Aaron Vessup will be the guest at The Erotic Literary Salon on Tuesday, May 16. | Provided
Aaron Vessup will be the guest at The Erotic Literary Salon on Tuesday, May 16. Provided

While there has no doubt been progress since the mid-20th century, it remains a fact that, even in 2017, expressing one’s sexual side is still seen as a taboo topic. But all hope is not lost.

On the third Tuesday evening of each month, a crowd packs the upper level of Center City’s Time Lounge. Representing all ages, walks of life, and of course sexual experience, the members of this crowd have gathered for the Erotic Literary Salon: A Verbal Sanctuary for Sexual Expression. Over the next few hours, everyone will share personal stories (both fictitious and true), thoughts, laughs, and touching moments. And on Tuesday, May 16, this one-of-a-kind safe space will mark its ninth successful year in Philadelphia.

Local sexologist Dr. Susana Mayer founded and hosts the Erotic Literary Salon. Conceived in 2008 as a way to “mainstream erotica,” the Salon has since developed into an all-inclusive, sex-focused event designed to draw together like-minded artists and attendees.

“The event has evolved to include the witnessing, acceptance and support of people and their pieces as they share not only their fantasies, but lusty confessions, sex memoirs, journals, diaries, correspondence and rants, using a variety of writing styles, some of which I didn’t even realize existed,” Mayer explains.

Each Salon kicks off with an Adult Sex-Ed Salon, where audience members will anonymously pose questions and topics for Mayer and her co-host Walter to discuss. The Salon itself follows, where both new and veteran attendees take the mic to share their personal works—and works in progress—with an appreciative and engaged audience. Fictional erotica, true tales, poetry and even stand-up comedy are all welcome at the Salon. The narratives are punctuated by “six-word sex memoirs,” which audience members anonymously fill out before the event to be read by Mayer.

A special guest usually makes an appearance as well and May 16, it will be author and educator Aaron Vessup.

If You Go:
Tuesday, May 16 (and the third Tuesday of every month)
7 p.m., $12
Bohemian Absinthe Lounge at Time Lounge
1315 Sansom St.

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