Possibly the cleverest take on the absence of the Femdom trope in modern romance literature that I’ve ever read.
I need some insight on something.
My teen-aged daughter, like many of her friends, has a Tumblr. Her Tumblr — like those of her friends — is nothing like my own. My Tumblr is full of pictures, gifs, and captioned shots of sex, desire, attractive women in sexual poses and situations, and depictions sexual fantasies. Hers, on the other hand, is full of pictures, gifs, and captioned shots of hot, attractive guys staring soulfully at each other, physically touching, hugging, or struggling with their emotions.
See? Hers — like those of her friends — has absolutely nothing whatsoever to do with sex.
I maintain a more mundane Tumblr with funny pictures of animals, bicycles, and vacation shots so she and I can share things. Naturally, among her friends, I’m the cool dad. “Wow, your dad has a Tumblr? My dad still emails in all caps.” This means that they feel free to talk about what they’re reblogging with me, and most of it seems to be emotional pairings of characters in movies and TV shows such as Doctor Who, BBC Sherlock, Harry Potter, The Hobbit, The Avengers, etc. The big draw for most of them, however, is the shipping of characters from Supernatural.
Shipping is the modern variation on slashfic; fan fiction that pairs characters in books, movies, tv, etc., in a romantic or sexual situation. Slashfic further carries the connotation of being primarily about gay, i.e., homosexual pairings, such as (for you old-timers) Kirk/Spock or (more recently) Edward/Jacob from Twilight. The hottest OTPs on shipping Tumblrs right now seem to be Dean/Castiel, two of the characters on Supernatural. I won’t even attempt to describe the show, except to say that Dean and his brother Sam are traveling demon hunters, and once in a while get some assistance from the angel Castiel.
Coincidentally, IO9 just posted an article about Supernatural, calling it “the best gay romance on TV that isn’t actually gay.” The article is fluff, the the comments point up that many people (and not just women) see the homoerotic undertones, and enjoy playing along. Anyway, here’s where I need the insight. I understand fanfic pairings; fan fiction is often more about fleshing out the relationships between people than about adding to the canon, and slashfic just does so in a more adult fashion. I mean, who hasn’t watched Star Trek and thought about Uhura and Spock, or Deanna Troi and Riker, or saw the older, matured Harry Potter movies and thought about Harry and Hermione? But what is it about gay pairings that are so fascinating to young women? Most of the Tumblrs I’ve seen appear to be run by straight women in their late teens and early twenties, an age that I associate with obsessing over straight relationships as they try to negotiate the twists and turns of growing up and finding a life (or long term) partner.
I’m guessing that my lack of understanding is partly a generational thing. Mrs. Edge assures me that neither she nor any of her friends even entertained the idea of gay sex back when she grew up. Hell, back in the 1970s, we were just getting used to the idea that straight people had sex, and that it could be fun and not just for married people making babies. But this raises the further question: now that we seem to culturally accept the idea of recreational sex, hy are younger women now fantasizing about straight men having relationships with each other?
Supernatural pictures? I thought you’d never ask. Here’s one that has been floating around on some of the Tumblrs. I can’t tell if it’s a capture, or it it’s been shipped… er, shopped. But they are a couple of fine looking guys.
Well, it’s another year come and gone here at Edge of Vanilla Laboratories, and like most other bloggers I’m looking at my stats to
see how much love I’ve gotten to see what kind of traffic has come through here.
As in the previous few years, about a quarter-million of viewers stopped by, the overwhelming majority of you were directed here as a result of web searches for some variation of male chastity and/or orgasm denial. Not surprisingly, typical search terms leading here were: male chastity, chastity devices, orgasm denial, chastity blog, chastity captions, (various named) chastity devices, orgasm control, femdom chastity, flr chastity, long-term denial, male chastity marriage, husband in chastity, femdom wife, real-life chastity, chastity stories, orgasm denial stories, chastity lifestyle, enforced chastity, ruined orgasm, and similar variations on these.
There were also a good number of slightly over-lapping BDSM & fetish themed searches, mainly: vanilla femdom, femdom marriage, femdom strapon, femdom pegging, tight leather, latex dominatrix, fetish leather, fetish lingerie, fetish fashion, and femdom vanilla wife. Note that Mrs. Edge does not self-identify as dominant, nor do I claim to be in any kind of a FLR or femdom marriage.
