Wednesday, January 30, 2008

What's On the Menu?

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Friday, January 25, 2008

The Mad King

Welcome to my home! Enter freely of your own will and leave some of the naughty thoughts you bring (to paraphrase Dracula's line from the sumptuous Coppola version - I reckoned it would be an appropriately dramatic entrance).

I'm in my late twenties and live in Munich, Germany. In "normal life", I study history and philosophy with a passion. This blog, however, is dedicated to a darker, more unusual kink of mine: erotic spanking and corporal punishment. Under the pseudonym Ludwig, I will write about my own experiences and friends in the community, about movies and books, about fantasies and philosophical ramblings on the subject of spanking, flagellantism and BDSM.

In this first post of mine, I won't tell you more about myself, but I'd like to write about why I chose the name Ludwig and the strange title for the blog (which you probably can't pronounce, let alone translate, unless you're German - "Rohrstockschnitzelwhat?"). It's always an interesting question: what is in a name? My answer might reveal more about me than any random detail of my everyday life.

My nickname is a reference to Ludwig II. (1845-1886), who was King of Bavaria from the early age of 18 to his mysterious death some twenty years later. I didn't pick it for the pompous "royalty" value, but because he was a very fascinating guy. Ludwig was an eccentric and somewhat disturbed man with a passion for daydreaming and romantic flights of fancy. He is best remembered as the patron of composer Richard Wagner and for the extravagant "fantasy castles" he built. The most famous of them, Neuschwanstein ("Swan Stone palace"), became the inspiration for the Sleeping Beauty castle in Disneyland. That's not very BDSM, is it? But bear with me.

What always intrigued me about Ludwig is that he just refused to be a man of his time. He felt out of place in the Victorian Age with its "English machinery" like steam trains and textile factories. Ludwig would have much preferred to be a Medieval emperor, a French king during the ancien regime or a Turkish sultan. So, he simply acted out his fantasies! He built palaces in the exotic architectural styles he admired and ordered his servants to play the roles of "Germanic warriors" or "harem dancers".

Ironically, he was also a man ahead of his time, because the castles that once ruined Ludwig's treasury are now very profitable tourist attractions. Wagner's late operas (sorry, Richard, "music dramas") are regarded as some of the finest examples of romanticism. Of course, most of Ludwig's contemporaries didn't see it that way. There was much speculation about the sanity of the reclusive "mad king" and he was officially declared incapable of executing his governmental powers in 1886. Ludwig's death a few months later, when he drowned under controversial circumstances in Lake Starnberg, didn't help to clear things up - it's still debated whether it was an accident, murder, or suicide. What can be said for sure is that his legacy is very much alive in Bavaria today, and that many look upon him with a mix of admiration and puzzlement as the proverbial "fairy tale king".

(For the movie buffs among you, there is an opulent
Ludwig film by Italian director Luchino Visconti, and a much weirder (but interesting) German one named Requiem for a Virgin King. Both are very watchable, but the German title might be hard to get these days.)

I may not be quite that eccentric, even though I live just a few miles from the lake where Ludwig drowned. But I've always felt sympathy for the mad king, and not only because he generously sponsored one of my favourite composers. As a devotee of erotic corporal punishment (a BDSM person, a kinky guy, a spanko or whatever you want to call it), I also often feel out of place in a society that is predominantly "vanilla" and still regards what we do with some suspicion. Like any other spanko, I have a rich fantasy life that I yearn to act out. And I have a special fondness for the art made in our community, the films and stories. Since I happen to be a Bavarian as well, the choice of nickname came naturally for me.

The name of the blog, "Rohrstockpalast", could be translated as "caning palace". It sounds somewhat less corny in my native language than it does in English. A bit of schtick is intended - I've always regarded erotic spanking as something that should be fun, above all things, even and especially when we're talking about cane welts and broken skin. No schtick, no risk, no fun. And while "Rohrstockpalast" started as a joke, I've come to like the name. Names are like politicians, whores and ugly buildings - they grow respectable with age (if you recognize the movie where I stole that line, you must have seen a lot of neo-noir). In case you can't pronounce the word, just think of it as "Ludwig's blog".

It's obviously a reference to the castles Ludwig built, but also to the beautiful things which we all construct in our minds. As kinky people, we share the same passion (well, it's all roughly in the same ballpark, let's say). But our erotic fantasies also make each one of us unique. The variety and wonder (and sometimes the sheer weirdness) of what makes us tick never ceases to amaze me. And sometimes, with a bit of good fortune, we can turn these dream-stuff castles from "within our heads" into stone. Or into well-whipped, reddened flesh.

The image is from "The Warlock's Revenge" by RGE / Lupus Pictures. Note the fairy tale theme and the gentleman with the crown. Fitting, isn't it?

And with this joyous sight, I'm ending my introduction. I suppose it tells you quite a lot about me in its way. Next time, I'll let you know what, exactly, I want to write about here on the subject of erotic corporal punishment - the short version is, a good bit of everything.