Tag Archive: Greater Granola Blog Project

So, over on Facebook, I’m part of a polyamoury discussion group and someone was asking for book recommendations. This lead to me deciding to make a post over here about different “love styles”[1] and how going into Poly assuming that everyone does it the same way is… a good way to get tripped up in short order.
The book that I (and at least one other person) recommended was Opening Up (Tristan Taormino). I suggested it – or, rather, seconded the other commenter’s suggestion – because it offers a lot of different examples of How To Do This or, maybe more accurately, Why You (Might) Want To Do This / What You’re Looking To Find/Gain/Experience. Like everyone else (it seems), I read The Ethical Slut when I first started looking into polyamoury. I had a friend, around that time, who described it as the “handbook of everything that can go wrong in poly”. I don’t remember it being quite such a downer but, then again, when I read it, I was in a monogamous relationship that I wanted to open up a bit and I really needed a trouble-shooting guide to Dealing With What Could Go Wrong. So maybe I didn’t interpret it that way because my situation was one where everything that “could go wrong” probably would[2].
Another friend – the one who lent me The Ethical Slut, as it happens – warned me in advance that “It’s not the be-all and end-all of happy and functional poly”. And she’s right. I find that it focuses more on the “slut” aspect of things – talking about play-dates, trick-bags, and finding your turn-on, as it does – and maybe a tad less on the constelationships end of things[3]. Which is why I’m less likely to recommend it than I am to suggest someone read Opening Up. (Yes, we were eventually going to get back here, thanks for sticking around).
When I first started identifying as polyamourous, I was a recently-separated single girl, a “gay divorcee” as one friend put it, who wanted nothing more from poly than the chance to stop policing her desires and to stop categorizing everything down to the nth degree as soon as anyone had coffee with me or asked me out to a movie.
Looking back on the past six years or so, though, I can see that I’m still trying to overcome that stuff. I’m a little bit better at not policing my desires, but I still freak right out if romantic/sexual/sensual/flirtatious interactions don’t come with some kind of border around them to define what they are and where they might potentially end up going. Case in point: I kissed a friend at a party, and now I don’t know what to do about that and am really hesitant to even, like, instant-message her about something inoccuous, because I don’t know What It Meeeeeeeeeeeeeans.
It’s a bit ridiculous, to be perfectly honest. I need to learn how to chill.
Anyway. Because of the above – and for other reason or three that I’ll get into in a moment – I tend to think of my style of polyamoury as being one where I want (a) a Main Squeeze, and (b) friends with benefits, and the chance to sexy/kinky stuff with people who, outside of a scene, I can just hang around with as and when the opportunity arises. I’m not sure how this is going to develop as time goes on, though.
My wife once commented that she, as someone who’s not all that sexual most of the time, wants polyamoury because she wants to love many people. Whereas I want polyamoury because I want the opportunity to (at least potentially) fuck many people. When she said it, I admit I was a little hurt by it which, given my wife, I suspect has a lot more to do with my own internalized hierarchies of “love > sex” than any feelings in that vein on her part[4]. Having thought about it, though, my feeling is that I don’t need to be poly – something that, for me, is explicitely both sexual and romantic – to love someone. Now, admittedly, I’m part of a community where Cheerful Letchery is how we say “I love you” to our friends. So it helps to be comfortable with being non-seriously macked-upon by the people you love. But I’m also someone who falls in love fast and hard when I let myself be sexually vulnerable with someone. There’s a pretty direct link between my heart and my cunt[5] and it’s a big part of why I tend to top, rather than bottom. And probably a fairly significant part of why it’s hard for me to let my guard down and Stay Present when I do choose to bottom for someone. It’s a thing. So aiming for poly as a way to explore sexual desire without risking losing my heart – over and over and over – is kind of where it’s at right now.
And yet… that could change. Maybe I would risk my heart. I just need to do it with my eyes open[6].
BUT this is about people with different poly-types/love-styles and how that can (maybe) be navigated, so let me talk a little bit about that. See, early in my relationship with Ghost, I was (eroniously) opperating on the assumption that what she wanted from our open relationship was the same general stuff as I did. so when she started falling in love with her other people… I freaked. For real. It wasn’t pretty.
So some questions:
What happens when a more monogamous-acting[7] person hooks up with someone who has Lots Of People? How do they handle it if/when those dynamics shift or do a 180?
What happens if you’re a newly-opened-up formerly-mono couple and one of you is expecting to be unicorn-hunters together than the other is… not.
What do you do if you hook up with someone (liker, er, me… apparently) who has [LOVE > sex] hierarchies, or other stuff (escalator expectations, for example) in their head? Do you have a game-plan for how to bring it up & hopefully address it? Do they?
If your Zucchini discovers she’s more grey than A, does that affect your relationship(s) at all? If yes, in what possible ways?
What happens if you go into a Craigslist Encounter hoping to make a friend-with-benefits, and it turns out she’s looking for an annonymous one-night-stand? (E.G.: Any idea how you’ll deal with the reality that you’re just not going to hear from her again?)
Does it affect how you feel about your crush to find out that she’s a “meet the metamours” poly person, while you and your main squeeze have a DADT thing going on? What about the other way around?
Ms Syren.
[1] I admit that I’m not overly fond of the term “love style”. I can’t put my finger quite on why, though, since there’s nothing intrinsically wrong or icky about it… Maybe because it sounds too much, to my ears at least, like “The Lifestyle”? No idea. :-\
[2] As it happened, I asked my husband for polyamoury and he said “I can’t be married to you any more”. Devistating at the time? Yeah. But I think I dodged one hell of a bullet because of that, and I’m grateful that we split up as easily as we did. I sometimes wonder if the separation and ensuing divorce would have gone as smoothly and cooperatively as it did if I’d been the one suggesting we end things.
[3] Though I admit it’s been close to eight years since I read it, so…
[4] Something to unpack in a future post, perhaps?
[5] …And between my heart and my voice, so… maybe it’s no surprise that I hit high notes when I orgasm?
[6] I ask myself this stuff a lot these days. How would I handle having a second sweetheart? In town? Not in town? How long would it take for me to start wanting to shift from friends-with-benefits to sweethearts if we were messing around regularly? To what extent am I still navigating by the Relationship Escalator’s unidirectional map?
[7] Not to be confused with something like “straight-acting”. I mean someone who is seriously limitting the number of slots on their dance card, for a variety of reasons, while still quite happy to be one of many in terms of their partners’/partner’s partners.

