Saturday, August 21, 2004

Books and Love

I love having partners who give me books to read. How cool is that, for a pervy bibliophile such as I?

When I had my date with Roman this week, he loaned me a copy of Ayn Rand's book Anthem. And Jake has loaned/given me three books; Dreamland, by Kevin Baker, which is a novel set in early twentieth century New York. A Member of the Wedding, by Carson McCullers, which I think I read in a lit class once, but which I'm looking forward to reading again, and a book about writing called Style: Ten Lessons in Clarity and Grace, by Joseph M. Williams.

Max and I went through a book-swapping period early in our courtship, too. Right now he doesn't have time to read as much as I do, although I will say that he's gotten through more of Bill Clinton's autobiography than I have. And we've both been reading a very informative book called Beat the Heat: How to Handle Encounters with Law Enforcement by Katya Komisaruk. Not that we're planning on doing anything illegal, you understand. But education is never a wasted thing.

More details on life, love and clothespins later on…But right now I have social events to prepare for…

Friday, August 20, 2004

Late night last night, busy day today....Here are a few links to entertain you until I have time to write more...

My newest column is up, so I invite you to go read that...

A Large Leather Lexicon for a Little List of Terms
I am such a word-whore, and this page has some good definitions and some cool things to say about the use and misuse of BDSM terminology. A quick scan of the rest of the site revealed some well-expressed ideas on other pages as well...

An interesting article about (supposedly)British female sex tourists in Thailand.

Tune in later for stories about my date with Roman, and Max's encounters at a strip club. Very amusing...

Wednesday, August 18, 2004

Yesterday Van left this note in the comments below…
"Roman is a lucky guy. As is Jake, as is Max.
Just out of curiosity, how much interaction do you tend to have or foster among you and your three partners? I know they're all aware of each other, but do you sometimes socialize together (three or more of you—and please understand, I'm not talking about sexually), or is it kind of like three separately maintained duo relationships? I'm especially fascinated by the poly aspect of your lifestyle, even more than by the pro domme and general BDSM aspects."
An excellent question, Van, and the kind of thing every poly couple has to figure out. Let me start off by talking a little about Max and his secondary partner, Maura. They've been involved for nearly three years, so there's a bit more history there to use as an example.

When Max first began seeing Maura, he and I had a not-very-well-explored-expectation that she and I would be around each other a fair amount socially. "Socially" is a broad term here, it encompasses everything from having her accompany Max and I to parties, to me bumping into her at breakfast after her date with Max.

I also agreed that I would be willing to sleep in the same bed with her – Max likes to keep his dates overnight – although there would definitely be no three-way sex. (And no two-way sex, either. Sleep means sleep.) Our bed is quite large, and I felt reasonably okay about that for while.

But after about a year and half, I felt like some of the lines around this relationship were getting blurred, and I decided that a) I didn't want to sleep with anyone I myself wasn't having an intimate relationship with, and b) I needed Max's relationship with Maura to be more separate from me. Maura is a nice person. But you know, she's not my partner.

So that's where thing stand now. I do see Maura on some group social occasions, but it's not unusual for a month or three to go by without my seeing her at all. So I'm guessing you'd call that a "separately maintained duo relationship".

While this was happening, I was seeing Mike, and while Mike did come to some parties at our house, he was fairly outside our (mine and Max's) social circle, so while Max liked what he knew of Mike, they didn't encounter each other much. So you could score that as another SMDR. (Hey, I like that acronym!)

Fast forward a few months. Exit Mike, enter Jake and Roman. Max knew Roman before he was my partner – in fact, I would say that Max was instrumental in my getting to know Roman well enough to say, "I want that guy."

Since then, Max and I have spent some time around Roman socially, usually with his wife present as well. Group situations so far, although I think Roman's wife seems very cool - I'd like to hang out with her some more. (All in good time, I'm sure.) We have a lot of the same friends and acquaintances, and we go to many of the same fetish events, and I could see the four of us doing some social stuff together. Still, it seems like a mostly-separate relationship.

Given how I met Jake, it's going take a little longer to sort of blend him into my social life. He does know some people I know, though, so I'm thinking that will happen gradually, as will any connection that happens between he and Max. They've met several times, of course, but so far, my relationship with him been rather SMDRish.

