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The Folsom Street Fair is Like Nothing Else in the World!

I love the Folsom Street Fair.  It is always a blast.  An afternoon long, multi-block long, kinky street festival in San Francisco held in late September each year.  I went to my first one back in '91 and have rarely missed a year since.  Living in Los Angeles as I do, the airfares up to SF are pretty cheap.  Finding a place to stay can be expensive if you approach it the wrong way.  The best thing to do is to make friends with some City residents and then - politely - ask if you can crash at their place for the event.  Longtime residents of Sodom-By-The-Sea expect this.  They realize that it is actually in the San Francisco City Charter that they must host their out of town acquaintances.  The law is the law you know.

Seriously, this event is a great party and a fun time in a great and fun city.  I have always enjoyed myself when I have gone up there for it.  The City fills with leatherfolk from the world over for this weekend and there is always something fun to watch and or do.

Some long time attendees of Folsom decry how large the event has gotten and how many tourists now crush into the streets.  Well, that may be so but it doesn't detract from the fun for me.  I like crowds.  I like there being a lot going on to see.  Also, Folsom has always been this way for me.  I notice little difference from the first Folsom I went to in '91 to the most recent one in 2002.  Each one was a crowded event and each one had a wonderful mix of leatherfolk, kinky folk, and tourists.  A great blend.  Just be sure to bring your camera and leave your attitude behind.

Folsom 2018

I extracted a good enough time out of Folsom this year.  And that was a telling thing.  That I had to work as hard at it as I did just to have fun up there made it real clear to me that this'd be my last Folsom for a while.  How long I don't know.  I'm writing this literally when Folsom 2019 is taking place and my looking back at the images and write up of the fun I had a previous Folsoms just reminds me of how much the event has had to change for me to view it so poorly now.

The Fair started off nicely enough with my helping Ann get herself into Beauty pony-mode and be part of the Cavalcade of other ponies and critters making a round or two of the Fair.  While we were waiting for the rest of the ponies and their handlers to show up a friend and fellow bootman, Morris, passed by and we took the time to catch up a bit.

Bootman Morris

After making our laps around the Fair I helped Ann stow her cart and then off I went to take in the rest of the day myself.  First stop, of course, was getting my two bootblack tickets.  Once I felt I'd taken in enough that early I went back to the booth and got my Dehner's shined nicely.  The folks running the booth were pissy right from the outset about any photography there.  So even when Ann came by to take a photo of my sitting in the bootblack chair and getting my boots nicely tended to, the pissy queens got pissy about her doing so.  Yeah, that did NOT sit well with me.  I asked the fine man who'd polished my fine boots to take this shot of me freshly shined.

Freshly shined

I then returned the favor by taking his photo - outside of the bootblack booth, of course.

Happy bootblackSome things I want to point out here.  Look at the image of me in the booth above here and at the booth canopy behind the bootblack on the left.

Note how low that canopy is?  Note how dark it is inside the booth itself.

Note how that when you're up on one of the bootblack stand's chair you can't really see out to the Fair around you.  And nor can anyone really see in.  In the Sun's glare it's dark inside there and all anyone walking by will see is the bottom half of folks getting their boots shined.  Not terribly exciting or connecting, that.

This is by design and it is a fairly recent choice of the folks running the bootblack booth.  When they first got a pavilion canopy to shade the bootblacks it was set sufficiently high that everything in the booth was still visible and everyone in the booth could still remain a part of Folsom even as they say there.

Contrast the image of me above with this one from just 2012.  Notice how much more open and welcoming the booth was then?

When I came back to get my Corcoran's done the folks running the booth were so hostile to the idea of even taking a picture of me in my shiny jump boots that I just said "screw it" and walked off.  They've successfully turned what used to be a high point of being at Folsom into yet another reason of why I've no reason to go back.  Yay us.

In between all that I did enjoy what was there to be enjoyed.  There was, as usual some truly handsome men and gorgeous ladies there.  As well as no few sexy folk in between that gender spectrum.

A handsome manThis handsome lad - and he was just trying to look fierce in this particular photo - had some truly nice curves that his latex outfit showed nicely.  The outfit also nicely showed his extensive ink.  And what originally caught my eye was his oh-so-curvaceous ass!

I'm not sure what, exactly, her presentation was all about but I thought she was quite striking as she pulled it off nicely.A cute girl

Some lovely gurlsAs the day wore down I chanced upon these to gurls.  They were quite friendly, as it were.  Don't let the oh-so-serious look on the lass there on the right fool you.  Quite friend indeed.

Also toward the day's end there was this couple doing a nice bit of street scene playing on one of the side streets at the Fair.  The rope work being rigged was what first caught my eyes.  The red against his skin and all that against the black of the garage door was striking.  Of course, San Francisco being San Francisco, the clouds decided to roll in as I began snapping away.  Hence the somewhat muted tones of the image.

Street play

And that was about it for Folsom 2018.  I only took a relative handful of shots that year.  Not the hundreds as I had in previous years.  I was concentrating on just being at the event more than photographing it.  But it's changes just began piling up too much for me to have as good a time as I have in previous years.  I've thought about this a bit more and worked up an essay about Folsom Changes that you can read over on My Opinion page.

At the least I'll be giving a break to myself in making an annual pilgrimage to Baghdad By The Bay.  We'll see how long that lasts.

Folsom 2017

Folsom 2017 was another enjoyable year to be up in SF.  It was also another year of my not taking the usual huge number of pictures.  I also didn't get a nice bear buzz going on as there was no Sapporo and thus I had less incentive to put up with the long lines to get those beers.  Still though, I had enough and was in a nice relaxed mood by day's end.  The weather was sunny but not too warm.  And that was just right for comfortably wearing fetish outfits as well as showing a nice amount of skin.  Well, some guys would always show plenty of skin no matter what the weather.  But I'm not counting them...

The Fair started off with my once again taking Beauty's reins for her laps around the Fair in the morning.  We were part of the "cavalcade" of ponys and critters making the rounds at the Fair's start.

Beauty and Me - Handymann's Photo

After a lap or two around it was time for us to head off to take in the Fair on our own.  One of the things which caught my eye was this bunch.  I really - truly - despise these "Ask First" shitheads.

"Ask First" Shitheads

They're a bunch of sanctimonious authoritarian shitheads.  That Folsom is even allowing them to buy a booth is an insult to the whole purpose and history of the Folsom Street Fair.  This bunch of assholes demand that everyone respect their privacy while they're letting their freak flags fly at the Folsom Street Fair.  Demanding that people "ask first" before taking their picture is something they dress up with all the usual politically correct sanctimony but they're out on a public street - literally in the middle of a public street - at a public event and thus have no right or expectation of privacy.  We already have plenty of laws covering harassment and unauthorized use of photographic imagery.  These little gits want to control everyone around them by demanding their privacy in public.  Fuck them.  Their attitude and demands are a cancer on what Folsom is all about.

So, I always make a point of photographing their booth and photographing any of the little virtue signaling shits wearing one of their stickers - all without stopping to "ask first."

After making a round or two of the Fair I decided to hit up the boot black station.  This, to make use of the first of the two boot blacking tickets I'd purchased as soon as the Fair officially opened.  That's the key to getting a shine without having to wait in line.  You find the boot black booth early in the day and get your numbered ticket.  The way they then handle things is whoever has the lower ticket number gets at the head of the line for the next boot black.  Thus, buying my tickets first thing in the day means I can then hit up the booth when it is convenient for me later on.  And that's exactly what I did whilst wearing my Dehner Patrol Boots.  I like getting 'em shined at such events as it usually means the boot blacks there are part of the community and really, deeply, love boots and their craft.  Once again, I was far from disappointed at this year's bootblack stand at Folsom.

Bootblack Energy

Later in the day I repeated the process to get my Corcoran's shined.  And, once again, I got both an excellent shine and some wonderful bootblack energy.

More bootblack energy

Through my travels back and forth across the length of the Fair I saw a number of intriguing sights.  Among these were this bunch of nicely costumed costumers.

Nicely costumed costumers

The guy camping it up in the center of the image there had made his "wig" out of bubble wrap and it was fabulous!  He's quite improved from last year's outfit!

More Street Theater I've no idea what this lad here on the left was up to with his outfit but it fit perfectly at Folsom.

These two on the right were fun to watch.  They were both drunk as skunks and loudly bitching at each other as they stumbled 'round the Fair.  Just more "street theater" to take in at Folsom!
Drunken Queens

And then there was this lass.  Her outfit was imminently practical!  She was wearing a headpiece that plainly put "safety first" as well as providing two excellent handgrips for some serious boinking.  She was the epitome of the Practical Slut!

A Practical Slut

And that pretty much wrapped up my Folsom 2017.  I'm going to have to try something different for Folsom 2018.  My usual routine is to pull into town on the Friday night, check in to the America's Best Value Inn - SOMA, perhaps catch a bite to eat over at Rocco's and then call it a night.  Saturday sees me up and off to the Castro - after having breakfast at Rocco's - for my usual haircut, manicure / pedicure at Queen Bee Nails, browsing through Worn Out West, scoring a slice or two of pizza at Escape From New York Pizza, then hanging out a bit at the Starbucks on 18th before heading back down to SOMA to dive into the fun at Mr. S.

Well, it's been a couple years now since the Escape From New York pizza joint closed.  The new place is okay but it's not the same.  What is now the Starbucks there on 18th used to be Pasqua's Cafe and it had a very different "vibe" that what's replaced it.  Worn Out West used to be on Castro but it's moved over to a storefront on Market.  Again, a different "vibe" to it all.

Plus Castro Street itself has drastically changed.  They widened the sidewalks to make them more "pedestrian friendly" and that they are - but that made the whole area much worse for cars to get to and through.  That space also is harder to fill up so it makes the Castro - even on Folsom weekend - seem more empty.  The whole neighborhood is also much more gentrified and vanilla - and hetero.  That too has greatly changed the "vibe" and the fun of hanging out there.

Getting back down to SOMA and heading over to Mr. S is still fun.  The place is jam packed on Folsom weekend.  It's their busiest time of the year and you can still get a "contact high" just from hanging out inside the shop.  Plus they've a keg running all day on Saturday with but a "requested donation" to keep your cup filled.  It makes for some fun times.

Saturday night I took Ann out for her birthday to a nice dinner up in the North Beach section of town at the "North Beach Restaurant" on Stockton.  Good eats there.

Later I went out that night to a play party where I ran into an old friend from when I lived down in San Diego.  We caught up as we watched the various goings on go on.  But, I called it a somewhat early night to be ready for Folsom the next morning.

Next time I think I'll try a different routine on the Saturday and perhaps look for other parties to attend that night as well.  I dunno.  I need to mix it up a tad as it seemed a bit stale for me this year.  Still fun and worthwhile but I do need to do something different.

