Monthly Archives: December 2011

Christmas Eve Travels: Advent Blog Day 24

blue-canary
Today started before the crack of dawn as we headed up to my parent’s house in Portland. The taxi arrived on time, but we were a bit wary because the night before we had been unable to print out boarding passes. When we got there (after going to the wrong terminal — damn code-share flights!) the machine printed my boarding pass for both legs of the flight but only one of Paul’s.  When we went to talk to the agent about it, she said it wouldn’t be a problem, that he’d be able to get his boarding pass at the gate when we changed planes in San Francisco, a plane change we only had one hour to make.

The flight was on time, but when we got to San Francisco, we had to not only change planes, but change airlines. This meant going through security again. But Paul didn’t have a boarding pass. The machine gave him one, but while we were in line we realized it wasn’t a boarding pass but a luggage receipt. Paul stepped out of the security line and went to talk to the agents about it, telling me he’d meet me at the gate. I didn’t want to let him go without me, but I knew he could move faster through the airport without me. So with rising dread I went through the security check point and waited nervously at the gate.

Our flight was boarding and our row had been called when, hurrying in his sock feet, I saw Paul rushing through the terminal. We made it on the flight and arrived in Portland early.

Last night with Paul and my parents was wonderful. My dad made prime rib, my mom scalloped potatoes.  After dinner we exchanged gifts and everyone was happy.  The best gift I got was from Paul, a ThinkGeek canary night light, though the CD of Bernard Cribbins songs was a close second.

It’s late and I must head to bed.  But Merry Christmas and many thanks to those of you who made this advent journey with me.

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Advent bloggers so far (go see them!):

padme & Anakin – Journey to the Darkside

Marie – Life, Lemons & Spanking

EmmaEnchanted – This Kinky Life

Quai  –  Spanking Discussion

Poppy St. Vincent – Poppy’s Submissions

Sharon – The Evolution of a Pin-Up Model

Tiger – Innermost Me

Indy – Not So Submissive

Dreams of Spanking: Advent Blog Day 23

dreams-of-spanking
Today is an exciting day in the spanking scene and I just have to post something here to celebrate. The witty and wonderful Pandora Blake has officially launched her new website, Dreams of Spanking, complete with stills and video from some of my very favorite performers.

There’s a lot about the site that I like, especially Pandora’s vision and the trouble she’s taken over settings and costumes.  The quality reflects the love and care she’s given them.

But even more than that, I like the whole concept of the site. Beginning with the site name, Dreams of Spanking affirms that whether topping or bottoming, this isn’t something that’s being done to her, but rather that she’s an active participant in an activity that’s a huge part of her sexuality and fantasy life. There’s a specificity it all that defies this pornography being able men looking at women (so it doesn’t matter what the men look like) and instead is about a female gaze as well.

This pleases me a lot, as does the attention that’s given in the stills I’ve seen to the performers’ faces.  Yes, this is about kink and their bodies, but it’s also about kink and their minds and their relationships with and desires for each other.

Wonderful.  Congratulations on realizing your dreams Pandora.  And thank you for an amazing Christmas gift.

 

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: Advent Blog Day 22

I’ve rarely been called simple anything but I have a yearning for more simplicity in my life, the ability to be mindful and focus on what I’m doing at any given moment. Today when I was reading at H.D. Silversmith’s blog and saw an entry to The Simple Woman’s Daybook and decided to use the writing prompts too. I’m not sure how the original author will feel about a kink blog linking to her, but we’ll see.

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FOR TODAY
Outside my window all is dark and chilly.

I am thinking about my small neice and how fun it is to see her laugh.

I am thankful for my family, that I’ll be teaching next semester, and for the medications that keep me sane-ish.

In the kitchen all is quiet. I wish there were cookies, but we’re leaving town soon.

I am wearing jeans, a tee-shirt and turquiose Vans.

I am creating this blog post and basking in the glow of the Christmas tree.

I am going to Portland on Saturday.

I am wondering how much work it will be to move this blog and The Punishment Book to WordPress from TypePad.

I am reading Here Come Everybody.

I am hoping against hope that I end up with an interview for MLA. But I’m also at peace with the idea of going to the conference without one.

I am looking forward to giving myself over to Christmas.

I am hearing the heater and my fingers on the keys. It’s all pretty quiet.

Around the house there’s dust and clutter and Christmas lights.

I am pondering how many books to bring with me to Portland.

