Oh, emotional crapola abounds.
I’ve had a mood swing roller coaster the past couple of days, from ecstatic giddiness crashing into low-grade depression within hours. The low was most noticeable after a couple deplorable and uninspiring clothes-shopping trips, in which I despaired upon ever having an inkling of fashion sense.
Similarly, I’ve ping-ponged back and forth between going into work in the morning feeling like I am a wasted piece of flesh who will never amount to anything for working in food service to never having felt happier than when I stepped foot into a place where, for once in my life, I can truly be myself.
Oh, believe me, I fully appreciate the melodramatic senselessness of it all. As ever, I blame it on my upbringing. Living with parents whose personalities are as contrasting as black and white was sure to screw me up somehow, right? (I hear it’s also trendy with my generation to place all blame on our parentals for everything wrong with how we turned out. We are the Entitled and Victimized Generation, it seems.) When I’m not taking after my father and having all the emotional and social capabilities of a lump of coal, I wax my mother’s flavor of melodramatic and feel the world collapsing around me.
And within this big Freudian, Oedipean psychoanalytical metaphor of a life that I’ve contrived for myself, my personal sense of self gets a bit muddled and fuzzy.
And then there are nights like tonight, when I am antsy and disgruntled and want to get in an intense, emotionally riled, buzzed discussion on the state of affairs; expound upon the latest in ridiculous, head-shaking-worthy antics of some fanatical zealot group; extrapolate on ideological tangents as a mere academic curiosity and exercise with a lack of any tangible consequence. Where can I fire off with self-righteous anger while cradling my Bailey’s on the rocks? Where is my dimly lit, wood-paneled hole in the wall for meeting with fellow conspirators and shooting our mouths off about how much better we’d do things, given the chance?
How is it possible to feel so tiny and still so concretely present at the same time? I am so confused, so out of place. Once again I feel pale and passionless among so many hundreds of people who change the world with the bright flare that is their life.
Stepping back and taking it all in, there is not much else I can do except laugh at myself for these inconsequential ravings. Pay no mind, please, I don’t even know what I’m rambling about anymore.
The other thing weighing on my mind these past few days lies in a not-so-optimistic reflection of my forays into casual play thus far. I will not yet claim to experiencing actual polyamory, because I draw a distinct line between having a stable relationship with one or more partners and having multiple casual play or sexual partners. Nothing wrong with either, necessarily – just distinguishing the definitions for myself.
And, in all fairness, I have had immense fun dabbling in various types and intensities of play. I’ve had formal ritualistic roles, more playful flirting roles, and much more in the grey areas between. And it’s been an incredible and educational series of experiences so far, to be sure. Now, however, I have realized how little I’ve participated in my local community (besides, I suppose, working at the new epicenter for kink activity and community in SoMa). Since I unpacked my sparse belongings into my new home on August 11th, I’ve set foot inside the Citadel three times. In fact, I am hesitant to explore that space at all, and I think some of that reluctance can be relegated to some choice flesh-related terms: ‘meat market’ and ‘fresh meat’ being the main two.
I’d like to change that, however. Despite my lack of social grace, I’m determined to make some headway to become more of an active participant at the Citadel. After all, while I am having fun with the play relationships I have now, I cannot survive, emotionally, on that alone to any kind of satisfaction. I’m looking, in short, for more regular human company (my cilantro plants don’t count, despite their enthusiastic blooming). Not necessarily for play, just for company. I’m reluctant even to voice this desire here, because I am afraid even a whiff of whisper of “single” and “looking” and I’ll have an influx of Fetlife messages asking for me to be someone or some couple’s slave for life.
Or, more succinctly, I’ll just get messages like I used to on Alt.com: “Kneel, bitch, and beg me for the honor to be my slave!”
So if you were to come up to me at any Citadel event, in all likelihood I will decline any and all offers to play or socialize or “meet up later” with a deer-in-headlights look on my face denoting my horror at having to interact with another human being.
Case in point? Two days prior, I made a short trip to Trader Joe’s to pick up groceries, and lined up at the cash register of one cashier whose eyes I’d caught while scanning the aisles for the shortest wait. He was a cute redhead with what I think is an Irish accent (I’m useless at guessing accents). As I pulled out my wallet, we exchanged the usual cashier-customer pleasantries. Then he looked up, made eye contact, and asked, “What brings you out here on such a fine afternoon?”
I might as well have been faced with either of the Boondock brothers. As in, wow you’re hot, but why are you pointing a gun at me?
Except in this case it was, are you actually talking to me? I blinked in surprise and managed to croak out a paltry, “Um, I needed food! Ha…ha.”
