Master Joe and slave kim from Melbourne, Australia, competed for the International M/s couple this year up at Southplains Leather Fest. They had asked me to be their “handler.” The problem with this was that I had no idea what was expected or required for this position, nor wise enough to ask anyone. They’d had no competition coaching and I had no handling coaching. That’s not good.
Joe didn’t need us to come up on Thursday, as it was the General Meeting for MAsT International and he, as MAsT’s Australian regional rep and president of MAsT Melbourne, had lots to do. We drove up on Friday and met with them in the late afternoon to schedule a time that evening to listen to their speeches.
There was a LOT of controversy swirling around the Australian Faction at this conference. Back in Melbourne nearly a year before, the VP for MAsT Melbourne got mad at Joe and quit the MAsT chapter and tried to form her own. Actually, she fomented a lot of trouble with MAsT International trying to take the chapter away from Joe on the grounds that he wasn’t providing enough “support” to MAsT members.
To shorten this very long story, I’ll say that this person then held an “Australian Master/slave Competition” and chose their titleholders. Now, at SPLF, this other couple (well know to Joe and Kim and people I’d met repeatedly when I was there in 2011, were claiming that Joe and Kim were not the only authorized international competitors. THIS is what had to be hashed out in the Thursday MAsT GM.)
We did what we could, but they did not win. It may have been in part due to kim’s prepared two-minute speech. It referenced much of the challenges they’d been through over the past year and was not likely taken well by the judges. She had been deeply hurt by the betrayal and bigotry of the “other group” in Melbourne and this was not likely received well by the judges.
Ultimately, Master figured out that a great deal of the “stumble” was cultural. Joe had been “doing” BDSM for decades. He had been a very active ProDom — a concept practically unheard of in this country. Here, there is a tremendous demarcation between ProDommes and “lifestylers.” Also, there is a very fuzzy line between BDSMers and M/s-ers in Australia. Here, the M/s people see themselves in a different sub-culture from those in BDSM clubs. The judges couldn’t tell whether Joe was really a BDSMer calling himself M/s or an M/s person who did an awful lot of work with the BDSM community.
Master and I thought both Joe and kim handled themselves extremely well, and we parted with long hugs all ‘round.