Folsom 2016

Another year of just "being" at Folsom.  I didn't take hardly any photos this year.  Some, yes.  But not nigh as many as I used to.

Handsome Man

I've said before that I'm a sucker for guys with Longhair.  Especially for handsome guys with Longhair and this handsome man with his mane fit that bill quite nicely.  His grin here added to it all.  He'd notice me lining up my camera and after I'd snapped away we began talking.  I actually got asked out on a date as a result!  Had I lived up in SF, as he does, I'd have taken him up on it!
A Man After My Own Heart!

This is Eric Alden here to the right.  He was that year's Mr. New England Leather and was at Folsom fresh from IML.  Aside from being a fine looking man what I found even more impressive was his choice of footwear at Folsom.  Boots can look sexy, be utterly fitting for a leather presentation and also be hard on the feet as you pound the pavement at Folsom.  These high heel platforms however, had to be excruciating to be pounding pavement around in all day there at Folsom.

Yet, there here was looking truly fierce in those heels!

Fierce Heels
A Man After My Own Heart!

Impressive Impressive!

I found this lad's outfit to be particularly impressive.  His "hair piece" is all bubble wrap packaging but it's packaged in a truly fabulous manner.  This guy looked flawless in this outfit and was a great addition to the street theater that is Folsom.

As usual, there was a whole lot going on at Folsom.  That's why I enjoy attending as much as I do.  This year there was a rather dedicated human pony doing it as a four legged variety instead of the normal two legged version.  That's just as uncomfortable as it sounds.

I found my usual assortment of nicely curvaceous butts to behold.  There was this one guy with some truly dense body fur.  The crowd was peeping into the peeping booth.  And the food vendors were really smokin' up the joint.

I also found the time during all of this to get my Dehners shined by a very happy Boot Black Boy.

So, all in all, it was another fine year to be up at Folsom!

Folsom 2015

Mark Chester does wonderful work

Ann and I got some fetish photos done on the Saturday prior to Folsom.  She had some outfits she wanted photographed.

Beauty and I

High fetish indeed.  This image is about as "How We Do Folsom" as it can get!
It's called "play" for a reason!
Happy and kinky! The best way to be!
Happy and kinky - the best way to be!

The next when actually amidst the Fair I didn't wind up taking as many pictures as I usually do.  Instead, I just enjoyed the day and the crowds.  I did take some images however...

Ink at Folsom 15

There's always lots of skin and lots of skin art on display at Folsom.

I've always enjoyed seeing such artistry and the people with it there are only too happy to display it.

These likely lads here on the left are perfect examples of this.
More ink at Folsom 15
This lad here has taken a more traditional approach to the ink artwork adorning his skin
An interesting combo This one here however, is anything but traditional.


I do enjoy the male form with Longhair.  And with Folsom being up in the Bay Area, there are plenty of guys who have resplendent manes on display.

Longhair at Folsom 15
I'll bet this mane is quite impressive when untied. Longhair at Folsom 15
Another good looking mane on a good looking man. Longhair at Folsom 15

Stompers Boot Black

Damn but, I miss Stompers!

Aside from being a great place to shop for boots, it was also a great place to hit up on Folsom for their backyard boot party.

There was food and beer to be had for all booted folk.  PLUS there was a bootblack on duty!

At Folsom 15 I availed myself of both!
The Results!

Old School!

Doin' it "old school!"

I admired this guy's dedication.  He was out at Folsom and using an old high resolution film camera to take his imagery.  This, when it's now considered somewhat old fashioned to use even a modern digital camera as everyone is usual just whipping out their cellphones to get the pics they're after.  He was also in the right place at the right time for some truly great images - late afternoon as the sunlight is low on the horizon and its "warmest" for photographing people in all their glory.


Also late in the afternoon I spied this couple.  The lighting was hitting them just perfectly as they cut a path through the crowd.  Both of them looked quite impressive as they made their way down Folsom.
A striking couple

Folsom 2013
Another year and another Folsom.  Once again, Ann and I were doing her pony play stuff.  This year however, I went off a bit more on my own.  I didn't take many photos of my own but was lucky enough to be deemed visible by others and thankful for that.
SF Station Image of Beauty and I

This is about as quintessential a Folsom image as you can get.  This was part of the "Cavalcade" which the pony play / animal play folks up in San Franc put on at Folsom.  They all gather and do a lap or two around the length of the Fair.  They do this right as the event opens as the crowd soon gets too tick for it to work later.  I'm in my leather uniform shirt, leather jodhpurs, and my Dehners looking about as traditional a "Tom of Finland" leatherman as I can look.  And Beauty there up front is equally as resplendent in her pony attire.  It's a fun thing to do at Folsom.
Andy Barret did an excellent job taking this image

Andy Barrett caught this image of me as Folsom 2013 wound its way down.  It was late afternoon and I was quite relaxed - thanks in no small part to all the Sapporos I'd had that day.  The lighting was perfect at that time and Andy paused to capture this one as I had propped myself up against the tree there to watch the crowd flow past.

Folsom 2012

Folsom 2012

It's been a while.  At least a while since last I updated my Folsom experiences.  Since 2008 I've actually not missed a Folsom.  And it's not like I wasn't enjoying my attendance each year for I most certainly was.  What was different for those years is that I was there with my partner, Ann, and Folsom for her was all about pony play.  That had its advantages and was an amazing thing to be a part of.  Doing pony play the way we did it at Folsom meant that I was no longer an attendee of the event but became part of the event.  Instead of being largely a "consumer of content" I was among the people who were the "content" of Folsom.  It was a blast doing that but it also made it a tad difficult to take in the event itself - let alone take photos of it to then share.

Folsom 2011 was my last time with Ann there as my partner.  Folsom 2012 was my first time since '08 where I was able to take in Folsom the way that I am used to doing so and where I was once again but an attendee enjoying all that was there before me.  I took over three hundred photos that day and have been distilling them down what I think shows best what Folsom 2012 was for me this year.

Eye Candy!

Three likely lads at Folsom

This is pretty standard fare for the "traditional" image of what Folsom is: big, muscular, handsome, sexy men in leather.  Kinda hard to argue with such eye candy.  Walking up and down Folsom during that afternoon you're quite likely to see lots of this.  I certainly did.  I caught up with these guys late in the afternoon.  I like that time of day at Folsom as the sun is low on the horizon and yields some wonderful warm and full lighting which can really bring out the warmth and colors you can see through the lens.  Also by that time of day, enough beer has flowed to make a goodly number of the Festival's participants quite happy.  I think our Red Fleet lad there on the right demonstrates that well enough.

These three guys were certainly friendly enough but they did ask a price of me for my taking their photo.  Namely, they wanted to see if I was "regimental" under my kilt.  Well, I am ALWAYS regimental under my kilt!  I found they also had a nice strong grip.  No surprise that.  While our sailor boy on the right didn't say much, the other two did and it turns out they're from Canada.  By their accents, I'd say the Quebec part of the Great White North.  Anyway, it was a pleasure interacting with them.  And that, for me, is one of the joys of Folsom - interacting with the people there.


Folsom for me started out early enough with making my first loop as the event opened.  Also making a first loop around the Festival were the Ponies.  And the critters as well.  No surprise, Beauty and Tinnie were leading the herd.


Beauty decided to show a bit more flesh this year 'round and I know it was well appreciated.


Tinnie was also in fine form and doing her part to keep bringing pony play to Folsom.

One thing I like about pony play is that there is lots and lots of room for creativity with it.  This couple, for example, demonstrated that quite well with their converted wheelchair as a pony "cart."  The pony girl was also wearing tap shoes and that enhanced the "clip clop" of her "hooves."  I like such creativity at this event.

Pony play creativity

Quite unexpectedly, this year turned into a "boot Folsom" for me.  In years past I made a point of hooking up with the crowd and enjoying the company of other bootmen and afficiandos.  But, after that last time a "boot mood" struck me, I was pretty much set.  Or, so I thought.

I had just been up to the Castro to get a haircut and get my nails done.  Yes, I get my nails manicured and pedicured.  Deal with it.  I went to Daddy's Barbershop for the hair bit and got nicely done by ArlenQueen Bee Nails took care of the bits on my digits.  I've Frank to thank for that recommendation.  Anyway, all nicely groomed and trimmed, I made my way back down to SOMA.  I had to push past the nudist rights demo taking place there at Castro and Market but, somehow, I made it.

Once I'd showered and got appropriately dressed (Mr. S shirt, tank Uk, and desert boots,) I headed off to the Mr. S Leathers store.  If you've never been to their store on the Saturday before Folsom you owe yourself a visit.  The place was packed shoulder to shoulder (and butts to nuts) with wall to wall hot 'n horny men.  Everyone there was having a good time and doing so without even having to buy anything.  The atmosphere in that store at that time was intoxicating.  You could get a contact sexual high just from standing inside the shop.  Everyone was that happy, that turned on, and the much fun to be around.  That the guys running Mr. S also had set up a keg dispensing free beer helped.  A bit. 

One thing I did have to laugh at though was the bathroom there at Mr. S.  This year, as opposed to the last time I was in that shop on Folsom weekend, the bathroom wasn't just spotlessly clean it was also quite pungently clean.  VERY pungently clean.  Pine Sol or what ever other industrial strength / industrial smell cleaner they used had rendered the air inside the bathroom almost noxious with its scent.  Now, there could've just been some unfortunate spillage that required the use of a lot of that stuff.  Or perhaps the cleaning staff just likes the smell.  Or perhaps my schnoz is just overly sensitive to it.  Perhaps.

But I really can't help speculate on the inhibiting effect that such a powerful chemical smell has on anybody who sought to use the stalls in the bathroom for anything other than single occupant privacy while voiding ones bowels.  This, as opposed to perfect places for a quickie to act on that contact high from out there on the main floor of the store.  Smart move on Mr. S's part as anyone who obtained such a release would most likely no longer be in such an eager-to-consume mood.

In any event, I had a great amount of fun wandering around the shop and taking it all in.  The beer helped but more so did the happy, sexy, eager guys filling the place.  Eventually, I found an item I just could not live without and reluctantly made my exit.  I decided that since it was in the neighborhood and since I had damn little else to do otherwise, I'd at least hit up Stompers Boots.  Not that I was expecting much from them.  The last time I'd tried shopping there I was disappointed.  But, like I said, I was in the neighborhood and I was "up for it" to say the least.

Much to my surprise however, Stompers did have merchandise which caught my eye.  The eye candy filling the store also caught my eye but they weren't the "for sale" type.  In this case it turned out to be another pair of Corcorans.  Only this time, it was a pair made out of regular boot leather and not like the last pair of Corcorans I bought.  The leather of that pair is such that only the heel counter and toe cap could really be shined.  The rest of the uppers are made of a leather specifically finished not to take a shine.  This has always been something I've regretted about those boots despite their fitting so well and their being genuine Corcorans.

