31 December 2008

New Year - It's About Change

I would never be so stupid as to say that the next year can't possibly be as bad as the last. I mean, that would just be tempting fate in a way that is silly. And anyway, I fully understand that things can always get worse. In fact, I think this mantra is something that helps me get through many a sticky situation. The full knowledge that things can always be worse.

So I don't feel the need to tempt mistress karma, but I do fervently hope that 2009 is a shade better for me than 2008. No heart wrenching break-ups, no ovary scares, no loss of jobs. I'd like to say no unemployment, but since I'm starting off the year that way, lets just hope for a short lived unemployment.

In fact, for as many things that I cite as bad about 2008, my hope is that it has been something of a purging. What I see that 2009 must bring for me, is change. Change tends to be unpleasant when one is going through it, but change, when executed correctly, can also be the best way to bring about positive things in ones life. Too often we get stuck in cycles and repetition- in comfort. Or at least I do. I'm happy with the status quo. Even when I know that things should change, I am often reluctant to make that change. So when things happen that are either beyond my control, or leave me no choice but to act, and I am forced to change, it can be a stressful time. The thing is, I often come out of these situations okay, and sometimes even well.

When people write New Years resolutions, I think it's about a time when we focus on our desire to change. And the running joke of course, is that we know how difficult it is, and how unlikely we are to actually do so. But for me, for this year, the change isn't optional.

I will get a new job, either doing what I do, or doing something else. Regardless, it will be a big change for me.

I will continue to work on the relationship thing. Yes, I despair of ever having a relationship, and the likelihood of my 2009 being a year without one entirely as opposed to getting one is pretty strong given past experience and past years. But there is no more Mr.Aloof for me. And this means at least that the potential is greater than if there was. And I hope that the therapy is helping, even in a small way, and that I am more ready for a relationship- one that I really want. And maybe, just maybe, I'll get one.

I will be there for my friends through all of the changes in their lives. By default, when my friend's situations change, my own situation subtly changes because my friends are like my family. And I wish them all the best in their new years as well.

And then there are the small things. A desire to get my driving license. A desire to travel. A desire to cook more. A desire to be more fit. A desire to learn things. A desire to make things. I hope that my 2009 has more laughter than tears. More smiles than frowns. More content than longing. I hope that the change that must come sees me land on my feet, and sees me improve in my life and as a person.

(And if it's all a touch better than 2008, that wouldn't be a bad thing at all.)

Happy New Year (to my tiny group of readers) may 2009 bring you the changes you desire and deserve.

29 December 2008


At the moment I am battling a mild headache. I think I have had undercurrents of a headache for a few days now actually. I'm not really sure why. I don't often get headaches and when I do is normally for some specific reason or another. I wonder this time if it's not from sitting on the sofa too much- unsupporting my back and neck or some such.

I also note that my skin has been itchy as well which is frequently a sign of stress- or weather change. It's not really bad yet, but it's on that borderline edge of not being quite right. It could break out, or it could just stay like this and eventually clear up. Dunno.

I managed to arrange to have a washing machine repair person come around tomorrow. I really hope they can fix it. I'm desperate to do some laundry now. I really want the house to be generally clean and put together by the time my flatmate comes home on the 12th. Oh, and I actually suppose it should be clean and put together on the 9th because I've volunteered to partake in a kinky photoshoot. I think I'll have to say more about that later.

Although that's not stressing me out- I'm actually kind of looking forward to that, though I need to remember to make an appointment for a bikini wax a few days ahead of time. I figure it's worth it.

So what else? The stupid maid made a post on IC today that revealed one of the small mysteries in the miserable time at the beginning of the year which had to do with what Mr.Aloof and toy had given her as a birthday gift. This particularly rankled me at the time as they'd only been together about 3 months and in the 3 years that I was involved with him and subsequently them, he never gave me anything at all. Not a single thing. Not even a card.

Anyway, I learned that what they gave her was a photo album full of photos of their time together that they had made for her. I found this annoying, though what else would I find it? I know, I know... stop looking this stuff up! But it's a sick fascination. I can't stop. As each small piece eventually falls into place I feel more.... grounded in many ways. I hate 'not knowing'- especially when it concerns me. Even well after the fact, anything that gives me clarity, in some ways gives me peace.

