@$!#@$&! underwear tags

@$!#@$&! underwear tags

what’s wrong with this picture?

beautiful bottom - ugly underwear tagEverybody’s allowed a pet peeve or two, maybe even three, if they are true domly dom.  I hope you know I’m being facetious, submissives can have as many pet peeves as they like, but they aren’t allowed to express them!  OK, all joking aside, this post really is about what some might call a pet peeve of mine . . .

That’s my lovely slave/wife, Serafina Samadhi.  As you can see, she’s been bent over a convenient downed tree, it was part of our “Spanksgiving 2012” celebration.   I know I’m prejudiced, but I think my slave has a really great ass.  I’ll let you in on a secret, her beautiful bottom is even sweeter than it looks, the “jiggle” is just perfect when she’s spanked.

I’ve got one problem with the picture though and it’s a big one.  That @$!#@$&! underwear tag that’s sticking out.  It really is a beautiful bottom, but that certainly is an ugly assed tag.

those @$!#@$&! underwear tags

These ads do a great job of driving home the point of how annoying tags are in a very funny and entertaining way.  I can’t stand annoying, itchy tags and I’m so glad Hanes® decided to get rid of them… and I’m very happy to help.
~ Michael Jordan

I guess it’s already pretty clear, I really dislike underwear tags.  It’s rare that I allow Serafina to wear panties these days, and when I do it’s expected that they will be without tags.  In all honesty, the only thing more annoying than underwear tags showing up on my slave’s panties, is an underwear tag showing up in my pictures!

Frankly, I’ve never liked tags of any sort in my clothes.  I didn’t care for the way they felt against my neck in shirts, some kind of annoying cross between an itch and a tickle.  Who needs that kind of distraction?  When I was a boy, I used to carefully cut the tags out of every shirt I wore.  And if tags in shirts are annoying, tags in underwear just darn right maddening.  I’m told that tags are so infuriating because they are made out of relatively coarse material, in order to make it easier for print to be sewn into the tags’s fabric.  Some manufacturers make higher quality tags that are softer than the norm, but those are more costly to produce, so they aren’t commonly used.

Not only are underwear tags situated to irritating to tender skin when they placed are in clothing worn around our waist and crotch, it’s my studied opinion that tags in underwear aren’t even necessary at all.   With modern technology, it’s simple enough to print sizing and material disclosures on waistbands, or any other unobtrusive place for that matter.  The idea also has the added benefit of eliminating the cost of material used for the tag.

Now, before anyone says I need to go patent and sell that great idea, I have to tell you it’s too late.  Haynes, who already went to tagless t-shirts back in 2002, started marketing men’s boxers and briefs without underwear tags close to two years ago.  It’s a brilliant campaign if you ask me – Hanes® Goes Tagless Across All Men’s Underwear.  It wasn’t exactly difficult to sell me on the idea.  Now, when I wear underwear, it’s Hanes® tagless briefs.  Ya know, just like Michael Jordan.

just say no to underwear tags

Of the different clothing tags, those found in underwear are easily the worst.  I’d wager that I’m not alone in that opinion too.  Apparently, it’s just a good practice to get rid of underwear tags, I mean if you read it on the Internet it must be true.  Right?  Over at wikiHow there’s a cute little tutorial on How to Choose Comfortable Underwear, and Step 9 is about eliminating underwear tags . . .

remove underwear tagsRemove tags from the underwear after purchase.
These can cause scratching and rubbing problems if you’re sensitive to them. Once removed, you can always store them somewhere if you need the care instructions or want to remember the brand, size, and style of what works for you so you can find your next undergarment with ease. It is possible to purchase tagless underwear in some brands, if preferred.

I guess that totally justifies my personal fetish for tag removal – hahaha.  As a dominant, I don’t need any external validation to allow me to set rules for my submissive.  But, it doesn’t hurt when validation is available either.  Seriously though, you aren’t going to find a drawer full of stored underwear tags in my house.  If my slave wants to remember the “make and model” of her underwear, she can keep the information in her submissive’s journal.  We aren’t cutting off tags just to save them damnit.  If we are going to “just say no” to underwear tags, they need to go away!

it’s a rule

About a year ago, not long after taking the Spanksgiving 2012 photo that opened this post, I decided to make tagless panties a rule here at House of Samadhi.  I’m picking out Serafina’s wardrobe these days anyway, so it’s rare enough that she’d wear panties to begin with.  When she does wear lingerie of any sort, including panties, I’ll guarantee there are no underwear tags flying their little freak flags high.  And that same rule holds true for guests too.  Any submissive who wishes to play at Samadhi House needs to know that underwear tags are vile little things, they have no place here in my sanctum.

Don’t worry though, if I find underwear tags, I’ll cut them off for you, as a public service!

Adventures in STD Screening

Adventures in STD Screening

Let me start by saying that I want to encourage everyone who has been sexually active at any time in their life to get a STD screening for HIV and other sexually transmitted infections. Sexually transmitted diseases are far more prevalent than many assume.  Often, there are no physical sign that a carrier is infected, so it’s possible that some people may carry a STD and never even know it.  With that in mind, please realize that a guy telling you he’s never had any problems with his equipment, and that he has never been tested, is a guarantee of only one thing – that he’s irresponsible with his health, and with your’s too.  Even if you think you know everything about your partner’s sexual history, even if you’ve only ever slept with one person, you really should get tested.

you might need STD screening too

std gone logo

My ex-wife was unfaithful to me, and I wasn’t aware of the fact until after our divorce when I found compromising pictures of her on the internet. At the very least she had unprotected oral sex with a man who frequented sex professionals. Essentially, that was the equivalent of my ex-wife having sex with thousands of men.  Without some asshole posting his “trophy” pics of my ex-wife online, I never would have known for sure that I’d been cheated on. Prior to that point I’d always assumed she’d kept her word that our play partners would only be enjoyed in each others physical presence. So, when it comes to STD’s and your health, don’t take your partner’s word.  Maybe they are actually telling you the truth, but it’s entirely possible that a former partner may have lied to them too! Some people really will say anything to get laid . . .

