Saturday, September 7, 2013

R.I.P. Jeff Gord

image of Jeff Gord and Ashley Renee from Jeff Gord's twitter

Jeff Gord - a master, a BDSM pioneer, a visionary, a hero to many, and a true BDSM artist passed from this world earlier this week on September 3rd. Jeff was the genius behind the House of Gord - a site devoted to ultra bondage and Forniphilia.

While he's listed among my Fetlife friends, I can't say that I was privileged to have met Jeff in person. Our only contact was a few brief messages exchanged via mail here and at (believe it or not) tumblr. Yet, I can honestly say he touched my life, and even left a visible reminder of that contact, something that's very meaningful to me.

You see, Jeff Gord recommended the craftsman who created the custom collar that's going to be placed around Serafina's neck at our collaring ceremony in October. I can very safely say that without Jeff pointing me that way, I never would have found the German craftsman who created a piece of jewelry that's also a very special symbol of my Master / slave relationship with my Serafina.

Thank you Jeff Gord, for having touched my life, and thank you for making the BDSM world a little more unique and special place to inhabit. You are, and will be, missed.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Mastery is not a destination . . .

Masters are those who by nature have suffered to get to where they are. They have experienced endless criticisms of their work, doubts about their progress, setbacks along the way. They know deep in their bones what is required to get to the creative phase and beyond. As mentors, they alone can gauge the extent of our progress, the weakness in our character, the ordeals we must go through to advance. In this day and age, you must get the sharpest dose of reality that is possible from your mentor. You must go in search of it and welcome it. If possible, choose a mentor who is known for supplying this form of tough love. If they shy away from giving it, force them to hold up the mirror that will reflect you as you are. Get them to give you the proper challenges that will reveal your strengths and weaknesses and allow you to gain as much feedback as possible, no matter how hard it might be to take. Accustom yourself to criticism. Confidence is important, but if it is not based on a realistic appraisal of who you are, it is mere grandiosity and smugness. Through the realistic feedback of your mentor you will eventually develop a confidence that is much more substantial and worth possessing.
    ~~ excerpt from Mastery by Robert Greene

The preceding excerpt from Greene's book isn't talking about "mastery" in the BDSM sense, but in the end, it applies to our community just as much as it does any other. I'm convinced that mastery of the "Art of BDSM" is as valid a pursuit as mastery of the nuances of painting with oils, or any other form of mastery we might encounter in the vanilla world.

BDSM and kink matter to me, they matter a lot. I can't honestly say that BDSM is my only personal calling, as my profession is also a true calling for me as well. One without the other could overwhelm Michael and change him for the worse. But let me be clear, BDSM truly is a calling, and when done properly, it's an art as well.

So, I'm sure some reading this are wishing to ask, "Michael, are you serious? Comparing the wielding of a flogger with the wielding of a fine sable brush? You've either got to be kidding, or full of yourself. Are you really trying to make yourself out as some DiVinci of the single tail whip or something?"

This essay isn't about me, I'm not claiming to be Master of anything but Serafina. And while I captivated her heart, she's also a gift from God, just as surely as her service is a gift from her heart. She's not an example of my art, but instead that of the Creator.

My art is more subtle and far more human. My art is in making a woman pant out of control, then teaching her exercises to control her own breathing and through it her mind. My art is in exploring limits, learning that my partners and I have hidden depths of character, emotion, and passion we might never have imagined.

At it's heart, BDSM is erotic theater, and therefore it's a performance art. It doesn't take an audience to create erotic drama, it doesn't even take two people. The solo bondage artist, practicing his craft in a carefully protected sanctum of privacy, is an erotic artist, performing a role no less dramatic than any other.

Now once we've embraced the concept of BDSM as an art form, it follows that the world of kink is not a place where one can appear and suddenly "know" all it takes to be a Master. For those "tourist" types who think they are "insta-dom" and suddenly God's gift to the submissive world, I've got some news, and it holds a lesson for new submissives as well . . .

The more a person claims to have mastered, the less they actually know . . .

The first time I tied a girl up for sex was 1980, I've had three BDSM wedding nights since that day. I've lived in a 24/7 BDSM lifestyle since about 1990, with a few breaks forced on by life, but that's the human condition, we aren't living lives like in a romance novel.

And let me tell you something - despite the more than 30 years of experience; despite the thousands of hours I've spent playing BDSM games in a living rooms, basements, or dungeons; despite the ability's and skills I've learned and possess, there's still more I don't know and don't understand than what I do.

I am still merely an apprentice!

I may have Mastered my Serafina, but I have not yet Mastered my art. I still learn from every individual I meet in this community, new or old, experienced or otherwise. They may not be able to teach me a new skill, they may not ever be able to directly help me master a skill I'm actively learning, but I learn from them all nevertheless.

Serafina is fond of saying that slavery is not a destination, but rather a path. Obviously that's true for dominants as well. Mastery is a path not a destination.