I don't know. This partners itself with the recent thought I had earlier today that I care less and less about Mr.Aloof and that's a good thing. I'm less interested in checking up on him specifically (though in fairness, there is very little, or really nothing, to check up on). I"m less concerned with him contacting me (he missed his most recent 5 week window, but I don't think I care). It's starting to feel like something I actually want to be behind me. But this has taken time. Lots of time. Almost an entire year of time. And I'm still scarred from this experience. I guess I always will be. I can move on in many ways, but I'll carry it with me probably forever. Sort of sucks.

Anyway, today I am leaving the house for the first time in four days I think. Going to dinner at X's house. Going to play on her Wii. Might even get stoned. In fact, I'm hoping to get stoned. Drink wine. Play Wii. Eat food. Should be good. I guess I should go take something for this headache then.

27 December 2008

World Affairs

I don't often write about things of any real importance here. Things that will make some sort of vital difference to the world, or anything that comments on things vital to the world. It's not that I don't think about them, but I can't say that world affairs are of a particularly high priority to me. I don't keep up with technical terms or international alliances, the exchange rate, oil production, medicine, technology, or conflicts. Well, most of the time I don't keep up with conflicts. I would be the first to tell you that history and politics tend to bore the crap out of me. I can't be bothered with all the details of treaties and truces over time.

I tend to look at things from a practical point of view. What would I do in this situation? What do I think is right or wrong? Everyone is entitled to have their own opinion of right and wrong, though I appreciate more when people can back up their position with a rationale.

So today on the news, both on television and on some website I frequent, reporting of the latest Israeli bombing of Hamas. Cue big sigh.

Before I moved here, one of the most frequent things I heard from those who would care was that I should be careful that I was moving to such an anti-semitic place. And while I have noticed that I have met a lot more people here who have never really met a Jew, or known many Jews, I can't say overtly that I have felt waves of anti-semitism towards me or in my presence. Except for the small area of reporting on Israeli-Palestinian conflicts. And by default, if this ever comes up in conversation, as influenced by the media, I would say that many British people hold an opinion I do not agree with, but then they also tend to be highly uninformed and simply repeat the message of the media.

The first thing that drives me nuts about any discussion of the current conflict is the disregard for the fact that people have been warring in this part of the country over this tiny speck of land for the past 2000 years or more. Just because we have better media coverage and far better weapons, it really isn't anything new. For those who hold out hope that this can somehow be 'fixed' or 'solved' in their lifetimes, I say, take a look at history. It seems unlikely at best.

It's just the media reporting is so directive and sensationalist. For example, this most recent implosion- on all the news channels, eliciting outrage all over. Well, where was the reporting and outrage for the past week while Hamas sent over 200 (some say 300) mortar rounds into Israel? Where was the international outcry at the end of the cease fire at Hamas's first response? Where was the coverage then? When you look at the Israeli response during the past week, they basically said, "Stop. Look, you need to stop. Guys, if you don't stop you are going to force us to strike back and you know we're stronger than you. Hello, are you going to stop anytime soon? We're giving you a warning, cut it out, you know what's going to happen." Of course they didn't stop, Israel retaliates and suddenly it's international news.

Does anyone else see a problem just with this? Leave out who is right and who is wrong. Just look at the coverage. Why is it only news when Israel uses their fire power? Because they have more? Should that matter? Everyone knows they have more, including Hamas. In fact, they expect and desire Israel to attack them because it's the only way they get international attention (and money). And what do they do with their money? Smuggle weapons through underground passages and train vigilantes. Why not invest in education and on infrastructure?

The best thing the Palestinian government could do for itself would be to take the billions of dollars that other governments give it and turn it's back on Israel to create a stable and thriving country of its own on the (waterfront) land that it already occupies and has now long been handed over to it. Don't hide militants in new schools and hospitals- just stop that. And once you became independent and prosperous, then it shouldn't matter should it?

But here I will become political and annoyed. Because it isn't about becoming a prosperous people for the Palestinian government. It's about 'getting back at Israel' and that's just stupid. It's wasteful of resources, both material and human and it promotes hatred and conflict ensuring that this is something that will not be over in my lifetime. I doubt that most Israelis or Palestinians approve of the warfare and bloodshed, but they have both invested in governments that don't represent them in this. As long as militant vigilante terrorists run Palestinian land, they will continue to put their resources into warfare, neglecting their people and provoking what is obviously a superior opponent who is then pushed by their own people to retaliate when nothing else seems to work.

It's complicated. It's so very complicated. But I have to say, I do watch the media here, I listen to people and it does get me riled up. Yes, I'm Jewish. And yes, I believe in the free state of Israel. But I also believe in a Palestinian state. I just watch the destruction, the aggression, the provoking and I get angry at the media villainization of Israel when to me it's not that simple, and often is in somewhat disregard to the facts.