So Del has a post up called “Sometimes You Just Gotta Open Your Mouth” wherein he talks about a lot of things – primarily mortality – but, at the beginning, specifically about feeling overwhelmed when faced with the blank blogging-page.
I can relate.
There’s a zillion things that I feel like I “should” be blogging about here on Syrens – Bill C36 and its (negative & appalling) effect on sex workers’ rights and safety; Jian Gomeshi and the situation where predators sometimes use an identification as kinky to hide their abusive behaviour; Bill C279, which would protect gender identity under the Canadian Human Rights Act and enshrine it from protection against hate crimes under the Criminal Code as well, and which is currently being held up in the senate by one or more Conservative senators who – apparently – are hoping it’ll die (AGAIN) before being passed, due to another election; … Along with my own growth/struggles/you-name-it around poly, power exhange, and personal sexuality.
So I sat down over waffles this morning and “just opened my mouth” onto a piece of paper. And what came out – surprisingly or otherwise – was another discussion of loneliness.
I often joke to people – my friends, anyone who reads this blog, y’know: people – that I’m “the most monogamous poly person I know”. I admit that I’m starting to wonder if I’m not shooting myself in the poly foot by saying stuff like that. :-\ Between this and the slight possibility of my wife getting yet another person in her romantic life (ye gods…), I wound up thinking about loneliness and how it relates (sort of…) to polyamoury. Basically, I wound up thinking about Fear Of Abandonment and how loneliness makes assholes of us all by messing with our ability to feel empathy, among other things.
Look, I don’t have a study to back this up (though the loneliness stuff I linked to, above, isn’t far off), but I’m developing this theory that Fear Of Abandonment makes people incredibly self-absorbed. I’ve talked about this before, although possibly not on this blog, about how the fear of (and pre-occupation with) What Other People Think of us, and how (not IF, but how) people feel about us can lead us to believing that every little thing is some kind of a referendum on whether So-And-So likes us for real or not.
Someone didn’t send a thank-you note after that thing, that time? Clearly this is because They Don’t Really Care about me, and has nothing to do with their work-life being kind of overwhelming at the moment.
Someone didn’t text me back immediately? Clearly this is because they’re punishing me [in a really passive-agressive way] for some unknown Thing for-which They Are Going To Leave Me with all haste, and which couldn’t possibly have anything to do with the fact that I texted them while they were on a date, at work, or possibly driving.
Someone didn’t come to my birthday party? Clearly this is because They Hate Me and has NOTHING to do with the fact that they’d made plans to do something else six weeks ago, while my party invitation was kind of short-notice.
Seriously. Captain Awkward is FULL of stuff like this, so I heartily recommend that you go and read it if you need more examples. But do you see what I mean? Starhawk wrote something – in either Dreaming the Dark or Truth or Dare – about being “King Nothing”, about how being the Most Hated is, in a weird, backwards, upside-down way, kind of like being the Most Loved.
It makes sense.
For those of us who secretly, or not-so-secretly, believe that we are worthless, that we’ll never be worthy of love and kindness, that being wanted isn’t really something we understand as possible… knowing ourselves to be the Lowest Of The Low is, in a way, a chance to be special in some way. Being the “Best Loser” is still being the best something, right?
