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Master Rant’s 10 Day Intensive

In the past couple of weeks, I’ve been host to a friend who I met through this site.  She lives quite far away, but we’ve been in contact off and on through email and other online means for well over a year at this point.  I never thought we would actually meet in person, but she decided that she wanted to take a trip to San Francisco and experience what it is like to live the D/s lifestyle for a short period under my thumb.

This is the account of some of what transpired in those ten days.

I don’t think the experience was what either of us had anticipated, but it was certainly valuable for many reasons and I am thankful for the opportunities that it afforded me to grow as well.

Let us call my friend (and I do hope that she is still a friend after all of this) Nicole.  That is not her name, but my name isn’t really Rant either, so this should not be terribly surprising to any of you.

Nicole had no experience with D/s before meeting me – but she had had some experience with kink and there were several things that she wanted to try while with me.  We got to many, but not all of them.  There were also several aspects of what I consider to be important to D/s that she had no experience with and found surprising.   Those are the sorts of things that I am going to focus on for this entry.

Foremost, and although I have tried to cover this in the past, was the assumption on her part that D/s requires sex.  This is most assuredly not the case.  I know of several D/s relationships where sex does not play into things at all, and while I would not call that sort of complete lack of sexual focus normal, there is also nothing abnormal about a relationship with deep D/s elements that contains no sex at all.

We did have sex while she was here, but I’m certain that it was not entirely what she was expecting, because sex is not the focus of D/s for me.

D/s is about power exchange.  It is about the transfer of personal power from one individual to another.  It is about choices and decisions and actions and who controls them.  Sometimes these choices and actions and decisions have to do with things of a sexual nature, but quite often they are much more mundane.

Nicole is from Europe and many of our conflicts probably would have been a bit smoother or not have occurred at all were it not for cultural differences as well as the very new nature of things D/s for her when she found herself in my space and under my control.

In fact, I would go so far as to say that she felt that I was simultaneously not controlling enough in some areas and far too controlling in others.

Everyone does D/s a little differently and places emphasis on different parts of the equation.   I was brought up under a different paradigm than is the current norm, and the key facets of D/s for me are Respect, Devotion, and Service.

Respect is the cornerstone of D/s in my world.   It is something that I expect to be in place always and transgressions are dealt with swiftly and decisively.  I am not physically violent without a tremendous amount of forecasting, but I can and often do change my body language and verbal tone to be quite severe when I feel like I am personally being disrespected, or my submissive trainee is being disrespectful to my property or friends.  Showing me proper Respect is Rule Zero.  It is something that I expect to not have to talk about, and if I do, there is a high likelihood that I will be lecturing you, not just mentioning it out of hand.

Devotion is where I get my kicks.   It is my single biggest fetish.  It is the reason why I do D/s.   I may have a big ego, but I like being worshiped just a little bit – and for more than my body or skills.  I like being thought of as competent and trustworthy, and being Devoted to me is the best way to show me that.

And last, but not least, is Service.  I expect a certain amount of Service to be rendered unto me.  This does not always have to take the typical forms, and sexual service is only one manner of service, and not nearly the most important to me.   I can be rather particular in the ways that I expect Service to be rendered, and that can also be an area of conflict from time to time.

Pain management is a constant struggle for me, and even in a short term visit like the one that Nicole and I planned and executed I can be sidelined by my physical pain issues.  There was one evening in particular while she was here with me where the pain was extreme enough that even conversation was difficult for me.  That isn’t necessarily normal, but it’s not abnormal either.  I would say that I have at least one day a month where things are that bad.

Nicole is a lovely woman, but I think I disappointed her a bit when I showed her some of the non-sexual aspects of D/s and placed those of higher importance than the sexual ones.

She asked me to be true to my older self and not to soften the edges on my High Protocol nature, so I didn’t.

It caused conflict.

Conflict in any relationship is normal, but most people are so enamored of each other and deep into the throes of NRE that they don’t register conflict right away – and Nicole and I had our first conflict within 24 hours of her arrival.  It was jarring for us both, but more so for her, I think.

I also practice ethical non-monogamy, which made for more conflict, as I had to manage the feelings of my current submissive partner as well as Nicole’s own feelings while hosting Nicole for her visit.  The three-way conflict was very minimal, but present.

All told, Nicole was able to check off some of her bucket-list items while she was here and I learned a few important things about myself:

Most surprising to me: Sex is nowhere near as important to me as it once was – even just a year or two ago.

D/s is much more in line with my lifestyle and the way I want to live my life than I’ve admitted in the past.  It has always informed my choices, but now it is much more of a lifestyle choice that I cannot turn away from.

In particular, Discipline is very important to me where it has not always been.

I’m a very physical person – and while this manifests itself sexually, it also manifests itself in other areas, Discipline being chief among them.

I really enjoy public play.  This has not always been the case.  I’ve taken part in various forms of it over the past couple of decades, but I have historically had a strong preference for private play.   I no longer feel that way.  They are balanced for me now.

I still don’t enjoy meting out punishment.  I do it, because Discipline is important to me, but I can spank pretty hard – especially when using a paddle – and I surprised myself with the ferocity of my flogger strikes this time as well.

I know that Nicole learned a great deal about herself too while she was here – but those thoughts are for her and I would do her a disservice to relay them here without her implicit approval.

I doubt very much that she and I will meet again in person – the distance and cost are just too high to make that tenable – this was more of a once-in-a-lifetime sort of thing, and while I know that things did not go exactly the way that she had planned, I do hope that she feels the experience was worth it.

I certainly do.

If ever I found myself with a similar situation in the offering, I would change a few things, but keep most things the same – so I suppose that is as good a measure of the success of things as any other.  I learned and grew and I’m certain that she did too.

I am changing and I continue to change those around me, but I remain Rant.

  • Rant

Control Triptych: Voice

Three Layers of Control: Touch, Voice, Glance

This is the second part in a three part series.  When I am training a new submissive, I rely on three of the five senses to keep her where I want her.  My first piece on Touch was just previous to this and you may or may not wish to read that before continuing with this.

 

Voice: a (slightly) more subtle approach to the same.

Since I started off talking about senses, I suppose it makes more sense to say that I really mean ‘sound’ when I say ‘voice’ here – but since I don’t use a training whistle, clicker, or anything like that, sound almost always means my voice.  There are some Dominants who do use clickers or whistles or the like, so some of those same concepts probably apply here, but since that is outside of the scope of my experience, this is the only mention I will make of them.

I have three distinct voices that I use with submissives and trainees:

Normal voice:  This is just the voice that I use under normal circumstances – both vanilla and kinky.  I’m told that I have a very soothing voice and that it carries, so I rarely have reason to modify this in normal circumstances.  In normal voice, it is important to pay attention to what I am saying as well as how I am saying it.  This is the voice that I will use to tell you that you are a good girl, but also the voice that I will use when I lean in close beside you and tell you that I’m going to use you until I’m exhausted.  It carries the most variability of intonation and generally the most information, but there is subtlety here that can sometimes be missed, so it is not ideal for situations where more control is required.

Command voice:  This is the voice that I use when I want you to do what I am telling you.  It does not mean that I’m angry with you, but that is how it is most often interpreted at first… I drop my voice by about an octave and a half, so not only is the tone different, but the pitch is as well.  It’s an obvious difference and it follows a convention held by much of society – even in different cultures, I’ve found.  I’ve been told by vanilla friends that this is my ‘serious’ voice or even my “don’t fuck with me” voice.  The timbre won’t change, but I often vary the volume with which I speak in this voice.  It carries very far and I don’t always want to broadcast my intentions.  In this voice it is much more important to pay attention to the content of what I am telling you rather than look for subtlety of meaning.

Crisis voice:  This is the voice that I use when I need to be paid attention to right now – usually for reasons of safety.  The tone is similar to my command voice, but it’s about half an octave higher, so it’s similar in pitch to my normal voice, just a bit deeper and definitely much, much louder, just under a yell.  This is the voice that I will use when you are near to harming yourself, or someone or something else is about to impede upon your physical space, things like that.  This is my, “watch out!” voice.  If I want, I can put a lot of power behind this.  In this voice, there is never any implied subtlety at all – the only important thing is the information that I need you understand and likely act upon right now.

Of course, I can also whisper and use other vocal intonations, but generally those are embellishments on one of the above – things that I can use to subtly change the meaning of the words that I am using, or to impart a particular idea.  I can whisper in Command voice, for example, and sometimes I’m just an asshole and I’ll lower my vocal volume of my Normal voice in an effort to cause someone (not always my sub/trainee) to move closer to me or to pay closer attention to what I’m saying.

Even without me explaining these things, trainees under my care usually come to understand them pretty quickly.  I use facial expression, body language, and sometimes just plain brute force to reinforce the things that I say with my voice and establish a pattern pretty quickly.  It’s difficult to train anyone to do anything without explaining what it is that you want done, and voice is generally the way that I accomplish that – at least in person – and while long distance D/s is something that I have some experience with and am learning much more about as I do it every day, the spoken word has power even in situations like this.  Written text in an email or text message can be extremely descriptive and more detailed than most people can maintain patience for in person, in voice, but the voice, facial expressions, and body language that you can experience in person is a lot more powerful – even more powerful in person than over media like Skype.

