawned Miles Davis, Ike and Tina Turner, Albert King, and Leonard Slatkin.
If you are not familiar with what a GrUE is: it is an acronym for Graydancer’s Unconference Extravaganza. This GrUE happened to be the 16th GruE ! To learn more about Graydancer, and the GrUE concept, check here, there may be one coming to your city soon.
Each GrUE has a meet and greet the night before the event, this one was being held at the Marley Ferguson bar, a funny play on the words Harley Davidson, very creative. Built like a barn, it was loud and crowded. The downside to bars such as this one is the noise, its difficult to hear at times, and you get hoarse from the shouting. But we managed to have some great conversations with some new friends, and make connections with those we have only read about. Georgia and I left the bar with an energetic buzz, chatting incessantly as we navigated the patchwork quilt of roads that led us back to our hotel.
The Unconference part of the GrUE, starts around 10am and continues until 530pm or so, depending on the venue. We arrived twenty minutes before the start time, so we could help with bringing in supplies. Lily and Aja were busy setting up pastry’s and pouring coffee. We then stood around with the other participants, making introductions then pausing, standing around coffees in hand, feeling very much like children who has to wait all day to open a specific gift they are about to receive.
Assembling around the nucleus that was our facilitator, everyone grabbed a cold metal folding chair, settling in them and listened eagerly to Graydancer as he brought the groups attention to a couple of points. One the law of two feet, and the other the Closing circle, both points emphasizing the responsibilities of the individual, and the collection of individuals forming that group .
Then Graydancer described how we create the agenda of talks for the day. It is for the participants to decide which talks will be given. Anyone can talk about anything one might be passionate about, even two or more person can present about an idea. In fact that happened a couple of times during the day. The talks are discussions really, someone says here is what I have learned, you might like it too.
The items discussed during the day were: fire play, D/s protocols, long distance D/s, hair bondage, rope conditioning, shibari for sex, simple bondage, predicament bondage, rituals and symbolism, beautiful bondage, kinky crafts, needle play, and tie ‘em up and fuck’em. I may be forgetting a couple of talks but thats a pretty comprehensive list of topics that were discussed.
A few of the specific highlights: Georgia attended the fire play class and judging from her radiant smile she wants to try it. The shibari for sex was incredibly awesome, two very skilled riggers showed some very sexy ties that were very educational. The rituals and symbols class was fascinating, very appealing to me as it generated good conversation with smart people making some excellent points. I had a great time participating in a simple bondage talk that was fun, hilarious, and incredibly sexy! It emphasized the fun part of sex, creating a fun space with you and your partner(s). The last talk I remember was a demo of beautiful bondage, a royal display of green and purple rope, that used the good luck knot to create a lovely chest harness.
The day finished with the closing circle. The part of the GrUE where we gathered in a big circle, the symbol of life’s energy, the atom ready to be divided into its smaller parts creating an explosion of knowledge each particle will take with them as they continue their adventure on the great highway.
I will post about the AfterGrUE party and Graydancers world famous cheap ass pancake breakfast next.