Sav­age Love

The Georgia Straight - - Contents - > BY DAN SAV­AGE

How does one get into the gay BDSM bot­tom­ing and leather scene? > SEEK­ING AN­SWERS CON­CERN­ING KINK

One shows up, SACK.

“Eighty per­cent of suc­cess is just show­ing up,” some­one or other once said. The adage ap­plies to ro­man­tic/ sex­ual suc­cess as well as pro­fes­sional suc­cess, SACK, but show­ing up eas­ily ac­counts for 90 per­cent of suc­cess in the Bdsm/leather/fetish scene. (Be­ing a de­cent hu­man be­ing ac­counts for the other 110 per­cent*.) Be­cause if you aren’t show­ing up in kink spa­ces— on­line or Irl—your fel­low kinksters won’t be able to find or bind you. But you don’t have to take my word for it…

“The leather scene is a di­verse place with tons of out­lets and av­enues, de­pend­ing on how you nav­i­gate your life and learn,” said Amp from Watts the Safe­word (watts­the­safe­, a kink and sex-ed web­site and Youtube chan­nel. “When I was first get­ting started, I found a lo­cal leather con­tin­gent that held monthly bar nights and dis­cus­sion groups that taught classes for kinksters at any level. It pro­vided an easy way into the com­mu­nity, and it helped me meet new peo­ple, make new friends, and find trust­wor­thy play part­ners. If you’re a tad shy and work bet­ter on­line, these con­tin­gents have Face­book groups or Fetlife pages you can join. And Youtube has a chan­nel for ev­ery­one in the kink spec­trum from gay to straight to trans to non­bi­nary and beyond!”

“Re­ is a great op­tion for gay men,” said Me­tal from the gay male bondage web­site Me­tal­bond­ “It’s a site where you can cre­ate a pro­file, win­dow-shop for a play buddy, and ‘check his ref­er­ences’. Even bet­ter, if you can, go to a public event like IML, MAL, or CLAW, or to a play party like the New York Bondage Club, where you can par­tic­i­pate in a mon­i­tored space with other peo­ple around or just watch the ac­tion. Don’t for­get the motto ‘safe, sane, and con­sen­sual’, and be sure to have a safe word! And if you do want to ex­plore bondage, take pre­cau­tions. Never get tied up in your own home by some­one you don’t know. If you go to his or her place, al­ways tell a trusted friend where you are go­ing. And when hook­ing up on­line, never use Craigslist.”

“Be cau­tious,” said Ruff of Ruff’s Stuff blog. “There are peo­ple out there who view ‘kink new­bies’ as prey. Any­time any­one—top or bot­tom—wants to rush into a pow­erex­change scene, that’s a red flag. Al­ways get to know a per­son first. A good-qual­ity con­nec­tion with any po­ten­tial play­mate is achieved only through com­mu­ni­ca­tion. If they are not in­ter­ested in do­ing the leg­work, they’re not the right per­son for you.”

Fol­low Me­tal on Twit­ter @Me­tal­bond­nyc, fol­low Amp @Pup_amp, and fol­low Ruff @Ruff­sstuff Blog.

I’m a 28-year-old bi-cu­ri­ous fe­male, and I ended a three-year straight LTR a month ago. It’s been tough—my ex is a great guy, and caus­ing him pain has been a loss on top of my own loss, but I know I did the right thing. Among other things, our sex life was bland and we had in­fre­quent sex at best. Now I want to ex­per­i­ment, ex­plore non­monogamy, and have crazy and ful­fill­ing sex with who­ever tick­les my fancy. I met a new guy two weeks ago, and the sex is in­cred­i­ble. We also im­me­di­ately clicked and be­came friends. The prob­lem? I sus­pect he wants a ro­man­tic re­la­tion­ship. He says he’s open to my terms—open/ fuck-buddy sit­u­a­tion—but things have quickly be­come re­la­tion­ship­ish. I like him, but I can’t re­al­is­ti­cally pic­ture us be­ing a good LTR match. I’m hop­ing we can fig­ure out some­thing in be­tween—some­thing like a sex­ual friend­ship where we en­joy and sup­port each other and ex­per­i­ment to­gether with­out ty­ing our­selves down—but I have found very lit­tle ev­i­dence of such un­de­fined re­la­tion­ships work­ing with­out some­one get­ting hurt. I am sick of hurt­ing peo­ple! Any ad­vice? > HOP­ING OPEN PEACE­FUL EX­PE­RI­ENCES FEEL UN­LIKE LOSS

