me on the bottom


You know when you get A Great Idea, and it sounds like the best thing ever, and you can’t wait to implement it?

And then it falls…flat? Not falls flat like, say, the Edsel (no, I’m not that old; I just read a lot and one day hope to appear on Jeopardy [seriously, I’d love to go on Jeopardy, but mostly just to poke fun at the way Alex Trebek pronounces foreign and foreign-sounding words with such enthusiastic authenticity]). But a disappointing follow-through nonetheless.

At a recent party, T. was in full top mode, and pulled out 3 dice he had bought at the comic-book store (I’m the comics reader; he was just along for the ride and doesn’t really read comics [although I got him hooked on Blue Beetle before it got cancelled]). These weren’t the standard 6-sided dice you see on craps tables or…well, wherever people tend to play dice. (I’m not really a gambler, although I do love $1 blackjack at church festivals.)

These were gaming dice, of the kind used for Dungeons & Dragons and similar games. Neither T. nor I are gamers; he bought the dice mostly because he thought they looked cool, and then he hatched a scheme to use them during kinky play (as opposed to gaming play). One die was 20-sided, one was 8-sided, and one was 4-sided.

The basic idea was this: he laid out 8 beat-y implements (floggers, riding crop, etc.); I rolled the 8-sided die to pick which implement he would use on me. The 20-sided die determined how many strokes I would receive with the aforementioned implement, and the 4-sided die was used to determine if the strokes would be to my front side or back side (odd numbers were front and even numbers were back).

Out of all of the beat-y implements, I really only “like” the floggers. A good flogging leaves me loopy and stoned. The riding crop I can tolerate, but it’s not my favorite. The other evil toys (a plastic “magic wand” from a kid’s magic set, a short heavy lucite rod that I dubbed the “beat-y stick,” and a short piece of wood cut in the basic shape of a hairbrush, but without bristles, bearing the label “bald man’s hairbrush” — it was a goofy thing we found in a souvenir shop on vacation, and we knew it needed to be in our toy bag) were things that really freaking HURT me; it’s hard for me to take them, and when I do, it usually has to involve a good warm-up.

The problem with the execution of the dice game was this: it doesn’t allow for any warm-up. I’ve seen bottoms/subs/slaves who don’t need to be warmed up for impact play; they can jump right in and take one hell of a paddling. I, however, am not like that. So when my roll of the dice came up 8 strokes with the magic wand on my front side, it hurt in ways that I could hardly handle.

We kept on with the dice game for several rounds, until I finally told T. that the lack of warm-up was killing me. We moved to a spanking bench and he spent a long time flogging me — mostly florentine flogging, which I love. I was, in fact, loopy and endorphin-stoned when he was finished, which hasn’t happened to me in a long time. I slept very, VERY well that night.

I don’t think the dice game is bad, or something we’ll never do again. I just think that if we do it in the future — at least with me as the bottom — I’ll need warm-up first, and then we can move into the dice game.

It’s something that I think would also work well as a punishment. T. and I don’t have the kind of a relationship that involves rules and punishment, but if we did, I like the mindfuck-y aspect of the dice game forcing the bottom to be the one to “choose” her punishment.

This was the first time we tried the dice game, so neither of us knew how it would play out; we certainly weren’t expecting our most mind-blowing scene ever (though we also weren’t expecting a failure). And I wouldn’t call it a failure, either. I’ll just call it beta-testing.

The human body is a wondrous and strange thing. Here’s an example: my ass is the wimpiest ass known to ass-kind. Many people I’ve talked to say that, when their ass is being flogged/paddled/spanked, they are able to take more pain/stronger hits as the scene goes on. Not me. My ass gets more and more sore and tender as the scene progresses, and I can’t take more pain.

This is weird to me, because it seems like my ass should be a little bit tough. I sit on it all day, for one thing (my logic being that, since my ass supports my body weight — not insubstantial — all day, it should be hale and hearty). But no, I have a weak ass.

My vulva/labia, on the other hand, can take all kinds of evil sensations. And I would have thought that the general ladyparts area would be very tender. Apparently not. Or at least, not mine.

