Erica Scott: Life, Love and Spanking

Ruminations, opinionated observations, darkly humorous blathering and the occasional rant from an outspoken spanko and unapologetic attention wh–, um, hog.

Archive for the category “friends”

Notes on The Scene

You might want to settle in with your refreshing beverage of choice for this one, as it’s really freaking long.

Recently, someone I’m very fond of, and who is quite prominent in the spanking scene, wrote a piece about the scene and where he feels he stands in it, in particular the large national parties. Lest people accuse me of name-dropping (“oooh, she’s friends with him“), I won’t say who it is. But his post was honest and brave, and it gave me the courage and impetus to do some reflecting of my own.

I have stated, time and again, that throughout life, I have felt like this photo:

brickdoesnotfit

The piece that doesn’t fit. The square peg in a round world. Or, as I once heard in a 12-step meeting: “I feel like I’m trespassing on the planet.” Different. Weird. Etc. Throw kinkiness into the mix and you really get the stench of otherness.

I’ve also often said that navigating the scene is like dancing on a double-edged sword. On one side, you have infinite potential for belonging, for acceptance, for connecting with others. For personal fulfillment. For expressing your truest self. But misstep, and that sword can hurt you. Sometimes it’s little cuts that bleed, and leave tiny scars that no one sees but you. And other times, it can outright disembowel you.

The scene is loving. The scene is fickle. It is kind. It is brutal. The scene gives. The scene takes away.

I’ve seen so much in my scene years. Some of it has happened to me, and some things have happened to others. I’ve been loved, hated, accepted, misunderstood, put up on a pedestal, knocked back off it, immortalized on film and in cartoons, stalked, cat-fished, supported, betrayed, judged, defended. I’ve hit the highest highs and the lowest lows, and everything in between.

Just a few random things I’ve borne witness to over the years, that touched me deeply:

When a long-time party-goer had a massive heart attack and nearly died, he ended up in an extended hospital stay, unable to pay his mortgage and his bills. A GoFundMe was set up for him — contributions came pouring in. I believe they ended up with $15-20,000. He survived.

When a young woman mentioned on FetLife that she had a birthday party and no one showed up, a surprise party was arranged for her at one of the national gatherings. When she walked into the room and everyone cheered, she actually turned around, looking for who was being greeted. Then realization dawned, and she burst into tears.

When a woman had devastating losses from a fire, a GoFundMe was set up for her as well. Many came through for her.

A long-time host of room parties, who had been absent for years due to illness, came to his first party in years with his wife. They were given a tribute, complete with speakers (I was one of them) and an award. It was a beautiful recognition of a great scene contributor. Not too long after that, he passed away from cancer.

When a young woman came to her first party, not knowing anyone and having only connected online with a few people on FetLife, the enormity of it all, the noise, the crush of bodies overwhelmed her. The first night, she left the party room in tears. The party might have ended for her there, had it not been for a dear friend of mine intercepting her in the hallway. He pulled her into his room, let her cry, gave her a pep talk. She calmed down and regained her composure, took a break, then went back to the party. Later that weekend, I saw the same woman happily, joyously playing, right in the midst of the main party room.

When a beloved scene member nearly died giving birth to twins and then one of them tragically didn’t make it, a beautiful soul took up a collection to buy the shell-shocked couple a ton of essentials — everything from diapers to formula to clothes — plus a cleaning service and a subscription to Netflix for distraction.

Countless displays of welcome, of support, of love. The more I think about this, the more incidents I come up with. But of course, there is the other side.

I’ve seen relationships form, then crash and burn. I’ve seen countless emotional meltdowns at parties, including several of my own. I’ve seen friendships dissolve, jealousies flare, hurts inflicted. People who put out their time, money and efforts to open their hotel suites to everyone at parties get criticized and picked apart by those who consider themselves entitled to everything they want at someone else’s expense. I read an account of someone who welcomed everyone in their suite for several days/nights at a national party — and then was thoroughly reamed for having the audacity to restrict their suite to friends only on the final night. That’s just one story of many. I have witnessed people being systemically and cruelly shunned from groups. This one hates that one; so-and-so violated so-and-so; stay away from that guy; don’t talk to this woman. Battle lines are drawn; gossip runs rampant. Granted, if someone is a genuine hot mess, a violator, a predator, etc., with accounts from many to back up the concerns, that’s one thing; friends should be warned and safety should be paramount. But sometimes, good people who cross the wrong individuals can find they become pariahs in short order.

The scene can foster closeness and special relationships, but it also provides a sort of pseudo-intimacy. We are in close proximity, we bare our body parts before we even learn each other’s real names, we engage in intimate activity. We are emotionally invested and vulnerable. We open fully and trust quickly. But sometimes, it simply isn’t real. And when reality does hit, it hurts worse. Because we’ve invested so much of ourselves. Not just our bodies, but our hearts and souls.

I have watched people rally and rise above bad times to eventually prevail. And I have seen people disappear, burned out or driven away. The trouble with being too close to the scene is it’s like a personal house of cards. The loss of a key card can cause the whole thing to come down for you. And although you know logically that there are other components of life, at the moment of that crash, it can feel like your entire world is crashing. Your source of support. Your place of belonging.

There have been many ups and downs for me over the years, navigating this scene. Luckily, I was spared the tumult of multiple relationships, of breakups, of having to see exes at gatherings, because I have been with John the entire time. A couple of times, I came very close to dropping out. When I thought I was done shooting because one company didn’t want me, I felt like a has-been and like my time was done. It was the first time I became aware of the fickleness of the scene, how much is about the newest hot young thing. However, I was able to work through that, with the help of a much beloved friend (thank you again, Danny)… and went on to shoot with several other companies for another ten years. I beat the odds, over and over.

Well-placed gossip can destroy someone in this scene. Roughly fifteen years ago, a woman accused me of trying to sabotage her relationship and steal her boyfriend. Ridiculous, since I had John. The man in question had been my play partner, she had been my friend, but when she began dating him, suddenly I became the enemy. Not only was he not to play with me anymore, he wasn’t to communicate with me at all. I don’t know where this jealousy and paranoia came from. I consider myself the least threatening woman on earth, hardly a femme fatale. I was older than her, and not nearly as striking.

