Category Archives: MacGyvery Sex Aids & Props

Whip Me, Beat Me, Slap Me – Just Don’t Judge Me

While all the good little people were out getting in touch with their god of choice, I was having a lovely Sunday morning watching a BDSM fairytale, Secretary.

I’ve been meaning to see Secretary since its release in 2002, as I’ve been a lifelong fan of James Spader ever since I loved hating him in Pretty in Pink when I was just 13.

I remember being apprehensive about the movie, though, way back in 2002. BDSM, I thought, was largely for Weirdos. I suspect the movie was the first really mainstream movie to introduce the lifestyle to a large percentage of the population who probably walked out of the theatre with a silly grin pasted on their lips. It’s not so bad, they likely thought. A little odd, and weird, but certainly not this horridly perverse thing their churches had them believing it was.

Since then, my eyes have opened. No, I’m not into S&M, though I don’t mind a little smack on my ass from time to time, but I’ll probably never join the movement. I ain’t, however, writing that in stone.

The movie Secretary does not dispel the notion that those who gravitate to this pain-for-pleasure lifestyle tend to be somewhat broken inside. It echoes the common perception that the participants are hurting after a life of shortcomings and trouble, and this is their way of finding a coping mechanism. Control the pain that pains you, and you will control the life around you; this seems to be the prevailing wisdom.

So there are those who scoff at them and scorn them, as if they should find healthier mechanisms for dealing.

Aren’t we all hurting to a degree, though? Don’t we all nurse regrets and fears and wishes and wants? Sure we do. But the rest of us got the magic “All Better Now” button installed when we were manufactured. Or did we? Hmm, perhaps we could use a little coping, too.

And what would you suggest? How about a more socially accepted method? Alcohol to cure to ills? Cocaine’s making a comeback, you know. Perhaps cardio-holism is more your thing. Sweat, then, baby. How about a double-banana split? A bag of Doritos? How about shoplifting a new shade of red lipstick? Say, I hear they have a double-bill at church this weekend.

The point is, we all confront our demons in ways particular to us. The notion of willingly allowing ourselves to be hurt seems to be one that most people can’t handle. It’s not as if life doesn’t bruise us often enough as it is, is what people think.

And, sure, there are some right-fucked sadomasochists out there, but there are also some incredibly well-balanced ones as well. It takes all kinds, just like bowling. The thing is, do you understand why you like to have pain inflicted on you? Are you aware of what it does for you? By that same token, are you aware of why you want sex and romance to be all feathers and soft kisses?

It’s all about self-knowledge, this life thing. The more you know about what motivates you to do what you do, the greater your grasp on things will be. If you’re oblivious, then you’re in trouble. Simple.

I’d argue that the person who likes only the soft love – the gentlest of kisses, the lightest of touches – is equally as mentally ill-equipped as the out-of-touch person who prefers only pain. I’d say that they probably fail to realize just how sheltered they’re trying to be from the harshness of reality, and that they need to wake up and smell the rough sex.

I think anyone who’s only into pain for pleasure, and has no other outlets, is unbalanced. Just like in Secretary, there are plenty who like a little roughness and pain in between the soft kisses and lingering caresses. Balance is good. Experimentation is good. Sticking to vanilla all your life, or just Rocky Road, is probably never a healthy way to go.

There is nothing wrong with loving a little roughness. There’s nothing to be ashamed of when it comes to enjoying your lover smacking your ass so hard it’s red when they’re done. There’s simply nothing wrong with liking anything, as long as you understand why you like it, and you’re not just using it to cover up the ills of your existence.

Society doesn’t understand BDSM, and they’re not going to anytime soon, either. Acceptance is increasing, but as long as it’s all the hardcore folk riding front and centre and playing the roles of spokespeople, there will always be a negative perception about the lifestyle.

It is what it is. Enjoy what you do, and know that being discreet doesn’t mean being ashamed; it’s simply self-preservation in a society that just doesn’t understand. Sounds like being gay in the ’40s, don’t it? Oh, well.

Bondage for Beginners: Part Two, Basic Guidelines

(I forgot to include the link to part one, which is here.)

Bondage can become part of your life for a lot of reasons. Sometimes, it’s a way for folks to deal with the anxiety of their lives; symbolically giving control to another, or taking control. Sometimes, it’s for less honourable reasons. Sometimes, it’s just another fun game to play.

