Saturday, December 19, 2009
I just got back from almost a week in China on business. I started in Shanghai, went on to a smaller city, then returned to Shanghai again. In the van ride back to Shanghai I got to thinking about living in this place, a place where people are "disappeared" all the time for political dissidence. My mind wandered to thoughts of spanking. Soon, spanking and China combined in my mind I wondered about spanking in China. Does it even happen? If so, how deep, deep, deep does it have to be? About a year ago I saw the design for China's "killing vans," these Winnebagos that roll up to riots or "criminal's" homes and then they can just drag these dissidents into the van for a quick euthanasia on the spot. Saves time. Quick. Economical. What would happen if the government ran into a spanking party. How quickly would the killing van roll up to the Holiday Inn and start dragging our asses (no pun intended) on in? Think I'm overdoing it? I don't think so. I could log onto the internet from my hotel room, but I couldn't get on Facebook, check out Erica's latest post on MySpace and certainly couldn't get to the bratty emails from Carolyn on FetLife. Why? Censored content.
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Certainly many of you have read Erica's blog and know all about our scenes. I've detailed them fairly extensively myself as well. Everyone who read these knows it's a mutual admiration society going on. I've often talked about on these pages (screens???) the near-psychic connection we share when in a scene. How just a breath or a movement or a sound is enough communication for me to understand what needs to happen next.
Saturday night Erica and I played. Our scenes in the past have been bratty, fun, loud, intense, emotional, dark, punishing...not all at the same time, mind you. Before we played Saturday Erica told me she wanted something "fun and intense." Got it. She'd been having a tough couple of weeks. Dark and intense would've been too much, though before she told me I had considered both a "dark and intense" or a "fun and intense" (note a theme to these?) as viable possibilities. Perhaps she needing centering, focusing as a result of her recent issues. But she sent the word on what she hoped to get.
Our scene was just that. Fun and intense. There was much laughter, sometimes at the expense of others in the room--like the guy with the LED flashing lights and tinsel on his wiener. The banter was light and playful and Erica laughed with joy numerous times. Most surprisingly, at one of the most intense moments in the scene she began a muffled, throaty laugh, face down on the padded table. I couldn't tell what she was doing--laughing or moaning in pain (the bad kind). I stopped and checked in. She was fine. She was more than fine. It started me.
I got to try out my new implements I had purchased at Bizarre Bazaar, some better than others. HL at the FMS Back to School party showed me one of those Japanese gloves with the vibrating fingertips and he told me how much he loved it, so I had to get me one of those! Tried that out during a period of sensation play and we both loved it. Great in combination with a knife or, I would imagine, a vampire glove (though Erica hates "poky things").
Though her subspace wasn't deep, she felt fulfilled. The only word that kept coming to me during aftercare was "joyous." The scene had been just that.
The importance of good playmates. Fulfilling to both parties, delivering something much needed. I don't take these relationships lightly.
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Mind you, I'm not talking spur-of-the-moment casual play at a spanking party. I'm sure there's a huge mental checklist the brain thumbs through when someone says, "So, do you wanna go play?" like: Is he a creeper? Is she a psycho? How will he play? Is he careful? Those kinds of questions most certainly (hopefully!) enter a mind, but that's not what I'm talking about, really.
I'm talking about attraction. What draws us in to play with another, beyond the casual impromptu play? Certainly there can be a physical attraction. Other times, it's seeing a person play with another and thinking, "I'd like to try that." Beyond those obvious, and rather superficial, aspects of attraction, what lies beneath?
Attraction can take on many forms beyond those first impressions. Perhaps it's the honesty or sincerity in which the person speaks or presents themselves. Perhaps it's a certain self-assured way they hold themselves. It could be a glowering disposition in a disciplinary top, or the sexy vulnerability of a diminutive bottom. Sometimes the attraction comes from a certain connection, a kind of sixth sense between two people or as the result of an intense scene together, a feeling of closeness that cannot be articulated.
For me, it's many of those things. Sometimes a purely physical attraction. Others, and often after that initial impression, it's a kinship from like interests in play, often it is that almost psychic bond I can share with those I feel close to. Other times, it's the attractiveness of that vulnerability, or the desire to simply make a bottom feel special, wanted, cared for, attended to.
By nature, I'm a fixer and a pleaser. When I have a successful scene, it's because I've resolved a conflict, conundrum, confusion or issue within a bottom that can only be resolved with a good punishment or disciplinary scene. And in so doing, I please those I top. Two critical things in what I get out the lifestyle. But more importantly, it's that attraction--sometimes animal, sometimes almost spiritual--that binds us all together in this weird thing we all do.
What attracts you?
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Once a year, Threshold (a local BDSM group/club in L.A.) holds their Bizarre Bazaar, a flea-market/kink mall/sale-o-thon. This year it was at Bar Sinister in Hollywood. My wife and I spent two and a half hours (and much, much more money than I care to admit) buying some whips, crops, leather pants, straps, floggers...Oh! It was like Kinky Christmas!
We ran into many friends and acquaintances from the Lair. It was a very productive shopping spree! We can't wait to try our newfound toys out on our deserving bottoms...
I feel for the guy. No, really, I do. I have been there! Well, not in the ass with the ginger. Well, I mean, I've been in the ass... Wait. Okay. Back up. What I mean to say is: I've experienced this kind of penile pain before.
Allow me to elaborate...
Years and years ago, when I was in a punk rock band, I used to carry mace on a keychain in my pocket (alleys, 2 am, loading vans with band equipment, Hollywood, cash earnings--these things bring you to carry a weapon). One day, I was lying on the floor of a friends' bedroom playing Dungeons & Dragons (yeah, a punk rock nerd--imagine that!) and somehow the pressure caused the mace to release just a bit in my pocket. After about a half an hour on the floor, I started to feel a burning. I went into the bathroom and dropped my pants and saw an angry red weeping welt about the size of a football on my thigh.
"What the hell...?" I wondered. It took a few minutes for me to put two and two together. The pain was excruciating. I knew the mace was oil-based, so I got a wet washrag, put soap on it and scrubbed, bringing tears to my eyes. I cleaned it up enough to stop the burning, so I pulled my pants back on, careful to avoid the angry red welt, raised and puffy at least a half an inch off my leg.
About a half hour later I had to pee, so I went back the restroom and pulled out my willy. Unbeknownst to me, I still had some of that oil-based mace on my fingers. The resulting pain on the head of my manhood was so excruciating I fell to my knees, nearly hitting my chin on the toilet bowl, and almost passing out.
So yeah, I feel for the man...
Friday, November 13, 2009
"Did 'figging' ever involve figs at one time?" I asked my educated friend. "I don't think so," was her reply.
So why the hell not call it "gingering"?
I'll admit to this as well: all the machinations and details of the spanko world are not within my realm of expertise yet. I come from the BDSM world, where I'm still learning (like the whole saline-in-the-scrotum scene we witnessed a number of weeks back--eek!). But figging. Okay, I actually get it. Makes sense. Punishment, torture, pain. But I was surprised I'd never heard of it before or had anyone reference it in the past.
So...anyone want to admit to a good, solid figging? Care to share with this unilluminated top what it's all about, why you like it and how it can be screwed up? Anyone have any opinions to the contrary about doing it?
And can we all just agree to call it "gingering"?
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
We went back to our room and everyone hung out and chatted until it started to get dark. Getting antsy, Jada and I went off to her room for our long-planned scene together, lasting all of two hours. Cindy played with Martin. I came back to the room and Cindy proudly showed me something. At the dinner the night before the FMS gang handed out rulers with “BEHAVE” printed on them. What Cindy held in her hand was a broken ruler, snapped in two. “I’m so proud of you!” I said. “Now you can start your own collection, like Erica!”
Soon, we met up again and went to dinner at the local TGI Fridays. After, it was back to our room for more conversation. Before long, it was about 1 am and people started to head off to bed. Cindy went to play with John and I turned in.