Well, here at Folsom this year at Stompers they had fully shineable Corcoran jump boots.  And that was all it took for me. 

While I was there this young lass walked in and began chatting up the staff there and showing them the pictures from her step-down ceremony.  Turns out, her name is Luna and she was the California Bootblack 2011 and the International Community Bootblack 2012.  Imagine that, a bootblack titleholder showing up at the Stompers Boots store.  For her step-down outfit she wore some delightfully and utterly femme black and white custom made dress that apparently caused quite the stir.  Good on her!

I left Stampers that afternoon wearing my brand new Corcoran Jump Boots and was quite happy with myself for it.  Yay me!

A bit later that afternoon I wound up over at the San Francisco Erotic Art Exhibition 2.  I was in hides from head to toes and it was something of a shame that I was really the only guy there in full-on fetish attire.  I guess the event is still a tad young and needs more publicity.  While there I enjoyed the creations of all involved.  Particularly Yancy Mendoza's pieces.  He, in turn, appreciated the efforts I went to in turning out for the event.  I was pleasantly surprised to see an artist like Nancy Peach tapping into an icon like Peter Berlin.  A good trend, that.

The next day, at Folsom, one of the very first things I did was seek out the bootblack booth to get their first official shine.  Turns out, Luna was working the booth that day.  Another, "gee, go figure!" moment.  I put my name, got my little numbered card and roamed around a bit waiting for my turn and her chair to open up.  Eventually, it did.  In the meantime however, I enjoyed some of the eye candy also getting their boots shined.

First up was this fine example of leatherman:

Hot Daddy Gets A Shine!

Damn, but he was distracting!  Now, I'm pretty sure this guy used to be - or perhaps still is - one of the models for Mr. S.  If not, he certainly could be.

I'm not sure if it was an effect of that chair on that end of the bootblack stand but a while later there was this other bit of eye candy occupying it.

Sharp eye candy!

She too was wonderfully distracting!  And she also turned out to be VERY well armed as I counted at least three knives tucked into various places there in her shorts!

Adding a bit of "fantasy" and no small amount of "cosplay" to the day was this fine gent.  Or rather, his Royal Highness, the Goblin King, Jareth.

Jareth, the Goblin King

He had the hair, the eye makeup, the white poet shirt, the gray  tights and the boots down spot on.  Very sexy and nice to see  someone wearing such a costume to an event like Folsom.  I have to wonder though, just how many folk caught the reference.

Eventually, it was my turn however, and Luna was pleased to recognize me from the day before.  It was good to connect with the bootblack who was doing my boots for the first time.  I was glad for that.  And, as I would expect from a bootblack competition winner, she did a most excellent job on them!

Luna at work

Oooh!  Shiny!

And this time, unlike the last time, when I got a picture of me in my freshly first ever shined boots, I actually showed up in the picture!  Thank you Olga and Blu!

Newly shined boots!

This was a great way to start my day!

But, the boot fun for Folsom 2012 wasn't over for me

Later that afternoon I wound up over at Stompers.  Each Folsom afternoon they have a little boot party out in the "backyard" of their shop.  This was the first year I hit them up and it was well worth it.  There were plenty of sexy boots being worn by plenty of sexy bootmen and bootwomen too!  And if ever there was a place to show your appreciation and enthusiasm for all that, then this was it.  Just ask Blu here.

Boot appreciation

Both she and I appreciated the boots Olga was trying on.  Not sure if she eventually bought them and if not, then those boots have a jump start in the personal energy invested in them for their new lucky buyer.

Of course, it would've been wrong to have left out the oh-so-helpful Stompers bootman helping Olga and Blu come to their boot purchasing decision.  Very wrong.

Being helpful

Yes, very wrong indeed.

Appreciating the man's boots...

Interestingly enough, it turns out to have been ten full years since my last "boot mood" at a Folsom.  It was back at Folsom 2002 when I was last in Stompers and last buying any sort of boots at a Folsom.  Hard to believe the time has passed like that.  Also hard to believe the pair of Corcorans I bought back then are now a full decade old!

A Contrast

Amusingly enough, just next door to the Stompers store there was a semi-private party going on and its attendees were a wee bit different from the crowd hanging out just a couple of doors down.

Yes another sissy gets spanked

Another sissy gets spanked!

This very sexy mistress kept herself quite busy for quite a while there on that afternoon.  I managed to hit up Stompers twice that day and she was out front there working over different sissies every time I passed by.  The party itself had a nice assortment of such gender bending and gender fucking going on.  Some were "classic" sissies in girly attire.  Some were club kiddie androgynette.  And others were just intent on doing their own thing in bending the holy blue hell out of the entire gender role concept.

Eye candy!

That would be one truly interesting football team he's playing for!

Ink 2012

Tattoos at Folsom always catch my eye.  There's a lot of very creative folk who turn up to this event and no few of them carry that on to the creativity they impart onto their own flesh.

This lad's ink was quite eye catching.

Great ink!

The ink this lad worked up on himself was about as impressive as the flesh it adorns.

Muscle ink

What really caught my ink appreciating eye though, was the works on this lad.  He was quite literary in his adornments.

Literary ink

I have more shots of him that I hope he follows through in contacting me for as I really like how they came out.


Early in the day, at the 10th Street end of the Festival, I spied a series of dancers up on box platforms.  At that particular moment, they all were sporting Leather Pride Flag colors that they were twirling way as they moved to the pounding music.  The visual assembly of all this was quite striking as the colors twirling made for quite the imagery.

Pride Dancers

While that was visual enough, it was the bliss of the dancers which really struck me.  In particular, the bliss of this one lass as she joyously twirled away there that day.


She is another one who I hope follows through as I've a series of great shots of her twirling away in her joy.


Folsom Sights
One of the things I enjoy most about Folsom is just the simple act of being in the midst of it to take it all in.  Of going there with no pressing agenda than just to be there and enjoy it as it offers itself up to me.

In doing that, I get to share in what everyone else there brings to that event themselves.  Sometimes, it's their own selves which I enjoy sharing.  That's the case with these lads here on the left.  There were three of them strung together and I really liked how that flowed between them.

In other cases, the individuals have gone to no small length in turning themselves out for Folsom.  And the creativity there is just as eye catching and wondrous to share.  That's what I did with these two here on the right.  They worked hard at getting their "look" done just right.  The first pic I took of them they struck a "professional" pose which, for me, was damn near worthless.  It was when I asked them to smile however, that the beauty of their efforts came out.

And then there's the spectacular Folsom

Spectacular Folsom

These two were quite the pair.  They had enough sequins, make-up, and glam on to lay waste to an entire Vegas showgirl chorus line.  And they were having a blast that afternoon.

Gas mask hottie The "gas mask hottie" here on the left was quite eye catching even without the gear.  And side from that tasty looking physique, he was also sporting some very well done ink.  His partner there with him seems quite happy about it all - and rightly so!

In a well appreciated difference this year at Folsom, I saw this female muscle beauty there at the event.  I can't recall ever seeing other such women at Folsom.  As you might imagine, she was not wanting for attention that afternoon.  And rightly so as well!

I hope her presence starts a trend as I know I'd appreciate it!
Muscle Beauty

As I've mentioned, I really like the late afternoon sun at Folsom.  The lighting is great, the bulk of the crowd has moved on, and of those that remain, they're usually pretty mellow and in a lot of cases quite unique.  Unique, such as this fine gent.

Eye candy

There are few other places in the world where you could wear such spectacular shades and fit right in while doing so.

Now, of these next images, I'm not exactly sure what was going on about them. 

I'm sure there must've been some point to having a big inflatable King Kong atop the building but I'll be damned if I know what it was.  It did make for an often captured image that day.

King Kon

This group was well and elaborately turned out.  I'm not sure what the intent was, but it was striking none-the-less.

Not sure here...

And then there was this bit of graphic oddness on display at the Festival.  The "S&M Obama"  I'd seen from previous years. But the Hellfire armed Predator drones sporting gay pride flag colors was something entirely new.  And there was at least one guy walking around the Festival with more of these posters for sale.

Really not sure...

I saw this gent in line to get some Festival food and, aside from being entirely covered in silver body paint, he was sporting a truly striking bit of ear jewelry that I thought well worth the moment.

Silver shiny

Another thing I like about Folsom is the sense of frolic that so many of the attendees bring to it.  This little clutch here was frolicking quite intently and doing so right outside the entrance to the hotel I was staying in.  Apparently, for the guy on the left here, it was his first date with the lass there in the middle.  And it looked like they were hitting it off just fine.

First Date Frolic

As the afternoon wore down into early evening, and as the San Francisco weather did its usual frosty thing, I enjoyed the change in energy and scenery that this brought with it.

I made sure to stop at the Utilikilts booth and get a shot of me in my brand new black Uk.  The folks running the booth were willing enough to take the pic even though I'd bought that Uk at their Seattle store and not at their booth.  Later on, the same Uk booth lad was even willing to "Morgan" for me.

I'm not sure who's booth this was but the play station frame they had there was quite beautifully done and made for a great image.  I really like the lines and the curves and its contrast with the sky behind it.

Folsom moments

I kept my eyes peeled at that time for other such intriguing compositions and was well rewarded for it.

Folsom moments

Other such "Folsom moments" weren't nearly so artistic.  While the attendees enjoy the Festival, the folks who work the Festival do just that - work.  And by Festival's end, they're done.  Very done.

Folsom moments

Yeah, we got yer glamor, right here!

Folsom moments

I don't know, there was just something captivating about this guy as he sat there at Festival's end.  A few minutes prior - half an hour at the most - and the crowd would've been too thick to have gotten this image.  As it was, at this moment, he and I could've been the only ones out there.  I don't know his story, I don't know his name, and I've no idea why he was there.  But, there he was and the composition of the moment really struck me.

Men With Strong Hands

But Folsom isn't only about the images or the spectacles.  It's also about the people there at Folsom.  In this particular case, as I walked around in my Uk at Festival's end, I encountered a couple of men who also turned out to have very strong hands. 

Arlen, for instance, had a nicely developed grip that was quite fun to rock back away from and I enjoyed how in place his grip remained.  So too did a bunch of other people around us with their cameras.  I was however, too... focused... to ask for copies of those images. 

Arlen has a strong grip

Arlen is also the lad who cut my hair at Daddy's on Saturday.  It was good to see him at the Festival as well.

These two lads here, aside from being fellow kilt fans, also had good, strong grips.  Like I said, I like that.  A lot.

More guys with strong grips

And that was about it.  I'd spent almost the entire Folsom 2012 out amongst the middle of it.  The only time I was in the midst of was when I was in the midst of the Stompers boot party or up in my hotel room executing yet another quick costume change.  That is one great advantage of being right there at the Festival as I swapped out of my leather BDUs & leather shirt into my leather shirt, jodhpurs and Dehners and then into my tan Uk, Catskill Moccasins and then into my leather kilt and then into my black Uk and Catskills.  Like I like saying: change is good. Change or die.

