While I was unpacking from IML and cleaning up some gear, something happened which I didn't think was likely to occur for a number of years. My closet filled up.
Seriously. I have a small closet in my attic where I keep all my leather, rubber, and spandex pants, shirts, etc. Not only did I run out of hangers, but I filled up the closet as I finished washing each piece of latex, polishing each piece of leather, and organizing each of them. I can't believe it. Being a poor midwesterner, I thought it would be many more years before I had a closet that was full since I have so many bills to pay. Granted, it's a rather small closet, but I can't help but be thankful for everything I have.
There's one piece missing though.
I bought my latex catsuit when I was 21 years old. I gave some careful thought to what I would do with my income tax refund that year; after making sure I didn't have any car repairs or debts to other people to pay off, I decided to buy some gear. I had wanted something made of rubber for a while, and with great trepidation, I searched far and wide for the one piece that just felt right to me. The Mr. S full body five-zip catsuit. I didn't send them my measurements or anything; I just got lucky by ordering a "small". It fit like a glove.
Over the next five years, I got a good amount of *ahem* mileage from that amazing piece of molded pseudoliquid sex. Everytime I would slide it onto my body, something would happen with me. It wouldn't matter what was going on at school or how many hours I had worked that week or what kind of fight I had just gotten into with my parents. Every last bit of that would melt away into the rubber. I was a fox. I was Tynan. I was me.
My first MIR came around; I got a chance to wear it in public. And met some great new friends in the process. I realized what it was like to wear the catsuit for 8 hours; and by the end of it, it feels like a second skin. I wore it to the Eagle on my very first visit there a couple years ago. I didn't know what else to wear to the Eagle. Since it fit so tight and was just not something I'd wear out on the street (yet), I wore regular street clothes over it. Even so, it was such a novelty. I met a few people and made some small talk, and I realized how little the latex fetish was known to the old-guard leathermen.
MIR number two comes and goes. That latex catsuit is what I wore to my very first gear night at the Eagle in January of 2010. It was the outfit of choice for trying to convince other guys to come out to the bar and be a part of a community. It worked; everyone who was there had to feel the smoothness of the latex at least one time, and I made a lot of good, new friends. The next month, I wasn't the only rubberboy there. A few months later, at the behest of my friends, I wore that catsuit onstage as I competed at MIR. It turned out to be one of my favorite outfits to wear because not only did it look good, but because it tells a story of me through its scars and blemishes.
My catsuit isn't just a sexy piece of rubber that I put on to get off. My catsuit is the very first piece of wearable gear that I've ever owned, and the piece of latex that gave me the strength and determination to drive myself forward, uninhibited into my own kinky desires. My catsuit was the first piece of gear to make me feel whole and complete. It was the first garment to hang in a closet now completely full of gear in a life that's now completely full of joy, vibrance, friends, and course, kinky sex.
At IML a couple weekends ago, International Mr. Leather Founder (yes, Founder!) and Executive Producer Chuck Renslow gave a very heartfelt speech at the contest on Sunday night, which included an amazing shout-out to me. He had to shorten it due to time constraints, but in the whole thing was published afterward (click here to read it). I am ever humbled and grateful to receive such a compliment from such a great man. I still can't believe he even knows who I am. After the contest, I went back to my hotel, and slipped into the old girl for (what would become) her last time to play with an old friend of mine.
I've had my catsuit repaired three times already, but I liked the scars on it. They added character. But alas, my catsuit exploded after my friend and I played, later that night at the bar. It may seem silly, but this is the ode to my catsuit. Thank you, old girl, for being there for all those years and planting the kinky seed in my life. You've served me well in many precarious situations and in many different *ahem* positions. You gave me the calm and solace I needed to persevere; with your help, I found the strength to fill the closet in my dungeon as well as the void in my life. I could always slide in to you and melt away from it all, lost in the kinky life you gave me.
I'll never forget you.