Seems like this sort of thing is no big deal, right? Unfortunately, she happened to be a well loved icon of videos — definitely a case of “boys want to meet her, girls want to be her.” And she was telling anyone who would listen to her that I was a relationship wrecker. I lost friends. I was put in the awful state of wondering who was saying what about me and to whom. Or, even worse, having damning words come directly back to me, like the time a friend told me she’d been admonished in no uncertain terms by another that she should “sever all ties with Erica.”

I was devastated and thought I was done. But somehow, with support, I made it through that too. She sabotaged her own relationship, it ended without any of my involvement, and she eventually disappeared. Friends who had believed her ended up apologizing to me (including the “sever all ties” person). It was an ugly and painful time, and I think that came the closest to driving me out. (Please, no guesses. And no, it was not Samantha Woodley.)

But I was younger then. I had time on my side. I could ride it out, even though it seemed impossible at the time. Because there was a greater good. There was something to fight for, to persevere for.

Humans are resilient beings. We have to be. There is so much in life that is devastating and inevitable. Death. Illness. Crushing losses. And then there is the suffering that shouldn’t be inevitable, but it is: the pain from the careless cruelty and indifference of fellow humans.

We are able to move past and survive a whole lot of grief and loss, recover from disappointments, rise above life’s meanness. But I think everyone has a breaking point. Everyone has that one last straw, the one where they realize something has to change. Something has to give… or something has to go.

I am reminded of a woman I knew in the scene many years ago. She, along with her play partner and friend, hosted many room parties at Shadow Lane and was one of the organizers of a spanking group in her hometown. She was someone who had been through her share of pain in life; prolonged illness and death of her first husband with no support from his family, raising two children alone, addiction. But now her kids were older, she’d fallen in love and married again, and it seemed that life was finally going to turn around.

Until she was hit with not one, but two unspeakable betrayals from people she trusted. I will not elaborate on what happened or who was involved, only that the incidents were scene-related. They were her final straw. She withdrew from the groups, disappeared from the online boards. I stopped hearing from her; she lived in another state, so it wasn’t like I could go for coffee or lunch and hang out with her.

She died from acute liver failure at age 50, drinking herself to death.

No, I’m not going to drink myself to death. Or anything myself to death. But I think I’ve experienced my last straw as well. And I don’t think I’m going to get past this one. Unlike with the others, time is not on my side. I know I harp about my age a lot, but this statement has never been more true: I really am too old for this shit. I’m already dealing with a lot of insecurity about the changes in my body, my face. And now that I feel like my confidence, sense of kinship, and trust have disappeared, that’s simply too much to cope with. I can’t put the face on anymore. I don’t want to be seen. When I look in the mirror, the face that gazes back at me looks pale and lifeless.

50 Freaks was this past weekend. This is the first time since this party was conceived that we’ve missed one. The decision was painful and I’ve shed copious tears over it. I hope Joe will understand and forgive me; it had absolutely nothing to do with him. But I simply couldn’t do it. And interwoven with all the sadness and regret was a feeling of relief. All the prep of getting there felt overwhelming and exhausting. I’ve never liked that part; I’ve always found it stressful. But I also always knew there was great joy and welcoming and fun and play and escape on the other side. Now… that has been tainted.

It snowed in Vegas, a rare occurrence. Several flights were canceled. I told myself, meh, it would have been a hassle driving in it (I read about road closures and other traffic nightmares), it would have been freezing, I’d have to bring a ton of heavy clothes, and who feels sexy and spanky when they’re bundled up like an Eskimo? But of course, I knew that was ridiculous. We’d be in a hotel, not in a freaking tent. In our room, we could turn on the heat. In the party room, all the bodies would keep things plenty warm. So that was just a rationale.

God damn, I miss play. So much. Part of me is yearning, fully, bodily, emotionally, to lose myself in the pain, to be spanked to tears, to feel those incomparable endorphins cleanse me. But I don’t know where that is to be found right now. I don’t know who I can trust with it. In case you’re wondering whatever happened to Mr. Woodland — he is not gone. He is great and I would unquestionably scene with him. However, he is very busy dealing with Life at this time and not available.

And more than play, I miss the connection. I miss the bubble of parties, the complete immersion into an altered state for a while. A few days of respite from reality. The hugs. The laughs. I miss the me I was at these events. I don’t know if she’ll ever come back.

I am and will always be a spanko. I just don’t know what my outlets will be now. And like I said, it doesn’t seem like time is on my side. I feel a profound emptiness, a sense of loss. I suppose, like everything else, I just have to let it be there and wait to see what’s ahead.

By the way, the absurdity of this post doesn’t escape me. I can hear people out there thinking, “Oh, boo-hoo, you little snowflake victim. First World Problems. Get over yourself.” One friend I know is dealing with her mother’s terminal cancer. Another lost both her parents within seven weeks at the end of last year. Others are dealing with physical ailments, money worries, dying pets, relationship issues, and life’s other assorted crises and grievous situations.

Right now, John’s health is stable. I am working. I love my quiet, safe apartment. I am lucky enough to live in a strong, progressive and enlightened state during these terrifying times. I don’t wish to minimize any of the good things I’m grateful for. However, this is one of the worst and most long-lasting depressions I’ve had in years. And it is about more than just parties and playing. It’s about feeling like I’m losing a piece of myself. John says I am going through an existential crisis. He’s not one given to exaggeration, although I think this phrase sounds melodramatic. But perhaps I am. I’m questioning everything and everyone, including myself.

They say depression is anger turned inward. I am angry. More than anything, I am angry at myself. I allowed my power to be taken from me, let harsh words break me. I should be stronger than that. But I guess it’s that last straw thing again. Sometimes our well of strength runs dry. I don’t have it in me to go through another episode of wondering who’s saying what to whom.Β It’s soul-sucking.

I was told, among other things, that I use my depression like a shield, so people will feel sorry for me and not hold me accountable for my actions. That is the lowest of the low blows, cruel, and untrue. I hold myself accountable for my actions. When I fuck up, I say so. No one is harder on me than I am. But if one person believes this of me, then surely others do too. There are flawed humans, as we all are, and then there are those who cross the line and are fatally flawed. I’m not sure which side of the line I’m on… or am considered to be.

