The 20 finalists had to write and deliver a 90 second speech as part of the 2005 "International Mr Leather" contest.
Here's the transcript of Michael Egdes' winning speech:

Distinguished judges, leather family and friends:

Tonight, I'd like to share with you what it means to me to be a Leatherman. I dedicate these thoughts to the memory of Robert Davolt, and to all those whom we have loved and lost.

Rope, shackles, dungeon, sling.
Crack the whip or feel the sting,

Safe, consensual, sane and fun,
One for all, or all on one.

Slave's heart, Master's will,
Bound in service, forged in steel.

Mentor's guidance, lover's care,
Warmth, compassion, always there.

Tom of Finland, Gold Coast Bar,
Old Guard, Harleys, lit cigar.

Soaked in history, drenched in sweat,
Leather Archives won't forget.

Leather souls, no longer here,
Feel their presence, always near.

Black and blue, white and red,
Leads our battles, drapes our dead.

Tailored hides - my second skin,
But my leather lives within.

Now, as our year comes to a start,
Remember, it's about the heart!

Cover, gauntlet, harness, glove.


... Heartspace.

... Heartbeat.
... LOVE.
Colour photo of Michael giving his speech at the International Mr Leather Contest, taken May 2005
Photo credit: Dave Harris

Copyright © Michael Egdes 2005. All Rights Reserved. Reprinted with permission

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