Japanese Versus Western Bondage

A friend and I were recently emailing about this terrific Japanese bondage site called BBPS (Bound Beauties Photo Salon). The interesting thing is that while they do have some traditional Japanese bondage (Shibari), most of their pics are actually more Western-style damsel in distress bondage, usually fully clothed, which is a rare combination to find on a Japanese site. And they do it brilliantly. I wish there were an English language “Join” option, as I’d sign up immediately. All I’ve seen are samples and things that have been re-posted. They are nice enough to link back to my blog but I can never figure out anything when I go to their actual site, even with that Google translation thing.

The contrast between Shibari and Western-style bondage was on my mind recently (and I’ll probably step on a few toes here). It seems that bondage in general has become more popular in the last ten years or so, but it sometimes seems to me that the most popular style is Shibari, or Japanese bondage, which to be honest, is actually my least favorite style of bondage. When I go to the BDSM clubs and people talk about bondage it sometimes seems it’s almost assumed that we’re talking about the Japanese style. And I do realize how hard it is to do traditional Shibari, and that many talented people devote years of study to it.

But I have to admit, I don’t see many Shibari picture that sexually turn me on – mainly because quite often the girl is naked (I likes the clothes) and sometimes they don’t even gag her (which blows my mind – why even bother then?) I will grant though that when they do use gags, they’re sometimes very nicely done, such as the polka-dotted scarves you see and the nice “bandit” gag where both the girl’s mouth and nose are covered with a cloth. Sometimes though the tying just strikes me as being overly complicated and methodical and lacking in excitement. Personally I prefer the kind of bondage where it looks like some guy broke in, grabbed the girl, and bound and gagged her against her will – not that I’m advocating anything non-consensual, but Western-style bondage quite often seems to have more of a sense of danger and peril, which is a huge turn on for me.

I should point out I do have some Shibari related links on the “how to” pages of my website, as many of the techniques are useful – even lots of damsel in distress bondage is often done with Shibari-inspired ties. But joining a Shibari paysite? It’s not something I’ll probably do very often, unless they have a model that really works for me.

In a similar vein, I have to mention this phrase I’ve been hearing more and more the last few years that just drives me nuts – “Adult Rope Art” or just “Rope Art.” I have to say it kind of gives me the willies. I’m not into “Rope Art;” I’m into Bondage! Rope Art just sounds so sanitary and “nice,” which I guess is the whole point, whereas the word Bondage sounds kind of forbidden and a bit shameful. Thanks but I’ll stick with the shame ;-)

Syren! at C Frenz

Irv and Wayne had another Club Syren! event at C Frenz last Saturday and they had a good turnout and several photographers milling about. I went with a couple friends and we had a nice time, though it was cold as hell outside. Here’s a shot that my friend Al from Altomic Photo took.

Westwood Memorial

I was near UCLA this morning getting my teeth cleaned and afterwards stopped by the tiny Westwood Memorial Cemetary, where dozens of famous Hollywood stars are buried. I’ve wanted to visit it for years and the endless rains that we’ve been having here seemed appropriate. It’s actually really hard to find, surrounded by walls with only one entrance tucked in among high rise office buildings and condos and ironically situated right behind a big multiplex cinema. Probably most people in the theater have no idea they’re a few hundred feet away from Marilyn Monroe’s grave. It’s a nice little cemetary and worth a visit if you’re in the area. Just wandering around you see all kinds of familiar names such as Truman Capote, Peggy Lee, Dorothy Stratten and dozens more.

Cindy McCain for NOH8

I just love when attractive women do tape gag protest pictures! Cindy McCain just did a nice picture for the NOH8 campaign against the gay marriage ban in California, quite a surprising move for a high-profile Republican. She followed the lead of her daughter Meghan who did a similar picture last summer with photographer Adam Bouska. Cindy McCain’s husband feels, well, differently about the issue. Great pictures, though the tape could have been applied a little more stringently. ;-)


I was in the grocery store today and was wandering around and realized I was hearing Black Sabbath’s “Paranoid” on the muzak – not some watered down version but the real thing with Ozzy, and fairly loud. “Happiness I cannot feel and love to me is so unreal.” Interesting.