Day 4: Monday, November 8, 2009
Another day of sleeping in. The same FMS laggers (John, Martin, Jada, Cindy and myself) all went to a late breakfast at the local IHOP, came back, packed up, said our goodbyes and left for the airport, another fun weekend with friends, spanking, laughs and conversation. Can’t wait for Atlantic City in April. Hope to see old friends there, make new ones and spank.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Michael and Diane held a nice reception to celebrate their wedding, complete with cake, hor’s deuvres, mimosas and, of course, spankings in the next room. It was a fun daytime play party—a nice rarity. I gave Diane her wedding gift, a pleasant spanking. She decided to get rough and wrestle away from me and before long the two of us were sweaty and fighting like tigers on the bed. Fun! Sass got a great spanking, as well as Jada and others.
Getting on into the afternoon, Jada and I decided to go to lunch while Cindy and Lizzie played. We came back just in time for the Grammar Test, a hilarious and “proper British” affair, complete with tons of bratting, lots of spankings, ruler slaps and much comedy. Paper airplanes were flying. Gum was being chewed. Diane got on her hands and knees and crawled away, hiding under a skirted catering table. I could only imagine the fun and mayhem that would occur if Erica were there…
The afternoon was quickly taken up with a scene with Stacey (of Strict Dave & Stacey), which was hard and intense. It was a great scene. She is so expressive! I went back to the room, changed clothes and went to the Fitness Center for an hour’s cardio. I got back and showered/changed to get ready for the evening’s festivities, trying my best for an “academic/collegiate” look, accomplished rather convincingly (I felt) with a striped college-style tie that also was in autumn colors.
Arrived at the dinner and Tony announced that, by tradition, “Headmasters and Faculty” would get their dinner first. I figured out quickly that meant tops, so I went in, found a table and got my food. (Actually, I felt kinda bad that the women were left out in the hallway. It didn’t seem altogether gentlemanly.)
The dinner was decent (stuffing-filled chicken breast and roast beef—yum!) and immediately following the games began. Started off with a musical chairs game with tops on the chair and bottoms walking around. Music was Strict Dave smacking a bottom in rhythm. When the smacking stopped, the women were to dive into a lap. Judges determined if there was a “lap tie” which bottom got there first. Fun and furious. The next game was “Newlyred Game.” It was made up of HL and Sass (who recently celebrated their 25th anniversary), Diane and Michael (true newlyweds) and Ian, Stella and Kay (just for shits and grins?). It was fun, but it was hard to hear Strict Dave.
The evening pretty much wrapped up immediately thereafter. Everyone went off to their rooms to change clothes out of their fancy duds and off to Strict Dave/Stacey and HL/Sass’s suite to play. Played with Aurora, who paid me a great compliment. She said, “Your hand may be stronger than Ian’s.” I glowed. Sarah and her husband showed up. This was their first party and she had communicated with me via MySpace thanks to a recommendation from Erica. They arrived in Dave’s suite and before long I had Sarah over my lap, kicking and wiggly.
Soon, it was time to go off to Jada and Lizzie’s room for a private play appointment with Lizzie. We had a great scene going on, pretty intense and loud with lots of crop slaps, hand smacks and more, when—muffled through the wall—we hear a man shout, “Would you shut the fuck up? We’re trying to sleep!” My. First of all, why the hell would the hotel put a vanilla next door to our group, anyway? Secondly, it was almost a scene kill. It was very much like a needle scratching across a record, experientially. I had to rethink the rest of our scene. Cut down on the loud implements. Switch to more sensation play, canes. But I turned the TV on nonetheless and put the volume up. There you go, jackass. No slapping sounds, but you’ll have to put up with swearing and gunfire from the Quintin Tarantino film!
Our scene ended eventually and I packed up my bag of toys and took them back to the room. Scurried up to Strict Dave’s and found a room packed to the ceiling with folks. HL and Sass always cater such a great suite party: great gourmet cheese, crackers, fine wine (a fantastic Spanish Rioja that’s one of my favorites!), cookies, nuts, candy. (Thanks guys for your wonderful hospitality!) I’m not claustrophobic but I don’t like stuffy, hot rooms, and the room was most certainly hot and stuffy. I went out into the hall for a bit, but decided I wanted a nightcap and borrowed Jada’s room key to go make us up a batch of Dark & Stormy’s, given my spanking night was over and was ready for a dollop of alcohol.
When I got back, Cindy was over Strict Dave’s bench getting a rather humongous flogging/srapping and between the time of night and the alcohol I was ready to turn in. I said my goodnights to everyone and turned in, my hand throbbing with three tiny blisters forming…
Sunday, November 8, 2009
Our journey began humorously enough at the airport where, upon presenting her ticket to board the plane, a woman was told she could not bring her roll-along onto the plane because it was too thick. The woman insisted she brought it on flights with her all the time. The airline employee pointed out the freestanding display with the metal bin to test luggage dimensions. Annoyed, the passenger said, “I’m telling you, it fits!” and proceeded, smugly to put her roll-along into the bin. But it wouldn’t go. She was making such a ruckus there were many eyes on her in the terminal. Cindy and I were behind her, awaiting to board, but unable to do so because of her tantrum as the airline employee patiently watched.
The woman actually stepped on the luggage with one leg and with all her weight, shoved it down into the metal frame. “See?” she said, smugly, “it fits!” She went to pull the bag out of the display and it wouldn’t budge. Everyone began snickering. She pried and pulled and tugged, but could not get the bag out. To move things along, another ticket taker came over and tried to assist her in getting the bag out by pushing this way and that on the bag to dislodge it from the frame, to no avail. At this point, other passengers awaiting to board were outright laughing! As Cindy and I wanted onto the tunnel to board the plane the last thing we saw was a maintenance worker taking apart the stand to release the luggage and overheard the flight attendant saying, “And that’s why you’re going to be checking that, ma’am.”
During the flight, I watched as a couple about ten years older than us in the same row consumed a to-go meal from TGI Fridays, a terrible breakfast sandwich on a giant croissant filled with eggs, bacon and sausage slathered in gravy with at least a pound of Tater Tots on the side. The two smacked and munched. It was rather disgusting. Not long after I look over and the husband is giving himself an insulin injection—right there in his seat! Go to the bathroom and do that, for Chrissakes! Made me woozy. Of course, if the man changed his eating habits, perhaps he wouldn’t be diabetic to begin with…
On landing in Dallas both Cindy’s and my phones were buzzing and vibrating with text messages and emails from folks on the ground in or on the way to Tampa. Little reports on the hotel, bratting, arrangements for play dates, etc.
We arrived in Tampa without incident and we were pleased our bags of implements weren’t violated by the TSA. It wasn’t long before we arrived at the Comfort Inn. We carefully unpacked, completely disgorging the contents of clothes, computers and play implements. Cindy went immediately to shower as we were rapidly approaching the time of the first FMS social gathering. Cindy stripped down, jumped into the shower and discovered nothing but a trickle coming out. Thre would be no way she could shampoo her luscious mane. She could barely shower, having to cup her hands to fill them with water from the anemic showerhead and splash the water on her to get the soap off.
We complained, and were told we could move to another room—having completely unpacked. Frustrating. It would take 30 minutes to move all our stuff and we were late, so we decided to do it later.
The hotel meeting room was full of people. There were 50-60 folks there and Ian had a table of his best London Tanners goods. At 8:30 the social began, a game of scavenger hunt that required people to ask one another questions about when they were in school (valedictorian? Went to school stoned? Mooned someone on campus?). The first person to fill their sheet would win a prize. Five swats to the bottom for each spot filled on the sheet, so there was a cacophony of spankings happening all around the room.
Around 10 pm things started to wind down, and with two hours before the hospitality suite was to open. Cindy had a play date, so Jada, Lizzie and I went to the local IHOP and grabbed a late-night dinner, getting back to the hotel around 11:30. We got tired of waiting and decided to play, my first two-bottom scene. We discussed basic navigation of the scene and began, Jada bent over one bed and Lizzie the other with yours truly going back and forth between the two, going from implement to implement, girl to girl. It was a very unique scene because I requested a lot of feedback about a few things. Both are so communicative and open with me I was able to ask them about how a two girl scene would work logistically. Further, I had just purchased some new gloves (to replace the ones worn out on Erica's bottom!) and wanted feedback on how they felt. We finished after 1 am and all three of us were spent, each girl nuzzled in on their beds as I was feeling a bit top-spacey myself.