More often than not, the things that I will do with my voice are explained by the content of what I am saying when I say it.  For instance, if I say, “bunny, go sit on that chair and hold it for me,” what I mean is literally that I want her to go sit in the chair I indicated and wait for me – it’s not rocket science.  However, sometimes I will use commands that are not obvious, but that actually require training.

I stole this wholesale from Stranger in a Strange Land – one of my favorite books of all time – but on occasion I’ll just blurt out,  “Front!” and I expect my submissive to immediately walk to me, stand in front of me, facing me, place her hands on her lower abdomen with the palms facing her, one over the other, look me in eye briefly and say, “yes, Sir?” and then lower her eyes.  This is not exactly what happens in the book.  In the book, the character who says this is not a Dom – at least not in the overt sense, and not in the typical sense either.  He has three women who serve as his assistants, keeping his books, taking dictation, cooking his meals, etc. – all of the things that one would normally expect of a service submissive, but not any of the physical or sexual aspects of that service.  It’s entirely possible that this novel helped to contribute to my ideals of what a submissive should be like – for me – but I first read it at such a young age and it provided the backdrop to a different phase of my life.  The character in the book, Jubal Harshaw, expects one of his three assistants – on a rotating schedule – to run to him with a notebook and a pen and ready to take notes or instructions when he calls Front.  My requirements are somewhat different and tuned to my own needs, but the call is still similar.

When I say, “present” I expect my submissive to stand in front of me, legs shoulder width apart, hands with fingers interlaced together behind her head, elbows up, head up straight, and chest out.  As with any other command, I expect some sort of verbal acknowledgement as well – a, “yes, Sir” is sufficient.

When I say, “kneel” I expect my submissive to present herself before me as above, and then to drop the her knees in front of me, put her legs and knees together, sit on her feet, put her hands behind her back, palms out, and then after meeting my eyes and acknowledging my command, look at her own navel.  For competition, I’ll have her make a diamond figure with her hands, thumbs out and touching, forefingers touching, and to do all of that silently, but in more common usage, I’m not normally going to walk around behind her to inspect that anyway.  

When I say, “expose” I expect my submissive to be in the kneeling position above or work her way into it through the “present” and “kneel” poses, but to spread her legs out so that her calves are at shoulder-width and straight back behind her, toes pointed back away from her, and then to lock her fingers together and put them behind her head as with the “present” position above.  I expect her to hold her head high and meet my gaze or that of anyone else who happens to be watching nearby.  For competition, this is modified again so that the knees are further apart and the calves need not be so far apart behind her – toes still pointed but without overlapping the feet.

When I say, “move to position,” I expect my submissive to be in kneeling position or to move to it by moving through ‘present’ and ‘kneel’ and then to change the placement of her hands so that her hands are open, palms covering the front of her knees.  Unless she has very long arms, this will result in her leaning slightly forward.  I want her to crane her neck a bit to look up at me, acknowledge my command with a “yes, Sir” or similar, and then to drop her eyes and stare at her own navel, awaiting further command.  I used to call this “position one” but found that numbering positions was a bit more difficult to remember than naming them, so this is merely ‘position’ now.

When I say, “hands and knees” I expect my submissive to drop to her knees, lean forward, keep her legs at hip-width directly beneath her, calves straight back, and toes pointed back behind her.  I expect her to place her hands flat on the surface in front of her, whether that is the floor, bed, couch, whatever.  I expect her to hold her fingers together with the exception of her thumbs, which I want out at a 90 degree angle.  Her fingers should point directly in front of her and her thumbs should point at each other.  I expect her to look up, craning her neck if needed, acknowledge my command, and then drop her head so that her chin rests on her chest and she’s looking back between her own legs.

In private, these are often all that I will say – there is no need to further qualify who I am talking to or about, but in public spaces or even in private places where there are other people about, I will usually modify the above to include a name, but sometimes I expect to be understood anyway.

As an example: in a public dungeon, I might say, “bunny, kneel” and I’ll expect bunny to come over and kneel in front of me, but “Front!” is a special command and I always expect my submissive or submissives – if I’m carrying more than one – to respond, lining up side-by-side in front of me if needed.

There are other commands that I sometimes use as well, as well as some other positions that are specifically for competition, and these are probably what earned me the reputation of being a ‘High Protocol’ Dom, but I’m not convinced that is factual.  I have also become even more lax with protocol as I’ve aged.  I’m a lot more tolerant of ambiguity than I once was, and I’ve worked with submissives in the recent past without using any of these commands – positions are not as important to me as they once were, and in most situations I will just explicitly say what I want, making a need to memorize commands like the above unnecessary.

There is definitely something to be said for having someone instantly react to simple or single word commands though.  It is certainly one of my favorite things, especially when chained together with other more explicit commands.

For instance, ‘kneel’ is often followed by something quite like, “Look at me.  Now reach up and undo my belt…” which, as you can probably imagine, is not where things are meant to end, but often an over-eager submissive in this position will take it as license to do more.  Without an additional command, I would expect her to acknowledge my command with a “yes, Sir,” do as I’ve said – undoing my belt – but to then return her hands behind her back and await further instruction.  

Sometimes I will chain these with other indicators as well.  For instance, “hands and knees – on the bed,” is often a command I might give, in Command voice, to let her know that things are serious and that she needs to respond with vigor.  It lets her know that I want her in the ‘hands and knees’ position, but that I want her on the bed, not necessarily where she is now, which is likely to be standing on the floor.  

It is really not possible to over-communicate, so I’ll often add modifiers like these even when they’re not necessary.  I am not the kind of Dominant to often try to trap my submissive with a command that she cannot easily fulfill – I like to enable success – but I have done so in the past and will likely do so again from time to time in the future.  It is a playful way to push her into a place where she knows that punishment is likely to come, but there is a big difference between playful punishment and correction.  Perhaps that should be the topic of a new post sometime soon, but I still have one more to go in this series before it’s complete.

Next week I will talk about the final means of control – glances.  This is the ultimate level of control in a D/s setting in my opinion.  I like my submissives to learn to anticipate and provide for my needs, but that is not the same thing as control.  I also like my submissives to be autonomous and have their own opinions and ideas, so I have no desire to completely stifle that, but the ability to produce an action or change a behavior with nothing more than a pointed look is the pinnacle of D/s communication and control – in my not-so-very-humble opinion.

I hope this was informative, helpful, and perhaps even a bit titillating.  Come back next week for the final piece in this trilogy and then I’ll give you a story of my own experiences in learning these things at the hand of my brutal and affectionate – if not compassionate – Domme Simone when I was but a young pup myself.

  • Rant

Control Triptych: Touch

Three Layers of Control: Touch, Voice, Glance

This is going to be the first part in a three part series.  When I am training a new submissive, I rely on three of the five senses to keep her where I want her.  The other two senses are certainly involved in everything that we do, but using taste or scent as a means of control is difficult. Scent is much easier to employ than taste, but most of the time the things that evoked by scent are visceral, immediate, and tend to trigger or reinforce memory.  I can use scent to help me get a submissive into subspace, but it’s rarely something that I can use to instruct.

 

Touch: the fast path to victory.

The easiest and most direct way to control my submissive is through touch.  It really requires no finesse at all, it only requires intent and confidence… well, and some physicality.

It also requires virtually no training.  While every person is different, and people act and react during sexual situations or even the non-sexual elements of a scene with different responses, there are some commonalities that I’ve been able to identify and exploit over the years.  While none of these techniques are universal, most of them can be employed to good measure on almost anyone – of either sex, from what I’m led to believe.

Just like with any method of employing force, there are varying ways to use touch to your advantage.  By far the easiest route is simply to employ brute force.

I’m not a small man.  I’m six feet tall and currently weigh in at a slightly overweight but extremely solid 16 stone.  This means that I get to throw my size around quite a bit.  There are very few women that I have met who are anywhere near my size and I have not yet taken a male submissive to this point in my life.  I doubt that I ever will, but if I do, it’s likely going to require me to learn many, many new things.

Beginning in the junior high school I started wrestling competitively, both in school sports and freestyle events. In the late 1990’s I was training to be a Pankration fighter.  I was hopeful of snagging a slot on the Olympic team since they were bringing the sport back to the modern Olympics for the first time in Athens – minus the glass shards and all…  While I didn’t get selected, and I had a very abbreviated and not terribly successful run as an MMA fighter, I did learn an awful lot of useful things and I would still venture to say that it makes me a dangerous man.

Apart from bragging a little bit, the purpose of the above statement was to reinforce the fact that I have much experience as as grappler, I have learned basic pressure points, and I know the value of a rapid and not necessarily high-powered strike.  These are definitely things that I employ in scene, but also just when I am having sex.

So – while using physical force is certainly the easiest way to get someone to do what you want them to do, it definitely not the safest.  Please use caution whenever you play.  Know your strength, know your partner’s signals, have a defined safe word and safe gesture and use them.

While there are gestures that I may perform as part of a command and sometimes those gestures involve touch, when I speak of three different levels of command, and how touch represents the first of these and with the lowest barrier of entry, it is not that sort of touch for which I am speaking.  

It is the less subtle and more brutal touch that I am talking about here.

Grab her by the throat, step into and behind her to put your calf behind her knee, lift and push and then catch her with your other arm as she’s about to fall.  If you plan this right, she’ll be on her back, preferably on a bed or something else similarly well suited to fucking, with you hovering over her and your hand on her throat.  If you can’t seal the deal at this point, there is no hope for you anywhere.

