Monthly Archives: September 2009

I killed Niki Flynn

True! nervous, very, very dreadfully nervous I had been and am; but why will you say that I am mad? The disease had sharpened my senses, not destroyed, not dulled them. Above all was the sense of hearing acute. I heard all things in the heaven and in the earth. I heard many things in hell. How then am I mad? Hearken! and observe how healthily, how calmly, I can tell you the whole story.

niki-dead

By the dark of the night, far past the English witching hour, I put the final touch on the death of Niki Flynn. Yes she survives on in memory, Google is filled with pages of links to her images and even some of her words. Amazon continues to sell her books. But Niki’s site is no more.

Do I have your attention yet?

Okay, then that’s probably enough of the gothic for now. I’m afraid I lack the flare for it. But what I wrote is true enough. Late last night I did click the “delete” button on Niki’s Not Blog — Paul removed it from the ‘net at her request. If you go there today you’ll get the Laughing Squid “page not found” message. Those who have been following her blog writings are probably not surprised. Niki announced she was leaving earlier this month. Galleries had been disappearing even before that. The blog already was closed for comments. Still I’m sure some people are surprised this morning / afternoon / evening to find it gone altogether.

This chapter of my friend’s life is closed.

Earlier this week I read Ludwig’s insightful thoughts on Niki’s demise — both his last interview with her and a final blog entry on her leaving and wondered if when the time came I’d have anything to say. Clearly I’ve found something.

My thoughts are a little different than some who’ve known Niki Flynn. She was a surprise to me despite (or maybe because) I’d known the woman behind the masks of Niki and Fiona years before they appeared on the ‘net or in text and know her still. For all the mystery behind Fiona Locke, she seemed to evolve organically as an author / ‘net identity. Quirky, reclusive and oh so fine a writer, I knew her of old as it were.

Niki, emerging, as she did, out of my friend’s need for an alternate identity as she made first one film and then more and more, was someone else entirely. She was not the mad writer in the garret or a lost little woman-child. When I met her at her first Shadow Lane appearance, I was dazzled. Don’t get me wrong, she had always been beautiful and sexy but Niki radiated a sexual confidence (and just a general confidence) I hadn’t seen before, especially when meeting people. Niki was definitely another aspect of my friend — a public one, seen, as it were, through a glass brightly. I’d seen the pictures and films Niki was making, but this was my first experience of her as a distinct personality.

The same sense of the surreal washed over me as I read (and re-read) Dances With Werewolves and Over the Knee. I know a few people have commented that people should have guessed sooner based on the writing style, but I disagree. Even knowing they were both penned by the same person and having read other writing by her, the author’s voice in Dances With Werewolves has always seemed distinct from Fiona’s work. There’s a easy confidence and even extraversion to Niki I’d never associated with the woman I knew. That said, both, of course are her. Niki was just, to paraphrase Tori Amos, pieces of her I’d never seen –but was glad to know as I grew to recognize her voice (as did so many of us) through her blog.

I do believe closing and deleting the blog and site is the right thing to do. Niki isn’t writing any more and the site was always intended to be for fun (no money was made of it — indeed I wouldn’t be surprised to find that it was a break-even proposition) and a way for her to get feedback from others in the scene. In the almost three years it was up, it was never neglected by its author, this despite her having told a number of us when it started that she didn’t see herself as being much of a blogger (hence the name “Not Blog”). Rather than let it lapse into dis-use and be taken over by spam or become a chore rather than a pleasure, it’s better for it to be gone.

Nothing on the ‘net is ever really gone — Niki in archived form certainly won’t vanish. Even knowing this though, I did feel a tiny twinge of guilt as I pushed “delete.”

A final note. As Ludwig pointed out on his blog, our friend has opted for privacy — she removed her site and didn’t leave a forwarding address. Don’t write to me asking me to forward any mail. It’s not that I can’t — it’s that I won’t.

[…]ere long, I felt myself getting pale and wished them gone. My head ached, and I fancied a ringing in my ears; but still they sat, and still chatted. The ringing became more distinct : I talked more freely to get rid of the feeling: but it continued and gained definitiveness — until, at length, I found that the noise was NOT within my ears.

No doubt I now grew VERY pale; but I talked more fluently, and with a heightened voice. Yet the sound increased — and what could I do? It was a low, dull, quick sound –much such a sounds as a watch makes when enveloped in cotton. […] Why would they not be gone? I paced the floor to and fro with heavy strides, as if excited to fury by the observations of the men, but the noise steadily increased. O God! what could I do? […] It grew louder — louder — louder! And still the men chatted pleasantly , and smiled. Was it possible they heard not? Almighty God! — no, no? They heard! — they suspected! — they knew! — they were making a mockery of my horror! — this I thought, and this I think. But anything was better than this agony! Anything was more tolerable than this derision! I could bear those hypocritical smiles no longer! I felt that I must scream or die! — and now — again — hark! louder! louder! louder! Louder!

“Villains!” I shrieked, “dissemble no more! I admit the deed! — tear up the planks! — here, here! — it is the beating of [her] hideous heart!”

