Archive for December, 2015

What are “Elders” anyway?

Posted: Tuesday, 29 December, 2015 by deacongray in Uncategorized

grumpy-old-man-cartoon

 

For years I have heard people talking about these Mystical Creatures known as “Elders”. The “Elders” abuse their power, the “Elders” aren’t doing enough, the “Elders” aren’t accepting of the new generation. So what Are Elders anyway?

 

I realize that many people out there know what an elder is, it’s pretty well established. But, there seems to be a great many people out there who really don’t seem to get it. So I thought I would write this little primer for those who seem to have missed the boat, and seem to think that these nearly divine creatures have passed them by.

According to Webster’s Dictionary and Elder is

1:  of earlier birth or greater age <his elder brother>

2:  of or relating to earlier times :  former

3   archaic :  of or relating to a more advanced time of life

4:  prior or superior in rank, office, or validity

 

But how does this really apply to the Vampire Community? Well let’s take a look.

There are actually a few different types of Elder in the community. The first type primarily being

1:  Organization rank achieved through time, contribution, and administrative task completion, and community recognition

2: Individual standing achieved through significantly long community involvement

The first one really speaks mostly to Houses, Clans, Courts and Halo’s. In this field it is expected that the member involved has spent enough time, displayed a depth of knowledge and contributed enough effort to be recognized by both their own organization and others.

When one tries to establish a House, or other organization without any respected Elders, it often becomes rather difficult to gain wider acceptance. This can be an issue when there isn’t an organization in ones given area and they wish to set up their own, but simply haven’t been around long enough to gain a reputation in the wider community. These people are known by another term a “Leader”

The second type of Elder speaks not to standing in an organization, but to simply having been around a long time. It becomes accepted that through time, one has gained knowledge and wisdom (though that’s not always true.) These “Elders” aren’t always leaders and quiet often couldn’t lead their way out of a paper sack, if they could they would most likely be, or  have been, in some organization.  Sure there are some that are simply not interested in joining a group, but those tend to contribute in other ways.

 

What it really breaks down to, is that not all “Elders” are “Leaders” and not all “Leaders” have to be “Elders” The title “Elder” isn’t worth a whole lot outside of organizational business, and even then, if you aren’t a leader, it tends to be more of an honorific.

So if that is what Elders are, what are they not?

This has become a big question, so let me give you my view on it. Elders are not in the community to baby sit. They are not law enforcement, they are not working behind the scenes to put down upstarts, because honestly, they are a dime a dozen and no matter how many you squish, ten more take their place. Elders are not magical, or divine, they are not going to make bad people go away, (might kick them from groups) and in the end they are just normal people with the same reach and power as anyone else on Facebook or in the real world.

Very few Elders are full time community focused individuals. I know it might be a shock but most of them have jobs, heck some jobs that pay less then what you might be making, or in a profession with less esteem.

The Biggest thing elders contribute, at the end of the day, is experience. They have seen the rabble rousers before, they have seen the trolls, the womanizers, and dramatics and games people play. They know what has worked in the past, and what has totally failed.

Our community doesn’t need more Elders, what we need are more Leaders.

Rather then worry about a status, earn one by getting involved in something you are passionate about. Share your own knowledge, and contribute to on going efforts if leadership isn’t your thing. Respect can be earned by anyone, don’t worry about being Elder, you can grow old as time passes.

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From a Dark House

Posted: Monday, 28 December, 2015 by deacongray in Uncategorized

Morgan Library.jpg
( Interview with a member of a Vampire House gone “Dark”)

Over 15 years ago a Vampire House of growing reputation went full on into the shadows. “We went dark, as people call it”. 15 years ago, an institution that was focused on building libraries and data bases, quietly closed down its web pages, removed open access to their articles and books, and became, for all intents and purposes silent to the Vampire Community.

 

Today I am talking to Raven Hunyadi, a mid level priestess for this organization, primarily to ask the simple question. Why? With the budding of the OVC and the building community, why would you want to close the doors on an organization that was developing so well? Why agree to speak to me now, even if unwilling to disclose even the name of the organization? Why, speak at all if the goal is to remain in the shadows?

 

RH:

Hello, my name is Raven Hunyadi, and yes that’s a fake name, so report me to Facebook if you can find me. I was only a young night sider back when the house that I had the honor of being included decided to close their doors to the outside. Because of this status I was basically unknown to the community and remains so under the guise I was known as at the time. Of course during that period having a “nightside” name meant a little more than simply grabbing the coolest name you could think of, though many did just that. Your “nightside” name was your identity, the one selected by both you and your house, where a formal naming often took place, and you bonded your soul to the organization as a reborn spiritual element.

