May 182012
 

Author, Sex Educator, Filmmaker Tristan Taormino to Host Show on VoiceAmerica Radio Network

Tristan Taormino, internationally acclaimed author, sex educator, college lecturer, and feminist pornographer “Sex Out Loud” on VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network. The show debuts June 1 at 5 pm Pacific Time, 8 pm Eastern Time.

PHOENIX, AZ, May 21, 2012 – VoiceAmerica Talk Radio Network, Internet broadcasting pioneer, producing and syndicating online audio and video, today announced the debut of Sex Out Loud, hosted by internationally acclaimed author, sex educator, college lecturer, and feminist pornographer Tristan Taormino on the VoiceAmerica Variety Channel on Friday, June 1, at 5 pm Pacific Time, 8 pm Eastern Time.

Sex Out Loud explores the world of sexuality from every angle. Tristan Taormino will interview leading authors, educators, artists and icons and give listeners an uncensored, inside look at alternative sexual practices and communities. She’ll delve into topics from the popular to the taboo, including sex education and sexual health, erotic fantasies, BDSM, non-monogamy, the adult industry, and more. Tristan and her guests will also answer listeners’ questions live. Her first guest will be Dan Savage, sex advice columnist, author, co-creator of the “It Gets Better” campaign, and star of MTV’s “Savage U.” Upcoming guests include Kate Bornstein, Buck Angel, Jaclyn Friedman, Jessica Valenti, Bobbi Starr, Susie Bright, and her daughter, Aretha Bright.

Tristan has been educating and entertaining people for over fifteen years. A former columnist for “The Village Voice,” Tristan’s sex-positive attitude and sharp wit have made her a sought after guest on radio and television shows across the United States and abroad including “Howard Stern,” “Loveline,” “Ricki Lake,” and HBO’s “Real Sex.” Most notably, she was a recurring guest on “Ricki Lake” for two seasons, gave sex advice to Danny Bonaduce and the late Dick Clark on the NBC talk show “The Other Half,” and debated Dr. Drew Pinsky and Joe Scarborough on MSNBC. She is a widely recognized expert on sex education, GLBT issues, alternative relationships, and feminist pornography. She frequently lectures at top colleges and universities, including Harvard, Yale, Cornell, Princeton, Columbia, Brown, UCLA, and NYU.

“Tristan Taormino is known around the world for her honest, down to earth, sex-positive advice, books, and films,” says Karen Dana, Executive Producer of Sex Out Loud. “We are so thrilled that she’s joining the VoiceAmerica Network, and her show is sure to inform and inspire our listeners.” Sex Out Loud follows Sex with Jaiya, the Variety Channel’s most popular show, giving listeners two hours of exciting, informative sex education.

Sex Out Loud is sponsored by The Smitten Kitten, an award-winning progressive sex toy retailer; Astroglide, one of the leading personal lubricant brands; and We-Vibe, the most popular rechargeable vibrator for couples in the world.

Sex Out Loud airs live on Fridays at 5 pm Pacific / 7 pm Central / 8 pm Eastern on The VoiceAmerica Variety Channel. To read more about the show, go to sexoutloudradio.com. To access the show, log on at http://www.voiceamerica.com/show/2096/sex-out-loud. All shows will be available in Tristan Taormino’s Content Library on The VoiceAmerica Variety Channel for on-demand and podcast download.

Mar 242012
 


I am so proud of my newest book: The Ultimate Guide to Kink: BDSM, Role Play and the Erotic Edge. I decided on a unique format for a non-fiction educational book: each chapter is written by a different person. And not just any person, but a top kink educator who has taught that subject extensively at conferences and community events. So, you don’t get just my take on the world of kink, but the experience, knowledge, and opinions of some amazing teachers.

