Sexiness has no boundaries, and neither should access to bathhouses.
That's what those trying to organize Toronto's first fully accessible sex party are trying to tell us. But it's hard to find a space in this town that's both sex-positive and accessible.
Some 60 people jammed Buddies two weeks ago (July 21) for Reclaiming The Gaze, an evening of short films and performances with a sex-and-disabilities theme by local filmmakers, writers and artists that raised funds for T.O.'s first accessible sex party, Acsexxxable, scheduled for sometime later this month.
Filmmaker Loree Erickson
had approached the Toronto Women's Bathhouse Committee, organizers of the famous Pussy Palace parties at local bathhouses, about a fully accessible party at a local bathhouse.
But those efforts went cold.
Renee Pilgrim , a committee member, tells me later that finding a bathhouse that's both accessible and sex-positive has proven "problematic."
Counters Erickson, "While space is an issue, that shouldn't be a reason to keep holding events in inaccessible places."
But even booking a fully accessible space has been challenging. Every time owners of a space find out Erickson wants it for a sex party, they jack up the rent, from $500 to $2,500 in one recent case.
Says Jes Sachse , the publisher of Crooked, a feminist disabilities zine, and a performer at the funder, "People are so afraid of fetishizing that they automatically look at you as asexual."
The fundraising night begins with a screening of Erickson's Want.
"I want to be a girl you picture naked," says the voice-over as intense making out occurs onscreen between Erickson in a wheelchair and another woman.
It's not all sex and sensibility. The evening ends on a comedic note with AJ Withers's film about horny differently-abled characters trying to escape an attacking horde of zombies.
Come as You Are co-owner Cory Silverberg , who helped organize the fundraiser, says, "The idea of a private sex party being fully accessible makes an important point about accessibility in general."