Sir Cadian found himself trapped in what he could only describe as a “Rod Serling” moment when he visited an annual Leather conference and title holder competition.
“I was reading the program and I realized it was the exact same people, teaching the exact same classes as 2004. I felt like I was in a time warp, so I attended the first class of the day and I felt like I was in a flashback. The same presenter, wearing the same clothes, saying exactly the same things.”
Needing to check on his connection to reality, he prompted the person next to him for a response. “Yeah, this part is great,” the young woman said, “I come to this class every year, I can’t get enough. Last year he switched up and said ‘when I accept his or her service’ as opposed to just using the gender fluid pronoun ‘he/is/r.’ I think it flows better, don’t you? Are you going to fill out a comment card? I am. You really should.”
At that point, Sir Cadian found himself having an out of body experience, floating through space and time, hearing presentations from conferences past echo throughout the space of the hotel.
Master Bartholomew, one of the conference organizers, agreed that there was some repetition from year to year, “but that,” he remarked, “was how you know you are home. Most of these people I only see at Leather events and sometimes we have to wait as long as two weeks until the next one.”
Mistress Delilah, presenting on hair cutting and scalp shaving, was offering her class for only the 15th time since January. “I’m kind of a newbie here,” she remarked, “many of these presenters have been giving the same class since 1975. I only started presenting this one in 1998. I try to limit it to 25 or 30 times a year to keep it fresh.”
When asked if he planned to return next year Sir Cadian was unequivocal. “I think I have to. You never know when someone might change a pronoun and you really don’t want to miss an event like that!”