Saturday, March 21, 2015

When Life Hands You Lemons

There's no way around it; sometimes you just have to make the best of a bad situation. Nowhere is that point driven home better than that old axiom "When life hands you lemons, make lemonade". 

"But Cheryl," I  can hear you all grumbling, "what does that have to do with spanking?"

Well, allow me to explain. Long time readers of these pages have heard me lamenting at other times that I never got to be a young woman in the spanking scene. Yeah, life's not fair. I get that. I learned that lesson a very long time ago. 

I was simply born at the wrong time. There's no getting around that. When I was a cute 20-year-old, there was no spanking scene (at least, not here in the States). Even if there had been, I lacked the confidence and the resources to participate. There was also no internet. In those days (the early 80's) there were three ways to meet men if you were kinky:

1) Go to an adult book store and put an ad on the bulletin board with your name, phone number and what you're into.
2) Put an ad in an adult magazine or newspaper.
3) Pick up a guy in a bar and hope he wasn't an axe murderer.

You can see how limited our resources were. We didn't even have cellphones in those days so there was no texting going on. If you did actually meet a guy and wanted to talk to him, you had to exchange phone numbers. People had to actually "date" in those days. However, none of the young men I met were interested in spanking me. 

The above photo was taken at a friend's completely seedy house during a party. The smoke should be a cue that I'm smoking and I was. But not a cigarette. I was stoned out of my gourd here. I did many things in my youth that I regret now because of drugs and alcohol. There's no way that I would have made the right decisions to be safe in the scene; especially since drugs and alcohol were a part of my everyday life back then. Maybe if I had been sober I would see things differently. Anyway, that's another thing that's unfair about life: you never really know the things you're missing until somehow the years of your life show them to you. 

In every other way, I've always said that I was born at the perfect time. I was fully able to enjoy the 70's and most of the 60's (though as a child). The music was awesome, the cars were cool, the television was groovy and the toys were the best. But...there's that small regret. Time marches on and it has taken its toll on me in many ways. The years have been kind in regards to my looks, I'll be the first to admit. Many women my age look every bit of it. I'm don't think it's bragging to say that. Lots of people that I meet are surprised when they learn how old I am. So I don't want anyone to get the idea that I'm just feeling sorry for myself here. I do have some blessings to count. But when I see the excitement of the young people just coming into the scene, I do feel just a pang of remorse over when I was born. I would give almost anything to be a young person in the scene today--with all the advantages of social media, Smartphones and texting. There are times I feel like a dinosaur. I don't understand the appeal of most of the new shows that young people watch. I don't understand their taste in music at all. I don't get the new films that they Tweet about. But I still know how to enjoy myself, although I'm sober these days.

Now, saying all this, I have to say that we older folks do serve a purpose in the scene. We should be there to give advice when it's asked for. After all, if they have the advantage of youth, we have the advantage of experience. And young people should remember that they're walking a road that was paved for them, the same as it was for us by the ones who came before us. 

As a teen (I was 18 when the above photo was taken), I think part of my problem was that I hung around people a lot older than me. In the photo here, I'm dressed to go fishing with my grandfather. I spent a lot of time with my Paw Paw while he lived. He and I had some awesome talks while our fishing lines bobbed in the water. Because I spent so much time with older folks, I think I had a maturity that most of the people I knew who were my age lacked. My mother always used to say I was an "old soul", meaning I never really acted my age. I always acted older and more mature than my age. Maybe that's another reason that some of the young people in the scene get on my nerves a little. Behavior that I would never dream of engaging in happens all the time at parties. People just shrug and say "They're young". Well, so was I once. I think the difference is that I had people around me who put the brakes on my behavior before it became destructive. Even in my worst days of alcoholism and pill popping I never really hurt anyone but myself. I never drove drunk or reported for work under the influence. Even when I was drunk my common sense never got overridden by my stupidity. 

So getting down to brass tacks here, I have to say that today I feel a bit sad that never got to be a 21 year old at her first party. Nothing will ever change that. Well, not unless someone really does learn how to make a time machine out of a Delorean. In the meantime, I'll just have to make lots of this:

And it's a good thing I like the taste of lemonade. So if you see me with a sour look on my face, just put down to lemonade. I'll just go on, trying my best to make the best of a less than ideal situation. The spanking scene will go on after I hang up my canes. I'll go on enjoying parties when I feel like attending. But oh, to be a young lady getting all of that attention!

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

When In Rome

There used to be a very famous saying: "When in Rome, do as the Romans". What this means is when you're visiting somewhere, whether it's another country or even just someone's home, it's customary to partake of the local customs. Unfortunately for me, the closest I ever got to Rome was a Toga Party thrown by some friends when I was in Atlantic City last year.

