I S.U.Q.

Bitchy Jones being, well, Bitchy Jones, is ranting about something (yes, really) on which she’s touched on in the past: Submissive men who are too worried about being properly subby to be sexy. She touches briefly on a quiz that she ran into on Ms Rika’s website, which outlines some of stereotyped ways for men to demonstrate their submissiveness, especially to women partners who aren’t totally with the program.

Now, I know that Beej is all about the hot, down’n’dirty, sweaty, panting, heaving, muscular, stubbly, lust-driven sexy-sex part of submission. You know, the manly, macho submissive thing. I’m down with that, really. I’ll dig trenches, climb mountains, and row across rivers.

Yeah, I know that the really macho guys would swim, but I’m not a good swimmer. Besides, the rowing would be good for my abs.

I happen to like the Ms. Rika site; it’s not a “You worthless, pathetic worm!”kind of domination, nor is the site overrun with R/rules for P/proper C/capitalization. It strikes me as the kind of site that (mostly) vanilla guys frequent when they’re looking for ideas to trick finagle gently suggest domination to their (very) vanilla partners. I realize that this smacks of “stealth submission” but maybe we need to revisit that concept.

Here are the questions on The Sub Utility Quotient found on Ms. Rika’s pages:

Score: 2 points for tasks done regularly, 1 point for task not desired or not applicable, and 0 points for tasks not done regularly.

Housework:
1. Cook all meals and clean up afterwards.
2. Prepare a weekly menu and review it with your partner
3. Do the shopping for the food, track food usage, and keep the
kitchen stocked.
4. Clean the bathrooms (with brushes and cleanser, not your tongue)
5. Make the beds (including the pillows).
6. Do the laundry, iron, fold and put away.
7. Dust and vacuum and yes, do the windows too 🙂
8. Put out potpourris, candles, or oils with her favorite scents so that the house is always fragrant.
9. Feed, bathe, and groom the pets.
10. Take the children to school (or bring them to the bus stop).
11. Do home repairs within your capabilities.
12. Take the garbage pails to the curb on garbage nights.
13. Clean the pails after the garbage has been collected.
14. Package the recycling, wrap the newspapers and bring them to the curb on recycling days.
15. Prepare the monthly bills and payments for review and prepare all checks for the domme’s signature.

Yardwork** :
16. Mow, edge, and trim the yard regularly.
17. Take care of the garden beds and trim the trees.
18. Make certain the lawn and flower beds are watered regularly.
19. Care for the pool and spa.
20. Keep the patio, drive, and garage swept and clean,
including cobwebs.
21. Remove the leaves from the gutters.
**(these items may be marked as 2 points each if the work is done by a lawn service AND the sub manages the relationship (i.e., payment, negotiations, appointment management, etc)

Nightly Activities:
22. Bring late night snacks while his partner watches TV.
23. Give up the remote! LOL!
24. Go on the Internet and research the Dish schedule (or TV Guide) and print out items which are of interest to the domme.
25. Get on the Internet and read the papers and her magazines to create the equivalent of an executive clipping service… articles of interest with key points highlighted.
26. Take down her bed (including the pillows).
27. Sit on the toilet seat before she needs to go in (in the winter it gets kind of cold).
28. Take her cell phone from her bag and put it on the charger (and then put it back in her bag, turned on, in the morning).
29. Draw the blinds and shades (and open them in the morning).
30. Put toothpaste on her toothbrush.
31. Fill her glass with water.
32. Bring her slippers.
33. Brush her hair.
34. Lay out the clothes she selects and press as appropriate.
35. Light scented candles, and put them out after she is asleep.
36. MASSAGE her back until she falls asleep (every night) 🙂 🙂 🙂

In the Car:
37. Keep a pager or cell phone so you can be called to pick her up at a moments notice.
38. Ask her if she’d prefer to drive!
39. If not, drive her wherever she needs to go and wait for her to
come out.
40. Arrive at the front of the building within 10 seconds of her first step outside the door, 5 if the weather is not good. Keep an umbrella handy and escort her to the car if it’s raining.
41. Keep her favorite magazines and CDs in the car.
42. Never, ever criticize her driving or suggest a “quicker way” (unless she requests it).
43. Wash the car regularly inside and out.
44. Preheat and de-ice the car on cold mornings.

Around the House:
45. Pee sitting down so that the toilet seat is never up and you don’t
leave “droplets”.
46. Prepare her bath (and the kid’s baths, if appropriate) and run the water until it’s warm for her showers.
47. Paint her toenails.
48. Pick up her shoes from the front hallway and carry them to her closet, inspect them and polish them as need be (with real polish, not saliva).
49. Keep her favorite magazines, books and CD’s ready in her favorite sitting areas.
50. Answer the phone and make phone calls for her (such as ordering items she’s marked in a catalogue).

How’d you do?