The photo was taken by Billy of Monkey Twizzle fame. The fiends ignoring Niki’s death are Paul and Lucy of Northern Spanking.

My Ugly Shoes

shoes1Earlier today I tweeted this picture of my ugly new shoes.  I’d just bought them at my favorite charity shop (benefiting the American Cancer Society) across from the local Coffee Bean.  They’re from a charity shop so the shoes aren’t really new, but new

shoes2

enough as to make no real difference).  These are, as was confirmed by my dear friends (also on Twitter) Adele, Natty and Casey, ugly shoes.  They are sort of shoes a girl is forced to wear, are purchased for rather than by her (despite my activities to the contrary).

These particular shoes make my US7 / UK5 sized feet look huge and long — like a teen forced into little girl mary janes.  Their brown color is drab and boring.  They have flat leather sole which are slippery, noisy, sturdy and the very opposite of high-heeled glamor.  They make me think of shoes purchased for a 15 year-old girl during WWII — a girl longing for pumps and stockings but forced to wear (and be outwardly thankful for) ugly practical shoes. [Note: Tony Elka added to this fantasy for me by pointing out a girl of that era not grateful for her good fortune is probably due a cold bath and then some.]

shoes3I’ve got a lot of shoes and many of them are quite ugly.  Ugly shoes seem to go with my sense of being oppressed into wearing uniforms and other attributes of childhood / girlhood without being either overly cute or frilly. Most of my ugly shoes are school related — and I’ve included a selection of pictures here.  True, I photographed only one of three pairs of my buckle Docs, but you get the idea.

shoes4Chief among the shoes I think of as “ugly” are my black and white saddle shoes.  I think of them as probably the most fetish-y footwear I own and will ever own.  They were purchased on a special outing with a scene friend more than ten years ago (I wrote about it at the time for soc.sexuality.spanking — the original story is archived on the The Treehouse.  At the time I wrote that I  expected never to wear them enough for them to break in, let alone wear out.  As it’s happened, wearing them for scenes and Shadow Lane parties has been enough to run the heels down just a bit.  A great irony however is there was a time first grade when my feet were still too small for black and white saddle shoes and I was forced to wear the all white kind (to much teasing of wearing “baby shoes” sad to say. So when I wear them, I remember my father driving up to Los Angeles from San Diego where the coveted black and whites were carried in my size.

When I was in second grade I was forced to memorize a poem which, as is the way with my brain, has never left (though don’t ask me to decline Latin nouns please).  Here it is, as best as I can remember it.

shoes5

New shoes, new shoes,
Red and pink and blue shoes.
Tell me, what would you choose
If they’d let us buy?

Buckle shoes, bow shoes,
Pretty pointy-toe shoes,
Strappy, cappy low shoes —
Please give me some to try.

shoes6

Bright shoes, white shoes,
Dandy-dance-by-night shoes,
Perhaps-a-little-tight shoes,
Like some? So would I.

…but

Flat shoes, fat shoes,
Stump-Along-Like-That shoes,
Wipe-Them-on-the-Mat shoes,
That’s the sort they’ll buy.

shoes7The fact is, I do have pretty shoes too. Paul would claim I have lots of those as well, though I would disagree — I don’t have very many compared to most women of my age that I know.  There’s a reason for that and he’s partly it.  Unlike many of his gender, Paul doesn’t like the sight of women in heels (or garter belt and stockings for that matter). The shoes he’s bought for me have all either been “school” related or, in the case of last Christmas, an inspired gift of very snug and comfy Ugg boots.  When I wear my “pretty shoes,” the ones with straps and heels, I can feel him mentally changing my feet into something lower and more comfortable.

shoes8More sensible.

And uglier.

Angry & Evil Little Girls







girl-scoutsSomeone forwarded this “motivational” poster to me today. I love it.

Confession: I’ve always been fascinated by stories and films about little girls who do bad things.  Really bad things. Not naughty things like Eloise (though who doesn’t love a naughty girl in a short short skirt) or even kind of bad things like Minnie the Minx. I’m talking about girls like Rhoda (from The Bad Seed – the play, not the film) and Hayley (from Hard Candy) who do things that are really really BAD.  It’s why I was disappointed that Orphan chickened out of their creation of Esther as another cinematic Bad Girl in the end.

It’s not really whether they do terrible things in the name of something “good,” like Hayley’s torture in the name of justice or Rhoda’s basic, inherent evil that’s important.  What I love is the conflict between the assumption of sweet, harmless innocence that little girls always carry, even more than little boys, and their violence based on cleverness rather than physical strength or even conventional weapons.  I love the way they exploit our expectations of girlhood sunshine and light.

I think it may be time to order myself a DVD of Heathers to watch while snacking on some thin mints.

When Worlds Collide: Part 2

pain

It’s always strange when my academic life meets up with my kink one.  It happened back in 2007 with a CFP (that’s “Call for Papers” in the larger world) and then again today.  Opening emails like this in my vanilla account is always a bit startling. 

[I’ve left the contact information in case any of my friends want to write a tedious academic paper on the science of pain and suffering.] 