One of my favorite things is watching Doctor Who.

A few plans for the rest of the week: packing and flying to Portland. Enjoying time with my family.

Here is picture for thought I am sharing…

christmas-tree

 

Seeing What I Want to See: Advent Blog Day 20

Two weeks ago, give or take,  Kaelah posted a question about Spanking Porn: On Compartmentalization, musing about the differences between her own and Ludwig's experience with spanking videos with elements they don't like and wondering if it has to do with the differences between their INTJ and INFJ personalities. (For more on what these types are, see my post on Myers Briggs types

I'm good at overlooking things that I don't want to see.  Or maybe it's that I see what I think should be there rather than what is.  Paul has pointed out that this makes me a terrible editor. I read what should be there or what I want to be there rather than what is. While I don't watch very much spanking porn as I'm not a very visual person, it definitely holds true in spanking stories.  In fact, one of the biggest surprises I ever had was when I re-read The Reckoning, which was my pre-internet favorite spanking book, some ten years after my earlier readings of it.  I remembered it as not having sex or much reference to it in it, something which added to its attraction for me.  But when I re-read it, I found all the stories ended with the M/F pair heading toward sex.  

That's not to say stories shouldn't end with sex, of course, but the fact that I had read past it to such a degree I didn't remember it being there at all still surprises me as I'd probably read some of the stories in this book thirty times or more.  My own Myers Briggs type is INFP, lending support to Kaelah's hypothesis that NFs are more able to naturally compartmentalize or look past the things they don't like in a film or story than NTs.  That said, the sample size we're discussing here is obviously quite small. How is it for you? Do you look past the things that aren't right for your kink or does their presence damage the fantasy?

Advent bloggers:

padme & Anakin - Journey to the Darkside

Marie - Life, Lemons & Spanking

EmmaEnchanted - This Kinky Life

Quai  -  Spanking Discussion

Poppy St. Vincent - Poppy's Submissions

Sharon - The Evolution of a Pin-Up Model

Tiger - Innermost Me 

Indy - Not So Submissive

 

Christmas Song List 2011 – Advent Blog Day 19

We’ve made a holiday playlist this Christmas — we do it every other year or so.  Paul did all of the selecting and I calligraphied the cover. Here’s the song list:

home-for-the-holidays

Home for the Holidays – Emmy the Great & Tim Wheeler
Let It Snow – Leon Redbone
Santa Baby – Pink Martini
The Man With the Bag – Animal, Floyd & Zoot
Christmastime Is Killing Us – From “Family Guy”
We Need a Little Christmas – Patrick Wilson
Lonely This Christmas – Mud A’s, B’s and Rarities
The Wren – Kate Rusby
Calling On Mary – Aimee Mann
Among Angels – Kate Bush
Winter In the Sun – Brandon Schott
Christmas Lights – Coldplay
When the Thames Froze – Smith & Burrows
This Is Christmas – Curt Smith
One More Sleep ’til Christmas – Kermit the Frog
Santa Lost a Ho – The Christmas Jug Band
Marshmallow World – Raul Malo
Sleigh Ride – The Wurzels
Home for the Holidays – Cyndi Lauper & Norah Jones
Christmas Is All Around – Bill Nighy (as “Billy Mack”)

snowman
The lettering came out okay, but I’m most pleased at how the little snowman came out. Here’s a close-up.

Hope your holidays are merry and bright.

 

Favorite Board Game: Advent Blog Day 18

scrabble
Another quick blog post made at the end of the day.  🙂

As the weather gets colder (okay, it’s Santa Monica, but we’ve got the heater on and all) I tend to want to curl up and cocoon a bit. This makes me think of sipping hot beverages and playing board games.  And when I think of playing board games I mostly think of my very favorite (and my family’s favorite too) which is Scrabble.  We all play, sometimes in bursts where we do it every night, with various styles and skills. Sometimes I play a tight defensive game.  Other times I go for the high scoring words, regardless of leaving the board open in a kind of “catch me if you can” kind of play.  Paul didn’t play when we first met, but he took to it well and, after years of my almost always winning, he now routinely trounces me. (Damn!)

I have some wonderful Scrabble memories.  Some of my favorites are of traveling on trains in Britain with Paul and playing our travel Scrabble game.  The games themselves were a fun way to pass the time, but it was also great fun to watch the nearby passengers slowly get sucked into watching the game while they pretended to read.  We’ve even played on transatlantic flights, a huge advantage for me because Paul is a tense flyer.