So, by Festival's end, I was more than spent.  The numerous Sapporos I'd downed had to have helped with that to at least some degree.  But, at least I could carry myself away from the event and back to my hotel room.  I do have to admit however, that it would've been fun to have been carried away from the Folsom Street Festival 2012 like this lass got carried away!

Carried Away

Perhaps next year!

Folsom 2011

Folsom 2011 Roman Ponygirl

Practice made it perfect!

With a year's familiarity and time to think about it, we perfected things.  Beauty went out and got an actual harness made for herself that allowed her to pull the chariot with her body and not just with her arms.  Plus, we did more work on me standing in the right position to keep the chariot balanced so that it didn't exhaust her arms trying to do so herself.

The result was truly smashing!

This year she was able to pull the Roman Chariot all around the Festival without any exhaustion.  And we were quite the hit.  This, even with it being a cloudy and rainy Folsom.

Folsom 2010

After the fun we had doing the ponyplay thing at the previous year's Folsom we decided to "bump it up a notch" for this year's.  To that end, Ann had a friend of hers help her making a chariott for her to pull instead of the usual cart.  And we went with a "Roman" theme for it all.

In the months leading up to Folsom I scoured the Web to assemble my half of the ensemble.  I went as "Tribune Madoc Hibernicus Britanicus Maximus, commander of the Emperor's Ponygirl Legion."  That meant I sported an officer's armor and a "Praetorian" style helmet.  The "musculata" armor I found online and the helmet I ordered from a company in France.  I got everything together while I was working in Aurora, Colorado and even had the armor and the tunic altered by an amorer I'd found at the Colorado Rennaissance Faire.  

I'd also found a source for a Roman Legionnaire Cavalry sword and a Legionnaire's
personal  dagger.  Rounding the outfit out, I even found a source to make me a pair of custom Roman Legionnaire's sandals.  I was as authentic as I could get.  So, come Folsom, I was all set.

Tribune Madoc Hibernicus Britanicus Maximus, commander of the Emperor's Ponygirl Legion and his Ponygirl, Beauty

Beauty's Roman Charriot

Ann had done a splendid job with the Roman Chariot.

Inside the Roman Charriot

She'd even outfitted the thing with attachment points for our water bottles and sundries.

Ponygirl Legion!

Ponygirl Legion!

We made quite the sight!

We made quite the sight!

And we even got a video of us in all our Roman Legion Ponygirl splendor!

While our planning and preparation for the Roman Chariot got the appearances down, the actual pulling of the thing proved more problematic than either of us thought.  The balance on the Chariot proved very difficult for Ann to deal with and she was soon exhausted.  One of the tires also sprung a leak and that made it even more difficult for her to pull it along.  So, after a very brief foray out onto Folsom we retired back to the hotel and did a costume change.  The full arrival of the Roman Chariot Ponygirl would have to wait until the next year.

Fun at Folsom 2010

Folsom 2009

Some years I take or wind up with lots and lots of photos from
 Folsom.  Other years, not so much.  Folsom 2009 was one of those "not so much" years.

It was however, the first year I attended Folsom with Ann and it was also the first year we got some professionally done fetish photos of us together.  They came out nicely.

Photo by Mark Chester

Ann and I went full glam, full fetish for this set.  The photographer had never photographed a ponygirl before so this was something very much new for him.  In the years since, he's gotten quite a few compliments for how these images turned out.

Beauty and Azalea

On Folsom day itself Ann sported the silver outfit for when we did our walking 'round the Festival.  That's where we ran into Azalea here.  Ann's outfit is about as custom as she could get and it cost her accordingly.  That's fair enough as she likes the results she's gotten with it and so to do quite a few other folk.

Azalea's outfit however, was all home made - with the exception of the bit.  Her hooves were but some black electrical tape and everything else was homespun and homemade.  And it was great!  We both really loved how genuinely enthusiastic Azalea was in making all that herself and how much joy she was finding in it all.  Having such fun is a big part of what makes Folsom so enjoyable.
A different look

Earlier in the day, Ann and I had done a few loops around the Festival before the crowds set in.  She'd chosen a different outfit to start the day and I think it worked well.

I would normally have taken more photos but I didn't get the chance to take any, actually.  This was my first time to a Folsom where I wasn't taking in the spectacle of Folsom but was, instead, part of the spectacle of Folsom.

To say that Ann / Beauty was photogenic and eye catching would be an understatement.  Everyone, it seemed, wanted a photo of us.  Well, at least of her and they didn't mind if I was in the frame.  Whether we were doing the cart pull thing or whether I just had her by the reins, the attention was constant.  And it was a rush.  There was almost always a crowd of folks crowding around us to take our picture.  I'd never experienced that before.  And it was a heady thing.  I can now much better understand why celebrities do just about anything to keep getting that sort of attention - it's an enormous ego stroke and quite intoxicating.

So, I never got a chance to get my camera out to take any photos of my own.  Instead, Ann and I simply cruised the various online photo upload sites after Folsom and began culling the imagery of us that others posted there.  To this day, web searching "folsom ponygirl" will bring up an image selection in which Ann is prominently featured.  Oh, and I'm there in the frame too...

Folsom 2008

Folsom 08 Entrance Sticker

I love it when a plan comes together.

I was last up at Folsom in 2005.  Then, I was there with my partner, Julia.  It was her second Folsom and my eighth? ninth?  tenth?  Anyway, I’d been there a lot times more than her so I got to enjoy her enjoying it as something still very much new.  Julia and I wound things up last summer so this year I was back in SF on my own; free, white and definitely over twenty one!

In getting set for this Folsom I wanted to stay near the action so I could be part of as much of it as I could.  That meant finding a hotel pretty close to where the Festival would take place so I could hit that room up frequently for what costume changes I needed to make.

For anyone who has spent some summer days in the City, you know how it lives up to the old saw: "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco."  Folsom Weekend 08 lived up to that in great degree.  In the mornings the difference between being in the sun or in the shade meant needing to be in shorts or bundled up in a sweater.  By mid-day it was hot enough to roast.  By late afternoon, the marine layer started rolling in and the breeze ahead of it, combined with the roiling clouds to the west, would drop the temps down hard.  Folks who’d been hot ‘n sweaty in their next to nothing at the Festival around mid-afternoon suddenly were all chills, goose bumps and chattering teeth by Festival closing.

If you chose hide as your attire you were mostly comfortable in the morning, sweating like a pig by mid-day, and warm (if still damp) by sundown.  It all depended on your comfort level and what you wanted to achieve.  Me?  I wanted to be both comfortable and look good.  Thus, I knew I’d need to change at least a couple of times during the day.  That plus I had more than a couple of things to change into so getting a hotel nearby for those “costume changes” was mandatory.

But, due to a lot of factors out of my control (and some well within it) I only got started on my Folsom plans late in the season.  In years past if you didn’t lock in your hotel room for Folsom by late winter / early spring then you were SOL bigtime.  As I was starting this effort in late July I was just hoping to find a hotel within a half mile or so of Folsom.  I fired up Expedia and ran a search on hotels in San Francisco and then started looking on the map for ones that were in the SOMA (South of Market Area.)

One place I found was really surprising in that it’s location was more than perfect, it’s room night price was actually pretty low, and it actually still had rooms for the weekend even at this late date and even with all that other stuff going for it.  Knowing how Expedia works, I decided to light up the hotel directly.  That way I could book my room there without having to pay for it up front.

The hotel I speak of, Americas Best Value Inn & Suites – SOMA, is located on Hallam Street.  This isn’t just near Folsom it’s on Folsom.  The northern face of the hotel is on Folsom street itself and the place is literally just a stone’s throw away from where they set up the 7th Street Stage.  Yeah it’s that close.

The place has an interesting history to it as well.  I knew that prior to it’s becoming a hotel in the Americas Best Value series it had been a youth hostel.  That gave me a bit of a pause as I really didn’t want to deal with sharing one bathroom per floor or something like that.  However, the place had been renovated enough that each room had its own facilities.

At some point prior in its history, the building had actually been used a bathhouse.  This was “back in the day” as a friend of mine, Ron of, told me when he learned where I was staying.  He remembers the place from when he was stationed down in the South Bay and would go off duty on Friday nights, drive up to the City, check in to that bathhouse, spend the rest of the night fucking his brains out, and then get turned out onto the street come Saturday morning.  Bathhouses were not hotels and thus could not provide overnight accommodations and thus had to close for business the next day.  A legalistic quirk that put well and truly spent guys out on the street at an early hour.

I found the hotel to be well suited to my needs.  It has few of the amenities you’d expect from a national chain but it had enough to get by.  WiFi access being both free and online was the primary one I needed.  The rooms were small but serviceable.  The place was clean enough and secure enough as well.  I was a tad worried about that last bit as I knew the Folsom crowds could mean for so much foot traffic it’d be easy for a thief to get through.  Luckily, no such thing happened.

I figure that it was a younger Indian guy who bought up the place and converted it into its present form.  He did the managing and such, while bringing on the rest of his family to staff out the rest.  As a result there were a couple of older Indian women on duty through the weekend and it was real clear they had no idea what part of town they were in nor what sort of crowd they’d see over the weekend.  Coming back from one of my rounds on Saturday I crossed paths with one of these ladies.  I was in my new leather jodhpurs, Dehner patrol boots, and black Mr. S Leathers shirt.  That lady clearly did not approve of such attire and kept her eyes upon me as I walked through the small lobby of the hotel.  For my part, I didn’t give a rat’s ass what she approved of and locked my eyes upon hers.  My facial expression made it pretty clear that her expressing any further disdain would be most unwise.  I didn’t see her again that weekend.

A few years back, when I was last up in SF for a Folsom by myself, I was lucky enough to stay in a friend’s house in the area.  Being that central to SOMA meant I really didn’t have much cause – nor much time, in fact – to get much away from the area.  The same happened this time up there.

I got up to the Castro on Friday afternoon shortly after pulling in to town, and then again on Saturday when I was up there to have lunch with a friend.  Other than that, I stayed down there in SOMA within but a few blocks of the hotel.  And I wasn’t wanting for staying so close!

Friday afternoon I took a tour of that friend’s place.  He’s recently got it finished and it is truly wonderful.  I’m happy for him in this because he’s put a lot of effort and thought into its renovation and the results truly bespeak him.

From there I went over to the Mr. S Leathers store on 8th Street.  It was literally “just around the block” from my hotel so it was but a short walk down Folsom and then down 8th to Richard’s store.  Damn, but that place is intoxicating.  It is a true “toy store for adults” and is filled with the finest gear for such play as you can imagine.  And on Folsom weekend it is also filled with lots and lots of sexually charged men and women looking for such gear to fulfill their fantasies.  That and perhaps meet others of like mind while shopping there to. 

