“When you bury a king, it must be done right. This weekend, we did it right…”
My wife and I attended two memorials this weekend. Both were for Master Aryn Blaque.
Others can (and should) describe his impact on the LA public kink scene, and many did both nights. Stories were told about how, with Club Fuck and the back room at Sinamatic in the 1990s, he either shaped or even outright created the public scene that continues on here today. They described a teacher, a mentor, a play partner, an artist, and someone who had an effect that rippled outward, not just from person to person but to a degree even those who knew him well didn’t seem to realize until one speaker after another shared similar experiences.
I didn’t speak either night. Partly because I’m still the introvert I was back when I first met him. But mostly because I knew him the least of anyone there, either night, and wanted to hear more from all of them. But a conversation Aryn and I had 16 years ago, almost to the day, kept coming back to me. And deep in the second night—during the memorial play party at Sanctuary Studios where nobody really wanted to stop sharing memories of him to actually play—I realized the effect that conversation had on me was anything but unique.
At the time, I was this young, introverted guy who had never been public about fetish or kink, especially after a certain “munch in hell.” These had been a mostly secret side I revealed to every girlfriend at some point and then went on to share with the select few who didn’t immediately walk out the door in disgust. So apart with a few sessions with pro-Dommes in my twenties, I had never been to a fetish club, or a play party. And then, somehow, I found myself picking up stakes and moving across the country for this amazing woman I had met on Alt.com.
Unlike me, she had been in the public kink scene for years and was a regular at Sinamatic. Almost as soon as I landed, she started taking me out with her. And one of the first people I ever saw perform a scene publicly (aside from her) was Master Aryn.
I had never seen anything like it. Or him. It wasn’t just the technique, or the showmanship, or the kink itself. Even today, I still can’t put into words what made him him on that stage. But as one speaker said both nights, it really was like watching some “BDSM god.”
I remember thinking something similar that night, watching him. And then having the sinking realization slowly dawn, not just in my head where I already knew it but down in my gut where I could feel it, that the woman standing beside me, who I had just moved several thousand miles for and was talking about having me top her at some point, too, had played with him repeatedly. And on stage.
My God, I thought, watching Aryn. Do I have to live up to this?
The nerves just built from that moment on. Everything about public kink was new to me, remember. And more than a little nerve-wracking. The second-guessing started soon after that, too. What had I been thinking, that little voice nagged inside my head, imagining I could walk into this world of hers, and his, and expect to find a place there?
Then Aryn finished his scene. And he left the stage. And he came over to talk.
However well he knew my future wife, he didn’t know me. And he had absolutely nothing to gain from treating me well, either. I was nobody, as at least one particular fetish-club asshole had already tried to impress upon me. So I stood there, watching this BDSM god who seemed at least three times my own slight frame coming our way, and prayed I wouldn’t embarrass myself, or my then-girlfriend.
Thirty seconds later, I knew everything I needed to about what kind of man Aryn really was.
Because within 30 seconds of talking with him, the nerves and the second-guessing were gone. He had me feeling not only like I belonged, but that I had as much right to be there as everyone else with their years of experience and fetish-wear I could only hope to someday afford. I had absolutely nothing to give or offer him, yet he somehow gave me everything I needed that night.
The nerves about measuring up as a Top came back eventually, of course, but she and I got through them. And I’m not suggesting my wife and I are only together now because of Master Aryn Blaque. He was one of the stones in our foundation, though, because he made an overwhelming and often-confusing time much easier for me, whether he even realized it or not, which in turn made other things easier as life rippled on down the line.
I wish I could have told him that. And that I had known him as well as everyone else on that stage, both nights, did.