400,000 visitors, 90 degrees
It’s been a while since I have been to a Folsom Street Festival and what I like about this festival is that it is an act of freedom, of sexual expression without judgment. I met my first porn star. A counselor said they were most impressed by him because he was in the industry for a long time. A short man walked by our tent without shoes, without clothes and had full on shackles on his hands, his feet and neck. It looked painful to watch him shuffle by. A counselor told me he is a high powered attorney who advocates for freedom of sexuality in public places. I felt my presence was impactful today. I provided HIV counseling to over dozens of people, some without clothing. I was able to counsel one man on his level of risk and ways to reduce it. It felt great to to provide support and education to someone to help them make their own decision on safer sex. Sex is a complex subject often filled with shame and stigma in many communities. In my shift we had seen 100 people, offering free HIV testing. I wore a black short spaghetti strap dress with buttons down the front and fishnet tights, black boots. Someone asked me if I was getting my kink on, and I said no, but I wanted to honor Folsom street without pretending to be something I am not, nor wearing normal clothes that would make me look like a spectator instead of an active participant. I felt comfortable and satisfied with my outfit choice and felt it did made a difference to the clients we served.
A few photos from the day: Batman without clothes under the cape. Footwear. The woman riding the man had an amazing back tattoo. The man in the mascot costume are called furries. There were lots of people with only tails because it was too hot to wear the entire suit. The carriage photo is a professional photo, taken from the Chronicle. I saw the chariots and carriages go by but I was caught up with observing and didn’t take a photo. I wanted to point out the man’s boots, they have no heels. He stayed on his toes the entire time.