Unless you’re a sexless eunuch or such a prude that you can’t tolerate anyone else having fun, just standing in that store will give you a “contact high” from all the erotic energy being generated there.  I spent a good couple of hours in the shop on Friday and on Saturday and got a buzz from that on both days.  I also did a bit more than just “stand there” (thank you, James!) and managed to part with no small amount of coin to boot.  But hey, I need all that schwag! 

I’d started Friday afternoon in my shorts but was soon in my black Utilikilt back at the Mr. S store as I needed a new belt and Sam Browne for it.  It felt really good to be able to walk around the streets in that kilt.  I only looked a little bit out of place as I strolled up 7th to catch a cab up to the Castro and once in the Castro I looked not at all out of place.

Up in the Castro on that Friday I realized that I had forgotten to bring any jacket along for the weekend.  I had thought things through far enough the last time I was in San Diego to pack two leather jackets in anticipation of this trip.  But in my haste to get to the City, and being used to the Alabama summer’s heat, I had left both jackets hanging in their Huntsville Residence Inn closet.  Smooth move, Madoc!  So, I walked up to Worn Out West and checked out their goods.  Luckily, I found a used leather jacket that both fit and was of a reasonable price.  There at the store’s counter I also found something similar to one of these little gems and decided to give it a try as well.  Whaddayaknow, it fit!  One of the guys working there, Mike, was quite helpful in making sure of that.  Odd how so many guys in San Francisco are just so damn helpful like that, eh?

I wound up that evening by getting my Dehners shined just down the street from the hotel at Chaps II.  Bootdog was on duty for the “boot party” and while he did a good job, he wasn’t as personally into it as Paksen was back in Denver.  I miss Paksen. 

Saturday morning found me relaxing out front of the Starbucks on 18th Street in the Castro as I waited for my friend Frank.  We had a lunch date to catch each other up on our lives.  This Starbucks used to be a Pasqua’s coffeeshop and it has always done a land office business.  It’s convenient to the rest of the Castro, it’s located within eye shot of the 18th and Castro intersection, it’s shaded by a few well placed trees, it has a few seats outside, and it has become one of the places for folk to hang out, cruise, people watch, and simply to be at.  I got cruised and flirted with, heavily, by some of the guys there and that was flattering.

From there I went off to the boot “brunch” held at Rocco’s, as I mentioned earlier.  Leaving there I made my way over to a "scene" photographer’s studio nearby.  I’ve known of his works for a number of years now and have also known of his studio being open during Folsom Weekend as well.  I’ve dropped by a few times previously and gotten some excellent photos in the process.  Today was no different.  I was dressed in my finest fetish gear; my freshly shined Dehner patrol boots, my Marvelous Mayhem leather jodhpurs, and my longsleeve black Mr. S Leathers uniform shirt.  On this day, I looked about as regulation “Tom of Finland” / Old Guard Leather as I was ever gonna get.  We wound up taking a buncha photos and he was pretty enthusiastic about what he saw through the lens.  I’m hoping that will well translate into equally as enthusiastic images.

Folsom 2008 Fetish Photos!

Mark Chester's Photos
Yay!  They just came in today, Sunday, one week to the day after Folsom itself.

I'm quite happy with these!

Jodhpurs and Dehners
The spread

More boots n jodhpurs
Smilin' Madoc

Looks like the photos come out even better than I'd hoped!  Yay!

From there it was back again to Mr. S (hello James!) and then off to collect Simone from the Citadel.  We had a dinner date and wound up at Rocco’s – up front this time, not out in the gravel covered lot in back.  We caught each other up on things and how our weekends were going.  I was starting to fade having had a really energetic afternoon.  I think I should’ve taken a “disco nap” in anticipation of the rest of the night.  In any event, I was pretty well done by the time I’d walked her back to the Citadel and made my way back to my hotel.  After a bit, I decided to get some rest for the next day and turned in.

Sunday, I was up early.  To early as it turned out.  For me it was well past time for me to be up, 09:00 by my Central Time acclimated body clock.  That meant it was but 07:00 Pacific Time and, worse, it was that early on a Sunday morning down there in SOMA.  Nothing was open!  Well, nothing was open for business, that is.  I got rather peeved at a couple of places nearby which had staff in them, their lights on, and their front doors propped open but were all “Oh, sorry, we’re not open yet” in response.  One place even had its “Open” lighted sign in their window all lit up and blinking that they were “open” when, in fact, they weren’t.  Not a good thing for a hungry guy like me in the AM.  I did find a place to take the edge off and then got going doing my first walkaround of the event.  I made five such runs that day.

Early morning at the Utilikilt booth
At the end of this first lap I pulled up to the Utilikilt booth.  They were still setting up and were nowhere near being ready for business, officially.  However, I’d already been in contact with them (hey Pounder!) as to whether they were gonna carry what I was specifically after – a caramel Workman Uk.  Even at that hour, the staff was more than happy to take my money.

I did have to try on the two sizes they suggested and to do that without their dressing room being set up I simply dropped trou and wrapped the kilts on right there in the middle of the street outside their booth.  It wasn’t that brisk at that hour but it weren’t balmy either and I certainly felt that standing there between trying them on!  But, at the end of that process I now had my second Utilikilt!

This was one of my main goals, purchase-wise, for the weekend.  I’ve long been after a second Uk.  I’d bought my first one at the 2001 Folsom and soon found myself wanting another one.  The first one was a black Workman Uk and it seemed more appropriate as fetishwear than otherwise.  The black is a bit severe for day to day wear and I really didn’t want to do much real work in it ‘lest I get it marked up.  So, I’ve long been in the market for another one that doesn’t shout “fetish” quite so loudly.  This new caramel Uk is just the thing.  I was real happy to have finally laid my hands on one.  I’d hoped that Utilikilts would have had a presence at Dragon*Con but no such luck.  This, despite guys wearing Uk’s being all over that event.

I was quickly back up in my room and working up my first blog entry about Folsom.  Then it was time to shower and get slung up in my first outfit of the day.

I did a full lap of the event in this one and was quite enjoying myself.  I connected again with Simone and got myself a Fosters at one of the beer booths.  The difference between that brew and the standard Bud / Miller crap is night and day.  I’d been stuck with that piss water the previous night at Chaps. 

Having the option of Fosters on draft reminded me of just how much better that beer is than the rest.  It became my preferred cuppa brew for the rest of the day.
The morning's outfit

Wolf and Carriage
While enjoying my cup of Fosters we chanced upon this bunch.  The group consisted of the rubber suited pony / horse up front, a leather and rubber suited wolf there on the one side, a leather clad pup on the other, and a sultry femme domme riding in the carriage.  They made for quite the spectacle.  The amount of room they took up also meant theirs was a display only workable pretty early on in the Festival.  An hour or two later and enough people would’ve crowded in to the Festival that they wouldn’t have been able to move at all.  They were nice enough to look at though.

Other visuals on display at that time included this fine lad who found himself parked atop a handy fire hydrant.  His was a nice bit of rope work displayed across a fine frame to show it off. Rope Boy

Simone and I made our way down to Mr. S as I needed to buy a hat.  The sun was fully out and beaming by now and my freshly flattopped haircut was revealing my scalp to the sun’s frying nature.  Plus it was just plain fun hanging out again in the shop.  Not nearly as many folk in it though.  Hat on head, and one of these also being worn, it was time for another round of the Festival.

I spied this red gay devil dude at one booth.  I didn’t catch the rationale behind his look and the devil red rubber duckies there but they carried well the theme.
Red Gay Devil Dude

Several other groups of folks were running their own themes.  And this lad, Bruce, was running quite the theme all by himself.  I like that.  Having such fun and being creative people there really adds to the event.

Also adding to things was all the handsome beef standing around, the public spectacles taking place, and the truly handsome men doing their best to hold up the walls along the street.  After that loop it was time to get back to my room and pull the first costume change of the day.
Hot Damn!
Black Uk
The result was not a terribly major difference, just swapping out my caramel Uk for the black one and the T-shirt I picked up at the last Inferno I was at.

By now the crowd was truly coming out to the event and it was even drawing folk forth out their windows Balconey Boys
Ledge Boys
...onto their ledges...
         ...and rooftops. Rooftop Boys

And some sexy Longhairs were there to!

Sexy Longhair
Mr. Corset
The folks at Dark Garden had their booth in full swing by this time and their work is always exquisite.   Mr. Corset from the rear
Fine model No. 1
Their models are pretty damn fine as well. Fine model No. 2

Toward the 10th Street end of the street I encountered this guy: Mr. San Francisco Sweater 2008.  I about pissed myself laughing at this one.   Mr. SF Sweater 2008


Mr. SF Sweater 2008
I thought it great. 

Nothing like a bit of well done parody to lampoon the overly serious leather titleholder realm. 

This guy’s outfit did that perfectly and we had a great time chatting it up.
Mr. SF Sweater 2008

Bully for him in his creation!

Mr. SF Sweater 2008

Shibari Boy
Then there was this fine lad.

He showed both skill at self-tying his Shibari ropework... small bit of self-marketing skills...
Shibari Boy
Shibari Boy
 ....and also the exceptionally useful skill of being rather flexible. Shibari Boy - Flexibility
Also there was this lad who clearly had his priorities straight .Priorities
Latex seamed stocking outfit

This woman’s outfit was like one great big classic seamed nylon which covered her entire body but in this incarnation it was made out of translucent latex.

Sexy indeed.

Latex seamed stocking outfit

That loop completed, I decided to try the leather kilt, Dehners, white pirate shirt and Glengarry.

Leather kilt, Dheners, Glengarry

Ledge Crew
Coming back out, I found the ledge crew had grown in number and boldness.

Along with a decidedly flirty nature.
Beautiful Ropework
I saw some truly gorgeous rope work being done...

...on a truly gorgeous subject
Beautiful Ropework
There was more spectacle, of course, , at least one lad who knows a good piece of headgear when he sees it. Smart headgear choice!
Hot Damn!

and yet more gorgeous men holding up the walls.                  

At this point, I’d run out of cards so I had to duck back in and while there I shucked the kilt and went for the jodhpurs.

By this time the event was in its end phase and the weather was pushing that along.  The temps had dropped and the wind had risen.  So, going over to full hide was a warm sensible choice as well as being a stylin’ one. 

Clueless Tourist
Stepping out there was more spectacle going on as well as more shopping.  I thought this rather clueless vanilla couple coming out of the Leather Etc. store there at 8th and Folsom.  They were probably so jazzed at buying their first crop that they didn’t even notice the bubble butted lad coming in ahead of them.
I dunno
I’ve no clue what this guy’s creation was all about.  However, it’s clear he was having a blast with it and that made it work for everyone.

