Monday, December 28, 2009

Building Family

As I've mentioned previously, I am New Leather and I am aware of this fact. Not only am I aware of it, but I see it as an opportunity.

This does NOT mean that I do not have a great deal of respect and fascination in Old Leather and its traditions and ways.

I've always believed that while we can learn from history's mistakes, we can also learn from its victories. History is neither good nor bad - we can use the information that now have, thanks to history, to build a better present and future. The AIDS crisis of the 70s and 80s has taught us that safer sex really is the best option, for example... but that doesn't mean that we all use condoms all the time. Sometimes, when we have examined the risks and made an informed decision, we do without condoms. We go bareback. And that's okay.

The problems that many perceive as "not taking traditions seriously" or "not caring about our history" is that many people don't examine history before doing things. They do not learn from the past's mistakes and victories. They think they have it figured out by themselves.

Now, sometimes this is true, and sometimes this attitude can build glorious new things. But this type of thinking is the type that leads to "condoms aren't necessary". Carelessness.

The other way can be awkward as well - thinking we MUST do things a certain way because of tradition does not work for everyone. These are the people who know they are both free of STDs and/or not at risk of pregnancy, and do not eroticize safer sex (as I do), but simply use a condom every time because that's what you do. It doesn't hurt anyone, but what if they might enjoy bareback sex? They might never know!

I like informed consent. I like it in all things - sexual, psychological, medical, everything.

I like it in history, too. I learn about our history, I learn about traditions, I learn about protocols and I learn as much as I can about the way people make things work... so that I can make an informed decision about whether that particular thing will work for me.

I am rambling, as I tend to do in this blog sometimes. I will come to the point.

In the last few years, I have been learning as much as I can about Leather and Leather families and households. Partially because I am a huge nerd and I enjoy learning about these things, partially because I have come to identify as a Leather man... but also partially because I feel that a Leather family, a connected tribe who interact with each other via not just talk and love and BDSM and/or sex, but also through protocols and hierarchies, is something that I am increasingly and unavoidably attracted to.

I feel drawn to build my own Leather family.

That is a bold admission. Many Leather families are not born or built, they are joined, or at best they grow slowly. This isn't mutually exclusive with what I am looking to do, it's just that I am being conscious, mindful of what I am slowly building. I am watering the seed in my soul and my life, so that it may grow.

The boy is firmly at my heels on this subject, he too feels the growing desire/need for family.

Now, here's the thing. The way most Leather families work, are built, etc... it's not that I think they're bad or anything, but as they stand, they don't work for me. I'm seeking something... different.

As I have mentioned before, much of who I am is influenced by martial arts. There is no reason that a family that I may be the head of (beneath the late "real" head, I'd say, which would be my Sensei) would not also be influenced by this. This isn't even that far away from the origins of Leather - much of its protocols and traditions are rooted in the military.

But I find myself flandering a little. Learning as much as possible, poaching from many traditions, families, cultures, ways... and incorporating it all into myself, who I am, what I seek, what I offer....

It's very complicated!

It also takes a very long time. This is something I've been thinking about for a year (at least) now, and I am not actually closer to it appearing yet. It is still gestating, a new form, a new life, a new chapter... laying dormant in my mind, waiting to be born.

It will happen. I am patient.

In the meantime, I know that one thing that absolutely WILL be passed to those involved with me is the way I learned how to kneel and bow. It's quite simple and not that different to how most people naturally do it, but it carries so much meaning for me that being able to pass that on is intensely powerful.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Shifting the Dynamic

I think I need to stop promising what I'm going to write about in my next post, because I'm clearly setting a precedent of not doing it. So, new year's resolution - never promise what my next post will be on my blog :)

After the collaring, my boy and I specifically decided not to set up any protocols right away because we were attending Lee Harrington's Rituals for D/s workshop a week or so later. We didn't want to set anything up just in case the workshop was life changing. No one wants to have to say "You know that thing I told you to do a week ago? Yeah don't do that anymore, do this." Not in such a small time frame.

The workshop was wonderful, and while it wasn't particularly life changing it did give me a few things to think about. If nothing else it reminded me of some very basic, very important things, for example, it is better to have ten rules implemented and enforced than four hundred rules that even the Dominant forgets about.

So far, we don't have any rituals or protocol that have been specifically introduced since the collaring. We have a few little rituals that are very casual and not formal - but these rituals have been there for a long time and have more to do with them growing organically rather than being implemented.