In the end, getting tested is the responsible thing to do for our health and for ourselves, as well as the responsible thing to do our partner’s health and their overall well-being too. Don’t let the comedy story I’m about to tell dissuade you in any way from getting a STD screening for yourself, if nothing else, you may get a funny story, or two, of your own to share.  And, please do realize the story is comedic in nature.  The verbal portraits I’ve painted of local health department workers are deliberate caricatures, and as such, are far from being politically correct.

visiting the public health dept

So, let’s say, hypothetically of course, that you are a responsible straight man who feels the need to make sure everything’s clean and safe. In basic training, soldiers are taught the difference between their “rifle” and their “gun” – so let’s just call this an exercise in “gun control” and hope that the guys from the NRA don’t take it the wrong way.  Fellas, this has nothing to do with your rifles, OK? And, for the sake of this story and for simplicity’s sake as well, let’s imagine that I am this hypothetical man, if for no other reason than to allow me to speak in the first person.

So, I do a little research, and find that in partnership with the Iowa Department of Public Health, that my local health department does free STD screenings – $10 donation suggested.  Now a $10donation isn’t free, but I don’t want to look a gift horse in the mouth either.  It really sounds like a good deal to me.  I mean Government Health Care isn’t the darling of the Libertarian crowd I find myself hanging out with these days, but I’m not going to look a gift horse in the mouth.  My new subbie drinks Pinot Noir @ $9 a glass at munches, so Government health care means I can urge her to drink irresponsibly. My free market friends have to appreciate the efficiency of that particular gambit, I’d think!

And, I find myself at the local Public Health Department’s office, and feeling confident that I’m doing the right thing, I step up to the bullet proof glass that separates me from the receptionist. She doesn’t seem to notice me, so I gaze more strongly at her. I’ve got a pretty “heavy” stare, I can usually wake folks up from across the room by simply looking “hard” at them. So I give her “the look”, but Public Health Department receptionist lady is oddly oblivious.

I clear my throat. Nothing.  Tap my foot. No response.

Finally a nurse steps behind the counter, nudges Public Health Department receptionist woman, and nearly gets her to disengage from her stupor. If you’ve ever seen the deliberate movements of a Ground Sloth, then you’ve got an idea of the pace Public Health Department receptionist woman was capable of achieving. She made a ground sloth look like an Indy Car!

“Can . . . I . . . help . . . you . . . ?” she finally intones.

“Yes, I’m here for the STD screening,” I say, using my quiet voice.

I usually have a loud voice, it carries very well. I didn’t figure the entire 4th floor of Davenport’s Bi-Centennial Building needed to hear the reason for my visit. Some things should be on a “need to know” basis, ya know?

Apparently not . . .

“Excuse . . . me?” Public Health Department receptionist lady replies.  Don’t sloths have excellent hearing? Maybe not, but I thought I remembered that from Zoology – I’m just saying . . .

“I’m here for the STD screening,” I say, stepping a little closer to the slot in the bullet proof glass, hoping to push the vocalization through to Ms. Sloth. Instead, my voice booms down the hall. I swear there was even an echo, “STD . . . std . . . std” carrying my voice all the way to the building’s elevators.

“Are . . . you . . . having . . . any . . . symptoms?” she asks.  Great, I think to myself, so the sloth is doing triage too?

“No, I don’t have any current STD symptoms,” I scream at the glass and the sloth. At least if the whole building needs to hear me say “STD”, I want them to know I’m not having symptoms.

“OK . . . then . . . step . . . thru . . . the . . . door.”

WTF – Couldn’t we have had this entire conversation on the OTHER side of the door, ya know where there’s actually medical privacy?

So, I’m given a standard government issue clipboard, pen leashed by ball-chain attachment. I believe there were 7 pages of information to submit. Apparently, because I may have at some point in my life screwed a skank, I now have to give them my Mother’s maiden name, and my place of birth?

I tell public health as much as I know about my most recent sex partners, not having my phone, I can’t give phone numbers, and I really don’t want to give the real name of people I know from fetlife anyway – if there’s a problem I’d know what to do, there’s only one thing that can be done. Full disclosure.

Thinking of disclosure, and the flat voice of a public health official lecturing about hepatitis on the small TV monitor in the Public Health Dept waiting room, I can help my mind from drifting away to Eddie Murphy in Beverly Hills Cop . . .

Axel Foley:  Tell Victor that Ramon – -the fella he met about a week ago? – -tell him that Ramon went to the clinic today, and I found out that I have, um, herpes simplex 10, and I think Victor should go check himself out with his physician to make sure everything is fine before things start falling off on the man.

Anyway, a few moments later I get the joy of interacting with Ms. Sloth again, and it does appear that she’s been raised from her stupor. She’s contentedly grazing from a package of processed food. Being a bit of a wildlife aficionado, it was instructive to watch an individual member of this species dine in it’s normal habitat. When seen outside their usual domain, at bars and restaurants for instance, they are usually observed traveling in herds or packs, which dramatically effects behavior.

This one’s alert, she sense’s the presence of a predator, so the food is quickly slid into a desk drawer.  Then my form is taken. I’m given one sheet and a number in return, so it’s hoped that I’ve cleared the ground sloth hurdle, and am now on to bigger and better fauna.

not how you are supposed to do it

public health logo

Whew. Soon I get called back behind yet another security door, where a nice African-American social worker took my information there at.  I feel as though I’m meeting and talking with a facsimile of Samuel L Jackson.  OK, it wasn’t really the F-bomb throwing actor in person who did my intake, but it was a gentleman who was close.  He had the look, he had the talk, he even had the confident walk.  He may as well have been a character from a movie, I’m sure I’ve seen this same guy in at least a dozen different inner city type movies, usually heading up a methadone clinic.  I’ve heard of life imitating art, but this was starting to get more than a little surreal.

