Women


In place of thought or analysis, today I’m posting a few things I found elsewhere on the Internetswebconnection.

First, the warm fuzzy.  Shay (of the s spot) tweeted a link to this really adorable list of the 15 Things You Should Know About Breasts.  It’s a quality list–I only knew 1.5 of the items on it.  For instance, I definitely did not know that “the average female nipple is 3/8″ long when erect.  Slightly taller than 5 stacked quarters.”

Breast graphics by Jason Powers.

Second, the squickily disturbing.  TBK posted two days ago about a porn clip with major editing problems.  The young starlet in it who was fucking and sucking two cocks would stop every few moments to complain about how much pain she was in–and every time she fell “out of character”, the cameras kept rolling.  If all (a significant proportion? any?) porn is like this, then I feel dirty retroactively for all the women I’ve watched fake their enjoyment of sex.

Third, the simply hot.  TroyOrleans is up to her many badass dominatrix tricks, my favorite of which is her use of MEO’s Silentium Tongue Gag.  No matter how many times I see this thing, it still makes me drool with desire.  (Get it?  Drool?  Gag? . . . )

Enjoy the fruits of others’ labors.

(Check it out. This is actually an Oreo.)

I don’t think I’ve mentioned it here before, but I’m going to Dark Odyssey’s Winter Fire in a few weeks.  Squee. I could not be more excited.  For those who aren’t familiar with it, Dark Odyssey is “a wholly unique experience which brings together sexuality, spirituality, education, and play in a fun, supportive, non-judgmental, diverse environment where fantasy becomes reality.”  Basically, it’s a three-day sex-conference with workshops during the day and play at night.

The whole event is so well-organized that there’s a private web-page for those who are attending to post little profiles, FetLife style, to introduce themselves.  I finally got around to doing this the other day and listed myself as bisexual.  This gave me pause, and I’ve been thinking about it since.

I don’t really identify as bi.  As I mentioned, I’ve been to bed with women before; the problem isn’t that I’m not attracted to them, or that I wouldn’t consider a relationship with a woman.  The problem is political; if I identify as anything, I identify increasingly as queer because of my sexual politics.  But Robbie and I went to hear Sarah Sloane speak about polyamory earlier this year, and her quick-and-dirty take on listing yourself as “bi” v. “queer” was that, “If you’re trying to attract mostly men, put bi; if you want to date mostly women, put queer.”  I’m mostly trying to attract men, but it pisses me off that in putting “bi”, the sexist ones will think I’m going to fuck girls for their benefit.  I suppose the last thing I should think about is what the jerks I am not going to date might think . . . but that still leaves me with the question of what I actually think.


Perhaps “feel” is a better word than “think”.  Robbie and I met a woman he’s been interested in during this last visit, and I expected myself, from pictures and emails and descriptions, to be incredibly drawn to her as well.  (If you’re reading this, hi hon!)  But I wasn’t.  I just didn’t feel sexual tension there on first meet.  For awhile, I was thinking, “well, it’s just because  you really don’t feel that pull to women”.  But that’s not true either.

Today, I was thinking that I just feel drawn to some people.  It sounds like that cliche–“Oh, it’s the person, not the gender, that I love.”  But that’s not true either.  I’m not talking love.  I’m talking raw desire.  Most men I meet I have pretty much zero desire to touch, much less fuck.  So when Robbie used to tell me that he could tell that I “loved cock”, I was befuddled.  Mostly when I contemplate a new cock–and the person attached to it–my overriding thought is, “Is it going to be ugly or smell bad?”  Because I hate finding out that someone is mangled and stinky when he’s six inches from my mouth.

But every so often when contemplating that new cock and its owner, my overriding thought is, “I WANT.”  I want to tear the person apart, shove him into the nearest piece of furniture, get my hands up inside his shirt, and feel him pin my arms as payback for my enthusiasm.  This is a relatively rare feeling for me–rare in proportion to the actual numbers of men in the universe, frequent enough that I’ve managed to get laid more than the average number of times for an American woman (last time I checked the stats).  And it’s an even rarer feeling when it comes to women.  But when I find it, it’s magic.

So whatever the label is for people who get electrically turned on by some individuals in ways they can’t always predict but always enjoy–that’s what I am.

Clever photographs by Kevin Van Aelst, via Feature Shoot.

silent_stories_lj1

After I started dating Robbie, my social life fell off precipitously, from a rich round of dinners and drinks with friends to basically nada.  This wasn’t his fault, or even mine.  By unfortunate coincidence, five out of seven of my closest friends moved out of state a few months after Robbie and I met, and my work changed in a way that meant I was encountering far fewer people than I once had.