Whatever the reasons, however pure or otherwise, trust – having it, taking it, sharing it, abusing it – is the core experience of bondage. I touched on this last time ‘round. Have the right intentions, and this can be an incredible relationship-building experience.

In my fun little world of bondage, the tease is never separated from satisfaction. For me, tying a lover up is not only my opportunity to tease and taunt him, but also a chance to take him to orgasm as slowly and deliberately as I’m able, and make no mistake about it, an orgasm will be had.

As much as we’d like to think we’re all grown-up and it’s easy to give and take orgasms, the reality is, most of us are a little too conscious about whether or not we’re getting not only our partners but ourselves a ticket to the promised land. We overthink it, and we often overplay it.

During bondage my style, it’s a little more honest and straightforward: You will come if it’s the last thing I do – that is my job, my mission, for the next hour or more, my raison d’etre.

This is one of those instances where people want me to lay out step-by-step instructions, but that’s taking it too far. Bondage is about you being creative, using your lover’s body as a canvas or even as a test subject. “I wonder what happens if I drag an ice cube up the inside of his leg.” If you can think it, try it, and see what happens. Any time it doesn’t work, just go back to something you know you will. It’s not the end of the world. Try, try again.

So let me, instead, give you a few guidelines, not rules, all right?

  • I know there’s a contingent who finds the hows and whys of fancy knot-tying really erotic, but there are those of us who just can’t give a shit, too. I’m no sailor. I can’t do a grapevine knot or anything like that. I can tie my shoes, though, so bind a lover I can do. I make up for it in details.
  • Music can be an added bonus, or a negative, depending on your POV. If the submissive’s lying there all bound and blindfolded, sound is one of their major clues as to what’s going on. I have hardwood floor in my bedroom and it creaks and groans. I tend to put some music on to cover the sound a little, so he’s not as aware of what the next move is.
  • Lighting doesn’t really matter, if they can’t see, but the question is, how are you feeling? The sexier you feel, the better you’ll play. If candles make you feel more comfortable, then do that. Whatever makes you feel good, baby.
  • When bringing food into the equation, make sure everything is chopped bite-size. Put ‘em in bowls. Do you need to have all your supplies when you’re starting? Not really, you can leave them bound and wander out to find additional things later, but it might be considered cruel. I prefer to be organized at the start, so he’s not abandoned for more than a moment or two throughout.
  • Misleading them is fun. I’ll drag a finger up his chest, trace it over his lips, and when he thinks he can suck on it, pop a little cherry in his mouth or something else, like a tongue. Play, play, play.
  • If you can, pull your bed out from the wall. I can, and I do. Having 360-degree access means I can do more to him, and that I have more ability to move around.
  • Crawling over them on the bed’s pretty much a suspense killer. What’s the point, then? Get off the bed and walk around. Try to minimize how often you lean onto the bed, because, again, they can feel the weight shifting, thus negating the surprise advantage.
  • When you’re making your way up their body, be it with kisses or with drizzled syrup, going in a straight line doesn’t work as effectively as zig-zagging will. Why not? Because nerves like surprises, and if you’re working in a straight line, the body knows what’s coming next. This is always, always about surprising the senses.
  • Multi-tasking is hot. If you’re standing and you lean down to suck and bite a nipple, then use a hand to tease their inner thigh and the other hand to toy with an ear lobe or something. Remember, they can’t see what’s coming. Every touch, every action, they all get you a new reaction. It can be tricky, when you’re the doer, but as the receiver, it’s just an incredible mix of feelings.
  • Always, always, always mix approaches. Bondage without oral should simply be considered wrong. Bondage with straight-through-to-orgasm oral should also be considered wrong, in my world. I think it should be intermittent, incessant teases. Oral, then kiss and suck and bite all over them, then return again to oral play. Interrupt it with more props and toys. Toy with them manually. Change gears as often as you’re able. When the frustrated groans get louder and more pained, start planning your route to orgasm — by oral? By fucking them? By manual stimulation? Using sex toys? You’re writing the playbook, you decide. If you like, ask what they want. I never bother, though. I’m in control, I’m deciding.
  • Talk to them as you play. Tease them with little suggestive comments, or investigate how they’re enjoying things. Take requests, if you do such things. Most of all, be sure they know you’re having fun. Tell them it’s getting you hot, all this satisfactioning of them. Remember that the only senses they really have fully functioning are hearing, smell, and touch. Now and then you’ll indulge taste, too. Hearing, though, is a great way of keeping them focused on everything. Don’t talk incessantly; shut up and do your job sometimes.
  • Devour your lover. Cover every inch of their body with your hands, mouth, and any other body part you can think of. Every place you touch and claim as yours is one less area they’ll be self-conscious about – and when you’re tied up in bondage, feeling self-conscious isn’t a big stretch. Try to negate it by doting and outwardly desiring them.