I’m sure that sounds a little cultish to you, and perhaps it was. We did engage in ritual, we did have one charismatic leader, and we did support the organization with monthly dues. However the only thought control we dealt with was on the subject of the discipline of privacy for each of the members. You could identify as part of the house, but you were not allowed to give out any personal information of the others, or even their names if they wished it held secret.

GYP: So what happened? The organization was fairly well known for their work, to suddenly close up shop and disappear was a little unusual.

RH: That’s a misconception. We actually still have the same webpage up as we did years ago. We just stopped updating it, and took down the archives.

You see the goal wasn’t to make a big drama, or even make a stir. We wanted to slip away and you can’t do that if suddenly all of your stuff just vanishes. No, it was a slow arduous process with a step by step plan, though that doesn’t really answer your question.

The answer is pretty simple really. The Community wasn’t growing in developmental ways, it was merely gaining numbers. More and more tourists were coming around, and we spent more time defending our beliefs, than refining them and learning. The community was slowly becoming a place that was more about popularity and power than any real growth, and that got old fast. The Forms and Courtesies we established to help keep conflict minimized became a point of conflict all of its own. Civility became second to arrogance and the constant demand that people be called out as role players, lifestyles, or fakes, by people who had no real contact or knowledge.

Every few days a new House was popping up, complete with some decades old history that no one had ever heard of, and people whose time line made them adolescents when they supposedly became part of a House no one ever heard of, or something ridiculous thing like that.

We could see where we would be caught in a quagmire of useless bickering if we allowed it, so rather than engage, our counsel decided to go dark instead. Our members would no longer speak of the House, but they were free to speak on their own behalf if they so decided. Not many did.

 

GYP: As a House gone dark did you still meet, have gatherings or just hang out?

 

RH: We went dark, but we didn’t cease to exist. The most difficult part was keeping members interested. It was a real test to see who was truly with the organization, or merely with it for the benefits they perceived as being so connected. We lost several members initially, and for a while it certainly did get quiet, but in the long run we actually built up.

We went from a small amount to many more, and we did gather and have events. We just didn’t do them publically and if we did, they weren’t called House Events, as much as social events for the Pagan, Goth and Vampire Community. We didn’t allow any one person to become a spotlighter for the organization, and so the hosts were changed out often to avoid the suspicion of any one group organizing such events.

GYP: So you developed something of a Shadow Court?

RH: While that sounds romantic and interesting, it would be unbecoming of me to make such a claim. We helped to organize events, we just didn’t jump out there as the organizers. Courts are an interesting concept, and one I personally find very appealing, but they require leadership that remains constant, and with it power and ego often gets involved.

If in any way you claim some form of leadership these days, there will be villagers with pitch forks trying to hunt you down. Look at Austin, or Lazarus, the Iron Garden and many others. The moment they actually try to bring people together, try to unite people for a common good, the community vultures start to circle and the hate starts pouring out from many of the same voices that later call “it’s time for unity!”

 

GYP:  So you don’t think community unity is possible? Is that part of why your house went dark?

RH:  Unity? Unity in what exactly? Unity in marching for our combined vampire rights? Unity to hold a huge event? Unity of Governance or leadership?  What exactly do we need to be unified about that we cannot accomplish without trying to make everyone fall in line? The call for unity is mere rhetoric, a word tossed around in the attempt to make people feel like they are leaders.

I saw in a post where Merticus said “I would take civility over unity any day.” Of course I am paraphrasing there, but you get the gist. Our House went dark for several reasons the foremost reason was a lack of civility.

GYP: Civility has been my goal for a long time, but that too is nearly impossible to accomplish. Do you think it could be made a social norm for the VC?

RH: Could it be? Yes without a doubt. Will it be? Not as things stand now. An agreement for civil behavior would have to be written up, and people would have to sign on to it, and agree not to be mean spirited for the sake of same.

You once posted that, people who sit in forums and wait for a reason to “Call people out” or “Call it like I see it” would be rallying the masses and starting bon fires.
I think that there is room for discussion, and even debate, but this group of people who seem to think that being “Blunt” is an excuse to be rude, is the reason we have so much confrontation. You can disagree with someone with out being a prick, but that’s hard to do when people wear it as a badge of honor.

