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The online diary of an ethical pervert.

Saturday, 27 August 2011

One rule for me, one for you? Part Two

Following on from the last post on rules, and a discussion on Twitter. I thought it would be good to talk about my own personal rules, in more that 140 characters. This is somewhat of a divergence from a BDSM specific topic, except for the fact that kink is about people, what makes them tick, and understanding yourself is important to delivering and receiving good kink.

The rules are in part about ethics - a way of living, or trying to live, that I consider to be a good way of being towards others and the world. They are also about being good to myself, making sure that I look after my needs and getting what I want. There is a sense in which these rules are "selfish" - which I recognise, but not in the disparaging way that people usually use the word. They are made by me, for me and how I intend to mediate my life - which is an awful lot of me, myself and I.

Personal rules are about really thinking about who you are and doing what you really want rather than what other people think or what they might want from you. How I behave impacts on people around me - I treat other people well (or as well as I can) because I want to be a good person, not because I want to be the sort of person they think I should be.

Naturally the way we are perceived is important and no-one would want people to think badly of them, but as Mannequin commented, everyone also thinks that their own way of being is the right one. Similarly everyone tends to view their own ideas as self-evident facts whereas the rest of the world has opinions. The key thing for me about these rules is that they are mine. I don't expect anyone else to live according to them, or even to like them. So, for what it's worth, here they are.

1. All or nothing

I always get this song in my head when I write that phrase, which always makes me smile. I'm quite a direct person these days, realising more and more that I know what I want and will not be content with half measures. This goes for my personal and professional life. I cannot stand a job half done, or something given a cursory amount of effort. This rule does mean that I am poor at compromising on the things I truly care about - and lack of compromise indicates how much I care about something. This can be a difficult rule to live by, as people pointed out when I posted these rules, life is full of grey areas. But that doesn't mean I have to be like that.

2. Fear is the enemy

Like a lot of perverts, I do like a good bit of fear play, but the fun for me is in pushing past the things that scare us, push other people through their fear. Personal fear, the things that hold us back, is made of the same stuff. Fear, in and of itself, can be deeply paralysing, the sensation of fear is often more powerful than the thing we believe causes the fear. Fear of failing, fear of letting other people down, fear of the unknown.
I think it's really important to recognise those fears and to work to remove them as best as I can.

3. Only you are responsible for you

At the end of the day you have to live with yourself and everything you do. You are the only person who really understands yourself, the things that you want, the things that are in your past. It's very easy to blame other people, our background and our situations for things that have happened, and we are absolutely influenced by others and the world. However, there is a difference between accepting our lot and feeling incapable of doing anything about it, if you want something, you need to work for it. That work is part of what makes it yours. This rule is also about recognising and owning our mistakes, the things we have got wrong. The flipside is about taking pride in our achievements and the things we have done right. Basically, being you - warts and all.

4. Be kind, be clear

I've wrapped these two together because I think they rely on each other. Kindness is not about giving other people what they want all the time, nor is it about always putting other people first - though those things can be kind. It's about respecting the boundaries that you need and that other people need and sticking to them, a sort of honesty. Clarity gives you this: be clear in what you want, tell other people about it and then act accordingly. That's kindness.

5. Ask for help

Rule three is true, but it doesn't mean that I want to live in isolation. Life is very difficult, and very boring all by yourself - it's much more fun with people to share it. It's also much easier to get through problems, to learn new things and to generally get on with getting the most out of life if you are able to ask for help. It's something that I find hard to do, which is in part why it's one of my rules - things we find easy we don't need to strive to do.

6. Love fiercely

Final one, and the one that matches rule one the most, but I like keeping them as a pair. Love isn't about flowers, and chocolates and cuddly teddy bears. It's not soft, or weak or silly, and neither is the desire for love when you do not have it. My insistence on fierceness is also about how I behave when I am in love - a protection and a need to stand up for the things and people I love, which means being a little defiant in the face of everything else, and to go for it despite it perhaps not being the most practical thing to do. But without risk or effort, how would we go forward?

Once I'd written these, this of course then led me on to thinking about how I do against my own rules, which are of course an idealised version of myself. Am I living up to them? Sometimes, and I want to live up to them, certainly. Having the rules is half the battle, as they mark out where I want to get to - like deciding your own kink road map, rules give you a way of becoming the person you want to be.