At the moment, I’m living with one of those two friends.  She has a very active social life, and for the moment at least, I’m being encouraged to tag along as she lives it.  In the last week I’ve gone to two women-only dinner parties and met eight new people.  Like someone who’s been in a cave for too long, I’m stunned and blinking at the light.  (And like anyone who’s been alone too long, I have a lot to unlearn.  Last night I caught myself pushing food onto my fork with my fingers–twice.)

In addition to being a sexual switch, I’m a social switch.  Most people think I’m an extrovert; inside, I feel like an introvert.  I spent years training myself to interact fluidly with other humans, and I feel I have lost the knack.  Still, at a dinner party full of women, one has to adapt fast.

This company of women is soothing right now.  They all talk about the same things–husbands, children, in-laws, houses–and since I have none of those things, I don’t feel on the spot.  I listen as stories of other lives flow over and around me, and wonder, idly and with remarkably little panic, whether I’ll ever experience the things they’re talking about.  A year or two ago the prospect of not being married, not having children would have filled me with hysteria.  Not now.  I may just be so stunned by life I can’t feel anything, but that’s fine by me.

I suppose it’s a bit like reading a novel, talking to these women–one of those well-written, contemporary, affirming tales of love and adversity.  For although all my dining companions have all been wealthy, they have not necessarily had easy lives–there are insane relatives, husbands or children with cancer, and the looming economic threat that shadows everyone these days.

But this is not what figures in their dinner conversation, and it’s not what I get out of it.  When I said, a few days back, that I felt vile, fat, and disgusting, I meant it.  I have not paid much attention to my appearance for some time.  Robbie lives in the country, where the main object in winter is to beat the cold rather than to pull together a “look”.  Under our existing agreement, my hair has needed neither cutting nor styling.  Makeup has been optional, and I have opted out.  It would be the usual “letting yourself go”, except it feels unusual somehow.  I can’t put my finger on how, today, so I won’t try.

In the wake of our disastrous weekends together in February and March, I did what any smart girl would do–I bought lipstick.  Being especially smart, I also bought eyeliner.  On alternate days, I even remember to dab some of this stuff on my face.  I seem to remember how to make myself up, which is handy.

My collar is gone, which hurts–it feels like a part of my body is gone, amputated.  On the other hand, this means I get to wear necklaces, and I have been adorning myself with long strands of beads, fascinated by how they look in the light.

I watch the women and look at their scrubbed faces and careful ensembles.  They let me into their circle.  I’m not sure if this is healing, and I am not sure if this is love.  The company of women can be a harsh place.  But right now, its surfaces and appearances, its brittle, glittering rules and customs, are as much as I can bear thinking about.

if-only-you-were-here-lj

The unmistakable Audrey Kawasaki.

Kasia at Beautiful and Depraved has been writing some wonderful posts about beauty–how it’s found in odd places, how it can be earned.

A month or two ago, she wrote about a time her then-lover ordered her to cut her long hair. From reading her account, it seemed to me she found the experience terrifying but liberating. She felt ugly for weeks after she had cut her tresses, and then she found she was beautiful in ways that she hadn’t ever noticed before–especially that she was beautiful to women.

The same thing happened to me, but in reverse. When Robbie and I first met, I had a jaw length, jaunty haircut. It made me look cute, and young, and sometimes sexy, and my eyes sparkled through it.

short-hair

One of the very first things Robbie asked was that I not cut my hair. I went for something like 18 months without letting scissors touch it. My mother despaired. She had always loved my short hair, and she always thought that long hair hung in my face and hid my eyes. After the first few months of nagging me about it, though, she started to get the picture. “I know,” she’d say, after gazing at my hair for a long moment. “Robbie likes it like that.” Now she doesn’t say anything, which is better. I’ve cut my hair two or three times in the thirty-three months Robbie and I have known each other.

While Kasia had always had long hair, I had always had short hair. From 5 to 15, I had the same Dorothy Hamill haircut. I was so skinny, with such straight, short hair, that people often called me a boy when I was a kid. Having long, feminine hair seemed to me silly, extravagant, excessive, wasteful, even. I had grown it out just twice–my sophomore year of college, and my very last year of grad school. Both were times I was working with tremendous diligence. It wasn’t that I didn’t have time to take care of my hair. It was that I didn’t have time to take care of the rest of me. I felt fat and full of junk food and miserable, and long hair was an easy way to hide it. I never associated long hair with beauty.

But this time around, being told to grow my hair, things were different. The first year of having long hair was a revelation. People–men–reacted to me completely differently. With a smile and a shake of my locks, I could get anything, it seemed. My hair is beautiful–it’s long and shiny and naturally curly. The mother of one of my childhood friends always said it was my “best feature,” which I found a particularly backhanded compliment. I’m not as sure it’s as simple as short hair attracting pussy and long hair attracting cock, but it wouldn’t be far off from my experience.