I love to challenge submissives, and without knowing it they often find ways to challenge me in return. I honestly hope there's never a day when I'm no longer challenged, never a day when there's nothing left to learn. I think that's the day my art would die.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

how did I get here? how do I work this? -OR- All I Really Need to Know I Learned from BDSM

You may find yourself living in a shotgun shack
You may find yourself in another part of the world
You may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile
You may find yourself in a beautiful house with a beautiful wife
You may ask yourself, well, how did I get here?
Letting the days go by, let the water hold me down
Letting the days go by, water flowing underground
Into the blue again after the money's gone
Once in a lifetime, water flowing underground
You may ask yourself, how do I work this?

 lyric from Once in a Lifetime by David Byrne, Chris Franz, Tina Weymouth, Jerry Harrison, Brian Eno
So, I find myself sitting at a restaurant. And I find myself sharing a meal with another couple from the BDSM lifestyle. And I find myself sitting with my wonderfully lovely slave/wife Serafina on my right. And I find myself with the equally lovely EvaKaye, my new submissive, on my left.

I guarantee that the three most beautiful, the three most radiant, the three sexiest (not to mention the three kinkiest) women in the establishment were sitting there at my table! And, two of them are mine!

And, at this point I really do ask myself, how did I get here? Believe it or not, I also asked myself, how do I work this?

Now I have to confess that my thoughts weren't really the lyrics of a popular song, the actual thought that comes to mind when sitting in a booth with EvaKaye on one side and Serafina on the other is this:
"Dear Lord, I don't know what I'e done to earn the honor and privilege of being able to accompany these two wonderful creatures, but please God, give me the strength, wisdom, and courage to do them justice. To my eyes Lord, they are your most beautiful creations."
I also believe that can be roughly translated to mean "How did I get here?" and "How do I work this?"

Dominants are supposed to have answers, at least that's the reality I come from (your mileage and reality may vary!) Yes, I suppose I have my share of answers, but it seems I have more than my share of questions as well these days too.

I guess if I think long and hard enough I can answer "How did I get here?" - the path I've taken is clear enough in retrospect, even if looking back now it's overgrown and more than a little tortuous. I bought into the whole "road less traveled" imagery so much that most of my life I've been bushwhacking thru underbrush, nary a footstep, let along another's path to follow.

And I suppose that's the experience that has made the man who stands before you today. Everything I do, everything I experience, it truly is a once in a lifetime event. All our yesterday's are gone, and tomorrow's sometime never come. That's the real reason we are told to live for the moment, to seize the day, because in the end that's all we have, this one moment in this one lifetime, to experience what's before us.

I mean not only am I blessed with the aforementioned submissive and slave that I can call my own, I also get to mentor and play with a third lovely lady masochist who is enthralling in her own right. I also have good friends in the lifestyle, and am finding more all the time.

I'm certainly not going to be appearing on any commercials as the worlds most interesting man, that's without a doubt true, but I'd be willing to accept the title of "world's luckiest man". For God's sake, in addition to the slave, submissive, and play partner, there's even a St Andrew's Cross, a Dungeon bed, a suspension frame, and a spanking bench spread out between the rooms of my home's main floor. World's luckiest man indeed!

So, I guess that means that it turns out that I also have at least a semblance of an answer to the question, "How do I work this?"

And the answer is simple, I look to the values that brought me to where I am today. I look at how I got here to see where I'm going. And the realization that suddenly strikes me, is that - Everything I really need to know I learned from BDSM.

  • Honor
  • Respect
  • Responsibility
  • Integrity
  • Compassion
  • Courage
  • Passion
  • Desire
  • Giving
  • Sharing

No matter what lesson I've needed to learn, I've realized my own best answers from studying and living this lifestyle.

I know that's not the path that most others take, but most don't tie their first girl up for sex 7 months before their 18th birthday. Well, maybe with the internet that's not so true anymore, but back in 1980, my path hadn't been much more than trailblazed before me.

I came from a dysfunctional family, and was an only child to boot, not to mention having no children of my own. So, it's become true that the fetish/kink/BDSM community is my real family. I'm often asked how I can have a St Andrew's Cross and a dungeon bed in my living room, what do I do when people who don't live the lifestyle come to visit?

I never liked answering a question with a question, but can't help but reply - "Why would I want people who don't understand my lifestyle visiting my home?"

That's how I work it for now, but even that's open to change. One never knows where the next twist in the road will take me, the only thing I'm sure of today is that BDSM has shaped me (and my life) for the better. BDSM has become a core part of who I am.

Michael Samadhi has become as much "who I am" as any name my Mother might have put on a birth certificate . . . Once in a lifetime indeed!
You may ask yourself, what is that beautiful house?
You may ask yourself, where does that highway lead to?
You may ask yourself, am I right, am I wrong?
You may say to yourself, my god, what have I done?
Well you may ask yourself those things, I know very well what I've done. And I know what I'm going to do too . . .
Same as it ever was
Same as it ever was
Same as it ever was
Same as it ever was
Same as it ever was
Now go find out for yourself, what BDSM can do for you!

Michael Samadhi

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Journey of a Flawed Slave

A number of times I have been halted and stunned to have someone say to me or question whether at heart I am a submissive slave. Those times have in the past arrested me and I likely looked like a deer caught in the headlights. Mostly because when some questions my validity or integrity, I am not sure of how to answer that. 

Many feel that I am undertaking this journey into slavery purely out of love and commitment to my Master. As if that is such a bad motive! Of course that is the case! If it were not for Master Michael, I would never have considered this level of relationship, but the fact that he was committed to me spoke very strongly to me and I was compelled to it like a moth to a flame.