More interesting to see, however, are the non-chastity/denial searches that have led readers here. Among the top search terms were variations of: mature women, curvy women, senior sex, frenum piercings, naughty limericks, fitness porn, and Rule 34. I’m probably not the oldest (age-wise) blogger around, but I do try to feature news items on people having sex above the 35 to 40 year old age limit that the media would have you believe is the top end of “sexually active.”
Fitness porn searches are obviously a reflection of the turn that this blog has taken in the last couple of years, as I’ve become more fitness and health oriented. I’ve taken some flack for this, but as those “mature” people know, maintenance grows more important when you have more miles on the equipment.
Admittedly, the staff here at EoV Labs have been distracted with various work, family, and health issues, all of which tend to draw the focus away from sexuality, as much as we try otherwise. For example, this time last year saw me in physical therapy for a shoulder injury, for which I had to give up weight lifting — which is just as well because by the end of the summer I had to go in for hernia surgery. Sometimes I suspect that I’m damaging myself with all this healthy exercise. Accordingly, I haven’t posted many HNTs as I have in previous years, but I’ll try to make up for it, especially since I’m actually in better shape than I was a few years ago.
Most of my blog referrals have come from the several major search engines, but not far behind has been Keyheld, the “Chastity Blog” aggregate that we started a few years ago. Right now, there are about 2 dozen blogs represented, and that number changes as we add and subtract blogs based on their activity level. Sad to say, many people get off to a great start, and then fall off the radar after a few months, a statistic which hasn’t changed much in the last decade. Femdom Resource has now claimed a top spot for referrers, and I urge people to check out Paltego’s daily picture and commentary. Chastity Forums is also near the top of this list, and I’m pleased to say that it has developed into a fantastic little community for people who are interested in the more vanilla aspects of introducing “enforced” chastity as a way to enhance their relationship.
Ironically, Keyheld, in addition to being my biggest referrer, is also my biggest out-click, and the revolving door is rounded out by the number of out-clicks to The Edgier Vanilla, and Chastity Forums.
One major change has been in the top named “celebrity” search that has brought people here. For the last four or five years, Marina Sirtis has been the single top name search that has brought people to this blog, and not without reason; the lovely, 57 year old Ms. Sirtis — or at least, pictures of her — have been featured a number of times over the years, and those articles also coincide with “curvy” and “mature.”
This past year, however, searches for Marina Sirtis have been eclipsed by searches for the younger, and admittedly much curvier plus-sized model London Andrews. This has come as a bit of a surprise to me; two years ago (back when I started The Edgier Vanilla tumblr blog) I had never heard of her. Now, a significant number of my Tumblr reblogs feature London, and I’ve discovered about a half-dozen blogs dedicated to her. The really interesting thing is that she doesn’t seem to do kink or fetish modeling (like Bianca Beauchamp, one of my other favorites), but seems to specialize in erotic pictorials that show off her voluptuous curves in a sensual manner.
I expect that 2013 will see much of the same as this past year, although I’m hoping that our various work, family, and health issues will be lighter this year, which will allow us to
be a little more frisky experiment a little more at the laboratory.
Just in case you haven’t already labeled yourself in enough ways, here’s an interesting article in the Huffington Post (Motto: “At least we’re not the Daily Mail.”) about arousal and sexuality: Arousal Types: What’s yours? Aimed mainly at women, the author, relationship therapist Petra Zebroff, declares:
Most of us do not analyze what exactly turns us on; arousal just seems to happen. It can appear at the strangest of times, coming upon us with the most unsuitable partners or taboo acts. Or arousal can be more predictable, with the heat coming from a favorite alluring sex scene in a movie or book.
As a guy, I can attest to the fact that I often don’t know what’s going to arouse me half the time. BUt the other half of the time, I’m admittedly predictable.
I found this interesting:
Research has determined women’s arousal to be ‘complex’, but has little to say about the specifics. Until the ’60s, women were believed to be sexually aroused only by the feminine aspects of sex such as intimacy and soft touch, when Alfred Kinsey (Sexual Behavior in the Human Female), Nancy Friday (My Secret Garden) and Shere Hite (The Hite Report) reported that women’s fantasies were often as bold and “dirty” as men’s were.
As someone who grew up in the 70s, I remember hearing and reading about this, and the controversy over the various books that were published identifying these ideas, and I remember sitting around with my college friends — men and women — talking about the kinds of things that turn women on. I was often surprised that women (some some women, anyway) spurned the bodice ripping drugstore novels for the more graphic erotica.
But on to the good stuff. Amazingly, Ms. Zebroff has managed to distill arousal down to 4 main types.