I had a great time with these folks, mostly because they were good friends of mine and there was spanking involved. Which leads me to the subject of today's entry. Do hosts have the right to expect their guests to participate in activities that make them uncomfortable? Is it bad manners to decline a particular activity because it's "not my thing"? How do we decline without hurting the host's feelings? I'll use the above photo as an example. The Toga Party that I attended was thrown in a private suite by friends of mine. There was alcohol (several different wines) available, even though everyone in the room knew I don't touch alcohol. In no way did I feel that my hosts had disrespected me or my feelings by offering wine. None was offered to me personally. Now, if everyone had spent the evening trying to get me to drink, I might have felt differently. However, there have been times when I've felt pressured to do something I ordinarily wouldn't do because all the other participants were doing it. Once or twice, the pressure was overt. But more often, it's more subtle. I won't put the details of specific incidents here because I have no idea who reads this and the thought of someone being offended by me stating my discomfort is too horrible for words. Suffice to say that I declined to do what everyone else was doing for my own personal reasons. There was a card game being played and it was a game I wasn't interested in playing. So when I was invited to play, I politely declined. The majority of the players accepted my decision with grace, but a few gave me a moderate harangue on the issue. After all, everyone else was doing it. I think one or two people may have taken my polite refusal as me saying I'm better or morally superior to them in some way. True, the game had some distasteful aspects to it (not the least of which for me is bad language) but that's really why I declined. I think I declined because everyone else was playing. The card game is one of those trendy games that no one will remember in three or four years (kind of the way no one remembers the game Sex Drive today). It just smacked of what I call Everyone's Doing It Syndrome. In much the same way people were reading the "50 Shades" books because  everyone else was, this card game became de rigeur at many of the spanking parties I attended. 

So that begs a question. People in the kink scene say that we embrace and encourage individuality, but do we really? Almost everyone wants to be accepted or seen as popular. I know very few people who are true rebels in the kink scene; those who march to their own drummer and don't allow others to pressure them into conforming to their standards. When I see friends who never showed the slightest interest in a certain activity all of a sudden embrace it, I have to wonder why. Usually, it means that that person has made a new friend and that new friend has either subtly or overtly pressured them to do it, too as a way of "fitting in". Sometimes, it could just mean that the person in question has just experienced an area of growth, something that's perfectly normal in the kink scene. But sadly, more often than not, it usually means that they've befriended someone who expects all of his or her friends to be into the same things he or she is into and they won't tolerate someone who doesn't play along. Of course, it's really hard to know which event occurred. But given what I know about peer pressure in the scene I can tell you that it does happen and that normally bright and imaginative people give in to peer pressure in order to be popular. As an example, the fact that I don't drink or smoke makes me unpopular with the scotch and cigars crowd. It's just something that I won't ever be able to partake of because I've quit both of those things. I enjoyed them while I did them, for sure but I don't do them anymore. I guess that makes me seem like I'm on a moral high horse with some people, but that's not it at all. I don't judge smokers or drinkers because I used to be one. To me, there's nothing more angering than a former smoker who acts like they never smoked. This is especially true if they're smoking on the side and living in fear of being caught. 

As another example, I was once invited to an ageplay party and I politely explained that since that wasn't my thing, I felt it best to attend another of the suite parties available that night. The person who invited me accepted my explanation graciously and wished me a pleasant evening and there I thought the matter rested. Not true. Later, when I returned home, I had a private message in my inbox asking me why I had dissed the ageplayers. The person who wrote me told me that the person who had invited me told them I had "recoiled in horror" at being invited. This wasn't true, I explained in my message back to this person. I told them that I had declined in a perfectly polite way, explaining that I had never had any interest in ageplay and that, quite frankly, it made me a bit uncomfortable. So I guess that constitutes recoiling in horror. Whatever happened to "your kink is not my kink"? I'm sure I'm into things that other people find weird and that's OK with me. I've never expected other people to be into all of the same things as me. I can't speak for the BDSM scene as I'm not into it, but I can say that, in my opinion, the spanking scene has become a cult of personality, where a select few control who gets accepted and who gets left out. But they're more likely to accept you if you at least pretend to like what they like. And that leaves me out because more than ever before, the spanking scene has become all about punishment and discipline, two things I have no interest in at all. I see people who never had the slightest interest in doing punishments now embracing it and I have to wonder if it's because they feel they'll be left out if they don't? It's a rather uncomfortable feeling knowing that you're not popular and if you don't attend a certain party, you won't be missed. 

Look, I'm not saying that everyone who develops a new fetish does it only because someone coerced them into it. I know that people often change and grow as they go on in the scene. I know I've changed quite a bit from when I first started. However, my core beliefs haven't changed. I still detest real punishment scenarios as much as I did when I was a newbie (and I participated in a misguided attempt to fit in). But I've seen so many people doing 180s in their philosophies that it makes me wonder. I've also come to grips with the fact that my political and religious views don't win me any fans in the spanking world either. It's one thing to not enjoy participating in punishment role plays, but quite another to criticize the current administration, especially how they react to watching Islamic terrorists cut of the heads off Christians. Many of the people in the kink community are hostile to Christians, so why would they mind if a couple hundred of them get beheaded on Youtube? I mean, it's not like we're humans or anything, right? I'm a follower of Jesus Christ and I don't apologize for it. Last time I checked with the Constitution, Freedom Of Religion was still there. Being a conservative Christian in the spanking scene is one sure way to get yourself uninvited to the popular kids' parties. I'm sure there are others like me who love the Lord but they keep that to themselves for fear of being ridiculed or ostracized. 

So I guess that wraps up this entry. I will state right here that I have no desire to do something distasteful to me for fear of being teased or unfriended. I've had both happen to me in my life and I've survived them. I also have no desire to do "what everyone else is doing". My mother taught me years ago that just because everyone else is doing something doesn't mean I should be doing it.