This is your chance to really take notice of what your lover does when you touch them in different ways, different places. It’s an opportunity to learn and develop new insight. The question is, will you use it as such? I always do.

I may think of more in regards to bondage, from a beginner’s point of view, but really, it’s not brain surgery. Just try to keep the suspense at a maximum, remember that it’s all about the submissive, and try to take them to the edge as often as you can before you finally give the gift of what’s bound to be a pretty incredible orgasm.

Bondage for Beginners, Part One: What You Need

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, bondage is something everyone should experience.

Too often, things like bondage or use of sex toys or whatever are all obscured by a perception that they’re made for people who REALLY are into sex as a lifestyle. Not so.

But even if it were so, what’s so bad about enjoying sex as a larger part of your existence? Is it really so bad? There’s no admission cost, you don’t have to find parking, you don’t need to plan ahead. Sex as entertainment isn’t the worst fucking thing you could be doing with your time, now, is it? Beats the shit out of watching another Will & Grace rerun.

People get bored with sex. “The Missionary? Again?” With good reason. Sex can get repetitive if it’s the same position, same approach, every time. You wouldn’t eat a hamburger every day, now, would you? (Unless you’re that boring fuck in the States who’s eaten 20,000+ Big Macs. Jesus Christ – don’t get me started. But lemme know when he finally visits an oncologist.)

And this is why there are sex toys. This is why people try bondage, or public sex, or whatever. Now, you don’t have to get all gussied up like the Gimp in Pulp Fiction in order to enjoy bondage. So, what do you need? Well, let’s start first with what you DON’T need.

  • You don’t need to own a copy of The Ashley Book of Knots.
  • You don’t need to be nurturing a passion for the Japanese art of Shibari.
  • You don’t need to own a closet full of leather or gear.
  • You don’t need to have any special equipment at all.
  • You don’t need to own rope.

No rope? Gasp! Really?! Why, yes, Virginia, there is bondage without proper rope. How about neckties? Scarves? Nylons? Even that belt from your housecoat will do. It needs to be able to tie in a standard knot. That’s all you need.

So, here’s the shortlist of your requirements.

  • You need something that can restrain your lover.
  • You need creativity.
  • You need trust.
  • You need inventiveness.
  • You need a sense of adventure.
  • You need to want to enjoy yourself.

And five out of six things on that list ain’t gonna be bought at Paul’s House of Porn, all right?

Here’s the deal. Bondage is about trusting your partner enough to let them tie you up and do what they like to you, or vice versa. It’s imperative you talk about what isn’t going to happen. Don’t like pain? Agree to not go there. It’s pretty simple. You can get all fancy and lifestyle-ish and pick a “stop” word (a word that, whenever you use it during anything experimental in sex, signals that’s going too far, and stopping has to happen) but I find the premise pretty silly for anything less than full-on BDSM experimentation involving serious pain.

Me, I’m crazy, I favour the word “stop.” I mean, fuck, like it’s that complicated? “Hello, stop that, please.” When your lover says to stop, I don’t care what you’re doing, STOP, whether it’s in standard sex, or when your lover’s slung from the roof in stirrups. The more often you stop what they don’t like, whenever they ask you to, the more they’ll trust you in the future. Makes sense, huh?

Not respecting your partner’s boundaries in bondage means you’re breaking the number one rule. The belief in bondage/BDSM is that the person who’s all tied up is the one with all the power. Why? Because if they say stop, you absolutely must. According to anyone who’s played in the lifestyle, ignoring the submissive’s wishes is grounds for an ass-kicking.

Now, if you’re all gung-ho to tie someone up, but don’t want to be tied up yourself, I don’t think you deserve to do the tying, and I don’t care about this “But I’m a top!” bullshit. It is an act of trust. If you expect your lover to trust you, but you won’t trust them, then you might as well get a hammer, ‘cos that’s the first nail in your relationship’s coffin.