The thing that's going to make any Max/Matisse/Jake social occasion slightly trickier is that while Jake is dating different people, he doesn't have a primary partner. Roman being married - well, I understand how to behave in that situation. When I see Roman with his wife, he's her date, not mine, and his focus is on her. That means hands-off for me, except for normal social hugging and such. Naturally there's that little zing between us, but we're low-key and friendly, rather than all intense and sexual. And I'm fine with that arrangement; it seems completely reasonable and natural to me. It's certainly what I'd expect from any secondary partner of Max's.

But let's say I invite Jake to, just for example, a dinner party at our house. So he's there stag, and I'm there, and Max is there. Wow. For me, that sounds like an exercise in very carefully portioning my focus - especially if Jake doesn't know many of the other people present very well. Not that he'd expect me to pay an inappropriate level of attention to him, but still...

It's not un-doable. Max has been in precisely that situation with me and Maura on any number of occasions, and we (usually) sailed through it unscathed. But it requires some delicate handling, and it assumes everyone involved will give everyone else the generous benefit of the doubt.

So I can imagine doing something like that – but what I cannot imagine is sleeping in the same bed with Max and either Roman or Jake. Max, fair-minded guy that he is, has expressed his willingness to at least try that sometime. (With the same no-sex rules.) But I couldn't...It's just…Oh, it's simply not in the realm of things that seem possible. I'd either giggle nervously all night or just lie there in a state of this-should-be-fun-but-wow-it’s-weird.

The mildly flustered tone you're hearing in my voice is all about me, you understand. Max is such a friendly person, he's quite disposed to like people if they give him half a chance. (I would be the snooty one in this relationship.) So I think I'd like it if Max had independent friendships with either one of them, although a corner of my soul quails at the idea of them talking about me when I'm not there. Surely that couldn't be good.

Postscript: I confess it hadn't really occurred to me to foster any kind of acquaintance between Roman and Jake, although Roman has expressed some mild curiosity about his opposite number. Huh, an interesting thought. I have no idea what they'd make of each other. But I can't imagine sleeping in the same bed with the two of them, either.

Tuesday, August 17, 2004

When in Rome…

Looking back over the entries for the last month or so, I see that I haven't written so much about Roman. I have a date with him this week, so he's on my mind right now…

I'm one of those women who, if you want to get me naked, you first must make me laugh. All three of my partners have different brands of humor, but in each case, laughing with them was something that made me feel, in an early moment, intimately connected with them. And it made me want to move forward and be more intimate with them. Roman started making me laugh the first time I met him, and his rapid-fire humor sometimes causes me laugh so hard that I have to lie down on some flat surface and recover slowly. (Come to think of it, that might be how we began some of our early sexual encounters.)

Now, it's not a one-way street: I make Roman laugh, too. He laughs that Oh-this-is-going-to-be-fun laugh when he's about to do something particularly wicked to me. And he laughs that Oh-shit-I'm-in-trouble-but-it's-turning-me-on laugh when I'm about to do something deliciously devious to him. I do like the balance in our relationship.

I'm sure you have surmised that we’re pretty irreverent about our kink - certainly neither of us is looking for any kind of formal dominant/submissive roleplay from each other. Roman has referred to what we do as "playing naked rugby", and I like that phrase.

But while we're informal in our BDSM, he's sweetly romantic with me, bringing me flowers and champagne and feeding me decadent little chocolates. It's funny – I'm not really the romantic type of girl, and frequently such gestures make me view someone askance, wondering what's with the big snow job. But Roman clearly has a generous soul, and the pleasure that he seems to take in pampering me with such indulgences make me feel comfortable accepting from him what might make me uneasy from another person. I suppose it means I trust him.

Monday, August 16, 2004

A few random observations…

"…Permanent makeup, for women who want the most natural appearance possible…." This, alongside a picture of a woman who looks like she just sat on an electrified porcupine? Not a good marriage of text and photo. Not at all.
(Link snagged from Everything Burns)

"No" always means "no". But four out of five bratty submissives agree that "you can't make me" always means "make me". Especially in bed.

I think some of these techniques are a little out of date - but not all of them, and it's still interesting reading, from someone who's definitely been there: Top 10 Signs You Are Being Set Up By An Undercover Cop, by Norma Jean Almodovar

Now I have to go decide on a column topic. And then I have to write the damn thing….