Friday, April 30, 2010

Kaelah's Corner (Apr 2010):
I Don't Want To Get Hurt

(Not a picture to show your vanilla friends?)

Last month Kaelah's Corner was about the question whether to tell vanilla friends about one's kink. I told you that I'm usually very open about my kinky life and have talked to many friends about my journey. But of course there are also some friends who don't know, either because they aren't that close or because they might be irritated being confronted with my rather uncommon sexual preference. As I also wrote last month, today my urge of sharing my kinky journey with my vanilla friends has become less strong, since I now have Ludwig, some kinky friends and still some close vanilla friends to talk to.

But a bit less than one year ago, when I was just about starting to write my first blog post, that was still different. And so, my enthusiasm for my kinky journey and my usual openness got me into real trouble one day. Actually, it was the first time (and the last one so far) Ludwig was very angry at me. Which finally led to my first (kind of) domestic discipline spanking. So, what had happened?

There was a party at my place involving about twenty friends of mine. Ludwig had met some of them before, with others it was the first encounter that day. The situation wasn't too easy for him, given how strictly he separates his kinky from his vanilla life, knowing that some of the people knew exactly how we met while others just knew something about common interests and internet chats. But the party went well and I was happy to see Ludwig getting along fine with my friends.

Two of the party guests were Eileen and Neil, a sweet and very open vanilla couple, with whom we had done my first-ever private sexy photo shoot a few days earlier [note from Ludwig: Eileen and Neil are not into BDSM, but I'd say that they are comfortably beyond vanilla!]. We had taken hundreds of pictures, among them the ones Ludwig and I later used for the Where No Man Has Spanked Before post. When I had looked at the results, it had been the first time in my life when I felt like an attractive woman. So, I was very eager to show the pictures to some other friends whom I had told about the shoot. Suddenly I had the "great" idea that I could quickly show them the photos on my computer, which was in another room, so none of the other party guests would notice. So, the tragedy took its course...

When I asked those I had in mind for my photo presentation whether they wanted to see the pictures, others heard it. "Oh, you've made nice photos? Can we see them, too?" they asked. I knew that Eileen and Neil probably wouldn't have a problem with showing the photos to others. I talked to them and they said it was okay. They're not kinky, so their pictures were sexy and involved some fetish props, but I didn't associate them with spanking. Unfortunately, I forgot about two things: First of all, we hadn't only shot pictures of Eileen and me. Ludwig was on some of the photos, too. Secondly, Ludwig's and my pictures weren't only about sexy dresses. Some of them showed explicit spanking scenes! But in the enthusiasm of the moment, I had forgotten about those. So I agreed, glad to get the chance to show the "innocent" sexy pictures I was so proud of to even more people.

Within a few seconds the story about the photos spread among all the guests and suddenly twenty people were following me to my computer. Ludwig sat in the party room, completely stunned. On our way to the computer, Eileen asked me whether it was okay with Ludwig that I showed the pictures. I, still not seeing the trouble I was about to get myself (and, even more importantly, Ludwig) in, answered with a smile: "Well, at least we don't show one of his videos." Again, I must have spoken quite loud, because one of the guests following us turned around and asked Ludwig: "What kind of videos is she talking about?"

Everyone who knows Ludwig and his paranoia concerning the separation of his kinky and his vanilla life a bit can easily imagine the state of mind he was in by now! Today, we can both laugh about it, but at the time he was equally stunned and outraged. It took him a few moments to overcome the first shock and to follow us.

Meanwhile, I was sitting in front of the computer, surrounded by curious party guests, trying to open the folder containing the pictures. Some of my friends, who knew what kind of photos I was about to show, had also realised the possible threat by now. They tried to stop me by asking whether I was really sure I wanted to show such "personal" pictures to all of the guests. Still I didn't see any problem with my guests seeing photos of me dressed up in sexy clothes. Then Ludwig entered the room, not saying a word. But I immediately realised that he was incredibly angry. I was shocked by the intensity of the anger I sensed. It took me a few more seconds until, while still trying to open the folder with the pictures, I began to see the danger. But how could I get out of that situation?

