Remembering Why This Is Important

Last Thursday, I went to the monthly Anarkink meeting, and was dismayed to find only two other people: one a regular, the other a younger guy who was just visiting the area. I was frustrated at how many people have disappeared from the group, and as the three of us present started talking, I started to wonder why I was even bothering with this. Why try to keep a group going, I thought, if this is all it’s going to be?

Of course, a night like that isn’t what Anarkink isalways like; last month, our cane-making and -using workshop was incredibly fun and pretty well-attended. But there have been a few meetings like this over the past year, in which a few people end up sitting around a table without a lot to really talk about, with no real plan or purpose. It makes me doubt the necessity of the group, makes me think that there’s nothing to be gained by continuing it.

It turns out that the kid who was just visiting had come from Asheville, North Carolina, and he told us that some folks there had recently hosted a flogger-making workshop (using old bike tubes). We talked about different things happening all over the country — the recent anarchist play party that happened in Chicago, and the workshops/parties that folks organized at the Crimethinc convergence in Pittsburgh. As we closed up the infoshop, I apologized for the meeting not being more exciting or interesting; he told me how glad he was that he’d come out for it, to simply be in a space where people were even talking about this sort of thing, to simply know that something like this exists. It seemed that he had never really been public about his interest in BDSM, and had always been afraid, like I had been, like I continue to be, that others would judge and ostracize him (especially due to his involvement in a feminist collective).

And I realized, then, just how important this is — or can be, at least. Talking to him made me remember how I had felt after the first Anarkink meeting — that feeling that I wasn’t alone, the feeling that it was all worth it just to be sitting in a room with other people like me. Sure, it’s more fun when there’s a lot of people there, when we have some exciting workshop or crafty activity or a movie to watch. But sometimes, it’s just about three radical perverts sitting in a room together and knowing we’re not alone.

3 comments so far

  1. […] Remembering Why This Is Important « Subversive Submissive And I realized, then, just how important this is — or can be, at least. Talking to him made me remember how I had felt after the first Anarkink meeting — that feeling that I wasn’t alone, the feeling that it was all worth it just to be sitting in a room with other people like me. Sure, it’s more fun when there’s a lot of people there, when we have some exciting workshop or crafty activity or a movie to watch. But sometimes, it’s just about three radical perverts sitting in a room together and knowing we’re not alone. (tags: anarchism bdsm) […]

  2. ranat on

    Though I’ve found a surprising amount of acceptance/tolerance of my brief descriptions of my sexuality among the people around me who share my worldview, I still wish for some kind of community where I can have both: understanding and resonance with my sexuality and my worldview. Sometimes I think I’m just asking for too much, or not being grateful for what I have found. I don’t know.

    I wonder how people who have interests and lifestyles in both subcultures can find each other. Communities like Anarkink have to be one way. As for others, I don’t know.

  3. maymay on

    Thanks for this post; it’s an important one for me to right now.

    Ranat, I don’t actually know if I share your worldview or not—and I suspect I don’t, actually, since I am far too urban. 😉 That being said, I also ask for the two things you ask for: a resonance with my sexuality and worldview. So if you are asking too much, then so am I, but I am not about to stop asking for it.


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