There is never an excuse to be rude for the sake of ones of ego stroking. If you do not like what someone is saying, don’t respond, or stop reading their missives.  Worse case, block them and move on.

In your own forums, Deacon, you will warn them about being rude, or intentionally contentious and if they won’t stop, they are removed. At the same time you have engaged in the same contentious bickering as many of the others you despise. Bullying the Bully doesn’t solve anything, it just makes two bullies. In the end did it change any minds? Did it do anything other than make everyone involved look silly?

 

GYP:  So your house refuses to engage in these things, but what do you engage in? From the Shadows what do you really accomplish?

RH: Some times, nothing at all. Sometimes we have done charity drives in our area. But we are not a charity organization. We focus on our paths. We select topics and assign classes to members to help educate us on concepts we have not yet learned. Last year we spent most of our time studying Luciferianism. Next year we might look at Predatory spiritualism, or Tantra. We might delve into Buddhism, or spend some time looking at the old Greek rhetoric.

We can do this because we are not mired down in useless OVC bickering, or wasting time trying to become a name in a community that despises names, while clamoring to obtain their own reputation

GYP: So in closing, is there anything you would like to say to this generation?

 

RH: Social groups are ok, but just building new groups doesn’t make you a leader. It takes focus and goals that mean something to really stand out, to be recognized for contributing. I saw one guy is doing new social surveys and studies, I believe he is working with the House of The Dreaming, but the effort is all his own. He is gathering real data, something that could be useful, and he stays with it. He’s Focused, and really accomplishing something.

Also, don’t repeat what others have already done and expect to be considered something special. “Oh you have a blog! Wow so original!”  If half of the bloggers got together and worked together to make something special, it would do amazing things, but that won’t happen because- well Ego.

Last, ask yourself why you are in the VC or OVC at all. If you’re honest with yourself, and realize that you are basically just around to feel connected, that’s cool. Do that. But if you have any idea’s about leadership, you are going to have to do something new, something original and focus. Merely posting pictures to Facebook groups isn’t going to cut it. Merely talking about being a new generation of leadership, isn’t the same as buckling down, outlining goals and developing a path that makes it happen.

 

© 2015 Dec 23 Graveyard Press

A Tarnished Swan’s tale

Posted: Sunday, 27 December, 2015 by deacongray in Uncategorized

 A donor’s tale of Abuse, Rape Betrayal and Renewal.

swan
by JB R
(c) GraveyardPress 2015 Dec 14

Growing up I wasn’t exactly your everyday kid. I was into things like Role Playing games, Japanese animation ( before it became popular) and comic books. I liked to search libraries for old books on witches, and magic, and I could spend hours on my own at Powell’s book store in Portland Oregon, just drinking watered down coffee ( I couldn’t handle the full strength stuff) and enjoying all that was weird about a place that had acres of book shelves and people just as odd as I was.  It didn’t change the fact that I was lonely.

 

I guess it was at the comic book store that I first met Dillon. He was there fairly often and to be honest I always took his friendliness as nothing more than the comradery of a fellow fan of the X-Men. I was around fifteen, he was closer to twenty eight, and he spent most of his time at the store talking to older people, playing role playing games, or sneaking out back to smoke pot. Sure he was cute, but he was also an older man, and old men didn’t really ping my radar. Still he and the rest of the regulars soon became friends in our own geeky, odd sort of way.

So after a few months of hanging out, my new friend Dillon and I became a little more than simple friends. We might make out after smoking a little weed at the end of game night, and it all seemed fairly harmless.  Hell, even my mom didn’t really mind.

She knew how old he was, but he was always a gentlemen, and we hadn’t exactly ‘Done it’ or anything.  I suppose she was just glad to see that I wasn’t hanging out in my room reading books and wishing my Mr. Darcy would magically appear. Dillion assured my mom that he wanted to be certain I was ready, and that he wasn’t in any kind of a rush. To me it didn’t seem like he was in a hurry enough. I was nearly seventeen by the time we had intercourse, though I had done other things with him up until then.

We would see each other on the weekends, mostly at the comic book store, and he would treat me like his queen, and called me his sweet little swan. I felt incredible, not only part of the cool crowd, but one of its leaders. Dillion would keep the group organized and I would do my best to administrate his plans.

“Vampire: The Masquerade, at the shop, dress the part!” I would send out to all the group members, and they would show up just as directed. It might seem a silly thing to find empowering, but for a girl who had never had any power, popularity or friends, this was like a dream come true. They were always glad to see me on the weekend, and their acceptance of me, made it easy to ignore some of the other things going on around me.