Friday, 26 August 2011

One rule for me, one for you? Part One

We are surrounded by rules. Obvious rules that we can see and touch and generally all agree on as existing as facts (whether we agree with the rule itself or not) things like signposts, grammar and spelling the legal system and those T&C check boxes we keep selecting on websites and have probably agreed to do something dreadful. There are unconscious rules that we have absorbed as part of our life, probably without really knowing it, but ones that we accept as true, even though they might not be: social conventions are a good example, gender is another, things that are really truisms and stuff our parents said.

We can divide up rules into all sorts of categories.
Rules we actively chose to abide by like diets and rules that are given to us without our consent, like laws. Some rules are more important to us than others, some are better enforced than others, either by ourselves or by external agents. This may well change according to what day it is, where we are in the world and whether it's raining or not. Some rules are only really important if we get caught breaking them - like a lot of the legislation around BDSM. The same rule might fall into different categories for different people - religious rules for example might be inherited from our families and fall into the background, subconscious sort of rule that we live by but don't think too much about, or it may be an active choice that we signed up to. No matter what kind of rule it is, it's always, always personal because of the relationship between holding to and breaking the rule in your life.

This has been a week of rules.
The sort of rules you give out as a dominant not only reflect the kind of D/s situations you want to create but they say things about you. In effect, you can think of them like the rules of a game. If you don't "play by the rules" then you are not really playing the game. The rules that you build create certain games - change the rules and you change the game. I'm always amused by the completely opposing value of rules within the two D/s relationships in my life.

Mannequin does not need or respond well to having a rigid set of rules. If I am not actively present, things like sending emails at certain times or any kind of remote control rule is likely to not be done and then cause anxiety and upset over it being left. Because I don't really enjoy chasing up on tasks (that sounds like work to me!) and she doesn't enjoy getting annoyed messages from me we don't have rules. We have an ongoing contract that stipulates obedience and whenever I need a particular thing from her I ask and I get it, but there isn't a rigid framework with specific tasks and deadlines. She has a list of things that I enjoy seeing her do, or having her do for me and it is up to her to ensure I am generally satisfied. If at any point she does something I don't like, I correct it then and there: this is currently more of a theory than practice given that she is rather good at giving me what I want.

Mr Smith on the other hand, really, really likes ongoing, set rules. They give him a sense of order and security in what can be a rather chaotic life. For him, lack of rules generates anxiety and a complete absence of focus. Rules remind him of my ownership, they give him "things to do" which correlate directly onto pleasing me. He is under a variety of rules at the moment including a diet and exercise plan, a structured way of behaving in public and private, formalities around greetings, communicating with me and small rituals to perform during the day. These sit alongside existing rules about saying thank-you after orgasm and how he is allowed to have sexual activity outside our relationship. They are quite extensive and detailed, having their origins in a series of conversations about his life, the sort of person (and submissive) he wants to be for himself and for me, the things that give him satisfaction, that scare him, that worry him.

Such a long list might seem onderous but they actually make both of our lives easier and more pleasurable. The rules are part of training. I enjoy the control I have over him, and the fact that I get regular updates, as well as the satisfaction of knowing he is doing things for me in my absence.
The rules that we have are clear and simple, even though there are many of them. It is obvious how they can be followed, and equally obvious how they are broken. If he breaks a rule, he is punished. There is no argument, no sulks or stress - he accepts his wrongdoing, submits to punishment and afterwards the slate is clean, except for perhaps a little physical discomfort, but that's a good reminder of doing better next time. Following the rules is not precisely rewarded, instead, following the rules constitutes his submission to me, so its a reward in itself, really.

The difference between the attitudes of my submissives neatly expresses my opinion on rules in D/s relationships: they are worth giving out if my life is directly improved by their existence; they either make my life easier, generate better and more interesting kinky sex or perform another function that serves my purposes. If rules get in the way, prevent me from doing something I want with my partners or make life complicated or stressful then they are pointless. Pointless rules are generally a bad idea. Which isn't do say that D/s rules need to make sense or be logical. The rule "You must always wear yellow on Tuesday" to take a random example could seem fairly pointless without a decent context - good D/s rules follow from good D/s (this is me winning a states-the-obvious-award). So if Tuesday is date night, and yellow is the dominant's favourite colour then that rule might serve to remind the submissive of the evening to come. Or Tuesday is a day that the dominant isn't going to be around, and they want to be present in some other fashion. Or it's a hated colour and it's being done as a punishment and Tuesday is just a good, regular day to pick. There are many reasons why it might work, the point is that the rule does something for both the dominant and the submissive.