So public health intake guy is asking me questions about my sexual activity and history, how many people had I had sex with in the last three months, did I ever meet people form the internet for sex, did I ever pay for sex, did I ever get paid for sex , did I ever have sex with snakes on a plane. . . you know just your standard chatter between guys, like we were around the water cooler . . .

I tell him the truth, that I’ve been pretty careful my whole life, but may have screwed a skank once or twice, not having actually recognized that individual member of the species before it was too late. And I mention that my wife and I had done a bit of experimenting with some folk we weren’t exactly married to, as of late, although I do withhold the tasty tidbits about restraints, blindfolds, whips and chains. Like I said, some things should be need to know!

Everything’s going along great, snakes on a plane guy isn’t dropping any f-bombs, so I figure I must be moving along nicely. We’re both smiling and laughing and pretending he doesn’t have to spend 6 more hours in his sterile, depressing, poorly lit, not to mention shared office that day. It’s all good until he clears his throat . . .

That’s when he tells me that the government isn’t funding these programs like they should. Apparently, screwing an occasional indiscriminate skank that one might otherwise drunkenly mistake for a chameleon, well that doesn’t qualify one for free testing anymore. Getting told I’m really just not a high enough risk candidate to call for HIV testing feels good, but it also means that I’ve cleared the sloth hurdle, but may not make it past snakes on a freakin’ plane.

Kind African-American social /intake worker goes on to say that there are certain groups who get tested, but that with the cuts, other’s simply don’t qualify. Then he starts rattling off the list of people who can get the state funded HIV test . . .

I look across the desk at him, manage to interrupt Samuel L. Jackson for a moment and say, “So you are telling me that the state won’t test me unless I tell you I have sex with men ,or I shoot heroin?”

“That’s basically the story,” Mr African-American Public Health intake worker replies . . .

“Oh,” I say, less then deadpan, “I guess I forgot to tell you that I have sex with men then, huh.”

In the movies, Samuel L Jackson in the role of Mr African-American Public Health intake worker would have dropped the “f-bomb” and told me to get the fuck out of Dodge. I have been walking around in a bit of a dream state lately, so it shouldn’t have surprised me that the reply was almost as good, almost as if it had been scripted . . .

“Damn man, that’s not how you are supposed to do it,” he says to me . . .

“I don’t want to get you in any trouble,” I say earnestly, “But before you mentioned it I’d forgotten that I’d done some experimentation back in 1990, back when my ex-wife and I kept a houseboy in our basement, and only let him our for private parties!”

“Whatever,” says Samuel L Jackson in the role of Mr African-American Public Health intake worker, and fills out the paperwork to get my test.

Now, I have to say that while having sex with the houseboy is a complete invention, the houseboy himself is not. His name was Davey Jones and he didn’t have a locker.  Hell, he didn’t even have a foot locker, just a musty old duffel bag with two pair of jeans, some t-shirts, and a few other essentials. He was actually a cross dresser, but one who I never saw cross-dress.  I’m told he was quite passable, rather attractive as a woman, I just never saw it. My ex-wife took a liking to him, and when we moved from St. Louis to Rock Island he tagged along as, you guessed it, our houseboy.

Oh, but I do digress . . .

Next, Mr African-American Public Health intake worker got out the special “men who have sex with men” forms that apparently are different from your average run of the mill men who have sex with biological women set of forms. Samuel L Jackson seemed to be a little perturbed to have to do the extra paperwork, but he did take it all in stride.

In the end, he even thanked me for being so polite and easy to deal with. “You’d be surprised at the kind of attitude I get at my job,” he confided in me.

“I can only imagine,” I said politely, praying to God that I really couldn’t imagine.

I sometimes wonder if Purgatory isn’t really a state of being here on earth, and sadly that my new friend, Mr Samuel L Jackson Public Health intake worker, was being punished for the sins of some past life. That, however, would lead one to believe that a stint in Purgatory comes with good medical benefits, and that’s not something my free market friends could ever accept.

Feeling compassion for his plight, I did try to offer my version of a kind word. “There’s no reason I can’t be nice, I mean after all, it’s not your fault I’ve slept with a couple of skanks thru the years, right?”

That made him smile, so I felt better for him. In fact, I felt better for my visit to the whole Public Health Department Sexually Transmitted Disease clinic, the whole experience had just become more positive for everyone involved, except the sloth (of course).

buttsex

Then, of course, all the reverie, all the comradery, the whole spell that everything was going to be ok, was quickly shattered with Mr Jackson’s brief addendum . . .

“And you have buttsex with men. Right?”

Yeah, that’s right! Thanks for reminding me.

I hope the motherfucking snakes on the motherfucking plane get your ass next time Mr Jackson, at least then you’ll escape purgatory. Right? I’ll stop short of wishing that the aforementioned snakes have butt sex with you, Mr Jackson, because I’m sure you’d have to fill out a extra form then for answering “Yes” to question #13 – “Have you ever had butt sex with snake on a plane?” Jeesh, those public health questionnaires really have become way too thorough, haven’t they?

They did get around to asking if I had buttsex with women too . . . Eventually.

“Yes I enjoy fucking a woman’s ass,” I said to the plump Caucasian nurse who kept using the term “butt sex” which is really way to cutesy for what I consider to be a primal act. She looked a bit like Sally Struthers, not like I remember her from “All in the Family”, but instead as she’s portrayed on the cartoon South Park.

“I assume the first sex partner listed on the form is your wife,” says Sally Struthers.

“Ummmm yeah,” I say, not wanting to belabor the obvious.