Of course – you don’t do ANY of that shit if she isn’t expecting you to move on her.  She doesn’t have to know exactly what you have planned, but she does have to know that you’re going to basically attack her.  However, I guarantee you that the results will be better if she doesn’t know exactly what you have planned.  

But it’s not just sex that I’m talking about here… you can use touch – firm or light – as a method of control in almost any D/s situation.

If I want my submissive to kneel for me, and she fails to do so the first time I tell her to, maybe because she didn’t understand that yes, I did in fact expect you to kneel right in the middle of the aisle at Target, or maybe she’s just being bratty, but no matter what her reasons for failing to kneel, I can usually get her to do so without saying another word.  She has to have heard my first command or she’ll just be confused by my actions, but usually if she doesn’t respond to my command, “kneel for me, bunny,” I can put my hands on her shoulders and apply a little bit of pressure and she’ll do what I want.  If that fails and the setting allows for it, I can move behind her and gently apply pressure to the backs of her calves, right below the knee, with my boot.  

This will almost certainly get the point across.

If that still does not produce the desired result, I can grab her hair and increase the pressure that I apply with my boot.  It will cause her to be off balance and bend at the knees as she begins to drop.  I can then use my hand in her hair to guide her slowly to where I want her to be.

And if that still fails to produce the behavior I want, I can move to the front of her, put my right hand on the front of her throat, my left hand on the back of her neck, and stare her in the eyes as I close off her carotids with my thumb and forefinger, which will eventually cause her to become lightheaded or even pass out.  Then I can do whatever I like to her.

This maneuver requires a great deal of trust and training, however, and I would not recommend it to someone who has not seen it demonstrated in person and has had many chances to practice.

But using touch as control does not require overpowering either…  

Occasionally my submissive can be a bit bratty.  When that happens and I’m not feeling like dealing with it, a quick light slap across the face will almost always get my point across.  If I’m a bit more tolerant of the brattiness, I’ll slap her ass instead, but that has a tendency to encourage more brattiness – a reaction that appears to be almost universal among bratty subs, but one that I still don’t completely understand.

So – if you want the brattiness to continue or even intensify – smile and smack her ass.  You don’t have to say a thing.  If you want the brattiness to cease, slap her across the face – lightly.  Too much will encourage a fight or flight response and you’ll have a fight on your hands.

Part of this has to come from experience, unfortunately, and every person is different.  I’m sure that I’ll hear from someone who is going to tell me that slapping her face will increase her brattiness as well as from someone who will tell me that a smack to the ass will pull her out of her bratty tirade.

Touch is most effective in combination with voice and glance as well, but it is the crudest and most easily employed without predefined rules in place.  Like anything in this world though, it will require some practice to get right.

Next week I’ll talk about command voice and how to intone things for maximal effect – employed with some pushing and prodding taken from this post as well, but this post threatens to get too long if I keep talking.

 –  Rant

Early morning erotic musings

Sleep is something that seems to elude me lately.

Sleeping with a broken jaw is turning out to be difficult – or perhaps more accurately – turning while sleeping with a broken jaw is difficult…  I keep turning over onto the side with the break while I’m sleeping and waking myself up.  It is just ever-so-slightly maddening.

But it does give me lots of time to think.

I have a new submissive trainee.  She is wonderful.

I want her to burn for me, and I told her that I would leave her be until today while she saves herself for me, but after today, all bets were off.

I planned to share this story with her, but I know she’ll see if it is here, and I thought perhaps the rest of my readers might benefit as well.

Plus – who doesn’t like a little voyeurism into the life of their favorite online Dom?

While slightly embellished, this is a story based on reality and the names of the parties involved have been changed to mask the identity of the guilty, but if you happen to be reading this and know who you are – I’ll gladly remove the story at your request.

I have a fetish that I have never fully satisfied.   I’ve had a pretty varied sex life to date, and I’ve actively sought out every fetish that I have been able to identify so far, including this one, but I haven’t quite managed to hit the right combination of factors yet… the short version is that I have a desire to have sex with a fully unconscious woman.  Consensual, of course – pre-negotiated, adhering to limit terms even while unconscious, etc.  But, as you can imagine, this is a tricky thing to negotiate.  It requires a seriously intense amount of trust.

My new trainee is willing to satisfy this for me, at least in theory, and for that I owe her much, including this story.

As I said, this is a fetish that I have not yet been able to fulfill, but I do have something of a confession to make.  While it is true that I have not fulfilled the entire fantasy of mine, I have, sort-of, possibly, had sexual intercourse with an unconscious woman before, but she didn’t start out that way, and I didn’t drug her or anything nefarious like that.. in fact, I’m pretty sure that the experience was pretty profound for her, but I’ll relate it now in full.


I would like to preface this story with the fact that this happened several years ago, and at the time I was a very different creature, emotionally, than I am today.  I was a more callous, hurt, and dangerous person, but I don’t want to sugar-coat my past.


This all happened several years ago.  I was freshly broken up again, which seems to be a recurring theme in my life, but that’s not the point.

During the course of my relationship, which was mostly polyamorous, my girlfriend told me that I could have sex with anyone I wanted to with the exception of three people, two of which were her friends and the other .. is not important.

One of these friends and I had some serious sexual tension from the time we first met.  Within moments of meeting, we were locked in a kiss and my girlfriend had to separate us and ask us not to pursue each other because it was going to induce Ratatosk-sized brain squirrels for her if we were to continue, so – since we both loved her – we stopped and let it drop from that point forward.

Let’s fast forward a bit to where I was broken up with.  This friend was one of the few who remained friendly with me in the aftermath.  I know that her motives were not entirely selfless, but then again, neither were mine.  The sexual tension had never completely dissipated.

In my sorrow at being emotionally wrecked yet again, I was out drinking at a strip club and I received a text from this woman – let’s call her Ruby.

Ruby texted me, letting me know that her date turned out to be a dud and that she was home alone, waiting for her girlfriend to get back from the kink event that she was volunteering at..

Home alone safely now. Date was a total bust. The guy was at least four inches shorter than he claimed and he was about as Dominant as the gum under my shoe.  Now I’m just sitting around and waiting for Ariel to get done at the Citadel.  What are you up to?

Interesting, I thought to myself.   It was about 10:00pm and the event that was going on was going to go until 1:00am at the earliest.

She was sitting at home, looking at three hours of doldrums ahead after having had her fires stoked for a bit by a guy who turned out to be a total schlep.   I was already horny, a little bit drunk, and not looking forward to the prospect of bringing home another stripper for meaningless and somewhat risky sex.

Besides, Ruby was hot and I wanted her more than any of the girls who were hanging off of me because I’m respectful, good looking, and came with lots of cash…  How can I work this to my advantage?

I’m just sitting here watching London climb the pole topless and waiting for her to finish her stage show so that I can try to talk her into blowing me in the back room.

Leave out lots of information… make the pieces that you do reveal tantalizing… tilt the direction towards the thing you want… it’s okay, she wants it too…

Oh really?  Who is London?  Where are you?

Bingo. Gotcha.

Absolutely.  She’s a rather attractive young girl who would really like my money.  I’m at the Hanky Panky, drinking way too much and trying to forget why it’s a bad idea to offer London money to suck my cock.

Damn, I’m horrible… I might as well be hanging out a sign saying, “I want sex and my inhibitions are down.”  The real question is whether or not she’s really been hooked and will let me reel her in now, or if I’ll have spooked her.  Even with the pre-existing tension, trying to reel her in with only a couple of text messages is pretty bold.

You mean that horrible dive bar/strip bar in Redwood City?

That’s the one.

Yuck.  Isn’t that place gross?

Now I know that I have her.  She’s making disparaging remarks towards the competition and seeking to elevate her place in my eyes.

Meh.  It’s not so bad… once you’re six or seven drinks in, anyway.. and London is very cute.  Much too young for me, but that never seems to be much of a problem.

Now I’ve reinforced my claim that I’m dis-inhibited (nevermind the fact that this is true, at the time, I was rather full of myself) and I’ve let her know that her competition actually has my attention, I should become irresistible…

You really should stop robbing the cradle, Rant.  I would think that you’d have learned to appreciate the experience that comes with a few more years by now.

* evil grin *

You’re not suggesting that you would be a more suitable tribute than young London here now, are you?  Besides which, you’re still several years younger than me.

Three years is not several.

I have to admit, at this point, I’m pretty excited.  I’ve wanted to nail Ruby for well over a year at this point and I’ve been denying every impulse.

I can’t drive at this point, but if you’d like to come get me, I might be persuaded to leave now.

I’ll be there in ten.

Holy shit! Did that just happen?!

At this point, I have to actually get rid of London, because she really is sitting on the stool next to me with her hand in between my legs and asking me if I’d like to go back and have that ‘private dance’ with her now.

I politely tell her that I’m not feeling well and that I need to close out and leave, but I give her a $20 for sitting with me for the couple of minutes that I was arranging for what would turn out to be rather extraordinary.

I closed out my tab at the bar and walked outside, to wait for Ruby to show up to pick me up.  One of the other dancers was outside and took the opportunity to chat me up and handed me a slip of paper.  It happened to have a name, phone number, and email address on it.  I figured I’d keep it for later, so I put it into my pocket, but I ended up losing it – sorry, Cheyenne…

Moments later, Ruby pulled up to the street next to where I was standing and rolled down the window of the passenger side door, on the curb next to me.  She leaned over to look at me through the open window, “Hello, Sir.  I’m ready to take you home now.”