Jada’s favorite drink is a Dark & Stormy, as is mine. So she brought all the makin’s (dark rum, ginger beer, lime) and we broke open the rum and enjoyed a toast. Cindy wrapped up around 2 am and joined in the girls’ room and we chatted until 3 before heading off to bed.
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Arriving in the evening, we'll go to the hotel, freshen up and head off to the first event--vendor fair and scavenger hunt, a great ice breaker. Before long, certainly someone will be over my lap getting what-for. My dance card is filling quickly. I'm playing with four of my favorite girls, some of the banter/communication/conversation/"negotiation" having gone on for more than a month now. One of my "favorites" I've only played with briefly in a private party, but I'm eager to get more intense with her. I'm certain my assumption will prove out to be correct.
This should be fun. Smaller group than the FMS Beach Party, but between the organized events and the private play and parties, it's going to be 60 hours of nonstop fun. I'm ready for my hand to be red, throbbing and sore--which is a good thing!
I'll keep notes and post a full report upon my return next week. In the mean time, happy smackin'!
Friday, October 30, 2009
Halloween is tomorrow. What are you going as?
Florida Moonshine is just a week away. In seven days my wife and I will be in Tampa, gearing up for a weekend of spanking, parties, private play and scenes galore. I've got a few private play sessions I'm very much looking forward to and am eager to give a low-down on the event afterwards, since many of you liked my play-by-play following Shadow Lane's party in Vegas in September.
Happy Halloween and don't forget to set your clocks back before you go to your local dungeon!
Saturday, October 17, 2009
We had a nice dinner at a very tasty Chinese place before heading off to the Lair. With schedules what they were, it's been about a month since we'd been, so it felt good to "come home." Like always, we chatted in the kitchen for a while before Erica and I made our way to our usual spot in the next room.
Erica was in need of very intense scene. She'd been scattered in certain ways over the prior week(s). She'd had some issues that needed addressing. She needed "centering." Dark and intense was the order of the day.
I had planned on very impersonally putting her bent over on the bench, swatting her straight away with a paddle. She loves to start OTK and I know that human connection is incredibly important to her, so I thought it would set the tone for the intensity of the scene by going away from that, but when the time came, it just didn't feel right. I'd made a show of laying out the implements I was intending on using. It really messes with Erica's head. I pulled out the thick natural wood paddle with the holes drilled in it. I'd brought it only once before and had only shown it to Erica in the middle of the scene before she broke down, begging me not to use it. I hadn't. But evidently Erica didn't see this implement in the darkened room. By the time we started I just felt I needed to modify my plan.
I took her over my lap, but did no warm up. Instead, I started into a volley of very intense, hard-handed swats. I could hear Erica's surprise in the way she gasped for air. She knew this was going to be a hard scene and was demure before we had begun--no bratting tonight. My hand spanking grew more intense, with one of my special techniques that doesn't give the bottom a chance to "take a breather." I was not going to rub it out, either. This was meant to be punishing. At my side I'd placed a strap and my new London Tanner's Nanny Paddle (love that thing, so thanks Ian!). I seamlessly brought them into the spanking so Erica didn't know when I went from the hand to the paddle that it was coming. Keep 'em guessing...
She was vocal a bit, but mostly surprise that I wasn't about to let up or warm her up, so I moved her to a bent over position at the bench and moved on to my flicky gym towel-like leather thing (I never know the damn name for this--Dragon's Tail???) and a Devil's Tail and few other things that required some distance. Wrapped once and nailed her between the legs. GOD, I hate when I do that! She knows it's not intentional and knows I feel very poorly about it when it does, but we moved on quickly. (Hey, not going to sugar coat this stuff. Tops screw up occasionally too, you know!) The color on her bottom was red and getting welts. About an hour had gone by at this point.
I moved her face down onto the padded bench, covered with my soft, furry blanket she loves to snuggle into and keeps her skin from getting cold on the Naugahyde and allows the skin to breathe. A flurry of hand spanks, then the caning began. If you're a regular reader of either of our blogs you'll know she hates, hates, HATES my carbon fiber cane. So I used that first. I about killed the scene then, so intense were my swats without let-up. I really punished her "sweet spots." To "pound out" the pain from the cane I switched to a wide leather paddle, very slappy. Between, rub-downs with a rabbit fur mitt, some gentle fingertips and then I surprised her by bringing out my throwing knives, gently tracing them across her back, arms and legs, then digging them into the flesh of her buttocks, the pointy tips leaving trails in her skin. She howled with this, her mind telling her she was being cut. She's so scared of knives. They caressed her and tortured her. At one point I had the mitt in one hand and the knife in the other, switching between the two, short-circuiting her senses. Still she screamed bloody murder.
Enough with the knives, I went back to hand and then more canes, focusing on a rubber cane that's a nasty little friend of mine. This was about pushing limits and going to forbidden places, thus the knives, but I also had a thick, thuddy cane of fiberglass that Erica had me toss away one early scene when I was learning what she liked and disliked. Without showing it to her I swatted her butt with it and she knew instantly what it was and what I was doing. Rather than saying "stop!" she dug deep and took it, putting her trust in me. I checked in frequently, making sure she was really alright.
At about that point I asked her a variant of a common question I put to her in our scenes. I whispered in her ear: "Are you centered yet?" Her answer surprised me. "I'll be centered when you decide I'm centered." She had put herself 100% into my hands. Submitted to me. I drew out the wooden paddle with the holes in it and again, without showing it her first, swatted her cheeks. "Oh god!" she screamed, knowing full well what was at hand. I showed it to her then and she buried her face in her hands, sobbing. "This is going to get intense," I said. "But to be fair, I'll tell you how many swats I'm going to do and how." And I did.
I started to get more compassionate at this point, rubbing it out before switching to the final implement, our traditional scene-ender, a thick leather paddle, so thick it looks like wood. Erica hates it more than anything and this time I told her the count: 50. I started lighter, to be fair, and worked up to about the hardest I could muster, the sound of the hits really echoing around the room, Erica's screams so loud and frightening I thought the DM might show up and glare at me. But she took them all with aplomb.
Her return to normalcy took a long time, so deep was she. She sobbed, but not like other, intense scenes. This time, it was just a long, slow return. She was grateful for my intensity, but I had no idea how frightened she'd been with the knives or how major her trust in me was with the thick cane or the wooden paddle. Those had been Big Deals, and she let me know. Later, we talked about her submission. Again, the import of that moment ("I'll be centered when you decide.") didn't truly strike me in the moment, I was in my own topspace, but I hugged her and petted her and let her know how truly appreciative I was of her giving herself to me.
These scenes are intense, physically and emotionally, as most of you know. A lot of this kind of stuff isn't talked about. We speak (or write) of these things superficially, focusing on the fun and the play, not the intensity of emotion. After one such blog someone commented, "When are the two of you going to get married?" sarcastically (and anonymously). Well, I am married, for 25 years and Erica has been in her stable relationship for 13. If any reader of either of blog senses such an intimacy, it's certainly because we've become close friends, because the connection we share, the trust she puts in me and the emotional bond is, honestly, rather intense.
Do you have intense scenes, play partners you bond with? Tops/bottoms you trust implicitly? I'm sure you must. Please share.
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
Monday, October 12, 2009
Friday, October 9, 2009
Spankers vs. BDSMers:
Just commenting that BDSMers and spankers are different kinds of people, spankers and BDSMers don't want to admit how close they are to one another. Spankers can look down their noses haughtily at the BDSM scene. "Too weird!" "We don't do THAT!" That sort of thing. BDSMers are more open to spanking, but many say, "Oh, that's so about PLAY. It's not real corporeal punishment. They don't take it seriously." They're both right and both wrong.
How to Find a Play Partner at a Party:
"First-glance attraction.” There's far less subtlety at spanking parties than at a BDSM dungeon. (And just take, for a moment, the less-than-subtle cues from those descriptions alone. Spanking aficionados have “parties.” BDSMers go to “dungeons.”) At the Lair, they're a lot of circling, of vague communication in the hopes of coming to some conclusion. In the end, eventually--perhaps--it could lead to, "So, do you want to play some time?" In the spanking world, it's much simpler. You see someone across the room (or they see you). You strike up a conversation. Everyone knows why everyone else is there, so there are no airs about it. You could walk up and say, "Hey, need a spanking? Oh, I'm Craig," and if you don't come off like some kind of creeper you'd be off and spanking in seconds.
