Martini with a Twist

My favorite part of any yoga session is drinking the gin martini at the end of it. Admittedly that particular finishing position (seated, legs crossed at ankles, glass stem firmly held in the right hand, lemon twisted) is my own particularly innovation, and not found in the more traditional yoga schools. However, I find it’s just the thing to achieve true relaxation after physical exertion.

Judging by this image, Blake Lively obviously shares my love of the gin martini with a twist. She’s even using a gin I like from the Pacific Northwest. The combination of a naked man with a kitchen countertop is more questionable. Particularly given this particular position hints at pegging. I think I’m safe in saying that nobody wants any santorum near their kitchen surfaces or their martini.

This was from Blake Lively’s instagram feed and is a promotion shot (I think) for her latest movie A Simple Favor.

Kitchen Submissives?

The amusing kinky food video from a few posts back got me thinking about cooking in a D/s context. Specifically, why do I never seen dommes advertise for a submissive chef? Typically I see asks for cleaners, chauffeurs, PA’s and general dogsbodies, yet never for kitchen help. Actually, to be entirely honest, what I mostly observe is dommes complaining that trying to get a submissive to do anything actually useful to them is more trouble than it’s worth, and most submissives are only keen on what’ll please them and their dick. But after that sadly large group, among those still giving submissives a chance to be useful, I’ve never seen a chef request. I wonder why?

Personally, if I was recruiting for my own household, there would two main chores to offload: Ironing and food preparation. I love cooking, but food prep is a major time sink that I’d happily delegate. On the flipside, as a submissive, I’ve no interest in scrubbing floors, but would take satisfaction in preparing and cooking food for someone. Plus, food prep is full of sexy french terms. Getting beaten for a sloppy chiffonade or uneven brunoise would be extra kinky.

I’m afraid I don’t have an attribution for this image. If you can help with that, then please leave me a comment.

Protonmail vs Gmail

When the FOSTA-SESTA bill was passed into law there was a rush of sex workers and clients moving from Gmail to the enhanced security of Protonmail. Since then I’ve noticed a backlash to Protonmail, with complaints about its reliability resulting in some people moving back to Gmail. At the same time I’ve also observed some confusion about the security issues involved, with comments like “Gmail uses encryption anyway” or “I’m on a VPN, so why does it matter?” Obviously, everyone can make their own judgement call about utility vs security, but I’d like that decision to be an informed one. Hence, this post to dig into the issues.

When it comes to encryption, Gmail does use an encrypted connection between you and their servers. That’s nothing unusual. So does pretty much every internet service that carries personal data (banking, shopping, email, etc). That’s necessary to stop people in your building, coffee shop or  IT department sneaking a look at what you’re sending and receiving. Obviously this is a good thing, but pretty much irrelevant when it comes to law enforcement. Even if they could do it (which they can’t), they’re not going to try and hack your internet connection and reconstruct your emails from the data you send.

Similarly, while a VPN (virtual private network) is generally a good thing for privacy, it’s irrelevant when it comes to law enforcement and email. Normally, even with encrypted connections, it’s still possible to see what sites someone is visiting. With a VPN, a remote computer (typically in another country) makes all those connections for you, and you just have a single encrypted connection to the VPN. That’s great if you don’t want someone to be able to trace your interactions with sites like eros or slixa, but kind of pointless when it comes to Gmail. If you’ve got a public web presence tied to a known email account, there’s absolutely no value trying to hide the fact you’re connecting to that email service. The fact you’ve got the email address on your website proves that you must be using the service.

The key difference between Protonmail and Gmail is how the data is stored on the email servers. In Protonmail the data is encrypted so that even the people running Protonmail can’t read it. That is absolutely not true for Gmail. Google’s entire business model is based on mining user data. In some cases it’s even possible for third parties to access the data. As Google describes here, they will produce the content of your Gmail account in response to a search warrant. And, as they document here, they produced user data for around 80% of the legal requests they receive each month. So if a prosecutor has your Gmail address and a search warrant, he can read your emails. The bar for obtaining a search warrant is simply showing probable cause. That is not a high bar. In contrast, even if US and Swiss law enforcement cooperated to get hold of Protonmail data, it would be a jumble of meaningless numbers. They’d need the account password to make sense of it.