If you read the article above which does remark on the Hamas recent bombing of Israel, compare to this BBC piece and note there is no mention of any provoking on the Palestinian side. I'm sorry. I see a huge problem with that. At least Channel 4 makes mention of it, though not the scale or any of the angry or hateful words of Hamas. Only CNN offers an entire article that even attempts to make sense of the recent difficulties. I don't think that it's in favor of one group or the other but at least it seems more fair in the reporting. Is it too much to ask that reporting even attempt to be fair? I'm bothered by the British manipulation of public opinion through suppression of certain information and the boosting of other.

Right. Enough on world affairs. It just makes me angry. This most recent example highlighting something that pops up and bothers me from time to time. I don't know how the UK benefits from this lopsided reporting or why they promote it. I'm sure if I did know, it would just be something else to make me angry.

26 December 2008

Round Numbers

Believe it or not, this is my 700th post. That seems like an awful lot doesn't it? I'm not sure why these things stick in the mind, digits that end in 0 or 00. With it being so close to New Years it seems like that would be nice for the two to coincide, but then that's just silliness that doesn't really matter. Still, 700 posts. Pretty cool.

The search for a blog publisher goes badly. One suggestion made elsewhere was for a site called Lulu but they don't have any sort of blog copying feature, you have to do it all manually. I may be looking at just doing it manually. Doing all of this research into books has given me some ideas about layout and the like, so I could more easily set up a product that I'm happy with. It's still just a massive clusterfuck to hand copy and paste every single post, every hyperlink, and every comment. Well, as long as I'm still unemployed there is still time to consider all of this as I'm not rushing to get it done before I can afford it. So the hunt continues.

It's been cooking a-go-go around here. Kicking off with octopus feast with Heathrow, on Christmas day my friend M came over (walked all the way from South London) and we had cheese and crackers and roasted chestnuts. Then I got more inspired and made mini deep dish pizzas with chopped greens cooked with garlic, chili, mushrooms, wine soaked sultanas, pine nuts, lemon juice, and parmesan. That was put over the pre-baked crusts and some mozzarella and topped with goats cheese and oh my god were they delicious.

And then, just because I could, I made the cinnamon goodness again. I didn't have margarine so I had to substitute butter which wasn't exactly the same. It wasn't bad- but as M said to me, butter has more water in it so it's not as good for pastry and can make things dryer. I think this is a good assessment of what happened, but you'd have to be very pick to be able to tell. No one was complaining.

Oh, and I've decided to try and get a washing machine repair person out before splurging on a whole new machine. The wash cycle is running, the drum is spinning, water comes in. It just won't drain or rinse. When it gets to that point, the program dial just spins endlessly. But to me, this shows that all the key parts are still working, so hopefully it's not something super huge. I read online that if this happens you probably have a clog in the draining. I went through the hell of finding the trap, emptying the water and cleaning out the sludge. This stank horribly and made a huge mess, but I felt good that I cleared out a penny and a small stick and a lot of disgusting gray gunk. But after all of that, it didn't change anything which makes me think the clog is somewhere else. Possibly in the out-hose but after the grossness of the first experience, I'm more willing to pay someone to clean out the other areas. Seriously. I was never cut out to be any sort of plumber. I don't even like cleaning my bathroom for crying out loud. This is enough to make me gag constantly. No fun.

So we'll see what happens there. In the meantime, to get the memory of sludge out of my mind, I'll instead focus on sugary goodness.

22 December 2008

Octopus at Home

So Heathrow came over today for what I imagine we could call our fifth date although counting our time spent together seems much less like dates and much more like hanging out, but what else should it be called? First date was meeting up at the Korean grocery in Shoreditch and a so-so Mexican meal nearby. Date two was my staying over at his in between my scuba lessons in the middle of nowhere which included a trip to Windsor, an Italian meal, parking in a park, and hours of conversation. Date three was our first feast at my house which included the making of omurice and one of my favorite movies and of course more hours of conversation. Date four was last weekend and our lunch in Soho and visit to the Just Rope event at Sweet Torments where we had our first more intimate encounter with him tieing me. And now date five- he came over here for a new cooking adventure, lots of talking, some hair playing, and some rope.