Types of Play:
- General Suite Party Play: lots of people, open to all party goers, grab a partner, go off to one of the bedrooms and play for 10-30 minutes. Very casual, no planning. Bratting may occur. Don't see a whole lot of role play.
- Private Party Play: smaller private invitee only parties in smaller suites, grab a partner, go off to one of the bedrooms and play for 10-30 minutes. Could be more intense or intimate. Role play may or may not be a part of these activities, determined by the individuals. Could easily play with 4-5 people in an evening.
- Private Play: two people make arrangements to play in a hotel room, they do their thing, whatever it might be. Typically, these are done during the day as the parties take place at night.
Bratting is not so much role-play, IMHO. Role-play is more scene or scenario stuff. Worked out in advance. Bratting can range from totally annoying "little girl" stuff (which I just do not get into) to more subdued or intelligent arguments/punishments kind of things. Bratting happens openly in the play suites but role-play seems to be more private.
Clothing During Spanking:
As for women getting spanked, some get spanked over clothes only. Some you can take down the pants or pull up the skirt and spank. Others you can pull down the panties and spank. Depends on the girl. Depends on the guy. Depends on the familiarity, chemistry, etc.
Jealousy issues between spankees? No. It's so relaxed and casual. Virtually no protocol. No seriousness. The vibe is totally different than in the BDSM scene. It's very spontaneous. Everyone is there for the same reason: get as much spanking/play in as you can get. You can dive as deep as you feel comfortable depending on the individual.
Tuesday, October 6, 2009
BUT...tonight I have a few thoughts.
First and foremost, good news. I'll be playing with Erica again. J and she and my wife and I will get together for a fun night at the Lair again on Saturday. Haven't played since the SL party. Been busy with business travel, home stuff, etc. So it's been more than a month. I'm twitchin'. Should be an intense scene, from what's revving up behind the scenes.
But what got me back to the blog tonight are some of the girls in my extended circle of twisted fetish friends. You know who you are. In the last two days there's been a move afoot. One girl tattles on another about some wrongdoing to me. Another tells me of something bad the first has done. Yet another has informed me Erica's been very bad and deserving of some much-needed punishment. One of the first sends me a revealing transcript of an IM conversation between the two of them...about me. All to get each in trouble...with me.
Okay. I get it. Let's get the other in trouble so when we play at the Lair or at the FMS party in November or whatever I'll get 'em good. Nice. I get it. I do. But what this really boils down to? What gets my goat? It's all a form of manipulation. (You're saying to yourself, "Duh!" I know, I know. I'm just making it public to the guilty that I know.) I appreciate them goading me into ever-escalating forms of punishment and pain. I enjoy the attention. But ladies. Girls. I do not wish to be manipulated so obviously. Subtly, sure. Good for you. Go for it. But so painfully obviously. I'd rather think I'm getting "mad" or "even" with one of you pretty ladies all on my own, not because I've been goaded into it through obvious means. C'mon. What do you take me for? Can you please try harder?
Of course, I know all this is for fun, and I appreciate it. I just like giving you all shit.
Friday, September 25, 2009
For those of you who publicly posted, I appreciate your honesty and willingness to share with the group. For some that send me thoughts privately, I understand your desire for confidentiality or your timidness or other personal reasons for not sharing publicly. You willingness to send me your comments was most appreciated.
I think this worked out very well. I'll do this again at some point in the future.
Thanks again, one and all. And if you're just reading this and late to the game, check out the previous blog post and add your own comments.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
Big questions. Answer as simply or as detailed as you wish. Do it privately, publicly, anonymously. I'm interested in your answers and if I'm interested, chances are the rest of you will be as well.
I'll get it started by being frank: I am a textbook sadist. I derive sexual pleasure from inflicting pain. Sometimes it's just deriving pleasure, in general, from pleasing the bottom by inflicting pain. A lot of it is the physical connection between two people--the trust, the tenacious bond formed in the moment, the tactile and almost neurological binding of two people. Not in a sexual way, per-se, but in a very human way that really can't be achieved by vanilla means.
That's my rather top-line answer. What's yours?
Friday, September 11, 2009
I had my own weird and visceral reaction today. In speaking to my lovely switch of a wife on the phone this morning I inquired if she was going to be playing with anyone at our local BDSM club Saturday night--we're typically there most Saturday nights, either with Erica and J or other individuals--and she said she had no plans, that we were likely to have a quiet night at home instead. I'm good with the occasional quiet night at home. But it got me pining for the Shadow Lane or Florida Moonshine parties.
At those parties I can see someone I want to play with, politely ask if I can take them to the bedroom to give 'em a few whacks and off we go. Or I've prearranged spankings or BDSM scenes in advance. My card is pretty full. I like that, knowing I'll be busy and having fun.
But at the Lair, it's catch-as-catch-can...or not. Most likely not. Most playdates there are prearranged. There's very little trolling for someone to bottom or top. In the BDSM world, such trolling could end up with dangerous consequences at worst or a mediocre scene at best. I've given up on the opportunity for a random walk-up in that setting.
I know many tops that work very hard online at setting playdates and acquiring interested play parties. FetLife, Alt.com and other dens of debauchery are their haunts, email and IM the new way to find a playdate. Of course, the results seem to be less than satisfactory. I talk to many of the tops/doms at the Lair who express frustration at many of their planned rendezvous simply not panning out. The other party just doesn't show up. I get it. It's tough to meet at a BDSM club, particularly if you're alone and a woman. Talk about feeling vulnerable!
I just don't have time for all that. It's bad enough I work as many hours in a week as I do, travel a lot for business and have very little downtime once I get back from a few hours at the gym. I savor that downtime. Even still, I'm usually online, paying bills, catching up on the continuous stream of work-related emails that pour in from around the globe when others are working in foreign places, or IMing with friends and play partners. So much for downtime!
So I have a hard time imagining working the message boards on FetLife or Alt.com trying to come up with, at best, a 50/50 proposition. Maybe I don't want it bad enough. Certainly I am not critiquing the techniques or wherewithal of my top/dom compatriots. They have more patience and fortitude than I do.
All of which leads me to the subject of this post: my own post-party drop.
Thinking about last weekend and the fun we had at Shadow Lane's Vegas party, thinking about all the wonderful women I got to spank (and flog, and touch with poky things, and strap, and cane, and, and, and...) and then thinking about the Lair and my lack of an opportunity to do the same kinda bummed me out.
Of course, there's always the monthly (give or take) playdate with Erica. I'll gladly wait a month to get a chance to play with her, but it's more the philosophy of the thing--the cold, hard reality of it. The scenes are different, the attitudes more insular, the approaches more protocol-laden and complicated.
And, for me, I've got just a bit of the SOLD.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
But I’ve gotten ahead of myself. Allow me to start at the very beginning.
Cindy and I arrived Friday late morning, getting to the SunCoast way, waaay off the strip and finding our suite. A very nice hotel, I must say. Soon we were changed and in Matt’s pimpin’ suite (thanks Matt for your hospitality!), a sprawling Tuscan affair built for high rollers. Ran into some friends there and familiar faces and before long I said goodbye to head back to our suite with Sandy. We played in the living room of our suite, an intense but friendly spanking scene that I certainly believe got Sandy warmed up for the weekend. I like Sandy and enjoy playing with her. She’s such an eager bottom and I hope to set up an even more intense scene with her and my cadre of implements at a future play party.
After playing a bit I went down to the fitness center for a short run, getting back to the room minutes before the official party was to begin.
That evening it was the Shadow Lane vendor fair and appetizer buffet. We arrived late, leaving Matt’s party, changing and heading downstairs. Soon we were saying “hi” to friends and were ogling Ian’s London Tanner’s goods, spread out like a kinky smorgasbord before us. Poor Cindy, my delightful and beautiful switch of a wife, could hardly decide what new leather item she wanted for her diabolical collection. Before long, the actual smorgasbord of appetizers became slim pickin’s.
But before I could grab something to eat I looked across the room and saw our good friends Jada, J & Erica at a table. Erica! There she was! My favorite bottom and most special friend. I bee-lined it across the room, trying to look my toppy best, hoping to catch her eye. She spotted me and shot up like she had a joy buzzer in her seat and before long we were hugging, saying hellos and chatting away excitedly, all four of us.