I have never been satisfied with conventional answers- I always have a deep need to understand more than accepted answers to life and questioning the validity of those. It often gets me in trouble. As a Christian one is taught all the rules are to be obeyed without question.

In fact one of the primary rule is to obey your elders and not question them- just accept and comply. Politics likes that arrangement, because organized religious folks are the easiest to convince that they need to sacrifice for the greater good, and are easily swayed to control the masses.

Years ago in my mid 20's I was asking far too many questions to remain a compliant member of a stoic fundamental church, even though I was a leader in many functions. I watched a prominent self-declared leader turn first red and followed by purple rage and sputter when I finally challenged him that perhaps Christ and not he that saved people. From there I became a more firm seeker for truth, and slid into more lustrous and seeming advanced philosophical groups. And soon found that while they certainly were not lacking in zeal and passion their beliefs were build on the same shaky principles they had left to regroup into menagerie of mixed beliefs that often was made up along the way and each seemed to tower over the rest.

It has been a long, sometimes arduous, sometimes lonely journey, wrought with questions and wondering. Organized religions has become a distant memory for me, but I have never lose sight of the spiritual, in fact it has become stronger and I am convinced of my convictions. Well, mostly- I do know more of what I think and why- and sometimes resist breaking away layers of what seems like truth when examined have nothing solid at the core.

In many ways submission and slavery is an extension of and a furthering in my spiritual journey. For me submission and slavery is more than a fantasy, it is a reality. As such there are times where I forget who I want to be and keep pushing at boundaries, or forget to act in a way that honors my Master. It is not done out of rebellion- it is more of forgetting who and whose I am. I constantly need reminders. I constantly need a compass to refer to.

Not unlike a person who boldly undertakes a wilderness journey who loses their bearings. They choose their journey, and cannot anticipate every turn and challenge. There might even be moments when there are doubts and regrets for making certain choices, but they indeed choose the destination.
Slavery, and submission is a choice and a journey. I am far from having arrived, I am still going to make wrong turns, and I will get tired, and sometime I may even despair. In the end though I am determined to continue my journey to learn and discover truth. It takes faith and trust.

Faith and trust take years and years and layers to build. Everyone has the capacity, but not everyone has the tenacity. I am not always sure I have what it takes. I fail a lot. Sometimes I feel like giving up, but soon I am compelled to get up, retrace where things went wrong and endeavor to keep going, keep searching, keep growing in trust. Every time I get to a small rise I can see where I have come from- and it makes me feel pretty good- kind of accomplished. But soon there is a test and I see how much further I still have left.

So doing something out of love is good, and it alone would be reason enough, but I choose this journey from a deep conviction. And in the end submissive slavery is a journey not a destination. So is Mastery. Life is a series of learning, making errors and trials that follow. The trick is not to give up on yourself, and stay strong so others can follow.

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

kinky shopping heaven

Inside the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile
Oh my dear friends and readers, it was a glorious day on Friday, as Serafina and I road tripped to IML2013 for kinky shopping. Our destination was the Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile (yes it's a pretentious hotel name - don't blame me, I'm just the reporter) where IML2013's vending area was waiting.

With nary a cloud in the vast blue mid-western sky, the drive up was absolutely beautiful. Of course my lovely slave/wife Serafina was a delight to converse with as I drove. I really do cherish our rides together, as we often spend our time talking without any outside distractions, and that kind of time is truly priceless.

I don't think I missed any toolbooths on the way up (that might not have been the case on the way home in rush hour traffic) and outside of the usual heavy traffic one encounters in downtown Chicago, the trip was essentially uneventful.

We found secure all day parking for just $10 (just as mushroom hunters don't give up their prize patches – I don't disclose my parking secrets) only a few blocks from the Marriott on Michigan Avenue. Serafina was dressed in a short and slutty cheerleader's style skirt with a black lace top that left little (or nothing to the imagination.) Because I knew we were going to walk a few blocks to get cheap parking, not to mention the 5 hours of walking and shopping her feet would have to endure, I didn't have my slave wear any sort of heels or fetish shoes. And, as a nod to the cold wind off of Lake Michigan, I did let her carry a sweater to wear for the walk. What a kind Master, right?

I wore my dress uniform style leather shirt (replete with epaulets) - accessorized with a classic Sam Browne style shoulder belt. I may not be gay, but I'm not so straight that I'm going to go hang with a bunch of hot hunky men dressed in fetish clothes and not actually look the part myself – hell no! The only thing missing from my outfit was a pair of Wesco boots, but once again the compromise was a nod to sensibility. Instead I wore a black Keen hiking boot that are particular comfortable for tired old feet like mine.

While our outfits might (and actually did) turn a few heads in places like Rock Falls where we stopped on the way for food, or the DeKalb Oasis where we stopped for gas, I really didn't feel “noticed” at all walking down Chicago city streets in that attire. OK, I need to retract that statement, I did notice one woman getting perturbed with her husband for perhaps noticing Serafina's breasts a little more ardently than she would have preferred. I figure that's not too bad a result at all for our little exhibitionistic walk, and if nothing else, the outfits seemed to keep the panhandlers at a bay, well at least for the walk to the hotel.