The other night, I asked T. if he would clamp nasty things on my tender bits (that might be a verbatim quote). He happily agreed.

First he put the leather cuffs on me and then ran a rope through their D-rings and through the headboard of the bed. Hands and arms out of the way: check. Then he tied my legs in a frog-tie and attached the spreader bar, so that my legs were held open. Pesky knees out of the way: check. Then he added a cloth gag (made from an old t-shirt; I have big time jaw issues and really can’t handle any other gag without serious nonerotic pain). Yelps and protests muffled: check.

For fairness’ sake — to, you know, make sure that all my parts were equally tormented — he put tweezer clamps on my nipples and tugged on them for a while. There may or may not have been grumbling from behind the gag….

Then he put racheting spring clamps on my outer labia (4 clamps total, eventually). Pinchy and tight and really, really nice.

He twisted them and tugged on them, racheted a couple of them down even tighter (more grumbling may or may not have come from behind the gag), and then he decided that the handles of the clamps were top-heavy and falling over, so he tied twine around them and then tied that off to the rope already around my legs, making sure that the twine was pulling on the clamps.

More torment ensued, with more twisting and tugging on the clamps, and eventually T. pulled out the Hitachi Magic Wand and ran it along the clamps, letting it vibrate them. The vibrations were both fantastic, in the stimulating sense, and terrible, because they made the clamps — which were already racheted down tight AND being pulled to the sides by the twine — wiggle and twist around more.

Evil. Naughty, delicious, evil.

(The subject line isn’t actually a joke, although it sounds like one. I just think there should be a collective noun for kinky folk, like a flock of birds, a pride of lions, a [___] of kinky people. You know?)

Yeah, I know it’s been quite a while since I’ve posted anything. It’s been one of those summers. T. and I went away on vacation, and I returned to face a shitstorm at work (which is still continuing, alas), and that’s been pretty much all that’s consumed my energy and brain power for the past few months. Not very exciting.

However, T. and I recently went to a weekend-long kink event, and I thought that maybe I should drag the blog out of the mothballs and talk about it. (Hence my subject line — there were more than 100 people there [at least, it sure SEEMED that way at the play party!], but you get my point and my crappy attempt at a joke.)

The event offered 23 classes, in 5 time slots (so you could go to as many as 5 classes throughout the day) loosely arranged into tracks — i.e., you could attend all classes on rope, or all classes on lifestyle issues, etc. Because I’m a dilettante, I just jumped around and took classes on a few different themes.

I went to 2 classes that Graydancer taught — military-style bondage as well as his pretty well-known The Defining Moment class. (Completely unrelated to the class material, I’m in awe of how quickly he can tie. It’s really impressive, and just fun to watch.) The classes themselves were really helpful in giving me a new way to think about my kink, and how to create scenes that work for T. *and* I.

(And if that last bit doesn’t make sense — you may be asking yourself, “Why *wouldn’t* a scene work for both the top and the bottom?” — then I envy you your relationship(s) with your partner(s). There are quite a few scenes — mostly when I top — where I feel like I’m the one serving T., and *he’s* the one in charge, even though he’s the one tied up and being tormented.

And that sentiment deserves its own post, honestly. The bottom obviously deserves enjoyment out of a scene; I’m not saying that he doesn’t. But when I, as the top, feel like I’m not in charge, there’s something wrong.

I also realize that there are scenes where the bottom is *ordered* to tie up/torment the top; sometimes a top just wants to be beaten. And that might be the way we need to shift our view of our scenes. But that’s not what this entry is about, dang it!)

(Yes, the previous 3 paragraphs were a parenthetical. I’m verbose.)

Anyway, back to the classes I attended. The 2 that Graydancer presented were great. I should send him an e-mail to tell him that.

Another class I attended was “The Primal Self” in BDSM, presented by Jack Rinella. It was exactly the kind of nerdy, intellectual topic that I love, but it was also really relevant to life as a kinky person.