Tired of waiting for her to make up my mind, I grabbed my own slappy leather “Nanny Paddle” and headed off to get something to eat as we hadn’t had lunch and I was famished. Unfortunately, all that was left was some albino watermelon, a single, sad slice of pineapple and a carvery station of dry peppered turkey breast and roast beef. I slathered a pile of horseradish cream onto the meat in the hopes it would do some good and eventually gave up on it.
Finally, Cindy decided on something and bought it, coming back to the table with even less than what I had (though her roast beef was juicier than what I’d been carved). Before long, it was time to go to the suite parties, so off we all went.
We ended up in the suite of Glenn and Lori (hope I get these spellings right!), with my new friend Carolyn there. Carolyn was introduced to me pre-party by Erica. Ends up, she told both of us we’d really like to play with one another and we’d both enjoy each other’s company and it was certainly true! When we got to Glenn and Laurie’s suite Carolyn was showing off a HUGE wooden industrial size rice paddle (easily 36” long) and before we knew it three women were lined up bent over the sofa getting swats from eager hubbies. Erica, John, Michael, Kate, Jada, Cindy, myself and others (it all begins to be a blur after so many parties!).
I got to play then with Carolyn. Such a hottie with an ass that’s so perfect it looks injection molded. She was so much fun! I laughed so hard with her. We became fast friends and I look forward to getting to know her better online. (Thanks to Glenn and Laurie for their fine hospitality and generosity!) Carolyn is into fire play and managed to drum up enough support (Kate, Jada...) to convince me to bring my fire gear to Vegas next time. Grrrr... Can't wait!
I don’t recall if I played with Erica the first time over the weekend at Glenn & Laurie’s or later at Tom’s suite party, but she was next. Erica and I share such a special connection, almost a sixth sense when we play. I tried explaining it to others over the weekend at Shadow Lane and have a hard time putting into words that connection we share, but that first scene was like pent-up energy released all together at once. Hard, fast, furious. Delicious.
There were others, but it really is all a blur! By the time Tom’s suite party shut down at 2 am we headed out, Jada, Cindy and I. Cindy and I were starved. We had hardly eaten at the vendor fair and were truly famished. The three of us went down to the 24-hour deli and order a selection of sandwiches we scarfed down in no time. Went to bed around 3:30 or so.
By noon on Saturday we were up and met Erica, J and Mir (a friend of J’s and Erica’s) downstairs at the café for a late breakfast. Before long, it was time again to play. I had an afternoon appointment with Lizzie, the very first person I ever made contact with in the scene. We had connected via the Shadow Lane message board and had a very short play session the first time we met at Shadow Lane in March, but we made up for it with a fun and intense scene at Florida Moonshine in June in Tampa. Our scene was fun, deep and full of a wide range of BDSM implements. We certainly enjoyed our lengthy scene together.
Once it was over, it was time to get ready for the themed “prom night.” Cindy and I dressed for the event, with Cindy wearing a beautiful short formal dress and I in a stylish black suit, thin tie and white pocket square a la Mad Men. I arrived before Cindy. She was still getting ready and I knew J was holding a table for us, I wanted to get down to keep him company. But by the time I arrived, everyone was there. The table was full with Michael & Kate, J & Erica, Glenn & Laurie and Jada. Cindy was 38 minutes late, and the men at the table decided she needed at least one spanking from each man as punishment for being late. She accepted her fate with brattiness and aplomb. The dinner was fine and the music began and soon the dance floor was full of kinksters dressed to the nines. Cindy and I enjoyed a rare opportunity to dance and later I invited Erica to the floor for a delicious slow dance. While on the dance floor I whispered what I was going to do to her later. Hee-hee.
Time ran out on our dinner dance and once again we were off to play in the suites, after stopping back to our rooms to change again. More play, lots of fun. Again, a lot of it’s a blur. There was fun with many delightful and wonderful women. By around 1 am Tom’s place shut down and we were off to a New York spanking group’s suite. There, I grabbed Erica and we had a rather intense scene. I must admit, I was trying to get in her head and, regrettably, it turned a bit dark. I felt bad. “Please don’t be upset,” I said. “This is a party! You’re supposed to be having fun!” Erica told me about her almost-guaranteed once-a-Shadow Lane meltdown, so I didn’t feel that bad, but still… I was determined to turn our scene around and make it fun. We did.
Afterward, I was spent, my hand sore. Worse, my upper arm and shoulder was really sore and I am nursing an Achilles tendinitis issue with left foot, so I was throbbing top and bottom and knew my night was done. I said goodnight and headed to bed, while Cindy went off to continue scene play with others.
Sunday began much like the day before, with a noontime brunch meeting with J & Erica and Mir. Cindy slept in, having gone to bed around 4:30 am. She ended up joining us just as we were finishing up. I ordered off the Chinese menu and couldn’t even eat mine, unfortunately, so after we finished I grabbed a protein bar at the hotel’s convenience store.
We went off to play dates again. I began to panic. I still had three private play dates to work out, with daylight waning. I know I have the order of things all screwy, but we went to Matt’s suite again for another party. After a brief time there I was off with Jada to her room. Jada and I had been “negotiating” our scene for months. It was meant to be intense, dark, focused and, in some ways, important. I would be saying too much to explain, but Jada was deeply and intensely “occupied” by our scene and very subspace-y afterward. I felt very protective of her afterward. We went back to Glenn & Laurie’s then I grabbed Erica for a private play scene for 90 minutes or so.
Everyone that reads Erica’s blog and mine know of our special connection. I won’t lie. I was pleased to have “private time” like I more or less get at the Lair. Not a public party. We had a fun, light, playful scene. We went back to Glenn and Laurie’s and then off to dinner with J & Erica and Jada. We were famished.
A Mexican dinner and we were off again to another suite party, back at Tom’s. Erica and I played again, this time for a small group of people watching, and she bratted it up for the crowd and I joined in, the inner performer in me jumping out. It was a blast! Erica would tell me to fuck off and the crowd would “oooh!” in surprise and I’d pound away at her butt like a butcher works on a chunk of gristly beef with a cleaver. We were both laughing and though she got a bit subspace-y at the end, we were lucid enough to acknowledge our “performance” with each other.
I’d promised a longer play session with my new friend Carolyn and we connected at the suite party and off we went to play, a longish scene at the party with lots of hand and strap work. Carolyn, I’d figured, would be my last of the night and of the party, so I was ready to “give it up” for her. I went into a new rhythm thing I concocted and finished her off to her satisfaction. I was spent. My hand was in pain, my palm having gone from red to a weird purple. My arm from the elbow to shoulder was sore and my shoulder hurt like I’d dislocated it. It was over.
I gave Carolyn a big hug and a thank you and we went back to the living room to be with the rest. There was Kate, of Michael & Kate. I love Kate. She’s a firecracker. She’s a heavy, excellent player and I’m pleased and honored every time we play because she’s such a good player. She chided me for not having played with her yet. Fair enough. Time was running out. I had wanted desperately to play with her earlier in the weekend and the time just didn’t work out. So, off we went, my poor hand and I.
Again, we had a blast. Kate took all I could give, but I was reminded once more, “I’m no Erica!” It was Sunday and she was very sore, so I took it easy, but also gave her something to remember me by as well. My little gift. Kate: I’m play with you anytime you want.
We finished and I secretly looked at my hand again. I couldn’t believe I’d done another scene. I could barely make a fist. We went back to the living room and I thanked Michael for the great time I had with Kate and said goodbyes. After I had played with Erica earlier she had played with Andy who’d caned her very well and very technically accurately and after that I think she played with Joe, another very good top and a very traditional spanker. I was sure she was spent because she’d looked like it when she’d finished with Adam and had poured herself into J’s arms. So I was surprised to see her come out of the other bedroom, having just played with Djinn, I believe, another excellent player, I’m told.
Very toppily, I motioned for her to come over to me before she weaved her way to J to work their way out of the suite. “I want to play with you one last time,” I said, selfishly, barely able to believe my own words. “I want to be your last.” She was hesitant, touching her butt cheek and wincing. “I’m done, Craig,” she said, pleadingly. But she saw I was, too, and we decided to have “one for the road.”