This time the cooking interest was focused on a spicy Korean octopus dish. I've never actually cooked octopus or squid at home although it's been high on my list of things to try out. Especially if I could make salt and pepper chili squid. Now that would be amazing. But this was a good alternative. To go with it I made carrot kinpira and miso eggplant, and of course, rice. Oh, and Heathrow also brought this cream of mushroom soup mix. To end the meal we had some Gu chocolate souffle pots. Always a winner.

So after our feast, which I'm afraid defeated us both, but was of course delicious, we were just hanging out on my sofa chat chat chatting away as usual. A lot about relationships actually, which I think I find a little bit confusing. I figure it's one of two things- either we talk about relationships because we aren't actually going to have one, or we talk about relationships in a more analytical/hypothetical fashion because it's a way of talking about our own potential without actually talking about it.

So there we were chatting and I decided that I needed to be more assertive about things that I want so I said, "To interject with an off topic question, do you mind if I play with your hair while we continue this conversation?". To make this seem slightly less odd than it perhaps initially sounds I should update my reading audience of three with the following information. First, Heathrow has hair down to his ass, and secondly, this is something we touched upon briefly during date three, in the sense that I think his hair was casually mentioned and he casually mentioned that people ask to play with it sometimes and I think I responded along the lines of "Well I can understand that sentiment.".

So it wasn't a completely out of the blue and obscure sort of thing to ask, but I think it's significant to me because it represented me being assertive (even if in a very small way) which is something I am trying to work on for myself because I think it's something important to my future success at relationships. On the upside, this suggestion was met with a positive response and the appearance of a hairbrush so we settled into a slightly different state of repose and continued our chat while I played with his hair.

This went on for a bit and was nice. It gave me a chance to be more physically open towards him and intimate in my own way not to mention that it was fun to play with his hair and brush it and braid it. So I did that for a while and then was finished and settled back into the sofa and he asked me if I felt like being tied up so I asked him if he felt like tying me up and we both agreed that seemed like a very good idea.

We chatted briefly about what I was looking for out of a rope scene. Here's where things get very tricky for me. Usually it would be my inclination to not have an answer to this sort of question or give the ever so unsatisfactory 'Well what do you want?'. Because honestly that is frequently how I feel. I don't think I'm always very in touch at moments like that with what I really want. Probably because I am afraid of rejection- I mean, that is what most relationship fears are based on. And it's far easier to go with what someone else wants and by giving that to them, or being able to provide that for them, making them happy and by default feeling happy about that. But I think this is not the path to a healthy relationship. It's a cop out. The same joy and satisfaction I feel in 'doing for' my partner needs to be able to be reciprocated and the only way that can happen is for me to be more clear and proactive about expressing what I want. Which at this point means trying to be more in touch with it myself.

Oh therapy. Finally it seems you have actually done something for me, even if I can't quite pinpoint exactly how.

So anyway, back to the rope. I do think I faltered in the sense that I asked what sorts of options were available when discussing a rope scene. Which led to a slightly different conversation about what it was I liked about rope and in particular what I had enjoyed about our first and previous interaction. And this I could discuss. I could articulate how I liked the dynamic and interactive aspect to our interaction as compared to the more static interaction I had experienced previously. I could describe how as rope is laid upon my body, for me it takes on the sensation of the person who is doing the tying- as if every strand of rope that hugs me and contains me is an extension of that person and makes me feel held and contained by them. I expressed how I enjoyed the intimacy of the tying- the closeness of his person. And I talked about how I liked the laughing and the playing elements- the tickling and the struggling but of course how this is only being started between us as it has a lot more to do with knowing someone and reading them as well as knowing the extents and limits of their strengths, abilities and tolerances.

And while I talked about all of these things, the rope came out of the bag and was laid upon me. Over my clothes it crossed and bound and slowly I felt myself relax into it. As my options and choices became restricted and limited, my mind cleared so that I could simply focus on the sensation of being held, of being contained. And of course this was partnered with the intimacy- the closeness and the touching. This wasn't fast like the last time, it was more slow and deliberate. My breathing slowed. My eyes closed. I enjoyed the sensation of being held and of being touched. And the touching became intensified. Once the rope was finished off, he used it, he pulled on it, as a way of moving me and as a way of increasing the containment. I breathed him in. I swam in the sensation. And the sensations became more intimate. The touching more intimate. All over clothes, bound together, I alternately squirmed and arched for his hand wedged between my legs.

And then there was the untying. As slow and deliberate as the tying. Revelling in the closeness. The loosening of the layers of rope compensated for by the closeness of him. And when he came within reach of my bound hands I touched him as I could. Eventually all the rope was gone and we embraced. I almost said 'simply embraced' and yet in many ways there wasn't anything simple about it, as soft and gentle as it was. And when we finally pulled apart, we settled back onto the sofa and cuddled up together and stayed like that for another hour or so while continuing our endless conversation.