I stayed off social media this past weekend. John did his best to keep me distracted, taking me to see a movie, joking and being silly. It was a strange, surreal feeling all weekend, knowing what was going on and not being there. Wondering how everyone was doing. Who made it, and who got held up by the inclement weather. Who played with whom. Two of my favorite people there recently married; I hope they got lots of attention. What dramas occurred, because they always do. Would they have been mine, or someone else’s?

Since our going missing from the party, John has received one text, and I’ve received two messages, asking if we’re okay… and that’s it. Ouch. Humbling indeed. 😦 “It’s not personal,” John said. “People just have short attention spans.” I like his kinder, gentler take on it, rather than mine — that my reputation has been damaged, and people are staying away. Or, even worse, that no one cared all that much to begin with. Out of sight, out of mind. We’re all just faces in the crowd. (Or asses, in this case.)

So no party report, I’m afraid. May not be much of anything from me, at least for a while. I will always love the spanking scene, sharp edges and all, and love some very special people in it. I’ll always be grateful for what it gave to me. I just don’t know if I can be part of it anymore. Or if it even wants me to be.

John has done all he can to assure me that I am indeed lovable, that I matter. He told me that I make his life worth living, every single day. The same goes for you, my beloved fellow misfit. I love you with all my heart.

Carry on, kids.

Onward… where to, I’m not sure

So here I am, staring another birthday in the face. Didn’t I just have one of the damn things? Look, I enjoy birthday festivities as much as the next attention whore hog, but I can do without this ageing business.

And — confession time. I don’t have a birthday spanking to look forward to. Because as it happens, I do not have a play partner at this time.

I feel kind of ridiculous and thought perhaps if I just didn’t talk about it, people would forget that big announcement I made a few posts back. I thought about deleting it, but I really didn’t want to. That would be denying it ever happened, and it did. And it was lovely and lots of fun, however brief.

Please don’t ask me for details… it is what it is. I will tell you this much. I have not lost a friend. Ulf is a dear, kind-hearted and special man I am privileged to know and who I hope to keep in my life for a good long time, as my friend, part of my chosen family.

It just seems he’s not meant to be my play partner.

So. Once again, I am adrift in spanko land. And you know what? I’m tired of looking. I’m not going to make a thing out of finding another partner. If it happens, it happens. But the process can be so damned disheartening and frustrating, and many times, the best relationships have happened organically and not when I was specifically seeking them. So I won’t.

Of course I will miss regular play. I’m not going to kid myself and say no big deal, I won’t miss it, I’m busy, I’m working, I spend weekends with John, spanking isn’t everything, so on and so forth. It’s a huge part of me and I feel a sadness, an emptiness when I don’t have it in my life. However, I would rather go without it than to settle for anything less than what fulfills me. I’m not going to play with just anyone, simply for the sake of feeling a hand on my butt. I need the connection. I need the trust and chemistry and the humor and the attraction and all those wonderful things that come together to make the potent cocktail that sends me into bliss.

In recent times, I’ve befriended a couple of lovely young women on FetLife — very young (early twenties). Both have been lucky enough to have positive and caring early experiences with good men, which is so very important. Both are eager sponges, wanting to soak up everything about this kink and learn about where they fit in all of this, and with whom. One of them recently told me that she was concerned it wouldn’t always be this good, and she was setting the bar too high. “It can’t always be this perfect, can it?” she asked.

In a word, no. Nothing is always wonderful. Even chocolate cake isn’t always wonderful. (Come on, you know you’ve had a dry piece or two in your lifetime.) Yes, spanking is readily available pretty much anywhere if you look for it. So is chocolate. But sometimes you get See’s or Godiva… and sometimes you get Russell Stover’s. Don’t settle for the latter. It just makes you want the former even more.

This is what I said to both these women — I told them they were given a very special gift, getting to play with good partners early on. They would go on to have a lot of experiences with many different people, if they kept on this path, and not all of them would be so hot. BUT… they would always have a benchmark. They would always know how it was supposed to feel when it’s right. And when it wasn’t, they wouldn’t have to question themselves. No. I don’t like this. Doesn’t feel right. Next.

Well, guess what. I’m taking my own advice, because I too have benchmarks. I have had some incredible play partners. I have had dozens — hell, hundreds — of positive experiences. And yeah, I’ve had some really crappy, unsatisfying, and even a few traumatic ones as well. But they were anomalies. And I knew there was something better, something worth waiting for. Because when it happened, when all those elusive factors came together and made for that connection, it was blissful. Quality over quantity.

Recently, a good friend asked me how I deal with all the losses of play partners I’ve had over the years — how could I stand having my heart broken again and again? I told her that’s the risk you take. It’s an unusual relationship, often times a fleeting one. And yes, it hurts to open my heart, give my trust, and put my body and soul in a man’s hands, only to have him go away. But the alternative is not playing. The alternative is not experiencing the closeness, the intensity, the magic. And that’s worse. That’s so empty.

Yup, I know there are those who think I’m too picky. That I have too many hard limits, my play focus is too narrow, I should open myself up to more experiences and some different types of people, should experiment more, should be more scene-inclusive, blah blah blah. Yeah, maybe. But you know what?

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That’s right. Screw this whole PC thing that says we’re supposed to embrace all varieties of our kink. That we’re supposed to “evolve” — implication being that if your scene tastes don’t broaden, you’re a dinosaur. Well, call me Erica-sauras. Or sore-ass. Whatever. I’m too old for this shit, y’all. I’ve tried other stuff. I tried to push my square peg self into some other round kinks and just got scraped and chafed and miserable. I have been doing this long enough… I know who I am. I know what I like, I know what works for me and what does not. I know where my comfort zones are. I get to say I don’t like stuff and I don’t want it. That doesn’t mean I don’t accept when others do it. People are welcome to do their own consensual kinky-fuckery. But acknowledging/accepting it and embracing it are very different things. For example? The recent Shadow Lane party and the extreme scene I mentioned that was stopped. It’s. A. Spanking. Party. If a man wants to kick and stomp on a woman while wearing heavy boots, and she wants him to kick and stomp on her while he’s wearing heavy boots, fine. They can knock themselves out… at a dungeon. Not at a spanking party. I don’t want to see it, and I shouldn’t have to.

If I were younger, newer, then I’d say sure, experiment. But I’ve done that. Sometimes I wish I did like more varieties of play — I’d certainly have more opportunities for fulfillment. But we are who we are.

So, here’s what I do want.