The Chicago Marriott Downtown Magnificent Mile does, for the most part, live up to it's swanky and pretentious name. I'm not saying that I'd pay the $500+ dollars a night the rooms can cost on some nights of the week, but I will admit that I'd understand why a person of means might decide to spend a night (or three) there. The Marriott is a beautiful building with very striking décor inside, but let's be very honest, when attending an event like IML, it's really not the venue that you notice.

Last year at the Hyatt-Regency, it felt a little bit as though some of the staff were off-put by the unabashed attire and behavior that can accompany this event. I never once got that feeling at the Marriott at IML2013. The staff was all smiles, and they honestly seemed to be enjoying the presence of all the young, virile (not to mention very sexually charged) presence of leathermen from around the globe.

Once inside we quickly found our way to vending registration area, showed our ID's, signed our names, gave our $5 donation, and were given wristbands to flash in order to access the vending area. Again, unlike the Hyatt-Regency, the vending area was not found down in the bowels of the building, instead it had been consigned to both the 5th and 7th floors of the Marriott.

Outside of the registration area I stopped for a moment, drawing serafina towards a quiet area without much traffic, I asked her to produce the pretty new leash I'd recently purchased as a present for her. It was a horridly overpriced little treat from Scott Paul Designs, but as with many things where fetish or kink is involved, seeing my wonderful slave/wife attached to the pretty purple leash, ready to be led around the event all day on my lead . . . Well, it was priceless!

Walking into the 5th floor was a bit like entering a maze where the walls were composed of BDSM gear and fetish attire. Going in prepared and ready for the spectacle, having shopped at IML before, the whole atmosphere was still a little bit awe inspiring and overwhelming. I don't mean that it a bad way, I'm simply saying that the endless walls of goods and gear have a real effect for folks who's hearts belong to BDSM, fetish, and kink. It makes one's heart race just a little

It's easy to completely miss a single vendor in a corner, or even an entire row of vendors if a person isn't careful. To assure I didn't miss anything I was very methodical in my approach to navigating the world's greatest leather shopping area. When approaching the maze of vendors I simply turned to my right upon entering, and then took every possible aisle, going up one side and down the other, methodically taking in every vendor and their wares.

There are a few things about this show that seem different than many others, as vendors have no problems letting customers try on and try out some very personal items. When asking how a lovely metal ball stretcher actually worked, I was immediately invited to try it on for size.

When I politely declined (my question truly indicated curiosity rather than personal interest in the item) - the vendor, following proper sales protocol, refused to take my first no as a hard no, and offered again, saying that if I was shy I could try it on in a corner of their display area. Once again, my refusal was met with yet more polite insistence, which I declined for the third time.

So if attending IML's vending area, it is important to be ready to see guys whipping out their junk to try on cock rings, ball stretchers, as well as other various assorted CBT goodies and toys for bad men and boys. It's also important that you are ready to see ass-crack galore, while some events prohibit nudity of that sort, it really does seem that most anything goes. Last year we witnessed a slightly built man of Japaneses descent, completely naked, crawling across the floor of the floor of the hotel and the vending area on his knees, with a sign hung around his neck. Without a doubt, it had to be the longest walk (crawl) of shame I've ever witnessed . . .

Another thing that's different about this event is the relaxed atmosphere concerning cameras. A lot of fetish/kink/leather/BDSM events prohibit picture taking, or severely limit it in some way, but there's not an eye blinked when folks start shooting pictures (or even video) with their phones and cameras. Some vendors put on elaborate demos to entertain the crowd and attract interest for their products, and it's not uncommon to find a tightly packed group of unabashed voyeuristic men, packed around the display, shooting video with their cell phones.

When it was all said and done, we spent 5 solid hours without a break circling the vending area, we pretty well kept moving and didn't stop for long to gawk at any of the demos. Even at that pace, it still felt as though we were rushing towards the end. Booths that didn't appear to have any items of interests were quickly bypassed, and vendors I'm very familiar with online (like TheStockroom and Mr-S-Leather) got less attention than they deserved.

We did make one social call during the day as well, stopping at the booth to chat with the one of owners about last year's purchase. Even there we were quick and efficient with our time, shaking hands making small talk and praising their product before we returned to our quest for toys.

When it was all said and done, we'd purchased items from 7 different vendors, with a complete tally exceeding $800. We'd picked up everything on the shopping list we'd arrived with, along with a few extras we didn't know we needed. The biggest single purchase was a very nice spanking bench, which will be custom built to our specifications and shipped to our home next month. The second largest purchases were a very striking masquerade mask for serafina, and a nice dragon's tongue flogger that is for serafina too, but in a different way . . .

All told, we drove 8 hours round trip, walked about 15 blocks thru Chicago, spent 6 hours total on our feet without a break, making it close to a 14 hour day. Cost wise we spent close to $1000 on food, gas, tolls, parking and (best/most of all) lots of fun fetish and BDSM gear. We saved back $100 a month for the last year to shop at this event, so we actually came in “under budget” for the day.