“Thank you, Ruby,” I said as I opened the door and sat beside her in the passenger side.

“I’m not sure this is a good idea,” she said as we pulled away.

“It almost certainly is not,” I replied. “But I’m not altogether certain that I care.”

“I agree,” she said, and then not another word all the way back to her place, which was not far.

“I suppose I should have asked if you wanted me to take you home, shouldn’t I?” she asked demurely once we’d pulled into her parking spot.

“Don’t be foolish,” I said, “this has been over a year in the making.  Show me upstairs.”  I already knew the way to her apartment, having been there several times in the past, but I wanted her to lead me.

She led the way to her apartment and I followed.

Once inside the door, I closed it behind me and then turned around to find her only inches away from me, looking up at me, directly into my eyes.

“You don’t smell good, Sir,” she said, without the slightest hint of guile.

“Does that matter?” I asked, knowing that I was in the throes of grief and had not been taking care of myself for several days, not to mention the fact that I had recently been drinking heavily and even smoking a bit – which I am somewhat ashamed to admit that I occasionally do when I’ve been drinking.

“No. I suppose not,” she said, in the most demure voice I’d ever heard. “I want you,” she said afterwards, while looking me directly in the eyes with the most innocent eyes she could manage.

“I am here, Ruby.” I said, with all the gravitas I could summon, and shockingly, it worked! She dropped to her knees in front of me, wrapped her arms around the back of my thighs and looked up into my eyes.

“May I suck your cock, Sir?  I’ve been waiting ever so long to do so.”

“You may, Ruby.”

She undid my belt, slowly, with purpose.  Then she undid the button at the top of my jeans, then the next one down in the fly, then the next, and finally the last one.

As she started to pull on my pants to bring them around my ankles, I held onto my belt, pulling it free as my pants fell.

Then she brought her hands to the front of my boxer briefs and stroked the bottom of my cock, from balls to head, through the fabric of my boxer briefs.

She looked up again into my eyes, pleading for me to give her permission to pull my boxer briefs down, even though the permission was already implicit in my affirmation that she could suck my cock.

I put my hand under her chin as she lifted her head, and tilted it back.

With the other hand, which was holding my belt now, I quickly looped it around her neck and pulled it taught, dragging her upright on her knees.

Then I pushed my boxer briefs down and pulled my rigid cock free, letting go with my hand to allow the belt to settle around her neck and come to rest between her breasts, still covered by her clothing.

I grabbed the back of her neck with my free hand and guided her mouth around my cock.

I thrust slowly in and and out a few times, deeper than was comfortable for her, but not enough to cause serious discomfort.

Then I grabbed the belt again, and pulled her off of my cock, and up to her feet.

I stepped out of my pants and my boxer briefs and I walked her back, forcing her to back up several steps until she was abutted against her ottoman.

Then I let go of the belt and I leveled my sharpest gaze directly at her soul and I said in my Command Voice, “Remove your clothing and lie on this ottoman on your back.  I want to eat your pussy until you scream.”

Before thoughts were registering in her mind, I think, she had removed her top and was halfway through removing her bra.

“Wait – can I put a towel down?  This is new furniture….”

“Yes, of course, but if you make me wait any longer I’m going to hurt you.”

“Yes Sir!” and with that she quickly removed her remaining clothes, ran to put a towel on the ottoman, and laid down upon it, on her back, spread legs in front of me.

Cunnilingus is my favorite sex act… it allows me an awful lot of control over my partner’s orgasm, and I really like that kind of control.

I dropped to my knees and closed in on her gorgeous pussy.

I thrust my tongue deep within her and then drew it up through her inner labia to her clitoris, and as I did so, she let out an audible moan.

I focused my attention on my tongue and her clitoris for some time after that, bringing her to a state of near frenzy and backing off to deny her orgasm several times.

Eventually her frustration was staring to climb and she called out in an exasperated tone, “Sir! Are you ever going to let me cum?!”

“Why should I?”  I asked in the calmest, clearest tone that I could.

“I thought you said that you weren’t a Sadist?!!?”

“I said I’m not a physical Sadist.”

“This feels pretty fucking physical to me!”

“You’re right, Ruby,” I said and then immediately put my right forefinger and middle finger into my mouth to wet them, and then thrust them with nothing held back deep into her pussy.

She exploded with her first orgasm, shaking and moaning.

I began to feather my fingers inside of her, hitting her g-spot as I put my face back between her legs and started circling her clitoris with my tongue again.

“Ugnghshg!”  – She can be pretty eloquent when she’s cumming.

“ARGH!” she screamed out as every muscle in her abdomen contracted at once and she came extremely strongly, pushing my fingers out of her with the force.

“That was almost a word,” I said, sarcastically.

“ARGH!” she replied, so I stuck a finger into her asshole.

“UGHAASHUEDUDSAVJ!” she squirted all over me and pushed my fingers out of her vagina again, but the one in her asshole remained, so I curled it on her.

“HOLY FUCKNUTS!” she screamed, which I took as an invitation, so I put my fingers back inside her and attacked her clitoris with my tongue again.

“AGISDGDH! What?! WHo?! How?!?”

I straightened up so that I could look her in the face, because reactions like these really need to be seen to be understood.

I pulled my thumb up to start pushing on her clitoris.. not moving around, just steady and increasing pressure.  I was kneeling above her now, so I could see the fact that she was holding her breath.  She was starting to turn purple, but I didn’t want to stop what I was doing, so I pulled my finger out of her ass and stuck the tip of my cock in instead.

“AHDFGSHDSAJD!”

I began to push with my hips while I was continuing to kneed at her g-spot with my fingers and push on her clit with my thumb.

By the time I had half of the shaft of my cock in her ass she had squirted again, her eyes rolled back into her head, and her body went completely limp.  Her arms flopped back behind her, and the action pulled her tits up and forward and that made me even harder, if you can believe it.

Now balls deep inside her ass with my cock, two fingers into her pussy, and putting increasing pressure on her clit with my thumb, it was clear that she had passed out.  She was still breathing though, and making noises that were somewhere between a moan and a ‘coo,’ so I just kept fucking her ass.

A few moments later, I came in her ass, pulled out, pulled her body against mine and held her while she tried to catch her breath.

Eventually she came back around and she looked up at me and smiled and said, “Thank you, Sir,” before dropping her head onto my shoulder and trying to steady her breathing.

I helped her to clean herself up, and clean up the mess we’d left behind.  I put on my clothes and then I walked home.

It was a pretty intense night.  Some of the details I’ve glossed over and left behind.  Some of the details I’ve embellished upon, but the core of the story remains true, and my desire for the real thing is unabated.

I hope you enjoyed my story.

I know that bunny is going to enjoy the reality much, much more.

  • Rant.

 

Tips for dealing with vanilla authorities.

Firstly, let me say that this article is for entertainment purposes.  I’m not a lawyer, I don’t claim to be one, and I am neither qualified to give nor interested in giving actual legal advice.  This article represents my own experiences, most of which fall completely outside of the written law (if not perhaps the spirit of the law.)

Secondly, it’s been almost a month since I added a new post and the last one that I did was pretty shitty, and yet, there are at least a few dedicated people who visit my page every day.  Thank you for your support or curiosity or whatever it is that keeps you coming back.  Believe it or not, it means something.  I appreciate it.

Obviously, with the lack of new content, readership and email volumes go down.  It doesn’t help anything that I was out of the country for a week and could not get or respond to emails, but I have received a relatively large number of emails lately about one topic in particular, and I have been working for some time on a post to address that issue, but this is not that post.  It is coming though.


So, I’ve been involved in kink for quite some time now, and that involves things like air travel with toys, dealing with the cops on unrelated matters while in possession of kink gear, and all sorts of other dealings with vanilla people when they stumble across something that to them is shocking.

The very first thing that I will say about this is quite simple, and I’m going to steal the line from one of my favorite authors (and former humans,) Douglas Adams – “Don’t Panic.”  If you can remember that statement and live by it, you can get through almost anything.  That and, “Always remember where your towel is,” but that’s a separate issue.

If you happen to find yourself in a security inspection line and they start making noise about something that the x-ray shows is in your bag, Don’t Panic.

If you happen to find yourself in a police pat-down and one of the officers starts asking pointed questions about why you have a handcuff key on your keychain, Don’t Panic.

If you happen to be packing up your apartment and your mom starts to lift your mattress off the bed and then notices the nylon webbing restraints under the mattress, Don’t Panic.

I’m a Dominant.  This does not mean that I spend all of my life ordering people around or even that I’m always going to approach every interaction with any person from a position of confidence and authority, but it does help.  I make mistakes, I falter, I even occasionally socially submit when it is appropropriate or when I’m not thinking about it.  Often, this is the right thing to do.  In the case of dealing with authority figures who have an ability to make your life miserable, this is usually the right thing to do, but it doesn’t always have to be a case of purely cow-towing to the cops, or something like that.

I’m also Caucasian.  I’m pretty sure that this is a huge benefit to me when dealing with authority figures.  It’s entirely possible that you may get roughed up for trying some of the things that I’ve done.  You have been warned.

