Monday, August 31, 2009

Hungry eyes..

No, not the Eric Carman song from Dirty Dancing. Although now I need to go listen to it or watch the movie. Anyways. On to the actual point.

Last weekend, I finally got a chance to see T and his partner, A, again. For those of you just tuning in or without your Sasha's-ridiculously-complicated-relationships Map handy, I met T and A at Thunder last year. A played with Essin' Em, and I played with T. It was my first time playing with a relative stranger in any kind of public setting, and I couldn't have asked for a better escort into the scene. Of course, at the time I was just astounded by how compassionate and kind he was in his aftercare and beyond - I didn't realize that a year later we would still be in touch and he would still be unofficially escorting me into the world of kink.

I hadn't seen T since Thunder (except for a few minutes when I stopped by his work a few weeks ago when I was in town. Which is not as stalker-y as it sounds, I promise, because...) but we had been keeping pretty regular contact with one another. Periodic text messages, emails and facebook pokes. He had invited me to several play parties he and A were hosting (at a local bdsm club) over the past year, but the timing has always been off. Finally, it wasn't.

The theme was pirates, and, well, you know me, I just can't resist a good pillaging. I went in early to help T, A and some other volunteers set up the space. In addition to going because I was invited, specifically by A, I also hoped that by going early to set up it might help me break the ice with people, since I knew T and A would likely be busy hosting for most of the night. And it worked - I got to chatting with a few people, some of whom were new like me, and definitely made some connections there, I think. I actually wasn't even especially expecting to get to play with T, because I knew he would be busy hosting. I would was content to just watch the scenes going on around the dungeon and chat with people.

But you wouldn't keep reading if that's all I'd done, right? Perverts.

There was a stage set up at the front of the dungeon with a St. Andrew's cross and stage lighting prominently highlighting it. It had been designated the "Public Flogging" area... for those scallywags who needed to be punished. (Pirates, remember.) T gave a nice - is it strange to describe it as such? - flogging to one of the women I'd been talking to when setting up. It's always fun to watch people I know, even casually, play. Not long after, T asked me if I'd like to/be willing to be publicly flogged. I pointed out that I'm not the biggest fan of floggers, and he asked if I'd like to do another punching scene, as we had done at Thunder.

I hope my excitement wasn't TOO embarassingly obvious.

He led me up to the stage, and helped me strip down to my underwear - gentleman that he is. (Aside: It's always fun, when you're in a room full of people, to be applauded when you take your top off. Awesome.) We went over safewords, signals, and confirmed consent once more. I love that part so much about the kink community. Consent is ALWAYS informed, and reconfirmed as needed. I think the world would do better to apply this standard more often. He set me facing the cross with my exposed back to him. Then he ran his hands down my back a few times, and started hitting me.

He was obviously warming up, but even with the lighter strikes, I could start to feel the energy flowing. Obviously there's a fair amount of mechanical energy, but there is so much spiritual or emotional energy being transferred, too. His hits came harder, faster and more varied as I concentrated on my breathing, revelling in each irregular breath that escaped my lungs as he hit me. He moved positions periodically, and used different strokes. He punched near my shoulderblades, the muscles running along my spine, and down to my ass. He used his knees, his feet, his knuckles, anything he had to leave me black and blue.

He leaned into me and grabbed a handful of my dark, tousled hair. Pulled me backwards and turned me around to face him, my tender back against the cross. Instinctively, I closed my eyes. I felt his hand on my face, or my head, again, and knew he wanted me to open my eyes. I remembered this about the first time we played - without speaking a word, he asked me to maintain eye contact with him. So that's what I did.

I met his gaze as he punched both of my breasts with his right hand. I didn't break contact when he stuck a knuckle out in his fist as he struck the fleshy space between my breast and collarbone. The only thing I saw were his eyes as he used both fists to punch both breasts, hard enough to knock me back. I followed him as he moved to my side to strike me with the side of his arm and his enclosed fist.

After the first hit with him on my side, he smirked a little. "Have you been wanting this for a while?" He asked, not entirely incredulously.

I think I managed a nod or a chuckled retort. What I should have said was "Not wanting. Needing."

"Because you look... hungry for this," he said, as his fists met my body again. At that I did almost crack a smile. Because it was all too true. I just didn't realize the look was that plain on my face.

He moved back in front of me, winding up to punch me - hard - with both fists. With the first, I couldn't help but cry out a breathless "Fuck!" as his fists and energy knocked the wind out of me. "We're going to do two more of those, and then we're done, OK?" he said.

