Thursday, November 30

Friday Fantasy

"Oh please," I moaned, "no, no more..."

"You want me to stop?"

"Yes. No. Oh, dammitdammitdammit!"

We had cooked dinner, cleaned up, and she suggested that I take a nice shower before bed. "And make sure you shave for me," she admonished. I knew she wasn't talking about just my chin.

A half hour later I was restrained to the bed - arms and legs, a rarity. The nipple clamps had gone from painful to stimulating, and the couple of pillows under my head allowed me to watch her every move. Especially her every maddeningly slow stroke along my shaft. Every time I strained my hips upward, she'd back off.

Five times now she'd brought me right up to the edge, each time letting me believe that she would follow through.

Five times I settled back into the bed, each time more frustrated than the last.

"It's almost midnight. We've been at this two hours. I'm very impressed."

I looked at her, pleading. "Impressed enough to let me come?"

"How ready are you?"

I was dying. This is the longest she'd ever teased me this way. My balls were beyond sore, my cock was purple, my muscles were cramping from the contractions. "I'm ready. Please? Please? It's been so long since you allowed me to release."

"How long?"

"I... I think it's been over three weeks now."

"Oh, you've gone much, much longer than that. Three weeks shouldn't be very hard for you, now should it?" She gave me a firm squeeze to emphasize her point.

"Only three more minutes until midnight. Wouldn't it be wonderful to shoot a nice, big load right when the clock turns twelve?"

"Yes, yes, oh yesyesyes!"

She resumed stroking, ignoring my ragged moans. "Tell you what," she said, "I'd be a real bitch to deny you after working you up like this."

I nodded.

"So I don't think that I should deny you."

I nodded faster.

"And that's why I'm not going to deny you."

I stopped nodding. "I'm?"

She stopped her maddeningly slow stroking, and stretched her body over me, her nipples just out of reach of my mouth. Fumbling for a moment, she sat back down on the bed and held out a shiny object to me.

A quarter.

"Heads or tails?" she asked, smiling wickedly.

Wednesday, November 29

My First Tagging

Oh, dammit.

This can't be happening to me, can it? I mean, this is "The Edge of Vanilla," for cryin' out loud! Sleek, slick, kinky and sexy. Good writing. Sex. Insightful articles. Kink. Poignant perspectives. Kinky sex. This isn't one of those MySpace ghetto blogs; this is an eclectic little corner bistro of a blog.

Damn, I can't believe I've been tagged!

Yeah, yeah, I know. I could ignore the call. I could turn it down. I could stick my nose in the air and walk away.

Oh, what the hell. After all, Cat tagged me, so how could I possibly refuse?

Besides, as bait, she's even promised to post a special HNT pic for me. Of course, I've been promised other things lately that I don't really expect to get.

Still waitin' for that car, Mistress Yunohoo.

Okay, here's the deal: Six random, wierd things about Tom Allen. Stuff you'd never guess. Stuff that I don't even tell my closest friends. But stuff that I'm going to tell you - my anonymous internet friends.

1) I'm really a 36 year old single mother from Charlotte, North Carolina...

Wait. What's that?

They had to be true things?


1) About fifteen years ago I stopped listening to pop/rock stations and switched to talk radio. After a few more years, I pretty much stopped listening to the radio at all. I drive in silence, just gooving on my own thoughts. I sometimes need to take the long way home to finish them.

2) I'm a voracious reader. In fact, I have a 512m SD card in my Palm T3 that's always got a dozen E-books on it at any time. I read in the bathroom, waiting to pick up my pizza, wherever. And because of that, I can have a conversation on virtually any topic, which often surprises people who really should know me better by now.

3) Speaking of pizza, I'm one of the 87 people on the East Coast of the U.S. who likes anchovies on his pizza. Really. Anchovies, mushrooms, peppers on a thin crust. With a chilled Chianti or a light beer. On a lazy Sunday evening. In the summer.

4) I have a very dry sense of humor in real life. So dry that people often feel compelled to douse me with glasses of water.

