From the ashes…

I often complain about my life not quite turning out the way I’d expected. But whose does? Meet Jennie Ketcham. Until very recently, those who knew her, probably knew her as “Penny Flame”, porn star. Some of you may notice that I spend a perhaps inordinate amount of time writing about porn stars. This may be because I used to spend an inordinate amount of time watching porn stars. No more.

I spent four years of my life writing in the smoking room of Courtenay’s strip club, The Courtenay House. I rarely if ever looked up at the stage for more than a glance while writing. I found much more “pleasure” (though it is perverse to use that word here) watching the watchers. Meeting the girls, meeting the promoters, was an eye opener for me. People defend the industry saying that it’s not all bad.

I remember a story about a woman whose parachute didn’t open. She lived. Wonder how often that happens? There are exceptions to every rule, yes. But let us not forget that we call them “rules” for a good goddamned reason.

Back to Jennie. Remember Jennie? This is a blog about Jennie.

I dare any fan of hardcore pornography to watch a documentary called “Give Me Your Soul” and then watch another porn without hating yourself and loathing your lot in the universe. When you feel it is time to seek redemption, find and read about the human toll of your “victimless orgasm.”

Jennie Ketcham wanted to be a dancer. Penny Flame did a lot of “dancing.” Jennie wants her life back from Penny.

I do not believe that you can just wrap yourself in a white sheet and take a dip then walk the land “reborn.” Like everything religion does, this is too simple, too easy, and provides only a real sense of false hope.

What the Jesus myth and Eastern religions share is the promise of resurrection. But unlike dunking your head in a drainage ditch and screaming “Jesus be praised!” true resurrection requires death. Resurrection within one lifetime is possible but requires the real death of the individual.

I know it is hard to leave a life behind and starting over can be the most terrifying thing ever. Especially for someone like Ketcham whose alter ego is at the same time feared and despised by her but currently her primary source of income.

No one gets a pass and we must all pay for our mistakes. But for how long?

Head over to and read the heart-felt tales of a young woman looking to resurrect herself.

Greek myth tells us that all heroes must journey to hell. It’s usually the last thing they do before finally going home again.



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