I am a bottom, a strong woman who happens to enjoy the power exchange of being spanked by a man. I am not someone who needs to be held accountable, except in a playful realm — I hold myself accountable. I am a living, breathing human — I am not an object. I am not something to be owned and controlled. Yes, you can push me, test my limits. You can break down my walls, break through my defenses, touch my soft center. But you do not get to break me. Don’t break my heart or my trust. Be my friend and give me loving firmness. Make me sting, make me sore, but don’t harm me. I can take a lot of pain from you if it is done with caring and proper technique. But if you slap/strike anything other than my butt/thighs, you will not like my reaction. You want to punch/kick something? Go to the gym, and stay the hell away from me.

Make me laugh, and let me make you laugh. There is great joy in what we do; it is not a dark and serious thing. Embrace it with me.

Yes, I like playing with younger men. Enough with the cougar crap and other ageist insults. I’m not a predatory beast. I’m a woman who is young at heart and in mind, in good shape, and I just happen to relate well to people who are younger than I am — both male and female.

And for sweet Christ’s sake — don’t disappear, don’t ghost. I have seen more damn disappearing acts than the Magic Castle, and I’m tired of them. Yes, I get that lives are busy. Mine is too. I don’t ask for much of your time and attention. I just want to know you are in my life and you care, and know in my heart of hearts that I will see you, get to spend some time with you, sooner or later. Shoot me a text or a tweet when life is crazy. It takes seconds.

I guess time will tell if my dream play partner will materialize. Meanwhile, life goes on. John is making a big fuss over my birthday and I love him for it. He’s already sent me beautiful flowers, and this Saturday (the actual birthday), he’s taking me to the Walt Disney Concert Hall to hear a live performance of Mozart’s Requiem. I have never been to this particular venue, and I love classical music, so this is a huge treat.

So, like I said, onward. I am a bit melancholy, a bit adrift, but I am okay. It is what it is. And life has a way of surprising me when I least expect it. We shall see.

Shadow Lane 2018

This is late; I’ve always tried to do my post-party blogs as soon as possible after I get home, so everything will be fresh in my mind. Alas, that was not to be, as I had to jump right back into work that kept me chained to my desk for the rest of the week. Plus, I seem to have caught a cold. So reality hit hard and fast without any time to bask in the kinky afterglow, but, oh well. However, we had a great time! And I even managed to get a few pictures. So while I probably won’t remember everything in as great a detail, I can put out a basic timeline with the highlights of our weekend.

Incidentally, it seems I was worried for naught about my condition to play. Over three days, I played twelve times, four each day… and came home with not a mark on me. Not even a speckle.

Friday:

We got on the road on time in the morning, but the rental car (a Volvo! I got a free upgrade when they didn’t have the class of car I’d requested) decided to be problematic, giving us a warning that the tire pressure was low and we needed to “check and recalibrate.” We hadn’t even gone twenty miles. Crap. In a panic, I called the rental car place and the guy told me we needed to go to a Pep Boys or a Firestone, because they have a contract with them. I pleaded with him to please look one up for us, which he did, and gave me a Pep Boys that was out of our way, but not by a whole lot. So we drove to the address… guess what? No Pep Boys! By now, I’m in a state of apoplexy, so John got out of the car, looked at all the tires, then got back in and said, “They look fine to me. I say we just go.” And so we did. We lost about an hour, and I was a wreck imagining that we were going to have a blow-out or something, but that never happened, and we still made it to Vegas by 3:00. Fun start! But all was well once we got checked in and settled into our room.

After sleeping a bit, we changed and went to Joe’s (DrLectr’s) suite (960) for the end of the Vendor Fair. There began the mass of greetings and hugs and introductions. Our timing was a bit off, though, because shortly thereafter, people dispersed and went off to eat dinner, and the room parties weren’t starting until 9:00. So back to our room we went, noshed on some snacks and relaxed. I grabbed the newspaper and was checking out the front page when John said, “Oh, I need to get a picture of that, give me your phone.”

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What, he’s never seen a woman read the paper before? πŸ˜‰

Later, we went to the Shadow Lane suite for a while, and then back to Joe’s, where I soon did my first scene with Roy (CalNation on Fet), who is always a favorite. There was a gentleman at this party who was new, and I struck up a conversation with him. He confessed that he had been on the receiving end, but he didn’t really know how to give a spanking. I invited him to come watch Roy and me, so he could see how it’s done.

Of course, the room was packed and all the available play space was taken up, but undaunted, we simply headed into the bathroom. Our friend politely watched and asked permission to take pictures, and we said yes.

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^^ I love this guy! Wish I could see him more than twice a year.

And of course, I can’t have a party weekend without a scene with Joe, who never fails to deliver.

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His suite, besides having two bedrooms, has a very large living room area and he gets three or four massage tables to set up for scenes, for anyone who wants to use them — they’re great for strappings, as you can by what’s lying next to me on the table.

Steve Fuller was there! He and I go way back, so it’s always a treat to see him. We had a lively scene in the bedroom, with him fabricating some nonsense or another about how I’d been “mean” to him. Say what? He’s as sharp as always; when he started moving down onto my thighs, I blurted “Hey, what are you doing down there?” To which he answered, “Mind your own business.” (How my own ass and thighs are not my business, I’ll never understand.)

Lots more chats and greetings and hugs — I was worried that our dear friends InspectHerHide and Ellie3 weren’t there, but it turned out they just arrived Friday night. Always soooooo happy to see them! IHH was jet-lagged and tired, but he said if I didn’t mind a lighter Friday-night scene, he’d love to play. Well, of course. Usually I like him to be my first scene of the weekend, but their late arrival made that not work out this time. But better late than not at all.

More hugs, more talk, and finally it was time to head to bed. Of course, things continue in 960 until the wee hours of the morning, but you know, I need to sleep. So off we went for the night.