When it comes to bondage, I prefer doing the tying up, but I’d never deny my lover the experience of returning the favour, because that’s what good relationships involve.

Once you’ve had the talk and you’ve decided who’s being tied up first, it’s time to play. Personally, I prefer making an agreement to explore bondage in advance, because I think you need to be organized beforehand. There are, indeed, things you need in order to play with bondage Steff’s way.

My shopping list tends to include:

  • Chocolate syrup
  • Caramel syrup
  • Strawberries
  • Nectarines
  • Kiwis
  • Mangos
  • Papayas
  • Apples
  • Massage oil
  • Lube

And whatever else gets you through the night, baby. No, you’re not making a fruit salad. You’re bringing food into the equation because a) they’re at your mercy and b) if you’re doing it right, they’ll be blindfolded for a while. The fruit is practical and sensual at the same time. When the bondage play begins, and they’re blindfolded, feeding them a mystery fruit will have to force them to turn their senses on. It’s a pleasure trigger. They’ll need to figure out what they’re eating, thus making them sensually more alert for when you begin playing. I’ll talk more about the food in the next posting.

First off, let’s talk setting. Do you have a headboard you can bind your lover to? No? Then visit your local hardware store. Get standard-issue drawer pulls and screw them in strategic locations. You could even put them on the side of the bed and the bottom, if you want a variety of positions in the night. This scenario runs you about $10 to do four mounts, depending on the price you’re paying for the drawer pulls. It’s practical, cheap, and you can move them around if you’ve chosen bad spots. These pulls pictured here are exactly the ones I’ve used on my bed. Two for $3, and they have plenty of room for getting rope underneath, and allow for a little wiggle room for my submissive (aka Guy). The alternative is bondage bedwear, but it’s such a hassle and it’s expensive. If you’re settling in for a long night of play, it could be useful, but it also might intimidate the shit out of the submissive.

Ah, you’re not ready yet, grasshopper. Now you need toys. If you want to shell out the big bucks on sex toys when you don’t already have them, feel free, but your house is filled with a million things that can trigger some really, really happy feelings in your lover.

Get creative. Go rummaging through your drawers. Make a stop in the kitchen. Find things you know will offer a variety of interesting sensations. Whether you’re lightly dragging the tines of a fresh-from-the-freezer ice-cold fork up in the inside of a lover’s leg, or teasing their privates with the bristles of a silicone pastry brush, you’ll be guaranteed some shivers.

Let me revisit the silicone pastry brush. Run, do not walk, to your local kitchen supply aisle and buy yourself an extra silicon pastry brush for the bedroom. Fuck feathers – the pastry brush is one of the most erotic feelings I’ve found. I sent shivers up my guy with it the other week. Trust me. Go get one, kids.

Buy a curtain tassel at the fabric store and tease your way around their body. Even a piece of paper being dragged up a naked body is amazing. Ice cubes rock, so make them in advance. Even one of those skin-scrubbing gloves for the shower can be pretty wild. It’s coarse, so it’s a change of pace from the soft and smooth things. Sandpaper. Anything works, provided you begin with light pressure and see what the reaction is.

If you don’t trust your ability to judge how something might feel, then do your rummaging half-naked and any time you find something that piques your curiosity, then simply close your eyes and try it on your inner thigh. If it works, great. If not, put it back.

If you plan on getting really sloppy with the syrup, and expect to have to clean your lover up a bit over course of time, you can grab a slow cooker or a rice cooker with a “keep warm” mode on it, put some water and some wash clothes in it, and keep it bedside for a clean, warm cloth to wipe them up with. Or you can save the filth and shower together later. Whatever, but there are options.

Lastly, what you need is a carrying tray. It does no good to have a lover about to be blindfolded if they can see what you’re going to use on them. They should be bound and blindfolded before you gather all your goods to bring bedside.

And that’s where we’ll stop for today. By the weekend I hope to post on how the actual act of bondage itself should unfold in its most basic terms, but you clearly have a couple ideas, I’m sure, of where this is headed. Any questions so far? Any tips on household products that have brought you bondage glee in the past?

Want more? Huh? Do ya, punk? Part two is here.

A Game For New (And Old) Lovers

Part of the fun of a new relationship is that of getting to know each other. We get to make a mental checklist. You learn their mannerisms, routine comments, favourite phrases, what their contemplative expressions are, how they look in that moment where they’re truly relaxed, and so forth. In the bedroom, it’s no different.

