Disclaimers and Fair Warnings:
Immediate disclaimer, since it's an automatic issue for so many people -- I'm poly and I'm a smoker. I totally understand if either of those are "no-goes" for you.
Also, apologies in advance for slow or brief replies on here; I rarely access it these days except by phone. Much better to reach me by email or GIM, and I'm generally pretty free with providing those if my filters send me your message (I think they require an 80% or so to do that at the moment). I'm generally not going to log into other messaging systems with any reliability, so please be aware of this.
7-14-12: quick update since I'm on my phone and thumb-typing. Did end up finding a primary partner (here, actually) not entirely closed to new involvements but really not looking, either. Always happy to chat and meet with new folks, though! Particularly love welcoming Cleveland newbies to the area and social networks.
8-15-12: going through to do a bit of updating, although probably not the whole movies/books/etc part, so that remains about two years out of date (finished educating myself on Doctor Who, or at least have reached the same pace as any Whovian, Max Headroom HAS come out on DVD, etc), and the pics are about two or three years out of date, too. I don't look much different, except for being two or three years older.
Well, seems good to start with the stuff that's most relevant in my life... My most central identity is "activist" -- it's about how I think about and interpret the world as much as whether I'm doing big things or little things at any given moment. I believe in speaking truth to power, and the importance of sharing information. I define activism as any action in intentional pursuit of a particular philosophy, so it's a pretty broad umbrella. I consider my big, crazy, chaotic household to be its own form of activism (especially in combination with my participation in couchsurfing.com), and I'm very much a homebody these days. I love that my place is where my friends come for a break from the world, and I generally describe it as "the den of moderate hedonism" -- I'm all about the comfort.
Generally I'm rather education-focused; I've particularly done a lot of sexuality and reproductive health educating of various sorts over the course of my life, and my central foci at the moment are clinic escorting and patient-instructing (teaching med students reproductive health exams). I'm a font of bizarre information about history of sexuality and sexology, anatomy and physiology, sociological analyses of zombie flicks, and whatever topic has pegged my interest recently (I love micro-histories that focus on a specific topic -- salt, bathing, bananas, sodomy laws, etc). I love learning new things. I love finding information and sharing it with people. I love what the internet has done for all of this. I like the weird and the silly and the fascinating, and I love what the internet has done for this, too.
I'm polyamorous, bisexual, kinky (S/M much more than D/s), and very out about all of it. I've done a lot of educating about these topics too, and have a knack for talking comfortably about commonly taboo subjects. I totally suck at socially appropriate small-talk, though -- I only get going when I'm on a topic that interests me. That said, examining almost any topic closely enough is interesting to me. It's why I think of myself as a geek, and tend to be attracted to other geeks -- people who are intensely fascinated with some aspect of their world. I love conversation for conversation's sake, as long as it isn't small-talk. I also enjoy hearing from local folks who are looking for friends; we're a pretty social household, and if we get along, you can always come over for one of our mellow little hangouts and meet some new people.
I'm queer-identified, and tend to connect best with other folks who also are, in some way or another. It's one of my home communities (I've been out and politically active since I was 16), and it's nice to share that. I have a longstanding sense of connection with the trans and genderqueer communities, and I'm political about trans inclusion issues in both queer and feminist communities. And I'm a feminist, and if you think that's a dirty word, or aren't capable of comprehending why that's important to me, we pretty much aren't going to connect. For those of you who have a sense of how many different branches of feminism there are, I grew up educated in the mainstream second wave, and am theoretically pretty in line with third-wave sex-positive feminism, with a particular focus on class and classism. I'd have to go back to my decade-old textbooks (or hit up wikipedia) to get more specific.
I'm vehemently in favor of the broadest possible interpretations of the First Amendment. I despise the obscenity exclusion on free speech. I believe when it's the issue, the solution to offensive speech is more speech, not less. I find the current intellectual property debates fascinating. I don't believe drugs or prostitution, or anything else consensual for adults should be criminalized. I'm political about sex workers' rights, and about workers' rights in general.
