Poly Weekly #224: Modern Poly

This week’s Poly Weekly #224: Modern Poly

Download the mp3 directly!

0:00 Introduction and host chat
Intro, under-18 warning and re-direction to www.scarleteen.com; friend me on Twitter and answer questions about what you want on the show, call 206-202-POLY with comments or discuss your own topics at the forums at http://forum.polyweekly.com.


  • • “PolyApathy”- unwillingness or lack of interest in “doing the work” within a poly family
  • Toronto, Ontario, poly group: the Toronto Ethical Lovers Group meets on the second Wednesday of every month at the University of Toronto Women’s Centre from 7:30pm to 10:00 p.m.

Miss Poly Manners: Poly for the Holidays
Advice on navigating the holidays with the poly family. Visit Miss Poly Manners Googe site or the Miss Poly Manners MySpace page

Interview: Modern Poly
A chat with Mai Li, the PR branch of the new Modern Poly website, a place for poly activists, organizers and general poly folks seeking education to gather.

Poly Weekly 221, This American Life
Crispin writes in to dispute “everyone hates cheaters” comment

Poly Weekly 222, Metamours, Change and Insecurity
More suggestions for “needing a cuddle” from Vicky, who suggests “mimosa” and George, who suggests “cuddlesie”

Thank you!
Big thanks to this week’s donors, Jennifer and Patrick! You guys rock!

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email cunningminx@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 206-202-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at polyweekly.libsyn.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

Want Poly Weekly for your very own? Get the Best of Poly Weekly collection from PodDisc.com

Our intro and outro music is courtesy of Pacemaker Jane, “Good Suspicions”

Newsweek poly video

Kudos to Newsweek for doing a fun, fair, lighthearted look at polyamory. And to the ever-fabulous Terisa Greenan, Scott, Larry, Matt & Vera for going on camera. We need more spokespeople like these guys!

From Poly Living 2009: Poly Weddings and Gay Marriage Rights

Diana Adams’ talk on Poly Weddings: the legal impact of same sex marriage decision on your poly family with Diana Adams. (I did record audio of this session with permission; check the Poly Weekly feed soon)

  • There is a legal bias against those who are sex-positive
  • Discussing “emotional pre-nups”–discussing what your relationship will look like and the terms of your breakup beforehand
  • She uses a forensic psychologist to help refocus on the issue of which of the parents is doing more negative parenting–the one who never puts the kid to bed or the one who does and who happens to have a locked cabinet of sex toys
  • The vibrator laws aren’t about vibrators but what it would mean if we allowed that: “You have the right to sell Tupperware, but not if there is a dildo in it.” Now focusing on how and whether these rules are actually to prevent harm.
  • Definition of “prostitution” in New York: sexual conduct for a fee. That is, whatever a judge decides is “sexual,” creating a culture of fear and shame for all workers, sexual and even sexual healers as well.

Prop 8 in California
The debate is whether this should be an actual amendment to the California constitution, which is surprisingly easy to amend. Diana argues this should be a court decision, not one put to the voting populace. There are now questions as to whether gay couples married during the legal period will still be legally married. She showed an Amicus brief from an organization associated with the religious right stating that because bisexual and polyamorous people can’t get legally married, we don’t need to give marriage rights to gays, either.

Same-Sex Marriage Debate and How It Affects Us
Diana explains how arguing that marriage is a fundamental human right actually harms the poly marriage issue. Lawrence v Texas overturned older sodomy laws, with an apology, maintaining it was undignified to afford homosexual citizens the same right to have private sex in their homes. (Does everybody know what “santorum” is?)

Two arguments being made:

  1. Sexual orientation should be a legal right as a “suspect class”, or group that has traditionally faced discrimination and thus needs protection. Saying that sexual orientation is a “suspect class” is a major step and very powerful. In states with civil unions, the argument is that allowing civil unions but not marriage for suspect classes is inherently as unfair as “separate but equal.”
  2. We ask: why aren’t we making the argument that the state shouldn’t be making marriages at all? The issue with making marriage a fundamental right is valorizing it and thus further entrenching it into our law, and we’ll no longer be able to separate church and state. This is dangerous because it’s appealing to morality and accepting the institution of marriage without examining it. We went from criminalizing to heterosexualizing our relationships.