For example, the boy always asks me before he comes. I didn't ask him to start doing that, he started doing it of his own accord - and it has now become such a ritual that if he comes without asking or comes before I say he can, he gets in trouble. (Not the kind of trouble that involves punishment, but I feel pretty confident in saying that if I tell him he's a bad boy, he'll feel bad enough from that alone.) Although I admit we have both been so busy the last couple of months I did give him permission a while ago that he could come whenever he likes when we're apart.

To get off subject here a little and talk about that for a moment, orgasm control is one of my boy's biggest kinks. So I imagine he misses being told he can't come on his own, and I'll be revoking that privilege at some point in the near future. I know he gets very wriggly and happy when my words control whether or not he comes, and I imagine a lack of that is probably a little boring for him.

That's a hard thing to deal with, as a Sir. As much as I am in control, sometimes life gets in the way of what we love to do, as I'm sure you know. Parents, kids, work, school, moving house, all kinds of things. For us, recently my life has been very stressful as I'm reorganizing my living arrangements, and I had some interstate visitors, and I've been quite sick... anyway, the point is, life gets in the way sometimes, and sometimes you need to dial D/s back a bit. And that's hard for me, not just because I love the control (don't get me wrong, I do) but because the boy loves the control, and I love the boy. I want him to feel that his needs are being met in this relationship, I want him to be having a good time, I want him to be happy.

A happy boy makes for a happier dynamic. So it's very hard for me to dial down things I know make my boy happy, no matter how necessary that dialing down is.

D/s is a feedback loop. We both need to be getting what we need out of the relationship for it to work. If my dominance is making him feel happy and at peace, then he is getting what he needs out of it to be a good boy, and when he is a good boy and serves me well, I feel happy and at peace. It's a big circle of goodness.

Anyway, to get back onto the initial subject of rituals, one thing that I have implemented is a bed time.

See, the boy has a habit of bumming around on the computer until it's quite late. This is not very useful for someone who works fulltime. He frequently does not get enough sleep and is often complaining about being tired, even on the weekends, because he does not care for his sleep schedule. Left to his own devices, he used to only sleep six hours a night! For my boy, this is not enough (of course how much sleep is good for us varies from person to person). The boy needs at least eight hours sleep every night for him not to be always tired.

So I implemented a bed time. I asked him what time he has to get up in the morning, and then I counted back. I seem to recall that ideally he'd be going to bed at 10:30 (I think that was because it would give him a half hour either of extra sleep, or a half hour of between-waking-and-sleeping time so he still got a full eight hours), however I realized quickly that would be impractical for him. So I set his bedtime for 11pm. He has to be IN BED and trying to sleep by 11, every work night. He can't start getting ready for bed at eleven. He has to be in bed by then.

The boy does not have insomnia, or any other sleep problems. He is just lazy about caring for his sleep. He gets into bed and falls right to sleep - which has been a source of mild, amused annoyance for me as I do suffer from insomnia and have to struggle constantly to keep my sleeping schedule functional.

Anyway, I am getting off topic again (clearly I am feeling wordy today, perhaps to make up for all the blog entries I've missed making over the last few weeks).

The last couple of nights, the boy has been half an hour later for bed time on one night, and five minutes later for bed time on another. Now here's where us D-types sometimes get stuck - what do I do about that?

It's easy to say "punish him!", but what does that mean? Punishment is a very tricky subject in D/s relationships. In scenes, punishment can be for fun or not, it doesn't matter. But in D/s... 'funishment' (that is, play that is presented as punishment) is not going to discourage an action.

But my boy is a pansy (this is not an insult, it simply means he is a beautiful, delicate flower). Pain (sudden or sharp) would certainly be a punishment, but does the punishment fit the crime? Is being late to bed really worth a beating, or ten strokes of the cane?

I don't think so.

So coming up with a punishment that fits the crime can be difficult. It has to be something not too bad, because he didn't disobey too badly (and there was no intent to disobey, which is important). It has to fit the person in question, and can be neither too lenient nor too strict.

It also has to not have associations set up elsewhere. My first thought was to make him spend his lost time (35 minutes) sorting rice grains, until I remembered that he uses a similar exercise to practice focus and meditation. I do not want him to consider focus and meditation a punishment! And I do not want him to think that his punishment is fun, either!

So, I thought about withdrawing affection and touch for 35 minutes. Certainly quite mean to my boy, who is very touch-focussed, but tolerable. However, how do you implement that? I considered corner time, however I quickly realized that being near him and not letting him touch me is something we do in play. It is a way I can tease him - so it immediately becomes a bad punishment, because it is something we do for fun.

But I followed the train of thought over to the cage. As you know, the boy loves the cage. He loves sleeping in it, he loves being it.

Suddenly I had a thought.

