Sunday, September 28, 2008

"I Need to Find Some Pleather"

A rather long time ago, I wrote about BDSM here. Today, I actually got to experience it-- well, vicariously, that is. Yes, an asexual person survived the Folsom Street Fair, which is "the largest leather/fetish event in the world" and a classic San Francisco event. There were many, many people showing off a wide array of bondage fashion...or lack thereof. I had to admire people's utilikilts and elaborate fake police uniforms. I saw a few of these too, which I found interesting:

Another interesting thing was a group of people standing around a booth where an organization was performing floggings as a fundraiser. There was an announcer standing up, and he's trying to get the crowd involved. He yells,
"So, who's had sex in the last week?"
I was expecting cheers from most, but the group was pretty much silent.
"Come on, who's had sex in the last week?"
Still...mostly silence. But amusement from my direction.
The announcer, obviously having a hard time energizing people at the beginning of the event, starts targeting one woman who's dressed in regular clothes at the front of the crowd. He says, "You look like you want to be flogged! Don't deny your sexuality?"
I was like, "Uh...what sexuality?"
I know, most people see something like flogging as sexual, perhaps overly so. But what's really intrinsically sexual about it? I know there are asexual people who are into S&M. I was also talking to my fair-going buddy about people who get a rush from the pain of piercings and tattoos. It seems to be an adrenaline thing, not sexual pleasure. I've heard this from multiple people, although I've never experienced it myself. To me, feeling needles in my body isn't "cool", as I've heard it described, just painful. But it seems meditative for some. Apparently, people's bodies work in very different ways. Which is strange, because I thought we all just had slight surface variations on the same thing.

Another thing that might not be intuitive: Although being elaboretely tied up before noon on a Sunday morning isn't quite my idea of fun, I understand this kind of "alternative" sexuality more than I do "vanilla" sexuality. Is that true for other aces? Sex by itself doesn't seem exciting or interesting to me (except on a theoretical level), so it makes total sense that people would want to add some more adventurous elements. Leather dog masks? Well, life is short...


The Impossible K said...

I can't speak for all aces, but yeah- I totally agree with the "alternative" vs "vanilla" sexuality. I think that's the main reason I find sex shops so interesting. The act alone is Bo-ring to say the least. At least if toys were present, they'd provide some sort of distraction... :-P

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This is really weird.

Lusandre said...

You know, I do find BDSM more interesting than vanilla sexuality, and it is oddly more intuitive to me. I'm somewhat afraid to venture into it myself, since the sexual aspect (or perceived sexual aspect) alienates me so much. If I could get over that, I think it would be cool to be involved in a rope suspension, as long as it is perfectly clear to everyone involved that I'm A. I really don't see what's so inherently sexual about being tied up, either. I don't connect it with sex at all.

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