  • We have passed the time where we link sexual relationships with economic dependency.
  • Participants recommend readings by Stephanie Koontz on the history of marriage and marriage as a tool of governmental control.

Sex blogger calendar launch party Friday, Nov. 14

New York City – Join us for the launch party and buy a copy of the NYC Sex Blogger 2009 Limited Edition Calendar on Friday, November 14, 2008 from 6:30 pm – 9:30pm at The White Rabbit. The White Rabbit is located at 145 E. Houston Street, between Forsyth and Eldridge, in NYC. Meet the bloggers who made it happen, and ask really nicely and you might even get your calendar signed. While admission to our party is FREE and open to the public, there will be a cash bar (with Happy Hour prices till 9PM), raffle tickets and calendars to purchase so please come prepared with some green to show your support and join in the fun.

Twelve of New York City’s most dynamic literary and sex positive women, along with photographer Stacie Joy, and the sex blogging CommUNITY have collaborated to create the New York City SexBlogger 2009 Limited Edition calendar in order to support Sex Work Awareness. Sex Work Awareness is an organization that trains sex workers in media skills and educates the public about issues that affect people who work in the sex industry. 12 of NYC’s finest writers, sex educators, film makers, and ordinary women are determined to see the stigma associated with sex work and workers removed.

Included in the calendar are Audacia Ray, Desiree, Diva, Elizabeth Wood, Jamye Waxman, Luz Alptraum, Mariella Ella, Rachel Kramer Bussel, Riese, Sinclair Sexsmith, Tess Danesi, and Twanna A. Hines. A full biography of each calendar model is available at Sex Blogger Calendar.

The first 100 guests to arrive will receive a FREE gift bag from Babeland! Aside from amazing burlesque performers and organic orgasm-worthy cookies from FreeFoodsNYC, you can purchase your very own copy of the calendar. In addition, to supplement our fundraising efforts we will have a raffle, and we encourage you to buy a raffle tickets. $2 for 1, $5 for 3 and $10 for 10 will give you a chance to win prizes that include an Njoy Eleven, a Liberator Ramp, a Liberator Throe, a Rolling Toy Trunk from ForYourNymphomation, and a Museum Signed Print “Ally Bound” by Lochai. The list grows daily. A complete list is posted on the calendar blog.

If you are unable to attend the launch party, you can still buy your limited edition copy of the calendar directly through the Sex Blogger Calendar website.

About the NYC Sex Blogger 2009 Limited Edition Calendar:
For the latest news, a complete list of bios of each sex blogger featured in the calendar, our sponsors, and our CommUNITY of friends, please visit the Sex Blog Calendar Website.

Poly Weekly #177: Poly and Proud, Part Deux

This week Poly Weekly #177:Poly and Proud, Part Deux.

Download the episode directly!

0:00 Introduction and host chat
Intro, under-18 warning and re-direction to www.scarleteen.com; friend me on Twitter and answer questions about what you want on the show, call 206-202-POLY with comments or discuss your own topics at the forums at http://forum.polyweekly.com.

We will have a feedback show coming up soon and then go back to our format of feedback in each episode.

1:45 More interviews from NYC Poly Pride!

1:50 Interview with Birgitte Phillipedes
President of Polyamory NYC and goddess of the event; mainstreaming poly and PolyNYC; nature of poly and lack of structure and organization; potential of the Poly Leadership Summit–should there be a national group?; future of the poly movement; next year–a leadership retreat; favorite act? Heada!; how can we help? Donate!

14:00 Interview: Pete Benson
Author of the Polyamory Handbook; book structure; what he learned from writing the book

19:45 Interview: Marcia and Ried, founders of Cuddle Party
how they started, how Cuddle Parties have grown, how they work

Questions? Comments? Feedback? Email cunningminx@gmail.com or call the listener comment line at 206-202-POLY. And hey, why not attach an audio comment to that email? :-) Check out PolyWeekly at polyweekly.libsyn.com. Share this with a friend or write an iTunes review!

