LOS ANGELES - Shortly after the 11th annual Erotica LA officially begins on Friday afternoon, Sunny Lane is approaching the front entrance of the Los Angeles Convention Center with her suitcase of convention tricks rolling behind her. I didn't see the car that dropped her off, but I presume it was a champagne-filled stretch limousine as she stops to greet me with a big Sunny Lane hug and a glowing smile.
Sunny tells me about a group of people who had just offered to pray on her behalf. She's telling the story faster than my brain can process it, but I do catch the part about what she would have liked to have told them — something about how she communes with god every time "I get cum splattered across my chest."
Sunny heads into the Convention Center and, about two hundred feet away, I notice a group of four people surrounding a guitar player. They're singing songs about Jesus and apparently saving the damned souls of those attending the convention. They have their work cut out for them.
Inside, the place to be is in line waiting to get an exhibitor's badge. The line is a cross-section of porndom's who's who with Belladonna at one end, Tiana Lynn on another and Elegant Angel marketing and promotions manager Mike Barbella entertaining the crowd with his New York City personality.
"This is a personal story, so don't listen," he says in a voice that booms across the Convention Center's vast lobby area.
On the convention floor, the iconic Wicked booth is the first thing to see. Stormy Daniels is front and center hosting a press conference for ASACP, the organization that advocates online self-regulation for the adult industry. Roxy Jezel is right next door at the Club Jenna booth posing on a motorcycle.
Aubrey Addams and Michelle Maylene are dressed like farmer's daughters at the western-themed Platinum X/Red Light District booth. A mechanical bull is the booth's centerpiece, surrounded by plenty of hay. Fan favorite Ava Devine quickly draws a crowd to her little corner bedroom at Naughty America's familiar white picket fence booth — designed to look like your naughty neighbor's innocuous homestead. Gianna and Belladonna take elevated spots at the Evil Angel booth.
Sunny Lane is smiling for fans at the Jules Jordan Video Pornitentiary booth. And Katja Kassin signs autographs for newcomer Pink Kitty Video.
The porn company booths are like skyscrapers in a landscape of tract homes, dwarfing the standard–sized booths of clothing lines, novelty distributors, tattoo artists, strip clubs and other erotic enterprises.
Towards the back of the room is a grand stage that draws a crowd for one female dancer after another. I walk by a woman who puts a gloved hand on my shoulder. The glove vibrates — a nice little unexpected vibrating surprise. "Thank you," I tell her. "It's waterproof," she replies as the vibrating hand makes its way to my chest. "What's it called?" "Fuku-oku,"
I wonder if by now I've done enough damage to my soul to warrant it being saved and head back outside to check up on the Jesus singers. They're still there, but visibly tired. The circle around the guitar player has broken down as the faithful sit around on short concrete pillars. Chalk one up for the damned.
Back inside, it's nearing 7 pm. Jessica Drake has replaced Stormy on the main chair at the Wicked booth, flanked by Randy Spears and Carmen Hart. As the trio meets and greets their line of fans another line is snaking around the Club Jenna booth — for Jenna's 6 o'clock appearance.
On the striptease stage at the back of the room, three half-naked male dancers are giving a chair dance to a woman as Journey's "Open Arms" blasts through the convention floor.
Just before 7, Jenna arrives, takes her spot at the head of the Club Jenna booth and with a smile she throws up her hands. Her fans all know she's worth the wait. The cameras start flashing as she takes a seat and begins meeting and greeting.
Actually, I'm only assuming it's her because I have yet to get a good look at her face through the crowd. Internet porn scribe Gram Ponante — who stands about ten feet tall — walks by and says to me in passing, "I can't even see her."
By 7:30, things start getting naughty around the Spearmint Rhino booth. With the biggest sound system in the house, scaffolding as high as any of the big porn company booths and strippers working about a half dozen spots, the strip club chain makes a scene that seems to spread to the girls working the surrounding booths.
I run into Van Damage by the Pulpo booth. Pulpo is a brand new company that has been on the lips of a lot of people lately because of its high quality features and unique art direction. Van has been starring in Pulpo's features and looks at the top of his game.
"My diet consists of two things," he tells me. "Grapefruit and pussy."
At the Vouyer Media booth, Jack Napier is sitting pretty next to his cherry classic-era black Chevy on one side — with windows covered by promo for his new release, Ridin' Dirty — and young, sexy blonde Alexis Texas on the other. I tell him I'm jealous of his ride.
"Me too," he replies, "this car gets more action than I do."
On the back stage, four girls are using dildos to give blowjob demonstrations. It's nearing 9 o'clock and the crowd is starting to get thick, making it difficult to walk through. I almost bump face first into Delilah Strong — not an altogether bad idea — as she makes her way to the WantedList booth, a fairly sizable booth situated just behind Club Jenna. She takes her spot next to Jenna Haze.
At the Club Jenna booth, as Jenna's signing hours draw to a close, the line to meet her is even longer than it was prior to her arrival.
On my way out of the convention, I pass by Sunny Lane at the Jules Jordan booth. She is still all smiles as she lifts her sundress to strike a sexy pose for a few dozen fans crowding around her and snapping photos.
Jesus would approve.
Photo of Wicked Girl Kirsten Price by GP.