08/10/14: Well, now I know what this was all about!  Thanks to his finally finding my card, the illustrious gentleman here in these photos dropped me an email and identified himself.

I don't know how I could've missed this!  What we have here is King Key!
I dunno

I dunno - but it's good to be king!

Ledgecrew Giveaway Challenge I eventually made my way back to about where my hotel was and took in the ledge crew having more fun.  By now they’d taken to giving away leather ballstretchers to anyone who’d put one on in front of them.  They lowered it by rope and cheered passerbys on to the challenge.

Ledgecrew Ring Toss They also took to trying a ring toss

and this lad with his penis squirt gun came out the winner.
Ledgecrew Ringtoss Catch

One of the things I like about Folsom is getting to see some fine examples of beautiful ink work sported by folk who attend the Festival.  This year was no exception to that. 

In my morning’s first round there was this Egyptian themed piece gracing the skin of a handsome man. 

Later in the day I spied this leonine beauty.

John's back John's Front

Near the Festival’s end I chanced by John here.  The work on his back is gorgeous.  The piece on his front is a Kerouac quote.  John has promised me that he’ll soon send along the story behind the art on his skin and when he does I’ll update things here to include it.

Rebel Girlscout
One other bit of living art caught my eye that day and it was sported by this fine lass: “Rebel Girlscout.”  This beautiful piece was peaking itself out from this beauty’s back and she graciously held still for a passing as I recorded her images.  Very, very nice and very, very sexy.  She also was very much up to the challenge.  Her guy is a lucky man indeed.

Rebele Girlscout

Rebel Girlscout

There were other folks there that presented sights worth seeing that day.  This fine gentleman looked absolutely radiant as he stood there “stylin’” so fiercely.  He graciously paused his meal to allow me to record that fearsome style and I think it well worth it.

There was also this gent who was obviously very much into torture.  If you think not then just try standing around for the hours he did in heels on that street pavement.  But then, the guy’s T-shirt said it all. Torture

By day’s end I was pretty well done myself.  That’s a lot that gets crammed into Folsom’s seven hours.  The evening’s approach, with its quick drop in temps and blustery winds, made it clear things were done for another year.  I wound down that evening with Simone over dinner at Basil Thai’s and still had some fun with the crowd there doing the same.

Lemme know what thoughts you have of this.  Also, if you know the names of the folks in these images please send that on or put them in touch with me.  I tried to give out my cards as best I could but between running out and between folks losing them I’ve not been able to be in touch with everyone I recorded.

All in all, this was another good Folsom.  I think I found a good place to stay at for next year and I’m already thinking about what I could do differently and what I could simply repeat to keep on having a good time at the event.  So, that wraps this up. 

Now it's time to plan for the next Folsom!

Folsom 2005

A year's gap between getting up to SF for its annual Folsom was a year to long apart for me.  But then, poverty will tend to do that to anyone's traveling abilities.  I missed Folsom '04 because I was seven months unemployed by that point.  So, come '05 I swore I'd be god damned if we were going to miss it again!  We did, however make some concessions to frugality.  In years passed I'd gone up there on the Thursday or Friday preceding the Fair and stayed through into Monday.  Not so this year.  Instead of getting up there that early and spending all that much money on a hotel room, Julia and  I decided to  just go up there for the day.  This was both being la-T-da, oh-so-jet-setter, and also being as damn cheap as possible.  So, early on the morning of the 25th, Julia and I flew into Oakland, did a quick costume change in the airport bathroom, and then hoped onto BART to zip into town.  We then spent the day enjoying the Festival, the eye candy, the spectacle, and each other.  While there, Julia got a chance to try an some awesome bit of bondage hardware made by a fine gent from Germany.  Martin's "Rigid Fiddle" is a sight to behold and a joy to wear.  Martin was even kind enough to allow Julia and I to go running around the Festival with her wearing it.  He did, however, make sure to retain the key...

Julia as part of the street scene

As you can make out in the photo here, that's quite a bit of metal around her throat.  It was actually quite comfortable to wear, thanks to Martin's excellent design.  Drop on by his site and check it out for yourself.  Tell him Julia sent you!

This fine lad in the fine outfit was part of a group making its way through the Festival.  This is one of the things I truly love about Folsom.  There are so many folks doing so many things like this that it is a real treat just to stand still and try and take it all in.  He and the rest of the crew with him were having a blast in their costumes and were quite the hit amongst the crowd.
I brought my camera with me this year and I even brought along an extra memory card and a new battery so as to be prepared.  I wound up taking but a handful of shots.  I was too busy with my love to do otherwise and I also decided to remain amongst the Festival more than taking pictures of it.  So, I don't have many shots of Folsom 2005 to share here.  I do however, have this last one to include.  It was on the subway ride back to Oakland Airport that we encountered this.

Julia and I boarded the train and were quite glad to be able to sit down and take a load off our tired dogs.  We looked over and saw that someone had left a small paperbag of trash on one of the other seats.  More to the point, they'd left a marked up paperbag.  The marking on it was a crudely done trefoil symbol - i.e. a nuke warning.  Given the size of the bag, the very hand drawn nature of the thing, and the paperbag's obvious contents, it was pretty apparent that the thing was but a rather crude and quick joke.  That's what Julia and I were quick to take it as.

Iz zat a booom?

Sad to say, not everyone was either as well informed, capable of exercising such rational judgment, or in on the joke.  As we sat there we watched a family come aboard the train and move to sit their kids down on that seat.  The father saw the nuke symbol and reacted with fear.  He and his kin quickly discussed whether it was a bomb or not and whether it was even safe to remain aboard the train.  Julia and I just had to sigh over this.  The guy in front of us couldn't believe the reaction of all this either.  The three of us joked about it as the family continued to quiver in fear.  Such is the state of the world today.  Eventually the guy in front of us reached over and plucked the "nuclear device" off the seat and saved the day.  We kidded him that he was now an official bomb disposal expert.  He laughed and shook his head.

Folsom 2003

This was the first Folsom that Julia and I attended together.  We spent the weekend up there and took in all that we could take in of San Francisco during that time.  We stayed real busy doing that as there's always a lot to take in when your in the middle of The City!

Once we'd gotten our sight seeing all seen, it was then time to do Folsom.  I didn't take a bunch of pictures this time 'round but I did take some and some others took some of us as well.  
Mark Chester's Photo of Julia and I We got a bunch of these shots of both myself alone, Julia alone, us together and even a brief video of us being a tad more "active" than you can convey in just a still.  They're nice shots and denote a particular moment in our time together.  

As our hotel room was so close, Julia and I were well able to dash back to it and execute at least one costume change each during the course of the fair.  Thus, as the day progressed we had on a different outfit when Julia ran into one of her many leather family friends.  In this case it was Donald Dotson.

Donald Julia and I

Folsom 2002

Another fine year in The City is now history.  This year was a bit different for me as I wound up staying at a friend's house which was right in the middle of the event.  That gave me a rather unique perspective on the whole weekend and one which I enjoyed immensely.  It is indeed good to have such friends.

The weather this year was just about perfect.  Not quite as hot as Folsom '01 but still warm enough that it made sense to show an awful lot of flesh.  That suited me just fine!  Once the late afternoon rolled around then SF's infamous chill rolled in too.  Then it made sense to wear an awful lot of hide - which also suited me just fine!  Life can be good!

Because of my location this year, my perspective changed.  I still took a whole bunch of photos but they were of different things.  I also realized that I had enough photos of the standard eye candy which abounds at Folsom and I didn't want to put up more such images when they really wouldn't be distinct from other years.  Nor did I want to take pictures of the more unique images this year's event lest I give the impression that freakishness is what Folsom is all - and only - about.  I say this even though there was this one couple in drag at the Fair who really stood out.

Don't get me there were some truly handsome men there, as shown by these two here on the right.  I'm not sure, but these may be the same guys I saw swapping spit at a Folsom a couple of years back.  In any event, such "private" public moments are part of the fun of Folsom be they intentionally exhibitionistic or not.

Stretchy Aside from men kissing, there were also men who deserved to be kissed, such as this gent over here on the left.  I'm not stretching things by saying he was rather impressive.  He is also a friend of mine and a nice guy to boot.  So drop Jeff a line and say hello!
A private moment in public
The packed masses Folsom was also packed as it always is.  The crowd got more intense as the day went on and seemed to start earlier too.

There was also the usual amount of street theater at this year's event.  I've no idea what these guys were up to here on the right but they certainly pulled off an elaborate bit of theater as they pulled it around the Fair. They were fine enough to look at that no explanation was needed. 

Aside from these fine lads there was also the usual assortment of wanker bait and other such exhibitionists.  I usually only noted them due to the traffic obstructions they caused as the tourists and wankers clotted around them.

Street Theater on the move

Leather Trash
Because I was staying at a place right on Folsom, I was exposed to how things changed on a daily basis.  This allowed me to catch some of the little things.  Things like the trash.
Leather Trash No More

When I pulled into town on Friday I happened to look down at the base of one of the street trees planted along Folsom.  In the midst of the rest of the clutter I picked out several ads for leather bars, dances, events, hotlines, and websites.  I think SF must be the only place where even its trash is hot!
I also noticed just how thorough the Folsom crew can be.  These two shots are not a "before and after" bit for they are both "before" the event happened.   In this case the cleanup crew came through and made sure the streets were ready for the day's onslaught.  They also came through once the party was over and cleaned things up again.

Numbers on the Street Sunday morning came along and I found myself up early.  I also found myself with a bird's eye view of the Fair as it too came to life.  I looked down from my perch to see that the Folsom crew had already marked out the booth layouts with spray paint, numbering each spot as they went.  Pretty smart and efficient.
I then got to watch as the booths themselves were laid out and assembled.  The contrast between the relative calm and isolation of the Fair before it started and what it became within but a few minutes of the gate's opening was a striking thing to see.

Another thing which struck me was the level of detail which the Fair folk went to.  I noticed this when I first saw this traffic signal box here on the right.  I thought it looked a wee bit odd and then I realized that it had been "mummified" in Saran wrap.  I thought that strange until I realized why they'd done this.  My guess is that the City has gotten testy with the Folsom folks due to the huge volume of flyers and posters and stickers which the Folsom attendees post.  Even dispensing a whole bunch of "Post No Bills" signs around would do little good during the Fair.  So, the organizers decided to use some "pro" - as in protection - for their event and made sure to wrap things up beforehand.  That way, it was but a simple thing to remove the whole mess in one fell swoop at the event's end.  This was a wise move. Safe Sex Rules!

