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  • Red Alert! Valentine’s Day is tomorrow!

    February 13, 2012
    Red Alert! Valentine’s Day is tomorrow!
    Did this come as a surprise to you? Don’t worry! Midori’s got you covered.
    If you are single and happy, this article doesn’t concern you. Move on to the next article here.

    If you’re single and bitter, read the rest of this article, and cackle over all the trouble you won’t have to deal with.

    But if you’re in a relationship, read on, as you may be suffering from a serious case of R.A.N.C.I.D. – Romantic Aptitude Nuance & Communication Insufficiency Disorder. It’s quite possible that the next 24 hours may be critical for the harmony of the relationship and your survival.

    Here are some low cost, last-ditch Valentines rescue ideas collected from my friends and readers.

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  • The Suspension Accident: It Finally Happened...

    January 30, 2012
    The Suspension Accident: It Finally Happened...
    Kinksters talk quite a bit about the inherent risk of bondage and other kinky play. They learn the proper procedure, to mitigate that risk — but rarely do you hear about the stark reality that no matter what precautions you take or how safe you play, people can still get hurt.
    I haven’t had a day since the accident that I’ve not thought about it. I could have killed her. The scenarios play in my head over and over. There have been nights of deep darkness. The grief lingers. She’s suffered pain and trauma of flesh and heart, not only in the moment of the accident, but long after as well. Her healing and recovery will take time. The depth of emotional hurt for the person I dropped will be profound and long lasting.

    Those of us who play with kink have access to scores of workshops, seminars, and manuals on how to avoid this very sort of thing. But when it actually happens, none of it is enough.

    The reality is, I’m simply lucky something like this didn’t happen sooner. One of the things we forget when we get into the play space is no matter how many of those classes you’ve taken (or in my case, taught), no matter how many knots you’ve tied, or how many scenes you’ve negotiated, it never becomes perfectly safe. After twenty years of public and private rope play, I was reminded of a single, brutal truth — a truth of which few dare to speak: if you do kink long enough, you will have a scene go bad, sometimes horrifically bad.

    Mountain climbers and motorcyclists alike have their own version of that rule. There are two kinds of bikers; those who’ve crashed their bikes, and those who haven’t crashed their bikes yet. But in the kink milieu, we’re silent about the risk. The workshops and guidebooks become incantations that will protect us from harm with mystical infallibility. Bad things only happen to the newbies and the tourists, not real kinksters who know what they’re doing — so goes the unspoken faith. Because mishaps and accidents reside in the realm of the hypothetical, when it becomes real and personal, we’re often not prepared.

    The woman I dropped was my co-performer at a fetish dinner theater; two hundred plus guests in elegant attire were watching us. One minute, she was flying through the air, her graceful arms flowing. The next, she was on the floor. I had a nanosecond of bafflement, and then it hit me:

    She fell.

    I dropped her.

    Even as time slowed and stretched, my old military training came up. Over two hundred people were watching us, and panic would only make things worse. After quickly assessing she was conscious and could move, I decided the best thing for her safety and the audiences would be to get her offstage in as calm a fashion as possible. Staying in character, I “danced” her offstage and to the dressing room where the medically trained staff attended to her.

    What draws most of us to kink is that it allows us to access raw, intense emotions that we have to keep locked away on a day-to-day basis. The risk is that while a good scene can send you flying so high you think you’ll break right through the sky, a bad one can be devastating, and the devastation doesn't stop at the end of the evening. The emotional fallout can come at different stages and at different times, like any grief process.

    That kind of trauma doesn’t fit easily in how we think about “sex positivity.” So much of our training and community values are based on being positive about sexuality that negative experiences get swept under the rug.

    There is too much at stake in a scene for us to pretend that with the proper invocations, everything will go right. If we are not ready for things to go wrong, we can’t be there for our friends and partners when a scene causes physical or emotional injury.

    Perhaps the next stage in kink education needs to be training to respond to “Oh, shit!” situations, so that responses to crises in a playspace become as standard as knowing your safeword and packing EMT shears.

    But to go beyond even that, to start to discuss failed scenes openly and with compassion, we have to realize that the pain and consequences go deeper than we might first think. The loss of trust in partner and self can be deeper than any wound.

    Even the best of responses is never perfect. I did the best I could for my co-performer: I went with her to the hospital and paid her medical bills. Fortunately her physical injuries were not as catastrophic as they could have been. The depth of the emotional pain, however, is likely to be far deeper, but only she will know how deep.