I nodded, but there was a part of me that wanted to ask him to keep going. I could feel the release just behind my eyes and held up in my chest. I was pretty confident if he'd hit me a few more times, I would have started crying. Not sobbing, and not because I was hurt, but because I would be able to let go of everything that has been making me so tight and crazy and miserable lately. But he spoke before I did, and I didn't want to ask for anything more.

He hit me twice more, hard, and keeping his eyes locked on mine the whole time. As my body stopped resonating from the last strike, I half-stepped, half-fell forward into his arms and we held each other in a tight, warm, electric hug. I took a deep breath and he helped me off the stage. The room wasn't quite spinning, but my feet weren't quite touching the ground, either.

I kept floating like that for a while - a new acquaintance or two offered me hugs, caresses, and conversation. This is another reason that I love the kink community. You might not think it would be the case, but there is so much love and compassion and warmth and understanding within the community, it's almost unparalleled.

As I came down from floating, what T jokingly refers to as my "Bubbles" arrived. I get really happy and hyper and carefree. Again, it might not seem logical, but it's a direct result of (CONSENSUALLY) getting my ass kicked. It lets me let go, give control to someone else for a while, and functions as such a release for so much stress that I just feel infinitely better and lighter afterwards.

And as T and I were talking throughout the rest of the night, there may be other fun adventures in the works, as well. I can't wait to go back.

Of course, I probably SHOULD wait until the bruises heal... See the damage on thursday for HNT.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

It feels like we've been here before...

It's been a while since I've written anything overly personal on here. With my real-world job as a web editor (did I mention that I have a real-world job now? Like, an actual career?), I spend my entire workday staring at a computer screen, so sometimes I'm not overly eager to run home and do the same. I've been trading online interaction for actual, real life socialization. Imagine that!

But there are other reasons for the relative silence of late, too. And I haven't written about them in hopes that they would get better. But, the truth is, they aren't getting better. And I'm starting to feel myself slip down into those dark places I inhabited years ago... And I don't want to do that. In the past, you, dear readers, have been so incredibly helpful and gracious and insightful, that I thought perhaps I would turn to you again.

I've noticed changes in some of my habits. i think some of it is just antsy-ness - this is usually the time of year I would be headed back to school... So it's possible I'm still adjusting to and realizing that this is, in fact, my life. This is not a summer job and a summer apartment and summer flings, but rather the real thing.

Well, in some regards. Of course, it seems the things I wouldn't mind being temporary - the things I wouldn't mind trading out - are the things that are stable, and the things I so desperately want to hang on to are those which are slipping away from me. And it's started getting to me. I'm exhausted all the time. Regardless of how much sleep I get. Waking up is brutal, although I was getting good at waking up at 7am for work without much difficulty in the past month. That has stopped. Of course, when I do fall asleep, it's never through the night. This in and of itself, of course, doesn't mean much, but it seems to be just one part of a series of small problems that add up to something that feels unconquerable. I've gone back to always feeling rather sick - a combination of allergies and near-constant nausea that hasn't been so pervasive since, probably, high school.

If it hasn't been clear from my "frustratingly abstract" (according to Friend) posts, The Optimist is gone. Through no fault of his own, and no fault of mine. The universe decided to throw him a curveball, and he took the good, responsible, compassionate route out. A route that led him, suddenly and without a goodbye, far away from me and his other friends in this state. I don't hold the decision against him in the slightest - actually, quite the opposite. His making this sacrifice confirms my belief that he is this incredible, compassionate, giving person. It makes me respect him that much more. It absolutely supports my fascination with who he is and how he became this truly singular individual.

But his leaving hurt more than I thought it would. I've talked to Nonboyfriend about it - since he and I were in essentially the same boat, being unpleasantly surprised by The Optimist's sudden departure. I felt like (after convincing him that, no, I really wasn't going to turn into some crazy stalker and terrorize his best friend... Because we all know that I do that regularly) he and I could at least identify with each other's heartache. I don't say heartbreak, because that sounds too dramatic. But there is absolutely an ache. And it is palpable. And harder to ignore than I thought it would be. I'm not angry in the least. I am just very simply and without anything else, very sad. It's a pervasive kind of sadness that is at the same time purer than anything else I can remember feeling. I am sad for the loss of the memories I was so looking forward to making. I am sad for the departure of the butterflies that only inhabit my stomach when he's around me. I am sad to not feel that electricity when he touches me. I am sad to not feel his lips on mine and hope my knees don't give out but know even if they did he would catch me - and probably have some perfectly eloquent comment about it. I am sad to not know when I will see his face again. I am sad.