If “some­one might get hurt” is the stan­dard you’re go­ing to ap­ply to all fu­ture re­la­tion­ships—if it’s a deal breaker— then you shouldn’t date or fuck any­one else ever again, HOPE­FUL, be­cause there’s al­ways a chance some­one is go­ing to get hurt. The fact that hurt is al­ways a pos­si­bil­ity is no ex­cuse for hurt­ing oth­ers need­lessly or ma­li­ciously; we should be thought­ful and con­sci­en­tious about other peo­ple’s feel­ings. We should also re­mem­ber that no one is clair­voy­ant and that some­one can hurt us with­out in­tend­ing to. But there’s no in­ti­mate hu­man con­nec­tion, sex­ual or oth­er­wise, that doesn’t leave us open to hurt­ing or be­ing hurt.

So fuck this guy, HOPE­FUL, on your own terms—but don’t be too quick to dis­miss the pos­si­bil­ity of an LTR. Great sex and a good friend­ship make up a solid foun­da­tion. You’re aware that non­monog­a­mous re­la­tion­ships are an op­tion—and cou­ples can ex­plore non­monogamy to­gether. If you can have this guy and have your sex­ual ad­ven­tures, too, this could be the start of some­thing big.

I’m a mid-20s , above-av­er­agelook­ing gay dude into spank­ing guys. The weird thing is, the only guys I can find to spank are straight. It’s not that they’re clos­eted—most of them go on to have girl­friends, and that’s when we stop—and they make it clear they don’t want any­thing sex­ual to hap­pen. No com­plaints on my end! But why don’t they want a woman spank­ing them? > SE­RI­OUSLY PERPLEXED AND NEED­ING KNOWL­EDGE

How do you know their new girl­friends don’t start spank­ing them when you stop? And how do you know they aren’t clos­ing their eyes and imag­in­ing that you’re a woman when you’re spank­ing them? And how do you know they’re not bi—at least where spank­ings are con­cerned? (Also: There are tons of gay guys out there into spank­ing, SPANK. So if you aren’t find­ing any, I can only con­clude that you aren’t look­ing.) I’m won­der­ing about the ap­pli­ca­tion of the term bear to a straight man, such as my­self. I’m a big­ger guy with a lot of body hair and a beard. I love that in the gay com­mu­nity there is a cute term for guys like me re­flect­ing body pos­i­tiv­ity. For us straight dudes, how­ever, be­ing big and hairy means get­ting thought of as an ape— big, dumb, smelly oafs. While I can be dumb, smelly, and oafish at times (like any­one), I’d also like to have a way to de­scribe my­self that is mas­cu­line yet at­trac­tive. Bear is a great term, but I’m con­cerned about be­ing in­sen­si­tive in ap­pro­pri­at­ing it. I haven’t asked my gay/bear friends about it (though they’ve re­ferred to me as a bear on oc­ca­sion) be­cause I’m afraid I won’t get a straight an­swer (no pun in­tended). Would it be okay for me to re­fer to my­self as a bear or, as a highly priv­i­leged straight cis male, do I need to ac­cept the fact that I can’t have ev­ery­thing and maybe leave some­thing alone for fuck­ing once? > HETERO APE IN­QUIR­ING RE­SPECT­FULLY, YUP

“If you want to be a bear, be a bear!” said Bren­dan Mack, an or­ga­niz­ing mem­ber of XL Bears (xl­, a so­cial group for bears and their ad­mir­ers. “Do you! There isn’t any­thing ap­pro­pria­tive about a straight guy us­ing the term bear to de­scribe him­self—it’s a body type, it’s a life­style, and it’s cel­e­brat­ing your­self. Gay, straight, hairy, smooth, fat, mus­cled—bear is a state of mind. It’s body ac­cep­tance. It’s ac­cep­tance of who you are. So if you want to be a bear, wel­come to the woods!”

Matt Bee, the pro­moter be­hind Bear­racuda World­wide (bear­racuda. com), sec­onded Mack. “The term bear, like any other an­i­mal de­scrip­tor, is a pretty play­ful one to be­gin with. Please, by all means, use it and any other well-mean­ing word to de­scribe your­self!”

* Math is hard.

On the Love­cast, the ro­bots are mak­ing your porn!: sav­agelove­ Email: mail@sav­ Fol­low Dan on Twit­ter @fakedansav­age. ITMFA.ORG.

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