Fortunately, my old computer rescued me. It simply needed incredibly long to open the folder which, as I already mentioned, contained hundreds of pictures. I used the time to tell the people around me I had just realised that some of the pictures might be a bit too explicit and that there were too many of them, anyway. I asked them to leave me alone for a few minutes, so that I could prepare a slide show for them containing a few different good photos.

When the guests where gone, Ludwig sat next to me, still very quiet. "You are very angry, aren't you?" I asked him. "I just wanted to show them the pictures I'm so proud of. Okay, some of them are fetish photos and the people might also realise that they've got something to do with spanking. But, you know, most of them know about it, anyway. And I'm not ashamed of my kink. Don't you want me to show those sexy pictures of me to my friends?" "They are our pictures. We've made them together. And you've just passed me over", Ludwig answered. "And do you really think it is a good idea to show explicit spanking photos to all of the guests, even to those who aren't such close friends of yours? Are you absolutely sure they wouldn't gossip about it? Are you sure all of them could deal with it?"

I wasn't. Only then did I realise that many of the pictures showed Ludwig and me and that this wasn't only about me, it was about us. I wasn't used to the fact that my decisions now also affected my partner, and I was suddenly very sorry for having passed Ludwig over. Moreover, I was very sad that one of my rare attempts to be more spontaneous and not to miss out on all the fun by planning too much turned out to be that stupid!

[Note from Ludwig: I was 99% sure that all of the party guests were okay, that there wouldn't be any negative repercussions down the road from any of them, even the more puritan ones. Of course, in my philosophy, 1% of remaining doubt still means that it is better not to show the pictures, period. Beyond that, I was angry about the fact that my consent hadn't been asked for, that I was passed over. That hurt.]

I selected some of Eileen's and some of my pictures, sexy ones, but none containing any spanking props. Then I called the guests and showed them the slide show. I think they liked the photos, but found them quite harmless and not worth the chaos. It didn't matter too much to me in that situation, anyway. I just wanted Ludwig to forgive me, to take me into his arms and to tell me that he still loved me. Sweet Neil suggested that Eileen and he could take care of my guests, so that Ludwig and I could use the time for some "reconciliation sex". That sounded good, but I knew it wouldn't work. I had to wait until after the party.

So, I sat next to Ludwig, hoping for his anger to fade. He behaved quite normally, chatting with the guests, and no one would have suspected that anything was amiss. But I could sense how outraged he still was under the surface, and it hurt me and made me feel very insecure and afraid. One by one the guests left. Finally the party was over and Ludwig and I were alone.

It was late and we went to bed. But I couldn't go to sleep like that. I'm of the opinion that one should never go to sleep with an unsolved quarrel with one's mate. One never knows, maybe one of the partners doesn't wake up the next morning, and the one left behind has to live with that situation for the rest of his/her life. I told Ludwig about it and that I felt his anger and that I was very sorry. I said I never meant to hurt him, that I had just been happy about the pictures and wanted to be a bit spontaneous and to share a part of my new life I was so happy about with my friends. Ludwig reassured me that he still loved me. He didn't want to be unfair because of the anger still boiling inside him and told me he just needed some time to calm down. So, we went to sleep.

The next day I had an emergency in my family. Ludwig was at my side and we had a busy day. Then, in the evening, we cuddled on the bed and talked through the events of the day before. Ludwig explained to me that he had been angry for two reasons: First of all, I hadn't asked him whether it was okay to show our pictures to the party guests. Secondly, and even worse from his point of view, I nearly got myself into trouble with my spontaneous idea. I told him how sorry I was and that I didn't want to hurt him. And Ludwig reassured me that his anger had already faded and that his love for me was as strong as ever.

After everything was cleared up verbally I was a bit unsure what to do. As I wrote in my Anderswelt post, I'm absolutely not into domestic discipline. On the other hand, since we are a kinky couple and since Ludwig likes to connect kinky play to real life events, not using the events for a spanking scene seemed somehow wrong. Ludwig showed a great sense for what I needed by asking me what I thought would be a proper "punishment". (I'm using the quotation marks because for me, despite of the real life background, we're not talking about a real punishment but about kinky play.)

