Some hump-day blathering
Sorry, no Steve scene this week. The poor dear called me yesterday with a barely recognizable voice. He insists I did not give him my cold, because he came down with it a week after he’d seen me… I hope he’s right. Actually, his is worse, because he has a throat infection and his doc had to give him a Z-Pak.
As it happens, the found time was welcome. I find myself scrambling right now, as I’m trying to get work and other things squared away for the next week until John and I head out to Vegas next Thursday, for four days of spanko camaraderie, debauchery and revelry. I am attempting to get a series of five short books proofread in this time, as well as prepping and doing all the last-minute stuff one needs to do before abandoning all for a few days. Times like this, I wish I had a Surface Pro or something like that, so I could bring my work with me and do some of it in my downtime. But so far, I haven’t made that happen.
Something occurred to me yesterday and has been percolating in my brain ever since, regarding This Thing We Do, the scene overall and the state of it these days. I’ve been watching the endless and ubiquitous FSOG debates rage on and on (and granted, I’ve done my share of contributing to them). I’ve seen the outcry, the protests, the defenses, the dichotomy of crappy reviews and box-office records broken (re. the movie), the spoofs, the backlashes, on and on and on. Someone made a good point on Twitter yesterday: Fourteen years ago, Secretary didn’t get this much insanity. Oh, there was a lot of talk, but I don’t recall anything like what’s been going on with FSOG. Is it because Secretary was a better movie — or because social media and its ever-increasing ripples outward is so much more advanced now than it was in 2001? Why are people harping and haranguing, for example, about Christian Grey’s non-consensual behavior with Ana, but there wasn’t nearly as much squawking when E. Edward Grey quite non-consensually put Lee over his desk and spanked her? Are we much more uptight as a culture now, since everything we do is open for scrutiny?
I don’t know the answers, and I don’t want to get into that debate here, because that isn’t my point. This is my point: There is so much arguing out there now — not just with FSOG, but all sorts of scene issues. Consent. BDSM vs. spanking. Inclusivity vs. exclusivity. Sexual orientation. Etiquette and protocol. Looks, age, bodies. These issues always existed, but now, with Twitter and FetLife (and even Facebook) and the instantaneous nature of social media, they are discussed far more openly, and many times, more combatively.
When I see this, I can’t help thinking, “Damn. I’m so glad I’m not new to this.”
How sad, really. I know I bitch a lot about my age, but as I tweeted yesterday, there’s something to be said about being older in this scene. I no longer have to worry as much about what people think (although a part of me still does and always will), and my fear of predators and outing and falling in with the wrong people and all the other shit that newbies face as they’re navigating is much lower than it would be if I were just stumbling into this.
This is not to say that the kink scene is a bad place now. There is still so much joy and fulfillment and kinship to be found. It’s just that you have to wade through so much more BS to get to it, it seems. I see it and/or hear about it every day.
As much as I think ageing blows, I have to admit I feel pretty lucky these days, scene-wise. I have no children, no family to worry about. I am self-employed, so I don’t have to worry about Big Brother Bosses. I am in a long-term relationship, so I don’t have to sail the treacherous waters of dating in a rape culture era, I don’t have to fret about who didn’t call or didn’t text or didn’t email, if my older butt isn’t sexy enough, if I’ll have to attend kink functions alone, blah blah blah. I don’t openly broadcast who I am everywhere because I don’t wish to out those close to me by association, but as far as I am concerned, I couldn’t care less who knows.
When I see the climate of fear and paranoia out there, the confusion over who to trust, the terrible repercussions of outing, I realize I’m in about the best place I could be right now, and I don’t take it for granted.
When I observe all the arguing and debates and uptightness and political correctness and so forth, I realize I’ve been in this long enough to know my own mind, what I like and what I don’t, and what works for me, and I don’t have to look outside myself for validation that I’m on a good path. This makes me feel a rare peace today.
I still admire all the younger folks who got into this early, who will experience everything in their youth that I scrambled to achieve later in life. I envy those who never knew a world without Internet, who didn’t have to keep their desires and questions and fantasies in the dark recesses of their minds. But for now, I think I’m in a damn good place, or at least the best place I can be, at this time, in this scene of ours.
Of course, this doesn’t mean I won’t feel completely different once again next week or tomorrow or next month. I mean, just a couple of weeks ago, I was in a tizzy about scene evolution. So I will acknowledge the good feelings now, and enjoy them.
Any thoughts, y’all? For people who have been around TTWD for a while, have you noticed the changes?
Yes, and not only around TTWD bur also about novels, acts of terror, movies, the Tea Party and what else do we have. I guess your point about social media is key here.
What you make me thing about is what difference it will make to those are new, looking for their identities, experimenting with relationships, developing preferences. I must admit, when I entered this world, the better class of weblogs were of significant help to stimulate thinking and to guide my ways into. The blogs I am hinting at here are more thoughtful, less volatile and often faciiltate exchange between the crowd that frequent it.