Saturday:

Club Finn at noon in 960! An event that Joe conceived of a few years back, Club Finn is named after Fineous, our resident flogger. It’s like a spa time for the ladies — massages, sensual flogging, foot rubs, hair-brushing (hair, not backsides), plus champagne and chocolates. Roy had said he wanted to pamper me, but he was a bit late, so I signed up for a turn with a professional masseur who was attending the party and had even brought his own table complete with the face piece at the end. Oh, that was so good — too short, but he had a long list of ladies waiting. When I climbed off the table, I saw Roy sitting and talking with John, so I came over and sat at his feet, and he commenced to massaging my upper back, shoulders and neck for a wonderfully long time. Even after he was done massaging, I didn’t want to get up, so I sat with my head on his leg while we talked with others around us. So I daresay I got a lot of pampering in that hour and three-quarters! Also had a fun chat with Kat (InfamousK on Fet), reminding her of the time she reduced John to a stunned silence when she referred to him as “Erica’s bitch.” πŸ˜€ Later, when I was pestering John to stop talking already so we could go eat, he said, “Don’t be a b-witch!” Kat overheard. “B-witch??” “Yeah,” John answered. “I figured it’s nicer than, you know, that other word.”

“So,” Kat replied, deadpan, “does that mean I can call you Erica’s b-witch?”

Aaaaand once again, John was speechless, while Kat and I fell over each other on the couch laughing.

Finally, we went with our friend Mir to grab a bagel, and were joined by Mr. Woodland, a really great guy I’ve played with a couple of times before. He’s local, and we keep saying we should get together and hang out, but we never seem to make it happen. We hung out chatting and munching, and then it was time to head back to our room for a nap.

Later that evening, we went to another Suncoast party tradition, dinner at the steakhouse. We started doing that at 50 Freaks in 2013 and it became an annual thing; we’ve even gotten the same server (Laurence) every time. This time, even though we had the banquet room that can accommodate eighteen, we had a smaller, more intimate group of nine. I wore a new dress (John took a picture before we left):

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It was such fun — we sat across from Mr W and the stunning and statuesque Switch_Delta, and like every year, John made a toast to Joe and picked up his dinner. We figure that’s the very least we can do, after all he does for the parties — the open 24/7 suite, the snacks, the drinks, the events. I didn’t get champagne this time, but I had several sips of John’s “dessert,” a glass of 30-year aged tawny port. Oh, so good.

Later, it was back to 960 for the black-light DJ’ed dance party. At midnight, we had a surprise birthday cake for Ellie3, whose birthday was Monday. After that… I dunno. I’d played a couple of times (including a fantastic first scene with a man who goes by the name TanerHyde, yes, one n), but I was feeling a bit out of sorts. It was just too noisy in the room with the music — no one could have a conversation. It’s a tough call, I know; a lot of folks like the music loud and you can’t please everyone. People were going off to the bedrooms to play, but if you just wanted to talk in the main room, it was pretty difficult. My throat was getting sore and I was starting to feel overwhelmed. When I realized John was feeling the same way, we decided to take a break and go back to our room for a bit.

When we went into the hall, we found IHH, Ellie, Mr. W, Djinn and a few others sitting out there, having their own mini-party. Turns out the music was too much for them as well. When John and I walked by, we got a chorus of “You’re not going to bed, are you??” No, no, we reassured, just taking a break. Mr. W announced that he’d SEE ME shortly, and then everyone started clapping, making spanky sounds, as we walked away. “Erica’s in trouuuuuubllllle!” Ellie sang. (This was the last night they could do that, since everyone on the 9th floor was in our party. The next day, a few vanillas moved into some of the 9th floor rooms after some of our party left, so we had to keep all noise out of the hallway. Booo!)

We took a break in our room, freshened up a bit, and headed back out. People were still sitting in the hall, so we sat with them for a bit, but then I really, really wanted to play. So we went back in.

It was worth it; I ended up having a fabulous scene with Mr. W. He has a very strong hand, and when he started using both hands, I protested. “Hey! That’s cheating! You can’t use both hands!” “No?” he said. “Well, how about if I use NO hands?” When he leaned back on the bed and reached for his waist, I thought, oh shit, me and my big mouth. Sure enough, next thing I knew he had his belt whipped off, doubled over, and whacking me.

“Soooo,” he teased. “Two hands okay, then?” Argh. Fine. So not fair.

At least I liked a lot of the songs Bob the DJ was playing. I even danced a little when he played Aretha. But I was relieved when the music ended at 2:00 a.m. and we could talk again. We hung out chatting for a while longer — at 3:00, the party was still in full swing, everyone playing and talking and laughing. But by then, I was wiped out. Much as I wanted to stay, I knew I was done for the night. Besides, we had to get up for Strict Dave’s Punishment Court the next day at noon. We got to bed between 3:30 and 4:00.

Oh, wait! Almost forgot — a lovely, lovely man from England, whom I met several years ago (he came with the Northern Spanking group back in 2009) approached me and said he had a gift for me. Imagine my delight when he gave me a Beatles coffee mug! Not just any Beatles mug, either; instead of just one image, the entire cup is plastered with Beatles album covers all the way around.

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How cool is this?? I was so touched. Thank you, my thoughtful friend. β™₯

Sunday:

John got me out of bed at 11:00 (yeah, we don’t do breakfast in Vegas); I showered, dressed, and went to get us coffee while John went to 960 to help set up for Dave’s Court. It was the usual great fun, with a lot of laughs. I haven’t been taken to court on a case for a few years — so far, I have a perfect record of winning all my cases (although I usually manage to get penalty swats from Dave anyway for dropping the f-bomb, which is considered contempt. Did I mention I do that on purpose?).

After court, John and I went downstairs to eat, peeking in to DuPar’s to see if anyone we knew was there. Turned out Bob the DJ and his wife S were just about to have lunch and asked us to join them, so we got a booth and had a nice late lunch and a great talk. I love how you never know who you’re going to meet up with at these things, the impromptu meals, etc.

At 5:00, there was Judicial Punishment in Joe’s room. That’s where they have “prison guards” and the women sign up to be “prisoners” and take a designated amount of strokes with either a cane, a paddle, or a strap. And all three are big and heavy versions of said implements. The standard amount is eight, although some do six and others do ten. The prisoners get to choose their guard (there are three), the implement, and the level of strokes — Light, Medium, Hard, or Severe. It’s all done sort of tongue-in-cheek melodramatic; the prisoners wear orange shirts and panties, and we’re each called out, one by one, to take our strokes, which Joe announces very emphatically. I’ve done this event a few times; I kind of consider it a personal challenge. The strokes are hard (I always choose the cane), but I figure I can take eight strokes of pretty much anything. Plus, I always pick SanDiegoCorey as the guard, and he knows I like it harder than medium, but not super hard either. Afterward, each woman heads for the “recovery area” (pillows and blankets piled up on the floor) and the next one comes out.

