Today, not long after I'd got out of bed, I got my arse spanked by a dominatrix in Manchester's Sackville Gardens in the heart of the Gay Village.
As The Manchester Evening News discusses, The Spankathon events- led by campaigner and sex worker Charlotte Rose- aim to raise awareness of a change in the law.
The event began with Charlotte addressing the crowd outside gay bar / hotel The Rembrant, making it clear that we don't want the government to tell us- adults- which videos we can and can't watch when they feature other consenting adults.
As Charlotte's leaflet describes, “On December 1st, in secret, without debate, and without wider consultation, parliament pushed through new laws via amendments to “protect” women and children from the so called 'evils' of porn. Far from protecting anyone, these laws are confined by the conventions of a very narrow, straight male view of the world as they see it. They are wholly skewed in their selection of what is deemed acceptable clamping down far harder on expressions of women's sexuality than on men's.”
The laws would, weirdly, restrict British producers from depicting consensual spanking in their videos. This is happening in an era when, Charlotte reminds us, large online organisations like Facebook can't manage to take down videos of beheadings and people being burned alive.
Jane Fae, from the Consenting Adults Action Network (CAAN), took the mic next. “The problem of Government policy on censorship,” she described, “is that it is irrational and hurts the very people it supposedly protects.” She goes on to discuss that they have been contacted by students struggling with their sexuality- and the internet. “If someone at a college or university thinks that they may be gay and they type 'lesbian' into the search engine, the results are frequently blocked by the campus' filters.”
Before we began the main event, Charlotte reminded us all that we must ask permission before we spanked anyone and that the spanking mustn't be on bare skin, in case children were around.
At 12:30, to the sound of Madonna's Hanky Panky, the spanking began on a park bench. Charlotte set the ball rolling by taking a lady with pink hair over her lap and spanking her bottom. Hurrah!
Then, using the appropriately large seating area, the attendees gathered to lie over each other's laps whilst getting spanked. The next to feel campaigner-and-dominatrix Charlotte's firm hand was a reporter from national pervy red-top The Daily Sport, whilst his and other photographers snapped away. I got in on the action too, lying over Charlotte's lap and taking six of the best. Well, hey, if it's free...
Also in attendance was the Manchester Evening News, so I could end up on their site in the next 24 hours. Or even the paper. Who knows.
For more info see Charlotte's website.
And if the Government could please just let adults watch other adults doing what adults want to do, that'd be great.