My hair is still growing, though, and the last time we discussed the subject–over the summer–Robbie said that he would almost always have me have long hair. “For one thing, it gives me something to hang onto when I drag you around or have you blow me,” he said, a half-snarl, half-smile on his lips. “For another, I have always preferred women with long hair. And third, I particularly like the way you look with long hair. I think it’s very flattering for you.” He must have snarled that way about a dozen more times during the conversation, telling me what he’d have me do to my hair, and when.

Like many things about D/s, the rules about my hair can produce mixed feelings depending on how I’m doing, overall. When I feel happy and joyous, I delight in my hair, taking care of it, putting it up or swinging it around. When my mood is low, it shows in my pelt, I think. My hair is tangled and dry. At my lowest, when I am angry at Robbie and myself, I imagine hacking it off, at home, one of the more drastic acts of rebellious and self-destructive acts I can conjure.

But I haven’t and won’t. Whatever my hair is now is what I am, and I have earned it.

hair-longer

Photographs by David Bergman.

I have no idea why I’m posting this, except that I’m sick of feeling like I have to write a book in order to make a post on my own blog, and also, I like this picture. So there.

Thank you, Strange Eros!

PS This color is named “Salmon”.

“Okay okay okay,” my best friend said, tossing her head and flashing her eyes at us. “Listen up. There are four steps to giving a good blowjob.” The rest of us sat rapt in the sunlight filtering down from the street. It was that nameless hour between afternoon and evening, the one before sunset, where all the light turns golden and time stands still. My favorite time of day.

“Number one: Kiss and tease. You start kissing his chest, licking his nipples, kissing down his belly, touching his thighs—everything but his dick. Do not touch his dick. Do this for as long as you can. It will drive him crazy. Lick his inner thighs, lick right up next to his cock—but don’t lick his cock.”

Three heads nodded at what she said. We sat in a tight circle around a pitcher of cheap beer and four plastic cups, gigglingly nervous and predator-serious. Everyone in the circle had applied tongue to cock before, but our friend was the acknowledged expert.

“When he can’t stand it anymore, grip his penis at the base, like this.” She demonstrated a solid thumb-and-forefingers cock ring. “Do whatever you want, whatever feels good. Kisskisskiss it up and down, swirl your tongue around the head like it’s an ice cream cone, dart all along the length . . . “

Blowjob 101

“There’s that vein . . . “ the blonde interjected.

“Yep, you can run your tongue along that vein. Just, you know, whatever feels good.” She spread her hands wide—she talked with her hands as much as with her words.

“Okay, now you’re gonna start going down on him for real. You want to make sure that you have your teeth covered up.”

“How do you . . . ?” I started.

Two or three of my friends started talking at once. “You cover them with your lips.” “Put your lips over your teeth.”

The speaker took over again. “Look, Sera, like this.” And she showed me, her perfectly lipsticked mouth curving into an “o”, then an oval. “You can do it a couple of ways. You guys—everyone do it.” We all practiced blowjob embouchure. We all drank.

“Alright, step three. Put your mouth on him and move up and down the shaft, slowly. DO NOT SUCK! You’re gonna tire yourself out waaay before he comes if you start sucking right off the bat. You don’t want to start sucking until he’s almost there.”

The other two nodded sagely. They had clearly been there, been tired.

“So you’re moving up and down. You want to try to feel his rhythm—but do not. let. any guy. put his hand on your head.”

We nodded, a little less confidently this time. She was so in control as she told us how to keep things in control. Her level of cool and confidence set a high standard, even as it reassured.

“So, step four. You’re probably going to start going faster and he’s going to get harder, and when you feel that happen, THEN you suck. Still no teeth, just make a vacuum in your mouth like you do when you’re sucking a straw. Suck HARD. And then he’ll come. And that’s it.” She sat back in her chair, smiled a cat-like smile, stopped short of licking her lips, and drank again.

The blonde and the raven-haired girl started peppering her with questions about cum—how to swallow it, how to avoid swallowing it, the swallowing debate of centuries. I didn’t, not that I remember. I was busy memorizing the steps. One. Two. Three. Four. And when next opportunity came, a mere seven months later, I remembered them to perfection, which is, possibly, a story for another time.

* * *

I have had trouble finishing this post, and have been sitting on it for days now. I want to say something about my friend—but I don’t know what I want to say yet. That’s okay. Often we write to find out what we think.

There is something I want to say about my friend, something to do with who we were then and who we are now. It is hard to say it without explaining everything that happened in time that has passed, in hectic changes and slow growth.

Two

She has done more life adventuring than many people, so when I first began exploring kinkiness with Robbie, I called her often–to ask for advice, to brag, to compare notes, to get consolation when things felt odd or strange. Almost two decades after we first met, more than fifteen years since that introduction to blowjobs in a tacky bar that doesn’t exist anymore, my friend is still my guide on matters sexual. The authority, experience, and candor she showed then have mellowed, become graciousness, self-knowledge, and a compassionate openness. My own woeful insecurity and inexperience have softened—especially since knowing Robbie—into the beginnings of comfort and, I gather from talking to Robbie, a lingering wholesomeness, despite his unceasing efforts to corrupt me.