So what does this all mean? Again I am not yet worried about it. We've talked about me coming up to Cambridge for a weekend where he's currently working to stay there and go do touristy things and hang out, and we've made reference to without specifically planning for, the next feast and cooking day at my house.

It's all like one long slow burn at the moment. Like something that you don't necessarily notice until all of the sudden it's ablaze. This evening's activities were sensual and erotic and of course fun.

An exceptional counterpoint to make up for the stupid washing machine....

Not Amused

I think my washing machine just broke.


It's not even all that old- I bought it off a friend who had bought it new so I think it's no more than six years old at this point.

I'm trying to decide if it's worth the money to get a repair person out or if I should just get a new one. I'd be mighty pissed off if I pay to get it repaired and then I have to end up getting a new one anyway.

Of course, in my current unemployed state, a repairman would be much cheaper- but only if it friggin works. And also if they don't start tacking on a ton of dosh for 'parts'.


I am seriously not amused!!

20 December 2008

Testing Permanence

Last week I went to a lovely gathering hosted by Ms.Woo which included many other bloggers, and those who read them. I am in fact fascinated by the ability Ms.Woo possesses which is in fact, to have actually met many fellow bloggers and readers- or in other words to have 'moved beyond' the electronic medium to create something that is more lasting, and real, and substantial. It is no small feat I tell you. I'm sure she doesn't recognize it as something unique or special at all, but I say it is. So there.

At any rate, in hanging about with people who blog or read blogs, I shared an annoyance with the Hitchcock Blonde that it is ridiculous and annoying that it is very difficult to actually get a copy of ones blog hard copy printed. This is something that pops up in my mind periodically and annoys me. For me, blogging has replaced a lifelong dedication to journaling. I have a special box I made filled with chronological journals/diaries that came before the Internet and started when I was six years old. And I still struggle along with my last paper journal- though the entries are truly sporadic. I wrote one this morning and realized it had been over a year since the last.

But I write here you see. Everything that I would journal for the most part, goes here. But I don't want it to stay here in electronic limbo. It belongs with the other hand written versions, so that my life, as written by me, is whole and complete. Hence my desire to print it out. A book for every year. That seems appropriate.

So with this conversation recently on my mind, I decided to look into this whole fiasco again and see what I could find. And I found two things that are better than nothing, but not that great necessarily. The best looking option I found was from a company called Blurb. I like that they have multiple editing options and formats available. Unfortunately, they seem to have an issue taking data from blogger and it's currently disabled. I could of course cut and paste every single entry but I know this is time consuming and horrible since I've been attempting to set that up as an InDesign template for a couple of years now. An automatic feature that I could then edit after the fact seems the only way to go at this point. Until Blurb can fix their blogger issue, I can't see how I can use them even though their product is the most attractive.

The second company I am eyeballing is Blog2Print which did manage to automatically transform my blog into a book with minimal fuss, but the formatting options and printing options leave something to be desired. It looks like you can only get a soft cover in one size while I'd prefer a hardcover and I'd like to see some sizing options. Why they seem to be able to do this with ease and Blurb can't is beyond me, but so be it. All I know is, here are two options, neither of which is ideal.

So basically I need to ponder this for a bit. There are other considerations that throw this all into a tizzy. It all looks good initially, but once you start to read the user agreements how you can't publish anything 'obscene' and you must have copyright permission for all of your content it gets tricky. Obviously I don't really have all that for every image I've used, or even for some text I've probably lifted. But this is just for me- not for anyone else. I don't see it as any different from making a scrapbook out of clippings and glue. You don't need copyright permission for that! Not to mention that I obviously write about a number of things that would probably be considered 'obscene'. At any rate, we'll see what happens. I've more made this post so I don't have to find those sites again. If anyone has any other links or suggestions on the best site to use to get a printed copy of a blog, let me know in the comments. It's appreciated.

18 December 2008

Silly Blog Toys

Every now and then I give in and take these silly tests.

You are Strength

Courage, strength, fortitude. Power not arrested in the act of judgement, but passing on to further action, sometimes obstinacy.