 

Call for Papers
Annual Interdisciplinary Graduate Student Conference:
The Poetics of Pain: Aesthetics, Ideology, and Representation
February 25th-26th, 2010

Pain has always occupied a problematic space in any discipline investigating the human condition. The question of how to manage the unmediated experience of pain in the face of the social and ethical imperative to communicate it has spawned countless theories of and approaches to pain itself and its representation. This conference seeks to foster dialogue between a broad range of approaches to pain and suffering, including medical-scientific investigations of the neurological processes involved in the experience of pain, socio-historical analyses of the connection between individual pain and collective trauma and literary/linguistic inquiries into the possibilities and limitations of a poetics of pain. Theorists and thinkers will include, among others, Jean Amery, Elaine Scarry, Sade, Sacher-Masoch, Deleuze, Wittgenstein, Foucault, Ballard, Mirbeau and Kafka.

How can the ineffable sensation of physical torment be conveyed by its sufferer, or acknowledged by the other? How is individual suffering converted into collective experience? How, in turn, is an individual’s experience of pain socially determined? How do the varying discourses of pain bring the sufferer into contact with the world and break down the barriers between self and other? What are the conceptual mechanisms that guide our understanding of this physiological experience?

We invite papers from all disciplines approaching the subject from a variety of critical perspectives that explore the ways in which pain is articulated, narrativized, framed, interpreted, subjectivized, and imbued with meaning.

Topics may include but are not limited to:

• Torture, War
• Illness Narratives
• Medical and Diagnostic Language of Pain
• Sadomasochism – from Rousseau and de Sade to LGBT “Leather Scenes”
• Biopolitics
• Animality and Humanism
• Martyrdom and Religious Representations of Suffering
• Theaters of Cruelty
• Politicization of Pain and Collective Accounts of Past Suffering
• Violence and Politics
• Survivor Memoirs
• Victims of Crime and Assault
• Trauma and Testimony
• Physical Suffering in Light of the Cartesian Mind/Body Problem
• Religious and Secular Theodicies
• Victimhood, Voice and Agency
• Desire, pain and subjectivity.
• Technologies of Punishment
• Bioethics

Please submit a 300 word abstract for a 15-20 minute paper by October 10th to painconference@gmail.com. Proposals should include the title of the paper, presenter’s name, institutional and departmental affiliation. We also welcome panel proposals (3-4 papers).
The Graduate Center
The City University of New York
365 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10016-4309

Thoughts on the “poetics of pain”? Bueller, Bueller? Anyone, anyone?

Mad4Plaid OR 9/22, the First Day of Fall

plaid-skirtsBorn on Twitter, thanks to tweets between the delightful Eliane and me, tomorrow being the first day of Fall (in the Northern Hemisphere) is hereby declared “Mad For Plaid Day.”  You can participate by spreading the word and, most importantly, wearing either a plaid skirt or kilt.  Modest or slutty, uniform or vanilla, all plaids are welcome.

You can follow the fun here or on Twitter.  Just let me know what you’re doing and how you’re celebrating and I’ll add links.  Pictures are always welcome.

Do come and play.

Players thus far:

  • Zille: who claims there will be picture
  • Kate:is  wearing her skirt to and from classes.  What a good girl!
  • Elaine : says she is changing after work as her kilt is too short (naughty girl!)
  • Mystery Minx: always the rebel, says she’ll wear a non-plaid games kilt.
  • Bridget: so in tune with the beginning of Fall, she wore a plaid jumper without even knowing.
  • Sandy: also wore plaid without meaning to and claims famous spanking model Rad is wearing a plaid bow.  (I know I’m not alone in wanting pictures of that.)
  • Chris claims he can “motivate” his lovely Serenity into a plaid skirt.  We’ll have to see.  (Okay, we want to see)
  • Casey D. Morgan didn’t go out in her skirt, but very sweetly changed into one and took a picture.  Such a game girl!

[This blog entry is evolving.]

Leaving Las Vegas

[okay, let’s see how typing with my thumbs in the moving car goes.]
I’m going to try and do a more organized party report once we get home. Pablo and I are headed home from what is, I think anyway, my 14th Shadow Lane party. Since there’s been 29 total. I’m catching up to 50%. There’s just no way to claim newbie status anymore. Who’d have guessed?
Before every party I’m nervous enough to wonder why we’re going, even though I have never regretted attending a single party and have always been sorry when we’ve had to skip / miss one. it’s not about the play (though some of the most amazing scenes I’ve ever been part of have been at SL parties) — I’m fortunate to have married someone happy to spank me as much as I can stand. it’s the chance to spend a weekend away from real life stress and surrounded by and celebrating spanking and how damned much fun it is that makes the parties such great events for me.
The economy in the past 18 months has made it difficult for some of our friends to travel for pleasure. This made it all the more wonderful that so many were able to make it this time around. I especially enjoyed the sadly too-rare chance to hang out with some of the folks from FL Moonshine and SSNY.
it’ll likely be a while until we can do it again. Meantime the friendships continue on and offline. The afterglow feeds Pab and my feelings toward each other. My most heartfelt thanks to Butch, Eve and Tony for working so hard so their guests can play so much.
And with that, we’re almost to Baker and lunch. NV is behind us for now.

This entry was sent from my iPhone.