How far can we go? Part Two

A month or so ago I wrote a piece on the edges and boundaries of BDSM, in that piece I talked about how (and why) we might define our own personal spaces for play and participation in the scene. Now I'm going to elaborate on what happens when put other people into the mix.

Masturbation is all well and good - I'm certainly fond of it, but kink is generally better with others involved. They can at least help you clean up the mess afterwards. Let's assume then, that we have a good list of What We Want i.e. we've defined our own edges. Whether dominant or submissive or falling somewhere in between the ideal is to find someone whose edges are complimentary to ours. This isn't the same thing as finding someone with the same list: two people who want to be tied up and hit with floggers are going to have problems getting what they want out of a play session.

In that scenario, you may well decide that you don't play at all. This is something that's always worth thinking about. It's not about saying "I don't find you attractive" or about being critical about someone as a person, it's about mix and fit. Some people just aren't a match for what you want. You aren't a match for what they want either. No-one is bad or wrong or not trying hard enough. Them's the breaks. Knowing what you don't want, and knowing whether you are capable of giving someone what they want are important lessons to learn and absorb.

A second possibility is that you could take turns, certainly if the two people involved are both switches this can be interesting and fun. You find out a lot about yourself and your kink from delivering the thing that you desire for yourself, and vice-versa - and not just from a practical "how to" point of view. You learn the experience of immersing yourself in an unfamiliar role, of the flip side to your own pleasure and perversion, which can be just as pleasurable and just as perverse. Equally, harking back to the previous paragraph, you might find that it is not. I know plenty of switches who don't switch for everything - and why should you? Again, these are good things to learn, rather than bad things that you are somehow "failing" at. I know needle players who love inserting but just feel pain and discomfort when pierced themselves, bondage experts who hate being tied up and I don't give really head but love receiving.

Sometimes it doesn't work. Even with all the prep work in the world scenes fail, stuff goes wrong and what one person wanted was not what happened. There may be arguments and clashes along the way. Taking time to cool off is important, individual time to review as well as discussing together what happened. I'm a sucker for nice lengthy feedback emails, I love someone who is good in text, and refuse to play with people who don't give feedback.

Sometimes it works with one person but not another. Or at one time but not the next. Your feelings over a particular thing might change with time and experience. Edges shift. One of the joys of dominance is helping people to push those edges, for submission its in having those edges pushed. Going places you never thought you could, and that's what I mean by "compatible" edges. Points in common. Things that you want to do, that you want to be, that I want to do to you.

A negotiation between play partners is less about a specific act or action and more about a journey that they want to take together, exactly like the way we defined what we want as individuals, except with more people involved. Now, this doesn't always mean parity or fairness, and in the case of D/s scenarios it explicitly does not. However, there is a big difference between the situation being unfair and the desire for the situation being unfair. And this is where we come back to consent and the RACK kids can line up facing the SSC kids to call names and throw stones, but ultimately, however we define it the word consent is still in there.

We consent to having our edges pushed. This goes for dominants as well as submissives - it's easier to imagine as submissive being forced outside their comfort zone (especially as this is the fodder of many a fantasy) but the reality is that dominants push edges all the time too. Especially emotional ones - we are delicate creatures at heart, really. We press at the boundaries of our dark and dangerous sides when we are given space to indulge the bits of us that thrill to the power trip and revel in the pain we are causing, the control we are exerting, the things and people that we own and command. We need to acknowledge and think about what we are consenting to, on both sides, because otherwise we aren't really capable of saying "yes".

And that's a problem.

If one person really doesn't want something then that's not D/s, that's abuse. To my mind, we need to be super clear on abuse within the BDSM community even more so than in vanilla circles because of how we play and how we interact. Each and every transgressive act that we do, each and every instance of pain or punishment or degradation - everything that the dominant delivers and the submissive swallows should be part of what they both actually, passionately and deeply want. We live in a world where "no" can mean "more please", where voices are silenced and muffled behind gags and masks, where a public display of affection can be a slap to the face. So we need to be damn sure that this is what both people want. And damn sure to come down like a ton of bricks on instances where our edges are trampled on and pushed in ways we do not want and did not agree to. Even if we enjoyed it. Even if they thought we enjoyed it. And this can be confusing if our enjoyment looks exactly like a terrified person screaming the house down. The key point is "looks like". A decent discussion of edges can help clear up the grey areas around "what stuff looks like" and "what it really is" in order to bottom out exactly what is going on and ensure that both parties have the same level of investment in the relationship, even if what they want out of it is different.