I locked my lips shut after that and just concentrated on not bolting out the door. I grabbed my change, started to power-walk away, when he calls out asking if I want my receipt. I turned, grabbed it out of his hand and really did bolt for the door.
Yes, I am that awkward.
So, in closing: do I know how to laugh at myself? Are you kidding? I need no other source of entertainment. I spent my teenage years doing what teenagers do best: taking myself way too seriously. The only reason I’ve survived this long and retained my sanity is by learning to laugh at myself, and at life in general.
I’ve given a lot of attention to various parts of my body for the HNT, but rarely do I show my feet. Odd, since I do actually like the way my feet are shaped. And even now you can’t see anything since they are bound within the curves of the heels I’m wearing. Ah, well.
In any case, this is pair #1 of the shoes I purchased on Monday. Pair #2 will likely make an appearance tomorrow when I go down to San José to meet up with Jewel, T, and company for the comedian show.
I lasted a good 3 or 4 hours in these shoes. Not bad considering the last time I wore a pair of heels was…sometime this past spring for a New York City outing.
October had been a busy busy month indeed, and there are still 10 more days left! I’m really excited to celebrate Halloween in San Francisco, although I still have no clue what my costume will be. And, to be honest, I am neither much of a party-er nor a trick-or-treater. But I love the holiday nonetheless. It will be weird to celebrate it in an area where the change in seasons is not as distinct, and there is none of the bite of upcoming frost in the wind, nor the crisp, spicy scent of apple, cinnamon, and pumpkin.
I guess I am just a little nostalgic. In any case, I’ve had quite a month: battling the flu for a week, having my car broken into (and, once I got the car cleaned up, I discovered the GPS cord hadn’t been taken at all, just flung into the backseat), starting to work morning shifts at Wicked Grounds, attending a Tom Petty cover band concert, spending the weekend with T, shoe-shopping, and attending the monthly rope peer workshop at Edges. I seem to be spending very little time at home.
I’m not complaining. It makes the time I do spend at home all the more valuable and appreciable.
So, let’s see. I think the real highlight was spending this past weekend in San José with T and 3 of his other lady friends and sometimes play partners. I went as his pet again, complete with the same collar I wore for our IKEA outing. It was quite fun! I met T after my work shift at the café, and we drove to Edges for a kinky yard sale/swap. I found a couple of old books for free, including one dictionary and atlas from 1939. T bought a ball gag from the table across from us, complete with alternate gags and attachments, which he insisted I try out.
Afterward we met up with the others for dinner and the concert. I thoroughly enjoyed the company I was with, as well as the concert, though by the time it finished at 1am, I was pretty well spent. I think even T was pretty tired, because after we’d dropped everyone else off and gone home, we went to bed after I gave him a brief foot rub. I luckily got to sleep on the guest bed, albeit with my ankle chained to it. It’s a very curious feeling and did wake me up a few times throughout the night, as I would move my foot and cause the chain to rustle around and sometimes slide against my other leg.
Sunday…ah, Sunday. The morning was rather a delirious blur of orgasm after orgasm. I was fucked into a mindless puddle with a metal dildo that has a large rounded ball at one end. It was painful going in, but my God did I want to keep it in. It got to the point where he was more or less forcing orgasms out of me with the dildo and his fingers. Complete sensory overload.
And then we showered and it was time to go help a friend of his unload a truckload of furniture and belongings into a storage unit.
Then Monday I drove down again to go shoe-shopping with a mutual friend of T’s – I’m going to call her Jewel – and we managed to spend 3 hours in two stores trying on shoes. I finally decided on two pairs of fairly tall high heels, which is a little ambitious given my inexperience with heels. But after the post-Folsom dinner I attended with Max – in a restaurant with business casual dress code, and where I wore a more formal dress but only had my black Teva flip flops to wear with it – I decided I really did need at least one pair of decent heels for the occasional formal event. Considering I never went to any formal events at college (I was more or less a social recluse), I’d never previously felt the need to own nice shoes.
Then Tuesday was the monthly rope peer workshop at Edges, which is always a good time. I got to tie a couple people up, and everyone had fun doing microbondage with twine, yarn, string, and crochet hooks. I also wore one of the shoes I’d bought the day before. By the end of the night my feet were definitely throbbing, but it was fun clopping around in them for the evening. And I even got treated to a foot rub by T when we went back to his place! More rope play ensued, and some foot play as well.
Needless to say, I went to work this morning with lots of rope blisters. But considering my current place of employment also sells bondage rope, I was not quite as worried about the marks showing.
And then there’s this upcoming weekend. Jewel invited a bunch of people to a comedian’s show this Friday and has planned afterward to have a big slumber party at T’s place. Yes, I have actually regressed 15 years at the thought. I am thoroughly enjoying this mental picture I have of a bunch of giggling girls surrounding one hapless guy (yeah right). Who doesn’t love a sleepover?