To make my own sacrifice I didn’t use any implements, just my hand. I wanted her to know this was going to be my last, too, and we were both “giving something” to do this. Does that sound sappy? Silly? I hope not. Certainly some scenes are fun, light and superficial. Some bottoms I could never connect with at all and the play is just fun and the banter and time together a pleasure. Others are more. The connection is there to make the scenes meaningful to me personally. I don’t take them for granted and I don’t take them lightly. I may sound like a broken record because with each bottom I say, “Thank you for trusting me.” And I mean it. Putting yourself, in such a vulnerable position, is hard to do on any level. The least I can do is acknowledge I value that trust.
The combination of satisfying my own sadistic needs, coupled with my desire to fulfill other’s needs, plus my own empathetic nature and need to help others makes for a heady and powerful package when in a place like Shadow Lane. It’s not all heavy and intellectual and emotional. So much of the time it’s fun and frivolous (in a good way) and just damn entertaining. So much laughter and attention and connection and fun. So many friends, new friends and acquaintances.
A lot of these events are out of order and I know I've forgotten a few special people I enjoyed playing with. I also am sure I failed to thank everyone for their fine hospitality and for inviting Cindy and I to their suite parties and sharing food and drink with us. We did not take that hospitality for granted.
Thanks to you all for making our weekends so special, be them Shadow Lane or Florida Moonshine or a night at the Lair. It’s not just about beating butts or flogging backs. It’s about connection. It’s the whole package that recharges my batteries.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Sunday, August 30, 2009
So, without further ado (as they say) I present to you:
How to Ask for What You Need: A Bottom's Field Guide
(you may argue about this validity of this post to your heart's content)
As part of my intro to the lifestyle I was taught communication is key prior to a scene. But more than finding out if a bottom has a bad knee and can't stay bent over too long or if a leather flogger is a scene kill for reasons unclear, it was also brought to my attention to find out, if at all possible, what the bottom needs. I'm very keen on delivering the goods for my bottoms. I aim to please. I've said on this blog in the past that I'm very clear on the fact that sometimes--most times!--a bottom is simply looking to play, to feel the pain, to have a good time, to be taken to subspace. But other times, a bottom needs more. She has her own internal monitoring system that has little red lights that go off on the dashboard of her mind to let her know when the time is now for something more intense, something lighter, something different, something specific. But when I sit down for that "interview" before a scene (not negotiation, I assure you!) I discover many bottoms simply cannot articulate what they need, even when they know they need something. I hope I can help, just a little bit.
Some people's minds move at one thousand miles per hour, constantly, all day long. Others are desensitized to emotion, for whatever reason, and need to simply feel. Others are bottled up all day at work, or at home (or both!) and need to emotionally let it go and need "permission" to do so. Some need, as Erica so aptly puts it, to be "centered" (the best description I've heard for a lot of what ails some of you bottoms). Some need to feel unsafe, out of bounds, out of control to push themselves to new heights of awareness.
Here's some things to think about to help you self-assess what you might need:
- What makes you tick?
- What's driving you crazy?
- Do you need "emotional punishment"?
- Are you out of control (emotionally, control-wise)? Do you simply need to focus?
- Are you feeling bottled up inside and can't give yourself (or don't know how to) release?
- Do you need to be pushed? Do you need to go beyond your previous boundaries of "safety" to experience something more "dangerous" (likely as a means to an end relating to one of the #s above)?
What makes you tick?
This question presumes you know. If you knew the answer to this one, you probably would be able to answer one of my very first questions: What do you need? But perhaps, indirectly, you can get to the answer by simply taking inventory of yourself. "Hmmm, what makes me tick?" you say. "Well, I'm super-organized, always in control, always on the go, never have time for myself, always thinking about others. That's my life, that's what makes me tick." Okay. Perhaps you need a loss of control, a sense of momentary chaos. This is one of the most obvious reasons why people are in the lifestyle, IMHO (aside from that whole masochism thing). Thinking about what makes you tick might lead you to one possible answer to the question, What do you need?
What's driving you crazy?
"I have so much on my plate I don't know where to begin!" or "I'm always the one in control. I have to be." Great. These issues that weigh heavy on you or frustrate you might just be simple clues to help figure out what you need.
Do you need "emotional punishment"?
Corporeal punishment is obvious (otherwise you probably wouldn't be on this, and similar, blogs to begin with). But emotional punishment? Catharsis comes in many forms. I could never suggest to any bottom that I can tell they need something along these lines. But a bottom can. Nor can I pretend to understand or explain the why of something like this. Emotional punishment is not humiliation and should not be confused as such. I personally cannot go there. It's not within me. But there are buttons that can be pushed, much like a good scolding in a spanking scene, that can assist a bottom achieve their emotional goals.
Are you out of control?
I hear this from one of my favorite bottoms. Her head becomes chaotic. She can't focus. She can't start a project. It's not motivation, it's that needing to be centered thing again. Sometimes, it seems, a good, intense session has a way of calcifying all that chaos and blasting it away. The more intense, corporeally, the better the focus (or the worse the chaos has been prior to the scene). Gaining control, gaining focus, becoming centered--whatever you call it, can last a few minutes, hours, days or weeks. But from my conversations with bottoms, it is a precious commodity that cannot be bought, manufactured or consumed in any other form than the intensity of a scene.
Are you feeling bottled up inside and can't give yourself (or don't know how to) release?
I personally get this one. I don't have to be a masochist to understand these feelings, as throughout my life I've been one to bottle up my feelings, push my emotional issues way, waaaay down in the Trash Compactor of Life. I went to a therapist to gain understanding of how to release all that shit. But sometimes, for a bottom, the only way to achieve that release is with a good whuppin'. Maybe it's as simple as that. This also seems to be a highly common reason for a scene. Simply the bliss of that release.
Do you need to be pushed? Do you need to go beyond your previous boundaries of "safety" to experience something more "dangerous"?
"I can't really explain why, I just need to go beyond my boundaries" or "I need to feel unsafe even though I know I won't be." Again, I can't pretend to understand the why of this need, but it comes up. For a regular play couple, this is often a hard one to deliver. After a while, the top begins to intuit the edge of a scene, the boundaries of tolerance from the bottom. Going "beyond" could get into scene-kill territory, so playing in this realm can be a challenge. With all things in the lifestyle, communication is key, and checking in during this kind of scene is extraordinarily important.
Some more disclaimers: I realized after writing this that it sounds like I know what I'm talking about, that this borders on some form of psychoanalysis. I don't know what I'm talking about. I'm no expert of the mind or of corporeal punishment. I shouldn't be quoted, referenced or Wiki'd. I'm dangerous in that I analyze the shit out of everything and formulate my own conclusions based on my own experience, research and observations. But in the grand scheme of things, I'm no expert.
I've been asked a number of times by different bottoms, "What do you mean by 'what do you need'?" I have been thinking about this for a few months, how to answer that question more articulately. I hope this post has achieved that goal. The rest, my fair bottom darlings, is up to you.
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
I certainly hope this SL will be better than the party in March, our first spanking party. A few months later we went to Tampa for Florida Moonshine and had a blast, so we decided if SL had another party we'd give it a try. We've got many new friends we've made over the past two parties we are so looking forward to seeing, talking to and playing with and look forward to making many more.
So, if you see a guy dressed like one of the retro ad agency dudes from the hit TV show with a beautiful long blond-haired woman, stop by and introduce yourself! We'll be the ones laughing, playing, having a great time and hanging out with new, good friends.
Saturday, August 22, 2009
My wife and I are getting ready for the ShadowLane party in Vegas. Don't know if you're going, but I hope to meet some of you there! Tonight, it's off to the Lair. Cindy (my wife) has a scene planned in which she's topping and I've got nothing on the books. I don't like to do impromptu scenes, so I'm not packing any toys/implements. Last time that happened, I ended up doing a hand spanking in the "back alley," an area between the wall and the side of the building that's dark, loaded with candles and has a metal chair in the far back recesses of the space.
