(oh, I cannot believe this has taken me a week to complete – for shame!!)
Pretty much exactly one week ago, I was on a plane… leaving Las Vegas and another year’s Adult Entertainment Expo (AEE), returning from whenst I came.
It was all very dramatic. (not really)
Held at a new venue, Las Vegas’ Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, AEE was wonderful this year – productive, inspiring in many respects, and super fun. And although I came away with a pretty severe case of Vegas Convention Cough, my feet weren’t nearly as jacked as they usually are after six days worth of five-inch heels (I like to be tall). Super win!!
(pictured: I was pretty excited about my badge this year)
Here’re some of my more note-worthy adventures and observations…
The highlight of this year’s show for me (and everyone else, I’m sure) had to be moderating my amazing panel, “It’s (not) A Man’s World – women leaders in the adult production and novelty industry.” The occupationally diverse collection of women panelists representing so many different areas of the business included Allison Vivas (Pink Visual), Joy King (Wicked Pictures), Stormy Daniels (Wicked Pictures), Lucy Vonne (Evolved Novelties), and Anne Hodder (Hodder Media)…
…and it went so well!! The room was packed, and the questions were incredible. Each speaker shared her experiences and perspective generously and openly – some pretty personal issues were raised, and these ladies dove right in. Whatsmore, even though I wasn’t technically a panelist, I had a couple opportunities to share some of my own insights and experiences (because let me tell you – just taking a serious sociological look at adult is enough to be extremely stigmatizing), as well as provide the audience with some broader sociological observations. It was delightful!!
I was so honored that these women felt compelled to take time out of their busy show schedules to be on my little ol’ panel, and it was such a privilege to be a part of something so amazing. I still can’t say thanks enough.
In case you missed it, here is the seminar program, with the panelists’ bios, and a nifty little clip from the panel itself featuring Anne Hodder and Stormy Daniels – so awesome!!
And there were many other wonderful panels this year – better, actually, than I ever recall them being in years past. It’s always so wonderful to hear from folks who are in the industry and on the front lines, creating and thinking and doing so much. Yay, learning!!
I met a lot of new people at this year’s show, but I have to say – my absolute favorites were the guys from ProBoner.org!! There is no way to explain ProBoner better than the way that Alex and Pearse and the gang explain themselves, so here you have it:
“Did you know that the same part of the brain that receives pleasure from sex is also stimulated by helping others? Imagine the earth-shattering-paradigm-breaking-Peter-North-dwarfing orgasms you could have by doing both at once.
At ProBoner.org, we’re transforming a $98 billion dollar porn business into a $98 billion dollar steamy, sexed-up force for change. Our site features real couples having real sex. Every time you get off at ProBoner.org, the proceeds go towards a cause of your choice. Yup, that’s right, 100% percent of the proceeds go towards helping those in need.
Bottom line: we’re making porn socially responsible, and we’re making better porn doing it. Double the pleasure. Zero guilt. Net positive for everyone involved. Join the Pro Boner movement while you help out those in need, including yourself.
Pro Boner. Let’s Beat It Together.
We offer $250 to our couples or to the cause of their choice. Our couples then share their love with the world by making high quality, homemade pornography for a great cause.
We engage our members by donating 100% of our proceeds to the cause of the member’s choice.
Our goal is to bring two seemingly disparate industries together for the benefit of all.” (about ProBoner here)
I could cry – ProBoner is pretty much the most amazing idea that I’ve ever heard, and helping these guys succeed at their current mission in life is now one of my missions in life!!
Philanthropic public health activist and Adam & Eve founder Phil Harvey gave the guys at ProBoner start-up funding after hearing about their incredible concept. Pretty badass!! I highly recommend checking out ProBoner. One must be the change they hope to see in the world (M. Gandhi-ish), and these guys are changing the world as we speak. Meeting them was definitely a highlight of this year’s AEE.
And that’s kind of how it went – one heart-pounding adventure topped with meeting a new series of incredible someones after another. My six days in Vegas were a swirlwind of activity – meetings and interviews (some of which involved me being interviewed, oh lordy!!) and lots of hanging out. I lost at video poker, but I got have a long chat with Richie Calhoun, who is incredibly interesting.
The awards show this year left much to be desired. Fraught with technical difficulties and an epically late start, I couldn’t even hear host Dave Attell so I retreated early… off to do other things on my last night in Vegas!!
This lovely photograph was taken pre-show in the Hard Rock’s The Joint venue/theatre though, so that made everything ok.
Many members of the industry approached this year’s AEE with a significant and somewhat warranted measure of trepidation – times are financially tough, the venue was new (read: smaller), and many of the industry’s big players were not as visible as they had been in years past. But I gotta tell you…
The Hard Rock looked packed to me (but maybe that was a trick to look full that I totally fell for…) and just because some people/companies didn’t spend hundreds of thousands of dollars on a booth didn’t mean they weren’t around. Perhaps this is simply one artifact of a cultural move towards cutting the glut and getting to the meat of this particular event’s intended purpose: business interactions and socializing amongst industry peers and ample opportunity for fans to see the folks who star in their favorite adult films. So I don’t know… maybe AEE’s got some life left?
See you next year Las Vegas… I hope!!
(pictured: not a very good picture of where the booths and things were)
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