There was also a class on switches! This isn’t always the case at a kink event, no matter how large, although it seems like more and more, the bigger events at least have a “switches’ roundtable.” Anyway, this class was presented by Coral Mallow (that link is NOT from the event I attended), who is, as her bio states, a force of nature. She talked about the myriad ways that a person can be a switch, including gender, and how that might play — and/or change — at any given time.

The last class I took was for “novice” doms. At this point in my life as a switch, I still don’t have the kind of experience or confidence I’d like when I’m the one on top, so I figured that this class would help me, or at least point me in the right direction. And it did. (Side note: I’m always tickled by doms who are soft-spoken and unassuming, because they’re a delight compared to the loud, overbearing folks who seem to think that being loud and overbearing is what makes one a dom.) (And the dom who presented the class was a soft-spoken, unassuming guy, definitely. And yet his entire demeanor made it clear that he had a spine of steel. Metaphorically.)

The play party was one of the most well-planned ones I’ve ever attended. The venue where the event was held had enough space for there to be a HUGE main room for the party, as well as a side room and a separate “sensual space” play area. (I thought that “sensual space” was code for “lots of fucking on the floor!” but my cynical side was proven entirely wrong, and I am chagrined that I made that assumption.) The “sensual space” was MUCH quieter than the large play area, even though it had the same kind of play equipment that the larger space had (meaning, there were a lot of similar scenes — suspensions [including a self-suspension that BLEW ME AWAY], flogging, rope bondage, etc.); the difference was just in the intent of the space. It was supposed to be quieter and more intimate, and the people who played there adhered to that.

The large play area was like a CARNIVAL. I mean, really. There’s no other word for it. It was full, but not so crowded that it was hard to walk through. All the equipment was constantly in use, with a lot of really creative, high-energy scenes.

Since I don’t want to give away detail that isn’t mine to give, I’ll just list some of the types of play that was going on in the large dungeon: suspensions, takedowns, fire play, flogging, single-tail scenes, foot worship, rough impact play, spanking, caning — and that’s just what *I* saw; I’m sure there was lots more.

T. told me before the event that he wanted to be the top for the party, which was fine with me. The only problem was, there was so much going on around us, plus the music and all the other noises one hears in a playspace, that he just couldn’t concentrate enough to really top me. He gave it his level best, and tied me to a cross and flogged me a little bit, but he just couldn’t get his head into the game. (He started on my front side, and when he turned me around and immediately started Florentine (double) flogging my ass, without warming up, I *knew* he couldn’t concentrate.)

Honestly, I was okay with the premature discontinuation of our scene. I was exhausted after getting up at 6 a.m. to drive to the event, and a full day of classes. Don’t get me wrong; when we walked in to the party, I was fully on board to get a beating. But I was fine with stopping, too. I got to watch some amazing scenes I wouldn’t have otherwise gotten to see, and I got to socialize with people I hadn’t seen in months, so that was all good, too.

And now that we’re home, I’m fighting off a cold. Honestly, every time I go to a large event, I bring home some sort of plague.

But other than the plague, it was a very good event, and I’m glad we went.

(This could alternatively be titled, “If Teppycat is Bottoming, It MUST Be Time to Talk to Her!”)

After my car’s iPod adapter was recently resurrected (yeah, first-world problems), I was listening to Graydancer‘s podcast, Ropecast, on the way home from work today. One of the things he was talking about with a group of people was play party etiquette, and it reminded me of what has been a constant theme in my kinky public life: if I’m bottoming at a play party, *someone* WILL come up and start talking to me, my top, or both of us.

WTF, right??? I thought everyone knew that actually talking to people WHILE THEY’RE IN A SCENE is uncool. Unbelievably un-fucking-cool, man. But I apparently have a sign tatttooed on my ass that says, “Please, come talk to me; why would I want to achieve subspace or any sort of intimacy with my partner?”