If I remove all the blankets and cushions from the cage, it becomes just that little bit uncomfortable. If I do not let the boy have any stimulation while he is in there, it also becomes that little bit more uncomfortable.

To put the boy in the cage in that way, for 35 minutes, one of two things will happen:

1) He will get bored. If this is the case, I think it's a suitable punishment.

2) He will go to sleep. If this is the case, he will be catching up on the sleep he was otherwise missing out on.

A win-win situation! Both of these options are a good consequence for missing bedtime.

So that is how this particular dominant goes about selecting a punishment. As you can see, it's a lot harder than most submissives think. :)

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

I'm a consumer whore!

Fetlife always has wonderful giveaways around Christmastime, and this year is no exception :)

http://fetlife.com/sit_on_santas_lap

Personally I'm hoping Santa brings me a fucking machine.

Next post: my inner beast and how stifled it's been for the last three years.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Collaring

On December 6, I officially collared my boy.

We've been D/s for a long time, so not much has changed... but the little that has means a lot to me, and will make me feel more secure and comfortable in our relationship.

We had a very casual ceremony at one of the local kink events, with many of our friends to witness it. It was a little awkward at first, I told the story of how we met and why we decided to change from vanilla boyfriends to Daddy and boy, and that we didn't plan the ceremony at all.

Oh, we spent hours talking and planning and thinking out the ceremony... but in the end, we decided that we have planned little else in our relationship, perhaps it would be best if we just improvised our ceremony as well.

We exchanged some words, talked about what this meant for us, and then I collared him. Honestly it was a little awkward and might have been better if we had planned it, but several of our friends were quite teary-eyed afterwards so it couldn't have been as bad as I had thought :)

My boy and I hugged and our friends applauded. Then my "best man" (a dear friend of mine whose job it was to hold the collar until I needed it and make sure I couldn't run away, as I am a bit of a commitment-phobe) bought me drink, and then we all stayed to play and have a good night out.

I played with the boy a couple of times, nothing too different or anything - I am saving rituals for a later point, which I am sure I will write about then - however he did start crying as I was flogging him, and he took a little while to recover from it. He's not very good at accessing his own emotions but I suspect he touched briefly up against a level of subspace that he is not familiar with.

It was good crying, though, and the fact that he did not safeword and it was my decision to stop and care for him bodes well for our future relationship.

It was a very small affair, and I can't say that I feel that different afterwards, or even that our relationship is any different now, but that is hardly the point. The point is that there is no wiggle room in this relationship any more. We are Daddy and boy, that is who we are, and we never have to stumble over our words when people ask, ever again.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Almost Collaring

In a few hours, I will be officially collaring my boy. I am very excited and nervous. I will write about it probably tomorrow. :)

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Dear Future [blank]

Dear future [blank],

I'm not sure what you are, just yet. I don't know your gender, I don't know your kinks, I don't even know your exact relationship to me.

Will you be my slave, my totally owned property? Will you be my sidekick submissive, as I am hero, and we fight the crime of sex negativity together? Will you be my puppy, to be petted and fed and sleep in the cage? Will you be a patient student, wanting to learn what I've learned from those before me? Will you be the submissive of my boy, who wants to be a part of my life as well? Or will you be something else entirely, that I haven't even thought of?

I don't know you yet, [blank]. But I do love you, dearly.

But I'm not ready for you yet.

I don't want you to think that this means I don't want you. I do want you, and in fact I want you terribly. I dream about you, I fantasize about you.

However, I am not ready yet. There are many physical things I must pull together in the coming months... my housing situation, my emotional situation... I have books to read and study to do, and things to organize. I'm not ready for you yet, because I want to be as pulled together as I can get before I meet you.

I hope that's all right.

Of course, if you appear before then, I hope that I have the strength to know it, and to accept you without worrying about the fact that I don't feel ready yet.

I look forward to meeting you, [blank], I think about you almost every day. I hope you can forgive me for not being ready for you yet.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Good Times

On this Thursday just past, the boy and I attended a Leather Lifestyles forum. A couple of friends of mine were on the panel, so I probably would have gone for that reason alone, but also I was looking forward to discussions about Leather from a few different angles.

We were also lucky enough to have Mr Leather Australia & New Zealand 2008, Pierre Brand, in attendance, sharing his journey and thoughts and discussing these things with us as well.

It was a really good night, one that left me feeling inspired and thrilled, happy little endorphins doing their work in my brain. I always feel this way after spending time with like minded souls, regardless of where that like mindedness comes from.

I am still very young and new to Leather (as it differs from kink), but I no longer feel that it is something I am not allowed to touch, lest I dirty it with my filthy heathen (read: New Leather) hands.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Asking of Others...