[Note from Ludwig: I'm not into domestic discipline, either, but indeed, this was too good to pass up. Also, from what I remember, it was you who suggested that you should get spanked for what happened at the party. I didn't insist on it.]

The number forty occurred on my mind. Everything less seemed ridiculous, everything more seemed impossible to take. "There have been two misconducts", I finally said, "and there were twenty people involved. Two multiplied with twenty is forty. So, I think it should be forty strokes." Ludwig agreed and started to think about which implement he should use. Two implements seemed to fit: The cane and the dreaded flogger that hurts very much but doesn't produce a lot of marks. Since I had an appointment with my dermatologist only a few days later Ludwig thought about delaying the "punishment" spanking until after that. But I desperately wanted to get that spanking out of the way and asked him to get over with it right now. Ludwig agreed and decided to give me twenty strokes with each of the implements in question.

Before we got up Ludwig told me: "I somehow would prefer to just cuddle with you right now, you know." This reassured me that Ludwig still loved me and cared for me. Nevertheless I was really scared when I prepared myself for the spanking. Ludwig usually spanks quite hard, anyway. How bad must it be now that I really had done something that made him feel upset? Would I be able to deal with it, given that real background?

We went to a room in which we had never played before and Ludwig told me to strip. I did as I was told and soon stood there completely nude. Ludwig ordered me to take a position in front of him, bent over, hands on the seat of a sofa. He started with the flogger. Twenty strokes for passing him over. The strokes were hard but bearable. Then came the cane and the twenty strokes for getting myself into trouble, the offence that was even worse from Ludwig's point of view. Between the strokes Ludwig constantly talked to me, telling me that he wanted to protect me and that I should be more careful and think twice the next time. The constant verbal contact meant a lot to me and reassured me that Ludwig was very much concerned about my well-being. The way Ludwig enforced the "punishment" made me feel very safe and cared for.

At one point Ludwig asked me whether I thought that the spanking would help me to remember to be more careful in the future. I honestly replied I didn't believe that a spanking worked for me that way, but that it was the talking that was essential for me. After fourteen cane strokes (again hard, but not over the top) Ludwig told me that he had taken everything into consideration that spoke for a not so hard spanking - the stress I had had, the emergency in my family, the appointment with the dermatologist etc. But the last six strokes would be severe in the hope to remind me to think twice the next time, even if that wasn't something I considered a spanking to be good for. And he wanted me to count them. Again, I obediently followed the instructions. The last six strokes were really harder than the previous ones, but still bearable. When it was over, Ludwig sat down on the sofa and I laid down next to him, the upper part of my body resting on his knees. He held me and petted me and I was very grateful that the "punishment" was over and that Ludwig knew so well what worked for me.

I'm still not into real life domestic discipline. As an adult and a self-reliant woman I neither seek/need someone to educate and control me, nor do I think that getting spanked for misconducts is the right way of seriously dealing with them. Concerning my mistake, talking it through and apologizing for me is the adult way of handling that. That's why I could only do that "punishment" spanking scene after Ludwig had already told me that he had forgiven me and that he still loved me. Because then it wasn't a serious way of making up for my mistake, instead I saw it as the kinky equivalent of "reconciliation sex". It was the final step of our reconciliation process, it showed me how much Ludwig cared for me and my obedience showed him how sorry I was. And it was also the proof that everything between Ludwig and me was okay and normal again.

There might not be a big difference between our scene and the way others live real life domestic discipline. But I think the way I see it and feel about it is a bit different. That way "punishment" sessions and "domestic discipline" really work for me - and I'm very glad to have a partner who has a similar point of view and instinctively knew how to treat me in that special situation when I felt very vulnerable!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Movie Review: The Godfather

Lupus Pictures (released in 2010)

Entire Story In Fewer Words Than Are In This Sentence:
Don't mess with the Russian mob

Victim Appeal:
Five Czech dívkas get their bottoms soundly punished in this newest (as of spring 2010) offering from Lupus Pictures: Ester Slaba, their redhaired long-time star, plays a sadistic schoolteacher who at the end of the story receives a taste of her own medicine. Sara Ronheim, a blonde who I see for the first time here, plays the other main female part, a schoolgirl with a "well-connected" father. The remaining three appear as extra schoolgirls: Michaela Trmotova, with white blonde hair partially dyed pink, Veronika Bartakova, a brunette, and Martina Vavrova, dark-haired and a bit on the chubby side.