Okay, some of it’s a bit “nancy boy,” no question about it. Mrs. Edge would, fearing brain damage, rush me to the hospital if she saw me refilling the potpourri. If she found some of her favorite music in my car, she’d assume that I was turning gay. No friggin’ way will I lay out her clothes, either – I already have enough problems trying to answer the “Does this skirt make my butt look big?” questions. And if I make the bed with her still in it one more time, I’m going to be in serious trouble.

I’ve tried doing her flower beds around the house. The end result of that was needing to replace 3/4 of the foundation plantings. Hey, it’s not my fault that so many “decorative” plants look just like weeds, and vice versa.

But this “quiz” raises another issue. How much of this is simply something that we do for our partners, not as a “submissive” act, but simply out of consideration for someone that we love? Running down this list, I do quite a bit of these things – more successfully than I am at weeding, I might add.

I always warm up and scrape off Mrs. Edge’s car in the winter. I’ve even been known to leave work early and swing by her place to scrape off her car before she leaves the office. Okay, I’ve only been known to do it a half dozen times, but still…

We switch driving, I usually clean the bathrooms, and we split other chores. I tend to do more cooking, and she tends to do more laundry (admittedly my laundry skills are only marginally better than my gardening skills). She gets the kids off for school, but that’s because I leave earlier. And as we have an auxiliary hot water heater installed under the bathroom, she’s got hot water in five seconds. I don’t polish her nails because she and the Edgelette trade this on their occasional “girl’s night.” Or they go down the street to have them done. Mrs. Edge controls the TV remote, but that’s because I don’t watch tv, especially when I could be blogging. I do take her cell phone and charge it, but that’s because I’m somehow the head of IT at the Edge household, and cell phones and PDAs fall under my umbrella.

And speaking of umbrellas, I usually have two in my car, and I usually drive her up to the entrance of a store and drop her off in the rain. I don’t put toothpaste on her toothbrush – sorry, that’s just weird. And we don’t do the late night snack thing because we’re both doing some serious training, but I do get her a glass of water when I’m heading in that direction, and will make her coffee if she asks.

Oh, and for cryin’ out loud, is it that difficult to lift the friggin’ toilet seat?

The point here is that except for a handful of items, these are mostly things that we already do for each other, simply because doing nice things for each other is one of the lubricants of a good relationship. Certainly, the list of things that Mrs. Edge does for me is at least this long, and overlaps in some areas. I don’t bring the laundry basket up the stairs because it’s some kind of “stealth submission” and certainly she doesn’t wash my socks because she, herself, is a secret submissive.

Look, we could all poke fun at some of the items on this list. Potpourri? Nightly back massages? Running a bath? We all have our little likes and dislikes and habits that, taken outside of the context of our relationship would look odd. And notice that this list had nothing about chastity devices, orgasm denial, lingerie, dressing up in sissy maid clothes, or finding other male partners. Hell, it didn’t mention anything about plain, old vanilla sex. Lists like this are not outlines for submissive behavior, they are outlines for (what our society considers to be) romantic behavior.

That said, I want to also point out that the reason we see so many lists like this is because there are apparently quite a few guys out there who, for whatever reasons, seem to stop “dating” their partners. They stop opening doors, and bringing thoughtful gifts (which could be flowers or vibrators, so let’s not judge), and showing some of the consideration that they exhibited when the relationship was new. These lists, I think, serve as reminders to men who are clueless as to why they are getting less sexual attention. And to those who forget that a D/s relationship is not all about the D/s; it’s also about the relationship.

About Tom Allen

The Grey Geezer Dauntless defender of, um, something that needed dauntless defending. Dammit, I can't read this script without my glasses. Hey, you kids, get off my damn lawn!
This entry was posted in BDSM, D/s, femdom, kink, Manliness, personality, Stereotypes, Submission. Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to I S.U.Q.

  1. nigel says:

    Bravo ! and again Bravo !!!!

    I have a lot of difficulty with the “omline” D/s communities definition of submission because to me this is “normal” behaviour if you cherish your partner! Unfortunately this is a cross cultural problem because many of my mates do not even lift a finger to help their partners. Conversely there are SOME really sicko women out there who “get off’ trying to “change” bad boys!! (Jane Austen groupy types) So to the neo-feminist, in your face, high school principal queen bee, wanna-a-bee’s, I’m a bad ass bitch, with an attitude;

    get a crip! date nice guys.

  2. devastatingyet says:

    I think you nailed it with this:

    These lists…serve as reminders to men who are clueless as to why they are getting less sexual attention.

    Some of these are basic helpful behaviors, others are romantic, and some (the toothpaste thing – like I want to stand around waiting for someone to come over and do this for me??) are just weird.

    Offering service is a legitimate way to embark (very gently, and with absolutely no guarantee of ever getting where you’d like to be) on a d/s relationship from the s side. It’s how Joscelin did it with me, though he was never stealthy about it. If your partner appreciates it, there is a chance that she might be willing to start demanding more of it, and that’s something that would be life-alteringly meaningful to some submissives.