One thing I struggle with as a dominant person is that I feel I should not ask anything of anyone that I cannot do myself.

For example... my boy has a blog (which he has asked me not to link to, as he chooses to keep it anonymous for the time being at least) which I have told him to update at least once a week. He has missed a couple of weeks, so I have asked him to have two posts up before Monday. Even as I told him this, I knew that I too was going to write two posts before Monday. Because I do not want him thinking that I am asking something of him that I am not willing to do myself.

There's no real reason for this... much of D/s is built on the idea that one person is in charge and has the power, and so if that person chooses to task their submissive with things they themselves do not take part in, that shouldn't be a problem.

So why do I think that this has to apply to me?

Much of it comes down to my own problems with authority. I have trouble respecting someone who has authority over me if they ask or tell me to do things they themselves aren't willing to do, or I have any suspicions that they might not be willing to do.

Sensei put me through some terribly difficult things, but I never doubted that he either would do it, or in fact had done it in the past. My parents never expected anything from me that they couldn't deliver themselves. I had the utmost trust and respect in my surgeon years ago, because as a tracheotomy patient himself he knew what it was like under the knife as well as holding it.

What is this elusive quality? What is it that makes me wonder whether or not someone would or had gone through what they put me through?

Most of it comes down to trust and experience. I want to trust that the person who is asking much of me knows what they're getting me into, and what better way to know for certain than to have gone through it themselves, or at least be willing to do so?

When I think back to people who had technical authority over me, but to whom I did not defer, that was missing. The other thing that was missing was respect.

When someone commands something of me, I need to know they respect me. If they give me respect, I will return it tenfold, and most likely do as they wish.

I am reminded of a story from martial arts... (oh, prepare to hear that sentence a lot in this blog!)

Sensei would often get his higher graded students to teach the class for half a session, or even a full session. This in itself was a teaching exercise - he was teaching his students, in turn, to teach. He was also watching them and seeing if they were capable of it.

Now obviously, this meant that if Sensei was ever out of town or sick (although I don't think he ever got sick before he died), one of his high graded students would teach the class. (And poor me would go without my private, one-on-one lessons from him for that week or two.)

There was one particular Senpai (loosely translated to 'upperclassman', perhaps best translated as 'knowledgeable student and teacher's aid') who we shall call Bill for the sake of this entry.

Bill, despite being a third level blackbelt, had no respect for other students. He was also a terrible teacher, but that's beside the point at the moment. Bill certainly had no respect for me, as I was a very young student. He was also a very arrogant person, who believed that because he could punch very hard and kick very high, he was a magnificent karateka (someone who does karate). This, of course, is not how karate works... to be truly good at karate, you have to live it and feel it within your spirit.

One evening class that Bill was teaching, his arrogance and his lack of care for the students left to him by Sensei was driving me crazy, and I couldn't take it anymore. I held up my hand and told him that I had to leave the class.

He demanded in a snobbish tone, "Why? What do you need to leave for?"

This was completely unacceptable, and his lack of respect for me had finally reached boiling point. I am very ashamed to admit that I sneered, "What does it matter to you?"

This was not respectful of me, and perhaps I should have known better, but I was only fourteen, so I am going to give myself a little slack on the issue.

He yelled at me and I yelled back, and we had a little spat before he finally excused me from the class. I do regret losing my cool with him, but I am proud of myself for waiting for his formal dismissal before actually leaving.

I would NEVER have acted this way with Sensei. Never in a thousand years. It wasn't fear that stopped me acting like this with Sensei, it was respect. I respected him, and I looked up to him. So of course I wouldn't be rude to him.

But this man, this Bill... he was so rude, so arrogant, and did not care for the learning experience of those left in his care. He had no respect for the other students, and we could all sense that... thus, we did not respect him either.

I think of Bill when I think about D/s sometimes. How if he had granted me respect as a student, I would have granted him respect as a teacher. He was a very technically skilled karateka and I could have learned much from him, if only there had been an exchange of respect.

I want any submissive in my care to know I respect them. This is very important to me. I only ask for what I am able to give when it comes to respect, and that is one of the most important things about this dynamic, about this lifestyle, for me.

I think that is where much of my fear comes from, even when it comes to tangible tasks. I am afraid that asking a task of someone that I am either not willing or not able to do myself is taking and being self indulgent like Bill was. I know, intellectually, that this is not the case, but emotionally, it will take a lot of time to learn.

But I will never compromise this belief when it comes to respect. I will always grant an exchange of respect with any submissive in my care - and, for that matter, with all other human beings on the planet, as long as they grant me the same.