Literally every party I’ve ever played at — except one, which I will describe below — when I’ve been the bottom, people walk right up and start talking to me. Once, at a play party at an event (which means, yeah, a BIG play party, where you’d think people would be adhering to the rules lest they get bounced by the DMs), I was bottoming to T. He had me tied with my wrists above my head, attached to the crossbar of a pillory post. Because I’m self-conscious and have body image issues, I had on underpants (but nothing else). I have a lower-back tattoo (not to be trendy [although it’s nobody’s business *why* I have it]; rather, I had back surgery 5 years ago, and the tattoo serves to partially cover the scar and to also re-claim that part of my body).

While T. was pausing to switch floggers, someone walked up to him and asked him if he would PULL DOWN MY UNDERPANTS SO SHE COULD SEE THE REST OF MY TATTOO.

I think my eyeballs fell out of my head. WHO DOES THAT?!? That’s so fucking rude. Because (1) hello, we’re PLAYING, HERE; and (2) you want to see my tattoo, you come around to my face and ask ME (I have big-time boundary issues when it comes to my body, although I will grant that, if someone had never met me before that event, and then the first thing they saw of me was to watch me bottoming, it wouldn’t be an absurd conclusion to think that I was owned, and the appropriate person to ask would be my master).

But still. Even if I were owned, you still don’t walk up and ask to see someone’s slave’s tattoo while the master is changing floggers!

(Interestingly — or, really, NOT — when *I* top T. at parties, NO ONE comes up to talk to me or him. I have a very effective “Do NOT fuck with me or I will KILL YOU DEAD” demeanor. Plus, I don’t make eye contact with anyone while I’m topping, because I’m just hyper-focused like that.)

As for the party that was the exception, where no one walked up to try to talk to either of us during the scene: I had grumbled at length to T. before the scene about the fact that people always interrupt, and I felt like putting up a sign that said “Stay the Fuck Away!” Because T. is a nicer person than I am, we compromised and, on the back of a chair that was between us and the rest of the party, taped a sign that said, “Do Not Talk To The Animals Or They’ll Bite! You Have Been Warned!”

Worked like a charm. But, seriously? It shouldn’t take a sign, you know?

The other day, I was listening to the Ropecast (Graydancer’s podcast about shibari and other kinky things), and much to my delight, Midori was a guest. She and Graydancer talked about a variety of topics, including her “Elements of Suffering” performance.

In describing “Elements of Suffering,” Midori talked about the Japanese cultural virtue of enduring. She didn’t elaborate on the reasons that enduring is a Japanese virtue; she just explained that it’s a common theme. And then she related that back in to her “Elements of Suffering” performance, talking about the idea of enduring hardship (or suffering).

When I first started reading books about BDSM (thank you, Amazon.com, for making it easy for shy kinksters to get their hands on good reading material!), one of the first books I read was Janet Hardy and Dossie Easton’s New Bottoming Book. In it, they tell the reader to think about what it is that he or she wants to get out of bottoming. In other words, what are you looking for, what do you want to achieve — why are you doing this?

It wasn’t a question I could answer right away; certainly not until I got involved with other kinky people and started playing at parties. Even then, I was just trying to learn everything I could, experience everything I could (or what I was willing to experience), and see what I liked.

Figuring out why I liked it could come later.

And, eventually, what I realized was that, when I bottom, what I want is to endure. I want to take the flogging/beating/pain and get through it, get past it, and see what’s on the other side. (I also want to be praised for taking the pain, to be told I’m a good girl, but that’s not my primary motivator in bottoming.)

This is very much in contrast with T.’s goal in bottoming; he very often wants to be broken, to be pushed to the point where he can’t take the pain any more. And as much as I’ve gone there with him, as his top, it’s not something I want to experience as a bottom.

Neither way is “right,” of course; when it comes to kink, there’s only what’s right for any given person. And it’s endlessly fascinating to me to see just how many permutations there can be, how many different ways people have to embrace and express their kink.

So, last night’s party. I got my ass beaten well and thoroughly. And I was stubborn and didn’t want to call yellow to get T. to tone it down, so I’m really fucking sore today, and I have massive sub drop.