“Well, we don’t always know, most people don’t give out their real name when filling in these forms,” she says with a smile.

WTF??? – I mean seriously – WTF!!! Did someone say that I didn’t have to give me real fucking name? Feeling a bit like the white-bread middle class boy that I am, I realize I don’t know as much about playing the system as I’d thought.

Nowhere did the Government need to have a form saying Michael Samadhi has sex with skanks (and men) – buttsex – Nope! I could have, I should have had, my listed name as John Holmes. That’s right Mr Snakes on a Plane, you can just call me “Johnny Motherfucking Wadd” motherfucker!

Damn, it’s a little late for that now.  There’s no closing that barn door after the cows are out.

So, eventually, Sally Struthers starts up some more conversation.  “I see you’ve had sex with one women and oral sex with another woman who aren’t you wife, and that’s over the last six months, correct?” she says trying not to sound judgmental.

“Well, the form only had three spaces, and I was too shy to ask the sloth for more forms,” I say.

“Formssssss?” She says, putting unnecessary emphasis on the plural.

“Well, I keep trying to have a one night stand, because I’ve never had one, and I really wanted the experience,” I tell her, trying to remain helpful.

“Why did it take so many women to have a single one night stand?” she asks.  Apparently I’ve peaked Public Health Dept Sally Struthers interest.

“Well, they always come back for more,” I say, trying to be matter of fact. I mean, the old catchphrase does go something to the effect – “It ain’t braggin’ if it’s fact!”

introducing Iowa Dept of Public Health to Fetlife

“I don’t want to be judgmental, and I don’t want to sound as if I’m telling you how to have sex . . . “ Sally states, obviously a trained and practiced disclaimer that goes along with the government not being judgmental of folks with open sores on their genitals having sex and spreading disease.

I couldn’t do Sally’s job, and I know it. I couldn’t do Mr Jackson’s job either, for the record. I’m not perfect, and I’ve made my share of mistakes, but I’ve rarely strayed into the realm of absolute self destructive behavior that many of the individuals who come through the clinics door’s represent.

“But, if you are going to be promiscuous you should consider using condoms,” Ms. Struthers states, again a rote line that’s part of her training.

I nod. Smile.

“Do you have buttsex with these women, the ones who aren’t one night stands?” she asks.

I read mannerisms, tone of voice, inflection, and take a good measure of what’s said and unsaid in a conversation. Lots of folks I can “read”, lots of folks I can’t, but the 2nd half of Sally’s question was like sitting in a room full of senior citizens and calling out – BINGO! – It was sure to get lots of attention . . .

Sally Struthers Public Health sex clinic nurse needs to get laid. She’s secretly wishing to find a man who can make her feel all the things she’s read about in romance novels, yet she’s pretty disgusted with men in general, and who can blame her from the class of “gentleman” she likely meets on the job. I’m a nice guy, I don’t break mirrors, and I’m putting of pheromones like nobody’s business because of a new love interest, so putting everything together it’s clear that my reference to women not allowing me my one night stand has peaked her curiosity.

“Only if they ask,” I say with the same grin I use on a lady submissive I might be flirting with.

“And do they?” she asks.

“Do they what?” I say, deliberately being obtuse.

“Do they ask you for buttsex?” she blurts out. I know for a fact this isn’t a question from her sheet.

As I was trying to describe the interplay between a dominant and a submissive recently for a lady who’s new to the lifestyle, I was inspired to use the analogy of the wolf and caribou. Getting Sally Struthers Public Health sex clinic nurse to go off script made my inner wolf take notice. Now I’ve got to be honest, it’s really not a great idea to let the wolf loose in this particular setting, this woman is putting on latex gloves, and about to swab my urethra with q-tip that looks as though it’s been grown on steroids.

“Well yes of course,” I say, “It’s a very common fantasy,” I say, entering my own public sex information officer mode.

“Where do you meet these women,” she asks, “Do you meet them at a website?”

She goes on to quote some site where men go to hook up with other men for (you guessed it) butt sex.

“I’ve never heard of that site before,” I say, truthfully.

“Fetlife!” I said.

“What?” she replied.

“Fetlife,” I repeated.

“F”
“E”
“T”
“L”
“I”
“F”
“E”

I spelled it out for her.

“What does the “F” “E” “T” stand for?” she asks.

“Fet is for Fetish,” I add with a grin. “It’s like Facebook for folks who want to get their freak on,” I volunteer.

“Oh” she says noncommittally.

“Do you use your real name there?” she enquirers.

“Would you?” I retort.

“I suppose not,” she states.

“I didn’t think so,” I say, concurring.

taking my blood

Sally Struthers Public Health sex clinic nurse swabbed my urethra, but not before managing to comment that my equipment looked healthy enough from a visual inspection (thank you very much . . . ) She then had me pull my pants up (I’m pretty sure she was as disappointed as I was) before leading me back to yet another Public Health sex clinic worker who would then take my blood.

At this point I was introduced to a middle-aged Hispanic lady who was to be my phlebotomist. To my amazement, my local Public Health Clinic was once again staffed by an individual who seemed recognizable from television, who’d have thought, right? Here, right before my eyes, standing before me with a large needle and a smile, was a dead ringer for Consuela, the laconic housekeeper from Family Guy.

“Ellow Misser Michael” she says.

OK, maybe she didn’t really talk like Consuela, but that’s how I heard her. The whole ordeal was starting to get more and more surreal with each passing moment. I’m well beyond starting to think that a few moments of mediocre pleasure with a skankus americus could be worth feeling like I’d landed in a fuckin’ cartoon.

After strapping a rubber tube around my upper arm, Public Health sex clinic phlebotomist lady begins to dig her needle around in the crook of my arm for a vein. She goes through one into the tissue behind. I swear, she apologizes.

“I’m sorry Misser Michael” she says.