Just as there are different types of learning (visual, auditory, kinetic), there are different types of sexual arousal. The four sexual arousal types I have identified are:
- The Sensual Type is body-oriented and relies on the senses (touch, smell, taste) to fuel arousal. They get hot by the sensation of their skin being stroked, smelling a delicious scent or tasting something erotic.
- The Cognitive Type is head-oriented, relying on thoughts and imagination to drive sexual feelings. This type is fueled erotically by thinking about/seeing certain sexual acts. Fantasy and porn are important tools used by the cognitive type to imagine different acts in their erotic map.
- The Intimacy Type’s primary motivation is to “connect” with their partner. They thrive when they share with him/her, or when they feel that he/she “gets” them.
- The Attractor Type gets his/her arousal from arousing their partner. Their main source of arousal is when their partner finds them sexy and appreciates them. Being ‘seen’ is important to this type.
I’m a sucker for psychological profiling surveys, so I took the one linked in the article. Like the article, it seemed geared mainly toward women, but not exclusively so. I suspect that I’ll come out as either sensual or cognitive. It should take a few days to get the results, and I’ll report them on this blog.
Anyone who has seen a Myers Briggs Personality Type matrix is probably imagining how one might create a 4 x 4 profile of sexuality types.
In the meantime, let’s have something sensual, intimate, and attractive to think about:
Because I’m a guy, I still shop at Sears. The Craftsman Tool line is still pretty good, they have snowblower and lawnmower parts, and they often have good deals on appliances. But apparently some people still shop for clothes there, including (ahem) intimate apparel. Sears even has a section of their online catalog devoted to — specifically devoted to — sexy, flirty, adult evening wear. No, they aren’t going to compete with, for example, The Stockroom or Adam & Eve, but it’s pretty interesting that they acknowledge that some grown-ups want to have a little play time.
Naturally some people have a problem with this. More correctly, some people have a problem that the Sears online catalog recently had a picture of a woman modeling some of that aforementioned lingerie, in which one, by peering and squinting closely at the screen, could clearly see some nipple. You know, on a breast. Covered with purple, lacey material. Because it’s lingerie.
The internet is a great way to make this kind of information spread very quickly, and Sears soon had a number of complaints. They removed the offensive picture, but not before other people captured the image to pass it around.
Now, this was not a wardrobe malfunction, nor was it something seen in a widely viewed, general-audience venue. It was on a woman modeling “exotic” lingerie in a portion of the online catalog (which required a number of clicks to find) that was meant for adult viewing.
The various discussion areas where people were nattering about this showed a range of attitudes. While many people didn’t particularly care (presumably people who don’t shop for “exotic” wear at Sears), I was surprised at the number of people who suggested that such images should have been more carefully vetted by the designers, web site artists, etc. Even more surprising was the implication that a) people browsing from work could have gotten into trouble for a NSFW picture, and b) that impressionable youngsters might see it.
I don’t know what to say about people shopping for lingerie from work. I mean, we’ve had internet and computers for a generation now, and if some people haven’t figured out that online shopping for anything during work hours is frowned upon, then there’s not much more you can do to get that message across.
But the idea that a teen boy might be hesitantly poking around the Sears lingerie ads to see porn is downright laughable. Okay, sure, back in the old days (pre-internet) we actually did look through the Sears (and Montgomery Ward, etc.) catalogs for pictures of women in their underthings. But any 13 year old who is trying to get a thrill at Sears instead of looking at the, oh, thousands of different web sites out there should probably be left alone — if not put into a museum as an example of adolescent innocence.
And because I don’t want my readers squinting and staring too closely at their screens to find a nipple, here’s a couple that are a little more obvious, and just as enjoyable to look at.
So, I’m recovering from some (planned) surgery, which has left me sore, tired, cranky, and somewhat incapacitated. I can’t exercise, can’t walk much, and bike riding is out of the question. And instead of catching up on finishing drafts I’ve started months or years ago, I’ve been hanging out on web groups where I can read, leave a sentence or two, and move on. My well-known supply of patience has to be carefully rationed for a while.
Anyway, I was reading a particular web board, and somebody wrote a question about popular depictions of male submissiveness in the mainstream media. This subject being one of my hot buttons, I responded to the effect that while I can think of a lot of characterizations of male submissiveness, I only remember ones that have been portrayed for laughs or for outright humiliation. But acknowledging that I’m not up to par lately, I thought I’d toss this out to the handful of my readers who used to remember when I wrote a sex blog instead of a fitness blog.