The main appeal for me in this one is to see Ester Slaba switching. Aside from bending over for her usual werewolf-style caning (how many has she had on film by now? did anyone keep count?), Ester also tops a great deal here, and she does it very well. Actually, because this is one of those "role reversal" films, one could say that it also includes an MM/M scene. The headmaster of the school, played by Timur, also gets his comeuppance in the end. And although the abuse Timur suffers is (mostly) simulated, the headmaster's fate is even worse than Ester's...

Gratuitous Sadism:
A Russian mafia boss (Alfi Grovio) whose wife has been murdered by rival gangsters fears that his daughter, Lenocka (Sara Ronheim), will be the next in line. To get Lenocka out of harm's way, he enrolls her at a small boarding school for girls. The headmaster and his wife (Timur and Ester Slaba) assure him: "We have a friendly, informal, almost family-like environment." The father, on his part, tells them that he is an entomologist about to go on an expedition. So, he has to give Lenocka into their care in the meantime.

Once he leaves, it quickly becomes clear what the school's definition of "family-like" is: beatings and sexual abuse. We see a scene where Martina Vavrova, fully naked except for her socks and bent over a wooden horse, is caned by the headmaster. Forty vicious, welt-raising strokes are shown on-screen, but it is implied that the thrashing goes on for much longer. Lenocka hears the screams while she is being escorted to her room. She starts to realise what kind of place her unknowing father has left her in.

When the girls are in class writing a test, Ester uses a pretext to punish three of them, including Lenocka. One after the other, they have to bend over the teacher's desk while Ester whacks their behinds with a wooden paddle. The headmaster helps to hold them down. Michaela Trmotova gets 43 strokes, followed by another 43 for Veronika Bartakova (why that number, I wonder?). Sara aka Lenocka is last. After 26 whacks, she jumps up, throws a major screaming fit and refuses to continue: "Leave me alone, you swine! I'll tell my father!" They take her to another room and tie her to the wooden horse, naked down to her socks. The headmaster gives her 42 fast-paced cane strokes and then rapes her from behind (the beating is real, the penetration isn't).

Later, in her schoolgirl uniform again, Lenocka sneaks into the classroom at night and manages to call her father with a mobile phone which she finds in the teacher's desk. She begs him to rescue her. There follows an extended scene where Ester tortures Lenocka and two other girls by making them perform knee bends. They are nude during the gymnastics and Ester has a leather tawse in hand, but she is not using it much except for the occasional "motivational lash". The exercise is demaning enough as it is. Just when Ester has exhausted the girls to the point where they are literally collapsing to the floor, the mafia boss and his henchmen storm the school.

Cue revenge, terror, excruciating pain. The headmaster and his wife find out, the hard way, that the father of their latest victim is no entomologist after all. Ester is violently stripped of her clothes and has to go over her own desk. The mafia boss gives her 53 hard cane strokes while Lenocka cheers him on. Once Ester's bottom is covered in welts, the henchmen go to work on her husband in the next room while Ester has to listen. They tie him to the horse, naked, and burn him with a blowtorch (it's simulated, of course, and mostly happens off-screen). Then they shoot him, and when the crime boss and his daughter leave, it is implied that the henchmen will rape Ester before they leave as well.

Best Reactions:
No one among the spankees shows the restrained, defiantly suffering reactions I like so much. Which is excusable, I suppose, given that the beatings have the usual Lupus-style severity - Ester really leans into it with the wooden paddle, turning the schoolgirls' bottoms a very deep shade of red, and when she gets caned herself at the end, some blood is drawn. I suppose I liked Michaela Trmotova's reactions best. She is fairly hysterical like everyone else, but... nicer somehow. More pitiful, more arousing. I dunno. Watch the movie for yourself.

