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Archive for Sidewalk Smut

SMUT STAND REPORT: Atlanta, Nov. 14, 2014 (outdoor season is over)

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This bad boy needs a tune-up like whoa

Temperatures in Atlanta have dropped below freezing at night. I have already set aside my denim tour jacket for the faux fur-lined faux-suede coat; I don't think I brought my really BIG faux-fur coat along on this trip. I may have been a little optimistic.

Sidewalk Smut outdoor season is over.

Oh, I still do custom typewritten erotica for people. Ye Olde Smutte Shoppe (how many extra Es does one need to convey antique charm?) is open year-round, in theory, and I'm bracing my self for the double-bump of winter holidays and Valentine's Day. I can do excellent work from email interviews, and even allow my online customers a little more leeway for special requests than when I'm out there on the sidewalk, where I definitely don't have time for that shit.

But Sidewalk Smut, in its truest form, is a warm-weather sport, and the warm weather is officially gone until next spring. And this makes me sad.

There is the sudden loss of the Sidewalk Smut discipline, that constant flow of interview-then-write, don't think too much, just WRITE, because those fuckers are coming back in 20 minutes and I have their money in my hand, and I just have to produce, I HAVE TO. In theory, I could do stream-of-consciousness writing on my laptop, and I have tried, but the reality is, when I have the option and the time to edit, I will. I did it with this very paragraph. Sigh. I try to keep myself from doing it, but it's well-nigh impossible.

But never mind the discipline. Sidewalk Smut keeps me from being a hermit, even during the touring season, when I run the risk of being a little too one-track, becoming a "theatre hermit". There are always shows to do, or tech rehearsals to attend, or promotional opportunities to pursue, especially out on the festival circuit. But getting the Smut Stand out there, for three hours a day, wherever "there" is, keeps me out in circulation. It keeps me fresh. It keeps me socialized and able to talk to people. To their faces. In addition to the money I get for the smut, Sidewalk Smut does me immeasurable good on the "not skulking around at home on the Internet" front.

Sidewalk Smut keeps me conversing with people, and listening to really what my customers want and desire and actually do in sex. During the touring time my phone hours drop low or stop altogether; Sidewalk Smut kinda keeps my non-judgy mind in shape.

Dammit. As grinding as the Smut Stand can be, especially in places like New Orleans, I do miss it when the season is through, especially because it coincides almost perfectly with end of touring, when I go to wherever I am wintering, stay signed in for phone work for 14-18 hours a day, and tug and wrench my mind around whatever the next play or writing project is that I'm working on, and all the fundraising and logistics and administrivia that goes along with that. I'm not just not outdoors, I'm Extreme Indoors, and already feeling isolated, and pretty much confined to Facebook for connection with my world.

From consensual dirty talk with strangers on the sidewalk to … online chat. Sigh. I get to relive a little of the fun this winter when I edit the next volume of Bang It Out, but yeah, end of outdoor Smut for the year always makes me a little sad.

SMUT STAND REPORT: Oct. 18, 2014 (New Orleans)

WHEN: 6.5 hours (7:30pm-2am), Oct 18, 2014. WHERE: in front of Bicycle Michael's, Frenchmen Street, New Orleans.   OUTPUT: 6 custom works, including a soft-core moment in the sun-warmed tall grass of a summery British meadow; some heated missionary action with melting ice over the nipples; and a driving-hard reverse-cowgirl scene with hints of BDSM for a girl who wanted to somehow let her boyfriend know that she wanted to go further.

I went out an hour earlier than usual, hoping to score the spot on the fence close to the Art Market gate, but no: the jewelry vendor was already there. I fear that I cannot get out early enough for that spot on the weekends without winding up spending 8 hours on the street, which is too fucking long and a little ridiculous for my line of work. And the last time I tried to set up on the other end of the fence, near the Apple Barrel, it ended up too crowded and dark and frankly, some of the fence-sitters, they are either too harassing or smelly or both for me to create a comfortable-enough environment for my clients. I think I'm going to end up staying in front of Bicycle Michael's for every night except Tuesday and Thursday, and hope that Tuesdays, at least, won't be so in demand near the Art Market. Sigh. I'm doing my best here. Last night, though, three poets rotated through, and they all seemed to get a few commissions each, so maybe business in general is picking up for poetry. I hope.

My first commission came in early, and reminded me of something I had wanted to do as an additional perk for customers who want it. It was for a couple who wanted something with a little light BDSM; the woman in particular said she was intrigued by some of the things in 50 Shades of Grey, but really hated the writing. After I wrote the piece, which really seemed to hit the sweet spot for them, I asked her to hit me up on Facebook and I would be happy to give her some recommendations for good erotica. See, I had thought last year about printing up a quarter-sheet bibliography for the more committed erotica readers who stop by; I think I need to do that. Another couple commission later in the evening reminded me of another service that I had considered offering: recording my reading of the piece, and offering to email it to them as an mp3 file, or let them record it on their own phone, for some undetermined extra amount. I welcome any input on this matter.

This year I am definitely noticing an uptake of … networking, I guess I'd call it? It's not HOT networking, as in a producer or publisher "discovering" me right there on the sidewalk, but it's not cold either. People are making suggestions and proposals, and not in a sexual sense. A couple last week had a strong lead on possibly Chicago productions; last night a couple from the Netherlands stopped by and just could not get over the whole concept. They declined to commission a story, but the man handed me a twenty and said, "I just want you to keep doing this. I know someone in Amsterdam who you really need to meet. Do you know so-and-so?" And the funny thing is, I TOTALLY DID. I had met this woman at a sex-ed conference two years ago, and just hadn't followed up in earnest, because Europe seemed a distant goal. It's not anymore, though, and this guy reminded me that I should get on that shit. All of this stuff still involves me doing a lot of footwork, but it's still a lot warmer than "ooh, you should come to my town." I have Names!

On an introspective level, last night I noticed a shift in my attitude towards infidelity in my customers. I remember last year, getting my first commission from an openly cheating couple, and having to set aside a strong knee-jerk judgment. I'm saying this as someone who has cheated in the past, and has dedicated a fair bit of emotional energy and relationship time over the last four years getting my head on right about my own love life. As hard as it is, I do wish people could be more honest about these things.

Anyway, last night, one of my couples mentioned that one of them was married and they weren't supposed to be down there together. I took that information in, and for a split second let it sit next to all the other information and impressions I had gotten from them thus far, and then just saw their obvious love for each other, and that judgment I had last year? I could barely feel it. Most people are doing the best they can under the circumstances they are given. I'm never going to go back to cheating, myself, but I can understand it, and give these wandering lovers the gift of my understanding.

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