    What I do know is that I screwed up. She trusted me with her body and safety, and I quite literally let her fall. I’m not sure when I’ll do another suspension. For now, I have to go back to the drawing board and review my own skills before I’m ready to take flight with another. I’ll be working up towards that.

    No matter how much we study or train, know this: we will fail someday. When that day comes, be ready.

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  • Tenugui of Love

    January 16, 2012
    Tenugui of Love © Midori
    Let’s start the New Year, the year of the Water Dragon, with an erotic Japanese cultural lesson! Tenugui is a beloved traditional item in Japan with a thousand practical uses. Sex uses abound for these and inventive lovers in Japan use them well. But most Westerners, unless they’re hooked up with Tenugui-savvy Japanese sweethearts, are likely to never appreciate its pleasures.
    The Tenugui is a thin cotton cloth, measuring around 1’ wide by 2.5’ long. Some are hand printed while others are machine dyed. The prints range from traditional motifs such as family crests, seasonal patterns, and favorite Kabuki performers as well as store logos, festival commemoration, modern graphics, manga characters and even Hello Kitty and Star Wars. The best ones are limited editions, silk screened by hand and sought after like baseball trading cards. Its use may date back to the Yayoi era (300 CE to 300 CE) but the big boom came in the Edo period (1603-1868). They even appear in Ukiyoe images of beautiful women and popular actors. Today, they’re experiencing a huge resurgence in Japan as people look towards traditional wisdom for modern living solutions.

    Here’s some G rated Tenugui uses:

    Below are some of my favorite sex uses:

    • Trick towel, cum rag, clean up cloth: What ever you call it, sex is a wet and messy affair. Tenuigui is there for you!

    • Insta Dildo: Layering two Tenuigui makes for a nice thickness. Fold lengthwise until about 2’ wide. Then keep twisting until it begins to twist back on to itself, making a tightly coiled ‘rope’. Tie ends together. Cover with a condom. If you put a vibrating egg in the middle, before twisting, it becomes a vibrating dildo.

    • Doggie Style Shagging Handles: Make knots on each end. Slide under your partner’s hip and hold on to the ends for deeper, harder thrusts without embedding your partner’s skin with your fingerprints.

    • Walk of Shame Emergency Panties / Brief: Tear off a thin strand or two, enough to make a waist or hip band. Use the remaining piece along the crotch or package.

    • Blindfold: Fold lengthwise, cover eyes snugly and tie behind head.

    • Gag: Teeth friendly gag that fits even tiny mouths! Fold lengthwise. Make a big knot in the middle. Insert knot in mouth and tie behind the head.

    • Wrist or ankle Tie: Contrary to Western misconception, bondage in Japan isn’t just about rope. In a culture of artful wrapping, why not tenugui?

    • Dildo Harness variation 2: Though the Tenugui is a bit short for the full standard Midori Scarf Harness, you can still rig up a simple and functional alternative using two Tenuguis.

    • Nejiri Hachimaki style Cockring! Just like the neat headband on sushi chefs, but on the other head. Keep the original tenugui size, or split it lengthwise for a thinner band. Twist into a very tight strand. Wrap around the base, behind the balls. Twist and tuck the ends or tie a simple knot to finish.

    • Single Tail Whip: Wet it down, twist it, and snap it like a locker room towel.

    Get a little Japanese with your sex with Tenugui. Come up with your own sexy uses and let me know.


    * Photos by Midori of her friend and piercing artist / performer, Samar.

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  • Tentacle Love

    December 19, 2011
    Tentacle Love
    What’s with all the alien or monster tentacles in Japanese porn and anime?
    Hentai, one of many Japanese words for pervert, also is a western reference to a genre of comic and erotic work coming out of Japan or influenced by it. The Inuit may have hundreds of words for snow, but leave it to the Japanese to come up with words expressing gradations and subtlety of perversity! There are loads of different hentai styles and tentacle is just one of them. I totally dig weird Hentai stuff… I guess you can take hentai out of Japan, but you just can’t take the hentai out of a Japanese.