Firstly, and most important, know the law.  Laws vary from country to country, state to state, and even municipality to municipality, and it is important to know what you might be dealing with before you begin.  For instance, in some jurisdictions, the possession of handcuffs, or even handcuff keys, can be legally limited to individuals who have gone through POST (Peace Officer Standards and Training) procedures or something similar – this can mean that only cops or security guards are allowed to have them in that jurisdiction.  However, in most jurisdictions, this is not the case, and anyone can possess handcuffs.  Therefore, it’s important to know what applies to you if you’re going to be putting yourself in a position where it might become a question.

Secondly, and nearly as important, realize that authority does not come with knowledge.  Oh, it should, that’s for damned sure, but often the police officer that you are dealing with is going to be more ignorant of the actual laws and statutes covering kink activities or equipment than you are.  This does not give you license to teach them… that was a lesson that I had to learn the hard way…  cops don’t like civilians lecturing them about the law, it tends to piss them off, and then you escalate things, which is something you definitely don’t want.

And finally… be pleasant.  Smile.  Laugh.  Don’t be confrontational.  When you get confrontational, you put the authority figure on the defensive.  They then fall back to their training and try to make sure that everything that they do is, ‘by the book.’  They will literally force down their own humanity and attempt to become robotic, just to make sure that they cover their own ass in case you try to file a complaint or take things to court.  Once they let go of their humanity, the odds of you getting out of the situation without involving the courts drop to almost zero, and no one wants that.

Remember, cops and security guards, like all humans, are inherently lazy people.  They don’t want to do more work.  They want to do a good job, and most of them got into the work that they do because they want to make the world a safer place, so if they feel like you are dangerous, they will arrest you.  It is your job to show them that you are not harming anyone, that you understand the difference between malice and fun, and that you can be trusted to decide how to act for yourself.  If they can be convinced that you are not a threat to anyone (including yourself,) that you understand what you’re doing, and that you are a responsible, well-balanced individual, then the odds are very good that they’re going to simply leave you be.  Arresting you makes more work for them.  They may even have to give up their day off to go to court to testify against you, and they’d much rather just be able to say that they spoke with you and determined that there was nothing illegal happening.

All that being said, some people are just dicks.  Some people get into positions of power because they like abusing that power to make other people uncomfortable.  In those situations, don’t let yourself be victimized, but remember, it’s probably better/cheaper/faster to just let the bastards confiscate your flogger and bear the expense of buying a new one than it is to go through the hassle of dealing with the courts, possibly having to hire a lawyer, and potentially even having to spend time in jail.  If the authority figure is hell-bent on exerting his authority and refuses to act like a human, sometimes the best thing to do is to submit.

Yep – I said it… even as a Dominant, sometimes the best thing to do is to submit.

There is fodder in that statement for a whole philosophical discussion, but not today.

So, to recap, be cool, get out of the way of yourself, and remember, some people are just dicks.

Trust, But Verify

A friend of mine was recently interviewed by The Atlantic for an article about this thing that we do.

They used very little of what she actually said, which was somewhat disappointing to me,  but if you’d like to read the article, you can find it here and while most of my readers are already well aware of her blog, just in case you are not one of those, you can find it here.

The article was supposed to be about the impact of the 50 Shades movie on the BDSM community, or so I was led to believe, but it turned into a condemnation of Fetlife instead.

I don’t think that the author of The Atlantic piece did a poor job, but I think that perhaps his lack of personal experience in the arena may have made him somewhat blind to the nuance involved.

By way of disclaimer, I should point out that I’m a lifetime supporter and member of Fetlife – in fact, it is the only social networking site of which I am a member, and I have had many good experiences facilitated by that site, but I’m neither a predator nor a potential victim, so much of what they speak about in the article is outside of my experience.  However, there is still the core of the message, which I still support entirely.

BDSM is not a license to be stupid.

There are people who use BDSM as an excuse to commit abuse.  These are not all outliers of the community.  Some of the core people who make up my own local community have engaged in practices that I find somewhat questionable, and I’ve heard accusations about others that I have not personally witnessed.  A person’s standing in the community is not a blanket endorsement by the members of the community and cannot substitute for caution on the part of newbies.  Even if they are wonderful, it is still very possible that your experience with them might not be satisfactory, and if you are not careful, possibly even dangerous.

It’s possible that Autumn will condemn me for what I am about to write, but I doubt it – I know her to be a rational and intelligent woman, and while she may not agree with what I am about to say, I doubt that it will lessen her opinion of me.

I have no doubt whatsoever that abuse does occur within the auspices of BDSM.  However, I understand and actually commend the people at Fetlife for the way that they have handled things – primarily by staying out of the conflicts.

Fetlife is a corporate entity and therefore is legally obligated to be largely blind to anything that is not provable, so they maintain a practice that is not unlike my own faith – in the absence of the provable, I choose to believe nothing – but they differ on some very important points that I will get to after an illustrative example to follow.

Add to this the fact that personal preferences and even the individual desires of a single person can vary greatly for a given time span, and you run into the fact that some interactions between some people are simply always going to be bad and there is very little that can be done to avoid this other than to communicate and negotiate.

For instance, as a completely hypothetical exercise, let us evaluate the following scenario:

 

A Top in the local community is well known to a lot of people, has many friends, is known to be particularly skilled at flogging, is well known for being patient and kind, especially with newbies, and he has had strong D/s relationships with multiple partners over the years, including a few that are currently going on.

Less well known are the personal proclivities of this person – things not shared except in intimate settings: he has a deep desire for anal penetrative intercourse, he likes asphyxiation, he thinks of himself as being able to read emotional and physical cues well and so he doesn’t place a great deal of emphasis on safewords, and he always has sex as part of a scene.

Now we introduce two newbie female bottoms to the mix.

Newbie bottom A becomes involved with the community and learns that our Top might be a good play partner for her first scene.  She has never been flogged, but thinks she might like it, she loves sex, including anal sex.  She has a deep desire to submit and to be used as an instrument of pleasure for her partner, and this, coupled with a desire to experience the sensation-heightening aspects of light pain lead her to believe that she wants an encounter with our Top.

She seeks him out at an event, they talk briefly, and with very little negotiation, agree to a private scene.  She meets him at his home, he takes her to his playroom, they engage in some petting, he binds her and flogs her, getting her into subspace for the first time in her life.  She is euphoric and he decides to extend things by gagging and blindfolding her to which she does not object.  He continues to flog her and she fights against her bindings, moaning and crying as she does so.  He interprets this as a good sign and then proceeds to take things further, having anal and vaginal intercourse with her while she is bound and gagged, sending her into even higher and tighter spirals of ecstasy.  When her thrashing becomes particularly passionate, he chokes her with his hands until she starts to lose consciousness and she immediately calms down as she surrenders and floats in subspace and then he lets go and she lies limp, savoring the experience.

When he is done, he un-gags and unbinds her while she is still floating.  She is euphoric and so is he.  She can barely move with the intensity of the experience that she has just had.  They share some quiet time together after the scene without speaking and then she leaves, believing that she has just undergone a transformative experience and is ecstatic.

 

Newbie bottom B becomes involved with the community and learns that our Top might be a good play partner for her first scene.  She has never been flogged, but thinks she might like it, she loves sex, but has some very deep personal aversions to anal sex.  She has a deep desire to submit and to be used as an instrument of pleasure for her partner, and this, coupled with a desire to experience the sensation-heightening aspects of light pain lead her to believe that she wants an encounter with our Top.

She seeks him out at an event, they talk briefly, and with very little negotiation, agree to a private scene.  She meets him at his home, he takes her to his playroom, they engage in some petting, he binds her and flogs her, getting her into subspace for the first time in her life.  She is euphoric and he decides to extend things by gagging and blindfolding her.  He continues to flog her and she fights against her bindings, moaning and crying as she does so.  He interprets this as a good sign and then proceeds to take things further, having anal and vaginal intercourse with her while she is bound and gagged, causing her to panic and fight against him.  He mistakes this as more of the same sort of euphoric passion and continues to have sex with her.  When her thrashing becomes particularly violent, he chokes her with his hands and she, unable to take any more abuse, begins to withdraw as the violation completely overwhelms her.

When he is done, he un-gags and unbinds her while she is still floating.  She is in shock and nearly catatonic and he is deeply euphoric.  He lies back to savor the experience and she lies there, unable to respond for some time until finally she wordlessly leaves, believing that she has just been raped and abused, while he thinks that things went extremely well.

 

Now – in this scenario, who is right?

You probably have your own opinion, but in my opinion, they are all wrong.

I’m going to momentarily overlook the complete lack of aftercare in this scenario (which is all too common in my opinion) and just talk about the interpretations of the scene itself.

It is convenient to assign blame for the bad experiences to either our Top or even to bottom B here, but in my own personal opinion the issue is not that simple, and turning Fetlife into a yelp-like rating system for Tops (or bottoms) is not going to help because the problem comes down to one of communication and personal preferences.

If you take the prevailing wisdom of the common culture from a few decades ago and apply it to these scenarios, it would tell you that our Top had no ill intent in either case and that the ideal scenario as presented with bottom A is wonderful and that the worst case scenario as presented with bottom B is the bottom’s fault.  She should have understood what she was getting herself into better and the fact that she didn’t object at a time where she could have objected is her own fault.

If we instead take the prevailing wisdom of today’s post-Feminist-revolution society and apply it we see the polar opposite.  The Top is entirely at fault for not explicitly getting permission for his actions at every step with bottom B and is even guilty of abuse in the case of bottom A, because while she enjoyed the experience, he did not fulfill his duty and it was mere happenstance that she felt good about things instead of bad.