Gawd. Even just writing that down. It feels so self-pitying, so very much an unneccesary (“unneccesary”?) cry for sympathy and attention and what-not, so very, very “poor little rich girl” to be sitting here with my neuroteypical brain that does not pre-emptively re-absorb its serotonin, that doesn’t plague me with disturbing thoughts of how nobody would miss me if I just happened to die on day, y’know, “by accident”, that the people I love would be better off, and happier too, without the burden of my neediness[1] always weighing on them.
And yet I beat myself up – often emotionally, sometimes physically – on really bad days when I’m so overwhelmed with shame that I slap my own face, tear at my hair, claw at my skin, while my Jerk Brain puts on the skin of someone who woould never hurt me like this, and laughs inside my head. While my self-loathing rages and screams at it Are you happy now? Are you happy now? If I hate myself enough, will I be worthy of your crumbs? If I hurt myself enough, will your indifference feel like love??
Whew. Yeah. So that’s the inside of my brain for you.
But I was talking about loneliness and how it can make you really self-absorbed.
I wonder if everyone who deals with loneliness, who is afraid of being abandoned, ditched, replaced “as soon as Someone Better (and wouldn’t anyone be better?) comes along”, if we aren’t all secretly carrying around that same horrible, cruel, world-devouring voice that never stops telling you you’re bad, it just changes up the volume periodically.
At Unholy Harvest this year, I got to take part in a ritual. It was a really good ritual, and I hope that we get to have another one next year[2]. Part of that ritual involved partnering up and one of you saying “I love myself. I love myself.” and the other acknowledging it, saying “You love yourself”. It was so easy, when my ritual-partner said that she loves herself, to respond with a grin and “I know. You love yourself!”
But I don’t know. Maybe she was faking it just as much as I was, and her confidence and her 1700-lumen smile that actually does light up the room, are just a cover-up for the same loathing and self-directed rage that are gnawing at me all the damn time.
All I know is that when she said “You love yourself” to me, I laughed in that awful “this is actually a living nightmare and I just told a really big lie” kind of way.
I have no idea how to like myself better[3]. Every time I see someone make a note of how they’re resolving to treat themselves with as much compassion and care as they treat their friends, I wonder if it would be okay for me to do something like that, or if acting like I’m mean to myself, publically acknowledging that I’m mean to myself (I am mean to myself, and acting like it doesn’t count because I’m not taking a razor to my own arms is… possibly part of how I’m doing it?), if, given that I spend most of my days cooking good home-food, making different kinds of art, going for walks and/or doing yoga, and getting in a number of more-than-occasional hot baths (you know, living the life I actually want and getting to do it in spite of my own income being kind of uncertain?), it isn’t a little bit ridiculous to act like I’m entitled to, I dunno, also believing that I deserve that stuff. Or something.
I don’t know.
I don’t know how to like myself better. But I think I need to.
I think I need to.
Take care,
Ms Syren.
[1] … Er… Mostly. I’m not suicidal. Not suicidal thoughts. Not suicidal ideation. DEFINITELY not PLANNING anything. But that “burden of my neediness” thing… That eats at me sometimes. :-\
[2] Although heaven and earth know I’m not up to facilitating it at this point… Maybe I can figure something out?
[3] And I mean that in the sense of “like myself more” but also in the same sense meant by phrases like “laugh yourself healthy”. Funny how that works out, isn’t it?