Want Poly Weekly for your very own? Get the Best of Poly Weekly collection from PodDisc.com

Our intro and outro music is courtesy of Pacemaker Jane, “Good Suspicions”

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Wonder what a Cuddle Party really is?

Check out this video from the New York Post about the Friday night Cuddle Party from New York Poly Pride (yes, I make a brief appearance, but only brief)

New York Poly Pride: Day 3

A little belated posting: Sunday in New York

Drug myself outta bed for brunch with Nikol Hasler and J. Apparently, I passed Parker Posey on the way and didn’t notice. Does that count as a celebrity un-sighting?

Fantastic brunch with the funniest girl alive. Got to hear the tale of the transplant to NYC and all the fabulous opportunities the Midwest Teen Sex Show has these days. Personally, I can’t wait to see the movie! Listen up, Hollywood: we want the MTSS movie NOW! She and J spent the brunch singing songs to each other and generally being wildly entertaining. I heart my friends.

Then, it was off to the book reading and signing at Blue Stockings:
Blue Stockings

Jenny Block reading from Open; Tristan Taormino reading from Opening Up; Barbara Foster reading from her history of the threesome; Serena Anderlini d’Onofrio reading from Eros. The place was PACKED!

Jenny Block reading from Open

Tristan Taormino

And guess who came? The bestest, cutest eroticist in New York, Rachel Kramer Bussel! Got a quick hug from her before heading off to the first ever National Poly Leadership Summit, then straight to the airport to go home.

Rachel Kramer Bussel

Special thanks to for picking me up from the Blue Line stop and saving me the last 45 minute bus ride home. You are full of awesome. (And we need to get naked soon, dear.)

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New York Poly Pride: Saturday evening

And then, the PARTY! Great view of the river from the spacious balcony; hot acts inside!

  • Voguing drag queens, light-up hula-hoopers, burlesque strippers and more!
  • I spent an hour speaking French with three native French polys, discovering that the poly scene in France is nonexistent; there’s not even a word for it! Dommage.
  • Watched Simon and Reid make out–thanks, boys; YUM!
  • Got in the midst of a three-way kiss with said boys. Girls, I highly recommend two tongues in your mouth at once!
  • Cuddled on the pallets on top of three cute bi/straight boys. Heaven!
  • Made out with the adorable Trace, a charming gay boy two weeks away from his wedding day. (MWAH you’re so cute–call me!)
  • Danced a swing dance with a closet Republican
  • Spilled red wine all over my pretty dress, silk pashmina and hose and spent the rest of the evening wet and cold. Ick!
  • Talked with Simon until I had to pull myself away at 3:00 a.m. Dude, I’ll come back–we still need to break out that champagne!

    Photos and videos are posted on the Facebook event; full photos from the weekend are on my Flickr.

    Thanks again to Simon for being the host with the most. I didn’t even mind the six floor walkup; that way, I didn’t have to worry about not working out for three days!

New York Poly Pride, Day 2

The day dawned a bit dreary and drippy, not the sunlight I’d been hoping for. But I drug myself out of my lovely host’s bed–he’s the best host EVER, not only because he’s a cute bi boy who obligingly kissed other cute bi boys for my titillation, but also because he provided me with an adorable cat to sleep with! Yes, cat. Two live with him now, and the runty black one, Lucy, curled up in the crook of my legs last night! Awwwww!

Google Maps told me the rally site was four miles away, directly up Central Park West, so I wandered over to the nearest main street, found a bus stop, checked the route and schedule and determined I had just enough time to grab a decaf latte at the Starbucks. On the bulletin board:

The second bus was equally easy and dropped me off right on 106th street, and I found the rally site, no problem. And what a rally it was! I’ve never attended a poly pride event, and it was inspiring! Everyone was there; Birgitte with her two adorable pups, Trace with his cute puppy Keno, the adorable Jenny Block–oh, hell; I can’t name all the names. It would be silly. Everyone who is anyone in poly was there. For me, it was a real treat to finally meet in person Alan, the Poly in the News guy (wow; he’s really tall!), Anita Wagner, Robyn Trask of Loving More and Serena Anderlini d’Onofrio, all folks I’ve talked with on the phone/via Skype/electronically over the past few years but never met in person!