This is a card of courage and energy. It represents both the Lion's hot, roaring energy, and the Maiden's steadfast will. The innocent Maiden is unafraid, undaunted, and indomitable. In some cards she opens the lion's mouth, in others she shuts it. Either way, she proves that inner strength is more powerful than raw physical strength. That forces can be controlled and used to score a victory is very close to the message of the Chariot, which might be why, in some decks, it is Justice that is card 8 instead of Strength. With strength you can control not only the situation, but yourself. It is a card about anger and impulse management, about creative answers, leadership and maintaining one's personal honor. It can also stand for a steadfast friend.

What Tarot Card are You?
Take the Test to Find Out.

15 December 2008

A Ropey Evening

Yesterday I had a date with Heathrow. We haven't met up since he came over to mine for a cooking evening which was over a month ago. We've been emailing in the interim, but there hasn't been any pressure to meet up. There is the ever so slight issue of distance- it's not insurmountable but it's enough to be an obstacle. And while I like that he is quirky and lives in a motor home parked outside his studio flat, there is also an issue surrounding toilets and showers if I go to his.

At any rate, in all of our email exchange we decided to meet up at a 'Just Rope' event that was being held at Sweet Torments in west London this weekend. There was actually an entire workshop weekend going on, but we weren't going to go to that- only to the after party which was yesterday, Sunday night.

In arranging all this, it was implied but not discussed that he and I would indulge in some tying. One of the reasons I initially approached Heathrow, aside from his love of Korean food that was listed on his profile (and gave me the nudge to actually memo him) was that I knew who he was as he has made a small name for himself as a very good rope top. So I was both excited and nervous about being tied by someone who is actually very good at it and has done thousands of ties on probably hundreds of people. What if I was no fun to tie? Not flexible enough? Too fat? And also, this isn't 'just anyone' tying me, this is someone I've had three very pleasant but chaste encounters with previously. And tying is obviously all hands on- how was that going to go and what did it mean about what's going on with us?

We met in the early afternoon in Soho to go to a Japanese restaurant that was on my taste london card. I'd sent through some suggestions earlier in the week and we settled on Japanese- no big surprise there! I hadn't been to this particularly restaurant before and it was interesting as it's not a standard Japanese place but rather a yakitori restaurant. The food was very good, and as it's all set up for sharing, it's also a very nice date type place. We also got a sake sampler which was super yummy. I think I like sake better than I like regular wine. But I digress.

As like all previous meetings with Heathrow, we somehow managed to talk without effort for hours and hours. It's funny how it just flows. I never get a sense of time passing or trying to struggle to make conversation. It seems to be very 'easy' around him for lack of a better way of putting it. Leaving out my internal thought confusion on exactly what we're doing of course, but if I just look at the actual time spent together, it's really nice and... comfortable.

So we sat there nibbling and chatting until it was time to head to the party. We got there just past 5 which was when the workshop was winding up. We stayed in the other room/bar area while it finished and hung out some more. Eventually we moved into the main space- there were a lot of people there initially, though many seemed to be from the workshop and were on their way out as opposed to sticking around for the party. Still, there were clumps of people here and there, and a little bit of rope work getting started. I was mostly chilling out and observing things when after a bit Heathrow asked if I was interested in being tied and I said I was. And a little while longer, when there were a couple of people doing rope we decided to give it a go, and also in the hopes that would encourage some of the more chatty people to stop chatting and start doing!

So Heathrow asked me what I would like out of a rope scene. Which is tricky. I'm trying to work on this- the 'what I want' from things aspects of interactions. I realize that it's lazy, but also unfair to be so quiet or complacent with my needs or desires in interactions as much as I prefer to let things slip that way. The thing about Heathrow though, is he isn't a dominant in the regular sense. He's a rope top- but he's not necessarily a full on dominant. He's actually quite shy as a person, and not 'in your face' so in terms of the non scene/play interaction between him and I, it's very equal. I would even go so far as to say that perhaps we are even somewhat similar, though obviously we both deal with it very differently.

So basically I told him that since we'd never interacted in this way before, I would just be curious to see how it was with him, try out a few different ties so he could show me some of the things he had described, and just see how it went. So we agreed and prepared- I had worn some lycra gym kit under a skirt and sweater so I would be covered, but body snug which I thought was appropriate for rope- not only in a public place, but also with someone I have only hugged previously.

So we started and it was like a dance in a way. I was mostly compliant and observational, but was not so pliable or easy to move that I didn't show him some of my strength or moves as well. It was all very intimate and he was very close to me while he tied. We giggled and commented along the way, and all the time the rope was flowing and binding.