It was pretty basic beating: me, bent over a bench, and T. just pounding on my ass, upper back, the backs of my thighs, and, oh, MY ASS some more. He alternated various floggers (thuddy deerskin, sting-y owie rubber) with a riding crop and his own evil hands (in leather gloves). He warmed me up, but it was one of those nights where my ass just couldn’t take a lot of pain.

[I have a weird, weird ass. Most other subs/bottoms I know are able to take *more* pain as they warm up and get into the beating, rather than *less* pain. Not me. It’s like my ass has a pre-set amount of pain it can take, and then it’s finished.]

I tend to not be extremely vocal when I’m bottoming, even when I’m getting beaten. I’ll yelp once in a while, or make some other noise of approval/discomfort, but in general I’m a pretty quiet bottom.

Not last night. Because everything just *hurt,* I kept actually saying “Ow,” repeatedly. And loudly. More like yelling. And I got kind of irritated with T., because he knows how I bottom, and knows that I don’t get vocal, so I assumed that when he realized how vocal I was being, he’d take that as a cue to either (1) dial back how hard he was hitting, or (2) move to a different target, rather than hitting the same spot over and over and over. But he didn’t (at least, not as quickly as I would have liked).

I couldn’t tell if he was *trying* to get me to call yellow, or not. (And I’m well aware that “Ow” is not a safeword.)

I’m a big believer in safewords (I wrote about this a few entries back), but I *don’t* consider safewords to be an excuse for the top to ignore all other signs of distress. I consider safewords to be a failsafe, a last resort. But if you’re my top, and I’m reacting in a different way to a type of play we’ve done countless times before, maybe you should stop and think about WHY THAT IS.

We played for about 45 minutes, and I did call yellow once, when T. just wouldn’t stop with the really hard strokes to my ass, and I asked him to please leave my ass alone for a while. And he acquiesced, but I was still annoyed that he wasn’t reading my reactions as quickly and clearly as I thought he should. I was starting to think he *was* aware that I was reacting in an unusual manner (for me), but was choosing to ignore it. (He wasn’t. Choosing to ignore it, that is.)

I was completely endorphin-stupid when we were finished, and I ate all the cake in the WORLD. I’m starving today — T. already made us a huge brunch with cheese-o-riffic eggs, potatoes, turkey bacon (for me), english muffins, strawberries, and coffee; still, I feel like I could eat anything that isn’t actively decomposing. And I have big time sub drop. Stupid endorphins.

T. and I talked this morning about the “Hey, did you notice that I was reacting in a way I *never had before*? Then why didn’t you DO SOMETHING about it?” issue. And he did say that, yeah, he noticed that I was reacting in an atypical manner, but he didn’t think it was cause for alarm.

And I said no, not cause for alarm per se, but damn close enough to make me think about ending the scene, which ruins the fun for me AND you, buddy. So he said he’d pay closer attention to my reaction in the future, and adjust accordingly (like alternating really hard strokes with some less-hard ones, instead of all hard, all the time).

Man, my ass is SORE.

On edit: I’m afraid that I made T. sound like a dick in this entry, and that’s not at all what I mean. A lot of my irritation was because *I* thought he should have picked up on the nuances of my reactions with telepathic clarity. And that’s not fair on my part. Also, I was really reluctant to call yellow, because I feel like a big wimp whenever I call yellow. Again, that’s not fair to T., when it’s an issue of *my* stubborn pride.

He also wasn’t just whomping on one area of my ass over and over and over again for long stretches of time; it just felt like it to my ass. Frankly, all it takes is more than one hard stroke in a row to the same area, and that’s enough to qualify (to my ass) as “over and over.” He *did* move to different targets, and *did* alternate how hard/soft he was hitting; it just didn’t seem like it happened quickly enough to make my ass happy.

My upper back can take a hell of a lot more abuse than my ass can, which, again, is freaking weird.

Anyway. T. wasn’t being a dick; he was being a top. He wasn’t being telepathic, but then, that wasn’t part of the scene.

One of the local groups is having a play party tonight.

T. has informed me that he’s feeling toppy.

::shiver::

Full report later.

[edit] I think I’ll do some yoga, so that I can move all my parts tomorrow….

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