Okay, so as-you-know-bob, I have this pet theory – based on not a whole lot, I admit – that many of the people who are Wired for polyamory in the sense that they Just Don’t Get Jealous are possibly coming to it from a place of Insecure-Avoidant attachment styles and the need to always have an escape route available. That said, not everybody who goes “Poly! It’s what’s for breakfast!” is going to attach in an insecure-avoidant way. A lot of us – self very, very much included – are insecure-anxious attachment types who are terrified of Being Abandoned, and carry around a secret (or not-so-secret) fear that the only reason anyone is hanging out with us is because someone better hasn’t come along yet.
And today, I kind of want to talk about making the switch from Monogamy to Polyamoury (where “Polyamoury” means the whole spectrum of consensual non-monogamy), as an insecure-anxious person, when the only road map I’ve ever had has been the one for Monogamy. Continue reading

So there’s this article up on Salon right now, talking about polyamoury’s age-old bugaboo, jealousy, and how one poly triad handles theirs.
In addition to talking about “transitivity” (which is fascinating, particularly when considered in conjunction with things like the annual Phamily Reunion that is Unholy Harvest), the author goes into some theories about where the whole idea that “jealousy is a problem that originates within the individual and so must be handled by that individual” comes from. She links it to the 20th Century (“Industrial”, “Modern”, “Capitalist”, etc) idealization/lionization of The Individual. Which I admit is a neat way to look at it if you want to situate polyamoury in opposition to a system (see: Nuclear Family) of isolation, alienation and the resulting anxiety that can be used to, ah, encourage people to buy a lot of stuff they don’t really need to buy. (Although her brief segue into class analysis is also kind of fascinating – again in the context of Queer Leather Tribe with its working class and broke-ass-chosen-family roots). Continue reading

So Maggie Mayhem has this post about “Women by the Wayside”. It’s a post about the cultural narrative we have about “women on the road”. But it’s also a post about the cultural narrative that we have about women who exercise agency and autonomy when it comes to our own bodies and what we do with them.
She says:

“There’s the rub, right? Whether you’re the woman who dared to stick out a thumb for a ride, tits for the rent, or a tongue for a tab of acid you get that message loud and clear: you’ll get what’s coming to you one way or another.”

It’s not an easy read. I’ve had harder, but be aware: The subject that prompted the post is that of Women disappearing on the highway and getting found in dumpsters. The subject of the post itself is sexwork, stigma and in/visibility. Just be aware of what you’re getting into.
Maggie also says:

“Engaging in sex work as a method of survival is seen as tragic, not victorious. You’re relegated to life in the objective case, not the subjective. When people are committed to the narrative of your context as defeat they will only see you as defeated.”

