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Inclusive and Feminist Porn and Adult Entertainment communities

Posted on  by Cinnamon

Hey, so I realize that the adult industry, like most mainstream industries, is all based on what people find sexy and attractive. Among other things. But that means it’s also inherently racist, fat phobic, and all based on mainstream beauty standards. You know the other ones; thick or pouty lips, a certain type of breast, hair style or color, etc. All the generic things mainstream media tells people they should be attracted to. And for the adult industry, obviously, it’s all intensely revolved around sex. 
Call me a dreamer, but I would like my body to be more easily seen as attractive to the masses. Maybe that’s not the way to say that. What I mean is, I’m tired of the fact that pale skin, blond hair, and straight bodies (as in size), are seen as the most desirable and therefore worth more and than mine. It’s bullshit. 
Even still in the queer porn, queer sex worker, and queer adult work communities where everyone wants to talk about inclusion fat people and black people are still less included than white people thin people. They’re less popular. 
You know, I’ve been doing queer porn for 7 years. I’m not trying to toot my own horn here, but I want to point out that there are people who have gotten far more attention than I have for a quarter amount of the time. And you could say this is because I don’t try to get more work or I’m not really invested. But that’s not true. I’ve tried. I’ve put in the effort to get more work, to do amazing projects, to work with photographers, for this thing or for that thing. Please do not tell me it’s because I’m not invested, I don’t put in the work, or I don’t try hard enough. I do. 
I’ve been told time and time again from people in the queer community, the feminist porn community, and other “inclusive” communities, “Thanks, but no thanks”. Or I’ve just never heard back. And much of the time I know why. I’m not stupid and I’ve been doing this for enough time. It’s because of the way I look. Not based on much else. It’s a combination of my size, the way my fat is on my body, my color, and features. If I had more subtly “black” features, I may (may) have a better chance. 
Getting back to the point, the inclusive queer and feminist adult industries that many of us belong to are still perpetuating racism, fat phobia, and ridiculous mainstream beauty standards. And if you don’t fit those standards, then you get less attention, less opportunities, and less work. 
You are part of the problem if you work for companies that refuse to hire diverse people and you don’t advocate for real diversity when given the opportunity. I’m not saying that you’re part of the problem simply by working with those companies. You’re part of the problem when you don’t try to change the issues. Which is many of you. 
You part of the problem when you put out a casting call, gig call, or other opportunity and even though you get plenty of diverse people responding, your cast still only consists of thin white people. Oh, but it probably includes the token white passing person of color, or the thin person of color, or a combination. Or maybe even someone who is slightly larger size than the rest of the cast. So you can convince yourself you’re being inclusive and making changes. But you’re not. Sorry. Not Sorry. 
You’re part of the problem if you’re not seeing that there is a problem here!

And just because you hire fat people or brown people doesn’t mean you’re not fucking up either. If all of your feature films star white thin people then there may be an issue. If all the shows you produce or performers you hire to work your event, at your bar or club are thin, blond hair, fair skinned femmes, then maybe you should reconsider wether or not you’re really being “inclusive”. 
There’s also something to be said for choosing to focus one’s attention solely on one minority group, especially if that minority group is white. Let’s be real about that. Yes, fat white people are important. Yes, white trans people are important. Yes, white sex workers are important. But if one focuses all their attention on the white counterparts, then you’re telling the world it’s less okay, or not at all okay, to be POC in those communities. And that POC in those communities still mean less than their white counterparts. Which is what we hear everyday.

So don’t pretend to be my friend if you do any of this stuff and refuse to change. All I’m asking is that you try. Stop perpetuating this bullshit. And stop calling yourself inclusive and or feminist when you’re not. You’re just as racist, fat phobic, gender phobic, etc and problematic as the rest of them.

Note: I am so grateful for the opportunities that I have personally been given and I don’t want to burn any bridges, but this needed to be said.Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged fatphobiafeminist porninclusive pornPornqueerRacismsex work

Drag King

Posted on  by Cinnamon

Recently I did a drag king show. I had a great time and would do it again. Except there was one little something I noticed and it confused me and bothered me. I did some serious thinking about whether or not I wanted to write about it.  I walked away feeling like it was very femme centric and so did the group of people I was with. It disappointed me. There was so much attention on the ladies that a lot of focus, too much is you ask me was on them and not the kings. If a performance included a lady mostly naked then it was good. Which seemed really backward to me, I thought we were at a drag king show. Shouldn’t it be all about the fierce, hot, kings?