To my mind, the way this works the best in terms of edges is to think of the submissive giving an equal but opposite amount of space compared to what the dominant takes. Quid pro quo. For the kink generation.

Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Decisions, decisions

A night with Mr Smith and I'm trying a new way of scene setting. I put a selection of toys on the bed, including some new ones we've yet to use.

"Lay them out on the bed. In order of what you want to have done to you."

I like creating the illusion of choice. Or rather, the dilemma of choice. I'm interested in seeing what he does.
At first he hesitates, then when it becomes clear that I have no intention of helping him out he starts to lay things out in a pleasingly methodical fashion, picking up each object and placing them on a scale.

I encourage him to examine the toys, get a feel for them and to talk me through what he is doing - half of the skill in domination is in listening and paying attention to the submissive (which can often include creating situations that force their hand, such as in this case).

The objects we've played with the least go at either end. I'm pleased that he has selected some new things to try, it adds weight to my theory that part of his submission is about being encouraged and driven into new activities, especially those that he might be a little scared or intimidated by.

The knife, the inflatable anal plug with penis sheath (I was rather cheered by the acquisition of this little number) go at the "most wanted" end. The pinwheel, dental tools and chopsticks go at the "least wanted" end by the cold steel handled rubber whip and the heavy flogger.

I then tie him up and blindfold him, giving myself some time to absorb this new set of data. It would be easy to go simply for one side or another: building up through pleasant to unpleasant if I'm feeling nice or vice-versa if I'm not.

The "pain" items are all at the far end, which sits in with his judgement of himself as not a masochist. The sharp things are at the furthest point followed by floggers - this is a useful bit of information as it lets me know that he likes thuddy, stingy and sharp in descending order of preference. But there's more going on here, more to think about than just a scale of desire. It's about what drives that desire and the context for it.

The things he really enjoys have gone in the middle, so it's not as simple as "bad" and "good". As suspected these are all anal penetration toys - generally pleasurable, though sometimes a little difficult, well within understood parameters. They are those which he is familiar and comfortable with: part of the "everyday" tools of our interactions and represent the kind of fucking we often do, which I know he responds very well and positively to.

I can use these frequent flier items to judge his thoughts on the newer things. T
he knife is graded alongside the anal vibrator which packs rather a punch and can be difficult for him to take: he enjoys the sensation but needs a good build up and it causes him a lot of tension and pressurised orgasm build up which may or may not come to fruition. I can mirror those responses onto knives - something he wants to try but is unsure about the outcome. I'm especially interested that the knife has gone at the other end to the rest of the sharps, which makes me think there's something about knives themselves that merits exploring.

Sunday, 21 August 2011

Only when I laugh

I arrive with a smile and my vintage doctor's bag: sturdy but worn, with smooth brown leather and brass buckles. Like the smart red casing of my violet wand, the bag tells a story before I've even done or said anything. It sits, smugly, hiding its contents, on the table as we sit down for the pre-scene chat. The bag whispering subtle hints whilst I check in with my intended, smoothing any nerves and checking out my environment. Playing in other people's houses has some advantages, the unfamiliar environment keeps me focused on the activity and the person I'm playing with, plus it frees me from a lot of hum drum prep work like hoovering.

From her emails I'd decided that "medical" was going to be a loose working theme - I'd seen it listed as a fetish, but not an often practised one.
Mood was going to be critical for this, and the freedom to be a little bit silly was important, it was an afternoon session, both of us were going to do other things later on and so I knew that this needed to be a fun rather than serious or scary medical scene. With that in mind, a touch of "mad science" also went into the pot, shortly followed by "test subject".

I stripped her, blindfolded then tied her down on her front, arms behind back and ankles slightly apart.
My plan was to mix sensation escalation on different areas with regular check-ins where the subject would have to give me feedback on the experiment. This sat nicely within my own fetish of body exploration - I can quite happily randomly prod bodies for hours on end.