Note that Ms. Ferns did a wonderful job of depicting images of sexy, desirable, submissive/bottoming men a few weeks ago, but those were solicited images, and not likely to be seen by many people not frequenters of our little corner of the sex blogging world. Similarly, Maymay hasn’t added to Male Submission Art in a while, but again, those are already depictions from porn or fetish shoots, and not typically seen on, say, network television.
Also note that there are many non-negative images of femdom or simply strong women in the media, but that’s not at question here. What I’m looking for are movies or TV shows (or any other media, advertising, literature, etc.) that depict submissive men in a positive or even desirable fashion. The men don’t need to be obviously sexually submissive; that is, I don’t expect to see men dressed like exotic dancers or wearing fetish gear. I’m looking for characters that are portrayed in a manner in which their partner sees them as sexy or desirable, or even appreciates their devotion.
If you can think of anything, please leave a comment. Hell, if you’ve given this some thought and you can’t think of anything, leave a comment saying so. At least I’ll know it’s not just my imagination (or lack of it) at work.
And as a reward for reading this post, here’s a nice image of femdomme and malesub that’s not based on cruelty or humiliation.
So I’m just browsing
porn on Tumblr the internet news sites the other day, and thinking about the irony in my having started a fitness porn page to keep updates about my weight loss and exercise (you can blame Ms. Ferns for that), and how that doesn’t seem to jibe with my penchant for reposting pictures of women who are a bit on the curvy side, when I happen to stumble across this Live Science post in my RSS reader:
Men under stress find overweight and obese women to be more attractive than do guys in a relaxed state of mind, new research finds.
The headline and article were fascinating, if short, but as with many studies in human nature, I think that sometimes we have to take a step back for some perspective. For example:
After the stressful faux interview or quiet waiting period, the men rated the attractiveness of photos of women who ranged in weight from emaciated to obese.
The results revealed that the stressed-out men rated heavier bodies more positively than did men who hadn’t experienced stress. Stressed men also rated normal weight women as more attractive than did their relaxed counterparts.
The evolutionary biology explanation is that stress brings us to operate in some kind of survival mode in which we perceive larger women to have better access to scarce resources than emaciated or thin women. Fair enough, I guess, but let me advance a culturally biased hypothesis: Heavier women carry a cultural connotation of pleasure, and men who are stressed perceive them as potential partners to help relieve such stresses (e.g., through sex, cuddling, dinners, sex, etc.).
Personally, though, I think that most such studies are pleasant, but ultimately trivial academic side trips. If I’m going to pass time idly, I prefer to actually look, or even interact with such objects of attraction, especially after a stressful day in the quarry pits. For example:
For example, I’ve been staring at this picture for five minutes now, and I certainly feel much less stress about things.
What’s that? You’re still stressed? Okay, let’s see what we can do.
Okay, one more. If this doesn’t adjust your attitude, then you need professional help:
And now I have to stop blogging, because these last few pictures have rendered me pretty much incapable of doing anything constructive for the next hour or two.
Sorry, I was just feeling lonely, so I picked a title that I thought would get some traffic. Hey, it brought you, didn’t it?
Ferns has decided that as the umpteenth anniversary of her 29th birthday looms, she wants to stop being the soft, little thing we’ve come to know, and to become the hardbody goddess that we all imagine her to be. And since she gets lonely, all the way over in that little island, she was hoping that some of you could join in with her.
Ferns is doing a “Body for Life” workout routine, which is an upper/lower body split 3 days a week, with cardio thrown in the intervening days. It’s tough – Mrs. Edge and I did that together a few years ago, and while it worked very well, each day we’d walk out of the gym exhausted. More than once our arms or legs would still be trembling too much to drive home.
Most of my long-suffering readers know that I’ve maintained my own exercising since then. Unfortunately, I’ve had to give up some of the lifting because of some stupid physical injuries I sustained, probably from
lifting things that were too heavy pushing a busload of children off some railroad tracks. But I’ve continued to diet and have been bicycling longer and longer distances, so I’ve decided to take Ms. Ferns up on her challenge. I’ve been looking for an easy to use exercise tracker that allows me to share my progress, but I haven’t run across anything that really looks like it will do exactly what I want; I may just have to post weekly updates on this blog.
With that in mind, here are some starting pictures: This is me at 175 pounds (79.5 kg, or 12.5 stone for you Brits). My goal is to get down to 165 by the end of the summer or early fall. That’s going to be tough with several family vacations planned, but with your support and encouragement, I think we can do it.