She wiggles the needle around side to side, trying to capture a rolling vein, no luck. I’m starting to think this lady really is a housekeeper, she’s surely not accomplished at the vampire business. I clear my throat. I do it again. A third time. Finally, she gets the hint and stops the needle torture.

“Oh, I’m sorry Misser Michael. Did that hurt?” she says.

“Well, it wasn’t exactly a walk in the park you know,” I say, trying to restrain the sarcasm in my voice. Instead of saying what I really wanted to tell her, I ask politely, “Might it be possible to take the blood from one of the veins on the back of my hand?”

“Oh yes Misser Michael, you like?”

“Yes. I like.”

WTF, now I’m starting to sound like Peter Griffin . . .

clean bill of health

In the end, before it was all said and done, I’d not only had my finger pricked, I’d also had my prick fingered. It wasn’t an bad experience, just a surreal one. And, I left with a mostly clean bill of health. By “mostly” I simply mean that not all results are available the day of testing.  I was instructed to call back in a few days for the results of the blood work. When I did, that testing came up clean too. Even though I’d never seen myself as being at high risk, it was good to get confirmation that I’d not compromised my own, or anyone else’s health. And, I not only got peace of mind for myself, and for my current partners, I also got a story to tell.

Serafina didn’t have to tell any lies to get her testing. Apparently my fictional homo-erotic “butt sex” exploits meant she got the full round of testing, no questions asked.

The moral of the story is simply – head on down to your local Public Health clinic, get yourself tested for STD’s. The whole experience might just turn out to be a real adventure.

And remember, you don’t have to give them your real name.

STD germ chasing condom - original artwork by Serafina Samadhi

STD germ chasing a condom — original artwork by Serafina Samadhi

 

Ohh, nooo! It’s Gingerbondage!

Ohh, nooo! It’s Gingerbondage!

one word – gingerbondage

Maybe it’s the need to find ways to deal with holiday stresses, perhaps it’s just the need for creative expression, but there’s no denying that it’s the season for all sorts of silliness.  The kink community is no different from the rest of the world in that respect I guess, after all we are nothing if we aren’t a microcosm of society.  In our community, it’s trussed up turkeys and bondage bears that abound, there’s no escaping them.  But maybe, just maybe, you’re the sort who’s already seen enough shiburkey and turkeybari?

Well, don’t despair, and certainly don’t cry out “Ohh, nooo!!!!” in a high pitched voice.  I’ve found the answer to your woes over at Dumb Domme’s blog.

Michael: I want to say one word to you. Just one word.
Serafina: Yes, sir.
Michael: Are you listening?
Serafina: Yes, I am.
Michael: Gingerbondage!
(My apologies to the writers of the film The Graduate, for my misappropriation of their classic script.)

That’s right, the answer (in case you hadn’t figured it out for yourself) is gingerbondage.

Oh No Gingerbondage!

Oh No!!!

the horror . . . the horror

I stopped believing in Santa Claus when I was six. Mother took me to see him in a department store and he asked for my autograph.
~ Shirley Temple

The featured gingerbondage illustration is actually part of an award winning advertising campaign put together by an agency named Zulu Alpha Kilo. The advert was produced for Fangoria, a magazine devoted to horror cinema that’s been around since I graduated from High School.  I have to admit the ad is very inventive.   I’d think that it’s pretty hard to put horror and holidays together in a tasteful manner, and Zulu Alpha Kilo’s campaign really does it well.

The gingerbondage ad is by far the kinkiest of the series produced for Fangoria, but they all have at least a little fetish value.  There’s one that features some extreme gingerabrasion play . . .

gingerbread horror

Do you find the holidays grating?

And, another showing gingertemperature torture . . .

toasted gingerbreadman

I’ve got just the thing to warm you up!

Mad Men meet Mr Bill

mr bill headshotThe “Holiday Horror” campaign (aka gingerbread torture series) really is an award-winning campaign.  It recently garnered a bronze medal at the 2013 Epica Awards.  While it doesn’t quite strike me as a Don Draper style ad campaign in the best Mad Men tradition, I can easily picture this as being the inspired result of someone like Margaret “Peggy” Olson.  And, while pondering such intriguing fictional hypothetical possibilities, I couldn’t help myself from thinking that the inspiration for the series might have come from late night weekend television.  I just can’t help seeing a significant resemblance between the concept of gingerbread horror ads and the ubiquitous Mr Bill comedy series from Saturday Night Live.

Surely you remember Mr Bill, his dog Spot, not to mention as his nemesis Sluggo, and the evil Mr Hand?  In the late 1970’s Mr. Bill was a national phenomena, and his high-pitched cry of horror – “Ohh, nooo!” became a ubiquitous catchphrase.  And, once I recognized the similarity, I couldn’t help myself from making the comparison.  Now I can’t shake it.  When I see the gingerbread man trussed up on the rack between the rolling pins, I have “flashbacks” to SNL.

Ohh, nooo!!!!

Now, if I can only convince Serafina to get out some brightly colored playdough . . . Ohh, nooo Serafina!!!! Look out for Mr Hand!!!!

Playing the Grammar Police

Playing the Grammar Police

a grammar policeman speaks

grammar police say shift key is not respectI’m putting on my grammar police uniform today, addressing a pet peeve of mine –  some call it “BDSM capitalization” or “slave-pidgin”, but to my eyes it’s just deliberately butchered grammar.   In keeping with that role, as your friendly grammar policeman, I have to issue a stern warning.  If you insist on continuing, I’ll get out my ticket book and start writing citations.  Deliberately butchering our language really should be a crime.

I’m sure you all know some poor unfortunate soul who believes that butchering the English language is standard protocol in the BDSM community. You know who I mean, they are the folks who would write this opening and have it look much different.  Under their protocols, the opening paragraph might instead look something like this:

i’m sure Y/you A/all know some poor unfortunate soul W/who believes that butchering the English language is standard protocol in the BDSM C/community. Y/you know W/who i mean, T/they are the F/folks W/who would write this opening and have it look much different.