Even a slave who desires to be treated like trash, abused and used and kept in harsh conditions... they deserve respect as well, perhaps more than anyone. Choosing to live according to desires such as that takes an immense amount of personal strength, and that should be respected.

Then, too, we must respect ourselves. If we do not respect ourselves, then we are empty of respect, and have none to offer those around us.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Vests & Life

Life has been crazy busy, not in the fun way, recently - mostly, I have just been very sick, and that's mostly why I haven't been writing.

But, you're not here to hear about that, so let's talk about vests.

I recently bought myself a leather vest. It is a tangible item for me to represent the Sir I am and will become. I bought it for a lot of reasons, but now that I have it and have bonded with it, I know that it is going to remain important to me forever.

Also, I look very sexy in it.

My tattoo was an action of my own volition, given to me by myself. It represents my adulthood, my life spent working towards being the kind of person I want to be and believe I can be.

My vest will be an action of my own volition, given to me by myself. It will represent my coming into myself as a Sir, my life spent dedicating myself to my community and my lifestyle and my loved ones.

Monday, November 2, 2009

NaNoWriMo

Yes, I have fallen into the clutches of National Novel Writing Month. I am writing a coming of age love story set in Leather and kink culture.

So far I find myself fascinated with my protagonist, who is absolutely nothing at all like me. They find their way to Leather not because of a calling, but because they are bored. Once there, they find that it stimulates them in a way they didn't even know existed, and they fall deeply in love with a mentor figure.

My protagonist (Vic) is exactly the type of person no one likes. They smoke, do drugs, drink too much, pick fights, swear a lot, and don't take anything seriously. My interest in this character comes from being the type of person with a lot of trust in myself and my instincts, in what I believe is my journey, what is good for me... I try to think of Vic as the person that I could be, were my priorities and opinions different, but my drive the same.

I have to admit, my talking about my novel in this post is mostly because I realized I hadn't updated in a few days and wasn't sure what to write about! I'll try and do better on that in future.

In other news, I have started reading a book called "Faeries, Bears and Leathermen: Men in Community Queering the Masculine". It is utterly fascinating to me, especially being that I identify with all three of those identities, and I'm sure I'll have some more thoughts on it in a future post.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Ways of Serving the Community

Do you know what a community is?

A community is a group of people. Individuals, with individual desires, dreams, hopes, aspirations and problems.

There is a Leather community, a kink community, a queer community, a gay community... there are a lot of communities, all made up of individual people who have some things in common with each other.

In Leather, people often speak of "serving the community". This type of service is not restricted to bottoms - it is something that all people, regardless of orientation, are encouraged to do. The community in question, usually, is the Leather community. Service? Well, that can be anything.

I choose to believe this attitude in Leather is based on Golden Rule principles - let's care for other people and be good people (whatever that might mean individually). This is a large idea that many communities make use of; the idea of taking care of each other. In Australia, we even have a cultural idea behind this, that we call "mateship". In short, "one must look out for one's mates", and in Australia, in the idea of "mateship" when used as a cultural idea, means that most of us are all mates. Mate, in case you're not familiar with the slang, means dear friend. So, mateship is looking after each other.

In Leather, service, while not exclusively this, can be seen to be looking out for others in the community.

So let's get back to what a community is. It's a person.

So to apply "service to the community"... we can apply this to the idea of "looking out for someone" as an act of service.

Now that might seem a little obvious, but I wanted to talk around it a little, so you could see where I am coming from.

The boy's 36 hours in the cage had to be broken. I received a phone call at 2am that night (why are these types of phone calls always between 2-4am?). Someone dear to me needed help. They were in a bad situation and while they were in a safe place in that moment, they had to move out of home as soon as possible.

I told them to relax for the night, and the boy and I would be there tomorrow. I woke the boy up and told him that I needed him to move to the bed so he could get a good night's sleep - I summarized the situation.

He woke up fully immediately and asked if we had to go then and there. I told him no, but we would have to go tomorrow, so I needed him to sleep well. He ended up staying in the cage after all (apparently he sleeps very well in there), but I left the door unlocked.

The next day, I called another friend for extra manpower, and together we all moved someone out of home in about an hour.

It got me thinking about what an act of service can be, and to whom it can be given.

Yesterday, we did a very good thing. We helped remove someone from a toxic situation. That act, in of itself, was looking out for someone. Taking care of them.

Aside from helping them specifically, they will now be in a better place to help others in future, and to perform their own services for the community.

Yesterday, we committed an act of service for the community. It may not have looked that way, perhaps... but what is a community? A community is made up of people.

Yesterday, we helped a person. This is a revolutionary act. An act of kindness, an act of care, and yes, even an act of service to the community.