So I took my eight strokes, bent over a table with other guards holding me down. By stroke four, I was hollering. By the last one, I was kicking my feet. But I did it. πŸ˜€ What can I say, it’s a head space thing.

After that, people were hanging out talking, and I was approached by a rather handsome man I hadn’t seen before. He introduced himself (I’ll call him J) and said this was his first Shadow Lane party, but he’d been in the scene for over ten years. He was very polite and we talked a bit; he asked if I’d like to play later, and I said yes. More on him shortly.

John and I have a tradition on Sunday nights at these things: since things don’t really get started until 9:30-10:00, we take a long nap, get up and ready, do some preliminary packing, and then head to dinner around 9:00 at the Oyster House, a charming little restaurant in the hotel. It’s a perfect place to get a light bite, the food is good and we usually end up seeing people we know there. After that, we headed for 960 for the final blow-out.

The room was packed, they’d gotten pizza, and people were playing — the massage tables had various scenes going on, as per usual. I started chatting with Djinn and Mir, which went for a while, until one of them said, “Whoa,” with a mildly horrified face. I turned to see what they were looking at. Behind me, a couple was playing on one of the tables. She was kneeling on the floor, her upper body draped across the table… and he was behind her, kicking her in the back. Hard.

Oh, fuck.

Yeah. That again. The “Your Kink is Not My Kink and It’s OK, But You Still Can’t Do That At A Spanking Party” bit. This couple had clearly wandered in from the BDSM community, both dressed in black leather, and didn’t realize this isn’t a @#$%ing dungeon; this is for spanking/flogging/caning, but kicking and beating the shit out of someone is generally not appreciated in the main room. It got worse… she ended up sprawled face down on the carpet beside the table, and he was stomping on her. With his boots on. On her low back, on her butt, interspersed with more kicks. To be fair, she didn’t look like she was objecting to it. But fuck that. You do not play like this at a spanking party. You just don’t.

People started asking “Where’s Joe?”, but he had left the room temporarily. Meanwhile, I couldn’t stand another minute of this. I looked across the room and saw J, the man who had talked with me earlier. I walked straight up to him. “Still want to play?” I asked. “Absolutely,” he said. “Then, please, do me a favor,” I implored, taking his hand. “Take me away from this awful scene and make me forget I ever saw it.” “I can do that,” he grinned, and he took me into one of the bedrooms.

Oh. My. God. What happened after that was one of the most delicious scenes of my weekend.

We talked a bit beforehand; he had a small toy bag, and he checked in with me about what was OK to use (the only thing I said no to was a nasty looking wooden paddle). He said he liked to build things up slowly, keep people guessing, alternate spanking with massage, things like that. Sounded good to me! So we did an OTK warm-up with his hand, and then he had me lie on the bed, with a pillow under my hips. And then he proceeded to use all his different toys, at different levels of intensity, speed, etc, with long pauses, wonderful massage strokes… I never knew what he was going to do next. He’d lull me into a relaxed state with an extended massage, and then WHACK! he’d snap a strap on me. Sneaky devil! And I loved it.

The scene went on for quite a while — I lost track of time — and when we were done, I was just a pile of mush on that bed. “So, did I make you forget?” he asked. Oh, you betcha. I asked him if he was on FetLife or any other social media, but he said no, he’s very private. So, since he isn’t local, I guess I won’t see him again until next year. *sigh*

When I came back out into the main room, I asked what had happened with Mr. Kicky-Stompy. Several people were upset (so no, it’s not just me!), and someone texted Joe and told him to come back ASAP. When Joe came back, the woman was still sprawled on the carpet, and the man was standing over her, taking off his pants. I do not want to think about what he was about to do. Joe stopped him and said, “I’m sorry, but you really can’t do play like this here. If you like, you can come back after 4:00 a.m. — people tend to do the darker scenes then.” And that was that. Good call. By that hour, the mainstream party has gone to bed and just the die-hards are still up.

I know if I were to talk about this on FetLife, I’d get a ration of noise about it, people telling me I’m narrow-minded and judgmental and non-accepting of other people’s kinks and blah blah blah. But you know, IDGAF. I saw plenty of scenes like this when John and I used to go to dungeon parties… and that’s why I stopped going to dungeon parties and started attending spanking parties. Because I don’t want to see a man kicking the shit out of a woman. Sheesh, draw and quarter me.

Anyway… I had one more delicious scene with Roy, harder than the one on Friday, and we both worked up a sweat, as the bedroom for whatever reason had gotten very warm. I had been waiting for him; he’d come up to me earlier, asking if I wanted to play, and of course I said yes. But then he said, “Give me about a half-hour, okay?” Argh. Figures, while I was waiting for him, two people asked me to play, including John Osborne of Triple A Spanking. I felt so lame, saying I was waiting for someone to come back and play, but it was the truth. I told John, “If he doesn’t come back, I’m all yours!” But then he did come back. Sorry, John, if you’re reading this! Next time!

And finally… how do I end my party weekends, kids? With a flogging from Fineous. The perfect relaxing, intense ending. As luck would have it, one of the tables in the main room freed up, so we didn’t have to use the hot bedroom. I stripped everything off but my panties, stretched out on the table with a wedge pillow under my hips, and gave myself over to the magical Fineous and his fabulous floggers. It went on and on… I could hear the noise around me, the talk, the laughing, the smacking, but somehow it all blurred and receded, and all I could do was feel. I was so relaxed, my arms were dangling limply off the table sides. After the flogging, he continued with a full-body massage, neck to toes, and ladies and gentlemen, I was done. I was in LaLaLand, blissed out, happy, blood thrumming and fizzing, feeling great. Perfection.

I was looking for John, but couldn’t find him. Someone said, “I think he’s in the bedroom,” so I walked in, and what did I see? John on the bed, with Joe’s utterly adorable girlfriend AyleeInTheory (Fet name) across his lap. John never plays at these parties… but apparently she asked him. And this girl is tough — she self-identifies as a masochist and she plays hard, even though she’s a little bitty thing. So she could take John’s heavy hand. I was delighted to see this. πŸ™‚ I like to see John having fun, and I knew it tickled him that this cutie-pie approached him for a scene. He’s actually an excellent spanker, but he never shows off his prowess at these events, preferring to talk and let me do the playing.