That said, I haven’t gotten into Words With Friends, partly because I’m not on Facebook enough and am worried about the time suck, but mostly because I take huge pleasure in the feeling of the wooden tiles in my fingers.  There’s nothing like sticking my fist in the bag and hoping not to pull out more than one letter “i”.

All this said, I wonder why I don’t play more often.  Maybe more Scrabble will be my resolution for the 2012.

 

Amazing Blogging: Advent Blog Day 17

Several things happened today. First, Paul and I got gifts shipped off to family we won't see at Christmas (stuff heading to Ohio and England).  We had great karma with parking appearing as we needed it and stores not being too crowded. I'm especially proud of our gift for our eight year old, science geek nephew.  We got him the Grow Your Own Bacteria kit from ThinkGeek.  I'm not sure it can compete with the owl puke of last year, but I did my best.

I also set up our small Christmas tree.  We didn't get a cut tree this year as we're going to be in Oregon at Christmas, but it felt good to get the small one, which used to be my grandmother's, decorated. Paul played our holiday music for this year and by the time we finished, I felt very much in the mood to celebrate. 

The best treat of the day was surfing over and reading Kaelah's recent (well for the last month, I've fallen behind) posts.  They're thoughtful and thought provoking, all of them raising thoughts and ideas that make me want to write.  Sadly I must go to bed, but I highly recommend reading the following:

Subject: Humiliation

Do You Want Kids With That

Spanking Porn: On Compartmentalization

Hopefully I'll be able to return to these topics in the next few days — I really want to do some reflection so I can do them justice either here or in their comments section.  Meanwhile, do read them. 

Crossing the Streams: Advent Blog Day 16

dont-cross-the-streams
I suppose we all have different faces or streams in our lives. For me there’s Annie (the person I am with my family and closest friends), Mija (my kink self) and an academic identity that’s separate from either of those (we’ll call her A.).  My streams aren’t that separate — Mija and Annie especially mingle across lines.  Most of my close friends know I’m into BDSM of some sort.  People in the kink, including those of you who read here, know a good deal about my life outside the spanking scene. But A. has stayed pretty separate from Mija (except to the degree that some of Mija’s friends in the kink are also academics of various sorts and therefore are likely to related to me as A. as well as knowing me as Annie and Mija).

Part of the seperation is purely practical.  I don’t want to worry overmuch that some poor student of mine is going to be looking for my academic writing on Latina feminism and stumble into The Treehouse.  It’s not that I’m ashamed of Mija, but my sexual life isn’t a place I want my students and I suspect they prefer it that way as well.  On the other hand, my research, so far anyway, hasn’t addressed issues of female masochism in literature, though I’ve read something of others work in that field.  But my academic interests are more in the area of queerness, race and class. I’m not sure why that is.  Part of is, I know, that talking about issues related to BDSM in an academic setting make me feel insecure in the sense of feeling exposed. It’s something that may change as I evolve as a scholar (I hope it does) but that’s where I’m at right now.  Yet another dimension to it is that on some level I don’t want to theorize everything in my personal life.  It’s nice to have a space in my life where academics don’t intrude.

At one time I imagined that doing a feminist analysis of what I do, especially what I do with Paul, would damage my kink on some level and I consciously tried to avoid doing it.  Which of course resulted in my doing exactly that and finding that my kink wouldn’t be possible (for me) without feminism.  So it’s not that the streams can’t cross.  I just generally don’t cross them.

Except when I do.  Today I was having coffee with someone from my department who works on gender studies, queerness and fandoms and found myself honestly talking with her about where my technical skills come from, where Paul and I met and then being honest about my interests in BDSM, including mentioning that my primary kink is spanking.  She identifies as a lesbian, and has some experience with the BDSM scene, but it’s not her thing.  Our conversation turned to issues of polyamory and how it does and doesn’t work with insecurity and introversion.  It was a conversation I could have had with any number of kink friends, but the first time I’ve been able to talk with someone from my “vanilla” life and not feel like they’re tourists.  It was nice, felt totally natural and I have no regrets about outing myself.  In fact, outing feels like too violent a word for our conversation.  As I said, it was natural. Not telling the truth would have closed off an emotional and intellectual area between us. It was only afterwards I found myself surprised by how much I’d disclosed.

My streams still don’t cross.  Except when they do.