Yesterday, we performed an act that was completely and utterly an important piece of what Leather is all about.

The idea of committing to serving the community can be a daunting aspect of Leather life. But it can be as simple as small acts of kindness, or as large as operating a community space. Leather doesn't care how much you give - only that you give it.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

More Cage Adventures

Sorry I've been absent, I had a very good friend visiting from interstate and have been busy paying attention to him. :-)

While he was here, we shared in a moment that amused us both. We were sitting on my couch, discussing all kinds of things, and sharing a delicious lunch of bagels and things. The boy was naked and in the cage - by his own volition, perhaps I should add.

Sitting, talking with my friend, I pulled apart pieces of bagel, dipped them in hummus and slipped them into the boy's mouth between the metal bars. It was a very natural movement.

After a few pieces, I paused and chuckled quietly to myself.

"There are moments," I say to my friend, "where I realize how strange my life would be to most people."

"I was just thinking that," he replied. "Not many people have naked boys in cages in their living rooms."

Perhaps they don't. But that is their loss.

The boy is in the cage again presently - locked in, as a matter of fact, for the next 36 hours (with the exception of supervised toilet breaks, of course). This is happening because I made a joke that he would get bored if he was in the cage for a day or two - he disagreed. (Are you noticing a pattern? I do believe this is how he ended up spending the night in there last time!)

At the beginning, I felt certain I would lose - he seems so happy in the cage that I am pleased this bet did not have any money attached. But a few hours in, and while he may not be bored yet I suspect another full day and a half of this may prove me victorious. We will see.

I asked him a few minutes ago how he is going, since I have a couple of friends online who want updates. His response was a big, cheerful smile that only boys know how to give, and a happy exclamation of "NICE!".

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Sleeping in the Cage

I own a lovely large cage. It's a dog cage, one that's sized for dogs like great danes and st bernards, so it's very big - about 1.5m x 1m x 1m. You can fit people into it extremely comfortably. At an event I ran, we had three people locked in the cage and then they started wrestling with each other... it was very entertaining to watch, and it gives you an idea of just how roomy it is.

I have always had a thing for cages. It's not necessarily a BDSM thing, either. For example, I like being in cages myself, even though I am exclusively dominant. For me, it is like when you are a child and you play in boxes - it's like having a fort, a place where the rest of the world doesn't matter, somewhere cozy and nice where you can settle down and just relax.

My cage is very comfortable for short term snuggling down and relaxing. I knew it was big enough to make someone sleep it it overnight without harming them, but I wasn't sure if it could be done comfortably.

Enter, the boy.

Last night we were mucking about with the cage, at one point discovering that you can easily fit two people who are snuggling into it. I talked to him about how much I adore cages, how I find them fun and secure when I am in them, and how I find them sexy and exciting when I am putting someone else in them. How I always fantasize about having someone sleep in them overnight.

He made a joke about sleeping in the cage that night. I laughed it off. A little later, he joked about it again. I told him that I doubted it would be very comfortable for him. He told me that he'd be fine.

Long story short, at midnight I was tucking him into the cage with lots of pillows and blankets. I deliberately did not lock it, because I was going to be sleeping in my room (the cage is in my living room) and I wanted him to be able to get up and pee if he needed it, or if it became too uncomfortable, come in and get into bed with me. I was not comfortable with locking him into something if I wasn't going to be able to be in the same room all night.

I covered the cage with blankets to keep the light down, as I was going to be up for a couple more hours in the living room and I didn't want to disturb him too much. This is a trick that you learn if you have caged pets - growing up I had a cockatoo, and to put her "to bed" each night I would cover her cage with a large sheet, to keep the cage dark.

Half an hour after putting him to bed--or perhaps, "to cage"--I heard soft snoring noises. Two hours later, they were still going on, and I went to bed myself.

I got up in the morning and came out into the living room only to find that he was still asleep in the cage. I sat down on the floor by the door and uncovered that part of the cage. His eyes opened.

"Hello," I said softly, smiling at him.

"Hello," he said back, smiling that wonderfully adorable boy-smile.

Then he said, "I told you."

Indeed you did, my boy. Indeed you did.

Monday, October 19, 2009

What Leather Means to Me

With a title like "Diary of a Leatherman", you'd want to hope I'd get to explaining this part early on.

Leather is a complex topic. Many think it's simply about the fabric, many think it's just a synonym for kinkster, while for many "Leather" refers to a strict, protocol based lifestyle that was born out of returning gay WWII soldiers in the 40s and 50s.

Personally I think they're all right, but then, this is often my attitude towards these types of things (I feel the same about religion).