Sometimes, sometimes, I sit back a little, review these events and relationships I have become a part of, and wonder: Is this really my life? How did a person like me end up so…happy?
On my second day with Max, I revealed to him a long-term dislike and fear – one might say phobia, as it is pretty irrational and mostly a mental and psychological fear – of needles and piercings. I pointed out my lack of earring piercings and emphatically declined Max’s offer to stick needles in Blondie for me to watch, to see if I would be interested in doing it as well.
Well, little did I know, but Doms and sadists are constantly taking notes regarding things like this. Sure enough, a little later in the week – I don’t remember when exactly, probably because my mind has been busy blocking that part away to keep me sane – Max began insinuating his desire to pierce me. Not only that, but he specifically wanted me to ask him to pierce me.
This is not unlike asking someone with a fear of electrocution (Oh hey! That’s me as well) to grab onto the end of an active cattle prod.
For his pleasure.
And that really is the kicker. It was his pleasure that I give this to him, despite this overwhelming fear. And so, despite all my self-preservation screaming and railing against it, I desperately wanted to be able to do this for him.
Throughout the rest of the week, Max would punctuate our sessions with reminders of that request and desire. He would tell me that I will say to him, when the time came, “Please, Sir, I want to give this to you.” Then he would make me repeat it, and repeat it, until he was convinced I meant it.
And so it continued, until the fear of needles, and the arousal from the utter submission, and the intensity of the pain he dealt me at the same time, all merged and coalesced into a singular, seething mass of nerves and adrenaline.
The weight of the question and of whether or not I would be able to give him the answer he desired remained on my mind for the duration of my time with Max. Up until the last night, I tried to convince myself that it would be fine, that the fear was entirely irrational anyway, that it would not hurt all that much, that there was no reason that thinking about piercing should make me flush and start to hyperventilate…
(The odd thing is that I have no problem with getting shots at the doctor’s – never have – and my calm with hypodermic needles has gotten to the point that a nurse administering a shot once had to ask me if I was okay, if I had felt anything, because I hadn’t reacted at all.)
So I tried to rationalize my fear of needle play so that I could, when or if Max asked, say with conviction that, yes, I wanted him to pierce me. At a certain point over the weekend, I thought, I can do this! It’s really not that big a deal. I can totally get over this. It’ll be fine!
And then, Wednesday night, as I sat between his knees on the floor of a friend’s personal dungeon, Max took my face between his hands, lifting it so that I was looking straight at him, and told me, very calmly and softly, that he wanted to put needles in me.
I instinctively shrank away, my eyes widened, and I sank back on my knees, my breath quickening. Max told me to think about my answer, assured me that there was no wrong response, that I was strong and brave regardless of my answer.
I bowed my head, closed my eyes, and tried hard to formulate the phrase he wanted me to say. All my internal assurances vanished, and I knew I couldn’t do it. I sat there, disappointment already churning through my gut, and Max could see clearly what my answer was. He again assured me that it was okay to say no, that being able to say no was just as important as saying yes, because it made the yeses all the more valuable. And relief flooded through my body at that acceptance.
Still, still. It was difficult knowing I had refused him something he wanted to do and, further, something he wanted me to experience. I was disappointed for not being able to get over an irrational fear for him. I wonder what it would take to be able to overcome something like this.
Overall, I am glad I didn’t do it. I’m not ready. I don’t know why, and I don’t know when or if I ever will be ready, but having now had the experience of reaching such a hard, unyielding boundary, I’m glad that I was able to say no. In past reflections on my various phobias – electricity and needles being the two prevalent ones I’ve come face to face with because of my proximity to the kink community – I’ve believed I would be able to overcome them at the behest of another. I see now that it will take more than that – and, to be sure, even my closeness and intense bonding with Max doesn’t hide the fact that I really have only known him for 8 days. For something like this, I’m sure it will take a much longer-term relationship: of building closeness, trust, and intimacy over time.
And then, perhaps, when that question is asked, I will be able to give a different response.
Perhaps it is only fair that a spectacular week be followed by a tremendously sucky one. I don’t know how karmic balance works, but who does? But on Monday – the day I was supposed to attend our first café staff meeting and a rope peer workshop afterwards at the Citadel – that very afternoon, I was suddenly struck down with a high fever and sore throat. I ended up sleeping through the meeting, and when I awoke, I had an astounding headache. I took a couple advil and went back to bed, but not before asking my housemate if there was tea in the house. There was one box of mango-based tea, which I wasn’t about to tempt my weakened immune system with.