IML2013 Vendor's List

29 Palms - The Collectors Oasis         Rockford, IL
Acme Toy                         Evanston, IL        
Adonis Leathercrafters                             Indian Rocks Beach, FL
Alt. Kilt                                                 Madison, WI        
Andre Whips/ Ms-V                                 Repentigny, Quebec
Atomic Jock                                        Chatsworth, CA
Balls and Chains                                 Hollywood, CA
Barcode Berlin                                        Houston , TX       
BDG Sales, LLC                                Tamaqua, PA       
Bear Ink                                                Augusta, GA                                Indianapolis, IN                                       Indianapolis, IN       
Boot Werks                                        Hinton, WVA       
Bootleg Life                                        Berwyn, IL
Bound & Gagged                               New York, NY       
Boy Butter                                       New York, NY       
BURLYSHIRTS / Shane Ruff Studios     Eliot, ME               
C3 Casual Clothing                               Indianapolis, IN                                      Portage, IN       
Chicago Dragons Rugby Football Club   Chicago, IL              
Chicago Hellfire Club                       Chicago, IL      
City of Chicago Department of Health     Chicago, IL         
CJ's Leather                                       Denver, CO    
Dancing Painter                                       Chicago, IL    
Dr. Clockwork's Electrical and Medical Oddities Lebanon, NJ
Dungeon Beds                                       San Francisco, CA
E7 Gear                                               Yonkers, NY     
Eagle Leathers                                       Chicago, IL
Exotic-Erotics                                       Shelbyville, KY    
Fetiche Armada                               Montreal, Quebec 
Folsom Street East                               New York, NY    
Folsom Street Events                       San Francisco, CA
Fort Troff                                               Atlanta, GA    
Gear Essentials                                       Minneapolis, MN
Got Kilt                                              White Lake, MI     
GuySpy                                               Vancouver, B.C.     
Hands for Hire Chair Massage              Niles, IL
HardpointsGreyCat Workshop              Madison, WI          
Howard Brown Health Center              Chicago, IL            
ID Lube                                              Santa Ana, CA   
Industrial Disease Toys LLC                  Madison, WI                                 Radford, VA    
Jewelry by Ponce                              Happy Valley, OR
Killerbob Graphics                              San Francisco, CA
KJ Canes                                              Baltimore, MD   
Le Chateau Exotique & LCE Ltd      Yardley, PA   
Leather Archives & Museum               Chicago, IL    
Leather Bonding Co.                              N. Miami, FL   
Leather Masters                              Dallas, TX           
Leather Werks                                      Fort Lauderdale, FL
Lockergear                                      Pittsburgh, PA   
Lucom USA                                      Miami Beach, FL                                         Chicago, IL            
Man2Man Leather                             Castaic, CA            
Manhunt                                             Cambridge, MA      
Marvelous Mayhem                            Snellville, CA           
Master Series                                    Huntington Beach, CA
Mid America Fists In Action              Cicero, IL           
MIR Mr. International Rubber               Chicago, IL           
MISTER                                             New York, NY   
Mr-S-Leather                                  San Francisco, CA   
Mr. Friendly                                     Kalamazoo, MI    
Mr. Hyde's Custom Leather                  New Orleans         
Nasty Pig                                            New York, NY    
Northbound Leather                              Toronto, Ontario    
NYJox                                              North Bergen, NJ
Obscure Belts                                      Kenosha, WI   
Off Ramp Leathers                               Palm Springs, CA
OraSure Technologie                             Bethlehem, PA     
Oxballs                                               Chatsworth, CA
Paddle Werks                                      Hinton, WVA      
PASD and CARAS                             Oak Park, IL
Passional Boutique Philadelphia, PA
Pjur Group USA                               Miami Beach, FL   
Priape                                            Montreal, Quebec
Puppy Grillz                                   West Hollywood, CA
Rainbow Rope/Kinky Medical Oceanside, NY
Raw Candles                                  Madison, WI                                     Chicago, IL
Rough Trade                                Los Angeles, CA
Rubio Leather                                 New York, NY
Semmerling & Schaefer Mask Studio  Chicago, IL
Sheets of San Francisc                San Rafael, CA
SLS Specialty                               Houston , TX       
Sold Out Clothing West Hollywood, CA
Square Peg Toys                           Idyllwild, CA
Steamworks                              San Francisco, CA
Steve Leather                         New York, NY
Stockroom                               Los Angeles, CA
Stompers Boots                        San Francisco, CA
The Kink Shop                         Shreveport, LA
The Leather Journal Los Angeles, CA
The Leather Man, Inc                New York, NY
The Writers Booth & Bears Chicago, IL
Timoteo L.L.C.                     Los Angeles, CA
TLS RubberGear / Midnight Blue  Houston , TX
Toolworks Chicago                    Willowbrook, IL
Tribal Son                             Fort Lauderdale, FL        
Tropicana Las Vegas                    La Verne, CA
Twin Cities Leather Minneapolis, MN
Unzicker Design                           Ojai, CA
Utilikilts                                    Seattle, WA              

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

a tribute to merinthophiliacs . . .

I write, at least in part, because I love words and word play.  So, imagine my great joy at discovering a new word that equates with being a lover of bondage!

Merinthophilia is now officially declared the "word of the day" here at Samadhi House!

Believe it or not, there's even a Facebook page for merinthophiliacs!