Personally, I believe something different.  They’re all at fault for failing to properly communicate and negotiate.

Our Top did not do his duty in communicating up front, and as the more experienced partner, he bears the majority of the burden here.  He should have known better, but he did not intend to hurt anyone and felt that he was in the right all along.  That does not make him right.  He screwed up, to the point of breaking the law and deserves whatever consequences befall him, but if our bottom had been better informed, this scenario would never have occurred.  Our Top is not a predator, he was just criminally negligent.

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it until I can’t speak any longer.  The heart of what it is that we do is negotiation and unfortunately people just don’t do enough of it.

The reason that we have contracts and safewords (or other signals when gagged, etc.) is to help ameliorate situations like these.  If you are in scene with me and we didn’t negotiate something in advance, I’m unlikely to try it, but if I do and you don’t like it, I’m counting on you to use your safeword or other signal to cue me to stop.  If you fail to do that and I fail to stop, we are both at fault.  I misread your cues and you didn’t explicitly signal me.  Our lack of pre-negotiation creates a bad experience for us both.

I think I’m an anomaly though and that most people don’t see things the way I do.  People like black and white outcomes.  They like to feel that they are right, and sometimes that has to mean that the other person is wrong.

Fetlife does not have the resources to adjudicate these cases, and therefore they simply refuse to allow their platform to be the battleground, and I believe that is the only viable course of action they have.  That’s what we need to remember.  Yes, there are people at Fetlife.  Yes, there is the Fetlife community itself, and communities are often capable of policing themselves – as they should – but Fetlife is not a community itself, it is a platform that hosts many distinct communities, and unless we want that platform to fail (which I don’t think anyone is suggesting) we have to view it as a what it is.

Fetlife has not failed its users, because Fetlife has no stake in these arguments and they are right to try to remove them from the platform completely.

If you have been abused, you have every right to seek restitution, and you should do that through the channels available to you.  Your own local meatspace community is a good place to start.  Most real-world communities are generally self-policing, and word of mouth can get you ostracized.  You may be the Top in this scenario and may have an encounter turn bad on you despite your intentions, and if that’s the case, you screwed up by not negotiating properly and you deserve the consequences that you receive.  The police might be another good place to go.  Only you can determine whether or not what you experienced is actually abuse, and only you can determine what the proper course of action should be, but Fetlife is a platform for people to engage with each other and is not itself a policing force, nor should it be.

This is all, of course, very complicated, and I’m not a lawyer.

But if I can get one message through to my readers, it is this:  think before you act.

Have an exfiltration plan.

Have a check-in person.

Have a safeword

Negotiate in advance.  Contracts and limits lists are a great way to do this.  Check my earlier posts if you need some examples of these.

This thing that we do is extremely risky – for Tops as well.  Protect yourself.

Trust, but verify.

Distrust gets you nowhere, but misplaced trust can get you hurt, badly.

And the last thing I ever want is for anyone to get hurt.

Fetlife is a tool, and use it for what you will, but remember, no tool, no database of players, no word of mouth reputation, nothing whatsoever can take the place of mindfulness, caution, and good sense.  There is always a first person to be abused – make sure that it isn’t you.

 

Pain vs Hurt

Pain is part and parcel of the BDSM lifestyle, but there is a difference of nuance in the meanings of pain and hurt in this context.  As practitioners of this thing that we do, we are no strangers to pain.  As human beings, we are no strangers to hurt, but while those words are synonyms, the English language has different words for similar concepts because those concepts are separated by subtle differences.

For the purposes of this entry, I’m going to define these words according to my own terms.

Both pain and hurt are used as verbs, though the use of pain as a verb is somewhat archaic.  One might say, “my arm pains me” to mean the same thing as, “my arm hurts.”  At the end of that second phrase, there is an implied “me,” but it is not usually explicitly stated in modern language.  Usually pain is a noun – it is a state of being, a thing that is being experienced, while hurt is a verb.. it is an action word and like all action words it requires an actor and intent.

However, while these synonyms can pretty much be used interchangeably if you so choose, I like to think that they have evolved to have subtly different meanings.

When I say that I am in pain, I mean that I am experiencing the physical sensation of pain.  When I say that I don’t want to hurt you, I mean that I don’t want to cause you unintentional distress.  For submissives under my care, I will often say, “I have no desire to hurt you,” and then proceed to slap, smack, spank, flog, whip, bite, and toss them into furniture.  In the absence of a way to properly distinguish my meaning, this would seem to be a case where my actions are not in line with my words, and yet, no one in this position with me has ever given me any indication of being confused on this point.

How is that possible?

I will attempt to elaborate by way of example…

The other day, I was in bed with my girlfriend, post-coitus, and she was expressing some concern about an interaction that we had has previously that day.  I failed to pick up on some of her emotional cues and created a situation where my lack of action caused her emotional turmoil.  I didn’t intend to hurt her in this case.  We do not have a TPE relationship and even if we did, I am not the type of Dominant partner who would ever want to create an emotional rift like that.  So in our discussion of what happened and how to best avoid similar situations in the future, I said to her, “I never wish to hurt you,” and then had to pause and chuckle, following up with, “well, you know what I mean…” and of course she did, but it brought to mind for me the unvocalized nuance that followed with that statement.

The words do not support this notion natively.  We have to imbue them with subtlety of our own.  And yet, because she is a smart woman and because she knows me rather well by this point, she understood my meaning without the need to elaborate significantly.

Hurt is a part of every relationship.. mistakes happen, people will fail to live up to our expectations, especially when those expectations are not vocalized – perhaps because the effort of so doing is extreme.

Pain is not a part of every relationship, and for most people, it really ought not to be.  I’ve said it before and I’m certain that I will say it again, but without consent, what we do is abuse.  For most relationships, there is no desire for pain, there is no discussion of appropriate applications of pain, and without the acknowledgement and discussion, the infliction of Pain is no different at all from Hurt.

Pain is a part of most BDSM relationships, but while we can revel in the pain, use the catharsis that follows, have a release of endorphins and emotions, we usually try to avoid Hurt.  Pain is part and parcel of the lifestyle that we choose to lead, but Hurt is abuse.

For my girlfriend, for my friends, even for my family, I try very hard to avoid Hurt.  I have felt Hurt from my family.  From some members of my family, that hurt has never abated.  We so very often hurt those that we love when we are, ourselves, hurt.  But I try very, very hard not to do so intentionally, and for those I love, this is especially true.

If you put yourself under my power, I will cause you pain with intent.  I will willfully bind you so that the bindings are tight enough to cause you pain.  I will willfully flog you with enough force to mark your skin and leave behind reminders of the experience.  I will bite you hard enough to leave a bruise that lasts for weeks.  But I will not intentionally pull the rug out from under you or cause you to question your trust.  I will not intentionally belittle you or put you down unless that is a specifically negotiated arrangement and executed at specifically designated times so that you can understand the difference between my words and my beliefs.

I respect those that I encounter, and even for those that have hurt me in the past or continue to hurt me now – I try to be respectful and forthright, but make no mistake, I will not idly sit by and continue to take the abuse, nor will I suffer it as you apply it to others.  I will at the least ostracize you and may even confront you, depending on the situation.

I have often said that I think I’m more of a masochist than a Sadist, and perhaps that fact is informing my opinions here.  I make no broad statements to say that a majority of Dominants feel as I do, nor do I necessarily think that they should, but this is what works for me, and it is a continuing part of my education and growth in this wonderful and scary world we inhabit.

I’m not sure at what point in my life I started to make this distinction, and I know that I’ve never successfully conveyed the nuance before, but I suspect that this is the kernel that exists behind my personal difficulties in causing pain in those that I love.

When you look back at me and say, “please hurt me,” this is the difficulty through which I have to process before I can act.  Like my grasp of other languages, I have not yet (despite my advanced age and position) been able to completely internalize these things and so I must go through a process of translation and change this to, ‘please render pain unto me,’ in my own particular and rather archaic idiom.

But my life, my experience in BDSM, and my experience in relationships is an ever evolving process and this is yet one more thing that I am refining and will probably further refine again over time.

Fifty Shades of Fucked Up

The movie adaptation of E L James’s book, 50 Shades of Grey starts tonight at midnight in most parts of this country.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past couple of weeks, you almost certainly already knew that.

For those that know me, it’s no big surprise that I’m not much of a fan of the series.  I don’t really know anyone who thinks that it an accurate representation of anything, but because it is meant to be entertainment, it does not have to be.

I would like to make it clear, however, that I respect and admire Ms. James despite my opinion on the accuracy or quality of her writing.

I’d like to think that I’m a good writer, but objectively, I’m forced to admit that Ms. James is light years ahead of me in terms of success.  She is a millionaire many times over and I’m, well, not.  She has millions of readers, many of whom are die-hard fans, and I have a few hundred people who read this blog.  She’s a woman with wealth and power.  For those things and others, I actually have a great deal of respect for her.  She has a feel for the pulse of the populace at large, and I’m afraid I’ve become rather specialized.

Don’t get me wrong, there are some serious problems with her books.  I don’t think she did much fact checking, and it’s pretty clear that her understanding of the BDSM world comes from the point of view of an outsider.  I doubt very much that she had any exposure to a real BDSM community before she wrote her first book.  I would hope that she has by now, but since I have seen no evidence of it, I cannot remark on that.