Meth. I’m not sure when it crept into our group, or if I was merely too stupid to notice. I tried it once; it was like having someone toss a shivering spell on me, with the addition of making me really sleepy. After that Dillion said, it was pointless for me to do it, he said I must be ADHD or something. So I smoked a little weed, and occasionally got into the wine, if someone brought some over.

Dillion didn’t like me drinking wine, it said it was too big of a risk, and that it made me act stupid. So I only snuck a little once in a while. He looked after me, regardless of my snarky comments about him acting like my father. All in all it was just like any family really, even if it was starting to get a little ordinary.

I think Dillion caught my discontent, because he proposed that we all get together for a road trip to one of the famous “Endless Nights Vampire Ball” gatherings, in New Orleans. I was so excited! Dillion said he would pay my way, and even help me find just the right clothing for the event. He said he would pick me up before my mom woke up, (So she couldn’t say no) and we would go on this amazing adventure.

The trip would take a few days, so I would have time to call my mom and let her know what the deal was, but once we got started there was no real way for her to stop me. The plan seemed so perfect, a childhood adventure! Something to tell my own kids about and show them I wasn’t just a library mouse, or comic book store looser.

“I think it’s time I told you something about our group.” Dillion said to me after we had been on the road for about an hour. “I didn’t want to freak you out before, so I told the others not to mention it, but I think it’s time you know.”

 

He had been a little quiet for the first twenty minutes, so I had left him alone, thinking that he was just working out the trip details, but I could see that other things had been on his mind. “My little Swan, I’m not sure how to tell you this. Our group, doesn’t just play vampire role playing games. We are a Vampire House. We are all vampires, Sanguinarians and Tantric vampires.”

I didn’t know what to say, to be frank about it. He went on for hours about the various courts, clans and covens. He talked about how they were organized and how ‘Black Swans’ were both hostess, counselor, and companion for the Houses. He said I was his Black Swan.

We had picked up some of the others, and they helped to educate me about the community rapidly, they said I ‘Needed to Know” now that we were headed for the Vampire Capital City. At first I thought they were messing with me, than I felt a little angry at being made fun of. Sure, try to convince the stupid comic book mouse into believing that real vampires existed. To tell you the truth I nearly cried, I couldn’t figure out why they were doing all of that to me.

It was one of the others that broke out his lap top and started pulling up all the pages.

I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. Hundreds of pages, facebook groups, WordPress and Yahoo groups all about real human vampires went back for decades! My friend’s group wasn’t just in there too, they were pretty well known, and active since way before they met me. They weren’t kidding about the vampire stuff.

 

I can’t tell you what a shock it was, I read and read, down loading page after page when we got to different stops that had wifi. We drove for hours, stopping to eat, smoke a little weed, and that back on the road, but I hardly noticed. I was so caught up in all of it that I felt like I was on a roller coaster.

We were in Colorado before we stopped for the night at a cheap hotel. The road had worn me down, but the others were still going strong. They had their meth, and the whole thing was a party. Still I wanted to sleep, but I was excited when Dillion asked me to be his donor, not just his donor, but a donor to them all.

I’m not sure what got into me. Maybe it was the alcohol, Dillion was pretty liberal with it that night, or maybe it was the mood, but I let Dillion drink my blood. I can’t explain it, but it was both frightening and sexually appealing. I wanted him to own me in every way, and let him take me in ways that always seemed so wicked before.

I noticed that all the others were involved with each other in some fashion or another and the mood was so alive and sexual. Dillion said vampire families were close, and that playing and tormenting each other was just part of bonding. He said I didn’t have to bond with the others, and I was both relieved and a little put off. I wanted to be completely part of them, to be their queen again; something that I felt had slipped away with all this new information.

I know we argued about it, I know I was so drunk I couldn’t really think. I know that it felt good to be with so many people and I had been fairly certain that sometime in the night I had traded sexual favors with most of them. It was more than a party it was the life, the blood, the bonding!

The car was mostly silent when I woke up. Dillion had put me in the car, and we had all taken off early, in a hurry to get to Endless Nights. He said that I imagined the sex, that sure he and I had been involved and it has been passionate, but that the others had left me alone for the most part.

I suppose I felt ok about that, but for some reason I felt kind of weird about it. I was positive I had been with each of the males, and pretty sure the female involved had too, but she seemed ok with everything, and none of the guys commented on anything.