A fast worker, working fast While I was sitting outside one of the coffeeshops, the Pick Me Up, and I got to see this man here on the left do his stuff.  In the span of less than a minute he had placed three or four flyers up on that once corner alone.  He was truly a fast worker.  He had a system to his work and he worked that system well.  He was using bits of masking tape to hold the flyers to the post.  He had pre-torn those bits of tape and temporarily stuck them to the side of the masking tape roll he held with him.  He walked up to the post, slapped a flyer onto it with one hand and then picked off the needed bits of tape with the other as the roll hung from his bag.  Very efficient and very fast.  With guys like this one working the streets, I could well see how the City would get P.O.'d at the coverage.

OK, so, what did I do at Folsom this year?

Seeing as how I was staying at a place right on Folsom itself and one that was also right in the middle of things at Folsom, I had a pretty unique experience as a result.  This was the first Folsom I've been to in which I spent almost my entire weekend South of Market (or SOMA as it's known among the cool set!)  I only ventured up the hill but once and that was only to attend at party on Friday night.  On the way back  I walked down the Vulcan Steps to get back to the Castro.  In case you've never found these steps in your travels to the City, you should.  They are a wonderful architechtural feature which really ads to the charm and beauty of San Francisco.

Once back down on the Castro I checked that out for a bit and caught up with a friend of mine from San Diego.  Typical that we would mostly cross paths outside the city we both live in.  While we were standing there at 18th & Castro, taking it all in, we got to witness a real dozy of a car crash.  A woman driving her SUV north on Castro ran the light there and was T-boned by a man driving his F-150 west on 18th.  The SUV lost that one.  Amazingly enough though, no one was injured.  This, despite the SUV being spun completely around and into the crosswalk.  We were all amazed that there were no pedestrians mowed down by this as that intersection is usually quite crowded with them.  Especially on a Friday night and especially on the Friday night before Folsom.  But none were.  The F-150 driver seemed more dazed than anyone as it really sunk in that he could have easily been killed in the collision.  A nice thought to wind down the work week.  That concluded my Castro adventures for this year!

I spent the next day entirely South of Market.  In fact, I didn't venture more than five or six blocks away from where I bedded down.  That was something new for me in my SF travels.  I liked it.  That morning, I got up early - too early it turned out.  I decided to do something with my time and I walked over a block or so to  the Mr. S store only to find it wasn't yet open.  No big loss, because when I turned around I spied a friend of mine, Frank, standing at the corner with his lover and some friends from England.  They invited me along to breakfast at Rocco's, just down the street.  We caught up with each other's goings on and had a fine meal.  By the time we were done, Mr. S was open so I checked it out.  Then I went back to the house and got ready for the day. 

Aside from showering and stuff, this also entailed getting ready for the " Boot Brunch," also at Rocco's.  A short walk and there I was with the bootmen.  The waitress gave me a quizzical look as I had just been in the joint eating there not but an hour or two ago.  The Boot Brunch was fine and the company excellent.  It also got me in a boot mood.

Once we were done eating, some of us went back to Mr. S to do some more shopping.  I've been in need of a new pair of combat boots for some time now so I decided to see what Mr. S had to offer.  They carried but one type of combat boot and before I put my hard earned cash down for it (actually, more like my hard earned plastic but hey, you get the point!) I decided it made sense to check out my options.  As Stompers Boots was also close by I decided to go check them out at well.

Stompers has quite the reputation among bootmen so I thought I'd be well served here in my interests.  Perhaps had I been looking for a pair of Dehners or 30 inch high Big Boss Wescos or something similar then maybe I would have.  However, I wasn't.  I was looking for a good solid pair of lace-up combat boots.  They are not as high fetish as those others but they were what I wanted.  Yet, Stompers really didn't have much in the way of true combat boots.  What they did have really didn't cut it.  They didn't look right, the didn't feel right.  Most of the ones they had in stock were also zip up the side boots and those, to me, just aren't combat boots.  I was pretty disappointed in this.  I thought that Stompers, of all places, would be _the_ place for this type of boot.  I also thought it would be pretty cool to buy myself a pair of boots at that particular store if for no other reason than the cache of the place.  It was not to be.  So, it was back to Mr. S.

The boots they had there were perfect for what I wanted.  They were real combat boots and even bore the namesake of the ultimate and original modern combat boot; Corcoran.  The difference was amazing.  The faux combat boots over at Stompers felt awkward on my feet.  They were too stiff, and weren't bending in any of the right places.  The stitching holding the sole to the uppers was also a pale white in color - what sort of real combat boot would have that?

When I slid my foot into the Corcoran though, it was like putting it into a glove that was almost tailor-made for me.  The fit was wonderful and was very comfortable from the outset.  I was sold on these almost before I even had them laced up.  Adding a cushion insole insert only increased the pleasure in wearing them.  These were the right boots for me.

Yeah, in hindsight I probably could have done just as well walking up to the big army/ navy surplus store on Market and getting a pair there.  That might have cost me less and they might have had the same brand of boot there.  Maybe, maybe not.  I was in a boot buying mood though and those were the ones on my feet at the time.  I walked out of the store wearing them.

Keeping with the theme of staying within those few blocks of where I was staying, I didn't have far to walk in those new boots before I found myself at the Loading Dock for the "Boot Party."  Yes, the afternoon's theme was also boots.  I did manage to get back to the house and crashed for a bit (can we say "disco nap!") but was then out to the party in short order.  As this _was_ a boot party, and as my boots _were_ brand new, I decided to get them shined.  The only downside to this was that there was but one bootblack.  The upside though was that he was very, very good at his job, and standing in line also afforded me the opportunity to enjoy the eye candy squeezing by upstairs at the Loading Dock.  So I simply waited my turn in Bootdog's chair.

Helping make the time pass by more entertainingly was a guy in town from Seattle.  The entertainment here was entirely at his expense, not mine.  I'd been standing in line for but a few minutes when he came up to me and struck up a conversation.  This was fine as that was one of the reasons we were out in the bar to begin with.  The way this lad chose to do so however, was priceless.  His opening line was something on the order of; "I don't usually find long haired guys attractive but it looks good on you."  Gee, how flattering.  I felt deeply touched at his generous words.  When he followed it up with "I just did a hit of Ecstasy a few minutes ago so don't worry if I start getting even friendlier" he managed to make the case right there.  Luckily a friend of mine from San Diego, Tom, also had the same idea to get his boots shined and he joined me in line.  The guy from Seattle wasn't in line to get his boots done, just to hit on all the stationary targets the line afforded him.  Sure enough he was hitting on Tom as well ("Oooh, a topman!  What do I have to say to get you to fuck me!" - I kid you not, those were this guy's exact words!)  This poor guy was so far gone at this point he completely missed all the looks and smirks Tom and I were sharing as he kept making an ever bigger ass of himself as the time wore on.  It was entertaining to watch, in a morbid sort of way, and that helped to pass the time.

Finally though, it was my term on the chair.  Actually, just a bunch of beer crates piled up high enough for Bootdog to do his stuff.  That was fine though, for he did well.  In short order I'd told him that the boots were new, that this was their first time out, and that he was the first bootblack to ever have at them.  I got a shine from him.  But, that was about it.  There was no connection or nothing terribly special about.  Oh, the shine was done well enough but he clearly was just running them through.  I felt no energy with him during the process.  This, unlike other bootblacks I've gotten my boots shined by.  In some cases, their shines are more like bootsex and it leaves us both turned on.  Not so here.  Not so tonight.  Oh well.

I had thought ahead to bring along my camera to record this first bootshine.  One of the guys from the Boot Brunch, Iain, happened to be walking by at that moment and he graciously snapped this shot of those boots getting done.

My new boots getting their first shine

Those are my boots in the picture.  That _is_ me in those boots, and that is Bootdog shining them.  Honest!  ;)

Once I got the boots properly shined I hung out for a bit longer and then decided to crash home.  Folsom was beckoning and I knew how much of an endurance thing it would be for me the next day.  I went back to my bed and was quickly wrapped up in sleep.

I was up early the next morning though and got to take it all in from a very preliminary moment.  That was fun, as I've mentioned above.  Once the day got going though, I decided that I just had to get my brand new boots shined at their first Folsom as well.  Not that Bootdog didn't do an excellent job, it was just that Folsom was Folsom and it was only right and fitting that my new boots get shined there too. 

So, I quickly found the Driller's Pit Stop bootblack booth at the Fair.  Bootdog happened to also be working there but I didn't get lucky enough to get him two times in a row. 

Kickin' It at Folsom Instead I simply had to sit back, take in the crowd and enjoy the afternoon - while another dedicated bootblack did his stuff on my new boots.

And it just so happened that Iain was there too!  He's the guy who took these three shots of me at Driller's.  Yes, I AM a white boy - and a pale one at that.  You better believe I lathered on the sun screen before I stepped out that morning!  You might also be able to make out that I am also a shaved white boy.  I've Hugh at Inferno to thank for that!

As you can see, these are very new boots.  They really didn't need a shine even when I took them out of the box at Mr. S.  They certainly didn't need one after Bootdog had done his stuff.  I'm hoping that the uppers will lose their lighter color the more I work the polish into them.  First shine at Folsom More first Folsom Shining Having such attention as this paid to them though can only help. There was something very appealing about getting my boots done in this way at the Fair.  To make things do-able for all the bootblacks you have to be seated pretty high up.  This really places you well above the crowd.  That makes it very easy to see the whole goings on go on.  It also makes it easy for the crowd to see you. 

Just Ride, She Said...

As usual, the Fair ended far too soon - even as long as it seemed to stretch.  My hosts, Richard & Marie, and their band of merry men & merry women, all decided to go out to eat at a local Thai joint just down at the end of the Fair's stretch.  This was a nice way to cap off the event as the food was tasty, the eye candy was great, and the company was excellent.  It also gave me a chance to prove the rumors chivalry's demise were greatly exaggerated.

Traci, with us at the meal,  was one of Richard & Marie's friends and cut quite the swath through the crowd that afternoon in her outfit.  Her boots were high fetish with their six inch platforms, stiletto heels, and thigh high laces.  Very sexy.  Very fetish.  And, not surprisingly, very painful!  After some several hours in them pouncing on the pavement, Traci's feet were screaming.

During the dinner she joked that we would have to carry her home as her feet were aching so much in those wonderful boots.  Richard and I said this wouldn't be a problem as one of us would take her by the heels and the other by the head!

Well, after the meal, it turned out her doggies were yappin' so loud she couldn't hardly stand on them - let alone walk.   Seeing a lady in need of assistance, I stepped forward and offered her conveyance to her abode.  Perhaps not the most conventional conveyance but one which did the job.

We almost made it all the way back to the front door before I had to set her down from my shoulders.  That was a lot further than she would have been able to go otherwise.  It also made for a great sight to see coming down the way on Folsom - and a great way to end this year's event.

Just ride, she said


Folsom 2001

Another great year!  The weather was excellent at this year's Festival and that allowed for some truly great eye candy to be seen.  A little hot perhaps - but then what is a little sweat when it brings forth such sights, eh?