Ms. James – if you are reading this, get in touch, I’d be more than happy to give you a true introduction.

But – that aside.. there is really one thing about her books that bothers me more than the niggling factual problems, internal inconsistencies, or use of repetitive plot devices and word choices.. and that is the underlying premise that the reason Christian Grey is a Dominant is because he is compensating for some psychological trauma.  He actually describes himself as ‘fifty shades of fucked up’ which is clearly the basis for the name of the entire series and a recurring theme throughout.

The implications are broad and rather harsh.  BDSM is a proxy for the world of darkness, of course, and a crutch for those that are not yet able to let go of their sordid pasts and wake up to join the real world.  It could almost have been anything – she needed a hidden and secret world for the protagonist to get caught up in, and since the vampire genre was already saturated she made a rather brilliant leap to pull in something that actually does  exist and make use of that instead.  It was genius on her part, really, but it paints those of us who actually are part of that world in a bad light.

She implies that anyone who would willingly make that a part of his life is somehow damaged.  The anti-hero in Christian Grey is a foil to the perfect innocence of the protagonist Anastasia.  He is dark and mysterious and larger than life and pulls her perfect innocent virginal person into his life of darkness and self loathing.

Now.. I can be aloof and mysterious at times.  I can be brooding and difficult.  I am the victim of several terrible things that happened to me when I was younger, but my role in the BDSM world does not mask anything and is not a foil for some true image of a more mainstream me that is waiting to be released.  This is who I am and I am unashamed.  Self loathing is rarely a part of my expression.  I have issues with physical pain and they can be frustrating but the vast majority of the time I feel happy and well adjusted.

I will admit, there are things that I do like about some of the interactions that the characters have in her books.  If I were a billionaire with very few actual job responsibilities I think that I might do many of the things that Christian does and act in many ways like he does, but certainly not in every way.  Perhaps part of that is because I’m older and wiser than Christian is meant to be.

I like the protective and overbearing nature that Christian takes towards Ana.  This actually did mirror many of the D/s aspects that my ex and I had as part of our relationship.

One of my strongest kinks is exposing the people that I love to new things, and that is certainly something the Christian does with a flare that exceeds my resources, but if I were to become an overnight billionaire you can bet that I’d be doing a lot of very similar things.

But I am not 50 shades of fucked up and I somewhat resent the image that she has created for those like me.

I doubt she wrote the novels with the intention of inviting these types of comparisons, and she likely could not have predicted the impact that her portrayal of the lifestyle would have on those of us who are in it, so I do not hold her personally accountable, but the fact remains that these comparisons are being made, and for most of the mainstream community, this is their first inkling of what BDSM is and they’re getting the wrong ideas.

The fact that this has started a dialog is a wonderful thing, but the fact that she, armed with too little information, has created a meme to describe BDSM participants.  This has enflamed the passions of many, interested many more in learning and exploring BDSM, and given some few just enough information to be dangerous to those that don’t know better.

BDSM can be a very dangerous thing to become involved in, and I am concerned that by bringing this into the mainstream she has helped to create an imbalance in the state of affairs.  The vast majority of her readers are female, and the interest that she has sparked for things kinky has created whole new streams of products and expanded some that were there before.  The number of proto-submissives is on the rise and only likely to become more so with the release of the movie.

As a Dominant, I should regard this a good thing, and I do, but sexual predation has long been a part of the BDSM community, which largely polices itself for such things, and has been largely effective to date in so doing because our numbers are relatively small and within the community, people become known for their behavior.  If a person is a predator, the word tends to spread.

Now – we’re beginning to see a rise in those interested, and they tend to be turning to online resources to satiate their newly found tastes for kink.

There are a couple of problems with this.

The BDSM community has been able to rely on self policing largely due to the fact that meetings are most often done in meatspace and where there are more than few practitioners in one place.  Sketchy things are noticed and corrected.  This does not, and perhaps cannot, happen in virtual space.

There is no formal process for induction into the BDSM community.  While there are leather groups with formal practices and some of us maintain a higher level of protocol than others, in general, any person can step forward at any time and declare himself a Dominant and claim at any background that he wishes.  There is very little that one can do to validate or refute such claims.  Sure, there are a few of use with specialized skills that can track people online and through public records, and sometimes it’s possible to refute ridiculous claims without the need to really do any research, but sometimes you simply cannot tell.

If you meet someone online you cannot know how much of their projected persona is real and how much is a fabrication.

This is true of online dating in general and certainly not limited to BDSM endeavors, but whereas social dating is often limited in scope, there are those that, under the guise of BDSM, are actually meeting a complete stranger for the first time and allowing this person to blindfold them, tie them up, and hit them with things.

This can and will lead to tragedy, I’m sure of it.

So – for those of you who are reading this and new to the concepts of BDSM, I urge you, go to a much.  Meet people who are in the community in person – in a public place – several at a time.  Talk to them in person, learn from them, ask questions.  The BDSM community locally has proven to be one of the most inclusive communities that I have ever seen or heard about.  Everyone is extremely approachable, and while there are always personality conflicts and differences of opinion, people are rarely, if ever, mean.  Well, until you ask them to be. that is…

If you meet someone online and really are drawn to meet them rather than first exposing yourself to a munch or three, follow safe dating practices!

Meet somewhere public.  Have a contact person who knows where you are and have a check in time.  Have an extraction plan.  And most importantly, don’t do anything dangerous on your first meeting.

What is dangerous, you ask?

If you really have to ask that, I suspect that you’re not listening to any of this anyway.

Be safe.

Be bold, be strong, be alive, satisfy your curiosity, satisfy your cravings, but be safe.

The Importance of the Collar

Collars can carry as many meanings as there are people to share them, but generally they are a few well accepted archetypes within the greater BDSM community.  However, even these can be somewhat confusing and entirely open to interpretation.

From my perspective, in my experience, and in my opinion, the three major archetypes are the Slave Collar, the Play Collar, and the Training Collar.

The Slave Collar is the most common within the BDSM community, and in fact, in most cases when a person is talking about having a collar, being collared, or collaring someone, this is what they are talking about.  Symbolically, this is intended to denote ownership.

Generally the person wearing the collar symbolically become the property of the person who placed the collar around the slave’s neck.  If I were to collar you with a slave collar, I would refer to the collar as ‘my collar’ and I might tell others that you wear my collar when defining our relationship.

While wearing my collar, you are my property, and the moment I take it off of you or permit you to remove it, that relationship ceases to exist.

For this reason, a slave collar generally never comes off except to be momentarily replaced with another collar.  There may be more than one collar to fill this role… for instance, one might have a collar that is worn only in private or around other kinky folks but is a bit too obvious for daily outside wear – this is generally referred to as the ‘slave collar’, ‘private collar,’ or even simply ‘His collar.’  Additionally, one might have a necklace with a lock pendant or some other indicator of its true purpose but that is less obvious to the uninitiated.  This is typically referred to as a ‘day collar,’ or ‘public collar.’

The term ‘Play Collar’ can have a couple of different meanings.  Generally this is used to either mean a collar that is used for a short duration – usually only the length of a single scene.  This can either be because the collared person is not actually your property – you are assuming that set of roles for the scene only – or because that person has a regular slave collar and the play collar is different in some way that facilitates your play.

For instance, I once had a rather chunky leather posture collar with three rings on it.  It would not make sense as a regular wear collar because it forces my property to keep her chin up at all times, which would make negotiating the world somewhat difficult, but sometimes that is exactly what I want.  It also has more attachment points on it, and sometimes you just need to shackle your property’s ankles to her neck, you know?

The Training Collar is a bit more uncommon and bit more nebulously defined.  It sits somewhere between the two listed above.

Where the Slave Collar is meant to be eternal and the Play Collar is meant to be used only for a short time, the Training Collar is meant to be used until the subject under consideration is either accepted or rejected.

The Training Collar is usually replaced with a Slave Collar or discarded entirely, depending upon the results of the training in question.

During a training period, there may be an equivalent ‘private collar’ and ‘day collar’ pair, but usually at least one of the two is intended to be replaced once the training is completed.

The training collar comes off and on a lot more frequently than the slave collar, and indeed, the right to wear the collar might be considered as part of the rewards to the sub during training.

For these reasons, Slave Collars (and their corresponding ‘day collars’) are generally well made, expensive, eternal sorts of items.  I’ve purchased and used Slave Collars made from leather, stainless steel, even titanium and day collars made from silver or gold.  Though of course, they can be made from anything at all.

Training collars are generally intended to be rugged enough to wear for a long time, but will eventually be replaced and are generally good quality but not jewelry level pieces.  I’ve used leather for these most commonly, but rubber, vinyl, or neoprene are also quite common.

Play collars really run the gamut, are often more interesting or gaudy than their longer wear counterparts, might often be used by more than one person, and can be anything from a piece of string or a ribbon to a dog collar made from nylon or fake leather, or even heavy pieces of wrought iron and chain.

It is important to note, however, that nothing about the materials that are used to make the collar can be inferred to denote the type of collar that it represents.  That is entirely up to the participants and their own particular aesthetic.

The most important thing though, and the thing that brings all of this together, is that all of these collars (and possibly others of which I am completely unaware) are intended to be powerful symbols that establish Dominance.

The collar is meant to be owned by the Dominant partner, and whether it is purchased by him or not before the power exchange takes place, it is understood that he is the Owner and Controller of the collar.