And then it was time to go. We had to get up at 7:00 a.m., just a few short hours from now. So, reluctantly, we went around saying our goodbyes, collecting hugs, then went back to our room and tumbled into bed around 4:00.

We were checked out and on the road by 8:00. Made one stop in Baker, and then pushed through all the way home. There was traffic, so it took us about five hours, but we made it without any mishap (and no, we didn’t blow a tire). Good news — when I brought the car back the next day, I told the manager about the warning light and the hassle trying to find a Pep Boys to no avail because of incorrect directions, the stress, etc. She was apologetic and very nice, taking 20% off the bill. Good customer relations!

So goes another Shadow Lane. It came and went too quickly. But it was a fun, pretty much drama-free party. I got to play quite a bit. John had a great time too. Neither one of us got sick. There were several people I really missed seeing, but I did my best to focus on who was there, not who wasn’t. I wish I could see these people more than twice a year. Maybe when John or I win the lottery, we’ll travel to every party. πŸ™‚ In the meantime, I appreciate the good times we get to have, and our friends. To everyone who hugged me, talked to me, played with me, made me laugh… Alex Maddy Adriana T&S Jai Scott Jen Michael Kevin Mark Katy Kate Stephen Kelley Loren Pat Samantha Sarah John etc. etc. etc…. I love you guys. Sorry I can’t mention each and every one of you, but you know who you are. See you next time.

(whew) Have a great weekend, y’all.

Reflections on relationships

Next week, on Thursday, John and I will be together for twenty-two years. On Friday, we will head for yet another Shadow Lane party. That’s sort of become our anniversary celebration. I will be very busy for the next week or so, so I figured I’d squeeze in a post here so y’all won’t think I’ve disappeared.

John and I never married, and we don’t live together. And yet we have been through so much in our years. Countless laughs, many tears. Many of life’s passages, including the losses of both our parents, job losses/transitions, and an illness and open heart surgery that nearly took him from me. When I first met him, he was living in an apartment; now he owns two homes. We’ve shared so many things, so many events. To this day, he still makes me laugh like no other. To this day, no one knows me better than he does.

We love each other. β™₯

Here is the part that continually baffles me. I must be doing something right, being able to maintain this relationship for so long. And yet, it seems I cannot keep any other kind of relationship for any length of time. Friends, play partners, etc. They come into my life, they exit. Sometimes the exits are dramatic, sometimes they just fade out. Sometimes they ghost. Sometimes, they’re still there, but otherwise preoccupied. Online, I have several people who enjoy communicating with me. People who don’t even know me send me beautiful words like these:

I’m writing to make sure you understand that there are many, many people out there just like me who appreciate and admire you. You may not know this, but you’ve been an inspiration to so many of us, with your blog, with the films you’ve been in, with your humor and honesty. With your politics. Also, if you’ll forgive me, your incredibly spankable bottom. πŸ™‚

The above is real, and it moved me to tears. But if I’m this wonderful, why don’t people stay?

And for those who are wondering who I’m talking about — please don’t. This post is cumulative. This post is, sadly, about many.

Is this just the nature of today’s relationships? Are we all so busy, so distracted, so caught up in social media and work and life’s constant barrage of insanity that we don’t have time to invest in lasting closeness? Are we torn in too many different directions? The irony is that in today’s age, it’s easier than ever to connect to people. You don’t even have to go anywhere. You can Skype, you can text, you can email. You don’t even have to talk on the phone if you don’t want to (and I don’t). It takes mere seconds to fire off a text to someone. A “Hi, really busy, but thinking of you,” or “Hi, just wanted to say I love you.” And yet, we’re more disconnected than ever.

Or is it that I’m a fatally flawed human who can’t keep people in my immediate circle? Am I not interesting enough, in person? Fun enough? Kinky enough? Available enough? Are John and I together this long because we’re both social square pegs and birds of a feather and all that?

Because I am an introvert and somewhat reclusive, it’s true I don’t open my heart to many. I don’t have the time or patience for acquaintances and small talk. But when I do open that door, it is fully open; I am loving, supportive, deeply loyal. Lately, I’m beginning to wonder if I should simply seal my heart away for good. Because there isn’t much of it left. Over the years, so many people have come in, taken what they needed, and left the rest behind. I’m getting too old for this shit.

So, another party. The sweet torture of being thrust into three days of noise and crowds, feeling overwhelmed, and talking more in those three days than I do in six months — and yet loving it because I’m among my people. Because I can play to my heart’s content. As seems to be the case every damn time now, I haven’t been spanked for a couple of months, so I’m feeling out of condition and worried that the play will be too much for me. And of course, then there’s the other part of me that’s afraid the people I want to play with, won’t want to play with me. But I’ve gone through the proper motions. I bought new panties and a couple of new dresses. I will get my hair cut, get a pedicure. Fake it till you make it (although I detest that expression).

My heart is not in it right now. But I will take my body into it, and hopefully my heart and spirit and joyous spanko side will follow. I will have my beloved with me. The man who has stayed.

Enough of that. Work has gotten busy again, for which I am grateful. Sorry I’ve been MIA.Β  For those who want to see pictures, here ya go. My new panties.

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And here’s a butt shot from a few months ago. No, I haven’t let myself go and disappeared into a vat of bonbons. I’m too fucking vain for that. :-Þ

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Part of me thinks it may have been a mistake to start this blog up again, but I’m not going to make another dramatic exit. I will write when time allows and when the spirit moves me. When I have something to say.

Until then, have a good weekend, y’all. And be kind to each other.

Ladies and gentlemen, my play partner

OK, so enough of this depression crap for a while. Time for fun.

Back in September 2016, in my Shadow Lane party write-up, I spoke of playing with Ulf Sayer for the first time. I had met him at a previous party and felt an immediate connection, but we didn’t have the chance to play at that time. This first scene was intense and fun; he enjoys clever bratting and I started in right away, calling him a hockey puck (he is Canadian).

Oh, and I assed his hand. πŸ™‚

He was doing videos and so forth and I thought perhaps we’d be seeing a lot more of him, but then he left the scene for a while.