If You’re Still Interested…

I hate to sound like I’m complaining or being sarcastic, but I got a funny email this morning. Several months ago a guy who says he has a trans girlfriend wrote me on URNA and said they’d be interested in getting together for some fun. From their profile and email it was clear that they wanted to have sex, which is fine – heck, I’ve had sex before! – but however, there was no mention of bondage at all, and not much response to it when I brought it up – a huge negative for me. So I politely wrote back and nicely declined and wished them all the best. So this morning I got another email reminding me that they’re going to be in town, in case I’m still interested. Um, I’d say there’s a certain disconnect here. I wasn’t interested in the first place. But I guess hope springs eternal, so I shouldn’t blame him for trying. No big deal.

It is interesting though, as this sort of thing happens a fair amount. The difficult thing is trying to explain about bondage to someone who’s not into it, or who has only the most casual interest. Another guy once told me that bondage was fine, but that he’s into lots and lots of other things too – as though that made him even more appealing to me. I’m afraid it didn’t. I try to get across that, no wait, I’m like REALLY into it! Like 100% into it! The way I see it, bondage IS the thing. It’s not a preliminary step on the way to giving or receiving a blowjob, which is what so many guys are after. Don’t get me wrong, with the right guy I can go there, especially if there’s a role-playing vibe of being “forced” into it, which can be very exciting, but to be honest that really doesn’t happen for me very often at all.

Another deal breaker, and one I’ve heard a lot, is “Yeah, I’m not really into bondage but I’d be willing to give it a try.” Ouch. I’ve actually made the stupid mistake of trying to do that in the past and it never works. The skills to tie someone up just can’t be taught in a half hour beforehand. You can always get some handcuffs or something like that but if you’re going to use rope it ain’t gonna happen, or at least not very well. And if the other person’s not really into it the chemistry’s just not going to be there.

Anyway, again not to be a complainer, as this is just how it is for those of us who are really really into bondage. It’s tough finding the right partner and making that connection. And yes, doing photoshoots is fantastic and great fun, but there is some difference between a shoot, where I’m worried about how I look and if my wig’s straight, and just getting together with someone who’s into the same kinds of things, with no worries about photography. To be honest, if I was more like that guy who’s into “lots and lots of other things” I’d probably get a lot more action than I do, and might even be more fulfilled with it (or might not). But I’m not like that guy and can’t pretend I am. So one continues on.

The Conservative Case for Gay Marriage in Newsweek

Newsweek has a very good article this week about gay marriage, specifically the upcoming federal challenge to California’s Proposition 8 being argued by Ted Olson. The really interesting thing is that Olson is a political conservative who served under both Reagan and George W. Bush. But he’s written a very well-reasoned and heartfelt argument as to why denying gays to marry is wrong, and he has a good track record in cases he’s argued, so it’ll be interesting to see what he does.

One of the more absurd things he points out is how there are currently 18,000 same-sex marriages in California, which occurred before Prop 8 and are recognized by the state. But these same people, if they got divorced, could not remarry. As he puts it, the situation in California is open to a good challenge, as it really “makes no sense to anyone.”

Been Listening To

I was out shopping at “Out of the Closet,” the gayest thrift store in L.A., and heard Ladytron’s “Destroy Everything You Touch” on the radio. It’s a couple years old but I always like it when I hear it, with that New Wave-ish sound and sort of blank sounding but sexy singing. I have no idea what it means but it’s pretty catchy (is it about sex or revenge? – heck, I don’t know). Also don’t know what all the snow is in this YouTube video but the girls are kind of cute in a gothic sort of way around the midpoint.

Oh, and I got a couple new skirts and also found a navy blue stewardess dress that fits pretty well, so hopefully I’ll have a fun new set of pictures in the coming weeks or months (it sometimes takes a while before they go online!)