    Images of tentacles as the appendage of choice for pornography aren’t a new thing in Japan. In 1820 Hokusai created the legendary image “dearm of a fisherman’s wife” where she’s getting it on with a couple of huge octopi. Many Westerners are often surprised at the graphic lustiness of this legendary Ukiyo-e artist. It’s probably the best known image of that genre, consequently inspiring many other fine artists, such as Masami Teraoka’s “Sarah and Octopus/ Seventh Heaven” (2001) and Michael Manning’s creatures.

    Japan has always had a playful and symbolic sense of sexual images. It helps that the cultural attitudes around sex doesn’t revolve around guilt. Censorship of porn in modern Japan, such as the strict limitations on display of genitalia during sex, is not a result of Japanese modesty, but rather the unfortunate influences of American morality shoved into the legal system by the post WWII occupying forces. So you can’t see anatomically correct hard-core stuff because of weird lines or pixilations? Don’t blame the pornographers; blame the American government and its foreign policy.

    The Japanese are notorious for visual puns including sexual innuendos. There’s an Ukiyoe image of courtesans fishing and grasping a fish. At first glance it’s just a fish. Then you realize that the fish has a gill ridge that makes its head look like a cock head. Yup, it’s a dirty picture of a pretty lady giving head hidden in public view. It’s not hidden for sin or shame. It’s hidden to show the cleverness and artistic skill of a sex-minded artist to a sex-minded viewer. Cheeky symbolic representations happen all the time in Japanese imagery. A wisp of undone hair is all that’s needed to symbolize ravishment and lust, and the rest is left up to our imagination.

    So, how do we explain the violent tentacle fucking? That’s hardly subtle, is it? Though violent, it’s still representational. Think of the tentacles, whether those of an alien, a hell beast or cephalopod, as representation of primal desire unbridled by social expectations — the Id. While Japanese sexuality may not be suppressed by guilt, as Westerners know it, it’s highly regulated by social pressures. Underneath all the chrome and steel of modern Japan, is a culture that’s still feudal and beehive like in its organization. To act upon one’s own urges could potentially disrupt the harmony of the whole.

    Human urges don’t do so well bottled up, so as many other older cultures, Japan has its outlets — pressure valves for their Id. Japanese mythology and folk tales are full of wild creatures acting upon their desires; much in the way that Greek mythology is full of critters fornicating with people. This menagerie contains the archetypes of human desires. While the octopus in Western imagery is the dark monster of the ocean bringing down ships, in Japan the octopus is the undersea comic and clever little prankster. The ocean depth for the Japanese is not a dark, watery hell, but rather a wondrous world of glittering castles and partying immortals.

    Then there are the pearl divers. These are real women, dressed in loose outfits made of white gauze, diving down to retrieve the jewels of the undersea kingdom. The sights of young women, emerging from the water with wet gauze clinging to their toned flesh inspired a lot of erotic awe and serious wood. They put wet t-shirt contests to shame. If you were a horny guy, wouldn’t it make sense to fantasize yourself as a cleaver octopus of many phallic limbs, getting it on with these swimming beauties?

    Maybe you’re wondering why a guy in a male dominant culture would need to obliquely project his sexual desires. It’s simple-minded to describe Japan as a male dominated culture. More accurately, all genders are pressed by expectations of a very old society. Men need to behave according to a pretty limited and specific code of ‘male’ behavior. Women are also oppressed by the social rules, such that expressing direct eagerness for erotic fulfillment is considered to be too ‘animal’ like. Images of ‘innocent’ women first resisting, and then going wild in sexual abandon plays with these expectations and taboo of women’s sexual self expression.

    In the past, individuals felt a greater sense of belonging, due to the agrarian social structure of the village. The modern industrial Japan managed to decimate that, creating a sense of isolation, loneliness and disconnection for many Japanese.

    Mix together this sense of disenfranchisement and social oppression, suppressed sensuality and ancient animistic representation of human libido. Then toss in the weird censorship laws that ban graphic depiction of human-to-human genital contact, and what do you get? Alien tentacle monsters with octopus like appendages having their way with gals who’ve ‘unleashed’ their wild sexual awakenings.

    Incidentally, tentacle sex isn’t just the territory of hentai schoolgirl anime and those nutty Japanese perverts. If you prefer kinky nun sex, there’s a fantastic western representation of suppressed sexuality boiling over among ‘chaste’ women in the graphic novel “The Convent of Hell” by Noe and Barreiro. For a humorous take on the genre, try Ghastly’s on-line comic about Alien Tentacle Monsters and the Women Who Love Them.

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