This is why I’m linking this post right now. Because I think it’s incredibly relevant to what’s going on with #C36.
It’s a post about how, for women who “presume” that we own our own bodies and can make our own choices even when they go against what Patriarchy would want us to do or believe, the presumed (presumed “deserved”?) outcome for us is rape and death.
Go take a look.
Ms Syren.

So, after a morning spent working as a Professional Naked Chick, I came home to the news that Peter MacKay had tabled Bill C-36 the inapropriately named “Protection of Communities and Exploited Persons” act.
The full text of the bill is, in theory, available through Open Parliament, though I haven’t got a link for it yet.
You can learn what the proposed legislation means, and how it flies in the face of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, over at Pivot Legal.
POWER has issued a press release regarding the proposed legislation, and you can read it here.
I don’t even know where to start.
So fuck it.
I’m going to yoga and I’ll come back to this another day.

So, my lovely wife/Property and I do a yoga class together on Wednesday nights. It’s an easy walk from our house, and gives us something approximating a Date Night once a week. As we were walking over, we were joking about the number of Significant Others she has and how that makes scheduling Interesting fairly frequently. And we ran down the different ways of naming those relationships, and the discussion, however light-hearted, got me thinking about different shades of intimacy. How an “intimate friendship” isn’t the same as a “friend with benefits”, for example, or how a “girlfriend” might have fewer social responsibilities expected of her than a “partner” or a “spouse”. Or not.
What I was thinking is that, when your relationship style allows for more than one romantic relationship, it also allows for those many degrees of intimacy between “just friends” and “dating”.
When I decided I needed to be polyamourous (or practice consensual non-monogamy, term it how you will), it was because I felt that I had to be extremely careful about how and to-whom I showed affection to people other than my then-husband (some of that, admittedly, was because of the kind of marriage it was, but still). When romantic fidelity isn’t tied to romantic excusivity, there stops (for me at least) being a need to put super-firm walls around what friends can do with each other or mean to each other.
This isn’t much of a post, I realize. I’m mostly just thinking out loud. While I do still struggle, on occasion, with worries (however unfounded, I know) about my own place in my wife’s busy, busy life, it’s still really nice to know that there can be that fuidity going on.
I think that’s it for now.
Ms Syren.