It was afternoon before I started feeling better, and nearly evening when the mood of comradery and excitement started to return. The girl that was with us had made contact with friends in New Orleans, and it looked like we would have a place to stay, and a pre-event party would be in full swing when we got there. It was looking to be a pretty amazing event.

When we arrived the party was in full swing, and I was already a few hits into a good buzz. Dillion hadn’t let me drink until we were about an hour out, so by the time we got there I was fairly well lubricated.  Our family was being playful and fun again, and it seemed like everything that had happened the night before was being washed away by the fun to be had.

Dillion took me around to meet all the Elders of the local community. They were mostly pretty nice, but I felt seriously under dressed. Dillion seemed to notice how I felt because he and the girl who traveled with us, introduced me to a beautiful vampire lady, and she was more than eager to dress me up. “A girl has to look the part! Besides you’re tits are going to look amazing in my blue and black corset!”

I would love to tell you all about my trip. I am excited to remember the graveyards, the people, the outfits and paraphilia. Did you know there are people who make vampire fangs?

 

Still everything comes back in bits and pieces. I know that I drank, smoked weed, but I didn’t realize until later that I was also on Ecstasy. I can’t explain the whirl wind, I can’t explain how I ended up in so many vampire blood orgies.  I know my body was cut for blood, I know I woke up unsure if I had been screwing Dillion, or if the image in my head was right and it was someone else.

I know by the end of the event, ( I missed the main ball) I was used up and feeling a little dead on the inside.  I asked Dillion if I could go back to the place we had been staying, but he didn’t want to leave. So he took me to our car and bundled me up. He said he would check on me, he said he wouldn’t be long.

I passed out. I don’t know what time it was, I only know that I was in the back of the car laying on my stomach, my legs crammed onto the floor board and my head shoved into the car seat. I felt some one on me, driving into my body, at first I thought it might be Dillion, but the weight of this guy was so much more than Dillion.

I started to try to push away, but caught a fist in the ribs. I both lost my breath and realized I was being rapped at about the same moment. I screamed, but my face was just pushed harder into the car seat. The guy stopped for a moment and I thought it was over, but then he started again with renewed vigor… and his weight felt different somehow. I struggled again and a second blow landed, hitting me in the head hard enough for me to lose consciousness.

When I woke up I was bundled up in the back seat of the car like nothing had happened. Dillion was there, he said he saw no signs of an issue, and thought maybe it was the drugs I had imagined it all. I pointed out the bruises and he seemed unsure of what to say, even asked if I might have knocked myself around while drunk.

I knew what happened, I wanted to call a cop, but Dillion said he didn’t think I knew what happened, and that cops would just get us all in trouble because I was underage. He talked me out of calling the police, but after I submitted he started acting weird. Mean, like I did something wrong.

The trip home wasn’t as much fun. The others still played and partied, but I just felt sad and used. No one seemed to want to stop the party, and some even whispered that I made the whole thing up for attention. “Look some people can’t handle being bonded to a group. Maybe you are just feeling regret and it transferred into some addled fantasy about being rapped.”

After I got home I didn’t talk to the group for a while. I stayed home until even my mother was worried about me. I’m not sure when I decided to push it away, to just accept it, but I did.

I started hanging back out, mostly only with Dillion on free time, and the others during game nights. They said we were still family, but there was a lot going on that I wasn’t involved in. They started getting in contact with other locals, there where even some fights over who had the right to go to what bar and what events were off limits to what people.  I was still too young to go, so I didn’t get to see a lot of it, but I heard about it when Dillion came looking for me.

For the most part I spent a lot of time by myself again. I started to get lonely again, but instead of reading or hanging out at the library, I went on line to the forums. Vampires, as it turns out, are fairly prolific on line. I met a lot of people, most I just interacted with in the forums, but a few I learned to really trust.

Regardless, I didn’t really talk about that night. I didn’t want to be seen as the drama queen, or get anyone in trouble from our group. I wanted to know people and build my own respect, but it seemed like every time I did Dillion would find something about them he didn’t approve of.

He really didn’t like me talking to the vampires in New Orleans. Something had happened down there, and he was pretty pissed off at them. He said that they were spreading lies, and that honorable vampire houses didn’t interact with them anymore.

I was starting to feel pretty sheltered, isolated and alone. I told Dillion how I was feeling and he said I just needed more time with the house to really feel like part of the group. He said it would be easier once I got old enough to go the clubs, but promised to start doing after parties so I could be involved. I have to admit, despite everything I was excited to have the chance.