Here’s the Table of Contents:

Part 1: Skills and Techniques
1. “S is for…”: The Terms, Principles, and Pleasures of Kink by Tristan Taormino
2. Making an Impact: Spanking, Caning, and Flogging by Lolita Wolf
3. How to Train Your Sex Slave by Laura Antoniou
4. Whole Hand Sex: Vaginal Fisting and BDSM by Sarah Sloane
5. Bondage for Sex by Midori
6. A Little Cock and Ball Play by Hardy Haberman
7. Kinky Twisted Tantra by Barbara Carrellas
8. Piercing Scenes by FifthAngel
9. Brutal Affection: Playing with Rough Sex by Felice Shays
10. Butthole Bliss: The Ins and Outs of Anal Fisting by Patrick Califia

Part 2: Fantasies and Philosophies
11. Stop, Drop, and Role! Erotic Role Playing by Mollena Williams
12. A Romp on the Wild Side: Erotic Human Animal Role Playing by Lee Harrington
13. ForteFemme: The Art and Philosophy of Feminine Dominance by Midori
14. Submissive: A Personal Manifesto by Madison Young
15. Enhancing Masochism: How to Expand Limits and Increase Desire by Patrick Califia
16. Inside the Mind of a Sadist by FifthAngel
17. Age Role Play by Ignacio Rivera, aka Papí Coxxx
18. Digging in the Dirt: The Lure of Taboo Role Play by Mollena Williams
19. The Dark Side by Jack Rinella
20. Mindfuck by Edge

And here is an exclusive excerpt of my introduction:

There are hundreds of gatherings of kinksters throughout North America—whether it’s a local organization’s annual conference, a camping event for pervy people, or a BDSM retreat—and the majority of them have a strong educational component. On any given weekend, you can learn how to: safely set someone on fire, be a good Daddy, plan the perfect gang bang, do bondage without rope, or channel your inner shaman. As a group, people into kink devote a lot of time, resources, and energy to learning.

I first heard the phrase lifelong learners when a friend of mine who works at a public radio station told me that marketers use it to refer to NPR listeners. Lifelong learners are people who are self-motivated to continually seek out new knowledge and skills, through informal and formal education, to constantly develop and improve themselves. The concept really resonates with me, as it aptly describes so many of the people I meet at sex and kink events—we are lifelong learners. That’s what’s so ironic about the conservative backlash against BDSMers. With increased visibility comes increased bigotry, and conservatives continue to rally against kinky events by local groups to get them shut down. What the anti-kink fanatics don’t understand about us is that we’re geeks. Sex nerds. SM intellectuals. We pay money to spend a weekend going to classes.

Of course, we do manage to get our noses out of the books to have fun, too. In the process of having a good time and getting off, we also strive to create alternative utopian worlds, even if only for a weekend. The kink community is built on the radical notion that people can express their erotic needs and desires and have them met. We believe that dreams do come true, and not at Disneyland, but in our bedrooms. Kink events are not just about getting together to have fabulous erotic experiences. We learn skills that we can translate into every part of our life: how to claim our desires, negotiate for what we want and need, set boundaries, communicate limits, acknowledge power dynamics, celebrate sexuality, and accept each other’s differences.

I envisioned this book as a compilation of the work of some of the best educators in North America, and every piece was written specifically for it. You don’t have to attend dozens of regional or national events to hear these experts speak—they are gathered here, in one place, taking on topics about which they are truly passionate. Their expertise in these subjects is tremendous, yet some of them have never had their writing about kink published for a wide audience. As you turn the pages, I want you to feel as if you’re at one of these gatherings, spending time with the teachers as they share their wisdom, experience, thoughts, opinions, and personal anecdotes. Unlike books about BDSM only, the chapters in this book explore different areas of kink with a specific focus on sex. After all, sex is a big part of what motivates and manifests our kink, but, until recently, it was often left out of the equation in our educational offerings.