I'm also a science fiction geek, a skeptic, an atheist, and a big ol' hippy at heart (yes, I'm familiar with cognitive dissonance). I'm a big fan of entheogens and altered states, and quite fond of 420. I'm not very "girl-identified" -- at best I'm a tomboy. I'm fat, and I'm fine with that. I've also got fibromyalgia, which limits my energy a good bit, and I tend to really need a lot of psychological space and "introvert-time", while also having a relatively broad social network that already takes up a good deal of my life, so I don't tend to do "attached at the hip" in relationships. I mostly tend toward friendly rather than overtly romantic involvements; I form very long-term connections, but I'm not exactly gushy, and the friendship is always the deepest necessary core for anything ongoing. I dig "mellow and affectionate" with people I trust, and I'm very comfortable with relationships that wander between platonic and sexual over the years. If it's not already obvious from my writing so far, I do my damndest to be as honest and forthcoming as I possibly can be; miscommunication makes me crazy. When I know what's going on in my head, I don't hide it.
I'm big on movies; everything from documentaries to shlock SF/horror, and I have a ridiculously large library and quite a number of pets (2 dogs, five cats, and a snake). I'm generally pretty mellow but straight-forward -- don't ask questions you don't want answers to. Not generally all that big on the club or bar scenes, but up for random roadtrips and festivals and new experiences.
I dig art and creativity and craziness, and fill my life with quite a number of people who are substantially more right-brained than me. It's a nice balance. I'm the "practical but utterly unshockable" one; the home base for all my substantially more peripatetic friends, the one who remembers the sunscreen and extra water when we're shrooming in the desert. I take in people and animals on a regular basis. I like a moderate level of chaos in my life, although I'm not a fan of the infamous "drama", and mostly got that out of my system in my twenties, thank maude. I like environments that don't require me to be clothed. I'm really not a fan of the stuff except for practical weather-related reasons. I joke that I have bodyart because it's the lowest-maintenance form of personal decoration out there.
I have several wonderful non-primary involvements in my life. In general, I tend to connect best with other people who are clear and comfortable with who they are, and who can geek about politics, gender, sexuality, science, and the world. Sexually, bi guys are a particular hot-button for me, but I also casually date clueful straight guys, especially if their sexual interests are relatively broad. Most of my female partners have been bi, although not all. If you're considering whether we might be compatible dating-wise, be aware it's a big plus if you have previous experience navigating open relationships -- I jokingly refer to dating me as being "the advanced course in Polyamory" due to the inherent complexity of my existing relationships. And please don't assume that an invitation to my bed is a de facto invitation to bed with any of my other partners; they're their own people, and make their own decisions. That said, jealousy and possessiveness aren't really where my personal faults lie. I find the "sharing" element of polyamory to come pretty naturally, and do well with relationships with people who already have primary partners. Seeing people happy together makes me grin. On the other hand, I probably have a harder time dealing with jealousy _from_ partners than average, and tend to cope rather poorly with feeling liked I'm "claimed" by someone, so I don't tend to connect well with folks who tend more toward that end of the spectrum.
And on a practical level, if you don't enjoy dealing with animals (or have allergies that'll make you miserable), our in-person hanging out time is going to be necessarily limited, since the number of animals in the household make them a central feature of it (aside from the resident five very friendly cats and two rambunctious dogs, we have up to three extra dogs on a daily basis -- it's great fun if it's your thing, and thoroughly annoying if it isn't), and I'm, as mentioned above, a homebody. Also on the practical side, I gave up the car several years back, since I've got good public transit access. I can get around Cleveland relatively well, but my ability to meet up with folks is limited by that factor. I know all the good spots in my neighborhood, though, and I always enjoy a cup of coffee and a chat.
I'm very much a sexual explorer, and really enjoy friendly sexual involvements with the right people. To clarify my mention of BDSM up above, it's something that's only part of some of my involvements, and it's an intermittent interest in my life. I have a deep sense of joy in sexuality, I'm turned on by intelligence (hellooooooo geeks!), by humor, by honesty, ethics, and independence, and by people who are comfortable in their own skin, and as adventurous as I am. I don't sleep with people I don't like and respect enough to want to continue hanging out with (although I'm quite happily slutty within those limitations), and I prefer the fun that an on-going sexual relationship allows to develop. I'm honest and forthright to a fault; to say "I don't play games" is quite the understatement.
And since I tend to be very "Dragnet" in my answers to these things ("Just the facts, Ma'am, just the facts"), I should probably take a minute to note that I consider a sense of humor and a good dose of silliness pretty damn essential to survival. I spend a large part of life laughing, although I, personally, am more witty and silly in turns than funny (twinge of envy for those of you writing the awesomely entertaining and creative profiles).
Did you make it this far? Really? Damn, I'm impressed. So, hopefully you know as much useful info as I can figure out to communicate about whether and how we might get along. Including knowing about my long-windedness.
I am queer-identified, activist, and geeky