    On the other hand, if your increased domestic usefulness makes your vanilla wife think less of you, then you can sort of start sorting things out differently in your mind and facing the tough questions. Sometimes our partners will just never meet our needs.

    I agree with Bitchy that this list, though, is not anything like what most dominant women are hoping for from their submissive men. I know it’s not what I want. I want passion, a drive to be dominated, a desire to take pain for me, hot fucking, and all that other stuff. I can hire someone to clean the house, but you can’t (really) pay for that sweet, hot, tear-bringing-to-eye look they give you. Yum.

  3. Eileen says:

    Thanks, Tom. I was trying to figure out a way to say just that.

    Romance. Yes. More needs to be written about romance.

  4. Kate says:

    I’m with Eileen…romance is a GOOD thing. Along with the hot, passionate need to be dominated.

  5. Tom Allen says:

    Yeah, at some point it occurred to me that in between Beej’s rantings and ravings, she was really talking about what we sometimes call “romance” which now seems to need a whole new definition.

  6. sexywhispers says:

    Wow….I am impressed and I understand your score! Good for you. I read all the way to the end waiting for the BUT…but it never arrived. You stayed intelligent and evolved until the end!

    Diana
    http://www.sexywhispers.wordpress.com

  7. Lotus says:

    Bravo. I agree whole heartedly- a lot of goofy stuff around D/s relationships is simply old fashioned “this is how you act in a relationship” advice given in a way that’s intended to give men boners.

    Which just looks weird to me. Potpourri?

  8. Susan says:

    Nice post Tom.

    Nigel, I like your non submissive side grrrrr:)

    I think getting your partner to change the sexual dynamic in your relationship has little to do with backrubs and candy. It’s nice but I think a much deeper connection or in many cases a reconnection needs to be made in the relationship. For many women that happens far away from the bedroom.

  9. Juliet says:

    Romance: undoubtedly a good thing. Yay for romance, and considerateness.

    But, at least from where I’m standing, romance, and being considerate of each other, are relationship things. Equal things. Things that *both* people should be doing for each other. And labelling that as “submission” makes me sad.

    (I also really do find some of that list a bit creepy. But then I have a very strong opinion about how adult humans should manage their own damn lives and not expect someone else to do it for them. I wouldn’t actually *want* someone to be doing that much tedious-life-stuff management for me; would freak me out. Um. It’s like the difference between an IM saying “hey love, did you see [interesting piece of news]” (which my partners & I exchange all the time, & which I think is probably part of good relationship communication stuff), and the suggestion there to spend time actively looking for such things. The whole list seems rather like that.)

  10. maymay says:

    I like a lot of Ms. Rika’s writings a lot, too. It’s obvious she’s talking to a more vanilla crowd, though, and of course there are things I don’t find personally applicable, but that’s the case with everything. People need to learn that it’s okay to try something on and, if it doesn’t fit, not to take it as the be-all-and-end-all of, well, everything.

    Anyways, I had a point somewhere in here and totally forgot it now. Damn it. Good post, though, is basically what I wanted to say to you, Tom.

  11. Tom Allen says:

    And people – some people – need to learn that not all things apply to all people or circumstances, and that’s perfectly okay, too.

  12. bitchyjones says:

    I’ll dig trenches, climb mountains, and row across rivers.

    *Rawr*

    Did i steal the phrase ‘stealth submission’ off you Tommy? It’s that good I thought it was one of mine.

  13. Tom Allen says:

    It’s that good I thought it was one of mine.

    *rolls eyes*

    No man is a prophet in his own land.

  14. Elizabeth says:

    Hey Tom –

    My husband is your basic prince, one of those “how does he put up with her” kinds of people. I’m absurdly spoiled on most of the *sane* items on the list.

    “Utility”?

    Is this what makes him “useful” to me? Gah, that’s such insulting language, I think, if you are talking about a real relationship. (If this were a fantasy list on a pro dom site, I would have shrugged and never sent Beej the link.)

    I agree that if the subject were reframed as “romantic suggestions”, with no scores, and some of the crazy shit cut out, a good part of the list might be helpful to thicker headed people who hadn’t thought of *doing things specifically for your partner’s pleasure* before.

    And of course, adding *sex* in there somewhere, for pete’s sake! 🙂

    hugs, E

  15. Destiny says:

    Very nicely said Tom.

    Too many take everyday small gestures, people in love that respect each other just do for each other and try to turn them into “FemDom” moments.

    Destiny

  16. Switch (Fetishlore) says:

    I really liked this entry. Some of the things on the quiz (like the toothpaste bit) are just plain weird, but you’re right most of it is just plain romantic and considerate. It’s perfectly vanilla too, but there isn’t anything wrong with that. Doing your share and a little extra here and there is what makes a relationship tick.

    Let’s here it not only for good old fashioned romance but for good old fashioned consideration too.

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