One could argue that there are easier and more likely ways for law enforcement to hassle sex workers than trying to access their email accounts. Or that if an investigation has reached the point of getting search warrants, it’s unlikely to be stopped simply by a lack of email data. However, in the current climate, I tend to take the view that safer is always better. Would you want to bet against the possibility of a prosecutor going on a fishing expedition after scraping the web for pro-domme and escort email addresses? Or getting hold of the data from sites like eros or slixa and then using some bullshit sex trafficking story to get a load of warrants signed off? No tech company is going to want to be perceived to facilitate sex trafficking, even if the trafficking story is a fiction with zero relationship to reality.

As I said at the beginning of the post, the utility vs security trade-off is a matter for individual judgement. But nobody should assume that there isn’t a trade-off involved here. Gmail and Protonmail offer very different levels of privacy. Personally, even though pro-domination is legal and I only engage in non-sexual BDSM activities, I’ve switched to Protonmail for my personal account.

If anyone has questions about any of this feel free to leave a comment. I’m absolutely not a legal expert, but I do know a bit about computers and networks. I also added some follow-up thoughts in a subsequent post.

This domme certainly takes security seriously. She doesn’t ever turn her computer on. That’s hardcore security.

As far as I can tell the website originally associated with this image has ceased to exist.

Changing of the Guard

The kink.com site has a new CEO. As covered in this Vice article, Alison Boden has replaced Peter Acworth. I’m happy to see a woman get the top job at a very high profile kinky porn producer and, an engineer myself, I’m particularly happy to see that she got there via a technology background. She started as a software engineer and was their VP of technology prior to the CEO job. It’s frequently the finance, marketing or product management people who get the fast track to the top job. Given the lack of female software engineers in general, and in top positions in particular, it’s great to see one heading a company like kink.com.

These images feature Lorilei Lee shooting for Kink’s Divine Bitches site.

Kitchen Toy

The kink part of my East Coast tour has sadly come to an end. What’s left is just the part I actually came all the way out here for – doing touristy stuff with family in Washington D.C. I basically used 4 days of family time as an excuse for 10 prior days of debauchery and perverted sexual practices. So … yay me?

While I’ve eaten out at some fantastic restaurants during the trip (Smyth in Chicago and Momofuku Ko in NYC would be the two stand-outs), what I’m really missing right now is my own kitchen and my own food. There’s something very satisfying and fulfilling about prepping and cooking a meal from your own cookbooks and with your own equipment.

Unlike this gentleman, I can’t say I’ve ever taken to naked cookery. Hot liquid droplets and splatters would seem to be an issue. Not to mention the problem of genitals in the proximity of work surfaces. On the other hand, if that’s what it takes to get Mistress Iris and Mistress Eva near my kitchen, it’s certainly a risk I’m prepared to take. I’d happily play prep cook, line cook, busboy and waiter for them.

Image is from this tweet and credited to dk_photo_88. While I’ve sadly not (yet) met Mistress Eva, I can personally attest that Mistress Iris is a fabulous domme to play with.

The Challenge of the New

Writing yesterday’s post on the new experiences I enjoyed with Mistress Cynthia got me thinking about the dynamics of doing new activities. More specifically, doing an old activity for the first time with a new play partner. There are a few different ways to approach this, and one of them niggles me every time it happens. I’m not sure it rises to the level of a pet peeve, but it’s something that I think is worth raising awareness of.

Some dominants don’t care what I’ve done in the past. They just pull out the toys they have in mind to use and get on with doing their thing. Others ask in order to gather information they can use. If it’s a new activity then maybe they’ll build intensity more slowly or check in more often. I’m perfectly happy with either approach. What I find odd is when a domme will be visibly disappointed if they discover the activity they’ve decided on isn’t a new one for me. Sometimes they’ll almost seem to be verging on frustration that they can’t ‘surprise’ me with a particular toy or new experience. I’ve had session where, after this kind of exchanged had repeated 3 or 4 times, I almost wanted to start lying and claiming ignorance, just so we could get out of that repeated negative interaction.