I have good friends that write that way. I love those folks dearly, but the way they write – it drives me crazy!  The deliberately butchered syntax makes me morph into the grammar police. Their writing style not only makes my eyes hurt, it’s not doing my brain any favors either.

P/please S/save U/us A/all F/from T/this.

Many on the Internet suffer from a severe lack of historical knowledge. I will admit that you can find websites advocating a submissive ‘s use of the lower case, but that does not give it historical or even cultural reality.
~ Jack Rinella

Please realize that writing using “BDSM grammar” isn’t a sign of respect. It doesn’t respect dominants, it doesn’t respect the community, and it certainly doesn’t respect the English language. There’s no doubt, it does not respect readability either, instead it displays apparent ignorance. At best, it reads as though you are stuttering, at worst, well it’s pretty much unreadable.

If you think you are using such atrocious grammar out of respect to some long-held BDSM tradition, you are wrong yet again. Unless, that is, you somehow think a “long-held tradition” is one dating back to the earlier days of mIRC or AOL chat.  I’m not saying this to upset anyone, I certainly don’t want any of my friends to be offended, that is not my purpose. If your kink is a strange grammatical fetish, I’m not going to remove you from my friends list, or do anything drastic. I don’t like you any less because of how you write.

And, I’m guessing you write like that because you’ve been taught the ‘rule” by some other poor ignorant bastard who didn’t know any better themselves. This isn’t about making them feel bad either.  No, this essay is an attempt at education. I’m guessing you use the odd capitalization rules because you think it will help you be taken more seriously within the community.

Sadly, the exact opposite is true. Butchering the English language out of respect to some misguided internet chat protocol is kind of like walking around with a booger hanging from your nose and something caught between your teeth.  Some folks think it’s polite to ignore the predicament, not wishing to cause further embarrassment. I’m the kind of guy who prefers to point out the problem, thinking that the brief embarrassment of correcting the issue now is far preferable to letting that booger buddy stick around all night.

So, please, wipe your nose . . . . and cut the capitalization crap too. You really do look better without it!

“slavese?”

For the record, I’m not alone in having this particular pet peeve.  Author Jack Rinella wrote about the problem more than a decade ago in an essay titled Slavese And Other Crap.  He gets right to the heart of the matter by saying:

For those who have not yet run into “slavese” it is the use of capitalization and pronouns to indicate one’s dominant or submissive status. Based on the protocols of a very few, it has taken on the aura of”Old Guard” validation. Slaves in this situation are forbidden to use the pronoun “I” or if they do, it must be in lower case. Some of this protocol, for instance, means that a slave would ask his or her master something like “Sir, would you like your slave to use the rest room now, Sir?” therefore avoiding the use of I.

There are many ways to debunk this Old Guard myth, much of which has to do with debunking the myth of the Old Guard itself. First of all, it’s necessary to reflect on who was the Old Guard, since in fact each of the three major historical BDSM groups had different predecessors. The most strict of the Old Guard protocols, as far as I can see, would have been held not by Gay Leathermen but by the elite heterosexual community generally led by professional dominatrices. A slave applicant in this situation was given his or her list of rules in the form of a copy of Emily Post’s Etiquette: The Blue Book of Social Usage, originally published in 1922 by Funk & Wagnalls. One can quickly understand that Mrs. Post would never allow such a breech of etiquette as to bastardize our language.

Rinella’s always a good read, and he’s spot-on for this topic.  His point that there are multiple “old guard” predecessors to the current scene is particularly well taken. With that said, I don’t want to go too far down the rabbit hole on the old Guard debate, at least not here.  That’s another topic for a different time.

bee-dee-es-em kap-i-tl-uh-zey-shuhn

If Rinella’s opinion, not to mention my own thoughts, aren’t enough to convince you on this topic, there are a number of others I could quote.  My favorite take on the topic comes from the Dumb Domme blog.  Her BDSM Lexicon Entry #23: BDSM capitalization expresses her thinking on slave-pidgin with witty hilarity.

Use of D/s capitalization is supposed to show respect or some such shit. Because, really, nothing says respect like hitting the shift key while typing ‘y.’ No, really. doMInAnT bitches love the shift key. Nothing makes a DOmInANt feel loved, appreciated, and respected like the fucking shift key.

Besides a show of respect, using D/s capitalization is supposed to help people reinforce their roles and their partner’s roles. Because… you know, the SHIFT KEY!

I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention that Dumb Domme’s post on the topic was the inspiration for the graphic Serafina created to go with this post.  Her writing is a relatively recent addition to my reading list, but she’s become a regular pleasure here.  I’m still pouring over Dumb Domme’s writing, but it’s a good bet she’ll be mentioned again here at the Joy of Kink.

A Simple Dedication

A Simple Dedication

to my family – a simple dedication

Michael Samadhi

your host and narrator

My personal blog, Spiritual BDSM, is dedicated to the wonderful lady who is the love of my life.  She also happens to be my wife and slave – she’s the beautiful Serafina Samadhi.  In the end, everything is (and always will be) for you, my darling beloved.  Like everything else in my life, this truly is dedicated to you!

This blog does need its own separate dedication however, no matter how important she is to my journey, it won’t do to list only Serafina.  With that in mind, Michael Samadhi’s Joy of Kink, is dedicated first, to all the friends I’ve met and learned from along my personal journey, everyone who’s helped me discover the joy of kink.  Quite obviously, it’s not a journey I could have experienced on my own. I thank you for what you shared with me, and allowed me to share of myself with you.