The book is divided into two sections. In “Skills and Techniques,” pieces feature nuts-and-bolts, how-to tutorials, sprinkled with lots of creative ideas and examples. You’ll learn about topics from bondage and spanking to piercing and rough sex. This section is beautifully illustrated by queer artist Katie Diamond, who created the images expressly for this book. There are a variety of role-playing fantasies as well as personal manifestos in the second section, “Fantasies and Philosophies.” From masochism to age play, these pieces cover some of the edgiest and most taboo and controversial elements of kink in depth. The subjects, which have long been a part of kink, are too rarely discussed outside closed circles or in print. It’s time to shine a light on what is often only perceived as darkness.

I wanted the collection to capture not only the incredible exchange of ideas at kink conferences, but the magic that happens at a gathering of a kinky tribe. I hope you learn a lot from this diverse group of writers and you are inspired to find them, and other educators, at an event near you so you can supplement this education with mentoring, hands-on demonstrations, and interactive learning.

Exploring kink provides us with an opportunity for self-reflection, challenge, and personal growth. Where many people are content to just sit back and let life happen, we’re not: we constantly engage our identities, sexualities, and relationships. Sometimes, it’s about testing ourselves. Rock climbing aficionados, competitive triathletes, or ambitious innovators in the business world: there are those who strive to go farther, faster, deeper. Some of us don’t do it dangling from a mountain; we do it through intense—what some would call extreme—erotic experiences. Kink can be a private (or semipublic) laboratory—a sacred space where we feel safe enough to try new things, push our boundaries, flirt with edges, and conquer fears. Because it combines the physical, emotional, psychological, and spiritual, it has the potential to heal old wounds and generate spiritual renewal. It can deepen our connections and relationships, bringing a new level of intimacy to them. Kink is a crucible for creativity, vulnerability, perseverance, control, catharsis, and connection. Kink is a unique space where there is room to experiment and see what bubbles up.

Feb 202012
 


The Expert Guide to Pegging: Strap-on Anal Sex for Couples comes out on Valentine’s Day!! Isn’t that just perfect? My latest instructional movie from Vivid-Ed stars Dylan Ryan, Wolf Hudson, Jiz Lee, Mickey Mod, Jada Fire, and Christian. This is not your mama’s pegging video, that’s for sure! The cast is awesome, their interviews and chemistry fantastic, and the scenes are the hottest strap-on anal scenes I’ve ever shot! Plus, there are lots of extras on the DVD. And, as always, if you buy it directly from me, you support your local feminist pornographer!

Jan 272012
 

[Ed. note: For this question, I turned it over to my legal expert, Davis from Sexquire.]

As a fellow New Yorker and former sex shop clerk, I’m hoping you can shed some light on this subject.  I’m a clerk at a sex shop in the Finger Lakes of New York, and I love the job – I’ve been a sex educator for seven years and love helping people pick out safe, well-designed sexy things. My boss, however, asks that clerks not give directions as to how to use the products in our store (we actually direct them to the store copy of your Big Book of Sex Toys).  But I can’t help myself!  Sex ed is in my blood!  Sex toys are not intuitive to people who have never seen one before! My boss says this is a legal issue: because the products are “novelties,” we can’t come right out and say what they’re for. In Jessica Valenti’s book, The Purity Myth, she points to a case in Texas about a “Passion Party” saleswoman who faced obscenity charges for explaining how to use a vibrator.  That scared the crap out of me.  Do you know what the deal is with obscenity laws and sex toys?  Is it really a legal risk for a clerk to talk about this stuff?  Is it only a risk in certain states?  Any response will be very much appreciated!

- Concerned Shopkeep

Let’s start with the technical legal part of your question, and then get to what it means for clerks like you.

The saleswoman Valenti speaks of, Joanne Webb, was initially charged, but once the case received attention, the Johnson County prosecutor dropped the charges, and later, in an unrelated case, the law under which she was charged was struck down as unconstitutional by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. (The United States federal court system is divided into 13 U.S. Circuit Courts of Appeal by geographic location, so when the Fifth Circuit struck down the Texas law, it had the effect of also invalidating a similar law in Mississippi though that law had not yet been directly challenged).