The only good thing I see with 50 shades of vanilla is that it did bring out people who have long harbored a spanking or BDSM desire and helpthem to explore this desire. One of the bad things is that the reality will be quite a shock for most. Not all spankos have private jets or Millions in cash to play with.
Most of us are not looking to be changed, just to experience our own fetish.
It has opened public debate and while it may be good to a point my fear is Big Brother who recently seems to feel its role is to protect us from our self will try to regulate something that is unique as each individual that plays. We have our own rules and etiquette and I do not need some congressman trying to tell me what I should or can't do.
Isn't it funny that the most corrupt, self serving, power hungry, and deceitful group of people in the country make our laws and try to shape our future?
I hope 50 shades will take the stigma away from TTWD; I fear it may do just the opposite.
You pretty much summed it up. I too, know what I like and don't like. Before experimenting with various spanking dynamics, I already had insight into what I most preferred and I feel I'm best with one on one situations as a spankee. Fetlife outlived its usefulness to me quite awhile ago. And the party scene is not my forte. I feel like I would have to ward off too many undesirable partners.
My time in the scene” has been very unpredictable and less than fulfilling. I'm a jaded person by nature which has been further tested over the last few years. I took time to develop connections with various people who seemed mutually interested. In a nutshell most of the interaction became lopsided-meaning I was initiating most of the contact. So just like that I stopped and they didn't inquire. But I truly don't care because with all the fickle behavior I've witnessed on Fetlife, I know who my true friends are and almost all are outside of the scene.
As for THE movie and books, I said before 98% of the “forbidden” activites don't appeal to me, but I enjoy reading all types of genres and just let myself use my imagination to the best of my ability. There was a secondary storyline in the books regarding injury/murder plots to the lead characters which played throughout the series.
MrJ — yes. Intelligent discourse and debate over these topics seems to have given way to hostility and flaming. Actually, flaming has always been around, but there are so many more avenues for it now!
Poppa — that is my fear too. And yeah, I don't like to think too much about the future of the country. Another reason I'm glad I'm older.
Kelly — as you know, I do like the camaraderie that can be found on FetLife. But Christ, the land mines you have to step around!
Erica, thank you for saying that being a MATURE person as a 'SPANKO' has its merits. We can choose with delight with no apprehension about the 'spanking scenes' we undertake. because of our maturity. I have always felt we have been in the 'golden age of the 'spanking scene'. And can now rest and relax. with fervent pleasure. our contribution to it. XXX Luv ya.
Six — ummmm, well, I wouldn't put myself quite in the “golden age” yet.
I don't know what it is like in the States, but down here there is an ongoing wave of political and social conservatism that, to us “golden oldies”, is dumbing down most new and exploratory activities. When Secretary was released there was a background of noise, both approving and disapproving, but we were not shocked. It encouraged some mild discussion and was accepted along with many other expressions of the times.
Then social media combined with the great conservatism hit. Suddenly something like FSOG, no matter how bad, is thrust into the spotlight and the world reacts as if it were a revelation. Fortunately those of us who don't subscribe to the great, right wing conspiracy (ha ha) and who have “been there, done that” look smugly down at those reacting and wonder what all the fuss is about.
Personally the books were bad enough. I will stick with the true life adventures of Erica, John, Steve and many others who inhabit this great blog land. Reality has always been better than fiction.
Don — what happened in the UK recently with the ATVOD could very well happen anywhere. It's scary. But you're right — reality is so much better than any of the books and fantasies. At least we're still allowed to have that, to some degree anyway, if we so choose.
Hi Erica — You pretty much covered everything 🙂 I totally agree with you.I know what I like and what I don't like when it comes to spanking etc 🙂 When you mentioned in a comment about the ATVOD in the UK, I think it's totally crazy,if they want to film spanking they should be allowed to, it's none of nobody's business, they are not bothering anyone.You are right it is scary, because it could happen here 😦 I hope Steve feels better very soon.Much Love and hugs from naughty girl Jade/Emily Jean
Jade — I should be able to see him next week, before we go away. 🙂 Thanks.
Erica, what a great read, and you covered it. I'm sure that all this fuss will lead to more sensitivity training for those who still have those Big Brother Bosses. I'm glad I don't have to worry about that, anymore .And let's not forget the new FCC rules that no one has read yet.
While an aging body is no fun, I'm delighted to have my own mind back. I'm glad to be where I am, age-wise, but I can't help but wonder how things would have been, if knew in 1980, what I know now. One had to know what books or movies had spanking scenes, or if you were in a big city, you could sneak into one of those book stores that you didn't want to be seen in. Folks today can find everything they need or want on the subject. I hope it lasts.
Gary — I think I remember those old bookstores. There may have still been one around in Hollywood or thereabouts when I first came onto the scene in the 90s. I think it was called Circus of Books?