But I believe him (and Nonboyfriend) when they remind me he will be back. I know he will. And he hasn't misled me yet, so I don't expect him to begin now. (Right down to his parting salutation on the phone, which was, verbatim, what I've always told friends I wanted to hear from someone who wasn't sure when the next time they would call might be.) And, again, his reason for leaving is so good and so... HIM... that I couldn't do anything but support it. There was never any other option in my mind. I couldn't not support him. And I hope he knows that. The last thing I would ever want to be or do would be an additional burden for him. That isn't what good friends do, let alone lovers or partners or whatever we were. But it does leave me pining a bit for something I know I can't have. At least right now. And the uncertainty of when I may or may not see him again is eating at me, just a little. It makes it harder to overcome the sadness, because I don't have a set point to look forward to. It's too abstract.

And I know that wound, if that's what we'd call it, is especially fresh. It will caulderize with time... Although I hope my feelings for him don't. I love that I simply cannot have my walls up around him. I love that I feel safe and comfortable and happy knowing he's in my life. I love that he talks to me about life and art and philosophy and also that we can get drunk with my roommates and write haikus about a missing cat. Like I said, he's rather singular. I've never met anyone who affected me the way he does. And just like how it's so easy to get used to sleeping next to someone, and so difficult to get used to sleeping alone (I still sleep on my side of the bed, although I haven't had a regular sleeping-over partner in years), accepting that affectation makes it that much harder to forget about.

And other relationships are suffering as a result. A few nights ago, I completely flaked out on Bear. He was having a rough night and needed someone to talk to, and I just... fell asleep. And I felt so incredibly guilty in the morning. And he's told me that he's not upset, although his tone indicated otherwise. Mostly, though, I just feel awful for being such a shitty friend. My friends deserve better. And usually, I can deliver. I don't know why I couldn't then.

And my best girlfriend, C, is going through some really serious things. I want so badly to be there for her, and it kills me that there's only so much I can do. Going to dinner with her and giving hugs and texting everyday seems so inadequate for how much I love her and how much I want to make her pain disappear. And I know, ultimately, there isn't anything I can do to make it stop, to make it better for her. I just wish there was. But I do know she reads this, so I just want to reiterate, my love, that I am here for any and everything you might need. And I love you more than words, and I only wish there was more I could do. I want to make all this stop for you. I want to fix everything. And I know that I can't. And that just... destroys me.

Maybe that's the best adjective for how I feel right now. I feel destroyed. Not by any single event or person, but I feel just so helpless and out of control, that it's driving me crazy. I'm falling back into old patterns of coping with that loss of control. I don't even know HOW to process these things in a healthier way. And the last thing I want is help, as strange as that might seem. I just want to feel better. I want these things that hurt the people I love to vanish (yes, even when I am one of those things). I don't want any of this. I don't want to feel like this.

Monday, August 24, 2009

another day...

..and the sadness continues.

Aside: I know this video is ridiculous. I have no idea why Amy Lee is wearing black angel wings. I suppose it's some kind of attempt at post-apocalyptic trailer-park goth? I don't know. Anyway. Ignore the video in and of itself, and I know the song is emo, but I maintain that it's also pretty much gorgeous. And it works for me right now. So that's all I've got.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

funny story.

I don't miss you anymore. I really don't. I think you might be one of the few people I have entirely moved on from. I don't even want you anymore. I don't remember what you smelled like.

I only barely remember what you made me feel like.

And in so many ways, that's such a good thing. You have moved on so completely, and so have I. Of course, your recipient is ohsoclose to you, and mine is - once a-fucking-gain, a thousand miles away. But that's the way it is, I suppose. But it was, I'll admit, hard to bite my tongue when we got into specifics. Because under any other circumstances, we'd be sharing this information. Which in no way means you have to share.... I'm just saying.

But it's funny, because there is a difference. There is a difference in how I feel. There is a difference in what I do. I wouldn't go so far as to say something crazy, but I do feel some kind of strange connection. And I know you do too. In case you forgot that I know you read this. Lovelovelove. I'm not ashamed to say it. It's ALWAYS a good thing to send more love into the universe.

And I won't apologize for it. Especially when I'm pretty sure love is what you most need right now.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Toybox: Corset Vibe

I LOVE corsets. Part of it is the sub in me, part of it is the Ren Faire nerd in me, part of it is the fashionista that adores the idea of anything that accentuates my tits and minimizes my waist. Brilliant idea!