(But let’s be honest. The beauty of a great relationship is that you continue learning about your lover over the long term. Hell, we never stop learning about ourselves, so how could we ever stop learning about them?)

We forget, sometimes, how truly expansive the land of lovemaking is. It covers vast territory, and the amount of activities at our disposal is legion. Sometimes, it might be nice to have a map at our disposal.

Enter this little game I’ve thought of. Let’s call it “School Me, Baby.” It’s a lusty little literary exercise, the kinda thing that turns a geek like me on.

You and your lover go to the bookstore and you each pick out a book on sexuality that best appeals to you. Now, it’s not rocket science, this book-selecting thing. Most of them will cover all the basics, but the question is whether or not it covers the best for you. I mean, self-help books are like underwear; almost any will technically do the job, but which best fits you is a highly subjective matter. In this matter, you want to ensure that the book covers everything from foreplay to positioning. If you’ve got kinks, you may have to buy a second book to reflect that, too, so go right ahead.* Take the time to scan through books. If you’re not really pro at deciding what books work for you, simply pick one subject to look up in each; say, oral. Read. Whichever passage evokes the experience best for you, that’s the book that best fits you.

So, you pick a lazy Sunday morning, head into the bookstore together, and spend an hour or two just browsing through sex books in the corner together. Decide which one each of you wants to take home, buy them, and head back to the pad.

Now you get to either head home to read in different parts of the house, or you can separate for the day and read in different areas. The only thing is, you’re going to decide how much you’ll be reading, and if you want to, what sections you’ll be covering. (Foreplay? Oral? Anal? Kinky? Old-fashioned lovemaking? Something rougher? Waterplay?)

You’ll make arrangements to meet again soon – that night, the next – for dinner.

Between now and then, your assignment, should you choose to accept it, is to read the required readings with a highlighter in hand. Anything that turns you on, gets you revving, or has you touching yourself, you highlight.

You can make an evening of reading the passages together, if you like, or you can trade books and get together again the next night, after you’ve done your homework. I think it’d be kind of sexy and hot to get a bunch of candles going, toss a blanket on the floor, scatter pillows about, and open up to, say, the highlighted section on oral. Naked, sprawled on the floor, the receiver reads the passage out to the soon-to-be-giver, and when the giver’s suitably inspired, they get down to work – possibly even while still being read to.

I have this image of the guy going down, hearing about, oh, say clitoral sucking techniques, and after he gives it a valiant try, looking up, and saying “Like that?” This is one of those times you can have a dialogue while you’re doing it. Have fun, exchange feedback, make it a game where you try slight variations of each technique, and see what one provokes the best reaction. Call it the “compare and contrast” segment of the evening.

Any which way, the point is that you learn from your lover’s perspective, in clear and certain terms, what it is that they find works for them, or what it is they’d like to experience.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, no two bodies are the same. There is no one surefire just-add-water instant-orgasm trick. Everyone has different needs, and for many people, it’s really hard to express exactly what it is we’re desiring. This is one of those little tricks designed to take care of those differences between us all.

VARIATIONS:
Not only can you highlight what turns you on as far as having done to you, but you can also highlight, in another colour, the things you’d love to do to your partner.

You can buy the book for your lover, highlight all the things you’d like to have done to you, and put Post-It notes opposite those sections with little suggestive notes, such as, “And in return, I would pin you down, and then perform – turn to page 94.” On page 94, you’d highlight raunchier parts the passage of what it is you’d do. Use page tabs to mark sections.

When reading your lovers’ book’s highlighted passage, if anything smacks of something you’d like to experience that wasn’t covered in your own book, underline it and mark the page for your lover.

As mentioned above, there are kinks in the world. Kinks are made, not born, and if you’re entering a new phase with your lover where kinks are something you’re wanting to explore together, starting that phase with an exercise like this, except using books focusing on BDSM and other alternative lifestyles, might ensure you’re both on the same page when you’re starting out, or give you an overview of the possibilities the new lifestyle you’re considering might offer to you as a couple.

Unleashing Your Vixen: Using Notes Pt. 2

This is the first installment of my new series, Unleashing Your Vixen. Please check that out before you read this. The next installment will probably be on Thursday at some point. That’ll have actual moves in it. This is sort of a tease towards that.