I talked for a while about my own fascination with pain, the language to describe it, the pitch and tone of sensation. I narrate what I am doing, as I do it, asking her to rate the pain between one and ten as I did so and noting her responses. I had a bag of different toys ranging from scratchy to sharp and the old favourite of my hands. Fingers are wonderful things. Slapping, tapping, stroking, flicking pinching and twisting gives an amazing range of sensation from pleasurable massage textures through to extraordinary amounts of pain. And all with feedback and minute levels of control that only skin to skin can deliver. I found sections of her body that responded in completely different ways and wished I had a sharpie on hand to circle them, slotting a number "8" or "9" into the space. Anything above a "5" made her part her lips, and breathe slightly heavily. A "7" or above created gasps. Certain noises were only uttered when certain parts were hit in particular ways.

At the higher level, she giggled. Whether in nervous anticipation or between gasps of pain, as if the laughter surprised her, and me. I do like it when they laugh - it's more common than people think. Usually BDSM is associated with tears and whimpers so laughter is a nice sound to hear. The very incongruity of it makes me smile, especially the oddness of hurting someone until they laugh. It's a response that is very genuine, in the sense of non-contrived. You can hear that people are actually enjoying themselves, even though the experience is painful and the laughter comes through gritted teeth and bitten lips.

Sadists heart masochists, and this was pain expressed beautifully. It was a pleasure to watch and
I was truly fascinated by her responses, driving headlong into the clear focus of domspace. I put her on her back and pulled on some latex gloves to begin pegging open her cunt using tiny little clothes pegs, placing the final one on her clit. Following an exploratory finger or two I pressed a vibrator inside her cunt and set it on low, offering up the hypothesis that heavier pain can be taken for longer and to higher levels if it is cushioned by pleasure. I then zoned out completely for rather a long time focusing solely on slowly but repeatedly pricking her mons pubis with an extremely sharp dental pick. Every now and then I slapped the skin and area, building from low pats to hard blows to stop the sensation becoming an accustomed one and to keep the blood flowing nicely, ratcheting up the vibrator until she came. Then kept on going as she rocked through the waves.

I only wished for more time and perhaps some fetching young men in white coats and clipboards to assist my not-so-tender ministrations. Offers to be a filthy assistant, anyone?

Crafting dominance

There's a lot of behind-the-scenes that goes on, well, behind scenes. Being a dominant is a bit like being the wizard of Oz. You rely on rumour, stage-craft and hot anticipation to contribute to your presence, which is essentially a constructed entity. Like celebrity, leadership and magic, dominance is not about what you do (or even what you say) but how it is received by the audience. In most cases the "audience" is the scene as a whole and those people within it who you decide to play with.

So, to paraphrase Mr Punch - what's the way to do it? Short answer: it varies. Better answer is to tell you what I do. For the purposes of this piece I'm going to focus on creating a scene with a new partner. BDSM 101, perhaps, but it's a good framework to illustrate how my mind works. Once you are in a longer term relationship things tend to get both more flexible and more deliciously complicated because you are able to explore together. The three things I'm going to talk about here are reputation, picking partners and deciding on scene thematics.

Reputation precedes you, and how! I'm lucky - I've been on the scene for a few years and I have played with enough people, in enough places to garner myself a reputation. My reputation is pretty much everything, in kink as in so many other things. I need to be known as a good player, which obviously takes the time and work. My reputation means that
I get invited to events to "guest star" with strangers and new people think I'm exciting because I am known but at the same time uncertain: it's that roller coaster sort of thrill which balances fear and safety. Glamour for perverts.

How do you build a good reputation? Books are written on this, many books, so I'm going to touch on it lightly. It's a balance of confidence and shameless self-promotion, which is always a little tricky when you are British and find that kind of thing alien. Again, three points (I like ordering in threes): be yourself, play with people, and get out and about. Your reputation should be a reflection of you - bigger, better and sexier, but still you. You will do much better at being an enhanced version of yourself than a pale imitation of someone else.
In the end, you do have to come up with the goods. There's only so long you can fiddle around with smoke and mirrors before people start to get suspicious. Play with people and look after the people you play with - take time to deliver good scenes and to give aftercare, people talk about dominants and you will be quickly known for doing such-and-such, make sure it's positive. Bad things will happen accidentally, but that's fine, the key thing for you is how you are seen to respond to them. Finally, get out there! You will not build a reputation in your bedroom alone. There is a big element of seeing and making sure that you are seen - go to munches, clubs, write blogs(!) talk to people and get involved.