I liked each performance. This isn’t meant to bash anyone’s performance or say that they were bad performances. They weren’t. I would just like to see the show be more about the drag king then his femme counter part. It also kind of bothered me that one of the judges kept asking to grope the ladies bits for extra points. There is no nice way to put that. And let’s be honest, I would totally let someone grope me for extra points in anything! But sometimes, it may not be the appropriate time. I also don’t think I would have cared as much, had there been groping of the kings, but there wasn’t. Just ass and tit groping. Which again, seemed confusing, since it was a drag king show and all!

Maybe I’m just sensitive. Don’t get me wrong, I appreciate naked ladies. I am a naked lady!  I’m not used to performing as a drag king, but wait! I am used to performing as a naked lady and you know what? I love naked chics, but let’s be real it was disheartening as a drag king to once again see it being all about the relatively thin, stacked or not, vanilla looking girl. I’m used to that in the stripping world. I thought it may be different in a drag show.  I do have to say, in a situation like this, you can’t help but be a little confused and disappointed.Posted in PerformanceUncategorized | Tagged Drag KingFemme | Leave a comment

Is this common practice?

Posted on  by Cinnamon

Is it common practice for a photographer, producer, other models, directors, etc to ask  for sexual favors if you want to work with them? I’ve heard of this and even expereinced this first hand. I personally feel that this is rude and unacceptable. However, please don’t misuderstand that for me saying that sexual favors should not be exchanged for other services. What bothers me is that some people expect it and make it seem like you have to exhange sexual favors for their services. That’s what pisses me off.  I don’t believe that’s anyway to do business. Sure some people will do it and don’t mind, but what about those people new to the industry that feel like they have to do it to get modeling gigs? That’s not fair or right. In fact it’s really fucking wrong.  It should always be the models decision whether or not they want to do it, they should never feel pressured to do so. 

 In addition why is it fair that some get the upper hand in the industry because they gave so and so a handy?  What I don’t like about that is, it gives the person they’re working with the impression that it’s alright for that to be a regular form of payment and should be expected if you want to work with them.  Models, performers, etc, should also be honest with one another when asked what their shooting experience was like. If a model approches you and ask if  you were expected to do this thing you should be honest about it. And in turn the other model should respect you and keep the information to themselves and for their own personal knowledge. But don’t lie. It makes the other models feel like they are being singled out for sexual acts as payment. That’s not ok.

 Again, I’m not saying that if you decide to or have recieved sexual favors for other services that you’re a bad person, that’s your decision and your choice. What I am saying is no one should eveer feel pressured to do so and it shouldn’t be the only way that a person would work with you. It’s not fair, it’s disrespectful, and it should never be expected.

 I’d like to hear other peoples thought on this topicPosted in ModelingUncategorized | Tagged CourtesyInappropriatePorn | Leave a comment

Courtesy

Posted on  by Cinnamon

How many of you folks have sent in a application for a job, gig, porno?  How many of you have never heard back? This particularly bothers me when it comes to directors, producers and other people  involved in the porn business, queer porn specifically. I know that people are busy and have tons of applicants and can’t possibly get back to everyone with a heartfelt and personalized rejection letter. However,  I don’t think it’s that difficult to send even a generic  “Thanks, but no thanks”.  It seems unprofessional not to at least do that. A simple e-mail reply is polite and it lets us know that you appreciate our efforts, but at this time you’re going with other applicants. It also lets us know that you received our application so we don’t have false hope that maybe someday we will be chosen. That being said, when a someone sends an email follow up, please do not respond with something like ”Oh, I’m sorry, I’ll contact you in a few weeks”, if you wont be. Do not tell people that you will be contacting them if you’re really not interested. Just tell them.

 I also have a hard time with those  queer porn companies  that say they want diversity, but still show the same face over and over again.  I love my queer pornstars, directors, and producers  and everything they do. I appreciate them so much. But it is dis-hearting when I see the same faces continuously. It also wouldn’t be so bad, if those faces were diverse, but I have to say that they still seem pretty white and on the smaller side.  I am not saying that there aren’t any plus size folks or folks of color, because there are, I just believe that there could be more. And also more plus size, queers of color pornstars (not necessarily together, although that would be great too). Even then it comes to seeing the same faces. There are only a couple that come to mind.