5) I can build a computer from scratch, machine stainless steel valves, climb mountains, swim rivers, design and build furniture that looks like artwork. But please do not ask me to do anything with plumbing. I can't solder a joint. Go figure.

6) I studied a bit of Taoist and Tantric yoga when I was younger. I can have full-body orgasms, even without intercourse. Not as useful as, say, doing my own plumbing, but it makes me a fun date.

Tuesday, November 28

Thoughts on "Thoughts"

Despite the aftermath of the Great Comment Fiasco in the Autumn of 2006, Ms. Susan herself has opted to comment on comments - to the delight of all nineteen of her most devout readers. To me, it's one of those self-referential "breaking the wall" situations, almost on the level of when Dilbert has a visitor from Family Circus, or when Jimmy Neutron gets zapped into the Fairly Oddparents world.

Yes, thirteen years of college have been wiped from my brain and I have been reprogrammed by Nickelodeon and the Cartoon Network. Anybody else out there have children, or is it just me?

Anyway, she left a comment on a comment on an article from last week that I wanted to comment on.

In her post, she writes:

"In reality because D/s or FemDom is just play to us right now. My “dungeon” consists of a paddle, some scarves, padded cuffs, feathers, lotions, vibrators and a blindfold. Pretty much standard bachelorette party stuff. We have added a collar which we both adore and some new elements to our play. Quick and quiet are usually two really important elements for us. The little erotic stories can be read to each other late at night. And yes they contain some real life elements:)

"For me as a woman the real benefit to sexual exploration is the intimacy I am able to share with Tyler. It started out as sharing fantasies but the intimacy has spread into other non sexual areas of our marriage. That was much needed."

In case anyone missed the subtext, Sue and Ty are using some D/s activities to enhance their enjoyment of each other. They are teasing each other with BDSM fantasies in order to enhance their level of intimacy.

In short, they are playing.

And you know what? I think that this is great! They are playing, having fun, enjoying each other, living in the stolen moments when they don't have to make breakfast, correct homework, do the grocery shopping or unclog the toilet. So it came as a bit of a disappointment to read her further thoughts on this:

"[...] I take every thing in proportion but the blogs and websites I was reading were Goddess This and Mistress That. After a while they become completely unrelatable to my life situation.

"I know there is an outlet for my thoughts; I’m just not sure it’s blogging or at least blogging about “playing” D/s."

That's sad.

What's even more sad, is that between the time I started writing this article this morning and now, Susan has deleted several of her well-written posts, and has again disabled the comments.

I suspect that, despite what she's written in the now hidden comments, it's because she really did not want me to win a car.

There are dozens of web logs in this community, and more dozens of web forums and internet groups in which many of the regular contributors are so damned serious. S/slash writing protocols. Capital Letters for Dom/mes and lower case for subs/slaves. Week long discussions defining the difference between subs and slaves. I/introspective R/retrospectives on the A/author's J/journey (and why is it always a journey? Why isn't it ever a trek or a voyage or an expedition?).

I've heard - all too often - the nervousness of the newbies who are concerned that they aren't doing something "right", as if there were some kind of performance review at the end of the quarter. Not long ago, a woman on a chastity group emailed me because she had questions on how to be a Domme the "right way." She was concerned that she was enjoying herself too much to be a "real Dominatrix." Another woman was concerned because she enjoyed the sensation of her husband orgasming inside her, and - based on what she'd read - believed that as a Domme she was not "allowed" to do that anymore.

Recently, Bonnie of Collars'n'Cuffs posted an interesting rant:

"So many on the blogger sphere try to tell newbie's and the committed to the lifestyle you must do this or that, this way in order to member of the Femdom Fan club. [...] I don't blame a lot of the blogger's for disappearing or hiding when the answer they give are not the answers the reader wants to hear. or they are burnt out from the derivative thoughts and opinions. [...] I get it now you have to fit the Femdom mould in order to belong. "

While I don't think that anyone has flat out told Susan that she's doing something wrong, I get the impression that like a T/traveler on a J/journey to a place that is enjoyable to visit she's absorbed some of the local color and wondering how she "fits" into an environment in which Ladies, Mistresses and Goddesses trade tips on edge play while naked subs and the great uncollared cavort at their feet - the better to give foot massages, of course. And I wonder if, like me, she hasn't thought that perhaps she's a bit out of place because she doesn't make a second career out of Femdomming.