But this isn't about them, it's about me.

It is only relatively recently that I have begun calling myself a Leather man, and begun identifying myself with Leather. In order to explain it, I think we'll need to cover a little history.

Before I turned 18, I already knew that I was kinky, that I wanted to live this lifestyle. Of course you can't do anything about it before you are 18, aside from playing privately with your partners. So that's what I did - I played with my partners, and I read books and articles on the internet.

The internet was a lot smaller back then, but it was still big enough for me to find the information I craved. I read safety notes, "how to" articles, journal entries, anything I could find. I snuck into sex stores that I knew wouldn't ask for my ID so I could buy floggers, collars, handcuffs. Then I took those toys home, and using the information that I had gleaned from the internet, I practiced. I practiced flogging on pillows, I would tie up chairs and pillows with rope.

For the mental side of it, I would roleplay. I would get into online roleplaying games and roleplay Master/slave relationships, using them to explore this world that I was so drawn to.

I would play with my partners - only things I was confident in, slowly increasing the complexity and intensity of toys, words, voice, play.

By the time I turned 18, I was ready to burst out onto the public scene - and I did. Now, I did so as part of a couple - I had a girl at the time, and we would go out together. Because we were a couple and we already had some idea what we were doing (so we were not complete newbies), we had a lot of trouble making friends. It's very difficult to get to know people when you first enter the scene if you are in a couple and you are not incredibly new to BDSM. So it actually took a few years before people started recognizing me around the scene - but anyway, that's getting off topic.

So for a long time, I identified simply as a kinkster, as a dom.

However, my voracious appetite for learning and reading did not stop at 18. I continued buying books (many of which, unfortunately, I no longer have) and I continued reading everything I could find on the internet.

I can't remember how old I was when I first heard about Leather as a lifestyle. It was probably via googling the term "old guard" - goodness knows you see that term everywhere around places like collarme and bondage.com and such, mostly used by people who have no idea what it actually means.

So I began to learn about Leather. I found it intriguing, yet somehow intimidating. It was so full of rules and protocols and "the right way to do things"... it took a long time for me to stop being afraid of Leather.

As you might have gathered from my history, I was not trained in the old ways, in the old protocols. And generally, this has always been the thing that stopped me from identifying as Leather - even when I was utilizing much of its philosophy and traditions myself. I did not want to step on toes. I did not want to offend anyone by identifying as Leather when I had not gone through the same beginnings as they had.

So you're probably wondering what changed my mind.

A few things happened. Let's take a look at them.

First, there is another aspect to my personal history that is relevant here. I grew up being very involved with martial arts, and when I switched styles at age 12 (from GKR Karate to Okinawan Goju-ryu Karate-do) I found the most incredible teacher.

His name was David Lambert, and he was the highest grade black belt in Australia, as well as the regional Master.

To me, he was and always will simply be "Sensei".

Sensei's classes were nothing at all like what I was used to. While there was certainly a lot of formality and serious business, he smiled and laughed and talked with his students. He taught us personally, with special care and interest in each and every one of us. He took very good care of me, coming to teach me not only martial arts but also much about life. He was my mentor.

He was also the most caring, sadistic and powerful dominant anyone could ever ask for.

Of course I did not know this at the time - indeed, it took many years later for me to realize what had happened. At the tender age of 12 I had found my Master. I lived and died on his words, he pushed me until I feared I could go no further, only for him to show me that I could go further after all. He showed me what I was capable of, he kept me grounded, he beat me and held me and it was all too magnificent for me to describe here. Anyone who has learnt martial arts in a very traditional way will know exactly what it was like.

Leather lifestyle was built vaguely on a military foundation. Well, the only place in the world as military as the actual military is a martial arts Master's dojo.

Sadly I lost Sensei to cancer some years ago now, but he still lives on in my memory.

However, my background in martial arts, when I compare it to taking the first steps into Leather... are not all that different. That was one of the pieces that made me realize that perhaps I was more Leather than I thought.

To get back a little closer to home, the other thing that happened was that I started socializing with more Leather people. Those found in the kink scene, those found in the queer scene. I met them, I talked with them. I watched them and their relationships and their journeys.

I realized I wasn't that different from them.

So, it took a very long time, but through looking at myself, my past, and at others, and at the past stories from Leather men before me, I gradually began to see that I was Leather.

Now here is where we get to something important.

I am not, nor do I particularly wish to be, "Old Guard". I have come from a different source, and I am walking a different journey, to the old guard ways.

I am "New Leather". Not only am I all right with this, I am actually very pleased with it. I am forging my own path, that happens to coincide with Leather ideas and philosophy.