I’ve tried out a lot of different kinky activities over the last few years. That’s not down to any skill or achievement on my part. I’m just lucky to have had the time and opportunity to do a lot of different session with experienced dommes in well equipped spaces. So it’s pretty rare to find a fairly general activity that’s both inside my limits that I haven’t tried at some point. Yet, in all that time, I’ve never once thought to myself “Oh, we’re doing this shit again. Let’s get through this as fast as possible so we can get to something different.” I’ve had sessions ranging from just OK to awesome, and that difference has never been made by the uniqueness or novelty of the activity. The quality of the experience is always about the dynamic between myself and the domme and our interaction in the moment. The way every scene unfolds is unique, even if some of the building blocks repeat. Or to put it in cruder terms, I’ve jerked off a fair amount over the last decade or three, and I’ve never got bored with that activity, so let’s assume that novelty isn’t the deciding factor in how fun something is.

For any dommes out there, I’d suggest always treating past experience with an activity as a positive. It means the submissive will probably be able to give good feedback during it and will have greater capacity for handling it.

Given the post subject matter I thought it’d be worth trying to pick an image of an activity I’ve not really tried. So here we go – cross dressing. There was a domme 6 or 7 years ago who put me in stockings a few times, but apart from that I’ve been lingerie free. I’m not sure of the source of this vintage picture, but that young guy is carrying that outfit off pretty well.

Problems

Apologies for the inactivity on the site recently. Over the weekend there was yet another technical issue with my web hosting company that took the site offline for many hours. That’s the third repeat of the issue in as many months, but like all modern technical companies, it’s almost impossible to get a human contact and a clear technical answer on what the problem was. Then, just as soon as I got that fixed, I screwed my back up and ended up horizontal on the floor. Being unable to bend or sit is not really conducive to blogging.

Anyway, hopefully the site is back and my back is good. Or, if good is too much to hope for, at least it’ll let me sit and type for short periods. By way of apology, here’s a hot and sexy image from the ever talented Yumine Guo. I’m not a CFNM fan per se, but there’s something lovely about his naked openess and her casual and clothed perch on the couch.

No pain, No gain

After my previous yoga related post, Phil mentioned via a comment that working with a personal trainer in a gym was another BDSM like experience. He’s right of course. There’s a similar sense of being dictated to, pushing limits and suffering pain.

I have weirdly differing responses to those three different scenarios. With a domme being hurt and bossed around is hot sexy fun. With a yoga teacher I tend to be bemused about what she thinks I’m capable of and frustrated when I fail. With a personal trainer my internal unspoken reaction is one of “Fuck you! Don’t you know how heavy this thing is? Do I look like I have muscle tone? I’m in goddamn agony here!” No idea why I react so differently in these three cases. Maybe I should try combining them to see what happens?

Reversa

Something simple for fans of the CFNM genre today. This is actually from an advertising campaign for an anti-aging cream called Reversa. I tend to the belief that such things are snake oil with little to no scientific basis. Has there ever been a properly controlled test of such things? However, I do like this shot. It almost seems to argue against the product itself. Who cares about a few wrinkles if you can pull off this kind of poised elegance?

The shoes

Images like this make me smile. They’re obviously going for a relaxing domme with service slave type vibe. The lady has a comfy chair, a book to read and a snack to enjoy. There’s a handy slave with a tray for nibbles attached to his nipples and an open mouth for any odds and ends she needs to dispose of. There’s even a log fire to light should she get chilly. And then we get to the enormous clear heel stripper shoes. How do they fit into this picture? Who settles down in their living room for a relaxing read with those on?

Some people even make the idea of playing in fuzzy slippers a tagline for their blog. I can’t say I’m much of a slipper fan, but I think they would actually make this image hotter. Forget improving the plot lines or sexual chemistry in porn shoots – lets start with just some costuming logic.

bigheelsThis is from the Planet Femdom site.