I write "like me" because our own dungeon is a couple of drawers in a bedside nightstand. More than once I've looked in on the various BDSM web forums, having felt embarrassed to post amid the veteran scene players, and decided to merely lurk, instead of becoming an active or even semi-active participant. I'm not sure why I feel so nervous, especially as I've spent a lot of time on various web groups trying to assuage the concerns of the new & nervous. Indeed, when I'm not being snarky with the clueless, I am usually explaining that it's perfectly acceptable to just play and have a good time, that not only do they not need to follow any rules, but that they'll have even more fun by stretching their imagination and making up their own rules as they go along.

Or better perhaps, making up no rules at all.

Friday, November 24

Friday Fantasy

Blogging memes are often annoying, perhaps because most of them are merely rehashed email memes. Those personal quizzes asking about your favorite color (blue or black) or which albums you'd take with you on a desert isle (Stop Making Sense - Talking Heads) have been done to death.


A recent series of posts by Richard generated a little spark of curiousity - suppose we created a meme more tailored for adults, specifically, a more sexually themed meme? Not something in the 20 QUestions format, but perhaps something more readable, something to look forward to. We've already got HNT - Half-Naked Thursdays (which origins I've still not been able to pin down), so to wind us up for the weekend, perhaps something along the same lines might work.

Accordingly, I propose the "Friday Fantasy".

While graphic erotica is certainly appreciated, I'm thinking that perhaps - as in HNT - just a snapshot, a quickie paragraph or two outlining a desire, wish, or a current favorite. Maybe it's even something that you've done, or almost done. Or maybe it's a situation that started one way, but you wish it had gone somewhere else. Anything, as long as it's a description of something that grabs your interest.

For example...

We're laying on the couch watching a movie, Linda's legs up on my lap so I can rub her feet. The commercial break comes, and she turns to me, her eyes glinting. "The polish on my toenails is really chipped and cracked. I'd really love it if you removed the old stuff." Hurriedly, I gather up a towel, a bag of cotton balls, polish remover, and an emery stick. By the time the movie is back on, we're settled back into our positions, only I'm gently rubbing the wet cotton balls over her toenails. It takes a few minutes, but I manage to get the red out of the cracks and crevices. I dry them off, and although she didn't ask, I buff down the rough edges with the emery. Another commercial break makes me realize that I hadn't been paying attention to the movie at all. Soon, I'm rubbing a soothing lotion around her toes and feet.

By the time the movie ends, her feet have been rubbed and smoothed, and she's feeling relaxed. "C'mon," she tells me as she gets to her feet, "I've got some other areas that need attention, too."

Friday, November 17

Mixed Feelings

I have mixed feelings upon discovering the events that unfolded over at Susan's blog during the last two days.





Okay, sure... Susan is over her admittedly over-reaction; but that's not the point. She's a new blogger, perhaps a bit excited over the new Comments feature, happily posting away with the little birds of praise twittering in the background. Life, that is, the blogging life, to Susan is good: a loving husband, an enjoyable family, pleasant times, and she does what bloggers do - writes about the things on her mind, not all of which happen to deal with BDSM or even with sex.

Then the jackass brayed.

"i wuz lukin 4 bsdm sexx. u suk. were is it? u suk. i doont care abot buttrflyz. u suk. if my mom didnt need teh cumputer now id riite more abot how u suk."

And here's where I felt anger and disgust. I simply do not understand why some people believe that the anonymity of the Internet gives them rein to act in ways that would, in the "real world," cause them to be ostracized, and perhaps nursing a lump on their head in the process. How miserable does your own life have to be, how small minded are you, and how insecure in your personhood do you have to be in order to act in such a way?

More to the point, what is it about the sex blogs, forums, and other groups that seems to attract the most loutish of you? Have you no other outlet for sexual expression than a lopsided keyboard and a handful of petrolatum?