I should also add that Serafina "suffers" from merinthophilia.  In a recent discussion she expressed her true love for rope bondage.  Apparently, for Serafina anyway, there is a special "energy" from rope that simply isn't recreated with leather straps and restraints.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

let me count the ways . . .

"There are a hundred ways to kneel and kiss the ground." 


It's easy to talk about the BDSM aspects of my relationship with serafina, it's harder to talk about the spiritual side of things.  I don't suppose that's going to change overnight, but it is a goal for this blog to have a greater focus on that aspect of our BDSM practice.  

To my mind, it's easier to see the spiritual side of service, the dominant aspect is perhaps a bit harder and more obscure to embrace.  That's something I occasionally struggle with as a dominant.  I feel a little bit like the old bluesmen, who were sure that their passion would land them in hell.  I guess there's some consolation there, in that at least I'd find good company there!

Sunday, March 10, 2013

25 question meme - Michael's

This is one of the memes that has been making it's rounds of the blogosphere, I've observed it on several differnt blogs, so I can't even say for sure where I first saw it

1. Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed?
The simple answer is - both . . .
Samadhi House is a fairly cozy place, especially so because we have far more furniture than fits comfortably (long story) so some closets have had their doors removed for simplicity, convenience, and ease of access.  All closets with doors are closed when not actively in use - isn't that the point of having doors?

2. Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotel?
Of course!  The products are brought home and placed in a box where the sit forgotten.  Once every ten years (or so) the box is emptied, and the cycle begins anew.  I think Serafina does actually use the products occasionally, or she did before we started using Dr Bronners soaps.

3. Do you cut out coupons but then never use them?
I don't get any newspapers, so don't get coupons to clip, unless they show up in my PO Box.  When coupons show up the the PO box they are brought home, placed on the kitchen table until they expire, then we throw them away.  If this doesn't seem perfectly logical to you, also refer to my answer about hotel soap.

4. Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of a bees?
I'm sorry, but I can't help picturing being attacked by a bear who's being chased by a swarm of bees.  Aren't Sadist's minds scary places to visit?

5. Do you always smile for pictures?
Not if I'm busy flogging someone . . .

6. What is your biggest pet peeve?
People with pet peeves . . . get over yourselves already, OK?

7. What size is your bed?
Apparently it's big enough for two people, but not large enough for three . . .

8. What’s your least favorite movie?
Ummmmm, this kind of question is one of my pet peeves!  OK not really, I got over myself a while back, but that sounded like a good answer.

I can't really say that I have an answer for this question, I try to dwell on the positive, so my mind has never stored away a least favorite.  I suppose I could use this as an excuse to take an editorial moment and explain that I will never understand the appeal of the Jackass show or movies, but I can't say that I've ever had more than a glimpse at them, so it wouldn't be fair to judge them on that limited basis (although it does seem like I have doesn't it?)

9. What do you dip a chicken nugget in?
The trash can - and it's not a dip, it's a tumble!  Seriously, just about anything is better than a McNugget built from some kind of pink slime.  Now if we are talking a piece of real chicken, not just congealed parts, I'm a BBQ sauce kinda guy.

10. What is your favorite food?
I like a good steak, cooked medium rare.

11. What movies could you watch over and over and still love?
I can't think of any mainstream movies I'd put into this category.  The only thing that comes to mind is a foreign flick alternately called The Punishment of Anne or The Image by director Radley Metzger.

The Image is not a movie that's terribly widely known or circulated, in fact when a former submissive of mine was once trying to source a copy as a gift for me circa 2000-2001, she went as far as contacting Metzger himself looking for a DVD copy, only to be told it wasn't available.  Fortunately that's changed, because my worn out old copy on videotape was in Sony Betamax format!  I love showing other folks in the BDSM lifestyle this movie, so it has always had more than it's share of screenings at Samadhi House.

12. Were you ever a boy/girl scout?
I was a Cub Scout at an early age, until my mom took objection to their oath including God . . .

Later when was in High School, I became an Explorer Scout, mostly because the local group included a young lady I was interested in exploring.

13. Would you ever strip or pose nude in a magazine?
I'd like to say yes, as it does sound like fun!
But, in reality I have to temper that enthusiasm with the fact that back about 20 years ago I was asked to be a nude model for life-drawing classes at a couple of local colleges, and I declined.  I'm a highly sexual person, and the offer was to model with my ex-wife who was built like a brick shithouse, I was afraid that I'd have to fight an erection popping up the entire time.  Of course, in retrospect it was pretty foolish of me to not want to go into a room full of college girls and "advertise" - I mean what was I afraid of?

14. When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper?
I write to Serafina in a notebook every single day.

15. Favorite kind of sandwich?

16. Best thing to eat for breakfast?
Oatmeal is best for me, so I eat that four days a week.  The other three days of the week it's usually some version of eggs and toast, perhaps with a smoked loin chop on the side if I'm feeling extravagant.

17. What is your usual bedtime?
I'm an early to be and early to rise kinda guy.  Weeknights I'm usually in bed by 10pm, although with Serafina next to me, that doesn't always mean I'm going to sleep right away!

