19 April 1999
To whom it may concern,
Went to the Erotica Convention yesterday... perhaps I'm a bit jaded having read Karma Sutra and Marquis De Sade (from the Sacred to the Decadent)... but the convention was a really bad joke. There was a sign requiring 21 to enter -- from the beginning I wondered why 18 wasn't good enough... once I got in, I think they shouldn't even stop a 12 year old... the only thing was pretty much PG...
Of the supposed 100 vendors and lecturers, I suppose most must have been in the lecture catagory which required a more expensive pass. I don'r think there were more than 30 vendors... definately less than 50. Of those, most didn't seem especially erotic (New York Press, Leather Jackets, Cell Phones?) and those few which were adult oriented constituted nothing you couldn't find walking around the village. The performers they had were just doing modern ballet and wore nothing particularly risque, even the ones that wore rubber.
The most interesting (only interesting) exhibit was a man they put in a rubber case and then gave him a snorkle while they sucked the air from the case. The result was an incredibly floppy replica of Han Solo frozen in carbonite... they tickled him for awhile and he wasn't able to move and then they let him free.
I'll agree with the announcers that sex isn't necessarily about the "hump and bump", but i don't think any legitimate convention on eroticism can so blatantly ignore the topic... this was so much about image and consumerism; maybe there are those who might argue that is was post-AIDs, post-MTV American eroticism should be about... but I think for anything to be erotic, there needs to be at least two things (A) tactile sensations (or a sufficently believable or imaginable promise thereof and (B) attitude... This convention was just so incredibly sterile and unpromising, unprovocative... If great sex is a rich ice cream, this convention was a non-dairy sour creme substitute.
-Brian Matthew Kessler