I have to admit I fell right into it. The parties were great, so much fun! I dressed up, spent all my money on clothing and make up. We have great bonding parties and while I stayed pretty much with Dillion, there were times when others got special time with me.

The first time I was asked to be a Birthday Day Gift, for one of the house, it was based on the idea that we had played before on the trip. I wasn’t sure I liked the idea, but with enough booze and drugs I managed to get in the spirit. After that it seemed all the House members and some of the House Friends wanted me as their present as well.

I normally said No, but there were times that even in saying No, I ended up relenting after enough booze. At some point I just came to know that I was there for the whole house, for their pleasure and mine. I didn’t like it, but they were my friends and I wanted them to want me around. I know how stupid that sounds.

Once again I started isolating. I felt like a whore, and started really letting myself go. I cried a lot, but Dillion just said I was being a silly girl. He told me that I needed the House, that no one else would want me now. He said he still loved me, but that I let my standards slip. That I encouraged the other house members, and how he felt like he was just getting what was left.

We broke up at some point. He found a girl a little older, a little more money and knowledge about the community. She said she liked me, but she also talked to me like I was a child. I really hated that, but there wasn’t much I could do. The rest of the house loved her.

I decided to take a vow of celibacy for six months, and try to find my own way. I left the house and talked to a lot of people in the community. They told me they thought I was funny and witty, they didn’t ask for pictures, and their flirting was friendly, not that dark feeling I had with the others. It was just fun.

On line a man who was really charming became my close friend. He showed me a lot, took care of me when I was down, and listened to me without judging me. He said he would help take care of Dillion if I wanted him too, not in a violent way, just have him removed from community gatherings, but I didn’t want that. I still loved Dillion.

It was months later that Dillion came back. He was thin and tired looking. He said he had missed me and couldn’t eat or drink, that the new girl had been a huge mistake,  that she had put a spell on him, and he was only now able to break it. He said he needed my support, and begged me to come back.

He promised to take me to the Portland Vampire Masquerade ball, and that it would be an amazing time to renew our bonds. He said everything I wanted to hear.

We dated again for a few weeks, and I had spent nearly all of my saved up money for College to prepare for the ball. We bought clothing and booze, drugs and a nice hotel room. It was going to be epic, and I couldn’t wait to go.

It was on that big night, the night I thought he might propose or something, that we went to the hotel and partied like there was no tomorrow. We all gathered and howled and showed up for the ball in our grandeur and fangs, ready to represent our growing house.

We met all kinds of amazing people. People from the great houses of New York were present, and even some of the people I knew on line. We danced as acrobats flipped in the sky, and had blood red wine in goblets ( plastic cups) until the whole thing just magically came together in a scene that was more dream than reality.

“It’s like the Goblin Kings Court!” I heard someone saying, and to me that was the perfect summation of the evening.

I suppose all good things have to come to an end though, and for us the end came as we headed back to the hotel, and my head swam with booze and pot. I laid down to rest and drifted, not really knowing what came next, but perfectly happy to go to bed and rest.

Dillion was texting someone, and everyone was anxious about some deal or another. I guessed they wanted more meth or pot, so I ignored it. I could have got back up and went back to the party, but I didn’t want to. I wanted to sleep and just enjoy the after glow of the evening, so I faked being passed out.

Apparently it worked. At around three am I lay listening to the others talking and something one of them said caught my attention. “ I don’t think we should do it again. I felt really shitty about it the last time.”

Dillion responded “She’s buy whatever we tell me. She is so drunk she won’t noticed. Heck she had a few before and never even woke up. Hell dude, I’ll cozy up to her, get her primed and if she seems under, than the deal is on. I let those guys have a piece, we’ll get our shit and no one is the wiser.”

I didn’t scream, or yell, or anything like that. I merely got up, and walked quietly to the patio door, and went home. It was all pretty clear once I heard them. I hadn’t imagined anything in New Orleans, I had been sold. Raped for profit and drugs and the house I thought I belonged too, had all known and done nothing about it.

Now I live at the edges of the community. I am still involved, but no so involved or trusting as I once was. Dillion is in jail, it seems he was registered sex offender his specialty was young girls like myself. After talking to my mother, she called the cops and they took him away on the third strike rap. He still sends me letters telling me he loves me, or calling me a whore who ruined his life.  My mother told the prison that his letters aren’t welcome, so they have put us on the list, though, when he moves to a new facility, it takes a while for them to get the clue.