So. Queering Power 2014 happened last weekend almost a month ago, and Ghost, Kitty, and I were asked to facilitate a discussion about overlapping power exchanges in full-time and ownership dynamics. Here’s the description:
Long term, full-time Power Exchange is never simple, but it becomes exponentially more complicated when you add polyamoury to the mix. How do you hold someone firmly while allowing them enough leash to hold power in another person’s life? What authority does someone have over you when they are your owner’s owner? How do you balance the requirements of submission and dominance at the same time? In what sense is someone your subordinate, and in what sense are they your equal, when they’re in service to your servant… but not to you? Open and overlapping full-time power exchanges stretch far beyond occasional extra-dynamic playdates or the running of a staff of submissives by a single dominant. Regardless of whether you’re in charge, in service, or in the middle, please join us for a discussion of the difficulties and delights of overlapping 24/7 power dynamics.
Basically this was very much like the Poly and Power salons that I host chez moi periodically, but a bit more specific in focus, both in terms of topic and in terms of how heavily it was facilitated.
Usually, with Poly and Power, the discussion just kind of ambles where it will, and I keep a couple of question-prompts in my back pocket in case things lag or get tangled in the weeds. In this case, we came prepared with a series of open-ended questions meant to get people thinking and talking.
Now, granted, the folks who turn up for Queering Power are basically a bunch of nerdy keeners in fetish gear. (Uh… I’ll be in my bunk)… Where was I? Right. They’re basically a facilitator’s dream group: They talk, they listen, and they build on what others in the group are saying. Basically, my job as facilitator was really easy. 😉
One of the participants – possibly because he’s a school teacher, but also possibly because he may have been instructed to do so by his Person – took notes. Posssibly I should have done this, too, since it’s now almost a month after the fact, and I’m trying to remember what everybody said.
The main gyst of what came up, though, could – I think – be boiled down to some fairly basic Poly Principals, possibly with a D/s twist on them:
(A) Remember your Place. This is an important one, and I don’t mean it in the sense of “bottom of the ladder” hierarchies where the person who owns someone else’s owner gets to poly-veto All The Things and the person who is owned by the ownee just has to suck it up and take the crumbs. I mean it in the sense of things like… Remembering that I am Ghost’s boss, but not Kitty’s boss (therefore, just as I don’t get to boss Kitty around[1], I also have to remember that her Personal Growth is not my Personal Project). OR Remembering that, just because your Dominant is someone else’s Submissive doesn’t mean that you have to, or get to, serve (or answer to) two Keepers. OR Remembering that being In The Middle sometimes requires a lot of triage, but that everything still needs to Get Done.
This feeds directly into (B) Use your words. But also use your ears. I’ve got a friend who, at his day-job, recently acquired some Minions. And, as he is familiar with KinkyLand, we’ve had a couple of conversations about management and about the responsibilities that one has to the people over-which one holds power. One of the major ones – and one that I fall down on a lot is making sure that your People have enough direction to keep them busy, but also to keep them interested and engaged and developing. It’s the counter-balance to all those job-descriptions that require you to be a self-starter or good at working independently, rather than being the kind of person who either needs someone standing over their shoulder going “Have you finished that project yet? How ’bout now?” in order to actually get anything finished, or else who can finished Assigned Task X just fine, but won’t independently go looking for Task Y on their own.
This is Polyamoury’s “Communicate, Communicate, Communicate” blended with the multi-tasking long game of the Master, the attentive, multi-layered listening of the Servant.
S-types need to listen for instructions, sure, and not just the kind that are phrased as a formal request/expectation (see: Self-starting), but they also need to be careful not to volunteer, unasked, on tasks that they know they’ll resent doing, but feel like they “should” do without having been asked for them. On a similar note, presuming to clean the leather of your master’s master might wind you up with a sharp talking-to along the lines of “That is not your privilege!” rather than a “Thanks for taking that task off my hands” from your boss.
D-types need to offer instructions, sure, but we need to determine those instructions based on both our goals (for ourselves, our dynamics, our People, and our to-do-lists) and on the needs, spoken or unspoken, of our People. I can want to instruct my Servant to whip me up a new pair of leather sandals this evening, but that doesn’t mean I get to ignore things like (a) paid cobblery work that needs to get done, (b) pain flare-ups, and (c) social/emotional responsibilities to her own servant and any other partners who are in the mix. Sometimes Using Your Words is going to feel less like Issuing Decrees and more like parenting an easily-distracted kindergartener[2], but you (in theory) figure out how to make it work.
People in the Middle need to be aware of what they can/should deligate to their own servant(s) – and how frequently they can do that before said s-type(s) start feeling like they’re primarily serving a master-not-their-own – versus what needs to be done by them-specifically in order to continue providing the service (the relationship) they offered to their d-type. A big balancing act, to be sure.
No matter what position(s) we play in a given overlap, we all need to remember to talk about it when we’re swamped with Fill-In-The-Blank and need some help or some slack on This or That responsibility/task.
This, in turn, feeds into (C) Be generous with your heart. This means… assume the best of the people in your constelationships. Nobody’s in competition. Nobody is trying to gain control of All The Time, Energy and Attention (even if your Jerk Brain is saying that they are[3]). Sometimes creative solutions (like sleeping three to a bed once a week so that the ownee’s ownee can make everybody coffee in the morning) will be necessary to keep things running smoothly for everyone involved. Something unexpected relationship twists (an owner’s owner becoming – formally or informally – a mentor/teacher to their ownee’s property; a switch in which member of a given diad is Holding the Power) will happen, and the ripples from those changes will also need to be navigated by everyone else involved in the overlaps.
So there you have it.
Some thoughts on “D/s Cubed” and what I learned while discussing the specifics of overlapping 24/7 and O/p power dynamics at Queering Power 2014.
Ms Syren.
[1] …Ish. I use the analogy of “auntie/neice” to describe the kind of authority (or “authority) I have where Kitty is concerned. I’m only Tthe Boss Of Her when GHost (her “mom” in this analogy) is out of the house.
[2] Even when you don’t have a Mommie/girl relationship there are still going to be days where you have to say “Okay, no more TV, it’s time to Tidy Up” or “I thought I told you to Clean Your Room” or whatever.
[3] Just me? Okay.