It's hot and humid here. Thunderstorms are threatening. Most of the Lair's circulation/hang-out space is outdoors. Because the Lair encourages "dress up" I won't be in a t-shirt and shorts and I'd love to be tonight, so I'm wearing hot black jeans, a hot black short sleeve top and hot black socks. No, not hot as in I look good, but hot as in really, really warm. I tried on my kilt, but just didn't feel up to trying to pull of that look tonight. I didn't even think about wearing my toppy shit-kicker boots. Ugh. So, here's to hoping it keeps warm. I'll hang out in the air conditioned kitchen and munch veggies and candy (and my favorite, Reese's Pieces mixed with a super-spicy BBQ Kettle chip that drives my wife crazy when I eat them in combination, but I love that sweet-salty-spicy mixture) and chat with friends while Cindy does her thing.
Tomorrow is filled with more chores like today, but I postponed the good ones for Sunday. Hope you're all having a great weekend. I'll get back on topic next week. Coming up: "Notes for a Bottom: How to Ask for What You Need." And just in time for ShadowLane! :-)
Tuesday, August 18, 2009
An older gentleman in his sixties, having spent many years within the lifestyle and was somewhat respected emerged out a backroom at the Lair with a younger lady following suit at his heels. His tone was stern, and loud, pointed directly at her, though he was taking heaving strides forward, almost like he was trying to get away from her (which I found out later, he was). The word he spoke, I knew, it was universally known. It was "Red".
She would not back off. His voice grew louder--- "I said RED!!!" She stopped. He left. She began to cry, and disappeared from view. First time I ever witnessed a dominant (personality) use that word to stop a submissive (personality) from specific actions. Seemed odd, at the time.
Now Craig, I know this is an unusual moment in time and not one I would ever see again but it had me thinking. When a bottom pushes limits (and they can, believe me) using emotionally fueled words (because pushing physical limits usually isn't the case) could then the Top call a safeword, warning the bottom to think twice regarding a specific behavior, or to even ultimately stop it?
Communication does work, but what if it goes too far? I mean far TOO far. What if the scene reached the end of your fuse. Would you use a safeword, like Yellow or Red? Or would that be totally ridiculous to you? Humor me here. What would cause YOU to blatantly, hands-down, games-over use the word Red as a Top?
This question really caused me to pause, because, believe it or not ladies and gentlemen, I've been in that situation. Here's what I replied:
I'll tell you a story about a scene I did in which I was not in the right headspace. Everything that night at the Lair was wrong. The lighting was wrong. I was using a piece of unfamiliar furniture. I was playing with an implement I didn't have a lot of experience with. The person I was playing with I'd quibbled with just prior to play. Someone I didn't like sat down and was literally STARING at our scene. Pretty much every that could be potential pitfalls to a good scene all came together in a convergence of confusion and frustration. It made me distracted. I kept missing my mark. Intent on getting that staring person out of my mind, I thought some good solid whacks to my bottom might "beat the issue out of my head." Instead, all I did was ruin the scene. The bottom told me she knew I wasn't in the right headspace. She said she could feel it through my hand. She called the scene early. Not safeworded, just said we needed to stop.
As you might imagine, I felt horrible. I knew better, but I went ahead anyway. It was stupid. I should have called the scene before it began, but in my desire to please my bottom and give her what she wanted/needed, I went ahead anyway.
That is NOT the same thing as what you've described, but it's along the same lines.
This exchange got me thinking more about her question. Would I "safeword" if a bottom "went too far"? It got me thinking about what was "too far" and coming up with those scenarios helped me solidify my opinion. So, what's too far? If a bottom got too emotional (i.e. over-the-top reaction, emotionally "unstable" or adverse reactions) that'd be too far. If a bottom really was going too far in terms of "topping from the bottom" I would seriously think of stopping (fortunately that hasn't happened yet!). If a bottom wanted me to do things that I found objectionable for any number of reasons (i.e. cruel, dangerous, something I'm uncomfortable with or just against what I think would be appropriate for the scene/bottom) I would call the scene.
I'm not above calling a scene, philosophically. I mean, what would be the reason not to? Sheer toppiness? Ego? Bravura? Machismo (and I use that term not in the Italian guy way but in the top way--I would see a femdom having an issue of machismo as it relates to this subject)? If you're a regular reader you know I want to please the bottom as much as possible, so doing this would cause a great deal of inner strife, but in the end, after the story I told my friend, I would not want to continue with another scene if I wasn't in the right frame of mind.
When we (my wife and I) first met Erica and J, before I ever played with her, J said, "Erica's a pretty heavy player. She'll make you use your safeword!" It was a hilarious joke, one that still makes me chuckle at today. No, I haven't had to safeword out of a scene with her, nor have I with anyone else, but I could imagine I might have to at some point. As for my friend's question, the answer is yes, I could see safewording out of a scene if I had to. Of course, I don't believe in safewords, so I guess, while she was blindfolded and tied to a St. Andrew's Cross, I'd just pack up and walk away...
Sunday, August 16, 2009
During the counting phase of our scene I told Erica to count as I bounced a cane rhythmically on her sweet spot (this, before the clothespins). When I stopped, she proudly said the correct number of hits. "Oh, when I said to count, I meant beats per minute," I said. "WHAT???!!!" Erica screamed, causing the room to laugh again. "Yes," I responded. "What was the BPM?" "How the hell should I know!" she nearly cried in frustration. Some wag behind me said something like, "I think it was about 120 BPM" trying to either be helpful or sarcastic (guess!).
I told her that since she hadn't figured out the BPM, the next set of counting was going to be worse, which led into the 25 that led to the five penalty whacks and so on.
Not much, but I thought it was diabolically fun. More than anything, I was surprised as I ran nine miles today in the blazing sun how that simple fact had been completely lost to me when I blogged about it, and how it popped back up so unexpectedly in my mind today. I do reach my own kind of subspace when I run, just as I do in a way when I'm scening--my excuse for not remembering every aspect of my scenes!
Saturday, August 15, 2009
I never just walk up to someone and go play when it's going to be a long, detailed or complex scene. Sure, at a party, a quick spank is fun and even then I'll ask a few questions first. But if I'm doing BDSM or a longer, more intense scene talking through (some call it negotiation but I hate that--read that blog entry here which also features a little more of those five keys discussed above) what works and doesn't, what a person's limits are, where they want/need to go are all extremely important. Understanding where the bottom is in her head is also very important.
"Great," you say. "Good for you. You communicate. We all do in one way or another. But what about during the scene? What then?" The communication continues. I check in with my bottom a lot. I "read" them, listen to their sounds, their breathing--how are they communicating with their muscles, their physical movements. I watch them. Typically, the combination of checking in and reading their bodies is more than enough to avoid any pitfalls in a scene that might, under other circumstances, result in the use of a safeword. But there are times, when things are really intense, when I'm really into the moment, going crazy, and the bottom is feeling like "enough is enough" when a safeword could be a good thing--at least a "yellow light" word. But still, the bottom always just says to me in one way or another, "Okay, I can't do more of that." And I change it up.
Personally, I think a safeword is a crutch. I think relying on them takes the onus off the top to pay attention, to be psychically in tune with their play partner. And I've never played with a bottom who, after I explained my philosophy, insisted on using one.
Communication. Sure, there's more to not using a safeword from the bottom's perspective. The bottom must have a great deal of trust in her play partner to know that not using that safeword will work. She has to believe the top respects her and won't ignore her signals or communication (and I know tops/doms who play on, not when a safeword is used, but when they see "signs" they should change things up but continue on because they want to be cruel).
I'm not advocating that safewords shouldn't be used with others. Everyone has their way of playing, of how to do things that work for them. I'm merely speaking from my perspective and my opinion.
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
In our favorite room we set up and started with OTK, Erica's favorite way to start a scene. I wanted to ramp it up slowly that night, so the spanking was a little frivolous at first. Nothing harsh. As that was going on, some visitors came in to watch and another couple came in to scene. By that time, I was ramping up the OTK with a thin leather paddle and a short strap. I also have a neoprene workman's glove that Erica just hates, so I switch to that just to torment her. In fact, when I put it on and began spanking her with it she screamed out, "Oh, I hate that fucking thing!" Made me grin. Once she was nice and rosy I stood her leaning over the padded bench, her backside facing into the room. I felt it was time to ramp it up.