Going to Hell Emails and Comments

It tends to go in cycles but recently I’ve gotten a few of those “You’re going to hell” emails and blog comments (all of which I deleted). One guy who wrote admitted that he was still sometimes bothered by his forced femme fantasies and that he got turned on looking at the pictures on my blog – apparently he spent a fair amount of time checking it out. It makes me sad. I just wish that people wouldn’t torment themselves so much over their sexual urges. From what he wrote it was clear that he was going to be struggling with his sexuality for the rest of his life, going back and forth between his religious beliefs, which in his mind shouted “No!” and occasional bouts of masturbation followed by guilt and self-loathing. That’s no way to live. When I was in my teens I was terribly guilt-ridden about being a crossdresser who likes bondage, and it probably took me ten years to even begin to set that aside. Thankfully now enough people in my life know about this side of me that there’s no going back. Like I’ve mentioned before, I’m not a believer myself but I have no problems with spirituality. In fact I know several people who are believers AND who also enjoy their kinks and they’re able to make it work and not torment themselves, as they really aren’t mutually exclusive things. The guilt and the prohibition are really so unnecessary and are just generated in one’s own mind.

I don’t want to put down anyone’s religious beliefs but the idea that there’s a supreme being keeping track of my sexual fantasies and my masturbation sessions, and that at the end he’s going to unleash eternal torment upon me – I don’t buy that for a second, and there’s no evidence at all to support the belief that that’s how the universe is set up. It’s just a story that so many of us have been told, handed down through the generations, and frankly I think it’s nonsense. There’ll probably be some comments and emails saying I’m wrong, and to change my ways before it’s too late, but if you’re inclined to write and say I’m going to burn in hell, please don’t. I’ve heard it a hundred times already; it’s usually the same old tired arguments and Bible quotes, and if it’s a blog comment that someone leaves, I’ll probably just delete it, unless it’s very well reasoned, with no misspelled words, or really really clever.

Red Wig and Dress

Well, I finally got around to that set with the red hoodie dress and red wig. It was a very strict and intense duct tape bondage and as the set progresses I also get blindfolded, which was a real turn on ;-) Here are a couple of “extra” shots below that didn’t make it in. I’ll be posting the full set on Friday for this week’s update.

More Computer Crap – I finally got the computer all back up and running over the weekend after that nasty computer virus. On the plus side, the computer’s probably running about as well as it ever does. It’s always so peppy after a clean install! I took a friend’s advice and made a cloned copy of the “C” drive onto an external hard drive, and I’m adding a larger “D” drive, so I’ll make a second cloned copy on the old drive just for extra insurance. If I get nailed again theoretically it should be fairly easy to copy the clone back to the “C” drive and be back up and running without the hassle of re-installing Windows and all those programs, some of which are so bloated.

I’m kind of freaked out now about going online though. I’ll probably start using Firefox more, as it’s “supposed” to be a bit safer than IE, though it’s debatable. Apparently more and more viruses are being written to target Firefox as it becomes more popular. It’s funny, though, are there kids out there who have the secret desire to grow up and be computer virus programmers? (“I want to mess up people’s computers and extort money from them! That’s what I want to do!”) I guess the answer’s yes.

While re-installing all my software I noticed too how many programs there are that, as a service, make a database of all the crap on your computer, thereby nicely slowing it down – a special feature, just for you! Nero is one of the biggest offenders, with Nero Scout. Why would I possibly want some CD burning software to index everything on my computer and run in the background doing it’s thing? Thankfully with a little work, you can shut down all these processes, but they’re all so unnecessary to begin with.

Okay, I’ll take a deep breath, and hopefully no more computer news for a while. I’ve obviously had this stuff on my mind way too much! Bondage would be much more preferable ;-)

These Computers

Well, Happy New Year, everyone! I was determined to get back to L.A. and get right back to work…and then I caught a computer virus. Yikes, these things are nasty! (The blog and the website, of course, are perfectly fine, as they’re on a server somewhere out there). But my home computer got hit hard last night, with one of those bogus spyware viruses that cause all those scary pop up windows to take over your computer. I’m not normally in favor of capital punishment, but the people who make these viruses definitely make me re-think it (spammers too).

I used a good free program called MalwareBytes that was able to eliminate the worst of the virus and allow me to use the computer again, but there are still mystery files that show up every time I run a scan. I was using Bitdefender but it obviously didn’t catch this thing. I’m really not even sure how I got it. I was checking out a photographer’s work on the Deviant Art site, and there may have been something on there, but I can’t say for sure. Well, it looks like I’ll be re-installing Windows XP tonight or tomorrow. And I’ll probably go with a new antivirus software, probably Nod32, and will probably pay for the “pro” version of MalwareBytes. I hate to waste a day or two with this kind of stuff, but what’s one to do?

Be careful out there. It’s a scary world.