Selecting partners is an important element to having a good scene and probably the most risky part of the mix. After all, you know yourself and you know your skills and desires (hopefully). In the case of new people, you don't know them. As a submissive this means selecting a dominant who you like the look and sound of - so you ask around, watch other people play at clubs and see who looks cute at the munch. As as a dominant the ground is less certain. Naturally you can do the same thing, but people actually talk a lot less about submissives' responses in scenes than they do about dominants' and a lot of what you might hear may well be unhelpful or coloured by someone else's play style. Watching a submissive play is hot, but whilst I can think "I'd like to get them to make that noise" I know that my play with them will be different. How someone responds to an intimate, lengthy shibari scene is not really going to be how they respond to my play given my rope skills are best termed "practical" and left at that. Secondly, the person you want to play with might be new - this is certainly something I do quite often. Mr Smith had no previous owner for example. So you need to do your homework.

Conversations over coffee are a good start. Getting people to write something down in an email as a follow up is better. I like lists, and have received many beautiful and detailed ones in my time. Read them. Ask questions. Listen carefully to the responses. Paying attention to someone else's sexual desire is flattering to them as well as unnerving. The end result is that they feel attractive but also a little nervous and self-conscious. Which plays in your favour. As does what they have actually written or said. People betray themselves when they talk about their desire, consciously or unconsciously, they want you to know what they want to do. Submissives in particularly want to offer up their desires for you, as a dominant, to take control - that's part of the power exchange.

Now to the planning - what are you actually going to do? Desire is slippery, complex and subtle. What you are looking for, at least for the first session is to get a broad overview of the edges of their desire - the things that are most waned and most hated or feared. This is why numbering systems or questions like "is this better than this?" are useful. I look for themes, recurring ideas or obvious groupings of kit, styles, fetishes and suchlike. I like to structure my scenes around a specific trope or two taken from those initial conversations and emails. First, it gives me something very clear to order what I'm going to do around, it also gives me a good insight into the mental state that someone wants to be put into, which will then help me think about the ways in which that might be done. Patterns are your friend, you may actually find that the scene is ready, waiting and obvious.

Do not worry about going for the obvious, there's a terrible tendency, especially if people are new to you and you might be nervous or keen to impress, about needing to do something "special" or that dominance should be about extremes or about always pushing boundaries. There is a lot to be said for a mutually satisfying scene that delivers what both parties want. You don't always have to be pulling people through the furthest edges of their fear, across broken glass, whilst they are on fire. Generally, this is not a good idea for a first scene with a new partner.

Wait for the second time.

Saturday, 20 August 2011

Subconscious sitcom

A comedy interulde, of sorts. Sometimes I have a very clear and well defined interior dialogue. Today, for example, it went like this:

Brain: (looks over top of newspaper) Oh, there you are, Heart, old chap. You gave me a bit of a fright. Is everything alright?
Brain: Hmmm. Interesting. Where have you been?
Heart: (whilst eating an alarming amount of chocolate) Behind *scrunch scrunch* the sofa *scrunch scrunch* for the past TWO YEARS!
Brain: Ah yes, it has been a while, hasn't it? Not to worry.
Libido and I have been keeping each other company.
Libido: (looks up from pictures of abs on Fetlife) Say what now?
Heart: You are both BASTARDS! You have been IGNORING ME! I got BROKEN! It was AWFUL! And now I need ATTENTION!
Libido: Eh? But I have two lovely partners who think I'm brilliant and give me lots of satisfaction on many levels.
Brain: Yes. Also I'm spending time with amazing friends who are fun, interesting and great to play with.
Heart: Lalalalala! I am not listening. That DOES NOT COUNT because none of these people are my special own thing that I can get all wrapped up and obsessed about to the exclusion of ALL ELSE.
Brain: Yes... now we've been meaning to talk to you about that Heart...
Libido: Ummm. I was hoping to avoid this entirely by having lots of kinky sex instead. Forever. I might leave you two to it, there's Torchwood on and I think boys might kiss.
(Libido exits)
Heart and Brain (together): Libido!
Heart: See? Libido is SELFISH and does not want me to find my TWUE LOVE!
Brain: Shut up Heart, there's a dear...
Heart: You HATE ME! I will SULK! Or KILL MYSELF!
Brain: Now really, come along. The thing is that this love business is very complicated and can't just magically happen. Also, evey time you get into it I seem to sort of "switch off". Which is most disturbing.
Heart:(happily) That is because love is the MOST IMPORTANTEST THING EVER!
Brain: Well, certainly it might be nice but I don't think we should get carried away. Remember what happened last time?
Heart: But it was AWESOME when it was good!
Brain: (wistfully) Hmmm. Yes, I suppose it was...
Heart: So can we try again?
Brain: I don't know, Heart. I just think that things are rather good right now and I don't want you to mess it all up by making me go all crazy or falling in love with someone incompatable or that you can't actually have or any of that kind of nonsense you tend to do.
Heart: PLEASE? I am lonely. I know you are too...
Brain: Well, let's see. But I'm going to be watching you very carefully.
Heart: WOO HOO!
Libido: (from the other room, over the sound of the Torchwood theme tune) I don't care as long as the sex is good, kinky and really frequent. With boy kissing!
Heart and Brain (together): Libido!