This isn’t meant to be a bash on the industry, just my personal feelings and things that I would like to see change. It’s a simple matter of respect and politeness when it comes to sending an e-mail reply and being honest about what you’re looking for when you cast folks. I know business isnt meant to be polite or what not, business is business, but is what I’m asking THAT hard? Would it really hurt you to email a ”No” to someone? I would also like to see us reach out to each other more often and help each other out. I am one of the last people that you will hear say ”Can’t we all just get along?” But I do want to see more support within the community. I know that people can be shady and the only person who really has your back and best interest at heart is you, but let’s do our best.Posted in Queer Porn | Tagged CourtesySexual Harassment | Leave a comment

From California to Portland, Maine and Back

Posted on  by Cinnamon

In February 2011 I finished my term as lead madam at the peepshow, I was burned out with life and desperately needed to get away, indefinitely. I’ve lived in the bay area all my life. I’ve never been outside of the bay area for more than a week. I had already started planning my escape and when going through all my options and due to lack of money I realized that my only real feasible option was to move to Portland, Maine. My parents moved there after GM/NUMMI closed a couple of years ago. I wasn’t in love with the idea, but I didn’t have very many other options. So in August of  2011 I packed up, said goodbye to California and plopped down in Maine.

The first two months were very long and lonely. I did move with my partner and that was great having the  companionship, but nothing can fill the void of being away from home for the first time. My partner and I spent the days before school started watching TV, unpacking, and generally getting settled. Those days were very boring.

When I got to Portland, not only was it a sever culture shock, but that place isn’t as openly queer friendly as they say it is. Or POC (people of color) friendly. It took several days for me to see a person of color. Days. When I finally starting seeing a few it kind of became a game. Counting how many people of color I would see in a day and how many of them were black/African American. Maine actually has a large Somalian community. But for some reason they don’t really mix with American black people.

When school finally started I was excited for the chance to occupy my time with something other than just sitting around watching TV all day. When I got to first class, Sociology 100, I was the only person of color in the class. I thought to myself  “Where the hell am I?”. When I got to my second class it seemed much the same. About  ten minute into class however, another brown girl walks in. So in my Psych class there were two of us. It made me think of the days when I was in elementary school in Castro Valley.

Portland does have queers out in the open, but what they don’t tell you is that they are all older queer folk. There is a small community of young queer people, but they aren’t easy to find. I just stumbled upon a queer couple by pure chance. It also helped that before I left California I met a few people from the east coast that put me in touch with friends. However, it took several months for me to even get that far. I was there for a good two and half months before met someone.

In October I found an adorabel apartment not too far from downtown Portland and a very short walk to the bus to school. My partner and I got settled in our apartment..  I got a work study job and even a seasonal job at Macy’s. Which, by the way had a training called CBT which made me think of  cock and ball torture and every time I heard it I would have to resist the urge to giggle or look confused.

Portland definitely had it’s charm. We found several restaurants that we loved. When we finally found folks to hang out with, we found a couple of night spots that were queer friendly. I even got a chance to perform! I had a lot of fun doing that actually. The Dirty Dishes, one of Portland’s burlesque groups,  made me feel right at home.

We  had a few awkward encounters with people being racist and or homophobic, but I  didn’t  let it bother me too much. But in December, while at their work study job, my partner gets called a jigaboo and faggot repeatedly. This was pretty much the last straw. My partner had been having a hard time adjusting to life in Portland and this was just the icing on the cake. We had to start making plans to get out of Portland ASAP.

We decided the best way to do this was to save money like crazy and move as soon as the  spring semester was over. However, things got worse. My sociology teacher told me that she’d gotten racist notes and symbols on assignments she had collected and that several times in the last few weeks there had been racist graffiti painted on school buildings. The racial and homophobic slurs got worse and so did the way people treated us. We’d go somewhere for dinner and get seated, order food. Three different groups of people would come in and order after us. They would all get their food first and when ours came it would be cold or burned.

My partner couldn’t take it anymore. Waiting until the semester was over wasn’t an option.  We waited for our financial aid checks, got a rental truck, packed our stuff and drove back to California.

Now, I’m back in California, living in Fresno with my aunt. I feel like I’m back to square one. I tried to get serious, go to school, and start getting ready for real life, if that makes any sense, but it back fired. I’m even a few steps back from where I as a year ago. I’m not in the bay area and I don’t have my own place and I’m not sure where to go from here. My aunt is actually amazing and more like roommate than a family member. It’s great. Except I’m so far away from everything I love. It’s also hot as all hell and I miss being close to my friends and the excitement of the bay. If  I want to go to the bay it’s a three and half hour drive. There isn’t much to do here.  On the upside I’ve started busying myself with small art projects, this blog, porn apps, and getting myself out there. It’s hard, but it sure beats living in a racist/ homophobic environment. Honestly, I don’t think Portland was that bad, I kind of liked it. But any city that still has people that use the term jigaboo is not a place for this brown queer diva.P