18. Are you lazy?
I work hard when I need to, but I enjoy my leisure time as much as the next guy, maybe more.

19. Do you have any magazine subscriptions?
I support Fetlife, I have a subscription to the Training of O site at, I also subscribe to Netflix and Spotify - but I have no traditional subscriptions in terms of print magazines.  I think the last subscription I had was a neat little hobbyist magazine called Military Miniatures In Review.

20. Do you sing in the car?
I sing in lots of places, not just the car . . . When I cooked for a living, they used to call me the "singing chef" . . .

21. Wal-Mart, Target or Kmart?
Menards (a large chain hardware store) has better "pervertables" than any of those choices, as does a farm supply store called Farm 'n' Fleet.  I shop those stores as often as I do Wally World (Wal-Mart) - but it's hard to beat Wally World's low low prices for groceries.  When we had a local grocery with unionized employees, I did shop there, but it's been gone for years . . .

22. What’s your favorite color?
Black Leather . . . if you don't consider "black leather" to be an actual color choice, I'll just go with black.

23. Do you sleep with your sheets tucked in or out?
Out!  Serafina used to keep tucking those sheet bottoms in tight, I had to keep kicking them out each night when I went to bed.  Now she knows better.  She learned that I'm like the Borg, in the end, resistance was futile and she was assimilated!

24. Have you ever stolen a street sign before?
Me?  Never!
How do I explain the street signs in my garage you ask?
My neighbor gave them to me . . .  ;)

25. Do you like to use post-it notes?
No, but I have 14 different tabs open in my browser. (I admit I closed 4 others as I was counting!)

Saturday, March 9, 2013


“Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens.”
   --  Carl Jung

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

making hay

Last year when the whole 50 Shades of Grey phenomena was exploding, before I knew anything about the books other than their popularity and that they included some elements of BDSM, I gave Serafina an assignment to read the books.  I can't say it ended up being a favorite assignment for either one of us, as I had to read the books myself, and I can't say that I'm personally a fan of romance novels, which is where I'd categorize 50 Shade of Grey and it's sequels.

I'd also previously asked my slave/wife to read Laura Antoniou's Marketplace series, but she found the initial premise to be objectionable, as she found the entire concept of preparing a slave (even a consensual one) for the auction block to be more than a little bit personally distasteful.  I've long been a fan of Antoniou's writing, and have always considered the Marketplace books to be the epitome of good BDSM literature.

Just over a week ago, on Feburary 24th, I reassigned The Marketplace to Serafina for her reading lessons, asking her to get beyond her personal prejudice against a human being sold at an auction, asking her to remember that in the fictional world of the Marketplace the individuals she'd be reading about had chosen their paths quite willingly.

I'm pleased to report that my darling slave/wife has not only completed The Marketplace (including the bonus short stories included with the kindle edition) but is deep into it's sequel, The Slave.  Another year of immersion in the lifestyle has broadened her perspective enough so that she's now enjoying the series very much.

Serafina gives her submission and service to me out of love, so the thought of a slave needing to be a slave so badly that they'd essentially be willing to be auctioned off to a term of service will always be a bit foreign to her, of that I am sure.  I never found the concept disturbing, in fact if such a thing as the Marketplace had existed in real life, I'd have found a way to seek it out.  I would have aspired to be a trainer . . .

Daydreams aside, I'm rather gratified that Serafina is enjoying her current reading assignments, so gratified I wanted to share it here.  I can't even begin to say how much it pleases me to see her grow in her acceptance and understanding of all things BDSM, it makes my heart feel young again.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Kid, we don't like your kind, and we're gonna send you fingerprints off to Washington.

There's a lot of debate going on at Fetlife right now about freedom of speech.  The debate was sparked in light of the decision to place stronger limits on what cannot be posted and discussed at this site. This decision was taken after Fetlife lost their credit card processor, a result of hosting discussions on some subjects that are taboo.

One vocal group in the debate has been the coprophiliacs - They resent being lumped together with the pedophiles, zoophilics, and incest fetishists. I've also read a few rumblings from the zoosexual folk that they resent being lumped together with the pedophiles too.  The incest lovers don't really want to be associated with pedophiles either, at least that's my understanding.  Apparently being a pedophile is like farting in church - nobody wants to sit next to you!

I almost feel it necessary to insert a disclaimer here, saying that I don't partake in any of those activities, they are pretty far outside of my personal comfort zone. I was a sexual abuse victim courtesy of a pedophile, and while I don't believe the experience changed me greatly, it's not something I'd wish upon any other child.

What I want to do is impart a bit of a civics lesson, I want to practice something I always preached when faced with problems of this sort, and tell folks if they don't like the system the way it is, they should call their legislator. I don't particularly want anyone to think I am 'taking a stand' with pedophiles, zoophilics, coprophiliacs, and incest fetishists, but I can't help planting my tongue firmly in cheek, and giving them some 'advice' . . .

You have the right to be protected from government censorship of your speech, but even that has limits - inciting a riot is going to be trouble, taking part in a criminal conspiracy isn't protected speech either, and you don't have much for freedom of speech rights when under oath in a courtroom.

Credit Card processors have rights of their own. Private companies, for the most part - within certain limits, have the ability to choose their customers. They have some freedoms too, ya know . . .