I think there is real value to events like this. Participating in Poly Pride made me realize just how isolated our communities are–when I started chatting with folks and hearing stories, it seemed that every community, from Portland to Chicago to New York, had a different vibe.

And none of them know about or communicate with the others. When people asked me about the poly scene in Chicago, they were surprised to hear how differently it is structured compared to New York. Or Oregon. Or Berkeley. In a way, the poly movement reminds me kind of like the first year of my own poly relationship–intelligent, energized, great intentions, but without the support of a strong network of informed, experienced polys, it was fraught with unnecessary difficulties.

The New York scene is crazy organized. There is a leadership committee of 13 people, each with a specific role and willing to commit hours every week to outreach and organization. More than just one or two people trying to make a difference (although that is certainly where Poly NYC began), this is a well-oiled machine with many devotees spending many hours working together to produce popular, inclusive events.

Birgitte Phillippedes, President of Poly-NYC

And the scene is highly tied in to the GLBT community and frequently meets at the local GLBT center. In fact, many of the plethora of acts from Poly Pride were GLBT oriented–from gay club singer Houston Bernard to the Pixie Harlots to the three gay Jews to Hedda Lettuce, the fabulous green-bewigged MC, the acceptance of diversity of sexuality, orientation and spirituality was obvious.

But I digress. The rally itself was amazing! I spent most of the day running around, trying to grab speakers for audio interviews. And there are some fantastic ones coming up–the stunning goddess Birgitte Phillippedes herself; Justen, the founder of Poly NYC; Anita Wagner; Alan from Poly in the Media (speaking of his activism, not giving news reports!); Pete Benson (The Polyamory Handbook); and Reid and Marcia, relationship coaches and founders of Cuddle Parties.

I think my favorite acts were the three Jewish poly gay boys singing a capella; how adorable!

Singing, dancing, hula hoops, a big earth ball, dogs barking, frisbee, cuddle piles, great speeches–too much to say; too much to catalogue. I took a ton of photos and video, too, so check my Flickr for photos of the fun.

One last thing, though–Tristan Taormino’s keynote kicked fuckin’ ASS! Inspiring, charging, challenging–she’s seen the gay movement organize and demand recognition, and she challenged the poly movement to do the same. And seeing what Poly NYC has done, I believe we can get there!

New York Poly Pride, Day 1

Had a great time my first day in New York for the 8th annual New York Poly Pride!

I’m crashing with a lovely poly bi guy in the West Village, and on his block (not on his stree, mind you, but his block, I can get a tattoo, buy leather gear, get sounds, find crystals, get a $12 haircut, get my fortune told and buy a custom $1,000 suit with a steampunk twist that would make my buddy M jealous.

So I’m in this silly, touristy place where everything is fun for me because it’s IN NEW YORK. I rode the subway IN NEW YORK! I ate at a diner IN NEW YORK! I had a black and white cookie a la Seinfeld IN NEW YORK! I walked a mile IN NEW YORK! I ordered pie a la mode iN NEW YORK!

Such a silly girl I am.

Last night’s Cuddle Party was interesting/fun. One of the big thrills of this trip is the chance to meet people I’ve only known online and via Skype–Serena Anderlini d’Onoforio, Alan from Poly in the Media, the stunning goddess Birgitte Phillippides, T, my cute host Simon, poly therapist Beki, Mark from Poly-NYC… and there will be more today. It’s kind of nice to be able to put faces to all these amazing poly activist names. The scene her is so very vibrant–not just socially, but politically. They don’t just have a few munches here and call it a day; these are the rock stars of polyamory. And I get to be here, too!

Speaking of which, I should run my short talk down and pack my purse. Oh, and figure out which way Central Park is…

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