Friday, 19 August 2011

Cheeky chappy

"I brought your pants back."

He hands my underwear to me across the table in the crowded cafe. I raise an eyebrow. Unwashed, I also note. Unabashed - it takes rather a lot to embarrass me and I have no intention of rising to this - I take them and put them in my bag. On the walk to the tube station I point out, in between some rather pointed nipple flicking, I explain how this is not the kind of laundry service I expect. Later, when there is an audience of kinky ladies to provide a suitable level of humiliating punishment. I regale the story with mock horror and shove the pants into his mouth with instruction to do better next time.

One of the highlights of training Mr Smith has been developing an appreciation for the distinction between cheek and brattishness, and finding pleasure in dominating a cheeky submissive
. Given my previous negative thoughts on the subject of any kind of push back from submissives, it was a surprise to me to find that I actually enjoy a certain amount of cute cheekiness.

Partly, I suppose, there's an issue of definitions. One person's acceptable cheek is another's brat. To me bratting involves
actually fighting back, with an element of uncertainty over the winner. The kind of submissive who kicks out, taunts and enters into determined activity to get a rise out of me. Generally, this can be interesting as a one-off session, but for a more involved, long-term D/s relationship I don't have the style of dominance that fits with someone who wants their submission to be constantly “taken” over and over again - a little fight every now and then, perhaps, but on a day-to-day basis I want them to offer themselves up to me.

Mr Smith compared his cheek to "teenage behaviour" - it's always interesting to note how people talk about their own submission, the words and phrases they use shed light on how they view themselves which can create structures for play scenes or D/s frameworks. The teenage reference is quite a useful one in his case - the brash, "look at me" element, combined with the shyness or social awkwardness when his cheek comes up against my dominance, and loses.

On some level this is a test, of course and it keeps me on my toes. It's a test of authority in the way that a child might see how far they can push their parent, to see whether they are paying attention, whether they care. In this regard there is also an element of "asking for it" - by being cheeky he is asking to be dominated. If this were a very regular occurrence, or happening in particular ways in order to receive specific actions then it would be worrying, a strong case of topping from the bottom, but I don't feel that it is, more I think it's just how he is.

I don't like a lot of cheek, mind you, and there are certainly limits, particularly along the lines of the kind of cheek given and where it occurs. My desire and interest is much more along the lines of "I like a boy with spirit" than anything else. Light banter which is easily batted aside and replaced with a blush, an apology, a bowed head. There is a dominant pleasure in having something to push against - as long as it gives in. The training process by definition requires a roughened surface to start with, something to mould and smooth down.

In training, I decide what is acceptable and what isn't. I also decide what warrants punishment and what doesn't. That includes the edges of "cheek" and "bratting". Generally speaking anything that could be considered rude or as a direct and forceful challenge to my dominance in public would be bratting and completely unacceptable. Anything that goes against good scene behaviour is also not on - and this would not be "punished" in the same amusing way as cheekiness would be, it would involve more serious conversations and a use of the dreaded (to him) phrase "I was disappointed in you."

Cheek is a game, and it's a light hearted one at that, in which the submissive pushes lightly against the edges of my dominance. There is a shared joy in it, it is the gleam in their eye that reflects their personality. A submissive entirely devoid of any vim or repartee would be a doormat or completely cowed out of existence. As much as I talk about idealised pets and servants, my submissives are my friends and lovers. And pets have personality, of course - I like to see them sparkle. Cheek is a way for them to express themselves, and as long as it doesn't interfere with what I want or put me out, it can also be fun and entertaining.

For others as well as myself, as the pants incident proves.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011


Dearest darlings, I'm taking a couple of weeks off to rest, recharge and collect some freckles. I will return shortly with some fresh musings from Kinksville.

If you can't be good, be careful - that goes for the sun as much as anything else.