So, not surprisingly, I was drawn to the Corset Vibe when it appeared in my Babeland Affiliate email.

I was thrilled when the (pleasantly nondescript brown) package arrived at my house about a week later. (Aside: It's impossible to keep your sex blogstress status a secret when you share a house with roommates who are a little suspicious about packages with alliterative psuedonyms as addressees. hah.) Inside the box was surprisingly decorative packaging, and what I discovered is officially called the "Girdle" from Touche. I must admit, I prefer the imagery of a corset over that conjured by the word "Girdle." So I'm going to keep referring to it as the Corset Vibe.

Two important things. The Corset Vibe is 100% silicone and phthalate-free. Yay for no scary chemical molecules making us sick! Of course, since it's silicone, that means NO silicone-based lubes. Melted, gooey silicone vibes are no fun. Especially when they're as good as the Corset Vibe.

The silicone is soft but not slippery, and the vibe itself is bendable, if not entirely prehensile. The folks at Touche have kindly included two AA batteries, which saves the near-obligatory raiding of household battery-run objects. It took me a minute to figure out how to turn the damn thing on (Hint: Hold DOWN the button. Right. I'm college-educated, I swear.), but then it was easy to change the settings - just a single click on the single button on the bottom of the toy.

The Corset Vibe boasts five different vibration patterns... All of which, actually, I like. There are slow, medium, and high constant buzzing, in addition to two differently timed buzzing patterns. (Think and buzzzz....buzzbuzzbuzz....buzzz.) The slowest/lowest vibration setting was a little soft, even for me, but could definitely be fun for warming up or cooling down. The rhythmic patterns are simply fantastic, with pauses just long enough to keep you aching for the next just as it is delivered.

So of course, the namesake of the vibe comes from the corset-like "lacing" pattern up one side of the shaft of the vibe. I was wondering if these would really make a difference - or even be noticeable - when the vibe was actually inside me. Well, I never got to find out.

I tried, I really did. But the head of the Corset Vibe was just too big to fit comfortably inside me. It's a lovely shape and I'm sure for some people it might work wonderfully - but it felt too snug in me. And my cunt seemed to dull the vibrations - which makes sense, but made me sad because they felt so awesome on my clit. So my only complaint is that the Corset Vibe is too big to fit inside me.

But I LOVE the vibrations it gives off. And while using a dildo-sized toy singularly as a clitoral vibe might seem a little excessive, the speed and variation and intensity of the vibrations are just so PERFECT that the Corset Vibe has become my new favorite vibe.

So, I give it 4 our of 5 stars - because if I could feel those same vibrations in my cunt, I'd imagine they would be even better.

Want your ownCorset Vibe? Check out Babeland, the fabulous, women-friendly and sex-positive place for all things sexy. Check out Babeland online or at their stores in Seattle or New York.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009




My heart hurts.

I forgot about THIS part of caring for someone.


Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I'm in love...

...with Jason Mraz.

All over again.

(Yeah, you can all relax now.)

I started listening to his music back in my freshman year of college, spent in Seattle. My friends and I went to a fabulous concert of his at the Showbox, where a just-before-he-blew-up James Blunt opened. Both Mraz's and Blunt's music is so gorgeously soothing and mellow that it has come to characterize Seattle for me. I can't listen to it without flashing back to fond memories of the people and the places I left back there.

And recently, my best friend from that year tipped me onto Mraz's blog. He's been running a series of posts where he answers questions tweeted to him by fans. This week's installation particularly reminded me why I love him and all of his crazy hippie-zen sex-positivity.

From freshness factor five thousand, first the Tweeter's question, followed by Mraz's response.

klneville2004: What advice do you have for the commitment-phobes?

Assuming your talking about being in a dedicated relationship, if commitment is an issue, odds are there is something you aren’t admitting to yourself. You might have hang-ups or further adventures elsewhere that need attention first. You should talk about EVERYTHING with your partner and see how they handle the REAL truth. He or She will either support you, send you off on your journey, or you two will become even closer and realize that commitment is easy when sharing what’s on your mind. Commitment is listening. Not committing is possessive. To honor your word is to be of good service. Shying away from the truth is to carry a belly full of poison. Flush it out and let freedom ring.