Taking a bit of a different tack today. So far, this year, I’ve managed to talk about Poly or D/s during my GGBP posts. Today, howver, I’m looking at safer sex.
Specifically, and having just done this myself, I’m reminding folks to check the expiry dates on your safer sex supplies. I had a whole bunch roll past their use-by dates recently. My hook-up kit (which, admitedly, doesn’t get a tonne of use) is re-stocked with stuff that’s not going to expire until 2016 or later. I feel a whole lot better.
As a side note: You don’t actually have to throw away expired condoms. You can use them on personal-use-only toys – you might want to do this if your toys are porous or otherwise tricky to clean, or to protect your silicone toys if you prefer silicone lube. Just… don’t get them mixed up with the stuff that’s still within its use period.
Look. It’s not the end of the world to use expired latex (and non-latex) barriers during sex – way better to use them than to use nothing. But the risk of having your barrier fail – tear, break, lose flexibility, lose potency (if we’re talking about spermicidally-lubed stuff) etc – gets higher the further past the expiration date something gets. So, if you’ve got the option of using, er, fresher materials… do so.
On a related note: Yeah, you can generally pick up free roll-on condoms in any CHC bathroom or Q/T community info fair. But if you’re wondering where to find affordable insertable condoms and oral dams – both of which can be a tad on the prohibitavely expensive side, expecially when you’re broke – turn to agencies like Planned Parenthood Ottawa and the ACO who give them away for free as part of their respective mandates.
NOTE: If you’re looking for fisting kits – which tend to contain nitril gloves rather than latex ones – I know that the AIDS Committee of Toronto supplies them, but I don’t know if anyone in Ottawa does. (Commenters? Want to throw some information out here?)
Anyway. That’s your PSA for the day.
Ms Syren.

So February 10th marked four years in Dynamic for me and my wife/property.
We win! 😀
Given the title of this post, maybe I should point out that this doesn’t mark four years in collar (that’ll be May 7th, 2015), and we don’t actually have a contract, per se. The gyst of it is: “Ghost takes care of Ms Syren. And Vice Versa.” And we just sort of take it from there.
Regardless, she signed on for another 40 years, which sounds pretty good to me. 😀
So… other than going “Squee!” about the whole situation, why am I bringing this up? (Okay, I admit it, it was mostly about the Squee). My question is: what do you do with a dynamic like this? How do you deepen it? It still feels… weird? Presumptuous? To be thinking “How do I want to focus my property’s development this year?” but I’m still doing it. It’s still my responsibility to do it.
I look at people who’ve been in dynamic for twenty and thirty years, and I have no idea what that looks like from the inside. Do you just keep claiming more and more of your territory? I keep reaching for the metaphor of cultivation – rather than that of, say, teaching someone new tricks. Where do we go from here?
It would be so easy to finish right here, to say “I guess we’ll find out” as if that were some kind of a Really Profound Statement. And it’s not like we won’t find out, over time, as our dynamic continues to develop. But I’d like to have some kind of a concrete plan for what direction to take.
As it stands, I find myself casting around for a focus-point. Like, “This is the direction we’re going to work on this year”. Given how things are going already, I’m guessing that this is going to be a year of “spiritual stuff” (for lack of a more appropriate catch-all). And part of that’s me, because that’s where I want to focus my energies so, hey, why not focus hers there, too? But that’s not all of it. Where do we go from here? I guess we’ll find out. 😉