So Susan, having learned to appreciate the wine and not wanting to sully her vineyard with the dregs, turned off the Comment feature.

And that's a disappointment.

Blogging can be about self-expression, but how much better to express one's self in a community which encourages such expression? In which one can be introspective, but to also to explore ideas. To trade, as it were, thoughts and tips about the wine with our neighbors.

Susan has added something little seen in this area of the blog world.

A sparkling sense of humor.

In an area in which so many of us take our kink so damn seriously, Susan set up shop with the admission that this is not a full-time endeavor for her. Whereas so many of us have a dozen references to "O/our J/journey I/into D/s" (and for some of us it's a dozen a week), it's pleasantly refreshing to see that some people aren't making a lifestyle commitment to anything except having a little enjoyable sexual exploration.

You know. Fun.

And yes, I see that she's turned the Comments back on after a couple of days of mood swings, tears, introspection , and (an assumption based on my experience) probably some wine and a bit of chocolate.

But something that she wrote sticks in my mind, and herein lies the seeds of my discouragement:

"I simply wandered into a community/lifestyle where I did not belong."

How sad that Susan - witty, charming, funny, sensuous, and thoughtful - believes that it is she who doesn't belong in this community.

If not her, then who?

Sunday, November 12

Supporting One's Self-Perception

I subscribe to Psychology Today - you know, the magazine that does for Psychology and Sociology what Ladies Home Journal does for Feminism. While a lot of the articles are pap and only scratch the surface, sometimes I get a glimmer of an insight. This month, there is an article on "friendship", which carries the following blurb:

The conventional wisdom is that we choose friends because of who they are. But it turns out that we actually love them because of the way they support who we are.

This makes me wonder about other aspects of ourselves, more specifically our love or romantic relationships. Do we do the same thing when looking for a partner; that is, do we tend to pick our romantic partners based on how they support our self image?

I can easily see how this works with a lot of relationships. If we think of ourselves as teachers, we tend to surround ourselves with people who enjoy learning from us. If we tend to think of ourselves as not worthy of respect, we might find a partner who treats us accordingly. But... does a change in our perception of ourselves - who we believe ourselves to be - one of the causes for a loss of intimacy?

I'm thinking about the seemingly inevitable differences in libido after several years together. Do we evolve into different people such that our partners no longer support our self-perceptions (and we no longer support theirs)? I've been reading a lot of blogs by people who are in bad, deteriorating, or otherwise miserable relationships - and almost all of them show a pattern in which they feel a distinct lack of intimacy with their partners. I'm not talking specifically about sexual intimacy, although that is also a widespread complaint. And after reading the blogs and comments, I'm sure that I'm not the only one to ask why it seems that Low Libido people always seem to get matched up with the High Libidos? Underlying many of the words of support on the Comments sections of the desperate and hurting is the not-always unspoken wish: "Wanna trade?" My question is what happened along the way? What else changed besides ten years, three kids, and two cars to make people grow so far apart? And after reading this article, I started to wonder if there isn't some principle that can be applied to love relationships.

I realize that I've been thinking about this subject for most of the week, and for some reason I can't get my thoughts on this to be coherent enough to set down. I think I'm just going to let this one sit for a bit and then come back to it later.

Friday, November 10

A Scene in the Vineyards

I can't possibly comment on this, for I have not the words. Or rather, I have the words, but reading her latest post has shamed my tongue into uncharacteristic silence, if not paralysis.

Droll. Stirring. Amusing. Satirical. Insightful.

Damn good.

But don't take my tongue-tied word for it; go read for yourself.

Me? I'm going to sit in my shed and contemplate the grapes for a spell.

The Grapes of Domme

Wednesday, November 8

Incompatible Defense*

Inspired by one of my last ramblings about coming out to my wife about my BDSM kink, slave2Catwoman left a comment in which he wrote:

I applaud your courage to finally talk to your wife. You did it the right way, too. You showed her the aspects that would benefit her, not just the leather and dungeon stuff. In time, she may come to enjoy those things as well.
I am always amazed at the way men will date and actually marry women who are totally sexually incompatible with them. It seems to me to be a horrible folly. Yet countless men fall into this trap.