_______________

Ah… smell that? That mix of spring and long-stemmed red roses and perfume dangling on the wind? It’s spring (well, unless you live in New York, you sorry bastards). More importantly, it’s Valentine’s day.

I have issues with Valentine’s day and I’ll share that with you some other time. For now, though, it’s a nice thought that more people will be getting laid tonight than any other night of the year. Far be it for me to rain on your love parade.

In keeping with the Unleashing Your Vixen notion, these are a couple small ideas to put in the arsenal of their education. Preliminary to moves is the act of initiation. Vixens must take initiative from time to time — if not half or more of the time.

__________________

So, you’re on a first date, it’s going well. He’s cute, he’s sexy. Every time he smiles, you imagine what it might feel like to glide your tongue along the edges of those pearly whites. But you’re just a vixen in training. You don’t want to be the good girl who gets a kiss at the door tonight. Nah, right now, you wanna lay a smacker on this guy and see how challenging you can make it for him to have to walk to that door in two or three hours.

But how do you make the first move?

Have you ever noticed that guys almost always head to the john before they start making out with you on the couch? There’s like this switch: They usually relieve themselves before they get all worked up. It’s a pragmatism thing. So, you go before that happens.

Wanna be cute? Put some vivid-colour Post-It with a cute little double-entendre like “Help yourself!” on your prominently-placed bottle of mouthwash.

I mean, if you’re dating and you don’t have a prominently-placed bottle of mouthwash, then you’re doing it all wrong. Tasty kisses are nice, but only when it’s chocolate, wine, etc. Mouthwash is key. Guys’ll help themselves to the mouthwash 90% of the time anyways, but a little note? An itty-bitty green light? I doubt there’s many fellows out there who’ll pass up that chance. Now you just wait.

The “take me now” note always works nicely, in all its varying states. Another fun way to use notes to break the ice when you don’t know how to say what it is you want – say, for example, you’ve been in the relationship for a spell, a couple weeks or month or something, and you don’t want to wade through all the niceties and cuddling and such. You want sex, you want it hot, and you want it now, but you’re not confident enough yet to answer the door a little moist and oily fresh out of a bath, and naked, when he rings. So, a smaller step is needed.

You’re at home, you’re having a nice meal in. Just put a note under the plates at dinner, and ask him to clear the table for you while you step into your bedroom for some silly reason. Try something like, “If the dishes are working for you, continue, but if you’d rather be taking me doggy style, come and get it.”

You can be as dirty as you want to, but the fact is, a little dirty with a little nice is always sexy, always classy, and always lets you feel like you’re as bad as you need to be, without crossing too many lines in your so-called ethical sand.

Hell, you can include a note in your Valentine’s day card that has a list of things you love your partner doing to you. “Things I love that you do to me: Nibbling the back of my knees, biting my inner thighs, when you switch to a more aggressive thrust as you get closer to climax, when you nibble my ear while fingering me…” and anything along those lines. Exchange cards in a restaurant. Let him get all flustered and aroused. Take it a step further and put a couple things on the list that you’ve never done to him, but wouldn’t mind trying, and see where that takes you.

Being a vixen or a rockstar lover means doing little things like this. It means taking initiative sometimes to let him know that you’re wanting this as much as he does, if not more. Too many guys are left feeling like their lovers fuck them out of obligation, not desire, and your job as a vixen is to lower that average. Let him know. Let it be unmistakable: Sex is what you want. No, he is what you want.

Being a vixen, yes, it’s about the moves, the know-how, but it’s also an attitude. It’s a confidence you need to find in yourself, an awareness of the sexy being you have inside, and it’s a desire to let that part of you shine. It’s not about being a size four or wearing a Chanel dress or being a barstar at the club. It’s more real, more innate than that. Being a vixen is about being strong when you need to be, being demure when it’s called for, and knowing what cards to play and when to play them. Being a vixen doesn’t happen overnight, but one night can drastically impact your progress and really spin you in the right direction. Taking small steps like this could be a crack that springs a raging river from the dam that has been your sexuality up till now. Embrace the fissure, and don’t worry, it bursts wide open faster than you might expect.

Lights, Camera, and… Action?

I don’t know about you, but January’s traditionally a month I stay home a lot in an effort to get my bankbook back in black after the excesses of the festive season. So, I was thinking, hmm, what little project can I propose for my readers?