So after a very long history lesson, we come back to the title of this post - what Leather means to me.

In karate, we had a set of rules - called "dojo kun" (loosely, "school rules"). This is what they say:

Respect others.
Be courageous.
Train in mind and body.
Practice daily and protect traditional karate.
Strive to reach the essence of Goju Ryu.
Never give up.


You can apply "dojo kun" to Leather. Leather, to me, means respecting others, being courageous, constantly aiming to improve yourself, living the lifestyle, serving the community, always finding the meaning and spirituality in Leather, and never giving up.

About karate, Sensei would say, "Karate is not a sport. It is a way of life."

Leather is a set of protocols, yes. But is it also a way of life.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Holding Steel

I know I said I was going to write about what Leather means to me in this post, however, something came up that needed to be written about. Please forgive me, I will post about what Leather means to me soon.

Today, the boy and I went to purchase his collar.

It wasn't meant to be a big thing, actually - and in a way, it wasn't. It was simply preparation for our collaring ceremony, me buying the collar that he will wear. The collar itself is lovely - it is a steel cable that closes and can be locked with a padlock. Here is a link to it, if you'd like to see. It is a very masculine collar that can easily pass as jewellery during the day while he is at work or seeing his family.

We went and tried on a couple of sizes to make sure it would fit right, looked at them in the mirror, and I selected the 19 inch one as it may be a little bigger, but I felt that helped it look more vanilla during the day and also would give a little extra leeway for him to wriggle once it's locked. I paid for it, then we decided to look around the store a little before leaving.

We bumped into a friend while there, which was a pleasant surprise, but not what this post is about - however it was a lovely moment to be in a BDSM store and meet a friend who you met through the scene, talk about D/s as small talk, then part ways. It struck me how similar it was to any person meeting their friend in a store - a housewife meeting her friend in a homewares store, a bloke meeting his friend at Bunnings, that sort of thing.

We got in the car and started home, and I took the collar out to take the price tag off it and examine it much more closely - and bond with it, as it is my collar now.

As we rolled along, I began to think about this collar.

This steel cable collar has been one that I have been in love with for years, ever since I first saw it. I remember the first time I saw it, and that I thought how much I would love to have someone in my life that I could lock that collar about their neck. I would look at it online and fantasize about having someone wear that collar.

And then, all of a sudden, I have someone. I had bought this collar for the purpose of locking it around my boy's neck. Not only had I chosen it, but he had chosen it with me, and he loved it as well.

My dream had come true.

I looked over at the boy, who was driving. He was bouncing his head and singing along to Fountains of Wayne that were playing on his ipod. He was happy, he was beautiful, and he was mine.

Is mine.

It is more beautiful than I can express. To dream of these relationships, to dream of these collars, to dream of this life... and then to have it! Not only to have it, but to have it be even better than I had dreamed.

This collar, this boy. My collar, my boy.

My boy, you are so beautiful, and I am so honoured to be your Daddy.

Friday, October 16, 2009

A Nice Warm Cup of "Sir, Yes Sir!"

Hello, blogosphere!

I am your friendly neighbourhood Leatherman, beginning a blog about my life as a Leather Sir.

I have started this blog for a few reasons, but one of the largest reasons is that there are not many blogs out there written from a Dominant perspective. There are plenty of blogs from submissives and slaves, but not many Doms, Sirs or Masters - and what few there are, they seem to almost entirely be from a heterosexual perspective.

So I am here offering my own perspective - that of a queer, polyamorous Leather man. A man for whom D/s is not always sexual, a man for whom D/s is as variable as the people who take part in it, a man who plays and loves men, women and all those in between and outside.

Another reason is that this blog will be an excellent resource for my partners, both present and future. Many Dominants ask their submissives or slaves to keep diaries that they can read, so they frequently know what their s type is thinking about and feeling. This is an excellent idea, and I see no reason why it would not be useful for submissives to have something similar.

I feel like now is a good time in my life to begin this blog. I have approximately eight years of "experience" under my belt at this point, having accepted that this is my orientation and preferred lifestyle and working towards building my dream life. I have had enough relationships to know what I do and don't want and need, and the relationships that I am in now are both at exciting turning points that will be interesting to both write and read about.

So here I am - a young Leather Sir with a kinky-boyfriend-of-two-years about to become my officially collared boy, and a newly collared girl. All I need is a talking dog and I can go on some of the best adventures ever.

In case you're wondering about the title of this post... it was the runner up for what I was thinking of calling my blog. I realized it was much too long, however, thus settling on the much more boring "Diary of a Leatherman" instead. :)

Next Post: What Leather Means to Me.