Once word got out, he was ruined in the community, though as I later came to understand he was never really anyone important in the community to start with. Just some guy who talked a big game, but never backed it up. His house wasn’t even recognized in most circles and his name was just as obscure.

One lady I spoke to at the Portland Ball, said she remembered me, because Dillion had introduced me to her, but she hadn’t a clue who Dillion was. “He was a total stranger introducing me to a total stranger. It was so odd.”

So what now? Well I am again dealing with a House as an outsider and friend, though this one is known in the community, though they do not all know my back story. They are friendly and never ask to “Bond” though men will be men. I find most of the houses are pretty safe, but I will always know that some aren’t and I doubt I will ever be able to trust friends like I did before.

I don’t know if the drugs addling my mind made the rape easier, or if it makes it harder, as I don’t know who all was involved or if they would ever be brought to justice. But still, I am glad I can’t see their faces in my nightmares.

Counseling helps, but nothing will let me take away the pain. Nothing changes my bad choices, or puts me in a different place in time where I was too stoned and drunk to know for sure if I was being sold for drugs. Nothing will change that betrayal of knowing my first love thought of me as nothing but a young piece to use as he saw fit.

These day’s things have changed for me though. I am married, I have a kid of my own (new husband’s kid, not Dillion’s) and I have a good job, where people know me as a nice young lady, and friend. I suppose some would say I turned it all around, though I will never totally get the vampire community out of my spirit. Despite all that happened, the people I met there have been truer as friends then many close to me. Despite everything all the negative, the horrible crap, the lies and shit I went through, this community remains dear to me, and my family. It isn’t always easy, and I still have a lot of counseling to do, but perhaps with each step and each year, it will get easier.

Ten Tips For Building a Vampire Group

Posted: Sunday, 27 December, 2015 by deacongray in Uncategorized

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A Vampire Facebook group should be more focused than a business page, and attracts people that are genuinely interested in what your group is about So the question is, how do you make it successful? I am going to offer some tips that might help, but in the end, if your content isn’t good, your group will struggle

 

#1: Choose the right name.

For searches, and ensuring the proper message is being sent, you have to ensure you pick the right name. I myself built a group called “ Dark Warriors” it seemed a good name, until I found out there is some sort of role playing game, or video game that uses the same term. I ended up with a lot of people drawn toward the group that focused on the game, and were totally lost at the talk about kin and vampire warrior paths.

#2: Upload a Group Etiquette or Policy Document

If there is one thing you don’t want in your group, its trolls, spammers and chancers. Make your group etiquette doc available to everyone so that they know the rules.

 

#3: Description: Keep it Simple!

In your description if you have too much content, or rules, people won’t read it. Save the rules for a post you can pin at the top. People want to be able to quickly scan your description and know what the room is all about

 

#4: Content is Key

There are hundreds of rooms that do nothing but post sexy vampire pictures. While there is nothing wrong with seeing those on occasion, they do little to encourage interaction. When people interact with the group, they start to feel like they are part of it, and this helps not just with word of mouth sharing, but also in ensuring good content all the way around.

 

#5: Encourage Personal Content Sharing

Encourage people to share their own content. I’m not saying that you should allow your group to become a advertising hub for others, in fact that draws people away from your room, but do ask them about their interests and encourage them to share. Poetry, photography, and written documents, or just things that happen in their life as it pertains to the topic really helps people to open up.

 

 

#6: Intermittently Use Images to Control Behavior

A handy little tool I learned to use are images that convey the rules of the room. A picture of two kids sharing, with a caption that reads “Civility encourages Sharing” and things of that type, can really help people remember to act like adults.

 

#7: Ask Before Adding People To Your Group

This one speaks for itself. Sure you might be able to get a large number of people who might not even notice they were added, or those that don’t mind, but you also tick off a lot of people who do mind, and they tend to let all of their friends know. If you have admins, make sure they are aware that only people who ask to join, should be approved. The goal is to have an active group, not the largest. Anyone can add thousands and for a time claim popularity.
#8: Choose Your Privacy Options Wisely

These days there are 3 options to choose from – open groups, closed groups and secret groups. Make sure your level of privacy corresponds with the goal for the group.

 

#9: Select a great Logo or Icon for your group

If you want your name to spread, there has to be more than just a great name. You need to have a logo or Icon that really stands out, and keep it! If you change your logo, Icon, or name often, it loses its power. People get confused, and generally drift toward things they know.