Yeah, well, the first part had to be done or I was going to have what they used to call "a nervous breakdown." I was not sleeping, was depressed, and felt physically ill most of the time. We'd had a long period in our marriage in which I could not even discuss vanilla sex, let along anything else. It took a separation and more before we could at least begin to discuss things.

But that's not the point I wanted to make today. Rather, I wanted to address the second part - the concept that so many of us end up with incompatible partners.

Personally, I think that hardly anyone considers their partner to be "incompatible" when they meet and date for a while. Some people manage to hit it off well right from the start, and can discuss their feelings and interests with regard to sex. Others need to feel more secure in their relationship as a whole; lest we forget, sex is not the entirety of our relationship, that's why we see so many couples with incompatible sex lives who are still together.

I think that many people believe that the initial excitement of dating will last forever, and so never give much thought to the eventual leveling off of libido. And some for some people, that libido will drop off fairly quickly into the relationship - but often after their partner is satisfied that their level is sufficient enough. If the five-times per week part of the relationship lasts for a few months, the partner with the higher libido will assume that things are going to be fine, and may in fact interpret a once-per-week spell as simply a setback, and not as the natural level. It's a constant subject of study for psychologists to understand why it seems that the security of marriage or long-term partnering seems to lead to a drop in frequency.

But people with kink leanings have one other obstacle to overcome: if they are embarrassed by or do not understand their own desires, then it will be difficult to bring them up for discussion with a partner. Worse, if they they have attempted discussion and were met with a real or imagined negative reaction from their partner, then it will be even more difficult for them to bring it up the next time.

Unfortunately, Western culture has a schizophrenic attitude about sexuality; we treasure it highly, but find it difficult to discuss because we're taught that it's impolite. Often, we lack even the syntax with which to discuss even the basics, let alone anything kinky. How often do you hear adults describe their genitals in terms of "down there" instead of using actual words? How many euphemisms do we have for various sex acts? And how many of those euphemisms are couched in language that is sarcastically humorous or downright degrading? Booty call? Doing the nasty? Parking the sausage bus in tuna town?

Ugh. Have any of us really progressed beyond Junior High School?

So here we have:
a) people who feel embarrassed to discuss their sexuality,
b) people who don't have the terminology to discuss their sexuality,
c) people who don't have enough sex drive to even want to discuss their sexuality.

Makes you wonder why we have so many couples who actually do so well at it.

Since I spend a lot of time reading relationship blogs, I run across interesting perspectives on couples who are mis-matched. I found this on Unsolicited Advice, one of the (seemingly) several dozen blogs by Digger Jones. While not specifically targeted for the kink-inclined, this brings up some good points that should not be overlooked.

Top 10 Ways of Identifying a LL Partner

Here's my TOP 10 ways to identify a Low Libido (LL) person...

First off, the odds of landing a LL guy or a guy who will have a substantial low libido problem at some point in your relationship is about 20%, which is way higher than most folks think. This is based on some of the research I've read. Sorry I don't have the citations, but check the Journal of Marital and Family Counseling for starters.

FYI, the odds of landing a similarly LL wife (or one that will turn out LL) for the guys is 60% based on the same research. Give or take 5%.

While predicting who is and who isn't going to be LL is difficult, I have seen some common themes from being on the low libido board for 5+ years. A Low Libido (LL) person typically:

1. Has no time or inclination towards sexual topics, items or subjects. This could be porn, lingerie, certain T.V. shows, books, pictures, etc. It does nothing for them, or precious little. If this is true for your guy, beware. Double beware if they are turned-off and disgusted by any or all of the above. Porn is controversial, but guys are generally more accepting and responsive.

2. Has no sexual fantasies. This is huge and consistent. Most of us, when we ask our LL spouses what their sexual fantasies are, they report that they don't really have any. Or have very few or something very tame, like sex in a water bed or something. Not all fantasies have to come true (like three-somes) but sexually healthy people do have fantasies and have them on a regular basis. They don't have to work on thinking about sex. To a high libido person, thinking and fantasizing are as natural as gravity.