When he puts it on the submissive partner, he is symbolically establishing his Dominance, and the collar itself is intended to serve as a reminder to the submissive partner of his submission.  While the collar is in place, this is intended to be an absolute (subject to negotiated parameters) transfer of power.

I used to be what one might consider a ‘High Protocol Dom.’  By this, I mean that I used to establish a set of rules and expectations that I had for my property.  While you were wearing my collar, you would be expected to carry out my instructions exactly, you would be expected to anticipate my desires and fulfill them prior to being asked, you would be expected to understand what I mean when I call, “Front!” and to comply immediately.

The days of High Protocol seem to be waning, and I am not so strict any longer.  Hierarchy and order are important, but I find that as I grow older, these things are less and less compatible with my worldview.

In fact, I’m coming to believe that Hierarchy may be harmful…  But this is not an article on Protocol or Hierarchy.

Today, for myself and most of the others that I’ve had the opportunity to witness lately, the collar is more an expression of partnering and position than anything else.  It can be used as a reminder to fulfill a role, but it’s not typically used in the way that I was originally taught, and even my own use of collars has recently been much more lax than it used to be, but the collar is still a useful reminder and tool.

As with everything in BDSM, these things are evolving.  As a former High Protocol Dom, some of these new, more relaxed ways of handling things chafe a bit.

I see something that would have been corrected in my past life and I let it pass because the current paradigm does not place the same level of importance on these things, and there are a great many things about the current paradigm that I find myself enjoying lately.

BDSM is making it’s way into the mainstream, and things like this must happen for that transition to take place.

Where once power transfer and authority were the forces that drove me, now I find that inclusion and compassion are the things that I crave most.  Devotion remains my main kink, but I am learning that it may take more forms than that to which I was most accustomed.

Still though, if you’re wearing my collar, you can expect me to point out that fact every once in awhile, and to urge you to think about what it represents or even use it for corrective action when required.

I may be taking a trip down the path of Hedonism lately, but I don’t see those things as wrong or incompatible.   BDSM is evolving, and so am I.

 

masochism from the Top perspective

I am not a Sadist.

I’ve said that before, and I honestly can’t see how it is likely to change any time in the foreseeable future.

I am also not a masochist.

That isn’t something that I’ve admitted to, but it something that most people tend to assume.  I mean, who ever heard of a masochistic Dom?

They do exist, of course, and I think it might even have been an accurate description for me when I first started to practice as a Dominant.  I had just left a submissive role, after all.  In the beginning of my training I felt like I deserved the pain, that I needed it to make me be who I was supposed to be, but by the end of my training, I no longer felt like I deserved or needed it, but I was determined to face it, and overcome it, no matter what the cost.

Before my car accident, I liked pain.  I still do, sometimes.  One of the issues that I have remaining from the injuries that I sustained then is that I have frequent upper back pain and this often radiates out from the cluster of nerves/muscles that are problematic for me in the center of my upper back, between the shoulder blades, and impacts my shoulders and neck.  When this happens, one of the only things that I can do to combat it is hook myself up to a TENS unit.

If you don’t know what a TENS unit it, TENS stands for Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation and the way it works is that you attach electrodes to your skin and then those to a machine that regulates a series of electrical pulses that causes your muscles to twitch.  The sensation itself is not usually painful, but when the muscles under the contacts are already seizing (as is often the case with my back) the feeling can get to be pretty intense.  However, at the end of a timed session, the muscles will be able to relax more than they had prior to the electrical stimulation, and so, I get some relief.

Prior to my car accident, I’d always avoided electro-torture devices.  It was a soft limit of mine.  I didn’t have any information on them apart from word of mouth and misinformation.  I’d been told that it felt like being electrocuted, or that it made one feel nauseated or induced a jelly-like feeling in the muscles.  All of this is bullshit.

In physical therapy after my car accident, the TENS unit was employed quite a lot, and while I both enjoyed the sensation that it invoked and the relief that I had after a session, the biggest gain I think I was able to get from it was the knowledge of what it is really like.  This led me to move on and explore violet wands and other BDSM-specific methods of electro-torture, but it also reawakened the parts of myself that I can recall opening up when I was actually a masochist.

In the intervening time between when I would have described myself as a masochist and when I was reawakened to these thoughts I did quite a bit of research on what makes a masochist a masochist.  I had the perfect platform from which to conduct my research, after all.  As a Dominant, with clients and partners that were masochists in addition to being submissive, I had the perfect opportunity to ask questions, to experiment with different types of pain, different techniques, different sensations… and while I retained the desire to conduct sensation play scenes, I lost the drive to create pain in others.  It’s not that I never feel the urge to hit someone, but it’s a rare thing nowadays.

I asked people, “why are you a masochist,” and not surprisingly, the answer was most often, “I don’t know, I just am.”  But every so often, I would get an answer that was different, and I’ve come to the largely unscientific conclusion that people are masochists for one of two reasons:

  1. Something happened in their lives to cause them to have extremely low self esteem and they feel like they deserve the punishment.  When they receive pain, it allows them to feel the catharsis of paying a debt.  They feel like the pain is the only thing that frees them from the mental torment that they almost always endure surrounding the things for which they feel undeserving or guilty.  They accept the pain as atonement, and the almost religious conversion from pain to elation is palpable, and when you see this type of masochist in scene, you can tell that he is truly flying.
  2. They view it as a challenge.  They feel every ounce of pain, it never gets converted to another type of sensation, but that only intensifies their desire to take on more and more.  They do this for themselves, because they always take the hard path, they feel like they are duty bound to push forward and make it to the next level, or they do it for someone else.  They know that their Dominant Sadist is deriving pleasure from their pain, and that makes them want to take on more, or they feel the energy of the people around them and they want to push even further, to show them all that they can endure anything.

Of these two, I certainly think that the first group have an easier road in the short term, but the second group can bear the long term visible signs with more ease and tend to view them as badges of honor.

At various points in my life, I think I’ve been both of these two. In the beginning, I was ashamed of so much of my life, and I felt, as part of the course of my daily life, that I had to hide it and pretend that it never happened.  The only time I felt like I could be free was when those thoughts were pushed out of my head by pain or booze or the sex drive or something like that.  I was a hedonist and an extremist and to this day I am shocked and amazed that I didn’t end up being hooked on heroin or something similar.  Once my Dominant nature started to come through though, I viewed it as a challenge that must be overcome.  I was better than my Top, and I was going to prove it by forcing her to back down before I did.

As a Dominant, who is not a Sadist, I’ve dealt with both types of masochists, and they must be approached in very different manners.  But in general, and perhaps because I’m not a Sadist, I don’t really enjoy inflicting pain on either type.  If I’m going to be involved in a scene that involves pain, I’d actually much rather do so with someone who is NOT a masochist, and perhaps this is a thing unique to me, but when I’m in scene, I don’t really want to be competing with someone, and there have been a few times when I felt like my bottom was trying to “win the scene,” in some way.  And for the other perspective, while I do enjoy the control aspects of things, and I am always hyper-aware of the physical and emotional states of my bottom, I would very much hate to be wrong and slip past the point where she should have used her safeword and didn’t.

Both of the masochist archetypes that I refer to have their own pitfalls and things to be careful for, but while the motives may be different, the end results are often the same.

The first type can fail to safeword, which is a dangerous thing for a Dominant.  They will let you drive them well beyond their physical capacity to deal with, and they can become injured in the process.  In fact, to properly address their needs, they need to get as close to the failure point as they can, and the headspace that they’re in does not let them see that barrier coming.  The only way to address this, as the Top, is to frequently check in with them, ask them specific questions, sometimes even asking them a specific question about the immediate environment, external to their own bodies, so that they have to come back to ground level for a bit.  Something like, “What color is the floor?” is often enough.  A simple question like that will cause them to become aware of their environment again.  Even if they already know the answer without having to look (though they probably will have to look if they are in an altered head-space) it forces them to think about the floor, which is not a part of their experience right now.

The second type has to be pushed.  It’s what they need most, and they’re going to fight you back for it.  This could take the form of insulting you – telling you that you can’t hit them hard enough, or perhaps that you’re hitting them too hard.  They are very aware, almost hyper-aware, of the safeword, and they will resist using it as long as possible, perhaps even trying to force you to stop before they get there, as a sort of challenge back at you.  Although I’ve never heard of anyone actually thinking this, I can imagine that there are some who would view it as a game, almost as an Alpha contest, to see if they can get you to quit first.  That is no less dangerous than failing to see the safe point pass and not reacting to it for the group described above, but competitive nature will eventually fail, where the first group just doesn’t have anything to react to, so their bodies have to fail first, every time.

This is not to say that it’s impossible for a person to willingly put themselves into injury because they refuse to break down – in fact, that is exactly the sort of thing that I worry about.

I dislike Topping true masochists because when you have a bottom who exhibits behaviors like these, you can never be fully sure that she is going to properly use her safeword, and when I feel like I don’t have a safeword to rely upon, I feel like I’m not in control, and control is why I Top.  I don’t want to give up control, almost ever, in almost any situation, and most certainly not when I should be at pinnacle of my ability to exert control.  I Top because I like it, and when I’m not in control, I’m not even really sure that I’m Top anymore.

Does that make any sense?

Sometimes I’m not sure, and I’ve spent quite a bit of time on these subjects.

I’m not sure what this post is either – I seem to have quite a few of those lately – but I’m still Rant.

Rant off.