But, more specifically, I’m writing this dedication with everyone I consider to be part of my leather family in mind.  I’ve met and grown to know the most wonderful group of people.  You are the world to me, you truly are my family!  So, this blog is for the lady I met at a now infamous munch, where I established my bona fides as a dominant who could “read” a submissive across a table, at a crowded restaurant no less.  No doubt you challenge me, I hope I do the same for you.  And, thank you for the quip about ruining the Hitachi for you, it’s a high honor indeed to have taken you to such heights.

This blog is for the  MILF who one day realizes that there is a name for the kind of secret fantasies she’s harbored her whole life and that there are real people out there doing those kinds of naughty things to each other every day. This blog is for the husband who desires to fulfill his wife’s fantasies, if only he knew how to do it in a safe and sane way where he could be confident she’d get everything she wants while also never suffering any ill from those more aggressive desires.  It’s for a sweet submissive woman I decided to protect, and has now become a valued friend.

This blog is also for my serious young friend, the dedicated rope artist, and it’s for my even younger friend, just as serious, who’s named TheRopeArtist.  This blog is for another couple, the lady dominant who stood with me as “best dominant” at Serafina’s collaring, and her wonderful submissive guy, I can’t imagine making this journey without you.  It’s for the gentleman who crafted my St Andrew’s cross, and his slave; not to mention the hypnotist who was the master of ceremonies at Serafaina’s collaring, and his slave too.  This blog is for a massage therapist who I haven’t seen in person in a decade, but is family too, nevertheless.

Thank you!  Many thanks to all of you, for your friendship and help, your guidance and care and affection.  Thank you for the honor of allowing me to join you in your own journey through this world.  And thank you to those who honored me by suggesting – “You should write a book.”

The thought of writing a book actually terrifies me, and there are few things in the world with that power.  I simply can’t help but envisioning a hard bound tome full of blank pages waiting for me to write everything down in a coherent order.  Sad to say, that’s a task I simply can’t envision ever completing.  Thankfully, I can picture myself sitting down on a regular (or at least semi-regular) basis to write essays and share stories of my knowledge and experiences. While I can’t be there in person to help (or mentor) everyone who needs help understanding and finding their own place in this world, I can help at least a little by sharing what I’ve learned on the pages of this blog.

Michael Samadhi
1-3-2014

a simple dedication - Michael Samadhi

“a simple dedication” by Michael Samadhi – your humble narrator

Claiming of Sleeping Beauty Sequel

Claiming of Sleeping Beauty Sequel

novel beginning to new year

Claiming of Sleeping Beauty author Anne Rice

Claiming of Sleeping Beauty author Anne Rice aka A. N. Roquelaure

Author Anne Rice announced plans for a 4th installment in the notorious Claiming of Sleeping Beauty series of erotic books yesterday, a novel way of ringing in 2014.   Rice originally penned three books in the series, The Claiming of Sleeping BeautyBeauty’s Punishment, and Beauty’s Release under the pen-name A. N. Roquelaure.  Earlier novels in the series were released between 1983 and 1985.

Rice is the author of more than thirty books, with total sales of close to 100 million copies.  Her work includes five erotic novels under two pseudonyms, she also wrote Exit to Eden and Belinda as Anne Rampling circa 1985-1986.

Rice’s most popular writings to date have been The Vampire Chronicles series, of which Interview with the VampireThe Vampire Lestat, and The Queen of the Damned were adapted into a pair of major motion pictures.

” claiming of sleeping beauty” announcement

Rice’s announcement wasn’t made in a press conference, nor did it come from a publicist.  Rather than using traditional media sources to declare her newest project, Anne Rice instead made a couple of posts at Facebook announcing the new effort.

And when I was writing these erotic novels, I did indeed meet sympathetic members of the BDSM community and found them inspiring and kind. My best friend at the time of writing was John Preston, a very famous S&M erotic novelist. And he was always an inspiration. The Wikipedia article on “The Sleeping Beauty Trilogy” needs to be corrected and updated. And I will be writing a new Roquelaure book in 2014. I’m working on it now.

She also made another Facebook posting referencing an Advocate.com article titled – We Were Kinky Long Before 50 Shades of Gray where she also referenced the new Claiming of Sleeping Beauty project.  Then examiner.com picked up on Rice’s Facebook posting creating an article – Anne Rice to Write New Roquelaure Novel – which Rice promptly reposted.

30 year anniversary

“The Sleeping Beauty books are causing no end of excitement, really. It’s kind of amazing. I had no idea people would care that much.”
~ Anne Rice

When it was first released, The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty seemed almost transcendent.  It was easily the best erotica I’d ever discovered.  I found it to be better written than The Story of O, far sexier than Venus in Furs, and much more relevant to my interests than either Lolita or Lady Chatterly’s Lover.  But that was then.  While they were certainly exciting reading in their day, to some eyes the original trilogy hasn’t aged especially well.  It’s been whispered in some circles that Rice obviously had an active and fertile imagination, but precious little (if any) real experience with BDSM.  I’m not sure that the erotic retelling of a fairy-tale calls for perfect realism, to be very honest.  And, it wasn’t Rice’s original ambition to be realistic, it was to write the sort of erotica she wanted to read herself.

I wrote it because I thought most pornography was 1) Victorian classics revived and repackaged or 2) Hack work by people who didn’t share the fantasy. So I decided to write the pornography I wanted to read, to prove that good S&M porn could be done without murder, burning, cutting or any kind of real physical harm; that a delicious pornography of detailed S&M games — dominance and submission, humiliation and love —- could be made, all of it with elegance, refinement, and some romance. I created a fairytale kingdom of luxurious chambers, gorgeous costumes, and handsome and beautiful royal slaves, a world filled with romance, some intrigue and a lot of detail as to sexuality. I wanted it to be fun.