3. Thinking, talking and having sex is a chore. Generally, LL folks lose energy when they have to relate on a sexual level, and they tire of it easily and quickly. HL generally gain energy as the level of sexual tension increases. Sex increases the well-being of people with high sexual thresholds, and not having sex bothers and hurts them on many, many levels.

4. Low libido people are generally easily and quickly satiated. Read an article below concerning LL from a sensory integration framework for more detail. In a nutshell, after having sex, the LL person will be satisfied for a longer period of time. They get irritated in a major way if they just finish having sex (meaning it was just an hour, a day, a week or even a month ago) and their partner tries to initiate again too soon. For HL folks, the more they have, the more they seem to want.

5. The LL person will generally have more boundaries and limitations on sexual practices. There are a slew of us on here who have partners who refuse to have oral sex with us. Some are okay with giving and more are okay with receiving, but it is almost universal that our LL partners will have some aversion to oral sex in some way. Or in any way, as in the case with my DW. The absence of variety and kinkiness may relate to the dearth of a fantasy life for LL people. 69ing is not a regular component of the menu for any of us HL CL folks.

6. Kissing. There are a bunch of us who have partners who refuse to give us open-mouthed or long, deep, passionate kisses. If your fiance isn't looking for your tonsils (in apparent sexual frustration) I'd be concerned. But that's just me.

7. Initiating. This is also a sore spot, as most HL people on this board complain that if they don't initiate, nothing is going to happen. Or they have given up, simply because they have been turned down so often. The LL partner generally initiates on an infrequent basis, if at all.

8. Talking about sex is different. The LL partner generally talks about "giving it up" or "giving the person sex" or "giving in", and refers to the other partner as the one "getting it" as in "I just gave you some (last month), and I can't believe you are interested in getting it again!" While the HL person may use similar language, such as "Pleeeze?! Can I pleeeeze have a little somethin'?" They are more likely to refer to it as a shared experience. The HL partner's fantasy includes being with someone who truly enjoys being with them, finds them sexually exciting, really, really wants to jump their bones and responds with lust, desire and passion. All of these components indicate a more shared experience from the HL standpoint. Our partners frequently view it from the standpoint of enduring it and wanting to get it over with.

9. Sex is not worth the effort. Often there are many obstacles to having sex, including work, schedules, physical stress, children, intramarital tensions and other factors that make sex a goal that seems far away. For the LL person, there is a very finite amount of energy that should be expended towards sex. If there are conflicts or obstacles, sex quickly gets put on the back burner. Circumstances sometimes warrant this, but the HL partner will almost always find ways of overcoming or working around these obstacles. The LL person will allow circumstances control and ultimately crowd out time, energy or thoughts of sex. They are often too tired for sex. The HL is more often too tired of NOT having sex!

10. Hostility towards discussing the topic. Generally, the LL folks regard having to discuss the clashing libido issue as pressure, which leads to #9. They will generally avoid the subject and definitely avoid discussing the problem or deny that there is one at all. Included in this is shifting responsibility back to the other partner. The problem should be a shared concern, not just a matter of fixing one person or the other. Chances are, both partners have contributed and both need to be involved in mending the relationship.


I don't have much to add to this, except to say that it's easy to see how some of these items apply in relationships in which there is a kink imbalance. Particularly appropriate is item No. 5 - if your partner tends to avoid conversations about introducing kink to your relationship, or in fact becomes openly hostile, then that should be a large red flag. I would even suggest that subtle attempts to make you feel ashamed or embarrassed, such as referring to BDSM as “sick” or “perverted”, or affecting scorn at the idea, or referring to the desires as “your problem” are also signs that your partner will likely maintain that attitude when you are long into the “comfort and security” part of your relationship.

* The title of the post refers to a joke in an old "Beverly Hillbillies" episode.
Uncle Jed Clampett was describing why the did not need a sophisticated alarm system back on the farm, and explained to Mr. Drysdale that it was the "Incompatible Defense." When questioned by the banker, Jed answered "If you come in to pat the bull, then you is going out over dee fence!"

Okay, it was funny when I was eight.