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Leather Line

Leather Line

by Rodney Burger

Friday, June 23, 2017

Thinking the Unthinkable

I discovered the leather community when I moved to Baltimore in 1984 and I became really involved when I joined the ShipMates Club in 1997. It amazes me sometimes when I realize how long ago that was. For the most part my leather journey has been filled with pleasant and joyful memories of all the great people I’ve met and all the fun leather events I’ve attended from coast to coast. One can meet people now on social apps, but are you making lifelong friends? I joined the ShipMates to meet leather folks and did I ever! Unfortunately, I have also had to say goodbye to many friends in the leather community who have left us. For me they live on in my many memories. No one every wants to think about death, but every once in a while we are forced to face it.

Friday, June 09, 2017

Not Fake News

There is lots of news this week in the leather community and I’m talking real news. This stuff was not reported in the New York Times or on CNN.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Bear With Me

It is hard to believe that I have be writing the Leather Line every other week for over 12 years now. (I haven’t missed an issue yet!) I’m never stuck without anything to write about. I was thinking recently that there’s a popular subculture of the leather community that I haven’t even really touched on: the bear culture. I’ve always liked hairy, beefy, masculine men and I discovered the idea of “bears” when I first picked up a copy of Bear magazine, founded in 1987. As time went on, the bear community started to evolve as an offshoot of the leather community and clubs were formed much like the leather community’s biker-patch clubs. Next came bear weekends or “runs,” followed by bear contests with bear titleholders.

Friday, May 12, 2017

Filling the Holes

There has been so much going on in the leather community the last few weeks that I really don’t know where to start. I want to finish up some of the stories of the last month or so. It seems that there are so many holes to fill.

Friday, April 28, 2017

Diversity Doesn’t Divide

I have always been proud of the diversity of the leather community in Baltimore. Maryland’s first leather club, the ShipMates Club of Baltimore, was founded in 1974. Although originally a club for men, currently the ShipMates counts both a female and a transgender person among the club’s full members. The Baltimore Eagle was the first of the “eagle bars” to add a Ms. Baltimore Eagle titleholder – and did so in 1992 when after founding a leather club called “Lesborados,” Glenda Ryder was selected Ms. Baltimore Eagle 1992. In 1993 Glenda went on to start a leather club for women called FIST (Females Investigating Sexual Terrain), which is still a big part of Baltimore’s leather community today. The Mr. Maryland Leather Contest began in 1991 and in 1993 Tony Hash became the first African-American Mr. Maryland Leather titleholder.

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