I had my camera with me as usual and went through three rolls of film that yielded almost eighty pictures.  I have gone through them and culled the most interesting for here.  This year I actually managed to run out of business cards before I ran out of film or out subjects to shoot pictures of.  I was really surprised at that for it is almost always the other way around.  I'll have to work on that for next year!

Where Else But In SF...


The Big House
Could you find an SM Clown?

Ikea's newest line of human furniture?

And Party Houses both....


...and small

The small House
Ikea's New Fall Line

Or a Pony Prancing Pretty?

 This is one of the reason I like Folsom so much.  There is always something going on in The City in general and Folsom Weekend just magnifies this.  That is one of the primary reasons I keep coming back to it year after year.

The crowd this year was literally "hangin' out the windows and off the rooftops" to see the show.  Nothing new, actually.  A good Folsom will always inspire such antics.


Looking East...
One nice thing about having a pad on Folsom is that it affords you an excellent view of the whole thing.

This is Folsom looking East

And this is Folsom looking West.
Looking West...

Wanker Bait
Here is another "view" that always amuses me.  At both Folsom and Dore Alley there are always a few guys who prance around buck naked.  I call them "Wanker Bait" for that is what they most usually attract; wankers.  Some of these guys are nice to look at and some are just out there getting a good old fashioned "air bath."  In any event it is usually the crowd that is more worth watching.  Their reactions run the gamut and also allow you to tell the tourists, from the leatherfolk, from the wankers.  The wankers come to these events just to get pictures of the freaks and of the dicks.  That's it.  You can usually tell by how they're dressed if not by what they spend their time hunting for and taking pictures of.

In this particular photo, I can only wonder what the guy on the cellphone is saying and what the woman next to him is thinking.

Wanker Bait

Red and Black and Butt Red Is In

Red and black can look really good together.  This fine gentleman on the left shows just how good. 

As does this other fine gentleman here on the right.

Either way, red and black make a very vivid and powerful statement.  Even when the it is worn not as an external hide, but as one still attached and yet to be "tanned" - as is the case with the gentleman's below.

Another sexy bit of red and black

The Leatherfolk

Some of my friends

This is the primary reason I go to Folsom.  I have a number of friends up in SF and even more of my friends pile into town over that weekend as well.  It is always good to see them and catch up with them even if but briefly.  There is also the good chance that I will make new friends over the weekend as well.

Me and Blondie No, that is not my butt.  Would that it were.  I first met this guy at Dore.  He was very sexy in his little shorts and Russian Navy hat.  His was very sexy now here at Folsom in his little shorts and beret.  Fun guy to talk with as well.  He was working (in all meanings of the word) the Gay Men's Chorus booth.  Whether or not all the folks who stopped by that booth were interested in signing up with the gay glee club or not, having this fine man out in front of their booth sure did generate a lot of attention.
I Was There Too!

I have been to enough Folsom's and other outdoor summertime events to realize that comfort is king and style is secondary.  While a head to toe heavy leather outfit may look hot, out in the warmth of a sunny day, it is more than hot to wear - it can actually be unhealthy!  Then too there is the price you pay for fashion even beyond the possibilities of heat stroke.  Some outfits are not just killer in how they look but also killer in how uncomfortable they are to wear - and I'm not even talking about the ladies (of various gender) who try wearing their stilletos all day on pavement! 

With all this in mind I have tried to be both as comfortable and as appropriately dressed as I can when I am at Folsom.  Usually this has meant wearing my black BDU's (Battle Dress Uniform) pants and my army boots.  These BDU's may be black but they are all cotton and only "tropical weight ripstop," i.e. lightweight and thinner cotton than otherwise.  This means that my pants breathe a lot better than even jeans and immensely better than a pair of leather pants ever could.

So I was pretty much set when it  came to this year's event.  I was wearing a white shirt and my black BDU's as I started strolling through the festival.  It was hot and I was sweating a bit but I knew that, save but for a pair of leather shorts, I was dressed in a manner finely balanced between comfort and leather image.  Or so I thought.

Two of my longtime Bay Area friends, Kevin & Andy, then came up to me and quickly dispelled my illusion.  They were both wearing their matching black Utilikilts.  I had seen one of these fine things before but never so many and never so up close.  They looked great!  I also imagined that they would be much more comfortable in that day's heat than even my "tropical weight" BDU's.  I was in luck because the Utilikilts (Uk for short) folks  just happened to be vending at the Festival and just happened to have a pair in my size and color preference.  Here is the result just a minute or so - literally - after my slapping my plastic down to make one my own.

A freshly purchased Utilikilt This rig was extremely comfortable.  I like it a lot.  It was also absolutely perfect for the day's heat and for the locale.  I'm not sure how appropriate it would be to wear to work or out and about.  For most leather and/ or gay events however, it will do just fine.

As I wandered around the Festival that day I came to like the Uk more and more.  Even just the act of walking tended to circulate air up underneath the kilt.  That felt great.  It also kept me much cooler.

One of the places I stopped by was the Steamworks booth.  I have heard much about the Steamworks bathouse over in Berkely but have never been there.  One of these days I will have to try it if for no other reason than to say that I have done so.  Their booth and the booth babe boys were certainly nice too look at.

Me at the Steamworks booth

Folsom Fetish Photo For 2001

Folsom 2000

Glam Rock Eye Candy Eye Candy!

I have seen these three lads at several Folsom's and they always look great at every one.  They know how to work it!

While the image on the left is of some guys who enjoy being "over the top" in their glam rock look, this one is more in line for what I go to Folsom for.  This is one sexy guy and I really like how the late afternoon light comes in to cast its glow on his fine features.  This too is Folsom Eye Candy at its finest! Hard Muscle Eye Candy

Doing It For The Camera

Oblivious Lip Lock Or Sucking Face For the Crowd? A couple of sexy guys, lip locked, basking in both the sun and in the crowd's attention.  In this case the attention is a little bit direct.

I love stuff like this and try and be aware to it as much as I can.  I sincerely doubt that the two lads here are so wrapped up in each other that they are oblivious to the people watching them and those taking their picture.  For a great many people who attend the Festival, the chance to see and be seen is what it is all about.  This is street theater for one and all.  In this particular scene I believe there were at least two other guys taking pictures of these leathermen at the same time this photographer was.  I simply had to get a picture of this guy taking a picture of these guys.  It was just too typical of the day. Getting the shot!

Nice wings! This man on the left here was fun to watch too.  Nice tatoo work on an equally nice back.

During the day I encountered many folks that I knew.  Here are another bunch of likely lads, this time they are from San Francisco.  Well, at least two of them are.  That is Bill there in center with the headband and tie-die shirt.  This photo represents an interesting blend as Bill was one of the first guys in the online Longhair community I encountered and made friends with.  His lover, Larry, is a boot fetishist.  Bill is not.  His provence is Longhair.  The two do mix.  Sometimes.  But in general it is real easy to tell the two groups apart.  In this picture it is almost a black and white difference.  Or at least black and tie-dye! Bill and the Gang

Likely Lads

Here are some likely lads from San Diego out enjoying themselves on this fine Sunday afternoon.  Those items adorning their chests are not just glued there, they are hung there with fishing line pierced through the skin to wire them in place.  A good way to get a nice endorphin rush while enjoying the crowd.

Likely Lads From San Diego

San Diego's Finest On The Job San Diego's Finest. 

David here is just stepping out of one of the many Port-a-Potties he was in on this day.  Not for personal reasons mind you, but for LeatherFest reasons.  He was part of a small crew that was plastering LeatherFest XI flyers over anything they could stick them to.  You can already see them on the doors to the Port-a-Potties on either side of him.  They are the ones with the shield logo on them. 

Street Theater

A "typical" bit of street theater at Folsom.  This was actually pretty funny.  Both of these creatures were barking at each other.  I think the dog on the left was very confused by the pup on the right.  Clearly though, the guy on the right there enjoys being in the role of a pup.  Look at the leather mitts he has on his hands.  I don't think his top standing beside him minds either.  Once again, there were a whole bunch of people enjoying this bit of street theater.

SF Street Theater Here is a bit more street theatre.  I have no idea what this group of folks was up to.  They were all done up in this very bizarre garb and makeup.  They were all interacting with each other and with the crowd and they clearly moved through the Festival with a plan known only to themselves.  They were fun to watch though.

This fine lady was enjoying herself with a female friend of hers (at this sort of event it would be a mistake to assume more) who asked if she could take my picture with her friend here.  As I am always the gentlemen when it comes to such requests (oh, you want to take another picture of ME!) I agreed.

After the first standard shot, I decided to liven it up a bit. So, I wrapped my Heartwood flogger around her and pulled her to me.  Her reaction was priceless!  And it made for a great shot.

A Bit of Street Theater of My Own!

Working the Booth - Not the Crowd! I was at the Festival to do more than take pictures and collect phone numbers.  I also pulled duty manning the National Coalition for Sexual Freedom's booth.

The NCSF is an organization devoted to helping defend alternative sexual practitioners from being crushed by the array of reactionary forces in our country.  It is a tough row to hoe but I am glad to be a part of the effort.  They have proven instrumental in getting the word out to the media and the public that sex is not a bad thing and that leatherfolk are not crazed psycho killers just waiting to abduct innocent high school kids.

A very worthwhile organization run by some very dedicated folks.


Folsom's of Years Past

I have been to more than one Folsom Street Festival and at each one I have taken a bunch of pictures.  Some of which are worth putting up here on my site.

As I go through my albums and scan those in I will be updating this page with those new images.

The Folsom Street Festival is full of wonderful eye candy.  A lot of it is leather or fetish oriented but some of it isn't.  Take this fine gentleman to the right here.

Aside from his belt he isn't wearing a bit of leather on him yet he was quite a sight to see.  I thought I would share this with you.

There are some Folsom "old hands" who have been to so many Festivals that they really know how to get the best results from their time at them.  Some of these guys stake out a particular piece of real estate on Folsom Street and let the Festival pass before them.

The real estate they pick is worth it to them for various reasons.  Some guys pick a nice shady spot.  Some guys pick a spot with a good view of the crowd.  Other guys pick spots with a good view for the crowd.  I don't know if this man was of the later or the former but the crowd certainly did enjoy their view of him!

A handsome man in the shade


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In the meantime, I hope you have enjoyed your "stay" at this site.  Check back again to see what new images I have added.  Until then, stay well, play hard, play safe, and have fun!


This page was last updated on: 4 October 2012  

Unless otherwise noted, all photographs and images on this page are copyright protected property of Madoc Pope.  If you would like to use any of my images you must contact me first before you do so.



In the meantime, I hope you have enjoyed your "stay" at this site.  Check back again to see what new images I have added.  Until then, stay well, play hard, play safe, and have fun!