In the last posting, I suggested doing performance report cards with each other, checking in with your partner to see how well each of you are doing in the pleasing department. This time, I want to suggest getting into visuals — taping your lovemaking — but with a twist.

We’ve all seen sex videos gone awry, whether it’s Paris Hilton’s tapes getting released to the world at large, or some couple down the street who accidentally turned their video into the rental store instead of the copy of Forrest Gump the family had been renting. Yes, these things can happen, and that’s why you need to be careful.

But you can get hit by a vehicle crossing a street, yet you do that daily. Take the chance, explore it. Be a star, in your own way.

Naturally, a lot of us don’t like seeing ourselves on tape, but it’s an important thing to get over. A sex video isn’t jalways smut, it can be an erotic record of how you feel about your lover, and evidence of how you display it. When incorporated back into the relationship as visual foreplay or a romantic night in, it can help spice your sex life like nothing else, provided you’re willing to embrace it.

Imagine you’re a woman with insecurities, and you’re sitting there, watching a DVD of some sexcapades with your lover, and he starts getting aroused just watching you. This time, it’s not some blonde bimbette with triple-D boobs getting him rigid, it’s you, in all your simple, real, attainable beauty. For once, you’ll feel like the bombshell you deserve to be. Take the chance.

If you have insecurities, then there are some approaches to lessen ‘em. Spend a quiet night planning the activities with your partner. Script it, as it were. Decide some of the things you’d like to do to each other, but don’t worry about order, just go with the flow. If planning it to the T will help you lessen even more of your inhibitions, then go for it, but don’t feel restrained by it.

When you’re getting down to the nitty-gritty, you need to keep a couple things in mind. Technology’s important. What is your camera capable of doing? What kind of lighting will it need? You want to ensure you’ve got a camera that can perform in low-light situations, especially if insecurities are present. The control of the lighting is what differentiates the romantic from the pornographic. Camera angles are important. If it gets you hot, explore your lover’s body with a handicam. If your lover’s going down on you, you can hold the camera and capture it from your perspective. If you like, get your lover masturbating on film. Whatever occurs to you, you can do.

Nowadays, the home sex video can be done better than ever. Home editing technology is more sophisticated, yet more user-friendly than it has ever been. My Mac, for instance, comes with iMovie and iDVD. The first allows you to take different tracks from different digital videos and edit them together for a digital film. Then, you can mosey over to iDVD and lay in an audio track. You can speed things up, slow them down, stretch ‘em, lay in colour filters, whatever turns you on, whatever makes the mood better. I don’t know what Windows programs exist, but I’m sure they’re every bit as simple.

So, here’s the twist, which comes after you’ve done the playing around on camera.

You get together with your lover, put all your different sexy video tracks on your computer, crack a bottle of wine, and as a couple, watch the clips and make decisions about what segments are the hottest, and then you create your own DVD with montages of your lovemaking sessions. Find music that sets the pace for your visuals — if it’s down’n’dirty, something like INXS or Nine Inch Nails might hit the spot. For something romantic, pick any cheesy diva you like. It really doesn’t matter. (Personally, I’d be wanting to find a little classic bassy porn soundtracks from the ‘70s, just for the fun/humour factor.) You can even intellectually elevate the moment by recording poetry or erotic writing and dub that over the tracks, too.

The great thing about doing something like this together is that the creation of it (via the editing) becomes as much a part of the experience as the action performance is. And if you’ve taken the time to talk and “script” what sort of activities you’d like done, then the entire thing, from start to finish, becomes an experience that you’ll always be able to enjoy.

There’s another bonus, too. Like I suggested last time, the performance reviews, they become so much more tangible if you’re sitting there and analyzing your clips and cutting/pasting them together. You can talk about why that move got you so hot, what you’re feeling when your face is screwed up in agonizing pleasure, and how it could have felt just a little better if done slightly different.

As a society, we’ve so many hang-ups about seeing ourselves on video, sexually, as if it’s pornographic and crass. It’s not. It’s a record of how two people express their love for each other. And while it’s easier for something like that to escape out into the world than ever before, it’s also easier to turn it into a beautiful work of art that you can enjoy time and time again as the years pass — just be careful with it, that’s all, and make sure you trust your lover on every level.

Speaking of years passing, every relationship has its phases where the sex might dwindle. If that’s the case, something like this can serve as a tangible reminder for just how good it was, and provide inspiration for getting back to that kind of feeling once again.