Best Line:

When the mafia boss instructs his henchmen to take the headmaster to the next room, he tells the poor guy: "Now your ass will taste the Middle Ages!" Actually, they didn't have blowtorches during the Middle Ages as far as I know. But we understand what he is trying to say, don't we?

Nice Psychological Touch:
While the movie's title is obviously inspired by Francis Ford Coppola's timeless masterpiece, I was reminded even more of Dogville by Lars von Trier: daughter of crime boss gets abused and abused and abused even more, until an apocalypse of revenge comes over her tormentors at the end. On second thoughts, comparing this flick to Lars von Trier is probably a bit far-fetched. But it allows me to show off my supreme taste in cinema.

What I'm really trying to say is: I like role reversal stories in spanking movies. This one was done well in terms of premise, and even better in terms of execution. Good stuff.

How Good Is It Really?
Another enjoyable offering from the Czechs. The acting during the quiet scenes is a bit lame and the locations are ordinary (how many times have we seen a classroom in a spanking film?), but this is more than made up for by the sheer intensity of the good parts: The Godfather is a nasty, violent, darkly comical film, even by Lupus standards. While it is definitely not for everyone, fans of the company and their trademark black humour will like it. The frantic finale where the mafiosi storm the school is quite a treat. The CP segments are fairly good throughout. I'm not a huge fan of the wooden paddle myself, but if you are, and if you want to see some really hard whackings with that implement, this is the movie for you.

What You Learned:
This is the first time that I've seen Ester Slaba as a top, and I must say, she is quite formidable. She seems to enjoy the job, her demeanour and tone of voice while bossing around the girls are convincing, and she really dishes it out during the action scenes, too. It shows once again that spanking models are wicked when given the opportunity to switch - obviously, after experiencing as many severe thrashings as Ester, you're not going to be squeamish when you wield the instruments yourself... It's also good to see that she takes her responsibility seriously and manages to be on target, unlike some other Eastern European tops I could mention.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

The Kink of Fasting

In March 2008, only two months after having started my blog, I wrote a post for Easter titled Penitentiam Agite!, which I described as "a little BDSM ode to the Church". A year later, I followed it up with Monks and Roses, about the novel The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco, the movie based on it, and the subject of kinky "monks and nuns" fantasies in general. (Those of you who are familiar with Eco's book will notice that I had already taken the title of the 2008 post from it. The line "Penitentiam agite!", Latin for "Do penitence!", plays an important part in the story.)

As I keep saying, I'm an agnostic and I don't have any strong religious convictions. So I can only attribute my fondness for such "Easter posts" to my historian's interest in religions as cultural phenomena (among them, Christianity has shaped our Western culture the most), and to the aforementioned kinky fantasies which were always among my favourites. Also, when I was a kid, I loved the Jesus films which they showed on TV during the Easter holidays. I still do. Epics like The Greatest Story Ever Told, Ben-Hur, Quo Vadis and The Robe. As silly, heavy-handed and historically inaccurate as they often are, there is a grandeur and a gravitas about them that I just like. It's one of my guilty pleasures. (Mind you, my favourite Jesus film of all is Martin Scorsese's controversial and thought-provoking The Last Temptation of Christ, because it is one of the more intellectually interesting ones. Of course, they never show that one on Easter!)

In the real world, of course, away from Hollywood epics and monks-turned-detectives novels, the Church has been heavily in the news this year in a much more somber context. After other countries like the United States or Ireland, Germany now has its own full-blown Catholic sexual abuse scandal. Hardly a day goes by without one of the local papers printing an article about it, with new horror stories coming to light and new victims stepping forward claiming that they were molested by a priest or beaten at a Catholic school years ago. Corporal punishment is great when it happens between kinky, consenting adults, not so great when it comes in the form of real abuse against minors. So, needless to say, I've been following the news with as much sadness and anger as anyone else.