When a US court gives coprophiliacs some sort of 'protected class' status - then you'll be able to sue for discrimination. Here is a link to a simple wiki article describing the current protected classes - . . . Lacking the status as a 'protected class' - coprophiliacs will probably always face discrimination . . .

You should realize how the system works, and what would need to change for your rights to be protected. It takes legislation to create a protected class, so rather than fighting and bickering here, which isn't going to change anything, I'd suggest you call your local legislators and ask them to stand up for your right to eat shit . . .
You know, if one person, just one person does it they may think he's really sick and they won't listen. And if two people, two people do it, in harmony, they may think they're both sickos, and they won't take listen to them. And three people do it, three, can you imagine, three people walking in telling a legislator they want to eat shit and then walking out. They may think it's an organization. And can you, can you imagine fifty people a day,I said fifty people a day walking in telling their legislator they want their right to eat shit protected and then walking out. Well friend,s they may think it's a movement!
My apologies to Arlo Guthrie for the liberties I took with his lyrics . . .

This was a very simple and very condensed version of a civic's lesson folks should have spent about a week learning about back when they were in school.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Falling for Ice Storms and Undeserved Reputation

Don't like the weather?

Well then just stick around, it'll change!

One of the significant joys of living in the Midwest is the weather extremes we see.  Sitting the the middle of a vast continent, with no significant bodies of water nearby to moderate temps and weather effects, we get to see Mother Nature as an extremely variable and rather capricious Goddess . . .

Today's adventure with weather was an ice storm.  We'd been gone for the weekend, off visiting the couple we are mentoring.  They live about an hour and a half from us, so it's not a terribly long drive, but it's not close enough for casual visits, especially when time seems to simply evaporate when we are together.

What seems like 45 minutes of play often turns out to have taken two or three hours.  I guess the old adage about time flying when having fun has more than a little measure of truth.  Lots of incredible fun was had by all, including Serafina's first efforts at rope bondage with another woman (hot!)!

The local forecast called for freezing rain this morning, and for once the weather man delivered on his promise, waking up this morning we were greeted by a thick coat of ice.  Just after breakfast, when I stepped out to check on the conditions, I took a slide, then a fall.

Fortunately, the hotel's hot tub helped to mitigate some of the falls effects, but the somewhat tense ride home on partially icy roads encouraged my body to stiffen up pretty good . . .

I was planning on doing a bullet point list of highlights from the weekend (there were many) but I find myself feeling a little addled in the brain, as the pain pills I took to counter the effects of my fall have already kicked in as I sat to write this post.  So I'll just leave you, my dear reader with the one that had me smiling, just before, and even after, I fell flat on my ass . . .

First, I'll ask you to picture Serafina and I sitting with the other couple this morning, eating our complimentary breakfasts together in a crowded upscale hotel lounge.

As we were quietly enjoying our meals together,I looked across the table and saw what looked like a 'shadow' on "d's" wrist ( "d" is the the lady submissive who's the fairer half of the couple I'm mentoring.)  Fearing that the 'shadow' was actually a bruise from the many hours of rope bondage we'd inflicted on "d" over the course of Friday and Saturday nights, I asked if the skin discoloration I was seeing was actually bruise.

To put the question into context, I should add that we've all grown very comfortable together, and quite obviously as I'm mentoring and playing with them, I speak in pretty graphic terms with my friend B (a convenient name for "d's" husband so they have the initials B&D or B/d.)   And, because we had the entire pool area to ourselves while enjoying the hot-tub together Saturday night, we'd never had to be discrete in our conversation for the better part of our three day weekend of play.

Forgetting for a moment where we were, "B" rather innocently asked, "So, you are thinking the bruise might be a rope mark from the bondage?"  As it always seems to happen at moments like that, what had been a loud room all morning suddenly seemed to quiet just as "B" asked his question.

Oh my dear reader, four faces were red, at least for a moment, until we all burst out laughing, giggling together like the outrageous confidants we've become.  I didn't look around the room to gauge reactions, but it did seem as though the room quickly got even louder than before, perhaps everyone switched to talking about us!

In the end, when I think about it, I'd rather be known as the guy who left the rope marks than as the guy who fell flat on his ass in the parking lot.  Oh, and in case anyone was curious, the mark was an old scar, so despite my new found reputation, I'm not really the guy who left rope marks at all, at least not long lasting ones . . .
rope marks on "d's" wrists

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Quote, news, etc.

"Bad BDSM is much like any other kind of bad sex and for the same reasons. Good BDSM is much like any other kind of good sex and for the same reasons. If either is impersonal and done by the numbers, it will disappoint. If either is done with real feelings, passion and a sense of connection, it will deliver beyond expectations.

Kink isn't the key factor here. It's the ability to connect with another human being."
    --  Ernest Greene
Ernest Green has been part of the BDSM community as long as I can remember, so it's a privilege to have him as a friend on FetLife, where I continually find him offering observations worthy of "breadcrumbs" . . .


I find myself posting here very rarely these days, for which I apologize to you, my dear reader.  There's more than enough juicy and titillating tidbits to share happening here between Serafina and myself, I just never seem to find the time (or motivation) to write.  I believe it's a case of writer's block, mixed in with a measure of seasonal depression, flavored with a tinge of distraction.


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