Most legal scholars felt that this case, coupled with the Supreme Court case of Lawrence v. Texas 539 U.S. 558 (2003) (which struck down a Texas law prohibiting sodomy between consenting adults in their own home) signaled the eventual end of laws regulating sex/sex toys and consenting adults.  However, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit later upheld a similar Alabama law that criminalized the sale of sex toys.  The court cited the fact that the Alabama law regulated only commercial activity – the sale of sexual aids, and not their use (unlike the more broad-based Texas law) in its justification for reaching a different result than the previous Fifth Circuit decision.

So what does all of this litigation mean to sex shop clerks? First, unless you are in Alabama, you have no reason to fear being arrested on obscenity charges for providing sex education about or selling these products as other than novelties. Second, if it is customer litigation that your boss fears, they should know that although some sex toy manufacturers apply a “FOR NOVELTY USE ONLY” label to sex toys in an attempt to circumvent potential injury claims from consumers, there has never been a reported case of this being a successful defense against such a claim. In fact there has not, to my knowledge, ever been a reported case of a consumer suing for damage caused by a sex toy, likely due not to the lack of such injuries but more to the social stigma and publicity such a case would cause for the potential plaintiff. And finally, and perhaps most importantly for you, know that New York is an at-will employment state, so despite your being technically right, your boss can legally fire you for any or no reason, just not an illegal reason, and sex educators are not a protected class. So, proceed forward with your new knowledge with caution, and feel free to refer any further questions your boss might have to me!

~~~

Davis is the founder of Sexquire, a complete sex-positive business services company. Davis is the legal arm of Sexquire, having advised brick and mortar sex toy stores, sex educators, sex workers and other sex positive business folk on all manner of legal issues for over 7 years.   In addition to legal matters, Sexquire also provides bookkeeping, accounting, personal assistance and other business services all with a sex-positive spin.  You can find them online at their website, as well as Twitter and Facebook.

Nov 272011
 


I know that the Black Friday retail stuff can be maddening, but I also know that people love a good bargain. If, like me, you want to support local, independent businesses this holiday season, then I want to make it even more enticing. So, we’re having a fabulous sale to encourage all of you to do some early holiday shopping at PuckerUp.com:

40% off all DVDs and
20% off everything else in the store

Just use the special code FRIDAY at checkout to take advantage of these huge discounts. But do it now, because this deal expires Monday, November 28 at Midnight PDT.

PLUS: We have some awesome gift sets just for the holidays!

Sep 282011
 

I am definitely a fan of yours and I have a quick simple question for you. I recently purchased an iVibe by Doc Johnson for my girlfriend. She loves it, but we are a little confused about something. The clerk told us to use cheap batteries, that vibrators are not made to handle batteries like Energizer Batteries. I wanted to find out if this is true or not? After spending some money on something I want to make it last as long as possible.

That’s very strange because when I worked at Babeland, we always recommended Energizer batteries over others. The cheap ones were just that -cheap, and, for whatever reason, we found through trial and error that Duracell batteries tended to either burn out the motors of vibrators or make them overheat. So stick with the bunny!

I got this info from a reader:

I worked for Duracell for a while and might be able to shed a little light on the subject. The chemicals used in batteries are designed for particular objectives. The Duracell analysis showed that people using Duracell batteries usually used them on and off for short periods, like video games and portable radios. So Duracell optimized the batteries for that kind of use-they last longest when used for twenty minutes than turned off for an hour.

Energizer advertises that their batteries last longer if you turn it on and leave it on, like a flashlight on an all night camping trip. Head to head, Energizer will last longer than Duracell if used constantly. But if used intermittently, Duracell batteries will last longer.

Sep 252011
 