Cut to last March, when I heard from him via Twitter Direct Message. He was now living in L.A. and would love to touch base. We met for coffee and talked for hours. Started texting. Then he came over for coffee… and asked if I’d like to be play partners. Oh, yes, I would. He wasn’t ready to ease his way back into the scene proper just yet, so I promised I would not mention him by name anywhere. I would just post pictures of play results.

But now he is fully returned — back on FetLife, back on Twitter, shooting again, attending parties, and I have the green light to talk about him all I want.

So what does one say about Ulf? By his own admission, he is a very silly man. Very playful, loves spanking banter. Smart and thoughtful, he’s someone I can talk with for hours (and have). He is caring and kind. Oh, and it’s way too damn easy to get into protracted nonsensical battles with him online.

For example, a while back on FetLife, he noticed that several bottoms (myself included) feel that they have earned chocolate, ice cream or other treats after a spanking. He then decreed that “brats don’t deserve treats, they deserve a spanking and nothing else” and that treats were forever banned.

Yeah, you can imagine how well that went over with the bottoms on FetLife. This quickly escalated into an epic battle known as the #WarOnTreats, #TreatsForAll, and several other hashtags. Pictures and posts ensued. Everyone talked about the various treats they had purchased and were consuming, and Ulf would scold and natter about how we should learn to like vegetables and how all the treat monsters were going to be punished.

Here he is chastising me because I bought two bags of Hershey’s dark chocolate almond nuggets. Hey, I had a two-for-one coupon. I thought I was being industrious with savings.

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One of my responses to this insanity was to encourage all the women involved on FetLife to take a selfie eating a treat and flipping the bird. I started the ball rolling with this one (that’s a Lindt truffle, BTW):

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I wish I could post all the other pictures this inspired — they were marvelous. The sisterhood is still alive and well!

Of course, I had to pay the price for encouraging all this anarchy; he had to make an example of me, in the hardest scene we’ve done to date. Ouch.

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By the way, my left butt cheek isn’t dented. That’s an illusion of the lamp light. I got lotion and cuddles afterward; he bought me lunch, too.

And I’m still assing his hand.

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Perhaps he needs to toughen his hand more instead of having so damn many implements.

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I did not make this face of my own volition, incidentally. I believe his words were, “Come on, let’s see that tongue, brat.”

So this is my play partner. I don’t call him my top, even though I am a bottom and he tops me. He’s my friend and we play. I saw a term on another blog that I kinda liked: SSO (Spanking Significant Other). I think this needs to be a Thing.

Here are a few random facts about Ulf:

  • He can’t spell “fascist.”
  • He has forbidden treats for bottoms, but he indulges in them himself. I have pictorial evidence of this pinnacle of Top Hypocrisy.
  • If you follow him on Twitter, be forewarned that his tweeting persona is often irreverent, blasphemous, and off-color. Then again, so is mine.
  • Some of his nicknames are Olaf, Snowman, Your Plaidness (the Canada thing), and Ulfiekins. I came up with that last one.
  • Oh, and he’s cute AF, but don’t tell him I said that.

So everyone welcome him back to the kinky family. He was missed greatly. β™₯

Against all odds, SOME FUN!!

The past couple of weeks have been a bit nuts. And fraught with frustration, because our dear friend Joe (DrLectr on FetLife), the host of 50 Freaks, was in L.A. with his beautiful girlfriend Mackenzie Reed, and as much as we wanted to see them, life kept interfering.

They were supposed to be here one week, and Joe had texted me and suggested we hang out. But that first week, I was still sick, and swamped with work, so I had to beg off from the offer to join them at Disneyland. I suggested that we get together on Saturday (last weekend), so John could join us too.

But then last weekend came and poor John had not only caught my cold, but he’d gotten pinkeye as well. He was sick as hell and we were concerned about his being contagious, so we had to cancel. And Joe and Kenzie were supposed to go home on Sunday.

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So much for that, I thought. Then I read that there was a huge blizzard where they’d be flying in to go home, so they decided to extend their trip for another week, going home today. They were staying at an AirB&B, run by a scene-ster friend named Dimples, who was a great host and encouraged them to stay.

However, I was swamped with work this week too. And I already had appointments that were eating into work time (dentist, taking my car to the shop, etc.).

So each day, I saw Joe posting pictures on Facebook and FetLife, of all the fun stuff they were doing and the people they were seeing. I only get to see him twice a year, and I just could not believe he was here on my turf and I didn’t have a spare @#$%ing minute to see him.

By Wednesday, this was me…

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Beside myself with frustration, I vented to John on Wednesday evening. “This sucks!! I’m grateful to have work, I know this is First World Problems, but this just sucks! I can’t believe Joe will have been here two weeks and I couldn’t even see him once!”

John, ever practical, said, “Can you have lunch with them tomorrow? Why not have them come to the Valley and you can meet them?” He suggested Jerry’s Deli, the original one in Studio City right down the street from Sportsmen’s Lodge, where Shadow Lane had their first spanking parties. Since John was feeling better but was still a bit under the weather, and he had some admin time from work that he had to use, he’d arranged to have Thursday off (he always has Fridays off), and he said he could come join us. “Take some time off,” he urged me. “You can work extra tonight, tomorrow night, and all day Friday. And if you need to postpone coming over Friday night for a couple of hours to get your work done, you can do that too.”

Thursday was our last chance, so with fingers crossed, I texted Joe, suggesting John’s plan. YES! They liked it!

So it was with much joy that John and I met Joe and Dimples at Jerry’s yesterday for what turned out to be a 3 1/2-hour lunch. Sadly, Kenzie had another commitment and couldn’t make it; she was missed! But the four of us had a great lunch and talked and talked and talked. I was able to relax, laugh, take a much-needed break.

Our server snapped this for us; so here we are (respecting Dimples’ request to not show her face):

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So much fun! Refreshed and sorted out, I went home, got to work. Today, working and doing laundry and all the other stuff I would have done yesterday afternoon, and it’s getting done. Happy to say that I will go to John’s tonight with everything completed. AND I got to see our friends too.

Oh! And keep your eye out for Shadow Lane’s newest release, “She’s Gonna Get It.” Starring — you guessed it — Joe and Mackenzie. πŸ™‚ So jazzed for them! Kenzie is adorable, and Joe was meant for spanking videos.

Friends are good things. β™₯

Back to work! Have a great weekend, y’all.

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