And truly, great fun it was!

can it be the same?

claiming of sleeping beauty - bookcoverBack at the time of their release, Rice’s books seemed to be a revelation.  I once owned first printing copies of the entire series, and two of the three still inhabit my erotic bookshelf, albeit a bit worn around the edges.  And, it’s true that the Claiming of Sleeping Beauty trilogy literally helped some of us to find ourselves, and the BDSM community.  I used the series as part of introducing my ex-wife to BDSM back in 1989, and it was her penchant for loaning the series out to friends as a part of introducing others to BDSM that caused the loss of one of the originals.

Yet, I have to wonder, if after the passage of 30 odd years, if any return to the concept is likely to work.  I’m not alone in asking that question.  Once again, using Facebook as a source, here’s what sex educator, author, and publisher Janet Hardy had to say in response to Rice’s announcement:

 The Beauty books led very directly to my finding the scene, and to my career as a sex writer and educator – it’s not at all an overstatement to say that they changed my life. I wonder if the new one will work for me at all, or if I’ve left that newbie enthusiasm behind me.

Yes, books like the Claiming of Sleeping beauty were once life changing, and not just for folks like myself, they had their effect on Janet Hardy too.  With that said, in light of the entire 50 Shades of Grey phenomena, will simply being life changing ever be enough?  I’ll never consider E.L. James’ books to be life changing works of fiction, but there’s no denying that the phenomena was an agent for change at the societal level.  Never again will kink and BDSM be looked at in the same light, the vast popularity of the 50 Shades series even spawned a local billboard for an upscale eatery.  Would you have imagined, just a few short years ago, an ad campaign based on “Your Safeword is Meatloaf” as a slogan?

what is BDSM?

what is BDSM?

Defining BDSM

There are many things that can draw a person to explore BDSM and the joy of kink.  For one group of folks it’s a specific fetish desire.  For some it’s an experimental nature leading them to kink.  Others are attracted exclusively to things that are taboo.  For me, it was an inescapable attraction to games of power and control, which along with the uses of sensation, are the foundations of BDSM play.  When looking at the wide variety of kink expressed by the human animal, we find that BDSM is one of the most important elements, a central pillar (to use a construction metaphor) of the world of kink.

Kink is the wider classification.  All of the many and varied protocols and play associated with BDSM are part of the world of kink.  But, not all kink is BDSM.  To my mind, BDSM is a sub-category of kink for that very reason.  All things BDSM fit inside the kink umbrella, while some kink activities aren’t considered part of BDSM.

Wikipedia actually defines BDSM this way:

“A continuum of erotic practice and expression involving the consensual use of restraint, intense sensory stimulation, and fantasy power role-play.”

When viewing things from a relativistic view, I figure that all human behavior is really part of a continuum.  So, only the last half of the definition seems very useful to my eyes.  The consensual use of restraint, intense sensory stimulation, and fantasy power role-play defines BDSM.  That covers activities ranging from playful restraint and light sensation play (like tickling) – to spanking and role-playing – and from there on to more intense activities like suspension, mummification, flogging, and whipping.

Some fantasies go still further still to the extreme.  For instance, there are entire online communities devoted to people who fantasize about being crushed.  Other groups are devoted to rape and force fantasies.  If you join FetLife, you may very well encounter men who dream of being castrated.  Another group dreams of being subjected to some sort of real medieval torture. I tend to view those sorts of fantasies as being a sub-set of the BDSM world. But, it could be argued that they would be better categorized instead simply as part of the world of kink, as they may not perfectly fit into any of the three subcategories melded together as BDSM.

Odd acronym

BDSM is an odd acronym, in that it is actually three other acronyms joined together. Wikipedia calls such an invention a compound acronym.

B/D or B&D stands for bondage and discipline. Individuals who take part in B/D derive erotic pleasure from activities like being restrained (bondage) and/or being spanked (discipline.)
D/s or D&S stands for dominance and submission. Individuals who practice D/s derive erotic pleasure from activities where one individual relinquishes authority or control to another.
S/M or S&M stands for sadism and masochism or sadomasochism. Individuals who practice S/M derive erotic pleasure from the giving and receiving of strong stimuli, sensations most of us might otherwise consider to be painful or intense.

These days, I prefer to identify with, and place myself under the larger umbrella of “kink”, but when I was in my 20’s and 30’s, I would certainly have told you I was into B&D (not to be confused with D&D, which I was geeky enough to play too) as well as S&M.  Language is a transient thing, and because of that, the way we define ourselves changes and evolves over time. I’ve also found that as a kinky person, my identity and interests are evolving right along with language, at the very same time, seemingly together, and I have no way of really knowing how one affects the other’s development.

When it is all said and done, the term BDSM encompasses a very wide range of activities and subcultures under a single banner. The term kink encompasses and even wider range of cultures and activities under an even larger umbrella. Because these artificial groupings are a relatively recent phenomenon, only time will tell whether such encompassing terms remains useful or meaningful a decade or two in the future.

Welcome 2014 ~ Happy New Year

Welcome 2014 ~ Happy New Year

A New Year’s Wish

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
~ Mark Twain

It’s the dawn of another new year, with all the fresh possibilities that go along with a new beginning.  I’ve got plans for Serafina (I always do!) in the New Year.  Of course I rarely tell her of my plans, those kinds of things are kept on a need to know basis round these parts.  When Serafina needs to know, she will!

What are your plans for 2014?  Your hopes?  Your dreams?  And, most importantly, what can I do to help them come true?

All kidding around aside, my darling slave/wife Serafina and I would like to wish everyone a happy, healthy, fruitful, and (most of all) a kinky new year.  Here’s to making everyone’s hopes and dreams, fantasies and desires, all come true.  Together, in 2014, in the spirit of always striving to learn and grow, we shall continue our delicious and delightful explorations of the joy of kink.  We hope you do too!

happy-new-year-clipart

Michael Samadhi ~ 1/1/2014