For the past year, aside from my immediate family, these two people have been unstintingly generous with me. I keep learning from both of them that lessons about sex are often lessons in love, too. And that is not a bad thing to have learned.

Photograph of couple by Samantha Wolov, whose work is also here. Illustration of girls with headphones by Yuko Shimizu, recolored and otherwise photoshopped on seraglioletters premises.

I love Robbie enormously. But everyone, Robbie especially, agrees that I ought to spend time with myself right now.

Hard CandyThis means cleaning house, organizing things, earning money, rediscovering real life friends, and all the other things people with full existences do. It also means “cultivating laziness”, as I persist in believing that the writer Robert Penn Warren once said despite a total lack of evidence that he did. It means silliness and time with my cats and grandiose projects and free rein to my curiosity. It absolutely means downloading Madonna’s Hard Candy.

And it means something deeper. For the last two years I have devoted at least half of every conversation to talk of Robbie. (This might be why I am short on friends, by the way.) He takes up a tremendous amount of my mental space. He is my best friend. But for quite a while it has felt like there’s no one in here, inside me.

June Miller untitledBuried in work and frittering away my spare time, I infrequently noticed my increasing sense of emptiness; when I did, I expressed it as feeling either tired or busy. All the things I might have done for myself when I was down got pushed to the side—not because of D/s or because of distance or because of anything else between us, but because I was letting my relationship with him take up the place where my relationship with myself used to be. I haven’t had true leisure in my life apart from the time we spent together. I was counting on him, funny, exuberant, and adventurous as he can be, to provide relaxation and sunshine as well as many of the other kinds of support we expect partners will cough up for each other.

I suppose this is common enough; I certainly don’t want to make it sound tragic. The tragedy for me will be if my failure to balance my needs and our needs has torpedoed us (though believe me, there were plenty of other missiles in the water).

The point is that for the moment, instead of focusing on Robbie, I’m mostly trying to date myself.

June Miller Pink Dress

* * *

June Miller BliznietaMyself and I have only been dating for a week, so any predictions I might make about myself would be totally out of line and probably disrespectful to me, as well. On the other hand, I’ve dated me before—we are one of those on-again, off-again couples that end up together in the end, no matter how rough the ride may be. I mean, I went for years in college and after graduation not really being very close to me. I’m sure the fact that I didn’t treat me right didn’t help, but the larger problem was that I wasn’t sure how much I cared for me. Looking back I see I loved me all along, though neither I nor myself saw that at the time.

Of course, many relationships later, I realize it takes more than caring and closeness to make a good couple. It takes commitment, for one thing. I haven’t really been there for myself lately, and vice versa. And then there’s compatibility. There are lots of times where I honestly can’t stand what myself is doing. Myself can be a real bitch, and me says I can be uptight.

June Miller Roxanne

But this week, I’m diggin’ me. Mind you, I haven’t had sex with myself yet. Oh, yeah, I’ve done it with me—tons of times. I’ve had a rocking, rolicking sex life June Miller Sukubuswith myself. And I could get busy with me–sure I could. But I just don’t have the urge, and me hasn’t been sending out any feelers either. I’m guessing its awkwardness, nerves, shyness– plus the fact that myself and I haven’t been back together long. Maybe this weekend we’ll feel like getting it on. I bought some stuff for cocktails just in case, and I think I’m going to give me a nice, long, steamy shower tomorrow night—that should spice things up for me, I think.

Until then, I and me have just been hanging out. I’ve made myself lots of meals, which me really appreciates—I can neglect feeding myself well, and me understandably resents that I’m not willing to put in that effort for myself. I’ve taken myself on walks, made efforts to dress up for me—those little things that really count. I even bought a few books for myself today; me seemed pretty touched by it, although me thinks me might return them because me knows I can get them cheaper on Amazon.

The one thing I stress about is how Robbie will deal with things between me and I. Like I said, I want me in my life and I want him, but me doesn’t feel that way. Myself is kinda possessive, I have to say. Sometimes, listening to me, I think that I could happily spend the rest of my life just with myself. Most of the time, though, I see clearly that I need all kinds of relationships besides my relationship with myself to feel fulfilled. Me gets pissed off then and says I’ve been reading the Ethical Slut too much—me really doesn’t have a lot of time for poly. The important thing for myself and I though is that we’re talking. Communication, communication, communication. I feel good about where I and me are going these days.

Miss Fly

Irresistible portraits by June Miller, via fluffy Lychees. More irresistibility at her blog.



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