MIR21 – MICHAL NEIGHBOUR

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How did you get into rubber and what is the appeal about it to you?
The whole story began many years ago, just before the end of elementary school. It was the time when I realised that I was attracted to people wearing wetsuits in documentaries and movies. So, my first fetish wear was a wetsuit. To be honest, I collected a few of them over the following two or three years.
At the same time, I started browsing the internet and found that it wasn’t only neoprene that attracted me. I discovered this tight-fitting rubber material – later I found out it is called latex. I made the decision that I needed it in my wardrobe!
I can honestly say that I love wearing rubber. Especially the feeling of wearing something perfectly fitted to my body, something that can be a second skin at the same time – it turns me on a lot! Of course, I also like the beautiful shine of rubber and the way the body looks in this great material.

Where do you get your gear and what are your favourite pieces ?
For rubber gear, my favourite supplier is Latex Catfish. But I also have a few pieces from Rubber Bunker and RBRO. When it comes to the place where I go shopping, it is mainly the internet. I love browsing internet auctions looking for new toys. My favourite pieces are catsuits and gas masks, but I am very proud of my last toy. It is a breathing apparatus with a full facemask that I bought from a firefighting team.

What made you enter the Mr. Poland contest?
To be honest, I had been thinking about taking part in the contest for a while. But it took me two weeks to finally make the decision to register. There was something behind my decision that I call ‘moving my interior comfort border’, stepping out of my comfort zone in other words.
On my registration form I wrote ‘I want to become a better version of myself’. I think I have done that successfully. I am sure that taking part in this contest was a huge step in my self-development.

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What is the general Fetish scene like in Poland at present ?
Poland is a very conservative country. If people openly say something about their fetish, they are usually perceived as cranks, even by their nearest friends or family members. Plenty of people still live in a ‘hidden’ way. They do not want to be seen at fetish events. So, the fetish scene in Poland is not as big as it is in Germany or in the UK. But I think it is a very good sign that it is getting bigger and bigger from event to event. I think there are a few reasons for that. One is that we finally have a great multi-fetish event in Poland called Oscura. It is a professionally organised party where all ‘fetish freaks’ can meet in a very friendly atmosphere. What is quite unique about the Polish fetish scene is that we work together as a group of friends, without any official club or association. We, as a community, also get great support from the REFFORM Foundation (Warsaw, Poland) to organise and promote fetish events across the whole country. Thanks to the Foundation, I could fly to Chicago for the Mr. International Rubber (MIR) contest as the ticket was the main prize in the Mr Rubber Poland 2017 election. What I really like about our Polish fetish ecosystem is that we are cooperating more and more. We visit each other’s events together. So rubber and leather guys are guests at bear events, and vice-versa.

What are some of your favorite bars/clubs/events in Poland and elsewhere?
My favourite event in Poland is Oscura, the biggest multi-fetish event in the country. Right after my return from the MIR contest in November last year, it was my welcome home party as well. The fifth edition of this event will take place in May 2018, in parallel with the Mr Rubber 2018 election in Warsaw, when we will be looking for my successor. All of your Alphatribe readers are more than welcome. I also like visiting Berlin in September for Folsom, and of course Antwerp in February for Leather & Fetish Pride.

How was the Mr. International contest in America?
To make a long story short – it was a life-changing experience. I think will be no surprise to you when I say it was a great, and very professionally prepared, event and show. It was also a wonderful chance to make some new friends. There was an injection of very positive attitude and energy from all the people gathered there – beginning with the staff and finishing with the guests in the audience. It was also very exciting for us, the contestants, to provide a fun and entertaining experience for the audience.

How did you feel when they announced your name as the top rubber man in the World ?
I probably could compare it to winning a lottery – a mix of shock – it was hard to believe. There were many emotions, and of course pride. Pride for what had happened, pride for the community in Poland, pride of the job we had done preparing for the contest. I was also thinking about my fetish friends in Poland who were probably sitting in front of their computers and TVs watching the live broadcast, and about how happy they were right then.

How was the rest of your American trip and your time in Chicago?
In addition to the MIR contest, my visit to the US was my vacation at the same time. After the event finished I spent a few days with my friends who had come to Chicago for MIR. After they went back home, I travelled to New York City and spent a few days there. After that I went back to Chicago once again and then flew home. I love travelling a lot. I spent my time in those great cities going sightseeing, tasting typical American cuisine, visiting the most popular spots, but also walking off the trail to feel the atmosphere of those places better.

What would you like to do with your title year?
My aim is to promote rubber and support the fetish community in Central and Eastern Europe in their fight against persecution and discrimination. I want to promote information about rubber as a fetish and BDSM in general, and to support the organisation of events and titles throughout the region.

How to fans follow you online and find out about your travel, events, and plans through 2018?
Just follow my official Facebook page ‘Michal Neighbour – MIR21’. There you will find all the details about my plans, and the events I will be attending.