I might actually do a separate post about it sometime. Even though there is a world of difference between a consensual spanking and a non-consensual one, it is an interesting question how we spankos are supposed to feel about and deal with such real abuse cases. Pandora Blake wrote about it not long ago, under the title, and uncomfortable fantasies. Good stuff as usual from Pandora. I might follow it up with a post about my own thoughts on the matter. But not today. I want this year's Easter post to retain the "lighter", fun feel of its predecessors instead.

I'm a little late for Easter, anyway (I only recently returned from a holiday trip with Kaelah, on which I will elaborate next week, because there are some stories to share). And truth be told, I have to stretch the limits of imagination to come up with something that is both on-topic (i.e. at least vaguely kink-related) and fits into the time. After last year's post, I was already worried about running out of Easter ideas. I had written one post about inquisition-inspired kink in general, one about The Name of the Rose... What was I going to do in 2010?

Well, Kaelah gave me the idea. She is a practising Christian. One who has the occasional atheist anxiety attack, but as I keep telling her: "Doubt is a part of belief." Anyway, in the weeks leading up to Easter (what is called Lent), Kaelah fasts for forty days, as many Christians do. She did that last year, just around the time when we started meeting more regularly and our relationship blossomed, and she was going to do it again this year. So I decided to join her in fasting, as a sort of voluntary agnostic gesture of solidarity. Kaelah's reaction was: "Oh, you really don't have to do that..." But I insisted. "I want to give it a try" I said. I thought it might be an interesting experience for me.

Kaelah's form of fasting is that she abstains from sweets - no sweets, no lemonades, no sugared foods or drinks whatsoever. That wouldn't have been a meaningful sacrifice for me, though. Unlike Kaelah, I don't have a problem not eating sweets. The tough thing for me would be quitting meat. I love meat. I probably eat it much more regularly than is healthy. If you've read my answers to the seven deadly sins meme, where I cracked a joke about "lame-ass hippie vegetarians", you already know that (I really don't like vegetarians much, because they use up all the food for my food). So, in order to make this a proper fasting period, something I would find hard to do, I was going to join the lame-asses and the hippies for forty days.

The very first day, I almost slipped. Not out of meat craving, but out of sheer absent-mindedness. I was at the train station and had just missed a train, so I was going to have to wait 20 minutes for the next one. Ah crap, I thought, I'll just grab a turkey sandwich to pass the time. But as I walked up to the nearest snack stand, I remembered, wait a minute, today is the first day of fasting. Does turkey fall into the meat category as well? Of course it does. I had a mozzarella and tomato sandwich instead.

I was never in danger of forgetting it again. Actually, it turns out that I didn't find it very difficult to give up meat. It was surprisingly easy. I think my usual stubborn nature helped me. I had given up smoking a couple of years ago, going from two packs of cigarettes per day to zero, over night. Through willpower alone, without acupuncture or nicotine patches or any of that nonsense. Now that had been hard. But I pulled it off. By comparison, going meatless was almost a cakewalk. Also, it helps when you have someone to share the experience with (or compete against, if that's the way you look at it). Kaelah seemed to have a harder time without sweets than I did without meat, and that obviously pleased me a great deal.

Truth be told, it did get a bit more taxing as time went on. After two or three weeks, you start thinking about how tasty a nice medium-rare steak would be. Or some lamb chops. Or just a slice of salami for breakfast. You really start missing that. Still, it wasn't nearly as bad as I thought it would be. I got to know a lot of new vegetarian recipes that I wouldn't have tried otherwise, and I looked forward to Sunday every week, that special day when you are allowed to interrupt the fasting. I think that was the main effect on me - as Kaelah said, fasting means that you learn to appreciate the things you normally take for granted. It makes you a bit more thankful and aware, I guess.

Other than that, I can't really say much about it now that it is over. Was it a spiritual experience? I wouldn't say that. Interesting, yes, but not an epiphany of any kind. And seeing how it wasn't all that difficult, it is not something I regard as an achievement to be proud of, either. All that said, I think I will do it again next year.