And he is very very good at what he does. I'd almost call it dynamic tying as opposed to more static tying. Obviously there are different sorts of rope scenes that one can have- with different effects. Because there are so many photographs of ropework available, I think people often think of it as a time intensive practice that results in a 'wrapped' person which is then admired and appreciated. But if you compare that line of thinking to more active rope, or performance rope, like that of Osada Steve, it has a different sort of purpose and dynamic where there is flow and movement. It reminds me of something Heathrow said- about how the untying is as much a part of the scene as the tying. How it comes undone, how someone is released, what you do along the way, where the rope ends up- it's all just as much a part of it as the creating process in the beginning. And I could really tell that from our interaction.

It was very different to say, the tying of Mr.Aloof. Obviously some things are similar- but the feeling surrounding it and the interaction was completely different. With Mr.Aloof tying was a means of almost instantly becoming 'object like' and he certainly falls into the category of 'sitting back and observing the creation' once the creation was done. And don't get me wrong at all- I enjoyed that very much. It's just that this was so different. Rope was involved, bondage was involved, touching and tickling and laughing and tussling was involved, but it was much more interactive and 'present' then how my experiences with Mr.Aloof were with rope.

Which obviously has everything to do with the interplay of the people with me as much as their interest in the rope. Obviously.

So I guess what was really interesting in retrospect was exactly how intimate it felt. I mean, here is someone I've never kissed and his hands and body are basically all over me. And it was so nice!! Better than nice even- it was intense- or at least, there were moments of intensity that were quite intoxicating and exhilarating. And it's interesting to me because obviously in many ways we were both holding back throughout the entire exercise and sort of weighing each other up to see how it went. Yet at the same time, it was a level of intimacy that is quite far along in some ways but then not in others. Still, the feel of someone, the smell of someone, the warmth of someone- with of lot of fantastic rope thrown in- a very nice thing indeed!

Afterwards he said to me that he was impressed with my endurance for it (we went through at least four substantial and consecutive ties with different sorts of interactions/play along the way. It's the sort of comment I'm always intrigued by because of course I have no way of judging my abilities to any other bottom or submissive. But of course I was pleased... and he said he really enjoyed tying me, so that was also good, because I definitely enjoyed it!

So we have plans for next Monday- he's going to come over and we're going to cook and do a movie again, but I said maybe he should bring his rope as well.... so that's all good at the moment.

And in the meantime I have a lovely red welt across my neck from some vigorous manipulating... hehehe. Makes me smile. The whole things makes me smile actually. Yay!

10 December 2008

Random Notes

Going to the gym, especially when I just start up again, makes me extra hungry. If the goal of going to the gym is getting fit and losing weight, I need to not give in to the urge. This is difficult. I'm hungry. Even though I ate.

The rest of this week, or perhaps early next week I have a small job to do building a 3D model. This has been in the pipes for a while now, so it's nice that it's come through. A little extra money, stemming the flow. I may decide to go out to the house of the people I'm doing it for. Like a mini vacation but not really.

People are starting to leave for the holidays. I hate that. In general, I hate the holiday season here in London. Everyone leaves and the city goes dead. Not like how it is in the States at all. I don't really like this time of year. Usually what gets me through it is at least I 'get a break' from working, except now I'm not working, it's not a break from anything, it's just a lonely spot where no one is around or in town.

I finished some knitting recently that I'm pleased with. Not that it took overly long, or was overly complex, but I'm pleased nonetheless. I need to start a new octopus project for a pregnant friend in Chicago who is getting ready to pop. I think I'm putting it off because the octopus was complex and fiddly. The elephants were much easier.

I have the flat to myself for the next month. Now that I'm free of a flatmate (temporarily) my house is clean and calm. I do like it like that. It goes to show how much havoc a flatmate brings to the table. Of course, it depends on the flatmate though- the best flatmate in the world, D, never gave me any complications at all.

Going to the ex-office holiday party this evening as T's plus one. Should be fun, as free drinks and snacks are always fun, as well as seeing people I'd like to see. On the other hand, I'm not looking forward to the 'So what are you doing?' comment I'm going to get about 100 times. Because the answer is 'Nothing thanks!' and then I'm going to get some look of pity or something. I could do without that part, but I'll get through it. It's alright.

I need to go pick up the next bag of vegetables. I haven't made much of a dent on the last bag of vegetables. This is going to be a serious cooking week. At least vegetables are healthy.

06 December 2008


I just was on the computer- taking a break from some knitting when I remembered that it was exactly the right time for the most recent art sale from the talented Audrey Kawasaki. Now, of course I have no current income, and I am trying to be extremely frugal, but I thought it was more than coincidental that not only did I just get on the computer during the scant window where this print would be available, but also that I remembered! No small feat.

