Note: Again, if I happen to misquote you, I sincerely apologize. Do not try to find and stab me. I have limited health insurance.
Addendum: Its also pretty fucking late at the time of this writing.
Saturday night arrives and here in Victoria, that means the locals come out of their quiet dwellings and flood the streets with a large variety of music venues, cultural niches and generally cut loose the way Canadians tend to do. In my case, that means hitting up the local fetish event, dressing up and socializing; outside of my familiar community, this involves some degree of research and careful regard towards making a good impression lest I be barred from entry.
Already the hospitality of my fellow deviants in the Garden City had left quite the impression since my timely arrival. Their welcoming attitude and candidness towards the alternative lifestyle has since captivated my sadistic little heart, far more quickly than the other destinations of my journey. I am invited to attend the upcoming Domlander event – a deviation on the movie Zoolander, featuring lighthearted skits targeting the fetish community as a whole. Though my initial attempts to purchase a ticket had fallen short of only a few hours since the last one was sold out, some of the locals had taken the time to arrange one for me in advance. Cheers, Victoria.
At Domlander, I bump into a handful of fellow Vancouverites, namely the organizer of the Metro Vancouver Kink group and a couple of other kinksters from back home. Always good to know that people are never too far away despite what you may think. We exchange hugs and handshakes, most of the kinksters in Victoria are accomodating, and the floor was already teaming with people looking forward to the show’s events.
Each year Victoria’s fetish community hosts a non-profit showcase of skits in Domlander, each contestant competing for the nomination of Mr & Mrs Domlander with prizes to be given away. The judges include the original Domlander judge and other group organizers from the province and beyond. The event also features a promotional draw, resulting in distributed gifts, this year being a beautiful corset that has caught the eyes of every woman in the room. I don’t blame them. That thing looked pretty fucking gorgeous.
A bar at the venue offers reasonably priced drinks, most of the people attending can be seen with a beverage in hand, and soon the tip jar begins to grow. Eventually the lights dim, people begin to cheer and the former Sagacity host, the venerable LadyFish, makes her way onto the stage with an opening skit that depicts the categories for judging the prizes through the visual metaphor of martini glasses. One, in particular, being a concoction of a urine mixed liquor. Don’t ask.
The opening act takes the crowd by storm, people breathe hard as Delilah D’Lish makes her way onto the stage, performing an enticing burlesque performance before everyone amidst wolf calls and applause. With everyone’s attention towards the stage, the following performance is a tongue-in-cheek rendition of Dr Jackie and Miss Hyde, a musical act depicting an experiment gone horribly wrong in the kinkiest of ways, all set to a remix of Bill Nye the science guy. Fucking awesome.
A brief interval featuring the show’s sponsor, Old Man Pepperidge, takes everyone to a trip down Kinkster Memory Lane. Between stories of unspeakable acts of yesteryear, people both simultaneously cringe and laugh and cringe again. Without warning as he exits, one audience member tears off his clothes, resulting in Old Man Pepperidge strutting the stage in suspenders, nipple tassles and glittery shorts.
One of the most interesting acts, in my humble opinion, was the surprising rendition of Casta Diva Norma in a story where takedown meets opera. That’s right, you read that correctly. The talented young woman onstage stuns the audience into silence with her magnificent voice. Most of the people watching are open-lipped in their awe, erupting into thunderous applause and even a standing ovation. I admit that a kinky opera is something that I myself have never even heard of. Timeless.
The Newt Guy struts his stuff on the stage in the wake of Old Man Pepperidge, his valiant attempts to overcome his predecessor falling short, but credit is due for his remarkable effort. His cardboard suit comes off, revealing dollars bills and (dear god) tissue paper.
Following the act is Sylvia, wherein a young Dominatrix and an elder trade stories of domination and where diamonds are a girl’s best friend. It is a solemn little piece, not unlike the works featuring the music of Jule Styne.
The Dapper Dom is a story about what appears to be the last attempts of a failed D/s relationship that ends in a horrible, horrible session of edge play involving sharp gardening instruments and a hatchet. Fortunately the bottom escapes and the blood-soaked Dom perfectly captures the Buddy Jesus look at the judges and the audience. As someone with a taste for the macabre, this act is truly fascinating.
The act that follows after is Bunny Foo Foo. It involves a bunny rabbit, a microphone that serves as a phallic device, and cream-based bunny ejaculation at the Splash Zone. I’m not making any of this up.
Another highlight of the evening is Keanu Cruise featuring a would-be rescue attempt for a damsel in distress, handcuffed and gagged to a chair; shredding her dress to reveal a ticking time bomb, the act goes a bit awry – at the end of the performance, said damsel cannot be uncuffed and had to literally be carried offstage, chair and all, amidst the shouts of “Make her the door prize!”. Heh, if only.
The closing act of the show is Olive Oyl. I must admit, too late, that it has since changed my view on another beloved childhood character. He is, after having seen the skit, in actuality Olive’s bitch.
After the end of the awards ceremony, an annual closing tradition is a parade by the participants and volunteers, set to the everlasting tune of We Are Family. A fantastic way to end an otherwise entertaining show, definitely worth every penny for admission. As an added bonus, the same price of admission allows entry to the play party that follows though much of it is spent socializing and commenting on the performances. Everybody gets up and helps put away the folding chairs, briefly exiting for the volunteers to set up shop – a process that takes only a surprisingly short amount of time.
While not as spacious as MVK’s own monthly venue, the space provided for the play party is decent to say the least. DMs patrol the floor and occasionally keep people from wandering too close. The seating is evenly distributed with tables set between comfortable chairs and an elevated platform for sitting with a better view. Most of the people who attended the show stay behind to observe the activities, mingling with one another; several outsiders, curious about the event, remain around to watch the activities. Again the friendliness shows itself, provided that both kinksters and locals alike are open to conversation.
Propped against the back of the place are a few toy distributors selling their custom wares and passing business cards. Browsing over their goods, I am pleased to say that the quality of work is above average should that be of any interest to anyone visiting. However, it pains me to inform that a theft had occurred since the night of the event and I pause to give my condolences to the party affected. Hopefully the perpetrator may be brought forward for flayi- er, penance.
LadyFish and her partner are both beloved members of this deviant little family and we converse briefly about the night’s performances. It escapes me the exact context of our conversation yet I recall fondly of her politeness, the sincerity of the well wishes of both she and the other people I spoke with. The play party ends at around midnight and as it does, part of me began to feel an absence for these wonderfully naughty deviants.
“You’ll always be welcome back here,” One person says, hugging me tightly. “Don’t you dare die on us. Come back and visit any time you like.”
I get a firm handshake, meeting the gaze of another Dom, “Victoria would be glad to have you. If not, just me.” He pats me on the shoulder. “Be safe, my friend.”
Try to understand how difficult it was to say goodbye to these fair folk of the Garden City. There is a simplistic feel to this place and much more beneath that pleasant image, vibrant with culture and echoes of the Canadian spirit. I almost regret having not stayed longer at this point. It comes as no surprise why many have chosen this community to call their home and chosen family.
Stepping out into the night, I try to burn the images of the streets passing by past the cab windows, drowned out by the distant whispers of a street busker far away. I returned then to my room and, with some hesitation, pack my belongings for my final day.
Next Update: Wherein yours truly flies the Leather Pride flag before legislation; the night owls of Victoria, the side effects of fetish to every day sightseeing and St. Patty’s day mayhem.