So, it wasn't spiritual, and I don't think I can deliberately misconstrue it as in any way kinky. That is not how it felt at all. However, on an abstract level, it lead me to the following observation: when you come to think about it, you could divide kinky practices into two broad categories. On the one hand, you have practices that center around giving something to another person (like, a jolly good spanking). On the other hand, there are many practices that center around depriving another person of something. Take bondage, for instance - essentially, it means that you deprive someone of the freedom of movement. Or take erotic asphyxiation, for the crazy freaks among you who are into that - you deprive someone of breath. Or take forced chastity, orgasm deprivation. That is very popular with some kinksters as well (I know my old friend Josephine was into it, although we never tried that kind of play together).

None of the "deprivation kinks" mentioned above is really my thing. I have a certain interest in bondage when it is combined with CP, but not so much on its own. As for erotic ashphyxiation or forced chastity, they don't attract me at all. Generally speaking, when I look at myself as a top, I suppose that I see myself as a "giver" rather than a "depriver". Which is not to say that I can't selfishly enjoy what I am doing - I certainly do that. I greatly enjoy spanking, whipping or caning a woman. But my kink centers around this kind of giving (giving pain, giving stripes), not around taking something away.

Of course, you could argue that CP also involves "taking something away", as in taking away someone's state of comfort or state of "painlessness". You could also argue that bondage, erotic ashphyxiation and forced chastity involve giving, as in giving someone that kind of experience. So it is always a matter of personal interpreation, of how that particular practice feels to you. The point I wish to make is that, to me, CP feels like a predominantly giving activity while the other practices I mentioned feel like predominantly depriving ones. That is my self-image of what I do, and of what I want to do.

I'm not sure what that says about me, if anything. As of yet, my thoughts haven't even coalesced into what you could call an armchair theory. But the fasting got me started, gave me the idea about "giving" versus "depriving" kinks, and I think it is an interesting distinction to examine. Maybe we can tell a fair bit about us as people by looking at which kind of kink we prefer, and why that might be. In any case, I'm not postulating that one is in any way superior to the other. The term "giving" might sound nicer to some people's ears than "depriving", which might sound vaguely wicked. But this is not an association I wish to create. As we all know, giving someone a caning can be a pretty wicked thing... I use the terms in a purely descriptive manner.

All that as it may be, I'm glad that I can eat steaks again. I am also glad to be back at blogging. Blogging wasn't among the things I planned to abstain from during Lent, but it somehow turned out that way (I'm sure you were well entertained by Kaelah during my absence, though). I am still figuring out how to balance my academic work, my relationship and my public kinky existence. It's great to have all three in my life now, but things were certainly a bit less cramped when I only had two.

Also, to be honest, my motivation for writing hasn't been all that high in recent weeks. If there was one thing I didn't want to start the new blogging year with, it's another long-winded debate about the morality or immorality of Eastern European spanking videos. The debates here and elsewhere were certainly necessary in light of the events in video land, they were fairly interesting and (to me) surprisingly civil for the most part. But I've done it all before, you see. I suppose we have to go through it once per year for people to reiterate their viewpoints and vent their feelings.

Well, that topic is ticked off for the time being (I will keep you updated about the Mood affair if I hear any news). There are other things I have in the pipeline now, things I originally wanted to post during the spring season, and I trust that it will be worth your while. Stay tuned.

In closing for today, and coming back to the subject of fasting: I recommend you try it sometime. It wasn't exactly a kinky experience for me, but it might be for you. At the least, it might give you some interesting new impressions. Try giving up sweets or meat or alcohol for forty days. Whatever is hard for you.

Now, of course, the really tough thing for all of us perverts - far tougher than anything else - would be to abstain from spanking. Could you do that? For forty days, breaking the abstinence only on Sundays? it wouldn't be easy, but I probably could - I have phases when I'm not feeling particularly kinky, anyway. A few days here, a week there. So, let's go one better: let's give up spanking for forty straight days. I'm talking about no play, no video watching, no blog reading... And no other, "substitute" kinks of any kind, either. Surely, that would be a major challenge.

On the plus side, think about how good the first indulgence would feel on the forty-first day. What a newfound appreciation it would give you for all that you've been missing. Maybe that would be the Kink of Fasting.