 

#10: Stay Active!!

 

Activity is everything on a group. If you don’t have the time to devote to keeping your room active, or don’t have admins that will help maintain its activity, you are going to suffer from a lot of malaise from your members. They want to be inspired, engaged, and involved. If you just phone it in with images, people will find forums where they are being engaged.

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Daily Offbeat Vampire House Profile: Temple House Sahjaza, An Exclusive Interview With Goddess Rosemary [EXCLUSIVE]

By Tony Sokol (anthonys@dailyoffbeat.com) 31 Oct ’14 07:30am

As we probably say too often, every day is Halloween at Daily Offbeat and this year we found that offbeat minds think alike. At Temple House Sahjaza also treats every day like it’s Halloween and they’ve been living that way since 1976.

Temple House Sahjaza is the longest consecutively running private organization of its type within the modern new age and occult underground. Most of their teachings are private and remain a mystery to those not initiated into the Temple.

Daily Offbeat spoke exclusively to Goddess Rosemary, the High Priestess and Matriarch of the Temple House Sahjaza, which she calls “a ‘tongue-in-cheek’ group of like-minded artistic, creative and literary individuals interested in science and the arts.”

Though often mentioned in vampire circles, “the Sahjaza seek a balance of dayside and nightside in all aspects of life,” Goddess Rosemary said. “They are spiritually intuitive beings that exist between the physical and metaphysical worlds, thus providing magickal, divinatory, psychic, healing and empathic abilities as well as a great artistic and energetic support system to the whole gambit of the arts and to those they meet.”

The Goddess in Goddess Rosemary is “just my name not a title,” she said. Though she did “practice Full Moon God and Goddess worship rituals.”

The High Priestess said that “despite the use of the word ‘Temple'” the Temple House Sahjaza is “not a religion but a philosophy of spiritually based living that allows for individual expression of belief while maintaining a common moral and ethical code.”

The collective follows “no particular religion and our members are of all faiths we are non-denominational however all our members are and follow some form of spirituality and are spiritually enlightened beings, we are for the most part, made up of pagan based and earth based followers but each is an individual,” she said.

“Spirituality is important to us, but not your own unique way to find God and Goddess,” she said. Though we are more known for our outspoken pagan faith based rituals and rites explored during the full moon goddess explorations in the 90s in NYC and beyond. We believe in individual freedoms and freedom of expression and the “harm none” rule, as well as the pay it forward or ‘karma’ concepts, we push the envelope in the area of literature and the arts.”

“The initial seeds for the Sahjaza were planted in 1976, 38 years ago.” In 1985, Goddess Rosemary established the power exchange organization Z/n Society NYC, which stood for Zenith and nadir. Z/n evolved into Temple House Sahjaza which has active members worldwide still maintaining a continual presence in New York City, Florida, Brazil, California, NOLA, and beyond,” the matriarch said.

Though, the Priestess warned “We don’t reveal our membership specifically beyond.”

“We are big supporters of underground theatre and theatrical companies, such as, La Commedia del Sangue: Vampyr Theatre,” Goddess Rosemary said “The Sahjaza have been putting on events since the 70s such as Cirque de Erotique and the most recently the Undead-A-Go-Go. Over the years Temple House Sahjaza has done everything from Ghost Tours to Whale Watching. Cirque de Erotique came long before Cirque de Soleil was on the scene.”

Goddess Rosemary “owned one of NYC’s first notable Computer Graphic Corporations in 1985 and paved the way for groups to follow such as Kinko’s.”

The High Priestess is also an artist, actress, filmmaker and “champion of women’s freedom of expression, personal growth and rights.” She is also an “advocate for lost and homeless shelter pets, spay and neuter programs and education.”

As an artist, Goddess Rosemary exhibited art in “Gallery shows in NYC from the Andrus Gallery at Carnage Hall, to the Salmagundi Club and other Galleries and venues.” Goddess Rosemary explores fetish and celebrates the female form.

She has directed award winning films that she calls “in-depth and psychological works like Fritz Lang or perhaps even David Lynch.” She is a fan of “cult classics, film noir and dark movie format” and often works in black and white. She also designs her own sets, having studied art direction for film at the New School and acting at HB Studio in NYC. She also studied dance at the Leslie Dance School also in NYC.

“We have many sorts of individuals that make up the whole Sahjaza. Our makeup of who we are and what we do is shrouded in mystery on purpose,” she said.

“We prefer to stay in the Shadows in this day and age.”