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Lourens Botha

By December 17, 2013

lourens-botha1. Please tell us about yourself, and your connection to the leather world.

I am a 51 year old white male and was till recently the secretary of the SA Leathemen Cape Town chapter. I have been the manager for 5.5 years at the oldest Gay male only guest house in SA until it was sold in April 2013. I also dabble into making small leather products for myself and anyone who might be interested, supplying the local bar and an online sex shop with various small leather products. I try and help create an environment in our community where we can be proud to be out and open about our leather community.

2. How long have you been into leather, what or who got you started?

I was introduced to the leather world by my ex boyfriend in 2000. Whilst we were dating he was working at the local leather bar "Bar-Code" when it was still situated in Hudson street Cape Town. Since he worked nights and I was working days it became clear to me to join him in working at the bar. And what an eye opener that was.

3. Which club or bar are you affiliated with and tell us more about the history?

I did always go to Barcode but the scene has changed so much that I no longer feel that it is the bar for me. We now mostly gather at Lions Corner in Observatory or at Amsterdam bar in Greenpoint. With the community being quite small it is difficult to have a bar that solely caters for the Leather community as a whole.

4. Tell us about your charity involvement and goals.

I personally support "The Gay Pride Shelter" and volunteer there on a permanent basis in doing all their handyman work. I have also together with the Golden Gay foundation raised funds and collected food and clothing for them to be distributed amongst our desperate and in need members of the broader gay and Lesbian community. The Pride shelter is one of the nonprofit organizations that give back to our people. It is time that we start looking after our own.

5. Who is the most influential person in your life and why?

My Mom, she is my hero. She supports and loves me unconditionally and has never made me feel anything less than the most beautiful person she has brought into this world. I am very lucky and happy to enjoy the full support from my whole family.

6. In your mind, what's the biggest misconception of the leather community?

I think the notion out there that we are sexual deviants that it is all about the sex in our community. We are so much more than just a sexual preference.

7. What would you say is the best thing that happened while at a leather function or event?

Experiencing the mindset change amongst an audience when they realize it is not all just about the fetish. When you see that spark in their eyes when they look at you and realize you are way more than their preconceived ideas and perceptions.

8. What does sexual freedom mean to you?

It means I can express myself sexually with whom I want and experiment without the fear of being persecuted, I n an environment of my choice.

9. What do you see for the future of leather in your community and internationally?

It is my strong believe that we as a male only Leather chapter should open up our group to include ALL the Leather brothers and sisters of South Africa. The only identifying criteria should be Leather; not whether we are male or female, gay or straight. It should become a totally inclusive group. At the moment it is just too fragmented to make any impact and that is why we will always be on the fringes of society unless we unite under single umbrella group structure.


 

10. Tell us what your favorite piece of leather is and why?

Oh that must be my harness......the smell and feel of the leather on my skin is just wow!!

thumb lourens-botha-south-africa11. You are a very talented man, making leather, what piece of leather can you design, make to represent yourself?

I still want to make the perfect leather waistcoat for myself. With enough well placed inside pockets for your keys and other little tidbits....

12. In your own words, can you tell us how important it is to maintain sexual freedom and how should we continue to making sure we have our rights?

If you can no longer express your sexual freedom we will no doubt land up like our brothers and sisters in Russia. You will be persecuted just for whom you love and care for. And that in the whole will make you as an individual lose your identity to conform to narrow minded bigots idea of what a society must be. We did not choose to be gay; it is whom we are. I was born this way.

13. What are your favorite S&M activities and tell us one you haven't tried yet?

Welllllllll........... Now that would be telling..... Well I like the fisting scene as it is one of the most intense, trust building and intimate scenes I know. Would not mind being introduced to a little bondage....if I can get over the fear of being tied up.

14. What's the funniest safe word you ever heard?

Banana!

15. What's your favorite meal, and cook us a meal that represent you and what would it be called?

Oh it must be Lamb shank. I make a very nice Beef Curry. The complex spices and taste should just be right. Too little or too much and it is yuk!


 

16. Tell us your favorite book at this moment.

The Gay man's Kama Sutra

17. We both live in Cape Town, what 5 things would you show me and why?

  • Paternoster - the sea, open spaces, beauty and fresh air
  • Table Mountain – it is like standing over our beautiful land and looking as far as the eye can see and just take in the majestic view, the creation of a Higher Power.
  • The Pride shelter – to highlight the plight of our brothers and sisters in need.
  • A beautiful wine farm – to savor the flavours of our wines.
  • Blikkies dorp – the most impoverished community that still survives against all odds. Their needs and aspirations, and how we can help.

18. In conclusion, anything you would like to add to this interview for the leather community of South Africa?

Stand-up and stand together all the boys and girls! It does not matter who or what you are; if you love Leather then you are part of this community.