So I purchased a print. A treat for myself. I'll have to get it framed at some later date. But I see this as a reasonable investment actually. Audrey's work has continued to be in high demand, and resale value of her work is always higher than the original purchase price. If I ever had to sell that is. But I wouldn't of course, unless I had to for some reason. I buy the work because I adore it. But I also know, that in dire circumstances, not being able to pay my mortgage for example, having maxed out my credit cards*, I could put up this work and get back at least what I put in to it, if not more.

So before I become a pauper in the street, scrounging for my next meal, I get to look at it and enjoy it and covet it. Win win I say.

* Not that this is currently in danger of being the case. In fact I just got an extra little job that paid me a hundred and fifty quid, so really, that more than pays for this particular indulgence. I wouldn't have done this at all if I honestly though I couldn't get away with it. I'm far too responsible for that.

03 December 2008

Why Are You Working?

It just dawned on me today, while looking at the chatter on Facebook, that I have been in a complete mental block about the days of the week. I already knew this to some degree, but today a friend was sending me a message and wrote something about 'being at work' and my very first thought was, "I wonder why she keeps working so much on the weekends?".


It's true really- every day feels very much like a weekend in the sense that I generally do fun things and am obviously on no particular schedule. But it's funny to me how it just sunk into my head without me thinking about it. I have forgotten in some ways, that other people are getting up and checking into a job every day, simply because I'm not.

On the other hand, I've just managed to secure the start of a small job that's been floating about since I stopped working- to build a 3D model for someone and we've also now added the inputting of their hand drawings into AutoCAD as well for some extra money. So that's not too bad in the end. I think it will take me about a week to do all of it- and I'll be paid accordingly. Not enough to support myself, but certainly enough to stem the flow out of my savings and let me hang on to my very small cushion for as long as possible.

Of course, this also means I need to get in the mindset of 'I have work to do.'- which in reality I should start this evening. At least that's what I keep telling myself- we'll see if I can actually get it done. See previous comments on procrastination....

01 December 2008

Testing Videos

Jesus H. When I procrastinate, I can seriously procrastinate or what? Lets be clear then.

Things I have accomplished today:
- Brought the rugs down from my room from after Thanksgiving and put them in the lounge.
- Called the man at Hackney to bitch about the ongoing saga of the missing bike shed key.
- Called my US bank to close my matured CD and move it into my savings to cover my student loans for a while in this time of unemployment.
- Finished off the savory leftovers from Thanksgiving, there is however, still pie.
- Moved the big plant from the kitchen back to the lounge (also a post thanksgiving clean up).
- Put the candle box back on top of the wardrobe after dusting it off.
- Emailed a number of people and written blogs and played Scrabble on Facebook.
- Watched the movie 'Beaufort'.

Things I have not accomplished today:
- Getting dressed (though I need to do this within the next hour because I'm going to a friends for dinner- oh, and that includes showering as well).
- Done laundry.
- Written the article which goes with the images I downloaded.
- Sorted any of the crap that ended up in my room when I cleared the lounge for thanksgiving.
- Moved the camel seat bench back downstairs.
- Emailed people I probably owe emails to.
- Done dishes.
- Knitting (I am currently two projects behind which are due before the end of the year).

So in keeping with the procrastination theme, I want to see what's up with this video embedding malarky. I've avoided it fastidiously so far, but I feel left out and I want to join in. So here is one of my favorites for your viewing pleasure (I hope).

4:10 PM

And all is dark. It's something that I'm not sure I'll ever get entirely used to- how far north London actually is, and how dark it gets in the winter. I mean seriously, it is ten minutes past four and it is DARK. Twenty more days of this, until the longest night of the year, and then we can slowly inch our way back out.

It's weird because it just throws everything off. I get tired earlier and hungry earlier. I feel like it's so late, when really it's early.

People don't usually consider just how much more north London is to the United States. It's confusing because London is so much more temperate than continental places because of its island nature and the Gulf Stream. You just forget how far north it actually is. Though not as far north as Copenhagen or Helsinki. Still, so far north that I can literally feel the difference in every fiber of my being. It's weird.

No wonder the pagans celebrated the longest night- the end of this time of darkness and the return to the light. It's really something tangible here. It's strange and to me feels almost unnatural, even though obviously it is natural, it's particularly jarring having come from a place where this doesn't happen. Weird.