I was in my late twenties, had found myself unceremoniously back in London after my Canadian visa ran out (and strangely enough the Canadian government hadn’t leapt to extend it, given that I was a semi employed film PA — basically I directed traffic and fetched coffee for a pittance but occasionally got a glimpse of a camera or two from a great distance so convinced myself it was crucial training 🤣
Funnily enough I was chatting about those days with a couple of actor friends just a few months ago. I’d completely forgotten the bonkers pecking order that we all took so very terribly seriously. As the lowliest of the low, I was only ever supposed to get coffee, for example, for the equivalent lowliest of the low cast and crew. If Brad Pitt had looked me in the eye and asked me to get him a coffee I was supposed to pass the request onto a PA higher up the totem pole who was qualified to fetch fancy person coffee. Poor old Brad would have just had to wait, thirsty and beautiful, until proper protocols had been observed, and it never occurred to me back then to question it.
For the avoidance of doubt, Brad Pitt never asked me for a coffee. Just, for example 😄)
Anyway, that has nothing to do with what I was going to talk about today.
So, Canada had politely bid me adieu and I was at a bit of a loose end in life, not particularly wanting to be in London but not sure where on earth else I could go.
This was obviously before the brilliant move-to-Sweden-despite-not-knowing-anyone-or-speaking-a-word-of-Swedish plan had formed.
One night, I was out in some trendy bar or other around Brick Lane with a friend. We got into conversation with a couple of women at the table next to us (REMEMBER WHEN SUCH WILD SOCIAL SHENANIGANS WERE ALLOWED!!) and ended up joining them. They told us about a group they were involved in, that was dedicated to the book/TV series True Blood.
Now, there is nothing I like better than the sort of mad fantasy series I can gobble up and get mildly obsessed with until I’m on to the next one. Bit of time travel action? I’m in. Hot vampire shagging? Don’t mind if I do. I had inhaled and adored the True Blood books over a series of lunch hours just a few weeks previously.
(Re-read the first couple quite recently and have to say they really don’t stand up, but at the time they hit the spot.)
So I was quite intrigued by what I took to be some kind of book club.
‘Ooh, I’d be up for that!’ I enthused. To be fair, after a few drinks I’ll enthuse about anything.
As they chatted a bit more about the group, it became clear that it involved dressing up.
Which half of me started to find a bit odd, whilst the other half wondered if I could get away with a Pam outfit.
‘Sounds fab, let me know when the next meeting is!’ To be fair, I’d had another drink or two by then.
They exchanged a look. ‘You’ll need to be approved.’
An exclusive dress up book club? I was so very in. ‘Whatever I need to do for approval, I will,’ I solemnly slurred.
So then they chatted some more.
And it slowly dawned on me that what I was enthusiastically signing myself up for was a fantasy S&M scene in which people lived full time as vampires. The ‘makers’ were doms. ‘It’s so hard to date outside the scene when guys just don’t understand that if my maker demands I blow him I don’t have a choice,’ one of them shrugged.
It is so very rare that I am on the side of guys in any statement like that, but I have to say… I can see their point with that one.
Now, these women seemed more than happy with their lifestyle. Whatever rocks consenting adults’ boats.
But that’s how I nearly accidentally joined a vampire sex cult.