Erica was still being her patented bratty self, but I could hear a moan or a groan entering into her vocalization, so I knew the scene was starting to take effect. But more people came into the room and it became more of a show. Erica is such a damn exhibitionist, it's almost impossible for her not to play to the room. I try to ignore the onlookers, but she was getting energy from them, feeding off them. Her brattiness wento up a notch, not down. So I decided to join in. I had a new implement that had been made for me a few months ago and I've been practicing with it off and on, not really ready to play with it on a person until I felt confident I knew what I was doing with it. It's a 3-foot whip with an 18" leather double-strap at the end, so it flicks like a whip and lands with a crackling snap! I knew the sound would be more dramatic than the pain, so I thought this would be both a good mindfuck for Erica and good show. I carefully laid into her, surgically landing that 2" wide double-strap with as much precision as I could muster.
I went on to a nasty 18" natural leather strap. It's so long and so flicky that I always place a hand or arm on the far side of the bottom to avoid wrapping. Aslo, Erica is a narrow target back there, so extra caution must be taken. Though she was still quite a bit bratty and vocal, she was starting to settle into her headspace, I could sense.
Nonetheless, she threw out some loud zingers (and I wish I could recall now all the hilarious things she said). She drew quite a few “oooh!” and “oh my!” and “watch out!” kind of comments from the onlookers, which got me smiling. Knowing my “arc” and the rough outline of a plan I had in my head for the scene, I knew I needed to get crackin’ on that sweet spot (pun intended). So I whipped out my trusty wood cane, one that’s been to ShadowLane and Florida Moonshine with me, one that’s been a part of almost every scene I’ve done at the Lair. I started to really give Erica a what-for (what’s that mean anyway???) and I suddenly I noticed a change in the feel and tone of the cane. I looked down and the damn thing had snapped. Now, I’ve never broken anything on anyone. I consider it bad form. But I knew Erica would love it. She takes pride in having things broken on that atomic ass. So I raise my voice and say, “Now look what you’ve done!” and I reach around and show her the cane. She starts laughing in that adorable, throaty, full-volume laugh of hers and everyone gets a good chuckle at the same time. “That’s one of my favorite canes!” I say. “Now you’re really going to get it!” and I unleash with a double-hand, two-cheek barrage that got Erica quiet quick. (And yes, Erica. I know the grammar is incorrect there, but I like the alliteration with two single-syllable words. Good God, if I didn’t write this note I’d hear about it later, folks, trust me!)
She was getting fidgety standing there and I could see once or twice her legs beginning to buckle a bit, ever so slightly. Time to move her onto the bench, I thought. So I moved some toys off the padded, waist-high bench that I’d covered with the usual ultra soft fur blanket and had her lie face-down on it. She was wearing thigh-high stockings with garters, which is super-hot, but it’s hard for me to get to her legs. I’m a scratcher and Erica responds so positively (or negatively, depending on how you look at it) to that. I’m very careful not to snag the stockings, so I get a little frustrated I can’t scratch all the way down to the heels.
A little over an hour had gone by at this point. Time to move into the next part of the scene. With Erica face down, she was in a more passive position and there was less of a “show” to be seen, so people moved out of the room or onto their own scenes in the space. Audience gone, we could focus more inwardly. Paddles, straps, hand all were used. She was going deeper. To “punish” her for breaking my cane I pulled out a nasty whippy rubber cane that I continued to use to pummel her sweet spot.
I scratched her back from shoulders to buttocks. She moans not in pleasure but pain at this every time. She says it feels like knives cutting into her. Knowing this, I’d brought these medieval finger blades that look truly diabolical. I put them on and raked them gently across her back, her bottom, then dug them in to her sweet spot. She cried out at that. I followed it up with a fur mitt. The nice one. She breathed a sigh of relief.
There was more cropping, intense. I began checking in with Erica more frequently. “Are you getting centered?” I whispered into her ear through her now-wild hair. She needed more. More hands. More paddles. I brought out the cane she hated the most, my super-stealth carbon fiber cane. Unbreakable. She despises this one. Again, on the sweet spot, over and over without moving until she screamed out and said, “Oh, God, Craig!” This is not good. The use of my name. It’s like a “yellow light” I’ve come to learn. A pre-safe word. I leaned in again. “Too much? Are you centered?” She replied with something indiscriminate.
“You’re not going to like this,” I said, which I usually say before trying something new that I think may not work. I pulled out a bag full of brand new wooden clothespins. Someone in the group of onlookers said, “Uh-oh,” and I think that enough to get Erica worrying. “What’s that?” she inquired. I pinched a bit of skin on the right cheek’s sweet spot, clamping down on it with a clothespin. “Ow!” she yelped. I took another and showed it to her. “Oh, GOD!” she replied. But…and I’m proud of her for this…she did not say “Stop!” I applied a total of eight clothespins to both cheeks’ sweet spots. Then I tweaked them with a flick of the finger. She went over the edge.
With those in place, I pulled out the other fur mitt—the one with the bear claws. This I applied softly at first, then dragged the claws down her back to her buttocks. She groaned and moaned in displeasure all the way down. I tweaked the clothespins again, noting the time on my watch. Five minutes for them, tops. I continued with the sensation play until the five minutes were up, then I gently, carefully, gingerly removed each pin. As I unclamped them Erica screamed out, very loudly. It was torture. I put all the clothespins in my hand and showed them to her. “These are for you,” I said, putting them in her carry bag. “Are you centered yet?”
This time there was a longer pause before she replied, “Maybe.” But maybe was not a “no” and so I continued. I pulled out a zip-lock bag. “I have something else you’re not going to like.” Recently, Erica had posted a missive on FetLife about how Doms used oils like capsaicin oil on their unsuspecting bottoms as part of supposed “aftercare.” Erica rightfully pointed out this was not fun, just cruel. I had read about it and decided to use it for a headfuck in our next scene. I pulled out the bottle I had, careful not to show her the label. “I brought oil,” I said. Soon, I was applying peppermint oil (not capsaicin—what am I, a sicko?) with a cotton ball to the raw sweet spots. Having tried this out on myself after abrading my own arm at the inner elbow fold, I knew it would be cold, sensitive and later stingy. She groaned.
She was going into her headspace, so I knew now was a good time to start some counting exercises. I always start by spanking rather rhythmically, then asking her if she knew how many strokes I’d applied. “You didn’t tell me to count!” she pleaded, utter exasperation in her voice. I told her to count then, and would do my usual of changing tempo or switching without losing a beat from implement to hand to confuse the bottom into a miscount. I added five stroke penalties every time that happened, going from 25 to 40. I was really enjoying this, sensing her infuriation and exasperation. She was near collapse. This was a good thing. She kicked her legs up and I smacked her sensitive thighs, causing he to yelp again. “Keep those down!” I growled.
I went back to the cane on that sweet spot, then hand, then paddle. Erica screamed louder and more frequently. I wiped away the peppermint oil with a medicated wipe, which stung worse than the oil, I’d guess.
I’d brought one her most hated implements, a plywood paddle with wholes drilled out by my wife. I showed it to Erica. “Oh, no, Craig. Please, no!” Her pleadings were not good ones, fakery for the fun of it. I knew she was serious. “You’ve convinced me,” I said, putting away the paddle. “But you’ll have to be ‘centered’ a bit longer in return.”
I intensified the ferocity of the scene, increasing tempo and impact. Erica began crying. I knew we were almost finished. Lots of intense hand spankings to really work up the sensitivity. She was really weeping now. We had to finish, soon. “Are you centered?” I asked again, quietly, for the umpteenth time in her ear. “Yes,” she sniffled. “Yes, I am.”
“Good,” I replied. “Then we’re almost done.” I pulled out the thick leather paddle, the truly most-hated implement in my arsenal. This was always the scene-ender with her. I told her there would be 50 strokes. Typically I do eight hard ones. Some of these were lighter, but I ended up putting my all into the last 15 or so. And I’ve got a lot of “all.”
She wept, hard, for the longest time. So long, in fact, I started to get concerned about her well being. She said she just had so many emotions at the surface that night, so much about the day and J and his migraine that had made her ill at ease. Again, read her blog about that stuff. It’s not for me to say.
Needless to say, she got “centered” and I was very pleased with bringing something new to Erica’s experiences and really delivering what she needed. Hopefully you all didn’t get bored with this long dissertation and really got to see my perspective on a scene. I look forward to your comments.