I particularly enjoy that he doesn't equate commitment with monogamy. And I totally agree. While I respect those who associate monogamy with commitment and can be happy and fulfilled in monogamous relationships, I don't think the two are dependent on one another. Commitment is important, but like Mraz says, I think the term says more about honesty than it does about exclusivity. I believe it's entirely possible to be in a committed relationship with more than one person simultaneously. I don't think there's any fundamental contradiction there. In fact, I like to think that's exactly where I've found myself, relationship-wise. It involves making a commitment to be honest with my partners, to (as Mraz suggests) communicate as needed, and to do my best to make them and myself happy.

And none of that hinges on monogamy. Which I think is brilliant.

(Of course, at the same time, it doesn't exclude monogamy, either. I've actually been sincerely impressed with my partners' acceptance of what I need to do/experiment with, monogamy-wise. More on that in the coming weeks.)

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Not the doctor

I don't want to be your idol, see this pedestal is high and I'm afraid of heights...

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

My one-track mind...

..and how I worry it sometimes hurts people.

Well, maybe not hurts, exactly. But I do have a tendency to get singularly-minded and focus a great deal of my attention and concern on a single area. I like to finish something that I start. If I hear a new band that I like, I want all their music, and I will listen to it on repeat until I know all the lyrics.

It's part of the reason my job as a Web Editor is tough for me - it's so multi-dimensional, and there are so many big things happening simultaneously that I can't ever finish any single "project" in a day. That can get frustrating.

So, too, I'd imagine, can being my friend when I'm really excited about someone or something. I've realized that the past few weeks, my personal posts have all focused on The Optimist. And, indeed, he is becoming a consistent part of my life. I love that. I love that he's in my life and he honestly fascinates and excites me in myriad ways.

But there are other people in my life, too. People who, maybe, are a little more unsung. Perhaps it means I take them for granted, but especially in regard to one, I feel he's been making an effort to be more present in my life lately, and I haven't acknowledged it as openly as I should. I suppose affections and obsessions wax and wane naturally, but I'm pretty sure it's been a while since I've written a post really talking about Friend. (Who, rightfully so, points out that his nickname is the least inventive of those I am or have been involved with. I still contend that's primarily because he is first, foremost, and always, my friend.)

As a refresher, I've known him for a long time, and we've been sleeping together, on-and-off (off when I was out of town or when I test out monogamy, not because we're fighting) for a couple years. He is very, very smart, and some of my favorite memories with him are conversations we've had where we get in often one-sided debates railing on the uneducated masses. (Snobbery, you say? Never!) Especially when we are together, we are exceedingly silly. He is one of the few people in my life I can always count on to cheer me up when I need to take my mind off something by just being goofy. A week ago or so when he came over for dinner, we found ourselves playing in the rain in a sweetly romantic gesture.

All of these attributes aren't anything new, though. They are things that have always and continue to attract me to him. I love and appreciate them. What I wanted to recognize is what seems to have changed, especially since I've moved back after graduation.

Sometimes, when I was home for summers or vacations or whatever reason, I would get frustrated with Friend's seemingly inherent flakyness. It never felt malicious, it was just kind of... saddening when we would have plans and he just wouldn't show or he would fall of the face of the earth conveniently for the week I was home. I talked to him about it on various ocassions, and while he would apologize where appropriate, I didn't see any change right away. I had recently resolved to just stop letting it bother me. It was, I figured, part of his personality, and therefore part of our relationship. I could deal.

But in the past few weeks, I've noticed him making - what feels like, at least - an increased effort to include me. It's nothing major, but they are those little things that I really appreciate. If he's running late or has to cancel on our plans, he'll shoot me a text. Whereas I've historically been the one to ask him to hang out, there have been several cases recently where he called me and wanted to see me, not the other way around. A few nights ago, he called me up to come help him build some things for work. Admittedly, he needed an extra hand, but it was still nice to feel like he'd thought of me. It was nice to feel included in a part of his life that's normally cordoned off for me.

(It's important here that he's not the only one cordoning off areas of his life. I do the same thing, and as such our times together are necessarily usually just the two of us. We are, essentially, one another's secondary partners. Other partners know about each other, but only in an abstract sense, for the most part.)

The past few times we've spent time together, actually, there hasn't been anything particularly sexual about it. Which, as strange as it might seem, makes it feel MORE like a relationship, not less. I'm not sure entirely WHY that is, but that's the result that often seems to happen.

Regardless, the point is that he's been making an effort. And it has meant something to me. And I haven't mentioned it. So now I am. Because it's awesome. And appreciated. Much love, Gun. ;-)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Workday procrastination

Ah, the things I stumble upon when I'm scanning the blogosphere for work.

Brilliant. Bloody brilliant.

Via OMG! blog.

Happy Tuesday, everyone.