Tuesday was probably the worst day – except that, midmorning, my housemate made a short stop home from work to drop off tea, orange juice, and fruit for me. I was extremely touched! Otherwise, however, I did not move from the bed except to go to the bathroom. Any and all light pierced straight through my skull, and whenever I awoke, it was accompanied by a throbbing headache. I had to call in sick for the few hours I had that day as well. Again I used Advil so I could sleep. The sore throat wasn’t too bad, as I kept drinking lots of tea, water, and orange juice.
Most of the day passed in a delirious blur, but when I woke up Wednesday morning, I felt a lot better. So much better that I even ventured outside to sit in the sun for a few minutes. Things were looking up! I felt optimistic about making it to work on Friday, with another day of recuperation. I internally praised my immune system for staying strong. I also got a very sweet phone call from Max, which also made me feel a lot better.
Then, Thursday struck. The day of questioning. My fever started creeping back, the headache returned, and my nose started running. I blew through one box of tissues and started on another. I took a hot shower, and then made soup. But even though I tried to resist all day, I ended up having to take more Advil in the afternoon. I really wanted to go to work the next day, but was I well enough? Would I still be contagious after my inadvertent four day quarantine? Would people run in fear from my appearance?
So many questions I didn’t know the answer to. Well, Friday morning, I was feeling a little better, in fact my only real symptom was a persistently clogged and runny nose. I decided to stop by Safeway to pick up Sudafed before work to relieve that a little, and headed to the café.
Well, it worked rather splendidly! I was still slightly sniffly, but that was about it – no sore throat, no fever, no headache. Work went without a hitch, though by the end of my shift I was feeling a little shaky from low blood pressure, as I hadn’t eaten throughout the shift. My own fault. I got some Thai curry to go and returned to the café to chill out and relax. Originally I’d planned on attending the opening reception at Mr. S, but decided my nose wasn’t up to it. I took another sudafed – my second that day – in the hopes of clearing it up before bed.
Instead, I felt my face becoming progressively number throughout the night – and it is only now starting to recede a little. My nose remained congested, and I had a growing pile of tissues accumulating at my table. Gross.
I decided it was time to go home. So I packed up, said goodnight to Rose, and walked the 500 feet to my car. At first, I thought I’d left my front driver window rolled all the way down. But I never had it down all the way that day, and then I saw the jagged edges.
Ah. Someone had broken in.
I was really quite calm about the whole thing. I carefully unlocked the car and peeked inside. Everything I’ve ever put in the side pockets, seat pockets, and in the glove compartment was strewn everywhere. Some dashboard panels had been ripped out, and there was glass everywhere. The back, in comparison, remained relatively untouched.
I walked around to the passenger side and checked the glove box. The only thing of value inside my poor, old, decrepit car was in the glove box: Susan, my GPS navigator. I saw the glove compartment hanging open and the car manual and everything piled onto the carseat and figured it was gone. But no – there it was, sitting right on the hanging door of the glove box. I picked it up with amazement.
A cursory look showed that my GPS car adapter was missing from its plug, though I didn’t do a more thorough search to see if it had been taken or merely thrown about like everything else was.
I wanted to laugh. Or cry. Did the thief who took the time to break into a 12-year-old, playa-dust-covered, dying car, not even get away with anything more than a $5 cable? I tried to imagine being in the shoes of this desperate person, who perhaps was feeling panic and anger building up as he searched and couldn’t find anything of value, that he could immediately tell. Because he apparently had no idea what a GPS looked like or what it’s worth (not all that much, anyway. Under $200 for my little Susan. But she’s priceless in my heart, anyway.)
Well, I really shouldn’t be too presumptuous yet. I really don’t know if there was something more valuable that was taken. I don’t have an inventory of what was in the car at the time. Maybe the little toolbox of torx heads and wrenches was taken from under my passenger seat. Or – more likely – the thief was interrupted in his search and had to make a quick getaway with whatever happened to be in his hand – a GPS car adapter cord.
In any case, I headed numbly – both literally and emotionally – back to the café. I made multiple phone calls chasing for a direct answer, or to at least direct me to something concrete that I could do. I called AAA, and was told they couldn’t help, but could redirect me to the SFPD. I got hung up on, so I looked up the SFPD number online and called directly. The dispatcher told me to file a claim online, so I did. Then I called my mommy.
Yes, I needed my mom. I also wanted to try and find my AAA membership number so I could see what else I could get in the way of services. After a bit of chitchat – through a very, very stuffed nose on my part – I got my number and called them. There really wasn’t much else they could do, except tow my car the next day to a repair center. So that is what I’ll be dealing with tomorrow.
I know I should be grateful that the vandalist didn’t steal Susan from me. But it only increases the pointlessness of the vandalism and makes it all the more difficult to deal with having to pay the cost of repair for the pointlessness.
To sum up this week?