For a much more touching post on how the streams can meet and cross, see EJ’s post.  She wrote it last week and I just read it tonight after I wrote this, but nonetheless felt it somehow inspired these thoughts.  Or rather that they come from a similar source.

The Cyst That Wasn’t: Advent Blog Day 14

First, let me preface this by saying there's nothing seriously wrong. But as I'm blogging every day and this is what happened today, I'm going write about it.  Also, it isn't serious, but I'm still a bit freaked out. Fair warning, if you're squimish about things medical, you may want to skip this blog post.

It started with a bump on my stomach.  I thought it was a boil actually on an old incision line.  It came to a head and opened in the revolting way such things do.  But then it wouldn't go away — kept coming back in the same place and getting a bit worse each time before healing and going away.  I stopped thinking it was just a boil and started wondering if maybe when I had surgery something like a staple had been left inside (yes, I'd been Googling).  So I made an appointment with a doctor to have it looked at.  Meanwhile, as I waited for my appointment it got worse and even grosser.

The doctor wasn't too concerned, though she agreed with me it was very gross (well, she didn't say that, but said she understood why I was grossed out by it).  She treated it, prescribed some cream to put on it under the dressing and then told me what she thought.  She said she thought I had a cyst which would, unless the cream cleared it up, would need very minor surgery to remove. However, since this was the site of a surgery, she wanted me to have a CT scan to see if I'd developed a hernia, which would need a slightly less minor surgery to repaiir.  

I went in for the CT scan on that terrible Friday.  Meanwhile, the cream seemed to be working a treat.  I got a call that evening telling me I did indeed have a hernia and would I come back in to talk about treatment.  I was a bit disturbed at the thought of surgery, mostly wondering how I was going to schedule it and my recovery around my teaching schedule next semester.  More annoyed then worried.  

Today I went in to hear more about the CT scan.  A second surgeon was called in.  This is where it started to get a little freakier. Apparently I have a enterocutaneous fistula which basically means I have a hernia but in addition to that, part of my small intestine has pushed its way through the opening in the muscle and attached itself to the underside of my skin. My skin doesn't like that and is draining in annoyance.  In the works are more follow-up appointments and what is still basically very minor surgery sometime in the new year.  It's not serious unless I start having a raft of symptoms which I don't have.

But, as I said earlier, I'm still freaked out.

In other news, I did the calligraphy for our Christmas CD covers and drew a small snowman to make it festive.  I'll put the playlist and a picture up tomorrow.    

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Advent bloggers so far (go see them!):

padme & Anakin - Journey to the Darkside

Marie - Life, Lemons & Spanking

EmmaEnchanted - This Kinky Life

Quai  -  Spanking Discussion

Poppy St. Vincent - Poppy's Submissions

Sharon - The Evolution of a Pin-Up Model

Tiger - Innermost Me 

Indy - Not So Submissive

Listening to Victorian England: Advent Blog Day 13

anne-perry
As you’ve probably gathered from my blog posts lately, I’ve been pretty stressed out about lots of things.  The spanking from Paul helped.  Working on my calligraphy helps.  So does baking, though I’ve done too little of that lately.

Another wonderful escape is listening to audiobooks.  Lately (for the last month) I’ve been listening to Anne Perry’s mystery series set in Victorian England. They’re lovely, full of rich detail about the period, the bad of the wrenching poverty, as well as the beauty of the lives of the English upper class.

At one point I had mixed feelings about audiobooks, holding to an odd snobbery about reading on paper. After listening to Stephan Fry read the Harry Potter books, I completely changed that point of view. A good reader can make a good book great, adding to the enjoyment of the text. I’ve found I like being read to and, as I read rather too fast sometimes, the act of being read to slows me down and can make me appreciate details of the text.  It’s also nice to be able to “read” while doing other things, like practicing my lettering. The act of having my hands occupied with calligraphy, while my brain is listening to a story is engrossing and leaves no room for the anxiety to creep in and distract me.

So what do you think of audiobooks or Anne Perry? Have you gotten into either?

And yes, there are very occasional references to “discipline” of various kinds. As ever, those unexpected moments give me a special thrill.

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Advent bloggers so far (go see them!):

padme & Anakin – Journey to the Darkside

Marie – Life, Lemons & Spanking

EmmaEnchanted – This Kinky Life

Quai  –  Spanking Discussion

Poppy St. Vincent – Poppy’s Submissions

Sharon – The Evolution of a Pin-Up Model

Tiger – Innermost Me

Indy – Not So Submissive