Tuesday, May 26, 2009

IML Weekend in Chicago

File Under: IML Festivities

IML stands for International Mr. Leather and it's a gathering of the leather community from around the world. In past years, Dan and Luis volunteered for the events at the host hotel and I spent time wandering around, taking in the sights. This year, both were very busy and couldn't commit to the long hours spent at the hotel. So, they took things in as spectators and we all went to the market together on Sunday afternoon.

I walked to their house. Just down the block from my home, this was written on the sidewalk. NO, I did NOT write it, but it made me giggle. Kids write funny things. :)

Dan, Luis, Polo, Steve and I piled into Luis' car and made our way to the Hilton Towers, this year's host hotel. As is typical of the event, the host hotel is closed to outside guests, those not there for the event. The sights one might see could offend. It's not uncommon to see men walking around in leather jockstraps, chaps, rubber outfits, or not much at all. It's really quite a sight to see the lobby of the hotel filled with leather men from around the world.

Below are some pictures from the market, where all sorts of fun things can be purchased.

The funny part about the afternoon was our arrival. We had already walked past assorted leather men in garb and by far we were the most out of place looking men in the lobby, dressed in jeans and t-shirts. Apparently I did my part in offending the stray couple that had wandered into the hotel. Perhaps they misunderstood and thought IML was some sort of International Mormon Lodge. The woman took a look at my shirt and was obviously offended. Do you find my shirt offensive?
I didn't think so. We all found the incident amusing, as did Doug, the owner of The Big Gay Ice Cream Truck.
After spending a couple of hours at the event, we left for another important task. Early dinner and Margaritas! YUM!



Dan said...

I had no idea you had your camera with you!

Jenny said...

Yikes! Some of that leather looks a bit uncomfortable!

Jimbo said...

I'm that good with the camera, you don't even notice me snapping pictures! LOL

Jenny, yes. I'm sure some of it is uncomfortable. I have a vest, that's the extent of my gear. But, it's cool to see such a celebration. For many it's a lifestyle. It's a fun event to attend.