I started doing anal play about 10 years ago. At first, it was somewhat uncomfortable, but I persisted, and my persistence paid off. I am now able to take a 10″ long dildo with a wide circumference. I thoroughly enjoy it, but I wonder: how deep can you go? Once, I tried a longer toy. After about five minutes of working it all the way in, I took it out, and there was some blood on the dildo. I went to the bathroom, but there was no more blood. It shook me up big time, so I didn’t insert anything for a week for fear of hurting myself. After my hiatus, I didn’t feel any pain and went back to playing, and it felt good. But that blood thing scares me — did I reach my limit?

–When Should I Say “When”?

If you’ve ever seen a porn video of someone taking a huge cock, a giant dildo, or even a fist (and beyond the fist!) up her or his ass, then you know that the butt is capable of a lot. The rectum has the ability to expand a great deal, but remember that it is still quite delicate. Even with plenty of lube and warm up, you can still have a minute cut in the lining of the anal canal or rectum. The longer and thicker the thing penetrating you is, the higher your chances of having one of these small tears. It’s only natural that when we see blood, it’s scary.

You did the right thing: you gave your ass a vacation from penetration. As long as there is only a small amount of blood, and it goes away within about a day, then your ass is on the road to healing itself. However, use common sense. If your ass is bleeding, you feel pain or serious discomfort, then you should see a doctor.

Sep 222011
 


The Pin Up Bullet Vibe is a glittery, gorgeous bullet vibrator with three speeds that’s waterproof; it is 3.35” long and has a textured coating. The vibe comes in a sexy case adorned with authentic vintage pin-up art. Inside, you’ll also find Bombshell Orgasm Balm, a minty balm made of natural oils and ingredients. Dab a little on your clitoral hood, and the menthol in it creates a tingling sensation and increases circulation to the area to boost the arousal process. Two ‘N’ batteries are included (the vibrator takes one, so you have an extra). Carry it in your purse or luggage, leave it on the nightstand, and no one will know what’s inside! Choose from three different designs: Betty (a brunette in lingerie with an orange glitter vibe), Gigi (a redhead with a silver glitter vibe) or Ruby (a brunette with a red glitter vibe).

Sep 122011
 


I directed three new sex-ed shorts—on cunnilingus, fellatio, and the G-spot—for the fabulous feminist sex shop and site The Smitten Kitten. They star me, Dylan Ryan, and Danny Wylde and you can watch them for free here. I’m very proud of how they turned out, and can’t wait to hear what all of you think. In addition to some solid information, there is super hot sex—er, demonstrations—by Dylan and Danny. This was the first time these two had ever worked together, which is always a totally mystery going in. As it turns out, they have insane can’t-keep-their-hands-off-each-other chemistry. We shot so much good stuff that we had plenty left over. So, in addition to the sex ed shorts, you can purchase a full sex scene, “Dylan + Danny: Extra Credit,” on demand. Photos above are by Clare from The Smitten Kitten who was on set.

Jul 012010
 

I’m a 19 year old student at the University of Chicago. My not-so-problematic problem is that I’m something of a sexual perfectionist, when it comes to pleasuring my partners. Therefore, worried that I must be missing out on an excellent means for pleasuring, I’ve decided that it would be good to keep a vibrator or dildo handy. The only problem is that I don’t know how to use such a device. It’s not very intuitive for me, and most of the women I’ve slept with have had no experience with them either. So, can you tell me an effective vibrator technique, or where I can find out about it?

Bravo! I wish every guy was as smart and self-confident as you are to have a toy handy to please his female lover! When choosing a vibrator—especially if it’s your first one—I absolutely recommend a trip to the sex toy store. You can see them, turn them on, feel the vibration, listen to the noise they make, and see what might work best for you. Since this isn’t for a specific woman, select one with variable speeds that could appeal to different preferences. Test the waters by exploring all different areas of her pussy with the vibrator first. Remember not to go directly for her clit with a vibe before she’s had some warm up with your hand or mouth first. Vary the speed, pressure, and position of the vibe—she’ll let you know when you’ve struck gold. Once she’s worked up, she may want you to stop wandering around with it and stay in one place for a while, so be prepared to stop dawdling and get down to business. Vibrators can help you be in two places at once when she uses it on herself to add clitoral stimulation to vaginal or anal penetration.