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Friday, September 29, 2017

Sloppy Seconds

Written by  Rodney Burger
Winners circle at Atlantic States Leather weekend Winners circle at Atlantic States Leather weekend

Frat Daddy George from Granby, Massachusetts, was awarded the title of Atlantic States LeatherSIR 2018, Justin Charles from Baltimore, Maryland, was sashed Atlantic States Leatherboy 2018, and Callie Girl from Newport News, Virginia took home the Atlantic States Community Bootblack 2018 title during the Atlantic States Leather weekend held in Baltimore on September 22nd and 23rd. There were no additional contestants.

Although “Sloppy Seconds” was the theme of the second annual Atlantic States Leather weekend, there were many neat moments during the two-day event. As Maryland’s first leather club, my fellow ShipMates and I were proud to host the “Welcome to Baltimore” cocktail party on Friday night in the Wolfstryker Hospitality Suite at the historic Hotel Brexton. Of course were served Natty Boh beer and Maryland’s official cocktail the Black-Eyed Susan. Later in the evening everyone headed over to the Baltimore Eagle for an informal meet and greet event.

Although a new contest, Atlantic States Leather was started last year to replace the Mid-Atlantic LeatherSir / boy and Community Bootblack Contest and was created so that our area would have representatives competing at the International LeatherSIR / boy and Community Bootblack (ILSb-ICBB) Contest in Dallas, Texas over the Labor Day weekend. I could not be happier that Mr eXile Leather 2010 Sir Robert Chandler and my ShipMate club brother Mr Maryland Leather 2011 Alex Lemaire stepped up last year to produce this event. In 2002, when I stepped down as Maryland Mr Drummer 2001, the Drummer Contest evolved into the LeatherSir / boy Contest – so I have a personal connection to these tiles and was honored to help select the premiere Atlantic States titleholders last year. It is wonderful that the tradition in our region continues.

This year’s judges traveled to Baltimore from all over and made an impressive judging panel. Even though there was only one contestant this year for each title, the judges were tasked with the job of making sure each candidate achieved the minimum point score to be awarded the title and conducted lengthy interviews on Saturday afternoon prior to the onstage contest. Helping selected Atlantic States LeatherSIR / boy 2018 were Mr DC Eagle 1984 and co-founder of the Mid-Atlantic Leather Contest Daddy Al Santora, “The First Lady of Leather” Mary Elizabeth Boyd, Leatherman of Color 2011, and co-founder of Onyx Mid-Atlantic Rod McCoy, president of the Three Rivers Leather Club of Pittsburgh Ron Koski, Mr Connecticut Leather 2013 KJ Nichols, Mid-Atlantic Leatherboy 2014 boy david zeidler, and International Deaf Leatherboy 2005 boy alex leffers. The judges for the Atlantic States Community Bootblack 2018 title were Mid-Atlantic Community Bootblack 2010 boy Anderson, Northeast Community Bootblack 2011 to 2012 Jay Falcon, and board member of ILSb-ICBB Christopher.

There was a small vendor mart at the host hotel with displays by the Violet Wand Store, Anubis Gear, and Collars by Boz. The Hotel Brexton was also the setting for Saturday afternoon’s workshops which included a roundtable discussion regarding Sir / boy relationships presented by Mid-Atlantic LeatherSIR 2010-2011 Sir John Korgorigan, an electro play demo by Mr Maryland Leather 2007 Sir Steve, a workshop on bootblacking by International Community Bootblack 2017 boy john urso, and a rope play demo by Mr New Jersey Leather 2015 Thomas Fincannon (who came up with the best line of the day when describing COMMAND member Richard who was assisting Sir Steve with the electrical play demo asked: “Why is the person who is wearing the least sweating the most?”).

At 5:30 pm on Saturday the event moved to the second floor of the Baltimore Eagle for the contest which was emceed by International Mr Leather 1994 Jeff Tucker and COMMAND member and popular drag performer Brie Devine. Other contest staff included den daddy Mr Connecticut Leather 2012 Matt Kenney, tally masters Mr Maryland Leather 2010 Justin B. Terry-Smith and COMMAND member Dennis Ober. Mr Mayhem Leather 2017 boy joe watson served as the judge’s boy. Although scheduled to begin at 6, the contest was still not over at 9 pm when the bar’s Pink Kryptonite LGBT Comic-Con dance party was scheduled to begin in the space. The contest began with an opening number / fantasy presented by Atlantic States LeatherSIR 2017 Tom Matt, Atlantic States Leatherboy 2017 trell walters and Atlantic States Community Bootblack 2017 boy john urso. There were also several very entertaining numbers by Brie Devine and by Miss Gay Maryland USofA Summer Knight, who really brought down the house with her “FU” number. It wasn’t easy for the performers to work the crowd in such a tight space. I thought I would die laughing when after knocking over an audience member’s beer, Summer did a double-take and handed over one of her dollar tips.

The contestants for the Sir and boy titles competed in jock, formal leather, speech, and perform an onstage fantasy. I could easily see how Frat Daddy George got his name. His very hot fantasy had him in a black robe paddling a sexy fraternity pledge in tighty-whities. The Atlantic States Community Bootblack contestant had competed off stage earlier to show her skills and on stage competed in formal leather and spoke of the unifying leather spirit of those in attendance and her role as someone who is tasked with preserving leather so that traditions may carry on. Frat Daddy’s speech touched on the issue of abuse in BDSM relationships and stressed that: “There is no place for non-consent.” Boy Justin thanked outgoing Atlantic States Leatherboy trell and Sir John who helped him embrace the leather boy within himself and added that his greatest accomplishment would be if he could serve as a role model for someone who was struggling when their identity as a leather boy.

There were many more highlights in this contest: Boy david zeidler unveiled the leather dom pride flag that he had created, a new annual community service awarded was presented to longtime ASL interpreter Susan “Magic Fingers” Wienstien and named in her honor (She and Debbie Jones also worked hard all day signing the contest), and the outgoing titleholders gave very emotional step-down speeches. Sir Tom stepped down on what was his 64th birthday and spoke of his long history in the community from being present at the police raid of the Stonewall Inn to the 107 events he attended during his Atlantic States LeatherSIR 2017 title year. Boy trell spoke of divisions in our community and quoted Martin Luther King: “Hate cannot drive out hate. Only love can do that.” Atlantic States Community Bootblack 2017 reminded everyone that a boot black does not need a fancy kit, he only needs the heart to service his community. After his speech he proudly removed his Atlantic States sash and put on his recently awarded International Community Bootblack 2017 sash.

Yes it was a long afternoon, and maybe there were some sloppy seconds. (There was no time to recognize the current titleholders in the audience or the leather clubs in attendance.) It was still a very enjoyable day and a celebration of the Atlantic States leather community. After the contest a victory party was held at the Baltimore Eagle in conjunction with a bar night put on by the Centaur MC and the ShipMates. I had a great time. I’m already looking forward to the third annual Atlantic States Leather Weekend.

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