BTW, for those of you unfamiliar with cycling, the shorts are meant to be worn commando, i.e., with nothing underneath. I plan to be wearing them a lot over the summer.
Raposo’s comment leads me to ask the question: Is my hair too long? Do I need a close-cropped cut now? Or can I get away with the boyish look for a few more years?
Social conventions change slowly… but they do change. This means that we need to keep abreast of the latest trends in order to provide support when and where it’s needed.
More specifically, unmarried old people are having sex without the awareness of the precautions that younger people now take for granted. The rate of senior citizens with Sexually Transmitted Diseases has skyrockted over the last ten years, with no appearance of slowing down for the foreseeable future.
Fortunately, some people had the foresight to get on this. Safer Sex for Seniors is a new website offering up tips, advice, and information for seniors interested in pursuing an active sex life. It’s an example of a good, informational website that doesn’t presuppose that all of it’s users will be cis-gendered straight married couples; the sidebar informational links to PDFs on topics ranging from Bisexuality, to Transgender issues, to condom use, to one’s sexual rights while in institutional care, to using adult toys.
Safer Sex for Seniors produced a short video that highlights the issues of “safe sex” STD prevention, while keeping a light-hearted tone that’s not patronizing. Apparently, we’ve learned something since the big sexual education programs of the 1980s.
I know that some of you are looking at these pictures of what are, frankly, older and out-of-shape people posing in what might be some of your own favorite positions, and are wondering if you’ll ever feel comfortable around your parents or grandparents again. You need to keep in mind that there is no age at which one suddenly loses sexual desire. You also need to learn that the images that you’re looking at in this post, and on the SS4S’s cute poster are pretty much what all of us have to look forward to when we’re past retirement age.
Personally, I find that as I get older, I’m still attracted to women my own age, and occasionally find myself wondering what lies ahead, sexually speaking, when I’m in my 70s or 80s.
The only drawback about the SS4S website (and their Twitter account) is that I’m having a hard time imagining enough seniors savvy enough with the internet to access their website. That is, are the seniors who are not familiar with the internet the same ones that could benefit the most from this information? And does anyone have any ideas on how to promote this message to those who really need it?
While the opinion has surfaced any number of times, finally there’s some confirmation.
Think that’s only a song?
From The Elite Daily
‘The internet is for porn,’ is the title of a song on hit musical Avenue Q. And it turns out the lyricists had touched on a home truth, because researchers have discovered that a staggering 30 per cent of all internet traffic is pornography.
The biggest porn site on the web – Xvideos – receives 4.4billion page views and 350million unique visits per month, according to a report on the ExtremeTech website.
The only sites that surpass this in size are the likes of Google and Facebook.
It then used these figures – and actual data from the third biggest porn site, YouPorn – to extrapolate how much data is being transferred out of the site’s servers.
And it’s a huge amount.
It based the first calculation on the average length of time spent on Xvideos, which is 15minutes, and assumed a low resolution video was being streamed.
From this it estimated that around 29 petabytes of pornography is being transferred a month, or 50 gigabytes per second.
However, it upped this estimate to 35 to 40PB per month after learning that YouPorn hosts over 100TB of porn, gets 100million page views and transfers 950 terabytes per day.
That’s the equivalent of 10 dual-layer DVDs per second.
At peak times, it speculates that Xvideos is streaming 1,000 gigabytes per second (or one terabyte), which, the report points out, is one fifteenth of the total amount of connectivity between London and New York.
So, roughly a third of internet traffic is porn, and that probably doesn’t include the various adult-oriented WordPress, Blogger, and Tumblr traffic, nor the handful of specialized web forums, etc.
I mention this because this report comes just after the hint that several of the Republican frontrunner candidates have come out as being against internet pornography. This strikes me as interesting because candidates usually claim to be acting on what their supporters want, but in this case, the statistics would indicate that a pretty significant number of their supporters are consumers. There’s a certain irony, too, in that last year there were news reports about the largest demographic for porn consumption was in the southern and south-western US, the same areas that traditionally seem to be the most conservative.
More interestingly, those kinds of numbers point out just how large the porn business must be; and from there, it’s not a stretch to imagine that such an industry must contribute to some pretty decent tax revenues, and add to the coffers of the local economies.
While I’m not a big porn consumer, myself, I support the right of other people to view what they want. So, yeah. Porn. It’s good for you, and good for the economy.