“Everybody’s in black or nothing at all.” — Claire Danes
According to many folks, Danes’ description of a popular Berlin nightclub shared on Ellen suits the entire city. Long known for its sexual liberty, eroticism and hedonism, Germany’s capital has a rap for being a very permissive, progressive place where your wildest fantasies can come true.
So imagine being somewhat of a “good girl,” someone who learned that sex is fairly taboo, moving to Berlin and eventually finding yourself completely at home when you see a group of people making out at a restaurant beside you. Why wouldn’t it? I mean, you are now heavily involved in the porn scene…
I recently had the pleasure of interviewing two women who’ve essentially lived this. Lina Bembe, a Mexican porn performer and model, and Pandora, who considers an “everyday girl” who loves joking around, make up half of The Ersties Podcast team. We chatted about their personal journeys, the power of supportive friendships in the context of sexual empowerment and more.
Lina, who’s lived in Berlin for the past eight years, described her early sex education as “barely knowing how kids come into this world.” Pandora started out in Australia, where she at least “learned physically how to put on a condom” and filled in educational gaps with information from teen magazines. It wasn’t until the two moved to Berlin that they began to learn about emotional aspects of sex, consent and their deepest (and kinkiest) sexual desires.
“Berlin makes a lot of space for people who want to explore themselves and normalize parts of sexuality, BDSM and kink, being a bit more open, Lina said of the city’s sex culture. “It makes space for people to know themselves.”
She recalls attending a nudist lake when she first arrived and thinking, What is going on? Where have I moved? A year and half later, she would spot four people making out with each other at a club and think, “I’m in the right place…I had the right address.” A gut feeling led Lina to pursue a porn career, she said, which is a decision she’s never regretted.
Pandora, who works outside of the porn industry, said she was “suppressed and unhappy” before meeting her Ersties cohorts. “I can talk to them about how I can do anal without shitting myself. That’s a very important conversation to have,” she said. “Once you set a norm for a conversation about sex, it also means that we can talk about other things in our lives openly as well.”
These conversations are exactly what led the four women to an epiphany, that they should start a podcast to not only share these chats, but to create a space for people who might not have such access to feel part of the same. They explore everything from person kinks and witchery (the topic of both Lina and Pandora’s favorite episode) to consent and censorship.
Stream the episode on iTunes, Spotify, iHeartRadio or below! It also features thoughts from Dr. Megan Fleming for a listener curious about sexting with a new friend-with-benefits and a few related tips from me.